Saturday, August 30, 2008
You know I was reading about the fact that black men who sleep with men in NY represent one of the largest groups of HIV infections. I can't help but think that the high incarceration rate is informing that rate of infection. So these want to be thugs need to understand the above quote.
Friday, August 29, 2008
So November is going to shape up like this:
The answers to these questions will be an accurate predictor of where votes go:
1) Would you ever vote for a Democrat/Republican?
2) Would you ever vote for a black man?
3) Did you support Hillary Clinton and are now pissed she didn't make it?
4) Are abortion rights are of paramount importance to you?
5) Are you hawkish?
6) Is the experience argument important to you in regards to the president or VP?
I wasn't all that impressed by the speech he gave last night. I don't think it was his best and I felt that kucinich was far more lively and by my own biased, much more real about what kind of change needs to happen in the US.
It was interesting watching the movie that introduced Obama. It struck me as particularly odd how the black candidate for president, had a life that, as presented on screen was completely devoid of black folk and black experiences as it relates to African-Americans. In fact, had there not been a picture of Obama or Obama's face was not a part of the movie, One could have easily "mistook" the film to be about a white man from the mid-west. It is clear to me, that the acceptance of Obama by many non-blacks has much to do with who he is not and where he does not come from or out of.
Alice Walker on an interview I was listening to yesterday was making comments about how good it was that Obama was mixed because "we'll all be mixed someday." I've heard these remarks a few too many times. I find such commentary insulting because it carries with it the implication that not being black and just black is bad, passe. It also implies the same thing about Europeans and Asians.
Anyway. US history in the making. A luta continua.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Regular readers of Garvey's Ghost will note that I usually say "so called liberals" and "so called conservatives." The reason for this is that by and large I see the left and right as part and parcel of the larger problem. Michael Fisher has an excellent post in which the basis of the Ghost's use of "so called" and "supposed" is based upon. Read it and understand.
Monday, August 18, 2008
Well those of us not into the whitewash, we know that Lincoln was by no means an abolitionist in the sense that Douglass was. But we covered this before
"All the unoccupied territory...shall be reserved for the benefit of the white Caucasian race --- A thing which cannot be except by the exclusion of slavery."
So either Frederick Douglass was a damn fool or he used Lincoln's clearly "racist" sentiments in regards to slavery in order to maneuver to get emancipation as a stepping stone to increase the oft quoted "demands."
Saturday, August 16, 2008
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Togo won its first ever Olympic medal when Benjamin Boukpeti took bronze in the men's single kayak slalom at the 2008 Beijing Games.
"I can hardly believe it but I'm not surprised," said Boukpeti, who became the first non-European male kayaker to win an Olympic slalom medal.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Why don’t you shut up? Do you really think anyone gives any importance whatsoever to your words after 8 years of your criminal and murderous regime and policies? Do you really believe you have any moral ground whatsoever and do you really imagine there is a single human being anywhere on this planet who does not stick up his middle finger every time you appear on a TV screen? Kinda makes ya’ll think, eh?
Do you really believe you have the right to give any opinion or advice after Abu Ghraib? After Guantanamo? After the massacre of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi citizens? After the torture by CIA operatives? Kinda difficult, eh?
I believe I pointed this out Monday.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Wall Street’s losses are fast becoming India’s gain. After outsourcing much of their back-office work to India, banks are now exporting data-intensive jobs from higher up the food chain to cities that cost less than New York, London and Hong Kong, either at their own offices or to third parties.
Bank executives call this shift “knowledge process outsourcing,” “off-shoring” or “high-value outsourcing.” It is affecting just about everyone, including Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan, Credit Suisse and Citibank — to name a few.
Think about that bail out that recently happened. Now think again..how much of that Money left the country? And how many more jobs will be leaving? And how much will the taxpayer have paid these companies to remove tax revenue from the state? but back to NYC in particular:
The jobs most affected so far are those with grueling hours, traditionally done by fresh-faced business school graduates — research associates and junior bankers on deal-making teams — paid in the low to mid six figures.
Cost-cutting in New York and London has already been brutal thus far this year, and there is more to come in the next few months. New York City financial firms expect to hand out some $18 billion less in pay and benefits this year than 2007, the largest one-year drop ever. Over all, United States banks will cut 200,000 employees by 2009, the banking consultancy Celent said in April.
