So word on the street is there’s blood in the water. Obama wants New York Governor David Paterson to not seek reelection. Interesting. Some speculate it has to do with his bungling over appointing, er not appointing Caroline Kennedy to the Senate seat vacated by Hillary Clinton. Hmm – who cares? The economy is still in the toilet and many states have Govs that are acting like fools right now or have ruined their state’s infrastructure. Take one Mark Sanford. Take one Arnold Schwarzenegger. I don’t see Obama asking them to go away. Oh yeah I’m supposed to dismiss them because they’re Republicans. Does that mean I’m also supposed to ignore the fact that Paterson is African-American? He’s not half-African and half-white like our president. He’s not a post-racial crossover politician either. He’s part of the bonafied black elite in fact. His family is well-established along with the Dinkins, the Suttons and many others. So am I expected to ignore the blatant disrespect the Obama administration (or is it the “Rahm & David Show”) have shown by PUBLICLY doing this? I don’t think so. Two wrongs don’t make it right.
The decision to ask Mr. Paterson to step aside was proposed by political advisers to Mr. Obama, but approved by the president himself, one of the administration officials said. The president’s request was conveyed to Mr. Paterson by Representative Gregory W. Meeks, a Queens Democrat, who has developed a strong relationship with the Obama administration, they said.
The move against a sitting Democratic governor represents an extraordinary intervention into a state political race by the president, and is a delicate one, given that Mr. Paterson is one of only two African-American governors in the nation. So Obama couldn’t pick up a phone to speak to the Gov directly?
Do I think Paterson did a great job while in office? Not necessarily. I’ve already written about why I thought Leecia Eve or Crystal Peoples should have been appointed instead of Gillibrand and how I think he back-stabbed Eve to get the Lt. Governorship to begin with. So he can’t be that slow or dumb. I was also not impressed by his whining about racism as the motivation behind his public ridicule instead of accepting it was his mediocrity. Ok maybe he is.
The lack of care in handling this messy situation by Obama is what has my hackles raised. He takes the time out to call Kanye West, he defends Skippy Gates, he rewards his other rivals/defiers with high-ranking positions in his administration but he can’t say squat about the racial animus, the plight of black women around the world or any number of things that have a negative impact on the meek of the earth but he can focus on this?
I realize since Rudy Guiliani has expressed interest in running for Gov the Democrats do need to neutralize him. I am personally so sick of him claiming special powers and a superior skill set because he was at Ground Zero during the September 11th attacks. It was complete ineptitude and lack of preparation for disasters that had him stuck there in the first place. Anyhoo…I will always associate him with a 400% rent increase, mass evictions, the death of club kid culture and the killing of the uniqueness of the “old” NYC so I have no partiality when it comes to my disdain for the former Mayor. That and taking credit for the Dinkins plan to increase the effectiveness of law enforcement. Ugh!
This latest move by Obama gives me the creeps. If he wanted to humiliate Paterson this very public chastisement should do that. It has the air of a personal beef and Obama thinks it’s okay to treat Paterson poorly in retaliation but rewarded Hillary Clinton with the Secretary of State position?!!! SMH. What of the unforeseen ramifications of such an action? While it’s true that blacks are not a monolith and not in lockstep with each other on every issue this is still a bad look. Obama is very calculated and cautious in his moves. He’s trying to deny he’s black right now so this obvious lack of faith gesture is especially galling to me. Yet I already hear the deniers discussing how he “needs” to do this because of blah blah blah.
It’s a betrayal plain and simple. Oh wait…I retract that. It can’t be a betrayal because Obama is not a real ally of blacks to begin with. Not the collective anyway. I could mention that black voters are a fickle bunch who don’t exercise any discretion or build coalitions to wield power effectively. I could mention too many focus on pulling a lever or punching a hole during a national election and remain silent and uninvolved the remainder of the time. I could mention too many have treated this president as some sort of prized calf where any criticism is taken as an invitation to fight. There’s a huge lack of discernment in effect. He’s not going to hitch himself to a wagon that could very well fall off the side of a cliff. Yet it’s still a slap in the face with the relative ease by which Obama abandons those blacks who are not “useful” to him but says nothing of the blatant disrespect heaped upon him by the likes of Limbaugh, Beck, Dobbs, etc.
Just when I think I’m possibly being extra harsh and not a political realist or lack enough skill in domination theory and am letting an emotional reaction take over Obama does something like this. I wonder what else is down the pipe for when your senior advisors are all white men cut from the same cloth that leaves out any diversity in perspective or concern about a entire voting group. This becomes a full circle conversation about why black women who want full lives need to divest. Again, it’s up to the black collective to get it together because in many respects this president will be more inclined to do even less than his predecessors (so the majority is out of luck for any number of reasons).
