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Auguste Roc
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Featured Guests

I am very fortunate because so many people contribute to my life everyday. People are always sharing with me about their lives or they share with me different perspectives or new ideas. I invite you to share with me whenever you'd like and I look forward to hearing from you!

10.28.13 | TERRY EDMONDS - Former Chief Speechwriter to President Bill Clinton, First African-American Director of Speechwriting for an American President

For months, as mainstream pundits and prognosticators argued about the growing prospect that Barack Obama would become the nation's first African-American president, I, along with many of my baby boomer African-American friends listened in semidisbelief. For as long as we could remember, whenever talk at the kitchen table or barber shop would veer into speculation about a possible black president, the conversation would inevitably abruptly end, punctuated by four final words-"not in our lifetime."

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10.20.14 | StoryCorps, Listening is the Greatest Gift

When was the last time that you took the time to really listen to what someone else had to say, for the sake of just listening to what someone else had to say?

StoryCorps is on a mission to provide people with the opportunity to give the gift of listening. Join them on November 28th for their National Day of Listening and discover that listening can actually be a precious gift that we can each give ourselves as well.

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10.13.14 | Shock Doctrine, U.S.A. by Paul Krugman

Thank you Paul Krugman for writing to us beyond the manufactured talking points, for respecting our intelligence and for exposing the real story...

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10.06.14 | ELIE WIESEL: The Peril of Indifference

Holocaust survivor and Nobel Laureate, Elie Wiesel, gave this impassioned speech in the East Room of the White House on April 12, 1999, as part of the Millennium Lecture series, hosted by President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton.

In the summer of 1944, as a teenager in Hungary, Elie Wiesel, along with his father, mother and sisters, were deported by the Nazis to Auschwitz extermination camp in occupied Poland. Upon arrival there, Wiesel and his father were selected by SS Dr. Josef Mengele for slave labor and wound up at the nearby Buna rubber factory.

Daily life included starvation rations of soup and bread, brutal discipline, and a constant struggle against overwhelming despair. At one point, young Wiesel received 25 lashes of the whip for a minor infraction.

In January 1945, as the Russian Army drew near, Wiesel and his father were hurriedly evacuated from Auschwitz by a forced march to Gleiwitz and then via an open train car to Buchenwald in Germany, where his father, mother, and a younger sister eventually died.

Wiesel was liberated by American troops in April 1945. After the war, he moved to Paris and became a journalist then later settled in New York. Since 1976, he has been Andrew Mellon Professor in the Humanities at Boston University. He has received numerous awards and honors including the 1986 Nobel Peace Prize and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He was also the Founding Chair of the United States Holocaust Memorial. Wiesel has written over 40 books including Night, a harrowing chronicle of his Holocaust experiences, first published in 1960.

At the White House lecture, Wiesel was introduced by Hillary Clinton who stated, "It was more than a year ago that I asked Elie if he would be willing to participate in these Millennium Lectures...I never could have imagined that when the time finally came for him to stand in this spot and to reflect on the past century and the future to come, that we would be seeing children in Kosovo crowded into trains, separated from families, separated from their homes, robbed of their childhoods, their memories, their humanity."

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09.29.14 | U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL ERIC HOLDER, ANTI-TORTURE SPEECH

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is the one to be listening to right now when it comes to the subject of torture...

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09.15.14 | A Peace Corps History: A Speech delivered by Theodore Vestal

Isn't it wonderful to be celebrating the fortieth anniversary of the founding of the Peace Corps? To those of us who can remember forty years ago, it seems as if it were only yesterday! Everyone who has been associated with the Peace Corps has mental stories, if not a book, about his or her adventures and trials and tribulations of learning first hand about a different culture. I'll tell you some of mine...

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09.08.14 | Mad as Hell Speech delivered by “Howard Beale”

As the economy continues to struggle to bounce back and as thousands of people continue to lose their jobs while wall street bonuses are predicted to exceed $145,000,000,000, and as we watch people around the world begin to fight for their right to live with dignity, are Americans finally ready to scream “ENOUGH”?!

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09.01.14 | LABOR THESE DAYS: THE WORK AND MESSAGE OF BARBARA EHRENREICH
More and more people are finding it near impossible to survive in a country with such tremendous resources. The gap between the rich and the poor is widening at an alarming pace. While some of its citizens reside in multiple luxury homes, and enjoy the influence that comes with having more, America has yet to effectively acknowledge and deal with the fact that far too many of its other citizens are slipping faster and faster into a world of barely surviving. Having to choose between food and gas, medicine or mortgage, is no longer “the thing that only happens to other people”. People that, at one time felt, they were somehow in the game, are having to deal with the sobering realization that the rules have suddenly changed.

This is America’s dirty little secret...

Barbara Ehrenreich has certainly earned the credibility to speak on this subject the hard way. Going undercover to investigate what it’s like for America’s working poor and the shrinking middle-class, she has lived the nightmare of trying to make it on inadequate wages. She has discovered, first-hand, the painful reality that is often too difficult and shameful to deal with. Together in a conversation with Bill Moyers, she exposes the dirt that continues to be swept under the carpet.

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08.25.14 | BEN ZANDER: CLASSICAL MUSIC WITH SHINING EYES

Benjamin Zander has two infectious passions: classical music, and helping us all realize our untapped love for it -- and by extension, our untapped love for all new possibilities, new experiences, new connections...

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08.18.14 | Senator Barack Obama Speech on Race

In March 2008, then Senator Barack Obama gave a speech on race. It was a speech that served to raise the bar on our country’s most divisive subject. The presidency of our nation’s first Black President has proven to further divide America with regard to race. When will we finally muster up the courage to deal openly and honestly with the issue of race so that we may begin to move beyond?

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08.11.14 | JESSI ARRINGTON: on TEDTalks: Wearing Nothing New

Designer Jessi Arrington packed nothing for TED but 7 pairs of undies, buying the rest of her clothes in thrift stores around LA. It's a meditation on conscious consumption -- wrapped in a rainbow of color and creativity... More...

08.04.14 | Why Can't We? : A Speech delivered by Samantha Power

She has captured our attention. Here's a peek into who Samantha Power is and what she unapologetically stands for.

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07.28.14 | TIM WISE, Antiracist Essayist, Author and Educator - Because They Hate: Health Care Obstructionism and the Conservative Mind

It's because they hate. There is no other logical explanation.

After all, it's one thing to oppose a piece of legislation and fight to keep it from being passed because you honestly disagree with it as a matter of principle. Decent people can disagree on policy.

But it's quite another to celebrate like frat boys at a keg party upon hearing the news that millions of people may now lose their health care, or that their care may become so financially prohibitive as to bankrupt them.

Yet that is what they are doing, and by they I mean pretty much the entirety of conservative America. Check out their Twitter spew, where you can see their nearly orgasmic delight at yesterday's 2-1 decision by an appellate court panel to the effect that only persons enrolled in state level insurance exchanges can receive federal subsidies for coverage under the Affordable Care Act. Since most states - especially those with conservative political leadership - have refused to establish exchanges, thereby forcing residents to turn to the federal version, the ruling (were it to stand) would mean that millions of Americans may no longer be able to access care under the law.

Decent human beings, irrespective of their take on a matter of policy, do not celebrate at the news that millions of peoples' lives could now be made harder. Decent human beings do not cheer and gloat at the news that millions of children could now go without care, or that millions of people may once again be forced to choose between health insurance they really can't afford, or paying a light bill, or buying groceries, or paying rent. Decent human beings don't put such a premium on political victories that they would... More...

07.21.14 | RACHEL CORRIE’S EMAILS FROM PALESTINE

“...and a child will lead them...”

Rachel Corrie’s life, her commitment and her courage continue to leave me speechless. Perhaps it is because I have a daughter who is fearless when it comes to voicing her opinions and standing up for what she thinks is right, that Rachel’s story touches me so deeply. Although her death was tragic, her passion is pure and will live on in the hearts of those who share her belief that we can all exist together –

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07.14.14 | Olympian Frank Shorter – Memories of Munich

For Frank Shorter, returning to Munich meant reliving one of the greatest achievements of his life, along with one of the greatest tragedies in sports history. And, as he discovered recently, there is a point where they intersect.

On a bridge near the Munich Olympic Stadium today stands a memorial to 11 Israeli athletes slain by Arab terrorists at the 1972 Summer Games. Shorter traveled to Germany this month to take part in a television documentary marking the 40-year anniversary. And when he visited the memorial, he remembered that spot well.

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07.07.14 | The 100 Years Project: Sam McConnell

100 Years from now what do you want to be remembered for:

Just to be remembered at all would be a lovely thing...

My grandparents have left an impression on me. There have been many artists and writers who have left something in the world that are important to me or moved me in some way…I don’t know if I will have an impact, either in a personal way or in a larger way. I don’t know if I’ll be able to leave behind a film that I have created that will still move people, but I sure hope so. That would be wonderful...

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06.30.14 | Lecture on Haiti: A Speech Delivered by Frederick Douglass

In 1893 as the Ex-Minister to Haiti, Frederick Douglass delivered a breath taking speech that paints a vivid picture of the rich history and the profound struggle of Haiti while offering cautious counsel regarding the consequences of shunning “her”. Today this speech offers a prophetic and brilliant look into the history of Haiti.

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06.23.14 | A CRISIS OF CONFIDENCE: A SPEECH DELIVERED BY PRESIDENT JIMMY CARTER

Take the time to read this historic speech, delivered by President Jimmy Carter in the summer of 1979. America was in crisis and fighting desperately to regain its optimism. Again, today, we find ourselves at such a crossroads, poised and ready for a change.

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06.16.14 | POLITICS OF FOOD, A SPEECH DELIVERED BY FATHER MIGUEL D’ESCOTO BROCKMANN

As the new President of the United Nations General Assembly, Father Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann is clearly committed to telling it like it is with the hope that the truth will indeed set the captive free.

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06.09.14 | Man on the Moon: A Speech Delivered by President Kennedy

These are extraordinary times. And we face an extraordinary challenge. Our strength as well as our convictions have imposed upon this nation the role of leader in freedom's cause. No role in history could be more difficult or more important. We stand for freedom. That is our conviction for ourselves-that is our only commitment to others. No friend, no neutral and no adversary should think otherwise. We are not against any man-or any nation-or any system-except as it is hostile to freedom. Nor am I here to present a new military doctrine, bearing any one name or aimed at any one area. I am here to promote the freedom doctrine...

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06.02.14 | Wisconsin: The Progressive Era 1895-1925 by Dan Kaufman

The genesis of political and social change reputedly occurred on September 17, 1891, when Republican leader Philetus Sawyer offered 35-year-old attorney Robert M. La Follette (1855-1925) a bribe to fix a court case. Furious, La Follette refused it, later saying, "Nothing else ever came into my life that exerted such a powerful influence upon me." For the rest of the decade he traveled around the state speaking out against crooked politicians, powerful lumber barons, and corrupt railroad interests. Elected governor in 1900, La Follette pledged to institute reforms. Those who followed him called themselves "Progressive" Republicans; they believed that the proper business of government was not business, but service to the common people.

