Sunday, July 15, 2012

The hand that once had the right to pick a president can now get back to picking cotton!



By Malik Sekou OSEI and William PLEASANT


“The people who cast the votes don't decide an election, the people who count the votes do.”--Joseph Stalin


July 15, 2012


Perhaps Pres. Barack Obama's most freakish stage routine today is his leading role in de jure disenfranchisement of Blacks and the poor in general. Ironic? Actually, it is quite lawful at this historical juncture characterized by growing convulsive class antagonisms that are sweeping the world. How can it be that the Obama regime at once crows that it is passionately commited to expanding the voter pool of the US and ready-willing-able to mobilize the traditional Democratic Party base--Blacks, Latinos, labor unionists, the elderly and progressive whites--and at the same collaborate in the Republican Party's quite transparent nationwide campaign to drive the poor and the left from the ballot box?


The answer is political. Obama has side-stepped the fundamental issue of democratic rights and equality by engaging the pinata of Voter ID laws under the now moribund 1965 Voting Rights Act.


In the state of Texas there a was week-long trial on a new voter ID law that concluded with members of a three-judge federal court panel indicating they would uphold the federal Department of Justice and block the implementation of the law on the grounds that it has a discriminatory effect on minorities.


Obama's Justice Department presented a compelling 1965 Voting Rights Act case proving that Black people (the poor in general) are far more likely to lack the government-issued photo identification required to vote under the Texas law. One expert witness testified that 11-percent of white registered voters lacked the required ID, compared to 18-percent of Hispanic registered voters and 21-percent of black registered voters. A total of 1.5 million people of all races could have been denied the right to vote under the new Texas law.


Attorneys representing the Texas state government argued that the law would not have a “disproportionate” impact on Latino and African American voters and claimed that “only” 167,000 current voters would be disenfranchised by the new ID requirements. Predictably, the Texas legal team never bothered to bring a single state legislator nor executive official (overwhelmingly right wing Republicans) to the witness stand The reason was simple: They would be subjected to cross-examination by the federal lawyers. That would have of course put the Texans on the record stating that their reasons for snatching the ballot from minorities and the poor was purely a political ploy to keep non-whites from voting AGAINST REPUBLICANS, not preventing voter fraud, as the Lone Star ballot bandits pleaded.


The Texans did not challenge evidence that 80 of the state’s 200 counties have no location where photo IDs can be obtained, and that many residents would have to drive more than 120 miles (one way) to get such an identification card. They also went mum when it was pointed out that the IDs runs at least $22, a hardship,  particularly onerous to the elderly and the poor. 


At one point, Mr. Robert Hughes, one of the Texas state attorneys, stated that he also regarded literacy tests as permissible, although they were one of the primary KKK-driven tactics for excluding Black people from the ballot box for 90 years!. Literacy tests and poll taxes were supposedly permanently barred by the 1965 Voting Rights Act. In other words, for the Texas Attorney General--circa 2012, "The hand that once had the right to pick a president can now get back to picking cotton!"


The Texan's case was so tranparently threadbare that it immdiately exposed the underlying national strategy of the Republican Party, namely to force an appeal in the US Supreme Court aimed at obliterating the 1965 Voting Rights Act altogether. Texas is one of 16 states required under the Voting Rights Act to obtain “clearance” by the federal Justice Department before any significant changes can be made to statewide or even county-level voting protocols.



The heart of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was to address particular counties where there had existed a historical pattern of de jure measures employed to virtually outlaw Black and Latino participation in the electoral process. These, of course, were augmented by sheer terrorism led by a coalition of local law enforcement officials and KKK death squads.


Texas is not the only Republican-run state to have recently enacted voter ID requirements and other measures aimed at curbing voter registration and reducing the number of people able to vote, in the name of a fight against “vote fraud.” Voter fraud is merely a euphemism for the strong tendency for non-whites and their allies to reject Republican Party candidates. It is a very WHITE ELEPHANT, since there have been no significant nor documented patterns of voter impersonation, the type of fraud that could be forestalled by a photo ID requirement. For example: not a single person has been convicted in Texas for such an offense. The song remains the same in the other states that have pushed for voter supression.


In Michigan, according to a report by the Republican Secretary of State, out of nearly 1.2 million ballots cast in the February 28, 2012 presidential primary, there were half a dozen believed to have been ineligible to vote.


In Florida, where the state attempted to purge 182,000 people from the voter rolls by employing a dubious list of supposed “illegal aliens,” the number was first whittled down to 2,600, then to only 47, after press revelations that the “illegals” on the list included such individuals as the state’s former Republican governor, Rick Scott, a principal sponsor of the law, and a 91-year-old decorated veteran of World War II's Battle of the Bulge.


Since a reactionary 2008 US Supreme Court decree upholding a photo ID requirement for voting in Indiana, such measures have been adopted in a total of 17 states. The Justice Department has blocked implementation of these laws in Texas, Florida and South Carolina, relying on its powers under the Voting Rights Act. But in states that lie out side the jurisdiction of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, legal disenfranchisement of non-white voters is in full swing. By one estimate, as many as five million voters could be summarily driven from the polls by such laws on Election Day 2012..


For example: Pennsylvania's voter ID law takes effect for the first time in November. According to state officials, some 750,000 people, or nine percent of the state’s 8.2 million voters, do not have an acceptable ID card. In Philadelphia, the state’s largest city, which has a Black majority, that figure rises to 18-percent!    


Pennsylvania's Republican House Majority Leader Mike Turzai openly confessed to the political purpose of the bill, declaring that voter ID “[I]s gonna allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania.”


The clear intent of these laws is to speed up the “vote suppression” tactics applied by the Republican Party in the 2000 and 2004 presidential elections, which included massive purges of Black and Latino voters from the registration lists in the name of eliminating felons and undocumented workers. The vast majority of those removed were, in fact, US citizens eligible to vote, whose democratic rights were denied in order to obtain an electoral advantage for the Republican Party's candidates..


Of course, the most egregious case of “vote fraud” in recent years was the stolen election of 2000, when Republican state officials in Florida intentionally suppressed turnout in African American precincts and then declared George W. Bush the victor by a 537-vote margin. When the Florida state Supreme Court ordered a full recount that threatened Bush’s supposed victory, the US Supreme Court intervened with its notorious Bush v. Gore decision.This crippled the vote re-count and the installed Bush in the White House. The Democratic Party surrendered to this attack on democratic rights, setting the stage for the anti-working class onslaught that has followed.


We have noted in earlier articles that the 2000 Supreme Court action and the decision by Democratic candidate Al Gore and the Democratic Party to accept the virtual coronation of Bush--who had actually lost the popular vote by a margin of nearly one million--demonstrated that there was no longer any significant constituency within the US ruling stratum for the defense of democratic rights.


Likewise, there is really no substance to the Obama regime's opposition to the voter supression campaign. Why did not the Justice Department subpoena the
Republican masterminds behind Texas disenfranchisement last week? Why did Obama's legal eagles merely argue against the Texas voter ID law on the basis of the 1965
Voting Rights Act--which applies almost exclusively to the former Confederacy--when voter supression is a nationwide phenomenon in 2012? It should be plainly clear that the 1965 Voting Rights Act is pathetically obsolete today. Doesn't the 19th Amendment of the US Constitution (1920), which granted euqal voting righs to males and females by extension grant the federal executive and legislative branches the absolute power to protect access to the ballot? It reads: "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation." 


Substitute "race" or "income level" or "geographic location" or "party affiliation" for "sex" and you can see our point. Does Obama support equal democratic rights for minorities and the poor. His Justice Department's performance in Texas leaves strong evidence that he is at most indifferent.



While the Democrats, for short-term electoral purposes, oppose the Republican attacks on voter turnout in minority areas, the Obama administration has in every other respect continued and accelerated the attacks on democratic rights carried out by the Bush administration, including stepped-up political surveillence on the American. Obama has effectively politically disarmed Blacks and other people of color through a highly sophisticate campaign by which the demands of minorities and poor are submerged in the politically neutral jargon of "Middle Class" shared self-interests. This bourgeois populism, propelled by the cultural nationalistic placebo of "Black faces in high places"   has rendered Black political resistance to a mush of apologies for Obama's very open disdain for anything approaching a pro-Black or pro-working class political agenda, even of the mildest reformist specie.


Now is the time for a profound reality check:
 “What” are the material and political interests of the Black community and the larger working class community?


Can Pres. Buckwheat, a representative of the American capitalist/imperialist system really have the same interests as the Black community and the working poor? There is, of course, the argument that we need to support the lesser (Obama) of the two evils. But where in Buckwheat's historical practice of the last four years have we seen him as anything other than evil? Buckwheat was simply the more efficient of the two evils.Let that sink in.
        
For Black people and the 99-percent in the US, history is on their side, but not time.


--30--

Friday, June 15, 2012

Discipline of Whispers of Frozen Time...


Then We Heard The Thunder in the Discipline of Whispers of Frozen Time...
by
Malik Sekou OSEI

The vexing silence of
broken clocks and watches
For some men are odd,
for they dream
in scents and smells,
Some swear,
they have the scent of
nutmeg
As they sleep in
too tight bandanas,
on
their
styles
home.
They swear, they smell
Friday fish of grove.
Where granny who gave the impression
that she had the science of dreams,
down to a science
Then we heard the thunder,
she would whisper...
Any dreams about birds
means good health,
because her motor
car
was at a full stop,
she was still
trying to turn the wheel,
she forgot to wind her watch,
For she has never
been a follower
of
time
she felt as its
victim...
when her dreams would appear
behind close eye-lids
As Ebony men
ride home
at
...night
Through stoic
shades
of
….evening.
The huge of darkness
gives
comfort
of
anonymity
through
foul and never
empty
tunnels
of
travel
trying...
to convince
that
they
are
not "still"
at
stop
called
PLANTATION...
The illusion
of motion
of
a NYC metro card.
THEY...
smile,
when
regal
women
of
Ebony
never
removed
sit across
with
children
and
one
child's
head
deep
in
a
book
trying
to
figure
the complexities
of living—life
with a smile.
Men smile
at the ever
slight
chance
at
motion.
They whisper
in a
child's
ear...
"By the virtue of the more
you know. The less you
can be mislead..."
This
big headed
ebony
boy-child
only
responded
"then we heard the thunder."
Then all the clocks
and watches on the
train began to work.
For the Ebony
Boy-child
understood
that
history
cannot
be understood
behind
the
warmth
of
closed
eye-lids .
--30--
 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

We don't have Obama's back or front...