The Emperor Has No Clothes and I for one am getting sick of seeing him showing his a** in public.
By now I’m certain enough people have heard about Kanye West’s hijacking of Taylor Swift’s acceptance speech. He’d been drinking and used his male privilege to assert his opinion about why Swift’s video for “You Belong With Me” wasn’t as good as Beyonce’s “Single Ladies”. Considering the fact she did a virtual recreation of Bob Fosse’s “Mexican Breakfast” (that she sparingly attributes to him) shouldn’t West have been demanding giving credit where credit is due?
Lest anyone think I’m excusing the rap artist’s boorish, rude behavior I’m not! It didn’t go unnoticed how quickly the president’s “off the record” comment referring to West as a jacka** was “accidently” released as well. While it may be true we’re also observing yet another situation where Obama decides to put down blacks to curry brownie points amongst whites. I’m not impressed by either males’ behavior under these circumstances.
For me the honor of the most infamous VMA acceptance interruptus goes to Fiona Apple. Whether she was speaking from the heart or biting the hand that fed her, the then 19-year-old’s speech from 1997 will remain memorable.
“I think an overwhelming portion of the intensely demonstrated animosity toward President Barack Obama is based on the fact that he is a black man, that he’s African American,” Carter said.
Well thanks a lot former president Jimmy Carter. Thanks for making perfect sense. Now look what you’ve done. Your one statement could undermine the Obama presidential plan to remain as race neutral as possible. He already miscalculated by wasting valuable “race currency” defending that Harvard “elitist” and had to have a beer with the idiot cop. Who by the way was unrepentant and never apologized. Kinda like so many other white people who claim we’re being taken over by an alien, communist, socialist all as code word for their fear of a Black Planet. Oh yeah – Obama isn’t a US citizen and a Muslim to boot. Don’t you know Mr. President the current occupant of the Oval Office is not a bleeding heart liberal like you. You’re Mr. Nice Guy. He’s not going out like you did.
Obama made certain to send his spokes-hack out for damage control. Robert Gibbs, Mr Obama’s press secretary, said: “The President does not believe that that criticism comes based on the colour of his skin.”
Too much race talk is like forcing people to take Cod Liver Oil by the gallon. It’s really good for you but so distasteful. That gag reflex is in full effect you know. Stop making sense! While it’s true that some people are actually opposed to the administration’s policies (many we don’t actually know what they are yet) let’s face the truth here. Most of these people are straight up embedded in their white privilege and blinded to it. I’ve failed to see even one tenth of the vitriol directed at George Bush that Barack Obama gets.
Of course I’m on the opposite end feeling dissatisfied because I know think our interests are being sold out and rendered useless. I define those loosely as wanting a reorder of the current status quo. That includes less power by the Corporate Industrial Complex, their army of lobbyists and neutered politicians and more effective jurisdiction by the “little” people. That includes holding the president accountable to us, not them. So I really have zero patience with these people – some of whom I know didn’t vote. Isn’t it funny how those otherwise passive yell the loudest nonsense?
Say it isn’t so, president Carter. You know you’re going to have to publicly recant what you said. Obama has already repudiated you. Didn’t you get the memo? We’re in Post-Racial America now and any discussion about how the use of privilege has been extended to a small percentage of the population is akin to throwing a molotov cocktail into a locked room. Don’t do it!! Those of us with eyes to see and ears to hear already know what’s up. Trying to make sense to the indoctrinated will not earn you their gratitude – only their derision as they hold fast to their false totems.
You’re getting quite feisty in your senior years, Sir. Getting to 85 with your health and mental faculties intact is a feat. You feel that you have nothing to lose. First you rebuke your church for its gender prejudice and now this. Grandpa doesn’t care who’s in the room – you’re going to tell it like it is. It is appreciated by many but it will be equally rejected by others. Those who like to scream and use terms like reverse racism. I’ve finally figured out that wanting a life outside the Matrix means dealing carefully with all of those left behind is imperative. Let this president do things the way he wants. Even if we disagree – it’s his right.
I spoke on the national public affairs show, The Takeway yesterday in anticipation of Obama’s address to Congress and the nation. I have many misgivings about this plan because first and foremost it leaves the insurance companies as recipients of our money. What exactly does a subsidized health care plan mean? I discussed that I wanted to hear about Single Payer being put back on the table and coverage as good as those members of Congress get.
