I just noticed that Black Agenda Report is doing a fundraiser, and I’m passing the hat. I had an opportunity to meet and do an on-camera interview with Bruce Dixon at the 2007 Yearly Kos convention (parts 1, 2 and 3). The site is worthwhile just for the CBC Monitor and the Ravaging of Africa series and these posts on Black-Latino relations.

While I don’t agree with everything they say and would often prefer if they weren’t so hard on Obama, I have read enough to have great respect for the work they are doing. In fact, legitimate criticism of Obama (no pledge of allegiance stuff ok?) forces me to dig deeper to justify my own support. To put it another way, I certainly don’t agree with everything CNN or MSNBC says, yet they get my attention on the regular and are making billions. I have given money to NPR and Apple Computer and the US government. If I can’t support my fellow black media outlet, something is wrong.

Independent media is critical (can’t help but plug Obama’s superior position on this), and independent black media must be preserved. As I’ve had the privilege to work with my fellow JJP writers, I’ve gotten an appreciation for just how hard it is to do this thing well. This could easily be a full time job. It takes time to research. It takes time to edit. It takes money to pay for the servers and recording equipment and phone lines.

If you truly value democracy, you value a diverse and independent media, and Black Agenda Report is among the best I’ve come across.

Here’s a link to the fundraiser.

That’s the only explanation for behavior as ugly as this. We need to put a stop to her campaign ASAP. I don’t want to hate her. I’m not eager to jump on the Clinton-bashing bandwagon, but she keeps pulling me closer. How can I think of her as anything other than a horrible, horrible person. Her mockery of Obama is not entertaining, is not funny. It’s just ugly.

Update: clipped the video directly.

I’m going to Texas next weekend to help deliver another victory. This is madness.

cross-posted to goodCRIMETHINK

I’m so proud of the people I know. A few weeks back, my boy Derrick Ashong held it down for Obama and yesterday fellow NYC comedian Lee Camp straight up punked Fox News. Lee and I have worked together for countless shows as part of Laughing Liberally. The entire clip is three minutes. Watch the entire thing. It’s so worth it.

You can catch Lee all month on Comedy Central’s Fresh Debate 08 series of clips.

A more popular version of Lee’s Fox News clip is available here, and you can Digg it here, but I wanted to provide the entire segment so you could see just how bold his question was. He laid in the cut and then BAM!

cross-posted to goodCRIMETHINK

A definite highlight of the State of the Black Union was the presence of one of my heroes, Dick Gregory, throwing in much real talk. In this clip, he destroys the idea of Bill Clinton as the first black president.

He also goes after the alleged pathology of black folk (such as being lazy) by reminding us of the assault that many black people and neighborhoods endure on a regular basis. The best line of the entire event has got to be

“What are you puttin in my malt liquor, white boy?!”

Check this joint out. Post it on your blogs!

cross-posted to goodCRIMETHINK

This is very important.

I almost forgot. In my post early this morning about Sheila Jackson Lee’s comments, she referenced her bill, HR 4545, which would mandate equal sentencing for crack and cocaine. She also talked about an early release program.

Here’s the video of Sheila Jackson Lee again. Skip to minute six.

It’s a good idea. Too bad her candidate, Hillary Clinton, has attacked Obama for his support of that very idea. There’s more coverage here of Hillary’s failings on this important matter of justice for black people and indeed all people. Of course, Bill Clinton blew his opportunity to do more for black folk besides play the sax and appoint us to cabinet positions when in 1995 he failed to stand up for equal sentencing. Sure, Bill apologized for slavery, but he also launched the unfair imprisonment of hundreds of thousands of black people.

And in case you think I’m just in an anti-Clinton mood, check out the positive work Obama has done and proposed on this issue. Just words??? How can the Congressional Black Caucus, the so-called “conscious conscience of the Congress” ignore this central issue for black people?

This is why folks are hating on CBC support of Hillary Clinton. It’s not because we think they have to support Obama just because they’re black. It’s that their support of Clinton ignores her record and her campaign’s race-baiting attacks in this campaign.

As commenter Nquest put it

To me, it’s a matter of principle and, Jack, that’s where I draw the line with SJL, etc. As a matter of principle, they should challenge Hillary on the race-baiting, to apply pressure to make her understand vs. defending her blindly without holding her to account, OR they should respectfully reconsider by either withdrawing or switching to Obama if they feel so inclined.