Watch Obama's latest pitch to the homeboys and homebettes of America....
MORE PIMP CHATTER FROM OUR PRES. BUCKWHEAT (CLICK HERE)

By Sekou OSEI
This can't be serious, I guess, if you don't stand for something, then you're fall for anything. I guess the Obama really doesn't care about Black people. I guess Black people are really just that uninformed and gullible. I guess we should be impressed by four years of nothing.
  
Perhaps, in his next ad geared for the African voting base, Pres. Buckwheat should play to so-called Black American stereotypes. The next cmpaign ad should point out that Obama can break-dance and he drinks red kool-aid out of a mayonnaise jar, and digs  ham sandwiches smeared with Miracle Whip. Hey? And ol' Buckwheat can't pass up a 40oz, right?

I guess he understands that he can't approach a Black voting base with intelligent information outside of Black so-called slang and perhaps he should (when talking to us) end all of his sentences with "Son" or "Dog".

Obama is convinced that Black America is too stupid or too mystified by a black face in a high place to see that not only did he never really promise anything to Black, Latino and working class people, but he has actually gone out of his way to exacerbate our misery.
 Let us look at his budget for fiscal year 2013. Proposed by the him, it is a thoroughly cynical exercise. He calls for hundreds of billions of dollars in social spending cuts, further devastating public services and the living standards of poor Black people and the rest of the %99 percent. The lyrical bullshit is combined with populist demogogy about taxing the rich, although "Buckwheat" knows full well that no such measures will pass either the Republican-controlled House of Representatives or the Democratic-controlled Senate.

"Buckwheat" will incorporate $1 trillion over ten years in cuts to domestic social spending already agreed on with congressional Republicans in last year’s negotiations over raising the federal debt ceiling. To these cuts will be added a total of $638 billion in social spending cuts.
We also have to deal with the fact that Buckwheat  signed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) into law on New Year’s Eve under the cover of darkness. The bill provides  a more than massive $662 billion hand-out to the US war machine. The bill also guts our civil rights by authorizing the US military to seize individuals anywhere in the world and hold them in a military detention facility indefinitely, without a trial or any other legal recourse.

$662 billions could put a number of people back to work (you think?)
Congressional Democrats and Republicans ratified the NDAA in a series of House and Senate votes in November and December that beat back nearly all efforts to set limits to the presidential power to arrest and imprison without trial or charge. As Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said during the congressional debate, "the legislation defines the entire world to be part of the battlefield against Al Qaeda (and the rest of the %99 percent), including the territory of the United States itself, making every human being on the planet, including every American citizen, a potential prisoner of the American military."

We didn't need to elect a Black president for this kind of shit. Any garden variety fascist would do.

The NDAA effectively takes away the oldest democratic right-- habeas corpus-- which bars arbitrary imprisonment by requiring that the government to present evidence to a judge or court to justify taking a person into custody. It must be noted that this right was first asserted in England during the Middle Ages and finally established and codified in the course of the English Revolution of the 17th century, which shattered the arbitrary power of the monarchy and established the supremacy of parliament ...I could go on.

--30--


Monday, June 11, 2012

On bashing Barack and the delusional tendency in Black USA


By William PLEASANT
On Sunday, I had a rather interesting email duel with an old friend.
He was scandalized by this blog and its frequent and strident political
attacks on the Democratic Party and the Obama regime.
The exchange below is very ilustrative of the political under development
the afflicts huge sectors of the Black intelligentsia.


From: XXXNYC
Subject: WHAT SIDE ARE YOU ON?? THIS IS A FIGHT!!
To: "William Pleasant" <
wmpleasantiv@com>
Date: Sunday, June 10, 2012, 9:56 AM



Dear Billiam,
This is a fight! You have to decide who is the better candidate: Mitt or Barack?
Neither is perfect...But they have entirely different agendas...
By Bashing barack, you provide ammunition to the republican party to string along uneducated
uncle tom blacks against Barack.
Please reconsider the focus of your Blog...
You say your against Republicans agenda to get rid of Unions,
But your approach is to bash Obama????
WHAT SIDE ARE YOU ON???THIS IS A FIGHT!!!!!
CHOOSE ONE PLEASE
I RESPONDED::::
On Sun, Jun 10, 2012 at 10:55 AM, William Pleasant wmpleasantiv@y wrote:
I am not bashing Obama.
I have no interest in bashing anybody.
If it is a fight--and it is--then we must know the terrain that we battle on and who are our enemies.
Obama is not on our side.
He never was.
He is not a sell-out because he was never bought-in to anything.
That is the bottom line.
That was the case in 2008. It is true now.
That upsets a lot of folks, but the objective circumstances indicate such.
Obama is not the lesser of two evils, he is, in fact, the most effective evil.
We must fight evil.
That is the fight I think worthy.
Sharpton and all the negro apologists for the DP are the enemy now. They articulate a
tactical surrender to Obama and the DP for Blacks, unionists and others. But there
tactic comes with no strategy of empowerment. Fuck them!

