This Just In…Keith Olbermann Just Scored….Again!!!

This rout would be seriously funny….weren’t it be so true, and the stakes so high.

Here’s my question:  Why aren’t the freakin’ Dimocrats as willing as KO to lay such truth down?? Why does he have to carry all of the water for the “progressive” media??

Maybe KO should produce another “Special Comment” for the Bush Dogs and their enablers Pelosi and Reid….they are as much responsible for Dubya’s myopia getting a free ride as the Repugs are.

Either way….here’s Olbermann going off once again on Dubya on Iraq.

Countdown with Keith Olbermann: Special Comment 9/5/07 (Dubya’s Credibility on Iraq/”Playing Us”) 

This Is Your Democracy, People. Use It, Or Lose It.

Well….between the US Supreme Court transforming itself into the executuve wing of the Federalist Society, King Dubya deciding that Scooter Libby should not be punished with jail time for outing an CIA agent to cover up the propaganda war preceding the real war in Iraq, and the usual cravenness of the Dimocrats in responding to such with empty cries signifying nothing…well, this year’s Fourth of July isn’t feeling so jolly to me today.

Especially since it takes a TV journalist to say the things that our supposed quasi-liberal “opposition” party should have been screaming in unison from the very beginning.

Paraphrasing the immortal words of Arsenio Hall: Kick it, KO.

From Countdown with Keith Olbermann: Special Comment on Scooter Libby Commutation (7/3/07) via YouTube, with the usual h/t to Crooks and Liars)

Though I’m not hitching my hopes on Dubya or Big Dick resigning in disgrace (more likely, they’ll sooner be dragged out of the White House kicking and screaming, or hatch another terrorist plot to suspend the elections for good), resignation seems to be looking pretty good as an option. Especially since the Dimocrats aren’t going to revive impeachment any time soon……damn them to hell.

Dimocrat Cave-In Smothers Cindy Sheehan

Well, well, well…guess who became the  first announced public victim of the Great Dimocratic Iraqi Cave-In???  None other than the patron saint of war mom protesters herself, Cindy Sheehan.

From her blog entry at AfterDowningStreet.org:

I have endured a lot of smear and hatred since Casey was killed and especially since I became the so-called “Face” of the American anti-war movement. Especially since I renounced any tie I have remaining with the Democratic Party, I have been further trashed on such “liberal blogs” as the Democratic Underground. Being called an “attention whore” and being told “good riddance” are some of the more milder rebukes.

I have come to some heartbreaking conclusions this Memorial Day Morning. These are not spur of the moment reflections, but things I have been meditating on for about a year now. The conclusions that I have slowly and very reluctantly come to are very heartbreaking to me.

The first conclusion is that I was the darling of the so-called left as long as I limited my protests to George Bush and the Republican Party. Of course, I was slandered and libeled by the right as a “tool” of the Democratic Party. This label was to marginalize me and my message. How could a woman have an original thought, or be working outside of our “two-party” system?

However, when I started to hold the Democratic Party to the same standards that I held the Republican Party, support for my cause started to erode and the “left” started labeling me with the same slurs that the right used. I guess no one paid attention to me when I said that the issue of peace and people dying for no reason is not a matter of “right or left”, but “right and wrong.”

I am deemed a radical because I believe that partisan politics should be left to the wayside when hundreds of thousands of people are dying for a war based on lies that is supported by Democrats and Republican alike. It amazes me that people who are sharp on the issues and can zero in like a laser beam on lies, misrepresentations, and political expediency when it comes to one party refuse to recognize it in their own party. Blind party loyalty is dangerous whatever side it occurs on. People of the world look on us Americans as jokes because we allow our political leaders so much murderous latitude and if we don’t find alternatives to this corrupt “two” party system our Representative Republic will die and be replaced with what we are rapidly descending into with nary a check or balance: a fascist corporate wasteland. I am demonized because I don’t see party affiliation or nationality when I look at a person, I see that person’s heart. If someone looks, dresses, acts, talks and votes like a Republican, then why do they deserve support just because he/she calls him/herself a Democrat?

[…]

The most devastating conclusion that I reached this morning, however, was that Casey did indeed die for nothing. His precious lifeblood drained out in a country far away from his family who loves him, killed by his own country which is beholden to and run by a war machine that even controls what we think. I have tried every since he died to make his sacrifice meaningful. Casey died for a country which cares more about who will be the next American Idol than how many people will be killed in the next few months while Democrats and Republicans play politics with human lives. It is so painful to me to know that I bought into this system for so many years and Casey paid the price for that allegiance. I failed my boy and that hurts the most.

I have also tried to work within a peace movement that often puts personal egos above peace and human life. This group won’t work with that group; he won’t attend an event if she is going to be there; and why does Cindy Sheehan get all the attention anyway? It is hard to work for peace when the very movement that is named after it has so many divisions.

[…]

This is my resignation letter as the “face” of the American anti-war movement. This is not my “Checkers” moment, because I will never give up trying to help people in the world who are harmed by the empire of the good old US of A, but I am finished working in, or outside of this system. This system forcefully resists being helped and eats up the people who try to help it. I am getting out before it totally consumes me or anymore people that I love and the rest of my resources.

Good-bye, America…you are not the country that I love and I finally realized no matter how much I sacrifice, I can’t make you be that country unless you want it.

It’s up to you now.

And Mrs. Sheehan didn’t stop there, either….in a special open letter resignation to the Dimocrat leadership, posted in CounterPunch today, she tore new ones into them:

[….]

Naively, I set off on my tireless campaign calling on Congress to rescind George’s authority to wage his war of terror while asking him "for what noble cause" did Casey and thousands of other have to die. Now, with Democrats in control of Congress, I have lost my optimistic naiveté and have become cynically pessimistic as I see you all caving into "Mr. 28%"

There is absolutely no sane or defensible reason for you to hand Bloody King George more money to condemn more of our brave, tired, and damaged soldiers and the people of Iraq to more death and carnage. You think giving him more money is politically expedient, but it is a moral abomination and every second the occupation of Iraq endures, you all have more blood on your hands.

Ms. Pelosi, Speaker of the House, said after George signed the new weak as a newborn baby funding authorization bill: "Now, I think the president’s policy will begin to unravel." Begin to unravel? How many more of our children will have to be killed and how much more of Iraq will have to be demolished before you all think enough unraveling has occurred? How many more crimes will BushCo be allowed to commit while their poll numbers are crumbling before you all gain the political "courage" to hold them accountable. If Iraq hasn’t unraveled in Ms. Pelosi’s mind, what will it take? With almost 700,000 Iraqis dead and four million refugees (which the US refuses to admit) how could it get worse? Well, it is getting worse and it can get much worse thanks to your complicity.

[….]

So, Democratic Congress, with the current daily death toll of 3.72 troops per day, you have condemned 473 more to these early graves. 473 more lives wasted for your political greed: Thousands of broken hearts because of your cowardice and avarice. How can you even go to sleep at night or look at yourselves in a mirror? How do you put behind you the screaming mothers on both sides of the conflict? How does the agony you have created escape you? It will never escape me…I can’t run far enough or hide well enough to get away from it.

By the end of September, we will be about 80 troops short of another bloody milestone: 4000, and MoveOn.org will hold nationwide candlelight vigils and you all will be busy passing legislation that will snuff the lights out of thousands more human beings.

