Monday Open Thread | Country Music |Willie Nelson

Willie NelsonWillie Hugh Nelson (/wɪli nɛlsən/; born April 29, 1933) is an American country music singer-songwriter, as well as an author, poet, actor, and activist. The critical success of the album Shotgun Willie (1973), combined with the critical and commercial success of Red Headed Stranger (1975) and Stardust (1978), made Nelson one of the most recognized artists in country music. He was one of the main figures of outlaw country, a subgenre of country music that developed in the late 1960s as a reaction to the conservative restrictions of the Nashville sound. Nelson has acted in over 30 films, co-authored several books, and has been involved in activism for the use of biofuels and the legalization of marijuana.

Born during the Great Depression, and raised by his grandparents, Nelson wrote his first song at age seven and joined his first band at ten. During high school, he toured locally with the Bohemian Polka as their lead singer and guitar player. After graduating from high school, in 1950, he joined the Air Force but was later discharged due to back problems. After his return, Nelson attended Baylor University for two years but dropped out because he was succeeding in music.

About SouthernGirl2

A Native Texan who adores baby kittens, loves horses, rodeos, pomegranates, & collect Eagles. Enjoys politics, games shows, & dancing to all types of music. Loves discussing and learning about different cultures. A Phi Theta Kappa lifetime member with a passion for Social & Civil Justice.
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83 Responses to Monday Open Thread | Country Music |Willie Nelson

  1. rikyrah says:

    The Republican War on Workers’ Rights
    May 18, 2014, 8:04 pm

    Midterm elections are like fancy software: Experts love them, end-users couldn’t care less. But if the 2010 elections are any indication, we might not want to doze off as we head into the summer months before November. Midterm elections at the state level can have tremendous consequences, especially for low-wage workers. What you don’t know can hurt you — or them.

    In 2010, the Republicans won control of the executive and legislative branches in 11 states (there are now more than 20 such states). Inspired by business groups like the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers, they proceeded to rewrite the rules of work, passing legislation designed to enhance the position of employers at the expense of employees.

    The University of Oregon political scientist Gordon Lafer, who wrote an eye-opening report on this topic last October for the Economic Policy Institute, a liberal think tank in Washington, looked at dozens of bills affecting workers. The legislation involved unemployment insurance, the minimum wage, child labor, collective bargaining, sick days, even meal breaks. Despite frequent Republican claims to be defending local customs and individual liberty, Mr. Lafer found a “cookie-cutter” pattern to their legislation. Not only did it consistently favor employers over workers, it also tilted toward big government over local government. And it often abridged the economic rights of individuals.

    Take the case of tipped workers and the minimum wage. In most states, tipped workers earn an hourly wage that is less than the federal minimum — the federal subminimum wage for tipped workers is $2.13 per hour — because they’re supposed to make up the rest in tips. (They often don’t; the poverty rate among waiters and waitresses is 250 percent higher than it is among the general work force.) But non-serving staff who don’t get tips must be paid the minimum wage.

    Republican state legislators have devised a way around that. In 2011, lawmakers in Wyoming introduced a bill that would have allowed restaurants and other employers to force their serving staff to pool their tips; tips would be redistributed among the nonserving staff, who could then be paid the subminimum wage. That same year, Maine legislators passed a bill declaring that “service charges” were not tips at all. Because they aren’t tips, they don’t belong to the serving staff. Employers can pocket them — without informing customers — whether they redistribute them among the staff or keep them.

    In both cases, conservative Republicans supported the right of employers to take money that workers had earned. This disregard for the earnings of workers is only an extreme manifestation of a more common phenomenon among Republican legislators: their indifference to the problem of wage theft.

  2. rikyrah says:

    Cops caught on tape slamming Georgia man into a wall as he moved into his new home
    By Arturo Garcia
    Monday, May 19, 2014 20:40 EDT

    An Atlanta-area man filed a formal complaint against local authorities on Monday after video surfaced of an officer slamming him to the ground in front of his own home, WAGA-TV reported.

    “I assumed — apparently incorrectly, and naively — that they were pursuing someone on foot that had fled through my yard, and I was unaware of it,” 69-year-old Dhoruba Bin-Wahad said at a press conference Monday afternoon. “I thought that that’s why they had their guns drawn.”

    The May 2 encounter began when Clayton County police were called to Bin-Wahad’s residence by a neighbor who reported seeing a “suspicious” male on the vacant property. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that another witness thought Bin-Wahad was a “pervert trying to look at her or her children from the vacant location through the woods.”

    According to a police report of the incident, officers described Bin-Wahad’s behavior as “uncooperative and verbally argumentative.” He was accused of taking “a bladed stance with his right side of his body” and allegedly refused to sit down when ordered to do so by them.

    “When I came out of the house, the first thing I said was that ‘I’m moving in. I have the key,’” Bin-Wahad said on Monday. “They asked me why was my car in the back. I said, ‘It’s my house. I was loading boxes.’”

  3. rikyrah says:

    Mayor Tells Tabloids to Apologize to His Wife Over Motherhood Coverage


    Mayor Bill de Blasio issued an unusual and stern rebuke of New York City’s tabloid newspapers on Monday, calling on them to apologize for publishing front-page headlines that suggested his wife, Chirlane McCray, had admitted to being a reluctant mother to the couple’s daughter, Chiara.

    The mayor’s remarks — he called the coverage “disturbing and inappropriate” — were primarily directed at The New York Post, which featured a front-page photograph of Ms. McCray next to a headline, in two-inch type: “I Was a Bad Mom!”

    The headlines referred to a profile in this week’s New York magazine in which Ms. McCray, describing the birth of her first child, said she had struggled to balance her independence and professional career with the newfound responsibilities of being a mother.

