Saturday, June 3, 2017

Dr. Boyce Watkins: 'Bill Maher Has a Very Stereotypical, One-Dimensional View of Blackness'

This video was published on YouTube on June 3, 2017.

Note: The commentary contains profanity. 

Source: Boyce Watkins

Obama: 'You Get the Politicians You Deserve'

This video was published on YouTube on May 9, 2017. 

Barack Obama urged people to participate fully in elections. He spoke to a crowd in Milan, Italy, relaying his experience as a community organizer in Chicago. 

Hundreds 'March for Truth' in Lower Manhattan

Hundreds of people marched Saturday through lower Manhattan to demand an impartial investigation into alleged Russian interference in the presidential election. 

The "March for Truth" was one of many demonstrations held nationwide. The organizers were also calling for an investigation into ties between Russia and President Donald Trump and his associates. 

Click here for summary.

Source: NBC News 4 New York

Mayor de Blasio & City Council Reach Early Agreement on Balanced FY2018 Budget

This video was published on YouTube on June 2, 2017.

Source: NYC Mayor's Office

Mayor de Blasio Signs Executive Order to Adopt Goals of Paris Climate Agreement

This video was published on YouTube on June 2, 2017. 

Mayor Bill de Blasio signed an executive order today that promised New York City would commit to the principles enshrined in the Paris Climate Agreement following President Trump’s announcement that he would formally withdraw the nation from the accord.

City Scoop: NYC Mayor's Office

NYC Workforce Development Board Discusses Potential WIOA Funding Decrease

This video was published on YouTube on June 1, 2017.

The Board invites Melinda Mack, Executive Director of NYATEP, to provide an update on the budget climate in Washington D.C. and suggest actions the Board can take in response.

US and China Unite as UN Slaps New Sanctions on North Korea

Source: euronews (in English)

How Did Trump and Obama's Speeches on Climate Change Differ?

Source: euronews (in English)

Friday, June 2, 2017

President Trump's Weekly Address

Game Theory, Citizen Journalists, and Media That Can’t Keep Up

By Eric Garland

The crisis of Donald Trump’s collusion with the Russian Federation has given rise to a new term online: citizen journalists. This new “job title” has emerged because, frankly, the major media outlets upon which we depend have failed to keep up with the sheer torrent of new, alarming updates on the perversion of American governance. The actions of the Trump Administration and its complicit legislative branch produce so many questions that, in some sense, it is entirely understandable that the traditional news media cannot react promptly enough to brace for the next hideous update.

That said, much of the media’s failure to keep up with Trump-Russia is that they lack a deep enough pool of talent to understand the complexities of the matter, which are legion:

Intelligence and national security
Offshore banking
Real estate
Structured finance
Big data and social networks
Clandestine extreme political movements

Plus, the Trump-Russia story is about an extraordinary combination of the above at an unusual moment in American political life. It makes sense that no one news outlet could maintain in-house talent – or even a network of freelancers – that could piece together narratives in time for the next outrage.

Enter the citizen journalists

Into this void stepped the so-called citizen journalists. Armed with specialized skills from their careers and alarmed for the future of their country, a new group of voices have emerged. Velocity being the most important factor, citizen journalists have mainly emerged from Twitter, where the rapid-fire flow of data and social networking suit this mission the best.

In a few short months, people like Dr. Sarah Kendzior, Andrea Chalupa, John SchindlerLouise Mensch, Claude Taylor, and many others have attracted hundreds of thousands of followers as citizens search for some sense of just what the hell might be going on in the surreal nightmare of Trump’s administration. Drawing from their own deep professional experiences, they and others have transcended the bounds of traditional journalism and shown the public just where this awful story was headed – and why to keep hope alive.

Not everyone has been happy about this.

Click here for the full article.


Michael Bloomberg: I'll Make Sure UN Gets $15 Million It Needs for Paris Agreement

Bloomberg Philanthropies said Friday it will pull together $15 million to "support the operations" of the United Nation's Framework Convention on Climate Change, the arm of the UN that coordinates the Paris pact.

The $15 million would cover the U.S. share of the convention's operating budget, according to Bloomberg spokesperson Carl Pope. The money will come from Bloomberg Philanthropies and its partners.

"The pledge aims to fill a significant funding gap that comes as a result of President Donald Trump's announced withdrawal from the Paris agreement and proposed steep budget cuts for international programs, including on climate," the Bloomberg Philanthropies statement reads. 

Click here for the full article. 

