Days Black People Not Re-Enslaved By Trump

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Putin, Iraq and Chechknya

While reading a "republican" blog I ran across This piece claiming that Putin gave US intel on Iraq plans to attack the US and US interests after 9-11

quote:
After Sept. 11, 2001, and before the start of the military operation in Iraq, the Russian special services ... received information that officials from Saddam's regime were preparing terrorist attacks in the United States and outside it against the U.S. military and other interests," Putin said.

"Despite that information ... Russia's position on Iraq remains unchanged," he said in the Kazakh capital, Astana, after regional economic and security summits. He said Russia didn't have any information that Saddam's regime had actually been behind any terrorist acts.

"It's one thing to have information that Saddam's regime is preparing terrorist attacks, (but) we didn't have information that it was involved in any known terrorist attacks," he said.

Putin didn't elaborate on any details of the alleged plots or mention whether they were tied to al-Qaida (website - news) . He said Bush had personally thanked one of the leaders of Russia's intelligence agencies for the information but that he couldn't comment on how critical it was in the U.S. decision to invade Iraq.



So let's get this straight. Russia had "intel" that could not state when or where or even what type of attack was supposed to hit the US. Nor did the 9-11 committe even mention this piece of information. I mean lets be real here: If this information was credible under any kind of scrutiny it would have been all over the news and in the debates as evidence. Why did Putin "gift" Bush on this? It is easy to figure that Putin, with his problems with Chechnya wanted an ally in his "civil war." which is being cast as a "terrorist war." in order to gain international sympathy (which the Chechens did for him by killing all those children). Bush, when he got into office was full of tough talk on Putin. Now he and Putin (Iraq war aside) are quite close with the US largely supporting the Russian government as it regards Chechnya. Let us not forget that Putin also backs Bush for re-election.

Links:
http://www.wjla.com/news/stories/0604/153958.html

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Africa Town and Carter G Woodson

I'm all for black businesss. I have one. I wish I had more clients..well paying clients, but there's a slight problem. along with the usual "start-ups are hard" problems with small businesses, black businesses face a problem unique to blacks: The desire to not do business with each other. Carter G. Woodson pointed out last century that blacks didn't care to take orders from other blacks and used a case where blacks actually conspired to get a black manager fired from his job. During segregation, such attitudes were stifled by the fact that blacks could not be served anywhere else, until or unless whites wished to extract extra profits by doing business with us. Once desegregation hit, blacks saw their business ownership plummet and with it vital economic engines called community businesses. These community businesses are how young people get their first job. The corner store clerk, the mechanics apprentice, the doctors whatever, the dental assistant, office boy/girl whatever. With the disappearance of community based businesses, in some places outsiders set up shop. outsiders brought in their own prejudices and , understandably, their own family/friends as employees. I hold that this is a large part of why New York City currently has 50% unemployment among blacks.

The Detroit News has an excellent article underscoring my position that the issue isn't really the government (local/state or federal) but a basic unwillingness of blacks to not only do business with each other, but to also behave in many instances in unprofessional manner towards both busiiness owner and customer. Many a black business owner can tell stories of those who wanted a "hoook up, my brother...." and equally their are customers who have had businesses think they would accept sub-par goods and services. Also in many instances you have an unwillingness of blacks to keep high business standards in terms of their shops or quality of product or service provided. For example I once worked at a garage and the owner had the attitude that not only should I come in in unstained clothing ( as possible) but also keep the garage in pristine condition. I didn't understand since I thought that people wouldn't care if I'm dirty cause I was working on cars and that's a dirty job. Similarly, who cares if oil is on the floor? The point he made was that customers size up a business on first impressions. if they see a neat as possible mechanic and garage then they would think that these are persons who take care in thier work and pay attention to detail and if they keep their garage and selves clean then they would treat their vehicle in the same manner.

now as a grown person I see his point. Look at the difference between a luxery automakers' service station and the "garage on the corner." which inspires more confidence in the abilities of the mechanics and the respect for your vehicle. Many blacks have been so used to "gettin' by" and accepting what they can or accepting that "hole in the wall" is somehow a cultural hallmark that we sabatoge our own selves by underserving not only our customers but also ourselves.

In the end. Detroit's Africa town will fail because it will cause non-blacks to avoid such businesses because they wont' feel welcome. In the game of economics the aim is to transfer wealth from one community to another. if you're not attracting customers from outside your community or doing busines in another community you're limited in your economic potential. Africa Town is also likely to fail because the underlying issues of black businesses are not being addresssed. Looking back at the Black Star Line and the Black Star Factories that Garvey was setting up, he clearly knew that blacks had to be in business not only to secure employment for blacks but to effectively compete on a global level with everyone else. I haven't seen the plans for "Africa Town" but it will fail if it is not comprehensive in it's design and implementation and first and foremost it needs to get out of the press.

links:
http://www.detnews.com/2004/metro/0410/26/d01-315290.htm
They Keys To The Colors

As noted when this blog started I am a huge fan of Dr. Frances Cress Welsing's Isis Papers Specifically the introduction, chapters 1-4 and 12. Once of the central points of Dr. Welsing's book is white fear of genetic anhilliation, which some mistakenly believe to be some overt and conscious issue. It is not. It plays out in activities in which whites (in general) take a very defensive position vis-a-vis the world at large which is overwhelmingly populated by people of varying hues. Last week The Bush administration/campaign gave us a very potent example of this attitude operating within' the halls of government. The ad is called "Wolves" and can be seen here:

http://www.georgewbush.com/News/MultiMedia/VideoPlayer.aspx?ID=1102&T=2&PT=hiqt [No longer there. follow the YouTube link below]



In this ad, "terrorists" are portrayed as wolves seeking "whom they can devour." This of course plays on the racism in the heart of America along the lines of the "yellow Peril" and the "black muslims." "they" are out there and "they" want to kill us. "they" must be exterminated before they can do so. There hasn't been such a blatantly "racist" ad run since possibly "Willie Horton." Many pundits have correctly stated it is a "fear' ad, yet they cannot see how this is an ad that plays to he very racist heart of American policy. It is sad that black 'conservatives" like Armstrong Williams co-sign such ideas.

Friday, October 22, 2004

New Science undermines oldest notions about race....or not

I was forwarded an article from the baltimore sun which can be found here:

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/nationworld/bal-te.race10oct10,1,633727.story

It is entitled " New Science undermines oldest notions about race" and purports to throw cold water on the notion of race.
It starts with this comment:

Most of us know a white person, a black person, an Asian or American
Indian when we
see one. We say we can spot them by their skin color, their hair
texture, or by the
shape of their eyes, or nose, or lips.

And many people, consciously or unconsciously, will leap from the
perception of race
to assumptions about a stranger's genetics, biology, behavior and abilities.

They'd probably be wrong.


Indeed they are right. In America what is defined as black, white, etc. is simplyh an extension of white supremacy. Those of us who rejected the "one drop rule" already could tell you that what many people consider "black" is not black at all and that black in such a state is more a social contruct than a true classification based on phenotype. And let's be clear the concept of race, which goes as far back as Egypt was not based on Genetics but on phenotype. Thus the article starts from a propostion that is flawed: Given that 'race" itself was not originally based on genetics nor a means to indicate inferiority or dominance.

But let us examine the statement further, In my discussions of this topic I usually pose the following question: Would you confuse Loretta Devine, Lucy liu and Pamela Anderson? No one ever "mistook" any of them for the other indicating that there were definitely discernible differences between groups which we call "races."