    “I was 40 years old; I had a life,” Ms. McCray told the magazine. “The truth is, I could not spend every day with her. I didn’t want to do that. I looked for all kinds of reasons not to do it.” She added: “It took a long time for me to get into ‘I’m taking care of kids,’ and what that means.”

    Ms. McCray, in the interview, said she still felt guilty about the experience.

    Mr. de Blasio, who has taken pains to portray his wife as a prominent and powerful member of his administration, decided midday on Monday that he wanted to address the headlines, and ordered his aides to organize a question-and-answer session with reporters.

    “It suggests a tremendous misunderstanding of what it means to be a parent, what it means to be a mother,” Mr. de Blasio said of the coverage.

    “A lot of hardworking women in this city are offended,” Mr. de Blasio added. “I think both The Post and The Daily News owe Chirlane an apology. I think they owe all of us an apology.”

    The Daily News ran a smaller photograph of Ms. McCray on its front page, above the headline, “Didn’t want to be a mom.”

    But it was the front page of The Post that drew criticism on social media on Monday, with some saying it had contributed to a culture in which mothers feel unable to speak openly about the complex emotions that can be involved in raising a child.

    Several allies of Mr. de Blasio turned to social media to defend the first lady. “The @nypost’s repulsive distortion of @Chirlane’s @NYMaginterview, shows that they do not even hold motherhood to be sacred,” the Rev. Al Sharpton wrote on Twitter.

    The New York chapter of the National Organization for Women addressed the cover on its Twitter account, urging users to write messages of support for Ms. McCray using the hashtag “#standwithchirlane.”

    Representatives of The Post and The Daily News did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

  4. Ametia says:

    Any one watching Maya Rudolh’s new show on NBC?

  5. rikyrah says:

    The Life, Times, and Truth of Being A Fat (Black, Pop Culture Addicted, Afro Wearing) Girl
    8:30 AM

    f you know me, you’d know I’m a huge fan of Louis C.K. He puts the “Finding humor in pain,” quote to fruition with his stand up, and his TV show is one of the best programs on TV, especially since we’re in the age of painted-that-way-but-is-really-fake reality television. Where that triumphs, this show stands tall with the utmost appreciation. Everything about this fictional-but-may-be-based-on-real-events show that accurately portrays our everyday realities is authentic. From the writing, to Louis being in almost complete control from writing to editing to directing, to the subject matters of the episodes, I respect Louis so much for making me laugh, cry, get upset, clutch at my heart, and go to bed thinking critically about what I just saw.

    So second week into season four, which premiered last week on FX, I knew what I was getting myself into (emotional feels!!!) and was ready. I had my food, I had my water, I had my phone hooked to the charger hooked to the outlet by me so I can live tweet (if I’m not too sucked into the episode), and I had my remote ready to fast forward through commercials. DVR, baby.

    But no matter how ready I thought I was, I was NOT ready for the accuracy that slapped, kicked, and stomped me in last night’s episode, about a cute, funny, bold, and fat waitress at the Comedy Cellar named Vanessa (played by Sarah Baker) who Louie finally gives a chance to after her few attempts to ask him out were shot down. Louie, after Vanessa gave him tickets that are well worth $1200 out of doing an act of kindness toward someone she liked, definitely felt bad and asked her out for coffee, in which she said yes, not without low key giving an arm thrust of “Fuck yeah!!!” after Louie’s departure.

    During their date, which starts off awesome with laughter, great conversation, and random debates on rhymes and dating, we come to the part in the episode where Louie fucks up: As Vanessa confides in him, saying how hard it is for a late 30s fat girl in New York in the dating (or “trying”) scene, he utters words a fat girl who’s WELL AWARE of herself HATES to hear: “You’re not fat.”

    What comes afterwards was one of the realest reactions and best monologues given on television through a female archetype you DON’T see enough of.

  6. rikyrah says:

    Bing: How much is that rap star worth?

    Look through some of hip-hop’s biggest fortunes and see just how lucrative being a rap music mogul can be.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Former news anchor Carole Simpson blasts ABC over Barbara Walters’ farewell snub
    May 19, 2014, 8:04 PM EST

    By Matthew Bramlett

    Apparently every prominent female journalist didn’t get the invite to Barbara Walters’ farewell episode.

    Carole Simpson, a veteran ABC newscaster, took to Facebook Saturday to address her exclusion from “The View” taping while posting a picture of the epic goodbye photo of the many broadcast newswomen who did take part.

    “I wonder why I wasn’t included among the two dozen network newswomen and anchors who feted Barbara Walters at a private party and then on ‘The View?'” Simpson, 72, postulated. “We both worked at NBC and ABC at the same times.”

    Also on TheWrap: Barbara Walters Epic Farewell Photo: Most Powerful Female Broadcasters Pay Tribute

    “I guess ABC News, after my 24 years there, still considers me persona non grata.” Simpson continued.

    Simpson and Walters became colleagues in 1982. Walters quickly became a positive influence on Simpson’s life and career, telling Simpson not to run for Congress because she could reach a wider audience in the newsroom.

    “The black woman anchor, who had to speak her mind for herself and others, is erased from ABC history,” Simpson said.

  8. rikyrah says:

    Why Do Millennials Not Understand Racism?
    They think if we ignore skin color, racism will somehow disappear.
    By Jamelle Bouie

    When you hear MTV, you don’t think “research.” But, for the last few years, the music television channel has been building a public affairs campaign to address bias called “Look Different.” Aimed at millennials, it seeks to help them deal with prejudice and discrimination in their lives. And as part of the project, MTV has worked with pollsters to survey a nationally representative sample of people ages 14 to 24 to measure how young people are “experiencing, affected by, and responding to issues associated with bias.”

