Monthly Archives: July 2011

Say Hello to the Disappearing Black Middle Class

The Great Recession has affected millions of Americans. One group the African-American  community is the hardest hit  community.  From Fox News Channel:

The unemployment situation across America is bad, no doubt. But for African-Americans in some cities, this is not the great recession. It’s the Great Depression.

Take Charlotte, N.C., for example. It is a jewel of the “new South.” The largest financial center outside of New York City, it’s the showcase for next year’s Democratic National Convention. It was a land of hope and opportunity for many blacks with a four-year college degree or higher.

According to an analysis by the Economic Policy Institute, in Charlotte, N.C., the unemployment rate for African-Americans is 19.2 percent. If you add in people who have given up looking for jobs, that number exceeds 20 percent, which, according to economists Algernon Austin and William Darity, has effectively mired blacks in a depression.

“You’re looking at a community that is economically depressed in my opinion,” Austin said. “And we need action that will address that scale of joblessness.”

Read more.
Fox News has video.
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Update:Norway Terrorist not Muslim But Right-Winger who hated Muslims. Oslo is More akin to Oklahoma City Bombing

Norwegian Police has identified the man at the center terrorist attacks a “Christian fundamentalist” named Anders Behring Breivik. From the New York Times:

The Norwegian police on Saturday charged a 32-year-old man, whom they identified as a Christian fundamentalist with right-wing connections, over the bombing of a government center here and a shooting attack on a nearby island that together left at least 92 people dead.

The police said they did not know if the man, identified by the Norwegian media as Anders Behring Breivik, was part of a larger conspiracy. He is being questioned under the country’s terrorism laws, the police said, and is cooperating with the investigation of the attacks, the deadliest on Norwegian soil since World War II.

Some witnesses to the shooting on the island raised the possibility of a second gunman, but police could not confirmed the reports. Still, they did not rule out the possibility.

“We are not sure whether he was alone or had help,” a police official, Roger Andresen, said at a televised news conference. “What we know is that he is right-wing and a Christian fundamentalist.” So far Mr. Breivik has not been linked to any anti-jihadist groups, he said.On Saturday, King Harald and Queen Sonja met with survivors of the camp shooting and their family members at a hotel outside Oslo..

Read More at the New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/24/world/europe/24oslo.html?_r=2&partner=MYWAY&ei=5065

America the Roasted: Massive Heatwave Kills at Least Two Dozen People Nationwide.

For the last 12 days the US sweltered in blistering heatwave.  Texas along with Oklahoma, and Kansas in extreme drought conditions. A large dome high pressure sitting atop the great plains has  create a disaster for the country.  Over two dozen are dead others a recovering from heat stroke.The Weather Channel gives details.

During this heatwave record breaking high temperatures and strong humidity lead to stifling heat indices over 100-120 degrees east of the Rockies. In fact Accu-Weather reports that eastern seaboard cities broke all time records temperatures including New York, Philadelphia Baltimore and  Washington, D.C .

In Chicago, Police escorts fire fighters throughout the city to shut down hydrants. According WBBM-TV/HD “CBS 2 News”:

City crews scrambling to turn off nearly 2,000 fire hydrants opened by residents seeking relief from the heat required a police escort to protect them from gang members and others upset with the shutdowns.

CBS 2 found one city crew being followed by a police sport-utility vehicle as they crisscrossed neighborhoods, turning off a total of 1,921 hydrants as of Thursday evening.

“It’s a waste of water, and I have to do my job,” said 20-year Water Management Department veteran Richard Quarles.

Quarles was surrounded by a group of people who dumped water on him as he shut down a hydrant that was spewing hundreds of gallons of water into the street.

“The gangbangers and the neighborhood tough guys, they could crack you over the head with something. Anything can happen,” he said.

Follow Drudge Report with the latest headlines and links.

Debt Deal at an Impass.

Well, August 2 is is “debt limit” deadline is less than two weeks away. Talks have broken off after the Senate voted down the Houses Cut, Cap and  Balance  bill That piece of legislation set up the ground work  a constitutional amendment requiring federal government balance it’s budget which more than 30 states have in law. From ABC News:

Talks between House Speaker John Boehner and President Obama to raise the debt ceiling in conjunction with sweeping spending cuts and tax and entitlement reform have broken down. There will be no “grand bargain” to deal with the debt crisis and raise the debt ceiling.

Boehner’s decision to abandon negotiations with President Obama puts an end to a deal that would have cut spending by up to $3.5 trillion over the next 10 years and increased tax revenues by close to a trillion dollars. But the $14.3 trillion debt ceiling must be raised by Aug. 2nd to avoid a government default.

“We have now run out of time,” a visibly angry Obama declared at a hastily arranged press conference in the White House briefing room.

The President  orders House Speaker John  Boehner, (R)  Ohio and Senate Majority leader Harry Reid,(D) Nevada to the White House on Saturday.

“I expect them to have an answer as to how they will get this thing done over the next week,” Obama said. Both sides agree that a proposal should be hammered out over the weekend.

Meanwhile,  Speaker Boehner  also spoke to the media about the defeat Cut,Cap and Balance bill.:

Boehner sent a letter to his Republican colleagues explaining his decision to pull out of talks for a “grand bargain.” Here are some highlights:

“It has become evident that the White House is not serious about ending the spending binge that is destroying jobs and endangering our children’s future,” he wrote, adding, “A deal was never reached, and was never really close.

“The president is emphatic that taxes have to be raised. … The president is emphatic that we cannot make fundamental changes to our entitlement programs,” Boehner wrote.

“For these reasons, I have decided to end discussions with the White House and begin conversations with the leaders in the Senate in an effort to find a path forward.”

