Saturday, May 12, 2012

Stand-Your-Ground Defense Fails for Florida Woman


Sources:WPTVMSNBCHLNCNN
FloridaTimesUnion 

By Samantha Kubota

Anchor: Ana Compain-Romero
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

For Mothers All Across the Country....and Abroad

This greeting is from the heart and.....from "The G-Man". 

(I love you Mom, Linda, Tonya and Nejla!

Animated gif courtesy of http://netanimations.net

Weekly Address: Congress Must Act on "To-Do List"


President Obama calls on Democrats and Republicans to come together and act on his Congressional “to-do list,” which will create jobs and help restore middle class security.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Biden Meets with Crown Prince of Bahrain


Escalation of Street Violence, Attacks Against Security Forces Discussed

Vice President Biden met this afternoon with Crown Prince Salman Bin Hamad Al Khalifa of Bahrain.

The Vice President reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to our long-standing partnership with the Government of Bahrain and discussed with the Crown Prince steps to strengthen those ties.

Vice President Biden expressed concern about the recent escalation of street violence, including attacks against security forces, and underscored the importance of ensuring fundamental rights for all Bahrainis and the need for greater progress by the government on accountability for past abuses, police reform and integration, and inclusive political dialogue.

Photo source: Department of Defense
Author: Helene C. Stikkel
Permission: Public Domain

Paul Begala Op-Ed Proclaims Romney a Bully


Begala: "Once a Bully, Always a Bully"

"Daily Beast" writer Paul Begala has written a scathing op-ed based on recent reports that leading GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney bullied a gay student while in high school. 

Although the incident allegedly took place some 40 years ago, Begala notes that over the course of Romney's political career, the former Massachusetts governor has engaged in behavior that would classify him as a bully.   

Here is an excerpt from the Daily Beast's May 11 column: 

"Romney would be able to dismiss the bullying story as ancient history if it didn’t confirm what we already suspected about him—that he’s a serial abuser of power."

The rest of Begala's column can be read here:  The Daily Beast

Paul Begala is also a Newsweek columnist, a CNN contributor, an affiliated professor of public policy at Georgetown, and a senior adviser to Priorities USA Action, a progressive PAC.

Photo source: Own work

Author: 
UpstateNYer

West Wing Week: 5/11/12


This week, the President traveled to Virginia and New York to urge Congress not to let interest rates double on student loans and to introduce a to-do list for Congress. He also hosted the University of Kentucky Wildcats, the Fermi Science award winners, and this year's Gershwin Award Winners.

Joining Forces Honors Military Moms


First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden host a Joining Forces Mother’s Day event at the White House for three generations of military families – military mothers, as well as their mothers and their children.

Vice President Joe Biden on College Affordability


Vice President Joe Biden addresses students and representatives from higher education and youth-serving organizations at a White House College Affordability Briefing.

Additional Police Officers Added to Queens Precincts



Mayor Bloomberg, Commissioner Kelly Respond to Senator Addabbo and Resort World NY Request 

Mayor Michael Bloomberg and New York City Police Department Commissioner Raymond Kelly have added a number of police officers to the rosters of three Queens precincts in effort to address concerns presented by New York State Senator Joseph Addabbo, Jr. (D-Queens) and representatives for Resort World NY (RWNY). 

The senator's office assessed the situation in the following statement:

“Community Board 10 has been working with RWNY from the point where it was awarded the bid for construction, during its local hiring phase, and its grand opening. CB 10 has continued to work with the organization during the initial phase of legislation that would allow full casino gaming in the state, before another legislative vote in early 2013, followed by a referendum on the ballot for the public to vote on. The concerns of CB 10 have always been all the extra traffic, especially on Friday through Sunday evenings and early morning Mondays, and a possible uptick in petty crimes inside and outside casino – such as theft of wallets, pocketbooks, fights breaking out because of alcohol consumption, or frustration with losing money. Currently, discussions about a new convention center are underway within the Cuomo Administration, which would bring even more business and traffic to the area. The security force hired by RWNY is not adequate to keep these problems under control. To address the matter, the organization and Senator Addabbo, asked the mayor and NYPD for more police to be assigned to local precincts. Thus far, four additional officers from the 106th Precinct have been assigned to RWNY on weekends. After opening last fall, the traffic had been so bad that some homeowners couldn’t get out of, or back into, their driveways. Now, that's been alleviated.”

Ten more police officers were assigned to the 106th Precinct in Ozone Park earlier in the week. Five officers were assigned last month, four of which, as previously noted, now cover RWNY on weekends.

