The President’s Day In California.




President Obama: The full interview


President Barack Obama discusses a wide range of subjects in an exclusive interview with CNBC‘s Steve Liesman. On the docket: Tax inversions, Washington inaction, the stock market and dealing with Russia.




Barack Obama to CNBC – ” FAA Israel Decision Not Based on Politics “


Published on Jul 24, 2014

7-24-14 – ( CNBC ) – At the very end of an interview with CNBC’s Steve Liesman Thursday, President Barack Obama addressed the accusations, from Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and others, that the Federal Aviation Administration’s decision to ban U.S. flights from landing in Israel for 48 hours was politically motivated. Obama called the move “purely technical,” saying the United States does not make “decisions when it comes to airline safety” based on “politics” or “even our strong alliance with Israel.”


He elaborated:

“The initial ban that was imposed by the FAA was based on Israel needing to show us that in fact it was safe for commercial airlines to fly in. They worked through a checklist of concerns and mitigation measures that needed to be taken. Having completed those, and convinced the FAA, we moved forward. And by the way, the European governments in terms of the regulating their airlines, did the exact same thing. So I think what happened here was in light of some scary moments a couple of days ago, the FAA took some prudent action. But it also engaged with Israel and Israel was able to answer those questions.”

After the FAA announced the ban on Tuesday, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg swiftly flew to Tel Aviv on an El Al plane to demonstrate just how safe it was to land at that airport. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly confronted Secretary of State John Kerry about the ban during a phone call that day.


The concern for Israel and its allies was that Hamas would view the ban as a victory, possibly emboldening its rocket campaign. Those fears were given credence when a Hamas spokesperson admitted that Israel’s Ben-Gurion airport was, in fact, a target for the rocket strikes.



See the full interview here.





President Obama Delivers Remarks on the Economy in Los Angeles


Published on Jul 24, 2014

President Barack Obama delivers remarks about the economy at Los Angeles Trade-Technical College in Los Angeles, California.




Pres Obama and Crowd Brilliantly Destroy Repeat Heckler Who Calls Him “Antichrist”




President Obama in LA: “You are why I ran for President in the first place.”


President Barack Obama delivers remarks at Los Angeles Trade and Technical CollegePresident Barack Obama delivers remarks at Los Angeles Trade and Technical College in Los Angeles, Calif. July 24, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)


This afternoon, President Obama addressed an excited and energized crowd under sunny skies at the Los Angeles Trade-Technical College.


In his remarks, the President said that he was excited to be back in L.A., where he spent a few “good years” in college — and quickly explained what he was there to talk about.


“I’m here because I am listening to Kati’s story,” the President said. Kati Koster wrote a letter to the President a couple years ago about the effect of student loans. Kati introduced the President — and the President sat down with Kati and three other Americans earlier in the day at Canter’s Deli, to chat about the issues that matter to them.


I’m listening to Americans all across the country, everybody who works their tail off, is doing the right thing, who believes in the American Dream, just wants a chance to build a decent life for themselves and their family. You are why I ran for President in the first place.


And we’ve made a lot of progress since the President took office. Months before the President was sworn into office, the economy tanked, millions of Americans lost their jobs, some of them lost their homes, and almost everyone suddenly was much less certain about America’s future.



But we’ve bounced back.


Today, our businesses have added nearly 10 million new jobs over the past 52 months. The unemployment rate is at its lowest point since September of 2008. And this past year, we saw one of the fastest drops in nearly 30 years in the unemployment rate. The decisions we made not only to rescue the economy, rescue the auto industry, but to rebuild it on a new foundation — those decisions are paying off.


We’re more energy independent. We’re the world’s number-one oil and gas producer. We’ve done more to reduce our carbon footprint than any other country over the past eight years. Our high school graduation rate is at a record high. More young people are going to college than ever before. And millions more Americans now have quality, affordable health care.


“None of this was an accident,” the President declared. “It’s thanks to your resilience and resolve that America has recovered faster and come farther than almost any other advanced country on Earth.”



“We’ve recovered faster, we’ve gone farther than almost any country on Earth since the economic crisis.”


The President also visited Los Angeles Trade-Technical College to focus on one thing in particular: training more Americans for the types of jobs that we’re creating in the 21st century.


Right now, there are more job openings in America than any time since 2007. That doesn’t always make headlines, it’s not sexy so the news doesn’t report it, but it’s a big deal. And the job training programs can help folks who fell on hard times in the recession, help them find a solid path back to the middle class.


“Americans are the best workers in the world — if we’re given a chance,” the President said. He then called on all of us to work together to help more Americans to learn the skills that the 21st-century economy needs.


Earlier this week, President Obama signed into law the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), which makes our federal training program more geared toward high-quality jobs that are in demand today. The President stressed that we should be doing things like this more often — that Congress should be taking efforts to strengthen the middle class and help create more opportunities for all Americans.


President Barack Obama delivers remarks at Los Angeles Trade and Technical CollegePresident Barack Obama delivers remarks at Los Angeles Trade and Technical College in Los Angeles, Calif. July 24, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson)


But there’s one specific issue where the President suggested Democrats and Republicans could come together — a type of corporate tax loophole called an “inversion.”


“Even as corporate profits are higher than ever,” the President said, “there’s a small but growing group of big corporations that are fleeing the country to get out of paying taxes.”