When I was employed by a well-financed company the insurance plan offered was pretty good. The premium was 100% employer paid but I was still responsible for annual deductibles, co-payments and other incidentals. It was not cheap and I still tried to find ways to reduce my costs for some things. Typically coverage is divided by major medical, dental, vision and prescriptions. As anyone with insurance knows there’s a lot you may get but there’s even more that you don’t.
I was fortunate to not have any pre-existing conditions or denial of claims (except for one that was due to the error of the medical office). I had to have a surgical procedure that resulted in a $32,000 bill of which I had to pay $1000. Relief – but $32K! Looking at the itemized bill to ensure I wasn’t overcharged I found out where the overinflated prices come from. $27 for every pill administered during my stay. A $425 charge for the sheets on the hospital bed – no they weren’t new and I didn’t get to take them home either.
This is why people go bankrupt trying to pay for their care. I was very disheartened to read about the soldier who’d reenlisted to keep his family covered only to lose his life in Iraq. Tort reform for medical malpractice is an absolute must as well. The insurance companies are gouging everyone involved from all ends!
When I left that position and had to foot the bill myself through COBRA I found out my insurance was a lot more expensive than I’d calculated. Adding up the various fees my insurance averaged $700. That was single coverage – not a family plan. It’s a mortgage payment for some people. I figured I seek out an alternative and dropped it. I was very happy when Mayor Gavin Newsom implemented the San Francisco Health Plan that would provide basic coverage. States also tend to cover children through SCHIP, but with the state of the economy have been slashing funding.
Many have praised the President’s plan especially with the promise of guaranteed coverage, but color me skeptical. At least I didn’t make myself a national laughingstock like South Carolina Rep. Joe Wilson who had the nerve to call Obama a liar on live television. I mean…wow. His house.gov page has crashed. What about Eric Cantor thumbing his Blackberry? It’s not the first time he’s done this either. Why are these people STILL in office? I am very critical of the President lately but it’s because I want the promise he represents to actually come to fruition. That level of disrespect and vitriol is just ridiculous.
On the other hand I don’t want my emotions played with or to sold a bill of fake goods. I need to SEE this plan in action to know whether it actually works. I want mental health services that offers more than 5-10 cursory visits with a therapist. I want acupuncture and chiropractic. I don’t want to subsidize the insurance companies I want actual medical services. I liked the fact he said preventative care would be automatically covered. I don’t really like the idea of individuals being fined if they don’t have coverage. There are going to be plenty of people out of work or underemployed whose cost of living expenses just won’t allow for any fees despite what this is supposed to do. Yet I do like the idea of straight accountability across the board for individuals as well as companies. We’ll see.
I’m being cautiously optimistic and actively getting my ducks in a row regardless of what these politicians do – or don’t do. Obama is notorious for dragging his feet and waiting too long to respond to a crisis only to give a great speech. It’s like riding a rollercoaster – but it’s not amusing because people’s lives are at stake. If the non-denial of coverage that insurers pull on so many unsuspecting people is actually banned that will be huge. What will the cost be for that though since the restrictions under a Single Payer won’t be implemented? Anything can happen between today and 2013.
**I’ll be speaking on The Takeaway again for a follow-up interview this morning at 7 a.m. Click here to listen.
The majority of the pre and post Civil Rights beneficiaries who currently hold office are in their 60’s-70’s. They’ve been so ham-fisted about holding onto that itty bitty political clout there has been no training of successors. Think of Stephanie Tubbs-Jones dying suddenly as an example of the lack of preparation. These men and women have had their share of foibles but as they’ve served their terms they have focused on “black issues” and not been ashamed of it. As much as I cannot stomach the carelessness of Rev Inc. (Hot Comb Sharpton and Baby Daddy Jackson) there are times they’ve hit the ball in the corner pocket.
As we see all the “white guilt” about the history of this country is considered paid in full with the election of Barack Obama. I really don’t think either he or many of the blacks that voted for him have seriously given this enough thought. As I stated in my post yesterday, he’s so slow to react to direct attack that he’s constantly being blind-sided. In the case of the voters some act as if they know the president personally and are not only defending him blindly but they are not prepared for the current backlash or any fallout still to come.
The president is not only facing outright opposition with a corporate media assist but members of his own party have no loyalty. It’s nearly seven months into his (first or only?) term and I don’t understand how anyone could fail to see the underlying problems. I blame the Democrats for this one. Too many aren’t really supportive and have not lifted a finger to ensure party unity. I also predicted it would be them, not the Republicans who would implode this administration from the inside out. It’s not as if I want to be right about these things either.
