Friday, May 30, 2008

How Can You Like Getting Old

Today, I will share with you a thought that was sent to me and so describes the way life should be looked at. I hope you find this as entertaining as I did for it surely speaks volumes of truth so sit back, read and enjoy.

Peace and Blessings !

I would never trade my amazing friends, my wonderful life, my loving family for less gray hair or a flatter belly. As I've aged, I've become more kind to myself, and less critical of myself. I've become my own friend. I don't chide myself for eating that extra cookie, or for not making my bed, or for buying that silly cement gecko that I didn't need, but looks so avante garde on my patio.

I am entitled to a treat, to be messy, to be extravagant. I have seen too many dear friends leave this world too soon; before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging. Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer until 4 :00 AM and sleep until noon?

I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 60 & 70's, and if I, at the same time, wish to weep over a lost love .. I will.

I will walk the beach in a swim suit that is stretched over a bulging body, and will dive into the waves with abandon if I choose to, despite the pitying glances from the jet set. They, too, will get old. I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten. And I eventually remember the important things.

Sure, over the years my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break when you lose a loved one, or when a child suffers, or even when somebody's beloved pet gets hit by a car? But broken hearts are what give us strength and understanding and compassion. A heart never broken is pristine and sterile and will never know the joy of being imperfect.

I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turning gray, and to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed, and so many have died before their hair could turn silver. As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think. I don't question myself anymore.

I've even earned the right to be wrong. So, to answer your question, I like being old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be.

And I shall eat dessert every single day. (If I feel like it)




Tuesday, May 27, 2008

I Wonder What's Happening to Black People in [Insert the Name of a U.S. State]

It really is annoying to know that Whites totally dominate the news media. Nowadays, I wait for little opinion pieces that sum up the events in America (from a Black perspective) as reported or narrated by Gil Noble every Sunday or by a guy who does 10 second commentaries on Kathy Hughes' cable channel, TV One. It just saddens and angers me that these are, basically, the only real television/cable opportunities we have where we get to hear about world news from our P.O.V.

I recently read (in a myspace bulletin) that Black conservative, J.C. Watts is planning to launch a 24/7 "Black" news station. My concern is, considering who's launching it; it may be more of a White news station (with Black faces). I think, given the racially bias way the White news media has handled the Clinton-Obama primary, White mainstream media has lost even greater respect and trust in the Black community. This "Black" news station (proposed by conservative J.C. Watts) may be a way for the biased White media to continue racial bias in reporting but now through a "Black" news station. I don't know... I guess we'll have to wait and see with that one.

In the meantime, I hope this station expands shows that do more news coverage. Nowadays, I don't even watch the major White news channels because of the racial bias and the wording of topics/events. There was a time when Black people had a nightly news show on B.E.T. But as the Black owner began to give up control of that cable station (just before selling it to non-Blacks), that news show was phased out.

As things grow more hostile toward Blacks in this country (blatant media bias, police brutality that seems to be condoned by the legal system, nooses found in places Black people congregate and/or work, etc.), how will we communicate to each other about what is happening? You know there's a saying that when you are in a war with a people, the first objective is to get rid of their ability to communicate with one another. Looking at the Black community, I suppose this tactic is also employed when stepping up the oppression of a people who are not even militarily equipped to defend themselves, let alone engage in a 'war' with the aggressor.

I just know that there are more people with cable/broadcast TV and radios in their homes than there are with regular internet access. And with this lack of Black-owned TV stations and news shows, plus a growing White corporate effort to get rid of community operated channels like MNN in New York, there is no way for many Black people to really know what is happening to Black people in California or in Kentucky like Whites can use the news media to keep up to date on what is happening to Whites in Washington or in Texas. And even when you can access the internet, you have to weed through numerous White perspectives (many of them racist and mocking Blacks) to get to valid, credible news items reported from a Black perspective.

Amazing and disturbing. You decide.

Peace and Blessings

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Does God Exist

Today is Sunday so I would just like to share with you a little story I heard.
I hope you enjoy it.

A man went to a barbershop to have his hair cut and his beard trimmed.
As the barber began to work, they began to have a good conversation.
They talked about so many things and various subjects.
When they eventually touched on the subject of God, the barber said:
"I don't believe that God exists."

"Why do you say that?" asked the customer. "Well, you just have to go
out in the street to realize that God doesn't exist.
Tell me, if God exists, would there be so many sick people?
Would there be abandoned children?