Source: CNN Money

White House Press Briefing

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt briefed reporters on the president’s agenda, including his decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement. Other topics included the latest figures on jobs and the unemployment rate, the White House petitions to the Supreme Court to consider reinstating the president’s executive order on travel and refugees, and the waiver signed by the president to keep the U.S. embassy in Israel in Tel Aviv instead of moving it to Jerusalem as he promised during his campaign. 

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

House Minority Leader Weekly Briefing

Calling climate change an issue of “environmental justice,” House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi challenges President Trump on his decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement and asks him how he will explain it to his grandchildren.

Source: C-SPAN

Hillary Clinton Shares Concerns About Trump Presidency

Speaking at the publishing industry’s annual convention, BookExpo America, in New York City, Hillary Clinton discusses her forthcoming memoir, calling it “an emotional catharsis.” She also pledges to support the “resistance” to the Trump presidency.

Click here for video. 

Source: C-SPAN

$2 Million in Funding Provided to Improve Water Quality and Prevent Brown Tide Blooms

June 2, 2017, Southampton - Governor Cuomo announced $2.05 million in funding to support the NY Sea Grant program, which advances an array of cutting edge research to improve the health of our oceans.

Source: NYGovCuomo

Governor Cuomo Comments on Trump's Decision to Withdraw from the Paris Accord

June 2, 2017, Southampton - Governor Cuomo commented on President Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Accord and what New York State is doing to combat climate change. 

Source: NYGovCuomo

Medicaid is on the Chopping Block

The Fate of 16.8 Million Enrollees Rests
on 20 GOP Senators from 14 States

By Jeffrey Young and Alissa Scheller

The Senate is on the verge of debating legislation to repeal and “replace” the Affordable Care Act, and Medicaid is on the chopping block.

Whatever happens next with Obamacare repeal and the future of Medicaid will depend in large measure on whether GOP senators choose to fight for the combined 16.8 million of their constituents on Medicaid, including 4.3 million who gained Medicaid coverage because of the Affordable Care Act, according to data from state agencies compiled by HuffPost. 

The Republicans in the House narrowly passed health care legislation last month that would gut the health care program, which the federal government jointly operates and finances with the states, for low-income families, people with disabilities and elderly nursing home patients. President Donald Trump staged a celebration at the White House after the passage of a measure projected to cause 14 million Medicaid beneficiaries to lose coverage. That’s despite repeatedly promising during his campaign not to cut Medicaid.

The American Health Care Act not only would undo the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion ― a major contributor to the law’s success at driving the uninsured rate to a historic low ― but would take hundreds of billions of dollars out of the rest of Medicaid, which would force states to make major cutbacks to who they cover, what benefits they provide and how much they pay doctors and hospitals. 

Click here for the full article.

Source: The Huffington Post

'Flashback Friday': 1930s Newsreel

Trailblazers in Black History: Joseph L. Searles III


Breaking Wall Street's Color Barrier: Echoes

By Kristin Aguilera

This article was originally published on February 13, 2012. 

Feb. 12, 1970, was a historic day on Wall Street. For the first time in the 178-year history of the New York Stock Exchange, a black man joined the trading community on the exchange floor. 

Joseph L. Searles III, the Newburger, Loeb & Co. partner who achieved this milestone, took a meandering route to the Street. He had been a professional football player for the New York Giants and later made a name for himself in politics as an aide to New York City Mayor John Lindsay. But Searles's experience in finance was extremely limited. 

The New York Times article announcing his proposed membership on Jan. 31, 1970, read, "The poised and assured Mr. Searles said that he had never owned any stocks or bonds and that his modest stake in the Newburger, Loeb partnership represented his first investment." 

Although Searles was the first black trader on the exchange's floor, he was technically not its first black member. That distinction goes to Clarence B. Jones -- counsel and speechwriter to Martin Luther King Jr. -- who became an allied member of the exchange in 1967 when he was named a partner at Carter, Berlind & Weill Inc. As an allied member, Jones had voting stock in a member firm, but he didn't have floor access.

Click here for the full article.

Source: Bloomberg

Secret Service Chief Discusses Threat Level Against Trump

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Secret Service is investigating about the same number of threats against Donald Trump as it did against the last several presidents, the agency's new director said Thursday.

"The number of threats has been fairly constant over the past 10 years, about six to eight a day," said Randolph Alles, who became Secret Service director barely a month ago.

He spoke the day after comedian Kathy Griffin was strongly condemned for posing in photographs holding up a likeness of a bloody severed head resembling Trump. She later apologized. Officials have declined to discuss her case, but such actions in the past have normally resulted in a visit from Secret Service agents to assess a person's intent. 

Click here for the full article.