31
Dec
14

2014: VC’s Most Memorable Moments

by VC

In a community such as the one built and nurtured here, it is understandable that a sharing of memorable moments will overlap. My ‘personal’ top 2014 MMs have already been featured, repeatedly (yet primarily by Arapaho)! I’ve summarized my version to reflect two main facts …

(1) President & Mrs. Obama are committed to our young people, at home and abroad.

a) In their ‘business’ travels The Obamas consistently meet with and listen to the future leaders of the WORLD! In 2014, this happened in Australia, Malaysia, China, Japan; Standing Rock Native youths, etc.

b) My Brother’s Keeper

“That’s what ‘My Brother’s Keeper’ is all about – Helping more of our young people stay on track. Providing the support they need to think more broadly about their future. Building on what works – when it works, in those critical life-changing moments.” ~ President Barack Obama: February 27, 2014

Get Involved

My Brother’s Keeper Community Challenge

In September 2014, President Obama issued a challenge to cities, towns, counties and tribes across the country to become “MBK Communities.” This challenge represents a call to action for all members of our communities, and mayors in particular, as they often sit at the intersection of many of the vital forces and structural components needed to enact sustainable change through policy, programs, and partnerships.

More here

c) They bring young people to WH or to USA for leadership networking & training.

Examples: i) August’s African Nations Summit at White House + the Town Hall with young African leaders

ii) On October 30, the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (WHIAAPI) held its first Young Leaders Dialogue (YLD) Google+ Hangout on Education. This is the first of four YLDs happening in conjunction with the E3! Ambassadors Program, comprised of 34 young leaders across the nation committed to increasing opportunity and improving the quality of life for AAPIs. These E3! Ambassadors aim to “Educate, Engage and Empower” young leaders, by highlighting federal programs and resources for AAPIs around the issues of education, mental health, pathways to public service and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).

iii) Nov 20 2014 FL Michelle Obama & Pres Obama have lunch with members of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Youth. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

(2) PBO, and his Admin, also show a consistent commitment to making the world a better place

For this latter, I will mention only the most recent example that many have already cited.
a) The rapprochement between the United States and Cuba – This one was particularly moving for me because even though we saw Castro unclenching his fist at Mandela’s memorial in 2013 (remember the media furor that caused), I was not expecting the announcement that both countries had started to move closer together so soon.


………………………………………………………………………………………….
Part 2 ••► Having established that my ‘personal’ memorable moments are the same as for many of you, I have decided to tempt *space* 😉  and focus more attention on not-so-familiar memorable moments for 3 of the Obama Admin’s movers and shakers, because in the end they all reflect PBO’s leadership.

i. John Kerry – Secretary of State who’s repeatedly been ‘around the world’ in ‘minutes’

ii. Sally Jewel – Secretary of the Interior

iii. Eric Holder – U.S. Attorney General [Feb 2009 – (Sept.) 2014]

i – John Kerry:

IMO it has been quite memorable to see SoS Kerry being so heavily invested in so many crucial negotiations in different locations around the world, as well as at home.

[SoS John Kerry – Kerry, photographed by Ralph Mecke, at the State Department in Washington, D.C. Grooming, Courtney Perkins; Vogue, October 2014]

Here are only two of the many ways SoS Kerry has been actively involved.

A) #OurOcean2014: A Threat Too Great to Ignore

In June, Secretary Kerry hosted his “Our Ocean” Conference at the State Department, which brought together nearly 400 participants from more than 80 nations, including government officials, scientists, private companies, and leading international institutions, to join together in determining concrete actions that can help protect ocean ecosystems.

B) #USAfrica: Welcoming 51 Leaders to the State Department

In August 2014, Pres Obama and SoS Kerry welcomed leaders from across the African continent to the State Dept for a three-day U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, the first such event of its kind. The Summit’s focus was on fostering stronger ties between the United States and Africa.

[US-Africa leaders summit begins in Washington with trade high on the agenda 04.08.2014]

‘Speaking to delegates at the opening of the three-day event, US Secretary of State John Kerry said Africa could be “the marketplace of the future.” ‘

ii – Sally Jewell:

I’m very impressed with the Secretary of the Interior because this past year her department has brought the nation’s Park Service to my attention in a way not done before. As you all know, I’ve been retweeting the weekly synopsis of what her department is doing. The one below was from August. I ♥♥♥ the way DoI always cites/gives credit to the ‘Obama Administration’, highlighting the team effort!

