Bush Tax Cuts vs Unemployment Benefits: What Millionaires Will Stand Up for the Poor?

As the holidays loom closer it seems less likely that unemployment benefits will be extended to the 2 million families that are desperately dependent up on them. The main stumbling block is that GOP leaders John Boehner, Eric Cantor and Mitch McConnell are demanding that tax cuts be extended to millionaires. Until then any attempt to give to the unemployed will be blocked. Today Congress will debate extending the tax cuts for millionaires with President Obama stating he hopes a compromise will be reached. Will that compromise extend job benefits?

Yes we all heard ‘noble’ sounding stories from these so-called leaders about how we all need to sacrifice and reign in the deficit. We all heard them express grave concern about how we all need to tighten our belts and lay down the ground work for our children to have brighter futures. Others like conservative media personalities like Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and Ben Stein have been pretty crass by stating those on unemployment are ‘too lazy to find work

This is all coming at a time where in many places where the unemployment rate is 20%. This is coming at a time when there are a reported 5-6 applications for every measly job available.  It was just yesterday that the local NBC affiliate here in the Bay Area ran a story called ‘economic migration‘ where they reported how thousands of people who’ve had homes foreclosed are living in cars, campers and RVs and have driven from state to state looking for work. The story showed a long line of people waiting to get minimum wage jobs at a Christmas Tree lot

Republican leader John Boehner wants tax cuts fir millionaires or no unemployment benefits for the poor.

A couple of months back McDonalds held a job fair here in the Bay and thousand showed up, all hoping for a chance to land a spot as a cashiers and french fry cookers. There’s no doubt times are definitely hard, but as long as millionaires don’t get  a tax cut millions will suffer.

In listening to Boehner and Cantor speak on behalf of millionaires, one has to wonder are they really representing their interests? Where are the millionaires, especially those who come from humble beginnings and poor backgrounds to speak on behalf of the poor, many of whom have spent their last dimes helping their millionaire brethren to fame, fortune and stardom?

It was just a few months ago the world was made to stand still as basketball star Lebron James, after weeks of intense speculation held a press conference to announce his ‘decision’. He unveiled to the world his new multi-million dollar deal and the team he would be playing for… the Miami Heat. Left behind and understandably angry were legions of fans in his home state of Ohio which has one of the highest unemployment rates in the country.

Imagine if Lebron James held a press conference demanding an extension to unemployment benefits?

Tonight King James is headed back to Cleveland to face off against his old team for the first time since he left. There’s no doubt there are throngs of basketball fans who can no longer afford to go to Cavalier games. Many more probably can’t afford a cable system to watch them on TV. Again its the times we’re in. But imagine if upon his return, Lebron James used his massive star power and took advantage of all the media covering him to stand up and say; ‘As a multi-millionaire he would like to see unemployment benefits extended. Do not hold up their checks on my behalf-I can wait for a tax cut’.. Could you imagine if James did that?

Wouldn’t it be great if an Oprah, DiddyJay-Z, 50 Cent, Lady Gaga and other multi-millionaires, many who are entertainers who we’re frequently exposed to held a press conference to announce, that the people in Washington do not speak for them and to please extend unemployment benefits? Is that too far-fetched? Unrealistic? Is it out of line to put that sort of weight on them?

After all, many of the aforementioned millionaires have come from poor backgrounds and had humble beginnings. Many obtained their financial status because poor people have admired them, spent their last dime on records, t-shirts, sneakers, concert tickets and any other thing being offered. And this spending is not limited to athletes and entertainers. Many who are poor have paid cable bills, cell phone bills and other now seemingly  necessary items resulting in quite a folks becoming uber rich.

Russell Simmons

I recall when then President George Bush first proposed those tax cuts several years ago I did an interview with music mogul Russell Simmons and he straight up said, while a tax cut would be great for him he honestly doesn’t need one. He said he makes more than enough money to pay his taxes  and that the people who need the breaks the most are poor people. If Russell is reading this, perhaps he can gather up some of his millionaire friends and hold such a press conference. Perhaps he can get them to speak on behalf of those who are dire straits.

