September 9, 2011

Last night, President Obama unveiled a $450 million dollar jobs plan during a special joint session of Congress. His plan would include slashing the Social Security payroll tax and infrastructure projects, and would be paid for in part by cutting Social Security and Medicare, as well as raising taxes on the wealthiest 1% of Americans.

Leading up to the speech, the prevailing story among political blogs and news sites was whether Republicans would play nice with the President. Since last night, the story seems to be the passion and aggression with which the speech was delivered. He implored Congress to cut the partisan bullshit and do the right thing for the American people. The President left it all at the podium last night, proclaiming, “You should pass it. And I intend to take that message to every corner of this country.”

A comprehensive and effective jobs plan couldn’t come any sooner; particularly in the wake of a recent report by the US Department of Agriculture, stating that 1 in 4 African American families are going hungry. And among households with children, that figure rises to 1 in 3 households. Black families are disproportionately impacted by high unemployment, which is clearly the driving force behind this horrible state of affairs. You know what they say: “We’re the first fired, and the last hired.” Some things never change…

In case you haven’t heard, T.I. is having a hell of a hard time staying out of prison. Last Thursday, T.I. was set for release from prison (again). He boarded a tour bus with his wife, his manager, and two VH1 reality show producers, and was enroute to a halfway house before being pulled over and taken back to jail! Initially, TMZ reported that T.I. was not supposed to be riding with anyone else besides his wife, and that he was not supposed to be conducting business of any kind. T.I.’s manager is pushing back against these stories, claiming that T.I.’s camp had no knowledge of such caveats. Whatever; it’s really a broken record at this point. The only rappers that have a harder time staying out of jail are Gucci Mane and DMX. And that’s saying a lot. Good luck, Tip!

Beverley Hall, the former Atlanta school superintendent that oversaw a massive wave of institutionalized cheating in her district, told the New York Times on Thursday that she had no idea there was any cheating going on at all. According to Black Voices:

“”I will survive this,” Hall told The Times. “I feel badly for myself, but I feel just as badly for all the people in this district who are working hard. Now everything they read and hear is negative. That is taking a tremendous toll on me.”

The initial investigation found that at least 178 teachers at 44 Atlanta schools were involved in test tampering. And seeing as how the report also condemned Hall for facilitating a “culture of fear and intimidation” that deterred teachers and staff from whistle blowing, something tells me Ms. Hall knew something about what was going on. Just sayin…

Meanwhile, Michigan Tea Party Governor Rick Snyder thinks he’s eliminating a different kind of cheating by passing into law a four-year, lifetime limit on welfare benefits. Governor Snyder just will not stand for those lazy poor people mooching off the system any longer. He’s so sure of this that he refused to listen to the cries of bystanders and watchdog groups that reminded Snyder that Michigan has one of the highest unemployment rates in the country. In other words, when this law goes into effect on October 1st, thousands will immediately lose benefits. These Midwest Governors are crazy.

And right off the heels of Weezy’s near-million-selling first week with Tha Carter IV, Young Money does a victory lap with a new single that leaked onto the internets yesterday. Set to appear on Birdman’s album (due for release this November), “Y U Mad” features Nicki Minaj and Lil Wayne over a satisfyingly hard beat. Way to rub it in, guys…