Congratulations Congress, you have bought yourself a few more months of an illegal and immoral bloodbath. And you know you mean to continue it indefinitely so "other presidents" can solve the horrid problem BushCo forced our world into.

It used to be George Bush’s war. You could have ended it honorably. Now it is yours and you all will descend into calumnious history with BushCo.

Pretty sad to see, I’d say, and quite painful to watch…..but more than necessary to break through the psychological chains and see the truth.

I’m sure that we will be seeing the "attention whore traitor" smack from the "lesser evil" Dimocrat loyalists any time now….as if Cindy Sheehan would be held personally responsible for allowing Dubya to get his blank check.

Only message that I’d send to Mrs. Sheehan would be this: Welcome to the club….and there is an alternative.

 

Welcome to the Fighting 101st, Earthside…

In the midst of my anger over the Dimocrats craveness, I may have discovered a new soldier for the Fighting 101st Progressive Headbussa Brigade(TM).

Say hello to the blog Earthside, who has been excellent in revealing the truth about the Dimocrats and their latest spinelessness, and the real agenda behind the Bush "surges". To with, this nugget:

Okay … this isn’t hard to figure out.

The propaganda ‘leak’ is that the Iranians and al Qaida and the Sunnis and the Shias and CHAOS and Smersh and all the forces of the Illuminati are going to join together to force the U.S. military out of Iraq this summer.

So, Bush is planning to send even more troops into Iraq, to double-up on the ‘surge’. Naturally, this means that any kind of judgement about the effectiveness of the ‘surge’ in September is going to be way too premature. Maybe by December, okay?

With no timetables in the Iraq funding legislation that the Democrats are reportedly working on, well, Bush will have achieved a political triumph, he will crow that his plan has been ‘approved’ for all intents and purposes — and U.S. troops will be in Iraq indefinitely.

In other words, the ‘surge’ plan of January this year was a lie … and the Democrats are preparing to cave-in because Bush and Cheney and Rush Limbaugh will call them nasty names and they don’t want that!

What a country, eh?

Other than forgetting Unka Karl Rove, and the mendacity of "liberals" like MoveOn and Kos, I’d say that he’s exactly on target.

Duly racked, and I will place in the Blogroll when I get back from work.

…And While Dimocrats Retreat; Dubya Surges…Again

And. right on the cue, this is how Dubya rewards the Dimocrats for giving him basically all he wants: by grabbing more and more.

Say hello to the "second surge" plan…thanks to the San Francisco Chronicle:

 

Bush could double force by Christmas

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

(05-22) 04:00 PDT Washington — The Bush administration is quietly on track to nearly double the number of combat troops in Iraq this year, an analysis of Pentagon deployment orders showed Monday.

The little-noticed second surge, designed to reinforce U.S. troops in Iraq, is being executed by sending more combat brigades and extending tours of duty for troops already there.

The actions could boost the number of combat soldiers from 52,500 in early January to as many as 98,000 by the end of this year if the Pentagon overlaps arriving and departing combat brigades.

Separately, when additional support troops are included in this second troop increase, the total number of U.S. troops in Iraq could increase from 162,000 now to more than 200,000 — a record-high number — by the end of the year.

The numbers were arrived at by an analysis of deployment orders by Hearst Newspapers.

"It doesn’t surprise me that they’re not talking about it," said retired Army Maj. Gen. William Nash, a former U.S. commander of NATO troops in Bosnia, referring to the Bush administration. "I think they would be very happy not to have any more attention paid to this."

The first surge was prominently announced by President Bush in a nationally televised address on Jan. 10, when he ordered five more combat brigades to join 15 brigades already in Iraq.

The buildup was designed to give commanders the 20 combat brigades Pentagon planners said were needed to provide security in Baghdad and western Anbar province.

Since then, the Pentagon has extended combat tours for units in Iraq from 12 months to 15 months and announced the deployment of additional brigades.

Taken together, the steps could put elements of as many as 28 combat brigades in Iraq by Christmas, according the deployment orders examined by Hearst Newspapers.

Army spokesman Lt. Col. Carl S. Ey said there was no effort by the Army to carry out "a secret surge" beyond the 20 combat brigades ordered by Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

"There isn’t a second surge going on; we’ve got what we’ve got," Ey said. "The idea that there are ever going to be more combat brigades in theater in the future than the secretary of defense has authorized is pure speculation."

Ey attributed the increase in troops to "temporary increases that typically occur during the crossover period" as arriving combat brigades move into position to replace departing combat brigades.

He said that only elements of the eight additional combat brigades beyond the 20 already authorized would actually be in Iraq in December.

The U.S. Joint Forces Command, based in Norfolk, Va., that tracks combat forces heading to and returning from Iraq, declined to discuss unit-by-unit deployments.

"Due to operational security, we cannot confirm or discuss military unit movements or schedules," Navy Lt. Jereal Dorsey said in an e-mail.

The Pentagon has repeatedly extended unit tours in Iraq during the past four years to achieve temporary increases in combat power. For example, three combat brigades were extended up to three months in November 2004 to boost the number of U.S. troops from 138,000 to 150,000 before, during and after the Jan. 30, 2005, Iraqi national elections.

Lawrence Korb, an assistant defense secretary for manpower during the Reagan administration, said the Pentagon deployment schedule enables the Bush administration to achieve quick increases in combat forces in the future by delaying units’ scheduled departures from Iraq and overlapping them with arriving replacement forces.

"The administration is giving itself the capability to increase the number of troops in Iraq," Korb said. "It remains to be seen whether they actually choose to do that."

Nash said the capability could reflect an effort by the Bush administration to "get the number of troops into Iraq that we’ve needed there all along."

I’m sure if this strategy works as well as the first "surge" did (like, not at all), then the next step will be formal reinstatement of the military draft.  I wonder how many Dimocrats will cave in on that??

Two-party system, my ass. Maybe time for an alternative.

 

More Excellent Democrat Dimocrat Betrayal And CYA

As if it wasn’t enough for the \”Dimocrats\” (thank you, Earthside, for that timely gloss) to sell their voters out on Iraq, get a load of how they plan to mask their craven vote today through the magic of parlimentary rule making.  Seems like they’ve been learning big time from the mechanisms of Tom DeLay when the Repubs were in charge..probably the only thing that they got from watching \”Bug Spray\” roll them over for so long.

David Sirorta of Working for Change gives the game away today at his blog (emphasis added by moi):

Today is the day House Democrats are expected to vote on Iraq – except, news out of Washington this morning says the leadership has come up with a nifty little trick to try to prevent the public from seeing who voted for giving Bush a blank check, and who voted against it. If you thought Democrats were behaving like cowards by caving into a President at a three-decade low in presidential polling and giving him the very blank check they explicitly promised not to give him during the 2006 election, you ain’t seen nothing yet. We are watching the rise of the Dick Cheney Democrats – that is, the rise of Democrats who endorse governing in secret and hiding the public’s business from the public itself.

Here’s how it is expected to work today in a process only Dick Cheney could love (though you never know – it could change at the last minute). Every bill comes to the House floor with what is known as a “rule” that sets the terms of the debate over the legislation in question. House members first vote to approve this parliamentary rule, and then vote on the legislation. Today, however, Democrats are planning to essentially include the Iraq blank check bill IN the rule itself, by making sure the underlying bill the rule brings to the floor includes no timelines for withdrawal, and that the rule only allows amendments that fund the war with no restrictions – blank check amendments that House Democratic leaders know Republicans will have the votes to pass.

