Friday, February 27, 2015

What are My Brother's Keepers, and their Mentees?

The below is from the Government website. It's weird...it's a call to action to cities, towns, counties and tribes... but not to parents or siblings. Shouldn't they be involved in this? http://www.whitehouse.gov/my-brothers-keeper
“That’s what ‘My Brother’s Keeper’ is all about. Helping more of our young people stay on track. Providing the support they need to think more broadly about their future. Building on what works – when it works, in those critical life-changing moments.” - President Barack Obama, February 27, 2014

My Brother’s Keeper Community Challenge

In September 2014, President Obama issued a challenge to cities, towns, counties and tribes across the country to become “MBK Communities.” This challenge represents a call to action for all members of our communities, and mayors in particular, as they often sit at the intersection of many of the vital forces and structural components needed to enact sustainable change through policy, programs, and partnerships.

The MBK Community Challenge encourages communities (cities, rural municipalities, and tribal nations) to implement a coherent cradle-to-college-and-career strategy for improving the life outcomes of all young people to ensure that they can reach their full potential, regardless of who they are, where they come from, or the circumstances into which they are born.

The six goals of the Challenge are:
Ensuring all children enter school cognitively, physically, socially and emotionally ready
Ensuring all children read at grade level by 3rd grade
Ensuring all youth graduate from high school
Ensuring all youth complete post-secondary education or training
Ensuring all youth out of school are employed
Ensuring all youth remain safe from violent crime

Community leaders can lay the groundwork for an MBK Community in four steps:
Accept the President’s Challenge
Convene a “Local Action Summit” to build an MBK Community
Conduct a policy review and form recommendations for action
Launch a plan of action, next steps and a timetable for review

President Obama launched the My Brother’s Keeper initiative to address persistent opportunity gaps faced by boys and young men of color and ensure that all young people can reach their full potential.

Through this initiative, the Administration is joining with cities and towns, businesses, and foundations who are taking important steps to connect young people to mentoring, support networks, and the skills they need to find a good job or go to college and work their way into the middle class.

My Brother’s Keeper is focused on six milestones:

Getting a Healthy Start and Entering School Ready to Learn

All children should have a healthy start and enter school ready – cognitively, physically, socially and emotionally.

Reading at Grade Level by Third Grade

All children should be reading at grade level by age 8 – the age at which reading to learn becomes essential.

Graduating from High School Ready for College and Career

Every American child should have the option to attend postsecondary education and receive the education and training needed for quality jobs of today and tomorrow.

Successfully Entering the Workforce

Anyone who wants a job should be able to get a job that allows them to support themselves and their families.

Keeping Kids on Track and Giving Them Second Chances

All children should be safe from violent crime; and individuals who are confined should receive the education, training and treatment they need for a second chance.

27 feb 2015: President Obama's schedule

10:00 am
The President receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
The Oval Office
Closed Press

11:05 am
The President holds a bilateral meeting with President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia
The Oval Office
Pool Spray at the Top

12:45 pm
The President has lunch with My Brother's Keeper mentees
Map Room
Pool Spray at the Top

5:35 pm
The President delivers remarks at the portrait unveiling ceremony for U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder
U.S. Department of Justice
Travel Pool Coverage

Thursday, February 26, 2015

26 Feb 2015 - President and Vice President's Schedule

President Obama has no public schedule today.
http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/president/2015-02-26 

Yesterday he was in Florida talking to an Immigration Advocacy Group (as usual, the fact that it is *illegal* Immigration advocacy is never, ever mentioned.

 I read a message board of a successful soundtrack producer who is a former active, and he as about 10 people contributing to his message board on a daily basis, one of whom is an "immigration" lawyer (who specializes in helping illegals stay in the country) and she mentioned a few days ago that she had given a talk about "immigration" to people... I forget all the precise details but the main thrust of the argument is that she was not talking about "immigration" - most US citizens have no problem with immigration.... she was talking about *illegal* immigration...but they just won't say that....

It's like living in the Twilight Zone...or in Kafka's world...

Vice President Biden also has no public schedule today according to the scheduler, anyway. Yesterday he made a couple of speeches in New Hampshire:
http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/vice-president/2015-02-26

Friday, February 20, 2015

Ever heard of Drabbles?

I decided to launch my own Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign. The first of hopefully several...

When going through some campaigns on Kickstarter, I found one called 1 Drawing for 1 Dollar. The campaign asked for only $250, and the guy had received over $7,000 in orders.

Unfortunately I'm not an artist, so I couldn't offer such a deal...but I *am* a good writer and wondered if I could sell drabbles. I set the bar at only $25....

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/118270389/1-drabble-for-1-dollar?ref=nav_search And a woman has already ordered 25 drabbles featuring John Steed and Emma Peel: The Avengers.

So after 3 days I'm already fully funded.

So if you would like a drabble, you'll receive it immediately.

What is a drabble? It is a story that is exactly 100 words long. It's typically fan fiction - for The Avengers, Doctor Who, Star Trek: The Original Series and so on.

Here's a couple of samples, one for The Avengers, and one a non-fiction drabble that I call a Scrabble Drabble, to help people improve their Scrabble vocabulary.

Religions don't kill people...

Someone mentioned this to me yesterday...these friends are Democrats who were annoyed about Giuliani's comment that Obama doesn't love America because he refuses to call ISIS Islamist radical terrorists.

The husband said: The refrain from gun lovers about guns is : "guns don't kill people, people kill people."

So following that logic, "religions don't kill people, people kill people."

Do you think the comparison is apt, in all its ramifications?

There's a woman on the hannity forums who persists in equating Islam of today with Christianity of today, which I've got to say shocks me. While there are fundamentalist Christians who won't let female refs referee a basketball game (because that would place a woman in a position of authority over the boys - God forbid! - I wonder if they have women teachers there or not) but I've yet to hear of a Christian parent doing an honor killing because daughter left the house without a male relative. I've yet to hear of these sects not allowing women to drive - which women can't do in Saudi Arabia...and on and on...

I felt like asking her where'd she prefer to live, as a woman, Saudi Arabia or any city in the US or even Europe...

Thursday, February 19, 2015

What can we do about ISIS?

President Obama says that if we get these terrorists jobs, they'll stop beheading people or setting them on fire.

All well and good...but where are they going to get jobs in the middle of a desert? What kind of jobs could they do?

Of course since they wouldn't allow women to work, they'd get any available jobs for themselves, which is one benefit... Seems to me ISIS folks are just living in the 13th century..and need to be sent back there as expeditiously as possible.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

OT: Rucksack Appeal: A UK chairty

For my readers in the UK, I thought I'd feature this charity for the homeless, located in the UK, that I thought was pretty interesting. (And there's no reason why my US readers can't help out as well if you feel so inclined.

The Rucksack Appeal is a charity whose goal is to collect rucksacks (or backpacks, as we say in the States), fill them full of necessities, and give them to the homeless.

Their URL is http://www.aokrucksackappeal.org.uk/.

They've been working for a couple of years now to help the homeless in the UK, and are putting together a variety of charitable events to help raise funds to fill rucksacks, such as holding a poetry competition, an art exhibit that sounds pretty interesting - it will focus on all aspects of homelessness and be held in St Stephens church Bournemouth at the beginning of July.(See their website for more details).

The Kaiser Chiefs, an Indie Rock band, are also going to help them out on the night of Feb 10, 2015. (Remember the English put their day before the month). They'll be asking for donations outside the the concert at the BIC.

So, if you're Anglophiles, or if you're in England, check out the Rucksack Appeal and help them (and help out the homeless) if you can.