Senator Addabbo praised Mayor Bloomberg and the NYPD’s response stating, “While I am grateful for the additional officers that have finally been assigned to the 106th Precinct, I will continue to advocate for more officers, due to the increase in business at Resorts World at Aqueduct. I also appreciate the four additional officers said to have been assigned by Police Commissioner Kelly to the racino on weekends, which will be helpful in assuring the safety and quality of life for my constituents.”

On May 9, the senator’s office informed From The G-Man that an additional 15 police officers were assigned to the 104th Precinct, in Glendale, and 14 officers were placed at the 102nd Precinct in Richmond Hill.

Image courtesy of http://bestanimations.com/

Top Newsy Headlines: JPMorgan CEO Blames 'Errors' for Loss


Sources:CNNBBCHLNFoxNews 

By Nathan Byrne

Anchor: Nathan Byrne
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

Romney Accused of Gay Bullying as Teen


Sources:TheWashingtonPostTwitterMSNBC
KTTVTheHuffingtonPostABCNews 

By Christina Hartman

Anchor: Christina Hartman
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

NFL Player Retires Citing Future Health Concerns


Sources:NFL.comSportsIllustrated
WindyCityGridironChicagoTribune
NFLConcussionLitigation 

By Andrew Carter

Anchor: Christian Bryant
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

DOJ Suing Arpaio


Sources:DemocracyNow!ABCOlogy.com
TheArizonaRepublicFoxNews 

By Jim Flink

Anchor: Christina Hartman
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

Sony Reports Worst Year Ever


Sources:CTVNewsVentureBeatBBCCNET
 

By Laura Janvier
Anchor: Carissa Loethen
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

Bill Would Stop Employers Asking for Facebook Passwords


Sources:WRTVWGALZDNetACLU 

By Christina Hartman

Anchor: Megan Murphy
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

Algerian Voters Skeptical of Reforms


Sources:AlJazeeraeuronewsBBCGuardian
BloombergMiddleEastOnlineAllAfrica 

By Emoke Bebiak

Anchor: Megan Murphy
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Department of Labor Gives $10.3 Million Grant to Help Unemployed New Yorkers



Award is the Largest in the Nation and Will Fund Job Coaches at 53 Career Centers

New York State has received $10.3 million from the U.S. Department of Labor as part of its Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment (REA) initiative.

The grant will help the state provide individualized job search and training services to individuals receiving unemployment insurance benefits in order to get unemployed New Yorkers back to work as quickly as possible.

New York’s grant was the largest among the 42 that were awarded nationwide, as recognition of the success of the state's One-Stop Career Centers.

"New York's One-Stop Career Centers have helped connect thousands of unemployed New Yorkers with businesses looking to hire," Governor Cuomo said.

"This federal grant recognizes the success of our One-Stop Career Centers and that New York State is a leader in helping the unemployed find a job. We will continue to focus on jobs, jobs, jobs, and do all we can to help unemployed New Yorkers get back into the workforce."

The federal grant will be used to support 115 existing job coaches and add 20 more at 53 One-Stop Career Centers across the state. Job coaches work aggressively to review the local labor market, reach out to businesses with job openings listed on the Governor’s Jobs Express website (www.jobs.ny.gov) and be the link between unemployed New Yorkers and businesses looking to hire.

A comprehensive skills assessment is also done with every jobseeker to determine and provide immediate training needs. Past REA grants have resulted in jobseekers connecting to jobs an average of up to two weeks sooner.

New York State received the largest grant in recognition of its leadership in developing an aggressive reemployment model that requires unemployed individuals to visit career centers, undergo skills assessment and receive personalized attention, all in an effort to get them back to work sooner.

New York's reemployment model has been cited by USDOL as an example for other states to follow. The One-Stop Career Centers are part of a series of initiatives the Governor has launched to assist unemployed New Yorkers, including the NY Works initiative, Jobs Express Website, NY Youth Works Program, career fairs across the state, and grants to help communities hit hard by Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee hire temporary workers.

The state's One-Stop Career Centers helped more than 400,000 New Yorkers find work in 2011. New Yorkers can find a One-Stop Career Center through the following link: 

http://labor.ny.gov/workforcenypartners/osview.asp

The following comments were provided in relation to the Department of Labor grant.

