Sunday, January 11, 2015


 Jim: It's time to roundtable again.  A number of topics will come from e-mails and our e-mail address is  Participating in our roundtable are  The Third Estate Sunday Review's Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava, and me, Jim; Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude; Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man; C.I. of The Common Ills and The Third Estate Sunday Review; Kat of Kat's Korner (of The Common Ills); Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix; Mike of Mikey Likes It!; Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz); Ruth of Ruth's Report; Trina of Trina's Kitchen; Wally of The Daily Jot; Marcia of SICKOFITRDLZ; Stan of Oh Boy It Never Ends; Isaiah of The World Today Just Nuts and Ann of Ann's Mega Dub. Betty's kids did the illustration. You are reading a rush transcript.


Jim (Con't):  First up, Ty wanted to address an issue and it will probably take up a third of the roundtable at least.  Ty?

Ty: "Black Lives Matter."  WTF?  I'm so damn sick of this stuff.  Marcia wrote a post about it "I get Oprah's point," noting all lives matter.  And I agree with her points but, as an African-American man, I'm bothered by another aspect.  I'm not your f**king charity case, White America.  This is an issue, it's an issue for the Black community.  If you're not Black, shut the f**k up.  Stop trying to lead.  "Black Lives Matter" is not a slogan of our community.  "F**k the police" might be.  I am so sick of the over-60, White male, Communist Jew out of NYC, usually with his own podcast or Pacifica Radio program, thinking we need his thoughts or his leadership.  He needs to shut the f**k up and yet that does include Michael Ratner.  It's not your world, it's not even your community.  Shut the f**k up.

Cedric: Is it okay to jump in?

Ty: Sure.

Cedric: I get exactly what you're saying and I'm sure Stan and Isaiah do as well since we're African-American men.  For women, it's a different thing, and I'm sure Betty, Ann and Marcia can speak to that.  But like Ty, I'm sick of it.  We're not important enough, African-American men, to speak for ourselves, apparently.  We need the elderly White, Communist Jew like Michael Ratner or Michael Smith to speak for us.  Not because we're important but because we're fashion accessories for them.  I hear Betty laughing, let me yield.

Betty: Laughing in agreement.  Yeah, it is like being a fashion accessory.  Please note the Michaels Ratner and Smith have their own Pacifica Radio show.  Every now and then they even have a Black guest. Every now and then.  But mainly it's two White men talking about Black people.  That show's over a decade old.  They could have had a Black co-host.  They don't.  Neither does Amy Goodman -- to note another Communist Jew in NYC trying to use Black people to make herself look soulful.  I agree with Cedric and I agree with Ty.  Shut the f**k up.  That goes to any White person with a radio program or TV show.  We don't need you to speak for the Black community.  We don't need you to message for the Black community.  We need you to shut the f**k up, sit your tired ass down and let Black people speak on this issue for Black people.

Ty: Exactly.  They want to control the conversation and paint themselves as so wonderful and so brilliant for defending the 'colored help.'  Please note, they won't turn down the mike themselves, they won't say, "You need Black voices on the air hosting programs."  But they'll happily talk about, as White gods looking down on the Black masses, what needs to be done.  I'm feeling a lot like the Native Americans in the early seventies when they told Jane Fonda to shut up and that she wasn't a leader on the Native American cause.

Isaiah: And one aspect that's being hinted at but maybe not fully developed enough for non-African-American audiences in the conversation we're having right now is the weakling factor.  There may be some strength in, for example, Ann saying, "Black lives matter!"  She's African-American.  But when it's being said or shouted by a White person it tends to look like pity, like we're Wednesday's child, the latest charity case.  I don't want your charity, I want my place at the microphone, my place on the stage.  It's time for White people to stop trying to seize control of Black issues.  You need to learn that we don't need your pity and anything you have to say about how African-Americans are treated can probably be better said by an African-American.

Ty: Amen.

Isaiah: I'm tired of it.  And I'm tired of when we get our rare chance in the media to discuss our issues, you've got these White people rushing in to speak for us.  They really need to sit their tired asses down.  We are not their props.  CodeStink, for example, tried to use some Black women as props.  The organization has had how many years to build membership but can't get any Black members so they go out and grab some Black women who are mothers and basically use them as puppets.  I'm damn tired of it.  White people shut up.  We don't need to hear you explain what it's like to be Black.  You want to talk about what it's like to be White or ask questions about what it's like to be Black, amen, let's have that conversation.  But stop trying to stand on a soapbox and tell the world what it's like to be Black because you don't know and you're loud and bellicose voice is preventing Black voices from being heard.