    All of this is apparent in the findings. Ninety-one percent of respondents “believe in equality” and believe “everyone should be treated equally.” Likewise, 84 percent say their families taught them to treat everyone the same, no matter their race, and 89 percent believe everyone should be treated as equals. With that said, only 37 percent of respondents (30 percent of whites and 46 percent of minorities) say they were raised in families that talk about race.

    For this reason, perhaps, a majority of millennials say that their generation is “post-racial.” Seventy-two percent believe their generation believes in equality more than older people, and 58 percent believe that as they get older, racism will become less of an issue. It’s almost certainly true that this view is influenced by the presence of President Obama. Sixty-two percent believe that having a black president shows that minorities have the same opportunities as whites, and 67 percent believe it proves that race is not a “barrier to accomplishments.”

    It’s no surprise, then, that most millennials aspire to “colorblindness.” Sixty-eight percent say “focusing on race prevents society from becoming colorblind.” As such, millennials are hostile to race-based affirmative action: 88 percent believe racial preferences are unfair as a matter of course, and 70 percent believe they are unfair regardless of “historical inequalities.” Interestingly, the difference between whites and people of color is nonexistent on the first question and small (74 percent versus 65 percent) on the second. But this might look different if you disaggregated “people of color” by race. There’s a chance that black millennials are more friendly to affirmative action than their Latino or Asian peers.

    For all of these aspirations, however, millennials have a hard time talking about race and discrimination. Although 73 percent believe that we should talk “more openly” about bias, only 20 percent say they’re comfortable doing so—despite the fact that a plurality of minorities say that their racial identities shape their views of the world.


    The problem is that racism isn’t reducible to “different treatment.” Since if it is, measures to ameliorate racial inequality—like the Voting Rights Act—would be as “racist” as the policies that necessitated them. No, racism is better understood as white supremacy—anything that furthers a broad hierarchy of racist inequity, where whites possess the greatest share of power, respect, and resources, and blacks the least.

    nd the magic of white supremacy is that its presence is obscured by the focus on race. When a black teenager is unfairly profiled by police, we say it’s “because of the color of his skin,” which—as a construction—avoids the racism at play, from the segregated neighborhood the officer patrols to the pervasive belief in black criminality that shapes our approach to crime. Likewise, it obscures the extent to which this isn’t just different treatment— it’s unequal treatment rooted in unequal conditions.

    Millennials have grown up in a world where we talk about race without racism—or don’t talk about it at all—and where “skin color” is the explanation for racial inequality, as if ghettos are ghettos because they are black, and not because they were created. As such, their views on racism—where you fight bias by denying it matters to outcomes—are muddled and confused.

    Which gets to the irony of this survey: A generation that hates racism but chooses colorblindness is a generation that, through its neglect, comes to perpetuate it.

  9. rikyrah says:

    If Your Grandma Gave You Savings Bonds for Your Birthdays, You Just Might Be White
    Thomas Piketty’s findings about inherited wealth driving economic inequality may also hold true for racial gaps

    How’s this for a shocking statistic: Almost 40 percent of African-Americans and more than one-third of Latinos have no financial assets at all. No money in the bank, no retirement savings, no stock-market investments—nothing. Whites are more likely to possess (and possess more of) every kind of asset, including homes.

    French economist Thomas Piketty recently made headlines by arguing that inherited wealth will drive inequality over the long term. A new report from the Center for Global Policy Solutions, a Washington nonprofit, and university research partners finds that inheritance also explains much of the racial wealth gap.

    “The fact of the matter is, yes, income matters. But it doesn’t explain the entirety of the story,” says Rebecca Tippett, director of Carolina Demography at the Carolina Population Center at UNC-Chapel Hill. Even when minorities and whites bring home similar paychecks, minorities have lower net worth.

    Some policy prescriptions for helping low-income families get ahead—such as encouraging people to earn credentials that lead to better paying jobs—may not do much to address the racial wealth gap. Black, college-educated heads of households have lower net worth than white heads of households who dropped out of high school, says Darrick Hamilton, associate professor at Milano—The New School for International Affairs, Management, and Urban Policy. Both Tippett and Hamilton worked on the report.

  10. rikyrah says:

    House GOP kills ‘ENLIST Act,’ too
    05/19/14 09:18 AM—Updated 05/19/14 09:33 AM
    By Steve Benen
    The extent of House Republicans’ opposition to comprehensive immigration reform has been well documented. The GOP majority in the chamber simply will not consider the popular, bipartisan Senate bill and Republicans have so refused to offer an alternative of their own.

    But just how sweeping is the GOP’s hostility towards undocumented immigrants? The answer came into sharper focus late on Friday afternoon, in a story that was largely overlooked.

    Rep. Jeff Denham (R-Calif.) has sponsored a proposal called the ENLIST Act, which seems like the sort of bill that could garner broad support: under the plan, young, undocumented immigrants who entered the United States before they turned 15 would be able to join the U.S. military. After their service, so long as they’re honorably discharged, these immigrants would become legal permanent residents and be eligible to apply for citizenship.

    As we discussed in April, the legislation is in line with American traditions – many immigrants to the U.S. became citizens by serving in the military – and has already picked up some bipartisan support from 26 Democrats and 24 Republicans.

    Denham and his allies hoped to push the ENLIST Act onto the House floor this week, so on Friday, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) killed the bipartisan proposal.

  11. rikyrah says:

    Julian Castro at the center of cabinet shake-up
    05/19/14 10:11 AM—Updated 05/19/14 10:25 AM
    By Steve Benen

    Last year, President Obama reportedly reached out to San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, gauging his interest in becoming the Secretary of Transportation. Castro declined and the post went to Anthony Foxx, the former Charlotte mayor.

