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Fronnie Lewis - Editor

Tag Archives | government

President Obama speaks to Congress and the nation

  White House photo/ Pete Souza   President Obama’s first speech to a joint session of congress is being analysed and scrutinized today. So I’m having my say. First, I agree with a radio commentator who called last night’s address a “pep talk” to keep Americans inspired and focused on the tough job of rebuilding the nation’s economy and confidence in our financial systems. A New York Times editorial complimented the president’s speech for being right on target: “He sounded confident — promising that the nation will rebuild and ’emerge stronger than before’ — without... Read More →

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Condoleezza Rice gets a multi-million dollar book deal

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is probably hammering away at a computer keyboard today as part of her new job, author. Several major media outlets, yesterday and today, report Rice has signed a three book deal with Crown Publishing, a division of Random House. According to the Associated Press, the deal is worth at least $2.5 million! The 54-year-old George W. Bush confidant will begin with a book about her White House days: “Rice will combine candid narrative and acute analysis to tell the story of her time in the White... Read More →

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Election Tuesday: Hot race for Burbank City Council

FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Burbank City Council candidate, Lee Dunayer, smiles and chats with folks at a campaign meet and greet on January 29, 2009, at the popular Porto’s Bakery & Cafe on West Magnolia Blvd.   You can tell there’s a city primary election coming up by just driving or walking through the neighborhoods of Burbank. Candidate signs dot the landscape and the windows of businesses, too. Most of those candidates are running for three seats on the Burbank City Council.                                                      Read More →

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Schwarzenegger, the new state budget, and Hollywood

  photo from http://gov.ca.gov/  02/20/09  — Governor Schwarzenegger holds news conference yesterday to sign the new state budget into law.   After a painful three months of bitter debate, the state legislature finally approved a budget on Thursday and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed it into law yesterday. The budget reportedly solves a $42 billion deficit by raising taxes and cutting spending. The governor says the budget lays the foundation for fiscal responsibility in the future:“During a down economy and facing an historic budget deficit we had to make some... Read More →

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Day 25: President Obama celebrates the passage of his stimulus bill by Congress

                                                                                                             Photo by Pete Souza  — President Barack Obama preparing to deliver his weekly address from the White House today.   Today President Barack Obama called the passage by Congress of the much debated $787 billion stimulus bill a major milestone. Even before he officially took the oath of office, President Obama has been pushing hard for his American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan. The president’s original plan was larger and he had lobbied for Republican support. Yesterday, the House voted 246-183 in favor of the stimulus bill; not one Republican voted for... Read More →

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The Obama White House looking to fill thousands of jobs

President Barack Obama’s White House is looking for a few thousand dedicated public servants to fill jobs in his administration of change. Today the official White House website www.whitehouse.gov put out the call for potential candidates to use the new job link at the bottom of its pages to begin the application process. If you decide to apply, make sure you’ve got your resume and qualifications together: “Remember, the WhiteHouse.gov jobs application is just for politically appointed positions in the Executive Branch of the government. These are positions... Read More →

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Michelle Obama on the cover of Vogue magazine

Photos from Vogue/Annie Leibovitz   First Lady Michelle Obama achieves a milestone of her own with an appearance on the cover of the March issue of Vogue magazine. First ladies have shown up in the high fashion icon since 1929, however, only two got the cover. The first, the now Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, back in December of 1998. For weeks now, rumors of the Obama/Vogue cover have been swirling around the Internet. Last night, the rumors became reality when the story along with the gorgeous cover popped up in... Read More →

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DAY 21: President Obama’s economic recovery plan clears the Senate

President Barack Obama’s hard fought economic recovery plan struggled through the Senate today on a vote of 61-37. To pass, the measure needed 60 votes. Only three Republicans voted for the $838 billion stimulus bill. About $108 billion in spending items were whacked from the measure in order to win support from the Republicans. Now, this stimulus bill and the one passed recently by the House will be compressed into one by a House/Senate committee. Democrats are still pushing hard for the final stimulus bill to reach President Obama’s desk for signing next Monday, Presidents Day. Meanwhile stocks took... Read More →

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Obama’s campaign manager gets million-dollar-plus book deal

Google Image   President Obama’s campaign manager/Internet wizard, David Plouffe, has snagged a mega-book deal worth between $1.5 and $2 million, according to the publishing news site GalleyCat. Plouffe now heads Organizing for America, a new entity that aims to mesh 13-million or so supporters of the Obama campaign into a powerful force to help push the President’s message and issues for change. I got an e-mail yesterday from Plouffe as part of Organizing for America. Plouffe, in a style he honed during the presidential campaign, wrote a casual, but... Read More →

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Day 15:President Obama slaps a cap on controversial executive pay deals

Photo from: www.whitehouse.gov   Today President Barack Obama vowed to take “the air out of golden parachutes” with new rules governing financial compensation for top executives at companies taking federal bailout money. The President said: “As part of the reforms we’re announcing today, top executives at firms receiving extraordinary help from U.S. taxpayers will have their compensation capped at $500,000 — a fraction of the salaries that have been reported recently. And if these executives receive any additional compensation, it will come in the form of stock that... Read More →

