Here’s an excerpt from a story that ran in USA Today, on February 21, 2008, referring to a population projection report released by the Pew Research Center. 

What do these numbers tell you?

The projected growth in the U.S. population — 303 million today — will be driven primarily by immigration among all groups except the elderly.

"We're assuming that the rate of immigration will stay roughly constant," says Jeffrey Passel, co-author of the report.

Even if immigration is limited, Hispanics' share of the population will increase because they have higher birth rates than the overall population. That's largely because Hispanic immigrants are younger than the nation's aging baby boom population. By 2030, all 79 million boomers will be at least 65 and the elderly will grow faster than any other age group.

The projections show that by 2050:

•Nearly one in five Americans will have been born outside the USA vs. one in eight in 2005. Sometime between 2020 and 2025, the percentage of foreign-born will surpass the historic peak reached a century ago during the last big immigration wave. New immigrants and their children and grandchildren born in the USA will account for 82% of the population increase from 2005 to 2050.

•Whites who are not Hispanic, now two-thirds of the population, will become a minority when their share drops to 47%. They made up 85% of the population in 1960.

•Hispanics, already the largest minority group, will more than double their share of the population to 29%.

A mattress may still be the best place to put your money.

If you’re looking for good investment advice, skip CNBC.

If you keep head your while others panic, you may do well.

On the other hand, not everyone will.

It’s time to rethink your convictions, and stay strong.

Location matters.

You get what you pay for.

It’s good to recycle things you love.

Unfortunately, bad things sometimes get recycled along with the good.

Keep your priorities straight. Be thankful for small gifts. Take good care of yourself, your family and others who want or need your help.

By the way, who says no one inside the Beltway understands family values? Look at this:

Here’s the beginning and the end of an essay by anti-racism activist and writer Tim Wise of Nashville, Tennessee. Follow one of the links at the bottom to read the entire piece.

Imagine: Protest, Insurgency and the Workings of White Privilege
By Tim Wise
April 20, 2010

Let’s play a game, shall we? The name of the game is called “Imagine.” The way it’s played is simple: we’ll envision recent happenings in the news, but then change them up a bit. Instead of envisioning white people as the main actors in the scenes we’ll conjure—the ones who are driving the action—we’ll envision black folks or other people of color instead. The object of the game is to imagine the public reaction to the events or incidents, if the main actors were of color, rather than white. Whoever gains the most insight into the workings of race in America, at the end of the game, wins.

So let’s begin.

Imagine that hundreds of black protesters were to descend upon Washington DC and Northern Virginia, just a few miles from the Capitol and White House, armed with AK-47s, assorted handguns, and ammunition. And imagine that some of these protesters—the black protesters--
spoke of the need for political revolution, and possibly even armed conflict in the event that laws they didn’t like were enforced by the government? Would these protesters--these black protesters with guns--be seen as brave defenders of the Second Amendment, or would they be viewed by most whites as a danger to the republic? What if they were Arab-Americans? Because, after all, that's what happened recently when white gun enthusiasts descended upon the nation's capital, arms in hand, and verbally announced their readiness to make war on the country's political leaders if the need arose.

Imagine that white members of Congress, while walking to work, were surrounded by thousands of angry black people, one of whom
proceeded to spit on one of those congressmen for not voting the way the black demonstrators desired. Would the protesters be seen as merely patriotic Americans voicing their opinions, or as an angry, potentially violent, and even insurrectionary mob? After all, this is what white Tea Party protesters did recently in Washington.


To ask any of these questions is to answer them. Protest is only seen as fundamentally American when those who have long had the luxury of seeing themselves as prototypically American engage in it. When the dangerous and dark “other” does so, however, it isn’t viewed as normal or natural, let alone patriotic. Which is why Rush Limbaugh could say, this past week, that the Tea Parties are the first time since the Civil War that ordinary, common Americans stood up for their rights: a statement that erases the normalcy and “American-ness” of blacks in the civil rights struggle, not to mention women in the fight for suffrage and equality, working people in the fight for better working conditions, and LGBT folks as they struggle to be treated as full and equal human beings.

