Michelle Obama tries the neon trend with a splash of bright nail polish

Michelle Obama tries the neon trend with a splash of bright nail polish
President Barack Obama delivers remarks while First Lady Michelle Obama listens as they visited military personnel eating Christmas Dinner at Anderson Hall at Marine Corps Base Hawaii on December 25, 2012 in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii. The president and …
Read more on The Grio

Jenna Elfman of NBC's '1600 Penn' praises Michelle Obama [VIDEO]
“I love what Michelle Obama has done for the position of First Lady because she brings energy and participation and presence and health and pride of your own self as a woman and fitness and just, and also being a mother and a wife who's supportive and …
Read more on Daily Caller

Michelle Obama: Future presidential candidate?
On the one hand, there are also several obvious problems with a potential Michelle Obama candidacy: she's repeatedly said she has no interest; she hasn't run for public office; and by all reports, she's a very private person. On the other hand …
Read more on Constitution Daily (blog)

FB Ads Lab Announces New Program for 2013 Designed to Increase Social Media ROI


Melbourne, Australia (PRWEB) January 11, 2013

FB Ads Lab, a full-service digital agency with expertise in social media paid traffic, recently unveiled its newest program aimed at achieving increased exposure, better traffic, and improved sales for businesses. Dubbed as the 5 Steps to Social Media Sales (SMS) FB Ads Lab says that the program is a combination of group and private sessions where clients get expert support needed for harnessing sales through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, and LinkedIn.

Businesses are encouraged to start applying to the program or make further inquiries about exactly how the program aims to increase social media ROI as soon as now since applications will be closing. Meanwhile, sessions are set to commence when the client is ready.

FB Ads Lab founder Jennifer Sheahan remarks, Dont waste any more time wondering if social media is right for your company. I will be working directly with a very small group of elite business owners. Together, we are going to charge ahead of the crowd as I help you implement a massive social media strategy designed to increase your traffic and sales quickly. This is a unique and exclusive program only available to a handful of people who need help from an expert team.

According to a recent Mashable.com report, social media sales will take up 50 percent of web sales by 2015, with a projected amount of $ 30 billion. The report, which lifts infographic statistics from the Gartner Research, goes on to reveal that Facebook drives 26 percentwhich is expected to increase even moreof referral traffic to business websites. Internet Retailer, provider of business intelligence to the e-commerce market, released a report early this month detailing increases in traffic on several social media networks. The report states that Pinterest received 27.2 million unique visitors in the third quarter; Twittter saw 37 million unique visits, and Tumblr had 25.6 unique visitors. Meanwhile leading authority on digital marketing, media, and commerce, eMarketer, finds that B2B and B2C marketers are increasing social marketing budgets by next year in order to generate leads and sales.

Clearly, the significance and effect of social media in business cannot be dismissed.

Through the 5 Steps of SMS program, FB Ads Lab not only intends to implement campaign management done for the client, the full-service digital agency also aims to provide intense training or coaching to their clients teams. Sheahan explains in detail, You will have a full social media presence created for your business. We will do the work for you, and teach you our strategy along the way using video, audio, documented strategies, checklists, and coaching sessions.

Jennifer Sheahan, an experienced and sought-after public speaker on numerous marketing topics, runs FB Ads Lab. Her company has worked with some of the industrys best, including personalities that have worked on US President Barack Obamas re-election campaign. For more information on the 5 Steps to SMS program and other options for social media marketing plan, go to the FB Ads Lab website today.







More Obama Press Releases

Experienced Edina Realty Short Sale Agent Kris Lindahl Explains How The Extended Mortgage Debt Relief Law Will Help Homeowners


Blaine, MN (PRWEB) January 02, 2013

Kris Lindahl, Edina Realty’s number one short sale agent, was excited to see that, as part of the 11th hour dealings to avoid the fiscal cliff, lawmakers have extended the Mortgage Debt Relief Act through 2013. President Obama is expected to sign it shortly. “This is great news,”says Kris Lindahl. “The extension of this act means that homeowners will not have to pay taxes on forgiven mortgage debt through 2013,” Kris explains.

The Mortgage Debt Relief Act was set to expire on December 31, 2012 and would have put millions of homeowners in an undesirable situation. With its extension, homeowners can take a breath of relief. “I’ve been watching this situation very closely for the past year,” Kris Lindahl said, and continued, “I was very happy to see it extended in the 11th hour.” The extension will now be in effect until January 1, 2014.

Kris Lindahl and his short sale team are hard working, full-time Edina Realty realtors. Kris and his all members of his team hold the designations Certified Distressed Property Experts (CDPE), Short Sale & Foreclosure Resources (SFR), and Council of Residential Specialists (CRS). Kris received the Chairman’s Award from Edina Realty for record-breaking numbers in sales and sales volume.

In addition to creating online real estate resources Kris also takes time to give to charities including the ACBC Emergency Food Shelf, the Liz Loglin Foundation, and most recently the Newtown Youth and Family Services. “I get so much support from family, friends, clients, and the community that the least I can do is give back,” Kris Lindahl said.

Call Kris and his team at (763) 607-1415 for more information. Visit the Minnesota Short Sale Calculator website to check eligibility. Download a complimentary copy of the eBook “A Homeowner’s Guide To Short Sales” and check out the video series on YouTube.







President and First Lady Praise Authors Suwal and Brener as Holidays Drive Sales of Their RATIONAL OPTIMISM Audio Program


BRANDON, FL (PRWEB) November 26, 2012

Cece Suwal and Mark Brener are co-authors of the bestselling A Guide to Your Supreme Power, a wealth of advice for achieving success and happiness. The inspirational book has been globally acclaimed by political, spiritual and business leaders, as well as educators, celebrities and the media. Now, just in time for the gift-giving season, A Guide to Your Supreme Power is also available in an enhanced program as a collection of audio discs.

Both the book and discs teach Rational Optimism – the authors unique and revolutionary concept that has even earned accolades from the White House. First Lady Michelle Obama wrote: Cecil and Mark The President and I share your hope and optimism for our Nations future Our strength as a country depends on engaged citizens like you

Who can benefit from increased optimism? Each day millions of people deal with depression, anxiety, stress, and general disappointment for the path their lives have taken. In a world where negativity is the norm, A Guide to Your Supreme Power is the beacon that has helped thousands of readers unlock the true potential of their lives.

Authors Cece Suwal and Mark Brener teach Rational Optimism through their best-selling book, but now a greater access and understanding, intimacy and interactivity is available through the Rational Optimism Audio Training Program the complete collection of audio discs for A Guide to Your Supreme Power. This program reveals the full potential of Rational Optimism and is scientifically designed to enhance the brains ability to absorb information and react positively to life events.

Everyone experiences moments of Why did I do that?, when their actions directly deter them from achieving their long-term goals. The Audio Program works to prevent these occurrences by enhancing cognitive thought and advancing the way one interprets and responds to daily events. The work of Cece Suwal and Mark Brener has been nationally recognized as a unique resource endorsed and used by doctors, lawyers, businessmen, thought-leaders, and the public. The recognition for this product from top authors, motivational speakers, life coaches and CEOs is unprecedented.

A Guide to Your Supreme Power and the Rational Optimism Audio Training Program are the answer to creating positive life-changing events. The program stimulates powerful thoughts and creative solutions which can transform the quality of any life. Thousands of people have already seen benefits from the bestselling book. Both A Guide to Your Supreme Power and the Rational Optimism Audio Training Program are available online at http://www.theoneworldinitiative.com/audioacceleration.html.