This means that when the public goes to look for the real vote on the Iraq supplemental bill, the public won’t find that. All we will find is a complex parliamentary procedure vote, which was the real vote. Democratic lawmakers, of course, will use the Memorial Day recess to tell their angry constituents they really are using all of their power to end the war, that they voted against the Republican blank check amendment which the rule deliberately propels, and that the vote on the rule – which was the real vote for war – wasn’t really the important vote, when, in fact, they know very well it is the biggest vote on the war since original 2002 authorization for the invasion. It is a devious, deliberately confusing cherry on top of the manure sundae being served up to the American public, which voted Democrats into office on the premise that they would use their congressional majority to end the war. To read more on these deliberately complex machinations, see Congressional Quarterly’s piece just out on the web.

All of this is happening at the time top Republican leaders are making ever more sociopathic statements at odds with mainstream public opinion. Today, as just one example, House Republican Conference Chairman Adam Putnam (R-FL) cheered on the blank check, telling Roll Call that “You drop Murtha [troop readiness standards], you drop withdrawal, the troops win.” He doesn’t explain how popular proposals to better equip and train American soldiers for combat and force the Bush administration to come up with a plan for redeploying troops out of harms way means “troops win.

— Excerpted from Sirota Blog: Vote Alert: Dick Cheney Dems Plan To Hide Votes On Iraq TODAY

Oh, and just so you think that this sort of behavior by the Dims only applies to Iraq (and soon to come, Iran), well Sirota bursts that bubble real quick.

If this secretive behavior seems familiar, it should. You may recall that in the past two weeks, the same Dimocratic leadership that is now trying to hide its votes on Iraq negotiated a secret free trade deal with the White House, steamrolling its other key Election 2006 pledge to stop lobbyist-written trade policy. The legislative texts of the trade pacts in question remain concealed from the public, though K Street lobbyists have told reporters they have received “assurances” that any of the much-touted provisions that purport to protect labor and the environment will be written to be unenforceable.

Oh, and did I forget to mention the betrayal on oil company price gouging, too??  See this CounterPunch article on that.

But, anyways…the Dim leadership already has a plan ready to face up to their pissed off constituents.  Mostly, lie through their teeth and rant about \”it’s all Dubya’s fault\”:

Not surprisingly, Democrats are reacting to questions about why they are trying to secretly defy the will of the public and disrespecting their Election 2006 campaign in the same way they always do: Like wailing infants. Last week, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charlie Rangel (D-NY) took to PBS to lace into critics of the secret trade deal he negotiated, saying he should have “ignored” his own Democratic colleagues raising questions because they are “wasting my time.”

On the war, same thing. Rep. Artur Davis (D-AL), for instance, today criticized Moveon.org in Roll Call newspaper for asking Democrats to vote down the blank check proposal, saying “I would urge MoveOn and others to recognize that the person who is extending this war is George Bush.” This is the same Artur Davis who whined to reporters that it was “unfortunate” he was exposed for taking thousands of dollars of credit card industry cash in exchange for his support for the credit card-industry written Bankruptcy Bill in 2005.

Oh, how really touching for MoveOn.org to finally rise up in opposition.  Now, if they hadn’t been so damn busy pimping the Dim establishment and torpedoing the likes of Woolsey, Waters and real progressive Democrats in offering a genuine antiwar bill that would have REAL:LY cut off funds to Dubya’s war, maybe it wouldn’t sound so farcical and hypocritial today…

But, then, Davis is trying to pull the same kind of rhetorical trick that so many other Democrats pull: Attempting to make us believe they are merely innocent bystanders, and that there isn’t that document known as the “Constitution” that gives Congress the power of the purse over George Bush. We’re all just supposed to be totally psyched that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D) says she is unhappy that this is all happening, even though Pelosi is simultaneously using her power to schedule this vote, and set it up in a way so as to hide it from the public. She would have us believe that September will be “really the moment of truth for this war,” as Congressional Quarterly quotes her saying – as if it’s no big deal that more troops will die because she and her colleagues are willing to drag their feet from the comfortable guarded confines of the U.S. Capitol. We’re all just supposed to wildly applaud when Rahm Emanuel (D-IL) goes on national television to say that the bill they are pushing is “the beginning of the end of the president’s policy in Iraq”we’re not supposed to know that he and his colleagues stripped out the timelines for withdrawal and even stripped out waivable troop readiness standards.

Sirota later goes on to pin his hopes on either 20 Dems voting with the Repubs — who would rather an open debate rule for baiting the \”cut-and-run party\” for \”abandoning our troops\” and for cutting out all the \”pork barrel\” spending (including the increase in the minimum wage — to kill this rule and start fresh (yeah, right); or, failing that, a filibuster in the Senate by the likes of Sanders, Feingold, Dodd, and Kerry. Boy, is he the eternal optimist, considering the record of the Senate Dims on holding on to principle (as displayed so explicitly in the Supreme Court nomination \”fights\” against Alito and Roberts).  And besides, doesn’t he know that Joe Lieberman can still switch parties and give the GOP Senate control anyway??

This is your \”lesser evil\” party, folks.  What ‘cha gonna do about it??

I know what I’ve done.

 

Nez Kicks, Ren Rocks, BfP Flames, BA Whacks….and J-Val Merely Sucks

[UPDATE (5-14-07): Thanks to some recent clarifications by ‘Da Queer Bitch; I’ve gotten some second thoughts on Jessica Valenti that may have made my critique of her a bit too strong and off the mark…more on that in a future post. I’m retracting my original critique of her pending a further review of her book, and making editing adjustments thereof to this post.]

I am writing this at around 1 AM (Lafayette time), just off a shift from work, while my mind is still awake before the sheep start barging in….so excuse the stream of conscious thought.

To say that it’s been an interesting week around the Prog 101 Fighting Headbussa Brigade ranks would be a freakin’ understatement.

First, there’s The Badassssssss Mexicano known as Nezua over at The Unapologetic Mexican , who’s been taking the names and kicking the asses with a series of pinpoint accurate posts on not only the react to the May Day LA police riot, but the seeming lack of action amongst certain A-list liberal bloggers….not to mention the overall attitude of what he derides as the “WHITEPROGRESSIVE”(tm) attitude towards issues affecting people of color and poor people.

I find it very interesting, as a hallmark of this “White Lens” that I continually speak of that one group of people is allowed to decide the reality for another group (or many groups), as well as what is best for them. True, it’s infuriating, but more than that, it’s sad. It’s frustrating. It’s challenging. Because the very dynamic that continues harm on the Brown™ prevents the mind suffering behind the dynamic from coming to awareness of same. So tricky.

This “knowing what’s best for all” is typically White® and what I call “the colonizer’s” view. If you grok my use there, you understand better the controversial post I wrote about Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt’s transracial adoption habit, titled Nezua’s 2006 Colonizers of the Year.. When understanding this “colonizer’s view,” as I call it, we can just hear Kirk on the bridge, talking about some good but primitive group of aliens that need the Federation’s intervention to find their way. This is part of why some grow so very offended and befuddled by my take on Jolie. In their eyes, I am attacking benevolence. How gross. What on earth is wrong with me? How DARE I posit that placing a brown baby from some “third world country” and immersing them in the home and culture of an American celebrity, giving them a snazzy new name and a place in the roost of our collective dreams—American celebrity—was not THE MOST bestest thing you could ever do? What am I? Some kind of Jolie-hater? Some kind of woman-hater? Some kind of commie?