This is a matter of the future quality of life for many blacks who aren’t part of the elite classes or aren’t wealthy/celebrities. Those that live in large cities with robust populations of other blacks who are relying on government jobs or holding onto seemingly stable positions like nursing or postal jobs need to figure out a back-up plan pronto! These positions and the lifestyle attained from holding onto them is in jeopardy. Did anyone think they’d see the day when a post office closed? I know I hadn’t. It’s not as if these losses aren’t impacting other communities but they have more intact families, less out of wedlock children as a whole and more men who are post-secondary educated and fulfilling their roles as providers and protectors. So whatever negatively impacts whites will be catastrophic to blacks. The unemployment rate for example is double for blacks and that only includes new claims not the chronically unemployed.
There’s also a new political order underfoot: Latinos and Asians. Whites still have the numbers and dominate public office but I expect next year’s Census to reveal Latinos as the largest “minority” population in this country. The Immigration Policy Center has released a report that shows Latino voters have increased 28.4% with Asians coming in second at 21.3%. Blacks are last at 15.1%. Now there are still more actual black voters but this number is going to decrease for a few reasons. Certain segments of the population are dying out, others will be barred from participation due to felony convictions and with the birth rates for educated black women at an all-time low – with only 30% being married. That’s just less future voters to go around. Districts will be redrawn to represent the newest constituent configuration as well. It has already been estimated the Congressional Black Caucus may lose at least three (3) seats.
Also, the underclass populations are on the rise and the anti-social/violent behavior goes unchecked. The Obama administration is now discouraging many from home ownership under the HUD program by building more low-income rentals. I have no words. Actually I have two: Dunbar Village. This is the site of a crumbling, non-secure housing complex where 10 males broke into the home of a single mother and gang-raped her. It was a particularly heinous crime for the viciousness of the attack as well as the apathy of other residents who made no effort to assist or even call the police. Only four are in custody. Some of them tried to broker plea deals by giving information about murders they may have had information about. Six of the suspects have been free for the two years since this incident because people will not come forward with information. There are far worse problems than white racism when black people adopt a mindset that crime is tolerable and the protection of males based on race is more important than seeking justice.
Now of course any subsidized housing being built could have a percentage of vouchers set aside for mid-income applicants but if you know anything about this gov’t organization you can see the abandonment as a mandate for entire populations. Applying for HUD housing is an already arduous task where it tends to be found in developing neighborhoods or those on the decline. You’re not likely to find HUD housing in wealthier or more established neighborhoods because those residents want a minimum caliber and income level that is much higher. So let’s get real here. Neighborhoods and groups of people are being written off. This is why it’s so important for individual black women to expand their social circles and find a mate of caliber who is able and willing to care for them regardless of race.
Further if the Obama presidency tanks you can bet the door will be firmly shut to future aspirants who wish to rise the same way. He did not ascend politically with the expressed “blessing” of certain established black politicians. This was seen as an asset last year but now that he’s in office and his isolation emerges perhaps that wasn’t so good in the long run. Not unless he extends an olive branch to them – for some have actually been in office as long as he’s been alive (scary I know).
I don’t have all teh answers. I’m just here posing questions. Blacks really need to be preparing right now for their political cover regardless of what happens with this president but even more so because he’s in office and there’s a LOT of disgruntled people out there. You’ve got people being “allowed” to bring weapons to events he attends. Too many are relying solely on this one man holding this office. We need to be involved in local politics and staying on top of what’s going on in our individual states.
I don’t recall Louisiana publicly announcing they would raze public housing that was undamaged from the Katrina-related flooding. It prevented even more of those displaced from returning. Some blacks are still assuming they’ll have fair warning for any plans that could negatively impact them because there’s a black guy in charge. New Orleans had a rather sizable underclass population that is mostly gone now. Some think the lack of gov’t response served as a experiment in population control. Whatever happened this current administration could have taken a more active role in assisting in the city’s recovery but it has not. I think that represents the extent of any future involvement as well and people should take heed of it.
I’ve just read your Op-Ed in the New York Times. Barack, Barack, Barack. I had so much hope for serious change. The demographic of the NYT tends to not include those without internet access, lower incomes and less education – the ones who really need the health care plan passed. So who were you trying to reach? Honestly you were the best to emerge from the Democratic candidate pool last year, but November 4th seems like a million years ago. I’ve personally waited for you to fully utilize the power you tapped into but unlike many others I don’t think you need to be given more time. You act like an insecure person unsure that they belong but you WON the election. That piece makes you look like a beggar at your own ball. It’s time to act Presidential. It’s time to crack some skulls and whip people into shape. You’ve taken this whole Knights of the Enemy Roundtable thing too far.
