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Posts Tagged ‘Barack Obama’

Obama address renews audacity to hope

Posted by 104Inc.com on February 25, 2009

WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama gave America the audacity to hope again.

After describing the U.S. economy in nearly apocalyptic terms for weeks, pushing his $787 billion stimulus plan through Congress, the president used his address to Congress on Tuesday night to tap the deep well of American optimism — the never-say-die spirit that every president tries to capture in words. And great presidents embody.

“We will rebuild. We will recover, and the United States of America will emerge stronger than before,” Obama said, echoing Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan.

“The answers to our problems don’t lie beyond our reach,” Obama said. “What is required now is for this country is to pull together, confront boldly the challenges we face, and take responsibility for our future once more.”

The themes of responsibility, accountability and, above all, national community rang throughout an address carefully balanced by the gravity of its times. Job losses. Home foreclosures. Credit crisis. Rising health care costs. Declining trust in government. Obama touched all those bases.

“The impact of this recession is real, and it is everywhere,” he said.

It seemed that the president might be sticking to the dour talking points of the stimulus debate, when he warned that failure to pass the legislation would lead to a catastrophe “as deep and dire as any since the Great Depression,” one that “we may be unable to reverse.”

Fearing (and hearing) the worst, Americans supported Obama’s package and lawmakers passed it. But his rhetoric carried a risk.

None other than former President Bill Clinton, husband of Obama’s former rival and now the secretary of state, Hillary Rodham Clinton, complained that the president’s words were too much of a downer. The president from Hope, Ark., told the author of “The Audacity of Hope” to get back on message.

“I just want the American people to know that he’s confident that we are going to get out of this and he feels good about the long run,” Clinton told ABC’s “Good Morning America” last Friday.

Obama didn’t need Clinton’s advice. While his advisers privately criticized Clinton for second-guessing their strategy, Obama said a president must be both a realist and a cheerleader. “I’m constantly trying to thread the needle between sounding alarmist but also letting the American people know the circumstances that we’re in,” Obama told ABC News on Feb. 10.

Indeed, advisers said at the time that Obama had already written much of his address, and they predicted that it would mark a rhetorical pivot — from selling fear to raising hopes.

And that he did.

“You should also know,” Obama told millions of viewers Tuesday night, “that the money you’ve deposited in banks across the country is safe; your insurance is secure; you can rely on the continued operation of our financial system.”

He sounded like Roosevelt who, after closing banks briefly in the first days of his presidency, stoked the embers of American optimism. “Confidence and courage are the essentials of success in carrying out our plan,” Roosevelt said. “Let us unite in banishing fear. We have provided the machinery to restore our financial system. It is up to you to support and make it work. It is your problem no less than it is mine. Together we cannot fail.”

Like Roosevelt, Obama asked Americans to unite against pessimism. “We are a nation that has seen promise amid peril, and claimed opportunity from ordeal,” Obama said. “Now we must be that nation again.”

Like Roosevelt, Obama said his government had already provided the machinery to create jobs, improve access to health care, free up credit and help struggling homeowners.

And, like Roosevelt, he challenged Americans to help fix the nation’s woes. Obama even challenged his fellow citizens to recognize their role in creating the problem. “People bought homes they knew they couldn’t afford,” Obama said, “from banks and lenders who pushed those bad loans anyway.”

He was blunt but bullish on America.

“None of this will come without cost, nor will it be easy,” he said after spelling out his agenda. “But this is America. We don’t do what’s easy. We do what is necessary to move this country forward.”

In short, he reminded people that America has always seen itself as a “shining city upon a hill,” as one of its earliest leaders, John Winthrop, put it — a metaphor that Ronald Reagan reintroduced effectively in the 1980s.

When he addressed Congress, Reagan liked to pepper the audience with average people who did extraordinary things and epitomized the American spirit. Obama borrowed that device, inviting Ty’Sheoma Bethea to join first lady Michelle Obama in the crowd.

Bethea is an eighth-grade student who wrote Congress for help in repairing her dilapidated school, telling lawmakers that she and her fellow students will rise above their conditions because, “We are not quitters.”

And that was Obama’s bottom-line message to a shaken nation. We are not quitters.

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Posted in Diary Entry, economy, job, life, Mortgage, motivation, Personal Finance, Politics, work | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Ill. Gov. arrested in Obama successor probe

Posted by 104Inc.com on December 9, 2008

CHICAGO – Federal authorities arrested Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich Tuesday on charges that he brazenly conspired to sell or trade the Senate seat left vacant by President-elect Barack Obama to the highest bidder.