Jim: Okay, we seem to be at a stopping point.  Let me bring Ann and Marcia in because they were mentioned a little earlier.  Ann, since it was Cedric who mentioned you and you two are married, why don't you pick it up.

Ann: Sure.  Cedric was talking about how African-American men are treated, by certain White radicals, as accessories and these White people -- usually men -- tend to build up their egos and images and do so by treating African-American men as weaklings in need of their leadership.  It's really the master and slave relationship from the plantation days -- no matter how much a Michael Ratner or Michael Smith might want to pretend otherwise.  And when African-American woman are invited into the conversation controlled by White people -- such as the CodeStink example Isaiah noted -- we are to do so as helpless Black women -- mothers -- little more than Black mammies, clutching the women of CodeStink to their bosoms  and singing "Steal Away."

Betty:  Steal away, steal away, steal away to Jesus
Steal away, steal away home
I ain't got long to stay here

Marcia:  And as Betty, Ann and I have so frequently noted at our sites, the White community makes news out of the deaths of African-American men while ignoring the deaths of African-American women.  When the White left establishment does choose to include us, as Ann and Betty note, it's for us to play Black mammies bemoaning the fate of the males.  Our own issues, our own agency, that will apparently never be decreed worthy of discussion in the White controlled media.

Betty: And we're repeatedly told to shut up.  Anita Hill stands up and tells the truth and the reaction by some is, "Why's that Black girl trying to take down a Black man?  She needs to shut up and let him have his time to shine."  And that's pretty much the way it always is in the media.

Ty: And now an e-mail question from Ian.  We're now at the ten year mark.  Why didn't we note it, Ian wants to know, and what does it mean for us?

Rebecca: And let me jump in to say I'm a guest and so are others and I'm sure we all agree this is a question that goes to Jim, Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava and C.I.  And that we all congratulate them on the 10 years.

Dona: Thank you.  For me, it's just a blink of the eye.  We were on the ast coast, we were in college, now we're out west, Jim and I are married and parents and it's like where did the time go.

Jess: I agree with that, where did the time go.  There have been so many changes in our lives.  Of course, our big issue as college students was the ongoing illegal war and, ten years later, it's still ongoing.

Ava: But a change there is that when this site started there was coverage of Iraq on the left, there were calls for the war to end.  Now, with a Democrat in the White House, the lousy peace 'leaders' can't speak out.  We're still speaking out.

Ty: Yeah, I'd agree with that and note how disappointing it is that so many on the left (a) no longer care and (b) those who you think might care are just cowards or whores.  It's really disheartening to look back on what was a colorful and living movement and see how it withered.

C.I.: I don't mean to be disagreeable but I see it differently.  I don't see it as withering, I see it as being killed. United for Peace and Justice announces right after the 2008 election that they're closing shop.  Those organizations that continue -- A.N.S.W.E.R. for one -- rush to find other 'issues.'  Saint Barack must not be called out -- that was their chief issue, these groups.  They killed the movement, it didn't wither.  My opinion.

Jim: Yeah, I'd go along with that.  The corruption and mendacity of the Leslie Cagans, Medea Benjamens, Ray McGoverns and so many other worthless 'leaders' -- it's appalling.

Ruth: If we are moving beyond the ten year anniversary of this site, I would note that what really shocks me about the Iraq War and the whorish 'leaders' is that you cannot pick one as the most whorish.  It is as if they are all in competition to be awarded the title, jostling one another for the dishonor.

Jim: Okay, let's go with Ruth and open this up.  Name the biggest disappointment on the left for you of the last ten years.  You can explain why or not but let's go around and name some.

Trina: I'd say World Can't Wait.  They spring to mind because last week I was visiting the site trying to find something to highlight and there was nothing on Iraq. Not this month, not last month.  Hey, Debra Sweet, I Can't Wait for you to wake the f**k up and start calling out the continued war on Iraq.