A recent comment on the post asked me “where’s the data to support the claim that kids uprooted from their ‘true’ cultural/ethnic heritage and raised in the US suffer/are alienated/resent their colonizing parents?” And I have to assume they did not read the thread. And thus, don’t really want to learn about what we are discussing.

“Data” they want, so they say. And what would this be? Books housed in accredited libraries, perhaps, they want. Science journals measuring the fractions that add up to a pile of sharp-edged and fractured identity and pain in an individual. I don’t have that data. What I do have are numerous blogs that swarmed to link to me after that post. Blogs like The Transracial Korean Adoptee Nexus and Twice the Rice and Racilicious. I got letters from transracial adoptees thanking me profusely for making the post. I dug up wounds, and posts ensued where memories, and pain and anger poured out, and others reading got to understand a bit of what was behind such a seemingly benign and benevolent act as the wiping out of a person’s culture in the name of “colorblindness.” Those who wanted to understand, that is. Because like that commenter’s rebuttal to the post, most challenges such as this—”prove to me that my view on others is wrong”—come in the form of an impossible request. There is no “proving” to these people that their views on others are not the end-all-be-all on that issue. If I point them to personal stories, they say that this is “largely speculative and anecdotal.” Very snazzy English. Very arrogant Deciders. They refuse to consider that they may not understand everything in the world, even when at issue is the lives of others, the thoughts of others, the feelings of others.

This is the White Lens. And it will not be pried off. This is why my brown friends do not engage in trying to change any minds on it. The owner must one day turn and realize there is a painful glare in their eye. Then, they can do the work of tearing it away themselves. And just as my verb choice indicates, there will be pain in this loss of vantage point, as it implies a loss of privilege.

— excerpted from “The Unapologetic Mexican: The True Front of Progressivism”; reposted at Jesus General and CorrenteWire

I’d rather that you go over there to Nez’s blog and read up the whole post and the commentary…I can’t do the man more justice than that.

Segue over to the lucious and lovely — but very deadly, if you push her too far — Renegade Evolution, who has been spreading her…..errrrrrrr…..wings of late on almost everything.  Like, for instance, the apparant conflict amongst some feminists between freedom of choice concerning abortion and reproductive rights, and the supposed lack thereof concerning consuming and producing porn.

When it comes to abortion, the battle cry is often “Her body, her choice! Her right! You do not get to question! How dare you judge? How dare you ask? How dare you seek to control, influence, shame, or otherwise do anything to this woman? It is Her Choice!”

But when it comes to porn, well…it’s not her choice! She’s been duped, controlled, has no choice! She cannot be expected to think and decide for herself! There must be something wrong with her! She must have been abused, or on drugs, or tricked! We must ask! We can judge! It is our business! She did not make a choice, there is no such thing as a choice when it comes to this, no one would make this choice! No one would willingly and with forethought do that with their body! There is something wrong with her! This is not a choice!

Well, see, I find that ironic, and little sickening, actually. Truth is both are choices women make, in a variety of conditions, for a variety of reasons. No choice is made in a vacuum, but both are choices. Her choice. Yet one is supported, defended, and protected without question in a great many circles. The other is not accorded that same consideration, at all, in those same circles. Both come down to the same thing…the idea of a woman’s right and ability to choose what to do with her body and what happens to and in it…yet…

One choice is a sacred, personal, and rallying point choice.

The other is decidedly…not.

Why is that? Do tell. Call me curious.

— excerpted from Renegade Evolution: Abortion and Porn: Choice Revisited

And then, there is BlackAmazon, who always seems to find the perfect stream-of-conscious phrase to put some jackass fool in his or her place….especially when she gets really pissed off.  Like this throuogh ass-whupping leveled at Feministing’s Jessica Valenti for her recently released bromide for rich Valley Girl slut wannabes book,  Full Frontal Feminism:


Nubian who has of course left for her sanity was right about this six months ago

WHEN SHE JUST SAW THE DAMN COVER

But this has nothing to do with me.

As a woman of color

As a woman of a certain class

As a woman of a certain education level and mindset

As a woman of a certain faith

So officially when I say

I’m not a feminist but,

If this is how you will be introducing “feminism” to young women,

Ms Valenti

When I say this is not me,

I would appreciate if you not be so brilliantly uninformed as to try and disrespectful as to try and dismiss offhand like I was some recalcitrant toddler or couch your condescension by only quoting the most baseless ( yet the fact it comes up in every piece you talk about ) homophobic bile in an effort to make yourself look better.

As a 22 year old women reading this book , I felt disrespected. As a teacher of nearly 9 years especially of “at risk ” youth, I was appalled.

Young women do not need friends who reduce their problems with feminism to some issue with the coolness factor.

The definitely do not need it from people who would choose a very specific half naked torso and various approximations of Valley girl lingo .

I am a young woman who is NOT a feminist. I am a young woman who is one of many young women who has disagreed ,disengaged, delinked, and been disrespected by many of the feminist sisterhood.

I am part of a much longer line of women who has been caricatured, stolen from, and used .

— excerpted from Having Read The Fine Print….: Imperative of the Life

BA has a hell of a lot more to say about J-Val and her brand of feminism…but you get the gist of where’s she coming from.  Ren gets in her licks as well here.

And then there is the saddest part of this post….namely, that Brownfemipower may have had enough of blogging; mostly from a combination of continuously banging her head against the wall from frustration over the constant racist barbs she recieves for defending herself as a radical Latina.  As in…this nice masterpiece love letter to her that she posted yesterday:

I am tired of reading sob stories detailing how these criminal aliens are “invisible” and must “live in the shadows.”

Myself, I see them everywhere. Target. Walmart. Mobil gas station. My apartment complex. My place of employment.

They talk loud in Mexican and advertise their lawless presence here in the US. They move into our neighborhoods though we make it obvious we don’t want them. They march openly and defiantly against America yet they survive chiefly as a parasite to America’s public assistance programs.

UGH! What an ugly race!!!!
love,
Ms Taletha of Texas | Thrillseeker96@yahoo.com | IP: 140.198.105.105

Such deep affection for the human race, no??? Could have been written 40 years ago about Black folk…or gay/lesbian folk, or Native Americans, or…..

But it may have been something else that finally snapped Bfp over the edge…something related to J-Val’s brand of poor rich Valley Girl feminism. Quoteh Bfp in her “Fuck this shit, I’m outa here” post today:

[…]  * white women continue to be the dirty little slut of color at their oh-so-funny south of the border parties…

* but will it make a difference to anybody that most latinas have had to deal with the “HOTT” mamacita stereotype most of their lives? that white women express their sexuality by being “exotic” and “spicy” like the dirty little slut mexicans (or black women, asian women, arab women etc)–and that their sexuality is based on nothing more than our embarrassment and shame? does it make a difference at all? Does it make a difference that it’s NOT the patriarchy that is fucking up latina’s sexuality in this case–and that it’s NOT “just sex” either–that I’m not slut-shaming, I’m not sucking the patriarchy’s dick–I’m just sick and fucking TIRED IN MY BONES of racist white women making me feel ashamed and horrified to be Latina? And scared to death that my daughter is going to hook up with some racist white man or woman who thinks that she’s a dirty hot mamacita that loves to fuck like crazy? Your sexuality makes me fear for my daughters mental and physical well being BECAUSE I KNOW WHAT IT’S DONE TO ME–does that mean nothing to you???

