Running to the Right: Barack Obama and the DLC Strategy

Back in 2003, when Obama was a candidate for the US Senate in the Illinois Democratic primary this reporter and Glen Ford challenged him on the fact that the Democratic Leadership Council, the right-wing, corporate-funded Trojan Horse inside the Democratic party had fervently embraced his political career, naming him one of its “100 to Watch” for 2003.

DLC endorsement is the gold standard of political reliability for Wall Street, Big Energy, Big Pharma, insurance, the airlines and more. Though candidates normally undergo extensive questioning and interviews before DLC endorsement, Obama insisted the blessing of these corporate special interests had been bestowed on him without these formalities and without his advance knowledge, and formally disassociated himself from the DLC. But like Hillary Clinton, and every front running Democrat since Michale Dukakis in 1988, Barack Obama’s campaign has adopted the classic right wing DLC strategy.

In the DLC playbook, the road to winning elections is appealing to Republican-leaning white voters – demographic groups which pollsters and consultants in previous elections called “suburban soccer moms”, NASCAR dads,” and before that “Reagan Democrats.” Candidates do this by decrying excessive partisanship, embracing “free trade” and “conservative” values, and displays of public piety, Though Obama has no formal ties with the DLC he has assiduously followed this prescription. Till a month ago Obama led every candidate among white men, an unprecedented achievement for a Democrat.

But after less than a month of sustained and often racist attacks from the likes of Fox News, CNN, Republican pundits and Hillary Clinton supporters, Obama’s support among Republican-leaning white voters has sharply eroded. Dr. Adolph Reed, a black professor of Political Science at the University of Pennsylvania explained why an April 30 Democracy Now interview,

…Obama opened himself to this by leaning to—on the premise that he can appeal to Republicans and to conservatives and by parading his personal faith around. And frankly—this is, I guess, the crux of my argument in The Progressive column—that this is precisely the tactic that has been the undoing of every Democratic candidate since Dukakis, and I would frankly even include (Bill) Clinton in that, were it not for the fact that Ross Perot siphoned votes away from the Republicans each time. I mean, this is what happened with Gore in 2000, it’s what happened with Kerry in 2004. You present yourself as electable because you can appeal to conservative voters, and then the Republicans attack you for not being a true conservative and can characterize you as someone who’s trying to put something over on the American people.

It worked for a while. Barack Obama followed the DLC script to the letter for the last two years, publicly scolding Democrats for their insufficient piety, liberally borrowing from Republican talking points. He advertised himself as grounded by his personal relationship with Jesus, and by the faith tradition of the Black Church. But after Obama’s Philadelphia speech on race, in which he characterized his pastor as a crazy old uncle stuck in the fifties and sixties, the Black Church was compelled to speak for itself. Rev. Jeremiah Wright, retiring pastor at Trinity UCC made a series of speeches and appearances in which he likened US Marines to Roman soldiers, described hundreds of US bases around the world as “empire” before the National Press Club, and refused to retreat from the contention that 9-11 was a preventable consequence of US foreign policy.

To preserve his support among whites which Obama won without challenging any of their fundamental beliefs about America, empire, Obama was forced to denounce his pastor’s words as “akin to hate speech” and disavow his church, and with it the prophetic tradition of Christianity and the Black Church in particular. But this, and joining a prosperity-Gospel mega-church will not be enough. From this point on, all Republicans have to do is prove to their base that Obama is not as conservative as he once appeared, which they will do by pointing to his pastor and the prophetic tradition of the Black Church in general. They can, in fact, point to any stirrings of black or grassroots outrage or militancy anywhere, which Obama will want to ignore anyway, and demand a ringing denunciation from Barack Obama. When Obama gets his way, he will be silent, sticking to content-free appeals to “unity”. And when Republicans prevail they will force him to denounce at every turn the grassroots activists he should be supporting.