    But the White House’s interest in Castro did not fade, and the Democratic mayor will reportedly accept the president’s second invitation to join his cabinet.

    San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro is set to be nominated for secretary of housing and urban development (HUD), NBC News confirmed Saturday, citing government sources.

    The new post would offer a national profile to Castro, a rising Democratic star who has been mentioned as a potential 2016 vice presidential pick.

    As cabinet shake-ups go, this one’s pretty interesting. There’s a bit of a domino effect, with one opening leading to another and then another, which could have long-term electoral consequences.

    With Kathleen Sebelius stepping down as Secretary of Health and Human Services, Sylvia Burwell will be confirmed as Sebelius’ successor, which means she’ll leave her role as the chair of the Office of Management and Budget.

    Shaun Donovan, the current HUD chief, will be nominated to replace Burwell at OMB. (This is actually a big promotion – OMB isn’t widely known to the public, but it’s a cabinet-level post with great power and influence.)

    And when Donovan becomes the president’s new budget chief, it will create a vacancy at HUD, which Castro will reportedly fill.

  12. rikyrah says:

    ACA withstands attack-ad onslaught
    05/19/14 01:03 PM—Updated 05/19/14 02:02 PM
    By Steve Benen

    Nearly a year ago, the Campaign Media Analysis Group at Kantar Media, which tracks advertising spending, found that since the Affordable Care Act was signed into law, critics have outspent supporters by a greater than five-to-one margin.

    As it turns out, there have been quite a few ads since last June, and the same researchers have revised their tally.

    The report, released Friday by nonpartisan analysts Kantar Media CMAG, estimates that $445 million was spent on political TV ads mentioning the law since the enactment of the Affordable Care Act in 2010. Spending on negative ads outpaced positive ones by more than 15 to 1.

    Outside of Social Security and Medicare, “no other law has come close to these amounts, much less within such a short period of time,” said Elizabeth Wilner of Kantar Media. “It speaks to the intensity of the opposition among the ACA’s political critics” and their belief that the health care issue will benefit their party in this year’s elections, she said.

    More specifically, according to the report, ACA opponents have spent $418 million on 880,000 commercials, as compared to $27 million on 58,000 positive ads from the law’s proponents. This includes advertising on all local television markets, national broadcast networks, and cable.

    It doesn’t include online ads, though it’s hard to imagine how they would help narrow the imbalance.

    Assuming the research is accurate, it would help explain a few things. For years, there’s been a lingering question underscoring public attitudes on “Obamacare”: if the polls showed public demand for health care reform going into the reform fight; Democrats approved a moderate law built on bipartisan ideas; and polls show broad support for the law’s provisions, why does the public still disapprove of the Affordable Care Act?

    Perhaps because they’ve seen some of the 880,000 attack ads.

  13. rikyrah says:

    Federal court strikes down Oregon’s same-sex marriage ban
    05/19/14 03:50 PM—Updated 05/19/14 04:04 PM
    By Steve Benen

    A decade ago, Oregon voters approved a ballot measure changing the state constitution to ban same-sex marriages with 57% support. As of today, that ban is no more.

    Oregon’s ban on same-sex marriages was struck down Monday by U.S. District Judge Michael McShane, who ruled that the prohibition violated the federal constitutional rights of gays and lesbians.

    Jubilant couples who anticipated a favorable decision from the judge began the rush to officially wed at locations around the state. McShane allowed his order to take immediate effect.

    There have been quite a few legal challenges to these state bans, especially in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling last year against the Defense of Marriage Act, but the Oregon case was a little different than most. In this case, the ostensible defendants – state officials, represented by state by Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum (D) – agreed with the plaintiffs and urged Judge McShane to strike down the anti-gay law.

  14. rikyrah says:

    YeaYouRite @YeaYouRite

    Ds are leading in AR, NC, & AK and tied in GA and KY, but @monkeycageblog gives Rs an EIGHTY PERCENT chance of winning Senate. #hilarious
    12:22 PM – 19 May 2014

  15. rikyrah says:

    Mitch McConnell Walks the Razor’s Edge

    by BooMan
    Mon May 19th, 2014 at 02:38:13 PM EST

    Al Cross has some smart analysis of the situation in Kentucky where Mitch McConnell is headed to a (perhaps narrower than anticipated) victory in Tuesday’s primary. However, one thing that I think Cross misses is the tension between McConnell’s need to run up the score on Bevin and his need not to alienate Bevin’s voters to the degree that a significant percentage of them don’t turn out to vote for him in November.

    In the latest Bluegrass Poll, McConnell is in a statistical dead-heat with Alison Lundergan Grimes, trailing 42%-43%. He is going to need a lot of Bevin voters if he is going to survive. Yet, he doesn’t want a weaker than expected performance in the primary because that will leave blood in the water that will attract Democratic donors and volunteers. Also, as Cross points out, a weak performance won’t help McConnell in his battle against the Senate Conservatives Fund.

    So, McConnell is in a bit of a no-win situation, but at least it looks like he will survive past Tuesday.

  16. rikyrah says:

    As hydraulic fracturing ramps up around the country, so do concerns about its health impacts. These concerns have led 20 states to require the disclosure of industrial chemicals used in the fracking process.

    North Carolina isn’t on that list of states yet – and it may be hurtling in the opposite direction.

    On Thursday, three Republican state senators introduced a bill that would slap a felony charge on individuals who disclosed confidential information about fracking chemicals. The bill, whose sponsors include a member of Republican party leadership, establishes procedures for fire chiefs and healthcare providers to obtain chemical information during emergencies. But as the trade publication Energywire noted Friday, individuals who leak information outside of emergency settings could be penalized with fines and several months in prison.