Recently investor Warren Buffet one of the richest men in the world bluntly stated that taxes needed to be raised on the wealthy. Why aren’t we hearing more people who have means listening to Buffet? Why the silence from our millionaire friends?  More people of sound mind, good hearts and political conscious are needed this holiday season to counter the claims that the world will fall apart if millionaires don’t get tax cuts.

Will millionaires especially those from humble beginnings stand up for the poor?  As I posted this, my homie Mookie hit me up and said the irony to all this in today’ twisted society the poor will stand up for millionaires.

Something to ponder

-Davey D-

PS Here’s a link to a story in which 80 millionaires have stepped up and demanded that the tax cuts not happen http://news.yahoo.com/s/dailycaller/patrioticmillionaires

Should Kanye West Have Apologized to George Bush? He Cancels Today Show Concert!

Lots of folks have been weighing in on Kanye.. I definitely have my thoughts, but I also wanna share the thoughts of my good friend  and fellow Adrienne Marie Brown.. She penned an Open Letter to Kanye …Below is one of the highlights.. You can and should peep the entire article at http://adriennemareebrown.net/blog/?p=1667

you stepped back from the single most awesome scandalous thing you have ever done. when you stood there after katrina and spoke the truth, that “george bush doesn’t care about black people”, and you spoke about racist media coverage of those trying to survive in new orleans, it was a powerful and necessary action. you spoke for many of us – i was so proud of you, using your access to millions to speak a truth that wasn’t to benefit yourself.

and you apologized?

In other news.. Kanye west pulled the rug from under the Today Show by cancelling his scheduled concert on Friday Nov 26th. he announced that for obvious reasons.. He was out.. He really feels Matt Lauer and the Today Show set him up and he’s not having it.. I wanna give Kanye props for taking a stand against main stream outlets, but this cat is likely to change his mind and show up just as everyone is cheering for him.

In any case, I’m glad Kanye is beefing with Matt Lauer and not another rapper, but who knows what’s really going on.. Wouldn’t it be something if this beef was manufactured

Peep the story here Kanye Cancels Today Show Concert

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There’s an old saying that goes; ‘everything is political and to not be political is political’. I couldn’t help thinking this when I saw Kanye West on the Today Show the other morning apologizing and offering an olive branch of sorts to former President George W Bush for the stinging remarks he made in August 2005 during a Hurricane Katrina telethon.

West is quoted as saying to host Matt Lauer “I would tell George Bush in my moment of frustration, I didn’t have the grounds to call him a racist.”

For those who don’t remember, during that telethon Kanye  asserted that ‘George Bush doesn’t care about Black people‘. It was the remark heard all around the world and unlike the Dixie Chicks who suffered a huge backlash 2 years earlier, for  saying they were ‘ashamed of George Bush’, Kanye was greeted with open arms. For those watching the telethon and juxtaposing it with images of stranded mothers and grandmothers on rooftops while plane loads of abandoned dogs and cats were shipped away from the flooded city, Kanye’s remarks were cheered rather than jeered. They resonated. He was a source of pride and a hero to those sitting on rooftops watching loved ones being swept away, who had no voice.

Kanye West apologized to former President George Bush. Many ask was that the right thing to do?

Kanye became even more of a hero, with each passing day as more information about the horrors that went on New Orleans surfaced including; vigilante killings of fleeing Black residents in the Algiers section of the city and rogue police shooting and killing unarmed residents as they attempted to cross the Danzinger Bridge. He was the who spoke truth to power at a time when it was surely needed. His words became the chorus in songs and the centerpieces for audio sound collages like the one we did a few days after  spoke out. (Kanye West vs George Bush the Katrina Mixhttp://www.swift.fm/mrdaveyd/song/60030/

For many who watched Kanye’s apology on the Today show, it may have seemed like a gracious gesture and a sign of him maturing especially in the aftermath of the Taylor Swift controversy where he interrupted her acceptance speech during last year’s VMAs.