ABOUT CECE SUWAL AND MARK BRENER

Mark Brener and Cecil (Cece) Suwal co-founded The One World Initiative and co-authored A Guide to Your Supreme Power – a national Bestseller. With English as his fourth language, Mark has lived and studied across the globe and holds an MBA from Israel. Cecil graduated Summa Cum Laude from Fordham University and is a member of Phi Kappa Phi; she is now working toward a doctorate in psychology in the United States. Cece and Mark have been featured on worldwide news media, such as ABC, The New York Times, The New York Observer, Fortune/CNN Money, The Guardian UK, and many more.

JV Broker International is the Legal Representative for this launch. For more information, please contact David Canham directly at 1 (866) 281-0847 or email admin(at)jvbrokerinternational(dot)com

Or For more information, contact Cece Suwal and Mark Brener of the One World Initiative at Phone: (917) 832-1090 or email them at media(at)theoneworldinitiative(dot)com.

# # #







Obama calls Rice "extraordinary," Cabinet members applaud

Obama calls Rice "extraordinary," Cabinet members applaud
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama gave a show of moral support to his embattled ambassador to the United Nations on Wednesday, calling Susan Rice "extraordinary" and prompting applause from his Cabinet during a meeting at the White …
Read more on Chicago Tribune

Republicans Debate Their Political Future
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Republican Party has begun a period of introspection following President Barack Obama's re-election victory on November 6. Debates about the future of the Republican Party began right after Mitt Romney conceded defeat on …
Read more on Voice of America

Senate panel OKs Obama choice for US commander
Senate panel OKs Obama choice for US commander. The Senate Armed Services Committee has approved President Barack Obama's choice to be the top commander in Afghanistan. By DONNA CASSATA. Associated Press …
Read more on The Seattle Times


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Remarks of President Barack Obama – WATCH Full Speech


State of the Union Address
“An America Built to Last”


Tuesday, January 24th, 2012
Washington, DC




WATCH: SOTU 2012







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Monday, January 23, 2012

Who REALLY Gets Food Stamps ?




By Dr. Julianne Malveaux-President, Bennett College for Women

Newt Gingrich is playing racial politics and he is playing to win. First he says that black children should get jobs as janitors (why not suggest they get the same consulting contract he did at Freddie Mac - I'm with Mitt Romney here, what did Gingrich tell Freddie Mac that was worth more than a million dollars). Then he says that he wants to tell the NAACP that we should demand jobs, not food stamps. He so bristles at Fox commentator Juan Williams that he gets a standing O in South Carolina. And he has repeatedly described President Barack Obama as a "food stamp" President. It's race baiting, pure and simple, and few have called him on it.

The true food stamp story goes something like this. In 2006 just 26.5 million Americans received food stamps. By 2011 the number had spiked to more than 45 million people. This has been the result of the Great Recession that has left at least 13 million people officially unemployed for an average of 40 weeks. Those are the official numbers, but they may be twice as high when we consider the people who have part time work and want full time work and those who have dropped out of the labor market because it costs too much to look for work. President Obama is not a food stamps president; he is a president who inherited an economic crisis. Newt is being extremely disingenuous and extraordinarily racist in his food stamps rap.

While about 14 percent of all of us - one in seven - gets food stamps, in some states the number is as high as one in five. In South Carolina, for example, poverty is greater than it is in the nation and 18.2 percent of South Carolinians get food stamps. The number in Maine is 18.6 percent, in Louisiana 19.2 percent, in Michigan 19.7 percent, in Oregon 20.1 percent, and in Mississippi 20.7 percent. Given the racial dynamics in South Carolina, did Newt decide to show out in a state where there is more poverty than elsewhere, and when the racial resentments (remember I said Confederate flag waving) don't need much fuel to turn to fire. He got a standing O by pandering to racial stereotypes. And that pandering may well have propelled him into victory.

Newt has managed to paint food stamps as a black program, partly by describing our president as a "food stamps" president, and partly by putting food stamps in context with the NAACP. But Mr. Gingrich, often touted for his intelligence, must be bright enough to know that most food stamp recipients are not African American. Indeed, according to the Associated Press, 49 percent of food stamp recipients are white, 26 percent are African American, and 20 percent are Hispanic. Indeed, some of the folks who gave Newt a standing O are food stamp recipients, but they chose to bond with Newt's racially coded messages instead of their own economic reality.

Poverty has a different face than it has ever had before. People who used to have big jobs and fancy cars are now struggling to make ends meet. People who always struggled are now strangling. More than 2 million families have doubled up in the past year because they needed a family lifeline to save their lives and their worlds. More than 40 percent of African American children live in poverty. Newt Gingrich would blame the poor for their situation, but the economy that President Obama inherited is an economy that has thrust people into despair. Food stamps are a lifeline for many. How dare candidate Gringrich attack President Obama for providing relief to 45 million Americans!

Most food stamp recipients are people who used to work, and they would, frankly, rather be working than receiving assistance. But they have downsized their lifestyles, their dreams, and their expectations. They are waiting for the job market to roar back. Half of the 45 million are white, and some of them stood to applaud Gingrich. Do they really think that a man who disdains the poor will provide them with a lifeline? Do they really believe that a man who is selling wolf tickets to the NAACP is really concerned with the well being of the least and the left out. The poverty that too many Americans experience is repugnant. The extent to which politicians trivialize such poverty is character revealing. Who will put American back to work? Who will alleviate poverty?


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Thursday, January 19, 2012

NOW SHOWING !


Red Tails The Incredible Story of The Tuskegee Airmen


Watch Trailer:


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Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Happy 48th Birthday to Our Wonderful

1st Lady Michelle Obama !



You Make Us So Proud !


B4B Home Page

Monday, January 16, 2012

Happy

Martin Luther King Day

2012 !




Watch:

Remembering His Life; Legacy


WATCH:



















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Thursday, January 12, 2012

What Has The President

Done for 'Progressives' ?




Watch: Find out in just 2 minutes


Watch:


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Watch:
1st Lady Dispels

'Angry Black Woman' Stereotype




(CBS News) Michelle Obama said depictions of friction in a new book, "The Obamas," between her and former top aides to her husband, President Obama, aren't true.

In a wide-ranging interview with "CBS This Morning" co-host Gayle King, the first lady also said that some have tried to portray her as an "angry black woman" since Mr. Obama first announced he was seeking the presidency.

More from the interview: Michelle Obama on how she's changed

" ... I guess it's more interesting to imagine this conflicted situation here and a strong woman and-- you know? But that's been an image that people have tried to paint of me since the day Barack announced, that I'm some angry black woman."

"The Obamas," written by New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor, reports that there was tension with former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and with former presidential Press Secretary Robert Gibbs.

But Mrs. Obama told King that simply wasn't so.

Watch:


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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

No Longer a Party of Lincoln:


The Racial Politics of the New GOP

By John Nichols



The Republican Party, founded by militant abolitionists and the political home through much of its history for committed foes of segregation and discrimination, has since the late 1960s been degenerating toward the crude politics of Southern strategies and what former Republican National Committee chairman Lee Atwater referred to as the "coded" language of complaints about "forced busing," legal-services programs, welfare and food stamps. But the 2012 campaign has seen this degeneration accelerate, as the candidates have repeatedly played on stereotypes about race, class and "entitlements."
On the eve of the Iowa caucuses, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum told a crowd of supporters: "I don't want to make black people's lives better by giving them somebody else's money."


Around the same time, Texas Congressman Ron Paul was scrambling to explain away old newsletters that went out under his name with sections suggesting that "95 percent of the black males in that city (Washington) are semi-criminal or entirely criminal" and describing the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday as "Hate Whitey Day." Order was restored in riot-torn Los Angeles, the newsletters suggested, only when welfare checks arrived.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who spent the fall talking about eliminating child-labor laws so that school janitors could be replaced with poor kids, and who regularly refers to Barack Obama as "best food stamp president in American history," arrived in the first-primary state of New Hampshire and announced: "I'm prepared if the NAACP invites me, I'll go to their convention and talk about why the African-American community should demand paychecks and not be satisfied with food stamps."

