He does speak truth.
I agree bru Parker.
I like Dr. West's statement that The President should be: "a thermostat not a thermometer".
from the Huffington Post.Cornel West and the President: What Are We Really Talking About?Cornel West's recent criticisms of President Obama have made news for the wrong reasons. The story is all about West. It shouldn't be.Isn't West an egotist miffed about being excluded from the president's inner circle? Isn't it hypocritical for an Ivy League professor to suggest that the president cares more about being accepted by the ruling elite than about standing up for the poor? Isn't it uncivil to imply that having grown up among people who were not descendants of slaves has something to do with the president's failure to express sympathy for the descendants of slaves? Isn't it wrong to call the president a "Black mascot of Wall Street oligarchs"?Suppose that the answer to all four questions were yes. What would we have learned? Only that West is a fallible human being, which he has been saying for as long as I have known him. Here are some questions actually worth debating: Why did the election of an African-American president not draw more attention to the misery of the African-American underclass? How did a campaign about bottom-up change result in an administration favorable to Wall Street? How can the millions of people who don't have jobs, or enough to live on, or a fair shake from their lenders and employers take the country back? What hope is there for democracy when the rich and the lucky dominate the rest?
...continued from above...These are the questions that West has been trying to raise since November 2008. They are good questions. It is a pity that he attracted a lot of attention only when he cast his criticisms of the president in personal terms. Obama is responsive to power. In this respect, he is like all other politicians. If he isn't the mascot of Wall Street oligarchs, he is the public face of their regime, he serves their interests, and he reinforces their view of themselves as tolerant and benevolent. That he is responsive to the corporate elite does not require explanation in terms of his upbringing and personality. Even if the president were more courageous, even if he identified more strongly with the downtrodden, the power imbalance in our society would still be roughly what it is, and Obama would either be dancing to a tune called by oligarchs or getting nothing done.The oligarchs have massive power. Their power is a product of the corporate organizations they run, which give employees monetary incentives to cooperate in carrying out the objectives of management. The resulting economic power translates easily into political power. And when it does, the politicians pay attention.People outside the economic and political elites are, on the whole, weakly organized and therefore lacking, for the time being, in power. If there were stronger labor unions and a highly developed network of citizens' organizations exerting pressure on politicians, there would be a fighting chance for poor and middle class people to hold the ruling elites accountable. We know this because we know how slavery was abolished, how women won the franchise, and how African-Americans got to sit in the front of the bus. The news from Tunis, Cairo, and Madison reminds us that ordinary people can generate power of their own.Nowadays ordinary Americans have a power shortage. They have a power shortage because they are weakly organized. Their only chance of holding elites accountable, of countering domination, is to organize themselves skillfully and use the resulting power wisely. Candidate Obama inspired people because he spoke about all this. He misled his followers into thinking that large-scale democratic change would happen if he were elected. His presidency has disappointed them. The trouble is that the basic power imbalance is still there. The ego of the prophet and the personality of the president don't matter. What matters is who is organized, by what means, toward what ends. The real story, as the president used to say, is about us. The president disappoints us because we let him.
At one time I had a great deal of respect for Dr. West. Then he started running around acting like a little bytch and hanging with Taavis Smelly. Dr. West is important to the African American diaspora. He needs to disassociate from people like Smelly.
I will have to do much more careful reading and listening before I have an opinion about Dr. West's statements. I must admit I hate that Obama has to take criticism from both sides.Unfortunately, the President of the United States, no matter what his race will never be the President of the downtrodden. I am afraid that those who fight for the rights of others will probably not be politicians. I expect that unions will have to have a revival when working conditions once again reach a level of unfairness that will cause people to rally (and conditions will reach a level of unfairness).Unfortunately, the other unions have already been broken for the most part, and no one is supporting the unions of public workers, firefighters, police, and teachers--other than those who are fighting for themselves and they, of course, will lose the fight when the average citizen does not see the value of unions. Unions are the only force that made the power structure listen to the needs of the workers. That will be the case with teachers, also, and please don't doubt that the "ruling elite of education" will think only of themselves. They will talk about "the children," but it isn't about the children at all. Sorry--didn't really mean to make this a topic about teachers and the union--but teachers are the last group to have a strong union. I bemoan the loss of all unions. And, please, I do understand that all unions sometimes fought for too much, etc. There does have to be a balance, but there is little balance now.
Emerge, are saying that a man is wrong for expressing his opinion even if that oponion is not popular to some?
Good because I believe as Dr. West does. I supported Barack out of love so I feel from that same love I should be able to critque him or at least question him. I ran around here and had to basically argue with black people to get them to sign his petitions to get his name on the ballot. Their biggeest argument was that "he's gonna mess things up for Hillary by splitting the black vote".I was there in Springfield when he announced in February of 2007 in the cold.After I got umteenth pages of petitions signed for him, I showed up in Sprinfield on a cold October 29th morning back in 2007 to wait in line with Sen. Terry Link, Sen. Kwame Raoul, Firefighter Union Rep. Rick Merril and Steve Preckwinckle to deliver and file the 55,000 signatures that had been collected. I then went to Iowa in December and camped out and caucused for our president in the cold and snow. This after going to Davenport on the weekends to campaign for him since June of that same year. I donated money, time and campaigned for him in other states. I was at his beckon call all through the election and even got elected as a delegate for him to the convention by securing more votes than anyone who ran for delegate on either the Democratic Republican side.I went to his inauguration and attended his inaugural ball. So, if I have a problem with or a question about our president's handling of the black community, I think I have a right to voice that. I'm just saying.
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