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05.26.14 | Anti Iraq War Speech delivered by Illinois State Senator Barack Obama

On Wednesday October 2, 2002, then Illinois Senator Barack Obama took a stand against the War in Iraq when few others would take that stand. On Friday February 27, 2009, President Barack Obama, announced the end of that same war...

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05.19.14 | FORMER CONGRESSWOMAN BARBARA JORDAN

Democratic Convention Keynote Address: Who Then Will Speak for the Common Good?
New York, New York, July 12, 1976
Fifth among the Top 100 American Speeches of the 20th Century

...We are a people in a quandary about the present. We are a people in search of our future. We are a people in search of... More...

05.12.14 | SAMANTHA POWERS - Address to Pitzer-Claremont College Class 0f 2008

Samantha Powers is a shining and brilliant example of what the future of leadership in America looks like...

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It is an indescribable honor to be here with you today, class of 2008. It is an even greater honor that you extended the invitation before what I now -- with exaggerated self-importance -- call "Monster-gate." I am grateful to you for not rescinding the invitation after I opened my big mouth and became global villain for a day. If you ever needed evidence that even college graduates never grow up -- they just get more sophisticated at disguising their inner child -- I offered it. Thanks for standing by your humbled commencement speaker.

Since I graduated from college in 1992, I have been blessed to have been a part of some pretty momentous causes. Yet I count as the greatest privileges of my life the...

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05.05.14 | DAVID SEDARIS: WHAT I LEARNED: And what I said at Princeton.

I dare anybody to read anything by David Sedaris without laughing out loud at least three times, and without caring about what other people will think. He’s that funny and his humor is a welcome oasis when trying to trudge across a downer desert.

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04.28.14 | HOST, JIM HAYNES

Jim Haynes was born in Louisiana, ran a bookstore in Scotland, created a theater company in London, launched a newspaper in Amsterdam and taught media studies in Paris. Guests at his Sunday dinners have included Allen Ginsberg, R. Crumb and Molly Ivins.

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04.21.14 | Robert F. Kennedy: An Offering of Peace and Unity

Robert F. Kennedy knew that, as a nation, united we will stand, divided we will most certainly fall. His words offer to us, a reminder of this timeless truth.

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04.14.14 | The 100 Years Project: Taylor Mork

100 Years from now what do you want to be remembered for:

Right now we are so concentrated on building a business and becoming a bigger movement - not necessarily a bigger company...



Most of my thoughts are about being good to...

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04.07.14 | The 100 Years Project: Eric Demby

100 Years from now what do you want to be remembered for:

As of today, I would most like to be remembered for helping Brooklyn, in a general sense, become a place that...

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03.31.14 | NAOMI KLEIN: JOURNALIST, AUTHOR AND FILMMAKER

To boldly declare what you stand for is arguably far easier to do than to actively demonstrate the courage of your convictions. Naomi Klein is one of the courageously outspoken, whose words and work continue to challenge others to consciously participate in the process of our democracy.

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03.24.14 | DALAI LAMA - Timeless Remarks

War and more war is the unsettling topic of many conversations these days, providing an opportunity for the world to reconsider –

PEACE.


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03.17.14 | AUTHOR AND ECO-ACTIVIST, PAUL HAWKEN

Paul Hawken is an environmentalist, entrepreneur, journalist and author who has dedicated his life to improving the relationship between business and the environment, and between human beings and living systems in order to create a more just and sustainable world.

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03.10.14 | THE HOPE SPEECH : HARVEY MILK

Harvey Milk delivered a message in 1978 that is just as relevant today. His message not only challenges our willingness to embrace and celebrate our differences, but it offers a message of hope. His untimely and tragic death serves as a reminder that we still have a very long way to go.

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02.24.14 | DAVID BRADLEY: Courageous

The first person on my list of friends isn't a person at all. It's more the beginning of a great journey than a circumstance. The first thing I wanted to talk about was my friend my tumor. I don't want to get into medical terms but more or less explain the story of my cancer for those of you that do not know it and maybe it will help to explain the writing of this section of this book.

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02.17.14 | TIM WISE: No Innocence left to Kill

You remember, forever and forever, that moment when you first discover the cruelties and injustices of the world, and having been ill-prepared for them, your heart breaks open.

I mean really discover them, and for yourself; not because someone else told you to see the elephant standing, gigantic and unrelenting in the middle of your room, but because you saw him, and now you know he’s there, and will never go away until you attack him, and with a vengeance... More...

02.10.14 | RECONNECTING: A CULINARY REVOLUTION - A Speech by Alice Water

Few things could be considered more important than the food that we eat everyday. What we eat, where our food comes from and how it is prepared is critical to so many aspects of our lives. Alice Waters understands the power of food and as a result she has magnified the urgency of eating consciously by identifying the relationships between how the food that we eat and the quality of our lives.

Whether we live well or not has everything to do with what we are putting into our bodies and this is the inspiration behind Alice Waters and her culinary revolution that inspires us to think before we eat.

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02.03.14 | ENOUGH : A SPEECH DELIVERED BY JOHN BOGLE

I first learned about John Bogle last year when, while listening to an interview with him, I decided to get his book Battle for the Soul of Capitalism. It is stunning to me how much of what has happened regarding the economy was predicted by John Bogle in this book. His voice is one that should be listened to. His message is one worth taking seriously.

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01.27.14 | BILL MOYERS: This is the Fight of Our Lives

On a recent trip to the Midwest, Auguste and I had the opportunity to talk with a woman about life in her town. She talked to us about how bad the job situation is and about how much things have changed for the worse. When she shared with us that she works two jobs and still can’t afford her health insurance we asked her if she had seen the movie Sicko, which is a documentary that confronts the health care crisis in America. She immediately became defensive and let us know that she had not seen the movie and didn’t plan on seeing it because she hates Michael Moore. When I asked her if she had ever seen any of his movies or read anything that he had written she answered “No. I have not”.

It is my belief that we are in the middle of a serious crisis in this country and I am not talking about our health care system or lack thereof. We are in a crisis with regard to our lack of willingness to think for ourselves about issues that profoundly effect how we can live our lives everyday. That we are so quick to form an opinion based on marketing and manipulation; that we are unwilling to do our own investigatory work and arrive at our own critical conclusions; that we are too lazy and complacent, too otherwise occupied or distracted to deal with issues that will literally result in whether we can live well or die, is our most urgent crisis indeed.

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01.20.14 | The 100 Years Project: David Turnley

100 Years from now what do you want to be remembered for:

The truth is, I feel like I am so busy living every day that I absolutely never think about my “legacy”.

I am also not ready to think about 100 Years from now. The whole idea scares me because I don’t want to contemplate my mortality yet. I think the easier answer for me is...

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01.06.14 | The 100 Years Project: Tara Bracco

100 Years from now what do you want to be remembered for:

I would be happy if in 100 years from now the work that I am doing is no longer needed.

More important to me, than being remembered is feeling like the people that I am working with have an impact on...

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12.30.13 | The 100 Years Project: Emily Verellen

100 Years from now what do you want to be remembered for:

The five things that came to mind are a little bit of a blend of personal and professional, those things that I define myself as...

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12.23.13 | Nothing is Impossible in America: A Speech delivered by Bono

Rock and Roll isn't the only thing that Bono does and does well. His work and reputation as an humanitarian are fast becoming his calling card. When Bono talks, people listen and he always has something incredible to say.

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12.09.13 | NELSON MANDELA - Free At Last

A life and a legacy that inspires courage and continues to humbles the heart...

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Friends, comrades and fellow South Africans.

I greet you all in the name of peace, democracy and freedom for all.

I stand here before you not as a prophet but as a humble servant of you, the people. Your tireless and heroic sacrifices have made it possible for me to be here today. I therefore place the remaining years of my life in your hands.

On this day of my release, I extend my...

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12.02.13 | BARBARA EHRENREICH: Welcome to a dying industry, journalism grads

Barbara Ehrenreich always succeeds in “telling it like it is”. This speech, in these tough economic times, delivers a message that sheds light on reality and encourages the fighter to fight on...

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10.21.13 | JOE WRIGHT - Doctor, Filmmaker, Commentator

Joe articulates so effectively the frustrations of so many doctors and patients and loved one and friends, as we weather the many challenges of a healthcare care system in crisis.

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My patient says the pharmacy says her health insurance isn't valid. Like a lot of people in the US, she's got just a little bit too much money to get health insurance for the indigent, but not enough money to buy health insurance on her own...

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10.14.13 | THE NEW DEAL: A SPEECH DELIVERED BY PRESIDENT FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT

On the evening of Tuesday, October 8th, 2013, Aaron Dworkin, Founder of The Sphinx Organization delivered an inspiring, courageous and patriotic speech about inclusion in American orchestras. His speech serves, not simply as a wake up call and a call to action within the fine arts community, but as an example of what it means to lead.

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10.07.13 | THE NEW DEAL: A SPEECH DELIVERED BY PRESIDENT FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT

I appreciate your willingness after these six arduous days to remain here, for I know well the sleepless hours which you and I have had. I regret that I am late, but I have no control over the winds of Heaven and could only be thankful for my Navy training.

The appearance before a National Convention of its nominee for President, to be formally notified of his selection, is unprecedented and unusual, but these are unprecedented and unusual times. I have started out on the tasks that lie ahead by breaking the absurd traditions that the candidate should remain in professed ignorance of what has happened for weeks until he is formally notified of that event many weeks later.

My friends, may this be the symbol of my intention to be honest and to avoid all hypocrisy or sham, to avoid all silly shutting of the eyes to the truth in this campaign. You have nominated me and I know it, and I am here to thank you for the honor. Let it also be symbolic that in so doing I broke traditions.

Let it be from now on the task of our Party to break foolish traditions. We will break foolish traditions and leave it to the Republican leadership, far more skilled in that art, to break promises.

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09.02.13 | A Time to Break Silence : A speech delivered by Martin Luther King, Jr.

Mr. Chairman, ladies and gentlemen, I need not pause to say how very delighted I am to be here tonight, and how very delighted I am to see you expressing your concern about the issues that will be discussed tonight by turning out in such large numbers. I also want to say that I consider it a great honor to share this program with Dr. Bennett, Dr. Commager, and Rabbi Heschel, some of the distinguished leaders and personalities of our nation. And of course it's always good to come back to Riverside Church. Over the last eight years, I have had the privilege of preaching here almost every year in that period, and it is always a rich and rewarding experience to come to this great church and this great pulpit. I come to this magnificent house of worship tonight because my conscience leaves me no other choice. I join you in this meeting because I am in deepest agreement with the aims and work of the organization which has brought us together: Clergy and Laymen Concerned about Vietnam. The recent statements of your executive committee are the sentiments of my own heart, and I found myself in full accord when I read its opening lines: "A time comes when silence is betrayal." And that time has come for us in relation to Vietnam.