[Sec of Interior to mark the 50th anniversary of the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and make the case for its full and permanent funding …]

    

Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly (L) puts a blanket on the shoulders of U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell after a ceremonial signing of a record multi-million-dollar settlement, in Window Rock, Arizona, at the Navajo Nation, Sept. 26, 2014.

By Isabela Cocoli, Voice of America News [Oct. 9/2014]

WASHINGTON—A record multi-million-dollar settlement between the United States government and the Navajo Nation has been seen as a turning point in relations between the Federal government and the entire Indian nation. It is the largest sum ever paid by the U.S. government to a single Indian tribe.

Within the territory of the United States are 562 nations — ethnically-, culturally- and linguistically-diverse Native American tribes recognized by the United States as sovereign governments. The largest is the Navajo Nation, whose territory stretches more than 70,000 square kilometers across three western states.While the tribal governments enforce laws on their territory and license and regulate activities, the federal government holds the vast majority of Indian lands, money and resources in trust for the tribes, and is required to manage them in a way that benefits the tribes and individual Native Americans.

The Navajo Nation sued the federal government in 2006 and sought $900 million in damages for mismanagement of resources and trust accounts since at least 1946

More here

iii – Eric Holder – US Attorney General

AG Eric Holder is the nation’s first AA attorney general and the fourth-longest-serving attorney general. Truth is, I only thought of the length of his service because of the media kerfuffle when he announced in September that he was ready to go … as soon as the President’s replacement was confirmed! Way to go, Mr. Holder!  

[AG Holder announces resignation – Sept 25/ 2014]

Here’s a whiff of some of what AG Holder and his team accomplished in 2014. We certainly wish him the very best as he steps aside, once the new AG is confirmed!

A) Company charged for Jan 2014 chemical spill

Freedom Industries Officials Indicted in January Chemical Spill

U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin today announced that Freedom Industries Inc. (Freedom) and six former Freedom officials have been charged with various federal crimes related to the January 2014 Elk River chemical spill in Charleston.

“Just a mile upstream from Charleston’s primary source of drinking water, the conditions at the Freedom Industries facility were not only grievously unacceptable, but unlawful,” said Attorney General Eric Holder. “They put an entire population needlessly at risk. As these actions make clear, such conduct cannot, and will not, be tolerated. These law enforcement actions send an unambiguous message: that compliance with environmental safety standards is an obligation, not a choice. The Department of Justice is committed to vigorously enforcing the Clean Water Act and other natural resource protections. And we will never rest in our efforts to protect the American people – and our environment – from harm.”

“It’s hard to overstate the disruption that results when 300,000 people suddenly lose clean water,” said Goodwin. “This is exactly the kind of scenario that the Clean Water Act is designed to prevent. This spill, which was completely preventable, happened to take place in this district, but it could have happened anywhere. If we don’t want it to happen again, we need to make it crystal clear that those who engage in the kind of criminal behavior that led to this crisis will be held accountable.”

More here

B) May 2014 – AG Holder speaks out against excessive use of solitary confinement for Juveniles with Disabilities

MP4

C) Sept. 22, 2014 – AG Holder Announces $2.6 Million in Grants for Domestic Violence Homicide Prevention

Domestic violence is a devastating crime that claims far too many lives, and the Justice Department is working hard to bring an end to this tragic status quo. Today, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that four sites have been selected to receive a total of $2.6 million to implement promising models aimed at reducing domestic violence homicides. Over the next two years, these sites– Pitt County, North Carolina; Cuyahoga County, Ohio; Contra Costa County, California; and the Borough of Brooklyn, New York—will institute screening models and evidence-based strategies that will allow them to anticipate potentially lethal behavior, take steps to stop the escalation of violence, and – ultimately – save lives.

