A new map from the Pew Research Center shows how the major sources of immigrants to the U.S. have changed since 1850.

In 1850, the majority of American immigrants were from European countries. The Eastern seaboard was dominated by Irish immigrants, while Germans flocked to the Midwest and Texas.

By 1900, Germany had become the dominant source of immigrants to the US, while Mexicans started to move en masse into Texas and southwestern states like New Mexico and Arizona. In the north, Canadians began to move in large numbers to Maine, Montana, Wisconsin, and Washington.

In 1950, following World War II and the closing of the Iron Curtain, German immigration continued into the Midwest, while Russians began to show up in large numbers in Colorado, Oklahoma, and Tennessee. Immigrants from the UK became a major force in Southern states.

In 2010, Mexico became by far the most dominant source of immigrants to the U.S., outpacing all other source countries in the majority of states.

See the map below from Pew.



“I Give the Governor Credit”: Rubio Praises Snyder’s Handling of Flint’s Man-made Water Crisis

'A motley assortment of Grand Rapids-area legislators resembling a rural PTA.' (Click to see larger version.) - PHOTO COURTESY GOV. SNYDER'S OFFICE

Photo courtesy Gov. Snyder’s office

They say a picture is worth 1,000 words.

And if you’re the embattled governor with more than 500,000 people demanding your arrest, you’d probably think long and hard about what any picture of you expresses.Well, that’s what you’d think, anyway.

After all, take a look at the latest photo opportunity from the Snyder administration. It was the signing of a bill appropriating $28 million in short-term aid for the people of Flint.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock in the U.P., you’re aware that decisions made by a Snyder-appointed emergency manager led to the city’s water being poisoned with lead, and the city’s infrastructure being damaged, perhaps permanently.

Needless to say, offering funding to deal with this man-made problem should be an excellent opportunity for the governor to rehabilitate his image as a bean-counting skinflint. He couldn’t pick a better time to demonstrate to the overwhelmingly poor, majority black citizens of Flint that he cares, that he is contrite, and that, good to his word, he will do what it takes to “fix” the problem.

So take a look at this photo, which Michigan Radio has credited to Gov. Snyder’s office, and tell me how it isn’t a PR disaster.

First of all, why are these people smiling? You’d think their faces should show stolid determination to help the people of Flint. Instead, they’re grinning as though the event were Snyder’s birthday party, and the bill a gift to him.

Second, why the heck was this event held in Grand Rapids, 100 miles away from Flint?

Then there’s the motely assortment of Republican legislators gathered around the governor. As far as we can tell, the only legislators from southeastern Michigan were Rep. Martin Howrylak (Troy, Clawson) and Rep. Kathy Crawford (Novi).

So who are those other legislators, particularly the ones who make it look like the meeting of a rural PTA? (For instance, that’s Rep. Holly Hughes in the ill-fitting, bright blue suit, and Rep. Phil Potvin in the circa-1977 used-car-salesman polyester number.)

Well, you can’t see all of them, but they are mostly republican state senators and representatives from Kent County and an arc of counties north, west, and south of there. (In other words, districts even more distant than the Grand Rapids location.)

There are some outliers we can identify, among them Kevin Cotter, who, as house speaker, probably has to be present. But what is the preposterously plaid Potvin doing there? His district is up in Wexford, Osceola, and Mecosta counties. Also, he’s got to be the last person you’d want at a press conference earmarking money for an environmentally damaged public water system. Why is that? Well, Progress Michigan reported that Potvin was caught dumping toxic pollutants into the ground in Wexford County, right in his own district. And that district includes Nestlé’s Ice Mountain Bottling Plant. Isn’t that a liability, given the way Nestlé’s former CEO once called the idea that “as a human being you should have a right to water” “extreme”?

Not that Gov. Snyder is necessarily guilty by his association with his own legislators, but … wouldn’t you want at least a 10-foot pole between you and Potvin while signing a bill helping the very people whose water was poisoned by people you appointed, answerable only to you?

Compounding my surprise, didn’t Gov. Snyder just hire two public relations companies to help him with this PR pileup? How could any PR professional allow a tone-deaf press photo like this to have been contemplated — let alone staged, shot, and released to the public? You might as well release a photo of the Hindenburg crashing.

