Tuesday, December 02, 2008

M V Consulting, Inc. Announces Milestone at Black Entertainment USA

New York (PRWEB) December 2, 2008 -- M V Consulting, Inc. announced today the achievement of a major milestone breakthrough within its Black Entertainment USA blog (BEB). The BEB blog, which is focused on entertainment news, sports, movie previews and reviews, television shows, and race relations issues in the media has been in existence for 3 years. In that time it has grown to be in the top .1% of blogs (out of the estimated 100 million+ in the world) with visitors from 125 nations every month.

Black Entertainment USA has now published its 1000th post. This milestone places the entertainment blog alongside some of the largest blogs, many national newspapers, and beyond most magazines in terms of publication rates. In 3 years the blog has gone from an unknown to maintaining readership that exceeds many mid-sized city periodicals.

In achieving 1000 posts, BEB has solidified its position as a leading internet destination for entertainment news commentary. Visitors read about all aspects of entertainment and interact with commentary as only the blogosphere allows. Hundreds have shared their thoughts, confirming the stature of the blog.

Michael Vass, President of M V Consulting, Inc., stated,
"Having crossed the 1000th post threshold at Black Entertainment USA, and nearly clearing 2000 posts when you include our political blog, I must admit my pleasure. The most important thing though has been the input and readership of tens of thousands of visitors each month." Mr. Vass went on to say, "From across the globe, representing every walk of life and growing each month, the visitors to the blogs of the Company make it all worthwhile. And now advertisers are recognizing these achievements. It's a great feeling."


In addition to this major milestone there are several milestones in the other divisions at M V Consulting's sites. These include:

  • 1. Over 600 posts at the political orientated blog - VASS
  • 2. The selection of VASS as 1 of 2 blogs that covered the entire Presidential election cycle for TV One's online website
  • 3. Exponential growth in key demographics of visitors such as 19 - 49 year olds, African Americans and Hispanics/Latinos, the college and post-college educated, and those earning $30,000 - $100,000 and above
  • 4. The continued expansion of the clothing lines featured at the Company's online store
  • 5. Increased visitors to the Company's online store
  • 6. Success in gaining initial advertisers
  • 7. Donations to charitable organizations and events growth
  • 8. The purchase of new office spaces for the Company

Another milestone that has been achieved is the recognition of M V Consulting, Inc. President and primary author Michael Vass in the blogosphere. Mr. Vass has grown from obscurity to writing for the Company's blogs to currently being the primary and/or contributing author at over 100 blogs besides those of the Company.

Additional growth of the Company will be detailed in the annual announcement.

About M V Consulting, Inc. and Michael Vass:
Mr. Michael Vass is a former securities industry account executive of good standing; and currently works as a consultant on the internet and investor relations, and social/political blog writing. He has served in the US Marine Corps Reserves, as well as worked and studied in such diverse fields as entertainment, communications, philosophy and chemistry. He has lived abroad, in Moscow and Tbilisi, as well as in various cities throughout the United States.

Mr. Vass is President of M V Consulting, Inc. a diversified private company that maintains divisions in search engine optimization, an online store, political and entertainment/celebrity blogs, and website/blog maintenence.

It is the combinations of these unique experiences that have led Mr. Vass to the creation of M V Consulting, Inc. The Company owns Black Entertainment USA (www.blackentertainmentblog.com), VASS (www.mvass.com), a corporate website (www.vassconsult.com), and an online store (www.cafepress.com/nova68).

About Black Entertainment USA
The blog focuses on the world of entertainment, celebrities and entertainers from the African American/Hispanic viewpoint of primary author Michael Vass. Trends in movies, commercials, and all other media in regard to race relations is another focal point of the website.

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Friday, November 21, 2008

Black buying power and advertising

As the holiday and Christmas seasons quickly approach, even as the stock market and economy falter, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on something that came up in a conversation with a friend of mine. The power of African Americans in the marketplace and the desire for advertising on Black media.

There is no question that Blacks buy things just as every group in America does. But if you were to look at most of the media coverage you might believe that African Americans are laden down with debt and/or depend on the Government for survival. Such a perception is both ignorant and false. And advertisers know it.

Recent projections place the African-American buying power at about $845 billion annually, growing to $1.1 trillion by 2012. That means the buying power of Blacks equals the money spent by the Government this year to save the entire financial and mortgage industries. This amount dwarfs the money being debated and requested by the auto industry. And this is more than double the money that is to be spent by the Government for the 2nd stimulus plan in 2009.

Targeted advertising cost up to 73% more for African Americans than any other group. That’s because the top 17% of affluent African Americans contribute 45% to all the buying power in any 1 year. And Pew research reports have shown that up to 2/3 prefer to emphasis their ethnic identity.

All of that money is part of the reason of the success of Black filmmakers, like Spike Lee and Tyler Perry. It is also part of the support to BET, and various television shows that star prominently African American actors/actresses. And it is one of the reasons why advertisers are including and/or directly marketing to Blacks. McDonald’s was one of the first to do this, but today hundreds of companies are doing so.

And the blogosphere is quickly becoming one of the major focal points of advertisers. Because the buying power of African Americans has grown 166% since 1990, the ability of blogs focused on or attracting African Americans to retain a steady daily influx of viewers is important. The internet allows visitors to connect with their favorite sites several times in a day as new posts are added to the blogs throughout the day; as I have seen in my own blogs as an example.

Political blogs were a huge resource in the Presidential election, and I can personally attest to TV One’s interest as VASS was selected as one of 2 blogs to provide daily coverage of the entire election cycle for their online visitors. Similar is true of all blogs, and especially those targeting African Americans.

Add to this the fact that the Black population tends to be younger and female (though my readers are about 50/50 for gender, age 12 - 49 predominantly, college or better educated, middle class incomes or better, and generally single); which advertisers are obsessive in their efforts to gain attention with. Not to mention that home ownership for African Americans is up 32% since 1990, and that the buying power of African Americans in just 3 states (New York, Texas, and Georgia) equals the money spent by the Government on AIG for fear of a complete collapse of the economy.

Black teens spend more money on clothing, video games, PC software and footwear than the average of the entire nation. In fact it could be argued that without Black teens athletic shoes, cell phones, DVD’s, and fast food industries might all lose their profits. And that says nothing of the fact that magazines like GQ, Entrepreneur, Inc. and others rely on the more than 25% readership that comes from African Americans.

Advertisers have increased spending in Black media by 72%, some 791 million dollars in 2006 alone. The automotive (GM leads), communications, cosmetics (L’O’real SA leads) industries and others (Dell, Procter & Gamble, Time Warner Inc., PepsiCo) lead in trying to gain Black consumer attention.

I say all this because I realize that for every news media image and story that denigrates or diminishes African Americans, the fact remains that this nation cannot survive without us. Just as was true during the time of Slavery, African Americans are the unsung backbone of the nation. Our buying power is so great that its loss would lead to financial ruin for the entire nation, in a manner that matches and/or exceeds every aspect of the current mortgage/credit crisis.

So this year when you go out to shop (or stay in and online) for your Christmas/holiday gifts, if you are Black, remember this when the guards and employees watch your every move. They need you, and if they could do it they would thank you. Because without us, they would be out of work.

**Several fact were complied from Package Facts and Magazine.org **

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Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Advertising With M V Consulting, Inc.

As the various blogs and sites of M V Consulting, Inc. have grown opportunities for advertising have increased as well. This of course matches the growth of the blogs and general internet use. Back in 2005, when Black Entertainment USA was created, roughly 60% of homes had at least 1 computer and 5% of internet users visited a blog regularly. Today while first time computer purchases are relatively flat visitors to blogs have grown to approximately 15%, up 300%.

Black Entertainment USA (BEB) in 2005 started like a tree falling in the woods. Gaining a mere handful of visitors and author Michael Vass unknown to search engines. Such is the start of most businesses.

But the growth in blog visitors and corporation ownership, like Microsoft, is nothing compared to M V Consulting’s sites. BEB is now seen in over 115 countries every month with enough visitors to fill a mid-sized city. Today BEB is ranked among the top 86,000 out of over 55,000,000 blogs in the whole world. This growth, which continues even now, cannot be marked in hundreds of percentage but tens of thousands of percent!

The junior blog of M V Consulting, VASS, has had similar growth and perhaps more targeted attention. While not as old as BEB, this blog is extremely popular in North America and other English speaking nations. Focused on social issues, politics, and the U.S. Presidential election this blog has been highly recognized. VASS is one of 2 blogs featured by TV One (a cable network with over 40 million subscribers) at its online website for the Presidential election coverage.

And Author Michael Vass, once an unknown voice, is now a highly searchable and respected blogger covering a wide spectrum of topics of interest. Mr. Vass can now be found via the Google engine (in web and image searches), Yahoo, MSN, frequently on the African American Opinion, African American Political Opinion, B.I.G. Magazine online as a guest writer, and over 22 blogs of the 1800blogger family of blogs – all in addition to his writing at the M V Consulting blogs.