MR. XXXNYC shot back:::::

From: <XXXNYC>
Subject: Re: WHAT SIDE ARE YOU ON?? THIS IS A FIGHT!!
To: "William Pleasant" <wmpleasantiv@>
Date: Sunday, June 10, 2012, 4:46 PM

YOUR SAYING THAT THIS IS SOME MAJOR CONSPIRACY THEORY THAT OBAMA IS WAGING AGAINST THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, SO FUCK THEM LETS RUN INTO THE ARMS OF THE REPUBLICANS???
WHAT DO YOU PROPOSE? H

HOW COULD YOU SAY YOUR NOT OBAMA BASHING WHEN YOU HAVE A HUGE PICTURE OF BARACK DRESSED LIKE A PIMP ON YOUR BLOG???
IF WHAT YOUR SAYING HAS ANY VALIDITY WHY IS IT SO ONE-SIDED??? WHAT ABOUT THE RP?????
YOUR SILENCE IS AN ENDORSEMENT FOR THEM--WHILE BASHING OBAMA, OBAMA HAS A HEALTH CARE PLAN.. RP--DONT HAVE ANY PLAN??THEY WANT YOU TO SUFFER RATHER THEN BACK ANYTHING OBAMA PROPOSES

From: <XXXNYC>
Subject: Re: WHAT SIDE ARE YOU ON?? THIS IS A FIGHT!!
To: "William Pleasant" <wmpleasantiv@>
Date: Monday, June 11, 2012, 6:46 PM

Well well Bill ..you have failed to answer the most pressing questions that l have asked... and its puzzling to me that you repeatedly skip over the question meaning that you either are afraid or you have a subliminal block either way your "Herman Cain"political reasoning is frightening at least and horrifying at most: PLEASE ANSWER THE QUESTION??????
1. Why is you bashing Obama??? (pimp outfit)if you are not..Why is your argument so ONE-SIDED.???? ("Hermancainist" why are you afraid to WRITE/BLOG ABOUT Mitt Romney) with the same vigor, "Hermancainism"
2. If Obama is so terrible, what is your antidote at the polls?: a) Advocating "Not voting" is just what the RP want you to do.
3. Your argument may have some validity but your timing is aweful.The is not about race-based sentimentality(perhaps for you-black man who hates black women), but it about RP's fear/paranoia of "redistribution of wealth" and "hate for Obama to the extent they are willing to drown the nation-so they can make Obama look bad_ then turn around and do all he wants to do" only with their stamp on it."
PLEASE ANSWER THE QUESTIONS, AND GET OFF THE RP PAYROLL AND PUT AN END TO YOUR HERMANCAINIST RHETORIC!
I BEG YOU!!
ON VIEWING THE ABOVE EXCHANGE, Comrade Sekou OSEI commented::::

WOW that was more than a GREAT response to an apologist whose only role is to disarm Black people with racial idealism, Perhaps you should send him a religious Christan tract or Watch Tower. The thing that takes me aback is after all of the history since the 50s 60s 70s 80s 90s 2000, and up to now 2012, negros are still politically naive and are still looking for racial validation and racial feel good.
   Perhaps this negro "MR XXXNYC" wants all of us to go out to the sand-box and play nice and not say bad words about "our" president.
REALITY CHECK....
  
Dear William, you can't spend a lot of time talking with negros because they will never learn that if they want to change the quality of their lives then they must prepare for a truggle for power and not to spend their lives trying to struggle to influence the powers-that-be. There is a vast history that shows you that the "Mr. Chuck and his buckdancing sidekicks" pretty-much ignore negros and their complaints.
The reason why I support this site, is because It's one thing to convince a people a "way" to "fight,"  but its quite another to "convince" them to fight. The latter is a waste  is actually a waste of intellectual time.
For most negros are desperate and broken, still looking for a nice white or Black elected official. Thus their range of ideas will always be damaged goods without courage and insight.
What you have to understand that negros are the victims of their own seduction, that why you must never shake hands with them, because they always have hair in their palms.

Apologist will never have the intellectual rigor--not because they are dimwitted-- but because they have no courage, for their argument are almost always around the niceties of sentiment or racial sentiment of not giving this "Buckwheat," who has continued Bush's war and who has begun the recolonization process in Africa with the support for racist Libyans and NATO. These scumbags daily torture, rape and ly nch Libyans who can't pass the brown paperbag test. This goes on under the watch of Pres. Buckwheat. Black people have lost more homes and jobs through sub-prime mortgages and "Buckwheat's" bail-out o the banks fiascos than ever before. Obama rides shotgun on an ever-growing police state. He engages in summary executions and mass murder via drone strikes.I can go on... ever,
Please. Are these negro apologist serious?..
REALITY CHECK.
M. Sekou OSEI
<><><> image
--30--

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

A PIMPER'S PARADISE: Obama and the unions...


