Wednesday Open Thread | Positive News From The Obama Foundation


Minority-Led Firms Will Build Obama Library
Author: Dorothy Tucker

January 6, 2018 10:56 AM

(CBS) — In a move that promises to challenge and change Chicago’s construction landscape, the Obama Foundation has announced who will build its presidential library.

A minority construction firm will take the lead. CBS 2’s Dorothy Tucker takes a look at the new firm in charge.

“This is incredible,” says Jimmy Akintonde.

He is about to be a part of history. After 16 years of running his own construction firm, where his largest contract was $60 million, Akintonde has joined forces with three other African-American firms to form the Presidential Partners consortium.

This new joint venture will take the lead on the $300 million construction of the Obama Presidential Center.

“We are responsible for building it,” Akintonde explains.

Alone, none of these companies had the experience to win the bid to construct the institution that is slated for Chicago’s Woodlawn neighborhood. Together, according to a vice president at the Obama Foundation, it was an easy choice.


“We want to set the stage for a new model,” Strautmanis says. “The new model is you don’t have to have a white firm with minority partners on the side. You want to have real diversity: minority firms in the lead with a seat at the table.”

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82 Responses to Wednesday Open Thread | Positive News From The Obama Foundation

    • Ametia says:

      Bless Mrs. Ruth Cummings and her family. It’s difficult for the family when the Matriarch dies, but I know Mrs. Cummings left a treasure trove of love and wisdom.

  1. rikyrah says:

    February 6, 2018 12:58 pm
    Black Panther Is a Beautiful Showcase for Natural Hair
    ByAshley Weatherford

    The stars! The clothes! The music! With its February 16 release date approaching, everyone is experiencing Black Panther fever. While we still have to wait for the early reviews (Issa Rae’s one-minute take: “Wooooooooo!”), the hair critics have already ruled that everyone looks fantastic.

    Ahead of the movie’s premiere, the Cut talked to the head of Black Panther’s hair department, Camille Friend. The movie’s hair wizard explained the month-long process of creating Angela Bassett’s wig, why Michael B. Jordan needed to wear extensions, and what it was like working on a film that celebrated natural black hair.

    What was the overall creative direction for the hair in Black Panther?
    There were three parts. For the “traditional” look, we used inspiration from the Zulu tribe, the Maasai tribe, and the Hima tribe. Then we looked at the modern styles in the natural-hair movement. Finally we looked at the Afropunk movement, which has a lot of natural and creative styling. Also, there are five tribes in the story, and we had to create different looks for each tribe.

    What was it like working on a movie where everyone was styled in natural hair?
    There’s no press and comb in this movie. No relaxers, no nothing! That was one of the things that I really was firm about. I requested that people come with their natural hair. People were like, “Are you sure?” and I was like, “Yes, I am sure! We have a qualified staff of hair people who are phenomenal and who are well-versed in natural hair.”

    How did you style Michael B. Jordan’s hair?
    He has dreadlocks. We wanted to give him a look that you’ve never seen before, and since he is the villain in this story, we wanted him to look strong and bold. He grew out his hair because we didn’t know what we wanted to do with his hair, at first. We eventually decided that we wanted to dreadlock it and keep the sides faded and really short. It’s a great look and he’s really sexy. We added extensions to it, but he did start out with a good amount of hair, and that’s why it looks so natural.

    What’s the story behind Angela Bassett’s wig?
    That was the pièce de résistance wig. It was a wig we created. All of the dreads were handmade, and they were blended with four different colors. Once those were made — there were about 110 pieces of individual dreads — we sent those to the wigmaker [Natascha Ladek], and the wigmaker inserted them in the wig. That whole process took about a month.
    Letitia Wright, Lupita Nyong’o and Angela Bassett in Black Panther.
    Letitia Wright, Lupita Nyong’o and Angela Bassett in Black Panther. Photo: Courtesy of Marvel Studios

    And Lupita’s hair?
    She has two looks in the movie. What we coined as the “Wakanda knot” is basically where we took small individual sections of hair and mixed those sections with Paul Mitchell’s Foaming Pomade, and then we twisted her hair down into itself to create that twist knot. The hair stayed really well all day long.