"This federal investment will have significant returns for New York’s economy in the form of a better trained workforce and greater access to job opportunities. It will provide those looking for work with an opportunity to find it by linking New York’s unemployed with career opportunities and by providing training to those who need it to expand their employment opportunities." - U.S. Senator Charles Schumer

"Reemployment services are a lifeline to New Yorkers across the state searching for a job to get back on their feet. This funding is critical to helping the state implement workforce programs that quickly and effectively provide unemployed New Yorkers with job training and placement opportunities so they are well equipped with tools necessary for securing a good-paying job to support their families." - U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand

"Getting unemployed New Yorkers back to work is a top priority, and I am thrilled the federal government is responding to this need in our state. I will continue working with Governor Cuomo and the federal government to continue and build on our economic recovery." - U.S. Representative Nita Lowey

"New Yorkers work harder than anyone and this nation-leading grant will be put to good use as we work to climb out of tough economic times. Many people are still hurting, and just want to work, and this funding will help. I'm grateful to the Obama Administration for this grant and know that Governor Cuomo will put it to good use in our state's One-Stop Career Centers." - U.S. Representative Carolyn McCarthy

"Unemployment Insurance is a bridge to re-employment for millions of Americans, and this grant funding recognizes New York’s leadership in helping our residents transition to their next career through the Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment initiative." - 
U.S. Representative Tim Bishop

"This federal reemployment grant will help job-seekers throughout Central New York get back to work. One-Stop Centers and job coaches are a lifeline to men and women seeking gainful employment. I’m pleased that more of our neighbors will now have access to these vital services." - U.S. Representative Richard Hanna

Top Newsy Headlines: Bodies Found at Plane Crash Site


Sources:AlJazeeraeuronewsBBCITV 

By Nathan Byrne and Harumendhah Helmy

Anchor: Nathan Byrne
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

'Ouchless' Bandages That Dissolve Into Body


Sources:AOLPopSci.comPHYSORG.com
Investor'sBusinessDailyPennState
ThePractitioNERD 

By Carissa Loethen

Anchor: Carissa Loethen
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

Postal Service May Keep Rural Offices Open


Sources:HLNTheGuardianWallStreetJournal
TheNewYorkTimesWINK-TV 

By David Earl

Anchor: David Earl
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

New Election Round Close As Greece Could Leave The Euro


Sources:SkyNewsBBCBloombergeuronews 

By Niels Schack Norgaard

Anchor: Christina Hartman
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

Fannie Mae Pulls in Biggest Profit Since 2008


Sources:BloombergTheHillForbesWMBD
FannieMae

By David Earl

Anchor: David Earl
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

President Obama Meets with NATO Secretary General


G-8 Summit and Afghanistan Among Topics Discussed

The President met today with NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen in the Oval Office in order to discuss preparations for the May 20-21 NATO Summit in Chicago. 

The President and Secretary General Rasmussen agreed that the Summit would focus on three important topics: Afghanistan, defense capabilities, and partnerships. 

On Afghanistan, the President and the Secretary General agreed that the NATO Summit should reaffirm allied commitment to the transition framework agreed to at Lisbon, while planning for the final stages of that transition -- including a shift next year from combat to a support role, as well as enduring support for sufficient and sustainable Afghan forces. 

The President and Secretary General also agreed that the Summit should highlight the commitment of allies to field the defense capabilities that NATO needs for the 2st century, and they discussed their expectation that allies would be in a position to announce progress on a number of key capabilities initiatives, including on missile defense. 

Finally, the President and the Secretary General discussed the importance of NATO’s partnerships with non-NATO countries.  NATO is now a hub for a global network of security partners which have served alongside NATO forces in Afghanistan, Libya, and Kosovo. 

Recognizing the important contributions provided by partner nations, the President and Secretary General welcomed the recent decision by allies to invite a group of thirteen partner nations to Chicago for an unprecedented meeting to discuss ways to further broaden and deepen NATO’s cooperation with partner nations.  

Oval Office Chat Session: Obama and Putin


Russian President Will Not Attend Upcoming G-8 Summit at Camp David

In their May 9 telephone conversation, President Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin commemorated the occasion of Russia’s celebration of Victory in Europe day, noting the historic war-time alliance between our two countries and underscoring their mutual commitment to strengthening the U.S.-Russian partnership. 

President Obama and President Putin noted with satisfaction the concrete achievements of the last three years and expressed their commitment to enhance bilateral cooperation on the basis of mutual strategic interests.   

Noting his responsibilities to finalize Cabinet appointments in the new Russian government, President Putin expressed his regret that he would be unable to attend the G8 Summit at Camp David on May 18-19. 