[…]

* I just don’t have the drive any more–nobody gives a shit about mother’s being ripped from their children, nobody gives a shit if the cockroach slut is “rounded up” (and i don’t care if you hate that term, you’re still a bitch for saying it) and incarcerated like an animal, and EVERYBODY considers that a criminal latina may be lying when she speaks her fucking reality–oh, and I forgot–centralizing women in the immigration debate is dividing the community, letting the whites win, blah blah blah (as told to me by both male and female Latin@s).

I’m beginning to think that nubian was right–that there really is no place for a woman of color to speak specifically AS A WOMAN OF COLOR in this blogging world–blog posts directed solely toward other women of color get a handful of comments–blog posts to anybody, begging somebody to please, for god’s sake, pay attention–only get attention if they are angry and hostile and contain more energy than I’m willing to put into any more.

* And goddamn it, yes it bothers the shit out of me that when black or white women are shit on by sexism, men of color have something to say about it, but when latin@ mothers are fucking ripped from their children, imprisoned, deported–there’s silence–silence that is interrupted by nationalistic fuckheads that call me traitor and vendida. Is it being a traitor to remember your own? It’s being a traitor to love the your sisters and mothers and aunts and grandmothers?

I’ll just let her words speak for themselves….although BA’s words in response can speak volumes, too.

I notice that no matter how many times Twisty degrades and insults you yoou make sure you keep her as a high respected blogosphere link.

No matter how many times you steal form BFP and report race issues smugly with little consideration, you can’t be arsed to put up one sentence when she’s gone?

Stumbling into conversations about memories of bar and fictitious happy childhoods and I’m not evil I swear it while she and others fight for our lives.

You talk about wanting to hold media responsible yet the only attention you pay is to ” big fish ” while women who claim to be fore literally face death and fury and threats for putting words to page.

How many times does KOS of Firedoglake have to do dumbshit before the price of it to real people is less than the opportunity to mug with Hilary Clinton or have a new byline ?

Links for us and comments are not about traffic. Links are what makes it known that you cant come to a certain place and degrade our lines. comments are the voices that let the trolls and the assholes know you will be reckoned with.

They are the things that keep us from disappearing in the night. You can’t be bothered to be challenged or discuss or even say

We’re here so you don’t have to be alone in front of a motherfucking keyboard.

While debate dissecting our shit for your own self glorification

and you know this when you joke at calling people sluts. You know this when you sit and talka bout how much smarter you are than the discourse, you know this when you call us stupid, or misquote us , or mischaracterize us , or deliberately disrespect or requests for privacy and autonomy.

Use our names and bodies for press or conveniently rember how important it is to be one of us when you can get paid.

But it’s not really powerful until then,

We can’t organize till then

Our lives aren’t worth it till then

YOU KNOW THIS

You know how little it takes to not feel alone or left out

You know how powerful a simple I’m here can be

And you fail

you fail us time and time again

Clavicles are more important than bombs, than children

Torsos need more defense than the first amendment

with I don’t have the time or I didn’t know or I can’t I can’t or oops I missed it

but never a chance to get paid for it or worshipped for it?

Time and time a gain the ball seems to get dropped with no steps towards being better

AND YOU WANT PEOPLE TO TRUST YOU WITH A MOVEMENT?!!

Fuck you .

 

This, friends, neighbors, and Clones, is the very reason I am a radical, not a liberal.

An Independent Leftist, not just a liberal Democrat.

A (pro-)sex radical, not just a libertarian.

A democratic socialist, not just a social democrat.

A Black man, not only an African American.

Because I know more than anything else that it’s not just right-wingers and Klan bigots who use and abuse Black  folk and Brown folk and female folk and sexual outcasts.

They are just the most boisterous and open about their hatred.

It’s the pseudo-“liberals” who mask their loathing of us outlaws behind the sacchrine of “unity” and “equality” and “human rights” and “colorblindness” and “let’s all get along” and vote for the lesser evil because the Republicans are pure evil”…yet are the first to grip an moan about “why you talking about us; we’re your saviors?” when called out for their presumptions of speaking for the outlaws.

And yet, for all their preening and squawking, they still can’t beat the conservatives and “centrists” at anything.

No thank you, J-Val, Kos, and the rest.  We outlaws aren’t playing this game anymore..at least, not with your rules.

Between Feministing Ariel Levy and Genderberg; Daily Kos and Townhall; Democrat and Republican; Radfem, Liberfem, and AntiFem; MRA and Burning Man, Randi Rhodes and Bill O’Reilly, there is only a flip of the same tired coin of traditional White privilege.  For the rest of humanity, there is only the basic principle of social solidarity, struggle, and the queer notion that humanity is non-negotiable, and not subject to either debate or majority vote. 

To Nez, BfP, BA, Ren, Nina, and all the other outlaws:  may you ride long, fly high, and kick ass….and smile, laugh, and fuck a hellava lot during the journey, too.

Time For A Little Catch-Up: COPA Struck Again; Dems Flash Cut-n-Run Asses…Again

First some good news on the sex war front:

Judge strikes down ’98 law aimed at online porn

Associated Press
San Jose Mercury News
Article Launched:03/22/2007 06:35:49 AM PDT

PHILADELPHIA – A 1998 law designed to keep pornography away from children on the Internet infringes on free-speech rights and is easily sidestepped, a federal judge ruled Thursday.

The judge blocked enforcement of the Child Online Protection Act, Congress’ second attempt to protect children from online porn.

The law, which has never been enforced, is unconstitutionally vague and fails to address current concerns about online predators, social networking sites and chat rooms, Senior U.S. District Judge Lowell Reed Jr. wrote.

"Even defendant’s own study shows that all but the worst performing (software) filters are far more effective than COPA would be at protecting children from sexually explicit material on the Web," said Reed, who presided over a monthlong trial in the fall.

The law would criminalize Web sites that allow children to access material deemed "harmful to minors" by "contemporary community standards." The sites would be expected to require a credit card number or other proof of age. Penalties include a $50,000 fine and up to six months in prison.

Sexual health sites, Salon.com and other Web publishers backed by the American Civil Liberties Union challenged the law on grounds it would have a chilling effect on speech. Reed agreed it would.

"Perhaps we do the minors of this country harm if First Amendment protections, which they will with age inherit fully, are chipped away in the name of their protection," he wrote.

The U.S. Supreme Court upheld a temporary injunction in 2004 on grounds the law was likely to be struck down and was perhaps outdated.

Daniel Weiss of Focus on the Family Action, a lobbying arm of the conservative Christian group, said it would continue to press Congress for a workable law.

"The judge seems to indicate there’s really no way for Congress to pass a good law to protect kids online. I just think that’s not a good response," Weiss said.

To defend the nine-year-old law, government lawyers attacked software filters as burdensome and less effective, even though they have previously defended their use in public schools and libraries.

The plaintiffs expect the Justice Department to appeal. Justice spokesman Charles Miller did not immediately return a phone message Thursday.