  17. rikyrah says:

    this read by Phaedra still slays me.

    she just took a machete to Kenya.

    for me, the best part is the SILENCE afterwards….even Andy couldn’t say shyt afterwards

  18. rikyrah says:

    Big Happy Family: Beyoncé, Blue Ivy, Solange, Mama Tina AND Jay Z Are All Smiles at Lunch [Photos]

    May 19, 2014 4 Comments

    It’s been one full week since the CarterGate footage leaked and it seems like most of the hoopla has died down — however we haven’t seen the whole family together since the incident….until now.

    Beyoncé posted a photo of her and Solange at lunch on Saturday, and Solange has posted several photos of her and Beyoncé — but we expected them to be fine.

    We’ve been waiting for Jay to make an appearance and now we see that he was also at that lunch in New Orleans.

  19. rikyrah says:

    Extraordinary Life: Daughter Of A Slave, With Deep Roots In Hartford
    By ANNE M. HAMILTON, Special to The Hartford Courant
    10:29 a.m. EDT, May 18, 2014

    Frances Taylor Dunham Catlett, a social worker, painter and poet, came from an African American family with deep roots in Hartford. Many members of her extended family have made significant contributions in education, social work, the union movement, sports and the arts.

    Catlett, whose parents were a formerly enslaved woman and the son of a white slave trader, was until her recent death a living connection to slavery in America.

    Catlett died in San Leandro, Calif., on April 22. She was 105 years old, and had lived independently until she was 103.

    She was born in Hartford on July 3, 1908. Her father, John Osborne Taylor, was the son of William Taylor, a white slave auctioneer, and Martha Ann Jett, whose heritage was Native American and African American.

    Catlett’s mother, Mary Agnes Epps, grew up on the same plantation as Taylor in Essex County, Va., and was a seamstress at the master’s “big house.,0,1686519.story

  20. rikyrah says:


    Philadelphia has seen its middle class shrink dramatically over the last 40 years
    May 19, 2014 11:18AM ET

    Philadelphia is a city beloved for reasons as diverse as those who live here. It’s celebrated for its rich history, cheesesteaks and many, many a “Rocky” movie.

    But over the last 40 years, the city has lost a quarter of its population — almost 400,000 residents. And 43 percent of that population loss has been from the middle class. Nationwide, the middle class has shrunk since the 1970s, from 60 percent to 51 percent. But Philly’s middle class was reduced even more dramatically, to just 42 percent.

    The strength of the suburbs is one reason for this. “Chester County, Montgomery, Bucks, Delaware County — those economies have grown significantly over the past 40 years, and their success has come at the expense of the city of Philadelphia,” said Ryan Sweet, an economist at Moody’s Analytics.

    But it’s also due to the decline in manufacturing there. In 1970 the middle class worked primarily in manufacturing and midlevel jobs. No longer. Manufacturing jobs have plummeted to just 10 percent of the workforce.

  21. rikyrah says:

    you know how I feel about these cases.

    put them in general population with the guards taking a ‘long break’.

    prison justice will take care of it.


    Woman Allegedly Targeted Asians During San Jose Walmart Attack On 4-Year-Old

    SAN JOSE (CBS SF) – The young woman accused of attacking a toddler with a wrench at a San Jose Walmart Tuesday has been charged with a hate crime, the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office confirmed Thursday.

    The DA’s office says Maria Garate went into the Walmart store on Story Rd. with the intent of attacking an Asian family. She then allegedly walked up to a 4-year-old Asian girl who was shopping with her father near the purse section and attacked with a lug nut wrench. She hit the child before her father was able to step in and take the brunt of the lashings from the weapon, previously described as a crowbar.

    Walmart security then showed up was then able to hold the woman down until police arrived.

    The girl was taken to a hospital with injuries that were not thought to be life threatening.

  22. rikyrah says:

    Andre Johnson has a great job, a beautiful wife, Rainbow, four kids, and a colonial home in the ‘burbs. But has success brought too much assimilation for this black family? With a little help from his dad, Dre sets out to establish a sense of cultural identity for his family that honors their past while embracing the future

  23. rikyrah says:

    GOP takes on Michelle Obama
    By Erik Wasson – 05/19/14 01:58 PM EDT

    House Republicans have inserted language in a new spending bill that allows schools to opt out of tougher nutrition standards for lunch and breakfast programs if they can show the programs loses money.

    The language sets up a fight between the House GOP and first lady Michelle Obama, who has championed the nutrition rules introduced in 2012. The first lady has made fighting childhood obesity her signature issue.

    The 2012 rules require that most schools make more fruits, vegetables, whole grains and fat-free meals available, and that they reduce salt and trans fat.
    The new spending bill for the Agriculture Department requires the agency to waive nutrition requirements for school lunch programs when a “state that verifies a net loss from operating a food service program for a period of at least 6 months that begins on or after July 1, 2013.”

    Republicans on the committee note that the waiver is temporary and the language is being included in response to requests from struggling local schools.

    Democrats on the Appropriations Committee are expected to try to remove the language from the bill. The rule was developed in conjunction with the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies.

    The School Nutrition Association, which represents providers of school breakfasts and lunches, has been lobbying in favor of temporary waivers. It argues students don’t like the healthier food and are deciding not to pay for the school programs at all.

    Since the standards went into effect, it said more than 1 million students have opted out of school lunch programs, causing financial strain on cafeterias.

    The association says it supports some of the rules but wants to prevent a further strengthening of standards. It supports requiring 50 percent of meals to have whole grains but opposes implementing a forthcoming 100 percent standard and opposes moving to even lower sodium levels.