Marcia: I'll go with Matthew Rothschild of The Progressive who used to climb on the cross as he soapboxed about the Iraq War but now has nothing to say.  He's not a coward, he's just a whore.  It's that simple.

Betty: I'll just say all of KPFA.  Once Barack became president, it morphed into the worst of Air America Radio -- total propaganda.  It made clear that its interest was not in the people but in Barack Obama.  They called out RomneyCare -- even though it took place miles away.  But when Barack recycled it as ObamaCare, they suddenly no longer objected.  They're whores, just cheap whores.  And we especially need to single out public menace Aimee Allison who not only called for book burning when The New Yorker mocked Barack and Michelle in a sardonic cover but who also posted a video to YouTube defending Barack's Drone War. That little whore should burn in hell for eternity.

Rebecca: Iraq Veterans Against the War.  A useless group.  They can't even protest war on Iraq today despite such a protest being their only claim to fame.  They're a disgrace.  And I can remember when they went around insisting they should be leading the antiwar movement because "we were there."  But, again, when little Barry Obama became president, they fell silent.

Elaine: I would agree with Rebecca.  To me, that group is the most appalling.  They are silent about the troops Barack's sending into Iraq despite their name being "Iraq Veterans Against the War."  It's probably time for them to close shop.  No one takes them seriously anymore and its the organization's own damn fault.

Stan:  I'd go with Naomi Klein.  I really thought she was the real deal and the hope for the left's future and then came Barack and Naomi was just a whore, she was an outright liar.  To pick up on an earlier theme, White people we are not your props.  Stop using us as your props.  To defend her support for Barack, Naomi had to invent a story about African-American men.  Now she didn't speak to them, she just watched them.  Like they were animals, apparently, Gorillas in the Mist and all.  But she's awful.  She pretended to care about Iraq, she castigated people for supporting John Kerry who she felt were co-opted yet Canadian born Naomi did a softcover book tour in 2008 to campaign for Barack.  And she hasn't called him out.  She's whored for him.

Mike:  And she's a real dirty whore.  This is the woman whose father and mother were American.  Why did they go to Canada?  Because her father didn't want to serve in Vietnam.  Yet she's done so damn little for war resisters of the Iraq War and, of course, she doesn't do anything anymore but walk around whoring.   For me, though, Robert Parry's the biggest whore.  He's sold out everything he believed in to run a fan board for Barack Obama, that's all Consortium is now, just a fan board for Barack.  He used to insist on accountability for presidents and all this other stuff that just flew out the window.  He's a joke and a huge disappointment.

Cedric: Al Sharpton's just a cheap little hustler but I'll include him because it's appalling that he's got an MSNBC program and is a 'friend' of the White House, etc.  Al Sharpton's a shake down artist.  He has no ethics.

Isaiah:  I think I would go with Riverdaughter and Paul Street.  It's hard to call out Barack for some people.  So they do what those two did, they call him out but make a point to call other critics racist -- whether they are or not.  In 2008 and 2009, Riverdaughter had a site and a huge following.  Now she's fallen from hundreds of comments on each post to ten or less.  Because she had to keep attacking others and smearing people as racists.  Paul's the same way and the reality of the matter is that Paul's work is weak.  As an African-American, I think I've got a little more insight into whether someone is racist against African-Americans -- more insight than White Riverdaughter or White Street.

Kat:  Well there are all these good points being made.  I'm going to go with my BFF Kevin Zeese.  Even now, Kevy's gotta tip toe around criticizing Barack because Kevin's a f**king coward.  The victims of the ongoing Drone War, for example, don't benefit from Kevin's tip toeing around serious issues.

Ann:  Or Ralph Nader.  What the hell has happened to him?  He's a disgrace.  He can't call out Barack at all.  Talk about a little kiss ass.  He needs to retire from public life.  If he can't call out Barack's actions in Iraq, he has nothing left to say.

Dona:  It's amazing that with Barack's popularity so low and with so many We The People speaking out against Barack's policies, the so-called leaders are basically speechless. For me, it would be the blogosphere.  Without the Iraq War, it really wouldn't have taken off on the left.  It motivated so many of us to speak out.  But look around today and there's no real efforts on Iraq in the US.  There's C.I., of course.  She's there every day at The Common Ills.  But outside of her, there's really not anyone.