If God existed, there would be neither suffering nor pain.
I can't imagine a loving God who would allow all of these things."
The customer thought for a moment, but didn't respond because he
didn't want to start an argument.
The barber finished his job and the customer left the shop.

Just after he left the barbershop, he saw a man in the street with
long, stringy, dirty hair and an untrimmed beard.
He looked dirty and unkempt. The customer turned back and entered the
barber shop again and he said to the barber:

"You know what? Barbers do not exist."
"How can you say that?" asked the surprised barber.
"I am here, and I am a barber. And I just worked on you!"
"No!" the customer exclaimed. "Barbers don't exist because if they
did, there would be no people with dirty long hair and untrimmed
beards, like that man outside."

"Ah, but barbers DO exist!
That's what happens when people do not come to me."

"Exactly!" affirmed the customer.

"That's the point! God, too, DOES exist!
That's what happens when people do not go to
Him and don't look to Him for help.

That's why there's so much pain and suffering in the world."


Friday, May 23, 2008

Never Forget

It’s been my long standing tradition, obligation and duty as we approach this Memorial Day, to share my thoughts of this coming weekend. I do this in honor of every
Veteran who has proudly and honorably worn the uniform.

As we head into the long weekend, for many - Memorial Day now stands as only the “Official Start” of summer. Sadly I fear many have forgotten the true meaning behind this Holiday because all they think about is getting to their cookout, sporting event, beach house or some other destination.

I ask all who this message reaches, to remember those who have given their lives for this country and for the freedoms we continue to enjoy.

I ask you to remember those who have been seriously wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan and now recover from those wounds in hospitals around the globe.

I ask you to buy a new flag, display that flag at your home and teach your little ones (and not so little ones) what this symbol of a free nation really means? Teach them to appreciate and respect our flag.

Enjoy the company of your friends in peace, for when you open your beer or soda or flip burgers with your friends and family, keep in mind there are men and women in uniform today – serving around the world – that are protecting you, so you can enjoy your long weekend. This world has changed dramatically since 2001 and it’s because of what they do – that allows you to still enjoy these freedoms.

Put the politics aside - it doesn’t matter what your point of view is regarding the War. What matters is that you remember those who have fallen and those who are serving today in the sands, mountains, oceans and skies around the world.

There are people around this world who hate us for the freedoms we have. Yet those same people and governments will be the first to look to these United States to provide food, water, clothing and other support when there is a disaster. And who responds?? Those kids in uniform and they perform magnificently with courage, compassion and sense of duty.

Honor our men and women in uniform past and present, by being part of or attend a Memorial Day Observance in your town on Monday – May 26th.

Tell those who served in WWII – you appreciate their service to this country and remember all those who have served with the “Greatest Generation”.

Thank those Korean War Vet’s - the Vietnam Vets – those who served in Grenada, Panama, Haiti, Kosovo, where ever and when ever they were called to serve.

Thank and appreciate the service of those serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Understand - What you enjoy today was earned and continues to be earned every day by those who serve and those at home who support them.

Remember – Appreciate - Support

To the Sailors, Marines, Coast Guardsman, Soldiers and Airman all around the world – I salute you for your service. I’m proud to be an American and we are proud that you are one of us.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

History In The Making

Today's blog is going to take a slightly different turn. I took it verbatim from MSN news as I felt it was important to mark a historical milestone with factual information as opposed to my read on this subject matter so read and enjoy:

Barack Obama was poised to reach a major milestone Tuesday in the Kentucky and Oregon primaries — a majority of the elected delegates offered in the Democratic presidential contest — even as Hillary Clinton soldiered on despite her dwindling hopes.

Clinton was vowing to continue the fight through the last primaries in early June as polls opened across Kentucky, a state she was expected to win by a wide margin. Obama was favored in Oregon, where supporters delivered the largest crowd of his campaign on Sunday in Portland.
Regardless of who prevails in those states, Obama was assured that he would be able to claim the largest share of elected delegates who could be won in the long slog of votes since January.
The Illinois senator's campaign is touting the milestone as a big step toward ending the epic nomination battle with Clinton. Superdelegate sway having a majority of delegates elected in state primaries and caucuses could help Obama's case with undecided superdelegates — the party insiders who are not tied to primary or caucus results — to pick up the pace of their endorsements. Superdelegate support is crucial because neither candidate will have enough delegates from the remaining primaries to clinch the nomination without them.