Corporations don’t want to give up the perks of doing business in the United States — the best universities, a strong economy, the best military — they’re just not trying to pay for those perks. “So they’re technically renouncing their U.S. citizenship,” he said. “They’re declaring they’re based someplace else even though most of their operations are here.”


It damages the country’s finances. It adds to the deficit. It makes it harder to invest in things like job training that help keep America growing. It sticks you with the tab to make up for what they’re stashing offshore through their evasive tax policies.


The President pointed out that a nurse or a construction worker or a teacher doesn’t get to pick the tax rate that they have to pay — so neither should these companies.


But the good news is that we’re able to do something about this. In this year’s budget, the President proposed closing these “unpatriotic tax loopholes for good.”



“You shouldn’t get to call yourself an American company only when you want a handout from American taxpayers.”


And the President stressed that has wasn’t interested in punishing these companies for what they’ve done — he’s simply interested in an economic patriotism where everyone in this country contributes their fair share.


Instead of tax breaks for millionaires, let’s give tax breaks to families to help on child care or college. Let’s stop rewarding companies that ship jobs overseas; give tax breaks to companies that are bringing jobs back to the United States. Let’s put America back to work rebuilding roads and bridges and airports. Let’s make sure the next generation of good manufacturing is happening right here in Los Angeles, and in Wisconsin, and in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


The President noted that the hardest thing to do in politics is to change the status quo. There’s an entire industry in Washington that feeds off of people staying cynical.


Cynicism is fashionable these days. But I got to tell you, cynicism didn’t put a man on the moon. Cynicism did not create the opportunity for all our citizens to vote. Cynicism has never won a war, or cured a disease, or started a business, or fed young minds.


I believe in optimism. I believe in hope.


“Cynicism is a choice, and hope is a better choice,” the President said. “And if we can work together, I promise you there’s no holding America back.”


Barack’s Day In Cali


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President Obama Surprises Canter’s Deli With Surprise Visit


Published on Jul 24, 2014

 President Obama made a surprise visit at Canter’s Deli on Thursday greeting the crowd and workers. He got tea and pastries to go. No corned beef!? Amy Johnson reports.




Obama Admits His Basketball Shot Is ‘Broke’


Published on Jul 24, 2014

(ABC) President Obama‘s basketball game isn’t what it used to be, he revealed during a surprise stop for lunch at Canter’s Deli in Los Angeles today.
After shaking hands with the people behind the counter at this family-owned landmark, the president talked a little basketball with two older gentleman sitting in a booth.
Asked about his game, Obama told them “My shot’s broken… My elbow keeps going out.”
Rubbing his shoulder, he told them he probably makes about 80 percent of his shots (free throws, not in a game).


“I get that chicken wing,” he said motioning with his elbow. “I’m just getting old.”


The president made his way to a booth in the back where he sat with four people who wrote him letters, part of his effort to “meet with folks from across the country to listen to their stories, struggles, and successes, as well as the issues in their lives that matter most,” according to the White House.






10:35 PM: The President arrives Joint Base Andrews, Joint Base Andrews.


10:50 PM: The President arrives the White House, South Lawn.





On Friday, the President and the Vice President will welcome President Otto Perez Molina of Guatemala, President Juan Orlando Hernandez of Honduras, and President Salvador Sanchez Ceren of El Salvador to the White House. The four leaders and Vice President Biden will discuss how to reinforce our ongoing collaboration to stem the flow of undocumented migrants from Central America to Mexico and the United States.


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Janelle Monae Has A Secret Video Of Barack Obama Dancing.


From Time Magazine:


Janelle Monae Has a Secret Video of Barack Obama Dancing


Janelle Monae


By Zeke J Miller


“She can blackmail me at any time,” Obama says

If R&B artist Janelle Monaescores a Cabinet post before President Barack Obama leaves office, we’ll know why.

Obama’s three-day West-coast fundraising tour for Democratic candidates took him to the Los Angeles home of Scandal and Grey’s Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes Wednesday, where he hobnobbed with the likes of Monae and Kerry Washington.


At the 450-person fundraiser for the Democratic National Committee — to which tickets started at $1,000 a head — Obama revealed that Monae was in possession of a top secret video of presidential dancing.


“Janelle has performed at the White House, like, 15 times,” Obama told the audience. “There’s going to be an official Janelle Monae room in the White House. We love her. Michelle and I love Janelle. We love her energy. We love her talent. But we most of all love her character. And anybody who gets a chance to talk to her, this is just a remarkable, strong, smart young lady.


“And I have to say nice things about her because she may be the only person in possession of a video in which I try to keep up with her and Usher on the dance floor,” Obama continued. “Now, this is top secret. She has promised that this will never be released. But she can blackmail me at any time.”

Monae called out “I love you!” to the Commander-in-Chief, to which he replied with his trademark “I love you back,” adding, “You do have that video, though, don’t you?”

Monae said she did, prompting the president to ask her to “testify” to his skills. “Now, tell the truth, though, Janelle — I wasn’t bad, though, was I? I’m just saying. Go ahead, testify just a little bit…Let me say I did not drop in splits. But I did bust a move. That I did do.”

Obama then recognized Washington, one of the earliest celebrities to back his 2008 candidacy, for being on his side when many Americans couldn’t pronounce his name correctly. “She pushed when the wagon was stuck in the mud — she was out there,” Obama said. “And she’s just been a great friend. Plus she showed me her baby pictures, and that is one cute baby.”