Ty: I'd say the embarrassing Danny Schechter.  Iraq mattered enough for him when he could try to make money off it with a book and a documentary.  Didn't he talk big and brave?  He doesn't now.  In fact, he doesn't talk at all now.  He shut down his blog in October. In its last days, he was linking to 'explanations' for why poor little Barack was 'forced' to send troops into Iraq and bomb it.  Danny Schechter's disgusting -- a fat piece of filth with no spine.  I could go on but I'll leave it at that.

Wally:  Danny Schechter is such a joke and he wonders why he lost readers?  Because he talked about accountability and about ethics and he tossed them all aside to become a cheerleader for Barack.

Ty: He worships Black cock.  Let's be honest.  He's too cowardly to act on his desires but his worship of terrorist Ike Turner, his worship of Barack, go down the list.  Dude just wants his mouth on some Black cock.

Wally: We're all laughing right now.  I don't know for me.  There was a time when I would have said Marjorie Cohn or Dave Lindorff but both seem to have grown aware that silence is not an option so I would leave them off the list. And while I can knock two people off my list, there are still so many on the list.  Let me go with Ani DiFranco whose just a nutcase.  Bob Roberts was a funny movie.  We on the left loved it. Hilarious.  Tim Robbins is a near genius.  But who would have thought that 'protest singer' Ani, the folkie who says she's not folk, would record a protest album protesting those who didn't bow down before a War Hawk Corporatist President?  Yeah, I'll go with Ani DiFranco who decided to bring Bob Roberts to life.

Jess: That's a real good choice.  Me, I'm wondering when Mr. Bright Eyes Connor Orbst is planning on doing a version of "When A President Talks To God" for Barack?  Oh, that's right, never. Chicken s**t piece of precious.  These entertainers better realize they have destroyed their careers.  They can't come back when a Republican's in the White House and claim, "Look, I'm about the issue not the person."  No, they're about whoring for the Democratic Party.

Jim:  And don't forget the washed up Eddie Vedder.  He's a sausage maker.  Kurt Cobain was an artist. Chris Cornell is an artist.  Eddie Vedder just churns it out.  Cheap product that most people no longer want to watch.

Ava:  I would say US House Rep. Barbara Lee and others like her.  So fired up and passionate to stop the war and end the war when Bully Boy Bush was in office but so laid back once Barack was elected.  And throw losers like Tammy Baldwin.  C.I. remains the only one to call Baldwin out.  As a member of the US House of Representatives, Tammy was part of the Out Of Iraq Caucus -- calling for US troops to be pulled out of Iraq.  As a Senator?  Tammy's all for Barack sending US troops into Iraq.  She's a hypocrite and a fake ass.

C.I.:  There are so many disappointments.  I'm going to go with Jane Fonda.  She's completely useless, Iraqi women are sick of her because of her silence after promising she'd be speaking out.  She's restyled herself as a sexpot -- we all should have known that was coming when she went blond again.  She's going to hit 79 this year but she's more concerned with pretending she's this highly sexual creature -- the only kind of stardom she's ever known -- than with speaking out against war.  Again, she's going to be 79 this year.  I don't know how many years she thinks she has left or why she thinks people will overlook her embarrassing politics.  She's the one who calls herself an activist but she won't speak out for peace, not when a Democrat's in office.  Maybe she just doesn't like Arabs?  Remember, she did cheer, in Israel, a demonstration of the government's attack on Palestinians.  Maybe that tells us all we need to know about Jane's attitude towards the Arab world.  Although you could add in Rollever which is probably the most anti-Arab film ever made and Jane didn't just star in it, she produced it.

Jim: And Ruth, since you kicked this off, who would you choose.

Ruth: I was a huge fan of Law and Disorder Radio.  We all were.  Listening to the Michaels and their nonsense over the last six years has been a huge disappointment.  I thought they stood for something.  Clearly I was wrong.  They need to take accountability for promoting President Barack Obama, for whoring for him and so much more.  And do not tell me that Mr. Ratner spoke out against the Libyan War because he made his comments meaningless.  If you feel as he does that that war was a crime, six months later you are not offering praises to Mr. Obama.

Jim: Alright.  That's going to be it and this is a rush transcript.

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