It may have also seemed like a wise thing to do because President Bush seemed really angry 5 years after the fact. He said Kanye’s remarks were the most disgusting thing he had to endure during his presidency.

Bush when shown the video of West apologizing from a soon to be aired Today Show interview of Kanye, Bush seemed to lighten up and said he appreciated Kanye reaching out. The former president said he wasn’t ‘a hater’.

It’s easy to see while one would see the apology as good thing,unfortunately, George Bush and for that matter Kanye didn’t sit through 5 days of excruciating testimony during the one year anniversary at the Hurricane Katrina and Rita International Tribunal. They didn’t hear the tales and see the tears as people told these horrific stories of mistreatment, violence and neglect that left us wondering if we were actually living in America.

Instead of getting 'disgusted' at Kanye, perhaps George Bush should've been disgusted with himself and apologized to Hurricane Katrina survivors

Had Bush heard some of these stories that were the result of his oversight and slowness to act being mad at Kanye should’ve been the least of his concerns. Instead of lambasting the rapper, he should’ve been on TV offering an olive branch to the people of Katrina.

Hell had he really bore witness to the Katrina horrors he might’ve been moved to offer all proceeds of his book Decision Points to Katrina survivors. And just on GP, Bush should’ve apologized for the insensitive remarks his mamma Barbara Bush made when she met survivors who had fled to Houston. Upon on meeting them she suggested that staying in the Astrodome was a good thing since they were underprivileged.

Had Kanye sat through the tribunal, he would’ve still been mad and upon hearing Bush was disgusted with him for  suggesting he was a racist he might’ve been inclined to stick to his guns and give the former President and war criminal the middle finger with no regrets.

Kanye let George Bush off the hook, but has Bush done the same for those he transgressed on?

Kanye apologizing to Bush, let him off the hook which is too bad because George Bush never let any of the folks he smashed on off the hook. As Governor of Texas he never let those he allowed to be executed off the hook, even when there were mass protests and compelling questions around their innocence

He didn’t let any of the innocent Iraqi’s killed in an unwarranted war off the hook and we had even bigger protests around that. He didn’t let any of those tortured at Abu Ghraib off the hook even when it was pointed out to be a violation of international laws. Bush noted that he always stuck to his decisions.

Bush as a former president clearly understood the importance of symbolism and how his every word and gesture would have meaning. He admitted to that during his Today Show interview. Apparently in his mind letting folks off the hook would be a sign of weakness and him being indecisive versus him being thoughtful. Because George Bush had tunnel vision a whole lot of folks paid a heavy price both here and abroad.

Folks forget that Bush refused to allow photographs of returning dead soldiers. His people and his supporters were real quick to shut down and label anyone who spoke out counter to the narrative they offered after 9-11 and later at the start of the Iraq war as unpatriotic. Bush was the type of cat who would not shake the hands of a foreign head of state like Hugo Chavez or Fidel Castro, because he knew such a gesture would symbolize his support.

One would assume that Kanye being in the music industry would also understand symbolism. After all, he’s already been on a rampage about the interview noting that Lauer made him look bad in the way he set up the questions and framed the conversation. Kanye said hes done with media.

With all this in mind, including his outburst, which may be or may not be calculated he had to know, like it or not that when he spoke out against Bush in 05, he was giving voice to a whole lot of folks who really needed it.. This was a good thing. It forced a dialogue and may have helped push things along, primarily because his words were captured all over the world and raised important questions. While it’s true, nobody asked him to speak on our behalf that fateful day, but since he did jump into the arena, many feel he needed to take the weight and NOT signify to an oppressive former president everything was all good when Bush hasmade no move to repair the damage done.

Something to Ponder

Davey D

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JNMxHfmXKVU

Kanye West Has Two Presidents Pissed At Him…George Bush Says He’s Disgusted at Him

Kanye West has pissed off two presidents-Who's next?