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Tax troubles derail two presidential nominees today

President Barack Obama’s administration today got hit with two tough political blows. Two Obama nominees, Former Senator Tom Daschle and consulting executive Nancy Killefer, both withdrew their names for top positions because of tax blunders. Daschle stepping aside was the most damaging to the fledgling Obama administration. Daschle was nominated to be head of the Health and Human Services Department. Daschle had been expected to lead the charge for health care reforms — an issue close to the president and millions of Americans. Daschle was tripped up by the disclosure that... Read More →

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President Obama sends out e-mails rallying support for his economic plan

Photo from: www.whitehouse.gov   I got one. An e-mail from President Barack Obama today. No, I am not on that ultra-top secret list of folks with the president’s e-mail address to his new Blackberry-like device. Also, I am not the only one who got this e-mail from the president today. President Obama sent out tons of e-mails to supporters urging them to push for the passage of his $825 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The president said:”I need your help to spread the word and build support.”... Read More →

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Day Nine: President Obama signs groundbreaking equal pay bill

Photo from www.whitehouse.gov   Today, less than two weeks into his administration President Barack Obama signed his first bill into law and it’s a groundbreaker. President Obama put his signature on the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Restoration Act of 2009. Among the supporters at the signing ceremony, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and Lilly Ledbetter. Ledbetter worked 19 years in a Goodyear tire plant. In 1998, Ledbetter sued Goodyear for pay discrimination. In May 2007, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against her saying she had failed to file... Read More →

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Day Eight:President Obama’s $819 Billion stimulus plan clears first major hurdle

 Late today, the House of Representatives passed President Barack Obama’s $819 billion economic stimulus plan aimed at creating jobs and providing tax cuts to individuals and businesses. The vote was 244-to-188. Despite the president’s efforts over the past few days to rally support among Republicans, not one voted for the plan. Only 18 Democrats voted against it. The president is trying to drum up support for his stimulus plan in the private sector as well. This morning at the White House, Obama met with executives from corporations like IBM, Jet Blue,... Read More →

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A huge demand for Aretha Franklin’s inauguration hat

FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove Legendary singer/songwriter Aretha Franklin belted out “My Country ‘Tis of Thee” at the swearing-in ceremony for President Barack Obama, last Tuesday January 20. Franklin is known for her over-the-top outfits that some feel are not always, ah, flattering. Well, the “Queen of Soul’s” inauguration outfit won her a multitude of praise, especially, that fabulous hat. I loved it! There are media reports, from People Magazine to the Wall Street Journal,  about that striking wool felt chapeau with the over-sized rhinestone bordered bow. The Detroit designer... Read More →

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A First Lady with a unique style

FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove Michelle Obama turned heads at the inauguration ceremony on January 20, 2009.   The new First Lady, Michelle Obama, really showcased her modern sophisticated style during inauguration week. Mrs. Obama got high marks from many fashion observers including Vogue editor-in-chief, Anna Wintour, in an article on the high fashion magazine’s website.   I’m not an expert, but I thought Michelle was “styling” all week long. My favorite outfit, that striking yellow Isabel Toledo dress and matching coat. The new First Lady sparkled at the swearing-in ceremony. “Yellow is the color of optimism and confidence and hope... Read More →

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Day Four:President Obama first weekly address touts his economic recovery plan

Photo from www.whitehouse.gov   In his first radio and Internet weekly address, President Barack Obama today called for bold and swift action to shore-up our shaky economy. The president is pushing for the passage of his American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan by Congress, which he said will “jumpstart” the economy. “It’s a plan that will save or create three to four million jobs over the next few years, and one that recognizes both the paradox and the promise of this moment – the fact that there are... Read More →

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Day Two: President Obama signs more important executive orders

President Barack Obama delivered on more campaign promises today. At the White House, the president signed three executive orders: one to close the controversial U.S. run prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and two others banning torture and setting up a task force to oversee these changes. These swift decisions are a clear break with the Bush administration and send a message to the world. President Obama says: “This is following through not just on a commitment I made during the campaign but an understanding that dates back to our Founding Fathers, that we are willing... Read More →

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Obama Oath

A do-over on the oath of office for President Obama

Today Chief Justice John Roberts administered the oath of office to President Obama for a second time.   Millions of people on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., across the country, and around the world cheered after the swearing-in yesterday of Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States. It probably did not matter to most of them that the Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court flubbed the 35-word oath. Chief Justice Roberts misplaced the word, “faithfully” and then at another point, omitted the word “execute.” That explains... Read More →

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President Obama gets down to business

  President Obama meets with White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel in the Oval Office.   The parties and celebrations of the historic inauguration of the 44th president are over. (Technical problems on my site blocked me from blogging yesterday. Some of the glitches are still being worked out.)  Meanwhile today, President Barack Obama got down to the business of running the country and dealing with its myriad of problems. President Obama’s first full day on the job got off to a fast start with the signing of several executive orders... Read More →

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