And this, my friends, is what white privilege is all about. The ability to threaten others, to engage in violent and incendiary rhetoric without consequence, to be viewed as patriotic and normal no matter what you do, and never to be feared and despised as people of color would be, if they tried to get away with half the shit we do, on a daily basis.

Game Over.

To read the entire piece, go to :!/notes/tim-wise/imagine-protest-insurgency-and-the-workings-of-white-privilege/10150151948920459

I don't know about you, but I'm weary of the level of anger, disrespect and selfishness we're bombarded with everyday in the news. For those who've forgotten what true "brotherhood" and respect look like, here's an instructional tale. 
Thank you, Steve Hartman. I wish I could claim you -- along with singer Johnny Hartman -- as a cousin.  

In February, my husband and I attended “Love Me Tender,” a perfectly delightful evening of Elvis Presley music, anecdotes and shenanigans offered by two brilliant performers. Actually, the show was as much a history lesson as an impersonation, which made it all the more fun for both or us. 

The Colonial Theater in Pittsfield, Massachusetts is an interesting place, with or without a performance on its stage. Once an ornate opera house, it’s been remodeled and expanded to include an old auto dealership as lobby. The theater sits maybe 100 yards off the town common in a town that's struggling to hold onto its historic roots while it finds a way to fit into the 21st century. You may have seen the Colonial in a PBS program featuring a recent  performance by singer James Taylor.  

In New England (and throughout the South, as well) most towns -- large or small – have a square, or common, containing a Civil War memorial that lists the names of those who fought and never came home. Since things don’t change very quickly around here, descendants of those dead often remain in the region. Commons are the focal points of towns, so those monuments get a certain amount of attention.

Back inside the theater, I learned more about Elvis than I ever wanted to know, and enjoyed almost every minute. While we relived the 1950s, 1960s, 1970s through song and dance, both singers/actors stressed Elvis’ strong religious faith and his commitment to his country. He was a true patriot, they said.    

At the end of the show, they returned to that thought. A drumbeat rumbled from the rear of the stage, the organ swelled and photos of fireworks flashed on the screen behind the band. Here comes the finale, I thought, assuming we were about to hear “The Star Spangled Banner“or “God Bless America.” Instead, we were all invited to stand up and sing “Dixie.” 

After the show, the cast came out to the lobby for photos and handshakes. I went up to the music director, told him how much I enjoyed the evening but mentioned that I thought “Dixie” was a poor song choice, especially in an area that supplied much of the cannon fodder for the Civil War. I suggested he take a look at the monument down the block. He didn’t seem to know what I was talking about. 

So, this week we’ve got Virginia Gov. Robert F. McDonnell (R) declaring April as Confederate History Month in Virginia, in hopes that designation will bring much-needed tourist dollars to the state while it helps Virginians "understand the sacrifices of the Confederate leaders, soldiers and citizens during the period of the Civil War."

To continue, click on Read More, on the right below the photo.
Gettysburg battlefield

Some of you know I’m a big fan of David Brooks, perhaps the last moderate conservative left in the 50 states. He also happens to be an independent thinker, not easily swept along the muddy river of disinformation created by Fox and friends. 
Thank you, David Brooks, for giving us something to look forward to during these bleak times. Here’s an op-ed worth sending to your kids and grandkids: 

April 6, 2010
Op-Ed Columnist

Relax, We’ll Be Fine

By David Brooks

According to recent polls, 60 percent of Americans think the country is heading in the wrong direction. The same percentage believes that the U.S. is in long-term decline. The political system is dysfunctional. A fiscal crisis looks unavoidable. There are plenty of reasons to be gloomy.

But if you want to read about them, stop right here. This column is a great luscious orgy of optimism. Because the fact is, despite all the problems, America’s future is exceedingly bright.