President Obama expressed his understanding of President Putin’s decision and welcomed the participation of Russian Prime Minister Medvedev at the G8 Summit. 

President Obama and President Putin agreed to hold a bilateral meeting on the margins of the June 18-19, G20 Summit in Los Cabos, Mexico. 

The two Presidents reiterated their interest in the sustained high-level dialogue that has characterized the re-set of relations, and the substantial progress of the last three years on issues like nuclear security and non-proliferation, Afghanistan, the WTO, and increased trade and commercial ties.

Excavation Begins on the Museum of Tolerance Jerusalem

(Click on photo to enlarge)

Facility Aims to Promote Jewish Unity and Universal Respect

At a meeting at the Milken Institute in Los Angeles, Simon Wiesenthal Center Dean and founder Rabbi Marvin Hier and Museum of Tolerance Jerusalem architect Michael Sedlacek  met with Jerusalem Mayor Nir Birkat to update him on the beginning of excavation at the Museum of Tolerance Jerusalem site. 

Pictured right to left are: Rabbi Marvin Hier, Jerusalem Mayor Nir Birkat, and Museum of Tolerance Jerusalem architect Michael Sedlacek. 

Mayor Birkat expressed his enthusiastic support of the project by telling Rabbi Hier he is convinced that the MOTJ will be a source of new employment opportunities as well as a major attraction for tourists visiting Israel from around the world.

Photos courtesy of the Simon Wiesenthal Center

Politics in Action: H.R. 5652

 

S
TATEMENT OF ADMINISTRATION POLICY

H.R. 5652 – Sequester Replacement Reconciliation Act of 2012
(Rep. Ryan, R-WI)

The Administration strongly opposes H.R. 5652, the "Sequester Replacement Reconciliation Act of 2012."  The bill's unbalanced provisions fail the test of fairness and shared responsibility.  At the same time as the House is advancing tax cuts that benefit the most fortunate Americans, H.R. 5652 would impose deep budget cuts that cost jobs and hurt middle class and vulnerable Americans – especially seniors, veterans, and children.

The sequester included in the bipartisan Budget Control Act of 2011 (BCA) included mutually disagreeable cuts to both defense and non-defense funding.  These cuts would have destructive effects on national security; on important domestic investments such as education, research and development, and rebuilding the Nation's crumbling infrastructure; and on core government programs from air traffic control to law enforcement.  The threat of these destructive cuts under the BCA was intended to be a mechanism to force action by the Congress on deficit reduction.

The President has made clear that the Congress can and must act to avoid the sweeping impacts of the sequester by passing a balanced deficit reduction package.  Last fall, the Administration provided a blueprint for the Congress to do so.  And in his 2013 Budget, the President proposed a comprehensive balanced deficit reduction package that would ensure the Nation lives within its means and, including legislation signed into law last year, reduces the deficit by $4 trillion while supporting job creation and long-term economic growth.  This package would achieve more than enough deficit reduction to avoid the sequester.

In contrast, the approach advanced in this bill only addresses a portion of the pending sequester, and does so in a way that imposes far greater cuts than the sequester would entail.  The bill would break the agreement on discretionary spending made in last summer's budget agreement; advancing the House Budget Resolution's approach to increase defense spending and reduce non-defense spending relative to the levels agreed to in the BCA.  Moreover, it would do nothing to address the reductions in discretionary spending and sequesters in mandatory programs after 2013.  The bill relies entirely on spending cuts that impose a particular burden on the middle-class and the most vulnerable among us, while doing nothing to raise revenue from the most affluent.

Rather than pursuing a comprehensive, balanced deficit reduction package to replace the sequester, H.R. 5652 undermines the intent of the BCA to bring both sides to compromise by proposing a short-term, one-sided solution.  This approach sharply undermines critical domestic priorities, such as efforts to prevent hunger and support low-income families and communities; to expand health care access and implement the Affordable Care Act; to protect consumers and implement the Wall Street Reform Act; and to support homeowners struggling to stay in their homes.  The Administration strongly opposes both the principles of this approach and specific legislative proposals included in the bill.  If the President is presented with H.R. 5652, his senior advisors would recommend that he veto the bill.

President Obama: 'I Think Same-Sex Couples Should Be Able to Get Married'


Confirms Support During an ABC News Interview

Details and video footage of President Obama's comments are available here: ABC News Exclusive

From The G-Man, in conjunction with Newsy.com, will provide more information on the President's announcement as it becomes available. 

