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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review June 29, 2011 / 27 Sivan, 5771

AmeriCorps' Favorite Scandal-Plagued Mayor

By Michelle Malkin




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | A prominent Democratic politician who was banned from receiving federal aid three years ago over fraud charges is once again raking in government funds from the very same program he abused. It pays to be a FOTO — Friend of the Obamas.

Our publicly subsidized con artist is Sacramento mayor and former NBA star Kevin Johnson. He donated the maximum individual amount to Obama for America, campaigned across the country for Obama in 2008, and bragged to California media during his mayoral run about his friendship and access to both Barack and Michelle Obama. The Obama administration's Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) recently bestowed Johnson's city with an AmeriCorps grant worth more than $650,000.

The money will flow into Sacramento's "Get Fit Now! Initiative," which will hire 124 AmeriCorps members "to teach fitness and nutrition education to children and offer adult fitness classes for their parents. They will also set up school-based gardens where children will learn how to grow fresh vegetables."

That's a lot of fertilizer-shovelers employed in the name of "public service." If the award smells funny, it should. For Johnson, AmeriCorps has indeed been all about service — self-service, that is.

In 2008, the independent Inspector General overseeing AmeriCorps, Gerald Walpin, concluded that Johnson and aide Dana Gonzalez had squandered hundreds of thousands of a nearly million-dollar grant earmarked for his nonprofit youth organization, St. HOPE. Based on Walpin's investigation, AmeriCorps' parent organization (the aforementioned CNCS) suspended Johnson and Gonzalez's access to federal funds. Here's a refresher on their fraud and abuse that led to the ban:

— Using AmeriCorps members to "recruit students for St. HOPE Academy."

— Using AmeriCorps members for political activities in connection with the "Sacramento Board of Education election."

— Assigning grant-funded AmeriCorps members to perform services for Johnson such as "driving (him) to personal appointments, washing (his) car, and running personal errands."

— Improperly using AmeriCorps "members to perform non-AmeriCorps clerical and other services" that "were outside the scope of the grant and therefore were impermissible" for "the benefit of St. HOPE."

Johnson didn't get jail time. Instead, the Democratic U.S. Attorney in Sacramento cut a cozy settlement deal so Johnson could avoid criminal prosecution. The deal also allowed Johnson to repay just a fraction of the money he siphoned from AmeriCorps coffers for personal gain — and it freed Johnson to receive federal Obama stimulus money for Sacramento. (My most recent check of the Recovery.gov website shows the city has taken in at least $32 million in stimulus cash.)

In keeping with this administration's brutal war on whistleblowers, Walpin was unceremoniously fired and smeared by Team Obama. The White House baselessly questioned the veteran watchdog's mental health and accused him of political interference. The first lady then installed her former chief of staff, Jackie Norris, in AmeriCorps' top management to ensure — in Mrs. Obama's own words — that they remained the program's "No. 1 cheerleaders."

Even more troubling, Johnson continues to reap government tax dollars for youth programs while he remains dogged by questions about his predatory behavior with teenage girls. A little-noticed section of the joint November 2009 report by GOP Sen. Charles Grassley and GOP Rep. Darrell Issa on Walpin's firing revealed that the AmeriCorps inspector general's investigator "became aware of allegations of inappropriate contact between Johnson and three female St. HOPE students." Their stories mirror a similar incident involving Johnson (then 29 and playing for the Phoenix Suns) and a 16-year-old girl dating back to 1995.

Johnson's attorney, Kevin Hiestand, approached at least one of the St. HOPE students describing himself only as "'a friend of Johnson's,'" and "basically asked me to keep quiet," according to the student. She had complained to St. HOPE officials that Johnson groped her sexually after instructing her to grade papers with him in her apartment. The report also highlighted what clearly looks like a hush-money and witness-tampering attempt: "According to her interview with OIG investigators, about one week later, Kevin Johnson offered her $1,000 a month until the end of the program, which she refused to accept."

Erik Jones, a teacher at St. HOPE, reported to the police that one of his students told him Johnson "started massaging her shoulders and then reached over and touched her breasts." Jones quit his job in protest over the seeming cover-up of Johnson's harassment and wrote in his resignation letter that "St. HOPE sought to intimidate the student through an illegal interrogation and even had the audacity to ask me to change my story."

Another student recounted for investigators how Johnson "kissed her cheek, brushed up against her" and touched her thigh on various occasions — as well as flipping up her skirt on a St. HOPE-sponsored trip to Harlem. She didn't report the incidents to AmeriCorps officials at the time because she "feared she would be terminated."

Another St. HOPE official, Jacqueline Wong-Hernandez, also left Johnson's nonprofit over the whitewash. Michelle Rhee, Johnson's fiancee and former D.C. schools chief, was a St. HOPE board member at the time. The Grassley-Issa report noted, "According to Wong-Hernandez, Rhee learned of the allegations and played the role of a fixer, doing 'damage control'" and vouching for Johnson's character.

He's a "good guy," Rhee told Walpin. Taxpayers — and especially parents of teenage girls and AmeriCorps workers in Sacramento schools — should beg to differ.

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