Let's look at their next set of comments:


"Race as an explanation for human biological variation is dead," says
Alan H. Goodman,
president-elect of the American Anthropological Association.

The truth emerging from modern genetics, scientists say, is that we're
99.9 percent
identical. Thanks to our common origins, and our natural eagerness to
exchange DNA,
our genes are thoroughly scrambled. And what patterns do emerge bear little
resemblance to our traditional, geographically rooted notions of "race."


Well according to Francis Collins a new analysis of of the human genome reveals that there are between 20,000 and 25,000 genes in humans. .1 % of whic would be 2000 genes. That's a whole lot of genes given that a mutation in just one of them could result in something like sickle cell.

if we took the lower number of genes (20,000) the "difference" between "races" would be the equivalent to the genetic difference between humans and C. elegans, a worm or a mustard plant. So clearly the fact that humans are so genetically close does not absolve the fact that even such closelness can contain massive differences. And if that number doesn't tickle you, consider that there are 3 Billion + Chemicals that make up DNA and .1% of that is 3 million. That's a whole lot of difference.

They continue after much social discussion:

Because of our relatively recent, partial genetic separation, two
individuals of two
different "races" are only slightly more different, genetically, than
two people from
the same race. And the few genetic differences scientists can identify
aren't
distributed neatly by continent, as traditional racial categories suggest.

*A genetic 'tree'*
For example, there is more genetic variation among humans in Africa than
in the rest
of the world combined. The point is illustrated on a genetic "tree"
Jorde devised. Based
on 620 genetic samples from around the world, it displays the genetic
relatedness of
24 Old World population groups.

The resulting diagram is dominated by 11 genetically diverse populations
from
sub-Saharan Africa, widely spaced along the tree's trunk and lower
branches. At one
end, crowded in a tight cluster that reflects their close genetic
similarities and
"recent" dispersion out of Africa, are 13 other groups representing
everyone else,
from the Finns and French to the Chinese and Cambodians.


That sub-saharan Africans have the most genetic diversity comes to no surprise as it was told to us by Loius Leakey that Africans have the genetic ability to reconstitute most of the human variation that we observe today. But this last point highlights the lack of seriousness on the part of the researchers:

Finally, visible markers such as skin color, hair texture and facial
patterns change in
response to natural selection. "Those differences we perceive physically
represent
external adaptations to extreme environments, at least in part," Jorde
says. "It's only
a very small fraction of our genes responsible for those differences."

For example, sub-Saharan African people and Australian Aborigines both
have dark skin,
an adaptation to strong sunlight. But genetically they're relatively far
apart. White skin
was selected as humans moved north from Africa. It's an adaptation to
low northern
sunlight that enhances the skin's vitamin D production. That, in turn,
prevents rickets,
a bone disease.


Now we have agreement that the founding population of humans came from Africa but nowhere do the researchers stake a claim as to how these persons look. Instead we get the usual BS that the skin became dark to protect the sun and the skin became light to allow more sunlight. I mean really now. How many non-blacks are poping out black skinned babies? It does not happen. Some people insist tha the "darkening was gradual" There is no evidence to support this. There is plenty of evidence of albinism among pigmented populations thereby supporting the claim that there was no "darkening" to protect from the sun, but lightening to access more light. It is even known that black (as opposed to lighter brown) populations have genetic markers for pigmentation that is not found in other human populations. In otherwords the gene can only be inherited from a black person.

This failure to even state that the human populations derived their color from depigmentation shows that the researchers were more motivated by some social agenda rather than the facts.

The facts are quite clear really:
1) NOrthern European populations are not genetically equiped to produce "nappy hair" or black skinned humans.

2) Asian (Chinese, Japanese)populations from my limited observations are unable to produce curly hair and also are unable to produce Black skinned humans. Their neighbors to the south have the abiity to produce "colored" humans of varying hues but none as dark as, or with the "nappy" hair of the darkest and "nappiest" African. Africans have the ability to produce the darkest, widest nosed and nappiest humans as well as the lightest, blondest, blue eyed, slant eyed humans. Why not just admit these facts and move along?
the American empire

Now I've not been under a rock and I know that America is an empire. Besides a few books stating that, it is rare to see such language used in "mainstream" press until today. Bob Herbert today wrote in his op ed Bush's Blinkers which I think was supposed to say Bush's Blinders..but anyway:

quote:
In a disturbing article in last Sunday's New York Times Magazine, the writer Ron Suskind told of a meeting he'd had with a senior adviser to the president. The White House at the time was unhappy about an article Mr. Suskind had written.

According to Mr. Suskind, "The aide said that guys like me were 'in what we call the reality-based community,' which he defined as people who 'believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.' " The aide told Mr. Suskind, "That's not the way the world really works anymore. We're an empire now, and when we act we create our own reality."


Let's be clear here: I am in total agreement with the idea of a person shaping their own reality but this makes it clear that the issues behind the war are about control of assets and entities and not about "freedom" and 'Liberty." I'm not sure how many people will have read Herbert's op-ed or the Article in which the comment was made given that the American attention span is quite short, but if and when another attack happens here, remember the "empire" comment. All empires fall.

edit: 2:05 PM:
here is a quote from the NY Times Magazine that Herbert quoted:

And for those who don't get it? That was explained to me in late 2002 by Mark McKinnon, a longtime senior media adviser to Bush, who now runs his own consulting firm and helps the president. He started by challenging me. ''You think he's an idiot, don't you?'' I said, no, I didn't. ''No, you do, all of you do, up and down the West Coast, the East Coast, a few blocks in southern Manhattan called Wall Street. Let me clue you in. We don't care. You see, you're outnumbered 2 to 1 by folks in the big, wide middle of America, busy working people who don't read The New York Times or Washington Post or The L.A. Times. And you know what they like? They like the way he walks and the way he points, the way he exudes confidence. They have faith in him. And when you attack him for his malaprops, his jumbled syntax, it's good for us. Because you know what those folks don't like? They don't like you!'' In this instance, the final ''you,'' of course, meant the entire reality-based community.

Folks.. this statement is perhaps the single thing that Black folks do not understand. We are vastly outnumbered by folks who don't live near us, who's main image of us is from TV and could care less about "our issues" and because they outnumber us, "they" can get into office without "us" and if they are democrats, simply ignore "us" until national elections happen.

Links:
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/10/17/magazine/17BUSH.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/10/22/opinion/22herbert.html?hp
Black Wealth revistited

Hot on the heels of the Pew Report on wealth in America which I commented on earlier. The Black Commentator posted an editorial on the subject. Unfortunatly it contained the following:

quote:
Tomfoolery in high places

“There were several members of the Congressional Black Caucus who took the position that the racial wealth disparity was due to the misbehavior of Black folks,” says Dr. William “Sandy” Darity, recalling events at the 2003 Black Caucus Week, in Washington. Several silly Black lawmakers theorized that wealth disparities could be eliminated if only African Americans would engage in less impulse buying and save more money, said Darity, a Professor of Public Policy Studies, African and African American Studies and Economics at Duke University. He continued: “In fact, if you control for income, the Black savings rate is at least as high as the white savings rate. There is some evidence to suggest that it might be higher.”

