Leslie Jones McCloud's feed

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

First Black Social Secretary Discusses Her New Appointment

We're just getting started working on them, so I can't really discuss it, but that's the first series of events I'll be working on. The first event we will have in the White House is the governor's ball in February.

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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Fed bets $800 billion on consumers

President-elect Barack Obama will speak at a news conference today on federal spending. Central bank and Treasury announce a massive plan to jumpstart lending. Will make $200 billion available for a range of consumer loans - including credit cards and car loans - likely won't be up and running until February.

read more | digg story

Fed bets $800 billion on consumers

President-elect Barack Obama will speak at a news conference today on federal spending. Central bank and Treasury announce a massive plan to jumpstart lending. Will make $200 billion available for a range of consumer loans - including credit cards and car loans - likely won't be up and running until February.

read more | digg story

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Michelle Obama: The world's most recognized woman


"Michelle Has the Power to Change the Way African-Americans See Ourselves, Our Lives and Our Possibilities"

NEW YORK, Nov. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- Without even stepping into the White House, Michelle Obama has already accomplished a great deal in raising the profile of African-American women, Newsweek National Correspondent Allison Samuels writes in the December 1 cover, "The Meaning of Michelle" (on newsstands Monday, November 24). "When her husband raises his hand to take the oath of office, Michelle will become the world's most visible African- American woman," Samuels writes. "The new First Lady will have the chance to knock down ugly stereotypes about black women and educate the world about American black culture more generally. But perhaps more important -- even apart from what her husband can do -- Michelle has the power to change the way African-Americans see ourselves, our lives and our possibilities."

Michelle Obama challenges the typical stereotype of African-American women, including what is beautiful. Often, the standard of beauty for black women has meant fair skin, and dainty facial features, a limited scope that has had a profound effect on the self-esteem of many African-American women. Michelle Obama puts a new face on the standard of beauty. "Michelle is not only African-American, but brown. Real brown," Samuels writes. "In an era where beauty is often defined on television, in magazines and in movies as fair or white skin, long straight hair and keen features, Michelle looks nothing like the supermodels who rule the catwalks or the porcelain-faced actresses who hawk must-have cosmetics. Yet now she's going to grace the March cover of Vogue magazine -- the ultimate affirmation of beauty."

It remains to be seen what Michelle Obama will accomplish if she takes on substantial issues. "I'm hoping the whole "Mom-in-Chief" role will leave plenty of room for Michelle to tackle significant, meaty issues even if she's not clamoring for a West Wing office, Samuels writes. "But she'll have another dimension to worry about: if she focuses on the black community -- helping urban schools, say -- will her interests be viewed as too parochial? And while every First Lady -- and plenty of professional women -- walk the line between being confident and seeming like a bitch, African- American women are especially wary that being called 'strong' is just another word for 'angry'."

Thursday, November 20, 2008

First Photos of Nic Cage in Season of the Witch

As the Black Plague rages across 14th century Europe, one brave knight Lavey, is tasked with transporting a girl suspected of being the witch who caused the pandemic to trial.

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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

National Report Ranks Indiana 28th, Illinois 43rd, in Protecting Kids From Tobacco

Ten Years After Tobacco Settlement, States Falling Short in Funding Tobacco Prevention

An annual report on states' funding of tobacco prevention programs, titled "A Decade of Broken

Promises," was released by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, American Heart Association, American

Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, American Lung Association and the Robert Wood Johnson

Foundation.
Ten years after the November 1998 state tobacco settlement, Indiana and Illinois rank 28th and 43rd in the nation in funding programs to protect kids from tobacco, according to a national report released today by a coalition of public health organizations.

Illinois currently spends $9.5 million a year on tobacco prevention programs, which is 6.1 percent of

the $157 million recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Other key findings for Illinois include:

-- The tobacco companies spend more than $471 million a year on marketing
in Illinois. This is almost 50 times what the state spends on tobacco
prevention.
-- Illinois this year will collect $913 million from the tobacco
settlement and tobacco taxes, but will spend just 1 percent of it on
tobacco prevention.

