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Wednesday, April 26, 2017

View of the Week (II): On National Service (Courtesy Corporation For National Service)

When you volunteer, you never know how far you can go.

We Stand in Tribute to Volunteers

During National Volunteer Week, the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) stands in tribute for all of those who step forward to serve. The service you do may not be as dramatic as, say, Katniss Everdeen of “The Hunger Games,” but volunteers can make a big impact and be heroic in their own way.
You see, CNCS believes that volunteering and civic engagement are the cornerstones of a strong nation. Our agency leads programs (AmeriCorpsSenior Corps, and the Social Innovation Fund), initiatives (Volunteer Generation Fund), and national Days of Service (MLK Day and the 9/11 Day of Service and Remembrance) that guide and support millions of volunteers in service annually. 
The volunteers we connect to service meet needs in underserved communities and address some of our nation’s greatest challenges. They respond to disasters, help preserve the environment and public lands, improve health and educational outcomes, expand economic opportunity, and support our veterans and military families. 
While they serve, these volunteers learn new skills, and gain important physical and mental health benefits as they strengthen the fabric of our nation. CNCS even has a study that found if you volunteer, the odds are in your favor when you embark on a job search. (See what we did there?)
This week, we discovered an AmeriCorps alum helping the homeless obtain free health care, an RSVP member who lends his talents to make air travel more secure, and another AmeriCorps alum who was named National Teacher of the year!
Oh, and our first AmeriCorps alum in the U.S. Senate joined current members on a service project. You know, just because.
During the last few months, many Americans have taken the challenge to serve in their communities, forming new relationships and demonstrating the power each of us has to make a difference by performing good works. And for that, we are all thankful.
Any way you add it up, volunteers are the real winners in this game – even when it’s not a matter of life and death.
In service, 
CNCS Office of External Affairs
P.S. To find volunteering opportunities in your community, visit the search engine at

View of the Week: On #China

China is rising and continues inroads as The United States continues its' efforts to strengthen its' alliances as North Korea's threat looms large.    This "snapshot" courtesy of the Fortune CEO Daily Newsletter W-End Edition provided a good snapshot of the current state of affairs in China and potential looming challenges which our team chose for this edition of "View of the Week" as the New Week dawns.

We wish all a great week from our Hometown here in Laguna Niguel:


APRIL 22, 2017
Good afternoon.
Chinese president Xi Jinping is often portrayed in Western media as something of a control freak. The Economist last year proclaimed him “Chairman of Everything” (and was promptly banned in China). That image may be undeserved. But with the approach of a crucial Party Congress this fall, it’s not hard to understand why the Chinese leader would focus on order and stability.
The Party Congress, the 19th to be held since China’s Communist Party was founded in 1921, affords Xi a make-or-break opportunity to pack the party’s 350-member Central Committee with his own allies. He’ll also have a chance to promote his own people to two key sub-groups, the Politburo and the Politburo’s Standing Committee, as well as the army’s ruling council. Results of the reshuffle will determine whether Xi has enough support to extend his influence beyond 2022, when his term as party secretary is set to expire.
To achieve maximum influence at the Congress, Xi must preserve steady growth of China’s economy; project an image of strong leadership in global affairs, especially in China’s dealings with the United States; and enforce absolute loyalty within the party.
For now, most analysts seem to be betting that Xi will succeed on all three fronts. China’s GDP grew 6.9% in the first quarter, its strongest quarterly performance in 18 months. Meanwhile, Donald Trump’s vow to scrap or re-write long-standing U.S. trade agreements and scale back American security guarantees to traditional allies has enabled Xi to position himself as a champion of global cooperation. Xi’s first meeting with Trump, in Mar-a-Largo, Florida, ended amicably, and Trump quickly abandoned threats to declare China a currency manipulator and slap tariffs on imports from China.
But a lot can happen in a few months–and there are plenty of potential Black Swans out there. Many analysts warn China’s growth is the result of ballooning credit, not genuine consumer demand. Skeptics point to the recent collapse in the share price of Hong Kong-listed China Huishan Dairy and record bond defaults as signs of economic distress. Trump added to the uncertainty with his announcement Thursday that he is launching a trade probe against China and other exporters of cheap steel into the United States.
Meanwhile, allegations of corruption among senior party officials by Chinese tycoon Guo Wengui last week spiraled into a bizarre feud involving senior Chinese diplomats, an abruptly terminated interview with Voice of America, and a hail of counter-attacks in China’s state-owned media. The controversy stirred speculation among US China experts of serious behind-the-scenes turmoil in Chinese politics. Fortune‘s Scott Cendrowski has more background on the dust-up here.
Enjoy the weekend!
Clay Chandler

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

An #Outsider Newsflash (Special Edition): Being Aware of Scams (Courtesy USA.Gov)

Woman on the phone. Takes you to FTC page on IRS imposter scams.
You get a call from someone who says she’s from the IRS. She says that you owe back taxes. She threatens to sue you, arrest or deport you, or revoke your license if you don’t pay right away. She tells you to put money on a prepaid debit card and give her the card numbers. The caller may know part of your Social Security number. And your caller ID might show a Washington, DC area code. But is it really the IRS calling?
No. The real IRS won’t ask you to pay with prepaid debit cards or wire transfers. They also won’t ask for a credit card over the phone. And when the IRS first contacts you about unpaid taxes, they do it by mail, not by phone. And caller IDs can be faked.
Here’s what you can do:
  1. Stop. Don’t wire money or pay with a prepaid debit card. Once you send it, the money is gone. If you have tax questions, go to or call the IRS at 800-829-1040.
  2. Pass this information on to a friend. You may not have gotten one of these calls, but the chances are you know someone who has.
Please Report Scams
If you spot a scam, please report it to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Report a scam online or call the FTC at 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357) or TTY 1-866-653-4261. Your complaint can help protect other people. By filing a complaint, you can help the FTC’s investigators identify the imposters and stop them before they can get someone’s hard-earned money. It really makes a difference.