Blagojevich also was charged with illegally threatening to withhold state assistance to Tribune Co., the owner of the Chicago Tribune, in the sale of Wrigley Field, according to a federal criminal complaint. In return for state assistance, Blagojevich allegedly wanted members of the paper’s editorial board who had been critical of him fired.

A 76-page FBI affidavit said the 51-year-old Democratic governor was intercepted on court-authorized wiretaps over the last month conspiring to sell or trade the vacant Senate seat for personal benefits for himself and his wife, Patti.

Otherwise, Blagojevich considered appointing himself. The affidavit said that as late as Nov. 3, he told his deputy governor that if “they’re not going to offer me anything of value I might as well take it.”

“I’m going to keep this Senate option for me a real possibility, you know, and therefore I can drive a hard bargain,” Blagojevich allegedly said later that day, according to the affidavit, which also quoted him as saying in a remark punctuated by profanity that the seat was “a valuable thing — you just don’t give it away for nothing.”

The affidavit said Blagojevich also discussed getting a substantial salary for himself at a nonprofit foundation or an organization affiliated with labor unions.

It said Blagojevich also talked about getting his wife placed on corporate boards where she might get $150,000 a year in director’s fees.

He also allegedly discussed getting campaign funds for himself or possibly a post in the president’s cabinet or an ambassadorship once he left the governor’s office. He noted becoming a U.S. senator might remake his image for a possible presidential run in 2016, according to the affidavit. And he allegedly said a Senate seat would also provide him with corporate contacts if he needed a job and present an opportunity for his wife to work as a lobbyist.

“I want to make money,” the affidavit quotes him as saying in one conversation.

The affidavit said Blagojevich expressed frustration at being “stuck” as governor and that he would have access to greater resources if he were indicted while in the U.S. Senate than while sitting as governor.

U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald said in a statement that “the breadth of corruption laid out in these charges is staggering.”

“They allege that Blagojevich put a for sale sign on the naming of a United States senator,” Fitzgerald said.”

Among those being considered for the post include U.S. Reps. Danny Davis and Jesse Jackson Jr.

Blagojevich also was charged with using his authority as governor in an attempt to squeeze out campaign contributions.

His chief of staff, John Harris, also was arrested.

Corruption in the Blagojevich administration has been the focus of a federal investigation involving an alleged $7 million scheme aimed at squeezing kickbacks out of companies seeking business from the state. Federal prosecutors have acknowledged they’re also investigating “serious allegations of endemic hiring fraud” under Blagojevich.

Political fundraiser Antoin “Tony” Rezko who raised money for the campaigns of both Blagojevich and Obama is awaiting sentencing after being convicted of fraud and other charges. Blagojevich’s chief fundraiser, Christopher G. Kelly, is due to stand trial early next year on charges of obstructing the Internal Revenue Service.

According to Tuesday’s complaint, Blagojevich schemed with Rezko, millionaire-fundraiser turned federal witness Stuart Levine and others to get financial benefits for himself and his campaign committee.

Federal prosecutors said Blagojevich and the chairman of his campaign committee have been speeding up corrupt fundraising activities in the last month to get as much money as possible before the end of the year when a new law would curtail his ability to raise contributions from companies with state contracts worth more than $50,000.

According to the affidavit, agents learned Blagojevich was seeking $2.5 million in campaign contributions by the end of the year, with a large part allegedly to come from companies and individuals who have gotten state contracts or appointments.

Blagojevich took the chief executive’s office in 2003 as a reformer promising to clean up former Gov. George Ryan’s mess.

Ryan, a Republican, is serving a 6-year prison sentence after being convicted on racketeering and fraud charges. A decade-long investigation began with the sale of driver’s licenses for bribes and led to the conviction of dozens of people who worked for Ryan when he was secretary of state and governor.

FBI spokesman Frank Bochte said federal agents arrested the governor and Harris simultaneously at their homes at 6:15 a.m. and took them to the Chicago FBI headquarters.

Bochte said he did not know if either man was handcuffed or if the governor’s family was their North Side home at the time of his arrest. He did say Blagojevich and Harris both were given time to get dressed before being taken to the headquarters.

He also did not have any details about Blagojevich’s arrest, only that he was cooperative with federal agents.