    Did you tell the actors to stick to a particular natural hair treatment plan while they were filming?
    We shampooed, conditioned, and did oil treatments in the trailer. We’re full service.

  2. rikyrah says:

    LarryO has been on the Porter/Kelly situation. His opening segment was searing.

    • Ametia says:

      Porter, THE WIFE BEATER.. Don’t think for a minute that Kelly didn’t know.

      These men claim to love their wives so much. Yep, they control them by beating them, dating them to not step out of line. Whatever the fuck that means.

  3. No way Russians penetrated U.S. voter systems and didn’t change anything. Trump need to be impeached and a new election held. And then undo the damage this fraud has done.

  4. Ametia says:

    This Swedish Actor Was Rejected For An Ikea Ad Because ‘He Can’t Be Black’
    Comedian, Fernando: “I was sad and angry.”

    Racism in retail marketing certainly received the spotlight via H&M’s recent fiasco. Now, it looks like another brand may be under fire … this time, when it comes to casting.
    According The Local, a Stockholm-based stand-up comedian named Fernando is calling out Ikea’s UK-based casting company, Crocodile Casting, for discrimination.
    Fernando, who has chosen to keep his surname private, shared a screenshot of a rejection email he reportedly received from the casting company which said, that he “can’t be black.”

  5. Ametia says:

    Stay woke folks, notice how cable news captions their lede “FBI UNDER FIRE” (MSNBC) They run with this tired narrative all day long, while in between air a shitload of ads . DON’T BE FOOLED.

    I don’t like all those captions and other “Breaking News” nonsense they flash across the screen NEVER HAVE. but it’s used to get into folks psyches.

  6. rikyrah says:

    Elder students heard chanting racial, homophobic slurs during basketball game
    Saint X coach stopped game in third quarter to confront referees about the chanting

    There has been anger and outrage following a basketball game between Elder High School and Saint Xavier High School on Friday.

    Elder students could be heard chanting racial and homophobic slurs during the game, through three quarters, before the game was stopped.

    WLWT talked with the parents of two players who were targeted by the slurs.

    They said the scene was unbelievable.

    One of their sons was faced with chants of “welfare” while the other heard “P.F. Chang’s.”

    “I was sickened, just sickened,” Susan Stockman said.

    Stockman is reeling from what she witnessed at her son’s basketball game Friday night.

    What came from Elder’s student section was no show of sportmanship, she said.

    Her son, a junior at Saint X, was one of the targets.

    “They were relentless. It went as far as ‘Asian, open your eyes. Go play chess. P.F. Chang’s,'” Stockman said.

    Mina Jefferson heard it too.

    Her son, a Saint X senior, was also targeted by the student section dubbed “The Sixth Man.”

    “Very quickly, the cheers turned to what I phrased as microaggressions and racial slurs,” Jefferson said.

    She said students in that area yelled that her son was on crack and welfare.

  7. rikyrah says:

    GOP lawmaker claims the Russia probe is ‘essentially birtherism’
    02/06/18 11:20 AM—UPDATED 02/06/18 12:57 PM
    By Steve Benen

    I’ve heard some creative Republican attempts to dismiss the Trump-Russia scandal, but TPM highlighted one yesterday that managed to surprise me.

    Rep. Tom Garrett (R-VA) on Monday compared special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election to the right-wing conspiracy theory that former President Barack Obama was not born in the United States.

    “Imagine that there were a partly political-funded investigation into President Obama’s place of birth, right? Because this Russia investigation is essentially birtherism,” Garrett said during an interview with CNN’s Brianna Keilar.


    Asked about the contacts between Russians and members of Team Trump during the Russians’ attack on the United States, the Virginia Republican said, “You don’t get to pick the people with whom you interact.”

  8. rikyrah says:

    The politics of patriotism takes an ugly turn in the Trump era
    02/07/18 10:04 AM
    By Steve Benen

    Donald Trump, annoyed by Democratic reactions to his State of the Union address, told a group of supporters this week that Dems had adopted an “un-American” posture. The president added, “Can we call that treason? Why not? I mean, they certainly didn’t seem to love our country very much.”

    The White House later said the comments were “tongue in cheek.” Whether one is inclined to accept the explanation or not, Trump’s comments were not an isolated incident.