I was so flummoxed by this disastrous photo that I got into a conversation about it with Detroit-based public relations professional David Rudolph. He’s bent our ear from time to time, and he’s a PR guy who believes he and his clients should be accountable and truthful, “even when it hurts.” He said the photo was a classic case of “how to make a horrible situation look worse.”

“Here’s how it should have went down,” he said. “Sign the bill in Flint with the mayor, with community folks, and wrap yourself with the people you are trying to help.”

It’s good advice, and you wonder if the governor has been pitched the idea. And bear in mind, Rudolph is a black Republican who not only supports Snyder but knows him personally.

“I would advise the governor your new working office is in Flint,” Rudolph says. “Show these people you mean it by moving every department having a hand in fixing the problem [to] Flint. This is not brain surgery: Do the right thing and let people see you care and feel their pain. His daily briefing reports should start with the state of Flint.”

Last Thursday’s Republican debate was held in Detroit, the Flint water crisis was only brought up once, thanks to a question from Fox News moderator Bret Baier. Marco Rubio responded by praising Michigan Governor Rick Snyder. “The politicizing of it, I think, is unfair,” Rubio said, “because I don’t think that someone woke up one morning and said, ’Let’s figure out how to poison the water system to hurt someone.’ … I give the governor credit. He took responsibility for what happened.”

First of all, maybe Snyder is simply too used to the executive culture of being a private sector CEO. The maladroit handling of this press conference suggests that only yes-men are penetrating his inner circle.

Also, he really must be tone-deaf to go through with this cheery dog-and-pony show, let alone to utter words such as this: “I always try to think about the person in Flint that can’t use the water coming out of the tap and what their life’s like and how they’re in a worse place than I am.” (“A worse place than I am”? That’s contrition?)

Finally, there’s the possibility that the photo is exactly what it appears to be: Michigan’s GOP legislators, particularly on the west side of the state, circling their wagons and playing exclusively to their constituencies. In which case, it means they wrote off the poor people of Flint months ago.

Frankly, that’s the scariest prospect of all: that Snyder and company view this photo as an asset.

If that’s the case, the people in this photograph are far beyond the help of any PR agency.


Source: Townhall.com

VIDEO: ‘Days of Revolt’: Chris Hedges, Native American Activists Denounce Uranium Poisoning



The United States has waged a long war against Native Americans. That war continues with abandoned uranium mines and poisoned water in South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana and Wyoming. In this episode ofteleSUR’s “Days of Revolt,” Chris Hedges and Native American activists Charmaine White Face and Petuuche Gilbert discuss the exploitation of natural resources and how to combat the devastating violations on indigenous lives and land.

“I think the public at large is still naive about this nuclear reactive poison,” explains Gilbert, vice president of the Laguna Acoma Coalition for a Safe Environment. “So education needs to be done. But then it’s also convincing the community to rise up against their politicians, against their leadership.”

White Face, a coordinator for the Defenders of the Black Hills, agrees.

“Educating—and where I live, educating allies. Wasicu [wah-SHEE-chu], we call white people, wasicu, allies, so that they can start getting involved,” she says. “Because where I come from, our state—the U.S. Civil Rights Commission said South Dakota’s the most racist state in the union. And so who’s going to listen to me? I’m just a little old brown Indian woman. Nobody’s going to listen to me, despite the fact I’m a scientist and I know what I’m talking about. So we enlist allies. … They bring in more, and then we, our organization, we back out and we start on another one.”

Watch full interview posted by The Real News below.

Warning: this Social Media Specialist could Explode your business

I believe that you don’t always have to choose between having your cake and eating it, too – I can totally order you another one if you want me to. Often, the better of the two options is both. For instance, I don’t just view blogs as vehicles for SEO keywords, I also view them as potential sources of serious PR – and use them as such. I find clever solutions to problems most people don’t know exist, and my clients benefit from it.

