Sunday, June 15, 2008

Barack and his use of racism

A strange thing is happening in our e-mails. New readers popping up to talk about Barack. Now the first group is the spam nonsense that the campaign's doing to all sites, trying to convince the world that Barack is lovable and all that jazz. The second group is the one that interests us.

This group is echoes what Marcia, Cedric, Ty and Betty see in their own African-American communities, the tempers easing and people beginning to grasp just how they were played.

Lawanda writes, "No one yelled 'racism!' louder than me about Bill Clinton calling Barack's 2008 tale of his position on Iraq a 'fairy tale.' But now, all these months after, I look back and scratch my head. First, Barack was telling a lie. Second, when is 'fairy tale' a racist remark? I feel like I was played for a sucker."

Yeah, it was a sucker punch. It was fake and fraudulent. Barack had joined John Edwards in attacking Hillary and so you had Loser Joe Trippi joining in to raise the hysteria level.

Via Chicago Tribune (text and video), here's Bill Clinton's fairy tale remarks:

"But since you raised the judgment issue, let's go over this again. That is the central argument for his campaign. 'It doesn't matter that I started running for president less a year after I got to the Senate from the Illinois State Senate. I am a great speaker and a charismatic figure and I'm the only one who had the judgment to oppose this war from the beginning. Always, always, always.' "
"First it is factually not true that everybody that supported that resolution supported Bush attacking Iraq before the UN inspectors were through. Chuck Hagel was one of the co-authors of that resolution. The only Republican Senator that always opposed the war. Every day from the get-go. He authored the resolution to say that Bush could go to war only if they didn't co-operate with the inspectors and he was assured personally by Condi Rice as many of the other Senators were. So, first the case is wrong that way."
"Second, it is wrong that Senator Obama got to go through 15 debates trumpeting his superior judgment and how he had been against the war in every year, numerating the years, and never got asked one time, not once, 'Well, how could you say, that when you said in 2004 you didn't know how you would have voted on the resolution? You said in 2004 there was no difference between you and George Bush on the war and you took that speech you're now running on off your website in 2004 and there's no difference in your voting record and Hillary's ever since?' Give me a break.
"This whole thing is the biggest fairy tale I've ever seen...So you can talk about Mark Penn all you want. What did you think about the Obama thing calling Hillary the Senator from Punjab? Did you like that?"
"Or what about the Obama hand out that was covered up, the press never reported on, implying that I was a crook? Scouring me, scathing criticism, over my financial reports. Ken Starr spent $70 million and indicted innocent people to find out that I wouldn't take a nickel to see the cow jump over the moon.
"So, you can take a shot at Mark Penn if you want. It wasn't his best day. He was hurt, he felt badly that we didn't do better in Iowa. But you know, the idea that one of these campaigns is positive and the other is negative when I know the reverse is true and I have seen it and I have been blistered by it for months, is a little tough to take. Just because of the sanitizing coverage that's in the media, doesn't mean the facts aren't out there.

It was probably really important to falsely scream "racism" at fairy tale and, if you read the above in full, you'll see why. What comes after fairy tale? A very real example of Barack's dirty tricks (exposed by the press) where Barack was using racism: "Punjab." So don't let the quote get discussed that far. Scream racism about what comes before and distract the people from the fact that Bill Clinton pointed out just who had been racist.

They did with that Gloria Steinem as well and we pointed that out last week. Stop the sound byte before it gets damaging for Barack! Zoom in on the first part and falsely scream "racism!" and maybe people won't pay attention to the remarks you don't want them to catch.