The net result is that the sites of M V Consulting are a perfect format for any company that seeks to reach American or international attention and internet visitors. Companies of all sizes advertising to African Americans, Whites, Men and/or Women, the college educated, singles and married internet users between the ages of 18 – 55 will find that the M V Consulting websites matches or exceeds (by as much as 250%) the internet averages for each target consumer group.

To learn more about the advertising rates and ad restrictions (ie. no pornography, no sites linking to pornography, no redirected links, ect.) please see the Ad Rates.

  • M V Consulting, Inc. reserves the right to deny any ad it deems objectionable, inflammatory, or pornographic.

  • The sites of M V Consulting. Inc. will never list more than 10 client ads maximum (including banners on top or bottom of a page) on any site – with the number being based on limiting distraction to readers and visitors as determined by M V Consulting itself.

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    Friday, April 18, 2008

    The real effect of the mortgage crisis on a real person

    Looking over the housing markets, and considering the negative sentiment out, I decided that this was a good time to purchase a new home. Rates are 5.875% fixed and many home prices are depressed currently. And I’m not alone in my decision to pick up some property. So I wanted to share my experience so far, and at the end of this post I have 2 questions for you my reader.

    Many who have good to excellent credit ratings, and available cash are out looking for a new home or a first time buy. But don’t believe this is exactly a buyers market. Even in a dying economy that is the Binghamton New York experience, home prices have held firm if not risen up. In fact I would say that prices over the last 6 months have risen about $3,000 on median. Because many like myself are entering this troubled market.

    Still there are bargains to be found. I am looking into a couple as this is being written, and is part of the reason why I have not been writing as much as normal for both of my blogs. [Of course having built and set up over 100 blogs in the past 2 months, the deal with TV One, and working out a deal with an upcoming magazine are factors as well.]

    Part of the process in getting a home is the mortgage pre-approval process. For those that are unfamiliar this is the initial amount that you may be able to get a mortgage for, the loan rate, and all other terms you might run into. It is affected by your credit rating - heavily, cash on hand, and income as per taxes filed.

    Now without giving away too much of my finances (some points I will deliberately extrapolate on – so the figures on income and pricing are inaccurate but the situation and rates are accurate) I will make you aware of what the world is like for me. You can decide if my skin tone and last name are factors or not.

    My first stop in the process was my local bank, NBT, which I have had accounts with for several years. I believe I had 1 check bounce in the entire time I was with the bank, and that was because of a bank error in depositing funds into the proper account. I also know and speak with a couple of managers on a regular basis. Thus you can say my relationship with the bank is favorable to friendly.

    I initially was given an indication that my pre-qual rate would easily be what I had asked for. My credit rating is 750 (after rebuilding my credit after a career change in 2001) with at least one agency ranking me at 766. That is considered good to excellent. It would normally grant a lower credit rating as I am a low risk. I also have no long-term debt. Thus the initial loan rate mentioned was 6.11%. I have a witness to this.

    I was rather pleased.

    But after looking at several homes, and having requests from the bank for additional tax records for my corporation and myself – which I provided promptly – I received my pre-approval line. 7.11% and a reduction in the dollar loan amount of 27% [ie. if I asked for $100,000 they approved $73,000]. But I was assured that this is not accurate and I could be approved for more if I found a home in the range I was initially looking. Though no mention was made of what interest rate would go with this higher loan dollar amount.

    Now I am insulted. I went from a very good interest rate and a decent yet highly affordable mortgage (fixed rate 30 years) to a bad rate – 1% higher than initially suggested and documented and 1.235% higher than the national rate – and a dollar bracket that provided access to homes far inferior to what I had wanted.

    I will add that I have an income that surpasses the local area average, in excess of 2x’s, and never had a bankruptcy. There was a surplus of cash in my bank account - as there has been for over a year - that easily surpassed the 3% required for the loan by the bank. I have been operating my business for 2 years, and have been in the field of work for over 7 as an independent consultant. I have never been sued and was a successful stockbroker for roughly a decade.

    I believe the increase in rate and decrease in dollar loan amount is insulting. I was given a reasoning that my credit report had bad notations (which I have reviewed for well over a year and cannot find), I have inadequate cash reserves (which I noted above), I do not make enough money for what I was requesting (which I and the initial loan officer determined I had far in excess for the amount requested beyond the local area average), and I failed to have enough funds to meet the 3% closing requirement (which I had in excess of 7% sitting in the bank).

    Now what factor could be the reason for the change? What could motivate such an extreme reaction?

    The loan officer that questioned me, and needed additional documents, never met me. He did speak to me (getting my last name wrong a couple of times). So what changed? Could it be that my actual last name (which is Spanish and yes Vass is a registered alias I use for business to avoid racial prejudices since I was a stockbroker) was too ethnic? Was it that my income too far exceeded the income of most of the 3% African American population in this area – as well as exceeding the White population income average.

    Obviously I went on to seek out a separate mortgage loan via a broker that is Hispanic, and the brother of a friend. My preference was not his background but that I knew his brother whom I speak with regularly.

    It has been over a week since placing my documentation with him. He is quite successful in getting mortgage loans, and owns his own brokerage. He too had high expectations for my loan. His opinion was that my dollar loan amount was very reasonable and in my affordability range. He could not understand why a bank I had been doing business with for years could not provide me a better rate, which he believes will be in the 6.4 – 6.6% range. Based on my cash on hand he believe that he might be able to get that percentage down to 6.25% (obviously the difference [from 5.875%] is for his own operating profit, which I do not begrudge him. This is business after all and we aren’t doing this to not make a profit).

    Why am I facing a delay? Because the bank has suspicions that I am hiding money. Because I own my own business the bank that the broker has gone to believes I may be laundering money. Now the United States Government, via the IRS, has had no problems with my finances. My income has been steady with a respectable increase to my top line revenue for years. Every dollar that comes in is documented, and every write-off is noted and within legal allocations. I do not make excessive amounts of money (Bill Gates, or even several stockbrokers I know, make significantly more), I am just a regular small business owner.

    So what could be the reasons? My last name is the reason some friends have mentioned to me. I’m ethnic and not generic like Smith or Hannity, or O’Reilly. I am immediately identified as at least Hispanic, and noted on some government documents as Black and Puerto Rican. And I live in an area that is 95% White, and comparatively a small town. Not to mention that a high percentage of those in the mortgage crisis are African American and minorities – though why they were selected and focused into these one-time highly profitable (for the lender) loans is unknown (sort of).

    What do you think? Can you imagine a reason why banks would have a problem loaning money to a low-risk, no debt, middle-class income, single, business owner, who normally pays taxes (no refunds for me) is in his affordability range and has never had a bankruptcy or problem with the IRS?

    Do you think if I was White, with exactly the same conditions I would be treated the same?

    Before you answer here is another fact. Less than 3 weeks before interest rates were lowered, and prior to my first loan query, I had a friend that was pre-approved for a mortgage up to 75% greater than what I asked for. They had a 750 credit report. They are a single parent. They make 50% of my own income. They had a gift provided to cover closing costs and down-payment (which I do not begrudge).They are almost 20 years my junior. And the final loan amount was for a home in the range I am seeking, with an interest rate of ~6.75% (closing after rates dropped).

    The big difference between us? Besides the income, that I am a business owner and not an employee, my age, and that she is a parent is that she is a White woman.

    And for those wondering what the big deal about an extra 1.235% is that over 30 years (which I can affordably pay off in 5-6 years) there is an extra $20 - $50,000 dollars in interest to be paid.

    So now I ask, why do you think I have been treated as such so far? Is this something others are experiencing across the nation?

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    Tuesday, April 08, 2008

    M V Consulting, Inc and TV One Announce Collaboration - Press Release

    New York (PRWEB) April 8, 2008 -- M V Consulting, Inc. announced that its VASS (www.mvass.com) blog has been selected as part of TV One's online website focus on the 2008 Presidential election (www.tvoneonline.com/electionwatch2008.asp).

    TV One, a national cable network targeting African American adults that is available in 43 million U.S. households, is seeking to provide voters of all ages with information and a wide range of viewpoints that will help them be motivated and involved with the upcoming Presidential election. To that end they have created a webpage of resources dedicated to the election including Delegate counts, links to voter registration, and commentary from political bloggers.

    To that end VASS - the politically focused blog of M V Consulting, Inc. - has been selected as 1 of 2 blogs to be featured on this resource page. M V Consulting previously collaborated with TV One to provide live coverage of the Heartland Presidential Forum in December 2007. At that time VASS was selected as 1 of 5 blogs covering the event and providing commentary on the presidential nomination process.

