President’s Proclamation for MLK Day

mlkTHE WHITE HOUSE  Office of the Press Secretary

The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., challenged our Nation to recognize that our individual liberty relies upon our common equality.  In communities marred by division and injustice, the movement he built from the ground up forced open doors to negotiation.  The strength of his leadership was matched only by the power of his words, which still call on us to perfect those sacred ideals enshrined in our founding documents.

“We have an opportunity to make America a better Nation,” Dr. King said on the eve of his death.  “I may not get there with you.  But I want you to know tonight that we, as a people, will get to the promised land.”  Though we have made great strides since the turbulent era of Dr. King’s movement, his work and our journey remain unfinished.  Only when our children are free to pursue their full measure of success — unhindered by the color of their skin, their gender, the faith in their heart, the people they love, or the fortune of their birth — will we have reached our destination.

Today, we are closer to fulfilling America’s promise of economic and social justice because we stand on the shoulders of giants like Dr. King, yet our future progress will depend on how we prepare our next generation of leaders.  We must fortify their ladders of opportunity by correcting social injustice, breaking the cycle of poverty in struggling communities, and reinvesting in our schools.  Education can unlock a child’s potential and remains our strongest weapon against injustice and inequality.

Recognizing that our Nation has yet to reach Dr. King’s promised land is not an admission of defeat, but a call to action.  In these challenging times, too many Americans face limited opportunities, but our capacity to support each other remains limitless.  Today, let us ask ourselves what Dr. King believed to be life’s most urgent and persistent question: “What are you doing for others?”  Visit to find Martin Luther King, Jr., Day of Service projects across our country.

Dr. King devoted his life to serving others, and his message transcends national borders.  The devastating earthquake in Haiti, and the urgent need for humanitarian support, reminds us that our service and generosity of spirit must also extend beyond our immediate communities.  As our Government continues to bring our resources to bear on the international emergency in Haiti, I ask all Americans who want to contribute to this effort to visit

By lifting up our brothers and sisters through dedication and service — both at home and around the world — we honor Dr. King’s memory and reaffirm our common humanity.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim January 18, 2010, as the Martin Luther King, Jr., Federal Holiday.  I encourage all Americans to observe this day with appropriate civic, community, and service programs in honor of Dr. King’s life and lasting legacy.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fifteenth day of January, in the year of our Lord two thousand ten, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.



How to Help Haitian Earthquake Victims

haiti-quakeIn the aftermath of a 7.0 earthquake in the impoverished island nation of Haiti, some of the world’s poorest citizens are dealt an ever more challenging hand than they had been faced with previously.  With so little by way of resources in the best of times, folks in Haiti are now faced with having to rebuild whatever semblance of normalcy they might be able to regain with even less than the zero resources they had pre-quake.  Follow me over the jump to a list of links to relief organizations where your help (either monetarily or voluntarily) is needed desperately. Continue reading…

Jobs Disappearing (But Not in Healthcare)

closedAn interesting piece in the Wall Street Journal discusses the likely permanent loss of jobs during the Great Recession of 2009.  Obviously, fields closely related to the credit and housing bubbles at the root of the current recession – mortgage brokerages, financial industry, home building etc. – have shed jobs which may never return.  Also, jobs in industries that can be automated by ongoing developments in IT – secretarial, mailroom, etc. – are also probably gone for good.   Add to this mix, the increasing practice of offshoring tech-enabled jobs to emerging, low-cost labor markets like China and India and it becomes apparent that it may take years for the US to return to employment levels seen pre-recession in 2006.  What was the one bright spot according to the US Labor Department?  Jobs in the healthcare field.  Training for service in the healthcare field puts you at the forefront of the career market for the next decade.  Congratulations!

Happy Birthday Elvis!

young-elvis1I used to have a number of Elvis Presley LPs and 45’s (you old folks know what those are) that I played on my little suitcase phonograph when I was a kid in the early 1970s.  But, I was never a huge devotee of Elvis Presley until I stopped to visit Graceland, Elvis’s home-turned-museum in Memphis during my third cross country trip; this time from California to New York in early 2003.  The totality of his achievement in music and his impact upon popular culture is overwhelming when you see, first hand, the monumental display of his life’s journey amassed in one place.  A subsequent reexamination of all his music blew me up into a true believer.   Alas the King is Dead – Long Live the King!  Over the jump, enjoy a link to a fantastic slide show of a young Elvis on the cusp of superstardom in 1956, courtesy of Huffington Post.  Enjoy! Continue reading…

The Past Decade in Only Three Minutes-A Remarkable Video!

The ABC-TV show, “Good Morning America,” had a remarkable video recently that managed to overview the entire past ten years within three minutes. I was surprised by how many things I had forgotten about that were covered in the content and also surprised that we all survived the decade in light of all of the goings on. If you have not seen this video, you need to check it out and see how much you remember.

Move Your Money – Beat The Greedy Bankers

zero-dollar-billI don’t know about you, but I am disgusted with the banksters on Wall Street who wrecked the economy while laughing all the way to their Swiss Bank accounts with our tax-funded bailout money.  Then, after all we as taxpayers did to save their entire industry, they thanked us by jacking up credit card rates and lowering limits.  Even on some credit cards where I had never made a single late payment or carried any significant balance, the banksters jacked my interest rate to nearly 30%!  If you have been similarly shaken down by these greedy weasels, I am happy to share with you a perfectly legal and very gratifying way to fight back.  Interested?  Follow me past the jump… Continue reading…

How And Where Did Kennedy Die? Your answer may provide insights into how you fit into the new workplace.

four-generations1In the current job market, there are four different generations working, the first time in American history that this is the case.  Each generation has a different way of communicating and different values and expectations. 

According to Greg Hammill, a human resources specialist, there are distinct attitudes, motivational “buttons,” behaviors, habits and expectations identified within each generational group. Research has revealed that individuals communicate based on their generational background. Generational differences can affect hiring, the building of teams, motivating and managing people and, ultimately, increasing productivity. Generational differences can also result in misunderstandings, employee turnover, problems in attracting good employees and keeping employees loyal. Learning how to communicate with the different groups can eliminate a great deal of confrontations and misunderstandings in the workplace. Follow past the jump for profiles of the four generations sharing the modern workplace. Continue reading…

Obama Lifts AIDS/HIV Immigration Ban

aids080It was announced today that President Obama has reversed a deeply immoral and perverse policy that has been in effect for the last 22 years.  For the last two decades, if you had AIDS or HIV, you were precluded from entering the USA.  This neanderthal policy, according to Obama, was at odds with our efforts at becoming thought leaders in the fight against HIV.  In light of advancements in treatment of HIV and AIDS it was even more silly for the US to continue the ban.  It kept us in the company of notoriously regressive countries like Saudi Arabia and Libya.  I support this change.  How do you feel about this?  Sound off in the comments.

What Do We Call the Ending Decade?

2010-movieposterI was born at the beginning of the 70s.  It was a time commemorated by super huge collars on orange paisley, polyester shirts and high heeled, white patent leather, zip-up boots for menfolk.  We think of the Flower Power generation, Viet Nam and the Nixon years as the 60s.  Gordon Gecko’s “Greed is Good” ethos characterized the “Me Decade” known as the 80s and the 90s were the era of Bill Clinton, the OJ Simpson trial and Grunge Rock.  So what do we call the first decade of the new millennium as we draw to the close of the 2000s?  Follow me after the jump for some ideas and to leave some o’ yer own! Continue reading…