Troy e-mailed that he decided to go back and check out what "enraged me in real time. I never caught Mark Penn on Hardball. I just heard that he went on there and started talking about BO's drug use and because Penn was head of Clinton's campaign, I thought, 'They're using racism.' I thought that and thought it because idiots like Blow Hard Michael, trashing the airwaves daily, was saying it and all these blogs were saying. Turns out Penn did discuss drug use. He discussed it because that was what the segment was about. Penn was brought on along with BO's David Axelrod and Edwards' Joe Trippi to discuss the drug use. That got left out of all the hysteria. That all three were on and that the segment was about drug use got left out. Media Matters has a lot of great stuff on that. I would recommend their 'On CNN, Donahue claimed Penn repeated "drug issue ... over and over and over" -- but Matthews first asked about drugs' because it not only discusses what really happened on Hardball, it exposes how people like Jennifer Donahue then went on CNN and lied and distorted what had happened on Hardball."

Which is exactly correct and the only thing we would add to Troy's observations is that you need to pay attention to what Joe Trippi does in that. And when you pay attention, you need to remember that John Edwards and Barack Obama worked as a tag team to destroy Hillary Clinton. There's Joe Trippi foaming at the mouth (no doubt desperate for some attention since he's always working for the losing candidate). But this Hardball appearance that entered folklore as proof of racism on the Clinton campaign's part included Axelrod. If it was objectionable (it wasn't), then Axelrod could have objected to Penn's remarks (on air, he didn't).

Most of the e-mails point out that no, it wasn't racism when Bill Clinton was asked about his pot use. So why is drug use being discussed racism for Barack? "Unless, you're an idiot like Dave Lindorff," wrote Birdie, "who thinks Barack risked jail to do drugs and that's a good thing and a sign of character!"

And why is it okay for bi-racial Barack to write about his drug use (pot and cocaine with hints of heroin) in his books and joke about it on The Tonight Show ("I inhaled!") but for anyone else to bring it up is allegedly racism?

Because that's all the weak candidate has to offer as a defense. If he's criticized, it's racism. If he's asked difficult questions, it's racism. It's the only way to shut down the discussion. The reality is Barack went to a posh prep school in Hawaii and led then, and for the bulk of his college, a White life. Like many White students in the late seventies and early eighties, he dabbled in drugs. He may have even sold them and, if so, wouldn't be the only college student at that time to do so. Chicago, which comes much later, is all about Barack attempting to identify Black. An interesting sociological work could be done on Barack's rejection of his bi-racial status and his early efforts to overcompensate with the appearance of Whiteness and then later with the appearance of Blackness. But that would involve a real discussion of race and we won't get that. But suffice is to say that there's a lot of the subplot from Imitation of Life in Barack's personal history.

But as people e-mail starting to grasp that, no, it isn't racism to mention drug use (admitted drug use at that, drug use the candidate has told jokes about on national television) and, no, it isn't racism to point out that Barack's lying about his Iraq War positions, and, no, it isn't racism to use the term "fairy tale," the question keeps popping up why would Barack do that?

As we pointed out last week, Hillary won New Hampshire. It was a great upset for Barack. And the usual loons like Mark Crispin Miller and others began insisting that it was voter fraud (MCM said "I KNOW" when he knew nothing). He'd lost New Hampshire. Michigan and Florida were going to go to Hillary (Barack's own polling demonstrated that which is why he pulled his name from the ballot at the last minute). All the public relations and spin that had puffed up his weak record was about to go down the tubes. South Carolina was next with an African-American community that would determine the winner of the state.

A fantasy seems to have replaced the reality of what Barack was up against back then.

Well, in South Carolina, which has the largest African-American voting population of all of these primaries, these early primaries, he's been trailing Hillary Clinton down there, because many of the blacks in South Carolina have said he doesn't embrace the Civil Rights movement, and he doesn't have that passion for civil rights that these-- Martin Luther King and Jesse Jackson did.

Bill Moyers, January 9th, Bill Moyers Journal, outlining the very real problem (now forgotten), Barack Obama had going into South Carolina. He needed that vote and a decision was made to falsely scream "racism" over and over in order to inflame tensions, create divisions, destroy Hillary's strong support in the African-American community and allow the Barack campaign to continue.