By William PLEASANT

When Barack Obama promised CHANGE during his 2008 presidential campaign he was definitely not talking about changing the traditional post-war relationship between organized labor and the Democratic Party.
The June 5th Wisconsin gubenatorial recall election should have made this point emphatic to all. Pres. Buckwheat and his DP minions allowed the Republican Party to stomp organized labor's passionate attempt to unseat the reactionary incumbent Gov. Scott Walker and install the liberal Democratic Mayor of Milwaukee Tom Barrett. Despite millions of man-hours spent collecting recall petition signatures and millions more spent on canvassing and get-out-the-vote campaigns, organized labor was undone at the hands of the Republicans, with the tacit assistance of the Obama regime and the Democratic National Committee (DNC).
(Walker raised more than $30 million--mostly from out-of-state corporate donors and the Republican National Committee. Barrett's campaign ran on less than $4 million--mostly from unions and small private donors.)
Obama and the DNC offered next to no concrete support to the recall drive (less than $500K), which began over a year ago when Gov. Walker rammed a bill through the Wisconsin legislature that effectively outlawed collective bargaining rights for state employees.
Scott Walker's anti-union antics in Wisconsin were a KOCH-financed experiment to see how much union-busting would be tolerated under the Obama regime. The KOCH BROTHER'S hypothesis was proven: Obama and the Democratic Party establishment did not support organized labor. In short, organized labor and its supporters in the liberal/progressive camps were actually politically disarmed by their material relationship to the Democratic Party.
The same can be said for the Black, Latino, Asian, Native social sectors. They are all political sitting ducks. The KOCH BROTHERS and fellow supporters of a fascistic AMERIKKAN SPRING are licking their chops now, as they prepare for a multi-state coupe de grace to public
sector collective bargaining rights.
Liberal post-recall pundits now scratch their heads and ask: "What if President Obama had campaigned for Tom Barrett? (Though Obama made fund-raising trips to nearby Minneapolis and Chicago last week, the president declined to make even a brief detour to campaign for his fellow Democrat.) The most Obama & Co. had to offer Barrett (i.e., organized labor) was a single TWEET of support on election eve!!!! Vice President Joe Biden didn't even TWEET.
The truth of the matter is that an Obama appearance in Wisconsin would still have been too late and too little. The political substance of Pres. Buckwheat and his party's support for labor had already been exposed over a year ago. When Wisconsin labor unionists occupied the state capitol in protest to Scott Walker's anti-union legislation, the Obama crew went AWOL. Obama and Biden were conspicuous no-shows.
Marxists are not scratching their heads in the wake of the Wisconsin debacle. Organized labor, like other resisting social sectors, has been double teamed by Democrats and Republicans since the 1980s. When then-president Ronald Reagan crushed the Air Traffic Controllers Union, without even a whimper from the Democratic Party, the ideological Right was given the historical high sign that the organized labor sector was political fair game. With military precision, the Right pushed through right-to-work laws and a string of roll-backs of 30 years of worker shop-floor gains.
Purged of its socialist and communist leadership during the 1950s and 60s, and ideologically misled by social democratic opportunists, organized labor ( especially its militants) were grazed silly on the notion that the Democratic Party was the party of labor. Labor's advance was equated with the fortunes of the Democratic Party, which was at least the "lesser-of-two-evils." The organized labor movement's social policy agenda became structurally chained to the Democratic Party. In the name of unity with the only mainstream political institution that would tolerate its social presence, organized labor again and again kow-towed to the whims of the Democratic Party leadership.
In this arrangement, the establishment of an independent, pro-labor party was impossible. That would mean that labor would need go into strategic opposition to the Democratic Party. This is the historical essence of Barack Obama's pimp game against US labor. In short, Obama correctly surmises that it would be absurd to pay for what he and only he can get for free--i.e., the money and slavish support of organized labor's leadership, and the disciplined activism of the rank-n-file.
Obama flashed his rear-end to labor and progressive voters in Wisconsin this week because he knows that come November 2012 they will stampede to the polls on his behalf, come hell or high water. His strategy is highly similar in respect Black and Latino voters.
As far as Obama is concerned, his streetwalkers have already officially lined up to pleasure him. Despite three years of deliberate neglect and disrespect at the hands of the Obama regime, labor unions have rushed to endorse the incumbent, starting a year before his party offers even a crumb of political concession and before the national convention!
National Education Association (NEA) – July 4, 2011
United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) – October 20, 2011
National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) – November 16, 2011
Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU) – November 17, 2011
Service Employees International Union (SEIU) – November 19, 2011
American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) – December 6, 2011
Communications Workers of America (CWA) – February 2, 2012
American Federation of Teachers (AFT) – February 7, 2012
International Association of Machinists (IAM) – February 24, 2012
United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipefitting Industry (UA) – March 1, 2012
United Steel Workers (USW) – March 4, 2012
Laborers International Union of North America (LIUNA) – March 8, 2012
AFL-CIO – March 13, 2012...
This list continues to grow week by week. Meanwhile, rank-n-file labor unionists groan under the political boot of a presidential candidate who promised in 2008 that if “American workers are being denied their right to organize and collectively bargain when I’m in the White House, I’ll put on a comfortable pair of shoes myself. I’ll walk on that picket line with you as president of the United States of America.”

--30--

THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE: Just like mom, apple pie and Chevrolet...