Boehner held his own press conference after 7 p.m. Friday night and said the talks broke down because “The White House moved the goal posts.”

Specifically, he said the two sides had agreed on an unspecified amount of revenue to be included in deficit reduction, achieved by broadening the number of Americans who pay taxes and lowering general tax rates. But he said President Obama on Thursday demanded another $400 billion in revenue, which Boehner said “was going to be nothing more than a tax hike on the American people.

ABC News has more  including video.

Breaking News: Terrorism Hits Norway: Bombing Targets Prime Minister Plus Shooting Rampage at Norwegian Summer Camp Killl 10 Numbers May Rise

Today,  the Kingdom of Norway  has had its 9/11 moment  July 22,2011 where car bomb blew up in a building where the Prime Minister offices. Killing Seven. Hours later A gunman dress up like a local police officer open fire on kids and adults at a summer camp  on the island of Utoya, 50 miles  south of Oslo, Norway’s Capitol. Belfast Telegraph:

As many as 30 people are feared dead after a gunman opened fire at Norway Labour Party’s youth camp on the island of Utoya, fifty miles south of Oslo.

An eyewitness reported seeing between 25 and 30 bodies. Police have confirmed that nine or ten people were killed, but said that is a preliminary figure.

An eyewitness told Norwegian broadcaster NRK he saw more than 20 bodies on the shore and in the water. It is understood panicked teenagers had tried to flee the island by swimming as the gunman opened fire.

Police said they did not know the motive or whether the attacks were the work of one person or a terrorist group, but Justice Minister Knut Storberget said the man who opened fire at the youth camp is Norwegian.

In Oslo, the capital and the city where the Nobel Peace Prize is awarded, the bombing left a square covered in twisted metal, shattered glass, documents expelled from surrounding buildings and a dust-fogged scene that reminded one visitor from New York of Sept. 11.

Ian Dutton, who was in a nearby hotel, people “just covered in rubble” were walking through “a fog of debris.”

“It wasn’t any sort of a panic,” he said, “It was really just people in disbelief and shock.”

And this from the New York Times:

Conflicting reports centered on one group, Ansar al-Jihad al-Alami, or the Helpers of the Global Jihad. According to Will McCants, a terrorism analyst at C.N.A., a research institute, the group issued a statement claiming responsibility, saying the attack was a response to the presence of Norwegian forces in Afghanistan and to unspecified insults to the Prophet Muhammad.

But Norwegian television reports later suggested that the group had denied responsibility. In the immediate aftermath of recent terrorist attacks, jihadi forums are often filled with claims and counterclaims that are impossible to independently confirm.

Reaction from World leaders expressing concern and  support for the Norwegian people. From the London Daily Mail:

Foreign Secretary William Hague said the UK stood ‘shoulder to shoulder’ with Norway.

The statement of support came as diplomats sought to check whether any British nationals were caught up in the carnage.

Mr Hague said: ‘I send my deepest condolences to all those who have lost relatives or been injured in today’s horrific bomb blast in Oslo.

‘Our Embassy stands ready to provide assistance to any British nationals who may have been caught up in the attack.

‘We condemn all acts of terrorism. The UK stands shoulder to shoulder with Norway and all our international allies in the face of such atrocities.

‘We are committed to work tirelessly with them to combat the threat from terrorism in all its forms.’

U.S. President Barack Obama said the incidents were ‘a reminder that the entire international community has a stake in preventing this kind of terror from occurring.’

Heide Bronke, a U.S. State Department spokeswoman, said Washington was monitoring the situation but did not have any word of U.S. casualties.

Read more:

Drudge Report

BBC News

Our Prayers goes out the Norway and her people.

We are all Norwegian now.

Atlanta Public Schools Rocked by Cheating Scandal

Atlanta Public School embroiled in a scandal. An investigation by Georgia Department of Education Found 3/4 of the schools in Atlanta cheating on the Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests (CRCT). The tests are mandatory for all Georgia students in the third, fifth and eight grades to move to the next grade.

The scandal start in  2001. Teachers and principals in low performing schools under pressure by  state and federal leaders; began changing the test answers to “improve”  the test scores in powerful  school district in Georgia.

The report found Atlanta Public Schools 178 teachers and principals were involved in the scheme. The investigators found 44 out of 56 schools and among 44 schools 38 principals were either responsible or very involved in cheating. From: WXIA-TV “11   Alive News”

Extensive  cover began in 2008 with Atlanta Journal-Constitution examination of CRCT Test scores were too  high for an urban school district.  Set in motion the wheels to review thousands of test scores over a 10 year period.

Read It all!!!!

And the losers in all of this the kids in Atlanta Public Schools.

Former First Lady Betty Ford Dies at 93

Former First Lady Elizabeth Ford has died. She  the widow of Former President Gerald R. Ford; who passed away in 2006. Mrs. Ford broke protocols  by revealing that she had breast cancer in 1975. After the Fords left the White House in 1977; Mrs. Ford established The Betty Ford Center for substance abuse and addiction in Rancho Mirage,CA; Where the Fords lived.  From ABC News:

Betty Ford, wife of former President Gerald Ford and the founder of the Betty Ford Center for substance abuse and addiction, has died at age 93.

In public, she was one of the most visible and outspoken first ladies in history. In private, she triumphed over serious personal adversity.

She was married to Gerald Ford for 58 years. Shortly after becoming president in 1974, Ford said, “I am indebted to no man and to only one woman, my dear wife.”

Ford died Friday at the Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage, Calif., ABC News has learned. Her cause of death was not immediately clear.

ABC News has the video

Watch it all.

My condolences to Ford family.