You need to grasp just how ugly what Barack did was. He inflamed the country with false charges of racism. The bi-racial man who claimed to be post-racial utilized a very real and very deep American wound and used his for his own personal gain via lies.

And none of your 'leaders' have ever called him out on that. A few have stayed silent while the bulk have repeated the lies. You used to see nonsense like that all the time on the right but that's how low the standards have gotten for the left that they will stay silent and act like Barack was a victim when Barack used racism by falsely crying it.

And they still do it. They take exit polls of Kentucky and West Virginia and find someone who said race was a reason for their vote and insist it's racism! (We should say they find someone who voted for Hillary and insist that. Those voting for Barack and saying "race" aren't called racists.) What we saw in West Virginia and Kentucky (and South Dakota) on the ground was that when people wanted to talk about "race" in terms of the elections, they usually wanted to talk about the false charges of racism Barack's campaign had used. Marcia heard it the most. Someone (African-American or White) would approach her after a speech and say they wanted to raise something privately. (Marcia is African-American.) "After the third time it happened," she recalls, "I knew whenever someone opened with that, what the subject was going to be. And whether they were African-American or White, it was always how offended they were by the use of these false charges of racism. One woman in Kentucky was crying about it as she started speaking. She was African-American. She didn't understand why this 'Black' man would falsely charge racism because, her words, 'We all have to live in this country regardless of who is president. Doesn't he realize the damage he's doing?' My reply to her was, remember, he's not 'Black,' he's bi-racial. He didn't grow up with racial tensions. He had everything handed to him and he's happy to slash and burn Black communities if it gets him into the White House."

And if you doubt that, you need to only look at the "Recreate 68" nonsense led by a lot of assholes who were threatening race riots at the convention (judging by the people involved, that would be White-White on violence but they were calling it race riots). Barack's never done a damn thing for the African-American community or promised them anything. But he was happy to use them and to inflame racial tensions across the country in order to get what he wanted.

"The fact of the matter," Betty says, "is that after the election, Barack's going to be living in his mansion in a pricey section of Chicago and somewhere in DC -- maybe the White House -- while Black people are still going to be struggling in their own areas. And they won't have Secret Service or a bankroll to hide behind. Barack inflamed racial tensions. He ran a Tawana Brawley campaign and that was not good for Black America and we're going to be ones living with the fallout, not him in his mansion. He has falsely cried racism over and over and ridden that to a higher profile but for Black America, we're the ones who will be stuck with the blowback. Real racism exists and we face it every day. When someone like him uses false racism, it degrades whatever understanding of real racism the country had, it exhausts people to the point that they just don't care. It's like Oprah claiming it was racism that a store in Paris wouldn't open up after hours to let her shop there. We face real racism in our schools -- which are poorly underfunded and goes to systematic racism, we face real racism in the job market -- in terms of opportunities as well as in terms of the pay scale. And Barack's false charges of racism didn't help any Black person in America. They helped a bi-racial man. It's just like OJ suddenly remembering he was 'Black' when he needed support. It's really time for the Black community to stop rushing to 'rescue' these millionaires who are not living Black lives and who are not part of the community. And, if you'll pay attention, the White Mommas are the ones still stirring it up. The Kimberly Wilders, the Sharon Smiths, the Michele Bolingers. None of them are Democrats but they sure as hell want to cheer on the bi-racial man and pretend like they get what it is to be Black. I am Black. I didn't need false charges of racism to explain to me what being Black means. They are poisoning America with their crap and who's going to suffer from it? The Black community. And for what? A bi-racial man that couldn't even attend Tavis Smiley's State of Black America two years running. A bi-racial man who gives nothing to the Black community and lives in a mansion. A bi-racial man who is Black when he wants to be and attacking the Black community when he needs to score some points with White conservatives. In this election, the Black community was treated like the football with everyone trying to grab it to move it where they wanted. They weren't trying to lift up the Black community and they weren't doing a damn thing for it. It was nothing but a football, a thing, a device to use and then discard."
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