Monday, January 30, 2012

Juan Williams Gets Racial Political Climate Right

'12 Racial Code Words Obscure Real Issues'

By Juan Williams
The language of GOP racial politics is heavy on euphemisms that allow the speaker to deny any responsibility for the racial content of his message. The code words in this game are “entitlement society” — as used by Mitt Romney — and “poor work ethic” and “food stamp president” — as used by Newt Gingrich. References to a lack of respect for the “Founding Fathers” and the “Constitution” also make certain ears perk up by demonizing anyone supposedly threatening core “old-fashioned American values.”
Just last week, the Labor Department reported that while the national unemployment rate fell slightly, black unemployment rose again from 15.5 percent to 15.8 percent and from 39.6 percent to 42.1 percent among young black people. The same report showed 11 percent of Hispanics are unemployed.

The problem is not a lack of work ethic on the part of the poor, who are disproportionately minorities. The problem is there are few good jobs for blue-collar people with the best work ethic.

Poverty, unemployment and the hopelessness that pervade minority communities are real issues that the GOP nominee, and President Obama for that matter, should address in this campaign.
(The Hill, 1/30/2012)

Friday, January 27, 2012

EPA Hosts African American Stakeholders Briefing

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency hosted a briefing for African American stakeholders on Thursday.  The purpose of the meeting was to discuss best practices for how the EPA and participating organizations are engaging the African American community and to share information.  The briefing was held at EPA Headquarters in the Ariel Rios Building.

A broad cross section of about 20 stakeholders participated in the briefing.  The agenda included presentations from various EPA staffers that included: grants overview, environmental job training, government contracts, access points to EPA, environmental justice, Brownfields and clean air regulations.

Monday, January 23, 2012

CBC & Black Business Leaders Meet With President Obama

Chairman Cleaver and African American Business Leaders Meet with President Barack Obama on Job Creation

In December, Chairman Emanuel Cleaver led a discussion with African American business leaders and President Barack Obama. The first of its kind, the meeting served as an opportunity to discuss job creation recommendations and cultivate stronger working relationships within the African American business community, the Congressional Black Caucus and the Administration.

As legislators and as a Caucus, Members are working diligently to remedy the jobs crisis. The Members of the CBC have introduced over fifty job creation bills since the beginning of the 112th Congress, launched the For the People national jobs initiative, and provided nine job creation proposals that help our nation’s most
vulnerable. These proposals and initiatives are closely in line with the President’s Americans Jobs Act.

The African American business leaders met with the Congressional Black Caucus immediately following their meeting with President Obama.  A full list of participating business leaders is included below.
Participating African American Business Leaders:

• Robert L. Johnson — Founder & Chairman, The RLJ Companies

• Ollie Gates — President, Gates BBQ

• Warren Thompson — President & Chairman, Thompson Hospitality Corporation

• Weldon Latham — Sr. Partner, Chair, Corporate Diversity Counseling Practice, Jackson Lewis, LLP

• Ernest Green — Partner, Madison Asset Management Group LLC

• Melvin Clark — GW Peoples Contracting Company

• C. Michael Gooden — CEO, Integrated Systems Analysts

• Tom Moorehead — President, Moorehead Properties

• Janice Howroyd — CEO, Act 1

• Valerie Daniels - Carter — CEO, V&J Holdings Company

• Maurice Tose — CEO, TeleCommunication Systems

• Suzanne Shank — CEO, Siebert Brandford Shank

(Source: CBC Newsletter-December/January)

Friday, January 20, 2012

Marsha Coleman-Adebayo on C-SPAN Book TV

C-Span / Book TV Airing: No FEAR: A Whistleblowers Triumph

Taped at Mid-Manhattan Library - New York

Saturday, January 21st at 9:15am (ET)

Saturday, January 21st at 4:30pm (ET)

Sunday, January 22nd at 10pm (ET)


Monday, January 16, 2012

Nigerian President Partially Restores Motor Fuel Subsidy

Nigerians Protest Lifting of Motor Fuel Subsidy
In response to nationwide protests, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan offered to partially reinstate a contentious subsidy for motor fuel and ordered soldiers to the streets.  and the threat of an oil workers' strike in Africa's largest crude producer, in steps to head off fresh unrest. President Jonathan announced that Nigeria would once again use its vast oil revenue to subsidize the pump price of gas, fixing the per-liter price at 97 naira ($2.27 a gallon). The move essentially reduces the price of gas in Nigeria about a third from the current market price.

The announcement marks a significant policy reversal for the Nigerian president who is facing one of the most challenging periods of his two years in office. The concession comes 16 days—and a week of paralyzing strikes—after Mr. Jonathan completely scrapped the subsidy in an attempt to raise an estimated $7.5 billion for infrastructure.

AAEA Nigeria

Since the subsidy's removal, tens of thousand of protesters have swarmed major city centers, and Nigeria's top two labor unions have staged strikes, demanding full restoration of the subsidy—viewed by many as the only benefit Nigeria's poor have enjoyed from its oil wealth. Last year, the subsidy had kept a liter of gas at 65 naira, but government officials said corruption and fraud made the program wasteful. (WSJ, 1/16/2012, photo courtesy WSJ)

Saturday, January 14, 2012

New York Assembly Hearing on Indian Point Energy Center

Norris McDonald Statement

Dan Durett Statement

The New York State Assembly Standing Committee on Energy and Standing Committee on Corporations, Authorities and Commissions held a hearing on the Potential Closure of Indian Point Energy Center (IPEC) on January 12, 2012 in New York City. The hearing examined alternatives to IPEC, including new generation facilities and upgrades to the state's electric transmission system that would prevent power supply disruptions and adequately address the electricity needs of New Yorkers.