"I would hope that Attorney General Gonzalez would save the U.S. public’s money and not try to further defend what is an unconstitutional statute," said lawyer John Morris of the Center for Democracy and Technology, which wrote a brief in the case.

"That money could better be used to help educate kids about Internet safety issues," he said.

The plaintiffs argued that filters work best because they let parents set limits based on their own values and a child’s age.

Reed concluded that filters have become highly effective and that the government – if it wants to protect children – could do more to promote or subsidize them.

The law addresses material accessed by children under 17, but only applies to content hosted in the United States.

The Web sites that challenged the law said fear of prosecution might lead them to shut down or move their operations offshore, beyond the reach of the U.S. law. They also said the Justice Department could do more to enforce obscenity laws already on the books.

Judge Reed noted in his 83-page ruling that, since 2000, the Justice Department has initiated fewer than 20 prosecutions for obscenity that did not also involve other charges such as child pornography or attempts to have sex with minors.

While the government argued for the use of credit cards as a screening device, Reed concluded from the evidence that there is currently no accurate way to verify the age of Internet users. And he agreed that sites that require a credit-card to view certain pages would see a sharp drop-off in users.

The 1998 law followed the Communications Decency Act of 1996, Congress’ first attempt to regulate online pornography. The Supreme Court in 1997 deemed key portions of that law unconstitutional because it was too vague and trampled on adults’ rights.

COPA narrowed the restrictions to commercial Web sites and defined indecency more specifically.

"This is the second time Congress has tried this, and both times the courts have struck it down. I don’t see how Congress could write a constitutional statute," the ACLU’s Chris Hansen, a lead attorney on the case, said.

In 2000, Congress passed a law requiring schools and libraries to use software filters if they receive certain federal funds. The high court upheld that law in 2003.

Joan Walsh, Salon.com’s editor-in-chief, said she was deposed at about the same time the magazine was deciding to publish photos of naked prisoners at Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prison.

"This law would have let any one of 93 U.S. attorneys … (say) our Abu Ghraib photos were harmful to minors, and the burden would have been on us to prove that they weren’t," Walsh said.

Somewhere, on this earth tonight, Barbara Nitke is celebrating….but I’ll hold my breath until Abu Gonzales loses the expected appeals to the higher courts.

Not so good news, though, is the final resolution of the Great Democratic Party Cave-In on funding the war in Iraq and any future adventures in Iran..and as before, Richard of American Leftist has the story:

The supplemental funding bill has cleared the House with exactly the number of votes required for passage:

The House of Representatives voted today, by the narrowest possible margin and after an unusually emotional debate, to set a timetable for bringing American troops home from Iraq.

The bill received 218 votes in favor, the minimum needed for passage in the 435-seat chamber. There were 212 votes opposed. The Democratic leadership held the voting open for two additional minutes past the originally scheduled 15 to lock up the majority. Vote-counters had predicted beforehand that the outcome would be very close.

 

Of course, the timetables are not binding upon the President, as he now has the funds to continue to do as he wishes in Iraq and Afghanistan, and, even, when the mood strikes, Iran, assuming, of course, that they survive the Senate, which is doubtful.

Who made this victory for the proponents of perpetual war in the Middle East possible? It’s shocking, and should never be forgotten:

With Democrats holding 233 seats and Republicans with 201, Democrats were able to afford only 15 "no" votes. Accordingly, Pelosi, and her leadership team spent days trying to convince members that the bill was Congress’ best chance of forcing Bush to change course—an argument that was aided when they added more than $20 billion in domestic spending in an effort to lure votes.

They got a breakthrough Thursday when four of the bill’s most consistent critics said they would not stand in its way. California Democrats Lynn Woolsey, Diane Watson, Barbara Lee and Maxine Waters said they would help round up support for the bill despite their intention to personally vote against it because it would not end the war immediately. "Despite my steadfast opposition, I have told the speaker that I will work with her to obtain the needed votes to pass the supplemental, but that in the end I must vote my conscience," said Rep. Diane Watson, D- Calif.

 

Is there any need to comment upon such self-serving personal and political expendiency? No doubt all four forcefully went about the task of persuading others to vote for the bill, because, if they failed, they would have then faced the prospect of drawing straws to determine who would be required to vote against their conscience for Pelosi. Rarely has there been such a compelling example of the much maligned situational ethics associated with some Californians.

Woolsey, Watson, Lee and Waters, the Gang of Four that rescued funding for the President’s wars in the Middle East, while keeping their own voting records scrupulously clean. The Iraqis and the Afghans will have to liberate themselves, as there is no prospect that the American political system will relinquish its grip upon their countries. A revolt within the US military is possible, probably more so as a consequence of this vote, but remote.

War with Iran is now a near certainty, as it provides an escape route for those who voted for this measure as well as those who only worked for its passage. Defeat of the bill was not only essential for the ongoing vitality of the antiwar movement in this country, as discussed here yesterday, but to also impair the ability of the President to expand the war. The Iranians, like the Iraqis and the Afghans, have been left to their own devices. We will have nothing to say about the decisions they make as to how to best defend themselves. No doubt the Gang of Four will express appropriate sentiments of sadness as violence in the Middle East intensifies as a consequence of their actions.

Naturally, much of the A-list liberal blogosphere has a slightly different view of the supplemental bill’s passage. Raw Story headlined their article of the bill’s passage "House Passes Iraq Pullout Bill" (conveniently ignoring that the "timetables" set were entirely voluntary and negotiable based on the word of Dubya…who has renewed his threat to veto the bill anyway as another "liberal cut-and-run" measure); and Chris Bowers of MyDD was waxing enthusiastic about the great victory of "progressives" (despite the shameful political ball-squeezing and heavy-handed tactics used by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to jerk those progressives wanting a more solid bill for pullout into line).

Problem is, this bill probably won’t even get to Dubya’s desk in its current form anyway for the veto, because the Senate (49 Republicans and Joe Lieberman) will more than likely gut even those weak "timetables" and force the Dems to accept a "clean" bill fully supporting and enabling Dubya’s war games….and I won’t even get into the atrocious surrender to the right-wing Israeli lobbyists in not including wordage seeking Congressional approval for any invasion of Iran..basically giving a green light to any such action. 

So much for progressive principles within the Democratic Party.  I guess that not even Maxine Waters or Barbara Lee can avoid the ultimate folly of attempting to reform a centrist (and rapidly rightward-tacking) party from within. The money and the power of the corporate warmongers are simply too great.

The only way for true "progressives" and legitimate Leftists to really change the Democratic Party is to get the fuck out and form a REAL Left independent party…or better yet, a real movement.  Cold-War liberalism just won’t cut it anymore.

 

MoveOn.Org: The Liberal Wing of the DLC?!?!?!

Funny how "moderate" Democrats tend to act like….you know, "moderate" Democrats when faced with genuine Left opposition.  It’s not so funny, though, when putatively "liberal" groups start triangulating.