All these remarks and revelations drew consternation. National Association for the Advancement of Colored People leaders rebuked Gingrich and Santorum, with NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous saying of Gingrich: "It is a shame that the former speaker feels that these types of inaccurate, divisive statements are in any way helpful to our country. The majority of people using food stamps are not African-American, and most people using food stamps have a job."

Instead of objecting to the excesses of the other contenders, the "adult" in the race, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, picked up on the themes developed by Santorum and Gingrich to gripe about "the ever-expanding payments of an entitlement society" as "a fundamental corruption of the American spirit."
Romney is arguably the most disappointing of the current candidates, as he surely knows better.

His father, George Romney, was one of the Republican Party's most ardent advocates of civil rights, anti-poverty programs and investment in urban renewal during the 1960s. As the newly elected governor of Michigan, George Romney marched with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1963. Throughout the turbulent 1960s, George Romney argued, at considerably political cost to himself, on behalf of a Republican Party that would welcome newly enfranchised African-American voters and reject the coded language of Southern strategists and repurposed segregationists. In 1964, as one of the nation's most prominent Republican elected officials, he refused to endorse Barry Goldwater's presidential candidacy. He complained that Goldwater, who had voted against the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and was gearing his campaign toward disaffected Democrats in Southern states such as Alabama and Mississippi, had broken faith with party members who valued "basic American and Republican principles."

While some Republicans responded to the outbreak of rioting in American cities by blaming Democratic President Lyndon Johnson's anti-poverty initiatives, Geoffrey Kabaservice recounts in his brilliant new analysis of the decay of the Republican Party, "Rule and Ruin" (Oxford, 2012), how George Romney argued that government was not doing enough. Instead of squandering federal funds on the Vietnam War, he argued, the United States must change its budget priorities and focus on the "human, social and economic problems of own people."
George Romney's was an honorable Republicanism, and that Republicanism remained alive long after the elder Romney left the political hustings. In the 1980s, when some Republicans openly opposed the creation of a Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, they were called on the carpet by U.S. Sen. Charles Mathias, R-Md., who had in the early 1960s taken the lead (with then-Congressman John Lindsay and a handful of others) in forcing reluctant Democrats in the U.S. House to consider civil-rights and voting-rights legislation. Mathias was horrified that any Republican would consider squandering what he correctly considered to be one of its finest legacies. In the late 1980s and 1990s, former Congressman Jack Kemp, a New York Republican who served as a Cabinet secretary and the party's 1996 vice presidential nominee, repeatedly raised alarms when Republicans engaged in stereotyping of African-Americans and other minority communities. And for a time in the 1990s and early 2000s, it seemed as if a young Mitt Romney, as a Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate and then a few years later as one of the nation's most liberal Republican governors, was aligning with Kemp and revitalizing the best traditions of his father's Republican Party.

But no more.
Unlike his father, Mitt Romney refuses to call out, let alone break with, the reactionaries who mouth slightly updated variations on the 1960s language of the "white backlash" against civil rights, social programs and the war on poverty. Indeed, with his crude complaints about the United States as an "entitlement nation," he embraces the rough outlines of their arguments.
Even worse, in many senses, is Jon Huntsman, the former Utah governor who has tried without much success to position himself as a moderate runner in the GOP race.

Huntsman had a perfect opening to distinguish himself in the days leading up to the New Hampshire primary, when so many of his fellow contenders were objecting to "making black peoples' lives better" and dismissing the first African-American commander in chief as the "best food stamp president in American history." He could have been the leader that Mitt Romney was not. But Huntsman lacked the courage to do the right thing. Or, perhaps, and this is even more unsettling, Huntsman simply concluded that an appeal to "basic American and Republican principles" would not be recognized by what remains of a once Grand Old Party.
John Nichols is associate editor of The Capital Times. jnichols@madison.com.


Saturday, January 7, 2012

WATCH: President's Weekly Address
Continuing to Grow the Economy
in the New year


President Obama shares his New Year's resolution: doing whatever it takes to move the economy forward and ensure that middle class families regain the security they've lost in the last decade.

WATCH:


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Thursday, January 5, 2012

JOBS !


The White House Announces Federal and Private Sector Commitments to Provide Employment Opportunities for Nearly 180,000 Youth

(List of companies hiring)