The West Coast swing has proven to be a controversial one for Obama, both for its timing amid multiple foreign policy crises and the secrecy surrounding fundraising events for two Democratic super PACs. White House officials defended Obama’s decision to continue with the trip despite the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 and the ongoing conflict in Gaza, saying that the president’s ability to manage the situations would not be impaired by keeping his schedule. While on the trip, Obama called Secretary of State John Kerry Wednesday to discuss efforts to bring about a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.

The White House did not make public the list of attendees at the two super PAC fundraisers, one each House Majority PAC and Senate Majority PAC, or what they had contributed to gain access to the president. Reporters were not allowed to attend either session. “Without a doubt, I think we’ve done more to achieve the President’s commitment to transparency than any other previous administration,” said White House principal deputy press secretary Eric Schultz.

Obama returns to Washington late Thursday after another fundraiser for the DNC and delivering a speech on the economy.

Thank you Time Magazine.







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“The Maverick” James Garner, Dies At Age 86. The Rockford Files Are Closed.

By Jueseppi B. The Militant Negro

By Jueseppi B. The Militant Negro











James Garner, a master of light comedy who shot to fame in the 1950s as the charming and dry-witted gambler on the hit TV western “Maverick” and later won an Emmy Award as the unconventional L.A. private eye on “The Rockford Files,” has died. He was 86.


Garner died Saturday at his home, his publicist Jennifer Allen told The Times. Garner, who lived in Los Angeles, underwent quintuple bypass heart surgery in 1988 and suffered a stroke in 2008. He had been in poor health for some time but the cause of his death was not immediately known.



Once described by Washington Post TV critic Tom Shales as having “embodied the crusty, sardonic and self-effacing strain of American masculinity” in his iconic roles as Maverick and Rockford, the Oklahoma-born Garner amassed more than 80 movie and TV-movie credits during his more than 50-year career.


An off-screen Hollywood maverick who successfully battled two studios in court, Garner easily moved between small screen and big screen in roles ranging from light comedy to drama.


“I have long thought that Jim Garner was one of the best actors around,” filmmaker Robert Altman, who directed him in the 1980 comedy “Health,” told Esquire magazine in 1979.


“He is often overlooked because he makes it look so easy, and that is not easy to do,” Altman said. “I don’t know anyone in the business with his charm and charisma who can act so well.”


Garner was nominated for an Academy Award for his role as a widowed small-town pharmacist opposite Sally Field’s much younger single mother in the 1985 romantic comedy “Murphy’s Romance.”


His films include “The Children’s Hour,” “The Great Escape,” “The Americanization of Emily,” “The Thrill of It All,” “Move Over, Darling,” “Grand Prix,” “Support Your Local Sheriff,” “Marlowe,” “Victor/Victoria,” “Space Cowboys” and “The Notebook.”


But it was television that made Garner a household name, and once he returned to series TV in the early 1970s after a decade starring in films, he remained a welcome presence on the small screen.


That included stints as a celebrity pitchman for such entities as the Beef Industry Council, Mazda, Chevy Tahoe and, most famously, Polaroid cameras.


Indeed, the humorous series of Polaroid spots Garner made with actress Mariette Hartley in the late ’70s and early ’80s only burnished Garner’s status as a TV icon.


Garner’s seemingly effortless flair for delivering humorous dialogue — and delivering straight dialogue humorously — made him one of television’s biggest stars.


North side of the 6900 block of Hollywood Boulevard

North side of the 6900 block of Hollywood Boulevard


James Garner (born James Scott Bumgarner; April 7, 1928 – July 19, 2014) was an American film and television actor. He starred in several television series over more than five decades, which included such popular roles as Bret Maverick in the 1950s western-comedy series Maverick and Jim Rockford in the 1970s detectivedrama The Rockford Files.

Garner starred in more than 50 films including The Great Escape (1963), Paddy Chayefsky’s The Americanization of Emily (1964), Grand Prix (1966), Blake Edwards’ Victor Victoria (1982), Murphy’s Romance (1985) for which he received an Academy Award nomination, and The Notebook (2004).



James Garner
James Garner.jpg

Garner at the 39th Emmy Awards in September 1987
Born James Scott Bumgarner[1]
April 7, 1928
NormanOklahoma, U.S.
Died July 19, 2014 (aged 86)
Los AngelesCalifornia, U.S.
Cause of death
Natural causes
Residence Brentwood, Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Alma mater University of Oklahoma
Occupation Actor
Years active 1955–2014
Home town Norman, Oklahoma, U.S.
Spouse(s) Lois Clarke (m. 1956–2014, his death)
Children Greta Garner [GiGi], Kimberly Garner



For his contribution to the film and television industry, Garner received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (at 6927 Hollywood Boulevard). In 1990, he was inducted into the Western Performers Hall of Fame at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. He was also inducted into the Television Hall of Fame that same year. In February 2005, he received the Screen Actors Guild‘s Lifetime Achievement Award. He was also nominated for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role that year, for The Notebook. When Morgan Freeman won that prize for his work in Million Dollar Baby, he led the audience in a sing-along of the original Maverick theme song, written by David Buttolph and Paul Francis Webster. In 2010, the Television Critics Association gave Garner its annual Career Achievement Award.




On April 21, 2006, a 10-foot-tall (3.0 m) bronze statue of Garner as Bret Maverick was unveiled in Garner’s hometown of Norman, Oklahoma, with Garner present at the ceremony.



