Serendipity SOUL | Thursday Open Thread | Neo SOUL Week!

dwele-singer-350Happy Thursday, Everyone. Today’s featured artist is Dwele.

DWELE-images (2)

Wiki: Andwele Gardner (born February 14, 1978),[1] better known by his stage name Dwele is a soul singer, songwriter and record producer from Detroit, Michigan.

Gardner was raised on the west side of Detroit in a musical family. He played piano from the age of six, later taking up trumpet, bass and guitar.[2][3][4] He was deeply affected by the fatal shooting of his father outside his home when he was age ten, later stating “I learned to put my emotions into music; it was my therapy.”[2][5] He cites Stevie Wonder, Donny Hathaway, Roy Ayers, Miles Davis, and Freddie Hubbard as favorite artists, and took inspiration from hip hop group A Tribe Called Quest, becoming an MC, and working with Slum Village.[2]

Gardner recorded a demo in his bedroom, called, The Rize, and sold it out of the trunk of his car.[2] He had about 100 copies, which sold out within a week. He caught the ears of local heroes Slum Village and more specifically their world-renowned producer J Dilla.[4] Slum Village invited Dwele to sing the hook of the song “Tainted” for their album Trinity (Past, Present and Future). It became an instant classic and led to more high profile work with female rapper Bahamadia, the all-star group Lucy Pearl and London’s New Sector Movement.[4] Dwele signed to Virgin Records in 2003, and the label released his debut album, Subject, which mixed neo soul and hip hop.[2]

In a 2005 review in The Independent, his style was summed up: “Dwele’s rooted in vintage soul but isn’t stuck in the past, overly reverential or an exercise in pastiche – there’s a major hip-hop edge which betrays his original incarnation as a rapper.”[6] A second album, Some Kinda…, followed in 2005.[2] He then later signed with RT Music Group and KOCH records in March, 2008[7] He released his fourth album titled, W.ants W.orld W.omen on June 29, 2010.

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58 Responses to Serendipity SOUL | Thursday Open Thread | Neo SOUL Week!

  1. rikyrah says:

    March 14, 2013 2:42 PM

    Another Shoe Drops In South Carolina

    By Ed Kilgore

    I hope all those pundits who keep confidently predicting that once all the bluster ends the states will uniformly agree to implement the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion note that South Carolina decidedly isn’t doing so. Here’s the report from The State’s Adam Beam:

    House lawmakers refused to expand Medicaid in South Carolina on Tuesday after hours of debate that echoed the conflicts of class, race and religion.

    For nearly five hours on Tuesday, Democrats quoted statistics and scripture in arguing for an amendment to the state’s $22.7 billion spending plan that would make 500,000 more poor people eligible for taxpayer-funded health insurance. They even proposed an amendment that would require any lawmaker voting against the expansion to forfeit their own taxpayer-funded health insurance.

    But Republicans – who control the state House of Representatives – said the plan would cost too much and questioned if it would improve the health of South Carolinians. Amendments were defeated with a series of votes along party lines

    Technically, the South Carolina Senate could keep the possibility of the expansion alive, but given Republican control of that chamber, and Gov. Nikki Haley’s pledge to veto any expansion, that ain’t happening. Haley’s message of congratulations to her House allies had a nice ironic touch:

  2. rikyrah says:

    Liberals to Dem leaders: Don’t even think about touching Social Security benefits
    Posted by Greg Sargent on March 14, 2013 at 1:40 pm

    Multiple reports out today suggest that Dem leaders in the House and Senate are edging towards supporting Chained CPI for Social Security as part of the “grand bargain” Obama wants to replace the sequester with — and that’s already sparking sharp pushback from Congressional liberals.

    “Why are we doing this?” Dem Rep. Keith Ellison, a co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, said to me in an interview today. Asked which is worse, continued sequestration or a grand bargain that cuts entitlement benefits, Ellison said: “It’s like saying, `Which of your kids do you want to sacrifice to the monster?’ Neither one.”