I learn more from my successes than my failures. The road to effective digital PR campaigns is paved with trial and error, but the fact of the matter is that effective campaigns have a lot more to teach me than their counterparts that are currently languishing in some obscure corner of the Internet. Of course, I also strive to make sure that no mistake goes unnoticed – or made twice.

I think marketing is equal parts artistry and science. When a campaign results in a lot of traffic or sales, I don’t celebrate. I do what I can to figure out why it was successful, and then experiment until I am able to replicate the process.

What started out as an experiment and a dream is now a successful digital social media firm owned by Jo Weber. I am committed to working smarter andharder for my clients, because I know that’s what it takes to succeed in today’s hyper competitive marketplace.

I hold myself to ridiculously high standards. My clients demand nothing less, and I am happy to deliver.

Areas of Expertise

Free press is a lot like a free lunch: there’s no such thing. Still, my digital PR and social media services are more affordable than traditional brick-and-mortar PR houses, and I am significantly more effective than your cousin who once took a class in public relations at the local community college. There’s an argument to be made that digital PR is even more effective than advertising (it’s certainly cheaper), and several books have been written about the fall of advertising and the rise of digital PR over the last decade. It’s a trend I am excited to be a part of. If you’ve seen the results I have, you’d be excited too.

This type of digital PR exposure is better than just getting your name out there. National coverage means high-quality backlinks for your website that money can’t buy, and this can have a significant impact on where your site shows up in search engine results pages. Sometimes, a few high-quality links can make the difference between the #1 and #2 spots – and you probably already know what that means for site traffic and sales.

With my digital PR and social media services, I take a three-pronged approach to getting my clients press, and it’s what makes me a little different than everyone else.


digital pr services for website

  1. PR Opportunity Monitoring

    I have the PR tools and contacts necessary to find great opportunities for your company, and I get hundreds of requests from reporters and media outlets looking for expert sources for their stories, each and every week. You could be that expert, and I help make it happen. I also have access to the editorial calendars of major media outlets, so we can plan ahead and make sure that you have a consistent, relevant outreach to reporters and journalists.

  2. Establishing Your Company As A Thought Leader In Your Industry

    When you’re a thought leader in your industry, reporters are more likely to tap you for expert commentary and quotes. If you’re interested, this can even develop into consulting gigs, speaking engagements and book deals. Once you’ve achieved a certain amount of exposure, your clients and customers will also view you as an expert in your industry – which automatically makes them trust your advice and opinions. This leads to more sales.

  3. Creative Campaign Development

    How do you get over a dozen .edu links (including Ivy League!) to point to an adult e-tailer’s website without scamming or spamming? Ask me, because I’ve done it before –and the universities even wanted to partner again in the future. The SEO results for that campaign were nothing short of astounding, and my client was thrilled. For me, it was just another day at the office.

This type of creative campaign development is something I excel at, and it’s one of my favorite aspects of my digital social media services. From SEO link-building campaigns to securing endorsement deals, I can do it all. No matter what your business or industry is, I can figure out a way to creatively solve your PR problems and get you the kind of press and name recognition you’re looking for.

Press Releases

How do you get the media to notice what you’re doing? The first step is to send a press release.

When you order a traditional press release, you’re buying the release itself, advance email distribution to 500+ related press contacts (which gives them a 24- to 48-hour head start on the story), national distribution and follow-up with media outlets. You’ll also receive two reports that detail pickups, traffic sent to the website and notable interactions, plus a complete list of outlets that the release was distributed to.

PR Article Placement

There’s a major advantage to having a great writer at your disposal: when reporters aren’t writing about your industry, I can – and then I’ll pitch the content I create to media outlets until somebody picks it up. It’s PR 2.0, and it’s something I am pioneering with great success.

Website Design

My website design rates include concept generation, design, all copy and as many edits as necessary to get the job done. Once you’ve approved everything and the website is live, I distribute it to media contacts and bloggers in your industry and encourage them to repost it (with a link back to your site, of course). I even include an HTML repost code that makes it easier for people to share your shiny new website.

I know what I am doing when it comes to digital PR. One of my client has been interviewed by CNN and has been on live national TV talking about everything from web content writing to small businesses and the economy. If she can get quoted in Forbes, you can too.