So now the "entry level" b-school grad job is going away? Pray tell how will you get further up the ranks if the entryway is gone? But enough of that, did someone say $18 billion less in pay? Do you know what that's going to cost NYC? NYS? Did someone say 200,000 financial sector jobs that pay upwards of six figures, will be going away? It's no wonder that..
Many investment banks, including Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch and Citigroup, would not make executives available to discuss the topic.
You don't say? If I was getting tax write offs and bail outs from the Fed as well as having the major political parties in my pocket, I wouldn't talk on record either.
But you must like the joke:
In the future, executives in India like to joke, the only function for highly paid bankers in New York or London will be to greet clients and shake hands when the deals close.
So when these "high value jobs" leave NY leaving a few highly paid "client greeters" in NYC just what will the tax base of NY look like? NYC has already lost upwards of 70% of it's finance sector revenues and movie prices can only go so high. Apple Stores will only bring in but so much. Fashion avenue is only going to bring in so much. The super rich buying from each other will only do so much. Is there an impending collapse here? We shall see.
Monday, August 11, 2008
There was a document dated May 11, 1965, a full three years before the murder of Dr. Martin Luther King jr, that said: 'somewhere at the top there must be a Negro who is clean who can step into the vacuum and chaos Once Dr. King is exposed or assasinated.'...
That document is stamped with the stamp of the CIA"
Now I said before that the rise of Obama represents the victory of the CointelPro program against black folk. One could say that Obama is far removed from Dr. King Jr. However; we see that there has been a steady charge against people like Al. Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and of coure Cynthia McKinney, who are arguably heirs of Dr. King Jr. Even now the NY Times has produced articles discussing the end of "black politics."
Yes, the "clean negro" has arrived on the scene.
Edsall: I think that McCain has sort of begun a message of Obama as an elitist, but to make it really work, you have to show that the liberal elitist is actually going to cost the average guy money or a job. That the elitist is going to tilt money or benefits away from regular working people -- i.e., whites -- and towards special-interest groups and the well-to-do.
So exactly what has the Republicans been doing all this time? This is the problem with your "average" white Republican voter. They simply do not understand that they are being used by the party to deliver the goods to large corporations that have been shipping their jobs overseas while getting massive tax benefits.
The attack in Georgia was a fulfillment of that ideology and the chicken hawks in Washington have no one to blame for it but themselves. Furthermore the US has been spending the last couple of years giving the Russians the middle finger as they meddled in the internal politics of former Soviet states in order to get "pro-western" governments into power. And let us not forget the plan to put a NATO missile "defence" ring, supposedly to protect western Europe from terrorists, right around Russia. This is something that the Russians have strenuously objected to. So 90% of the blame for the current situation in Georgia falls in the lap of the US and the remainder in the lap of the Georgians who thought that toying with Russia was a brilliant idea. Is it good to ya?
Update 11:58 AM
Oh and from the LA Times:
At a news briefing for reporters in Beijing, White House Press Secretary Dana Perino said the United States was "100% focused on solving this peacefully. . . . We respect Georgia's territorial integrity and we expect Russia to do the same."
Oh just about the same respect shown for the territorial integrity of Serbia? Yeah, OK.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Just as I'm getting my head around Bernie Mac, We hear about Issac Hayes whom I have NUFF respect for wearing a Gran Buba to a music awards show. My favorite of his music was his redo of Walk On By which featured prominently in the movie Dead Presidents.
Saturday, August 09, 2008
Thursday, August 07, 2008
Really, it's funny.
I graduated from Tuskegee back in 1994. I got my first job some 2 months later. I remember how shook folks were when I had the nerve to come to work in a Gran Buba. Man these folks scattered like roaches after a light been turned on.
The last time I seen so many opinionated black folk was after the OJ Simpson trial. Black folk who wouldn't give me a second look lest they be mistaken as "militant" gave me thumbs up (like I gave a damn about OJ), grins and all manner of "solidarity" signs.
