A Black Blogger’s Take on Obama’s Ambivalence toward the Real Problems in the Black Community

~~By InsightAnalytical-GRL

During last year’s primary season I discovered The Black Agenda Report which bills itself as “The Journal of African American Political Thought and Action.”  Glen Ford, the site’s executive editor, did NOT support Obama during the primaries and expressed his fear that Obama would actually set efforts to address real concerns in the black community back.

Ford and a group of writers continue to write compelling essays about the Obama Administration and his perspective is valuable as being an expression of how some blacks who are not Obots view what’s going on.

The most recent post deals with TBAR’s disappointment about Obama’s “ambivalence” over the effect of the current economic situation on black Americans.

Obama Preserves Entrenched Power, Sidesteps Racial Disparities

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Obama deploys the same twisted logic as generations of white, corporate politicians.”

In his own clichéd words, President Obama reveals himself to be, at best, ambivalent on the need to confront historical and current racial disparities in the United States. Behind the awesome hype and intellectual façade lies your garden variety corporate-bought politician whose worldview is no deeper than the shallowest catchphrase in long-discredited American economic discourse: a rising tide lifts all boats.

Ford takes Obama to task for stating that more “welfare” will meet the real needs of blacks.  Ford argues that real programs addressing such things as “institutionlized racism” and structural unemployment are needed, not just more “assistance.”  I’ve bolded a few key comments in the excerpt.

No Pretense of a Racial Policy

So confident is Obama that his personal Blackness is all that is required to offset horrific realities such as New York City’s nearly 50 percent Black male non-participation in the formal job market – statistics from 2003 that have certainly worsened in the current crisis – he offers not a single programmatic response. Obama is quick to point out that his plan is “is designed to help all people” – another way of saying there’s nothing in it to address the specific problems of people of color.

Obama claims there is no need for specific programs.”

He deploys the same twisted logic as generations of white, corporate politicians, who pointed to Black overrepresentation on welfare rolls as proof of the government’s deep concern for African Americans. In fact, concentrated levels of public assistance, food stamps and unemployment checks are elements of the misery index that, especially when dramatically skewed by race, cry out for specific programs and policies of remediation. Obama claims there is no need for specific programs because “folks who are most vulnerable are most likely to be helped because they need the most help.” Thus, he turns logic and language on their heads. The deeper Blacks sink into the abyss, the more they are eligible for general assistance – therefore, the Obama plan already contains everything African Americans need as a group, and will be of more use to them than to more advantaged groups. According to this line of reasoning, the worse things get, the more responsive the Obama plan is. There’s no need to deal directly with the underlying causes of disproportionate misery, such as institutional racism.

Presidential Denial

Obama is not even willing to fully acknowledge that Blacks and Browns have actually suffered disproportionately in the meltdown. In three successive sentences, he three times uses the word “probably” to describe what are solid facts. African Americans have not “probably” lost a disproportionate amount of jobs – Obama’s own Labor Department figures show that to be the case, on top of previously existing, horrendous rates of structural unemployment.

African American children are not “probably” over-represented among those lacking health insurance. They are, in fact, disproportionately uninsured. Obama belatedly corrects himself on this point, but his reflexive reluctance to give voice to the glaring racial disparities that are fundamental markers of American life, is deeply disturbing.

I love Ford’s opening description: “So confident is Obama that  his personal blackness is all that is required….” There are legitimate underlying problems that still need to be addressed and that the election of a black to the Presidency can’t cover up…especially a person like Barack Obama, who has no core values whatsoever and whose allegiances are all about drawing more power to himself.

But Ford and many of us already knew this during last year’s election season.  The “post-racial” candidate who spent most of the primaries playing the race card to win black votes has predictably been shafting this bloc by ignoring very real problems.  Instead, the Obama regime will offer more housing loans to folks who can’t afford them and trot out his “blackness” when re-election time comes around. In the meantime, very real issues concerning the black community will be brushed aside as usual.

And, of course, the same technique is being used with the poor in general and the middle class, as their  futures are thrown out the window to save the big banking friends of the Obama Administration.  There seem to be plenty of “programs” for bailing out banks (like TARP)  and taking over industries and “reforming” healthcare…Meanwhile,  the little guy will sink.

A writer in an earlier piece (about Guantanamo) asks the question “… Is Bush Still President?”

Seems appropriate since the “change” promised doesn’t seem to be anywhere in sight…

The Financial Filter: How CNBC Handles Howard Dean vs. Susan Boyle

~~By  InsightAnalytical-GRL

Lately, I’ve been testing my mettle by actually tuning into CNBC occasionally. We don’t have FOX Business here, but you get enough of their angle on the regular FOX shows featuring Neil Cavuto and the weekend financial panels.

