Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Opinions of Obama's First 100 Days

What are your opinions of President Obama first 100 days? One thing you can’t say is that they were boring or uneventful. From the fumbling of the vow taken at his Inauguration to closing Gitmo, to the Stimulus Package, to the bank bailout, to the end of water boarding…what can I say? It’s definitely been busy at the White House!

Is it too soon to tell how things are really going? Will we need more time to accurately judge? Not sure, but there have been ups and downs as with anything and everyone. I’m still impressed that he wanted the job especially at a time where the U.S. was and is in such a state of disarray.

So, what are your thoughts?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The $600,000 Man of God

The story below comes from "NewsOne Breaking News".

Reverend’s $600k Salary Causes Church Outrage By News One April 22, 2009 10:30 am

Call it the stimulus package from God.

Manhattan’s Riverside Church - one of the country’s most illustrious religious institutions - is paying its new senior pastor, the Rev. Brad Braxton, more than $600,000 in annual compensation.

That’s twice what Braxton’s predecessor, James Forbes, one of the country’s best-known preachers, was getting after running Riverside for more than 18 years.

It amounts to almost 10 times what William Sloane Coffin, the legendary anti-Vietnam War clergyman, was paid in his last year as senior minister at Riverside in 1987.

Braxton was selected in a vote of the congregation last fall and is to be officially installed Sunday.

A group of church dissidents claims the members were never told about the lavish package.

Church sources say it includes:

$250,000 in salary.

$11,500 monthly housing allowance.

Private school tuition for his child.

A full-time maid.

Entertainment, travel and “professional development” allowances.

Pension and life insurance benefits.

An equity allowance for Braxton to save up to buy a home.

On top of that, Braxton immediately hired a new second in command at more than $300,000 a year.

I'm not too sure why this story bothers me, I just know that it does. It bothers me in several different ways...

1. How could the parishoners not know how much their preacher was making? Maybe not the exact number but if it is truly almost double what the previous one was making, wouldn't this need to be a discussion that the church had prior to "hiring" him on?

2. In another report, it was stated that some church members have filed a suit against him to stop the first installment of payment to him. I'm not sure I agree with that either... Afterall, if he has already began serving the church, shouldn't he also receive payment for what he's done? Judge Lewis Bart Stone denied the request to delay his installation, according to the Daily News and scheduled a follow up hearing on April 3.

3. On "The Daily Voice", it states "... the compensation package is too high for a pastor at a church with a history of supporting social justice causes, and especially in a time of recession." Shouldn't this have been taking into account PRIOR to him receiving the job? And to bring up the recession... Did they just remember NOW that we are in the middle of one?

I don't know people, holla at me on this one...

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Happy Administrative Professionals Day

To all my fellow Administrative Assistants, may I say happy day to you! The people we support appreciate us and hopefully you work for people who tell you that they do. If not, just know that what you do is important and our positions are a necessity. Keep your heads up, stay focused and represent us well!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

TAX DAY IS HERE!!! Have you filed?

Tax Day is here and to be quite honest with everything else going on in people’s lives, I’m not sure if folks really give a damn… Either you have filed, will file by midnight, will ask for an extension to file late or could care less if you file today or ever. Where are you in this group?

I’ve read somewhere that 1 out of every 5 people do not file their taxes. Have I filed? Yes and the check was actually spent for its intended use. There have been times when I couldn’t say that, so I’m proud of myself even in the slightest bit…

If you are one of those folks who will be heading to the post office today, remember not to go crazy in the lines. Be patient and go with the intention of waiting. REMEMBER: It's your fault that you waited to the last minute to get this done, not the people who are working the lines.. Don't give them attitude! (Aren't I the one to talk! Isn't that the pot calling the kettle... lol)

Friday, April 10, 2009

DWI/DUI - Mandatory 90 days - First Offense?

I was listening to a talk show this morning and they were discussing DWI/DUI and suggested that the laws change to immediate 90 days in jail for the first offense. I’m not sure what the law entails now besides a one night stay in jail, but I believe they do not suspend the license until the 2nd offense. (Actually, I couldn’t handle not knowing Texas’ law on the subject so I looked it up and pasted the information below.) The callers couldn’t understand why the radio hosts were so adamant on the change. They were discussing the young 22 yr old pitcher, Nick Adenhart, who was killed yesterday as a drunk driver broadsided his vehicle and 3 people died in the accident. What are your opinions?

First Texas DWI Offense: Texas Criminal Status: Class B Misdemeanor

Jail: Minimum 72 hours, or 6 days if open container is present.

Texas DWI Fines/Costs: Fine not to exceed $2,000. Other administrative and evaluation fees may be assessed. TX imposes a “surcharge” for a DWI on top of regular fines. The surcharge is $1,000 per year for three years for a first DWI offense and $2,000 if the person’s BAC level was double or more the legal limit (.16). Texas License Suspension: Yes, 1 year. Attending DWI Education class may avoid this. Occupational license may be granted based on need.