Including superdelegates, Obama had 1,916 delegates to Clinton's 1,721 going into Tuesday's primaries in which 103 delegates are at stake in the two states.
NBC's national delegate count, including superdelegates, currently stands at 1,723.5 for Clinton and 1,905.5 for Obama.

[There are differences in how news organizations count delegates, how they award superdelegates, how they account for states that have held caucuses but have not yet chosen their delegates, and how they project the apportionment of delegates within Congressional districts where the vote was close. The Associated Press and NBC News conduct separate delegate counts.]

By early Wednesday, Obama could be just 50 to 75 delegates short of the total 2,026 needed to nominate a candidate at the party's national convention in Denver in late August.

McCain targeting Obama: Republican John McCain has already been targeting Obama in his campaign speeches as his likely opponent in the November election. On Monday the longtime Arizona senator accused Obama of inexperience and reckless judgment for saying Iran does not pose the same serious threat to the United States as the Soviet Union did in its day.
Obama has been increasingly presenting himself as the nominee as he looks ahead to the battleground swing states in the general election. On Tuesday night, he planned to hold a rally in Iowa, where he won the leadoff caucuses in early January.

Since Iowa, Obama has won 1,610.5 pledged delegates — leaving him just 17 short of a majority of the 3,253 pledged delegates up for grabs. He is sure to cover the gap in Tuesday's primaries because the delegates are allocated proportionately.
(NBC's pledged delegate count currently stands at 1,602 for Obama.)

Of the nearly 800 superdelegates, about a quarter of them have not declared support for either candidate. On Monday, Obama picked up six more superdelegates. Clinton added none.
Clinton has mounting campaign debts, but she vowed there was "no way that this is going to end anytime soon" as she campaigned Monday in Kentucky.

The New York senator soldiered on through event after event, ending her night Monday in Louisville before a crowd of several hundred, her voice raspy.
"There are a lot of people who wanted to end this election before you had a chance to vote," she said, husband and former President Bill Clinton at her side. "I'm ready to go to bat for you if you'll come out and vote for me."
Some of Clinton's female supporters urged Clinton in a full-page ad in The New York Times not to give up.
"We want Hillary to stay in this race until every vote is cast, every vote is counted, and we know that our voices are heard," said the Tuesday ad, paid for by the Women Count political action committee.

'Desire to unify 'But former Sen. Tom Daschle, a key Obama adviser, said now is the time for Democrats to coalesce behind Obama in order to defeat McCain.
"We want to begin the process of bringing this party together, and I think that over the last few weeks we've seen indications at virtually all levels in both campaigns that there's a desire to do that," Daschle told CBS's "The Early Show."
"That doesn't mean we're going to do it tomorrow or the next day, but clearly there is a desire to unify."

Obama, seeking to become the first black U.S. president, won the endorsement of Sen. Robert Byrd of West Virginia, the longest-serving senator in history and a former member of the white supremacist Ku Klux Klan and one-time opponent of civil rights legislation.

Nationally, Obama holds his largest lead yet over Clinton in the Gallup Poll, 55 percent to her 39 percent. The poll, released Monday, was conducted among 1,261 Democratic voters and has a 3 percentage point margin of error. Back in mid-January, Clinton held a 20 percentage point lead in the Gallup Poll.

Obama campaigned Monday in Montana, where voters will join those from South Dakota on June 3 in dropping the curtain on the 2008 primary and caucus season.
The Illinois senator rarely mentions Clinton now except to praise her "magnificent" campaign. Instead, Obama sought to exploit McCain's ties to lobbyists, drawing a contrast between the Arizona senator's reputation as a reformer and his relationship to special interests in his campaign.

McCain recently adopted conflict-of-interest guidelines that led to the departures of several campaign aides due to their links to lobbyists. While campaigning in Georgia, he dared Obama to follow his lead on the guidelines.

Although Obama does not take money from federal lobbyists and political action committees, he does accept cash from state lobbyists and corporate executives interested in issues before Congress. He has had unpaid advisers with federal lobbying clients, and some of his campaign officials were lobbyists before.

After Tuesday, only three primaries remain on the Democratic calendar. Puerto Rico, with 55 delegates, holds its primary on June 1; Montana, with 16 delegates, and South Dakota, with 15, vote two days later.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Double Standard - Maybe ?