Yesterday, I caught Howard Dean just around the Noon hour ET (on Power Lunch), slugging it out with that panel they have which features Larry Kudlow among others.  I was wondering what Dean was doing on there following the latest Geithner comments, but perhaps he’s getting warmed up to defend the upcoming healthcare “reform” that will be vomited out of the Congress and Obamaville soon.

Anyway, Kudlow was yelling again about “why can’t the markets be allowed to correct themselves” to which Dean retorted in perfect Obot fashion “Look what the markets did to the American people!” (sic).

Well, I waited for the comeback…I waited to hear one of these panel people, including Kudlow, respond snappily with how Congress, particularly Democratic members, failed to provide oversight over the housing mortgage debacle, which seems to have precipitated much of the mess we’re in.

CRICKETS!

But, as I thought about it, I figured that’s exactly what I was expected to hear. The GE family of companies that “bring good things to life” don’t consider history and full debate healthy for the 5th-grade level critical skills level of the American viewer. Kudlow is probably under orders “not to go there,” so he doesn’t go there. He’s loud and passionate about “the markets” but he pulled up short with Dean.

But that’s the way it is now. The media is in a permanent state of coitus interruptus when in it comes to discussing financial matters…or most political news. Especially since the Obama folks are so cozy with GE…

Sue Herera and Bill Griffeth, still at it after all these years,  are stuck in the middle of all this.  They’ll get a couple of people on and ask some serious questions, but the upcoming segments which follow always involve some provocative pugilism.  After listening to the Dean segment, which included another guest plus Dean and the four CNBC panelists,  I felt whiplashed, not informed. Mission accomplished!

After 3 PM, we get a lot more sober discussion for a brief time as The Closing Bell airs and things settle down.   Gone is the screaming on the panels and the minute-by-minute, breathless spewing that sounds like the coverage of a sporting event while the market gyrates. Maria Bartiromo anchors and does interviews and the discussions are less hysterical. Today, I caught a young guy from the NY Times and a few experienced hands getting down to the real problems with the financial sector…including the one-time things done this quarter courtesy government largesse that won’t be around to play with over the next few quarters when the rubber meets the road.

Yeah, but then it’s over as we get Fast Money then Jim Cramer’s Mad Money to liven the pace for evening prime time with their gameshow approach to finance and to appeal to the young dreamers who want to get rich quick and don’t have a clue. And then Kudlow returns.

In a comment to yesterday’s post, Lee M. had a musing which captures the zeitgeist of CNBC these days, too…I’ve done some word substitutions where appropriate:

…the cretins over at MSNBC CNBC, having crossed the Rubicon, have no where else to go.

They know that those of us who value our Constitution [journalistic integrity] have written them off, so they keep pitching their wares to the far left and the Obots because without them they would have no audience at all.

Like Julius Caesar before them, the die is cast, and they can’t go back. So they will continue their vile jokes [obvious bias and omissions] that would have gotten anyone else censored [fired] before this. They are tolerated because that is the way TPTB want it for now.

So Howard Dean is treated with kid gloves, the facts be damned!

Oh, but the folks at CNBC certainly DO have somewhere to go, if I may quibble a bit with that first line of the above comment. Where? Well, let’s visit the CNBC website where yesterday afternoon I found somebody dragging Susan Boyle along in a “humor” piece that ties the global economy to her performance…with an odd mixture of  admiration (?) and the requisite mockery (of course).  How appropriate…the taunts begin the day after I write about “Smeargate” in the UK and the level of “discourse”  we have here in the U.S.:

Apr.21
1:49 PM ET

As she concluded the song and the crowd jumped to its feet cheering, Susan Boyle blew a kiss. A kiss that, like the butterfly that flapped its wings, set in motion a flutter of dollars, pounds, euros and yen that will get this global economy humming again.

Will YouTube Sensation Susan Boyle Save the Global Economy?
Posted By:Cindy Perman

As the world grapples with headlines about troubled loans at Bank of America [BAC 8.76 +  0.74 (+9.23%)
and pirates wreaking havoc on the high seas, a lone dove has emerged to save the global economy.

SNIP
Boyle rolls her unknown-to-man hips.

Teenage girls roll their eyes. (Yeah, we saw you, eye-rolling girl at 1:24)

SNIP
Susan Boyle has given people a reason to hope.

A reason to look up from their flaming 401(k) statements.

I dreamed a dream in time gone by

A reason to walk over to their computer and log on to YouTube.com.