    [White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders] questioned the patriotism of Democrats who sat on their hands during Mr. Trump’s discussion of the thriving American economy. “Democrats are going to have to make a decision at some point really soon,” Ms. Sanders said. “Do they hate this president more than they love this country? And I hope the answer to that is, ‘No.’”

  9. rikyrah says:

    New details on dossier’s path to FBI

    Tom Hamburger, national reporter for The Washington Post, talks with Rachel Maddow about Christopher Steele’s discoveries about Donald Trump and Russia compelled him to bring what he’d learned to the FBI’s attention.

  10. rikyrah says:

    Who’s funding a new Trump scandal lawyer fund

    Rachel Maddow follows up on an earlier TRMS scoop about the discovery of a Trump Russia scandal legal defense fund, and notes that unaccounted-for excess Trump inauguration money might find a way into such a fund.

  11. rikyrah says:

    Fine line between legal fund and hush money

    Michael Beschloss, NBC News presidential historian, talks with Rachel Maddow about how legal defense funds built around presidential scandals often create scandals of their own.

  12. rikyrah says:

    uh huh
    uh huh

    @ chrislhayes
    Every single last thing GOP said about deficits/debt and austerity under Obama was obviously bad faith AT THE TIME. But for those who pretended not to see that, well….

    @ MikeGrunwald
    This was a big theme of The New New Deal and I’m remembering an influential former colleague who thought it made me unfit to cover politics.

  13. rikyrah says:


    ESPN/The Undefeated present “Dear Athlete,” a live taping featuring Jemele Hill, Anquan Boldin, host Cari Champion!

    Be a part of ESPN/ The Undefeated’s live audience taping of its Black History Month special “Dear Athlete,” in Birmingham, Ala. on February 7, 2018. Doors will open at 11:45 AM and taping will begin at 1:00 PM.

    This “Dear Athlete,” special is an ode to Martin Luther King. Jr.’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail”.

    Now 50 years after Dr. King’s assassination some of sport’s most influential names – including journalist Jemele Hill, former NFL star Anquan Boldin, Baltimore Ravens tight end Benjamin Watson, as well as icons of the civil-rights movement – will gather in Birmingham, Ala., cradle of the movement, to tape a Black History Month special, hosted by ESPN’s Cari Champion, featuring conversation about black athletes, sports and leadership.

    Limited seating is available.

  14. rikyrah says:

    A retired Army general just gave an epic response to Trump’s military parade demand
    By Peter Mellado
    Published on February 6, 2018

    American sensibilities were rocked Tuesday when the New York Times reported that White House and Pentagon officials had been ordered to plan “a grand military parade” for President Trump. Two sources told The Times that Trump met with top generals last month at the Pentagon, where they began to draw up the plans.


    After reading the New York Times report, retired Army Major General Paul D. Eaton released a scathing statement on, and he didn’t mince words.

    “Donald Trump has continually shown himself to have authoritarian tendencies, and this is just another worrisome example,” his barrage opens. He was just getting warmed up.

    “For someone who just declared it was ‘treasonous’ to not applaud him, and for someone who has, in the past, admired tactics of everyone from Saddam Hussein to Vladimir Putin, it is clear that a military parade isn’t about saluting the military – it’s about making a display of the military saluting him.”

    “The military is not Donald Trump’s to use and abuse in this way,” Eaton’s statement continues. “Our military is the very best in the world – they are not the be reduced to stagecraft to prop up Donald Trump’s image.”

    “Any commander in chief who respects the traditions of the military would understand that. Unfortunately, we do not have a commander in chief, right now, as much as we have a wannabe banana republic strongman.”

  15. rikyrah says:

    Someone needs to follow the money, cause somebody’s GETTING PAID!!

    The Department of State is mandating enormous fee increases to a new accrediting entity beginning February 15, 2018 for agencies working internationally.

    The newly-appointed accrediting entity does not have contracts, policies, or procedures, and has provided those agencies with no services. The costs of international adoptions for each family will increase by thousands of dollars beginning almost immediately. The DOS is charging an additional $500 per international adoption pursuit, even if the adoption is unsuccessful. Agency monitoring fees stand to increase by approximately 4,000% – an outrageous amount that does not include accreditation expenses or account for the additional staffing that will be required to meet their added demands.