Today, the White House announced Summer Jobs+, a new call to action for businesses, non-profits, and government to work together to provide pathways to employment for low-income and disconnected youth in the summer of 2012. The President proposed $1.5 billion for high-impact summer jobs and year-round employment for low-income youth ages 16-24 in the American Jobs Act as part of the Pathways Back to Work fund. When Congress failed to act, the Federal government and private sector came together to commit to creating nearly 180,000 employment opportunities for low-income youth in the summer of 2012, with a goal of reaching 250,000 employment opportunities by the start of summer, at least 100,000 of which will be placements in paid jobs and internships. Today’s announcement is the latest in a series of executive actions the Obama Administration is taking to strengthen the economy and move the country forward because we can’t wait for Congress to act.
“America’s young people face record unemployment, and we need to do everything we can to make sure they’ve got the opportunity to earn the skills and a work ethic that come with a job. It’s important for their future, and for America’s. That’s why I proposed a summer jobs program for youth in the American Jobs Act – a plan that Congress failed to pass. America’s youth can’t wait for Congress to act. This is an all-hands-on-deck moment. That’s why today, we’re launching Summer Jobs+, a joint initiative that challenges business leaders and communities to join my Administration in providing hundreds of thousands of summer jobs for America’s youth,” said President Obama.
“While young people who are currently disconnected from school or work are not contributing to our economy, we see these young people as ‘Opportunity Youth’ – because of the untapped potential they bring to the Nation. Today, the White House challenged all sectors to go all-in and work together in creating pathways to youth employment. Summer jobs are an important step – and to stay on the path to success, Opportunity Youth need social supports and access to relevant education, mentoring and training. This spring, the White House Council for Community Solutions will participate in community discussions nationwide to learn from best efforts by youth, families, government, business, educators, and nonprofits to connect young people to meaningful career opportunities,” said Patty Stonesifer,Chair of the White House Council for Community Solutions (WHCCS).
The Administration also announced its intention to launch, within 60 days, the Summer Jobs+ Bank, a one-stop search tool for youth to access postings for any participating employers seeking to reach them where they are online. The search tool builds upon an open standard, the JobPosting schema endorsed by schema.org in November, 2011 in support of the Veterans Jobs Bank,and will include technical and promotional support by Google, Internships.com, AfterCollege, LinkedIn and Facebook. Today the Corporation for National and Community Service released a new toolkit created in collaboration with the WHCCS and employers to support businesses and communities in their efforts to help young people become productive citizens and connect to greater opportunities, both of which are critical for the long-term strength and competiveness of the Nation.
Today’s announcements build on previous commitments from the Obama Administration to support summer youth employment. In 2009 and 2010, communities across the country used Recovery Act funds to directly support summer work opportunities for over 367,000 young people. In the summer of 2011, the Department of Labor brought together private sector commitments to employ over 80,000 youth.
A new analysis released today by the WHCCS showed that in 2011 alone, taxpayers shouldered more than $93 billion in direct costs and lost tax revenue to support young adults disconnected from school and work. Over the lifetime of these young people, taxpayers will assume a $1.6 trillion burden to meet the increased needs and lost revenue from this group. Read the full analysis here.
Businesses, non-profits and government can accept the President’s call-to-action by directly hiring youth as well as providing corporate mentorship experiences, internship, and other opportunities that connect young people to jobs. The three key ways organizations can engage are:
Learn and Earn: Provide youth jobs for the summer of 2012 in the form of paid internships and/or permanent positions that provide on-the-job training. Of the roughly 180,000 job commitments announced today more than 70,000 are Learn and Earn commitments
Life Skills:Provide youth work-related soft skills, such as communication, time management and teamwork, through coursework and/or experience. This includes resume writing or interview workshops and mentorship programs.
Work Skills:Provide youth insight into the world of work to prepare for employment. This includes job shadow days and internships. More information about this initiative can be found at dol.gov/summerjobs
As the nation continues to recover from the deepest recession since the Great Depression, American youth are struggling to get the work experience they need for jobs of the future. According to the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (Current Population Survey):
48.8 percent of youth between the ages of 16-24 were employed in July, the month when youth employment usually peaks. This is significantly lower than the 59.2 percent of youth who were employed five years ago and 63.3 percent of youth who were employed 10 years ago.
Minority youth had an especially difficult time finding employment this past summer. Only 34.6 percent of African American youth and 42.9 percent of Hispanic youth had a job this past July.
In addition to the organizations making commitments for the summer of 2012, the Department of Labor will honor UPS, We Are Golf, Wells Fargo, and Jamba Juice for their strong participation in their 2011 summer jobs effort and the Corporation for National and Community Service will honor Bank of America, State Street, Viacom, Deloitte, and JP Morgan for their leadership in corporate mentoring over the past year.
Commitments Announced Include:
The American Association of People with Disabilities(AAPD) is committed to improving employment outcomes for the many people with disabilities who are ready, willing, and able to work. The AAPD Summer Internship Program will provide 30 young people with disabilities the opportunity to engage in ten weeks of public service through paid internships on Capitol Hill, in federal agencies, nonprofits, and for-profit businesses.
AT&Tis committed to providing nearly 350 summer jobs in 2012 through a variety of summer job initiatives. These opportunities help students, from high school to recent college graduates, develop skills and gain insight while preparing them to more successfully enter the job market. Examples of AT&T summer opportunities for college students include leadership development internships on the fields on finance, retail, IT and engineering, as well as participation in college internship initiatives with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund and the Dr. Emmett J. Conrad Leadership Program. In addition to these unique opportunities, AT&T will also provide high school students the opportunity to experience the world of work through the Mayor’s Interns Fellows Program in Newark, NJ. Also in 2012, AT&T will reach their initial goal of providing 100,000 high school students the opportunity to learn more about career options and what it takes to be successful in today’s workforce through the AT&T/JA Worldwide Job Shadow Initiative.
Bank of America, as part of its broader three-year $50 million goal to support education and workforce development opportunities for underserved populations, will continue to invest significantly in youth and young adults in 2012, including 1,500 paid internships at the company and local nonprofits as well as job placement programs, in conjunction with more than 80,000 hours from employee volunteers. Recognizing the value of mentoring to help make opportunities possible for young people, Bank of America served as the primary sponsor of the National Mentoring Partnership’s 2011 National Mentoring Summit, at which the Corporate Mentoring Challenge was launched. In 2011, Bank of America invested more than $15 million, and its employees volunteered more than 75,000 hours to help youth and young adults attain life and work skills to propel them towards long-term success.
Baxter International Inc.pledges to support Summer Jobs+ by expanding their education initiative, Science@Work. As an extension of Science@Work – a multiyear commitment to support teacher training and student development in healthcare and biotechnology through a partnership with Chicago Public Schools – Baxter will reach 300-500 students. These students will participate in a variety of programs: the Career Training Program, in which Baxter professionals will assist students with career planning, soft skill development and interviewing skills; the 2012 Summer Job Shadowing program, in which students will participate in a unique shadowing experience with young Baxter professionals; and through Science @Work Community of Support, in which students will participate in an on-going relationship management program that provides counsel and professional support during college careers.
Bender Consulting Services, Inc.is committed to investing in youth who are living with disabilities, to support the development of life and work skills required by private and public sector employers. Partnering with local high-schools in Pittsburgh, PA and Newark, DE, Bender Consulting, through the year-long Bender Leadership Academy Program will train 60 high-school students with disabilities, many who are low-income, about how to be successful in the world of work. Four students who complete this program will work on a short-term paid summer internship in Bender Consulting’s offices in Pittsburgh, PA. Bender Consulting will also provide two to four, 12 week summer HR internships to low income youth, including youth with disabilities.
The Camber Corporation provides young people with real-life work experience, opportunities to enhance their professional skillsets, and mentorship from their qualified employees during paid internships. In 2011, 25% of their graduated interns were hired as full-time Camber employees to serve in the areas of accounting, engineering, and human resources. In 2012, Camber plans to offer 8 internship opportunities.
CenturyLinkhas had summer internship programs for more than 25 years and looks forward to participating in Summer Jobs+ in 2012. CenturyLink believe that one of its strengths is the diversity of its people, and they are committed to fostering diversity among the 50 summer jobs they will hire this year.
The Corporation for National and Community Service(CNCS) has made a commitment to provide approximately 4,000 disadvantaged youth with national service opportunities through AmeriCorps programs operating in the summer of 2012. The AmeriCorps VISTA Summer Associate Program, funded in part through private sector commitments, will place youth in communities across the country to address poverty and hunger. In addition, AmeriCorps State and National programs will engage youth in education and conservation projects, and the AmeriCorps NCCC Summer of Service program is designed to introduce teenagers, especially those from disadvantaged circumstances, to national service and to foster in them such values as teamwork, responsibility, and the ethic of serving one’s community. These stipended service opportunities train youth in the life and work skills, such as teamwork, problem solving, and leadership, that are critical for success in the labor market, while engaging in activities that tackle tough societal challenges.
CVS Caremarkis committing to hire over 20,000 youth between the ages of 16 and 24 in 2012. Many of the new employees will occupy part-time and full-time positions such as pharmacy service associates, technicians, cashiers and interns in a variety of corporate functions.
Deloitte helps American high school students prepare for college and careers through its Their Future Is Our Future program. As part of this program, 500,000 students have experienced the Life Inc. career exploration curriculum and Deloitte is committed to serve tens of thousands of students in 2012. Through a series of lessons, self-discovery techniques, and virtual role models tailored for youth in middle and high school, Life, Inc. introduces students to various career possibilities and helps them determine what kind of educational experiences they will need in order to pursue them. The program includes a website, career guide, teacher’s guide and student journal, which features seven lessons that are delivered by teachers in schools and after school youth programs. Additionally, through deep relationships with national nonprofits that lead on education including MENTOR, United Way, College Summit and City Year, Deloitte contributes cash, pro bono service and the time of one-on-one mentors to help young people pursue the education and skills they need to succeed in the 21st century.