    Michael Vass, President of M V Consulting, Inc., stated,
    "I am very happy to be working with TV One again. Our collaboration on the live coverage of the Heartland Presidential Forum was a positive experience with a direct effect on blog readers and potential Primary voters." Mr. Vass continued, "Our goal of increasing the awareness and number of voters in this election cycle is a shared goal with TV One. It is my firm belief that in motivating every American citizen to vote, America will benefit from electing the very best possible President and path for the nations future."


    TV One Director of Digital Media, James Hill stated,
    "Michael's insight made him an easy choice to be part of our Presidential forum event and an even easier choice when it came to our ongoing election coverage. He is a valued voice and one we thought necessary while tracking this historic time in American politics."


    In addition to VASS, TV One is also working with Megan Cosby - author and founder of Polichicks Online (www.polichicksonline.com). The Polichicks Online site was also previously involved with the Heartland Presidential Forum in 2007.

    "I'm thrilled that TV One is giving Polichicks Online a chance to expose the TV One audience to entertaining and informative election coverage. I hope that Polichicks Online's quick election updates - we dish just enough to get by at a cocktail party - will encourage even the busiest of people to follow the election and vote. I'm honored to be affiliated with TV One and in the company of TV One's other political blogger, Michael Vass."


    About TV One:
    Launched in January 2004, TV One (tvoneonline.com) serves 43.4 million households (Nielsen March 2008 estimate), offering a broad range of lifestyle and entertainment-oriented original programming, classic series, movies, fashion and music designed to entertain, inform and inspire a diverse audience of adult African American viewers. TV One's investors include Radio One [NASDAQ: ROIA and ROIAK; radio-one.com], the largest radio company that primarily targets African American and urban listeners; Comcast Corporation [NASDAQ: CMCSA and CMCSK; comcast.com], the leading cable television company in the country; The DirecTV Group; Constellation Ventures; Syndicated Communications; and Opportunity Capital Partners.

    About M V Consulting, Inc. and Michael Vass:
    Mr. Michael Vass is a former securities industry account executive of good standing; and currently works in the fields of investor relations, consultation on the internet, and social/political blog writing. He has served in the US Marine Corps Reserves, as well as worked and studied in such diverse fields as entertainment, communications, philosophy and chemistry. He has lived abroad, in Moscow and Tbilisi, as well as in various cities throughout the United States.

    Mr. Vass is President of M V Consulting, Inc. a diversified private company that maintains divisions in search engine optimization, an online store, political and entertainment celebrity blogs.

    It is the combinations of these unique experiences that have led Mr. Vass to the creation of M V Consulting, Inc. The Company owns Black Entertainment USA (www.blackentertainmentblog.com), VASS (mvass.com), a corporate website (www.vassconsult.com), and an online store (www.cafepress.com/nova68).

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    Friday, April 04, 2008

    Moment in time 40 years after Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. - repost

    **originally posted at Black Entertainment USA**

    Today, 40 years after the death of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and 2 days before my birthday I pause to reflect on what has happened and what could have.

    I’ve read a lot on Dr. King in the recent days, far more than what was written during this past Black History Month. And I’m reminded of comments made by Jeff Johnson when I saw him at Ithaca College this year. I consider what Dr. King was moving forward to do at the time he was killed, and how he has been frozen in time. I look at the society of America and of African Americans.

    I am a child of the Civil Rights era. I have benefited in numerous ways from the struggles and strife made by those before me. And there are numerous things today that have gone backwards in time or have wasted the efforts made. Those children beyond my generation have no idea of what has changed, and seemingly few have an appreciation that they don’t know things have changed only recently.

    If Dr. King had not been killed 40 years ago, do you think there would be a BET today? Perhaps there would be, and a TV One as well – but not the only 2 and not in the manner that we see now on Black Entertainment Television I imagine. I doubt that Bob Johnson would have been the first with a national cable channel, and it would not have been built upon the back of scantily clad Black women gyrating to lyrics promoting drugs and violence.

    If Dr. King had lived, he honestly would have diminished in some of his stature – as all great leaders do as they age. Yet his voice would hold more power than all the so called Black leaders of today combined and then some. He would long ago have questioned the infusion of drugs into our communities, the ridiculous face value actions of “Just say no”, and the promotion of money over education values that have integrated into our communities via music videos, video games, and other genres.

    If Dr. King had lived, there would be a voice to speak with fanatical Muslim extremists. Perhaps there would never have been a 9/11, nor a war in Kuwait, nor a bombing in Lebanon. And even if these events did happen, there might have been a voice to provide an alternative just a step short of war.

    If Dr. King had lived unions would be far different than they are now. There would have been a powerful voice questioning America’s involvement in Viet Nam, and questioning how the Government ran the war.

    I imagine that television networks and movie studios would have rushed to integrate the big and small screens for fear of boycotts. Today there would not be worlds of imagination segregated to a virtually uniform racial make up of the world. There would not be just 2% of the entertainment industry representing every person of color combined. Spike Lee would not have to be heralded as a unique and groundbreaking director (based on his color), but just a great director among others.

    I imagine that the African American middle class would not be a ghost, but a viable and growing community. I imagine that I would not have been able to get through high school with a college preparatory physics class textbook that was 3 years older than me. I imagine that a better alternative to Affirmative Action may have been found.

    I would hope that had Dr. King lived, America would have come to terms with the need to apologize for slavery, something that I think still festers in the background causing separation and ill-will. I would hope that America could realize that reparations are part of that contrition and the fact that every American today benefits from the 246 years of work that built the foundations of everything that exists today. I would hope that we all would further realize that another 100+ years of segregation and prejudice were instead built upon the back of slavery with Jim Crow laws and that the cycle of judgment based on skin color needed to be broken.

    I believe that as some of these things came to pass the history of the nation, the full history, would be revealed. Men like the Tuskegee Airmen and every other African American that has fought in every war America has ever had would not be new revelations to our children today. That the innovations and inventions that make life modern would be attributed to the Blacks that created them. That no person in America would wish to use a word like the N-word because it had no relevance and its meaning is too vile to repeat.

    I believe that there would be no need to be distinguished by skin color when being described as an American. I would not need to be African American or Mexican American and so on. We could simply be Americans, one and all.

    I believe that the Tuskegee Experiment would not have lasted until 1972, and that the Government would have been smitten for such actions. That there would not need to be a question of whether the government had made AIDS and brought it into communities of people of color because we could be sure they would never act in such a manner again.

    I believe that Dr. King would never have become a politician, but other people of color would have been inspired, supported and welcomed as such. That there would be no place in America that could still herald the fact an African American ran for or was elected to a political office. That the first viable Black Presidential candidate would have ran, and possibly been elected long before the 21st century – 388 years after the first recorded slave was sold, 235 years after creating America, 142 years after abolishing slavery, 85 years after lynchings became a crime, 42 years after Jim Crow and segregation laws were declared illegal, 23 years after the first Black Miss America, 8 years after the first Black Secretary of State, 7 years after the first African American President of an Ivy League College and first Black billionaire, and 1 year after the first Black American (and youngest person) that flew around the world solo [which went virtually unreported].

    There are many things I think that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. could have done had he lived, and others that he would have influenced that would have benefited America. But I am left with one other thought.

    Why haven’t these things happened even without him?

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    Wednesday, January 09, 2008

    M V Consulting, Inc. reports growth in 2007 - 1.9.2008.1

    New York (PRWEB) January 9, 2008 -- M V Consulting, Inc. announced today that the final numbers for the entire year of 2007 have been tabulated with phenomenal results. The Company's websites have grown at a remarkable pace, exceeding expectations and indicative of positive acceptance by internet users. In addition the Company's sites were involved with several promotions and events that could not be anticipated, and display the impact that has been made to date.

    "2007 was a great year. The blogs of the company grew by over 100% in virtually every metric that can be identified. The give away contests sponsored by the company were well received, if predominantly regional. We were surprised and pleased to receive the opportunity to work with TV One on live coverage of the Heartland Presidential Forum on December 1st 2007. That's something you just can't predict and we are thrilled about it, while looking forward to working with TV One again in the future," stated M V Consulting, Inc. President Michael Vass.


    Actual performance numbers are considered proprietary by the Company, but percentile growth and other metrics are available for the public. Some of the most important metrics are:

    • Visitors to the site tend to be 41% men, and 59% women

    • 46% of visitors tend to be between the ages of 25 - 54

    • 51% of visitors are college educated, with 37% having no college education at all

    • Visitors to Black Entertainment USA for the 12 months ending December 31st 2007 increased by 156%.

    • Individual pages viewed by visitors on Black Entertainment USA increased by 367%

    • The number of visitors from countries across the globe increased by 35%

    • At the Vass site the breakdown was (this blog only existed for the last 4 months of 2006):

    • Visitors for the full year increased by 5900%

    • Individual pages viewed by visitors on Vass increased by 9700%

    • While the number of countries remained relatively flat. The lack of growth in countries outside the USA may be attributable to the increased focus on the Presidential race and candidate's campaigns throughout 2007 as well as the limited time of existence in 2006.