    Ellison is backed up by over 100 other House Dems who have pledged to fight any cuts to retirement benefits, including Chained CPI, a way of indexing Social Security benefits to inflation that amounts to a real benefits cut.

    At a presser today, Nancy Pelosi signaled openness to Chained CPI, saying: “If we can demonstrate that it doesn’t hurt the poor and the very elderly, then let’s take a look at it. Because compared to what? Compared to Republicans saying Medicare should wither on the vine?” Meanwhile, the Post quoted administration officials claiming both Pelosi and Harry Reid are on board with the grand bargain and are ready to rally rank and file Dems to support politically difficult cuts to retirement programs in exchange for real tax increases.

  3. rikyrah says:

    Dems to Ryan: We’ll see your budget plan and raise you another
    By Steve Benen
    Thu Mar 14, 2013 10:12 AM EDT.

    It’s clearly not fair that House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) unveiled his far-right budget proposal this week to great fanfare, but Senate Democrats unveil a rival plan and it gets almost no attention at all. After all, GOP officials have been screaming bloody murder for months, demanding that Dems present a budget, and then when they do, it goes almost entirely overlooked.

    Sure, one could make the argument that Senate Democrats got unlucky, unveiling their plan on the same day a new pope was chosen, but it’s probably safe to say the rival budget wouldn’t have been front-page news whether the Vatican smoke was black or white.

    And why is that? It’s probably less a matter of party and ideology, and more a matter of policy scope. The Ryan budget, as Matt Yglesias noted, is “almost frighteningly ambitious,” aiming for “sweeping social transformation.” The House Republican plan wants nothing less than to undo much of American society, taking a sledgehammer to pillars of modern public life such as Medicare. It is the exact opposite of classical conservatism — what Ryan has in mind is literally radical and a sharp departure from contemporary American norms.

    The Senate Democratic budget, meanwhile, is … modest. It has no intention of trying to transform modern American life, and seeks fiscal responsibility through gradual tweaks and reforms. It’s a middle-of-the-road budget, setting a target of $1.85 trillion in debt reduction, divided perfectly between new revenue and new spending cuts. It eyes changes to social-insurance programs like Medicare, but goes out of its way to avoid touching benefits.

  4. rikyrah says:

    Dems plotting to lay a tax trap for GOP
    Posted by Greg Sargent on March 14, 2013 at 11:51 am

    I’m told that national Democrats are planning to mount a major campaign to hammer Republican candidates — particularly ones in swing areas — over a specific aspect of the Paul Ryan budget: The possibility that it could result in middle class tax hikes.

    The idea, a source tells me, is to tie this back to the political trap that ensnared Mitt Romney during last year’s campaign — his inability to explain how his massive tax rate cuts, including on the rich, would be paid for without closing loopholes enjoyed by the middle class.

    The Ryan plan, of course, promises to cut everyone’s taxes, by collapsing all tax brackets into just two brackets, with the top earners seeing their rates slashed to 25 percent as a goal, and others paying a 10 percent rate. But Ryan’s plan doesn’t say how this would be paid for, claiming that the process of eliminating loopholes and deductions should be left to committee. As one tax expert explained to me the other day, because of this and other lingering questions about how exactly the tax cuts would be structured, it’s impossible to say at this point whether those tax cuts could be paid for without hitting middle class loopholes.

  5. rikyrah says:

    GOP spins its wheels on health care
    By Steve Benen
    Thu Mar 14, 2013 10:43 AM EDT.

    It was just two months ago when it seemed the fight in Washington over health care was largely over. After all, what more was there to fight about? The election was over; the Supreme Court fight was resolved; Republican governors were beginning to grudgingly implement the law; and even House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) called the Affordable Care Act “the law of the land.” GOP candidates spent a year running on a repeal platform, and they lost.

    And yet, despite all of this, Republicans just can’t move on. Dana Milbank explained:

    On Wednesday, Senate Republicans supported legislation proposed by the freshman [Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas] to defund Obamacare — the 35th attempt, give or take, to abolish the program.