Richard over at American Leftist has a series of posts about the mendacity of the group MoveOn.org when it comes to attempting to neuter opposition to the dead-center politics of "mainstream" Democrats…especially on the issue of the Iraq War. It seems that the "centrists"  — led by Illinois Congressman Rahm Emanuel, the head of the House Democratic Caucus  — are attempting to nuke more liberal and substansial legislation to cut funding and force withdrawal of troops from Iraq, as well as prevent substansial opposition to any prospective invasion of Iran. To that end, Emanuel has been using both his power of the purse to threaten more liberal members with loss of funding for pet funding projects in their districts….and the pressure tactics have generally succeeded in intimidating most Democrats into submission…but with some notable and courageous exceptions (original citation from politico.com; emphasis added by Richard):

The most outspoken critics of the $124 billion wartime spending bill in the House are facing withering support in their fight to defeat it.

California Democratic Reps. Maxine Waters and Lynn Woolsey said that many of their liberal colleagues were caving under pressure from Democratic leaders who, according to at least one congressman, have threatened to block requests for new funds for his district.

They also cited MoveOn.org’s endorsement of the measure Monday as a blow to their efforts.

"For people who are undecided and looking for a reason to vote for the supplemental, MoveOn is going to make a difference, providing instant cover for these members," Woolsey said.

"In six months, I fear they will be really sorry because the president isn’t going to do what they want," she added, referring to waivers in the bill that allow the president to circumvent certain requirements.

"The supplemental" is a reference to a massive supplemental spending bill that is now being debated in Congress which includes, among other things, continued funding for the war in Iraq at the present levels, and would allow Dubya "flexibility" (read, a blank check) to circumvent rules and requirements and benchmarks. Most of the antiwar liberals wanted originally wanted to use the supplemental to cut off funding and place restrictions ultimately leading to a withdrawal of troops….but that grates in the side of "centrists" like Emanuel who really aren’t so opposed to the war in Iraq and invading Iran as they envy Dubya’s management of the war (and the largesse).

Where does MoveOn,org get into this:  Well, read on:

"MoveOn put out a dishonest poll that did not offer its members a real choice to end the war, and now the peace movement is lobbying activists to reform MoveOn or drop off its list," David Swanson, a board member of Progressive Democrats of America, said in an e-mail to The Politico. "I unsubscribed from MoveOn this morning."

In the poll, MoveOn.org gave its members a choice of supporting, opposing or being "not sure" of the plan proposed by the Democratic leadership, according to an e-mail sent to members Sunday by MoveOn.org official Eli Pariser.

It did not mention a more aggressive withdrawal proposal backed by Woolsey, Waters and Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.).

Pariser said MoveOn.org had held out as long as possible before backing the leadership proposal.

"We were basically declining to take a position as long as we could to strengthen the hand of the progressives. We did the poll at the last time we felt we could have an impact on the final vote."

He said he would support the progressive proposal if it came to a vote. "We’ll encourage people to vote for that and for the supplemental," he said. "We are trying to end the war. That’s the mandate."

Yeah, right…."end the war" by supporting a bill that allows the President to ignore its key restrictions, and keep the money flowing.

Of course, the bill will still probably be vetoed by Bush and attacked by Repubs as "typical liberal cut-and-run"…but, you know, we just gotta win back those good old "swing voters" and NASCAR dads who might be swayed by Karl Rove’s attack ads, do we?? And how in the hell does undercutting Waters and Lee (who, last time I saw opinion polls, represented the view of the overwhelming majority of public opinion) "strengthen progressives"….by feeding them to the lions???

Richard says all that is needed to say about this, so I’ll just quote him verbatum:

First things first: Eli Pariser, go fuck yourself.

Now, with that out of the way, let’s acknowledge the enormity of what the House Democrats are about to do. They are going to give Bush a blank check to continue the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan, with cosmetic timetables for withdrawal designed to deceive the public into believing that they oppose Bush’s policy. They have provided funding for military operations that can be expanded into an attack upon Iran, as they stripped the bill of language that would have required congressional approval.

In effect, as noted here last week and recognized by Pat Buchanan today, they have green lighted such an attack by adopting a Zionist exemption to the requirement that Congress declare war. In the post-9/11 world, the passage of this bill exposes bipartisan support for overt military operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, and, probably, Iran, with covert operations in Lebanon and Palestine. In short, US war from the beaches of Beirut to the border of Pakistan (and, possibly, even beyond, into the tribal regions of Pakistan itself).

[…quotes from military generals who oppose escalation snipped, see the original article…]

But people like Nancy Pelosi, Rahm Emanuel, Eli Pariser, and others in the leadership of MoveON.org, such as Joan Blades, could care less. Self-assured in the belief that they will not personally experience the consequences, they reduce the death and destruction associated with these current and probable future conflicts to political opportunism. Death, torture, brain injuries, loss of limbs, sexual assault, post-traumatic stress, that’s for Iraqis, Afghans and enlistees in the Marines, the Army and the Guard, while they fantasize about exploiting the victimization of others for electoral success and the joys of patronage.

As for MoveON.org itself, perhaps it is time to consider public confrontation and humiliation. The next time we learn of a purported MoveON.org antiwar event, like a vigil, or other such cynical nonsense, we might want to stop by and tell the participants, politely, of course, that we know that they, and the organization that they have affiliated themselves with, are the worst sort of hypocrites, professing a morality that conceals the most crass self-interest.

Public confrontation and humiliation…..and, perhaps, a REAL Left independent political party which isn’t controlled by corporate war profiteers or right-wing Likud Lobby fascists or "centrist" shysters.

In an earlier post, Richard channels an essay from CounterPunch depictiing the ill tactics of MoveOn to further rip them an new orfice (my apologies for the full quotation, but the entire quote is worth viewing):

For the introductory post on this subject, go here, just down below. Now, here’s more, from Sheldon Rampton and John Stauber over at Counterpunch:

On Sunday, MoveOn distributed a survey asking its members to vote on three options: support the Pelosi bill [the supplemental]; oppose it; or "not sure." MoveOn’s Eli Pariser described the survey in an email as an opportunity for members to participate in "a big decision coming up this week. … MoveOn is a member-directed organization – we believe that all of us, together, are smarter than any one of us." In fact, however, MoveOn’s survey was designed to conceal from its members the option of supporting the stronger anti-war amendment put forth by the Congressional Progressive Caucus.  [The Lee/Waters amendments]

There are, of course, other ways of running a survey. When TrueMajority.org recently surveyed its members about the best way forward, they offered three choices: the Lee plan, the Pelosi plan, and the option of demanding that Congress reject any further war funding, period. Only 24 percent of TrueMajority’s members supported the Pelosi plan – which appears to be the reason why MoveOn’s survey gave their members no choice but the Pelosi plan.

Even MoveOn’s rules for the war’s fourth-anniversary candlelight vigils expressly exclude anything specifically aimed at ending it. "There are many ways to commemorate the war anniversary – but MoveOn and other coalition members are coming together around solemn candlelight vigils," explains their website. "Events other than vigils that honor the sacrifice of our servicemen and women and their families will not be publicly posted here."

The fascinating aspect of this kind of message board control and survey manipulation, which, by the way, is nothing new, is the extent to which it creates the illusion that MoveON.org is an organization that makes decisions according to a process of grassroots consensus.

In fact, MoveON.org, to cite Noam Chomsky, manufactures consent within the boundaries established by Pariser, Joan Blades and their allies within the Democratic Party. It is the political equivalent of an astroturf group, a fake grassroots organization created by a corporate lobbyist or public relations firm to create the impression that the agenda of their client has broad based public support. One wonders the extent to MoveON.org has engaged in similar survey practices on issues such as health care (has MoveON.org surveyed its members about the suitability of a single payer system?) and media consolidation to align its grassroots base with the carefully calibrated policy decisions of the Democrats.