Marriage and family

Garner was married to Lois Clarke, whom he met at an “Adlai Stevenson for President” rally in 1956. They married 14 days later on August 17, 1956. “We went to dinner every night for 14 nights. I was just absolutely nuts about her. I spent $77 on our honeymoon, and it about broke me.” According to Garner, “Marriage is like the Army; everyone complains, but you’d be surprised at the large number of people who re-enlist”.


When Garner and Clarke married, her daughter Kim from a previous marriage was seven years old and recovering from polio. Garner had one daughter with wife Lois: Greta “Gigi” Garner. In an interview in Good Housekeeping with Garner, his wife, and two daughters conducted at their home that was published in March 1976, Gigi’s age was given as 18 and Kim, 27.



Health issues

Garner’s knees would become chronic problems during the filming of The Rockford Files in the 1970s, with “six or seven knee operations during that time.” In 2000 he had both knees surgically replaced.


On April 22, 1988, Garner had quintuple bypass heart surgery. Though he rapidly recovered, the doctors insisted that he stop smoking. Garner complied—17 years later.


Garner underwent surgery on May 11, 2008, following a minor stroke he had suffered two days earlier. His prognosis was reported to be “very positive.”




Garner was an owner of the “American International Racers” (AIR) auto racing team from 1967 through 1969. Famed motorsports writer William Edgar and Hollywood director Andy Sidaris teamed with Garner for the racing documentary The Racing Scene, filmed in 1969 and released in 1970. The team fielded cars at Le MansDaytona, and Sebring endurance races, but is best known for Garner’s celebrity status raising publicity in early off-road motor-sports events.


Garner signed a three-year sponsorship contract with American Motors Corporation (AMC). His shops prepared ten 1969 SC/Ramblers for the Baja 500 race. Garner did not drive in this event because of a film commitment in Spain that year. Nevertheless, seven of his cars finished the grueling race, taking three of the top five places in the sedan class. Garner also drove the pace car at the Indianapolis 500 race in 1975, 1977, and 1985 (see: list of Indianapolis 500 pace cars).




Garner was an avid golfer for many years. Along with his brother, Jack, he played golf in high school. Jack even attempted a professional golfing career after a brief stint in the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball farm system. Garner took it up again in the late 1950s to see if he could beat Jack.[10] He was a regular for years at Pebble Beach Pro-Am. In February 1990 at the AT&T Golf Tournament he won the Most Valuable Amateur Trophy.




Garner was noted as an enthusiastic fan of the Raiders in the NFL, particularly when they played in Los Angeles between 1982 and 1994, when he regularly attended games and mixed with the players.



University of Oklahoma

James Garner was a supporter of the University of Oklahoma, often returning to Norman for school functions. When he attended Oklahoma Sooners football games, he frequently could be seen on the sidelines or in the press box. Garner received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree at OU in 1995. In 2003, to endow the James Garner Chair in the School of Drama, he donated $500,000, half of a pledged $1 million, for the first endowed position at the drama school. Tom H. Orr, the Director for the School of Drama (Acting/Camera Acting) and the Artistic Director of the University Theatre, currently holds the James Garner Chair at the university.




Garner was a strong Democratic Party supporter, contributing over $7,500 to Democrats running for federal office the past seven years, including Dennis Kucinich (for Congress in 2002), Richard GephardtJohn KerryBarbara Boxer, and various Democratic committees and groups. Since 1982 Garner has given at least $29,000 to Federal campaigns, of which over $24,000 has been to Democratic Party candidates.


On August 28, 1963, Garner was one of several celebrities to join Martin Luther King Jr. in the “March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.” In his autobiography, Garner recalled sitting in third row listening to King’s “I Have a Dream” speech.


For his role in the 1985 CBS miniseries Space, the character’s party affiliation was changed from Republican as in the book to reflect Garner’s personal views. Garner said, “My wife would leave me if I played a Republican”.


Prior to the entry of ex-San Francisco Mayor (later U.S. SenatorDianne Feinstein, there was an effort by Democratic party leaders, led by state Senator Herschel Rosenthal, to persuade James Garner to seek the 1990 Democratic nomination for Governor of California.




According to police, an ambulance was dispatched to Garner’s Brentwood, Los Angeles, home at around 8:00 p.m. PDT on July 19, 2014. Garner was confirmed dead when paramedics arrived at his home. The cause of death was not immediately reported but initial law enforcement officers on the scene declared “natural causes” as the cause of death.



Legendary Actor James Garner Dies


Published on Jul 20, 2014

Subscribe for more Breaking News:

Legendary actor James Garner, the wisecracking star of TV’s “Maverick” who went on to a long career on both small and big screen, has died. He was 86. Garner was found dead of natural causes at his Los Angeles home Saturday evening. (July 20)




James Garner interview on Charlie Rose – Part 1


Published on Jul 17, 2012

A rebroadcast of an hour conversation with actor James Garner about his long career in Hollywood and in roles such as “The Americanization of Emily” and “The Great Escape”. Garner also discusses his roles on the television series “First Monday” and “Roughing It”, the latter of which is based on Mark Twain’s writings. He talks about what it means to be Native American in Hollywood and his role as a cultural pioneer. (June 25, 2002)




James Garner interview on Charlie Rose – Part 2




A Classic..James Garner….


This is the clip from Victor/Victoria. Ground breaking movie.

