Sunday, March 30, 2008

SECRECY REPORT CARD, a coalition of government groups, journalists, consumers, and environmentalists who focus on making the government more transparent and to strengthen the public trust in government has published in 2007 Secrecy Report Card. According to the report:

• Classified information has remained significantly higher than in the years prior to 2001

• States continue to enact laws that limit access to government information with 114 bills that expanded executive powers and closure of otherwise public forums due to security reasons

• 108 patents have been kept secret, with inventions kept under "secrecy orders"

• More than 25% of all Federal contracts are not competed on openly and fairly

The "Secrecy Report Card 2007, shows both a continued expansion of government secrecy across a broad array of agencies and actions and some, limited, movement toward more openness and accountability. While every administration wants to control access to information about its policies and practices, information created by or for the federal government belongs to the American public and should be open."

Read Report

Thursday, March 27, 2008

VOGUE COVER: LeBron and Gisele

You know I caught the discussion about this on the Today Show and was very intrigued. First I couldn’t believe that the mass media picked up on the story, although they did so because bloggers got so heavily into it. Ann Curry was excellent as she asked Nancy Giles (from CBS morning show who I really like) what do African American people see in this picture that white people don’t see? Nancy Giles said that blacks are always depicted in the media as aggressive, threatening and as primal beings. Advertising guru Danny Deutsch saw nothing wrong with the cover at all.

Actually they showed other Annie Lebowitz shots for the cover and I too think that they should have used one where LeBron and Gisele were both in movement, it was a great shot, but maybe the editors at Vogue thought it was too Sports Illustrated. I think this does help to perpetuate the stereotypes that Giles referred to and may purposefully be provocative. I’m sure LeBron got paid well for the shoot, plus that type of promotion boosts other career opportunities for him. So it’s easy to see why he would be positive about the cover shot. I personally think they made Gisele look like a weak figure, even a bit odd—twisted and her footing doesn’t appear well balanced. It looks like the only reason she’s standing upright is because LeBron is holding her up, yet that point of view wasn’t discussed on the Today Show.

Perhaps Vogue wanted some extra promotion for the magazine cover? 

Here's the full story

Monday, March 24, 2008


Mayor Cory A. Booker announced that the City of Newark ’s Division of Recreation/Cultural Affairs is seeking musicians, entertainers, and other performers to star in its concerts and events.

The division is seeking musicians with backgrounds in many types of music, including Hip Hop, R&B, Blues, Jazz, Gospel, Rap, and Salsa. Musicians can be solo performers, groups, dancers, bands, or choirs of all ethnic backgrounds. In addition, the division is looking for face painters, clowns, puppet performers, and food and craft vendors to entertain children and adults at fairs and events. The division is also looking for disk jockeys, comedians, and poets to give readings.

Newark and the surrounding region are rich with diversity and performing talent. The next generation of Sarah Vaughans and Frankie Vallis are with us right here, and we are proud to offer them a stage upon which to star. I urge performers, bands, entertainers, dancers, comedians, and groups to contact our Recreation Division and become Newark ’s newest legends,” Mayor Booker said.

The division is planning an expanded series of concerts this summer, utilizing concert halls, parks, and other public facilities, and plans a diverse array of entertainment for these events. Entertainers will get paid for their appearances. Performers need not be Newark residents, and they can be professional.

Musicians, comedians, and performers are encouraged to submit tapes, CDs, and biographies to Kevin Peterman at the Division of Recreation/Cultural Affairs, at 94 William Street , Newark , New Jersey , 07102 . Other performers and vendors can also contact him at (973) 733-6454.

Monday, March 17, 2008


The Museum of the Moving Image has a great archive of Presidential campaign commercials going back to 1952. Last year I watched some of the commercials in a comfy screening booth at the Museum and it was great fun. But now you can view the Museum's Living Room Candidate website right from your desk. The site allows you to search commercials by candidate, year, issue, and types of commercials and also has transcripts and teaching materials as well.

They also have an interesting statistic on their site: "The Internet is used regularly by almost two thirds of American adults, surpassing the level of penetration achieved by television in 1960, when that medium first played a vital role in the outcome of a presidential election. The Internet is no longer a novelty, but is rather a necessary campaign tool. Airing just 739 times in a total of three states, the controversial "Swift Boat" ad gained much of its considerable traction from the Internet and 24-hour cable news channels."

Monday, March 03, 2008


Sunny. Warm. Beautiful.