“It was a very calm setting,” he said.

The governor was to appear later Tuesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Nan Nolan to answer the charges. The time was not immediately set.

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OVERCOME YOUR FEARS WITH ACTION

Posted by 104Inc.com on November 18, 2008

One of several versions of the painting

Image via Wikipedia

Do the thing you fear and fear disappears.
Confront your fears, list them, get to know them
and only then will you be able to put them aside and move ahead.

Your obstacles will melt away, if instead of cowering before them,
you make up your mind to walk boldly through them.

One of the greatest surprises you’ll experience,
is when you discover that you can do what you were afraid you couldn’t do.

The only thing you have to fear is fear itself.
When you face the things that scare you, you open the door to freedom.

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Barack Your Vote

Posted by 104Inc.com on October 17, 2008

Barack Obama and Joe Biden in Dublin OH

Image by beru8ra via Flickr

Ding. Ding. Ding. Well, folks. Round III is complete, and both Obama and McCain are sitting in their corners, awaiting the results of this bout. If this was a boxing match, I’d have to relate Obama to Muhammad Ali and McCain to that of Mike Tyson (the Mike Tyson towards the end of his career, that is).

Check it out. Like Ali, Obama was calm, cool, and collected. While McCain simply tried to throw haymakers and low blows (no, he didn’t try to bite his ear), Obama took everything in stride, and just floated ‘like a butterfly’, landing consistent jab after jab after jab, only to relinquish monstrous counter punches when McCain tried miserably to accuse Barack of having terrorist affiliations, etc.

Barack was pummeling McCain with…now brace yourselves….FACTS. Hmmm, that’s an interesting tactic, Mr. Obama. You mean you’re not just gonna sit there like a corpse and regurgitate nonsensical, conjured up lies about what your opponent is not doing, but rather tell us what your plan is? A novel concept, Barack. I dig it. I think the American people will be stunned by the honesty and willingness to be a man and tell it like it is instead of resorting to underhanded dirty trickery and mendacious accusations, but that’s just outlook. Maybe America isn’t ready for a truthful president, after all, we’ve been lied to by Bush for 8 years now.

Now, I hope that you have noted my sarcasm throughout this, but for those of you who didn’t get that, I’m willing to bet my collection of Celtics memorabilia that you’re voting for McCan’t and Mrs. Maverick. Am I the only one that saw McCan’t sitting in that chair as if his bottom half was in a casket. The potential (if elected) Mr. ‘One-heartbeat-away-from-Palin-as-President’ Republican sat there, trying his best to speak like a human as a opposed to a programmed robot. Instead, would scoff and breathe so ridiculously into the microphone, I had to check outdoors to see if it was just the wind. In a nutshell, Obama flattered, while MCan’t flustered.

OK – let’s talk health care. This is probably the only question McCan’t answered. His ‘plan’ is to give everyone a voucher for $5k so they can get whatever health care they need. That sounds reasonable, but considering most health care plans are more than that, that $5k would maybe only cover someone of relatively young age who is currently in good health. On the flip-side, my main man Barack (yeah, we’re on a first name basis now) is proposing a health care plan that would let you keep what you have now, but that you would..get this…PAY LESS; and in the event that you don’t have coverage, you’d get coverage by the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. Wow, what a concept. The government helping its people. The choice is clear, people – Obama. Obama. Obama.

The best part of the debate, however, was when the topic turned to the quality choices of their respective running mates. Obama spoke beautifully, eloquently, and articulately about Joe Biden, citing his stellar resume, his plans, etc. The shear beauty was that Barack never even mentioned Mrs. Maverick’s name – probably because comparing Biden and Mrs. Maverick is like comparing Michael Jordan to the captain of an adult men’s basketball league. No contest. If you saw this, you had to revel in its comedic genius, considering the fact that while McCan’t was praising Mrs. Maverick, he couldn’t help continually blink his eyes and make other facial twitches – classic cases of insincerity.

Now, I love a good saga, but enough is enough. Let’s finish this off, shall we? According to polls, Obama is ahead, but he still NEEDS YOUR HELP. So, make sure you’re registered, and get out there and VOTE OBAMA. You’ll be glad you did.

Need any more help? Not sure which way to go? Well, at least there’s one easy choice. Log on to 104Vote.com for related articles on the upcoming election, as well as simple and easy ways to accommodate all your needs!


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Last Presidential Debate! Who hates joe plumber more?