    Read more:

  24. Ametia says:

    N.H. police official who used racial slur against Obama resigns

    WOLFEBORO, N.H. — Town officials confirmed Monday that the 82-year-old police commissioner who was heard publicly calling President Obama the n-word — sparking nationwide outrage — has tendered his resignation.

    Robert Copeland, 82, the head of Wolfeboro’s three-member police commission, turned in his resignation to the town manager and police chief Monday morning, police officials confirmed.

    His resignation comes as several of New Hampshire’s most prominent politicians — including Sens. Kelly Ayotte (R) and Jeanne Shaheen (D) and Gov. Maggie Hassan — had called for Copeland’s ouster.

  25. Cousins

    Cowboy cousins

  26. rikyrah says:

    Transcript: Attorney general Eric Holder’s speech to Morgan State University graduates
    Published: May 17

    The following is the text of remarks as prepared for delivery by Attorney General Eric Holder at the Morgan State University commencement ceremony in Baltimore on Saturday, May 17, 2014. The transcript was provided by the Justice Department’s Office of Public Affairs.

    Thank you, President [David] Wilson, for those kind words – and thank you all for such a warm welcome. It’s a pleasure to join you on this beautiful campus. And it’s a privilege to stand with so many distinguished faculty, staff, and administrators; members of the Board of Regents; and proud parents, family members, friends, and alumni – in congratulating the Morgan State University Class of 2014.

    I’d like to thank Calvin Butler for his thoughtful remarks. And I want to thank Chairman – and former Congressman and NAACP President – Kweisi Mfume for his inspiring words and his service to our nation over the course of his exemplary career. I’d also like to recognize every member of Morgan State’s renowned choir and band for sharing their talents with us. Thank you for making today’s ceremony so special. And thank you, most of all, to the Class of 2014 for inviting me to share in this moment – as we mark the end of one chapter of your lives and celebrate the beginning of the next.

    I know each of you walked a difficult path to be here today – a path beset by challenges; some prescribed by your professors to test your knowledge and skills, others by outside circumstances – and some by societal factors beyond your control. Every obstacle – every paper and project; every midterm and final exam – had to be confronted and overcome before you could take your seat among this crowd. And while we applaud your individual achievements today, celebrate your collective victories, and commemorate what is truly a significant milestone – the fact is that, for all the work, the studying, and the sleepless nights – none of you made this journey alone.

    In so many ways, the path that led you to this moment was forged by men and women who came before you – many seemingly ordinary, but all extraordinary – from those who pioneered the establishment of this great school more than 140 years ago, to those who first opened its doors to women and, later, to students of all races and backgrounds. Each of their journeys was less certain. They had no set courses to guide them. And they must have found, at times, that there was no obvious way forward – and nothing but darkness and difficulty stretching out ahead – their path lit only by the flame of America’s founding promise.

    In so many ways, the path that led you to this moment was forged by men and women who came before you – many seemingly ordinary, but all extraordinary – from those who pioneered the establishment of this great school more than 140 years ago, to those who first opened its doors to women and, later, to students of all races and backgrounds. Each of their journeys was less certain. They had no set courses to guide them. And they must have found, at times, that there was no obvious way forward – and nothing but darkness and difficulty stretching out ahead – their path lit only by the flame of America’s founding promise.

    Rest of it here:

  27. He’s not a cowboy but I guess he inherited a little something from me, huh?

    Herman- Holdin' the reins, takin' control.

    Holdin the reins, takin control

  28. Shady_Grady says:

    I remember listening to BB King do “Nightlife” and being surprised/impressed to learn that Willie Nelson wrote it.

  29. rikyrah says:

    May 19, 2014 12:29 PM
    Mitch’s Loyal Establishment Troops

    By Ed Kilgore

    Tomorrow is likely to be a good day for Mitch McConnell. He will almost certainly crush challenger Matt Bevin in his own Kentucky primary, and will then likely get some sort of general-election poll bump against Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes, who’s been running even with him up until now.

    Beyond that, to the extent the Year of the Republican Establishment narrative for 2014 gets back on track after a tough Tuesday last week in Nebraska and West Virginia, that will burnish McConnell’s reputation as the biggest of big dogs in the GOP kennel. With Mike Simpson likely to beat back a Tea Party challenge in Idaho and Paul Broun and Phil Gingrey almost certain to lose in the GA Senate primary, the YORE meme is lookin’ pretty good—as long as you don’t look too closely.

    If you do look a little more closely, you find Republican Establishment front-runner in the GA race, David Perdue, stating unequivocally in a candidate debate over the weekend that he would not vote for another term for McConnell as Senate GOP leader. The same answer was provided by Karen Handel, who is fighting for a runoff spot, likely facing Perdue. The third candidate thought to be in the thick of things, Jack Kingston, waffled. Nobody was inclined to thump the tubs for ol’ Mitch.

    This reinforces what ought to be the real Narrative of the GOP primary season so far: regardless of alleged “factions,” candidates are occupying “constitutional conservative” territory as fast as they can pitch their tents. “Establishment” victories, where they occur, are not, so far, in any visible way representing any positive referendum for “moderation” or even “pragmatism,” other than the pragmatism of heavy campaign spending. Let’s remember that when McConnell is featured as the triumphant vanquisher of extremism in many accounts tomorrow night.

  30. rikyrah says:

    May 17, 2014 11:44 AM
    We’re Here Too

    By Chad Stanton

    Bob Moser at The American Prospect recently wrote about the continued befuddlement of otherwise clear-eyed liberals in relation to the American South. He cites Obama’s three electoral wins in southern states as proof of undue nihilism in regard to liberalism’s ability to sway folks below the Mason-Dixon line in the past. We now may be seeing history repeat itself with southern Democratic Senate candidates faring “surprisingly” well so far in 2014. One under-regarded aspect of this puzzlement lies in an overriding tendency to erase or discount the African American presence in the South, as Moser points out in his parentheses. Unfortunately this elision has more consequences than merely propagating poor punditry.