The Department of Agriculture has made a commitment to provide approximately 7,100 youth with the opportunity to gain valuable work experience during the summer of 2012 by working with various USDA Mission Areas and Agencies throughout the country. The USDA provides leadership on food, agriculture, natural resources, and related issues based on sounds public policy, the best available science, and efficient management. USDA is committed to forming a pipeline of talented youth who will be our future leaders by giving them the opportunity for hands-on work experience in a variety of science, technology, engineering, math, administrative, management, agribusiness and industry positions.
The Department of Health and Human Services(HHS) will commit to supporting 324 summer jobs for low-income youth in 2012. HHS offices will be supporting paid summer jobs as well as other employment enhancement opportunities. The Office of Human Resources’ Strategic Programs Division (SPD) will host at least two classes in the “Life Skills” pathway to support 120 youth. These classes will have up to 50 participants each and will focus on work-related soft skills, such as communication, time management, and teamwork. Additionally, SPD will allow for 20 students to participate in the “Work Skills” pathway. These 20 students will shadow SPD employees for the day to offer insight into the federal workplace and to prepare them for employment.
The Department of the Interior has committed to providing approximately 12,000 young Americans with work opportunities in the summer of 2012 on public lands, tribal lands, national parks, wildlife refuges, and environmental restoration projects nationwide. Interior has increased the number of summer job opportunities it offers for young people under the Obama administration by 30 percent – helping more people from all walks of life to enjoy the great outdoors, and to pursue work opportunities and careers in the stewardship of America’s natural, cultural, and historic resources as part of the President’s America’s Great Outdoors initiative.
The DirectEmployers Associationis a nonprofit HR consortium of leading global employers formed to improve labor market efficiency through the sharing of best practices, research and the development of technology. They are committed to hiring 5 youths this summer in the Indianapolis area to provide opportunities to learn the skills needed to be successful in the workforce as well as to encourage and motivate them to continue with their education.
Discovery Communicationsprovides multiple avenues for young people to discover a summer job and a lasting career. Through the Discover Your Skills campaign youth can learn about exciting career opportunities in skilled trades and critical growth areas like manufacturing, health care, energy, technology, construction and other industries. A partnership with Montgomery College provides community college students with the skills they need to take advantage of available job opportunities. In addition, Discovery’s robust internship program will provide nearly 300 college students career opportunities in a variety of fields in 2012.
Easter Sealswill be working to create summer opportunities for three young people with disabilities and will be disseminating information about the Summer Jobs+ initiative throughout their nationwide network of affiliates. These positions will be in the "learn and earn" category of the initiative. While working for Easter Seals, young people will have the opportunity to learn various aspects of nonprofit management including marketing and corporate relations, public policy, program management, development and more.
Expeditors, through its Opportunity Knocks program, recruits and supports disconnected youth so they can get training in a professional environment that can be leveraged for future success. Since starting the program in 2008, Expeditors has helped 25 disconnected youth in six offices throughout the United States and is committed to adding 75 positions in another twenty offices in 2012 to bring the total participation to 100 youth.
Gap Inc.is supporting 80,000 youth in 2012 through a variety of programs, which include connecting youth to employment through the development of relevant life skills and work ready skills, as well as providing on-the-job training through learn and earn experiences.
General Dynamics C4 Systemsis committed to hiring 40 young people during the summer of 2012 and is partnering with Sentinels of Freedom, Wounded Warriors, Diversity Careers, SWE, SHPE, NSBE and WOC to support hiring needs nationwide.
Goodwill Industries Internationalis proud to be one of the first organizations to support the Summer Jobs+ program. Through Goodwill’s unique social enterprise business model, it creates employment and job training. This year, the organization will expand services for youth at the beginning their careers. Goodwill is committed to hiring 1,200 youth ages 16 to 24, provide more than 3,200 youth with life skills services and over 2,300 with work skills services. Almost 2,000 youth will be engaged in learn and earn services. Thousands more youth will be provided virtual career mentoring and exploration services.
H-E-Bhas committed to expand their summer jobs program by 19 percent. In the summer of 2012, 5,171 16-24 year olds will be hired to work at H-E-B.
J.B. Hunt Transportis focused on providing opportunities for young people to experience a professional working environment, particularly those in the Hispanic community in Arkansas. Through a partnership with ALPFA, the company reaches out to local high school students and helps raise awareness of opportunities in business, and provides mentors for college students. For 2012, J.B. Hunt is increasing the number of summer positions at headquarters to 20, and expanding college internships at our field locations throughout the United States.
Jamba Juicehas made a significant commitment to training and hiring young people and will pledge to hire at least 2,500 youth in the summer of 2012. Jamba Juice has a successful summer in 2011 when the company hired nearly 2,700 youth for summer work — 200 more than their pledge made as part of the "Summer Jobs USA: Make a Commitment" initiative. Additionally, Jamba Juice also recently launched a new internship program for Job Corps students.
JPMorgan Chase has been a leader in supporting “Learn and Earn” and “career and skill development” programs in cities all across the country for decades. During the 2011 Corporate Mentoring Challenge, JPMorgan Chase was inspired to step up in a leadership role – by funding and launching the Illinois Mentoring Partnership, introducing other potential funders and connecting non-profit organizations, who deliver the programs. In Chicago, JPMorgan Chase also has supported, since its creation 20 years ago, After School Matters, a program that helps teens discover and nurture their talents and aspirations for future successes. The bank’s support in 2012 will provide 1,300 teens with hands-on, project-based programs to learn about rewarding careers and to help develop marketable job skills.
LinkedInhas committed to offer 200 internships in the summer of 2012. Additionally, LinkedIn is committed to adopting the JobPosting schema and letting any company post their summer internship jobs (or entry level jobs) on the LinkedIn website at no cost.
ManpowerGroupis proud to support summer jobs through a direct commitment of 20 jobs at our global headquarters in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and at Manpower branch offices across the nation. Through its work with local Workforce Investment Boards and One-Stop Career Centers, Manpower supports employment opportunities for thousands of people touched by the public workforce system.
Operation HOPE, as part of the Gallup-HOPE Index Cities Initiative, commits to secure 20 businesses and place 500 youth through youth business internships, mentorships, shadow days or actual small business or entrepreneurship start-ups. Through the Gallup-HOPE Index Cities initiative, Operation HOPE, in partnership with Gallup intend to create a new youth entrepreneurial and business class in America, along with a new culture of progressive business mentoring by Corporate America.
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC) maintains a strong focus on providing learning and work opportunities for youth in the United States. Through its host of early-identification programs and a robust internship program designed for undergraduate students, PwC seeks to provide students the learning, coaching, and training opportunities and professional relationships they need to develop professionally and personally, while also learning about unique opportunities in a career in professional services. For the summer of 2012, PwC is committed to hiring 1,500 youth across the country.
The SI Organization will hire more than 100 young people in 2012 for full-time entry-level and internship/co-op positions focused on engineering and integration services in the U.S. Intelligence Community, Department of Defense and other agencies.
Starbucks Coffee Companyis supporting more than 25,000 youth this summer through a variety of programs. The company will work with local nonprofits and others to engage 20,000 young people in life skills and job readiness development. This commitment is in alignment with our Youth Action Grants programs, supporting young people to address critical issues in their communities. Starbucks supports nonprofit organizations to give young people the skills and resources to be catalysts for change through community service. One example of an organization Starbucks supports is Generation On in multiple cities across the US; this is a program of Hands On Network. Starbucks plans to work closely with its grant recipients to maximize the life skills training and service opportunities and to increase their outreach to underserved youth. The company will also provide hands-on and learn and earn experiences for 5,000 young people working at Starbucks.
State Street Corporationis committed to providing workforce development and education opportunities to approximately 1,000 youth each summer in cities including Boston, New York, Kansas City, and Sacramento among others. The company supports a continuum of meaningful job opportunities starting with funding subsidized wage placements in community-based organizations for first-time job experiences, as well as placements in professional positions at State Street for those who have developed basic employability skills and are ready for more responsibility.
Syracuse Universitywill provide 200 jobs to college-aged students working in the Say Yes to Education Syracuse’s Summer Camp for academic enrichment and youth leadership. Syracuse University will also provide 50 positions to 16-21 year olds in a SU partnership with CNY Works on a Summer Youth Initiative.
The McGraw-Hill Companies is committed to growing its 12-week paid summer internship program which employs youth across all of their businesses to 260 summer internships for 2012. In 2011, McGraw-Hill employed over 250 Summer Interns and roughly 10% of last year’s interns were offered full-time positions after graduation.
UPS, the global leader in logistics, is continuing its commitment to summer jobs and will offer 1,500 employment opportunities to youth across the country in 2012. Most opportunities qualify for employment benefits and UPS’ educational assistance program which can pay up to $3,000 a year for educational benefits.
Viacom has committed to provide internship and mentorship programs to connect youth to employment opportunities. Through their Summer Associates Program, VIACOM will provide 10 recent college graduates young people a 10 week paid training program in the summer 2012 fostering professional and personal development and unlocking the doors to valuable real-world experience. Through their partnership with POSSE’s Career Program, Viacom will provide 30 college students high school students with a paid internship. In addition, mentoring initiatives such as Viacom’s national mentoring program Get Connected, created with the Get Schooled Foundation, will assist students through meaningful connections with adults with the ultimate goal of helping to keep them in school and realize their true potential.
WE ARE GOLF is a national not-for-profit organization formed to tell the story of the nearly 2 million hardworking men and women who make golf a great sport and whose livelihoods depend on it. Golf courses across the country are building on their 2011 commitment of 2,700 summer jobs and WE ARE GOLF is bringing far more golf courses to this initiative in 2012 to offer tens of thousands more jobs to young people.
Wells Fargohas made an ongoing and significant commitment to its communities, including opportunities for summertime work, networking and training for young people. In the summer of 2012, Wells Fargo will support 1,000 employment opportunities for youth.
Along with significant commitments from across the business sector, national organizations are answering the President’s challenge. United Way Worldwide will work with local chapters in approximately 30 cities and regions to host a series of Community Conversations, where local leaders will join with ordinary citizens to map out what they can do to pull together the support needed to create opportunity and pathways for young adults.