Ya gotta love Kanye West. The man is constantly finding ways to make noise and stay in the spotlight. If he’s not bum rushing the stage to spark drama with pop singer Taylor Swift, he’s releasing 30 minute cryptic movies (Runaway) that have no real meaning, but has everyone talking like it does. Sometimes we absolutely love him. Other times he makes us cringe, but that’s Kanye.

One person who is absolutely not feeling Kanye is former president George Bush. In his recently released memoirs ‘Decision Points‘ Bush notes that he took issue with Kanye West asserting he didn’t care about Black people during the Hurricane Katrina relief telethon.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9pVTrnxCZaQ

He said he was deeply disgusted  and that it was the lowest moment of his Presidency. He said its one thing to have someone disagree with his policies, it’s another thing to call him a racist.  Teasers for Bush’s remarks about Kanye have been running in promos for his upcoming appearance on the Today Show where host Matt Lauer will air their conversation.

When I first saw an obviously angered Bush make his remarks the first thing that went through my mind was Kanye West did a damn good job and I need to give him props next time I see him.  I also noted that President Bush looked like he really wanted to have a fair one with the upstart rapper. I thought about it some more and concluded that Bush may have name dropped Kanye to get some publicity for his book. We saw this with Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas wife calling Anita Hill demanding an apology after 20 years. Certainly Kanye dissing George Bush can’t be his lowest moment. Many in higher places have said and done worse.

George Bush looked like he was ready to knock Kanye out when describing his reaction to the rapper's remarks about him hating Black people

Kanye dissing Bush was his lowest moment over 1-Getting his facts wrong about the Iraq War? 2-Leaving office with a 20% approval rating? 3-Having shoes thrown at him? 4-Having entire books released about his gaffes and inability to pronounce words? Really? C’mon son. Bush can’t be serious.

I know I’ve said worse over the airwaves about the former President especially when he routinely putting Black men to death as Governor of Texas. I’ll never forget his callousness when Shaka Sankofa was put to death  Hell I think President Barack ‘Bi-partisan’ Obama has said worse when he rightfully laid blame at Bush’s feet for the tanked economy.

But in any case,  Kanye is in his crosshairs. he took issue with being called a racist. I guess Bush was looking at the fact that he gave more money and resources to Africa than any other President. Ok I’ll give him that..But his lack of actions during Katrina cancelled that out. Also, our country the good ole United States needs to be given a lot more back to the mother land.

Memo to George Bush: The Truth Hurts

Memo to Kanye West: Get your knuckle game up, that Bush boy looks like a scrapper.

With that being said, Kanye may also have to watch his step around President Obama who after viewing Kanye interrupting Taylor Swift, remarked to news reporter Terry Moran of CNBC in an ‘off the record’ remark that Kanye West was a jackass.  Not sure if President Obama ever apologized the way he did when he called the Cambridge police ‘stupid’ for arresting his friend Skip Gates.  In any case Kanye has done what no rap artist has ever done, got two Presidents pissed off enough to talk about him. I wonder if he’ll do a song about it or if he’ll step up his presidential piss you off game and say something to anger Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter or Bush Sr

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=078BGtKNL1o

Kanye did respond to Bush’s remarks..During an interview on Houston’s The Box radio station.. He said the following;

“With him, it was a lack of compassion with him not rushing, him not taking the time to rush down to New Orleans. With me, it was a lack of compassion of cutting someone off in their moment. But nonetheless, I think we’re all quick to pull a race card in America, and now I’m more open, [due to] the poetic justice that I feel to have went through the same thing that he went. And I really more connect with him just on a humanitarian level because that next morning, the next morning when he felt that, I felt that same thing too [with the Taylor Swift incident].”

“I do think I changed a lot. I do think that I’m more compassionate, I’m more sensitive to people’s emotions. I’m just understanding that it’s not about me, it’s not about just what my opinion is all the time — especially when it’s someone else’s show,

You can peep the rest of the story on http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1651461/20101103/west_kanye.jhtml

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