Tag Archives

2 Articles

Care, Share, and Be Fair

Posted by rstapholz on
Care, Share, and Be Fair

Click to view this email in a browser



“Nobody cares how much you know,
until they know how much you care.”

~ Theodore Roosevelt



Cynthia Brian

When I was only eleven years old, a newly ordained young priest came to our parish. He was from a dairy farm in Limerick, Ireland and felt very out of place in very liberal and loud California. Since my family were fruit farmers and cattle ranchers, we invited him out to our place and he immediately felt at ease.

As he acclimated to life in the United States, he and I developed non-denominational youth programs. By the time I was in high school, our teen programs were the most popular with adolescents coming from all over northern California to attend. Father Pat McGrath became a mentor to many, but especially to me. The motto he lived by and I incorporated into my life was “Care, share, and be fair.”

In these tumultuous times, I find that adage to be more important than ever. Our Kindness Coordinator, Karen Kitchel, advises us to take a deep breath, think a kind thought, then proceed. This is a wise recommendation.

If we can all pause and remember that no matter what is transpiring, we are all in this together. When we care more, we share more.

Be the Star You Are!® has packed many cases of brand new books to ship to shelters and organizations in need of these resources as a result of the natural disasters that have occurred throughout the United States. If your organization is in need, please contact me so that we can include you in our Operation Disaster Relief program. We really do care and we want to share.

The Pear and Wine Festival is next Saturday, September 25th from 11-2pm with a live concert from 2-4pm. At this outdoor event, our volunteers will be following CDC protocols. More info at https://www.bethestaryouare.org/events. We hope to see you there.

Please care about your fellow citizens and get vaccinated. Wear a mask. Employ social distancing. We need to stop the variants from mutating. Covid is not something we want to share.

Be safe and enjoy back to school in-person learning.

Care, share, and be fair.

Sending healthy thoughts,

Cynthia Brian

Founder/Executive Director

Be the Star You Are!®

PO Box 376

Moraga, California 94556




DONATE: https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504


The Pear and Wine Festival is scheduled for Saturday, September 25th from 11 am-4pm with free family fun at Moraga Commons Park in Moraga. Be the Star You Are!® is participating with a booth. hosts and reporters of our radio broadcast, Express Yourself! will be in person to greet visitors. Instead of doing our normal face painting for kids, BTSYA volunteers will be providing a table with masks to be decorated. We will also have a Kids Korner with a reading circle. Many thanks to our sponsors The Lamorinda Weekly Newspaper (www.lamorindaweekly.com), Dr. Brian Sheaff Family Dentistry ( https://www.drsheaffdentistry.com) and MBJesse Painting (www.MBJessee.com). Also appreciation to author Brooks Olbrys who has donated two cases of books in English and Spanish of his 10 year anniversary special of Blue Ocean Bob. (https://www.blueoceanbob.com) Children who attend will be given a beautiful new book.

The festival will feature food, wine, art, children’s activities, a petting zoo, and fun for everyone. Admission is FREE. More information at https://www.bethestaryouare.org/copy-of-events


Rose Sarner is a Junior in high school at the Archer School for Girls who enjoys playing tennis, hiking, and hanging out with her friends. Her radio show sheds light on the pressing issues of urban food policy, nutrition, and the importance of food access in our world today. Rose is eager to share her knowledge, create an impact, and provide the tools and resources to enhance people’s lives in the community. Her segment on Express Yourself!® Teen Radio is called “Bite Share” and she is anxious to provide tips on how everyone needs to have access to eat healthy, nutritious meals. Her first reporting gig can be heard on September 26th at 3pm on the Voice America Empowerment Channel at https://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2014/express-yourself

Read more about Express Yourself!™ Teen Radio at www.ExpressYourselfTeenRadio.com


A Minneapolis parent shared her story about how her two young boys chose to make hygiene kits to donate. They helped make a list of needed items, all went shopping, and put everything together. Next was delivering them to a shelter.

“As a family, this allowed us to talk about different people’s situations, and how we can help. Our boys learned to be grateful for things like food, water, our home, and basic needs.  Each month we take on a new project listed on the website  Doing Good Together.  This provides ideas for simple, yet meaningful ways to give back, spread kindness and engage in conversations we would not otherwise have” commented Ann K.

This fantastic organization, Doing Good Together, has many tools for families to spark kindness. Check out their “Start Kind Conversations.”

Karen Kitchel who penned two chapters in the book, Be the Star You Are! Millennials to Boomers Celebrating Gifts of Positive Voices in a Changing Digital World, is the Kindness Coordinator volunteer with BTSYA. She serves meals to the homeless and is a volunteer teacher, writer, job coach, and mentor. www.scatteringkindness.com


BTSYA 3 book series csgs
In honor of our 20th anniversary since being on the first New York Times best seller list, first edition, autographed books are discounted in a special sale with proceeds benefitting Be the Star You Are!® You will also receive extra goodies and FREE music CD with your purchase when you buy from the website. Stock up now! http://starstylestore.net


The 2021 natural disasters continue to climb. Hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, tornados, and fires are more ferocious and deadly causing thousands to flee their homes. Global warming and climate change are causing extreme weather conditions that have never been seen before. Throughout 2020, Be the Star You Are!® concentrated disaster relief on helping individuals who were out of work survive during the pandemic. We now turn our assistance back to helping survivors of these major natural disasters happening throughout the United States. Be the Star You Are!® will be providing books and other materials to shelters and organizations in need. If you’d like to donate, please do so at our website, https://www.BetheStarYouAre.org. If your organization or shelter is in need of our resources to supply to survivors of a disaster, please email us at info@BetheStarYouAre.org.