WATCH:

President Flexes Muscle;

Bypasses Congress


President Barack Obama waves with Richard Cordray (R) after announcing that he has appointed Cordray to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau during a trip to Cleveland, Ohio January 4, 2012. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was created by the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial oversight law to police the market for consumer products such as credit cards and mortgages.—-REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque


WATCH: President Announces Cordray to head CFPB (Cleveland)









ANOTHER Great Job Mr. President !


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Wednesday, January 4, 2012



Watch:

President Obama to Iowa Dems:


"More Optimistic " about "Change"


than in 2008

WATCH:







(Real Clear Politics) In a video conference with Iowa Democrats on Tuesday night, President Obama made his case for another term. Obama outlined his progress during his first term and asked for their help in the upcoming campaign.

Obama also reminisced about his 2008 bid for the presidency.

"We've still got a lot of work to do. But think about the change that was accomplished because of those caucuses four years ago," Obama said in a message that was distributed to more than 200 Democratic caucus locations throughout the state of Iowa.

"In some ways I'm actually more optimistic now than I was when we first ran, because we've already seen change take place," Obama said when asked whether he still believed in 'hope and change,' his signature slogan of the 2008 election cycle.

"Part of what 2012 is about is about reminding the American people how far we've traveled and the concrete effects that some of our work has had in terms of making sure people have health insurance," Obama also said.


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Sunday, December 25, 2011

MERRY CHRISTMAS !


B4B Home Page

Saturday, December 24, 2011

SUPER THANKS

to all who worked diligently toward the passing of the Payroll Tax Cut and Unemployment Benefit Extension. As you all know....

There's STILL Much Work Ahead !


People Power Works !!!


Friday, December 16, 2011

WATCH:


President Obama's Message






"Ending The War in Iraq:


A Promise Kept"



Subscribers CLICK B4B MAIN PAGE for video

Wednesday, December 14, 2011




2.5 Million MORE Young Adults Have Coverage



Thanks to 'Obama-Care'




By: Kathleen Sebelius


Secretary of Health and Human Services


As a parent, nothing gives us more peace of mind than knowing that our children can pursue their dreams without unfair limitations. This is why I’m excited to announce that millions more young adults in America now have health insurance coverage thanks to the health care law – enabling them to pursue their goals without worrying about what will happen if they get sick.
The provision in the law allowing young adults to remain on their parents’ health insurance until age 26 has resulted in 2.5 million young people gaining coverage, according to analysis based on new data released today by the National Center for Health Statistics.
Families around the country are benefitting from this part of the law, including families like the Houghs, whose daughter Natalie was diagnosed with a rare heart condition after suffering a cardiac arrest at school. Her condition requires a lifetime of medication and care. There was a day when this diagnosis would mean insurance companies would either not cover Natalie or would offer her unaffordable plans. It would mean that Natalie and her family would have to keep paying, or face the unimaginable alternative.
Now, thanks to the health care law, Natalie can stay on her family’s plan and has started college. And, by the time she turns 26, it will be illegal for a plan to deny coverage to anyone, regardless of their health and Natalie will have access to quality, affordable care.
Today’s news is more evidence of the good things the health care law is doing for young people and their families. More young adults in this country can now go on and live their lives with less worry about visiting their doctor when they get sick, or incurring catastrophic medical bills if they are in an accident. And for us parents, this lets us breathe a sigh of relief.



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Wednesday, December 7, 2011



WATCH:

President Slams GOP in

Fiery Kansas Speech
" This is a make-or-break moment for the middle class ! "






President Obama in Osawatomie, Kansas

Watch:


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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Next Month: Unemployment Benefits to


END for Over 2 MILLION AMERICANS !






One important fact rarely being reported is that unemployment benefits are scheduled to expire if Congress does not vote to extend them by December 31 which will leave over 2.2 million American families to literally starve ! The time is NOW to make your voices be heard by contacting your Senators and Congresspeople to DEMAND that they do the right thing and extend the benefits. (Greg Jones-B4B)



WATCH: Unemployment Benefits to Expire



ACTION TIME !!!



SPEAK OUT !!!



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Thursday, November 24, 2011

President Pardons Turkey with 1st Daughters

HAPPY THANKSGIVING !

WATCH Weekly Address:
On Thanksgiving, Grateful for the Men and Women

Who Defend Our Country


President Obama wishes the American people a happy Thanksgiving -- and gives a special thanks to the brave men and women serving overseas and those giving back to their communities during the holidays.

WATCH:


P.S......Soooooo Thankful that McPalin didn't win !
Whew !!!


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Monday, November 21, 2011



WATCH:



President Responds to Super Committee Failure


WATCH:


B4B Note: The GOP's desire to do all they can to make certain that our country fails in hopes of blaming/defeating The President is actually domestic terrorism and should be identified as such.


PATHETIC !



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Wednesday, November 9, 2011

B4B Photo-of-the-Week

Ohio Gov. Kasich following experiencing
The Power Of The People !!!

B4B Home Page
Facebook Comment Spotlight

By Earlene Williams Hancock


BIG, BIG NIGHT FOR DEMOCRATS!!! Way to go OHIO ~ we rejected Issue 2 - 60/40!!! Mississippi ~ you voted down that ridiculous Personhood Amendment!!! Maine ~ you said NO to Voter Suppression...and Kentucky ~ you voted for a Democratic Governor!!! WOO HOO! ----► Listen up, GOP - the people have spoken and we're coming for you! ◄---


STAY FIRED UP....
There's STILL MUCH Work Ahead !
B4B Home Page
WE DID IT !
Ohioans Unite to Defeat
Repub Gov. Kasich Plan


Article from Amanda Terkel/Huffington Post:
Ohioans overturned a divisive anti-union law on Tuesday, delivering a significant defeat to Republican Gov. John Kasich and a victory to labor unions.