What is it with the double standard of the world we all live in today. Why is it right for people to take potshots at our black political candidates and just be able to apologize it away but everything said by anyone vaguely connected to the same black candidate or someone he might have know in his life automatically becomes his thoughts, ideals and morals. Point of reference - Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Of all the speeches and sermons he has preached in his career, white America latches on to 5 minutes of pieced together statements and all of a sudden Barack Obama shares his philosophies and ideals. That is the biggest line of B.S. I have ever heard. Follow me here.

During a speech before the National Rifle Association convention Friday afternoon in Louisville, Kentucky, former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee — who has endorsed presumptive GOP nominee John McCain — joked that an unexpected offstage noise was Democrat Barack Obama looking to avoid a gunman.

“That was Barack Obama, he just tripped off a chair, he's getting ready to speak,” said the former Arkansas governor, to audience laughter. “Somebody aimed a gun at him and he dove for the floor.”

Obama supports extending the assault weapons ban, limits on gun sales, and a national law against carrying concealed weapons, with exceptions for retired police and military personnel.

UPDATE, 8:28 PM: Huckabee released the following statement regarding his comments Friday, according to the New York Times website:

During my speech at the N.R.A., a loud noise backstage, that sounded like a chair falling, distracted the crowd and interrupted my speech. I made an off hand remark that was in no way intended to offend or disparage Sen. Obama. I apologize that my comments were offensive. That was never my intention.

Is that it? Is that all we get. Why is not the world crucifying John McCain for hanging out with this clown. Could we safely say that his statement is representative of the whole Republican Party or even further, the whole Anglo-Saxon race. How can they say Rev. Wright speaks for all of the blacks and at the same time, the whites do not have an all inclusive spokesman.

There is a serious double standard going on and it has to stop. We live in America so I do believe in free speech but I also believe the playing field should be level. I do not like what Huckabee said but I have to respect his right to say it. As for Rev Wright, I believe the same. I would not have said it at such a crucial time and might have gone underground for the time being but like I used to say about O.J Simpson, "If he is guilty of the crimes, He should be punished, I don't know why he would have done it, But I understand"

Peace And Blessings

Friday, May 16, 2008

Blame It On My Head And Not My Heart

I forgot to mention in my blog this morning - Thank You to my Ace B-Luv for the hearts and flowers on his blogspot. it is nice to be appreciated. I want all of my readers to go to the sites I will list and give them some love. B's sister amber is an olympic caliber track and field star who is pursuing a spot on the next olympic team. Let's go folks, show her some support and chck out her spot.

See you all on Monday

Peace and love

Blacks and Whites Differ As Investors - Sharply

I am going to do something a little different today. Instead of writing my opinion on this subject, I will state some facts based on my research. Hopefully, it will help somone out there reading this entry. Enjoy and God Bless:

Americans' decisions about how to invest their money are as different as black and white. So says a new survey of African-American and non-African-American investors released exclusively to MONEY; it was commissioned by Chicago-based Ariel Mutual Funds and conducted by pollster Roper Starch Worldwide. The most intriguing finding in this first-of-a-kind nationwide mail survey is this: Black investors are often less willing than whites to take the risks necessary to achieve high returns from their portfolios.

The highlights:

African Americans aim for higher returns than whites on average, but their investment choices fall short. Blacks said they seek an average 14.7% annual return, more than three points higher than the 11.2% anticipated by non-African Americans. But African Americans are less likely than whites to have investments like stocks and stock mutual funds that are most likely to achieve such returns. "African Americans are often inhibited from plunging into the stock market because many of our parents and grandparents were not involved in investing.

Women are much more likely to call the financial shots in black households. Women are the primary financial decisionmakers for 21% of African-American married couples, while wives play that role for just 10% of white couples. "Particularly in African-American families, middle-class status is maintained with both paychecks," says Brooke Stephens, author of Talking Dollars and Making Sense: A Wealth Building Guide for African Americans (McGraw-Hill, $14.95). "Women are more involved because we've had to work just as hard for it."

African Americans are more likely than whites to rely on financial advisers and less likely to listen to friends or family members. "Since many blacks are first- or second-generation investors at best, there is no pattern of behavior to follow, so they often feel more secure relying on professional help," says financial consultant Daron Fullwood in Greenbelt, Md., who has a large number of African-American clients. That may explain why a full 54% of blacks surveyed said that they would rely on a financial adviser or planner when making savings and investment decisions (vs. 46% of whites). By contrast, 31% are inclined to ask friends or family for money advice, compared with 39% of whites.