More here

D) November 19, 2014 – Securing Collections for the American People

Attorney General Holder Announces Justice Department Collected Over $24 Billion in Civil and Criminal Actions in FY2014

Today, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that – during Fiscal Year 2014 – the Justice Department collected a total of $24.7 billion in civil and criminal actions. That’s more than three times the $8 billion total the Department collected in 2013, and it’s nearly eight and a half times the combined budgets of all 94 U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and all main litigating divisions. These collections are won through the hard work of federal prosecutors and trial attorneys who protect our citizens, safeguard taxpayer resources, and provide a valuable return on investment for the American people. Going forward, Attorney General Holder urged leaders from both parties to come together to increase investments in this critical work, in order to ensure that the Justice Department will continue to have the necessary resources to build on these efforts, and to keep serving the American people, in the months and years to come.

Finally, despite the media’s persistent negativity, we know there is so much we can give thanks for! All of the memorable moments we have been sharing during this season reflect the way the Obama governance *has been working*, in spite of the recalcitrance of the Republicans and their minions – Yea, Pres O!

President B. H. Obama, we are so TREMENDOUSLY PROUD of you, VP Joe and the members of your administration! We are PROUD of your family too! THANKS!

****

See all your 2014 Memorable Moments here


134 Responses to “2014: VC’s Most Memorable Moments”


  1. December 31, 2014 at 11:04 am

    Thank yoooooooooou VC for your highly excellent Memorable Moments – and your very first TOD post!!!

    • 2 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 6:40 pm

      😳 Truth be told am feeling a bit nervous (much easier to mouth off from the sidelines, I think 😉 ), but willing to TRY to aim towards your high posting standards. Thank you for the opportunity!

  2. 11 desertflower
    December 31, 2014 at 11:05 am

    Yea me!

  3. 24 desertflower
    December 31, 2014 at 11:05 am

    wow vc! You did good:)

  4. 26 GGail
    December 31, 2014 at 11:18 am

    Geez, vc, this Memorable Moments reads like a Dissertation 😯 (I can tease her because I know she has left the building already) 😀 😀

    Truthfully, this is incredible and so thorough. I like seeing how we have similar attachments to certain moments and then we each bring one that is particularly special and we all go “aha”. Thank you so much vc for the Interior segments. We’ve grown attached to them now. Good job Girl {{{hugs}}}

    • 27 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 6:50 pm

      You do know that when she leaves the building, she eventually returns, right? And TY. 😀 I confess I find my own attachment to the Interior segments a bit odd since I’ve never paid any attention to them prior to Sec. Jewell or even been to *any* of them. I *think* part of the attraction is the weekly recap, the lovely nature pics, AND the fact their tweet account is responsive. If you ask them a (relevant) question they actually answer you.

  5. 28 MightyPamela
    December 31, 2014 at 11:19 am

    WowWee!!! VC = BT!! I should say I am in awe of you (nothing else new around here, eh?) Morning everyone… ❤

    • 29 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 6:56 pm

      Hush – vc is very definitely entering on the lowest rung of the ladder and leaning heavily on the real Bts re how to add pics or fix layout , or even save. Let’s leave her under the radar for her probationary period.

  6. 30 desertflower
    December 31, 2014 at 11:20 am

    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/kenny-knight-steve-scalise-campaign-donation

    David Duke’s Aide Gave $1,000 To Scalise’s 2008 Campaign

    ummmmm….

    • 31 Vicki
      December 31, 2014 at 11:23 am

      Racism is the GOP platform and they intend to ride it all the way to the White House in 2016.
      Same play in NYC right now. Against Mayor de Blasio.

  7. 32 Vicki
    December 31, 2014 at 11:21 am

    VC—Wonderful memorable moments and your first photo is one of my alltime favorites. POTUS and FLOTUS so joyful and the fantastic colors in the little girls outfit.
    That picture is ALIVE. This stunning photograph could easily stand for the joy PBO, his family and his administration have brought to so many of us for so many years.

  8. 33 Nena20409
    December 31, 2014 at 11:23 am

    VC, ❤ your post. Awesome.
    Au ⭐ for Lady Chipsticks.
    Ag ⭐ for DF 😉

  9. 34 forus50
    December 31, 2014 at 11:28 am

    Awesome, awesome post VC!!! I really love the first photo where I just now noticed that POTUS is holding her hand with both of his. Such kindness.