    This one failed, like all the others.

    Doing the same thing again and again and expecting a different result, it has been said, defines insanity. But among Senate Republicans, the lunatics are running the asylum.

  6. rikyrah says:

    Elizabeth Warren has some questions

    By Steve Benen
    Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:36 PM EDT

    Following up on a story we’ve been following, President Obama nominated Richard Cordray to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau about a year ago, and no one could find any objections to his qualifications. But Republicans don’t believe the agency, so they blocked Cordray’s nomination in order to stop the law from being implemented. Indeed, GOP senators said they would indefinitely refuse to allow the agency to function — or do any work at all — unless Democrats agreed to weaken the CFPB’s powers and lessen consumer protections.

    Just so we’re clear, this had never happened in American history. There was no precedent for the Senate blocking a qualified nominee solely because a minority of the chamber did not like the existence of the agency the nominee was selected to lead.

    Obama gave Cordray a recess appointment, and the CFPB has been acting on behalf of consumers ever since, but given the rules of how recess appointments work, the president has re-nominated Cordray for the post he already holds. The Senate Banking Committee met yesterday to consider the nomination once again, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who personally helped create the CFPB, asked some very worthwhile questions — not of Cordray, but of her GOP colleagues.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Got a lil heated up in there! LOL

    Feinstein became furious at one point with Cruz, who she saw as lecturing to her about the meaning of the Constitution and why the framers of that document used certain language.

    “I’m not a sixth grader,” she told the freshman Tea Party favorite. “I’m not a lawyer, but after 20 years I’ve been up close and personal to the Constitution. I have great respect for it … it’s fine you want to lecture me on the Constitution. I appreciate it. Just know I’ve been here for a long time. I’ve passed on a number of bills. I’ve studied the Constitution myself. I am reasonably well educated, and I thank you for the lecture.”

    Cruz responded by asking Feinstein if she also thought she had the power to interpret the First Amendment by deciding what books people could read.
    Feinstein said she was happy that child pornography was illegal, and Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) stepped in, bringing up controversies in Cruz’s home state over the content of its textbooks.

  8. rikyrah says:

    Jeff Gauvin ‏@JeffersonObama
    The Emos have won the prime time 8PM @MSNBC slot with Chris Hayes. More Emoprog Obama impeachment talk over uber left wing pet issues.

    zizi2 ‏@zizii2
    @ChrislHayes at 8 pm slot says MSNBC doesn’t care abt working class audiences, steelworkers. firefighters, nurses. It’ll be Maddow redux

  9. rikyrah says:

    The Morning Plum: Where’s the leadership, John Boehner?

    Posted by Greg Sargent on March 14, 2013 at 9:22 am

    Every GOP Senator and member of Congress needs to be asked a simple question: Is there any ratio of entitlement cuts of your own choosing to new revenues that you’d find acceptable?

    Let’s just cut through the BS about whether Obama’s “outreach” is genuine and whether Obama has exercised sufficient “leadership.” Either Republicans are willing to reach some kind of compromise, or they aren’t. Until there’s clarity on this point, everything else is just noise. The above question would help clarify it.

    Case in point: John Boehner’s remarkable Op ed in the Washington Post today.

    Yesterday Obama met with House Republicans. While there was a lot of grousing, a few were willing to admit Obama had offered them real entitlement cuts. According to Sahil Kapur’s report, one House Republican said: “He did express a willingness to give on entitlements.” Another said: “He focused a lot on entitlements.”

  10. Ametia says:

    More Cracka CRAZINESS

  11. Ametia says:

    For shits & giggles

  12. Ametia says:

    Charges Won’t Be Filed In Teen’s Death From Arrow
    March 7, 2013 1:36 PM

    MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Authorities said Thursday that criminal charges won’t be filed against the teen that shot and killed his best friend with a bow-and-arrow, calling the incident an accident.

