New Momentum After a Long Fight: Inside Kellogg’s Push on Children and Equity – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy

The high percentage of U.S. children living in poverty—one in five, at last count—hasn’t changed much in the past few decades. And while you’d think that would be a national scandal, this issue has just never had the political traction advocates have hoped.

Lately, though, things seem to be changing. Early childhood education is moving up on the national agenda and a new book by Robert Putnam on the deeply unequal lives of American children has received wide attention. Amid a growing debate over inequality, and also race, fresh opportunities are emerging to improve the lives of kids.

via New Momentum After a Long Fight: Inside Kellogg’s Push on Children and Equity – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

Seeing a New Opening, Annie E. Casey Is Pushing Hard on Poverty and Opportunity – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence

The Annie E. Casey Foundation is named after a widow who struggled to raise her four children as a single mother. One of her children, Jim, founded UPS and became wealthy—while never forgetting where he came from. For decades, the Annie E. Casey Foundation—now with assets of some $3 billion—has been a premier grantmaker focused on the well-being of children and families. Inevitably, these issues have taken the foundation deep into the realm of public policy, and since the mid-1990s, it has led a broad push to reduce poverty and expand opportunity for low-income communities.

As Casey’s director of policy reform and advocacy, Michael Laracy has been near the center of that push for 21 years. He advances the foundation’s efforts to inform, guide and influence public policy at the state and federal levels. He also takes care of the foundation’s KIDS COUNT network and State Priorities Partnership (previously called the State Fiscal Analysis Initiative, or SFAI).

via Seeing a New Opening, Annie E. Casey Is Pushing Hard on Poverty and Opportunity – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

What Did This Scholar Learn From His Deep Dive Into the World of Billionaires? – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy

We write about billionaires and their philanthropy almost every day here at IP, and so we’ve been intrigued by Darrell West’s new book, Billionaires: Reflections on the Upper Crust.

via What Did This Scholar Learn From His Deep Dive Into the World of Billionaires? – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

Sorry About That — Pass the Grey Poupon

An amazing interview with Rep. Dennis Kucinich by Meg White is at Buzzflash. Kucinich recently introduced articles of impeachment against President Bush for lying us into war. This would have gotten press coverage, except that Angelina Jolie was doing something last week and the press has to prioritize. Luckily, you can go to Buzzflash and read this–

“Where’s our heart here? What is going on that we can’t connect with the suffering of other people?” he asked. “We can’t say, ‘Oh, yeah, we went into a war, they didn’t tell the truth and all these people died. Sorry about that. Pass the Grey Poupon.’ We can’t do that. We cannot become so callous that we don’t care that innocent people are killed. This is what’s driving me.”

Check out the rest of the interview for details of the impeachment, who else signed on, and what the next step will be.

Cable TV Interview at 5:30 on Channel 18

UPDATE: I’m not sure what happened, but the show did not broadcast. Sorry — I’ll let you know when it’s going to be on.

We don’t have cable TV, but luckily I’ll be at work tonight, so if I can convince a bunch of rowdy teenagers to cooperate, we might be able to see this. The show will be broadcast at 5:30 pm on channel 18. It’s a half-hour interview with me conducted by Rebecca Flores-Amado, (scroll down on the linked page to see her bio) in which we discuss what it’s like to start and run a blog and how blogging is part of my larger vision of what it means to be a progressive citizen and a clinical social worker.

Interview with Senator Jack Reed

Issues discussed in the interview include: the Iraq War and Senator Reed’s response to the President’s current plan, Senator Reed’s plan going forward in conjunction with Senator Levin, the Biden-Gelb plan and its feasibility, concerns regarding the long-term effects of war on American military service personnel, including PTSD, and whether our VA’s are funded to handle the issues, health care and the crisis of the uninsured, Senator Reed’s efforts to fund SCHIP for the state of Rhode Island, the medicare prescription drug benefit and Reed’s support of the proposed changes, education funding from the national level and fulfilling the promise to fund special education under IDEA, addressing the national deficit by stopping the President’s tax cuts, funding alternative energy projects in the US. The interview is approximately 22 minutes long.

Supporting the Alternatives for Iraq

Contrary to what the President and other conservatives would have you believe, those who favor a withdrawal of American forces from Iraq do have alternative plans for how to achieve stability. The Iraq Study group provided its recommendations, which include no increase in troops and more efforts at stabilizing the region overall. The full report from the Iraq Study Group is available here. The Center for American Progress also provides a plan for moving forward responsibly in Iraq. Also, Senator Joe Biden has established a plan in conjunction with Leslie Gelb, which calls for creating a sustainable political settlement among the Kurds, Sunnis and Shiites, including dividing up the region and dividing the oil so that all the sects have access to a certain amount. The US would remain involved in the reconstruction effort but would call on allies in the Mideast to do their part to ensure stability among the sects of Iraqi people. The Biden-Gelb plan is being praised by voices as diverse as Bill O’Reilly, Bill Richardson, and Henry Kissinger.

Today I am meeting with Senator Jack Reed and hope to discuss some of the alternative plans to addressing the Iraq situation. I encourage people to read about these plans and to consider endorsing the Biden plan as a way to let Congress know that Americans are not “surrender monkeys.” We are people who care about our country and about Iraq, and we want to find a way to move forward that will avert further death, trauma, and loss for everyone.