The truth of these words is beyond doubt, but the mission to which they call us is a most difficult one. Even when pressed by the demands of inner truth, men do not easily assume the task of opposing their government's policy, especially in time of war. Nor does the human spirit move without great difficulty against all the apathy of conformist thought within one's own bosom and in the surrounding world. Moreover, when the issues at hand seem as perplexed as they often do in the case of this dreadful conflict, we are always on the verge of being mesmerized by uncertainty; but we must move on.

And some of us who have already begun to...

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08.26.13 | DENATALIE PHILLIPS: Essay From A Loving Sister

From my desk in Atlanta, I scour Internet articles in the Clovis News Journal looking for anything that might help my brother's death make sense. We have family and friends in Oklahoma, Tennessee, Georgia, New York, Wisconsin, Texas and Illinois who are all doing the same, searching Clovis for something that we have yet to find: peace.

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08.19.13 | Life on the Plantation: A Speech by Bill Moyers

It has long been said (ostensibly by Benjamin Franklin, but we can't be sure) that "democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for dinner. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote."

My fellow lambs:

It's good to be in Memphis and find you well-armed with passion for democracy, readiness for action, and courage for the next round in the fight for a free and independent press.

I salute the conviction that brought you here. I cherish the spirit that fills this hall and the camaraderie we share today. All too often the greatest obstacle to reform is...

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07.15.13 | ROBERT KENNEDY: A SPEECH ON RACE

I think that it is not only useful to point out something when it needs pointing out, but when it comes to destructive, divisive behavior and speech, I think that it is an absolute obligation to do so.

Robert Kennedy was a leader because he led. He demonstrated courage when he so often challenged, as a nation, who we were being and what we were and were not standing for.

As we are forced to deal directly with race in ways that we have never, as a nation, had to deal with race before, I am inspired to revisit the wise words and profound leadership of Robert Kennedy.

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07.01.13 | Voter Suppression in America

Voting rights are under attack in this country as state legislatures nationwide pass voter suppression laws under the pretext of preventing voter fraud and safeguarding election integrity. These voter suppression laws take many forms, and collectively lead to significant burdens for eligible voters trying to exercise their most fundamental constitutional right...

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06.10.13 | Columnist, Jay Mathews

Several years ago, I tried to persuade this newspaper to stop giving so much prominence to the annual results from America?s most feared test, the SAT. I said we were exaggerating its importance and aggravating the anxiety it caused families.

My editors ignored me. They are still doing so.

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06.03.13 | Senator Barack Obama – Commencement Address, Southern New Hampshire University, May 19, 2007

"Because everyday is an opportunity to start all over and to begin again, commencement speeches always cause me to take a fresh look at what I am doing and what I want my life to be for and about. Because of his ability to offer to us, the opportunity to live a BIG life beyond our comfort and our petty concerns, and because of his amazing ability to inspire, Barack Obama is someone I like to listen to.

"Do you want to be passive observers of the way world is or active citizens in shaping the way the world ought to be?"

This is the question that he invites us to ponder; this is the choice that he invites us to make.


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Good morning President LeBlanc, the Board of Trustees, faculty, parents, family, friends, and the Class of 2007. Congratulations on your graduation, and thank you for allowing me the honor to be a part of it. I also want to thank Southern New Hampshire University for this honorary doctor of laws degree. I ended up paying for my first law degree for years and years, so for all of you with visions of law school, I'd consider running for President and then waiting for a commencement invite instead – it's much cheaper....

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05.13.13 | BILL CLINTON Delivers Commencement Address at Howard University

"It turns out that creative cooperation works better than constant conflict, and we forget that at our peril," President Bill Clinton said during a commencement address at Howard University on Saturday, reminding the graduates, "You can't share the future unless you share the responsibility for building it."...

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05.06.13 | FROM "FACE-TO-FACE" COMBAT TO "ARM-IN-ARM" FRIENDSHIP: A Speech delivered by Lt. General Hal G. Moore

Lt. General Hal Moore shares about how his war experiences taught him to appreciate humanity and peace...

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04.29.13 | MAJORA CARTER: SAY IT LOUD! I'M GREEN AND I'M PROUD!

I started Sustainable South Bronx in 2001 to serve as a direct response to the issues and the degradation that the South Bronx community had been dealing with for twenty years or so. I wanted it to be something that would create the kind of vision that the South Bronx community, thru various visioning and community planning workshops, had decided that they wanted. Things like waterfront development and open space and parks. Things like opportunities for living wage jobs that actually don't degrade the environment, the right to clean air and access to various transportation systems that actually allow people to live a little more humanely.

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04.01.13 | MARTIN LUTHUR KING, JR.'s, "I’ve Been to the Mountaintop", Memphis Sanitation Workers Strike

On the anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. it seems fitting and I might even dare suggest, necessary to remember that Dr. King died while fighting for the rights of union workers in Alabama. And 43 years later, we watch the rights of union workers across the country being threatened. As teachers and police officers and firefighters and sanitation workers literally have to now fight to survive, I am painfully aware of the undeniable fact that we could use a big dose of the courage that Dr. King demonstrated and that we must dream, as he did, of a better day.

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Something is happening in Memphis; something is happening in our world. And you know, if I were standing at the beginning of time, with the possibility of taking a kind of general and panoramic view of the whole of human history up to now, and the Almighty said to me, "Martin Luther King, which age would you like to live in?" I would take my mental flight by Egypt and I would watch God's children in their magnificent trek from the dark dungeons of Egypt through, or rather across the Red Sea, through the wilderness on toward the promised land. And in spite of its magnificence, I wouldn't stop there...

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03.25.13 | President Barack Obama: Direct Appeal to Israeli Citizens

Thank you. Shalom. (Applause.) Thank you so much. Well, it is a great honor to be with you here in Jerusalem, and I'm so grateful for the welcome that I've received from the people of Israel. Thank you. (Applause.) I bring with me the support of the American people -- (applause) -- and the friendship that binds us together. (Applause.)

Over the last two days, I've reaffirmed the bonds between our countries with Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Peres. I've borne witness to the ancient history of the Jewish people at the Shrine of the Book, and I've seen...

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03.18.13 | AN ANNIVERSARY

March 19, 2003
George W. Bush


My fellow citizens, at this hour, American and coalition forces are in the early stages of military operations to disarm Iraq, to free its people, and to defend the world from grave danger.

On my orders, coalition forces have begun striking selected targets of military importance to undermine Saddam Hussein's ability to wage war. These are opening stages of what will be a broad and concerted campaign. More than 35 countries are giving crucial support -- from the use of naval and air bases, to help with intelligence and logistics, to the deployment of combat units. Every nation in this coalition has chosen to bear the duty and share the honor of serving in our common defense...


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03.14.13 | MADELINE MCCRAY: I BELIEVE I CAN FLY

I am proud of the things that I have done -- my sons and my grandchildren.

I am a mother. I have two sons Terahshea, and Uhuru. I have four grandchildren Khalil, Nadir, Elijah, and Minkhara. I always start with them because they are my proudest productions.

My sons are grown, they are 31 and 32 years old and my grand children range from two months to 13 years old. I worry that they have to live in this society. I worry about not only my own flesh and blood but the children that they will come in contact with.

I am no stranger to "the streets". I was born and raised in Harlem and Harlem will always be in my bones. It is where the foundation of so much of my character is born from. The struggles during my time were different but in terms of an emotional experience, it is still the same. I look at what young people are exposed to today, what society has embraced as "OK". The lines have been so blurred between what is right and what is wrong. I knew junkies that had more character than some of the people who wear suits and ties today. Young people really need guidance from people who understand what they are going through but at the same time do not condone their behavior. I have become very passionate about trying to pass along the things that got me through, in my own life.

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02.11.13 | Behind the Scenes: Writing the 2012 State of the Union Address

This week President Barack Obama will address Congress and the citizens of The United States of America and give us an update on the state of the union. This feels like one of those potentially pivotal moments in history where we witness a dramatic shift in our culture in real time. How will President Barack Obama usher in his second term? Watch below as he prepares:

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12.31.12 | Founder of Remote Area Medical, Stan Brock

Stan Brock is someone that I consider to be an angel on this earth. His work with Remote Area Medical is profoundly important, providing medical treatment in communities around the world where need is great. According to a report in The Independent (UK) he: "...has no money, no income, and no bank account. He spends 365 days a year at the charity events, sleeping on a small rolled-up mat on the floor and living on a diet made up entirely of porridge and fresh fruit."

The work that Stan does is a demonstration of his compassion and for his genuine concern and care for people which is why when Stan has something to say, I am someone who will listen. Today Stan has something to say about the Newtown shooting and our crisis of civilization.

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12.03.12 | DR. BERT PETERSEN: Menegitis Outbreak

Last Thursday, the Senate HELP Committee gathered to review the implications of the recent fungal meningitis outbreak that led to 33 deaths and over 450 cases of serious illnesses in 19 states because a failure at both the state and federal levels to enforce current laws and regulations to keep patients safe. A complete picture of how this disaster occurred and what lawmakers will do to prevent future failures remains to be seen...

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11.26.12 | PRESIDENT OBAMA'S SPEECH IN CAIRO

I am honored to be in the timeless city of Cairo, and to be hosted by two remarkable institutions. For over a thousand years, Al-Azhar has stood as a beacon of Islamic learning, and for over a century, Cairo University has been a source of Egypt's advancement. Together, you represent the harmony between tradition and progress....

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11.19.12 | PRESIDENT OBAMA PROMOTES PEACE IN THE MIDDLE EAST

Take a moment to reflect on one of the President’s recent speech promoting peace in a land where peace has taken a back seat to war.

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11.12.12 | PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Victory Speech

Thank you so much.

Tonight, more than 200 years after a former colony won the right to determine its own destiny, the task of perfecting our union moves forward.

It moves forward because of you. It moves forward because you reaffirmed the spirit that has triumphed over war and depression, the spirit that has lifted this country from the depths of despair to the great heights of hope, the belief that while each of us will pursue our own individual dreams, we are an American family and we rise or fall together as one nation and as one people.

Tonight, in this election, you, the American people, reminded us that...

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11.05.12 | Victory Speech: President-Elect BARACK OBAMA

If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible; who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time; who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer.

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10.29.12 | FRED GOLDRING: President Obama's Re-election song "Forward"

In 2004 when I was Chairman of Rock the Vote, I had the chance opportunity to meet and spend some quality time with then-Illinois State Senator Barack Obama, the day before he gave his now famous speech at the DNC in Boston. That meeting inspired me to do something I had never done before -- seriously support an individual political candidate.