But staying with Hillary and pretending like her diarrhea don’t stink should never be what principled Black people do. And that sexism stuff was as forced and “aloof” as Hillary’s strained and reluctant, half-azz apology. “My husband apologized for slavery…”

Hell at least write her damn speeches and tell her how to respond to questions about her campaign’s race-baiting because Hillary f-cked that up going off on her own. I mean, if you’re not going to be any good as far as Black people are concern in terms of ensuring that they (we) are okay with where you stand… at least straighten your girl out.


cross-posted to goodCRIMETHINK

Frank Rick at The New York Times, puts it down in The Audacity Of Hopelessness.

When people one day look back at the remarkable implosion of the Hillary Clinton campaign, they may notice that it both began and ended in the long dark shadow of Iraq.

It’s not just that her candidacy’s central premise — the priceless value of “experience” — was fatally poisoned from the start by her still ill-explained vote to authorize the fiasco. Senator Clinton then compounded that 2002 misjudgment by pursuing a 2008 campaign strategy that uncannily mimicked the disastrous Bush Iraq war plan. After promising a cakewalk to the nomination — “It will be me,” Mrs. Clinton told Katie Couric in November — she was routed by an insurgency.

The Clinton camp was certain that its moneyed arsenal of political shock-and-awe would take out Barack Hussein Obama in a flash. The race would “be over by Feb. 5,” Mrs. Clinton assured George Stephanopoulos just before New Year’s. But once the Obama forces outwitted her, leaving her mission unaccomplished on Super Tuesday, there was no contingency plan. She had neither the boots on the ground nor the money to recoup.

But wait, there’s more.

My people, I have spent some time arranging these clips, so look hard and remember well. There are several, but it’s worth it to sit through them.

First up. Around noon, Stephanie Tubbs Jones somehow fixed her face to say that “you can’t change the rules just because they favor your candidate.” Obviously, there’s not much love for her on this blog. I’ll limit her to 2 minutes. Watch this.

Next, Sheila Jackson Lee in a short clip about how she’s not against anybody but rather the CBC is for somebody. Watch (2 minutes).

Now, a longer segment from SJL really workin it for Senator Clinton. Her key points include Hillary’s experience and background which “cannot be challenged” plus the inappropriateness of challenging people’s blackness who don’t support Obama. Finally she closes talking about how significant sexism still is and how Hillary’s nomination would also be historic (check the crowd shot when she says this). This is about 8 minutes. Sorry for the length, but take the time if you can.

My take on some of her comments.

I am a bit disturbed that folks who support Clinton would have their black credentials challenged. I hesitate to be so heavy-handed in judging the average citizen supporting Hillary because I know what it’s like to have your blackness called into question, and I hated seeing people do it to Obama.

My issue is not with the average (uninformed) citizen, however. You can support Hillary on her merits. Although I call her “35 years of experience” into question, what I really have a problem with is her claiming “35 years” while only giving Obama credit as a “first term Senator.” And I do believe there are legitimate reasons to support her for some of the work she’s done and the plans she’s laid out.

What I find unacceptable, however, are those black leaders who came out early attacking Obama, questioning his blackness, making insane claims about the blackness of Billary and refusing to see the racial ugliness the Clinton campaign (and not just Bill) injected into this race.

And Ms. Lee, don’t tell me not to get angry!

When I’m being told that my legitimate observations are actually orchestrated by the Obama campaign or that votes for my candidate don’t count as much as votes for yours and when you can’t even bother to congratulate my candidate for his repeat and landslide victories, I’m going to get angry.

When your candidate says my candidate is acting like George W. Bush and Karl Rove and yet falsely accuses him of refusing to take a stand on choice even after being corrected on this lie, I am going to get angry.

When I’m told that my candidate is full of nice speeches but no substance, that he’s peddling false hopes and that my well-considered and informed support of him can be explained away by my mindless membership in a cult, I am going to get angry and my anger is justified and you are in no position to deny the validity of that anger. Okay??

The fact is that many supporting Hillary have not merely been for her. They have been part of a systematic effort to destroy Obama and the hope and participation he has helped inject into this campaign. What kind of jackass runs against hope anyway!?

See what you made me do? Now I’m even angrier because you’re telling me I don’t have the right to be angry.

The final clip is from Al Sharpton who does a fantastic job, really, in delivering an on point, intense rebuttal to the half-truths and lies perpetrated by Tubbs Jones and Jackson Lee, and he does it in just three minutes.

Man, it’s 2am. It could be a full time job just responding to b.s. with information. I’m so tired yall. I’ll be back tomorrow with clips from Dick Gregory, Bill Simons and Eddie Glaude.


I’m gonna have to step out soon, so no more posts for many hours, but I wanted to get Nicole Lee from TransAfrica some love. She did an amazing job raising issues of US foreign policy and black folks at the State of the Black Union.

