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"A bunch of rants." Really?

Glen Ford:

Obama was less than eloquent. "All it was is a bunch of rants that aren't grounded in truth," said Sen. Obama, low-rating Rev. Wright's remarks at the National Press Club, in Washington, the morning before. Rev. Wright had become a "caricature" of himself, said the wounded candidate - another way of calling the minister a clown.

Under questioning from reporters in Winston Salem, North Carolina, Obama swore up and down that he had never before, in 16 years as a member of Wright's Trinity United Church of Christ congregation, observed his pastor behave in such a way. The declaration rang patently false, as even a red-state Republican white evangelical observer would have recognized Wright's Press Club performance as that of veteran pulpit-master with a vast repertoire of church-pleasing moves and grooves to draw upon, all of them honed over decades for the entertainment of his parishioners - including Obama. But the senator was intent on giving the impression that Rev. Wright was - unbeknownst to Obama - a Jekyll and Hyde character, whose statements "were not only divisive and destructive, but I believe that they end up giving comfort to those who prey on hate."

An amazingly Bush-like turn of phrase! The man who married Barack and Michelle and baptized their children is now rhetorically linked to Osama bin Laden or the Ku Klux Klan.

Clearly, this is what panic looks and sounds like when Obama's flimsy tissues of "race neutrality" are stripped away.

Interesting. As I keep saying, I don't know the players here, but it seems clear tp me that Ford, in this post, is expressing a richer and more grounded experience than Obama (or his supporters).

Obama had belabored the same theme in his Philadelphia speech on race, a few weeks earlier - a widely applauded piece of oratory that was at root an exercise in moral equivalence that equated white and Black grievances in the U.S., as if history and gross power discrepancies did not exist. Obama is as quick as any smug corporate commentator to dismiss as the ravings of extremists and those who "prey on hate" the very idea that U.S. imperialism is an historical and current fact. Chickens cannot possibly come home to roost in terroristic revenge as a response to American crimes against humanity, since "good" nations by definition are incapable of such crimes. ...
In order for his race-neutral strategy to appear sane, Obama must constantly paint a picture of an America that does not exist.

Indeed. Perhaps that's why he's so popular? Especially among the Boiz and our famously free press?

NOTE I think that Glen Ford and Arthur Silber should form a group blog. Via Avedon, who everybody should read every day.

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white_n_az's picture
Submitted by white_n_az on

That's clear and surely no shock to Obama.

What is a shock is that white voters, southern democrats are deserting him like rats fleeing a sinking ship and he's desperate...big shock.

I cannot say this enough...5 weeks ago, he couldn't/wouldn't disown him and now, Wright hasn't said anything different or more outrageous and he disowns him.

How could anyone feel that he makes a commitment when he just disowned someone he calls family and just a few weeks ago...

What Wright has exposed is something worse than a politician...a yellow politician who will run over his friends and family to win.

Submitted by lambert on

is a post somebody really needs to do.

[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

BDBlue's picture
Submitted by BDBlue on

As Glen Ford points out this also coincides with some anger towards Obama about his statement over the Sean Bell verdict. It does seem that Obama was once again caught unprepared and spoke off the cuff when he would've been better served to have had a more thoughtful statement ready to go.

North Carolina should be very interesting. In addition to Wright and Bell, Hillary seems to be working hard for the AA vote, pulling in Maya Angelou and having black legislators tour the state. If she could get what she got in SC, just under 20%, that could be a game changer. Although I'm not going to believe that until I see it on Tuesday. Until then, I'm going to assume AA voters go home to Obama.

Submitted by lambert on

Hillary was prepared with a statement, Obama wasn't, and issued boilerplate.

Not ready, not ready, not ready.

It would be nice if Clinton could address this "Clintons are racist" thing directly. Not sure how to do it, though, without causing even more damage.

[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

Lost in Space's picture
Submitted by Lost in Space on

If they engage in this divergence, Obama wins. Because it allows Obama to run the narrative by using the "visible" part of his heritage to set the rules. For the most part, since Maggie Williams has taken over as Hillary's campaign manager, they have managed to allow Obama to step in his minefield and do nothing but eat popcorn - and that's a good thing.

Hillary wins if they remain on the issues that affect "Americans" directly in the pocketbook. Almost every single effort by the Clintons to talk about race relations ends up being an M80 blowing up in face of the Clinton campaign.

In the end, it comes down to actions. About the only thing that Clinton can do right now is to be seen with - and allow more stump speeches by - her AA core support, and spread it far and wide (example, I didn't know that Quincy Jones was a Hillary supporter until last week).

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
The enemy of my enemy is STILL my enemy. Those who forget this end up being Vulture scraps.

Aeryl's picture
Submitted by Aeryl on

She should be visiting the predominanty AA communities throughout IN and KY, too. Show the media that she doesn't feel that her campaign has been racist. She might recieve a bad reaction, but hell she's recieved worse.

One thing Melissa McEwan touched on her post that you pointed out, BDB, was how diverse the crowd is. I noticed it as well, I did not expect to see any AA's at the rally I attended, and was amazed by how many did show. These supporters are die hard for her, especially since many are probably having family fights over it, but they will be the ones who help with the healing after this is all said and done. And it would help their efforts, if she makes to move NOW to reach out to them.

Bill Clinton for First Dude!!!

Submitted by cg.eye on

Who isn't MLK Syndrome:

No one I've read mentioned that Rev. Wright was dead set against the scammers behind the Prosperity Gospel. In fact, he might be the most prominent proponent of Liberation Theology (the last proponents got killed during Iran Contra and other US proxy adventures). That would make him a marked man just in the black megachurch community, but now I understand why there are so few ministers openly defending him.

When Oral Roberts' son had his financial misdealings revealed, the scamming ministers begged folks not to rush to judgment, but now? They hand the Romans the nails and hammer for the cross.

Submitted by cg.eye on

he represents them.

No, they're not polite, but they're the angry, passionate, progressive, bone-Democratic people we were supposed to make coalitions with.

"No, no, don't make nice with those weird, strident people who fight for social justice, stay with our big-haired preachers who'll send you a free prayer cloth blessed by them, for only $19.95."