Call 951-675-2149


Kelly Davis

AS THE FBI and Apple fight a media war over whether the federal government can force the computer company to hack an iPhone, in California a new privacy law is raising questions over how deeply government should be allowed to peer into a convicted criminal’s digital life.

That new law, the California Electronic Communications Privacy Act(CalECPA), requires law enforcement to obtain a warrant before searching a person’s cellphone, laptop, or any digital storage device. At issue is whether the law covers people on probation, parole, and other forms of supervised release who’ve agreed to what’s known as a “Fourth waiver,” a condition that allows law enforcement to search their person and property at any time.

CalECPA took effect on January 1, 2016. Three days later, San Diego County prosecutors and Superior Court judges began asking defendants who were eligible for probation to sign a form giving “specific consent” to county probation officers “and/or a law enforcement government entity” to collect information that would be otherwise protected under CalECPA.

The consent form described everything that could be searched and seized:

Call logs, text and voicemail messages, photographs, emails, and social media account contents contained on any device or cloud or internet connected storage owned, operated, or controlled by the defendant, including but not limited to mobile phones, computers, computer hard drives, laptops, gaming consoles, mobile devices, tablets, storage media devices, thumb drives, Micro SD cards, external hard drives, or any other electronic storage devices, by probation and/or a law enforcement entity seeking the information.

The defendant shall also disclose any and all passwords, passcodes, password patterns, fingerprints, or other information required to gain access into any of the aforementioned devices or social media accounts.

Defense attorneys immediately protested, arguing that the form had been drawn up without input from the defense bar and that the language was vague and overly broad.

“Folks on parole, probation, even supervised release, they have a reduced expectation of privacy while they’re under supervision,” said Margaret Dooley-Sammuli, criminal justice and drug policy director for the ACLU of California, “but that’s not the same as no right to privacy online or offline.”

Dooley-Sammuli said she was surprised by the expansiveness of the consent waiver. “Anything, anytime, from the beginning of time until after your death is what it suggests in that language.”

In January, I attended dozens of probation and sentencing hearings in San Diego’s main courthouse. The majority of defendants were told that there would be broad monitoring of their online lives, despite objections from defense attorneys. In one case, a judge told a pair of young co-defendants — a boyfriend and girlfriend who pleaded guilty to robbery — that their emails, cellphones, and social media accounts would be monitored to make sure they weren’t in contact with each other during their five years’ probation. A young woman convicted of felony DUI was told that her probation officer would be checking her email and social media to make sure she wasn’t drinking. As the judge told the DUI defendant, “Law enforcement needs to monitor your physical as well as electronic world.”

Issues with digital privacy aside, probation conditions are supposed to be narrowly tailored to address a person’s crime and what will “reasonably” prevent future criminal acts, said Jeff Thoma, outgoing president of California Attorneys for Criminal Justice. “The whole idea of probation and sentencing is to individualize something,” Thoma said. “When you don’t do that and are just trying to put all these restrictions, it becomes, ‘Oh we might catch this person doing something.’”

In late January, the San Diego County public defender’s office filed a petition with a state appeals court, arguing that the consent form hadn’t gone through the proper vetting process. Shortly after the appeal was filed, judges who had been using the form stopped requiring probationers to sign it, and the district attorney’s office stopped including it in plea deals offering probation.

Getting rid of the form didn’t solve the problem, said Randy Mize, chief deputy public defender in San Diego County. Some judges are now assuming that any probationer who agrees to a Fourth waiver in court is also agreeing to make available to law enforcement all the digital information that had been included in the consent form. Mize said his office plans to appeal a number of these cases. “All we want is the judge to articulate on the record what makes it a constitutional probation condition,” he said.

Specific Consent and the Fourth Amendment

The new digital privacy law doesn’t directly address how to handle Fourth waivers. Rather, it says that absent a warrant, a government agency must obtain an individual’s “specific consent” to search an electronic device. The law defines “specific consent” as “consent provided directly to the government entity seeking information.” The question, then, is whether a defendant who agrees in court to waive his Fourth Amendment rights has given the “specific consent” the law requires.