We have suggestions for you to shop, save, and stay safe. Please use these web sites for all of your shopping essentials.

1. AmazonSmile donates .5% of purchases https://smile.amazon.com/ch/94-3333882

2020 Amazon smile logo

2. Discounted books at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/shops/be_the_star_you_are_charity

Giving Assistant Icon 234x60

3. Giving Assistant: Shop. Earn. Give! Use Giving Assistant to earn cash at 3500+ popular online stores :https://givingassistant.org/np#be-the-star-you-are-inc

4. Shop at over 1300 stores on IGIVE: http://www.iGive.com/BTSYA

2020 IGIVE logo

5. Buy “Read, Lead, Succeed” black tanks and books at StarStyle® Store: http://www.starstylestore.net/


Cynthia Brian books banner 3

6. Are you a gamer, lover of new software, or other digital content? Buy all of your favorites at Humble Bundle. http://ow.ly/cYs130iN6n4


LIVE on Wednesdays from 4-5pm PT, be entertained, informed, amused, and educated on StarStyle-Be the Star You Are!. Then be inspired and motivated on

Sundays from 3-4pm PT, it’s Express Yourself! Teen Radio with our Be the Star You Are! star teen hosts and reporters.
Express Yourself orange 72x24 banner-1 2
You’ll meet authors, actors, artists, activists, musicians, poets, scientists, educators, and other creatives. Enjoy our upbeat, authentic, and fun radio parties on the Voice America Network Empowerment Channel or wherever you like to listen. 
Visit https://www.StarStyleRadio.com for our line-up of guests.
on air logo


“Read, lead, succeed! To be a leader, you must be a reader! Communicate, collaborate, and innovate.”

BTSYA be a leader logo square
book3_right4.gif book3_right2.gif

Steve Forbes Says Flat Tax Fairer Than Fair Tax

Posted by Editor on
Steve Forbes Says Flat Tax Fairer Than Fair Tax

Steve Forbes

With tax season in full-swing, millions of Americans have begun the arduous process of filling out their Federal and State returns. The IRS estimated that Americans spent six billion hours filing returns last year, which begs the question: is a 4 million-word Federal tax code full of new regulations and guidelines necessary?

Renowned publishing executive and two-time Republican Presidential candidate, Steve Forbes, believes it is not. “We need radical tax reform,” he says.

Forbes, who has long been a vocal advocate for the “Flat Tax,” joined The Costa Report to explain just how complex the current tax system has become. He says the 4 million-word code is the tip of the iceberg because it doesn’t take into account millions of additional pages of interpretations, analysis, legal rulings, and other data experts must navigate to comply with the law. According to Forbes, growing complexity has increased the number of errors reported. He pointed to a recent government investigation which discovered that agents who monitor the IRS Hotline were wrong 20-30% of the time, and the IRS taxpayer assistance program had a 61% error rate.

Forbes says the “current code is beyond redemption,” and strongly urges government leaders to adopt a “Flat Tax” system. When asked whether he would support a “Fair Tax,” which would replace income taxes with a higher sales tax, Forbes made the point that a “Flat Tax” on income is more feasible and fair than the proposed “Fair Tax.” He cited four reasons why the “Fair Tax” is problematic. First, the government would be required to raise sales taxes to a very high rate to make up for lost income and payroll tax revenues. According to Forbes, this would discourage consumer spending and cause the economy to suffer. Second, the government would need to institute a way of distinguishing business purchases from personal purchases, as businesses are taxed differently. (How would the government determine whether an individual purchased office supplies for their personal use, or for use in their business?) Third, the “Fair Tax” assumes the government would pay itself taxes on the purchases it makes. The government is one of the largest spenders in the economy – if it failed to pay itself a sales tax on its own purchases, there would be a shortfall in revenue. And finally, the 16th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which gives government the power to impose taxes, would allow Congress to institute a “Fair Tax” without completely eliminating the income and payroll tax. So, in order for the “Fair Tax” to work, the 16th Amendment would have to be repealed – a move Forbes says is unlikely.

On the other hand, the “Flat Tax” can be instituted with no repeal of a Constitutional Amendment. The “Flat Tax” would require all taxpayers to pay a single fixed-rate regardless of their income, “with generous exemptions for adults and children below a certain income level.” Forbes points out that “A family of four, for example, would pay NO federal income tax on their first $52,000 in wages.”

On the business side, Forbes proposes cutting the current tax rate from 35% to 17%, a move he says will help revitalize the American economy. “When you have high income tax rates, you don’t get the kind of investment that is necessary for a productive economy,” claimed Forbes. “What a flat tax does … is it does not punish productive work, risk taking, or success.”

To listen to the full interview with Steve Forbes HERE.

Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)

Follow by Email