Another person I have been following for a while is Mark Horvath. Mark is the man behind http://www.invisiblepeople.tv/ and has a strong following as his videos on youtube ( check out the channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/invisiblepeopletv ) Mark has a background behind the lens of a camera. As he put it .... For years I’ve used the lens of a television camera to tell the stories of homelessness and the organizations trying to help. That was part of my job. The reports were produced well and told a story, but the stories you see on this site are much different. These are the real people, telling their own, very real stories… unedited, uncensored and raw.
The purpose of this vlog is to make the invisible visible. I hope these people and their stories connect with you and don’t let go. I hope their conversations with me will start a conversation in your circle of friends.
Mark is getting the word out on the homeless situation in a very effective way. Feel free to share the invisiblepeople.tv link and http://www.hardlynormal.com/ his other link. If you want to give Mark a hand feel free to spread his links and take a look at his page at http://invisiblepeople.tv/blog/about/ I have posted some of these videos myself in the past. Mark's road trip can be seen at http://invisiblepeople.tv/blog/invisible-people-homeless-road-trip/ There is good info there and there is also a donate button if you wish to help a bit. A side note; when this trip is complete Mark is still homeless.
Shay is on her own with little more than her dog and camera. Please feel free to share Shay's website URL and distribute it to your friends. She can use all the help and support that we can muster. http://www.shaykelley.com/
I commented on a story ...
Food trucks are rolling into the mainstream
Restaurant chains such as Sizzler and Subway are joining the parade of roving gourmet kitchens that started with Kogi two years ago. The story can be seen here: http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-food-trucks-20100909,0,579393.story
When I posted this story on facebook one person made a comment that others agreed with: Man, this is SUCH a bad idea! Best option is to NOT patronize the Sizzlers and Subways of the world.
From the location of the seat of our nation's government came this story:
Initial unemployment claims drop by 27,000
By Vicki Needham - 09/09/10 10:06 AM ET
The end of that story. More nonsense. More smoke and mirrors. The last paragraph above is somewhat interesting when you realize that every two weeks the next group of folks drop off the roles of the counted. The folks dropping off now are from the first wave of the folks who lost their jobs. Later in the "recession" these numbers increased so we are only seeing the tip of the proverbial iceberg at this time.
Some other folks had comments on the story:
Never mind that 9 states did not file stats for the week. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-09-09/jobless-claims-in-u-s-decreased-27-000-to-451-000-last-week.html
If you are going to report a story, please tell the entire story. BY YooDman on 09/09/2010 at 10:37
I believe big brother…NOT! BY uknow? on 09/09/2010 at 11:33
This story caught my eye:
Obama Stimulus Money Goes Where Needed Least:
By Veronique de Rugy - Sep 8, 2010 6:00 PM PT
State Unemployment Rate Stimulus/capita
Nevada 14.3 percent $561.55
Michigan 13.1 percent $648.91
California 12.3 percent $546.34
Rhode Island 11.9 percent $164.83
Florida 11.5 percent $475.67
Vermont 6.0 percent $522.42
New Hampshire 5.8 percent $852.53
Nebraska 4.7 percent $591.17
South Dakota 4.4 percent $1,084.73
North Dakota 3.6 percent $1,059.95
Does it make sense that the state with the highest unemployment rate, Nevada, is getting roughly half the per- capita amount of the state with the lowest, North Dakota? Sure, Michigan, Nevada and California are all getting more per person than New Hampshire, but only a smidge more, even though their unemployment rates are at least twice that of New Hampshire’s.
What’s going on here? For one thing, these are raw numbers that reflect only the amount of stimulus money spent. What they don’t do is tell us anything about the reasons it was spent.
In order to find what forces motivated the decision to spend, I ran a regression analysis that tested whether a certain factor is correlated to the outcome -- in this case, whether the unemployment level helped determine the spending allocations.
In this case, though, even after running a series of analyses, I found no correlation between unemployment levels and stimulus spending. (The data and regressions can be downloaded at mercatus.org.)
What about the possibility that these numbers don’t take into consideration money sloshing around federal agencies that will eventually go to the states? After all, that’s why data available on recovery.gov, which tracks stimulus spending, show that the District of Columbia receives a whopping $5,078.78 per person. That’s money that has been allocated to federal agencies, but some of it hasn’t yet gone to the states.
It doesn’t, however, explain why Alaska, with 7.7 percent unemployment, is getting $2,315.88 per person. Of course, Alaska always has been the Bermuda Triangle of federal spending -- some mysteries are eternal.
So if state unemployment levels weren’t the basis on which the federal government allocated these funds, what was? To me, it looks like it was just one: speed.
Back in February 2009, for all the talk about creating jobs, the administration wasn’t focused on distributing money to high-unemployment states, which, in theory, were the ones hurting the most. It was just trying to spend a massive amount of money as quickly as possible.
To achieve that, the stimulus bill distributed money among the states through existing channels -- such as the federal Departments of Education and Transportation -- whose main functions aren’t to address unemployment levels.
The Obama administration was wildly successful if its objective was to spend a lot of money in a short amount of time. Whether that money has done or will do anything for the people that need it most has proven far more elusive. As the saying goes, You can have it fast, you can have it good, or you can have it cheap -- pick two.
Sadly, we did worse than that: We only got one.
Is Homelessness Becoming Trendy?
This story was interesting - http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/bronstein/detail?entry_id=71858
The opening of the story: Is homelessness becoming trendy? Not if you're actually homeless. But the housing collapse means more and more people are sharing the streets these days. And wherever there's a growing market, expect news and a cultural stampede to follow it.
Some of my thinking on the story: Maybe what the folks at Men's Warehouse are doing is a good thing in some ways but when one looks into it a bit more deeply they are also offering a discount if you buy new things there. Something like leveraging the subject of being homeless to that of a business advantage? Perhaps I am just a bit paranoid of people doing things with unclear motivation?
Memo to Jerry Brown: Tell it like it is
This story just had me think about how I view our election process. In a nutshell, it seems to be the lesser of two evils. The story can be seen here - http://www.latimes.com/news/columnists/la-me-0908-lopezcolumn-20100908,0,4195567,full.column
My comment. I think that we should have extra boxes on the ballots ... "against". You would be allowed to check more than one. If all candidates had more against votes than for votes they would all be tossed.
At that point the Federal Government would step in. The secret service would drive down some street in middle income California and look for somebody unloading groceries or mowing their own lawn.
They would have secret service take over the house of these folks for a term to keep the house in good shape. The family would be relocated to Sacramento. The head of household would be the one to take office. They would have a actual view of reality, what day to day problems are and have the same "experts" that are available now for better or worse. But, at least there would be some form of a real person closer to the real daily problems in office.
I followed Mark Horvath of http://www.invisiblepeople.tv/ and http://www.hardlynormal.com/ and looked at his slide show of great shots. Mark has a great style of taking basic photos, unedited video and letting the subject speak for itself. Many times he asks the simple question ... if you could have three wishes ....
From the series ... America Out of Work
From helping run a school to taking handouts
Victoria Colliver, San Francisco Chronicle
I saw that California was in the big 3 .... http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/09/07/a-tale-of-three-states/
But Los Angeles made #2 in another story when it came to most stressed out cities in the USA. A nice PDF file with the results here: http://www.portfolio.com/resources/Portfolio-2010-Metro-Area-Stress-Rank.pdf
Another piece from America Out of Work
For many unemployed workers, jobs aren't coming back