    While African Americans in the South are often the subject of stories focusing on poverty and the efforts of voter suppression the agency of activists and everyday folk is often given short shrift. The work of folks in North Carolina participating in the Moral Mondays and elsewhere shows that the legacy of political and civic engagement is as vital as ever and ready to be engaged with and accounted for when discussing the tenor of the political environnment in a region too often described with nihilism or sarcasm by our intellectual and media class.

    In the short term this would mean more support and touting of efforts like the recent one launched by Democrats to turn out voters where they would have merely been written off in the past. Also less of an anxiety about how being strongly identified as the party of people of color plays to the Reagan Republicans from liberals and moderates in the Democratic Party when considering and discussing policy and politcs would be the beginning of a conversation that would lead to more collaboration and honestly it seems no amount of distancing will be able to alter that perception at this point.

    In the long term this greater acknowledgement would mean that fewer and fewer conservatives would be able to offer the assessment that the agency of African Americans is taken for granted by liberals. This belief is the source of a lot of the voter apathy seen in the black community and a brand of black conservatism too often written off as mere self-hate when it should instead be seen as a critique and rebuke of a perceived paternalism in the interaction between white and black liberals.

  31. vitaminlover says:

    ‘On the road again….just can’t wait to get on the road again’. I like his voice.

  32. rikyrah says:

    * ONLY THE SOUTH WANTS TO REPEAL OBAMACARE: Another fascinating tidbit from the Politico poll:

    Broken down by region, only in the South did total repeal of the law command the support of a majority — 51 percent. In the Northeast, Midwest and West, repeal was the preference of a plurality of voters, but a majority favored either leaving the ACA as is or making changes to the law without repealing it.

  33. rikyrah says:

    However, the real nature of the Obamacare problem Dems face — one that coexists with the truism that repeal remains unpopular — is also revealed here. The groups who tilt strongly against the law are more likely to turn out than the groups who favor it:

    While majorities of white voters (54 percent) and men (51 percent) support repealing Obamacare, repeal now falls short of majority support with most subgroups…The law receives powerful support from minority voters, including 80 percent of African-Americans who want to leave the law alone (34 percent) or modify it (46 percent), and 55 percent of Hispanics who want it left entirely intact (22 percent) or only modified (33 percent).

  34. rikyrah says:

    A Politico poll released this morning shows trouble for Dems, because it surveys likely voters in competitive U.S. House and Senate races and finds Republicans with a seven point generic lead, 41-34.

    Politico says this shows “mounting danger for Democrats,” and it’s true Dems are in danger. But it’s worth remembering that a tolerable outcome for Dems is if they limit their losses to five Senate seats, which will be decided by a series of grueling contests with a host of unique features.

    However, the poll’s findings on Obamcare are also noteworthy. Even among likely voters in the competitive races, keep/modify polls slightly better than repeal. The poll finds that 35 percent favor keeping the law with modifications, and another 16 percent favor keeping it as it is — for a total of 51 percent who favor keeping and modifying the law. Meanwhile, 48 percent favor repeal.

  35. rikyrah says:

    No more liberal apologies as Elizabeth Warren takes the offensive
    By E.J. Dionne Jr., E-mail the writer


    Elizabeth Warren is cast as many things: a populist, a left-winger, the paladin against the bankers and the rich, the Democrats’ alternative to Hillary Clinton, the policy wonk with a heart.

    The senior senator from Massachusetts is certainly a populist and her heart is with those foreclosed upon and exploited by shady financial practices. But she is not nearly as left-wing as many say — she can offer a strong defense of capitalism that’s usually overlooked. And here’s betting that she won’t run against Clinton.

    What all the descriptions miss is Warren’s most important contribution to the progressive cause. She is, above all, a lawyer who knows how to make arguments. From the time she first came to public attention, Warren has been challenging conservative presumptions embedded so deeply in our discourse that we barely notice them. Where others equivocate, she fights back with common sense.

    Since the Reagan era, Democrats have been so determined to show how pro-market and pro-business they are that they’ve shied away from pointing out that markets could not exist without government, that the well-off depend on the state to keep their wealth secure and that participants in the economy rely on government to keep the marketplace on the level and to temper the business cycle’s gyrations.

    Warren doesn’t back away from any of these facts. In her new book, “A Fighting Chance,” she recalls the answer she gave to a voter during a living-room gathering in Andover, Mass., that quickly went viral. She was in the early days of her Senate campaign, in the fall of 2011, and had been asked about the deficit. Characteristically, she pushed the boundaries beyond a narrow fiscal discussion to explain how government helped create wealth.

  36. California Chrome can use nasal strip in Belmont Stakes, race officials say


    (CNN) — Racehorse California Chrome will be allowed to use a nasal strip while racing in the June 7 Belmont Stakes, New York racing officials decided Monday.

    The decision by representatives of the New York State Gaming Commission, the New York Racing Association and the Jockeys Club ends a ban on the strips at Belmont. It keeps alive the the 3-year-old’s bid to win horse racing’s Triple Crown after winning this year’s Preakness Stakes and Kentucky Derby.

    The horse’s trainer had said his owners might not allow the horse to raise without the strip, which the manufacturer says allows horses to breathe more freely and reduces the risk of bleeding in the lungs during heavy exertion.

  37. rikyrah says:

    Nostradeptus @adept2u

    I think Black women act as The Help for White feminist cause they think all the equal pay for women will = Black woman, no it wont my sister

  38. rikyrah says:

    Former Virginia governor, wife seek split trials in corruption case
    Mon May 19, 2014 6:02am EDT

    (Reuters) – Former Virginia Governor Robert McDonnell and his wife will try to notch a win in their battle against corruption charges on Monday by getting a federal judge to order separate trials for them.