    • Ametia says:

      What’s more dangerous than a racist white man with a gun?

      A white fake POS posing as POTUS, with a gun & access to our nuclear codes

    • vitaminlover says:

      Did you hear what a REPUBLICAN lawmaker from Louisiana ( I believe) said? He said he did not think that such a parade was necessary. His statement concerning the deal was profound to me. He said “Confidence is silent, insecurity is loud”. I heard this today on MSNBC. His last name is Kennedy. I was pleasantly surprised

  16. rikyrah says:

    What is happening to our country?!?
    “A Pennsylvania Republican is calling for the impeachment of the justices on the state Supreme Court who ruled in favor of a redrawing of the state’s congressional map ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.”

    — Amy Siskind (@Amy_Siskind) February 7, 2018

    What’s scary is that there’s little Pennsylvania Dems could do to stop the GOP from trying to impeach these judges. The GOP needs just a simple majority in the state House & 2/3 in the state Senate. Their gerrymanders of both chambers have given them sufficiently large majorities

    — Stephen Wolf (@PoliticsWolf) February 6, 2018

  17. rikyrah says:

    BREAKING: New emails and court documents reveal how Republicans rigged Congress and have circumvented Democracy by using Gerrymandering to win House seats!

    — Ed Krassenstein (@EdKrassen) February 7, 2018

  18. rikyrah says:

    New legislation would add dental benefits for Maryland’s recipients of Medicaid.

    — The Baltimore Sun (@baltimoresun) February 7, 2018

  19. rikyrah says:

    uh huh
    uh huh

    A new media startup that billed itself as a “radical,” “grassroots” collective has admitted to being a wholly owned subsidiary of the Russian government following an exposé by The Daily Beast.

    — Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) February 7, 2018

  20. rikyrah says:

    Remind me why it bothers you? Never mind you opted to Jedi mind-trick the rest of my sentence, hoping it would vanish. I also said “unapologetically American” But I can guess why you didn’t see it. 🤭 Enjoy the interview in full.

    — Tamron Hall (@tamronhall) February 6, 2018

  21. rikyrah says:

    HOLDER names his 2018 targets

    Dem group to drop $30 mil on state races, from govs to legislators, judges, auditors

    Briefed OBAMA on Monday >>

    — Alex Burns (@alexburnsNYT) February 7, 2018

  22. rikyrah says:

    The @WhiteHouse proposal to cut legal immigration rates would delay the date that white Americans become a minority of the population by at least five years. This is a white nativist agenda in action, and it is a principal reason why Trump was elected.

    — Jamil Smith (@JamilSmith) February 6, 2018

  23. rikyrah says:

    Another race in Missouri, the Dem lost by 52-47 in a district that Dolt45 won 78-19.

    52-47 in a district he won by 78-19!

  24. The money should be spent on military families like La David Johnson’s family and those like him who lost their lives serving this country.

  25. rikyrah says:


    Dear @DineshDSouza: I didn’t know until I read comments to my tweet that you are a convicted felon. Now I have better context for your original tweet. So tell me, from your perspective as a felon, are the actions of @realDonaldTrump consistent with that of an innocent person?

    — Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) February 6, 2018

  26. rikyrah says:

    Oklahoma now has 91 school districts that can only afford to open schools four days per week; drunk drivers in the state can keep their licenses bc there are no bureaucrats to take them away. Remind me about the SW/Sun Belt growth model everyone’s touting?

    — Alec MacGillis (@AlecMacGillis) February 6, 2018

    • Ametia says:

      of course we aren’t prepared Rex. Good of you too parrot this nonsense as dictated by Putin, sine they are already adapting to meddle again. WE SEE YOU & PUTIN

  27. Trump envies Kim Jong-un’s military parade. The draft dodger is using ‘honoring the military’ as a front for his own petty desire.