By Darity’s calculations, African Americans would have to go without food, shelter, clothing and all other expenses en masse “for well over a decade” to save enough to achieve wealth parity with whites. “So I would say, there is no way that you can catch up by systemic and careful savings. If African Americans saved all of their income – that is, if we didn’t eat, pay any bills, but saved every cent of income – we could not close the wealth gap,” said the professor, who also teaches economics at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

...African American households earn less than 60 percent of median white income. At the pace of catch-up since 1968, according to a report issued earlier this year by United for a Fair Economy (UFE), “it would take 581 years” to achieve income parity with whites. But wages are not wealth. For most Americans, home ownership is the major asset. Seventy-five percent of whites own their homes, while more than half of Blacks rent. At the rate of “progress” recorded since 1970, UFE estimates “it would take 1,664 years to close the ownership gap – 55 generations.”



Now let's get the following out the way quick. Garvey's Ghost is for Reparations, though not neccessarily for individuals, but this isn't the spot for that discussion. Let's look at what was said here: it would take 10 years of blacks not spending any money in order to acheive wealth p[arity with whites. That's it? Think about that for a minute only 10 years if blacks simply did not spend thier money. Let's ask this question: What say if instead of not spending the money they made, the money they earned was only spent with other blacks? So what if all food was bought from black owned supermarkets. Say blacks used mass transit run by blacks? Say clothes were bougth from black owned stores, who dealt with black owned distributors? This points to the largest problem that blacks have, one that was imposed from the outside but maintained from the inside. Carter G. Woodson pointed out that he observed that blacks refused to work with or under other blacks. In fact, a great many black business owners complain about the lack of support from other black businesses, customers, etc. So it is arguable that we play a part in sabotaging our own wealth accumulation efforts. When Marcus Garvey taught that blacks should own supermarkets, factories and build up industries, not only was he made fun of by "mainstream" black leadership, the NAACP aided and abbeted the US Government to frame Garvey in order to shut down a wholly black owned corporate entity: The Black Star Line, the only (as far as I know) black owned international corporation operating in the interests (political and economic) of black folks all over the world who owned stock in that company and therefore would benefit wealth-wise from it's potential growth. Where would black Americans been had the Black Star Line had the support of the "oldest and most respected civil rights organization?"

So letting bygones be bygones, we are faced with this problem of black wealth. So if it takes 10 years of spending no money then how long does it take if 25% of black income was saved? would it be 40 years? If so then that is a single generation. But hypotheticals aside the editorial had another fatal flaw; it discusses the rate of savings among blacks being equal to that of whites if not higher. See be carefull when you see the word "rate." saving 10% of 1 dollar is not equal to saving 10% of $100. It is the same rate but it is not equal. I must say that we must stop using the "we;re doing what whites are doing' argument to cover up our bad news. When you're in a ditch you have to climb out of it before you can begin traveling.

The article also discusses the rate of home ownership and how it would take 55 generations to reach housing parity with whites. I'm not sure why that point was made, Is it to say that it is impossible, improbable? what? If you read the book "The Millionaire Next Door" you'll find that the way the authors defined "millionaire" is by excluding the value of thier homes. This is important. Many people are under the impression that one must own a home in order to "buld wealth." This is simply not true. In fact in too many cases, a home can be the large impediment to wealth creation. Ask those people who have had their homes foreclosed on them in the Poconos.
But let's look at this issue of home ownership more closely:

Most people cannot afford to pay cash for thier homes, just as they cannot afford to pay cash for thier new cars. Most people go into debt to purchase thier homes. Many people have 30 year mortgages on these homes that suck up, on average, 50% of thier income. In the past 10 years banks have decided that mortgages are not enough, they started pushing "home finance loans" in which the homeowner could borrow upto 110% of the value of thier home to do whatever they wanted. As was discussed on this blog, the vast majority of people use those loans to get into consumer debt or purchase things that have depreciating value. (TV's, cars, vacations, etc) not only that but they now have to pay off this new 'loan." The only real way a home is an asset ( wealth builder or creator) is when it is sold or rented out. Therin lies the real problem with black homeownership, it's not that blacks should own more homes per se, it is that blacks need to own property that generates income for them, which a great many whites do. So what happens when the original mortgager dies before paying for their property? If the next of kin cannot make the payments (and property taxes) that house goes back on the market, at the benefit to the bank ( foreclosure). If you read "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" Guy Kawasaki tells you the game outright. You purchase a house, and sell it immediately, but because like your vehicle, the house really isn't yours until it's payed for, if the payor defaults on a payment the payee may force them off the property and start the sale all over again with another buyer. This is why so many people are
"flipping" property which is inflating property values to ridiculous highs. therefore unless some fundamental change is made to the real estate system, blacks will have to use other avenues to gain wealth.

While there is no instantaneous answer to building black wealth there are long term processes that must be adhered to in order for it to happen. First is that blacks must abstain from high cost consumer debt, the number one of which is the Car Note. I cannot stress this enough. Having $200 - $700 come out your pocket monthly for a vehicle that you'll not own or will "trade in" as soon as it's done because it's no longer the latest thing or an irrational fear of maintenance is the fastest way to a low net worth. The second thing (which is first for many people) is fashion worship. The purcahsing of trendy clothes that "need" to be replaced with the passing of the years is another way to reduce net worth for no good reason.

Lastly, it is wrong to suggest that black wealth will be created by savings alone. Blacks must become investors in various interest bearing vehicles in order to accumulate wealth. When I talk to black people, especially the young about wealth I tell them that they should, as soon as possible, start some type of investment plan. I talk about how when we play french dominoes, that often the winner is the person who "nickel and dimes" themselves each time their turn comes, While the loser is usually the one who only want's the "big points." I tell them that you'd be surprised what $10 a month can grow to in a year. I ask them if they have $10 at any time after they pay thier bills and the answer is always "yes." Therefore i let them know that if they invested that $10 each month they would have $120 at the end of the ear 1200 in 10 years and $3600 in 30. That may not sound like much, but most people do see increases in their income and the 'middle class" has far more than $10 worth of disposable income at the end of the month. if those with $400/month car notes, spent that $400 on an investment vehicle in 30 years they would have $144,000 before accounting for capital gains. if that 144,000

In fact if an account was started with $400 and was gaining at a rate of 8% over 20 years with regular investments of $400 the account would have $237,578.88. But this is not for the lazy. If you don't have discipline and a willingness to forgo "keeping up with jones" or "Showing off for jones" or trying to "one up jones." then you ain't gonna have any cash. Period.

So let's fight for our deserved reparation AND let's get serious about the money we do get. We are in a far better place than our ancestors were and far better than many other black people on the planet and there is simply no excuse for us to not have greater wealth..among other things.

Peace.

Thursday, October 21, 2004

The Imploding Dollar?

I remember back in the day (80's) when Jamaican DanceHall had an artist who said " In Englan' where de Poun' is 'trong." That was my intro to International currency exchange. The idea that 1 dollar was not equal to 1 Pound was odd to me at the time (9 years old). Now I understand the reason for it. With the war in Iraq came discssions of peak oil and the set up where Oil was priced in dollars which created a situation where countries that wished to purchase oil would have to do so in dollars (or dollar equivalents in their own currency). This lead to countries purchasing "greenbacks" in order to make such purchases. A nice side effect of this is that all this buying weakened the purchasers currency vis-a-vis the dollar. Well the NY Times is reporting on an interesting twist this is having on the US economy:

Quote:
The Treasury Department reported yesterday that net monthly capital flows from the rest of the world fell for the sixth time this year, declining to $59 billion from $63 billion in July.

