Category: Democratic Party


Mydreamalive.com presents the Iconic Leontyne Price

What does it take to change the face of African-American culture?

A person that believes in what they believe and does not care what anyone else thinks!

One of her favorite quotes:

Accomplishment has no color

                                                         Leontyne Price

What an amazing person, performer, and voice like no nother.

Born in Laurel, Mississippi on February 10, 1927, Leontyne price grew up with  the love of music stirring inside of her veins. Like most African-American children, Leontyne got her music chops and internship in church, growing up listening to the type of music that could stir a soul. She new right then and there that she was going to make music, and affecting people’s lives, her  profession.

Now here is where the story gets interesting.

She chose to pursue a career in Classical/Operatic music and not jazz or gospel music!

huh??

This is where the disconnect happened for many of good ole down home black folks.

She went to Central State College in Wilberforce, Ohio and got encouragement and inspiration to further her love for the genre.  Leontyne went to college to become a music teacher. While hearing her sing one day in a Hall, the President of the College, Dr. Charles H. Wesley encouraged her to change her major from education to voice.

Leontyne Price earned her B.A. in June 1948, and headed to New York to study at the Julliard School of Music where she had won a full tuition scholarship. At Julliard, she received voice training from Florence Ward Kimball, a distinguished teacher, and, in her last year, she gave a strong performance as Mistress Ford in the student production of the opera, Falstaff. Upon seeing her in this production, Virgil Thompson immediately invited her to star in a revival of his opera, Four Saints in Three Acts, which ran on Broadway for three weeks in April 1952. Less than two months later, Price made her debut in Dallas, in a role that would carve her name in the minds of audiences everywhere; she appeared as Bess in a revival of Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess.

Leontyne Price achieved one of the greatest artistic victories of her career on January 27, 1961, when she debuted at the Metropolitan Opera as Leonora in Verdi’s Il Trovatore. This performance ignited a 42-minute ovation, one of the longest in the Met’s history. Critic Harold Schoenberg wrote: “Her voice was dusky and rich in its lower tones, perfectly even in its transitions from one register to another, and flawlessly pure and velvety at the top.”

Over the years, Leontyne Price has won 15 Grammy Awards for vocal recordings she has made, and she has been on the cover of Time and 27 other magazines. In addition, she was the only opera singer to be represented in the list of “Remarkable American Women: 1776-1976” in Life Magazine‘s Bicentennial issue in 1976. She now lives quietly in a cozy house in New York’s Greenwich Village.

Even with her amazing popularity in Europe, her status as an African-American Icon has yet to be truly celebrated!

There is more than enough evidence, rewards, reasons, and accolades to make this happen today!

Derrick Butler is CEO and Founder of Mydreamalive.com which has a mission of changing the negative images that media portrays as African-American heroes, to positive images that are true African-American Icons.

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The Terrible Duo

 What in the world are the Republicans drinking? You can not tell me that their line in the sand is the continued manipulation of the tax dollars by Billionaire corporations and the richest 1%. How in the world can you have a talk about deficit without revenue. Did Newt and Mitch go into a deep slumber during the President Bill Clinton years. Where their panties up their butts so tight that they missed one of the most ( If not the best!) deficit reducing years in American History. The Tax increases that Bill Clinton initiated not only reduced the deficit, and brought in 241 Billion in five years. It took both cutting of wasteful spending and revenues to turn the country around.

Now President Obama comes to the table with the Revenue and the Republicans come to the table with the Reductions, and now we have what we need to turn the country around.

I for one feel that the Holy Grail of the Democratic party – The Incredible FDR New Deal initiatives after the Great Depression should not be touched! Economists around the nation agree that Social Security is not a problem and only needs to be funded to last to the next couple generations. So I strongly disagree on putting it up as an offering to the republicans!

Do not cave in on this one.. we need the revenue and the cost cutting measures to turn the country around. For once, let both parties work together for the good of the country and not the good of their and their constituents pocket books!