Based on the poll results, experts we've interviewed offer these three tips to help African Americans increase their wealth--their median net worth ($4,418) remains a mere fraction of whites' ($45,740)--and approach the high returns they anticipate:

Boost your ownership in stocks and stock funds. Start by investing through your employer's professionally managed 401(k) or 403(b) retirement savings plan. If you want to buy individual stocks, consider joining or starting a local investment club.
If you want to hire a financial planner, choose one who understands your needs and financial temperament. For referrals, call a trade group like the International Association for Financial Planning (800-945-4237) or the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (800-366-2732). Interview at least three certified financial planners, and be clear about your primary goal.

Even if ethical investing and seeking stocks with integrated management are important to you, don't lose sight of profit performance. According to the survey, blacks are twice as likely to favor socially responsible investments as whites. And 51% of blacks say the diversity of a company's management is very important when they invest; only 10% of whites feel this way. Socially conscious mutual funds tend to underperform their peers, though comparisons are difficult since many of these funds are new.

The top performer, Domini Social Equity Fund (800-762-6814), returned an admirable 17.95% a year on average over the past three years. But remember: If you're going for 14% returns, you're better off scrutinizing a company's earning potential and its strategic plan than, say, its diversity. A company's work force might be black, brown and white.

But the only color that pays is green.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

What Is The Race Card ?

The majority of people of African descent, living in America, do not have the luxury of compartmentalizing our collective experience here in America, beginning with forced immigration, enslavement, the Black Codes, Jim Crow, and after slavery, in modern times, the long list of inequalities and abuses that have been brought down upon our heads as a result of who we are and our past relationship to those in stewardship, of non African descent, in America, when we express our feelings, beliefs and concerns over our past and for our as yet to be known futures in America.

Many Americans find it difficult and it makes them uneasy to hear a perspective that does not reflect the experiences of their own. It's difficult to understand another's perspective if one can't hear the speaker because one doesn't like what the speaker is saying.

Race, in America, has remained a divisive force among many Americans, not because America's citizens of African descent speak of it; because the society has never reconciled itself to the reality that for centuries, those of African descent lived in a world so different, with many continuing to do so, it would seemingly require, literally, a physical transformation and, as that saying attributed to caretakers of the land before the establishment of European colonies here, the ability to 'walk in another's moccasins'.

Numerous studies and reports, regarding societal development along separate paths in the United States, including the report from the Kerner Commission, commissioned by President Lyndon B. Johnson, have been conducted over the past few decades that indicate all that has transpired in America, since its inception, has shaped the psyches and consciences of all in America, Black and White, resulting in divergent view points on many things due to our life experiences.

The African slave trade and the system of chattel slavery became major sources of wealth for Europe. Estimates of the number of Africans taken from the continent during the nearly five hundred year period, including the East Coast Slave Trade, carried on by the Arabs of the Middle East, reaches beyond 30 million, taking into account all the European nations involved in the transport of Africans.

As Europe emerged out of the times known as the Dark Ages and as it recovered from the loss of life during the plague that came to be known as the Black Death, the wealth generated from the transport of Africans and their enslavement allowed Europe to continue to rebuild, seeking new, previously unexplored territories outside of Europe.

All who partook of the wealth generated during the slave trade received a leg up, economically, at the expense of lowering an entire continent of people to the status of less than human for those purposes.

I hear and read, nearly on a nonstop basis, the admonition to just 'get over slavery'. Our lives here right now are representative of our ancestors somehow grabbing hold to their belief in a Creator and against so many odds, including choosing not to take their own lives out of heartbreak and despair, who lived to continue, despite their hardships and struggles, in spite of slavery, so that each generation reaped the benefit of the succeeding generations' struggles, propelling us forward until we've arrived here.

One of the silliest notions that exists, whenever anyone of African descent speaks of historical matters that occurred due to America's history and how it viewed race, is that the speaker is playing the 'race' card.

For most within the African American community, the 'race' card is not some trump card that helps you 'win' any discussion or debate. Virtually every time, whenever race is mentioned by an African American, nearly every discussion veers off course, with the speaker being called out for expressing a belief based on their life experience.