Private investment from abroad fell by nearly half - to $37.4 billion in August from $72.9 billion the month before. Investors appear to be concerned over cooling growth and a rising American trade deficit.

The only reason that the contraction was not more pronounced was that official financing, mainly from Asian central banks, jumped to nearly $23 billion in August from just over $6 billion in July.

Washington has demanded that China end a policy of buying dollars to reduce the value of its currency, the yuan, and make its exports more competitive in American markets. But the new data accentuated how dependent the United States has become on purchases of dollar securities by the Chinese and other Asian governments with links to the dollar.

"Foreign central banks saved the dollar from disaster," said Ashraf Laidi, chief currency analyst of the MG Financial Group. "The stability of the bond market is at the mercy of Asian purchases of U.S. Treasuries."


the US crying foul at it's own game? Really now. if the dollar is a commodity on the market then anyone who wishes to make purchases and has the ability to do so can do so. That's "free markets." Is the US now against "free markets?" of course it is, is has been for a while. the "free market" mantra is only used at home to arouse the American Public who like when i was a child, has no clue as to how the international finacial markets work or what is at stake.

quote:
"If all we have funding our current account imbalance is the good graces of foreign central banks, we are on increasingly thin ice," said Stephen S. Roach, the chief economist at Morgan Stanley. Of Washington's call for China to stop interfering in currency markets, he cautioned, "That could come back and bite us."

Not all economists are that worried about the growing shortfall in the current account, the broadest measure of trade, pointing out that it is sustainable as long as Asians continue on a path of export-led growth that requires cheap currencies against the dollar.


Exactly. What are the Asians up to anyways? Well China recently purchased Noranda, Canada's largest Mining company for a cool $7 Billion (purchasing dollars indeed!!). Noranda also has a 60% stake in a minign company Falconbidge which happens to be the #3 supplier of Nickel to the US. Nickel has many military applications in the US which woudl make China the #3 supplier to the US DOD

And it get's better:
quote:

If the United States were to temper its appetite for foreign money, the Chinese and Japanese could curtail their purchases of American securities without causing financial havoc. The dollar could then drift lower against Asian currencies, benefiting American exporters and manufacturers that compete with Asian imports.

But this would require Americans to increase their rate of savings. Household savings have plummeted to only 1.5 percent of personal income, from 11 percent 20 years ago. With the federal government running a budget deficit of 3.5 percent of the nation's output, the public sector hardly contributes to savings.

A disorderly situation would occur if foreign money dried up suddenly when the United States still needed it. Then, the adjustment in American savings might happen involuntarily. Interest rates would rise sharply, and the dollar could fall abruptly. This could induce a sharp economic contraction, even stagflation.

"The longer we wait," Mr. Goldstein said, "the more likely we'll have the adjustment anyway. But the adjustment will be more chaotic and sharper."


Americans save? It was President Bush who told us "the terrorists win" if we don't go out and shop. No Mr. Bush perhaps not the people you were thinking of.

So what does this have to do with Black folks? Well it's already been shown that we as a group have a percentage of the wealth of whites. Just how bad will it get when this "adjustment" happens? Bling on brother. Bling on...

Links:
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20041021.wchina21/BNStory/International/?query=noranda
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/10/19/business/worldbusiness/19dollar.html
http://www.orwelltoday.com/beijingsudbury.shtml

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

The Politics of Double Standards

As we all should know by now, President Bush "never stepped foot into Vietnam." nor did he leave "The comforts of the States." Yet the Sinclair Group plans to air a portion of a documentary that paints Kerry and veterans that protested with him in the 1970's as frauds because "the never stepped foot in the battlefield" nor "left the comfort of the States."

Now this just shows how evil some of these "conservatives" are and that there is no outrage by the oft referred to Sen. McCain or any other "conservative" that loves to harp about Liberal Media Bias (tm) is further indicative of the lows that American Politics has gotten. While Kerry gets slammed for discussing an out of closet homosexual, This outfit get's to use public airwaves to simply Libel and slander a whole group of people.

quote:

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- A Vietnam veteran shown in a documentary criticizing Sen. John Kerry's anti-war activities filed a libel lawsuit against the movie's producer Monday, saying the film falsely calls him a fraud and a liar.

Kenneth J. Campbell, now a professor at the University of Delaware, said in the suit that ``Stolen Honor: Wounds That Never Heal'' combines footage of him appearing at a 1971 war protest with narration that claims that many of the supposed veterans who took part in the event were later ``discovered as frauds'' who ``never set foot on the battlefield, or left the comfort of the States, or even served in uniform.''


The suit said viewers would be left with the perception that Campbell had lied about his military service.

``It paints me as having been a fabricator, a fraud and a liar,'' Campbell said.

Campbell attached copies of his military records to the lawsuit, showing he received a Purple Heart and eight other medals, ribbons and decorations for his service in Vietnam.


NOw I have long said when those "swift boat" veterans ran those ads that were clearly aimed at slandering Kerry that he should have put lawyers all over them. He would have won serious points for taking on the media and being seen as a "Serious on the law." person who 'takes no shyt" just what he needs to take on Bush.
The Vote

As usual I will not be voting this year, Here is an excellent expose on why I'm not doing so.

quote:
George W. Bush is the latest in a long line of bipartisan plutocrats, militarists, and imperialists (and liars). Every major misdeed of his administration has an antecedent under Bill Clinton and/or his predecessors. Hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqis died at the hands of Clinton/Gore because they kept the sanctions in place. The 9/11 attack was planned during the Clinton years...and Clinton chose to keep U.S. troops in Saudi Arabia, continue U.S. backing of Israeli oppression, and maintain U.S. dependence on middle eastern oil (thus making Americans more unsafe).

Clinton started a war against Serbs without any conceivable threat to the American people, without UN approval, and without the congressional declaration required by the Constitution. Anglo-American imperialism took the lives of many innocent people in the Balkans in the 1990s with the support of the Democratic Party. The Bosnia and Kosovo wars were justified by the demonization of Milosovich, as if U.S. foreign policy is actually determined by things like concern for human life or human rights. The propaganda about Milosovich echoed and foreshadowed the same verbal attack on Hussein. Of course, Milosovich was a thug, but he and the Serbs did not have a monopoly on atrocities during the Balkan civil war (as Clinton, Gore, Albright, and Kerry well knew). Instead of acknowledging this, and allowing the Europeans to continue working on a brokered peace, the Democrats poured gasoline on the fire and killed more innocent people. The Patriot Act is an updating of the Anti-Terrorism Act created by Clinton in 1996. CAFTA proposed by Bush builds upon NAFTA pushed by Clinton. Kerry supported war against Iraq as early as 1998, when many congressional Democrats were agitating for bloodshed.


And I'll add Barak Obama to that list of Democrats who want to get at Iraq.

Links:
http://www.counterpunch.org/taylor10192004.html
The Israel Connection

D-Sekou author of the DeskRat Chronicles has posted a set of articles, of which This one discussing the role of Israel in and around Iraq is most interesting.

check it out.