One year ago at the Netroots Nation conference in Austin, Texas the mood of the crowd was one of excitement and elation over the possibility of a Barack Obama presidency. (I concur I was there and the mood was full of promise.)
A year later, with that possibility achieved, a sense of cynicism has begun to creep in. On Saturday morning, one of the president’s closest advisers, Valerie Jarrett addressed the Netroots Nation conference in Pittsburgh. And while attendees were largely supportive throughout the question and answer session, the reception was warm at best. The defining moment, in fact, came when Jarrett was hissed and heckled.
You’ve always been slow to react, slow to respond in kind to attacks and have so far gotten lucky breaks that didn’t derail your entire initiative. It has not gone unnoticed that you opened your mouth to defend Skippy Gates of all people but have been silent on every single attack against your wife. I don’t like that! Yeah…we get it you’re a lover not a fighter. You want everyone to just get along. You think you can appease enemies with trinkets and shiny objects or worse – giving away the store!
So now that this health care plan is teetering on the verge of annihilation by politicians who are DEMOCRATS (in name only) and will be so gutted as to be useless what are your back up plans for this country? This is just a taste of what the rest of your term will be like. Scraping by the skin of your teeth is not displaying leadership. Forget your back up plans – what will the most vulnerable of voters do after being fed to a pack of wolves? By the way I’m still waiting for the US to leave Iraq and Afghanistan. That was a campaign promise, remember?
Those loan modifications haven’t been allocated either. Oh and a few more banks have failed. I’ve also found it quite odd that companies who had to be bailed out with TARP funds are posting billion dollar profits less than one year later. What company bounces back that fast?! I smell a conspiracy to help somebody get elected. Yup I’m putting on the tin-foil hat for this one. Just call me Fox(y) Mulder. Lest anyone forget while many of us are unemployed and without medical coverage billions are still being spent abroad and the military budget has not decreased. That was supposed to be cut. Which was one of the reasons why I voted for you. I’m also wondering how the un/under employed are supposed to PAY for this health care plan when they have no money?
The big mistake that the Obama administration made was they did not have continual public congressional hearings documenting the greed, the fraud, the $250 billion in billing fraud and abuse alone that the GAO years ago has documented. They didn’t document the $350 billion of waste, the overhead of Aetna and UnitedHealthcare and other health insurance companies with their massive executive salaries and bureaucracies. They did not document the deaths, the injuries, the sickness that hundreds of thousands of Americans go through every year because they can’t afford healthcare. And by not doing that, by playing this behind-the-scenes game with these executives from the big health-industrial complex, they were vulnerable to the split in their own party in the House, with the Blue Dog Democrats emboldened by an apparently wavering and indecisive President Obama, and they made sure that they were placed on the defensive. Well, the significance is that Obama is being undermined by his own party in Congress, because the Blue Dogs are getting far more money from these corporations and campaign contributions than the so-called liberals in the Democratic Party.
But, you see, I say “undermined”—I’m not quite sure that Obama is objecting to this. He has set the whole atmosphere of catering to these giant corporations. He has made every mistake that the Clintons made in 1993, ’94 with their health insurance plan, except that he’s leaving Michelle Obama out of it. He’s made every mistake.
So far you’ve been a huge disappointment. The excitement generated from your seemingly quick ascendancy was too hard to resist. You’re slow-footed and haven’t taken control of your party. You’ve made a public declaration of extending an olive branch and been slapped with it. I’ve watched the corporate media spew every lie and right wing/racist philosophy since day three. When John Roberts “accidentally” messed up your Swearing-In didn’t you know it was on?! Yet you refuse to prepare and you don’t fight. Bush was a cowboy and Cheney was Darth Vader. They took no prisoners! Yet you want “bi-partisianship”. You can’t negotiate with terrorists! They want your head on a platter literally and figuratively. All of those “enemies” are undermining all that you do.
President Obama is now facing the same kind of opposition that President Bill Clinton had to deal with: an enraged right that denies the legitimacy of his presidency, that eagerly seizes on every wild rumor manufactured by the right-wing media complex. So much, then, for Mr. Obama’s dream of moving beyond divisive politics. The truth is that the factors that made politics so ugly in the Clinton years — the paranoia of a significant minority of Americans and the cynical willingness of leading Republicans to cater to that paranoia — are as strong as ever.