      The M V Consulting, Inc. corporate homepage was launched in May 2007 and therefore has no comparative numbers. Growth was solid and comparable to the first 7 months of either blog, reaching on average 48 countries across the world.

      The Company also owns an online store which features 12 separate and distinct clothing lines, as well as providing custom designed mugs, mouse pads, Teddy bears, gift cards, journals, postage stamps and more. Individual sales figures for this division are not reported.

      Results of the Company's SEO division are not reported and considered proprietary.

    Other events

    Several other events occurred in 2007 that were of significant importance. The Company created and sponsored 3 separate contests in 2007.

  • Robin Roberts book - From the Heart - in association with Authorsontheweb.com

  • Dinner at the Instinct Restaurant - in association with Instinct in Endicott, New York

  • $1000 for the holidays - run by M V Consulting Inc. with a $100 bonus added to the winning prize given to Cheryl W of New York State.

    In addition to these contests, the company was contacted by TV One, which reaches 40 million people via its cable network channel. On December 1st 2007 TV One had a live webcast of the Heartland Presidential Forum, for which it selected 5 political bloggers to comment on live. Of the thousands of potential bloggers available, President Michael Vass was selected for his writing at the Vass blog, and was invited to join the event as one of the 5 bloggers. The company accepted, creating over 9 posts related to the event (prior and after the event) including 6 live during the event.

    TV One and M V Consulting, Inc. cross-promoted the event via the individual websites of each company.

    Additional items

    To date, the various blogs of the Company have created nearly 1000 posts in total. In 2007 alone there was an increase of 201% in the number of posts. The blogs had a total number of posts that exceeded the number of days in the year, thus exceeding publication rates of virtually every other media format and/or syndicated author.

    The blogs of the Company have dealt with some of the most topical issues of the year, if not several of the most controversial in perhaps 100 years. Those topics included the death of Anna Nicole Smith and James Brown. The scandals surrounding Don Imus, Duane 'Dog' Johnson, Michael Vick, and Megan Williams. The Presidential candidates of both political parties. Also news involving entertainers and celebrities such as Paris Hilton, Wesley Snipes, Will Smith, Denzel Washington, Oprah Winfrey, George Clooney, and more. Not to mention reviews of restaurants, movies, books, and video games and information about Darfur and the Child Solider Prevention Act.

    President Michael Vass is also a contributing author for the 1800blogger.com family of blogs. Mr. Vass writes for a total of 8 additional blogs on a regular basis besides those of the Company.

    Mr. Vass stated, "This is only the beginning. Growth has exceeded all expectations and for 2008 we have raised the bar. While visitors to the various sites of the Company equaled or exceeded several metropolitan areas of the United States, our goal now is to reach the equivalent population of the major urban centers of the nation, if not New York City itself. Expect to see our clothing lines in colleges across the nation. And we are looking to lock down 2 exclusive sponsors for the various sites, further minimizing advertising clutter and providing an immersive and non-distracting atmosphere near term. Expect more news on other events soon."


    For additional information please contact M V Consulting, Inc. President Michael Vass at info@vassconsult.com or 718-344-6921.

    About M V Consulting, Inc. and Michael Vass:

    Mr. Michael Vass is a former securities industry account executive of good standing, and currently works in the field of investor relations. He has served in the US Marine Corps Reserves, as well as worked and studied in such diverse fields as entertainment, communications, philosophy and chemistry. He has lived abroad, in Moscow and Tbilisi, as well as in various cities throughout the United States.

    Mr. Vass is President of M V Consulting, Inc. a diversified private company that maintains divisions in search engine optimization, an online store, political and entertainment celebrity blogs.

    It is the combinations of these unique experiences that have led Mr. Vass to the creation of M V Consulting, Inc. The Company owns Black Entertainment USA (www.blackentertainmentblog.com), VASS (www.mvass.com), a corporate website (vassconsult.com), and an online store (cafepress.com/nova68).

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    Monday, December 03, 2007

    Final thoughts about the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum webcast Part 5 - 12.3.2007.5

    Concluded from Final thoughts about the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum webcast Part 4

    And another thing. I’m tired of hearing half-truths and lies from politicians. Especially those running for President. I do mean the supposed affordability of Senator Clinton’s Healthcare plan, and the comment from Senator Obama that he is not funded by special interest lobbyists. The health care plan gets its money from our taxes, and that means higher taxes if this plan is approved – don’t allow yourself to be lulled into false dreams that it won’t.

    And every candidate, Senator, and Representative receives money from lobbyists. They all have funding from special interests. They all wouldn’t have enough money for the campaigns they are running now if they didn’t, donations from the public may be large to the average person, but they are not enough. To deny this is a lie. If he said he had less than other candidates (like Senator Clinton who leads all presidential candidates) I might have bought it, but he didn’t.

    So all in all, this was just a jamboree of feel good left liberal democratic propaganda. There were no real answers, and less definite thoughts than at a real debate.

    And one final thing on the Forum Saturday. I was very upset that the moderator called for a sick child to go hug Senator Obama. That was partial treatment, a subtle endorsement, and a ‘kissing babies’ moment that should never have occurred. It was wrong and there is nothing more to say about it than that.

    If the next Heartland Presidential Forum is a bit less feel-good partisan self-aggrandizement and more debate oriented, and balanced enough to be welcoming and involving for the Republican Party I will enjoy it more. But that’s my thoughts on it all. It wasn’t bad, and I am happy for the opportunity to work with TV One (I hope they will consider working with me again in the future), but I am honest and this was hope I rated it.

    What do you think? What did you get from it if you saw it? How did the Heartland Presidential Forum affect your views of the Democratic Presidential candidates? Will it change or influence how you will vote at the primaries in Iowa in January and the rest of the primaries after that?

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    Final thoughts about the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum webcast Part 4 - 12.3.2007.4

    Continued from Final thoughts about the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum webcast Part 3

    Another thing worth noting was that Senator Clinton was not at the event but on satellite phone, where the conversation could only go one way and she could barely be heard or understood. That meant she had a delay in her response, was allowed to go over her time, and could not be cut off as other candidates over their time were. To be fair this was due to the attempted bombing/hostage situation in New Hampshire Friday, and bad weather at the airport (which was announced to the crowd). Obviously this was an unforeseen difficulty and the technical issues were from the last minute nature of these events.

    The last was that of all the candidates, I felt that Senator Obama was the least opportunistic and most direct. He covered more of the questions asked of him, with better details than any other candidate. Still there was a mountain of vagueness and ambiguity in his words and plans. And of course he used a couple of his prepared soundbite quotes, like the often used

    “CEO’s make more money in 10 minutes than the people that work for them.”


    Of course I have to say, “What’s wrong with that?” I mean where in the American dream or the law is it said that there is a cap on the success ANY American can have? What class did Bill Gates skip, or Michael Jordan violate, that said you can’t make more money than X? So some people are jealous, they feel bad they don’t make as much. But what are those people doing to make their lives better? Do they own their own business, did they go to college, and have they worked to improve their situation? Is it hard to make money, especially large amounts? Yes. And it’s even harder to build a business or run it as a national or global entity.

    Do I think it’s fair that a CEO of a mega-corp receives millions as a bonus when a company underperforms? Yes. But shareholders can complain or sell their holdings if they are upset, and that will get the companies attention. The golden parachute doesn’t have to be enormous and inlaid with precious jewels. Then a gain, they did spend decades of their life building careers to get to that position, which often is the last one they ever will have. And if they do well a bonus is a nice incentive.

    I’m tired of hearing people presume they are entitled to things just because they are a citizen and exist. I’m tired of politicians feeding into the concept that government must be involved in every aspect of our lives and there to pick up everyone that bruises their knees. It’s not the job of government, and honestly everyone doesn’t get to have all the perks and luxuries as everyone else, least of all those that worked a lifetime to get them.

    Concluded in Part 5...

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    Final thoughts about the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum webcast Part 3 - 12.3.2007.3

    Continued from Final thoughts about the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum webcast Part 2

    I mean raising the minimum wage sounds nice, except it has no connection to civil rights. And of course there was no mention that many if not most small businesses can’t afford the higher cost of paying employees. There was no connection between Guantanamo or alleged secret prisons or torture to civil rights.

    But these are big talking points for many Democrats and liberals. It made them feel good hearing that it was on his mind. But what I noticed was that it was a convenient way to avoid the real question he was asked.

    And every candidate did this. Mixing some of their talking points into answers given to them and failing to really answer what they were asked. Like when Kucinich was asked about immigrant (more on this in a second) being separated from their citizen children because they were deported – by a woman for a pro-immigration organization – and then a question about the pay a woman at Tyson receives. He chose to speak about NAFTA and the WTO, denouncing each. He spoke of the woe that workers are not getting paid enough. He avoided the immigrant issue.