By contrast, the 1984 and 1988 presidential campaigns of Rev. Jesse Jackson won white support too, but embraced the burden of challenging white American assumptions about the essential goodness of America, about empire, and race and class. If you were organizing against police brutality or farm foreclosures, organizing a union or protesting the illegal war in Central America, the campaign in many cases came to you and augmented your local efforts. The Obama must campaign avoid this kind of activism like Dracula avoids crosses, because its candidate’s appeal is based on challenging none of the fake history, none of the racism, injustice and unearned privilege at the heart of American life.

The Jackson campaign, at least, was honest about the obstacles to a real politics of transformation in America.

For the 21st century’s first black presidential candidate, “change” is to be accomplished through a content-free sort of “unity”. Again, Dr. Reed helps us understand what is happening.

…the contention that the candidate can bring us all together despite our partisan differences is the same thing that the Democrats have been claiming consistently since at least, you know, Dukakis, to be post-partisan, to be post-political. And frankly, I think it appeals—it’s an appeal that gets greatest traction among people who want to take politics out of politics…

Taking the politics out of politics, and out of black politics in particular is what Barack Obama must do to carry out his DLC strategy and retain his white base without teaching them anything they don’t want to know. When the NYC police officers who pumped 51 bullets into an unarmed man and a hail of bullets into adjacent homes and a transit station were exonerated, Barack Obama could not bring himself to suggest that black life ought to be respected, that police officers should obey the law, that an Obama Justice Department would look carefully at this kind of thing, or even to feign concern for the victims and their families. His only comments where that we were “a nation of laws” and that we should “respect the verdict”. When 25,000 longshoremen on the US West Coast staged a one-day strike on May 1 against the war in Iraq, the Obama campaign said nothing about the power of people standing together to “bring change”. When US warplanes, which fire missiles and drop bombs almost daily over oil-rich Somalia killed 15 civilians last week, Obama was silent, despite having traveled in the region as recently as last year.

When he does speak, it won’t be good news. Republicans are sure tol escalate their demands, insisting that Barack Obama denounce a list of black and progressive organizations, activities, beliefs and individuals to retain his share of their base. And as long as Obama is wedded to the DLC strategy, he will eagerly comply.

If there was an actual mass-based progressive movement in the US, operating on the ground and independent of political parties and campaigns, it might have a prayer of holding Barack Obama accountable. But there isn’t.

Bruce Dixon is the managing editor of the Black Agenda Report, where this article first appeared. Read other articles by Bruce, or visit Bruce's website.

26 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. Arch Stanton said on May 7th, 2008 at 11:43am #

    The only positive thing to come out of the career of Obama so far is the political crippling of Hillary Clinton. Other than that one beneficial public service, the man is about as useless as any toadying hack who’s ever climbed up the pixie dust ponzi scheme pyramid commonly known as the US electoral system. After he’s “elected” president, he will find, like all the other hacks, hypocrites, and professional liars, that blind ambition is deaf and dumb as well.

    As to this little gem–

    “If there was an actual mass-based progressive movement in the US, operating on the ground and independent of political parties and campaigns, it might have a prayer of holding Barack Obama accountable. But there isn’t.”

    –remember: solidarity isn’t really the baby seal it appears to be, because the ass you save may be your own.

  2. Edwin Pell said on May 7th, 2008 at 1:04pm #

    Obama will not let Iraq oil go to another power block (EU, Russia, China, India). So we stay in Iraq. Obama will not stop the spending of future social security money, medicare money, medicaid money, fed employye pension money otherwise he would have to cut the size of the federal government by 25%. He will not balance the budget. He will not end the trillion dollar trade deficit. He will not build out a new energy infrastructure because it cost 10 trillion dollars and pols do not how the courage to explain the real sacrifice this will require of all Americans.

    He at least may be a little less a slave of Israel. And he may end torture. So at least some good.

  3. bozhidar balkas said on May 7th, 2008 at 2:15pm #

    let’s not dwell too much on personal level; let’s dwell, instead, on basic structure of US governance.
    whether clinton, mccain, or obama becomes a prez, it’ll amount only to a few cosmetic changes.
    it’s the olligarchic rule; it won’t change. or change, but with its iron grip on working people strenghtened.
    if nader gets 15% of the votes, he may be assassinated. that’s a grim possibility. thank u.