But like I was saying, I've been Mr. Pro Black, as in people not individuals, since at least 1991. I'm not new to this. And that excludes my days of early KRS, early PE or anything like that. I'm talking straight up real as in study, research and analysis. BUt now a days, we have all kinds of black folk, feeling themselves because of Obama. Suddenly folks who couldn't even bring themselves to make a critique of white folk in front of white folk want to get mad at black folk who have critiques of Obama. Imagine that!
Suddetly these folks are experts in dissecting supposed "racist" statements and comments which just four scant years ago these same folks would have called people like me "over-sensitive" and "reading race into everything" had we pointed out the same thing. That's just too funny.
I just had to get that out.
Tuesday, August 05, 2008
Brother In Struggle:
Last Sunday I caught you on Like It Is with Gil Noble. I have always enjoyed listening to you. Of late however I have been sorely disappointed in your commentary as it regards Barack Obama's presidential bid. We are all entitled to our opinion and I respect that we who are looking out for the best interests of African people may have a difference of opinion on Obama's run for and probable presidency. However; it saddens me to see you of all people to stoop so low as to name call and categorically dismiss other people of differing opinion for the simple reason that they have a different opinion. You expounded on this difference of opinion in a most unsavory manner in a piece that picked up on the Assault on Black Folk Sanity website, which has prompted me to write this response.
But I’m talking about another substantial pimple of soi disant, dare I say, intellectuals & self advertised radicals who are quite audible & wordy in opposition to Obama.
So I could understand getting at people who call themselves black conservatives. I could even fathom the bile spit at Hillary Clinton supporters, but "pimple"? for having the audacity to critique brother Obama?
You might say, ‘but how is that, since now there is only the prisoner of war, McCain, who proves every time he opens his mouth that he is still a prisoner of the Vietnam war’ that Obama faces. McCain’s major campaign plank is that Americans need to keep dying in Iraq and our tax monies need to keep being fed to Halliburton and the other oilies and cronies. McCain also holds that we continue the Bush type savaging of the US constitution by denying habeas corpus and the legal rights of prisoners in Guantanamo. Keep it open as a Bush-Cheney concentration camp. McCain also wants to maintain the widespread hatred of the US by the world, as well as making Bush giveaway tax cuts for the super rich permanent.
Here’s a charming character who on returning from Vietnam soon dumped his lst wife who had been severely crippled in an automobile accident, to run off with, among others, a beer brewery heiress who cd support his political barn storming. Here’s a man, who for all the media clap about him being “an independent” is the spiritual follower of the man whose seat he sits in as Senator from Arizona, Barry Goldwater.
I mention all this because it is criminal for these people claiming to be radical or intellectual to oppose or refuse to support Obama. I hope we don’t have to hear about “the lesser of two evils” from people whose foolish mirror worship wd have us elect the worst of two evils.
Who said anything about McCain? I don't know of any person critical of Obama who is pro-McCain so why even bring him up? Well since you did bring him up, lets compare records for a second. Obama started out with the "I didn't agree with the war in the first place" position. A position shared with Cynthia McKinney, Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich. The aforementioned also were critical of Haliburton, etc. Tell me Mr. Baraka how much time (and money) did you spend supporting these individuals? I contributed cash money to the McKinney campaign. Did you? I devoted space on my blog to supporting AND critiquing her re-election campaign and you did what exactly? But let me not get into a pissing contest here and get back to McCain and Obama. Obama went from "remove the troops now" to "16 months" or whatever the "commanders on the ground" think is best. McCain went from 100 years to about the same thing. In either case the current PM of Iraq wants a withdrawal within 2 years so it doesn't really matter what either candidates have to say on the subject. But McCain and Obama have something more relevant in commmon, they have both repeatedly voted to continue funding this war. I find it odd how someone who is opposed to the war in Iraq would vote to keep sending money into that hole. I suppose that piece of contradiction doesn't bother you much.
Secondly, while you focus on the issue of Habeus Corpus in Guantanamo, I would remind you that Obama did a very significant and public about face on his opposition to the immunity for telecoms who BROKE THE LAW! Should I assume that the 4th Amendment to the US Constitution doesn't mean much to you? After all, if the government doesn't need a warrant then exactly what's the point of habeus corpus? Please, do tell.