Violation of Zero Tolerance Law: N/A

Texas Conditional License: A conditional, or occupational license, may be issued based on "essential need" and usually only when the court orders an offender into alcohol assessment/rehabilitation. Offenders who have been granted occupational licenses within 10 years are ineligible. For definitions of “essential need”, see Transportation Code Section 521.241.

Vehicle Impound: None

Texas DWI School: First time offenders must complete a 12 hour DWI Education Program within 180 days of when probation was granted or risk having their license revoked.

Texas Probation: Terms of probation decided by judge or jury.

Texas Community Service: 24 hours required, but no more than 100 hours. Second Texas DWI Offense Plus: Texas Criminal Status: Class A Misdemeanor. A 3rd DUI is a 3rd degree felony.

Jail: 72 hours, not more than 1 year. A 3rd DUI can mean 2-10 years in the penitentiary.

Texas DWI Fines/Costs: Fines not to exceed $4,000. Other administrative and evaluation fees may be assessed. TX imposes a “surcharge” for a DWI on top of regular fines. The surcharge is $1,500 per year for three years for a second DWI offense and $2,000 if the person’s BAC level was double or more the legal limit (.16).

Texas License Suspension: Yes, 180 days to 2 years. Occupational license may be granted based upon need.

Vehicle Impound: None.

Texas DWI School: Repeat offenders must complete a 32 hour DWI Repeat Offender Program.

Texas Probation: Terms of probation decided by judge or jury.

Texas Community Service: Minimum 80 hours, but no more than 200 hours. Other: DWI and Driving with Minor: It is a felony to drive while intoxicated with a minor younger than 15 years of age in the vehicle.

Commercial Vehicle: Over .04 BAC level may suspend a commercial driver’s license for one year and up to 3 years if the driver was carrying hazardous materials.

Under Age: 21

Texas DWI Insurance Consequences: How a DUI/DWI Affects Your Car Insurance.

Texas Open Container Laws: Yes, driver and passenger. This is a Class C Misdemeanor.

How long does a DWI stay on your record? A DWI conviction in Texas stays on your driving record forever.

Driver Responsibility Tax: TX imposes a “surcharge” for a DWI on top of regular fines. The surcharge is $1,000 per year for three years for a first DWI offense, $1,500 per year for three years for a second DWI offense and $2,000 for a first or subsequent conviction if the person’s BAC level was double or more the legal limit (.16).

Ignition interlock device program: Required in order to be released from jail on bond. Required for all second-offenders during probation.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Mother Requests Son's Sperm.. WTF?

Okay, now this is too crazy.. A mother has gone to court to ask the judge to summons the collection of her dead son’s sperm. Her argument? That she will never be able to have grandchildren! Okay, okay.. Let me back up a little… Her son was attacked while being downtown Austin last month. After being punched, he fell and hit his head on the ground. He later died at Brackenridge Hospital. The mother claimed that her son has always wanted 3 sons, whose names he’d already picked out as: Van, Hunter and Tod.

Now I know my readers out there have something to say about this!! What in the world?! The story didn’t say that the son had a girlfriend or a wife or anything so, wassup with that?? Who is going to raise this child and where is the egg coming from?! HELLO, Granny! It takes two things to make a baby and I’ve only read about one of ‘em.. I hope she doesn’t plan on using some of hers and hers should be “Dead and Gone” like the Justin Timberlake song says! Ewwwwwwwwwww ~ Holla back…

Monday, April 06, 2009

It’s the simple things…

So many people aren’t happy in the relationships that they are currently in.. Most of what they are missing is the simple things. Not huge issues that are impossible to fix, but small things that can be corrected almost instantly. Why aren’t these things done? Is it stubbornness, hard-headedness? People are not willing to change even if it could change EVERYTHING for the better… Why is that? People claim that all they want in life is to be happy, but so many of us will not do what we need to do in order to gain that happiness… Wassup with that?

Friday, April 03, 2009

A Poem My Friend Wrote - It's Beautiful

YOUR.....ME - a poem

Apr 2, 2009, 8:58 am

Your smile electrifies and humbles me.

Your pictures tease and excite me.

Your skin reminds me and emboldens me

Your words challenge and rewrite me.

Your eyes reflect and compel me.

Your lips beckon and subdue me.

Your love warms and secures me.

Your vision looks right through me.

Your humor tickles and delights me.

Your strength ensures and impresses me.

Your thoughts calm and compose me

Your mind eagerly undresses me.

Undress me as if I am yours and yours alone.

Your palace awaits, Queen, come sit on your throne.....

by, Jalil al-Asad Amir al-Hamza