“Had the legislature wanted to include a Fourth waiver in the definition of ‘specific consent,’ they could have specifically said so,” said Robert Phillips, a retired deputy district attorney and author of the website California Legal Update. “The legislature could have merely referred to the need for ‘consent’ without adding the word ‘specific.’ In interpreting a statute, the courts attempt to give every word meaning. To argue that ‘specific consent’ means no more than just a general consent in effect eliminates the need for the word ‘specific.’”

As for individuals on parole, a Fourth waiver is a mandatory condition, not something a parolee consents to. This has led a number of law enforcement groups to advise obtaining a warrant before searching a parolee’s electronic devices. So even though a parolee’s home, car, and person are open to search, law enforcement now needs a warrant to examine his cellphone or laptop.

“With all its good intentions, I think the ECPA was written in a very one-sided way without necessarily balancing the interests of all of the parties,” said Contra Costa County Deputy District Attorney Satish Jallepalli.

Sean Hoffman, legislative director for the California District Attorneys Association, said other counties are “grappling with how and when to effectuate searches of probationers’ electronic devices,” but so far San Diego is the only county that’s tried to address it through the court. At least three other counties — Contra Costa, Santa Clara, and Sacramento — have discussed implementing a consent waiver similar to San Diego’s.

Confusion over how to interpret CalECPA is happening against the backdrop of two significant recent court decisions. In 2014, in Riley v. California, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously held that searching a person’s cellphone during arrest is unconstitutional. The Fourth Amendment allows police to conduct unwarranted searches if they’re part of “a lawful arrest,” but Chief Justice John Roberts rejected the government’s argument that searching a cellphone is no different than searching a wallet, purse, or pack of cigarettes.

“Modern cellphones are not just another technological convenience,” he wrote. “With all they contain and all they may reveal, they hold for many Americans ‘the privacies of life.’ The fact that technology now allows an individual to carry such information in his hand does not make the information any less worthy of the protection for which the Founders fought.”

In a recent case, In re: J.B., California’s 1st District Court of Appeals sided with a juvenile probationer who argued it was unconstitutional to require him to give law enforcement access to his cellphone and social media passwords. The court ruled that the probation condition had no relation to his crime — petty theft — nor did it serve any rehabilitative purpose.

The J.B. case is only one of several recent cases in which the appeals court sided with a juvenile probationer over digital privacy issues. Expect to see more of these cases throughout the state, said Arthur Bowie, deputy public defender of Sacramento County.

“These things are going to be challenged until some court decides what they can and cannot do,” he said. “The edges are going to be tested.”



How Easily Distracted Are You? Here, Distract Yourself With This Game to Find Out

By and

Photo: Disney/Pixar

The conversation happening across the room, the alarmingly aggressive typing habits of a nearby colleague, the siren wailing past your office window: oh, for the ability to tune out distractions like these in order to focus 100 percent of your cognitive powers on the task in front of you. The value of laserlike focus and attention is clear — within the first few weeks of the new year, for example, publications like Fast Company, Harvard Business Review and the Huffington Post all offered their readers anti-distraction guides so that they may become better and more productive workers in 2016.

But perhaps you’ve tried these various tips and tricks and still can’t seem to filter out the distractions in your environment. This, it seems, is not entirely a bad thing. In a shift from the all-distractions-are-bad narrative, some research in cognitive psychology is revealing an unexpected bright side to having an easily distractible mind: People who are terrible at tuning out the nonsense around them also happen to be more highly creative than their more focused peers.

A classic test scientists used for studying an individual’s selective attention — in other words, the ability to tune out irrelevant information and focus squarely on the task at hand — is something called the Stroop Color and Word Test, the efficacy of which has been replicated in hundreds of scientific studies. Try it for yourself with our version below, which itself is based on a game designed by Boston College psychologist Joshua Hartshorne. We’ll be tracking how many you answer correctly, plus the amount of time it takes you to answer.

How well do you handle distraction?


You will be presented with a series of words.

When the color of the word is white, tap the ‘w’ key on your keyboard as quickly as you can.

When the color of the word is orange, tap the ‘o’ key on your keyboard as quickly as you can.

Focus only on the color itself – the word doesn’t matter.