    Dakota County prosecutors determined in an investigation of the incident that the boy who shot and killed Spencer Swanson was trying to get the arrow out of the bow when his fingers lost control and the bow discharged. The incident happened at about 6:25 p.m. on Oct. 13, 2012, in Chaska as Swanson and the boy were about to head to a community center to play basketball. The boy wanted to show Spencer his bow, which had just been restrung.

    It had a blunt tip less, arrow that was pointed at a tree. Spencer was riding his bike down a hill towards his friend when the boy tried to take the arrow out of the bow. The boy’s hands slipped and the arrow accidentally shot and hit Spencer in the forehead from 94 feet away. Spencer was transported to Hennepin County Medical Center, where he died from his injuries two days later.

    Authorities say no drugs or alcohol were a factor in the incident and that there was no clear sign the boy had intended to injure Swanson.

  13. rikyrah says:

    No “charm offensive” could ever win over Paul Ryan and his disciples
    Posted by Greg Sargent on March 13, 2013 at 3:47 pm

    The Paul Ryan budget should not be treated as a one-day story. The ideas in it represent the clearest expression of the GOP’s blueprint for the country’s fiscal and economic future you could possibly want.

    News is trickling out right now that Obama’s meeting with House Republicans today didn’t satisfy them. But if you want to understand why it’s crazy to expect any “charm offensive” to work, look no further than the Ryan budget. No amount of schmoozing can bridge the divide between Obama and anyone who seriously subscribes to the views it embodies.

    I strongly urge you to read and absorb the liberal-leaning Center on Budget and Policy Priorities’ stunning analysis of the document. The key takeaway from the CBPP analysis is that the Ryan budget would take government subsidized health coverage away from tens of millions of people, and dramatically roll back a big range of programs that millions of poor and middle class Americans rely upon, even as it hands the rich even bigger tax rate cuts than the ones Mitt Romney proposed in the 2012 campaign. This, after decisively losing that campaign.

    The analysis is startling, illustrating in new ways the draconian nature of this budget and the amount of budgetary hocus pocus in it. Some key points:

  14. rikyrah says:

    Ed Schultz Fills an Important Niche

    by BooMan
    Thu Mar 14th, 2013 at 11:06:49 AM EST

    I have this very vague recollection of a point in time when I read a comment on some blog, probably Daily Kos, where a progressive was praising Ed Schultz, and I had a moment of cognitive dissonance because I thought Ed Schultz was a right-wing shock jock. It turns out, I was right. He was a right-wing shock jock before he had an epiphany

    In 1998, just two years after starting his talk show, “News and Views,” Schultz met a psychiatric nurse named Wendy Noack, who would become his second wife. Noack worked a second job running a homeless shelter for the city of Fargo, and insisted that Schultz meet her at a soup kitchen on their first date. The experience of eating a baloney sandwich while surrounded by downtrodden men whom he was paid to lambast on the air rattled Schultz’s conservative worldview, and he began what he describes as a period of soul-searching that lasted several years. During this time, he made multiple trips around his coverage area in a 38-foot RV dubbed “The Big Eddie Cruiser,” visiting with struggling farmers and other members of America’s underclass who were largely absent from media coverage during the tech boom of the ’90s. Schultz emerged from this period a changed man.
    “I don’t think anyone wakes up one day and says ‘I’m a liberal,’” Schultz admits. “But I underwent a number of grassroots experiences that brought me around to a different perspective.”

    Cynics can doubt Schultz’s sincerity and criticize him for his chameleon-like ambition, but I think he’s spent enough time now with working men and women that his commitment to their causes should be beyond question. He may have his faults, but he fills a critical niche among white progressives. I don’t like to paint people into tight categories, but the progressive movement is mainly made up of three groups. The first and most powerful group is made of lawmakers who represent urban areas with large minority populations. Most of these lawmakers are black, Latino, or Asian, and they dominate the Progressive Caucus in the House of Representatives. The second group is made up of a combination of the academic world and the liberal-minded professional classes. The scientific community has a foot in each of these camps. It’s this second group that dominates the progressive blogosphere. It’s also where you find most of the MSNBC lineup. Chris Hayes went to Brown University; Lawrence O’Donnell went to Harvard; Rachel Maddow was a Rhodes Scholar; Ezra Klein went to UCLA; Melissa Harry-Perry has a doctorate from Duke University and has taught at Princeton. So, where does Big Ed fit in? He represents the third group: labor. He represents the interests of all working men and women, regardless of race. In fact, he seems to me to have a better understanding of how the labor and urban/minority groups are co-dependent and are empowered when they stand together than any other progressive I’ve seen on television.


