The Pragmatic Progressive Saturday Reading List!

There was so much going on this week and so much emotion with the fight to save Troy Davis from being killed, I know I missed a lot of great articles that I’m just getting caught up on. As always, please add your links in the comments and let’s talk about shit!

1.  ”Tavis Smiley and Cornel West: The Reign of Fools is Over”;

2.  ”Does the West/Obama Controversy Constitute Blacks Airing Dirty Laundry?”;

3.  ”Is the Attack on Prof. Melissa Harris-Perry’s Article Criticizing Prof. Cornel West Due to Male Academic Cronyism?”;

4.  ”How Do Politicians Get People to Vote Against Their Own Interest?”;

5.  ”Tavis/West: We Know We’re Hurting, Now Tell Us the Truth About Why”;

6.  ”The Tavis/West Poverty Pimp Tour“;

7.  ”Dr. Cornel West and Intellectual Rice Cake”;

8.  Is the GOP Manipulating Black Intellectuals to destroy the First Black President?”

And lastly, I’ll leave you with this quote from Elizabeth Warren, who I hope gets a lot of face time on cable news networks in the next couple of years and beyond.

Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles

Cornel West And Tavis Smiley Have Never Supported President Obama!

As Dr. Cornel West continues his crusade to undermine our President, I keep hearing how he was once a supporter of President Obama. If he did claim to be a supporter, it was just that — a claim.

I decided to go back in time with the help of Google and find out if he ever REALLY supported Barack Obama and exactly when it was that Dr. West and his sidekick, Tavis Smiley, began their assault on our first black president.

I typed into the search bar the words “Cornel West Supports Obama” and then proceeded to weed through hundreds of hits about Cornel’s criticism of President Obama, page after page after page of links to stories about “black mascots” and “oligarchs and plutocrats” and “fear of free black men”. There were articles by conservatives and liberals, all using Cornel West to justify their own hatred and dislike for our President.

I came across one transcript from an interview he did with Amy Goodman about 2 weeks after the election where Dr. West very cautiously applauds the election of President Obama, but you can already begin to see the formulation of his strategy to undermine him.

I looked at hundreds of results from my Google search and that one transcript was about the extent of the “support” I found for President Obama. I challenge any defenders of West to provide more, besides people saying he supported the president.

Continue reading

The Professional “Whiny” Left Revealed!

If you haven’t gone to iTunes and subscribed to the Bubble Genius Bob and Chez Show podcast, you are missing out on the best political analysis around and a lot of great laughs. You can find them at their respective blogs, Bob Cesca’s Aweseome Blog! Go! and Deus Ex Malcontent where they consistently tell it like it is.

I personally look forward to the show like a little kid looks forward to candy.

A few weeks ago, they did a show called “Stop Whining”, which I highly recommend you listen to, after you subscribe to them on iTunes. But in case you prefer reading or are at work and can’t really listen, I took the time to transcribe a large portion of that show for your reading pleasure. I think it exposes the true motivations and agenda of those who have become known as the “Professional Left” or the name I prefer, “Firebaggers”.

As with anyone, I don’t agree with everything they say, but damn near everything in this portion of the show. The one thing I disagree on is the characterization of the blog post by Deaniac83 from The People’s View that was the impetus for a lot of the discussion. Deaniac83’s post about the debt ceiling deal, as I saw it, was about how that deal wasn’t as bad as it was being portrayed by many on the left. I didn’t perceive it as approving of the deal, but rather that the President made the best of a bad situation. Contrary to John Boehner’s characterization that he got 98% of what he wanted, when you look at the deal from a wider perspective, President Obama “ate his lunch”. They quickly move away from that subject and on to an incredibly insightful analysis of the “firebaggers” — who seem intent on helping the Republicans take down our Democratic President Barack Obama. Enjoy and share widely!

Bob Cesca (B)- I don’t watch Morning Joe anymore, but I can guarantee you that they were talking about this, concern trolling about it on Morning Joe over the last couple of days, because they love to do that. Oh look, the president’s losing his base…when, we’ve talked about here, it’s not really the base. The liberal blogosphere is not the base of the Democratic Party, certainly not the Obama campaign. And it never has been…we’ve always been fickle, we were divided during the primaries in 2008. A lot of people were very hesitant to jump onboard, once President Obama became the nominee. But regardless, here’s the story. Backing up on this..”The Obama administrations point person”…this if from the Huffinton Post, “The Obama campaign’s point person in New Mexico recently sent an email to supporters defending the President’s position on the debt deal and bashing the Nobel prize winning New York Times columnist Paul Krugman and the quote

Chez Pazienza (C)- interject for a moment, the vital, vital outpost of New Mexico

B- That’s exactly right, ah…columnist Paul Krugman..