Derrick Butler is Founder of My Dream Alive find out more at www.mydreamalive.com

Follow me on Twitter @DerrickButler

 

The Origin of ALL Life

      What a question? Can we all come together and create a African History movement that encompasses the African History that most of the African-American know nothing about, with the African-American History that most Africans know nothing about.

African History is the true history that we should be sharing with generations. Connecting ourselves with Africa and then bringing history forward to the present. To much of the history that comes up in February is about the Civil Rights movement and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. ” I Have a Dream” movement. We have to go back further and we also need to include more of the people who made this dream life of ours possible.  Even though we have not reached the utopian level of society that Dr. King envisioned, this life is still a far cry from the civil unrest in the 60’s.  The ultimate example of how far we have come is the first African-American President Barack Obama.  Our generation needs to see the amazing rich culture of the Egyptians, and also understand the complexity of Booker T. Washington. Understand how Madame CJ Walker became the 1st African-American woman Millionaire, and how the great ruler of Ethiopian Yohannes IV ruled from 1872-1889. Until we can unite the two continents we as African Americans will continue to fight to find ourselves in this  caucasian dominated nation.

Do you feel it is possible to unite the two continents together?

Derrick Butler is Founder of My Dream Alive Black History Clothing that Inspires, Motivates, and Educates. Find out more at www.mydreamalive.com and stay up to date by following me on Twitter @DerrickButler

Ways to make money in a Recession

        Mydreamalive.com is all about removing the obstacles that are in your way to make your dreams come true.  I am often asked, How do you know if you are on the right road? Let me be clear that there is only one way to be sure that you are on the right road. You must be Connected to the Holy Spirit! Yes, that is the way and the only way. Once you are on the right road, you will be connect to the amazing anointing and the road will be a true road to the purpose that God has in store for you. I have often been faced in life with challenges, and these challenges usually come when I am doing what I want to do in life and not do what God wants me to do. I often get my mind straight and decide that I am going to go in a direction that doesn’t have anything to do with the purpose that God has in store for me. I get on this road, and destruction happens. Now when the destruction happens, I then get on my knees and pray, “Oh Lord, please help me out of the mess I am in.” Thank goodness that God is a forgiving and passionate God, because if he wasn’t he would have left me a long time ago because of the crazy messes I get myself into.

Salon Chairs filled with customers what a great thing!

I was recently talking to a young lady about starting a Hair Salon, and she did not know where to get started.  I told her the first thing you have to do is pray, to be sure that you are going in the right direction. Then go to http://www.domainnames.com  to find and purchase a  url that speaks to the type of salon you want. Then write a business plan that spells out what she is going to do in terms of operations, marketing, and finance. Once all those ducks were in a row then she needed to do pray again, just to be absolutely sure. In all my life I have never seen a women go without getting her hair done. I don’t care if the women did not have food in the house, or pay her cable bill, she was going to make sure she was in the shop getting her hair done. So a Hair Salon is a very good way to go. Women spend so much time with their hair, I am amused watching my wife and daughters spend hours at a time deciding on how they are going to wear their hair that DAY! Every day it is the same routine, wake up shower, dress, and spend 1 hour deciding on the right style/look of the hair. Men we have it soooo easy. We go the barber every two weeks, and until we get to the point where our wifes/lady friends tell us its time to go, we don’t even think twice about our hair.  Perhaps I should go to http://www.domainnames.com and secure www.hairmadness.com! I bet I could get a whole lot of traffic and sell hair products…lol

People, whether you ar trying to figure out if you are on the road of anointing, or deciding to open your first business. You have to commit to moving forward.

Stay in the grace of GOD and take action..and the rest will fall in the place.

Remember:

“Seek you first the kingdom of GOD, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you”

Matthew 6:33

Derrick Butler is Founder/CEO of My Dream Alive Inc, the largest producer of Black History Clothing Online. Find out more at www.mydreamalive.com

One Nation Under GOD

                                                                                                                                              This has been a very trying week for me.

                                                                                                So excited about the news from President Barack Obama that Osama Bin Laden is finally dead.