    Another item in the propaganda celebration of the left was the fact that everyone involved used the term immigrant. What they were referring to are the people from other nations (mostly Hispanic/Latinos from Mexico) that have entered the U.S. without visas, green cards or any legal documentation. No matter how some may want to spin it, every one of these people are criminals and the name for them is illegal aliens. They are not, NOT, immigrants.

    There is no difference between an illegal alien and someone walking into your house, and moving in. They eat your food, use your gas and electricity, and take up your space. They didn’t ask to be allowed in, they don’t pay you rent or your bills, and all the money they make they keep, minus the loose change they drop into your couch as they watch your television, They complain to you that you need to learn their language to speak with them, that you need to get books and magazines in their language, and that you need to spend more money on them while they stay in your home. They have literally broken into your home and effectively stolen your possession of it.

    That is an illegal alien, and that is what they have done to America. Sugar coating it, and spinning the name they are called does not change that fact. But during the Forum everyone was on the same page of propaganda, making these criminals (they broke the law the second they entered the nation without documentation) sound like they are tourists being unfairly taken advantage of. Like they had done everything involved to become U.S. citizens but was being treated with Jim Crow laws preventing them. It’s a lie and to try to pull the wool over the actual citizens is insulting. But it worked on the 5,000 in the crowd and I’m sure many who watched the webcast or C-Span coverage.

    3 things worth noting though. The first is that Dennis Kucinich is the only candidate to ever have spoken at a debate, forum or any event that I am aware of on the subject of reparations to African Americans. He is in favor of them, and an apology for slavery. No other candidate of any party will speak on the issue. Even when asked directly about it. Not one including Senator Obama.

    Continued in Part 4...

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    Final thoughts about the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum webcast Part 2 - 12.3.2007.2

    Continued from Final thoughts about the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum webcast Part 1...

    But it got worse. The form of the Forum was then announced. 20 minutes per candidate, 2 minutes to respond to the questions presented. One question from pre-selected (that’s important) people, and 2 questions from a select group of organizations and political figures would be asked before the candidate could use the 2 minutes to respond. Sounds fairly straight forward and easy to do. I had to wonder why the Forum was expected to take 2 ½ hours.

    Well I found out quickly as the event started with John Edwards, followed by Dennis Kucinich, Senator Clinton, Senator Dodd, and finally Senator Obama. With the first question we saw the format in action. One average person would come onto the stage with a story of woe and anguish. They would wax on about how horrible things were for them. Then after a few minutes of this they would as a question something like, “What are you going to do about this”, “or “How will you change that?” Then the mic would go to one of the selected figureheads and representatives who would ask another question which might only be tangially connected to the first story, and then another would do the same.

    Then the candidates would respond with some equally waxing response that was more of an attempt to have a soundbite on the news than a hard answer. Basically they were playing to the audience and trying to get cheap votes. I found the answers shallow.

    Kind of like when Edwards was asked about what he will do on civil rights, making the laws and system more balanced and fair to African Americans and minorities. The response was both rambling and indistinct. He was told how unfair racial profiling was and how one family was affected by it.

    Edwards’s response was that he would stop the profiling, and then he went on. He mentioned that he would close Guantanamo Bay, would close all the secret prisons, would cease spying on Americans, and end any and all forms of torture. He picked back up on the inequality core of what he was asked with a claim to remove mandatory minimums, the unfair and heavy handed practice of giving minorities extreme sentences as compared to Whites (like Genarlow Wilson). He then went on to jump top discuss creating jobs, passing a national healthcare raise the minimum wage to $9.50, empower unions, and oh back to the subject at hand change the disparity in sentences for crack versus power cocaine.

    He was posturing on a soapbox to the converted. The crowed loved it. And the responses of the other candidates were all similar in their scope. The “questions” also were all similar in their dreary and bemoanful story-telling. But what was it all really saying?

    Well as an example I now know that Edwards has no idea on what to do about the civil rights offenses in this nation. He has no plan, and thus could not point to anything he would change. He didn’t even mention a single case that is on-going that he could highlight as something he would prevent or change if he were President. I mean there are plenty to pick from, Genarlow Wilson – as I mentioned before, Megan Williams in West Virginia, the Jena 6 and many more. I’m sure his staff could have picked one to mention if he cared about it. Or any of the candidates for that matter. Not one had a real answer about this issue, or could reference a single event that happened recently. They all spun this in a manner to get everyone feeling warm and fuzzy though. Lots of style and not a drop of substance.

    Continued in part 3...

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    Final thoughts about the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum webcast - 12.03.2007.1

    I happened to be traveling on Saturday, and was out in public watching the Heartland Presidential Forum. I heard a couple of different comments about what some people thought about it. One was

    “Show me and honest politician and I’ll show you a dead politician.”


    Several had that kind of reaction to the event. Many were just starting to follow the race for the Presidency. Of course everyone that was listening and watching part of the webcast with me was moderately interested. Several had no idea who Dennis Kucinich or Chris Dodd were. None were interested in watching the whole event. Everyone thought I was crazy to be working on a Saturday. But well over 5,000 people were at the Forum, many spending hours (one group spent 12 hours on a bus) to arrive.

    So for those that were not able to see the Live TV One webcast of the Heartland Presidential Forum, or have not read my live commentary on the event, I offer this summary of my thoughts. [By the way, I want to thank TV One for selecting me as one of the 5 bloggers that covered the event live. Each of us had a unique viewpoint and it’s worth reading what they all had to say as well.]

    Basically one thing was very clear from the beginning. This was no debate, formal or informal. It was not like any of the usual political gatherings we have come to expect and often ignore on television. But what else might you expect from Iowa?

    The event started with no real pomp. Instead there were far too many accolades for various officials and organizations that were involved with creating the event. Oh and gospel singers. Oh and a prayer from a female reverend. Like I said, not your regular political event.

    After all the various people involved too their time to blather on about how great it was to be there and see the response of the people from 32 states gathered their, things got under way. Actually it’s a bit unfair to say they were blathering. Yet at the same time, I could have done without the fanfare. I honestly didn’t care who they were or their political affiliation. I wanted to hear the Presidential candidates speak and see how they responded to the questions of average American.

    But as the event went forward, I noticed something. More than the fact that this was not a Presidential debate. It was a propaganda stump for the Democratic Party, and liberal viewpoints. That was most likely the reason that though Republican candidates had been invited, only one arrived to participate. Of course since only one arrived, they were denied the chance to speak to the people.

    That was perhaps the first clue to what was to follow. It was announced that the lawyers for the event (they needed lawyers for this?) felt it would be an endorsement for the only Republican Presidential candidate to speak. So he was denied, and his name was never mentioned. Nothing like lawyers to make something political even more partisan than it already was. How they thought one candidate could be singled out like that is beyond me since there were 4 other candidates there.

    Continued in Part 2...

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    Saturday, December 01, 2007

    Live in Heartland 6

    Now for Senator Obama.

    Well this was a bit unfair. Senator Obama listened to a mother about her travails on losing healthcare and the trouble she had in caring for her sick daughter. Then the moderator allowed the child to hug Senator Obama. That is just wrong as it's the old kissing babies tactic that politicians often employ. I don't blame Obama, it was done on the moderators insistence.

    As for the healthcare question perhaps the most important thing was his promise that if elected he will have national healthcare, equal to any politician, that will cover every American by the end of his 1st term. He also stated, though not promised, good schools for all and the ability to retie well.

    Now are the questions about homes and the current mortgage crisis. One woman described how her family had to chose between their home or the health of their family member. Another woman had to chose etween the home and food.

    This was important. his response strts with

    "America has lost it's balance. Ceo's make more in 10 minutes than some worers do in a year."


    He has used this quote often. But why can't someone have the American dream of building a big company and being paid for it?

    but going beyond that He stated that to help mortgage owners he would have a tax exemption, and that those over 60 (or was it 70) would not pay taxes. And there would be and exemption for small businesses (if I heard that right) of 15 thousand dollars. He would also end the current tax cuts promoted by President Bush.

    This is because he is not "funded by special interest lobbyists". Sounds great though it is not entirely true. While a large amount of his funding is from private citizens, or bundlers like Ms.Oprah Winfrey, he does recieve money (a lot) from institutions. He recieved, I recall, the 5th most money from pharmacuetical companies - though i may be off on this as I do not have my figures in frot of me.

    I will say this. Senator Obama sounded the strongest, most prepared and most descriptive of how he would implement the proposed plans he stated. Perhaps Senator Clinton could have been better in person, but we will never know. If I pick one winner it would be Senator Obama hands down.

    I will be providing more indepth thoughts on the Forum in a bit, perhaps tomorrow. I found it interesting.

    I hope you have found this informative, and gives you some more insite when you see the soundbites on television tonight and Monday. Remember that this election is critical, and everything that gives you more information to make a decision on is a positive.