In fact, the situation may be even worse than it was in the 1990s because the collapse of the Bush administration has left the G.O.P. with no real leaders other than Rush Limbaugh. So far, at least, the Obama administration’s response to the outpouring of hate on the right has had a deer-in-the-headlights quality. It’s as if officials still can’t wrap their minds around the fact that things like this can happen to people who aren’t named Clinton, as if they keep expecting the nonsense to just go away.
Or perhaps I’ve read this wrong. You didn’t surround yourself with people who can turn on you because you were foolish or believed your own hype but because you’ve already surrendered. You’re just a figurehead for other people’s plans and are far more crafty about it than any of us imagined. You never had any intention of doing anything remotely close to your platform (like many politicians) but you tapped into a zeitgeist where people actually believed you. You brilliantly laid a trap so the Clintons would let their inner racism out and after a hard-fought primary “won” the nomination. You make half-hearted gestures and will tell us, “Oh well I tried”. If so the plan is working brilliantly. So many people are focused on race and fighting each other much like how Bush used Osama bin Laden to rile people up and distract them that nobody sees the big picture.
Of course so many black voters (and a few “progressives”) are still looking to you to “rescue” them from having to be focused, disciplined and fight politically but you’ve got their votes locked as long as you keep dangling the perception of making an effort. You’re a (great black hope) Trojan Horse to many. I shudder to think who’s hiding inside the statue ready to break out in the middle of the night. Most are not seriously questioning you on anything and to bring it up is met with mass denial. The white fright is bringing out the knee-jerk reaction of history of African-American struggle in this country and many are going in circles.
I’d like to know what these plans are and who the people behind the curtain (Oz) really are? The Blue Dogs? The ones Rahm Emanuel – your very own Chief of Staff and chief AIPAC supporter brought into power? It’s also worth noting Rep. Mike Ross, the leader of the Blue Dogs owes his seat to Bill Clinton. What’s really going on here? Perhaps you are simply foolish enough to think you could work something out with compromised policies being better than Republican ones. Like that secret WH deal with Big Pharma. Except there are 60 Democrats and the party controls the House and the Senate. So Republicans are not needed and if you ruled with an iron fist and laid down the parameters to the Democrats you’d actually get something done.
At least go down fighting for the little people and against the insurers and the drug companies! I seriously have to wonder though with all of the white men you’ve surrounded yourself with from similar backgrounds how you’re actually able to determine what’s best for those of us who don’t fit that demographic. You’ve flipped-flopped on LGBT issues as well. As some of us have noted you are half-white and half-African and know nothing directly of the survival history of African-Americans in this country. You also are NOT liberal or all that progressive. As evidenced by your wavering support of funding ALL reproductive services including abortions. Limited choices are not real choices. All the symbolism in the world isn’t going to put food on my table. I have to do my part, but so do you Mr. President. I think you’ve passed out checks that we can’t cash.
For those that still want to try to save the Public Option (after Single Payer was gutted) contact the White House TODAY! If things turn around it will because WE pushed back not because the President fought for this.
I know many people are very pleased with the “successful” confirmation of now Justice Sotomayor. It does have a nice ring to it, doesn’t it? Out of 111 Justices, she is the third woman and first Latino to be appointed. The Republicans continue to live up to their surly, childish ways with nearly 2/3rds voting against her. In total nine came on board so this could be wrapped up.
Obama gets kudos while acting to CYA by immediately catering to Latino voters in nominating her in the first place. Not that she isn’t immensely qualified, but let this be a lesson to black voters that if “we” don’t have a cohesive coalition in place we’ll get NOTHING from Obama. To suggest this to the “he’s one of us” and “let’s wait and see” crowd is akin to banging your head against a brick wall. After that wasted effort at defending Skippy Gates – which offered ZERO value to black women – he won’t so much as stick his finger in air lest it offend some group of ready-to-be-disgruntled whites.
I can’t help but think of the Clarence Thomas appointment with ALL of the red flags presenting themselves very clearly and how he more or less sailed through. I was too young to understand what was going on then. The slight road bump was presented with Anita Hill’s testimony of his sexual misconduct and contempt he expressed towards her. I’ve researched the transcripts now and can’t believe this man got through. He was supposed to fill the Thurgood Marshall seat. So any black man was okay apparently.
