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  • 06:08:55 pm on November 11, 2008 | 1 | # |

    For many it has just begun. The realization that Barack Obama, the 44th President Elect will soon take office and with him the hopes and dreams of a nation.

    While it seems that the fight for the White House as ended in victory for an overwhelmellen3ing amount of voters who flocked to polls this election, a new battele is starting. Proposition 8 which would once again ban same sex marriage in California has added a late come fire to a freshly finalized presidential race.

    Although both former candidates steered clear of the touchy topic I can help but see similarities and hypocrisy riddled full withihn the situation. The ban passed in California was also due to an overwhelming voter turnout.

    A vote that came from a predominantly Black and Latino demographic poll statistics dictate. How ironic. Just as the civil liberties of one group seem to be coming into fulfillment with the anniversary of Martin Luther King just past, that those of another group are thwarted by an impressive, previously non-existent voting group. Minorities.


  • 10:48:06 pm on November 5, 2008 | 3 | # |

    obama3_wSo its official, The United States of America has a new President elect Barack Obama.

    I took footage last night in Grant Park of the historic moment. As the former Senator alluded to in his acceptance speech, “this election was a first for many things,” I couldnt help but ponder those new frontiers as i sipped cocoa while bobbing and weaving through crowds. Never before has a minority ran for major office with the major backing of a people, nor has a woman ever come so close to becoming the Democratic nominee for the White House.

    Not to diminsh the occasion, but I am curious as to if the excitement of something new or dare I say something rebelious  is what all the excitement is about. Is it the unknown that excites people more than the issues themselves?

    As I did my interviews for this course I went around and asked people “whats does change mean for you personally?” Aside form what the candidates are telling you are the issues how will either in office affect your daily life? And you know what happened…nobody and I mean nobody who i spoke with had an original answer. Instead they just responded with “Go Obama!” and ran off.

    I never knew a man, or a day, could become a national holiday to the likes of New Year’s in less than 24 hours. Are people really invested in the issues? Do they know what change means? Or, heaven forbid, has society converted into a mob frenzy of a publicist wand and pen.

    What exactly is change or is it a notion that has worked oh so well for the Democratic party and the street hustlers who distribute Obama merchandise for profit?  Just something to think about.

  • 11:34:43 pm on November 3, 2008 | 1 | # |

    It almost here!

    As election day nears I just cant seem to sit still with the concious realization that I am about to witness history. Perhaps it is a bit presumptive of me to think that Obama has clenched gold in his ciptol hill dash but it just feels right. So right, that others seem to share in my sentiments.endofpro

    For some the “knowledge” that we may have a democratic president hell bent on redistributing the wealth is enough to let the hair down and to loosen the pocket strings if only a little bit. Oak street reatilers noticed an increase in shopping traffic over the weekend and aren’t giving all the credit to sunshine and lollipops.

    “I knew we would have a little bit more of a traffic flow with the events that the city was holding at the time along with holiday, but I didnt expect so many people to be shopping out of relief,” says Nick G. an assosciate at Barneys New York. ” I found myself talking more about the upcoming election with clients than what looks good on them,” he said.

    Its true, aside from those who the tax change might affect( like it matters anyways),once frugal weary shoppers are starting to see the light at the end of a retail prohibition tunnel. Says Claire DeFranco, a Chicago visitor who hasent come down from here hometown of Lansing MI to shop in quite some time, “its about time.”

  • 01:53:27 pm on October 28, 2008 | 0 | # |
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    My apologies on being tardy with my post but I have a good excuse…MADONNA! 

    Last night I was able to partake in the cultural rite of passage so few get to experience; I got to see Madonna herself perform no more than five feet away from me! I could hardly contain myself as the lights and music, allowed me to slip into an almost lucid state of euphoria. And then it hit me.

    As the concert reached what might be considered the middle portion the lights went out, the back screens illuminated and displayed a fashion forward illusion of Madonna insisting that I “act now!” A montage of past political figures “good and bad” such as Hitler and Stalin juxtaposed Mother Thresa and…Barack Obama! Woah!

    I like Barack as much as the next guy and in fact I endorse him for president, but what of politics in music? As i was almost hypnotized by the show I was being bombarded with political messages much like subliminal advertising and I couldn’t get enough. In a mob frenzy people began to cheer and go insane almost to the likes of which I remember in a Nazi documentary which analyzed mob mentality. I  never realized just how easy it is to “join the crowd” but I couldnt help myself…”its frickin Madonna!”

    If that is the case and it is our pop icons that can influence elections votes and shape global agenda, let pray that those icons success and all have the little peoples best interest at heart. Barack Obama wants to double tax incomes greater the $250,000. Last time I checked that was most of Hollywood and everyone who is shaping our generation. Just something to think about…

  • 02:42:14 pm on October 23, 2008 | 3 | # |

    For most, fall is a reason to bring out the hot chocolate and mittens. It is a time to observe the trees change colors as they illustrate how death can be so beautiful. For others, Fall is a harsh reminder of the bone chilling winter that is to come. The U.S. financial misfortune have caused a spike in homelessness this year.

    “It is really difficult to seperate those in true need from those who are just trying to hustle you,” says Grace Ramsey, 22, a Chicago resident and regular at downtown retailers. “A lot of people just assume that because I wear a designer bag or something that I have money to just throw around to whoever asks for it when I come out of a store. Wrong!” she said. Grace represents a growing number of Chicago resident who have become privy to hustler scams over recent months.