By William PLEASANT

The Atlanta-based Center for Disease Control (CDC} "does not know of a virus or condition that would reanimate the dead (or one that would present zombie-like symptoms),” agency spokesperson David Daigle declared last Friday. Zombie-mania has seized US pop consciousness. It all began May 26 in Florida after 31-year-old Miami resident Rudy Eugene stripped off all his clothes, attacked a homeless man and attempted to chew off his face. Eugene, naked and growling, only ceased his attack after police shot him several times, according to eyewitnesses. A day later, a New Jersey man stabbed himself 50 times, cut out his own intestines and threw them at police. By the end of the week a Seattle man had killed six people, including himself, in a shooting spree that started in a local cafe.
Meanwhile in Baltimore, .Alexander Kinyua, a 21-year-old Morgan State University student, allegedly confessed to killing and dismembering his housemate, fellow Morgan State student. Kujoe Bonsafo Agyei-Kodie. Kinyua , a son aof a Morgan State physics professor, also claimed that he ate his victim's heart and portions of his brain. Baltimore police found the remainder of Agyei-Kodie's body in the dumpster of a neighborhood church.
Luka Rocco Magnotta, the Canadian porn actor accused of killing and dismembering a man and mailing body parts to politicians and several schools, will not fight extradition following his arrest in Germany, a Berlin police official said Tuesday. Magnotta told a Berlin magistrate that he will return voluntarily to stand trial for the ritual murder of Jun Lin, a Chinese student at Canada's Concordia University. Canadian authorities accuse Magnotta of dismembering Lin, mailing one of his hands and one of his feet to Canadian politicians and posting a video of the grisly act on the Internet...A Florida couple allegedly kills a young girl,then goes on Facebook to brag about partying and argue about disposal of the body....A 14-year-old boy has been charged with murder in the death of his 9-year-old half-sister, whose body was found attached to a rope hanging from a tree, Alabama authorities said Friday....T.J. Lane, a 17-year-old has been charged with three counts of aggravated murder in the school shooting deaths of three students and the wounding of three others, according to an indictment released Tuesday. A psychiatrist who examined Lane testified earlier that that Lane sometimes loses touch with reality and suffers from hallucinations, psychosis and fantasies. Lane has admitted taking a .22-caliber pistol and a knife to the high school and firing 10 shots at a group of students sitting at a cafeteria table at the start of the school day....Police say a Nebraska mom who disappeared last month with her son strangled the 10-year-old boy before strangling herself in the woods of an Iowa state park. Council Bluffs police said Monday that Charlotte Schilling, 41, of Plattsmouth, Neb. and her son, Owen, both died with plastic zip ties around their necks in a murder-suicide. The Schillings were missing from May 10 until their bodies were found May 20 in Lake Manawa State Park, south of Council Bluffs in western Iowa, about 20 miles north of Plattsmouth. Council Bluff's police say Charlotte Schilling tried to commit suicide with a plastic zip tie in November, but a family member intervened then. Once a zip tie is tightened, the only way to loosen it is to cut it off, so police said after Schilling tightened one around her own neck enough to restrict breathing it would have been difficult for her to remove it......And the litany of bizarre murders and gratuitous violence grows day by day, it seems.

America is terrified. Is the ZOMBIE APPOCALYPSE UPON US?

The internet conspiracy mill has kicked into full gear over the last three weeks. There must be some hidden hand behind this string of atrocities. Is, as the fundamentalist Christians readily assert, THE END TIME at hand? Has Satan loosed his minions on a an unrepentent USA? Some internauts have even called the CDC dismissal of a zombie epidemic a massive government cover-up that denies the real cause of zombification, namely cat feces. As one theory goes, the US is experiencing an outbreak of taxoplasmosis, a disease caused by the single-cell parasite Taxoplasma gondii that can be found in the poop of the average American house cat. "The Toxoplasma, when living inside humans, is linked to causing significant changes in behavior, including neuroticism, increased aggression and schizophrenia. Mamalian studies of Toxoplasma infections have demonstrated that this organism affects levels of dopamine, norepinephrine, and other neurotransmitters, which are well known to be affected in persons with schizophrenia,” according to a 2003 article in the CDC’s “Emerging Infectious Diseases” publication. Is the kitty litter industry behind the CDC cover-up? It would have the most to lose if the truth got out. Right?
Well, let's blame US social debauchery on Puss 'n Boots.

Half-baked biological theories and religion-driven superstitions just won't do for marxists. Far from spook-show fixtures, ZOMBIES in America are real and actually symptomatic of decadent material conditions coupled with bi-partisan ruling class policy.
A quick review of the cases of wilding cited above will reveal one common factor. Each of the alleged perpetrators had a history of mental health problems. They exhibited anti-social behaviors days, weeks or even years before their alleged acts of violence. They were sick. In the case of Baltimore's Alexander Kunya, the student was well known for eccentric behavior. Par ex: He regularly walked through the Morgan State campus sporting camouflage face paint and brandishing a machete!!!!
Nobody paid attention. Nobody intervened. All the signs of impending horror were present. But as monopoly capitalism goes through its terminal decay, it is no longer capable of monitoring nor treating mental illness. The institutions in American society charged with mental health maintenance have always been weak, to say the least. Today, in the wake of growing social and economic destabilization and displacement experienced by vast sectors of society, they are literally disintegrating—as a matter of deliberate policy..

Poor people are much more likely to experience mental illness and to stay crazy for longer periods than those who are not sociologically defined as poor. That is a well known fact. Sociologists who look at inequality as an issue in mental health/psychiatric research are divided in their views as to whether people become poor because they are mentally ill and thus unable to function (social selection) or they become mentally ill because of being poor (social causation). In 2012, no theorizing is required. People are becoming increasingly pauperized and increasingly insane in the USA. On a daily basis, the legion of Zombies grows.

According to a 2011 National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) report: “One in 17 people in America lives with a serious mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, major depression, or bipolar disorder. About one in 10 children live with a serious mental disorder. In recent years, the worst recession in the U.S. since the Great Depression has dramatically impacted an already inadequate public mental health system.