I don’t usually get excited about a “Murder” because that was what it was.. but I know how GOD feels about sin and the people who continue to blasphemy his Holy name.
So I was happy that again the bad guy loses and all is right in GOD’s Universe.
Have you noticed that no matter the situation or movie the bad guys always gets it in the end!
Then the mess came out about..”Is he really Dead” and if he is DEAD then they should show the body!
I am really irritated about this whole debate.
Has anyone ever seen Hitler’s Body? Ok.. how about Attila the Hun??
We don’t even think about seeing them because guess what… they are DEAD!
Here we go again with a Republican Donald Trumpism.. where is the Birth Certificate???
Get a grip and get a clue!
Mr. Trump…where is your real hair??
Now you Trump  can spend his time on more important unsolved matters like… where the hell is Tupac and Biggie?
 
Come on people.. It is Mr. Bush that said that Hussein had weapons of mass destruction that were proven to not be there.
A war to capture Hussein for some reason, was on the way and the American public believed it hook line and sinker.
 
We have to be a people, a country that believes that the office of President will not call a press conference to make a bold face lie to the American people.
We have to be a nation that does not take this opportunity to divide the country into people who think he is dead and people who do not think he is dead..
 
why… FOR RATINGS!!
FOR   POLITICAL  ADVANTAGE!!
 
The Republicans have no one to run in 2012. They have no one that can beat President Barack Obama so here they go again with the Divisive Tactics.
The same Tactics that have worked in the past to confuse the American People.
No more.. we need answers on topics of great importance.
How about…JOBS.. EDUCATION..DEFICIT..HEATH CARE..NEW ENERGY
 
Can we all get on the same page for once.
We need answers on real problems and we need a country a leadership that can lead us into the next century.
Perhaps two parties are too much for our country??
 
I know we need to trim the Government and get the spending dow.
I know we need to raise the taxes on the rich to Clinton 2000 years.
We know those two need to happen to have a chance in making it to another generation.
In history ALL great nations fall!!
They fall because of stupidity, selfishness and Power Struggles
 
Are we going to have the same fate? Or are we finally going to create a nation that can live together in peace and harmony
Perhaps I am asking more than we are able to do.
But I have always been told, that if you ask.. you can receive..
 
WE can do this anything is possible.
 
I still believe we are an Amazing nation!
 
Derrick Butler is the Founder of My Dream Alive the largest producer of  Urban Inspirational Wear that Inspires, Motivates and Educates. Find out more at www.mydreamalive.com
Also Follow Derrick Butler on Twitter @DerrickButler
 
One Nation under GOD indivisible and justice for all
 
 

You do NOT have a good relationship with Blacks!

Wow.. here we go again.   A Billionaire that
“THINKS”  ( Ohhh boy does he THINK)
that he has an inkling of an idea of who and what we are as a people!
It is funny even hilarious to me that he would even imply that he could have taken away votes from Barack Obama in 2008!
This is like you know who saying ” Those People” that gave him a quick reality of who we are and what happens when you get us excited!
You can not come to us when you are looking for votes, after decades of neglect and non relationship.
You can not come to us, after spending no time in Black communities or even inviting a “Real Black” over to the house.
I don’t think Mr. Trump even knows a line from the most popular Lil Wayne song!
Come on.. we are not going to be fooled again to thinking that a Billionaire even understands the average wealth of a Black American or the graduation rate from High School of a boy in uptown New York.
We are not going to let the Republicans pretend to have our best interests at heart when people like  McCain think the average person has an income of 5 Million.
I am one that believes that you should not even get to run for office if your net worth exceeds 1 Million dollars.
We are supposed to be a Democracy… for the people and by the people.
Your Mr. Trump are not one of the people.
That is not your fault, you get the great distinction of being a self-made Billionaire, but you also should not be given the great responsibility of representing the common man.
We saw just recently with Meg Whitman running for Governor of California ( Thank God she did not win!) what would happen if a Wealthy person was to take office and run the Government strictly as a business.
You can not do that!
Government is more than profit and loss!!!
This amazing incredible country needs to get back to the foundation of what we were created to be.
A place where money would not decide..your education, or your ability to start a business or the state of your income for the rest of your life.
Like England where if you are born into Noble blood then you are set, but if not you are pretty much screwed.
We want a Democracy.. the Democracy that the founders believed was possible.
You Mr. Trump are the sign of the Capitalist propaganda that exists today. You are a sign of the disease that has infested our country.
I can tell you that NOOO Mr. Trump you do not know how much we detest the possibility that you would even be considered for Presidency!
You go run your business and make Billions more…
But.. please leave the Government to those who have a blood in their veins and a REAL HEART!!