    I thank TV One for the live webcast, and I hope to have more for you all soon.

    Michael Vass

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    Live in Heartland 5

    Had to take a small break. I'm sorry I missed a bit of Chriss Dodd's questins and answers.

    So let me take a moment tosun up some of the major point of the Forum so far. As I expected high on the priorities has been Civil Rights - particularly equality for minorities in the justice system. This is a bigger issue among African Americans, Latino/Hispanics and mnorities in this nation. And it's been mostly avoided up til now.

    Also the Economy. As I thought, most Americans are concerned about their jobs, and gaining a better wage. We all want more pay, though how smaller businesses will afford it is something no one has an answer for, nor even attempted to comment on.

    The last seems to be immigration. More correctly its illegal immigration. This may be one reason several of the Republican candidates didn't show up. This is sad as I think this is the exact reason they should have. To answer those concerned on this issue. It will come up again.

    I will note that this Forum seems highly aligned with Democratic philosophy, and I have yet to hear stories or questions that veer away from that view. This seems to go against the stated goal of inclusion of all Americans views. I truely doubt everyone in the Forum is pro-immigration, higher minimum wages (which I might suppor if it wouldn't kill many small businesses). I do agree with the civil rights stance, though I feel that is an apolitical view. It is something that affects every minority regardless of income, education or position.

    I'm also glad that many are bringing up the concern of education as that may be one of the most important issues for the future generations.

    And without surprise, there have been no question dealing with Iraq, or terrorism, that I was able to hear.

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    Live in Heartland 4

    They just mentioned that we won't hear from Senator Hillary Clinton. This is because of the weather out of New Hampshire, and the bombing there yesterday. She is responding via phone though.

    I could barely hear Senator Clinton, at the highest level. But I gathered that on the question of healthcare for those with pre-existing conditions, and/or without coverage the following was the essential answer.

    That Americans can keep the coverage they have now if they wis, but if they have pre-existing conditions, too high a cost, or no coverage her plan will be there. I gathered that it modeled the healthcare plan that Congress uses. She mentioed that this could be paid for via subsidies so that it will limit the cost of healthcare plans coverage.

    That sounds interesting, and I would love further details. But I think subsidizing can lead it its own problems. But as I did not understand her full response i will not fault this.

    I do notice that there is alot of questions and comment refering to illegal aliens as immigrants. As I've mentioned before I disagree with that designation. They are illegal, and until the laws are changed (which I would be upset by) they do not deserve any benefit of being in this nation with out documentation - that being a visa, green card, or other authorize permission to be in America.

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    Live in the Heartland 3

    I will try to reply when possible to some of the comments that are being made when possible.

    For Edwards, as a small business owner myself, where am I supposed to get the extra money to pay all the costs of a business and 9 dollars plus per employee? That does not even include the taxes I need to pay as well. How many others will not be able to afford that too? Is that good for the economy?

    As for Dennis Kucinich who was on next, I missed part of what he was asked and stated. I will make clear why in a second.

    As I caught it, he was asked why Tyson employees are paid 9.30 9I assune a low end employee) when the compay makes billions. His answe to that and the prior question, what to do for children of parents that get deported as illegal aliens?

    What i gathered was that he wants to end nafta, and get out of the WTO. further He wants to provide jobs for all americans and an education for every child from the age of 3 all the way thru college for free. [that sounds eriously like the communist system, and reminds me deeply of the time I spent in Moscow. I would love to hear details on how that could be done. How America could afford such ambitious goals. Though I would love to see every child get a quality education thru college that was equal in the inner city and outside them.]

    Now the reason I have missed most of what Kucinich has said is that a guy, observing what I am doing and why, commented

    "It means that they are all oing to steal from us. show me an honest politician and I'll show you a dead politician"


    I think that everyone would agree with that sentiment. Far too many politicians thes days, regardless of party, are too shady. They are found to be as corrupt, or more, than politicians all over the world. Perhaps it's naive to believe they can do better, but I do think so. It would be nice to see politicians give clear, straightforward, non-soundbite answers.

    Back to Kucinich. He mentioned that he wants the vice -president impeached. Wow. Amazing.

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    Heartland Live 2

    The first candidate was John Edwards. The first quetion delved into the fact that special interest has a huge hold over D.C. and politicians. That these groups promote an America Divided.

    The response was not too hard to guess. Edwards mentioned how average Americans, and the poor need to regain power in America. That 35 million go hungry last year and that we need to change this. It was an answer we all can agree with and consistent with what he has always said.

    Mr. Edwards goes on to say in the next question to attack corporations, mentioning he spent 20 years taking on corporation. He did not mention the fact that his last job as an attorney made money opposite to how he did for his first 20 years, as I recall.

    He plans to enforce the clean air act, and create new anti-trust laws. He wants to take power from corporations and give it to the people. What exactly does that mean? How will that be done? How will he limit that to only major corporations as he implies.

    Going on, he was asked about racial profiling and unequal sentances experience by African Americans and minorities. He says he will end racial profiling, remove manditory minimums, provide national healthcare, and raise the minimum wage to 9.5 dollars an hour. He will empower unions remove the disparity insentances for crack and coke.

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    Live coverage of the Heartland Presidential Forum - 12.1.2007.3

    Since this is a live event I will be blogging sporaticly through out the event, taking notes inbetween. Some of the posts will be very short, and I apoligize if my typing is bad. I will try to be as careful as possible, and I will try to get any quotes as accurate as possible.

    One of the first things that I want to note is that the link via TV One is pretty good. While it takes a bit to load up, it comes across on my laptop quite well. The image quality of the streaming video is impressive. As is the sound.

    The Forum has gathered a reported 5,000 people, some traveling 12 hours on a bus to get there. The people at the forum come 32 states in total. That goes to show how important this debate, and more directly the election is.

    Given this commitment I have to wonder why any of the frontrunners of the Republican party have declined to show up as has been reported. Given this is a very democratic themed debate, still it is the last one before the primaries start on January 4th.

    The intros are taking a bit of time. Many people are all taking a moment to stand on their soapboxes, and that's a good thing. But I have to admit it does sound a bit like a revival meeting. I'm far more interested in the debate than the mayor and where they are from.

    Correction it's not a debate, and the only Republican who did show was turned away by the lawyers. They were afraid it was biased, though there are several Democrats on hand. Shame. I really wanted to see how he would respond. Even moreso how the frotrunners would. It looks bad when they won't appear before 5000 Americans, but want to take on the highet office of the nation.

    More soon.

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    Preparing for the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum Part 2 - 12.1.2007.1

    Continued from Preparing for the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum Part 1...

    What do I expect the debate to go over today? I think that most people are more concerned about education for their children, the economy continuing to be stable and prosperous – so they know they have job security, illegal immigrants – taking away jobs and receiving benefits funded by taxpayer money (including income taxes which illegals don’t pay). Not necessarily in that order.

    Lower on the list are issues like race relations (the inequalities in the law enforcement and justice system that plague minorities as seen via Sean Bell, Megan Williams, Genarlow Wilson, and the Jena 6 as recent examples), anti-terrorism actions to keep us safe in this country (the Canadian border is still my biggest issue), and entitlement programs (like Welfare though not necessarily including Social Security). Again that is not a guarantee they are in that order of preference.

    I base this on my conversations with people across this country. Friends, associates, clients, blog readers and authors, as well as polls found on my blogs and corporate website. That is what I think the real America wants to hear answers to. Yet pundits and candidates of both parties have given short shrift to these issues.

    Think about it, other than one question in one debate, I don’t recall any candidate speaking about their plans to ensure our kids graduate high school, and are able to read. Yet in the African American community alone dropout rates exceed 50%. I recall one question, early in 2007, that dealt with AIDS and HIV, yet a recent announcement states that AIDS cases in kids 15-19 are up 20%, and those 20-24 are up 22% (according to 2005 numbers which are the most current known). The numbers for African American youth are appallingly higher.

    That says nothing about youth pregnancy (in the Black community up an estimated 60+%). And what about other issues that are not as close to home as the abovementioned? Like the Child Soldier Act (which Congress seems determined to ignore) or HR 180 IH which deals with Darfur (now nearing its 5th year of genocide). No, but there has been plenty of talk about green energy (which most regular people don’t even think about as far as I’ve heard) which we could not resolve immediately even if there was an energy source that we could use effectively right now.

    I hope that when these serious issues are asked by the regular people in the audience (hopefully not planted by the Clinton campaign which seems like a common practice for them based on recent revelations) there are full real answers.

    But don’t be surprised if you only hear 30 second soundbites that sound motivating but answer nothing. I mean I’m not running for any office and this quick recap takes about 5 minutes to read in full. When was the last time any candidate actually took 5 minutes to explain 1 issue without going off on a tangent, blaming Congress or the President (or both), or sliding the discussion into a completely different direction altogether?