Indiana currently spends $16 million a year on tobacco prevention programs, which is 20.3 percent of

the $78.8 million recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Other key findings for Indiana include:
-- The tobacco companies spend more than $425 million a year on marketing
in Indiana. This is more than 26 times what the state spends on
tobacco prevention.
-- Indiana this year will collect $660 million from the tobacco
settlement and tobacco taxes, but will spend just 2.4 percent of it on
tobacco prevention.


The report warns that the nation faces two immediate challenges in the fight against tobacco use:

complacency and looming state budget shortfalls. First, while the nation has made significant progress

over the past decade in reducing smoking, progress has slowed and further progress is at risk without

aggressive efforts at all levels of government.

Second, the states are expected to face budget

shortfalls in the coming year as a result of the weak economy. The last time the states faced

significant budget shortfalls, they cut funding for tobacco prevention programs by 28 percent between

2002 and 2005. The cutbacks are a major reason why smoking declines subsequently stalled, and states

should not make the same mistake again.

On Nov. 23, 1998, 46 states settled their lawsuits against the nation's major tobacco companies to

recover tobacco-related health care costs, joining four states (Mississippi, Texas, Florida and

Minnesota) that had reached earlier settlements. These settlements require the tobacco companies to

make annual payments to the states in perpetuity, with total payments estimated at $246 billion over

the first 25 years. The states also collect billions of dollars each year in tobacco taxes.

The new report finds that most states have broken their promise to use a significant portion of their

tobacco money to fund programs to prevent kids from smoking and help smokers quit.

According to the report, the states in the last 10 years have received $203.5 billion in revenue from

the tobacco settlement and tobacco taxes. But they have spent only 3.2 percent of this tobacco money

-- $6.5 billion -- on tobacco prevention and cessation programs.

In recent years, Indiana has taken several important steps to protect kids from tobacco. In 2007,

Governor Mitch Daniels and the Legislature increased tobacco prevention funding by nearly 50 percent

and raised the cigarette tax by 44 cents to 99.5 cents per pack. Cigarette consumption in Indiana

decreased by almost a fifth from 2007 to 2008 and was accompanied by a 260 percent increase in calls

to the state's smoking cessation quitline.

The annual report on states' funding of tobacco prevention programs, titled "A Decade of Broken

Promises," was released by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, American Heart Association, American

Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, American Lung Association and the Robert Wood Johnson

Foundation.

The new report finds that most states have broken their promise to use a significant portion of their

tobacco money to fund programs to prevent kids from smoking and help smokers quit.

In Indiana, 22.5 percent of high school students smoke, and 9,800 more kids become regular smokers

every year. Each year, tobacco claims 9,800 lives and costs the state $2.1 billion in health care

bills.

The report warns that the nation faces two immediate challenges in the fight against tobacco use:

complacency and looming state budget shortfalls. First, while the nation has made significant progress

over the past decade in reducing smoking, progress has slowed and further progress is at risk without

aggressive efforts at all levels of government. Second, the states are expected to face budget

shortfalls in the coming year as a result of the weak economy. The last time the states faced

significant budget shortfalls, they cut funding for tobacco prevention programs by 28 percent between

2002 and 2005. The cutbacks are a major reason why smoking declines subsequently stalled, and states

should not make the same mistake again.

The report found that there is more evidence than ever that tobacco prevention programs work to reduce

smoking, save lives and save money by reducing tobacco-related health care costs. Washington State,

which has been a national leader in funding tobacco prevention, has reduced smoking by 60 percent

among sixth graders and by 43 percent among 12th graders since the late 1990s. A recent study found

that California's tobacco control program saved $86 billion in health care costs in its first 15

years, compared to $1.8 billion spent on the program, for a return on investment of nearly 50:1.



More information, including the full report and state-specific information, can be obtained at

www.tobaccofreekids.org/reports/settlements.