Over the next 40 years, demographers estimate that the U.S. population will surge by an additional 100 million people, to 400 million over all. The population will be enterprising and relatively young. In 2050, only a quarter will be over 60, compared with 31 percent in China and 41 percent in Japan.

In his book, “The Next Hundred Million: America in 2050,” über-geographer Joel Kotkin sketches out how this growth will change the national landscape. Extrapolating from current trends, he describes an archipelago of vibrant suburban town centers, villages and urban cores.

The initial wave of suburbanization was sprawling and featureless. Tom Wolfe once observed that you only knew you were in a new town when you began to see a new set of 7-Elevens. But humans need meaningful places, so developers have been filling in with neo-downtowns — suburban gathering spots where people can dine, work, go to the movies and enjoy public space.

Over the next 40 years, Kotkin argues, urban downtowns will continue their modest (and perpetually overhyped) revival, but the real action will be out in the compact, self-sufficient suburban villages. Many of these places will be in the sunbelt — the drive to move there remains strong — but Kotkin also points to surging low-cost hubs on the Plains, like Fargo, Dubuque, Iowa City, Sioux Falls, and Boise.

The demographic growth is driven partly by fertility. The American fertility rate is 50 percent higher than Russia, Germany or Japan, and much higher than China. Americans born between 1968 and 1979 are more family-oriented than the boomers before them, and are having larger families.

In addition, the U.S. remains a magnet for immigrants. Global attitudes about immigration are diverging, and the U.S. is among the best at assimilating them (while China is exceptionally poor). As a result, half the world’s skilled immigrants come to the U.S. As Kotkin notes, between 1990 and 2005, immigrants started a quarter of the new venture-backed public companies.

The United States already measures at the top or close to the top of nearly every global measure of economic competitiveness. A comprehensive 2008 Rand Corporation study found that the U.S. leads the world in scientific and technological development. The U.S. now accounts for a third of the world’s research-and-development spending. Partly as a result, the average American worker is nearly 10 times more productive than the average Chinese worker, a gap that will close but not go away in our lifetimes.

To continue reading, click Read More on the right.

Clearly, some of us are ahead of the curve when it comes to this hot new look:

from The New York Times blogs:
April 1, 2010, 1:42 pm

Young Trendsetters Streak Their Hair With Gray
By Ruth La Ferla

ACTING on an impulse last month, Faran Krentcil dipped her shoulder-length curls into a bathtub filled with Virgin Snow, a pale lavender tint, in the hope, she said, of emerging a “rock ’n’ roll fairy princess.”

Ms. Krentcil, the 28-year old digital director at Nylon magazine, got her wish and then some, her lilac fading within days to an otherworldly gray. A mistake? Sure, but no matter, Ms. Krentcil said. During New York Fashion Week, she stood out like a beacon. “More people took notice,” she said. “I got photographed a lot.”

Thibault Camus/Associated Press Kate Moss shows off her “gray lights” at the launch party for her new line of bags.

Her color malfunction had placed her, it seemed, in a league with fashion’s bright young things, affluent trendsetters like Daphne Guinness, who alighted, silver-streaked, on Giles Deacon’s runway in Parislast fall, a ringer for Cruella De Vil; Kate Moss, who showed off “gray lights” at a fashion party earlier this year; and Tavi Gevinson, the 13-year-old blogger and fashion mascot, looking coolly spinsterish in her blue-gray Dutch boy bob during New York Fashion Week.

Also caught up in the silver rush were pop icons like Pink, who showed off gray-tipped strands at the Grammys, and Siobhan Magnus, the “American Idol” contestant, who accessorized recently with a skunk streak and spectacles.

In embracing a tint their mothers would have shunned, such role models are lending gray new cachet, giving shades from ash to ermine an unlikely fashion moment. Now, some say, the trend, which trickled down from the runways of Chanel, Giles Deacon and their rarefied ilk to fashion hot spots around the country, seems poised to go mainstream.

Read more at: