Thursday, July 10, 2008

What's Truth Got to Do With It? Part Umpteen

Utter some obvious but “inconvenient” truth this electoral season – then, if you’re a Democrat, get denounced, diagnosed by media pop psychologists (aka pundits), and, if possible, forced out of public view. Thus Jimmy Carter on Apartheid in occupied Palestine, Samantha Power on how the Clintons will do anything to win elections, Jeremiah Wright on America’s racist past and present, Wesley Clark on John McCain’s lack of military and diplomatic experience and now – Jesse Jackson.

Jackson, according to the movers and shakers of conventional wisdom, is sore because he thinks he, not the upstart Obama, should be the first black President. So he acted out – by saying “crudely” that Obama was “talking down” to African Americans in casting blame on black fathers (Pat Moynihan style) and in pandering to black (and other) evangelicals on “faith based initiatives.” Well, duh! The only thing wrong with what Jackson said is that it’s incomplete. Not only is Obama talking down to African Americans; he’s sucking up to those “hard working white” folks Hillary Clinton spent her cynically courting.

But Jackson is not blameless. Had he not folded the Rainbow Coalition back into the mainstream of the Democratic Party in the late eighties, had he not been so loyal to the party’s mainstream ever since, and had he not accepted crumbs from the Clintons all these years (even to the point of “counseling” Bill when his Monica troubles were getting him down), the Democrats would, in all likelihood, have more backbone than they do today (they could hardly have less!), more progressive policies, and a candidate for President who wouldn’t be quite so ready to aid and abet Dick Cheney and George W. Bush as they continue to commit high crimes and misdemeanors – not to mention war crimes, crimes against the peace and crimes against humanity. Remember this the next time Barack Obama joins the neo-con drum beat for war with Iran, as he has been doing with renewed vigor yesterday and today.

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