    I didn’t know AG Holder was the 4th longest serving AG – the media distorts everything. However, I would venture to opine that he might be the most productive Attorney General of the US EVER.

    Happy New Year!

  10. 37 arapaho415
    December 31, 2014 at 11:29 am

    Yay, congrats, VC newest BT — hope to see more of your posts in 2015!

    Thanks also for the shout out. 🙂

    The investment that PBO is making (yes, “decreeing”) will have repercussions for decades to come. TODville knows the lasting impression that leaders in the 1960s such as MLK and RFK made on those who lived through those years.

    Repeating what I’ve said earlier — the white elite media have no idea what a difference it makes in the lives of young people to have a network outside of the social hierarchy that is part of high school life. They take for granted that they have an uncle, cousin or other family member or buddy from summer camp who can provide insight on opportunities available to them in the outside world.

    A sense of belonging is paramount to adolescents and the peer-to-peer networking opportunities established by the Obama Administration (i.e., Tribal Youth Gathering, My Brother’s Keeper, etc.) is heartwarming and priceless.

    P.S. I voted for the 2014 Photo of the Year (thanks VC, for your tireless effort to scour and compile these photos). I was tempted to cast my vote for japa’s (pope) choice, but I went with the 70th anniversary of D-Day, a watershed moment for the Western World, an era that is quickly receding from living memory.

    Looking forward to the great photo choices 2015 and 2016 will bring. I am certain that TODville will have the opportunity to vote for another PBO/Pope photo before 2017.

    Happy New Year, everyone, and happy belated birthday to 99ts.

  11. 38 a4alice
    December 31, 2014 at 11:29 am

    Wonderful post VC! thanks for sharing those and I DO love the Interior weekly roundups. 😀

  12. 40 desertflower
    December 31, 2014 at 11:31 am

    http://immasmartypants.blogspot.com/2014/12/pope-franciss-message-and-tone-are.html

    “Pope Francis’s message and tone are making Catholic Republicans a little uncomfortable”

    🙂 🙂

    • 41 a4alice
      December 31, 2014 at 11:46 am

      read it. and tweeted – thanks DF. I saw an article I can’t remember where. It showed pictures of PF when he was in South America before he became the pope. He looked so old and worn down and just tired. Now that he is Pope and is everywhere, with probably an unbelievable schedule and he’s older he suddenly looks younger and lighter. It’s pretty amazing.

    • 42 MightyPamela
      December 31, 2014 at 1:11 pm

      This must be the ‘Devoted Catholics’ we know as Boner and Chief Justice Roberts… always putting themselves and their $$ sources first?

  13. 43 yardarm756
    December 31, 2014 at 11:32 am

    Good morning everyone and Happy New Year 9t9! 🙂

  14. 55 yardarm756
    December 31, 2014 at 11:48 am

  15. 58 Linda
    December 31, 2014 at 11:59 am

    CNN says the # 1 story of the year is the drop in oil prices.

    Really ?

  16. 60 yardarm756
    December 31, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    Something to think about!

  17. 69 Linda
    December 31, 2014 at 12:03 pm

    Big Sigh…!

    I just saw Thailand welcome in the new year and all the balls had corporate logos on them…even a 7-11.

    • 71 yardarm756
      December 31, 2014 at 12:26 pm

      Yup. Welcome in the new age of fleeting attention spans, the next new thingy, and a high level of commercialism that is generated by greed and selfishness…..(phew)!

    • 72 pickle48
      December 31, 2014 at 11:59 pm

      My oldest daughter is in Thailand right now and has been posting pictures. Fortunately, that is not what she’s seeing. She has about 30 teachers-in-training with her. They have been busy releasing lights into the sky…. 😍

  18. December 31, 2014 at 12:24 pm

    It’s. Mother. Freaking. Cold. Yes yes yes, insert derisive laughter here. I don’t care. GGail and Jojocat and PurpleShoes will back me up. Brrrrr.

    • 74 GGail
      December 31, 2014 at 12:37 pm

      Yes, Yes, YES!!!! It is freaking COLD in this here parts of town! Those folks at the Rose Parade will be shivering-me-timbers tonight and tomorrow till around Noon! Forecasting 32 degrees F for tonight and those people like to sleep along the Parade route to get the best viewing position. Not me! I’m just a few miles from the Parade route and I’m gonna watch it on the TV!