Monday, October 18, 2004

Net Worth

A couple of years ago I traded in my 2000 Dodge Neon for a 1988 BMW 325i Convertible that "needed work." The salesman was dumbfounded as to why I would trade in a 2000 for a 15 year old car. I told him I no longer intended to make car payments. He understood. Let's make this point clear, the car dealer is not your friend he or she knows that by telling the customer that it is "only" such and such a month, the customer is unlikely to do the math and see that the auto they purchased will cost them x thousands per year not to mention upkeep and insurance. What is worse is that the payment is fixed and the owner runs the risk of having thier car towed (resulting in a possible inability to get to work). people who lease tend to think of avoiding the mechanic but in that case end up paying some car dealership for the rest of thier lives for a new vehicle. With my '88 BMW (a vehicle which happens to retain quite a bit of value even for it's elevated mileage) I was able to instantly put my car note payment back into my pocket. That was 3000 a year. Of that I was able to put a part of that into investment vehicles. I did have to make a number of "costly" repairs though. And the only thing costly about them was that they were expensive at the time but in the long run came out to less than my car note would have been for the same duration of time AND I had a car I enjoyed more AND i never, ever had to worry about the repo man or my credit getting squashed because of slow payments in "bad times." But this post isn't about my car. What this post is about is the fact that I was reducing my debt and increasing my assets..basically taking care of my net worth. Today I'm the wrong person to try to sell to. If I don't see how it can benefit me I wont' buy it. I manage debt to the extent that I don't pay more than 4% interest on my credit cards, yes CARD(S). and I live by the motto that only the poor and lazy pay high interest. Why do I say that:
The poor are screwed by the system which is built to make those with the least access to capital pay the highest interest while those with the easiest access to capital pay the least interest. Supposedly that's because those with access to capital can negotiate whereas the poor cannot. The Lazy are those that don't attempt to get a better deal for their debt. They pay 19% because they think they have to and don't take advantage of the offers that come thier way. I used to be in both categories and the number one thing I did to get out of those categories was to get off the car note. Black America has had a long love affair with cars. It is said that the reason for this is that black men under such presure from racism could only "shine" in thier cars. Either way, Black America has been killing itself keeping up with "jones." In any 'hood" you can find the latest model foreign vehicles even when the owner lives in his mother's basement. Thes $20,000 and up SUV's and BMW's are killing them with interest that takes out $30-50,000 out of thier pockets every 5 to 7 years. And amny of these individuals will purchase another vehicle once that one get's old. Now someone will say "white folks do that too."
A) I don't care, I'm not talking about them
B) White folks are on average better financially equiped to do that dumb stuff.

How can I claim my second point? The New York Times covered reports from various Washington rearch groups that showed that blacks have had a 16% net reduction in net worth between 1996 and 2002.

quote:


White households had a median net worth of greater than $88,000 in 2002, 11 times that of Hispanic households and more than 14 times that of black households, the Pew Hispanic Center said in the study, being released Monday.

After accounting for inflation, net worth increased 17 percent for white households from 1996 to 2002 and 14 percent for Hispanic homes, to about $7,900. It fell for black households by 16 percent, to roughly $6,000.

The median net worth for all American households, representing all races and ethnicities, was $59,700 in 2002, a 12 percent gain from 1996.

Only white homes recouped all their losses from 2001 to 2002. Both Hispanics and blacks lost nearly 27 percent of net worth from 1999 to 2001; the next year Hispanics gained it almost all back (26 percent), while blacks were up only about 5 percent.

Mr. Harrison said Hispanics were more insulated from the downturn than blacks, so they suffered less. For example, Hispanics made employment gains in lower-paid, lower-skilled areas like service and construction.

Blacks were hit hard by job losses in the manufacturing industry and in professional fields, where they were victims of "last hired, first fired" policies, he said.


Now My problem with the last sentance here is that though I'm sure "last hired" issues are real ( I can attest to that myself), From some of the things I've seen in Black Enterprise, I'm not convinced we can explain away the loss in net worth of Blacks to just employment discrimination, especially for the middle class. Each time I've looked at the BE "financial picture" of some family I consistently note that mosty of the persons have HUGE auto debt. I mean househoulds with 2 SUV's (and not the small ones). And BE doesn't tell them to get rid of the vehicle, it tells them to cut up credit cards. NO!! Sell the vehicle forthwith take that money and purchase a decent (well running) used car and put the rest of the savings into investments. People invest upwards of $30,000 every 5 years into their cars when they could invest that same money into a good portfolio.

My point is, I believe that a large portion of the problem with black net worth comes down to our embrace of consumerism when we should be saving and investing.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Church - State And Blacks

Today the Washington Times reported on a group opposed to John Kerry's ""rally" at a Miami church on Oct 10. This group, American United for Separation of Church and State, correctly identified the presentation as such:

quote:
Americans United Executive Director Barry W. Lynn called the service a "rally," saying it was a clear violation of federal law that bars houses of worship and other tax-exempt groups from intervening in political campaigns.
"Federal tax law is clear on this matter," Mr. Lynn said. "Houses of worship may not endorse candidates for public office, and they certainly may not host huge partisan rallies. This was way over the top."
Sunday's event "appears to have been a clear case of a church hosting a partisan political rally," he said. "I believe the obvious aim of this event was to endorse Kerry's candidacy and spur congregants to vote for him."
On Tuesday, the Interfaith Alliance called on Mr. Kerry to "stop politicizing religion," citing the Sunday service.
"Our concern is to protect the sanctity of houses of worship and the integrity of religion," said the alliance's president, the Rev. C. Welton Gaddy. "We're not calling for houses of worship to shut down political discussion and education on the issues, but we are calling on all candidates and religious leaders to stop engaging in partisan politics at their houses of worship."


This group is absolutely correct. This was said at the "rally"

quote:
During the service, the Rev. Gaston E. Smith introduced Mr. Kerry as "the next president of the United States" and told the crowd, "For every Goliath, God has a David. For every Calvary's cross, God has a Christ Jesus. ... To bring our country out of despair, discouragement, despondency and disgust, God has a John Kerry."

... During Sunday's event, Mr. Sharpton also praised the Massachusetts senator and attacked President Bush. He also criticized the Florida recount of 2000, promising that voters in the state would deliver a "big payback" to the president.
He predicted that the future of the country and the world "will rest in our ability to come out in big numbers and elect this man on November 2."


The law is very specific on this matter: If you look here you will find the following:

quote:
A 501(c)(3) organization:
Must absolutely refrain from participating in the political campaigns of candidates for local, state. or federal office.

Must restrict it's lobbying activities to an insubstantial part of it's total activities.


Now that's the legal part. And no It is not a civil right to have a tax exempt status. Nothing stops Christians, Muslims or any other religious group from forming PACS and organizations such as MoveOn.org Personally I hate and despise that politicians run at black folks when they are at their most vulnerable:" a Church service. At such places most people have their thinking caps off and will respond to just about any emotional appeal. It is bad politics for blacks to allow themselves to be politically indoctrinated at such places. Marcus Garvey had it right: The UNIA had 'Libery Halls" all over the country where blacks (largely Christian) could organize politically, economically and socially without the tax gotchyas.

personally I think that all persons running for any office ought to be barred from speaking at any Church, Synagogue, Mosque or whatever. Go and worship if you like, but no speeches. Any candidate found in violation of such a law should automatically be disqualified from their race and the offending institution would lose it's tax exempt status for the term of the office that the candidate was running for ( 2 years for congress, 6 years for Senators, 4 years for president, etc.) That would put an immediate stop to this gross misuse of religion by the political establishment.