C – Defending the frontier

B- Right, the quote unquote “firebagger lefty blogosphere”, On the evening of August 1st. dunt, dunt, duh duh…cue the dubious music for this. “On the evening of Aug. 1, just after Congress passed legislation to raise the debt ceiling, Obama for America (OFA) New Mexico State Director Ray Sandoval sent an email to supporters with the subject line, “Please take 5 minutes to read this, Please.” He used the magic word twice. “”I know many of you have raised frustrations, but please, I implore you, please take 5 minutes and read the article below. It does a great job of explaining the Debt Ceiling deal,” Sandoval wrote in bold text.” Now, that was all he wrote and then it proceeded to include this blog post from a blog called The People’s View and the blog post went on to, ah, criticize Paul Krugman as being a political rookie, it used the word firebagger, you know, which is sort of the colloquialism combining Firedoglake and teabaggers, which I use that a lot, It’s, I think it’s appropriate.

C – It is actually.

B – He even used the ah…

C- I try really hard, actually, not to do too much of the adjusting names because I’ve always thought that it’s kind of childish when you do like the, you know, the Rethuglicans….(crosstalk)….but firebagger admittedly works and of course I can’t let myself off the hook for calling them teabaggers so uh..

B – Well you have to…

C – That’s a joke that makes it’s own gravy

Continue reading

We All Have a Choice in the 2012 Election

Guest Blogger: Joan Ruaiz

My choice – come November 6, 2012 will not be a surprise, as I will vote to re-elect the incumbent President, Barack Obama.

The reasons why I will work hard to re-elect the President and try to give him an overwhelming congressional majority in both the House and the Senate are very clear to me, and self-serving as they are, I believe my actions will also benefit a majority of Americans; even those who don’t quite know it yet.  By reading the rest of my commentary,  the reasons for my stubborn partisan stance will be made clear,  and as the election cycle progresses, I shall often make myself clearer still.

What I’d like folks to envision in the meantime is what would happen if progressives woke up the morning of November 7th, and reality hit that the President-elect is not Barack Obama?

Sure,  some on the Left would feel vindicated to witness Barack Obama defeated, believing that they had won the battle of “principles” they’d waged for four years to show President Obama their disappointment in him.  They would inevitably blame him for their choice not to donate, not to work, and/or simply not to have voted.

I believe, however, for those progressives willing to be intellectually honest, and who understand the concrete reality of political consequences (see Election 2010), we must also be willing to ask ourselves hard questions before the election, as opposed to after the fact.

You see, these questions will be answered regardless, either now, or for four long years (or eight even longer years) following November 6th.

Again, if the worse-case scenario were to occur  and we end up with a President other than Barack Obama (which is not out of the realm of possibility, as there are powerful forces working hard on this as we speak), what will happen then?

Some will say that my questions are nothing more than my cynical attempt to use fear, but I strongly disagree.  I am only asking you to picture what could very well happen.  If it is something to fear, you should duly note it.

I respectfully suggest that some of the questions we should all ask ourselves, especially those who haven’t already done so, are as follows:

Continue reading

New Poll Shows A Surge For President Obama!

It was a poll of all my friends and family and in my mind, has just as much validity as any of the major news organizations and their latest sampling of 700 – 1000 people. As anyone who knows me will tell you, I’m not a reactionary person for the most part. I’m usually the one urging calmness in the face of hysteria and stepping back to look at the big picture. Well here I go again.

To me the biggest story from the weekend was the former Republican staffer who retired from the GOP and wrote a blistering piece about the lunacy in the Republican Party. It was all over the left blogosphere and Twitter. A lot of truth in the piece, along with a lot of bullshit about the Democratic party too, remember, he was a loyal Republican so we have to take what he says about Democrats with a grain of salt.

I haven’t been watching the cable meme generators lately, but I don’t imagine that was the big story as far as they were concerned. I noticed the Twitter banter this morning that showed that the latest polls are what is generating the meme today. I’ve noticed recently that whenever there is a story that is negative to the Republicans or positive to the President, a new poll emerges and the subject is changed pretty quickly. Coincidence, or maybe just too many damn polls for lazy journalists to fall back on. The process is so much easier to cover than say, actual issues.