Ohio voters rejected Issue 2, a ballot referendum on Senate Bill 5, a measure that restricts collective bargaining rights for more than 360,000 public employees, among other provisions. Opposition to the legislation inspired large protests from residents around the state this year.

Immediately after the results came in, union officials sent out statements declaring success.

"One message rang loud and clear tonight in Ohio and across the country: those who spend their time scapegoating workers and pushing a partisan agenda will only strengthen the resolve of working people," said AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka. "From the very beginning, it’s been clear that Gov. Kasich, and indeed many politicians, were pushing an agenda that was about politics, not about solving our nation’s problems or creating jobs."

"Even after John Kasich locked the doors to democracy and shut out everyday heroes from the Statehouse, in the cold, blister of February -- working people never lost hope. We marched in the spring, circulated petitions in the summer and now, this fall, we delivered a win for all working people by defeating Issue 2, repealing Senate Bill 5," added Becky Williams, president of SEIU District 1199 in Ohio.

Kasich held a press conference shortly after the fate of Issue 2 had been declared, saying it was time for him to "take a deep breath" and figure out what to do next.

"When I say it is a time to pause, it is right now, on this issue," he said. "The people have spoken clearly. You don't ignore the public. Look, I also have an obligation to lead. I've been leading since the day I took this office, and I'll continue to do that. But part of leading is listening and hearing what people have to say to you."

Kasich signed SB 5 into law on March 31, although the law was put on hold during the referendum campaign. The labor-aligned group We Are Ohio organized the anti-Issue 2 effort, and Building A Better Ohio led the pro-Issue 2 fight.

Tuesday's defeat may have nullified SB 5, but parts of the law may not be dead in the long term. While much of the public attention has centered on the law's ban on collective bargaining for public employees, the law also contained provisions to require public employees to contribute to their health care and pension benefits, along with pushing merit pay for teachers -- proposals that polled well in the run-up to the election.

Ohio State Rep. Mike Foley (D) said the Republican leadership in the legislature may try to pass these proposals one by one when they reconvene in January.

"They could act and take bits and pieces of it and try a new bill on teacher merit pay or health care...or any of the parts of the bill that they think they can get passed," Foley said. "I don't know if they will. We'll have to see. ... I think some of the Republican members on their side of the aisle are going to start looking at their leadership funny if they come back with another collective bargaining bill."

"We certainly are going to be ready for that, if we're still in the same kind of political situation of them controlling the state legislature and governor's office," added AFL-CIO Political Director Mike Podhorzer. "We're hoping the vote on Tuesday will have demonstrated this is enormously unpopular.

Kasich's spokesman recently said the governor had not been focusing on what-ifs in case the referendum was defeated.

PEOPLE POWER WORKS !

B4B Main Page

Saturday, November 5, 2011




Photo-of-the-Week:


President Obama at the G20


President Barack Obama is greeted by French President Nicholas Sarkozy for the start of the G20 Summit in Cannes, France, Nov. 3, 2011. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)



President Obama is in France for a meeting of the G20 -- a gathering of 20 nations that represent the world's most important industrialized economies. In addition to working sessions with the full assembly of leaders, the President also held bilateral talks with French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

In his conversation with President Sarkozy, he discussed the focus of this week's talks:

I think it's no surprise that we spent most of our conversation focused on strengthening the global economic recovery so that we are creating jobs for our people and stabilizing the financial markets around the world. The most important aspect of our task over the next two days is to resolve the financial crisis here in Europe. President Sarkozy has shown extraordinary leadership on this issue. I agree with him that the EU has made some important steps towards a comprehensive solution, and that would not have happened without Nicolas's leadership. But here at the G20 we're going to have to flesh out more of the details about how the plan will be fully and decisively implemented.

The President elaborated on that theme in his conversation with Chancellor Merkel:

This is going to be a very busy two days. Central to our discussions at the G20 is how do we achieve greater global growth and put people back to work. That means we’re going to have to resolve the situation here in Europe. And without Angela’s leadership we would not have already made the progress that we’ve seen at the EU meeting on October 27th.




B4B Home Page

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

WATCH:
Trick-or-Treat with The President
and First Lady


President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama welcome area students and the children of military families to the White House for trick-or-treating on Halloween.

WATCH:


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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Watch:


President's Weekly Address







" We Can't Wait "


To Strengthen The Economy


and To Create Jobs



President Obama says that we can’t wait for Congress to take action to grow the economy and create jobs -- and highlights actions he took to help families refinance their mortgages, put veterans to work, and lower the cost of student loans.



WATCH:






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Thursday, October 27, 2011



THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary

October 25, 2011

FACT SHEET:




“Help Americans Manage Student Loan Debt”

The Administration has made historic investments in Pell Grants and the American Opportunity Tax Credit to help make college more affordable for millions of current and future students. While college remains an excellent investment for most students, debt may discourage some potential students from enrolling, keeping them from getting the skills they need to compete in the global economy. Some borrowers may struggle to manage their bills and support their families. The need for enough income to make large monthly payments may discourage some graduates from starting a new job-creating business or entering teaching or another lower-paying public service career.

Today, the President announced a series of additional steps that the Administration will take to make college more affordable and to make it even easier for students to repay their federal student loans:

Help Americans Manage Student Loan Debt by Capping Monthly Payments to What They Can Afford

· Allow borrowers to cap their student loan payments at 10% of discretionary income. In the 2010 State of the Union, the President proposed – and Congress quickly enacted – an improved income-based repayment (IBR) plan, which allows student loan borrowers to cap their monthly payments at 15% of their discretionary income. Beginning July 1, 2014, the IBR plan is scheduled to reduce that limit from 15% to 10% of discretionary income.

· Today, the President announced that his Administration is putting forth a new “Pay As You Earn” proposal to make sure these same important benefits are made available to some borrowers as soon as 2012. The Administration estimates that this cap will reduce monthly payments for more than 1.6 million student borrowers.

For example:

o A nurse who is earning $45,000 and has $60,000 in federal student loans. Under the standard repayment plan, this borrower’s monthly repayment amount is $690. The currently available IBR plan would reduce this borrower’s payment by $332 to $358. President Obama’s improved ‘Pay As You Earn’ plan will reduce her payment by an additional $119 to a more manageable $239 -- a total reduction of $451 a month.

o A teacher who is earning $30,000 a year and has $25,000 in Federal student loans. Under the standard repayment plan, this borrower’s monthly repayment amount is $287 . The currently available IBR plan would reduce this borrower’s payment by $116, to $171. Under the improved ‘P ay As You Earn’ plan, his monthly payment amount would be even more manageable at only $114. And, if this borrower remained a teacher or was employed in another public service occupation, he would be eligible for forgiveness under the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program after 10 years of payments .


· Continues to provide help for those already in the workforce. Recent graduates and others in the workforce who are still struggling to pay off their student loans can immediately take advantage of the current income-based repayment plan that caps payments at 15% of the borrower’s discretionary income to help them manage their debt. Currently, more than 36 million Americans have federal student loan debt, but fewer than 450,000 Americans participate in income-based repayment. Millions more may be eligible to reduce their monthly payments to an amount affordable based on income and family size. The Administration is taking steps to make it easier to participate in IBR and continues to reach out to borrowers to let them know about the program .

Borrowers looking to determine whether or not income-based repayment is the right option for them should visit www.studentaid.gov/ibr.
The CFPB also released the Student Debt Repayment Assistant, an online tool that provides borrowers, many of whom may be struggling with repayment, with information on income-based repayment, deferments, alternative payment programs, and much more. The Student Debt Repayment Assistant is available at ConsumerFinance.gov/students/repay

Improve Ease of Making Payments and Reduce Default Risk by Consolidating Loans

· Provide a discount on consolidation loans. While all new federal student loans are now Direct Loans thanks to the historic reforms in the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act, there are still $400 billion outstanding in old Federal Family Education Loans. These loans offer fewer repayment options and are unnecessarily expensive for taxpayers. In addition, about 6 million borrowers have at least one Direct Loan and at least one FFEL loan, which requires them to submit two separate monthly payments, a complexity that puts them at greater risk of default.