When Barack decided to run for the presidency in 2007, I had the crazy idea that maybe the right song could get his message across and actually influence people to get involved. I observed that for some strange reason, music had never been effectively used as an emotional driver to engage and inspire people in politics. Sure, there were artists regularly performing at rallies and fundraisers, but were minds really being changed? Most of the people going to these events were either big music fans there for just the music, or they were already committed and didn't need to be persuaded. Yes, Bill Clinton had adopted the Fleetwood Mac song and its message, but it wasn't a song originally created for his campaign. Technology had also changed and what emerged was...

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10.22.12 | Democratic Presidential Nominee Acceptance Speech: SEN. GEORGE MCGOVERN

Holocaust survivor and Nobel Laureate, Elie Wiesel, gave this impassioned speech in the East Room of the White House on April 12, 1999, as part of the Millennium Lecture series, hosted by President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton.

In the summer of 1944, as a teenager in Hungary, Elie Wiesel, along with his father, mother and sisters, were deported by the Nazis to Auschwitz extermination camp in occupied Poland. Upon arrival there, Wiesel and his father were selected by SS Dr. Josef Mengele for slave labor and wound up at the nearby Buna rubber factory.

Daily life included starvation rations of soup and bread, brutal discipline, and a constant struggle against overwhelming despair. At one point, young Wiesel received 25 lashes of the whip for a minor infraction.

In January 1945, as the Russian Army drew near, Wiesel and his father were hurriedly evacuated from Auschwitz by a forced march to Gleiwitz and then via an open train car to Buchenwald in Germany, where his father, mother, and a younger sister eventually died.

Wiesel was liberated by American troops in April 1945. After the war, he moved to Paris and became a journalist then later settled in New York. Since 1976, he has been Andrew Mellon Professor in the Humanities at Boston University. He has received numerous awards and honors including the 1986 Nobel Peace Prize and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He was also the Founding Chair of the United States Holocaust Memorial. Wiesel has written over 40 books including Night, a harrowing chronicle of his Holocaust experiences, first published in 1960.

At the White House lecture, Wiesel was introduced by Hillary Clinton who stated, "It was more than a year ago that I asked Elie if he would be willing to participate in these Millennium Lectures...I never could have imagined that when the time finally came for him to stand in this spot and to reflect on the past century and the future to come, that we would be seeing children in Kosovo crowded into trains, separated from families, separated from their homes, robbed of their childhoods, their memories, their humanity."

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09.24.12 | dawnt - Chatting With the Guy from Illinois with the Funny Name

It was during the rough part of his campaign in spring of 2008; in mid-March, just days before he delivered the now historic Race Speech, that I came across this blog post from dawnt of Illinois. I was riveted by her recollection, moved to tears as her words revealed truth and scared to death of the prospect that we might not elect this man, the man with the vision for restoring and rebuilding America.

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06.11.12 | Senator Barack Obama - Yes We Can

The fight for HEALTHCARE FOR EVERY American is on! Remember New Hampshire? Then do not forget about HOPE...

Remember Hope..

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05.28.12 | Land of Cheese and Rancor by Dan Kaufman

How did Wisconsin become the most politically divisive place in America?

This past March, standing outside a Shell station in Mellen, Wis., in the state's far north, Mike Wiggins Jr. told me about a series of dark and premonitory dreams he had two years earlier. "One of them was a very vivid trip around the North Woods and seeing forests bleeding and sludge from a creek emptying into the Bad River," Wiggins said. "I ended up at a dilapidated northern log home with rotten snowshoes falling off the wall. I stepped out of the lodge, walked through some pine, and I was in a pipeline. There was a big pipe coming in and out of the ground as far as I could see."

"I had no idea what the hell that was all about," Wiggins continued. But he said the dream became clearer when...

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05.07.12 | PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Campaign Kick-off Speech 2012

"Ohio, four years ago, you and I began a journey together. I didn't run, and you didn't work your hearts out, just to win an election. We came together to reclaim the basic bargain that built the largest middle class and the most prosperous nation on Earth."

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04.23.12 | The 100 Years Project: Musician, Singer and Songwriter, Dan Zanes

100 Years from now what do you want to be remembered for:

It would be nice if I could be remembered for getting people tossing a little bit more...

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04.16.12 | A MODERN DAY HERO, Stan Brock

As the healthcare reform debate rages on, there is, thankfully, a shining example, shedding a bright light on what this issue is really all about...

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04.09.12 | THE GIFT
If you've ever traveled, even the shortest distance, there is no doubt you've seen a bridge. It's likely that you have even traveled over one. More...

03.05.12 | SEN. BARACK OBAMA
Because everyday is an opportunity to start all over and to begin again, commencement speeches always cause me to take a fresh look at what I am doing and what I want my life to be for and about. Because of his ability to offer to us, the opportunity to live a BIG life beyond our comfort and our petty concerns, and because of his amazing ability to inspire, Barack Obama is someone I like to listen to.

“Do you want to be passive observers of the way world is or active citizens in shaping the way the world ought to be?”

This is the question that he invites us to ponder; this is the choice that he invites us to make.


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02.13.12 | MICHELLE OBAMA - University of Arkansas Commencement Speech

Thank you so much. I am so thrilled and so honored to be here today to help celebrate the extraordinary young men and women of the Class of 2010...

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01.23.12 | Singer, Songwriter, will.i.am

The Man Behind The Video: will.i.am

The yes we can song
by will.i.am, February 3 @635

I was sitting in my recording studio watching the debates...

Torn between the candidates...

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12.12.11 | MICHIGAN IS GROUND ZERO OF AMERICAN POLITICS RIGHT NOW

I’m so rarely floored by political news anymore. But last night the following segment of the Rachel Maddow Show floored me. I knew the Republicans were out of control with their budget cuts and fiscal insanity, but this goes beyond anything I’ve heard so far.

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11.07.11 | The 100 Years Project: Mahen Bonetti

100 Years from now what do you want to be remembered for:

In 100 Years I hope that we as human beings would have come to some sort of level of consciousness where we realize that, despite the fact that we might not speak the same language or look the same way or occupy the same space, that we are all...

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09.19.11 | Troy Davis: The Execution of an Innocent Man?
What have we become as a society that we would willingly stand by and simply accept the execution of an innocent man? More...

09.12.11 | 9/11: Anne Mulderry Remembers her son, Stephen
Just two months before that September 11th of 2001, I had moved to this village from the nearby city of Albany, which was where our three daughters and five sons were raised. We had been blessed to have a comfortable home there in a neighborhood rich in neighbors and friends, and my children had had a grace-filled place to grow-up before college and career opportunities took them away. At that time, the family home was sold, and the smaller house in the village of Kinderhook, just 30-minutes south of Albany on the east side of the Hudson River, had already become the family’s new gathering place. More...

08.15.11 | RUSSELL BRAND: BIG BROTHER ISN'T WATCHING

I no longer live in London. I’ve been transplanted to Los Angeles by a combination of love and money; such good fortune and opportunity, in both cases, you might think disqualify me from commenting on matters in my homeland. Even the results of Britain’s Got Ice-Factor may lay prettily glistening beyond my remit now that I am self banished....

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08.08.11 | THE NEW YORK TIMES: POLL SHOWS NEGATIVE VIEW OF TEA PARTY ON THE RISE

Little more than a year ago, most Americans did not know enough about the Tea Party to have an opinion. Now, more people have opinions, and they are hardly positive...

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05.16.11 | PAUL KRUGMAN - Seniors, Guns and Money: An Op Ed by Paul Krugman

This has to be one of the funniest political stories of recent weeks: On Tuesday, 42 freshmen Republican members of Congress sent a letter urging President Obama to stop Democrats from engaging in “Mediscare” tactics — that is, to stop saying that the Republican budget plan released early last month, which would end Medicare as we know it, is a plan to end Medicare as we know it.

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05.02.11 | WHY OBAMA SHOULDN’T HAVE HAD TO SHOW HIS PAPERS

"Show me your papers!"

Major Blackard, then just 19 years old, dug into his trousers in search of his wallet. He patted his jacket, but could not find his billfold.

"Sir, I done left my wallet..." Blackard said. Before he could finish his sentence, the young man was posted against the brick wall, cuffed and taken to the St. Louis city jail. Unable to prove his identity, he would spend the next 21 days in a cramped, musty cell. That's where his older brother Matt found him, beaten and bloodied. Matt returned with Major's employer later that day, wallet and identification card in hand, to post bond.

The year was 1899. Major Blackard was my great, great grandfather...

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04.11.11 | THE TOWN HALL MOB: Paul Krugman

There were two editorial columns that stood out for me last week because they were not dancing around the issue of racism when it comes to the current climate in certain parts of the country, regarding President Obama and his agenda – The Town Hall Mob by Paul Krugman of The New York Times and The Berserk Birthers by Eugene Robinson of The Washington Post.

I think that telling the truth about something is the first step toward moving beyond...

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03.14.11 | Wisconsin Protesters Refuse to Quit

Clogging the Wisconsin Capitol grounds and screaming angry chants, tens of thousands of undaunted pro-labor protesters descended on Madison again Saturday and vowed to focus on future elections now that contentious cuts to public worker union rights have become law.

Protests have rocked the Capitol almost every day since Gov. Scott Walker proposed taking nearly all collective bargaining rights away from public workers, but the largest came a day after the governor signed the measure into law. Madison Police estimated the crowd at 85,000 to 100,000 people – along with 50 tractors and one donkey – by late afternoon. No one was arrested.

Speakers delivered angry diatribes while the crowd carried signs comparing Walker to dictators and yelled thunderous chants of "this is what democracy looks like."

"This is so not the end," said protester Judy Gump, a 45-year-old English teacher at Madison Memorial High School. "This is what makes people more determined and makes them dig in."...

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02.21.11 | Rachel Maddow Reveals the Hidden Truth About Wisconsin Protests

When the citizens of Egypt stood up, refusing to further allow themselves to be oppressed and taken advantage of, I was inspired. I was riveted to the television set. Little did I know that only days later would the citizens of Madison, Wisconsin (which is my hometown) would unite in passionate protest and take a stand for what they believe to be fair and just. I am once again glued to my television set, to my laptop and to my phone, as I follow the events as they dramatically unfold. And just as with Egypt, what happens in Wisconsin, rest assured, will heap consequences on us all.

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12.06.10 | The 100 Years Project: Jacquette Timmons

100 Years from now what do you want to be remembered for:

In 100 years, I hope that we will have finally recognized that...

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10.04.10 | BARBARA EHRENREICH ON BREAST CANCER

Barbara Ehrenreich offers a very activist and useful viewpoint... we need more of this kind of honesty and commitment...