From 2009 to 2011, massive cuts to
non-Medicaid state mental health spending totaled nearly $1.6 billion dollars. And, deeper cuts are projected in 2011 and 2012. States have cut vital services for tens of thousands of youth and adults living with the most serious mental illness. These services include community and hospital based psychiatric care, housing and access to medications. To make matters worse, Medicaid funding of mental health services is also potentially on the chopping block in 2011. The temporary increase in federal funding of Medicaid through the stimulus package will end on June 30, 2011. Medicaid is the most important source of funding of public mental health services for youth and adults, leaving people with mental illness facing the real threat of being cut off from life-saving services. Communities pay a high price for cuts of this magnitude. Rather than saving states and communities money, these cuts to services simply shift financial responsibility to emergency rooms, community hospitals, law enforcement agencies, correctional facilities and homeless shelters.”

Moreover, “As most people know, mental health care services are not covered by health insurance packages and health plans to the same degree as physical health care services. Not only are there usually more services excluded as covered benefits, but those services that are covered are often subject to higher co-pays and are capped at a maximum number of covered treatments."

That is the best that working people with insurance can expect.

"Less well known is the fact that those with severe mental illness (SMI) are less likely to have health insurance coverage of any kind. McAlpine and Mechanic (1999) estimate that while 11.4% of those with no measured mental disorders lack health insurance coverage, 20.4% of those with SMI and 18.2% with less severe mental disorders lack coverage.” Delays in Treatment for Mental Disorders and Health Insurance Coverage
by Catherine G McLaughlin, Ph.D, Senior Associate Editor (2004)

Monday, May 28, 2012

A MEMORIAL DAY for murderers--past and present?


By William PLEASANT

Today, the US secular religious cult celebrated Memorial Day.
We were urged to give thanks--apolitically--to the US military personnel
who "died for our freedoms". The day was marked with military parades and
mountainous steaming piles of sentimental oratory. President Buckwheat Obama stood on the altar of US imperialism and called forth a deluge of crocodile tears.
Meanwhile, retail outlets badgered the appropriately mournful patriotic masses to soothe their bereavement with the purchase of a new car or sofa. That was the holiday. That was Memorial Day 2012, America's secular Easter--death and resurrection symbolized by the custom of lowering the flag to half-mast at dawn and then raising it at noon.




As marxists, we understand the political and cultural function of holidays. Aside from their transparent commercial utility, holidays serve a specific political use for the ruling stratum.

Karl Marx wrote:"Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of the
heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. It is the opium of the people."

The US secular religion is no less a narcotic. The CHURCH USA, as I style it, holds that every military escapade, past and present, is the work of an omniscient and benevolent god tasked with spreading his bounty--mainly consumer good, armaments and crass materialism--around the globe. The daily slaughter of civilians and military personnel is a necessary good for the glory of god who resides everywhere except in the political, social and financial agenda of the ruling class. One knows not where wars come from, but they are the will of the invisible god of America. Memorial Day serves to keep that god under wraps.


HIROSHIMA
 
Today, President Obama, the Pope of the CHURCH USA, in his Washington DC Memorial Day sermon, used the occasion to do a little historical revision on the 50th anniversary of the start of the Vietnam War. At the Vietnam war monument, he chastised past sinners for their apparent maltreatment of Vietnam War-era military personnel upon their return to the US. (Click here for complete text.)

"It was a national shame, a disgrace that should have never happened.
"That's why here today we resolve that it will not happen again," Obama told veterans and their families gathered on the national mall.

"You were often blamed for a war you didn't start when you should have been commended for serving your country with valor."


VIET NAM
 Indeed, returning members of the military were the target of national outrage over the illegal war in Vietnam. As operatives of a policy that was rejected by huge sectors of the population, they suffered the same repudiation as their civilian and military superiors. They were reviled for clear cut political reasons. Why did people throw garbage at returning soldiers? Namely, because military personnel committed atrocities against the Vietnamese people in the name of propping up the appallingly corrupt, neo-colonial clique known as the Republic of Vietnam. Most American people, particularly youths and non-whites, detested the war policy. They acted out on their political opposition. As Obama pointed out, that was a sin and the American people should sin no more.


GRENADA

But why shouldn't the gunslingers of US imperialism in Vietnam have been subjected to criticism and rebuke? Why, in a like manner, the marauding assassins who today operate in Afghanistan and Iraq not be called to task for their role in barbarizing the people in those countries?


PANAMA
Isn't a hitman as guilty of murder as is his employer?
 
The CHURCH USA requires a yearly mass supplication called Memorial Day to ward off the rather transparent fact that US military policy makers and their minions in the trenches are equally guilty of ongoing crimes against humanity. Memorial Day is merely a ploy to deflect political criticism of imperialistic military aggression by but again exploiting the cannonfodder class--dead and alive--as poster children. They bravely served the country, so they are worthy of our mourning and sympathy, correct? "The country" is really a myth. The military serves its paymaster, the ruling stratum. They kill for the ruling stratum. They occupy countries for the ruling stratum. And they make money, in the productive process of war manufacture, for the ruling stratum. Memorial Day is supposed to blind us with tears to the extent that we cannot discern the obvious.


IRAQ
 
The truth of the matter is that the holiday that we now call Memorial Day was invented by Black people in Charleston, SC. It was a political celebration based upon honoring dead Union Soldiers in the aftermath of the Civil War.