Check it

Hillary Clinton amazes me. She’s throwing a hissy fit over mailings the Obama campaign sent out claiming a) that she supported NAFTA and b) that her health care mandate could result in taking wages from workers. Check out this video, then meet me below…

Karl Rove tactics? “Since when do Democrats attack Democrats on universal health care?” Excuse me, but SINCE WHEN DO DEMOCRATS ATTACK DEMOCRATS ON THE ISSUE OF ABORTION??? I have heard from women friends of mine who are actually nervous that Obama won’t protect their right to choice.

Every time Hillary attacks Obama, she’s attacking him for something she herself has done. She has some serious nerve.

Here are some good links on Clinton and NAFTA:

Now, I’m no trade expert, and my understanding is that Obama is pretty free trade himself (he was supportive of the recent Peru round), but this issue is specifically about Hillary’s false indignation.

I don’t have time now to get into the health care thing, except to point you to Obama’s site defending elements of his plan under attack from Hillary and pointing to this reference from her about taking people’s wages.

The truth is that their goals are quite similar. Their approach is different. He focuses on reducing costs more aggressively and about having a transparent process so fewer shenanigans can go down. She’s focused on mandating universality (and also reducing costs BTW). Having just moved from Massachusetts where that plan seems to be tanking, I’m more skeptical of of her plan, but basically I don’t trust any sense of emotion or anger coming from Hillary Clinton right about now.

Feel free to expand or challenge in the comments

Update here’s Obama’s response

I just turned it on, and haven’t had a chance to listen much, but the first image I saw was of Tavis in front of the sponsor board. Apparently, the state of the black union is brought to you by ExxonMobil and McDonalds.

Tavis Smiley State Of The Black Union

Granted, ExxonMobil is not purely evil. The African American Environmental Association endorsed the company’s recent liquified natural gas project in Jersey, and the company has a black woman on its board!

However, this is also the same ExxonMobil that spent $16 million to fund groups that deny or confuse the issue of global warming and paid Indonesian military units to “secure” its gas pipeline by committing major human rights atrocities.

Anyway, feel free to use the comments here to share what you’re hearing from the SOBU, good, bad or otherwise.

Update: Wal-Mart is the major financial sponsor of the America, I Am black history exhibit which will be traveling the country over a five year period. Wal-Mart. As State Senator Clay Davis might say, “Shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit” (and pardon my language but come on now!)

cross-posted to goodCRIMETHINK

Update: an even more comprehensive look at her plagiarism from the Candid Blogger

Yall went nuts on the debate open thread last night. Beautiful. I didn’t even have to watch the thing (will later tonight).

Big ol’ tip of the hat to the commenters on this blog, plus DailyKos and others for posting these videos.

For realz!

I’m unable to watch the debate live, but yall go ahead and share your responses. What’s up?

cross-posted to goodCRIMETHINK

A twitter friend recently asked me about Obama’s energy stance. I wrote about it briefly in my endorsement letter.

While energy/climate/food issues are at the top of my “issues” list I don’t have time right now to do an in depth post, but I wanted to give more than a 140 character response. Yes, this blog post is in response to twitter. Wow.

What I will do is link to reputable sources

As is often pointed out in attempts to compare the two, they offer similar proposals. Gristmill’s assessment is similar to my own quick one. It comes down to who do you think will actually get their plan done and who can bring the largest number of Democratic votes into Congress to pass legislation.

That would be Obama in my book. In addition to his proven ability to work with a range of interests (see him on the Illinois death penalty), he brings a transformational plan (more here) for government transparency and civic engagement which should ensure that the voice of the people is heard in crafting our new energy policy.

But dude penned a nice one in “Playing the ‘Fair’ Card” where he does a decent job of ripping HRC specifically and Dems a bit generally about whining.

Judging from complaints by her minions, Hillary Clinton considers it unfair that Barack Obama has been wafted close to the pinnacle of politics by an updraft from the continentwide swoon of millions of Democrats and much of the media brought on by his Delphic utterances such as “We are the change.” But disquisitions on fairness are unpersuasive coming from someone from Illinois or Arkansas whose marriage enabled her to treat New York as her home, and the Senate as an entry-level electoral office (only 12 of today’s senators have been elected to no other office) and a steppingstone to the presidency.

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Cheryl Contee aka "Jill Tubman", Baratunde Thurston aka "Jack Turner", rikyrah, Leutisha Stills aka "The Christian Progressive Liberal", B-Serious, Casey Gane-McCalla, Jonathan Pitts-Wiley aka "Marcus Toussaint," Fredric Mitchell

Special Contributors: James Rucker, Rinku Sen, Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins, Adam Luna, Kamala Harris

Technical Contributor: Brandon Sheats


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