It is especially ironic, because liberals, as a means of concealing their inability to participate in any movement that supports the Palestinians, consistently reviles ANSWER for being a hierarchical organization that makes decisions and imposes them upon participants according to a vanguardist Marxist-Leninist model. Or, to put it more bluntly, ANSWER is Stalinist.

Yet, with MoveON.org, Pariser, Blades and the Democrats have implemented a Marxist-Leninist approach to political organization that has been far more effective than ANSWER could ever imagine. MoveON.org is basically the liberal wing of the Democratic Leadership Council, making sure that liberals, if they were so inclined, do not wander too far away from the pro-war, pro-business platform of the party. Just remember, when the attack upon Iran happens, MoveON.org played an important role in manufacturing liberal consent to finance it.

Actually, that would be kinda unfair to most Marxist-Leninsts…at least they oppose the war on fundamental principle.

Ahhh, the wonders of "lesser evil" politics….

The Obama Factor: The Next Jesse Jackson…Or Harold Ford With A Better Hairstyle??

Much has been written in the press this last week about  US Senator (from Illinois) Barack Obama’s announced 2008 candidacy for President of these United States….mostly either rehashing of the typical right-wing smears about his supposed "dual identity" as a converted Muslim to Christian (including the trumpted up charge of being raised in a militant Islamic madrassa school, which turned out to be more like a typical public school..which is probably good enough for our crypto wingnutters)…the bloviating of the "mainstream" press (mostly locked in for Hillary Clinton) about how he’s simply "too liberal" and inexperienced for the Presidency. (Interesting how any Black candidate to the left of Alan Keyes or Michael Steele who claims himself to be a Democrat is always tagged as "too liberal" and "too far to the Left"..even if he spends his entire political career pandering to the Right on matters of war and economics.)  Still, Obama has shown the gift of being quite…shall we say…articulate in the art of flowery speech making and overarching world vision — what the late John Kenneth Galbraith once tagged as "Dawnism"…and that may be enough to carry him at least to the primaries….before the full weight of DLC attacks, media intrusion, the stacked primary system, and Hillary’s money tree do him in…if he doesn’t get assassinated first by some crackpot nativist, that is.

The problem, though, for those of us who actually believe in progressive principles who may be moved to Obama due to dislike of the alternatives, is that underneath all that beautiful prose and verse that Obama spouts lies a hollow shell of a political platform not that far removed from the typical DLC center-right agenda…and especially for the masses of Black people looking for a leader that can fully represent their basic left-of-center interests, the Obama candicacy looks more and more like another hidden trap door to nothingness.

Some of the best critical analysis of Obama from the Black Left (though Kenneth Alexander Gray’s latest missive in CounterPunch is pretty decent) has come from the pens of Glen Ford and Bruce Dixon, the former founders and co-editors of the Black Commentator website who have now split off to run an more independent site caled The Black Agenda Report (BAR).  (Apparantly, Ford and Dixon didn’t like the movement of BC towards more conventional liberal Democrats.) Their original writings on Obama was when he was campaigning for his present seat, and covered the many ways in which Obama would mask his "centrist" politics with a progressive sheen….and his flip-flopping relationship with the Democratic Leadership Council. He had signed himself onto a list of DLC prospects; but when called on it by Ford and Dixon — then still at BC at the time — he crawfished and took his name off that list…only to resubmit it surrentipiously after he got elected.

The latest issue of BAR (in addition to a reprint of the Kenneth Alexander Gray CounterPunch article linked above) includes Glen Ford’s most recent blast of Obama as a pretender and a hollow shell of a Black politician pandering to conservatives and centrists at the expense of his Black progressive base. While the entire article is worth reading in its entirity to get the full flavor, a few excerpts are in order to set the tone:

Corporate media, an extension of Madison Avenue, eats this crap up. Barack Obama has “wide appeal” and is, therefore, a “saleable” product. But what are they selling, and to whom? They (and Obama) are certainly not selling an end to U.S. wars of aggression, or universal health care, or the right to housing, education, and a minimal standard of income. Most insidiously, Obama-mania does not even market substantive measures toward racial justice. Quite the opposite: it presents an Obama presidential candidacy as a palliative – a soothing potion – that on its face serves as an historical benchmark showing how far “America” – meaning [W]hite America – has come.ObamaHillary

Such is Obama’s carefully orchestrated message: Vote for me, and I’ll set you free – free like me! – from any obligation to reverse centuries of past wrongs or current crimes against African Americans; free to abandon universal health care as a national priority;  free to warn Iraqis that there will be “no more coddling” of them, as if 600,000 Iraqis have died from excess coddling; free to threaten “surgical missile strikes” against Iran in early 2006, and free to later back away from the warmongers’ bully pulpit when the political winds changed. Free!

[Picture of Obama canoodling with Hillary from original article]

Further down the article:

 Barack Obama has methodically created the impression that he feels no special obligation to African Americans (“There’s not a black America and white America and Latino America and Asian America; there’s the United States of America.”) – the source of his meteoric rise. It matters not what he feels inside, or what he wrote in a decade-old biography. Obama has eagerly signed on as a candidate of the center-right of the Democratic Party – a hair’s-breadth from Hillary Clinton, with whom I suspect he will eventually team-up.

[Pic of Ebony magazine cover of Obama and his wife in original snipped here due to formatting issues]

And what do African Americans get out of the deal? Far less than nothing. By assisting white Americans to believe that painless absolution of collective responsibility for the past and current national sins can be achieved by looking kindly on an ingratiating Black man’s presidential candidacy, Obama has become an active participant in the Great Diversion. He repeatedly reinforces the notion that noisy “partisan politics” is what’s wrong with America, rather than rapacious corporations, structural and overt racism, and rampaging militarism.

 Like I said….you have to go to the BAR site and read the entire article to get the full flavor of Ford’s bombthrowing…but it is more than worth it.

Of course, it’s not just liberals who play the "articulate Black man to address our issues" card….remember Congressman Harold Ford, who ran for the Tennessee Senate in ’06??  The one who got pilloried in the infamous "Call me" ad implying his love of White flesh and Playmates??  The Blue Dog conservative Democrat who actively sought after the Klan vote…even to the point of wearing Rebel and Stars and Bars gear to honky-tonks throughout the state?? [Scroll down to the Nov. 11th post.] The one who James Carville recently promoted as a better chair of the Democratic National Committee than Howard Dean….exactly ONE WEEK after Dean helped orchestrate the great Ass Kickback last November??  The one who is now the current chairman of the DLC???  Of course, his brand of "articulation" won’t quite get the ire….errrrrr, admiration….of the likes of US Senator (Del.) Joe :"Mr. Clean" Biden…. but then again, he only works FOR the establishment and is an open panderer.

Damn you to Hell, Jesse Jackson….if you ‘d only had bolted the Dems in 1988 after Dukakis punked you and ran as an Independent, we wouldn’t be in this sorry shape today. Oh, well..I guess another year of spoiling my vote again.

[Update: Memo to self: Damn, ‘Dog….can you please respect Jesse Jackson a bit more by properly spelling his freakin’ name in the title of the damn post???  Corrected.]