Published on Oct 5, 2012

Victor Victoria Trailer – Directed by Blake Edwards and starring Julie Andrews, James Garner, Robert Preston, Lesley Ann Warren, Alex Karras. A struggling female soprano finds work playing a male female impersonator, but it complicates her personal life.




James Garner.. “Maverick”..talks Steve McQueen,Brando and more…


Published on Oct 12, 2013

My first interview with tv and movie legend James Garner…a mans man!! Rockford,Maverick,The Great Escape…Grad Prix…so many great roles…Honest,Straight shooter!




James Garner discusses the end of “The Rockford Files”




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What You Might Have Missed This Week



This week, President Obama addressed the crash of Flight MH17, talked about investing in our country’s infrastructure, and continued to take important steps to respond to a changing climate — and the First Lady hosted the Kids’ State Dinner, featuring 54 delicious recipes from around the country.

Check out what else you may have missed in this week’s wrap up.



Weekly Address: Equipping Workers with Skills Employers Need Now and for the Future


In this week’s address, the President discussed the importance of ensuring that the economic progress we’ve made is shared by all hardworking Americans. Through his opportunity agenda, the President is focused on creating more jobs, educating more kids, and working to make sure hard work pays off with higher wages and better benefits.


This week, the President will visit a community college in Los Angeles to highlight the need to equip our workers with the skills employers are looking for now and for the good jobs of the future, and he will continue looking for the best way to grow the economy and expand opportunity for more hardworking Americans.





President Obama on the Crash of Flight MH17



Yesterday, President Obama delivered a statement to the press in the wake of the tragic crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17:


Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 took off from Amsterdam and was shot down over Ukraine near the Russian border. Nearly 300 innocent lives were taken — men, women, children, infants — who had nothing to do with the crisis in Ukraine. Their deaths are an outrage of unspeakable proportions



President Obama noted that this was “a global tragedy — an Asian airliner was destroyed in European skies, filled with citizens from many countries.” And as a result, there now needs to be a credible, international investigation into exactly what happened.






“Let’s Build Some Bridges. Let’s Build Some Roads.”


Thursday afternoon, President Obama spoke about the importance of long-term investments in our country’s infrastructure in front of Delaware’s Interstate 495 Bridge.


President Barack Obama delivers remarks before he signs an executive action creating the Build America Investment Initiative.

President Barack Obama delivers remarks before he signs an executive action creating the Build America Investment Initiative during an event near the Interstate 495 Bridge at the Port of Wilmington in Wilmington, Del., July 17, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)


We know that in the 21st century economy, businesses are going to set up shop wherever they find the best roads, the best bridges, the fastest Internet connection, the fastest rail lines, the smartest airports, the best power grid. First-class infrastructure attracts investment and it creates first-class jobs.

The President Talks About the Economy in Delaware

July 17, 2014 | 16:30 | Public Domain


At the Port of Wilmington in Delaware, President Obama delivers remarks on the economy.






Barack-oli and Mich-room Obama-lette


The First Lady hosted the 2014 Kids’ State Dinner today at the White House. Fifty-four winners were selected out of more than 1,500 delicious recipes — one of those 54 recipes included the Barack-oli and Mich-room Obama-lette.


The President and First Lady at the 2014 Kids’ State Dinner

July 18, 2014 | 18:40 | Public Domain


President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama deliver remarks at the 2014 Kids’ State Dinner in the East Room of the White House.



President Obama also made a surprise visit and talked about the First Family’s “pig-out indulgence food[s].”


“My big thing — chips and guacamole. Basically, if there is a bowl of good chips and guacamole — I lose my mind.”






West Wing Week 07/18/14 or, “Where Are You Going to Go Build Your Widgets?”



Welcome to Infrastructure & Transportation Week here at West Wing Week, your guide to everything that’s happening infrastructurally and transportationally here at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and beyond.






Weekly Address: Equipping Workers with Skills Employers Need Now and for the Future



In this week’s address, the President discussed the importance of ensuring that the economic progress we’ve made is shared by all hardworking Americans. Through his opportunity agenda, the President is focused on creating more jobs, educating more kids, and working to make sure hard work pays off with higher wages and better benefits.


This week, the President will visit a community college in Los Angeles to highlight the need to equip our workers with the skills employers are looking for now and for the good jobs of the future, and he will continue looking for the best way to grow the economy and expand opportunity for more hardworking Americans.


Equipping Workers with Skills Employers Need Now and for the Future

July 19, 2014 | 3:00 | Public Domain




VIDEO MENSAJE DE LA CASA BLANCA: Capacitando a los trabajadores para más oportunidades

July 19, 2014 | 3:50 | Public Domain


En el mensaje de esta semana, la Directora de la Casa Blanca Consejo de Política nacional Cecilia Muñoz habló sobre el progreso de nuestra economía, pero también subrayó la necesidad de seguir avanzando la agenda de oportunidad del Presidente para crear más puestos de trabajo, capacitar a más trabajadores, educar a todos nuestros niños y garantizar que el trabajo duro sea recompensando con salarios más altos y mejores beneficios. Según la Organización para la Cooperación y el Desarrollo Económico (OCDE), los adultos hispanos son cuatro veces más propensos a tener bajos niveles de alfabetización, lo que representa una gran barrera para las personas en Estados Unidos que trabajan duro para ascender en la escala de la carrera a trabajos mejor remunerados que apoyen su sueño americano. Este país debe seguir siendo el lugar en el que todos los que trabajan duro pueden tener éxito si intentan.