    McDonnell, a Republican who left office in January, and his wife, Maureen, face a 14-count indictment charging them with conspiring to accept about $165,000 in gifts, vacations and loans from businessman Jonnie Williams in exchange for helping his company, dietary supplement maker Star Scientific Inc.

    Prosecutors have portrayed the couple as short on money. Robert McDonnell, 59, also was unable to pay some bills for beachfront houses he owned through a corporation during his term as governor, according to court papers filed by prosecutors.

  39. rikyrah says:

    He stood up for Voter ID and STATES RIGHTS


    Here’s How Republicans Are Trying To Solve Their Problem With Black Voters

    The RNC picks fights with liberal media over race, while Rand Paul talks policy with black Democrats. But mixed signals continue. posted on May 18, 2014, at 10:57 p.m.

    McKay Coppins BuzzFeed Staff

    …Meanwhile, Rand Paul has taken a somewhat different tack in engaging with the black community. The Kentucky senator, whose libertarian following allows him more latitude in defying traditional GOP orthodoxy, has been an outspoken advocate for softening drug laws, reforming the criminal justice system, and creating major tax breaks for areas in financial distress, like Detroit. He has also given high-profile speeches at black colleges.

    Rather than seek out strategic fights with liberal black institutions
    to make a point, Paul’s aides say he tries to get their input and look
    for areas where they can align. To help do that, he has enlisted Elroy
    Sailor, an influential Republican lobbyist and strategist, to set up roundtable conversations with black community leaders and business owners — most of them Democrats — in Detroit, Chicago, Atlanta, and Houston.

    Sailor said Paul has plans to meet with the NAACP and the National Urban League in coming months.

  40. Ametia says:

    John Kerry To Yale Grads: You’re ‘Donald Sterling’s Worst Nightmare’
    TOM KLUDT – MAY 19, 2014, 7:10 AM EDT

    Secretary of State John Kerry used his address to this year’s Yale graduates on Sunday to take a swing at America’s favorite punching bag.

    Speaking at the school’s Class Day ceremony in New Haven, Conn., Kerry noted the record diversity in this year’s crop of graduates.

    “You are graduating today as the most diverse class in Yale’s long history,” Kerry said, according to a transcript provided by the State Department. “Or as they call it in the NBA, Donald Sterling’s worst nightmare.”

  41. Ametia says:

    May. 19, 2014 4:43 AM EDT

    MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered troops deployed in regions near Ukraine to return to their home bases, the Kremlin said Monday.

    The move appears to indicate Putin’s intention to de-escalate the crisis over Ukraine, the worst in Russia’s relations with the West since the end of the Cold War.

    The West has protested the deployment of 40,000 Russian troops near the border with Ukraine, seeing it as a possible preparation for grabbing more land after the annexation of Crimea in March.

    Putin has previously said he has ordered troops to return from the area near the Ukraine border, but the United States and NATO have said they see no sign of a pullout and have threatened more sanctions if Russia tries to derail Ukraine’s presidential vote set for Sunday.

    The Russian Defense Ministry insisted that there were no buildup near the border, saying that the troops in the regions in western Russia are involved in regular training.

  42. Yahtc says:

    “Racism is far more than old white men using the N-word”

    It is important to read the whole article, but here is an excerpt:

    And yet the magnitude of the response to each incident exemplifies how high the bar is now set for challenging racist behaviour and how distorted our understanding has become of what that behaviour constitutes.

    Before there can be outrage, the offending party must be caught red-handed – preferably on tape – using the worst epithets and most egregious insults. Clarkson previously maligning Mexicans as “lazy, feckless and flatulent”, or making jokes about “black Muslim lesbians”, or Sterling twice being fined by the department of justice for being a racist slumlord, didn’t quite cut it.

    And so the perception – on both sides of the Atlantic – takes hold that racism is not a system of discrimination planted by history, nourished by politics and nurtured by economics, in which some groups face endemic disadvantage – it’s about ignorant old people getting caught saying mean things. By privileging these episodes – outrageous as they are – racism is basically reduced to the level of a private, individual indiscretion made public. The scandal becomes not that racism exists but that anyone would be crass enough to articulate it so brazenly.

    The reality of modern racism is almost exactly the opposite: it’s the institutional marginalisation of groups performed with the utmost discretion and minimum of fuss by well-mannered and often well-intentioned people working in deeply flawed systems. According to a recent US department of education report, black preschoolers (mostly four-year-olds) are four times more likely to be suspended more than once than their white classmates. According to a 2013 report by Release, a UK group focusing on drugs and drug laws, black people in England and Wales are far less likely to use drugs than white people but six times more likely to be stopped and searched for possession of them. In both countries black people are far more likely to be convicted, and to get stiffer sentences and longer jail time.

    This is the soporific, statistical drumbeat to which black children march through our institutions and to which society as a whole has become inured. You are unlikely to find many of these preschool teachers throwing around the N-word or judges reminiscing about slavery. Apparently, until you do, there will be no big story here. It’s just the way we do things. The problem is no longer that it’s brazen, but that it’s banal.

    This is what makes attempts to defend a party like the United Kingdom Independence party from accusations of racism so hollow. Of course, that is not the sole nature of its appeal. But its calls for social housing to go first to those whose “parents and grandparents were born locally”; and a recent poll revealed that more than half its supporters believe immigrants and their British-born children should be “encouraged to leave the country”.</em

  43. CarolMaeWY says:

    Mine too. . .

  44. Good morning, everyone!

    My heroes have always been cowboys… ;)

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