Mirror worshipers would have "us" elect the worst of two evils? See that's some Democratic party line talk right there. That's up there with the 'Nader cost us the 2000 election" dumb talk. It's sad to see you have fallen for that line. In 2000 all that had to happen was for Gore to win his home state (like every other winning president has done to my knowledge). Had he done that, we wouldn't even be talking about Florida. Secondly why is it that the Democrats and Republicans (whom you admitted were two sides of the same coin) have been able to keep a monopoly on power? Where are the third and forth parties that could radically change how power is wielded in government. In any event, it won't be the "radicals" that will be electing any of the evil since it is clear that "intellectual radicals" are but a small minority in the US and really don't determine US electoral outcomes.
For those who claim radical by supporting McKinney or, brain forbid, the Nadir of fake liberalism, we shd have little sympathy. As much as I have admired Cynthia McKinney, to pose her candidacy as an alternative to Obama is at best empty idealism, at worst nearly as dangerous as when the Nader used the same windy egotism to help elect Bush.
The people who are supporting McKinney must know that that is an empty gesture. But too often such people are so pocked with self congratulatory idealism, that they care little or understand little about politics (i.e. the gaining maintaining and use of power) but want only to pronounce, to themselves mostly, how progressive or radical or even revolutionary they are.
No, I don't know of anyone who is posing McKinney as an alternative to Obama. Rather, I believe that those supporting McKinney are doing so because she supports their positions and policies. They are voting their policy interests. They know full well that McKinney is not going to win the election. So then does that mean that she shouldn't run and that people shouldn't vote for her? You do believe in democracy don't you? You claim that this is about being an idealist. Au Contrair. Her supporters know full well what reality looks like. To claim that they do not know or understand politics is condescending. As you noted we are discussing the gaining, maintaining and use of power. Apparently you have overlooked that point of "gaining." McKinney or others like her will never just show up with power. They gain power the same way everyone else gains power: they start out with a small determined (perhaps idealist) group of people and then work their asses off.
let me say that no amount of solipsistic fist pounding about “radical principles” will change this society as much as the election of Barack Obama will as president of the US. Not to understand this is to have few clues about the history of this country, its people, or the history of the Black struggle in the US. It is also to be completely at odds with the masses of the Afro-American people, let us say with the masses of black and colored people internationally. How people who claim to lead the people but who time after time tail them so badly must be understood. It is because they confuse elitism with class consciousness.
There is not a doubt among us "intellectuals" that the election of Barack Obama will have a serious impact on the US and the world. We are keenly aware of this and it is for THAT reason why we critique brother Obama as we do. There is much at stake. As you know and said in your interview with Gill Noble, Newark, NJ has not had a white person in the seat of power since the 1970's. There's a whole generation of people in Newark who have never known a white mayor of the largest city in NJ. Yet the economic situation for blacks in Newark is pretty bad. Schools are generally below par. And crime? Do I have to even discuss that? But you got black people in the big house. You seem to have plenty of not too nice words for Corey Booker. Why is it OK for you to shit on Booker as often as you do, while those of us who are critical of Obama are subject to being shit on by you? Seems very hypocritical to me.
Returning to the masses of "Afro-American" people and their support of Obama. I understand it. Who doesn't want to see a black president? What we are saying is that you must hold Obama accountable like you would any other politician. Why is that a problem? If Obama is going to vote for banks to jack up interest rates, then that's not good. We need to hold Obama accountable. If Obama doesn't have the balls to vote to impeach Bush, then we need to ask what he stands for. What Constitution is he pledging to uphold? If Obama wants to further entangle the state with religious institutions and we are opposed to that, then we need to hold Obama accountable. Each and every time the voters allow the Democrats to compromise on issues, we allow them to move further to the right. It's about principles.
On the international stage, many of us have studied how the mere presence of black faces in high places doesn't necessarily translate to real, on the ground positive changes. See Kenya. See Myanmar (Burma), See Liberia. I asked a question in regards to an Obama presidency some time ago. What happens when Obama signs the papers that sells the arms to Israel that ends up killing Palestinians (or maybe some Iranians)? How would that reflect on black Americans? That is a serious question because and Obama presidency may mark the first time in history that Black Americans as a group are directly complicit in the oppression of another group. That, to me is a very scary thought.