    But I agree with him that it is very important to have a voice like Ed’s talking the way Ed does. If people on the left are looking for growth, they can wait around until demographics does their work for them, or they can go after the working class, convincing whites, registering non-whites, and working to bridge the natural cultural and racial divides between groups.
    The white progressive movement is dominated by intellectuals who have advanced degrees from top universities. There is nothing wrong with that. Except, quite often, these eggheads forget that they are numerically quite small in the overall progressive movement. Big Ed is a key piece in this landscape. So is Melissa Harris-Perry, who bridges the academic-urban/minority groups.

    • Ametia says:

      Big ED did good last night. I’m NEVER going to be DOWN with anyone, including BIG ED, telling Americans .TO.BOYCOTT THE 2010 ELECTIONS = DO NOT VOTE FOR THE DEMOCRATS. And guess what, THEY DIDN’T

  15. rikyrah says:

    President Talks to Crazy Brick Wall

    by BooMan
    Thu Mar 14th, 2013 at 10:04:20 AM EST

    President Obama went down to Capitol Hill yesterday to meet with House Republicans and was immediately barraged by their non-factual universe. To wit:

    Rep. James Lankford (R-Okla.) — the Republican Policy Committee chairman — brought up a familiar hobby-horse for House Republicans: that Obama is always campaigning.
    He asked about Organizing for Action’s (OFA) meeting. He complained that Obama called Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chair Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) before Boehner on election night. Obama said that wasn’t true and that he had called Boehner, but Boehner had gone to sleep, according to a source familiar with the meeting. The speaker said the president was right, the source said.

    I thought it was common knowledge that John Boehner passed out drunk in his easy chair right around the time that Karl Rove lost his shit on Fox News. At the least, I thought people knew that election night was just one more example of John Boehner not taking the president’s phone calls.

    In any case, it’s telling that Rep. James Lankford took his opportunity to ask the president a question and wasted it by regurgitating some lie he’s been reading on Drudge Report or NewsMax or wherever.

  16. rikyrah says:

    A matter of priorities
    By Steve Benen
    Thu Mar 14, 2013 9:25 AM EDT.

    We learned this week that sequestration cuts will force furloughs for those who help keep Americans’ food supply safe, will deny tuition assistance to military veterans, and cause real hardship on low-income Americans who rely on housing assistance.

    But for reasons that increasingly defy comprehension, Washington doesn’t want to talk about any of these issues or related sequester-related suffering. Instead, the cancelation of White House tours is dominating the Beltway conversation.

    By my count, there were eight questions about the tours at yesterday’s White House press briefing. George Stephanopoulos wanted to talk about this during a rare interview with President Obama, asking two questions on this. Congressional Republicans wanted to talk about this when the president met with them privately, and they’re weighing a new resolution on the issue.

    This was a bizarre distraction last week, but yesterday, it seems Washington’s interest in the sequestration cuts’ effect on White House tours took a farcical turn. The CBO says the sequester will cost the nation 750,000 jobs and the Beltway yawns; the White House says tours will be canceled and the Beltway screams.

    It’s hard not to wonder why media professionals are playing along with this. Time’s Michael Grunwald said reporters are “obsessed” with the tours issue because “Republicans are talking about” it, and I suspect there’s something to this. I’ve long argued that Washington is simply “wired” to advantage Republicans — it’s GOP ideas that get attention; it’s GOP talking points that get internalized; it’s GOP voices that get aired — and so it stands to reason that if Republicans care about White House tour cancelations, it’s the issue that the president’s press secretary will get eight questions on, to the neglect of real sequestration consequences.