Links:
http://washingtontimes.com/national/20041013-111605-5814r.htm
http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p4220.pdf

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

The Double Standard

For those who watched the "presidential" debates last week, we saw a young woman ask Kerry what he would do in light of a citizen that did not wish to have thier tax dollars spent on abortion. Many people consider abortion murder and they object to murder and don't want thier money used to support it. Or do they? It seems that many of these same '"anti-abortion" persons have no problems with the state executing prisoners even when those prisonors may well be innocent. Many of these "conservative" anti-abortion people also have no qualms with the mass murder of Iraqi's by the US military and paid for with, you guessed it, tax dollars. But even more so these same anti-abortion, anti-murder folks have no problem sending over $6 Billion annually to Israel who kills 1.3 palestinians a day while destroying thier homes not to mention the use of American military machinery developed by companies and paid by the DOD with, yet again, tax dollars.

Counterpunch has an excellent expose entitled Amnesty International: A False Beacon" on the two faced nature of many groups on the matter of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict:

Quote:
In May 2004 AI issued a press release headed "AI condemns murder of woman and her four daughters by Palestinian gunmen." The body of the text contains the following condemnation:

"Such deliberate attacks against civilians, which have been widespread, systematic and in furtherance of a stated policy to attack the civilian population, constitute crimes against humanity, as defined by Article 7 (1) and (2)(a) of the 1998 Rome Statute of the International Criminal."[4]

So, when Palestinians kill some civilians, then it constitutes a "crime against humanity" -- one of the most serious crimes under international law, and a precursor to genocide. But, when Israel kills far more civilians "in furtherance of a stated policy" (the phrasing AI used against Palestinians) to "exact a price" (to use the words of Israeli Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz [5]), all that AI can do is to wring its hands and worry about "the Israeli army's use of excessive force". Thus, we see that AI does not hesitate to use against Palestinians terms, such as "crime against humanity", which it has never unambiguously leveled against Israel.



Note that the Israeli woman killed by Palestinians in the above episode was a settler. Thus, AI was stretching a point a to call her a civilian -- settlers are armed and they consider themselves, when they feel like it, the shock troops of an expansionist zionism whose stated goal is to ethnically cleanse the Palestinians from, at least, all the land west of the River Jordan.

Regarding the Palestinian attack, AI also states: "deliberate attacks against civilians, which have been widespread, systematic and in furtherance of a stated policy to attack the civilian population." Whoa! It is astonishing that such a description was added to its accusation pertaining a Palestinian attack, but at the same time, it is not willing to classify any Israeli actions as "systematic, deliberate and widespread [etc.]". AI portrays Palestinian violence as worse than Israeli violence, and this amounts to a clear double standard.


So when self righteous and indignant folks come out their face about how they don't want thier tac dollars supporting X,y or Z then you make sure they account for the billions that get sent to Israel.

Links:
http://www.counterpunch.org/rooij10132004.html

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Line Dem Ducks Up
Recently I posted on how the Republicans have been very good at playing the political chess game. indeed they have apparently been playing the game very well for a long time. Apparently the Democrats have again been caught sleeping in class. This morning I was watching Good Morning America and saw this report on plans by the Sinclair corporation to pre-empt regular programming to run a "documentary" on Kerry's commentary on Vietnam.

quote:
Sinclair Broadcast Group has asked its television stations many of them in competitive states in the presidential election to pre-empt regular programming to run the documentary as part of an hourlong program two weeks before the Nov. 2 election.

Based near Baltimore, the company owns or manages affiliates of major broadcast networks in several states, including Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania.

Mark Hyman, a vice president of corporate relations for Sinclair who also is a conservative commentator for the company, said Monday the show would contain some or all of the 42-minute film as well as a panel discussion of some sort. He said final details had not been worked out.

The documentary, "Stolen Honor: Wounds That Never Heal," chronicles Kerry's 1971 testimony before Congress and links him to activist and actress Jane Fonda. It includes interviews with Vietnam prisoners of war and their wives who claim Kerry's testimony filled with "lurid fantasies of butchery in Vietnam" on the part of U.S. troops demeaned them and led their captors to hold them longer.



Now these republicans were the first to raise a hissy fit when Michael Moore's movie Fahrenheit 9-11 was set to be released to DVD in October and they objected to plans to advertise it using the footage from the original advertising, siting it as prejudicial to the election process. The advertisments, for those who have seen them have been modified to remove all direct references to GW. So apparently this is an in-kind payback for 9-11. The problem the Democrats have, and there are many, is that tv stations pre-empt their scheduled line up all the time. Secondly, while they are right that Sinclair get's its license from the FCC and must broadcast "in the public interest," Being partisan is not a violation of that rule. The real deal is this: The conservative wing of the republican party has positioned themselves in very strategic positions in government, media and other industries and are now able to exploit these "aquisitions" for their own ends. It is the Democratic pary's fault for not seeing this AND not putting into effect thier own plans to counter such strategies.

And let us not forget, even though Bush acts like he will be president for life, he won't be, some other Republican must run 4 years from now, You best believe that the republicans are already planning on that election. beyond Kerry's half assed campaign I'm not sure what the Democrats have planned in the long run,but whatever it is, it better include removing Zell Miller and Joseph Leiberman from the rolls, and getting a clear consice and idiot proof set of messages and an apparatus to get thier positions heard and heard often. Lastly that messsage had better be something absolutely different. No more "I woulda done the same, but different" messages.

Again, Credit to the Republcans for playing the game "right."

edit 3:44 PM:
Alternet has an excellent article on the subject. You may find it here:
http://www.alternet.org/mediaculture/20151/

Links:
http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory?id=157274

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Debates 2

Well unfortunatly I could not catch all of the debates and therefore I won't have my "special" answers as I had in the previous debate. I did however catch when Kerry was asked about spending tax dollars on Abortions.
I found the question odd. perhaps I'm not informed but I thought that abortions were paid for by the patient, or an insurance company and therefore tax dollars have nothing to do with it. If i'm wrong I'm sure someone will point it out. I don't feel that strongly about the issue to look it up either. Kerry gave an answer, which a columnist for the Washtington Post, a black man, said "he couldn't figure out.' he felt that Bush gave an easy to understand answer.

Kerry said that he was a Catholic (which implies a pro-life stance as it is the policy of the Catholoc church) and his faith was what get him through a war, "but" he said, and said correctlym" I cannot legislate what is an article of faith for me and inpose it on someone else who may not share that faith... I have to represent all the American people." This is right in line with my discussion of religion in an earlier post. You would think that "conservative" who are so hell bent on conserving the constitution as Bush put it, would agree with Kerry that legislating religios ideas on life, is a bad thing and is a step down a slippery slope and basically unconstitutional.

Bush said: No, no tac dollars for Abortions. Ok it was a simple answer. which the low in intelligence can grasp, but it is not the constiutionally correct answer, and lest we forget the job of the president is to uphold the constitution. I think that these so called conservatives need a lesson in government and constitution becase it appears to me that they have no clue.

The next problem that I caught was the issue on taxes and small businesses. Bush tried to confuse the low of intelligence by saying that the repeal of taxes on people with incomes over $200,000 would damage the economy by taking money away from small businesses who employ most of the workers in the nation. Bush is right. Small busineses employ a great many people in the US, though the largest employer is Walmart..but anyways.....