  4. HR said on May 7th, 2008 at 4:31pm #

    Until working people stop identifying with their bosses and buying into their propaganda, stop considering themselves part of the investment class and until they start looking out for their own political self interests by choosing their own candidates at all levels of government, and voting accordingly, even if it means numerous write-in campaigns and runoffs — which means voting for neither wing of the single corporate party — politicians and their corporate cronies will continue to laugh all the way to the bank. I do not see a damned sign of this becoming a reality. Instead, the herd bitches and moans for a while, and then yawns and makes a ballot mark next to the name of some corporate representative, while every damned part of the Bill of Rights is legislated away, while every damned dime is transferred to the wealthy. People get the exact government they deserve. Maybe feudalism is what people really crave.

  5. Deadbeat said on May 7th, 2008 at 7:54pm #

    Here’s another quote from Dr. Reed’s article…

    I’m on record in last November’s issue as saying that I’d rather sit out the election entirely than vote for either [Hillary Clinton] or Obama. At this point, though, I’ve decided that she’s the lesser evil in the Democratic race, for the following reasons: 1) Obama’s empty claims to being a candidate of progressive change and to embodying a “movement” that exists only as a brand will dissolve into disillusionment in either a failed campaign against McCain or an Obama Presidency that continues the politics he’s practiced his entire career; 2) his horribly opportunistic approach to the issues bearing on inequality—in which he tosses behaviorist rhetoric to the right and little more than calls to celebrate his success to blacks—stands to pollute debate about racial injustice whether he wins or loses the Presidency; 3) he can’t beat McCain in November.

    I think that Reed is wildly irrational here. Hillary Clinton is not the lesser evil. At least Obama calls for dialog with “our” enemies versus “obliterating” them. Clearly Obama is the lesser of the three evils. I disagree with Reed’s analysis on his three points:

    [1] Should Obama fail against McCain while that will lead to disappointment it won’t lead to “disillusionment” unless there is a rout by McCain. Obama has put together a 50-state campaign and intend to compete in all states unlike Clinton who would have only ran a red/blue state campaign. Also Obama fund raising capabilities will make the general election competitive. This doesn’t mean he will beat McCain but his supporters especially among the youth and AfAms will not be disillusion should Obama loses. The biggest “losers” are on the left that could have tapped into that energy or co-opted that energy.

    [2] There are some mild redistribution within Obama’s program. Clearly the politics in the U.S. is so bad that the previous sentence seems contradictory. But thing are that bad. Obama has called for re-regulating Wall Street. Obama plan to cut tax for the elderly making less that $50,000.00 and his plan for health care is better than McCain. Obama has called for withdrawing soldiers from Iraq vs McCain 100 years occupation. Hillary Clinton calls for more provocation in the Middle East that not really different from McCain.

    [3] Reed is extremely confident in his position. I disagree. Obama has an excellent chance of beating McCain so long as Bruce Dixon warns that Obama doesn’t veer too much to the right and I agree that the media will want to pull him in that direction as they did in Pennsylvania. However McCain is too wedded to the Bush Administration policies and the American public is fed up with Bush. The DNC is already spinning that McCain is Bush’s 3rd term. And as mention Obama has the cash and the Republican are hurting for cash. Also Obama will run a 50-state campaign.

    This isn’t to criticize Bruce Dixon concerns about Obama drifting to the right during the general. But the state of politics are so bad in the U.S. that Obama “moderate” positions seem “liberal”. And since the left is so weak to non-existent that there very little pull on his left flank. Thus the crappy health care solution. However right now the biggest problem facing the U.S. is that they cannot maintain their imperial belligerency without the economy imploding. So Obama slight turn of the dial toward negotiation and away from belligerency may be the best that will emerge from the bourgeois politics this year.