Repubicans Block Progress again

 

   Republican leaders again want to block one of the biggest ways to get out of this economic mess ( that they created!!) and keep the social programs that were instituted by the Government to be a contract with the American people.

Everyone knows that I am a huge President Barack Obama fan ( Still love saying President), and I have supported him from the start, but he needs to stand firm on this one.

I have always been told that Facts are Friends..well let’s look at some facts:

Defense      Spending     :        2000        $334.2 Billion               20004   $379.5   Billion        2008   $726.10 Billion       2011 $928.5 Billion   ( Almost a Trillion!! )

Why is Defense up  $594.30 Billion Dollars!!

Why are we looking at Social Services cuts when we have added $594.30 Billion to the Federal Budget???

Our Defense Spending is 42% of our GDP!!   Are you kidding me!

Come on.. the place is Defense.. Defense…Defense!!

In order to tackle the astronomical Deficit that our County faces.. we have to take in more revenue and decrease spending.

You do not have to be a rocket scientist to get this..

Why are the Republicans playing games. We can reduce spending on Defense and make it up slowly.. or we can take in more Revenue and take care of it faster.

Do you remember the Clinton Years?? 

We need to return the tax rates for the Rich to those years. I do not remember a person rich or poor complaining about how bad it was during those Glory YEARS!!

The top income tax rate was 39% !

We had a booming economy!  We had a $4 Trillion dollar Surplus!!

Enough said…

Derrick Butler is Founder of My Dream Alive the only Urban Inspirational Clothing line and also an Equal Education Advocate. You can follow Derrick Butler on Twitter @DerrickButler or learn more about My Dream Alive at www.mydreamalive.com

Social Security Up in Smoke

As of December 2009, of the approximately 33.5 million people receiving Social Security retirement benefits, approximately 4.4 million, or roughly 13 percent, were in the age-group 62–65. This group received retirement benefits of $54.7 billion, which represents about 11.7 percent of the aggregate Social Security retirement benefits of $468.2 paid in 2009. It is not unreasonable to assume that the closing of Social Security to new enrollees in the 62–65 age-group would achieve comparable percentage reductions in the number of people receiving Social Security retirement benefits and in the overall cost of the program. To this must be added the effect of the 25 percent reduction in the benefits of the 66–69 age-group plus the effect of the elimination of premiums for late retirement.

Above is a statement written up in a proposal that would save the country billions of dollars and ultimately change the way that Social Security is allocated.

I can only say, that my dream as an American was to work my butt off, give 100% to the company(ies) that I worked for so that I could have a safe and secure retirement. It seems that Social Security is the new target for those (Lame) politicians in capital hill. Like they don’t have enough to worry about with the (3) wars Ameria is currently fighting, the Barry Bonds Case and the Unemployment rate still hovering at 8%.   They feel that they have to attack an American Institution that was once an untouchable institution.

Now I guess that all gloves are off, and we are in an economic climate  in this country where nothing is off the table.

I some how missed the proposal that every member of congress give up 40-50% of their enormous salaries! I missed the propsal to reduce the amount of money we spend each year on wars that do not involve Amercian citizens. I missed the proposal to cut the top heavy educational system. Why do the Superintendants make $250,00+ per year and the teachers make $30,000 per year?

The Health Care for all bill was such an amazing propositon for the American people and it still is under attack, even though it was signed into law by the President Obama himself.

I for one, do not want my Social Security changed and don’t want the generations behind us to not get the opportunity that we have to work for a secure retirement. 