Hartshorne’s game has been played by more than 18,000 people, and he’s still in the early stages of analyzing the data. He and his colleagues are using it to test a number of different things, but generally, “it’s about executive function and executive control, which is a very fuzzy category in cognitive theory,” he told Science of Us. “It describes the intuitive notion of the ability to stay on task — to ignore distractions, to focus, things like that. If you think about it for a little bit, you realize being able to focus is important to do just about anything you want to do — it’s how we’re having this conversation right now.”

If you didn’t do as well on that game as you’d have liked — or if you are maybe not as focused in everyday conversations as you’d like — relax. Take, for example, a series of studies on something called latent inhibition, or your ability to filter out environmental information (i.e., distractions) that are irrelevant to the task at hand. People with high latent inhibition are good at tuning out noises and other distractions that have nothing to do with them. “An example of this might be if somebody is building something a couple doors away from you, and you hear a hammer pounding,” Shelley H. Carson, a Harvard psychologist who has studied the link between creativity and latent inhibition, told Science of Us. “The first time you hear it, you’ll be startled, because it’s a large noise. But when you realize it doesn’t have any relevance to what you’re doing, you tune it out.”

But on the other hand, Carson’s work has shown that high-achieving, highly intelligent creative individuals are seven times more likely to have a faulty latent inhibition filter — they never really get used to distractions like the cacophony of nearby construction workers, “and every time they hear the noise, they pay attention to it,” Carson explained.

In the parlance of a programmer, this may be more of a feature than it is a bug. If your filter is more “porous,” as Carson phrases it, then you’re taking in bits of information from your environment that others may be missing. This, in turn, may allow you to remix and recombine that new incoming information with what you already know, leading to novel ideas or solutions. As psychologist Scott Barry Kaufman and science writer Carolyn Gregoire write in their fascinating new book, Wired to Create, a creative mind also often tends to be a rather disorganized one. “Reduced latent inhibition speaks directly to the concept of a ‘messy mind,’” they write, “as it reflects a mind that [is] tuning into greater amounts of information from its surroundings rather than automatically filtering and compartmentalizing.”

In the best of scenarios, the inability to filter out environmental distractions can lead to creative breakthroughs, something known as opportunistic assimilation. Instead of ignoring whatever has popped up that doesn’t immediately seem to be relevant to your work, what if you could use it instead? A famous example of this is Alexander Fleming’s accidental discovery of penicillin: Upon leaving for vacation, the scientist left the window to his lab open, which allowed some mold spores to come in from the outside and contaminate the bacteria he was trying to grow in petri dishes. As the story goes, Fleming quickly noticed that the mold killed all of the bacteria it touched. Voilà: the first modern antibiotic is born. “So he took something that happened in the environment and was able to use that in a creative way,” Carson said. “Sometimes, distractions — things we don’t notice, that don’t at first seem to be part of the problem we’re trying to solve — actually can help us solve creative problems.”

Overall, the link between creativity and distractibility ties in nicely with one of the main assertions Kaufman and Gregoire make in their book: that a creative mind is an open mind. This may even help explain why experiments since at least the 1960s have discovered a link between creativity and mental illness. “Being open to and curious about the full spectrum of life — both the good and the bad, the dark and the light — may be what leads writers to score high on some characteristics that our society tends to associate with mental illness,” Kaufman and Gregoire write, “at the same time that it leads them to become more grounded and self-aware.” Having an open mind means a lot more stuff is going to wander on in there, for better or for worse. “Everything is interesting, and you want to pay attention to it all,” Carson said.

But in the annoying, everyday scenarios, this can be a problem, for the obvious reasons. Sometimes you do have to filter out distractions. Alas, it’s not yet clear from the research whether it’s possible for a person to temporarily improve their latent inhibition. Instead of trying to train yourself to ignore distractions like email or texts, it may be better to avoid them completely, at least while you’re trying to get creative work done. Marcel Proust is said to have worked while wearing ear plugs; the 19th-century novelist Franz Kafka once said, “I need solitude for my writing; not ‘like a hermit’ — that wouldn’t be enough — but like a dead man.” Both men have a point.