  19. December 31, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    Is noon too early to start gimlets? Asking for a friend.

  20. 81 japa21
    December 31, 2014 at 12:27 pm

    VC, well done.

    I particularly liked you adding something about Kerry, Holder and jewel. You are right, they, as everyone in his administration is, are an extension of the man himself.

    • 82 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 9:38 pm

      Thanks, J. Though it’s the only one I’ve paid much attention to, I do believe this has been a productive and ‘good’ administration with far less kerfuffle than in past ones. There seems to be a lot of high achievers, whom I’d like to think have been influenced by their leader.

  21. December 31, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    Loving your post…VC…

  22. 85 carolyn
    December 31, 2014 at 12:37 pm

    vc, this round up is marvelous. I will echo japa, that I am so glad you included Kerry, Holder and Jewell. Those three have indeed done monumental work. Sally Jewell is bringing what the Interior dept does to public recognition, which I cannot remember any other Interior Sec doing. Kudos to her for making people aware and knowledgeable about the wonders of our country.

    We will be reaping the positive results of AG Holder’s tenure for years to come. He has started us on a completely new path in justice. Others will catch up, and the entire process will be restructured.

    SOS Kerry has been one of my faves for years, and I’m so glad to see him in the perfect arena for him. He is doing good things, for instance I didn’t know about the Ocean Conference…thank you. But I do know conservation and the environment have long been close to his heart.

    So, vc thank you for this wondrous work. I have to say I wish I could use this in my composition classes as an example of synthesis….a concept so difficult to teach. You did a beautiful job of synthesizing the long trail of events this year, putting likes together and explaining them. A+

    Happy New Year everyone. I’m looking forward to 365 more days with TOD!

    • 86 GGail
      December 31, 2014 at 12:39 pm

      carolyn, vc is gonna just beam when she see’s you gave her an A+ 🙂

      Happy New Year to you and to everyone of my family here at TOD ❤

    • 87 carla4obama
      December 31, 2014 at 1:38 pm

      I also echo Japa, so glad she included Kerry, Holder and Jewell. True, these 3 people are extensions (heart and soul) of our President. Kerry is so comfortable and dedicated to his SOS position. He is putting so much energy into his job not to add a checklist to what he has accomplished, but because he wants to leave a positive imprint on the world. SOS Clinton…it was a checklist for her. Prettyfoot, I think like you regarding “Are you ready for Hillary?”. I got an email from some outfit (Emily’s list?) asking me if I was ready for Hillary! I replied- “NO!”
      Have a great new year everyone. Oh…I voted for the pic with Our President and the Pope. Finally he has a kindred spirit outside of Washington to help him combat the evils of the world.

    • 88 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 9:52 pm

      Carolyn, you are absolutely great for my ego! Am trying to decide if I should discretely leave this grade in a spot where my offspring can stumble upon it. Of course, I would have to first convince him that vc is me. 😉 Thank you.

    • 89 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 10:15 pm

      BTW, Carolyn, if I ever pen (ye olde English? 😉 ) anything that makes stylistic sense to you, you are welcome to use it (without wishing). 😀

  23. December 31, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    God, my Stewie is such a sensitive petal. He gets totally dommed by my geriatric cat Babs.

    • 91 MightyPamela
      December 31, 2014 at 1:15 pm

      I know from experience Stewie is quite correct: if cats in general are ‘powerful’, these geriatric kitties just do.not.mess.around. Full Stop.

  24. 92 Nerdy Wonka
    December 31, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    • December 31, 2014 at 1:49 pm

      All this smoke and mirrors around whether he is or isn’t …takes me back to this video….

      “What they did vs What they are”

      • 94 vcprezofan2
        December 31, 2014 at 9:56 pm

        I remember that, pf, though it’s been a while since I’ve checked out jay. You’ve reminded me that I saw him doing a TED talk on the subject a good while back. Maybe I’ll remember to look it up one of these days – feeling too lazy right now.