According to historian David Blight:

"During the final year of the war, the Confederates had converted the planters' horse track, the Washington Race Course and Jockey Club, into an outdoor prison. Union soldiers were kept in horrible conditions in the interior of the track; at least 257 died of exposure and disease and were hastily buried in a mass grave behind the grandstand. Some 28 black workmen went to the site, re-buried the Union dead properly, and built a high fence around the cemetery. They whitewashed the fence and built an archway over an entrance on which they inscribed the words, "Martyrs of the Race Course."

"Then, [B]lack Charlestonians, in cooperation with white missionaries and teachers, staged an unforgettable parade of 10,000 people on the slaveholders' race course. [May 1, 1865--Ed.]. The symbolic power of the low-country planter aristocracy's horse track (where they had displayed their wealth, leisure, and influence) was not lost on the freed people. A New York Tribune correspondent witnessed the event and described, "a procession of friends and mourners as South Carolina and the United States never saw before."

This holiday--originally called DECORATION DAY-- caught on throughout the Unionist states. But its political meaning was quickly transformed by the bourgeoisie in the 1870s. Disdainful of freed Blacks and in opposition to radical Reconstructionists/progressives who saw Decoration Day as a celebration of Black emancipation and the victory of social progress, Decoration Day was quickly transformed into a spectacle of national mourning for ALL deceased US military personnel from ALL wars--including dead Confederate soldiers from the Civil War!!!! This was quite convenient, since the northern ruling stratum had grown weary of Reconstruction and was eager to get on with making money with the assistance of the previously defeated Southern aristocracy. Reconstruction was abandoned in 1876, with the withdrawal of federal troops from the South. The former rebel slave-owners were freed to initiate a reign of terror against the emancipated slaves and their white supporters. Blood flowed in the streets of the South. Meanwhile, a myth of national unity was anchored in all-embracing holiday of reconciliation between white men of the North and South. Modern Memorial Day was born.


PALESTINE BY PROXY
Through the years and until the end of World War II, Decoration Day--renamed Memorial Day--served the task of inculcating the myth of US national unity--actually a unity of cadavers who had previously engaged in corporatized ultra-violence. But as US imperialism went into over-drive following WWII, leading to dozens of military adventures of at best dubious justifications, the theme of national unity was supplanted with a theme of worshiping the act of war making and its executioner. That was, in fact, the substance of Obama's sermon today. According to Pres. Buckwheat, we were supposed to reward mass murderers with praise as a reflex of patriotism .

--30--

Friday, May 25, 2012

Comprendre, On N’a Pas D’autre Choix Pour Respirer Et Voir

(To understand, one has no choice but to breath and to see)
By Malik Sekou OSEI
Oui,
              Comprendre,
                                  On n’a pas d’autre choix
                                                            Pour respire et
                                                                                  voir…..
          As the
               world
                gives birth
                              to the brightness
                                                    of
                                                        light
                                                        likes an
                                                                    up-side-down
                                                                                  chicken
                                   pushing…
                                        sunny-side
                                                        up…
             The tombs gray
                                  of stoic still
                                                   buildings
                                   becomes
                                                 a
                                                    brighter
                                                    shade
                                                             of the same…
               The brown of
                              Ebony
                                      Mother/women
                                                        feels
                                             the shrinking
                                                            shade
                                                                 of
                                                                     night,
                                               behind closed
                                                               eyes
                                                                       lids…
Oui,
    Comprendre, on n’a
              Pas d’autre choix
              Pour respire et
                                     voir….
                 As…
                    a mother—
                          as she, the braids of time
                                   across
                                        her
                                        temples
                                                and
                                                   forehead.
    Trying to
                  forget
                            the
                                 French.
         For history
         Is the post-card
          Of sentimental
                          choice.
          Her name
                    Of imposed
                    Nationality
                    From a
                    Furcated
                            City
                               Of
                                  A
                                 Profane
                                          Spain.
       This mother
              communicated
               through
                            her
                                 eyes
                                     in
                                   the
                             French
                                after
                                   the
        “Treaty of Versailles.”
               She
                     brought
                             fear
                                 to
                                      their
                                             eyes
             when
                    she
                        whispered
                             “REVO”
                                    in
                                      English.
        Now, pale
                   travelers
                              can’t
                                       get a
                                            tan
                                                 under
                                                       communism.
          This
               Woman/mother
                Kept a picture
                               Post-card
                                     Of Julien Fedon
                 In the back of her
                                       purse.
   Oui,
       Compredre, on n’a
       Pas d’autre choix
       Pour respire et
                              voir...
   Now, she must travel,
              Visit the undisciplined
                                          of
                                              immediate gravitation
                                                                           of
                                                                                youth…
    Under the
                  gray sun
                            the dysfunction of
                        in-and-out of uniform.
                        Of mad Negroes in blue
                        Who only role is to cowardly
                                               Accommodate
                                    the keeping of victims
                                     of iron
                                             bracelets and
                                             cheap rubber slippers.
       Oui,
     Comprendre, on n’a
     Pas d’autre choix
     Pour respire et
                             Voir….
      As the childish uniform
      cowards only to receive
      A check
                  every two weeks
      only
             to rationalize
      the privatize slave trade
                                of youth
                              ignorance
                                and who
                          public dress,
                                       only
                                exposes
                             the public
                           dyfunction
                                       and
                     lack of respect
                     for themselves
                    and the people 
                                 of their
                          comunities
                                      and 
                                             class
        oui,
             comprendre, on n'a pas d'autre choix
             pour respirer et
                                          voir...
  --30--