President-Elect Obama selects Eric Holder as top cop pick

Holder set to be nation's first black Attorney General when confirmed
President-Elect Barack Obama has selected Eric Holder as the first African American Attorney General, according to US media reports. Mr Holder, 57, whose appointment is subject to confirmation by the Senate, was deputy attorney general for four years under Bill Clinton and co-chairman along with Caroline Kennedy of Mr Obama's vp search team.

read more | digg story

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Seriously? Say "no" to J. C. shoes?

During the economic boom of the past decade, many people relaxed their definitions of "need." They upgraded from Timex to Rolex. When the price of Jimmy Choo shoes hit $800, many people said they "needed" the latest shoe anyway.

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Saturday, November 8, 2008

Town stunned as 8-year-old charged in two killings, Chicago lawyer who tried similar case talks to CNN

An 8-year-old Arizona boy charged in the fatal shootings of his father and another man draws similarities between it and another case. Chicago attorney, Andre M. Grant spoke to CNN anchor, Don Lemon about a similar case in 1990s where Chicago police accused 7 and 8-year-old boys of a heinous sex crime and murder of an 11-year-old girl. He defended one of the boys.

(left to right) Atty. Andre Mandell Grant, Ill. Appellate Judge, ret. R. Eugene Pincham (deceased), Atty. Lewis Myers. This photo was taken by a Chicago Defender photographer (Rod) on the steps of the Defender at 2400 S. Michigan in 1999 at its old location in connection with a story on the Ryan Harris case.
Although both children were later exonerated, the incident changed the Cook County juvenile justice system forever. Grant said several factors must be considered, like the legality of the police interrogation process, when charging juveniles with adult crimes.Eighteen Months, a fictitious book based on a reporter who covered the story of two young boys accused of murdering 11-year-old Ryan Harris in the 1990s may be found here: Eighteen Months.

read more | digg story

Town stunned as 8-year-old charged in two killings, Chicago lawyer who tried similar case talks to CNN

An 8-year-old Arizona boy charged in the fatal shootings of his father and another man draws similarities between it and another case. Chicago attorney, Andre M. Grant spoke to CNN anchor, Don Lemon about a similar case in 1990s where Chicago police accused 7 and 8-year-old boys of a heinous sex crime and murder of an 11-year-old girl. Although both children were later exonerated, the incident changed the Cook County juvenile justice system forever. Grant said several factors must be considered, like the legality of the police interrogation process, when charging juveniles with adult crimes.Eighteen Months, a ficticious book based on a reporter who covered the story of two young boys accused of murdering 11-year-old Ryan Harris in the 1990s may be found here: http://stores.lulu.com/ljonesmccloud.

read more | digg story

Town stunned as 8-year-old charged in two killings, Chicago lawyer who tried similar case talks to CNN

An 8-year-old Arizona boy charged in the fatal shootings of his father and another man draws similarities between it and another case. Chicago attorney, Andre M. Grant spoke to CNN anchor, Don Lemon about a similar case in 1990s where Chicago police accused 7 and 8-year-old boys of a heinous sex crime and murder of an 11-year-old girl. Although both children were later exonerated, the incident changed the Cook County juvenile justice system forever. Grant said several factors must be considered, like the legality of the police interrogation process, when charging juveniles with adult crimes.Eighteen Months, a ficticious book based on a reporter who covered the story of two young boys accused of murdering 11-year-old Ryan Harris in the 1990s may be found here: http://stores.lulu.com/ljonesmccloud.