This is not a unique set of circumstances or occurrences to be spoken of in our community. Is speaking of these incidents somehow playing the 'race' card? I'm sure many would most likely say it is.

In reality, that imaginary 'race' card? It's more like the Old Maid card in the children's card game of that same name because, if you're an African American, when you get stuck with that card in your hand at the end of the game, you lose.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

I Paid $3.94 A Gallon And Think I Am Pissed

Embrace the memory of the average $3.21 cents we paid for each gallon of regular unleaded gasoline purchased Memorial Holiday weekend in 2007. The chances are we'll pay a lot more this year and the years after that.

Abandon your conspiracy theories, your worries that global oil companies are gouging us at the pump. For the record, they are. It's the kind of profiteering that accompanies any crisis -- war and rumors of war, hurricanes, or other actual or imminent disasters.

What the oil companies are doing isn't moral. Nor is it illegal. But it is business.
Crises usually are profitable for people positioned to exploit them; and they usually are costly for those who aren't. When it comes to oil and the motor fuels it provides, we're in a crisis. We've been in a crisis for nearly 30 years now.
But the only times we've paid attention to it were during those rare, for us, seasons of gasoline shortages, such as the spot shortages that occurred in the United States in the early 1970s. What we now regard as high gasoline prices -- laughable in the rest of the developed world -- have also gotten our attention.
We're upset. Life is unfair. Someone has taken away our cheap gasoline. It just isn't right.

Damn those oil companies and their lackeys in the automotive industry, especially in Detroit, who busily are churning out gas-guzzling trucks when everybody knows that all we've ever wanted in the United States were fuel-sipping sedans such as the gas-electric Toyota Prius. Never mind that Toyota got the money for the Prius through highly profitable sales of models such as the Toyota Land Cruiser, Toyota Sequoia and FJ Cruiser sport-utility vehicles. Never mind that Toyota, hungry for the dollars that Detroit has been raking in on sales of big pickup trucks, is going after that particular cash pile with its new, super-powerful, quite fuel-thirsty Toyota Tundra CrewMax pickup truck.

Fie on those Detroit companies! They have no interest in producing fuel-efficient vehicles. Never mind that they've been doing exactly that for decades in other parts of the world where gasoline isn't dirt cheap. Never mind that they tried on numerous occasions to do the same thing in the bigger-is-always-better United States, much to their fiscal distress.

And on that point, never mind that any American who wanted a car that could get at least 30 miles per gallon could have done so, most certainly, in the last two decades. But year after year, according to U.S. automotive sales histories, those cars lingered at the very bottom of the market regardless of whether they came from Japan, the United States or Europe.

But I digress. I was writing about the crisis. It is this: Despite all of the happy talk you hear from lawmakers who have fooled themselves into believing that the next big exploitable oil reserve is bubbling just beneath the surface of our national will to pump it from the ground or the sea, despite profound media hand-wringing over the putative sins of the oil industry or their cronies in the car business, despite the inane congressional tendency to try to avert an energy crisis by making the car companies produce more fuel-efficient vehicles while asking consumers to do nothing except sit and wait for gasoline prices to come down, world oil production cannot match the trajectory of demand.

No magic turn of the OPEC (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) oil wheel is going to alleviate that problem over the long term. No amount of U.S. military boots on the ground of someone else's oil-producing country is going to ultimately alter the inevitable outcome of rapid global consumption of a finite resource.

What is odd -- indeed what is scary -- is that there are so many Americans who don't get this, who don't believe it, who think that a quick fix is just around the corner. When you think about it, our mindset about oil is very much like that of a crack addict desperate for his or her next fix: "There must be some around here somewhere. I've got to have it. What must I do to get it? Whom must I kill? From whom must I steal?"

It's a useless pursuit.

We consume 20.8 million barrels of crude oil per day. But we daily produce only 5.2 million barrels of that amount within U.S. borders. We use 25 percent of the total oil and gasoline consumed in the world -- substantially more than any other country, including those that have no fuel economy rule. But we believe that fuel economy rules alone -- effectively shifting the burden of fuel conservation to the car companies while leaving the consumer side of the equation virtually untouched -- will solve our problem.

It's time to face up and fess up: We're high on cheap gasoline. Our current distemper is caused by the reality that in a world that loves the stuff as much as we do and that is beginning to use it with a profligacy that matches our own, we're going to have to pay much more to get it.