  17. Ametia says:


    First Lady Michelle Obama delivers remarks on the Joining Forces Initiative to business leaders at the Business Roundtable Conference Center in Washington, March 13, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)

  18. rikyrah says:

    South Carolina GOP: ‘It’s Good Politics to Oppose the Policies of the Black Guy’

    By Imani Gandy (ABL) March 13th, 2013

    Post-racial America is my favorite.

    The South Carolina legislature rejected extra funding from Obamacare for Medicaid expansion this week, despite pleading from South Carolina Democrats, who urged the South Carolina GOP to stop acting like douchebags and extend Medicaid to thousands of poor South Carolinians.

    Democrats even pulled the old “What would Jesus do?” trick, appealing to Republicans’ sense of morality (scoff!), and quoting scripture and everything:

    Rep. Joe Neal, a Baptist pastor, told his colleagues they will account for their vote before God.

    “If our citizens don’t have access to health care, we rob them of all meaning of life,” said Neal, D-Hopkins. “What did you do for the least of these? We’ll all have to answer that question. Did we do what was right — what was fair?”

    Unsurprisingly, South Carolina Republicans were unmoved. One Republican in particular finally said in front of God and everyone what everygoddamnbody knows most of these wingnut assclowns have been thinking all along: Republicans oppose President Obama’s policies because he’s black, even when they otherwise agree with the policy.

    Meet Rep. Kris Crawford (R-Seriously Dude?): He supports the Medicaid expansion but voted against it anyway, because Obama’s black. Literally. He actually said it out loud back in January, bless his heart

    Rep. Kris Crawford, a Republican from Florence and also an emergency room doctor, supports the expansion but expects the Republican caucus to vote as a block against the Medicaid expansion.
    “The politics are going to overwhelm the policy. It is good politics to oppose the black guy in the White House right now, especially for the Republican Party,” Crawford said.

  19. Ametia says:

    Lawyer expects Supreme Court to uphold gay marriage

    A well-known attorney due to ask the U.S. Supreme Court this month to strike down a California law banning same-sex marriage says the high court may very well present a united front in favor of gay and lesbian rights.

    In a wide-ranging interview this week with the USA TODAY Editorial Board, attorney David Boies said he believes that the court’s ruling, expected in June, “will not be a 5-4 decision. I don’t know whether it’s going to be 6-3, it’s going to be 7-2,” he said. “I don’t know where it’s going to come out, but I don’t think this is going to be a 5-4 decision.”

    Chief Justice John Roberts’ surprise decision last year to uphold President Obama’s health care overhaul, he said, shows “the court’s willingness to take a careful look at issues and not just conform to some people’s view of where they’re going to come out.”

  20. Ametia says:


    ONE: Middle Age Queasy

    The Conservative Political Action Conference turns 40 this year, but don’t expect maturity from a gathering where the speakers include Sarah Palin, Ted Cruz, Artur Davis, Dick Morris, Wayne LaPierre, Rick Perry, Allen West and Donald Trump.

    The coveted keynote slot will provide a generous 33 minutes for Cruz to prevaricate, obfuscate, fabricate, fulminate and regurgitate. Organizers have allotted the second and third longest slots to Palin and Trump, respectively, though why Palin needs 16 minutes and Trump 14 to recite “me, me, glorious me” is a mystery only slightly less mysterious than either of them being invited to begin with. I suppose The Donald and The Sarah deserve grudging credit for realizing that Fitzgerald’s dictum about American lives having no second acts is irrelevant now that first acts can simply be prolonged indefinitely.

    Over and above her CPAC gig, Palin manages to keep busy just being Palin. She devoted at least part of Monday to crafting a tweet celebrating the overturning of New York City’s ban on sodas larger than 16 ounces:

    Victory in NYC for liberty-loving soda drinkers. To politicians with too much time on their hands we say: Govt, stay out of my refrigerator!

    Yep, the GRIFTING SNOW HO’ will cash in on that one liner.