read more | digg story

Monday, November 3, 2008

Fraud alert for SSA

Social Security Inspector General Warns Public about Misleading Internet Websites that Appear to be Official Social Security Administration Site
Recently OIG has received complaints from Social Security applicants who believed that personal information they provided to the Social Security Administration had somehow been disclosed, without their permission, to claimant representative firms.
An Office of the Inspector General investigation revealed that instead, while the applicants believed they were visiting the Social Security Administration’s official website, they were instead visiting privately-owned websites designed so as to appear to be that of the Social Security Administration. As a result, some applicants provided personal information when the website operators later contacted them to offer representation.
Some of the misleading characteristics of these websites include: official-sounding website addresses; links which users could click on to (purportedly) apply for benefits; and the use of patriotic and/or governmental symbols, such as the American flag.
The Social Security Administration and the Office of the Inspector General are concerned that some applicants who mistakenly visited these websites believed they were applying for benefits online with SSA. The Office of the Inspector General has taken action under Section 1140 of the Social Security Act to stop the owners of these and similar websites from misleading the public in this fashion.
“Any organization that uses misleading tactics such as these to victimize applicants for Social Security benefits will be dealt with swiftly, and to the full extent of the law,” said Patrick P. O’Carroll, Jr., Inspector General for the Social Security Administration.
To date, the operators of two websites have been contacted and agreed to alter their sites to eliminate confusion. Nevertheless, Social Security Commissioner Michael J. Astrue urges the public to exercise caution online, and to provide personal information only through the Social Security Administration’s official website, www.socialsecurity.gov.
Anyone with knowledge of misleading websites such as those described in this advisory or any suspicious activity involving Social Security programs should contact the Office of the Inspector
General’s Fraud Hotline at http://www.socialsecurity.gov/oig/hotline/ or by phone at 1-800-269-0271. (Those who are deaf or hard-of-hearing can call the OIG TTY number at 1-866-501-2101.)
If a person has questions about Social Security benefits or programs, he or she should contact Social Security’s toll-free customer service number at 1-800-772-1213 or visit Social Security’s official website at www.socialsecurity.gov. (Those who are deaf or hard-of-hearing can call Social Security's TTY number at 1-800-325-0778.)

As public servants, SSA employees are expected to maintain a high level of integrity when it comes to facilitating the business of the Social Security Administration. As such, SSA/OIG takes seriously any crimes involving SSA employees. For example, is an SSA employee selling Social Security Cards? Is an employee stealing checks from beneficiaries? If you believe an SSA employee is committing these or any other crime against the Social Security Administration, please contact the OIG Fraud Hotline.

Top

Scams Involving the Impersonation of an SSA Employee

We sometimes receive reports where individuals have been contacted by someone pretending to be an SSA employee. The intent of this type of call may be to steal your identity and/or money from your bank accounts. The caller generally asks you for personal information such as your Social Security number, date of birth, your mother's maiden name, or your bank or financial account information.

The impersonator may state that "the SSA computers are down" or may refer to enrollment in the Medicare prescription drug program. The intent of this type of call may be to steal your identity and/or money from your bank accounts. You should not provide any of this information to these individuals.

It is possible that an SSA employee may contact you to follow-up on a previous application for SSA/Medicare Part D benefits or to follow-up on other business you initiated with SSA. If you are unsure as to the authenticity of someone who claims to be an SSA employee, please call SSA's toll-free number:

Saturday, November 1, 2008

We Were There!


We were there to hear and see Presidential Candidate, Barack Obama speak to Hoosiers in Highland, Indiana at Wicker Park Halloween Night.


It was the greatest thing to be a part of because I was about 10 yards from the podium and got to shake the Candidate's hand.
He was so nice and personable to everyone.
Now I can post as many photos and video as I care to because they all belong to me and I hold the copyright.
Naah nah!
Go Obama! Vote Obama!

Publisher

My photo

Nothing much to say...ummm..my teeth are really white and that's a good thing...ummmm...
I will put links to blog posts here from time to time and I would like you to read and comment. Please watch, subscribe to the videos too. Thank you!
Oh Yeah, I started a new blog!
I began DIY Life Hack Mamma because that is what I do most of the time: figure stuff out.
 If you've ever heard of the phrase champagne taste on a beer budget, you've found me. I make soap from scratch because regular soap does not agree with my skin, I recreate restaurant meals at home, create appliances I cannot install or afford (yet,) and in general, I figure out a way from no way. I pray a lot too. Join me on my journey. It will be fun. 
Everything you see me do is for entertainment purposes only. All of my experiments are for my purposes only. It's fun to watch.

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