When hope was high

A reason to buy Kleenex in bulk at Costco. [COST 46.48 + 2.14 (+4.83%) ]

And life worth living

A reason to go to Amazon.com [AMZN 78.75 + 1.18 (+1.52%) ]

I dreamed that love would never die—

SNIP

I dreamed that God would be forgiving

A reason to watch the made-for-TV movie about her on Lifetime and expose themselves to millions of dollars in advertising. [DIS 19.47 + 0.06 (+0.31%) ]

Do you get the feeling that someone RESENTS the fact that Susan Boyle wasn’t manufactured by the entertainment industry and the mass media, but simply appeared and touched people’s souls without a filter? If the “money machine” were cranking up for one of their fake creations, would you get the slights and mockery that we see directed at Susan Boyle in this piece? Or the cheapening of a great performance (and a pretty darned good song, too) ? The vultures find it so distasteful that the the plebes responded spontaneously even though the entertainment biz types will be trying to make money off  her until the well runs dry?  Personally, I hope she makes a bundle on her own terms and then walks away…before we start getting the “whispers” about her single life that will probably be started up to shove her aside for some plastic doll that can be marketed and controlled for public consumption… Like, what? She doesn’t deserve to make any money off her REAL talent??  Mark my words, Simon Cowell will look like a compassionate saint compared to what could come down further along this road…

Yes, just like the filtering of political and financial news, we have to get a filter in place for Susan Boyle so the public can be redirected to enable the opinion/money makers can move onto creating a fab NEW item for which they can take full credit and reward themselves with extra executive compensation bonuses.  Maybe TPTB can recycle the filters they used with Sarah Palin, Hillary Clinton and a “feeble” John McCain as they deal with Susan Boyle.

Heart seems to have a short shelf-life these days…

The Past Week: November 30-December 6, Recaps and Random Thoughts (Freepers “Heart” GG; Obama & Chester Arthur; Healthcare “Reform”; Montana-Yes, MONTANA-Legalizes Assisted-Suicide; Greens Pic)

~~By InsightAnalytical-GRL

I’m going to start the roundup today with an announcement of MAJOR IMPORTANCE!  Actually, two…

1) Thanks to WordPress, we now have SNOW falling at IA through the holiday season! I got brave and took them up on their suggestion to check out “Extras” and went for the snow!  It doesn’t really accumulate on the mountain masthead, but that’s OK.  At least we’ve got snow down here in southern NM for the holidays! Sometimes we get a dusting here at about 4500 ft.  with a spectacular blanket on the peaks, which are over 8000 ft. high…but, alas,  it doesn’t last very long when we see it on the driveway here. The sun melts it very quickly. So, I’ll be happy with the “computer-generated” snow for now. THANKS, WORDPRESS!!

2) A member of our illustrious team has finally gotten the recognition she deserves. Hats off  to Grail Guardian on her much-deserved recognition over at…Free Republic!  Yup, her dictionary of English-Obamese (see link below) was picked up by someone there in full and got a huge bunch of hits in Freeperland.  I don’t know if she’s thrilled by the honor, but, hey…there aren’t many “progressive” sites these days that would want her!! LOL!!  By the way, we’d like to thank all the visitors who suggested “additions” to the dictionary. I don’t know if Grail plans to publish a second edition, but maybe we can persuade her on that score?

Now, on to the roundup…

***

On the subject of the lawsuit filed re: Obama’s eligibility to be President…

CaffineQueen had a very interesting slant on the subject this week in a post entitled This is NOT the first time this country has faced this issue.

CQ writes:

Like many people I thought this case of the “certificate gate” or whatever was unique and the first time we as a country had faced this particular challenge. Wrong!

Over the course of our history this issue has come up before. (Yet no one has done anything about creating a method for preventing it.)

I’m not talking about Roger Calero, the candidate from the Socialist Workers Party, who has been on the ballot in the previous two elections in spite of the fact that it is well known that he was born in Nicaragua and is not even a citizen but a permanent resident alien and therefore ineligible. (He has a green card) That is a different story. Though one can’t help but wonder why would he run knowing he is ineligible and why would his party put him on the ballot knowing this? (Shouldn’t there be some recourse against this as it is fraud of the highest degree?)

I’m referring to President #21, Chester Arthur, who apparently became President when one of his ardent supporters shot and killed President Garfield making Arthur, then Vice President, the President.

Apparently there was some question as to whether or not he met the “natural born” qualification and it was a very similar argument to the one the Supreme Court Justices are hearing in a conference today. Eerily similar in many ways.

(MORE)

Head on over to read the whole piece.  It’s really fascinating!

***

Health issues are back on the frontburner these days, and it looks like we’re heading down the wrong road already.  Over at Not Your Sweetie there’ a must read post which details how the insurance companies are going to be directing “reform.”  The same thing happened with Medicare Part D; Big Pharma was in charge then.  As I recall, Ted Kennedy was going to “fix” all this when the Democrats took the Senate back.   Well, that didn’t go anywhere, of course…and now it seems Ted is embracing what he railed against before:

“There’s a spirit of optimism about our work to ensure quality, affordable health care for all Americans — and today’s announcement adds to that optimism,” said Kennedy spokesman Anthony Coley. “The insurance industry has advanced serious proposals that deserve serious analysis and consideration.”