In Memoriam....Specialist Junot M. L. Cochilus and 2nd Lieutenant David E. Rylander


Specialist Junot M. L. Cochilus

Fort Drum Soldiers Died in Logar Province, Afghanistan

Governor Andrew Cuomo has directed that flags on state government buildings be flown at half-staff on Friday, May 11 in honor of two Fort Drum soldiers who died in Logar province, Afghanistan on May 2.

Specialist Junot M. L. Cochilus and 2nd Lieutenant David E. Rylander died of injuries sustained when insurgents attacked their unit with an improvised explosive device.
 

2nd Lieutenant David E. Rylander

Both soldiers were assigned to the 7th Engineer Battalion of the 10th Mountain Division's 10th Sustainment Brigade, based at Fort Drum. Specialist Cochilus was from Charlotte, North Carolina, and 2nd Lieutenant Rylander was from Stow, Ohio.

"I join with all New Yorkers in mourning the loss of Specialist Cochilus and 2nd Lieutenant Rylander," said Governor Cuomo. 

"We will honor the service of these two Fort Drum soldiers and we will be forever grateful for the sacrifice that they made for our nation. I send my deepest sympathies to their family, friends, and fellow soldiers."

From The G-Man would like to take this opportunity to honor 
Specialist Junot M. L. Cochilus and 2nd Lieutenant David E. Rylander, their love of country, and their service with the following video tribute. May they forever rest in peace. 


Video uploaded to YouTube by moderatepopulist

Photos courtesy of http://freedomremembered.com

Female Engagement Teams: The Changing Face of the US Marines


Meet the brave women who are on the ground, building relationships in combat zones.

Specialist Leslie H. Sabo, Jr. to Receive Medal of Honor


Served as a Rifleman in Company B, 3d Battalion, 506th Infantry, 101st Airborne Division

WASHINGTON, DC—On May 16, President Barack Obama will award Specialist Leslie H. Sabo, Jr., U.S. Army, the Medal of Honor for conspicuous gallantry.

Specialist Sabo will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his heroic actions in combat on May 10, 1970, while serving as a rifleman in Company B, 3d Battalion, 506th Infantry, 101st Airborne Division in Se San, Cambodia.

On that day, when he and his platoon were ambushed by a large enemy force, Specialist Sabo immediately charged the enemy position, killing several enemy soldiers.  He then assaulted an enemy flanking force, successfully drawing their fire away from friendly soldiers and ultimately forcing the enemy to retreat. 

While securing a re-supply of ammunition, an enemy grenade landed nearby.  Specialist Sabo picked it up, threw it, and shielded a wounded comrade with his own body - absorbing the brunt of the blast and saving his comrade's life. 

Although wounded by the grenade blast, he continued to charge the enemy's bunker.  After receiving several serious wounds from automatic weapons fire, he crawled towards the enemy emplacement and, when in position, threw a grenade into the bunker. 

The resulting explosion silenced the enemy fire, but also ended Specialist Sabo’s life.  His indomitable courage and complete disregard for his own safety saved the lives of many of his platoon members. 

Specialist Sabo's widow, Rose Mary Sabo-Brown and his brother, George Sabo, will join the President at the White House to commemorate his example of selfless service and sacrifice.

Biden, WH Officials to Host Discussion on May 10

Vice President Joe Biden

Event Will Focus on Keeping Higher Education Affordable

Washington, D.C. – On Thursday, May 10, Vice President Joe Biden will address a group of students and representatives from higher education and youth-serving organizations who are meeting at the White House. 

The Vice President’s remarks will focus on the importance of keeping higher education affordable and accessible for more than 7 million students by preventing student loan interest rates from doubling on July 1st. 

Before the Vice President’s remarks, meeting attendees will hear from a panel of policy experts representing the Domestic Policy Council, the Department of Education, and the White House Office of Legislative Affairs.

New York Conducts Police Memorial


Protection of People with Special Needs Act Conference


Top Newsy Headlines: Explosion Hits Near U.N. Convoy in Syria


Sources:BBCRTLosAngelesTimesAlJazeeraCNN 
By Nathan Byrne and Harumendhah Helmy
Anchor: Nathan Byrne
Video courtesy of Newsy.com

Romney: 'I'll Take a Lot of Credit' for Auto Recovery


Sources:WEWSNewYorkTimesMSNBC
HLNTheHillLosAngelesTimes 

By Christina Hartman

Anchor: Christina Hartman
Video courtesy of Newsy.com