For the so called left and would be radicals (and some grinning idiots who say they don’t even care about politics) the McKinney gambit is to label oneself “Quixote of the loyal opposition” to pipsqueak a hiss of disproval at the rulers while being an enabler of the same. Neither McCain nor McKinney will help us. Only Obama offers some actual help.
McKinney can't help us because WE did not help McKinney. Don't you forget that.
Even the dumbest things Obama has said re: Cuba and the soft shoe for Israel must be seen as the cost of realpolitik, that is he is not running for president of the NAACP and not to understand that those are the stances that must be taken in the present political context, even though we hold out to support what he said about initiating talks with the Cubans, the Palestinians. After years of Washington stupidity and slavish support for the Miami Gusanos and Israeli imperialism, there is in Obama’s raising of talks with the US Bourgeois enemies something that must be understood as the potential path for new initiative. It is the duty of a left progressive radical bloc to be loud and regular in our demands for the changes Obama has alluded to in his campaign. We must take up these issues and push collectively, as a Bloc, or he will be pushed inexorably to the right.
The tired ass argument about Obama not running for president of black America is just that. Tired. Obama has made more than "dumb" statements about Israel. He went so far as to make promises of an undivided Jerusalem as a capitol of Israel. This is something that has been negotiated off the table by previous administrations. Obama promised more to Israel than Israel has even been asking for. That's not soft shoeing. That's outright capitulation. He says he'll talk to Palestinians? So? Everyone talks to Palestinians. Bush has people talking to Palestinians. What's the diff man?
Now the funniest thing about this paragraph is the "duty of the progressive and radical bloc" to be "loud and regular." Dude that's what we've been doing. That one sentence completely contradicts the entire tenor of the preceding screed against McKinney supporters.
Some people were grousing about the father’s day address and the stance he took lecturing Black men to actually become fathers not just disappearing sexual partners. But can anyone who actually lives in the hood, and has raised children there really claim that what Obama said is somehow an “insult to half a race.” We need to take up that idea of making Black men stand up and embrace fatherhood (a lifetime gig) as men and quit winking at the vanished baby makers that litter our community with fatherless children. This is where a great deal of the raw material comes from for the gangs that imperil our communities.
As I answered one irate e-mailer who was pissed off at Obama for leveling that challenge, a Negro man killed my only sister, a Negro man killed my youngest daughter. I can’t give no mealy mouth slack about that, we need to Stand Up!
Let me say that I was an early and ardent supporter of Bill Cosby's call out tour. I still support Dr. Cosby. Why? Because I feel his advice was dead on. Some question why I could support Cosby and not Obama. After all they were saying much of the same things. Let me clue you in on why Obama was out of line. In politics a candidate regularly compliments a group that he or she wants to win votes from. That Obama took his first appearance in a church after severing ties with Rev. Wright's church was a clear message to white voters that he'll keep the niggers in line (in political terms). Clear as day. Cosby was sending no such message. You ought to be insulted that a black candidate would see fit to pander to white voters by exploiting a problem in the black community. Secondly, Obama chose to single out Black Men in the speech. His prerogative, but if he wanted to make a point about parenting, there is MUCH to be said about Black women as well. He hasn't gone there. That too is insulting. So it's not so much the message, which in and of itself is skewed, but the reason for it's delivery. Surely you can understand that point.
But where is the Black left and general progressive, radical and revolutionary lobby? That is the real job we need to address. We must bring something to the table. It is time for the left to really make some kind of Left Bloc to support Obama. I was at the Black Left meeting in North Carolina and had to argue with a group of folks who want to be revolutionary as heck with a Reconstruction Party supporting Cynthia McKinney. Though there was some good discussion, nothing concrete has been offered especially around the Obama campaign.
Good quesion brother Baraka. Given your advanced age, lets pose the question to you. I'll tell you what we don't bring to the table: Cash money. I disagree that there needs to be a Left Bloc to support Obama. What there needs to be is a Left Bloc that can throw financial and voter support behind any candidate that furthers their objectives. This is not a personality contest, this is an issue contest. If Obama fits the bill then he gets support. In regards to the meeting in North Carolina, they were doing just as I said. McKinney represents their interest, while Obama apparently does not. So why should they support him? Regardless, as you are well aware, revolutionary blacks are not exactly the type of people Obama wants support from anyway so what does it matter where they want to expend their energy?