Preparing for a Changing Climate


Throughout the week, President Obama has been talking about how our nation’s infrastructure is vital for a world-class economy. But there’s another reason for all of this: climate change



Last November, the President established the State, Local, and Tribal Leaders Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience, which is made up of 26 governors, mayors, and county and tribal officials from across the country. On Wednesday, the Task Force came to the White House for their final meeting, before presenting the President their recommendations in the fall






5.5 Billion Hours


5.5 billion hours — that’s how much time Americans spend sitting in traffic each year. That costs us $120 billion in wasted time and gas.


We need to make driving safer and smarter — which is one of the reasons why President Obama visited the Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center on Tuesday, to talk about the importance in investing in new infrastructure technologies and renewing the Highway Trust Fund.



There are bipartisan bills moving forward in both the House and the Senate to fund the Highway Trust Fund for the short term — bills that the President supports. But he reiterated that there must be a long-term, comprehensive solution — which is something the President already put forth earlier this year.




PBS News Hour: Why political division is multiplying in Wisconsin


Published on Jul 18, 2014

The residents of metropolitan Milwaukee, Wisconsin are increasingly split by race, political party and geography. A major fight over Gov. Scott Walker in 2012 helped widen the divide. Gwen Ifill talks to residents and local politicians about the fractured political landscape and what the polarization means on a national level, and Mark Shields and David Brooks weigh in with analysis.




NYPD Kills Man For Selling Untaxed Cigarettes


Published on Jul 18, 2014

“A Staten Island man died Thursday after police placed him in a chokehold as they attempted to arrest him for selling untaxed cigarettes.


According to authorities, Eric Garner, 43, went into cardiac arrest and died at Richmond University Medical Center following the arrest that was filmed by several witnesses, the New York Daily News reported.


In the video, Garner can be seen telling police that he had not been selling cigarettes, repeatedly saying, ” I didn’t sell anything,” before insisting, “I’m minding my own business, please leave me alone.”


After a standoff, five officers tackled the 400-pound Garner — with one placing him in a chokehold — and wrestled him to the ground as they attempted to put handcuffs on him.


As Garner lay on the ground, with one officer pushing his head into the pavement, he can be heard saying, “I can’t breath. I can’t breath,” over and over.”




‘She was about bringing people together’


Published on Jul 18, 2014

Lucy Thackray of “The Daily Mail” shares memories of MH17 victim Sister Philomene Tiernan, a nun she called her mentor.




RAW: World mourns MH17 crash in Ukraine


Published on Jul 19, 2014

Mourners from around the globe left flowers, candles and stuffed animals for the victims of the MH17 crash in Ukraine. In Amsterdam’s airport where the plane took off, to the small flower shop that two of the victims owned, people paid their respects to those who died.




Typhoon Rammasun makes landfall in China


Published on Jul 19, 2014

Typhoon Rammasun has made landfall in China much earlier than expected. Meteorologist Karen McGinnis has the details




Controversies cloud new NFL season


Published on Jul 19, 2014

The NFL is starting its latest season with controversies on several fronts. Geoff Foster, sports editor for the Wall Street Journal, discusses the latest drug inquiry as well as the ongoing Redskins saga.




GOP Faithful Want Obama Impeached, Why? He’s Obama, That’s Why


Published on Jul 19, 2014

“About one-third of U.S. adults and 68 percent of Republicans agree with Sarah Palin that President Obama deserves impeachment, a new poll found.


The split along partisan lines in the new Huffington Post/YouGov poll was stark. While 68 percent of Republicans said impeachment would be justified, only 8 percent of Democrats agreed and independents were evenly split 37 percent on each side.


Just over one quarter, 26 percent, of respondents who did not describe themselves as Republicans called for impeachment.”





What happened to him could happen to anyone


Published on Jul 19, 2014

Two years ago, Stephen Barton was shot in the face and neck at the 2012 Aurora theater shooting in Colorado. He survived and joined the fight to stop gun violence — hear what he has to say.







TheObamaCrat™ Slide Show




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Variety: Michelle Obama Calls For Focus On The Arts In Grammy Museum Speech.










Michelle Obama Calls for Focus on the Arts in Grammy Museum Speech


By , Variety Magazine.


First lady Michelle Obama appeared in Los Angeles before a crowd of music professionals, educators and students on Wednesday, as she called for greater recognition of the value of arts education.


“We cannot be satisfied until every child in America has some exposure to the arts,” Obama said at the Nokia Theatre at L.A. Live.


Obama’s address was part of the Grammy Museum’s Jane Ortner Education Award Luncheon, named in honor of the late public school teacher Jane Ortner, who promoted music education.


Obama said that some 6 million school children have no music or arts classes in their schools, a problem exacerbated by cuts in public education.


She said that for many young people, “the arts are a way to channel that pain and frustration into something meaningful and productive and beautiful.”


“For many young people and arts education is the only reason they get out of bed in the morning,” she said, her voice often passionate as she delivered her remarks.


She also called on arts organizations across the country to adopt programs that include activities for students, as the Grammy Museum does. The museum participates in an educational component of the White House’s concert series, which airs on PBS as “In Performance at the White House.”


The honorees at the event were educator Sunshine Cavalluzzi and singer Janelle Monae, who performed “Q.U.E.E.N.” and “Tightrope.” The award honors educators and artists who are dedicated to education through the arts.