I don’t care that he’s married to a white woman. I don’t care that he wasn’t elevated through the “black community” either. His contempt and hatred for blacks was obvious though. It wasn’t an expression of his free agency from a narrow definition of blackness either. Many blacks foolishly supported him simply based on shared phenotype while ignoring his history. Ever since he’s been a Justice he has attempted to destroy all collective progress that other blacks were terrorized and died for.
Which brings me to Sotomayor. If so many could get swept up in symbolism with Thomas why not with her? Yes, she is a woman but that in and of itself it NOT a guarantee that she’ll vote progressively. So while many are doing the happy dance, people had better remember these appointments are FOR LIFE and they have COMPLETE AUTONOMY. Every week I think about how John Roberts was appointed and not just as a junior SCOTUS but the Chief Justice it makes me so angry. This was the man who advised Ronald Reagan to back away from publicly acknowledging AIDS at a crucial time. It set back funding for research and discouraged a change in behavior that would have saved lives. Instead of it being listed as an epidemic Reagan remained silent allowing millions more to die than what was necessary.
So while I’m glad it’s not yet another white male I can’t say for sure this newest Justice will help usher in a roadblock of her own to stop the ideologues…or if it’s just business as usual. We need at least two more women and one of them had better be black! Of course I’m not counting on Obama to appoint one. For the reasons listed above, but Kimberlie Crenshaw deserves to be a SCOTUS. If you will recall Souter was appointed as a Conservative and often voted socially progressive by comparison to his colleagues. Of course those Republicans (white males wanting to hold on to their privilege) are still being difficult.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, took aim at what he claimed was Sotomayor’s inability to refrain from bringing her personal political opinions to bear on her rulings.
“This is the most fundamental test for any judge and all the more so for those who would sit on our nation’s highest court, where a judge’s impulses and preferences are not subject to review. Because I’m not convinced that Judge Sotomayor would keep this commitment, I cannot support her nomination.” – – – – CNN
Umm…yeah whatever dude. Go call up your buddies Roberts and Scalia and ask them about separation of impulses and preferences!
When Bill Clinton went to North Korea to meet with Kim Jong-il was that a sign of what’s to come? He was successful in getting journalists Euna Lee and Laura Ling released. Did that seem a little easy at the end? A photo op and a declaration of “defeat” so North Korea would be “victorious”? As a reader pointed out it’s not like either Bush would’ve been able to speak on behalf of the United States. Not after Shrub dubbed NK part of the “Axis of Evil”.
Our current President certainly could not be seen directly negotiating. Apparently even Al Gore wasn’t enough of a heavyweight even though he founded Current TV and was the de-facto employer of Lee and Ling. No, the administration needed to send the big guns. Love them or hate them that would be the Clintons. Yes, I’m including Hillary on equal par with Bill because their entire political careers have been tied to each other from the beginning. This is despite the ongoing dispute about the NK nuclear program and some of their officials speaking harshly of Mrs. Clinton. As I’ve stated in an earlier post, they are a sovereign nation and have just as much right to defend themselves as any other country.
North Korea signaled its desire to have Mr. Clinton act as a special envoy in conversations with Ms. Ling and Ms. Lee, who relayed that message to their families in the middle of July, according to a senior administration official. The message was passed to Mr. Gore, who contacted the White House, which then explored whether such a mission would be successful.
Mr. Obama did not speak directly with Mr. Clinton before the mission. But his national security adviser, Gen. James L. Jones, contacted the former president to sound him out. The senior official said the administration did “due diligence” with the North Koreans to ensure that if Mr. Clinton went, he would return with the journalists. – – New York Times
It just goes to show you can never really write someone off. Last year’s primary for the Democratic nomination was certainly a low point for the Clintons. They had alienated many many voters. Billy Jeff lost his “black cred”. Of course he should’ve never had any to begin with. Now Obama certainly emerged the “winner” at that time. We were still reeling over Hillary’s alluding to assassinations happening in June and preparing for the Democratic National Convention in Denver. That was a magical time I have to admit, but I also remember how pissed off a lot of women were. Not just the PUMAS. All of that seemed to be knocked over by the Obama juggernaut. The increased craziness from the McCain camp by unleashing Sarah Palin on an unsuspecting public certainly took up a lot of attention. Then the first wave of the economic collapse hit and Obama rode to victory.
Due to the continued white backlash against having a black President that isn’t going to simmer down anytime soon, a return to the familiar (however dysfunctional) has a certain appeal. One thing we do know about the Clintons: they fight hard and dirty with NO regrets. Clinton went before a national audience and lied to us about Monika Lewinsky – and he was believable! Obama has already sputtered and apologized.