  25. 95 sherijr
    December 31, 2014 at 12:45 pm

    Thank you vc, wonderful ‘memories’. Special thanks too for showcasing AG Holder 🙂 I can’t believe this year is over, it’s been amazing!

  26. 100 desertflower
    December 31, 2014 at 12:49 pm

    Cold, rainy, nasty….going to snuggle back in bed:) Seriously, this could be an all day jammie day for me!

  27. 102 Nerdy Wonka
    December 31, 2014 at 12:52 pm

    HEADS UP for you or anyone you know.

  28. 104 Nerdy Wonka
    December 31, 2014 at 1:02 pm

    LOL. THIS.

    And THIS. (though I would amend it to marriage for all who want it) 🙂

  29. 105 Nerdy Wonka
    December 31, 2014 at 1:04 pm

  30. December 31, 2014 at 1:15 pm

    Ah ha, one photo has got 23% so far, two on 18% …….. I couldn’t resist having a little look 🙂

  31. 108 donna dem 4 obama
    December 31, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    Wow!!

    Chicago teenager Malik Bryant wrote a letter to Santa Claus this year asking for “safety,” but his note ended up intercepted by President Barack Obama.

  32. December 31, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    VC, I LOVE that you highlighted the unsung heroes in PBO’s administration. They are brilliant and tireless and your words make me even more proud. Thank you!!

    • 112 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 10:33 pm

      Thanks, Meta,Girl! I couldn’t highlight them all (I thought of VPJoe, S. Rice, S. Power, et al), but it felt ‘right’ mentioning those three. Who knows, maybe an opportunity might present itself, or inspiration may hit, to focus on one or two others in 2015.

  33. 113 jackiegrumbacher
    December 31, 2014 at 4:02 pm

    Coming late and last, VC, but want you to know that I learned so much from your “memorable moments” and enjoyed reviewing all the achievements, including those of some of the best cabinet members this country has ever had. Every MM post has been an education and a special insight into one or another aspect of the astonishingly brilliant, dazzling and utterly splendid and soul satisfying presidency of Barack Obama.

    • 114 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 10:50 pm

      Thanks a lot for your support, JackieG! Like you, I truly appreciate the fact that ‘every MM post has been an education’. One of the advantages of this site, I think, is that at periodic intervals Chips yank our chains and nudges and prods to get more villagers to dig deep and share themselves and their particular impressions and perspectives. The end result is that we all benefit from the increased brush strokes added to the tableau of the Obama-presidency, or to our music landscape, or to our list of which TOD furniture builders on whom we should not call. 😉

  34. December 31, 2014 at 5:06 pm

    No idea where my expression of gratitude to VC for her recognizing exceptional members of the Obama Administration. May be in spam? who knows …. Thank you VC and Happy New Year!

    • 116 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 11:19 pm

      At the rate I’ve been going it will be the new year before I get around to answering all the comments in this post! 😀
      You are very welcome, Bfr, and thank *you* for your support. I don’t think I’ve ever before seen a political leader who has chosen and led a more capable, productive and focused work force. In this instance, both leader and those led have managed, in an impressive way, to put ego aside so as to move the ball down the field despite consistent opposition. They have been very successful.

  35. December 31, 2014 at 6:03 pm

    VC I absolutely delighted in reading your memorable moments – wish I had gotten to it sooner – I was out for much of the afternoon, and then my browser for some reason failed to refresh appropriately to updated threads.
    I too love our President and First Lady’s commitment to forging new relationships with young people both here and abroad – and this administration’s endless work with the international communities from all over. The current & future generations will be reaping the benefits of these innovative collaborations…. 🙂

    • 118 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 6:12 pm

      Thanks, Hopef! You’ve actually gotten here before me. 😀 I missed the posting (haven’t read it yet on screen) and am busily trying to catch up on Lib_L’s post. Hoping desperately another post doesn’t arrive before I catch up to mine, otherwise my goose will be cooked! Yes, I am intrigued by the Obamas’ clear and ongoing commitment to the young people of the world. They genuinely seem to embrace ALL youth, emotionally and physically, and their interaction with international communities is so obviously sincere (not photo-ops)!

  36. 119 jacquelineoboomer
    December 31, 2014 at 8:35 pm

    VC – This is BRILLIANT. Thanks so much for sharing with all of us, and Happy New Year’s Eve to you.

