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Yellen in Africa. Mahlubi Dlamini, ESG Intern, Skidmore College

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen's 10-day trip to Zambia, South Africa and Senegal sought to “highlight the Biden-Harris Administration’s work to deepen U.S.-Africa economic ties, including by expanding trade and investment flows and promoting sustainable and inclusive economic growth” (US Treasury). This visit fulfills the promise that President Joe Biden made at the US-Africa Leaders’ Summit that he and members of his cabinet would visit the continent in 2023.  It seems the US is recognizing the growing importance Africa will have in the coming decades. While in Senegal, the Secretary stressed that “Africa will shape the trajectory of the world economy over the next century.” Given this, the US clearly wants to take a more proactive approach to diplomatic relations with the African continent. It also seems China’s involvement in Africa has not gone unnoticed. Yellen called out China as being a barrier to resolving Zambia’s debt crisis, explaining that loans backed by China “ca
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President Biden on Tyre Nichols and Nichols Memorial Fund

President Biden on Tyre Nichols Tyre Nichols Memorial Fund:  https://gofund.me/d639a355   "Like so many, I was outraged and deeply pained to see the horrific video of the beating that resulted in Tyre Nichols’ death. It is yet another painful reminder of the profound fear and trauma, the pain, and the exhaustion that Black and Brown Americans experience every single day.  My heart goes out to Tyre Nichols’ family and to Americans in Memphis and across the country who are grieving this tremendously painful loss. The footage that was released this evening will leave people justifiably outraged. I join Mr. Nichols’ family in calling for peaceful protest.  I spoke with RowVaughn Wells and Rodney Wells, Mr. Nichols’ mother and stepfather, this afternoon. There are no words to describe the heartbreak and grief of losing a beloved child and young father. Nothing can bring Mr. Nichols back to his family and the Memphis community. But Mr. and Mrs. Wells, Mr. Nichols’ son, and his whole fam

Ocean Rescue Alliance Innovation in the Blue Economy

Check out this write up of the Ocean Rescue Alliance innovation in the blue economy written by Alice Gabidoulline with our partners at the Creative Investment Research We need to continue integrate sustainable and creative pathways to fund restoration and conservation.  https://www.linkedin.com/feed/update/urn:li:activity:6834163126926233600/

DOJ’s largest redlining settlement

The Department of Justice announced a settlement with City National Bank of Los Angeles for "refusing  to underwrite mortgages in predominantly Black and Latino communities."  The $31 million dollar settlement requires the bank to:  Invest at least $29.5 million in a loan subsidy fund for residents of majority-Black and Hispanic neighborhoods in Los Angeles County. (We note our work on an investment vehicle that deals with homelessness and another that deals with HIV/AIDS. See: https://www.impactinvesting.online/2018/11/william-michael-cunningham-on-impact.html  and The opening of Brenda House Women's Shelter https://www.prlog.org/12708015-william-michael-cunningham-to-speak-at-the-opening-of-brenda-house-womens-shelter.html );  Spend at least $500,000 for advertising and outreach targeted toward the residents of these neighborhoods;  Spend at least $500,000 for a consumer financial education program to help increase access to credit for residents;  Spend at least $750,00

Can the US House of Representatives Operate without a Speaker?

According to 2 USC 25 : Oath of Speaker, Members, and Delegates. (Text contains those laws in effect on January 4, 2023:) “At the first session of Congress after every general election of Representatives, the oath of office shall be administered by any Member of the House of Representatives to the Speaker; and by the Speaker to all the Members and Delegates present, and to the Clerk, previous to entering on any other business; and to the Members and Delegates who afterward appear, previous to their taking their seats.” Essentially, most interpretations of this section state that the oath of office must be administered by the House Speaker. (Can't Members swear each other in?) Until then, all representatives are just Representative-Elects, and don’t hold any actual power. Without a Speaker, there are only 100 members of Congress (the US Senate), and an interim speaker cannot administer the oath.  It appears that "members are operating under the rules for the last Congress"

Now is the Time for Black Firms to Obtain Capital - Here's Why

Now is the Time for Black Firms to Obtain Capital - Here's Why We recently completed our 2023 Economic Outlook, with an eye to Black firms. Overall, we are optimistic. Our baseline forecast shows the US avoiding recession over the next year.  For more, see:  https://www.blackenterprise.com/now-is-the-time-for-black-firms-to-obtain-capital-heres-why/  

Jan 6th Report Summary...

1.  Trump knew he was likely to lose and planned to declare victory. 2.  Trump knew he lost but declared victory anyway.  3.  Trump publicized claims of electoral fraud knowing they were false.   4.  Trump promoted people to publicly lie for him. 5.  Trump made several efforts to overturn the election results. 6.  Trump pressured state officials to alter the election outcome. 7.  Trump tried to use the Dept of Justice to intimidate state election officials. 8.  Trump oversaw a scheme to create fake Electoral College representatives.  9.  Trump pressured the vice-president not to count the electoral votes. 10.  The person who devised the VP plan knew it was illegal. 11.  Trump encouraged armed supporters to stop the certification procedure. 12.  Trump's call to violence was successful. 13.  The vice-president and his security detail feared for their lives. 14.  After the failed coup attempt, Republican legislators sought pardons. 15.  The coup attempt is