Most americans have no clue how corporations work. So let me use this opportunity to clue them in (I should they read this):
Individuals, who make money by getting a paycheck pay taxes before they even get thier money. Corporations do not. Corporations make thier money and do Capital purchases: They pay rent, buy equipment, advertise, etc. and then pay taxes on what is left. Get that? You the individual pay taxes first and then attempt to purchase the things they need. So smart corporations know how to get accountants to move or spend thier money in such a way that they have a relatively low tax burden. Bush was right that in S-Corps, LLC's etc. have fallthrough, which means business profits or losses are accounted in the busines owners personal taxes, but any smart business owner has already discussed this with thier accountant and put enough of their income aside to pay those taxes, or have spent enough capital to register a loss and lower thier tax burden.

Now take it from someone who owns a corporation; If a company is depending on Taxes to make or break their company, then that company will not be in business very long regardless of who is in office.

And what if you are in the $200,000/year and up income braket? Well to be honest, I don't see what the problem is. Personally i'de just like to have that kind of gross income and if I do get that I'm not the type to live at that level anyway since I don't believe in spending all that I earn. Let's be real, the problem really isn'taxes, the problem is High rents and outraeous overvaluation of real estate. The problem is personal debt with record numbers of citizens in Debt that is in many cases equal to thier gross yearly income.

So don't let the Bush confuse you with the simple answer. If running a country was easy, If running a business was easy then any and everyone would do it and do it well.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

The Boy who would Be King

I have never been one to buy into the "we were once Kings and Queens" mantra that I'd heard come from many black folks. It just defied logic to me that we could all be kings and queens. Besides why can't I be proud of simply being a subject of a king or queen? Some people pointed out that it didn't mean all of us were kings or queens, but if I got it wrong I'm sure a whole lot of other people did too. Anyway, I notice that black children are assaulted on a near daily basis with images of white royalty, in stark contrast to black poverty and dependence. One youngster asked me, upon seeing images of Darfur, If 'those Africans were sick again. It cannot be good for the development of black youths to continualy be exposed to white "royalty" in the absence of black royalty. In this regard I believe that images of Oyo Nyimba Kabambaiguru Rukidi IV should be given to each and every black boy and girl in the Americas.

It's Everybody Else

I recall watching a tv show where someone was in court being cross examined. The defendant gave the usual "Everybody else has it wrong, you've got to believe me." Explanation as to why all the evidence points his way. Today the NYTimes reported on the US report on Iraq In which it was found that Iraq had "illiminated illicit arms in the 90's"

quote:
Iraq had destroyed its illicit weapons stockpiles within months after the Persian Gulf war of 1991, and its ability to produce such weapons had significantly eroded by the time of the American invasion in 2003, the top American inspector for Iraq said in a report made public Wednesday.

The report by the inspector, Charles A. Duelfer, intended to offer a near-final judgment about Iraq and its weapons, said Iraq, while under pressure from the United Nations, had "essentially destroyed'' its illicit weapons ability by the end of 1991, with its last secret factory, a biological weapons plant, eliminated in 1996.

... Mr. Duelfer said he had concluded that between 1991 and 2003, Mr. Hussein had in effect sacrificed Iraq's illicit weapons to the larger goal of winning an end to United Nations sanctions. But he also argued that Mr. Hussein had used the period to try to exploit avenues opened by the sanctions, especially the oil-for-food program, to lay the groundwork for a plan to resume weapons production if sanctions were lifted.

In addition, the report concluded that Mr. Hussein had deliberately sought to maintain ambiguity about whether it had illicit weapons, mainly as a deterrent to Iran, its rival.

...At the time of the American invasion, Mr. Duelfer said in the report, Iraq did not possess chemical and biological weapons, was not seeking to reconstitute its nuclear program, and was not making any active effort to gain those abilities. Even if Iraq had sought to restart its weapons programs in 2003, the report said, it could not have produced militarily significant quantities of chemical weapons for at least a year, and it would have required years to produce a nuclear weapon.

"Saddam Hussein ended the nuclear program in 1991 following the gulf war,'' Mr. Duelfer said in the report. It said American inspectors in Iraq had "found no evidence to suggest concerted efforts to restart the program.''




In response James Wilkinson, Deputy national security advisor, said:

"There is no doubt that Saddam was a threat to our nation, and there is no doubt that he had W.M.D. capability, and the Duelfer report is very clear on these points,''


Exactly what report did he read? So here we have Kofi Annan stating that the war in Iraq was/is illegal under international law. We have a report that clearly shows what many of us already knew and without a doubt was known by members of the administration, and there is no treason or impeachment hearings scheduled? Clinton gets head in his office and we get Ken Starr for years, Bush spends nearly $200 Billion on an illegal and baseless war which causes the death of 1000 US troops and disables many thousands more, not to mention the huge civilian casualties in Iraq and not one impeachment hearing is scheduled?

I'm going to give the Republicans their due credit, They play a mean game of Chess. They covered their king very very well. Democrats should take notes.
Religion and The Presidency

Religion is a sensitive issue. The US, although founded by Christians, was not founded as a Christian government. It is not nor was it intended to be a theocratic-democracy, as apposed to a strict theocracy. This is clear in the portion of the Constitution that bars the State from establishing or otherwise interfering with the religious practices of it's citizens. Why was this done? Simply put, from those grade school lessons, Christians found themselves oppressing each other over differences in opinion about how to interpret scripture. Furthermore you had a government that was beholden to either the Catholic Church or the Church of England. The founders knew well the dangers of mixing religion and government even if it was thought of in terms of Christianity. However, with the increasingly diverse American population, with people practicing all manner of religions, the choice that the founders made becomes evident as a very smart decision. If there are multiple religions practiced by the citizenry of the country then the government should not be in the practice of taking sides. It should be concerned with public works and national defense.

The NYT has a report showing that 75% of those polled want a president of "strong religious faith." Apparently the message has not gotten through about the importance of the separation between "church" and state.

What is interesting about that report was:

quote:
Democrats have a tougher time talking about religion than Republicans because they have also a secular wing to their party," the Pew director, Andrew Kohut, said. "There's much more Republican unity on social issues. Democrats have to tiptoe through the tulips on the social issues because they have a more diverse constituency. They have constituents with differing views about moral questions."

This should be very informational to those sutdying the parties: Clearly if the Democrats have a "more diverse constituency" then apparently the Democrats represent more "America" than the republicans do. And if that is the case then it could be inferred that the Republican Party is fast becoming a large "Christian" party. Which probably explains it's growing ability to fracture black voters who strongly identify with Christianity and so called 'conservatism." In this next election it will be interesting to see if the Republicans can increase their share of the black vote. I think it will happen, since black conservatives have been put on the spot in a manner I have not seen before. Remember that the Republican Party plans to erode the black vote and is not looking to have instant change. It took over 20 years for the black vote to go from Republican to Democrat, it will take at least that long to effect a change of similar magnitude and truth be told the Republicans don't need to make such a change they only need to split off perhaps 30% of the Black vote to effectively castrate Democrats in that market.

Anyway, back to the point. Just as I think it is bad decision making to put people into power who believe that martyring oneself is an effective means to progress, I think that putting Evangelicals in office who are attempting to "hasten the return of Christ" is also a bad decision. Government is about providing services, not playing Pope.