I think the next few months are going to be very interesting. If the healthcare plans crash and burn, the economy is still bad for middle-class whites (because let’s face it none of them care as much about the poor or non-whites since a majority rules) and if Obama doesn’t exert more control over the Democrats his weakness as a President will be cemented. So the question remains: will Hillary run for President in 2012 or what will she demand from Obama to not run?
Kim Jong II has pardoned journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee. Former President Clinton flew to North Korea to negotiate visit with the North Korean leader. I am certain their families are very relieved – and grateful. What I am even more curious about is what was promised to secure their release and why it was Billy Jeff who went and not another dignitary, politician or high-profile emissary like President Carter…or even Jesse Jackson, Sr.
“Clinton expressed words of sincere apology to Kim Jong Il for the hostile acts committed by the two American journalists against the DPRK after illegally intruding into it,” the news agency reported. “Clinton courteously conveyed to Kim Jong Il an earnest request of the U.S. government to leniently pardon them and send them back home from a humanitarian point of view. – – CNN
I think the women have learned a valuable lesson about not playing with knives so to speak and how willing they were to risk their lives over chasing a story. Everyone always thinks they’ll be the exception and someone else will be the “unlucky” one who never has to pay a penalty. There’s still speculation that they may have knowingly entered North Korea illegally. Of course that hasn’t been proven. They’re lucky to be alive quite frankly.
Does this help elevate the status of the Clintons and separate them from President Obama? Does this diminish Obama’s stature? Did he need to seem distant from this situation to facilitate a quick remedy? I suspect whatever is going on behind the scenes, the political fall-out has yet to hit the fan. A “victory” might have long lasting repercussions that have yet to be revealed.
This was an interview from a few days ago but since it’s regarding our healthcare plan it is still current. Maxine Waters was interviewed by Carlos Watson of MSNBC where she very clearly lays out the nefarious activities of Rahm Emanuel. He recruited a very active minority of “Conservative” Democrats referred to as Blue Dogs. These members usually sided with Republicans and actively supported Shrub when he was still in office. So far they’ve torpedoed the single-payer option (which is what I favored) and are trying to kill the public option. Which would make this health care plan DOA for the majority of Americans that actually need it.
WATERS: Well that may be difficult for Rahm Emanuel (to hold them accountable), because don’t forget — he recruited most of them. As when he was over in the Congress, in the leadership, Rahm Emanuel recruited more conservative members and based on some of the information I’m getting, they told them that they could vote the way they wanted to vote, that they would not interfere with what was considered their philosophy about some of these things. So, now the chickens have come home to roost.
Talk about divided loyalties! What other country would allow a politician who’s a dual citizen with another country to serve as Chief of Staff to a President? What President in his right mind would hire someone who worked for his political rivals and recruited (Republicans registered as) Conservative Democrats that work against much of the core tenets for the purpose of getting elected and think that person would be loyal to them? Using auxillaries and mercenaries will speed up one’s demise faster than using incompetent people.
Furthermore with a less than 6% population and an aging political powerhouse, what will the blacks in California do when Maxine Waters and other advocates like her eventually retire or leave this mortal coil? For to deny the fact that Waters has been an advocate by taking Geithner to task, talking about the failed loan modifications, still fighting for the Katrina survivors after most politicians have moved on you’d have to be an idiot. Not to mention the 2010 Census will result in a shift in representation from black to Latino.
Again I will state this plainly: too many blacks are sitting pretty feeling “good” about having Obama in office strictly based on his phenotype and some unearned assumptions that he will advocate for issues that matter to blacks. He hasn’t done it yet and any requests about giving him more time is to allow for other people’s efforts at undermining a truly “progressive” agenda. Those Blue Dogs aren’t waiting to kill the health care plan.
What are blacks doing politically right NOW to protect themselves? NOTHING! They’re waiting for Obama to “do right by them”. Don’t say you weren’t warned! I’m rethinking the decision of some of these old-guard CBC members in not initially supporting Obama as perhaps being wiser than I’d initially given them credit for. I thought they were simply deferring to Miss Anne by supporting Hillary Clinton. Now I wonder if they were picking the lesser of two evils – or at least someone who’d actually work with them.
Waters brings up a valid point. If any constituents in the areas where these Blue Dogs (or others) reside don’t like what they’re doing they have the right to a primary challenge. Now who’s mobilized to do that? You can’t be prepared to mete out any repercussions (withholding campaign funds or mounting opposition) if you haven’t PREPARED FOR IT. It’s not just about this health care plan either.