  21. Ametia says:

    Chris Hayes to Take Over 8 P.M. Show on MSNBC
    54 min ago – March 14, 2013, 9:24 am

    Chris Hayes to Take Over 8 P.M. Show on MSNBC By BRIAN STELTER Chris Hayes will take over the 8 p.m. time slot on MSNBC in the next month, the channel is planning to announce on Thursday morning, hours after the current hos … (New York Times)

    • Ametia says:

      Seriously? “Mr. Hayes, a liberal intellectual who has hosted a well-regarded weekend morning program on MSNBC for the past 18 months, is a protégé of Rachel Maddow, the highest-rated host on the channel. On April 1 he will become the lead-in for her 9 p.m. program, “The Rachel Maddow Show.”

  22. Ametia says:


  23. rikyrah says:

    Found this at DarkStar Spouts Off::

    I know of Kay Coles James too….she’s been a Black Republican since Reagan.


    “The Calvary Is Not Coming”

    I have known of Kay Cole James for some time. I have NEVER, before,
    seen this side of her. I am blown away by this interview in World

    I’ve interviewed white conservatives who say civil rights problems are
    part of history, but race now is not that big a factor. Is this—white
    folks talking?

    It certainly is and I’m glad you said it because I was about to. I was
    a part of that group that integrated the schools in the South. I had
    to go past dogs to go to algebra. I know what that’s like. Overt
    racism in America is gone. Thank goodness it is no longer socially
    acceptable to be a racist. But covert racism is alive and well. I see
    it every day in subtle ways. To be standing in a line at a cosmetic
    counter and to be ignored three times while they wait on the person
    next to you. One of my very dearest, best, closest friends became
    upset because her daughter was dating a black guy. To be involved in a
    white church and you’re part of a Bible study and everybody in the
    Bible study goes on vacation together but they didn’t invite you.

    Holy cow! I mean, WOW.

    You feel used?

    They’re telling me I was only important and significant to the degree
    that I could help them stay in power and advance their agenda. When I
    was no longer useful for that effort, I am no longer useful to them. I
    believe in self-sufficiency and independence. I believe in principles
    like “don’t spend more than you earn.” I believe in limited government
    because limited government gives you the most freedom. But I met
    recently with young African-American conservative professionals and
    said, “I have a newsflash for you: The cavalry is not coming. There is
    no one coming to save us. The conservative movement, the evangelical
    movement, and the Republican Party don’t care about us anymore.” … I
    am no longer useful. I had better change my name to Maria Sanchez and
    then maybe I can get some attention. We use people and then spit them


    Yes. I’ll be referring to this for some time.

  24. rikyrah says:

    Obama’s not the one with a popularity problem
    By Steve Benen
    Wed Mar 13, 2013 4:41 PM EDT.

    For the Washington Post and ABC News, the key takeaway from their new national poll is apparently supposed to be President Obama’s declining fortunes. The Post’s lede reads, “The afterglow of President Obama’s reelection and inauguration appears to have vanished.”

    And in a literal sense, that’s true. On Election Day 2012, when Obama won by 5 million votes and earned 332 electoral votes, the president had a 50/46 approval/disapproval rating, and in today’s poll, he once again has a 50/46 approval/disapproval rating. He got a bump earlier in the year, which has since gone away.

    But I thought it’d be worthwhile to put together a chart showing the approval ratings for Washington’s major players.

    Did the president get a post-election bounce that has since faded? Sure. But looking at this chart, I don’t think it’s Obama who has a popularity problem.

    This isn’t a matter of opinion; it’s a matter of looking at the numbers on the page. The president’s standing was clearly stronger immediately after his inauguration, and the honeymoon didn’t last. Weeks of sustained media coverage about how it’s Obama’s fault that Republicans won’t compromise or even negotiate may have taken a toll on his support.

    But for goodness sakes, 72% of the country — 72% — disapprove of congressional Republicans. Among self-identified moderates, it’s 81% — and the poll was taken before the House Republican budget, which hopes to scrap Medicare and give millionaires another tax break, was released. What’s more, GOP lawmakers receive the bulk of the blame for the sequestration fiasco.