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09.06.10 | PAULA'S KATRINA, PT. 1
It’s 5:30am. We spent an anxious night watching The Weather Channel. We packed our cooler and two days’ worth of clothes yesterday. We’ve got the checkbooks and insurance papers (just in case), flashlights, batteries, our cell phones and laptops. We’re good to go... It’s a beautiful day on the coast. You’d never know there was a storm out in the gulf. More...

08.30.10 | PRESIDENT-ELECT OBAMA’S MEMORABLE TRIBUTE TO MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.

The Scripture tells us that when Joshua and the Israelites arrived at the gates of Jericho, they could not enter. The walls of the city were too steep for any one person to climb; too strong to be taken down with brute force. And so they sat for days, unable to pass on through.

But God had a plan for his people.

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07.05.10 | YES. WE. CAN - A Speech by Barack Obama

A few weeks ago, no one imagined that we'd have accomplished what we did here tonight. For most of this campaign, we were far behind, and we always knew our climb would be steep.

But in record numbers, you came out and spoke up for change. And with your voices and your votes, you made it clear that at this moment - in this election - there is something happening in America.

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05.10.10 | Address at Warsaw School of Economics: A Speech Delivered by International Monetary Fund Director, DOMINIQUE STRAUSS-KAHN

In this emerging global world order, in the wake of the current economic crisis in Greece...

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05.03.10 | PRIME MINISTER GORDON BROWN - A Speech to Congress

Prime Minister Gordon Brown's recent address to Congress reflects the global reach and the absolute urgency of the current economic crisis, while offering hope and optimism about the future.

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04.26.10 | Earth Day: A Speech Delivered by Al Gore

For thirty-two years now, Americans have come together on Earth Day to support cleaner air, water and land - and to strengthen our resolve to preserve the earth's God-given beauty and natural resources for generations to come...

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03.22.10 | A PROFILE ON DR. MICHAEL HRANKOWSKI, DDS and the "Day of Caring"

Dr. Hrankowski is a dentist who is making a difference by serving people without health care insurance; helping those who have been turned down for treatment again and again. Read his inspiring story!

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11.30.09 | International Peace: A Speech delivered by Secretary of State for International Development, Douglas Alexander, MP

Can I thank you for that kind introduction and say what a privilege it is to be able to speak here today at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace – which ninety nine years after its establishment by my fellow countryman continues to enjoy an enviable reputation, here and abroad, for its international leadership on foreign and strategic affairs.

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11.16.09 | WE ARE ALL IN THE SAME BOAT...
Every once in a while, something comes along that alters your consciousness, something like Levy Lee Simon's play The Guest at Central Park West.

Simon's play, which runs through June 3rd, challenges comfortable ways of thinking and being and provokes conversation that will hopefully inspire new ideas.

Brilliantly acted by a cast led by John Marshall Jones, The Guest at Central Park West delivers and is definitely not to be missed.


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11.09.09 | THE GUEST AT CENTRAL PARK WEST...
Every once in a while, something comes along that alters your consciousness, something like Levy Lee Simon's play The Guest at Central Park West.

Simon's play, which runs through June 3rd, challenges comfortable ways of thinking and being and provokes conversation that will hopefully inspire new ideas.

Brilliantly acted by a cast led by John Marshall Jones, The Guest at Central Park West delivers and is definitely not to be missed.


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11.02.09 | GERALD FORD: A War That is Finished

This speech was given by President Ford amid the international turmoil surrounding the end of the Vietnam War in April 1975. On the very day the President gave this speech, 100,000 North Vietnamese soldiers were advancing toward Saigon, South Vietnam's capital. Meanwhile, leaders from around the world, and the North Vietnamese themselves, waited to see how the United States would react to the pending collapse of South Vietnam, which the U.S. had fought hard to preserve.

The answer came from President Ford during this speech in which he declared the conflict "a war that is finished as far as America is concerned," and urged the young Americans in his audience at Tulane University to look toward the future instead.

A week later, Saigon fell and South Vietnam surrendered to the North Vietnamese. Vietnam was thus unified under a Communist regime that remains in power today, some 30 years later.

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10.26.09 | BERT M PETERSEN, JR., M.D. : Prescription for Healthy Living

When I turned forty, my skin started going, but that was okay, because my eyes started going too. So, I couldn’t see what was happening. It was like aging with the lights down low.

You know somewhere along the way between thirty and forty you begin to notice that you don’t bounce out of bed quite the same way you used to. Its usually the first hint that we are all getting older.

Often we use forty as a marker. But how do you begin to chart a course for yourself that empowers you to manage your health throughout the life cycle. More...

09.21.09 | HEY YOUNG AMERICA, HERE’S A TEXT FOR YOU BY NAOMI WOLF

Naomi Wolf, for me, exists as a courageous voice in a world full of tentative passion. I appreciate the unapologetic stand that she takes as a patriot; as someone who cares deeply about America and about the world that we will one day leave behind.

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08.24.09 | LINDA MASON: The Art of Beauty
Linda Mason is first, an artist and her approach to beauty is as unique as it is fresh. With a painter's sensibility she is able to create beauty, anywhere and with anyone.

Upon walking into her shop, I am always transported into, not only to a glamorous state of mind, but to a playful one as well. Linda is delightful with an inner beauty that serves to explain -

how and why she always looks terrific!

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07.27.09 | HENRY LOUIS GATES: DÉJÀ VU ALL OVER AGAIN by Stanley Fish

I'm Skip Gates's friend, too. That's probably the only thing I share with President Obama, so when he ended his press conference last Wednesday by answering a question about Gates's arrest after he was seen trying to get into his own house, my ears perked up...

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07.06.09 | JANECE MOMENT: ARTIST AND ENTREPRENEUR

It takes a special kind of courage to tackle what seems to be an insurmountable problem and it takes uncommon strength to endure an unforgiving hurdle. And, to be able to find it in your heart to care about someone else’s when you’re in the middle of dealing with your own, takes extraordinary compassion. Janece Moment is one of those special, uncommon and compassionate people, making a difference from right where she is -- right now.

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06.15.09 | TIM RUSSERT - A Tribute

Few can be characterized as someone who lived a full life and lived it really well. Tim Russert is only characterized in that way. He died young but he will be remembered as a man who lived every minute fully until the very end as reflected in his sincere message to a graduating class.

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It is an honor to be back at Washington University. My fellow honorees, distinguished guests and most important, class of 2007, congratulations! You have finally made it! [APPLAUSE]

And also very important, mom and dad, thanks for paying those bills!

[LAUGHTER]

The chancellor mentioned that little white board that I wrote "Florida, Florida, Florida" on, the election of 2000. I came home after being up all night, covering the election, and my son said, "You know dad, I'd love to have that piece of your journalistic career."

"Son," I said, "I've never been so touched by this bonding moment that you want to share this experience with your dad."

He then said, "You know what that thing is worth on eBay?" [LAUGHTER]. A new generation of entrepreneurs in the Russert family!

I'm often asked my favorite "Meet the Press" story in the proud 60-year tradition of "Meet the Press." It goes back to 1992. There was a presidential candidate who...

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06.08.09 | LANCE ARMSTRONG - Live Strong

Recent high profile events have put cancer and it’s intrusive, destructive nature on the front burner of American culture, where it should remain until we have finally discovered a cure.

Lance Armstrong offers, not only one of the most heroic examples of just how possible it is to beat the odds and triumph over this disease, but he also offers an opportunity for us to fight together to win the war on cancer.


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"I chose active citizenship. And I challenge you all to choose that as well."

Lance Armstrong - cancer survivor and seven-time Tour de France champion - delivered the keynote address to thousands of graduates, families and friends on hand for Tufts' 150th commencement ceremonies.

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04.27.09 | WHY TORTURE MUST NOT BE SANCTIONED: AN ARTICLE

WHY TORTURE MUST NOT BE SANCTIONED BY THE UNITED STATES:
It undermines our humanity and does not make society safer

Vincent Iacopino, Senior medical consultant, Allen Keller, Director, and Deborah Oksenberg, Medical Director

In the wake of September 11th, many people in the United States believe that torture is justifiable in the name of national security. A recent public opinion poll indicated that one in three Americans believe government-sanctioned torture of suspected terrorists is an acceptable means of gatheringinformation. As physicians, we have spent our professional lives documenting medical evidence of torture and caring for torture survivors. In the course of our work, we have encountered hundreds of individuals who have suffered unspeakable pain and degradation at the hands of government authorities throughout the world. Our experiences documenting the effects of these practices have clearly shown us that torture does not make any one person or society safer or more secure.

The notion that torture can be a rational act that serves a just purpose is a fiction that "rational" minds construct to conceal base human emotions. Examples of such constructions have surfaced in the media in the form of "ticking-bomb scenarios," "torture warrants," and the "lesser-of-two-evils"rationale. But when perpetrators of torture inflict extreme pain on their victims, they reduce their victims to a point that precludes obtaining reliable" information." Victims then falsely confess to whatever their torturers want to hear.

Torture is "a form of savagery and stupidity." The real aim of torture is the display of power, albeit a fictional one, through the medium of broken bodies and minds. By committing extreme acts of violence, torturers send a message of...

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04.13.09 | DALAI LAMA – A HUMAN APPROACH TO WORLD PEACE

The opportunity to consider peace from a man whose made peace his life his personal mission, is an opportunity that must not be ignored...

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03.30.09 | MUHAMMAD YUNAS: Nobel Prize Winner

It as a very special privilege for me to speak at the commencement ceremony of this prestigious institution.

What a wonderful feeling to be here today. To be with all of you, some of the brightest minds in the world, right at a moment when you decide the path you will embark on in life. You represent the future of the world. The choices that you will make for yourself will...

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11.03.08 | AL GORE - Presidential Election Concession Speech

After a long and hard fought campaign, and weeks of contesting the validity of a close election, Al Gore faced a difficult choice. The courageous speech he delivered to a national audience on December 13, 2000 offered a powerful example of selfless leadership and will be remembered as one of the most extraordinary speeches in modern American history.

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Good evening.

Just moments ago, I spoke with George W. Bush and congratulated him on becoming the 43rd president of the United States, and I promised him that I wouldn't call him back this time...

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09.29.08 | THERESSA DUBOIS : We Are Here!

Deaf Welcome Foundation is a tax exempt public charity. We presented our business plan to the Federal Government, hoping to be approved as a non-profit organization, and to our surprise they approved us in record time and made us a public charity as well.

Right now we need to have major funding to create and produce sign language media for a deaf population that can't read. There are lots of deaf people who can not read. And so the best way to communicate with them is sign language... More...

09.15.08 | GONE GREEN! GAYLA TRAIL AND YOU GROW GIRL

You Grow Girl was launched by Gayla Trail in February 2000 and has grown into a thriving online community that speaks to a new kind of gardener, seeking to redefine the modern world relationship to plants. This contemporary, laid-back approach to gardening places equal importance on environmentalism, style, affordability, art, and humour.