My Dream is that somehow the politicians get this one right and maintain some resemblence of the Social Security System that our fathers and grandfathers enjoy. I pray that we get out of this economic situation and that our children have some sort of retirement program that works!

Derrick Butler is the Founder of My Dream Alive Inc the most comprehensive source of African American Clothing and Products on the net.

Find out more at: www.mydreamalive.com

Look at how the Governement sets budget: http://www.usgovernmentspending.com/federal_budget 

 

Today the Mega Millions Loto is $312 Million Dollars.

Can you believe it?? We’ll this lottery has given me the passion to write again. The last time I was this fired up.. Barack Obama was becoming our 1st ( Not Last ) African American President. I am still a huge  Obama fan and supporter, and next year is going to be no cake walk. Especially if the economy remains in the dumps like it is.

The truth of the matter is… what can one poor non suspecting slunk do with that much money.

The odds of winning are..and I like 5 Million to 1.. and people still play.

Yea.. let’s let 1 person get $312 Milllion in an American where the rich keep getting richer and the poor get stumped on!!

The middle class is disappering right before our eyes..

Wouldn’t it be better to make 312 new millionaires today. Today we could change 312 peoples lives…

Why should 1 person get the opportunity of a life time.

Imagine the families of the 312 members.. Imagine all the money in places all over the country that could get impacted by that one change in the system.

I don’t think 1 person would even know what to do with all that money, and imagine if Hitler one that money..

This Lottery system is suppose to support education.. but in fact it supports who? and where is the money for all the effort?

Let more people win.. and let’s do something right for a change.

So often we make the wrong choice..

Keith Marsden: Bush tax cuts were good for business and the middle class

President Obama remains skeptical about the Bush tax cuts that were due to expire at the end of this year.

During his post Congressional election press conference, he said: “From 2001 to 2008 we cut taxes significantly, but didn’t see the results”. But “my goal is not to have a huge spike in taxes on middle class families”, he stressed.

Reluctantly, he has now struck a deal with Republican leaders in Congress to extend the Bush-era income tax cuts for two years for all Americans, including the wealthy earning over $250,000 a year.

This latter concession left some liberal lawmakers and activists seething. But the White House argues that this compromise was needed to win enough votes for a necessary measure – to avoid dampening the already sluggish recovery from recession.

Later on, Democrats will probably try to rally partisan support by arguing that Republicans insisted that the wealthy be included only because they are large contributors to Republican election campaigns.

This cynical view ignores strong independent evidence that the Bush tax cuts boosted equity investment in US business, that the “rich” were the largest contributors, and the “middle class” benefitted substantially in the form of more jobs and higher incomes.

The triennial Surveys of U.S Family Finances, undertaken by the Federal Reserve Board, show a large increase in equity investment in “privately held businesses” from 1998 (towards the end of the Clinton presidency) to 2007 (the latest year available). The forms of business in this category are sole proprietorships, limited partnerships, other types of partnerships, subchapter S corporations and other types of corporations that are not publically traded, limited liability companies, and other types of private businesses.

President Obama has often declared himself a fan of these forms of “small business”, and has urged an increased provision of financial resources for them.

The Fed surveys show that the percentage of the richest 10 percent of families (ranked by annual income) who had business equity investments, jumped from 34.2 percent in 1998 to 41.8 percent in 2001 (the first year of the Bush tax cuts). This percentage dropped slightly to 40.9 percent in 2007. But the average (mean) size of holding per investor more than doubled to $2.475 million (in inflation-adjusted 2007 dollars). There seems little doubt that tax cuts played a significant role in increasing both the incentives and availability of funds for these investments.

Business equity investment by the middle class also expanded. The proportion of families in the middle 40-59.9 percent income percentiles with holdings remained constant at 10.6 percent. But their average size went up to $240,000 in 2007 from $169,600 in 1998.

Even among families ranked among the poorest 20 percent, the mean value of business equity holdings shot up to $686,700 in 2007 from $158,100 in 1998. But only 3.3% percent of this group possessed holdings, probably in the form of start-ups or very small businesses that have yet to yield substantial income for their proprietors, but could have substantial growth prospects.