Monday, August 04, 2008
Saturday, August 02, 2008
Expected. What else would a black man running for POTUS and scrambling for white votes while kicking black folk whenever necessary say?
Hat tip to Michael Fisher over at Assault on Black Sanity, for posting the youtube capture of the brothers in Florida for trying to keep it real with Obama.
Here's the video:
Let's break Obama's response down:
Obama: I've been talking about predatory lending for the past two years in the United States Senate and worked to pass legislation to prevent it when I was in the state legislature.
Truth: Well Mr. Obama did in fact vote against the so called "bankruptcy reform" Act. However; in the process of amending the bill Obama voted in favor of allowing credit card companies to charge interest in excess of 30%. Oh and If you happened to have had a serious medical condition or were called to fight somewhere? Obama voted down that amendment as well.
Obama explained that he voted against the larger bill because he felt it was "written" by the big banks. However; he had his hand in making sure that these banks could charge poor people well over 30% interest on their debt as well as making sure that the sick and active duty could have their life savings taken by creditors. In other words, Obama wants to have it both ways. Unfortunately the questioners were not specific with Obama's record and so Obama managed to squeeze himself out of that particular trap.
Obama: Jena 6. I was the first candidate to say to get out there and say this is wrong there's an injustice that's been done and we need to change it.
Truth: The record shows that Obama did, in fact speak out on the Jena 6 situation. He, like many people, were not there early on, but he did release statements. So the brother in the audience was off the mark in that accusation against Obama.
Obama: When Sean Bell Got shot I put out a statement immediately saying 'this is a problem'
Truth: Obama was in NYC not long after the Sean Bell shooting and made an extremely tepid comment on the shooting. I pointed this out on the blog:
Of course no speech to AIPAC would not be complete without the requisite sympathy for Israeli victims of Hamas and Hezbollah terrorism.
Just six months after I visited,
Hezbollah launched four thousand rocket attacks just like the one that
destroyed the home in Kiryat Shmona, and kidnapped Israeli service
members. And we pray for all of the service members who have been
kidnapped: Gilad Shalit, Eldad Regev, and Ehud Goldwasser, and I met with
his family this week. I offered to help in any way I can.
Oh yes Obama, has sympathy for some Israeli citizens and wants to do anything he can to help, but when he was in NYC, right after Sean Belle was murdered by the NYPD in a branzen act of wrecklessness, Obama couldn't even muster up the guts to call the shooting what it was. Nor did he even offer "help" to Sean Bell's family. But i understand, Sean Bell and his family are not wealthy white (and Jewish) donors, so they don't matter. I expect that kind of stuff from Hilary but Obama should know better, especially if he's going to tout the "different kind of politics". But the only thing different right now is the color of the face, and the texture of the hair.
The point above being pretty clear that Obama felt the need to extend "help" to an Israeli, who's not even a citizen, but when a US citizen is shot up by the NYPD, Obama hasn't much help to extend.
Even worse, after the verdict in the case, Obama made a comment to the effect that we must respect the justice system and not be violent. That was all. Meanwhile his remaining Democratic competitor, managed to speak words of comfort for the Bell family and question the validity of the verdict (whether it was sincere or not is a whole other matter). There was no violence in NY and it was because a lot of people expected the verdict to come down the way it did.
But Obama in his answer in St. Petersburg hedged his comments with the: "I may not have said it the way YOU would have." which went over very well with that crowd because you know black folks are just tired of loud, confrontational black men. And you know how white folk are scared shitless of "angry" black men.
In the end though the brothers in audience need to tighten up their game. They should have researched Obama's comments and votes and then hit him with his record. They also should have hit him with his FISA vote. There's no way he could have escaped that question with loose language. When I was in college and in an organization, we had a rule about public speaking: Only the designated speaker may speak. Oh I'm sure people thought it was just ego, but the above video shows why it is so important to have a designated speaker and for that speaker to be up on his or her game.