    “There is this guy who rides the train talking about how he just got released from prison and needs help to get back on his feet. I think I first heard his speech more than a year ago,” says Marcus Jones a DePaul commuter student who admits to shelling out some cash on his first encounter with the pleading gentleman.

     It would be great to give everyone a “helping hand” or at least the equivalant in Anericah which is a few dolars to get a Big Mac, but there will always those who exploit and or will use the good will of others to pass through life. This winter which is already predicted to be a harsh one has become a little worse for the truly unfortunate by the bad deeds of a few.

  • 05:22:27 pm on October 20, 2008 | 0 | # |
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    Gas prices continue to fall this autumn after a long streak of fuel price spikes and growing temperment. Drivers all over the country felt the tighteng grip as previously high gas pump prices put wallets and purses under careful audit. The drop in pice is somewhat of an oddity in timing with the economy in shambles and  in need of as much money as possible for revitlalization.  Perhaps even odder is the rising cost amongst retail pricing.

    Rising gas no laughing matter...

    Rising gas no laughing matter...

    Within the luxury market there is an automatic mark up in price due to branding purposes. For instance, the Gucci bag that sets someone back a stone cold $5-thousand only took $45 to make.  Most fashion houses opt at least a 200% markup in price. As such, it would seem that the the luxury retail industry should be doing just fine to break even.

    “Fashion and luxury is a fickle industry” says economic marketing professor at DePaul University Steven W.” 

    “The fashion markets are fueled by desire and branding; an image based on psychographics. Just because an economy is dwindling does not mean that fashion must along with it. When it comes to luxury retailers, those who can afford it usually will always be able too” he said. Economic times like that which the United States is facing allow retailers to widen the social gap between high end and more colloquial brands.” The widening chasm is what keeps the dichotomy between high end procurement and “the rest” alive and during times of financial prosperity

    Just another example of why communism never got too far here in the “good o’l  U.S. A.”




    making the economic recession a

  • 08:06:01 pm on October 13, 2008 | 0 | # |

    In a day and age when people seem be sounding off left and right on the issues that are important to them, there was no exception at Lakeview Methodist Thursday night. A panel of minority men and women addressed issues that are gaining more prevalence as the election month approaches and how they impact the lives of youth in Chicago.

    Night View of Mighigan Avenue

    Night View of Michigan Avenue

    The panel began with what was entitled “Hot Topics”; a list of issues pertaining to the youth’s social lives as minorities both sexually and ethnically. In what seemed to be a table rant of four high school and college students of a caliber only Star Jones could reproduce, the veil of taboo was quickly lifted. The truth came out; and some of it was difficult to listen to.

    When the issue turned to stereotypes and profiling one youth commented, “I feel like nobody cares about me anymore. Everywhere I go including up north to Halsted or downtown on Michigan Avenue I am treated like a thief or thug,” said Anthony, a 21 year-old college student from the south suburbs.

    Business owners are taking a second glance at everyone who enters their establishment more than ever when loss prevention is mandatory. A loss of inventory means a loss in profit; results store owners in Lakeview refuse to settle for.

    According to a recent survey retailers across the country are reporting a loss in UPT’s (Units per transaction) and an increase in store loss by theft Its not always easy to catch says Julia G., a store owner on Rush St. People are craftier these days not stealing with their hands but rather by forging or identity; thus making everyone suspect. “It is a shame but stereotypes are so prevalent but sometimes they are correct,” she says

  • 07:54:46 pm on October 13, 2008 | 0 | # |

    As the presidential election gets closer the water cooler talk about the forehand debates has become more of a pool with managers and shop clerks sounding off wherever they might be.

    Those who depend on the spending habits of their customers are increasingly interested in the issues that will make or break job security with the economy in such uncertainty. Commission is the best friend and enemy to the seasoned retailer but these days the latter seems to be the case.

    “Im starting to feel like a strategist!” says one retailer who literally plans how to score sales for the day like a PR pro. “I offer them free shipment, bend over backward son discounts, and even stay open later sometimes.” Anything to make a sale in this economy.

    As for the growing interest amongst once latent publics, it seems to have to deal a lot with the pivotal dichotomy between the presidential candidates. The economy, a foremost issue is shadowed and illustrated for many by what each of the candidates represent. Campaign party slogans are thrown around like the word “sale” in the retail word; a word heard not nearly enough as of late.

  • 08:12:00 pm on October 8, 2008 | 0 | # |
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    The legal dispute arising between the D’Avella brothers and their former employer A&P Califon frames copyright infringement in a new light. With online media taking over, more and more people duplicating very accessible online published work and morphing it with their own creative juices; the line of taste and defamation is being bent and side stepped altogether.



    Although the brothers (Mark and Matt) form of creativity was in no way beneficial to them or the company the comedic result of their song entitled “Produce Paradise” begs the question of “what exactly is TOO far. “


    In a day and age where information is at fingertips; the downtime from cognitive brain use get many into trouble as seen on the website http://www.citmedialaw.org.

     As for the case of the siblings the question of when does good nature humor become a million dollar lawsuit that has me and other online entrepreneurs walking the very tight rope of creativity and court case.

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