Knowing a little bit about election polling and having tracked them for several decades, I’m not getting myself worked up over the latest polls or any future ones for that matter. Maybe when we get close to the election, when the electorate is actually thinking about the election, then maybe I’ll go over to Nate Silver’s blog and see what the numbers say. But until then, you all keep chasing your tails, I have better things to do with my time.

The last thing I’ll say about polls in this post is that the media just loves to pin the entire right track/wrong track number on the sitting president. I think that is bullshit, especially in the partisan times we are living in. The scorched earth politics from the right and even some on the left these days, may turn everyone off to politics and bring everyone’s poll numbers down. After all, that’s what scorched earth politics is all about. But when it comes time for people to pull a lever for who they want to represent them, there won’t be an option labeled “they all suck” and I’m confident President Obama and the Democrats will come out on top — because the craziness from the right doesn’t seem to be letting up. Yeeeee hawwwwww!

Liberals, Take A Deep Breath…Now Let It Out, Repeat!

Fellow liberals — listen up. President Obama and the Democratic Party are looking great going into 2012. Don’t let the media or our opponents on both the right and the faux left discourage you, that is their goal. The media wants every election to be close, it increases their ratings and we all know that is the only thing they care about anymore. Journalism, shmournalism! And of course the Teapublicans aren’t even living in the same reality as the rest of the country, they are running around chasing phantom problems that don’t really exist and holding prayer rallies.

As I always remind myself heading into an election year, 95% or more of the American people don’t pay a damn bit of attention to what is happening in politics until the conventions and debates start up. Sure, the hard core party folks are engaged in the primaries, but we know how many people actually vote in the primaries. The real fun doesn’t start until next summer, when people will begin to pay attention. Most everything that happens until then, will never even be seen or heard by that 95% of people who are going to work, playing softball, going to the beach, camping, going for bike rides and just hanging around the porch talking about bullshit. More of these people are aware of what Snookie did in Italy than anything that is happening in Washington.

So I say to you fellow liberals, don’t get bogged down in the heat of the moment. Don’t let current perceptions and media generated memes get you down or affect your motivation. We have an ace in the hole, President Barack Obama. Anyone who doubts his political abilities is fucking stupid, if you ask me. And when you consider all the stupid shit the Teapublican’s have done over the last 2 and 1/2 years that will be used as ammunition against them — once the campaigns get rolling in earnest, it’s going to be fun as hell to watch. The President has given us a taste of it in the last few weeks, but wait until he gets going.

When people try to get you to play the negative meme game or the “woe is me, I didn’t get my pony game” — be polite, cite some facts, some accomplishments, but mostly stay positive and remember that if the pundits were right, President George H.W. Bush would have served a second term.

Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles

Creating Change From Within – A History Lesson For Progressives!

Guest Blogger: theangryliberal

“Everything I did in my life that was worthwhile, I caught hell for.”

~Earl Warren

Our Big Mistake!

That sounds like a Lyle Lovett song, Our Big Mistake; we are repeating it over and over and over again, from the 1968 election to the present. Isn’t it sort of sad, we gave up working from the inside to continue to move government in a more progressive way?

  1. We turn on each other at the drop of a hat
  2. We keep our eye off the prize, remember this is ultimately about so much  more than one guy

Republicans currently seem to have a real death wish for the country! They will basically do anything to make sure this President is unable to function properly as the Chief Executive.  Certainly this demonstrates the power Grover Norquist has over Republican politicians. What is up with that? How is it these guys get away with this behavior. The whole debt ceiling debacle, can you imagine the outrage of the press and others if Democrats had held the entire country hostage like that? No, I don’t think so.  On the other hand the Hamsher, L. Ron Greenwald faux progressives fight over who could be the leader of Shangri La., a leader for all, the liberal John Galt, the one who always makes good decisions, the man who never fails, the genius who saves us from ourselves. But he never requires we participate in saving ourselves, he does that on his own. So while the Hamsherwalds wait for their more perfect leader and the Republicans follow the Norquist lead, the country trudges on, while we struggle to maintain our optimism. But I am going to put this out there, why aren’t liberals/progressives working together to gain a foothold in government so more progressive legislation can be enacted at the federal level.

The extreme left is making a big mistake constantly making Barack Obama the issue and not Republican policies which are literally ruining the country.  How do we change the balance of power in the government?

Continue reading

A Compilation Of Sane Responses To The Resolution Of The Debt Hostage Drama!

If you want to read some reality based analysis of the debt ceiling deal, here are some links that won’t make you want to run around screaming “IT’S THE REPUBLICAN’S FAULT YOU STUPID FUCKING IDIOTS” or some variation on that.