Posted by 104Inc.com on October 16, 2008

Decisions, decisions….what to watch: the Dodgers/Phillies game or the final Presidential debate? 

Okay, I chose the debate.  If I can remember some of the talking points from the previous debates, why can’t the candidates?  Mainly it was McCain who didn’t seem to remember the talking points.  He got some points wrong about the Obama healthcare plan.  These were the same points he got wrong last week.  Then, he looked surprised when he was corrected by Obama for the second time.

The CNN coverage featured a split screen showing each candidate and that just wasn’t good for McCain.  Maybe he suffers from the same curse as George W. Bush….kind of a superior look on his face.  Obama generally looked like he was either paying attention to McCain as he spoke or he was taking notes.  McCain’s look seemed to say “this guy doesn’t know anything”.  Which may be true, but the look didn’t serve him well.

McCain seemed to start off well, but then went downhill.  He seemed to fall into trap that Obama set and ended up looking whiney about the campaign ads and talking about Bill Ayers. 

McCain’s biggest problem seems to be the economy.  Probably doesn’t matter who the Republicans ran as their candidate for president.  If the economy was in decent shape, McCain might have a chance.  His poll numbers have done nothing but trend down since the debates began. Part of the problem is his performance, but the party that is in power gets to take credit for a good economy or the blame for a bad economy.  It might not be right, but that is the way it is.

At least you can count on 104inc.com to give you unbiased information.

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Exercising Is Not Important

Posted by 104Inc.com on October 13, 2008

Anatomy of the biliary tree, liver and gall bl...

Image via Wikipedia

They say it is but why? Who pays these people to tell us that good health and exercise are important? The health industry is a $500 billion dollar industry and growing. Think about it. You exercise and you exercise and what do you have to show for your results sore back, bad knees, messed up elbow. Then you go to doctors you make billions of dollars prescribing you drugs to make you feel better. Wait all those drugs have side effects. They can kill you, or cause heart damage of liver disease, etc, etc, etc. So then you go back for more pills and surgery. This is all done in the name of good health.

So is exercise and good health important? Doctors say it is. How do doctors make money? They need to treat sick people. If people did not get sick we would not need doctors. If people did not get hurt we would not need doctors. That would mean that we would not need drug companies or insurance companies. We would save so much money by not having gym memberships, dealing with doctors, insurance companies. That would then reduce or level of stress and we would live longer.

That sounds like a better deal to me then exercising. Just eat better reduce your stress and you will live longer. Some people may say I am crazy but it sure makes sense to me. We are to busy complicating life. We need to step back and realize that we are just animals that were put on this earth to procreate and eat. Why do we have to have a higher purpose then that?

Let’s discuss this more at 104health.com.

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So You Still Don’t Know Who to Vote For, Huh?

Posted by 104Inc.com on October 9, 2008

US Senator Barack Obama campaigning in New Ham...

Image via Wikipedia

Webster’s dictionary defines debate as “a discussion, as of a public question in an assembly, involving opposing viewpoints.”

Now, either Mr. Webster was hallucinating when he defined that word, or Sarah “Pail In Comparison” Palin and John “I-have-no-substance-so-let-me-just-talk-smack-on-Obama” McCain have taken the liberty of redefining the word before our very eyes.

It’s a funny thing, really. After watching the Vice Presidential and Presidential debates, I saw one thing that got me thinking. McCain and Palin do belong together, but they’re on the wrong network, and on the wrong platform. Considering that neither of them could answer a question with a real answer to save their lives, and considering all the ‘dancing’ they do around each question, they’d be better served on Dancing With the Stars. However, I must admit that McCain has impressed me greatly – for a man with his physical ailments, barely able to raise his hands and walk fluidly, he sure can groove – who said white men can’t dance, huh?

On the flip-side, you have the stellar, stoic, and confident Obama who looks in the eye of the camera, in the eye of the American people, and instills confidence in us, instead of instilling further fear that we will all one day have to flee to neighboring countries and watch the USA crumble into oblivion. Obama will make a change, people!