  6. Lloyd Rowsey said on May 8th, 2008 at 6:20am #

    The situation seems to me to be in such flux and dependent on vagaries (of even the weather) that the argument on May 8 is down to the small differences between Bruce and Deadbeat. Bruce only decried “holding Barak Obama accountable,” and we all know presidents don’t run show.

    I’m delighted to read a respected member of academia writing along the lines of Adolph Reed. To repeat a sick joke I once heard, maybe the time has passed when Hitler gave Adolph a bad name.

  7. Rich Griffin said on May 8th, 2008 at 8:41am #

    Arch, I like and prefer Hillary Clinton. It has been a negative. We would have done so much better if Obama hadn’t run and Clinton had gotten the nomination. I’m not going to argue about it; read their books, their positions, listen to their speeches – his is all hot air, hers is substantive. She’s far from perfect and has some dumb ideas which make it impossible for me to vote for her, but she’s the BEST OF THE THREE who could be President in January 2009. Obama, by contrast, is really our worst nightmare come true – he will cripple our efforts, wait and see!

  8. Binh said on May 8th, 2008 at 9:07am #

    I can’t believe’s libertarian Justin Raimondo endorsed Obama as “the antiwar candidate”:

    With that “logic,” he should’ve backed Kerry in ’04.

  9. Random said on May 8th, 2008 at 9:59am #

    I’ll throw in with Deadbeat. What I find most amusing in the chatter is the defense of Hillary Clinton. Not so long ago no one who staked claim to the left would have defended Clinton on any grounds – even as the lesser evil. What has changed? Since Super Tuesday Hillary has become a bona fide lost cause. It is cliche: The left loves a lost cause. I include myself but not with Clinton. If you really think they made over a hundred million since the Clinton presidency by fighting for the little guy…well… Makes me wonder if Nader ever did threaten the 33% line of viability, would the “left” suddenly discover his flaws and inconsistencies? I don’t know what the answers are but if the goal is to promote a philosophy and affect policy change, we have had some effect. BTW, Obama will beat McCain decisively.

  10. hp said on May 8th, 2008 at 10:38am #

    If he doesn’t fall out a window first.

  11. Max Shields said on May 8th, 2008 at 11:07am #

    Deadbeat said: “I think that Reed is wildly irrational here. Hillary Clinton is not the lesser evil. At least Obama calls for dialog with “our” enemies versus “obliterating” them.”

    This is really a splitting of hairs. Hillary and Obama have made ever so slight distinctions, mostly posturing with the Repubs (McCain/Bush). Hillary was trying to sharpen the point that she brought “experience” which means she was trying to one up Obama by saying that she would approach the talking to “enemies” with underlyings leading the way before jumping in as President. Obama actually looked like he’d been one upped when she came back with this.

    This again is a splitting of hairs between clearly DLC corporatist candidates. Too much has been made of this and other meaningless differences between these two. In essence both are DLC corporate clones, fully vetted and hence the front runners who have been well bankrolled.

    Whether any analysis of DLC performance will repeat itself remains to be seen. But it certainly rings true to date.

  12. Arch Stanton said on May 8th, 2008 at 11:31am #

    Rich, you’re certainly entitled to like whomever catches your fancy, be it Hillary Clinton or Lyndon Larouche. Normally I would respond with a Matt Taibi style string of vituperative epithets directed at her, but that’s no longer necessary. She’s toast. She ran one of the dirtiest, cheap-shot primary campaigns in recent memory and she still got beaten by a happy face on a stick.
    And her backup strategy of ripping the guts out of the democratic party to insure McCain’s “election” in November (and her own in 2012) isn’t likely to pan out either.

    The demented “mainstream” media are typically full of elephant dung vis a vis McCain’s chances in the general election. It’s simply a matter of numbers. People across the country are abandoning the republican party in droves, and the man himself is a mindless walking corpse, unlikely to galvanize the kind of support he needs to win the big one. It’s a fait accompli that the wretched crypto-nazi scum who commonly refer to themselves as “conservatives” will attempt to smear Obama with everything from being a “left-wing fascist” to molesting Miley Cyrus to starting the Chicago Fire. That too, is unlikely to have much of an impact as Hillary discovered to her transcendent chagrin.