Now in it's seventh year online, You Grow Girl has become a thriving community for likeminded gardeners and even self-confessed “black thumbs.” The project's aim has always been to promote exploration, excitement and a d.i.y approach to growing plants without the restrictions of traditional ideas about gardening. While we have never said "You must do things this way" organic growing and a motto of “Do no harm” has always been the platform to start from. I strongly believe that most people take the plants around them and the food they eat for granted, and that if they are encouraged to see the wonder of plants and the relative ease with which they can be grown, it will foster a respect for nature that will extend beyond their backyards.

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09.01.08 | DIVINECAROLINE: Life in your words.

Meet DivineCaroline.. Just who is DivineCaroline? Read this article and find out. You'll discover what's in it for you...

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08.18.08 | TOMMY HAYES-BROWN: We Are Family.

His whole life is about his family. His whole family is about making a difference in this world.

Tommy Hayes-Brown knew from a very young age that he wanted to adopt children one day. Today, he and his wife Sharon have four beautiful boys - the first three adopted and the fourth, their natural child, and Tommy would be the first to point out that all of his kids are just his kids.

To listen to Tommy tell stories about a day, any day in his life with his kids, is to fully appreciate the fundamental joy of -

LOVE.

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08.11.08 | KEVIN LYNN: Kevin Shares

Kevin Lynn an inspiring example of living the life of your dreams no matter what life throws your way. He is a fighter who does not understand what it means to quit or give in. Kevin is a devoted husband and a wonderful father and I am proud to call him my friend.

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08.04.08 | EVA MCKEND: Promise's Promise

I met Eva for lunch about a week before school was to begin. I had Gussie with me. We ate salads.

As I spoke with Eva she unfolded as this extremely wise, surprisingly thoughtful and disarmingly capable woman with a child's profile. She is in high school, yes, and I was challenged to match her knowledge and enthusiasm for what is happening around the world today. Her self confidence in her ability to make a significant difference in world affairs left me committed to raising the bar for myself in that regard.

I met Eva for lunch about a week before school started. I am glad that I had Gussie with me...

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07.28.08 | RANDY PAUSCH: Professor, Author, Husband, Father and Hero

A rare act of courage.

That is one of the phrases I would use to characterize the contribution of Randy Pausch. Randy Pausch died this past week, but not before he would encourage millions to live every moment thoughtfully and with passion.

A rare gift.

That is how I would define his powerful legacy.


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05.05.08 | BONO: ON GOD AND FAITH

Well, thank you, thank you Mr. President, First Lady, King Abdullah of Jordan, Norm [Coleman], distinguished guests. Please join me in praying that I don't say something we'll all regret.

That was for the FCC.

If you're wondering what I'm doing here, at a prayer breakfast, well so am I. I'm certainly not here as a man of the cloth, unless that cloth is -- is leather. I'm certainly not here because I'm a rock star -- which leaves only one possible explanation: I've got a messianic complex. It's true. And anyone who knows me, it's hardly a revelation.

Well, I'm the first to admit that there's something unnatural, something even unseemly about rock stars mounting the pulpit and preaching at presidents -- and disappearing to their villas in the South of France. Talk about a fish out of water. It was weird enough to have Jesse Helms come to a rock show. This is really weird.

Now, one of the things I love about this country is the separation of Church and State and although I have to say in inviting me here both Church and State have been separated from something else completely: their -- their mind!

Mr. President, are you sure about this? It's very humbling, and I will try to keep my homily brief. But be warned: I am Irish.

I'd like to talk about the...

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03.31.08 | Rye Barcott - A Lesson on Living

Rye Barcott is an officer in the United States Marine Corps. He has served in Iraq.

Rye Barcott graduated in 2001 from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a B.A. in Peace, War, & Defense, and International Studies. Formerly a Triangle Institute for Security Studies Millennium Fellow, Rye is Co-Author of "American Anthropological Association Statement on Ethnic Cleansing," and Co-Editor of Armed Conflict in Africa.

In January 2001, Rye established Carolina For Kibera, Inc. (CFK), an international non-governmental organization. A program of the University Center for International Studies funded in part by the Ford Foundation, CFK leads a medical clinic, all-girls center, and youth sports association in the Kibera slum of Nairobi, Kenya.

Rye attended UNC on a Marine Corps Option NROTC Scholarship and In 2002, he served as a member of the World Trade Center North Carolina Board of Directors. Rye speaks Swahili and is currently working on a book project entitled Kibera Blood.

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03.03.08 | Senator Ted Kennedy: 1980 Democratic National Convention Address

More than a couple of decades ago, Senator Ted Kennedy delivered a speech to the Democratic National Convention after having lost the party nomination for President of the United States, proving that how gracious you are when you lose can be just as important as whether or not you won.

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02.25.08 | Creators of the new Hope.Act.Change Website (featuring will.i.am), Syrup

There is a movement that is erupting! Come and be a part of it!

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02.18.08 | Barack Obama

On behalf of the great state of Illinois, crossroads of a nation, land of Lincoln, let me express my deep gratitude for the privilege of addressing this convention. Tonight is a particular honor for me because, let's face it, my presence on this stage is pretty unlikely. My father was a foreign student, born and raised in a small village in Kenya. He grew up herding goats, went to school in a tin-roof shack. His father, my grandfather, was a cook, a domestic servant...

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02.04.08 | MICHELLE OBAMA: Fear Not

Our main reason, at least the girls and I -

we are here for the state fair.

I don't know about you but we're going to get some stuff on a stick. I don't care what it is -a hot dog, a snickers bar -- we are eating everything on a stick today. But the other reason I'm here is to introduce my husband. You know the guy running for President.

Yeah. It's pretty good.

One thing I want to share with you today is that whenever I get in front of an audience I get pumped up because I am very passionate about this race. I am very passionate about my husband in this race because I know that, and I am trying to convey to all of you that, there is something very special about this man. This is why we are doing this. Because Barack and I talked long and hard about this decision. This wasn't an easy decision for us because we've got two beautiful little girls and we have a wonderful life and everything was going fine and there would have been nothing that would have been more disruptive than a decision to run for President of the United States.

And as more people talked to us about it, I mean the question came up again and again, what people were most concerned about I think was -

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01.28.08 | JOHN F. KENNEDY - We choose to go to the Moon...

A monumental and pivotal moment in the history of man...

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John F. Kennedy -
"We choose to go to the Moon..."
September 12, 1962

President Pitzer, Mr. Vice President, Governor, Congressman Thomas, Senator Wiley, and Congressman Miller, Mr. Webb, Mr. Bell, scientists, distinguished guests, and ladies and gentlemen:

I appreciate your president having made me an honorary visiting professor, and I will assure you that my first lecture will be very brief.

I am delighted to be here and I'm particularly delighted to be here on this occasion.

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01.14.08 | MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. - I Have a Dream

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: A legacy that speaks for itself.

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I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.

Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of their captivity.

But one hundred years later, the Negro still is not free...

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01.07.08 | BARACK OBAMA - Thank you, Iowa – A Message from Barack Obama

"There's something happening here..."

I am riveted – but I mean riveted! Could it be that we are poised as a generation to witness what we have yet to give ourselves permission to imagine?


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Thank you, Iowa.

You know, they said this day would never come.

They said our sights were set too high.

They said this country was too divided; too disillusioned to ever come together around a common purpose.

But on this January night - at this defining moment in history - you have done what the cynics said we couldn't do. You have done what the state of New Hampshire can do in five days. You have done what America can do in this New Year, 2008. In lines that stretched around schools and churches; in small towns and big cities; you came together as Democrats, Republicans and Independents to stand up and say that we are one nation; we are one people; and our time for change has come.

You said the time has come to...

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12.31.07 | ANITA RODDICK - A Tribute

I remember reading her book Body and Soul and being transformed. I can’t remember what made more of an impression on me, the fact that she started The Body Shop in her kitchen while taking care of two babies, or the fact that she was so doggedly committed to fair trade and environmental issues.

Anita Roddick was an icon. She was a woman who was far ahead of her time and the legacy that she leaves behind speaks with clarity about who she was and the way that she lived her life, while inviting us all to re-examine ourselves.


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12.03.07 | THE URGENCY OF NOW: DELIVERED BY SEN. BARACK OBAMA

Every once in awhile do we have the opportunity to witness the emergence of something really great...

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11.12.07 | NORMAN MAILER

Norman Mailer passed away on Saturday, November 10th, 2007. The world collectively mourns the passing of a great writer, a controversial pop icon and a talent that will be nearly impossible to replace.

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11.05.07 | WINE JUST GOT HIP!

Courtney Cochran grew up in California's Central Valley, where she gained an early appreciation for wine and food while sampling the abundant produce at local farmer's markets and traveling frequently to the state's numerous wine regions on vacations with her family. A summer exchange program in France cemented her interest in both the French language and the country's finest export, its award-winning wines. Later, a semester at the Sorbonne during college led to extensive travel through France's most renowned wine regions and contributed to her decision to pursue a formal education in wine tasting and evaluation. It was also an excuse to drink lots of ridiculously good wine.

Courtney holds her sommelier certification from the International Sommelier Guild and the American Court of Master Sommeliers and operates a business, Your Personal Sommelier, in Los Angeles and San Francisco. The business enables her to channel her enthusiasm for wine and her knowledge of evaluating, purchasing, storing, appraising and selling wine into a livelihood.

A freelance writer, Courtney is currently working on a book about wine for savvy wine enthusiasts. Titled "Hip Tastes: The Fresh Guide to Wine," the book will be released in fall 2007 by Viking Studio, an imprint of Penguin. Courtney has passed levels 1 and 2 of the Master Sommelier program and continues to work towards the Master Sommelier title.

In addition to her wine education Courtney graduated Magna Cum Laude with a BA in English and French from the University of California, Los Angeles and is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa academic honor society. She also holds an MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management, where she studied marketing and entrepreneurship.

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10.15.07 | AL GORE - Memorable Remarks

Vice President Al Gore, now the recipient of The Nobel Peace Prize, continues to be a man just ahead of his time as he continues to courageously speak out and inform. Here in a speech that he delivered just after Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast, his message is still one that should not be ignored.

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10.01.07 | AARON DWORKIN - Founder and President of The Sphinx Organization

This past week I had the privilege of attending a concert at Carnegie Hall. It is always a privilege to attend almost anything at Carnegie Hall, so rich in all its tradition, but what made this particular evening a particularly special one is that The Sphinx Laureates were playing!

Aaron Dworkin founded the Sphinx Organization eleven years ago as a result of his commitment to provide an opportunity to Black and Latino kids to learn how to play the string instruments, to prepare them to play professionally and to expand the opportunities available to them, on a global level. What he has created, along with his faculty and staff is breath taking and the pleasure to continue to participate with them –

is all mine.