Introducing Monae, Obama said, “I love to hear her perform, and yes, she was on a table, in the White House, and that’s our little secret.” She praised Monae as “one of the young artists here who is making music that means something. … She serves as a role model and an inspiration to so many young people.” The first lady also said she was “honored to be the first Electric Lady.”


“I got my letter in the mail. I framed it. It’s up,” she said.


Ortner’s husband, entertainment attorney Charles, is a board member of the museum, and told the luncheon that a goal is to “enhance the education environment through music, even though these are not music teachers per se.” The music is a way in to match, the sciences and history, with lesson plans posted for free on the Grammy Museum website. Joining him were his children, Eric and Amy.


The first lady’s visit to Los Angeles included a speech at the Unite for Veterans Summit, organized by the United Way of Greater Los Angeles, the Federal Reserve Bank and USC. On Tuesday, she appeared at a fundraiser for the Democratic National Committee at the home of HBO’s Michael Lombardo and architect Sonny Ward.


First Lady Michelle Obama, right, hugs six-time Grammy nominee singer Janelle Monae at the Grammy Museum’s Jane Ortner Education Award Luncheon in Los Angeles Wednesday, July, 16, 2014. The first lady says every arts organization in the country should embrace the mission of the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles, which focuses on education.

First Lady Michelle Obama, right, hugs six-time Grammy nominee singer Janelle Monae at the Grammy Museum’s Jane Ortner Education Award Luncheon in Los Angeles Wednesday, July, 16, 2014. The first lady says every arts organization in the country should embrace the mission of the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles, which focuses on education.

First Lady Michelle Obama delivers remarks at the Grammy Museum’s Jane Ortner Education Award Luncheon in Los Angeles Wednesday, July, 16, 2014. Obama says every arts organization in the country should embrace the mission of the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles, which focuses on education.

First Lady Michelle Obama delivers remarks at the Grammy Museum’s Jane Ortner Education Award Luncheon in Los Angeles Wednesday, July, 16, 2014. Obama says every arts organization in the country should embrace the mission of the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles, which focuses on education.

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Thank you Variety Magazine.




Remarks by the First Lady at Grammy Museum’s Jane Ortner Education Award Luncheon

Grammy Museum
Los Angeles, California

12:32 P.M. PDT




MRS. OBAMA:  Thank you so much.  (Applause.)  Well, hello, everyone!  How are you guys doing?




MRS. OBAMA:  It’s really exciting, huh?




MRS. OBAMA:  Well, it is a pleasure for me to be here for the inaugural Jane Ortner Education Award Luncheon.  I want to start by thanking Bob for that very kind introduction and for his visionary leadership of the Grammy Museum, and for sharing that story.  And in response, yes, we did hear.  (Laughter.)  We heard everything.  We can hear everything that goes on on the State floor upstairs.  But as Bob noted, it was a beautiful sound.  It was the sound of growth and victory and happiness, and it filled the White House just as Barack and I had imagined.  So we were grateful for that night and so many, many wonderful nights shared with this organization.


I want to thank Chuck Ortner and his family for their tremendous generosity in making this luncheon possible.  Yes.  (Applause.)  And I want to give a special thank-you to your fabulous mayor, Mayor Garcetti.  We’re just thrilled that he could join us today, and we are grateful for his leadership.  (Applause.)


And I’d like to thank and congratulate today’s honorees — my dear, dear friend, Janelle Monae, as well as Sunshine Cavalluzzi, who I will get to meet.  (Applause.)  Sunshine — I’m going to see Sunshine soon.  We are so inspired by the both of you and so grateful for everything you do for our children.


And of course, I want to thank everyone here today for your support to bring arts education to young people across this country.  Your work has been at the heart of our vision for the White House right from the very beginning, as Bob shared.


Now, traditionally, when it comes to hosting cultural events, the White House has always brought in the most renowned performers in the world.  And in the past, the audiences for these performances were usually a lot of pretty fancy people — politicians, business leaders, celebrities — the kind of folks who get invited to the White House all the time.


But when Barack and I first came to Washington, we decided that it was time to shake things up a little bit.  We wanted to do everything we could to make the White House the “People’s House.”  We wanted to open it up to as many people in this country as possible, especially our young people.  So when we started inviting performers to the White House, as Bob mentioned, we told everyone that we also expected them to spend some time with young people, doing workshops and these wonderful mentoring sessions.


And that’s where all of you came in.  Thanks to your generosity, the Grammy Museum has flown nearly 1,000 students to Washington to visit the White House and take part in these programs, and thousands more have participated by video.  These young people have had so many once-in-a-lifetime experiences. They’ve explored soul music with Janelle Monae, Melissa Etheridge, Patti LaBelle — that was good.  (Laughter.)  They’ve learned about country music with Lyle Lovett, Darius Rucker, Kris Kristofferson.  As you heard, they talked about Motown with Smokey Robinson and John Legend.  I could go on and on.  These sessions are amazing.


And I have to tell you, these are some of my favorite events at the White House.  They’re these truly intimate moments when the artists and the kids are sitting around in the State Dining Room.  Very special.  I make sure they know they’re sitting where we host kings and queens and leaders from all over the world.  And in that room, they’re pouring their hearts out to each other.  They get really close.  They’re not just talking about music — they’re talking about their hopes and dreams and their fears.  They’re talking about the value of hard work, things like staying true to yourself, picking yourself up when you fall.  That’s one thing I always say to the students — failure is your only guarantee in life.  So you got to figure that out.