    Want a preview of Obama administration? Dig out that old comedy chestnut Blazing Saddles. That’s what it will be like, only not funny. At all.

  13. Mike McNiven said on May 8th, 2008 at 12:39pm #

    DLC was created to counter the presidential aspirations of Jesse Jackson — he supports reparations for the African Americans.

    Obama does not support reparations for the African Americans. He only benefits from the sufferings of the peoples of color. Perfect match for the DLC!

  14. Chris Crass said on May 8th, 2008 at 12:49pm #

    It’s really inconsequential as to which face of ObamaClintcain gets elected. They all represent the same interests and will do as they’re told. What this election really needs is a psychopomp.

  15. Chris Crass said on May 8th, 2008 at 1:50pm #

    Hmm. Could a moderator please remove my comments from this page? Thank you.

  16. Rich Griffin said on May 8th, 2008 at 2:23pm #

    Look: i’m not a Hillary Clinton supporter! I don’t vote for Democrats! I vote only for “third” party candidates. But I’ve been deeply disturbed by the lack of evidence from Obama supporters as to WHY they would vote for this DLC/Corporate candidate – and call him progressive?

    I’ts been the demonization of Hillary Clinton that has actually made me like her more because it’s been so absurd and insane. She does have good creative domestic policy ideas (and some really dumb ones, too). And her record really is better than Obama’s, and she could get things done, and he will be more like Gov. Deval Patrick, a do-nothing know nothing learning on the job disaster.

  17. Max Shields said on May 8th, 2008 at 3:32pm #

    On this I agree with Rich. Obama is right in the pocket of the DLC. So, the conversation between him and McCain are fait accompli.

    The double talk about if you wage a cogent argument concerning the DLC/Obama Repub-lite is “fascist leftist” is itself fascist DLC.

    We can all call one another names. The point, the most direct point is posed by Rich. And I quote: “lack of evidence from Obama supporters as to WHY they would vote for this DLC/Corporate candidate – and call him progressive..”

    The supporters are at least two fold: young who have yet to discern the rehashed DLC talking points and seem to be going at this as a one and done horse race; the other are so-called Dem progressives that while they are regularly marginalized by the Party, “hope” springs eternal that they can infiltrate and convert the Party. It’s a total delusion. They don’t understand centers of power and how that will never allow this “conversion” from within.

    Let’s be frank, Obama is of the system, and a vetted DLC member. There is nothing substantial to differentiate him from Bill Clinton, Al Gore (2000), John Kerry, and Hillary Clinton. Many of these are actually (voting record) to the left of Obama.

    So, I sympathize with Rich’s point. It’s central to collapsing US economy and the ensuing hell it will reign on middle and lower income people throughout the country. This makes these candidates a waste of time regarding the fundamental changes which they are bound to ignore because of their benefactors and the centers of powers which will continue to pull the strings regardless of who sits in the Oval Office.

    Is it imaginable that Obama if faced with a Depression could reinvent the system. I don’t see evidence of that, but necessity can sometimes be the mother of invention, but hardly a natural change agent.