    • 120 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 9:42 pm

      I am pleased that you think so!]
      Happy New Year, ye bard-ess of TOD! [I won'[t say what ‘bard-ess’ looked like to me after I wrote it, but I will add that it would have worked too. 😉

      • 121 jacquelineoboomer
        December 31, 2014 at 9:57 pm

        First time Chips used that, I thought what I think you thought at first – Ha! Works for me!

        Oh, and, I don’t believe in New Year’s resolutions, but tomorrow I start my goal of hopping back aboard my exercise bike and giving it another try. Want to join me? Before you say yes, I’m also giving up chocolate candy for a month, so be careful before answering. 🙂

        • 122 vcprezofan2
          December 31, 2014 at 10:03 pm

          Well now, giving up chocolate candy for a month would be the easier part of the deal for me. I could commit to 1-2 weeks** on the bike though, but do we have to start tomorrow? Holidays are a make no promises time for me generally. Would you consider starting ‘fresh’ next Monday?

          ** = my attention span for exercise

  37. 127 sjterrid
    December 31, 2014 at 10:45 pm

    VC, congratulations on your first post as a bt. Thank you for highlighting the great work that SOS John Kerry, Secretary Sally Jewell, and Atty. General, Eric Holder( I didn’t realize that he’s only the 4th longest AG) have done.

    • 128 vcprezofan2
      December 31, 2014 at 11:01 pm

      Thank you kindly, TerriD. There is so much that the AG’s office has been doing that has had /will have great impact on every day lives AND the country’s coffers. A great pity the MSM chose to gin up scandals, as opposed to sharing meaningful news.

      Another example of many:

      Defense Contractor Agrees to Pay $13.7 Million to Settle Allegations of Overbilling

      DRS Technical Services Inc. (DRS) has agreed to pay $13.7 million to settle allegations that it violated the False Claims Act by knowingly overbilling the government for work performed by DRS personnel who lacked the job qualifications required by the contract, the Justice Department announced today. DRS is located in Herndon, Virginia, and is a subsidiary of DRS Defense Solutions LLC.

      DRS designs, integrates, operates and maintains satellite and wireless network solutions and telecommunication services and security systems for government and private sector customers. DRS C3 & Aviation Company, which is headquartered in Gaithersburg, Maryland, is an indirect subsidiary of DRS and provides services to government agencies, including aircraft maintenance, logistics and depot support, and engineering support. Between March 2003 and Dec. 31, 2012, DRS and its predecessors were awarded time and materials contracts for services and supplies to be provided to the Army’s Communication and Electronics Command (CECOM) in Iraq and Afghanistan, and to the Coast Guard for aircraft maintenance.

      “Contractors that fail to provide qualified labor as promised are not entitled to bill the government as though they had,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Joyce R. Branda for the Justice Department’s Civil Division. “The Department of Justice will pursue contractors that claim taxpayer funds to which they are not entitled.” ………………………..??

      http://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/defense-contractor-agrees-pay-137-million-settle-allegations-overbilling

  38. 130 vcprezofan2
    December 31, 2014 at 11:09 pm

    Also, too, for anyone interested in what the Dept of Justice has really been doing, I actually stumbled upon a link that chronicles the WEEKLY ( 😯 ) video messages from the Attorney Generally (presumably this will continue with the incoming AG?). The link below will take you to the site.

    http://www.justice.gov/opa/video/ag-holder-announces-us-now-has-smallest-corrections-population-2003

  39. 131 PoliticalJunkessa
    January 1, 2015 at 2:27 pm

    Spectacular round-up, VC! ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

    • 132 vcprezofan2
      January 1, 2015 at 2:33 pm

      Hi, Sugar, thank you! 🙂 🙂

      Are you ready for 2015? Wishing for you, good health, warm relationships, and some travel (up north) and laughter! ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

      • 133 PoliticalJunkessa
        January 1, 2015 at 2:45 pm

        I’m *almost* ready — 2015 came ridiculously quickly! I receive your beautiful warm wishes and pray the same for you! I so want to travel more this year and getting North is near the top of my list — thank you! Blessings. ♥


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