There is not an inexhaustible supply of oil. There is not now, nor has there ever been, and nor will there ever be an inexhaustible finite resource. Get over it. Let's start withdrawing now. Let's face, share, and manage the pain. Let's deal with our own greed either by using only what we need or paying more of the real price for using more than what is needed. Yeah, carbon and horsepower taxes, and congestion pricing to control the egregious fuel waste in urban rush-hour traffic jams.

When it comes to oil, it's not going to get much better than this.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Why Is It ?

Well here I go again. Why is it the media makes such a buzz about Rev. Jeffrey Wright and all of the so called "negative things" he has to say about our country but we have heard nothing of Condoleeza Rice and the truthful things she has to say. I believe her and Rev Wright are saying similar things but phrase it a little differently. For those of you who missed it thanks to the biased media, I will recap:

"Condoleezza Rice today entered the race debate that has been a simmering undercurrent of the presidential campaign when she said it had been "important" for Barack Obama to give his landmark speech on race and defended the patriotism of African Americans.

The US secretary of state also decried the "birth defect" of slavery that she said has left Americans struggling to confront racism.

"Africans and Europeans came here and founded this country together - Europeans by choice and Africans in chains," Rice told the Washington Times. "That's not a very pretty reality of our founding."

Rice, the second African-American and second female in US history to lead the state department, grew up in Alabama at the height of the civil rights movement in America. One of her childhood playmates was killed in an infamous 1963 church bombing committed by white supremacists, whom Rice has called "terrorists".

She declined to comment directly on the presidential campaign in the Times interview, saying only that it was "important" that Obama "gave it for a whole host of reasons", but strongly defended the patriotism of African Americans. Video clips of Barack Obama's former pastor, Jeremiah Wright, shouting, "God damn America," ignited the race row that has been dominating the Democratic presidential race. Conservatives have also accused Obama and his wife, Michelle, of displaying insufficient love for the country.

"What I would like understood as a black American is that black Americans loved and had faith in this country even when this country didn't love and have faith in them - and that's our legacy," Rice said.

Now I know I promised to shorten my blogs going forward but I felt I had to present this to you since our media did not find it newsworthy enough to cover at length and blew past it. Until next time, ask yourself "Why Is It ?

Friday, May 9, 2008

Ask - Invite - Trust

This is my first week of blogging so I have to apologize if I get a little long winded. The primary purpose of this blog was to introduce the world to The Providence Packers Youth Football and Cheerleading Organization but now I realize it can be so much more than that so I intend to continue updating this blog. I promise that after today, my blogs will be a lot shorter but will reflect our desire to stimulate your thought process and get dialogue moving. With that being said,


Three bold verbs that embody what it is that we, as an Organization, are here to accomplish.

We are here to provide a product and service which provides our youth with a compelling reason to turn to the The Providence Packers as one of their primary solutions providers. The Providence Packers Organization is a process innovation that provides a solution to inner city youth that simply want and demand a better quality of life, a better quality of service.

Our strategy is to drive our children to

1. Ask: The Providence Packers Organization for fresh ideas, inspiration and instruction.

2. Invite: The Providence Packers Organization into their lives to be their coach, their personal assistant, their friend.

3. Trust: The Providence Packers Organization to provide solutions that work and exceed expectations.

Ask > Invite > Trust: The desired end result of the commitment by all of our leaders to remain focused on why we are here, what we do and how we will go about our day to day operations. It's a call to action that engages our endless curiosity, our passion, and our drive to be first and best in everything that we do.

OUR PURPOSE (why are we here)

Every organization has to have a reason to exist, a reason that answers the fundamental question of why are we here? While it is true that we are here to teach children the fundamentals of football and cheerleading, this is not our purpose. For The Providence Packers Organization, this big question has a simple answer:

We are here to enhance our children’s life and educational experiences.

We will accomplish this by providing our children with an educational base that will provide the most effective and practical whole product solution for success in any walk of life. Strengthening their opportunities for success will be the added reward of the lasting and impressionable experiences that our children will benefit from when they share the end result of their learning experience with family and friends.

MISSION (what we do)

The Providence Packers Organization is an on-demand sports and lifestyle oriented mentoring organization

Our committed staff will walk our children through the entire life process from start to finish without missing a single step. Our approach will be to deliver positive life experiences and mentoring directly into our children’s lives.

It is important to note that we are not totally a sports driven organization. Our content is developed solely to maximize learning and provide our children with a step by step experience that produces results that work.

Our organization will be instantly recognizable by our high quality, simple, but effective formula. Our name “The Providence Packers” will however be branded as a process innovation, a new way to learn how to live that will provide a compelling alternate to traditional lifestyles that end up a dead end street.

VALUES (How we will get there)

Values are the principles and beliefs that guide the decisions and actions of individuals, cultures and businesses.

For The Providence Packers Organization, our Values are more than just a set of words. The following values reflect the energy and spirit of an organization that has the solid foundation to lead change as the world around us evolves and they articulate a code of behavior that guides us through that change with integrity.

The values reflected here are a call to action that asks every The Providence Packers Organization Board Member, Co-coordinator, Officer, coach, parent and child to commit to a common set of beliefs about how we work in our World today.

Our four corporate values also suggest the most important but simplest reason we exist,

L.I.F.E ! We value the well-being of our children and will try to provide positive learning solutions that provide children with the right tools and information to lead healthier lives


We are loyal to our children, our affiliates, our parents and the Organization. We are grateful to each and every one of our parents and children for placing their trust in our organization. We are grateful to our affiliates for their commitment to our success and their contributions which continue to move us forward. We are grateful to our recreation department partners for embracing our vision and helping us achieve it. We are grateful to our corporate sponsors and prize their investment capital as if it were our own and will work effortlessly to maximize return on investment for all, not cash but that being successful children who become positive forces in our society.


Honesty, Responsibility and Accountability, three guiding fundamentals that govern our quest to be an organization with the highest standard of ethical conduct. We earn the trust of others through consistent honesty, truthfulness and transparency in all our relationships and business transactions. We accept responsibility for success and failure. We take accountability for all of our decisions and actions. We never make excuses for anything or anyone. We were, are and always will be an organization to trust and believe in.


We inspire to be an open innovative learning organization led with a relentless commitment to understand, anticipate and fulfill the needs of our children. For The Providence Packers Organization, this innovation starts with an invitation to our leaders and staff to imagine, to dream and to do things outside the box. To be creative in all our solutions coupled with empowerment. The solutions developed and implemented by our team(s) are designed and communicated to our children with the goal of instilling confidence and a freedom to achieve which will be inherent in all our offerings. Be informed, Be inspired, Be free.


We are an organization led with a passion and commitment for growth and advancement. We set and meet aggressive commitments for self and others. We are willing and free to stretch and exceed the expectations of our children, our leaders and our parents. We are leaders that stimulate new growth and evolve the way in which people learn. And most importantly, we seek out opportunities to lead this change.

Always With Unyielding Integrity!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

In my duties as President of a youth football organization, I will probably be invited to speak to various youth organizations. On these occasions I will always asked this question, "What one thing do you think we need to teach our kids?"

My answer, "Responsibility," will always raise eyebrows.In our society today, role models (pop stars, pro athletes, and politicians) blame their mistakes on others. I have heard it said that our youth do not meet expectations. Our youth fitness level is at an all-time low. Parents blame the schools. Schools blame the parents for allowing fast food consumption, substance abuse, and hours spent with TV and video games. The media blames everyone: latchkey kids, "McParents," disinterested teachers, and lack of government funds. Youth suicide and violence are common place. Here the finger pointing is even worse. Teachers, lawyers and judges all play the "Blame Game." Criminals are not responsible for their actions because ???.

Responsibility is an ORPHAN! Academics achievements in the classroom, together with the development of character, individual and team skills, the will to win, and a sense of fair play and sportsmanship in athletic competition determines distinction in youth athletics programs. Such groups require commitment from our youth, parents, alumni, community and friends at all levels of interest.

"This game of football is dedicated to our country and the fine youngsters playing the game. This is a classroom. They may get some bark scraped off their nose, but they are learning the value of courage, confidence and teamwork. Welcome to America's Leadership Laboratory."Just think about this; It costs more to send a kid to jail than to Yale. Our kids are being poisoned. Yes, poisoned! Physically and mentally, and what are we doing about it?Every one of us is responsible. We need to be more active. Our sport is under siege. We have enemies outside and sadly inside the sport. We must not allow the decay to continue. Let's all of us take the responsibility to alert America.

The face of football is NOT "Beer, Brawls and Betting!"