Links:

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/10/07/politics/campaign/07memo.html?pagewanted=2&hp&oref=login

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

The VEEP Debates

Ok how many people thought that Cheney would up and slap Edwards? How many were waiting for the VEEP to "black out" and cuss out Edwards for bringin up Haliburton? I know I was. I guess he gotta watch his temper, with that weak heart of his. ;-)

Anyways apparently after the Bush debate, Cheney was instructed that he was not to touch the water. or maybe he's just cool like that. Apparently Edwards did not get the message to avoid the water.
Edwards needs to learn how to debate. Though he landed a nice punch with the Haliburton comments, I thought that the night belonged to the VEEP. Not because I believed the junk runing out his mouth, but because he "appeared" to be more informed and prepared than Edwards. Edwards had many opportunities to show Cheney to be a liar and let those opportunities pass like runny..anyways..

Did anyone else notice that Edwards did not even attempt to answer the question on Israel? In fact by the time he got to it, after a long detour, he basically was a demo-hawk, There was the story about the terrorist bombing that killed some kids in Israel and not one, NOT ONE, comment on the lives of palestinians. Racist BAstard!! Palestinians are people too!! Needless to sa, a Kerry Edwards administration will be no better than a Bush admin, as far as Israel in concerned. Where's a Cynthia McKinney when you need her?
More wood for the Fire

While on BlackElectorate.com I stumbled across This article Which states:" Black Students Not Culturally Biases Against Academic Achievement"
After reading the piece, which includes a jab and Bill Cosby, I decided to download the paper which was 55 or so pages. I was preparing my analysis of the presentation and contacted the lead professor Karolyn Tyson, who informed me that the paper, in it's current form was not for public consumption and asked me not to publicly publlish information from that paper until the final draft was produced. Out of respect for their hard work I'm going to honor that request, Of course if too much time passes I will use the fact that I recieved the report legally ( no break-ins, etc), i will post my commentary on the piece, though I predict that those in opposition to Bill Cosby's statements will point to the working paper as evidence of Cosby's "irrarionality." What is interesting is that if this paper was not meant for public consumption than why did Willaim Darity Jr. decide that it was ok to give an interview on the subject and draw attention to it? Perhaps Mr. Darity needs some discipline.

Anyway I had very specific questions regarding the methodoogies used to collect data and the specific targets of the research. Again I'll have to wait until I get a response from the researchers.

No links....Yet...

Monday, October 04, 2004

Rumsfeld's About Face

Today the BBC reported that Donald Rumsfeld, the man pictured shaking hands with Saddam Hussien, now doubts links between Saddam and Osama.

quote:
n front of an audience in New York, Mr Rumsfeld was asked about connections between Saddam and Osama Bin Laden. "To my knowledge, I have not seen any strong, hard evidence that links the two," he said.

a quick glance at The New York and LA Times, show them asleep at the wheel, as usual.

links:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/3715396.stm
The Higher The Monkey Climb is the More He Expose

After the DNC I posted a bit about Barak Obama. I was saying that he isn't the "liberal" that he's made out to be. And with Kerry trying to out-Bush Bush The Democratic party under the spell of the DLC has gone very much to the right. Today I read where Obama is caught espousing the "pre-emptive doctrine" that Kerry made a part of the "new" democratic platform.

quote:

Obama told the Tribune, “[T]he big question is going to be, if Iran is resistant to these pressures, including economic sanctions, which I hope will be imposed if they do not cooperate, at what point are we going to, if any, are we going to take military action?”

Answering his own question, Obama said, “I hope it doesn’t get to that point. But realistically, as I watch how this thing has evolved, I’d be surprised if Iran blinked at this point.”

Obama advanced a racist argument for attacks on Iran and Pakistan. Making a comparison between the “Islamic world” and the Soviet Union, he argued that the religious outlook of Iranians and Pakistanis made them less prone to compromise and reason and more warlike.

He said: “With the Soviet Union, you did get the sense that they were operating on a model that we could comprehend in terms of, they don’t want to be blown up, we don’t want to be blown up, so you do game theory and calculate ways to contain. I think there are certain elements within the Islamic world right now that don’t make those same calculations.”

In the case of Pakistan, the Senate hopeful added, “I think there are elements within Pakistan right now—if Musharraf is overthrown and they took over—I think we would have to consider going in and taking those bombs out, because I don’t think we can make the same assumptions about how they calculate risks.”


As I pointed out in my mock debate answers: The problem with Iran is of our own doing (our being Bush, I ain't had shyt to do with it). I do agree with Obama on the issues of "risk." that is Pakistan and India developed Nukes in order to threaten each other. Apparently no one really thought that given that they are next door neighbors, that a nuke used by one would cause the other serious problems. Unlike the early nuke race between the Soviet Union and the US where there would be some time before effects from a nuclear strike at an enemy across the Atlantic. In the Case of Iran, the reasons for their nukes are quite clear:

Bush labeled them an "axis of evil" and therefore subject to pre-emptive strike. Israel has been indicating that it would strike at Iran ( with US arms of course) and Israel has already done such a strike in Iraq in the past. Lastly, we have the illegal war in Iraq. These three things give Iran a basic right to develop whatever armorments it chooses just as Bush and now Kerry likes to say: They don't need permission from other nations to defend their nation.

if Barak Obama is the face of new "black" leadership in the Democratic party then Black folks are in for a hot mess.

Links:
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/10/04/opinion/04safire.html
http://www.wsws.org/articles/2004/oct2004/obam-o01.shtml

Friday, October 01, 2004

What ?!!!! Me agree with Pat Buchanan?

Yesterday I wrote of my aggravation at some peoples writings, specifically those of so called "black conservatives" who seem to relish in being "one of the few" republican kneegrows in the party and seem to take what they are doing hook-line and sinker. They LUUUUUV Bush and recently 5 of them wrote an article on why we should vote for him.

Whatever.

I have told anyone that will listen that the current admin and perhaps much of the republican party is by no means "conservatives." At least not conservatives as i understood them to be: Low taxes, tight spending, carefull of conflict. While I never really bought the "careful on conflict" angle, the previous items are indeed hallmarks of any self resepcting conservative. I thought that once Bush exposed himself as something other than a real conservative his compatriots would have the sense to hang him out to dry. This hasn't happened, and not a few white (not black) conservatives have begun to get hip to this and speak on it. Enter Pat Buchanan.

I usually ignore Pat Buchanan, because, well, he doesn't have anything interesting to say. He especially likes to talk about the immigrants and the disintigration of the white Man's paradise in America by said immigrants. Today though, while still being shrill about immigration, Buchanan lands a one-two punch on the Bush admin, that any real conservative should pay attnetion to, including those so called "black conservatives."

quote:
With the guerrilla war, US prestige has plummeted. The hatred of President Bush is pandemic from Marrakesh to Mosul. Volunteers to fight the Americans have been trickling into Iraq from Syria, Saudi Arabia and Iran. In the spring of this year revelations of the sadistic abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison sent US prestige sinking to its lowest levels ever in the Arab world. We may have ignited the war of civilisations that it was in our vital interest to avoid. Never has America been more resented and reviled in an Islamic world of one billion people.

At home, the budget surpluses of the 1990s have vanished as the cost of the Afghan and Iraq wars has soared beyond the projections of the most pessimistic of the President’s economic advisers. The US budget deficit is above 4 per cent of GDP. With a trade deficit in goods nearing 6 per cent of GDP, the dollar has lost a third of its value against the euro in three years. One in six manufacturing jobs has disappeared since President Bush took the oath. By mid-2004, the President had failed to abolish a single significant agency, programme or department of a Leviathan government that consumes a fifth of our economy. Nor had he vetoed a single Bill.


read the rest here:

http://www.antiwar.com/spectator/spec396.html