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09.24.07 | ROB HOLZER AND JAKOB DASCHEK: The Syrup-y Sweet Life

They are business partners, friends and brothers-in-law. They are the founders of Syrup, an integrated, brand design advertising agency.

I remember when Rob and Jakob started Syrup. I remember their enthusiasm and their creative vision. I remember admiring the way that they seemed to always have fun.

I visited Rob and Jakob at Syrup recently "at the office" and they are still having fun. What impresses is the way that they have integrated their work into their entire lives. They have combined work with living and living with work - magically, providing an attractive model for the way work can -

work.

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09.17.07 | IF YOU THINK YOU CAN...
Clifton Bell reminds me of that guy we all went to high school with; the guy who everybody likes and the one who everybody always speaks well of. The fact that Clifton has been able to successfully break into the film industry is not surprising - after all, he's the guy that everybody likes. But take a closer look and you'll see that there is a definite method to his madness and a science to his art.

Clifton Bell understands what it takes to make it and he is unwilling to waste time or squander opportunity and that is just one of the reasons why people speak well of him today.


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07.02.07 | L.E.S. IS MORE. EXPLORE

Established in 1992, The Lower East Side Business Improvement District (LESBID) is a non-profit, economic development organization created to revitalize the Orchard Street Shopping District, while preserving its unique and diverse character. The LESBID promotes the local businesses, hosts events and provides community beautification services.

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06.04.07 | CINDY SHEEHAN
Peace. We say we want it. We all wish it for one another at least once every year. But Peace, we’ve seen, doesn’t seem to come easy. Peace often comes with a price. What would you be willing to pay for Peace? How far would you be willing to go?

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05.21.07 | KATYA GRINEVA
It was a rainy Tuesday morning when we met for breakfast. I love rainy weather because it is mood evoking rhythms and colors allow you to think deeper thoughts. This was the perfect weather for a conversation with a beautifully sensitive pianist.

Katya Grineva speaks about her music with the kind of reverence that might begin to explain her genius. Everything about Katya seems to suggest that mountains move and stars align just so she can share her music.

It is clear that she was born to do what she does and her clarity about that is empowering.


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05.14.07 | ANNA ZANES
I received the following email a few weeks ago:

Hello Friends,

I am happy to invite you to a fundraiser this Sunday, April 29th with The Children of Agape, an amazing South African vocal group from the Agape orphanage in Durban, South Africa. Their orphanage burned down in 2005 and we are working to raise funds to help finish the rebuilding. I spent time with them during their last two visits to New York and I love them as people and I love their music.

This is an opportunity to help.

I am putting on this concert in cooperation with my friends at Keep A Child Alive from whom I have learned a lot about the tragedy of AIDS in Africa and the millions of AIDS orphans as well.

Please join me to help our friends at Agape and to experience their incredible music on Sunday April 29th at 2pm.

My dad, Dan Zanes, will be one of the musical guests and there will be a reception following the concert for anyone wishing to make donations beyond the ticket price.

Thank you!

Anna Zanes

Anna Zanes is a seventh grade student with all of the concerns and preoccupations of most kids her age. Yet Anna made the time and put forth the effort to help some kids who have experienced more than their fair share of tragedy.

With the help of her of Dad and a few other really cool adults, Anna has raised over $12,000 for The Children of Agape; money that will go a long way in helping them rebuild their orphanage and in getting the medicine that they need.


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04.23.07 | ONE MAN BETWEEN TWO WORLDS
If you've ever traveled, even the shortest distance, there is no doubt you've seen a bridge. It's likely that you have even traveled over one. More...

04.16.07 | ACTION AGAINST HUNGER

While dining at a restaurant recently, Auguste and Gussie and I noticed the card that came with our menu. The card was an invitation to us to give one dollar at the end of our meal that someone else might eat...

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04.09.07 | CAROLINA FOR KIBERA

In January 2001, Rye established Carolina For Kibera, Inc. (CFK), an international non-governmental organization. A program of the University Center for International Studies funded in part by the Ford Foundation, CFK leads a medical clinic, all-girls center, and youth sports association in the Kibera slum of Nairobi, Kenya.

Founder Rye Barcott, graduated in 2001 from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a B.A. in Peace, War, & Defense, and International Studies. Formerly a Triangle Institute for Security Studies Millennium Fellow, Rye is Co-Author of "American Anthropological Association Statement on Ethnic Cleansing," and Co-Editor of Armed Conflict in Africa.

An officer in the United States Marine Corps, Rye has recently returned from serving on active duty in Iraq. He possesses a unique commitment to make a difference for people. It is what his whole young life is about. Rye is just twenty seven years old.

I continue to support Rye Barcott and the work of Carolina for Kibera. Please take a moment to learn more about them and how they are making a difference and how you might participate.


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04.02.07 | PAUL MOMENT: Identity

Paul Moment is one of the most credible people I know.

Because of his uncompromising sense of honesty and his refreshing imagination, I always have an ear for what he has to say.


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03.26.07 | AN OPEN HEART

With her 15 month daughter in her arms, Leslie entered the room and we settled in for a talk.

Leslie is a genuinely curious person and as a result I found it was easy for me to get lost in one of my own life altering stories. She is easy to talk to. She listens well. I think that is what makes her so good at what she does; she is so able to connect with the experience of another.

Leslie Lewis Sword is a beautiful woman with a beautiful spirit telling the story of another beautiful woman with a tremendously beautiful spirit.

Well, they do say that --

"It takes one to know one..."


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03.12.07 | DASHAUN "JIWE" MORRIS: Now

With his movie star good looks, Jiwe greeted me with the charm of someone from another time.

We sat and had coffee while he shared stories with me about his past; painful stories that are regrettably not so unique. It is because his story is the story of so many other young men, that Jiwe is doing what he does - spreading his message of peace.

As I listened to him share about the things that he has been through, the things that he has done, the things that he regrets and the things that keep hope alive in his heart, I predicted silently that Dashaun "Jiwe" Morris is destined to build a legacy of -

PEACE.

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03.05.07 | SELMA ALABAMA

The marches that took place in Selma Alabama forty two years ago, Bloody Sunday being the most memorable, served as a catalyst for the Voter's Rights Act.

Many sacrifices were made including loss of life as people took a courageous stand for the opportunity to participate in the democratic process - equally.

This past weekend two great leaders were in Selma, Alabama to mark another anniversary of this historical event, bringing with them a spotlight that will once again, draw our attention to the Edmund Pettus Bridge and what took place there in March of 1965; men and women who walked because they stood for something that they were willing to die for.

In remembrance...

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02.26.07 | SHALEIA REID AND JAMILA MANNING: Young Entrepreneurs

Their very first big interview was with Jennifer Hudson. They got it because they had the nerve to ask. They reached for the stars and got one and now they are not afraid to ask for the moon.

Their youthful ambition is a reminder to all of us that we really can have, if we'll only just believe...

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02.12.07 | TOMMY HAYES-BROWN: We Are Family.

His whole life is about his family. His whole family is about making a difference in this world.

Tommy Hayes-Brown knew from a very young age that he wanted to adopt children one day. Today, he and his wife Sharon have four beautiful boys - the first three adopted and the fourth, their natural child, and Tommy would be the first to point out that all of his kids are just his kids.

To listen to Tommy tell stories about a day, any day in his life with his kids, is to fully appreciate the fundamental joy of -

LOVE.

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01.29.07 | DAVID BRADLEY: Courageous

The first person on my list of friends isn't a person at all. It's more the beginning of a great journey than a circumstance. The first thing I wanted to talk about was my friend my tumor. I don't want to get into medical terms but more or less explain the story of my cancer for those of you that do not know it and maybe it will help to explain the writing of this section of this book.

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01.22.07 | COMP2KIDS - No Child Left Behind
Four years ago a friend invited me to a meeting of Comp2Kids, a newly formed non-profit organization formed to create programs to "bridge the digital divide." More...

01.15.07 | DEREK PHILLIPS : Keeping It Real

A lot of stuff goes back to when I was young. Sometimes I talk to my students and they think that I don't understand what its like for them:

"You're a teacher. You have a job. You went to college. You can't relate to what we are going through".

What I tell them is that for me, life is not easy.

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12.25.06 | FORMER CONGRESSWOMAN BARBARA JORDAN

Democratic Convention Keynote Address: Who Then Will Speak for the Common Good?
New York, New York, July 12, 1976
Fifth among the Top 100 American Speeches of the 20th Century

...We are a people in a quandary about the present. We are a people in search of our future. We are a people in search of... More...

12.18.06 | FORMER VICE PRESIDENT AL GORE Delivers Remarks on Constitutional Issues

From my desk in Atlanta, I scour Internet articles in the Clovis News Journal looking for anything that might help my brother's death make sense. We have family and friends in Oklahoma, Tennessee, Georgia, New York, Wisconsin, Texas and Illinois who are all doing the same, searching Clovis for something that we have yet to find: peace.

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12.04.06 | ELIE WIESEL: The Peril of Indifference

Holocaust survivor and Nobel Laureate, Elie Wiesel, gave this impassioned speech in the East Room of the White House on April 12, 1999, as part of the Millennium Lecture series, hosted by President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton.

In the summer of 1944, as a teenager in Hungary, Elie Wiesel, along with his father, mother and sisters, were deported by the Nazis to Auschwitz extermination camp in occupied Poland. Upon arrival there, Wiesel and his father were selected by SS Dr. Josef Mengele for slave labor and wound up at the nearby Buna rubber factory.

Daily life included starvation rations of soup and bread, brutal discipline, and a constant struggle against overwhelming despair. At one point, young Wiesel received 25 lashes of the whip for a minor infraction.

In January 1945, as the Russian Army drew near, Wiesel and his father were hurriedly evacuated from Auschwitz by a forced march to Gleiwitz and then via an open train car to Buchenwald in Germany, where his father, mother, and a younger sister eventually died.

Wiesel was liberated by American troops in April 1945. After the war, he moved to Paris and became a journalist then later settled in New York. Since 1976, he has been Andrew Mellon Professor in the Humanities at Boston University. He has received numerous awards and honors including the 1986 Nobel Peace Prize and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He was also the Founding Chair of the United States Holocaust Memorial. Wiesel has written over 40 books including Night, a harrowing chronicle of his Holocaust experiences, first published in 1960.

At the White House lecture, Wiesel was introduced by Hillary Clinton who stated, "It was more than a year ago that I asked Elie if he would be willing to participate in these Millennium Lectures...I never could have imagined that when the time finally came for him to stand in this spot and to reflect on the past century and the future to come, that we would be seeing children in Kosovo crowded into trains, separated from families, separated from their homes, robbed of their childhoods, their memories, their humanity."