Norris McDonald Interviewed by Channel 1

Indian Point Energy Center, located in Buchanan, Westchester County, New York, has two active nuclear reactors with a combined rated capacity of 2,000 megawatts. In 2012 and 2015 respectively, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) operational licenses for both reactors will expire. Entergy Corporation, which operates both reactors, has petitioned the NRC to operate the reactors for an additional 20 years.

The hearing was held in New York City in the Assembly Hearing Room at 250 Broadway on the 19th floor in room 1923.
AAEA President Norris McDonald was interviewed by Channel 1, quoted in The New York Times (see article at link), and quoted in Your New Now.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Why Blacks Support BIG GOVERNMENT


By Norris McDonald

African Americans support BIG GOVERNMENT because the private sector is not open to them.  Blacks, for the most part, are not owners of American resources and infrastructure.  In an age when TOO BIG TO FAIL is the order of the day and huge capital costs restrict entry, Blacks do not own or control Exxon Mobils or Wall Street firms.  Of course there are always the one or two examples of ownership: Michael Jordan and the Charlotte Bobcats; Oprah and HARPO. But the point is that corporate America, for the most part, remains segregated at the ownership level.  My particular focus is on the fact that Blacks do not own any of the natural resources and energy infrastructure in the United States.

So why don't Blacks open many more small businesses, which create the most jobs? I guess I could make excuses about competing with Asian-owned establishments, but that is a cop out. Blacks should open more small businesses, particularly in Black neighborhoods. Yet, due to lack of credit access and a proclivity for a more predictable employment venue, many Blacks have chosen a 9 to 5. Having only been free to operate in the marketplace from about 1965, Blacks are still trying to catch up from hundreds of years of involuntarily servitude and Jim Crow. A lack of intragroup organizing, particularly among the economically prominent Black 1%, is probably the strongest factor for why a dynamic economy among African Americans has not developed.  This is also a major factor in Blacks not being involved in international trade.

Blacks are registered as Democrats because the GOP is viewed as being hostile to their aspirations. This is manifested by the strong alliance between the GOP and corporate America that is perceived as keeping Blacks at arms length when it comes to spreading the resources. The Democratic Party nominated and elected a Black president while the GOP dumped Michael Steele after he won back the House of Representatives. Not a good signal.

Yet the election of a Black president who cannot do anything overtly to help Blacks should be a wake up call to the Black community. Politics has its limits. And the Congressional Black Caucus, as the real political representative of the Black community, should be leading on issues that can help the Black community gain ownership stakes in America. If the CBC had the discipline of the Tea Party, the African American community would get its fair share. Blacks should focus like a laser beam on the marketplace. And when it comes to government subsidies, food stamps and home heating assistance cannot hold a candle to corporate welfare. Until the marketplace opens up to Blacks, it will be BIG GOVERNMENT that is the focus of this community.

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Race Influences How Leaders Are Assessed

This Is Not News To AAEA.

Try Penetrating the Environmental Movement & the Energy Sector.

When white leaders succeed, people often say it is because they are competent. When black leaders succeed, people say it happened despite their incompetence. At least, that's what two business-school professors found after reviewing news coverage of 113 top college quarterbacks—generally viewed as team leaders—in the 2007 football season.

According to the study, media reports commended successful white quarterbacks for their intellectual prowess, while black quarterbacks got credit for being athletic. Deep-seated stereotypes that black leaders were intellectually inferior also came to light when the athletes performed poorly, with failure attributed to problems like inadequate decision-making skills, not a weak arm or poor agility.

The findings carry over to the C-suite, where the prototypical leader is white, says Ashleigh Shelby Rosette, a management professor at Duke University's Fuqua School of Business and co-author of the study on racial bias. Prof. Rosette says that when successful organizations are led by black managers, the strong performance is attributed to broad market factors over which the leader had no control, or to what she calls "compensatory stereotypes," such as humor or public-speaking skills, which would make up for any lack in competence.

Prof. Rosette says black leaders need to be particularly vocal about their qualifications or good works to receive due credit. "Success alone isn't enough," she says.

We particularly agree with the statement above.  (WSJ, 1/3/2012)

Gas Subsidies Lifted in Nigeria. Price Rise Causes Outrage

The Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency announced Sunday it was stopping to pay the subsidy on fuel to petroleum importers effective immediately. The government has said the move will save the country some $8 billion, some of which will be dedicated to much-needed infrastructure projects. Previous attempts to lift the subsidies have been met with nationwide strike actions.

Gas powers Nigeria's generators because the national electricity supply is sporadic at best, and fuel also keeps engines running in traffic that can snarl for hours. The government's announcement — made over a long holiday weekend — drew outrage. President Goodluck Jonathan already declared a state of emergency.

Many gas stations were shut down altogether on Monday, since gas station owners had only learned about the change at the same time as everyone else. Signs at a few stations put the cost at $3.50 per gallon (94 cents per liter) — just over double Sunday's morning price of about $1.70 per gallon (45 cents per liter). While that's cheap by American standards, most Nigerians subsist on just $2 a day and the rising gas prices are expected to force food prices to spiral as well.

Nigeria, an OPEC member nation producing about 2.4 million barrels of crude oil a day, is a top supplier to the United States, but virtually all of its petroleum products are imported after years of graft, mismanagement and violence at its refineries.

In a country where few people see any wealth from the country's staggering oil revenues, the subsidy was a rare government benefit and one Nigerians don't want to lose. (USA Today, 1/3/2012)