The significance of these findings does not only lie in the increased flow of investment funds to small private businesses. Most investors are not just passive providers of cash. The Federal Reserve studies show that of families with any business interest, 92% percenthad an active role as creative entrepreneurs and hands-on managers. Actively-managed interests accounted for 89 percent of privately-owned holdings in 2007.

The rich are also a significant source of inputs into the overall economy in other forms, and for varied purposes. They provide equity investments in non-residential property, including commercial property, farm and ranch land not operated through their own businesses. 21 percent of the richest 10% percent of families owned these assets in 2007, with a mean value per holding of $740,600, a 27 percent increase in real terms since 1998.

By investing in these properties, the more affluent families make office/factory/warehouse/space and farm land available for rental by other entrepreneurs.
They also help to fund investment in, and the operating costs of larger enterprises. They do so by buying and holding publically-traded shares. 91 percent of the richest 10% percent of families had stock holdings in 2007, a slight drop from 90.4% percent on 1998.

But the mean value (in 2007 dollars) of their holdings had risen by 26.8 percent over this period, reaching $863,300.

49.7 percent of the middle income group (40-59.9 percentiles) owned stock in 2007, up from 49.4 percent in 1998, and the mean value of their holdings rose to 5$8,900 from $49,000 dollars (in 2007 dollars). And even 13.6% of the poorest 20% were able to acquire stocks in 2007, up from 10.0% in 1998, with an increase in their average holding to $67,000 from $36,700 over this period.

Increased investment created more jobs. According to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics, total non-farm employment grew from 125.93 million in 1998 to 137.60 million in 2007, an increase of 9.3 percent.

This evidence contradicts the view, apparently held by President Obama and his administration, that the Bush tax cuts have benefited only the highest income group, and have fostered extravagant consumption at the expense of investment. On the contrary, the Federal Reserve studies show that all income groups enjoyed significant increases in real family incomes between 1998 and 2007. Rising productivity boosted wages.

The before-tax incomes (in 2007 dollars) of the poorest 20 percent of families went up by 21.8% from 1998 to 2007. The average rise for families in the middle 20 percent was 9.2 percent, while the richest 10 percent gained 42.3 percent on average, thus allowing the surges in investment noted above.

Minority ethnic groups also enjoyed increases in real income, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. It reports an increase in median (before tax) income for Black households from $33,315 in 1998 to $35,267 (in 2009 adjusted dollars) in 2007. While the median for Hispanic households went up to $40,013 in 2007 from $37,230 in 1998.

Except for the lowest income groups, whose members don’t pay federal income tax, the disposable (after-tax) income of most middle class families rose still faster as a result of the Bush tax cuts. Moreover, the cuts removed a further 5 million of families from the Federal tax roles.

The 10 percent of families in the highest income bracket remain by far the largest contributors of business equity. Even if the tax hike is confined to those with an income of $250,000 and above, as sometimes suggested, it could have a substantial negative impact on future equity investment flows to small business.

Post 2007 income trends are distorted by the recession that began at the end of that year. This recession stemmed from the collapse of the sub-prime mortgage market, provoked by an imprudent Democrat-led push for expanded home ownership among the lowest income groups. It was further accentuated by the repackaging of dubious home loans, supposedly “guaranteed” by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, into new-fangled derivatives promoted by the bonus-seeking staff of investment banks.

But this recession doesn’t invalidate the case for tax cuts as a means of stimulating the growth of output, employment and incomes. The new Republican-led House of Representatives should take the lead in promoting the indefinite extension of the Bush tax cuts for all income groups when it takes office in the New Year. These cuts should stimulate economic growth. But to accelerate reduction of the massive current and projected public debt, which acts as a drag on the whole economy, tax incentives will need to be accompanied by a pruning of wasteful and low priority government expenditure.
Keith Marsden is a member of the Council of the Centre for Policy Studies, and a former operations adviser at the World Bank.