To ensure borrowers are not adversely impacted by this transition and to facilitate loan repayment while reducing taxpayer costs, the Department of Education is encouraging borrowers with split loans to consolidate their guaranteed FFEL loans into the Direct Loan program. Borrowers do not need to take any action at this time. Beginning in January 2012, the Department will reach out to qualified borrowers early next year to alert them of the opportunity.

This special consolidation initiative would keep the terms and conditions of the loans the same, and most importantly, beginning in January 2012, allow borrowers to make only one monthly payment, as opposed to two or more payments, greatly simplifying the repayment process. Borrowers who take advantage of this special, limited-time consolidation option would also receive up to a 0.5 percent reduction to their interest rate on some of their loans, which means lower monthly payments and saving hundreds in interest. Borrowers would receive a 0.25 percent interest rate reduction on their consolidated FFEL loans and an additional 0.25 percent interest rate reduction on the entire consolidated FFEL and DL balance.

For example:
o A borrower about to enter repayment with two $4,500 FFEL Stafford loans (at 6.0%) and a $5,500 Direct Stafford loan (at 4.5%). Under Standard Repayment, the borrower can expect to pay a total of $4,330 in interest until the loans are paid in full. If this borrower consolidates their FFEL loans under this initiative they would save $376 in interest payments, and make only one payment per month, instead of two.

o A borrower in repayment with a $32,000 FFEL Consolidation loan (at 6.25%) and a $5,500 Direct Unsubsidized Stafford loan (at 6.8%). Under Standard Repayment, the borrower can expect to pay a total of $13,211 in interest until the loans are paid in full. If this borrower consolidates the FFEL loan under this initiative they would save $964 in interest payments, and make only one payment per month instead of two.

Provide Consumers with Better Information to Make College Selection Decisions

“Know Before You Owe” Financial Aid Shopping Sheet.
· The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Department of Education have teamed up to launch a new “Know Before You Owe” project aimed at creating a model financial aid disclosure form, which colleges and universities could use to help students better understand the type and amount of aid they qualify for and easily compare aid packages offered by different institutions. This “Financial Aid Shopping Sheet” makes the costs and risks of student loans clear upfront – before students have enrolled – outlining their total estimated student loan debt, monthly loan payments after graduation and additional costs not covered by federal aid. Ultimately, this provides students and their families with useful information that can help them make a more informed decision about where to attend college and help them better understand the debt burden they may be left with.

The CFPB is soliciting feedback on how to further improve the form, especially looking for input from college students and their families. They can go to the CFPB's website (http://consumerfinance.gov/students/knowbeforeyouowe) where an online ranking tool will provide the public with an opportunity to weigh in on the financial aid shopping sheet.










Friday, October 21, 2011

(WARNING....MUST READ/SHARE !!!)

The Plot To Dilute

The Black Vote !


By George Curry:

After decades of trying to ease voting restrictions that suppress voter turnout in the U.S., already among the lowest among industrialized nations, Republican-led state legislators and GOP governors have quickly implemented or proposed a series of changes aimed at reducing Black political clout.

Among the recent developments to limit Black voter participation:

· At least 34 states have introduced legislation that would require voters to show photo identification in order to vote;

· At least 12 states have introduced bills that would require proof of citizenship, such as a birth certificate, to register or vote;

· At least 13 states have introduced legislation to end popular Election Day and same-day voter registration;

· At least nine states have introduced bills to reduce their early voting periods and

· Two states – Florida and Iowa – have reversed prior executive orders making it easier for ex-felons to vote.

These voter suppression efforts are detailed in a recent report by the Brennan Center at New York University’s School of Law titled, Voting Law Changes in 2012.

“The general thrust of the law over the past few decades has been to ease registration requirements to make it easier for eligible citizens to get on the voter rolls,” the report stated. “The most significant advance was the National Voter Registration Act of 1993, also known as the ‘Motor Voter’ law, which made voter registration opportunities widely available across the country. More recently, states have taken the lead in modernizing their voter registration systems so that more voters are getting on the rolls and the rolls are getting more accurate.”

However, that’s no longer the case.

“This year, the tide reversed,” the report observed. “Instead of efforts to increase voter registration, this year new registration requirements have been instated that will make it more challenging for eligible voters to ensure that they are registered to vote on Election Day. Voter registration regulations range from restrictions on individuals and groups who help register voters, to efforts to scale back Election Day and same-day registration, to new rules making it harder for voters to stay registered after they move.”

These new restrictions could have a significant impact on the outcome of the 2012 presidential election. The states that have already placed further restrictions on voting will provide 171 electoral votes in 2012 – 63 percent of the 270 needed to win the presidency. Of the 12 battleground states, five have already cut back on voting rights and two more are considering following their lead.

Most of the public attention on voter disenfranchisement has centered on voter identification laws. Prior to 2006, no state required its voters to show government-issued ID, according to the study. In 2006, Indiana became the first state to require voters to show a government-issued photo ID. This year, 34 states introduced similar legislation. Of those, seven have been enacted so far: Alabama, Kansas, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Wisconsin. The type of government ID accepted is also an issue. Texas, for example, will recognize permits to carry concealed weapons, but not student IDs from state universities.

The partial or full elimination of early voting on Sundays will certainly reduce the Black vote. Ohio has eliminated all in-person early voting on Sundays. Florida has eliminated it for the last Sunday before Election Day. And North Carolina is considering eliminating all in-person voting on Sundays.

The Sunday restrictions target “Souls to the Polls” campaign popular in African-American churches. Forbidding early voting on the last Sunday before an election hurts Blacks. Florida is a perfect example. In the 2008 general election, 32.2 percent of those who voted early on the last Sunday were Black and 23.6 percent were Latino (Blacks represent 13.4 percent of all early voters in the state and Latinos 11.6 percent).

The movement to restore the rights of the formerly incarcerated has also hit a roadblock.

Since 1997, according to the report, 23 states have either restored voting rights for the formerly incarcerated or eased the restoration process.

“By executive action, Governors Terry Branstad of Iowa and Rick Scott of Florida, both Republicans, returned their state policies to de facto permanent disenfranchisement,” the report said. Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval, also a Republican, vetoed a bill with bipartisan support that would have automatically restored voting rights to anyone who honorably completed a felony sentence and probation or parole.

One of most serious threats to Black voting is the curbs being placed on community groups that assist in voter registration, such as the National Coalition on Black Voter Participation.

Texas is considering a proposal that would require anyone who registers voters to first be deputized and attend mandatory training that ends with an exam. On May 19, Florida Gov. Rick Scott signed a new law that requires voter registration groups to pre-register with the state before engaging in voter registration activity and mandates that every voter registration form collected be presented to county officials within 48 hours of signature. Those who don’t comply face civil penalties. In addition, the group conducting the voter registration must place their state-issued ID code on each form collected from a voter.

The net results of these new laws could mean the disenfranchisement of at least 5 million voters, the Brennan Center report noted. Republicans have made it clear that their primary goal is to defeat President Obama in 2012. What they are not saying is that they hope to do that by suppressing the Black vote.

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George E. Curry, former editor-in-chief of Emerge magazine and the NNPA News Service, is a keynote speaker, moderator, and media coach. He can be reached through his Web site, www.georgecurry.com. You can also follow him at www.twitter.com/currygeorge.

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