    But we will see.

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    Preparing for the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum - 12.1.2007.1

    As the TV One webcast of the Heartland Presidential Forum at 2:30 today approaches, I want to review some of the main issues that I think it will and will not cover. Overall I think that the candidates, of both parties, will seek to avoid a large number of issues most people really care about. Expect a good deal of deflection and moves to tangent issues rather than answering the actual questions posed. I doubt that it will be as obvious as the dramatic and highly covered yes, no, and maybe answer Senator Clinton offered on driver’s licenses for illegal aliens in New York State but I believe they will happen none the less.

    First off there are the issues that the candidates will avoid speaking about. The issues are widespread and party specific. For the Democrats there is the fact that for 9 months of this year virtually every candidate vehemently stated that the surge in Iraq could not and would not work. They coupled the disbelief in the surge with they demands for immediate withdrawal of troops.

    In the past couple of months, the most liberal pundits, reporters, and politicians have verified that the surge has in fact worked. Iraq is safer and more stable now than since Saddam Hussein was removed. Thus we have seen the debates and the public speeches of the candidates have moved from immediate withdrawal and failure, to a need to withdraw most troops (leaving an unspecified amount of troops for an unspecified amount of time) and failure, to not speaking about the subject at all as much as possible. Kind of funny how that went.

    In addition Democratic candidates have moved into the subject of national healthcare as their primary talking point. Though all the plans are not fully explained, and the cost (upwards of 100 billion dollars at the least) has no explanation where it will receive funding from (extra taxes from the rich is the general answer. What is rich is a floating income number ranging from 200,000 at the top and 90,000 near the bottom).

    For Republicans the key early issue was again Iraq and supporting the surge (and thus highlighting the Democrats willingness to retreat) and being against terrorism al la 9/11. After several months of each candidate mentioning how strong they are against terrorists they all have shied away from using the single greatest attack on American soil in past 60 years for their political gain (mostly).

    The new line of discussion, now that the surge has been shown to be working and President Bush has mandated that surge troops will be slowly phased out of Iraq, has become illegal aliens. Each candidate has claimed they will resolve this issue, though there is no plan stated that will deal with the 12 million plus illegals that are in this nation right now, nor any that will be coming in the future. There are half thoughts of paths to citizenship, documentation, healthcare and deportation but no real plans. And lots of one-upmanship over who is tougher on the subject and who has the best past performance. Oh and there are arguments over who is more devoutly religious, and who can do more to prevent higher taxes. Again no real plans though.

    So that is what they were all talking about, and what they want to discuss now. It’s a very short list. And yes I do realize they spoke about other things. But that was/is the focus.

    Continued in part 2...

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    Friday, November 30, 2007

    Upcoming events in December and for 2008 - 11.30.2007.2

    From Michael Vass,


    As we enter the month of December I just want to take a moment to share some of the things that are going on with M V Consulting, Inc. and all of its sites. As you may notice there has been a lot of activity in recent weeks. And I’m not planning on slowing down anytime soon.

    Currently there is the $1000 Holiday Give Away Contest, which will end on December 15th. I invite everyone to review the rules at the above link or the press release at PRWeb (http://www.prweb.com/releases/2007/11/prweb569295.htm ). I’m looking forward to giving away the money and I hope a truly needy family or individual wins. Remember that the entry is free, and no purchase is required.

    There is also the TV One webcast of the Heartland Presidential Forum on December 1st @ 2:30pm. As one of the bloggers selected to cover this webcast I look forward to sharing my thoughts on all the candidates comments. This is an important webcast as regular people will be providing questions for the candidates, live not YouTube. This is also critical as voting in primaries will start early January.

    There is little more important than selecting who will run for President of the United States, and there has not been a more critical election, in my opinion, since the 70’s when I was a child. Every vote counts, as recent elections have proven, and never are they as important as the 2008 election.

    You can see my political commentary from 2007 and in the future at Vass or at Presidential Race Blog where I also write.

    But in more immediate terms there is the holiday season. Some may have taken a look in the past at my online store and I want to let everyone know that there are many types of t-shirts, mugs, mousepads, posters, jewelry boxes, Teddy bears, sweatshirts, and more available. There are over 10 different clothing lines featured at the store including Anti-MoveOn.org, Sexy Woman, You’ll Do (as seen above, a favorite among many women it seems), Cowboy Ride, and I am the Myth.

    Oh, there is also a deal for purchases over $75. And as I mentioned in my press release, I will be donating all profits from the sales at the online store to $1000 Holiday Give Away Contest. While purchase is not required to enter or win, if you do see something you feel would be a great gift for someone or yourself (there are over 200 items available) it will go to help others.

    In addition, for those with businesses or who just want to be charitable, all donations made to the $1000 Holiday Give Away Contest will be given out to the winner(s). Every dollar counts and adds to what will be given away.



    In the near term I will be doing my annual lists, summing up some thoughts of 2007. In addition I will be reporting the growth of M V Consulting, Inc. and all its sites. It has been a tremendous year.

    Looking to 2008, expect to see another $1000 Give Away Contest or several of them. I will continue to follow the Presidential race, right up to the election night. I will get some free time and will be doing a few photo shoots for the various clothing lines. [Anyone interested in being a model for the photo shoot can send a headshot and contact information to info@vassconsult.com] Additional clothing lines will be released throughout the year as well.

    I will also be seeking one or 2 corporate sponsors for the various sites. It is my hope that by gaining dedicated sponsors I will be able to decrease the advertising found on each site (though I have tried to do my best to keep it minimal. But it costs money to keep things going. You can donate to help by going to the PayPal donation button at the top left of the sidebar).

    There also will be some changes in the look of the blog sites. You are welcome to provide me any suggestions on changes you would like to see. I value the opinions of all my readers and those that leave comments, so tell me your thoughts.

    You can look forward to better (I hope, I do make them myself) video ads, an improved resources pages, reworked gift store pages, and new video clips of posts (possibly in a news commentator style). These are ambitious (and costly) changes, so give me time but I’m working on it.

    Again I thank you all for your readership and commitment to my blogs and sites. Remember to enter the $1000 Holiday Give Away Contest (it’s free and who couldn’t use the money?), and check out the TV One webcast of the Heartland Presidential Forum, and my commentary tomorrow.

    Sincerely

    Michael Vass
    President – M V Consulting
    info@vassconsult.com



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    Thursday, November 29, 2007

    Pros and Cons of the leading Democratic Presidential Candidates Part 3 - 11.29.2007.3

    Concluded from Pros and Cons of the leading Democratic Presidential Candidates Part 2...

    These are a few Pros and Cons of the various candidates that will be appearing on at the Heartland Presidential Forum that will be webcast live by TV One on Saturday.

      John Edwards

      Pros

    • Previously ran for Vice President
    • Former Senator
    • Advocate of the poor
    • Not the psychic of the same name
    • Native Southerner
    • Has good looks
    • Wife has cancer
      Anti-Iraq war (sort of – voted in favor of war)
    • Pro-abortion

      Cons

    • Lost the election as Vice-President
    • Long-time politician
    • $400 haircuts
    • Lawyer (firm made money on questionable circumstances)
    • Wife has cancer
    • Not know for a particular strong stance on any issue (except the poor)
    • Pro-immediate withdrawal from Iraq
    • Pro-abortion
    • Anti-school vouchers
    • A bit of a sensationalist


    Hopefully this information will be helpful. By no means is this the definitive Pro and Con list. There are several issues I have excluded, and many of the items I have mentioned deserve greater scrutiny. But this is accurate and my opinion. I look forward to hearing yours.

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    Pros and Cons of the leading Democratic Presidential Candidates Part 2 - 11.29.2007.2

    Continued from Pros and Cons of the leading Democratic Presidential Candidates Part 1...

    These are a few Pros and Cons of the various candidates that will be appearing on at the Heartland Presidential Forum that will be webcast live by TV One on Saturday.

      Senator Barack Obama

      Pros

    • Lawyer
    • Current 1st term Senator
    • Healthcare advocate
    • First African American candidate with a chance
    • Liberal in most policies
    • Oprah Winfrey is major supporter
    • Not Hillary Clinton
    • Gained multiple former long-time Clinton supporters
    • Consistently against Iraq war
    • Charismatic, compassionate
    • Pro-abortion
    • Strong individual citizen support (internet donations)


    • Cons

    • Lawyer
    • Relative short public office experience
    • Black
    • Has interracial parents
    • Lived in an Islamic nation (as a youth)
    • Allegedly a smoker
    • No military service
    • Non-traditional name
    • Pro-Illegal Immigration
    • Anti-school vouchers
    • Pro-immediate withdrawal from Iraq
    • Pro-abortion


    Continued in Part 3...