Monday, April 24, 2017

An #Outsider Newsflash (Special Edition): On the Looming Government Shutdown

Please note this courtesy of Business Forward:

Congress needs to approve a federal spending plan—or pass a short-term continuing resolution—by next Friday, April 28 or the federal government will shut down.

Please join us on Tuesday for a conference call on the upcoming deadline and the broader budget fights facing Congress.

The day Congress returns from a two-week recess, budget expert Jacob Leibenluft will give an overview of what to expect around this appropriations deadline and what the coming debate over the budget means for the economy.
Can you join our conference call on the federal budget?

Yes, sign me up. >
No, I can't make it. >

Here are the details:

Conference call on the federal budget

Jacob Leibenluft
Senior Advisor
Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

Tuesday, April 25
2:00 p.m. ET / 11:00 a.m. PT
Please note: This call is on the record.

Click here to register.

If you can’t make it, sign up for a recording.


Friday, April 21, 2017

On This #EarthDay2017.....

We are here at The Daily Outsider are celebrating Earth Day 2017.      We could not agree more with a recent New York Times article that , "...our Climate Future is actually our Climate Present".    As the Trump Adminstration is busy rolling back Climate Protection, Companies, Cities and States are on the prowl to mitigate the tide.      For instance, Walmart has just announced Project Gigaton that is slated to, ".  removing a gigaton of greenhouse gas emissions from the company's global supply chain by 2030...".  

As a prelude to Earth Day 2017, The team at +Global Citizen put together 5 recommend movies--our team is pleased to feature the column in all our properties in its'  entirety as we wish all a Happy Earth Day!!

5 Movies Global Citizens Need to Watch Before Earth Day

By Phineas Rueckert|
Each week, streaming sites like Netflix, HBO, and Amazon release a whole spate of new movies for us to gobble up. 
Global Citizen has scoured the endless landscape of TV, movies, and streaming services to find the best things for you to watch. Check back every week as we present the latest and best offerings for you to enjoy.

1. “The Age of Consequences,” Documentary, Apple iTunes

Available on iTunes for just $0.99, this documentary considers the national and global security implications of a warming planet. Water and food shortages, extreme weather patterns, and rising sea-levels, this documentary argues, will lead to increasing instability, and more crises like the one in Syria.   

2. “Avatar,” Drama, Google Play

The highest-grossing film of all time, “Avatar” portrays an indigenous culture’s struggle to survive an invasion from earth-based explorers. The Na'vi are an advanced race that live in harmony with nature and whose way of life is under grave threat from exploitative forces. 
“Avatar,” director James Cameron said of the film, “wasn’t so much of a message as it was a feeling — a feeling that you needed to connect better with nature.” 

3. “A Plastic Ocean,” Documentary, Netflix

More than 8 million tons of plastic are dumped into the world’s oceans each year, posing a grave threat to this complex underwater ecosystem. This Netflix documentary shows how, eventually, this plastic waste ends up in an unsettling place: our stomachs. 

4. “Jumbo Wild,” Documentary, NetflixAmazon Prime

Produced in collaboration with Patagonia, “Jumbo Wild” takes us to the backcountry of British Columbia where a coalition of First Nations people, environmentalists, and locals have fought back against a proposed all-seasons resort development that would threaten sacred lands and threatened grizzly bear populations for more than 20 years.   

5. “Love Thy Nature,” Documentary, Amazon Prime

The argument made by “Love Thy Nature” is quite simple: if humans were to deepen their relationship with nature, they’d be more inclined to help protect it. Narrated by actor Liam Neeson, this documentary urges you to embark on this critical journey to save the planet. 

Notations From the Grid (Weekly Edition): On Global Education

On this week with a special focus on Education,  our team chose this guide courtesy of +Global Citizen .   The idea of making sure Children Stay in School and showcasing how ordinary faces make a difference every day is at the heart of what our mission is as we do our part to help transform the conversation about our World.   

The Global Citizen Guide to Education
Hero Teacher Buys Bikes for Every Kid at School
A first-grade teacher in South Carolina raised $80,000 over the course of three months to provide students with this critical tool.
Argentina Grants 1,000 Scholarships to Syrian Refugees
Argentina plans to open its doors to 1,000 Syrian students over the next five years, granting them full scholarships.
These College Students Gave Back on Spring Break
Some students spend their spring break in Miami. Others go back home. But these Howard University students lent a hand in 13 US communities.
This State Just Outlawed 'Lunch Shaming'
A new bill aims to end a terrible practice — shaming students who don’t have enough food or money for lunch at school.
Meet Sesame Street’s Newest Character
Sesame Street will be joined by a new cast member, Julia, who is breaking boundaries and teaching young kids to be accepting of difference.
Help These Children Stay in School
75 million kids are out of school because of conflict or natural disaster — but there’s something you can do to help.