So, you still don’t know who to vote for, huh? Well, let me ease this burden for you. We spend, and have been spending $10,000,000,000 a month in Iraq for the past several years. Did you get that? Not $10,000, not $10,000,000, but TEN BILLION DOLLARS A MONTH IN IRAQ. Now, don’t you think that TEN BILLION DOLLARS would be better suited coming back into our economy? I thought so.Where is Bin Laden? Where is Al-Qaida? They sure as hell aren’t in Iraq. They’re in Afghanistan, parts of Pakistan, and God knows where, yet we’re still up in Iraq’s kool-aid. What gives? Basically, the Republicans have taken each and every consumer, bent them over, handled their business, and didn’t even have the common courtesy to give a reach-around.

Finally, I’ll leave you with this. McCain will give a huge tax break to those who make over $200,000/year, while the rest of us John. Q.Taxpayers (not Joe Six-Packs: a retarded euphemism) have to tighten our wallets. On the other hand, Obama will raise taxes only for those who make the $200,000/year, while the remaining 95% of the population won’t see any increase. Now, I know it’s odd to see a politician display common sense and present an actual plan to benefit this country, but I tell you, it’s either Obama or nothing.

Bottom line:

McCain = The rich get richer, we stay in Iraq fighting a meaningless war, spending billions monthly while the country continues in its worst recession since 1929.

Obama = The country is assisted. Taxpayers get a break. The economy gets boosted, and we’re on our way to the international supremacy we once possessed.

Need any more help? Not sure which way to go? Well, at least there’s one easy choice. Log on to 104Vote.com for related articles on the upcoming election, as well as simple and easy ways to accommodate all your needs! Stay tuned for Part III next week when I get into the fundamental differences in their health care views.

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Anyone who votes for McCain might as well jump on the first ship, plane, train, helicopter, pigeon, or anything else that moves out of the country

Posted by 104Inc.com on October 2, 2008

US Senator Barack Obama campaigning in New Ham...

Image via Wikipedia

Well, ladies and gentleman, the magic number is now 35. 35 days until election day. Where do you stand? Where should you stand? Well, I’ll tell you one thing. Anyone who votes for McCain might as well jump on the first ship, plane, train, helicopter, pigeon, or anything else that moves out of the country. Now, don’t get me wrong. Bush III, err…McCain is a solid guy. A war veteran, former POW – we all know his resume; but the shear fact that his running mate is a nonsensical, Oprah-watching, I-can’t-answer-one-question-with-an-intelligent-answer soccer mom scares the ever-loving crap out of me. Can you imagine if, God forbid, something happened to McCain (72 years old and not in the best condition), then  our Commander in-chief would be….gulp…Sarah Palin. Wow. I just started convulsing at the thought of the Lifetime Channel taking over the television airwaves. OK, now I’m just terrified – and I think I just threw up a little. That woman has no business in office, and McCain would be wise to change his running mate (if that’s possible). Now, for all you reading this that are currently flipping through a thesaurus to come up with every synonym of chauvinist, let me make this perfectly clear. I voted for Hilary Clinton in the primaries because of her experience, intellect, and proven past of the Clinton family. This is not a ‘I am man, hear me roar’ rant. I don’t care if there’s a woman in office, as long as it’s the right one.

Okay, I better change course a bit, because I’m getting fired up. I suppose it’s obvious that I am a democrat and a strong Obama supporter. Now, who reading this saw the debate? And of you who did, who was for McCain, but after seing the debate, feels like Obama may be the better man? I thought so. McCain was flustered, not confident, and was caught multiple times spewing false statistics, to which Sen. Obama called him out ever time.

So, I ask you, Mr. John McCain, what is your master plan? This ‘plan’ we have heard about, but yet know nothing about.  McCain/Palin are in short, a deadly combo… and I don’t mean that as a compliment. He can’t back up anything, she can’t answer a question, and all they do is waste their time bashing Obama and his crew, in hopes that the retarded voters who elected Bush not once, but twice, will vote for them. They hope that the bon-bon popping Oprah fanatics will ‘relate’ to the stultifying nature that is Sarah Palin. I mean, if McCain must use Palin, perhaps he could consider swapping her out with Tina Fey (comedienne from Saturday Night Live); with the uncanny ability to do a spot-on impersonation of Palin, Tina Fey has more substance and actually has the ability to answer questions.

The choice is simple. The choice is ours…and yours. But as for this man, I say the answer is clear….OBAMA or bust.

I’m getting Virgin Atlantic on standby in case McCain/Palin win – I’ll be on the first flight to Prague.

Need any more help? Not sure which way to go? Well, at least there’s one easy choice. Log on to 104Vote.com for related articles on the upcoming election, as well as simple and easy ways to accommodate all your needs!

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