Having  just forked over $700 for inhalers thanks to the donut hole, I had a few choice words on the subject which I’m posting here:

Teddy Kennedy bloviated about saving Medicare Part D when the Dems took over Congress, then …crickets! Because it would be “too hard,” all those companies already being set up with their crummy marketing and all…
I’ve ranted about Medicare Part D before at IA, but I will rant again now…It is just an exercise in pushing papers around so that the companies remain “whole” and we foot the bill for the honor of supporting THEM! Meanwhile, it’s donut hole bigtime if you need an inhaler…

Recently I found out that about a month or so ago, you couldn’t try to avoid the donut hole anymore by purchasing cheap prescriptions at places like Kmart or Walmart! Nope, we are now FORCED to have all prescriptions processed through Part D so more of us can get into the donut hole! Who snuck that in?? Must have been the Democrats!!!!!!!

PS–monthly premiums are almost DOUBLING this year on my “cheap” plan…for the honor of getting a “discount” that is equivalent to the card I had BEFORE Medicare Part D.

It’s a TOTAL RIP OFF!

PS–If they stick Caroline Kennedy into Clinton’s vacated seat to muster public “empathy” for any shitty bill coming out of Teddy et al’s plotting, I will throw up!! Gosh, I hope the lack of a super-majority can convince enough Republicans to block this crap! But I wouldn’t bet on it, considering how they all gave us Part D!!!! (a pox on Olympia Snowe, who had the swing vote on that…remember how the GOP held the vote open and was coercing members to vote for it??)

Sorry for the salty language, but Medicare Part D is one of my pet peeves…the original way the bill was put together by Bushco, the lack of action by the Democrats after they took over in 2006, and now, the apparent willingness to do business just like the Republicans, by handing over legislating to big companies.

Meanwhile, there’s a new twist about the public relations onslaught that’s gearing up.  I’ll be writing more on the subject next week…stay tuned.

By the way, Ted…any plans for No Child Left Behind? Isn’t that another one of the issues you’ve “crusaded” about??

***

Just in case all this healthcare reform doesn’t work out for all of us, we can at least rest assured that we have another out.

Montana, of all places, has become the 3rd state to declare “assisted suicide” legal…

Montana third state to legalize assisted suicide

Ruling states that terminally ill can self-administer drugs to end own life

HELENA, Mont. – A Montana judge has issued a ruling saying residents of the state have the right to doctor-assisted suicide.

The ruling issued late Friday by state District Court Judge Dorothy McCarter makes Montana the third state in which doctor-assisted suicide is legal.

The judge said Saturday she ruled in a lawsuit filed by a terminally ill Billings man, four physicians and a nonprofit patients rights group, Compassion & Choices.

MORE

Montana?

***

This week in the garden: Harvesting collards this week.  I cut it into small pieces, steam it, and add it to pasta with lots of  olive oil. Yummy! The broccoli heads are about the size of 50 cent pieces now and I’m going to start picking arugula tomorrow! I still have way too much mustard for two people, but we’ll soldier on! I may have to freeze some.  Some of the peppers in pots are still growing little peppers and I’ve almost got at least one fig about to be harvested. Here’s a pic from a few days ago of the mustard (foreground) and the collards (background).

2008_1130backyardafternoon0008

***

THIS WEEK’S POSTS

*With a contribution from kenosha Marge

**By Grail Guardian

Will Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State Be Undermined by the Appointment of a Middle East Envoy? See What MESH Thinks…

The Scanner–Politics 12/5/08 (Obama…Vagus Nerve “Elevation” Superstar?; Obama-Clinton Contemplate a Jump (see awesome video!); Hands Like Butter; “Conscience”; Politically-Motivated Abortion “Science” Blasted by Johns Hopkins Researchers

*Martinis with Michelle, 2nd Round: Ladies,There IS a Different Way to Join the Post-Modern Feminist Party!~~

Martinis with Michelle–A Times (UK) Writer Jumps the Shark as Palin Helps Block a Senate Super-Majority

The Other Side of the Mountain

**How To Communicate with an Obot: The **OFFICIAL** English to Obamese Dictionary

The Past Week: November 23-29, Recaps and Random Thoughts (Dogs; Obamabilia and “Mt. Crapmore”; Jobs; Black Politics; CNN Delivers In-Depth Report on Our Best Hope to Save Us from “First Lady Fashion Fumbles”)