  25. rikyrah says:

    Jobless claims improve for seventh straight week, near 5-year low
    By Steve Benen

    Thu Mar 14, 2013 8:41 AM EDT

    It’s pretty remarkable how the Department of Labor’s reports on initial unemployment claims just keep getting better.

    The number of people applying for new U.S. unemployment benefits fell by 10,000 to 332,000 in the week ended March 9, marking the second lowest level in five years and indicating that the labor market continues to improve. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had expected claims to rise to a seasonally adjusted 350,000 from a revised 342,000 in the prior week.

    To put this in perspective, the 332,000 filings is the second best total we’ve seen in the United States since January 2008 — just a few weeks after the start of the recession. This, along with the GDP projections, retail sales, manufacturing, housing, and Wall Street, reinforces the impression that the economy really is showing new signs of life (at least until Congress screws it up).

  26. rikyrah says:

    Stopping imaginary threats in their tracks

    By Steve Benen
    Thu Mar 14, 2013 8:00 AM EDT.

    With all the real-world challenges policymakers can and should be addressing, it’s always disappointing when they invest their energies on threats that don’t actually exist.

    Some Republican lawmakers support denying funds to ACORN, which permanently closed its doors years ago. Others want to stop the scourge of imposing “Sharia law” on Americans, a threat that exists only in right-wing imaginations. Some even want to stop the “NAFTA Super Highway” that remains purely mythical.

    And to follow up on an item from yesterday, Congress is taking a firm stand in support of welfare work requirements that no one is trying to undermine.

  27. rikyrah says:

    The Associated Press ‏@AP
    BREAKING: Weekly U.S. unemployment aid applications drop to 332,000, cutting monthly average to a 5-year low. -MM

  28. Ametia says:

    CPAC: March Madness on the Potomac
    by Michael Tomasky
    Mar 14, 2013 4:45 AM EDT

    The annual conservative gathering is always bad, says Michael Tomasky, but this year’s choices of main speakers seem designed to alienate as many Americans as possible

    So March Madness begins today. The basketball tournament? Bah. I mean CPAC. The conference just gets lamer and somehow more bizarre every year, this allegedly marquee gathering of the nation’s conservatives; and this year, with the longest speaking slots going to an irrelevant has-been and America’s most obnoxious man, the trajectory is downward on a scale so operatic and yet so pulverizingly tedious that I have difficulty comprehending it. Can these people really believe they are accomplishing something? On rereading that sentence, I partially take it back. They are accomplishing something, all right: showing America that they are mad as hatters and thereby helping to ensure the election of more Democrats.


    As for the event itself, well, the has-been is Sarah Palin, and the obnoxious man is Donald Trump. What else do you need to know? My Beast colleague Michael Moynihan did a terrific job yesterday of describing the event’s consuming kookiness, but let’s take a moment to stop and ponder these two marquee invitations, as well as that of Ted Cruz, the new It boy. Palin leads the pack with a 16-minute slot. Trump is given 14 minutes, and Cruz will provide the conference with its crucial concluding remarks.

    What do these three have in common? They aren’t the movement’s rising stars. They aren’t its most articulate policy thinkers. They’re the most adept red-meat throwers. Palin and Trump are experienced demagogues and liars. Cruz is new to the game, but what with his recent prove-you-stopped-beating-your-wife attacks on Chuck Hagel and on the allegedly communist-infiltrated Harvard Law School, he’s risen up the ranks quickly.


    • Ametia says:

      The media will be CLAMORING all over these LOSERS this weekend. Talk about UNPOPULAR. Look in Websters unde “UNPOPULAR” and these clowns’ pics are pasted there.

      Yet the MSM will showcase these 2520s CaC, and Coons like they are the second coming… while posting BULLSHIT polls on how Obama’s approval ratings are dropping.

      SSDD Same Shit, Different Day!

  29. Ametia says:

    Good Morning, Everyone! :-)

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