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    Pros and Cons of the leading Democratic Presidential Candidates - 11.29.2007.1

    I want to remind everyone that on Saturday @ 2:30, TV One will have a live webcast of the Heartland Presidential Forum, featuring several leading Democratic Presidential candidates, and Republican candidates as well. This forum will feature candidates answering questions from the audience (and I don’t expect that any candidate will be planting questions for this).

    I will be covering this Forum on Saturday, and you can expect a few posts from me, for TV One and everyone.

    Considering the nature of the forum, and the fact that most Americans have not been following the candidates over the past year as much pundits and political bloggers, I thought that a short Pros and Cons of the leading Democratic candidates would be helpful. I intend to have a similar list for Republicans shortly.

    I am only focusing on the leading candidates because of the short time until the primaries. I want to note one candidate that will be at the forum that I will not be doing a Pros and Cons for. Dennis Kucinich was the only candidate of either party to-date that answered any questions on Reparations for African Americans. His answer was for reparations. Every other candidate has refused to even speak on the subject.

    With that noteworthy positions stated here is my list of Pros and Cons. I hope it helps those at the forum that get to ask questions, and everyone that will be voting. Please let me know your thoughts as well. [I am trying to be neutral, but of course that is not always possible in all issues. You may disagree with some of the items I list under either category. Let me know your reasons why you disagree, or agree, in the comments.]

      Senator Hillary Clinton:

      Pros

    • Wife of President Bill Clinton
    • Long-time Healthcare advocate
    • Determined
    • A lawyer
    • A current 2nd term Senator
    • Well known internationally
    • First female Presidential candidate with a chance
    • Forgave the infidelity of President Clinton
    • Various polls state ~1/2 country favors her
    • Very liberal in most all policies
    • Pro Abortion


    • Cons

    • Pro-abortion
    • Has never directly run or owned any business
    • Entered elected office after career of President Clinton
    • Initial attempt to pass Healthcare reforms failed horribly
    • Consistently appears to hold no actual position on most policies
    • Speaks like a lawyer
    • A female candidate
    • Various polls state roughly ½ the nation strongly dislikes her
    • Staff has at least 2x planted questions in her public appearances
    • Had committee member attack Republican candidates by surprise at CNN/YouTube debate
    • Very liberal (supported MoveOn.org in Gen. Patreaus ad)
    • Has received the most money from lobbyists and institutions of any candidate of any party
    • Took $1 million from wanted fugitive
    • Involved in multiple scandals
    • Pro-Illegal Immigration
    • Anti-death penalty
    • Anti-school vouchers


    Continued in part 2...

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    Why is Mike Huckabee moving up in the Iowa polls?

    I find it interesting that recent polls in Iowa show that Mitt Romney is slipping a bit to Mike Huckabee. Now you might have thought that such a drop could be attributed to the accusations made by the Rudy Giuliani campaign about Romney’s record on taxes and healthcare while Governor of Massachusetts.

    “Romney passed a mandate and tax hike-laden health care plan in Massachusetts which Hillary Clinton's own legislative director said was just like Hillarycare.” - Giuliani spokeswoman Katie Levinson


    But that isn’t the reason. It isn’t even close. It’s been stated, and quoted by Fox News at ~7am, that the loss in standing is because of Mitt Romney’s religion. That’s what’s bothering Iowans. Can you believe it?

    Of the questions and issues that could be asked of a Presidential candidate, this is the one that is bothering people? Not resolving the millions of illegal aliens in the nation, or the dependence on foreign oil, or ensuring our children will get better educations. It’s that they don’t trust the way he prays.

    I find that insulting. It’s as petty to me as saying “I won’t vote for John Edwards because he pays too much for his haircuts,” or even more accurately “I won’t vote for Senator Obama because he is Black.”

    I think when you think of it in terms of the second quote the ignorance of the situation becomes more apparent. Because if Edwards started moving up in polls because Iowans questioned the race of the candidates, or gender for that matter, there would be an uproar. Cries of bias and ignorance would run through all the major newspapers and media. Pundits would be amazed that such closed-mindedness still exist in America.

    I hope there is any reason other than the one stated above. Because as we get closer to the actual primaries, the real feelings are starting to show. More people are paying attention now after a virtual year of speeches and debates. And if there is a reason for Mike Huckabee the absolute least is religion.

    Iowans should be better than that. America must be better than that. And I shudder to think of where the nation will go if we fail to be.

    If you are in Iowa, I want to hear what you have to say. Is it true, and if so why?

    **I write about the Presidential Race for TV One and Presidential Race Blog as well as here.**

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    Tuesday, November 27, 2007

    M V Consulting Inc joins with TV One on the Heartland Presidential Forum

    In a little less than 6 weeks America will decide which candidates will be running for the Presidency of the United States. This next election will be perhaps the most critical for America in decades. Definitely for those Americans that have grown up with the internet, cell phones, and cable television this is the most definitive moment in American government they have ever witnessed.

    Because of that TV One will be presenting a live webcast of the Heartland Presidential Forum from Iowa. This debate will likely be the last held prior to the primary voting that will follow shortly in January 2008. The debate will be taking place on December 1st 2007 at 2:30pm. Expectations are that 5000 citizens will be at the forum, and some will be able to directly ask the candidates questions about their plans and goals for America.

    Also in conjunction with this Forum and webcast, TV One has gathered several bloggers that will discuss the various aspects of the political landscape leading up to the debate, and who will blog during the live debate as well. This will be a chance for you to be directly aware of what the candidates have to say about the issues you care about; and to be able to hear the thoughts of other average Americans about the answers given.

    I am proud to say that I have been selected as one of the bloggers to be involved with TV One and the Heartland Presidential Forum webcast.

    To that end I want to take a moment and review a bit about the many issues I have been blogging about since the beginning of the year in regard to the 2008 election. Long time readers to my site will be familiar with much of this, while newer visitors may find information that they may have missed.

    I started the year by sending out letters to several of the Presidential candidates. Those candidates were in both the Democratic and Republican parties. In those letters I asked each candidate several questions that were prevalent in the minds of many people, and continue to be today.

    Examples of some of the questions are

    “Lastly, what is your position on the various laws and actions that are in place or proposed to impede illegal aliens from entering this nation from our southern border only? Do you agree or disagree with the thought that more should be done to protect our largely unwatched northern borders, especially since there has been evidence of how dangerous this lack of attention has been. – To Senator Hillary Clinton, Dec. 16, 2006”


    “In recent weeks a great deal has been made of Representative Ellison’s informal swearing in using the Quran. As an individual of the Mormon faith, if you were to be elected President, would you use The Book Of Mormon to be sworn in on? (Please excuse my ignorance about your faith but I believe that is your religious text) Do you feel that your religious background would have any affect on your performance if elected President? Would it have any affect in dealing with dignitaries and governments that hold a different religion, and if so what? What place do you feel religion has for any elected official, if any? – To Mitt Romney, Jan. 10, 2007”


    “As a fellow African American I'm sure you are aware that there are several issues that are of great impact to the Black community. One of the most important may be the issue of education. What have you done to improve the number of African Americans that finish high school and/or seek higher education? If you were to be elected President, what plan would you follow that will improve the education system in America? – To Senator Barack Obama, Jan. 22, 2007”


    “Another matter that was received in a mixed manner was your choice of police commissioner and the law enforcement policies during your term of office. During your time as Mayor, Mr. Amidou Diallo and Mr. Patrick Dorismond were murdered by police officers in a disturbing manner and Mr. Abner Louima was tortured by police officers which was then attempted to be covered up. These policies and your defense of the police department created a significant atmosphere of anger and cries of racism among the African American, Hispanic/Latino and other minority groups in the city; that was not covered significantly across the nation. For those African American and minority voters in the nation, what are your views on law enforcement? Where do you stand on Affirmative Action and other reforms that address racial inequality? – To Rudy Giuliani, April 5, 2007”


    Other questions and letters can be found at my corporate website in the Presidential candidates section, or via search at any of my blogs.

    I have also been running a poll tracking the opinion of average Americans on who should be the next President of America. [The exact question is - If the election was held today who would you vote for? – The list of candidates does not include Fred Thompson who entered the race far later than any other candidate.] As of this post Senator Barack Obama leads with 52% of respondents. Senator Hillary Clinton trails behind in second with 22%, followed by Senator John McCain in a distant 3rd (9%). These can be found on the poll on the sidebar of all my sites. Feel free to place your vote as well, I will update this the day of the TV One Heartland Presidential Forum webcast and the following Monday.

    So to sum up the introduction, I try to be neutral in my questions and views of the Presidential race at this time. While we as a nation are trying to decide which candidates of either party are the best choices for the nation to choose between, I feel it’s most important for me to raise questions about what we need to know from any candidate. This next election is far too important. And I’m glad to say that TV One agrees.

    Expect more everyday, and if I can several times a day, until the debate. And check back during or after the debate. Hopefully together we will be able to find the best choices for America, because anything less diminishes us all.

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