And let me tell you, so many of the young people who’ve had these experiences, they walk away transformed — how can you help but not be transformed — with a new sense of purpose and hope.


Just take the example of a young woman named Trina Vargas who attended a workshop — she attended that first workshop on the music of the civil rights, back in 2010, that Bob talked about.  Now, Trina was raised by a single mother, much like many of the artists who perform and we have known and love.  She’s from Guatemala.  Her mother never had a chance to go to college herself.  And while Trina worked hard in school, she wasn’t always sure that hard work would really pay off.


But her trip to the White House opened her eyes, and as she put it — and these are just a few of her words — she said, “I saw for the first time how education and hard work could open doors I never dreamed possible.”  And she said, even though it isn’t easy to — and “it’s easy to feel discouraged at times,” she said, “I won’t stop chasing my dreams.”


Well today, four years later, Trina has graduated Summa Cum Laude from SUNY Albany, and she’s now working her way towards law school.  (Applause.)  And I’m sure I could share hundreds of stories just like that.


So make no mistake about it, programs like this aren’t just about taking a fun field trip to Washington, and they shouldn’t just be luxuries for kids who can afford it.  Because we know that engagement in the arts can unlock a world of possibilities for our young people, especially when it comes to their education.


Studies show that kids who are involved in the arts have higher grades, higher graduation rates, higher college enrollment rates.  And when you think about it, that’s not really surprising.  Because for many young people, arts education is the only reason they get out of bed in the morning.  Just like Janelle, they go to school each day because there’s an instrument they want to play, a musical they want to perform in, a painting they are dying to finish.  See, and then once they arrive in those classrooms, that’s when we can teach them something else, like math and writing and science.  That is the power of the arts for so many of our young people.


But today, as we honor your work to promote arts education and we recognize leaders like Sunshine and Janelle, we also need to be thinking about all the young people who will never have these opportunities in this country.  We need to be thinking about the six million children in this country who don’t have a single art or music class in their schools.  (Applause.)


So for every Janelle Monae, there are so many young people with so much promise [that] they never have the chance to develop.  And think about how that must feel for a kid to have so much talent, so much that they want to express, but it’s all bottled up inside because no one ever puts a paintbrush or an instrument or a script into their hand.


Think about what that means for our communities, that frustration bottled up.  Think about the neighborhoods where so many of our kids live — neighborhoods torn apart by poverty and violence.  Those kids have no good outlets or opportunities, so for them everything that’s bottled up — all that despair and anger and fear — it comes out in all the wrong places.  It comes out through guns and gangs and drugs, and the cycle just continues.


But the arts are a way to channel that pain and frustration into something meaningful and productive and beautiful.  And every human being needs that, particularly our kids.  And when they don’t have that outlet, that is such a tremendous loss, not just for our kids, but for our nation.  And that’s why the work you all are doing is so important.


But we can’t stop here.  Yes, you all have an abundance of riches here in Los Angeles.  And yes, we do have a pretty big platform at the White House; people do tend to accept our invitations to perform and interact with young people.  We’ve got a little leverage.  But let’s not forget that there are theaters and symphonies and museums in cities and towns all across this country.  And with every exhibit and performance they put on, these folks should be asking themselves, “How can we get some kids in here?  How can we get these artists and performers to connect with young people in those communities?”


In other words, every arts organization in this country should be embracing the mission of the Grammy Museum.  Because we cannot be satisfied until every child in America has some kind of exposure to the arts — every child.  Every child.  (Applause.)


And to all the young people here today, I just want to urge you all to take the fullest advantage of these opportunities when you get them.  Try as many new art forms as you can, and take some risks.  Don’t be afraid to express yourself.  And most importantly, take the lessons you learn through arts and apply them at school, and bring that same passion and dedication to getting the education you need to fulfill your dreams.  And so many of you are already doing that, and I am incredibly proud of you all.


But today, I want to urge you to dream even bigger, work even harder, and don’t ever give up, no matter what challenges you face.  Because if you do that, there is no limit to what you can achieve.  And remember, there are so many people who believe in you.  I believe in you.  Your President believes in you.  And all of these people here today believe in you.


So go out there and make us proud.  And more importantly, make yourselves proud.  Yes.  (Applause.)


And to all of you here today who are doing so much to support these amazing young people, I want to end as I started by once again saying thank you.  Thank you for your commitment to their future, to our country’s future.  And I do look forward to continuing our work together in the months and years ahead.


Thank you all so much.  (Applause.)  Thank you.


I have one more wonderful task here today.  You know that little fireplug of a woman that just stood here today?  Well, I’m going to introduce her, because she’s going to come out here and do her thing.


But let me just say something about this young, beautiful, talented woman.  First of all, I am honored to be the first Electric Lady.  (Laughter.)  I got my letter in the mail — I framed it; it’s up.  But when you listen to Janelle, when you hear her speak — I love to hear her perform.  And yes, she was on a table in the White House.  And that’s our little secret.  (Laughter.)  But I love to hear her perform, but I love to hear her talk.  I love Janelle’s message.


I love that she is one of the young artists here who is making music that means something.  She has a message.  She has a voice.  She has a power in her.  And she understands the responsibility she has within her grasp to take these opportunities and just take off with them.  She serves as a role model and an inspiration to so many young people.  And I am happy to call her my friend.  I am so proud of her.


It is my pleasure to introduce the one, the only — Janelle Monae.  (Applause.)


12:46 P.M. PDT







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