  28. rikyrah says:

    Josh Hawley, the Missouri attorney general and rising Republican star who appeared to have a clear path to the party’s U.S. Senate nomination this year, is now facing vague but widespread rumors of buyer’s remorse in the party. One of Hawley’s top supporters, former U.S. Sen. John Danforth of Missouri, hinted Tuesday that he believes those rumors might stem from incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo. — who has shown in the past a talent for scrambling the home turf of her enemies. Danforth offered no evidence implicating McCaskill, and her office is strongly denying any role.

    The concerns about Hawley’s campaign, conveyed in part by anonymous sources on national political websites, focus on his fundraising, which is solid by most standards but hasn’t kept up with McCaskill’s financial juggernaut. There is also the fact that she has been stumping all over Missouri while he has mostly remained on the job in Jefferson City. His recent comments blaming sex trafficking on the sexual revolution of 50 years ago got unwanted national attention and have added to the sense of a campaign adrift.
    McCaskill is considered one of the most vulnerable Senate Democrats in the country this year, with roughly even approval-disapproval marks in a state that went to Republican Donald Trump by about 20 percentage points in 2016. Trump has endorsed Hawley.

    In an interview with the Post-Dispatch, Danforth, the retired senator and party elder, suggested that McCaskill might have had a role in the whispers of party frustration with Hawley on national political sites. “I don’t want to peddle conspiracy theories … (but) who would have an interest in putting that rumor out there?” said Danforth, who helped clear the Republican field for Hawley and expressed continued support for him Tuesday. Danforth didn’t outright allege a McCaskill role in the stories, but said: “Sen. McCaskill is a very shrewd operator. Witness her engineering the (Todd) Akin nomination. … She doesn’t miss a trick.”

    Akin was the St. Louis-area congressman who emerged from a brutal GOP Senate primary in 2012 to challenge McCaskill, only to stumble with his comments claiming that “legitimate rape” doesn’t cause pregnancy. McCaskill later admitted — boasted, really — of how her campaign spent major money and effort to help Akin win the GOP nomination over other Republicans, believing he would be easiest to beat in the general election. After Akin’s “legitimate rape” flub, as Republicans nationally were trying to get him off the ballot, McCaskill publicly defended his right to keep running. She ended up beating him by more than 15 percentage points.

  29. rikyrah says:

    Former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon once again avoided testifying before the House Intelligence Committee on Tuesday, forcing the panel to give him another week to comply with a subpoena to appear.

    A source told CNN Monday that Bannon knew prior to Tuesday’s deadline that he would not be showing up to give testimony because the White House and the committee have not reached an agreement on the scope of the questioning. The committee confirmed Tuesday that Bannon would be given another week to comply with the subpoena.

    Emily Hytha, spokeswoman for Rep. Mike Conaway, the Texas Republican running the committee’s Russia probe, said in a statement: “The House Intelligence Committee’s interview with Stephen Bannon has been postponed at the Committee’s initiative until next week. We look forward to having him before the Committee once we can assure that he will be able to thoroughly answer all our questions without concerns regarding the scope of executive privilege.”

    That stonewalling has caused the committee to delay his appearance twice.

    Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), ranking committee member, released a statement in which he called Bannon’s failure to testify “unacceptable.”

  30. rikyrah says:

    Every American should be alarmed by how @realDonaldTrump is working to make loyalty to him synonymous with loyalty to our country. That is not how democracy works.

    — Nancy Pelosi (@NancyPelosi) February 5, 2018

    .@realDonaldTrump: “Treasonous” means betraying your country – like, say, if someone colluded with Russia to influence American elections. The freedom not to clap for ideas you disagree with is called the 1st Amendment.

    — Senator Jeff Merkley (@SenJeffMerkley) February 5, 2018

    Useful guide

    Not clapping = treason

    Welcoming clandestine offer of stolen information from a hostile foreign government to your presidential campaign? “That’s politics!”

    — David Frum (@davidfrum) February 5, 2018

  31. rikyrah says:

    Trump supporters: I love Trump because he speaks plainly and says what he means!

    Trump: If you don’t cheer me, that’s treason.

    Trump supporters: Ok, see, he didn’t mean that like it sounds

    — Stonekettle (@Stonekettle) February 7, 2018

  32. rikyrah says:

    Countdown clock ⏰:
    Nine Days Until WAKANDA😎😎🙌🙌

  33. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning,Everyone 😄😄😄

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