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11.27.06 | NICOLE KING-BURROUGHS: Heart and Soul

"I am not interested in dressing the world, just the few with an inimitable sense of style."

Born and bred in Detroit Michigan, King-Burroughs has held style court on the East and West coasts for over 10 years.

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11.20.06 | JOHN POLLACK: The Quiet Storm

In 1989, the image of one man standing in front. Can one man, willing to take a stand, make a difference? Can one person stop the powers that be dead in their tracks?

Remember Tiananmen Square?

Profiles of that kind of courage seem hard to find these days but, if you are willing to look then you will indeed find,

examples of that kind of heroism.

John Pollack, or JP as he is fondly known amongst his friends, is just such an example. JP is the kind of man that I imagine somebody will want to make a movie about one day. He is the kind of man that people write books about. Like that kid who stood in front of that tank in Tiananmen Square in 1989, JP is a quiet storm. Fueled by his passion to make a difference, armed with the courage of his convictions and shielded by the power that comes with integrity, he willingly answers the call.

John Pollack thinks globally and he acts locally as he fights to preserve those principles and ideals that ultimately shape the way that each of us experiences everyday life.

An extraordinarily courageous young man captured the attention of the entire world in June of 1989, when he single handedly stopped the advance of a tank column by standing in its way...

JP reminds us all again of the power of one man willing to take a stand.

One person cheering doesn't make a whole lot of noise but, you get 100,000 people cheering and suddenly you've got a roar! -- John Pollack

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11.13.06 | JENI BECK : We Are Here!

I had this moment recently...

You know when you remember some of the most important lessons that you've learned, that you forget, and you have to remember again? Well, I remembered that -

no one else is going to live my life for me and no one else will make my dreams come true and no one else will regret the things that I don't do.

So, I just did it!

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11.06.06 | BARACK OBAMA - Take Back America
My friends, we meet here today at a time where we find ourselves at a crossroads in America's history. More...

10.16.06 | EMILY VERELLEN: Let There Be Light!
If I were to describe Emily Verellen as an extraordinary young woman, I would be understating her courage, her creativity, her unselfishness and her commitment to being someone who contributes at a global level. I don’t know of a word that would accurately describe a young person who is more concerned about improving the quality of life for young girls halfway around the world, then they are about their own comfort.

Emily relates to all that she has done in the same way that most other people would relate to donating their spare change to a worthy cause while checking out at the grocery store.

With a humble and generous spirit, Emily Verellen raises the bar when it comes to exploring the possibilities of caring for our fellow man.

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09.18.06 | GORDON CHAMBERS: Beyond Successful

It always surprises me that Gordon Chambers is not quite fully aware of his musical genius. It is refreshing however. Gordon remains humble, even as someone who has been writing music since he was a child and has written for such legends as Aretha Franklin, Patti Labelle and Whitney Houston. Gordon is determined to re define what success means for him, as he strives to carve out yet another place for himself in an industry where he has already known success.

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09.11.06 | ANNE MULDERRY: She Rose Above Her Sorrow, And Took A Stand for Peace: A Speech
Just two months before that September 11th of 2001, I had moved to this village from the nearby city of Albany, which was where our three daughters and five sons were raised. We had been blessed to have a comfortable home there in a neighborhood rich in neighbors and friends, and my children had had a grace-filled place to grow-up before college and career opportunities took them away. At that time, the family home was sold, and the smaller house in the village of Kinderhook, just 30-minutes south of Albany on the east side of the Hudson River, had already become the family’s new gathering place. More...

09.04.06 | KEVIN KEATING : A Time For Everything!

My life is largely shaped and driven by my work. I think maybe a bit too much. It is all consuming. I am fortunate. My work is driven by my awareness of my surrounding - political awareness; of what is happening in my, in our society. Essentially the separation between work and existence are not much. When I leave work, I don't stop thinking about what it is that I am doing. I am lucky. What I enjoy most is what I do at work. Maybe I am unlucky because there isn't much of a distinction between work and life.

My work is what I love.

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08.28.06 | PAULA'S KATRINA, PT. 1
It’s 5:30am. We spent an anxious night watching The Weather Channel. We packed our cooler and two days’ worth of clothes yesterday. We’ve got the checkbooks and insurance papers (just in case), flashlights, batteries, our cell phones and laptops. We’re good to go... It’s a beautiful day on the coast. You’d never know there was a storm out in the gulf. More...

08.21.06 | BLANE WITHERS AND BARBARA GOLD : Remembering Marty

Marty's was brought to life as a tribute to the talent and distinguished career of Roxbury resident Martin O'Brien who lost his battle with cancer July 22, 2005.

Marty and his partner G. Blane Withers intended to open a version of Marty's together when Mr. O'Brien's life was tragically cut short. Blane and his good friend Barbara Gold decided to continue the project in his name and with his inspiration.

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07.31.06 | JACK MAZZOLA: Where Everybody Knows Your Name, and You're Always Glad You Came

At first glance, Jack Mazzola would seem to be just an ordinary, regular guy. But more than a glance will reveal that Jack Mazzola is, in fact, highly irregular.

Jack Mazzola is an extraordinary guy.

Jack is the owner of Jack's Stir Brew Coffee, an organic and fair trade coffee shop located at 138 West 10th Street in New York City's West Village.

But that is not what makes him highly irregular.

Jack serves some of the best coffee in New York and has gotten a lot of recent local and national attention including the Best Coffee Award from New York Magazine and a guest appearance on The Today Show with Al Roker and Katie Couric. And, while all of that is great, what makes Jack Mazzola so extraordinary and leaves him in a class all by himself is the simple, yet powerful philosophy that governs the way that Jack chooses to live his life. More...

07.17.06 | NANCY MALTIN: Never Too Late

"All human beings are 'late bloomers' and all of us 'bloom' in life at different times, each of us according to our own pace."

Wise words from my wise friend, Nancy.

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07.10.06 | ROB MOREA: On Being Present
“Being present is a concept that, I have noticed, is becoming more and more difficult with our increased access to technology and information. There are many benefits to technology and information, but there is a time and place for everything.” More...

07.03.06 | TRACE GAYNOR AND STEPHEN SOTOR: Kids Do The Darnedest Things!

Recently, I discovered something that I think I should share. I discovered a story about two 13 year old boys, Trace Gaynor and Stephen Sotor, who live in Chicago and decided to make a film about -

choices and about being responsible. Their film is about consequences and hope; about compassion and better days because it is about considering life beyond what works for you, personally. More...

06.26.06 | LAURA LOBDELL: One Small Step, One Big Difference

Armicitia (Latin) - to bind by friendship

It would be on her way home from a party, that Laura would, in a strange twist of fate, find a sense of urgency about her life purpose to spread peace through promoting friendship.

Laura was on her way home from a party given by her friends. She was alone. All of a sudden she began to feel sick and suspected... More...

06.12.06 | R.E.U.B. DELLE: It's Not About The Shoes. Or Is It?
A lot of people dream BIG dreams, but few will do whatever it takes to make their dream come true. More...

06.05.06 | JENNIFER LEHR: Can We Talk - About Sex?

"Let's talk about sex, baby. Let's talk about you and me. Let's talk about all the good things and the bad things that can be..."

And that is just what Jennifer Lehr does in her 'brutally honest' book Ill Equipped for a Life of Sex. While this book is definitely loaded with information that is guaranteed to make you blush, even as you sit at home alone with your cup of hot coffee and good piece of chocolate, do not make the mistake of "writing this book off" as merely a book about sex, or the lack thereof as was sometimes the case with Jennifer and husband John.

There is so much more that Jennifer has to offer...

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03.20.06 | DONNA SPERRY: The Love of a Mother
This is the story of a mother's love and my attempt to honor her request to -
"Please help". More...

03.13.06 | CHRISTOPHER PIZZO: Make It Happen!!! No Matter How Big The Dream
Just two months before that September 11th of 2001, I had moved to this village from the nearby city of Albany, which was where our three daughters and five sons were raised. More...

02.13.06 | GWEN LASTER: Let the Music Play

Gwen Laster is a violin player and she is gifted. She handles the violin as if she were born to play.

I am a violinist and the art of improvisation on violin gives me the opportunity and challenge of spontaneously transferring my musical thoughts through the facility of my instrument. My classical approach is to execute and interpret what has already been composed.

She is good but what makes Gwen Laster great is her commitment to pass her gifts on to the next generation.

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12.19.05 | RONNIE RUN: Stop And Look Me Over

North Carolina rapper Ronnie Run is clear about one thing - that he is an original and he is clear that he is trying to blaze new trails in the world of hip hop by taking people on a journey back to the past; back to old school rap...

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12.12.05 | STEVE PAGEOT: A Man Who Won't Be Denied

Steve Pageot is relentless when it comes to getting what he wants and accomplishing what he sets out to accomplish. And, although he has a manner that is quiet, gentle and easy to be with, I would go so far as to call him ruthless when it comes to making his mark.

We talked last week:

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"I started training to play music at the age of 3. I began with guitar, and at 13, I entered a high school called Pierre-Laporte, where I picked up the flute and studied classical music. At 17, I won the most prestigious classical music award from the Canadian Music Competition. When I turned 21, I put a recording studio together in my parents' house." More...

11.21.05 | A LESSON IN LIVING
What kind of person would dedicate their life to improving the quality of life for people on the other side of the world? What kind of drive, desire and determination does it take to start an organization for people who are nothing like you? How do you do that?

This is what I wanted to know so I asked Rye... More...

11.14.05 | IT'S NOT ABOUT THE SHOES. OR IS IT?
A lot of people dream BIG dreams, but few will do whatever it takes to make their dream come true. More...

11.07.05 | ON BEING PRESENT
“Being present is a concept that, I have noticed, is becoming more and more difficult with our increased access to technology and information. There are many benefits to technology and information, but there is a time and place for everything.” More...

10.24.05 | Anne Mulderry: She Rose Above Her Sorrow, And Took A Stand For Peace: A Speech
A hot, humid summer day in New York City...June 30, 2005. I remember that it was hot and humid, not only because most summer days in New York are like that but because I had to wear a suit and tie to a very important business meeting. More...

09.25.05 | BARACK OBAMA ADDRESSES THE NATION
On behalf of the great state of Illinois, crossroads of a nation, land of Lincoln, let me express my deep gratitude for the privilege of addressing this convention. Tonight is a particular honor for me because, let's face it, my presence on this stage is pretty unlikely. My father was a foreign student, born and raised in a small village in Kenya. He grew up herding goats, went to school in a tin-roof shack. His father, my grandfather, was a cook, a domestic servant. More...

09.12.05 | PAUL MOMENT : Hurricane Season
It's not always the case, but sometimes I'm struck by the similarities of how what happens on a macro-scale in the world around me is a perfect metaphor for what's happening on micro-scale in my life and in the lives of people around me. More...

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