  18. Shabnam said on May 8th, 2008 at 8:13pm #

    Bruce Dixon is using words of Adolph Reed to get at Obama whom he does not support. Barack Obama is not supported by Adolph Reed because he does not consider him one of theirs. Not because Obama is coming from an “advantageous” background or he has been associated with elite institution but because of Obama’s views on Farrakhan and his family background the way he does politics. Obama has also no flirtation with the Trotskyites in elite institution such as Yale University or the New School circles as Adolph Reed had. After working at Howard University – a black university – from 1976 to 1978, Adolph Reed has bee working for the White elite schools since 1978,
    therefore he must have done “something” right to be employed at these elite institutions and be the center of attention of the Zionfascist such as Christopher Hitchens, a pro Iraq war propagandist. C. Hitchens in his review of Reed’s book in 2000, Class Notes, refers to his fine essay, “What Color is Anti-Semitism?” where Reed wrote: “Louis Farrakhan is anti-Semite.” Does Adolph Reed take the same measures and calls Lieberman an Anti-Semite? Because Palestinians are Semite as well. Or call on Hillary Clinton to stop being an AIPAC girl when she is willing to obliterate Iran for the sake of Israel where Israel sitting on 600 bombs and receives more than 4 billion a year and is not signatory to NPT yet Hillary wants to protect an apartheid states with all these advantages. Is the apartheid system set in occupied Palestine different from the apartheid state set in South Africa? We know Reed can not afford to do the same if he wants to be employed.
    Adolph Reed also hated Jesse Jackson for being too much into the “black empowerment” agenda could potentially upset Jewish privilege, when he was running as a candidate in 1987 election. Jackson’s “black talk” revealed that upwardly mobile blacks no longer perceived the Jewish middle-class as an ally but a thread. The result on both sides was, in Reed’s words, “a meanness of spirit and small mindedness” as Brenner explained.
    Therefore, Adolph Reed, in my opinion, was not telling the truth when he said:
    “I’m on record in last November’s issue as saying that I’d rather sit out the election entirely than vote for either [Hillary Clinton] or Obama.”

    His background and his writing shows that he is Hillary supporter but he could not support Obama because of Obama’s position on Farrakhan and his relationship with Rev. Wright since Mr. Wright has sought a broader understanding of the Middle East than one who blames Islam and Arabs for all the region’s problems or endorses unconditional support for Israel. He also, contrary to Reed’s position, has relationship with Farrakhan and does not call him an Anti-Semite to please the Zionists.
    Mr. Reed also, like David Horowitz and others, is against reparation for Blacks for slavery. Therefore, no one can blame Obama being anti reparation.
    These group of black intellectuals, Reed and his associates, like Noam Chomsky do not enter “Zionism” in their analysis and they have different attitudes on Islam and Muslims compare to Reverend Wright. The reason he does not bring Zionism in his analysis, I think because he believes, as he wrote in “Sitting This one out” that:
    “The defense of Israel becomes a defense of Jewish-American identity itself. Now, just as some black nationalists conflated Zionism with racist, Jewish-American conflated anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism.”

    Therefore, he does not want to be called anti-Semite.
    Obama had to denounce Farrakhan because he wants to be elected but Adolph Reed is not running in the election but he has already denounced Farrakhan as an Anti-Semite yet he has not done the same exposing racists in the Zionist circle.
    One should ask a question: why must every black candidate to a major office go through the ritual of denouncing Farrakhan, a marginal figure in national politics? Rejection of Farrakhan and support for Israel is the price of admission to mainstream U.S. politics. But rejection of Zionism is not part of the game.
    Dixton writes:
    “ ..[H]e characterized his pastor as a crazy old uncle stuck in the fifties and sixties; the Black Church was compelled to speak for itself.”

    I think it is not fair that Mr. Dixton uses Rev. Jeremiah Wright to get at Obama since Adolph Reed and people like Dixton do not agree with Mr. Wright’s views on Mr. Farrakhan and Zionism or Mr. Wright’s view on America as an empire. Mr. Dixon writes:

    “When the NYC police officers who pumped 51 bullets into an unarmed man and a hail of bullets into adjacent homes and a transit station were exonerated, Barack Obama could not bring himself to suggest that black life ought to be respected, that police officers should obey the law…”
    Does Mr. Dixton know that Mr. Reed believes Mumia Abu-Jamal is guilty as charged. This recognition is interesting to Christopher Hichens and he writes:
    “On the available evidence, Reed concludes that Mumia Abu-Jamal may well be guilty as charged — he allows for the possible verdict ”guilty but framed” — and in any case, ”Being victimized by the state should not in itself confer political stature.”
    Mr. Dixton must ask Adolph Reed why does he support Hillary Clinton, established Zionist, and not Obama who has to adopt “the rules of the game”, submission to Zionist political game, to run as a candidate. I think it is the fault of the “left” who was and still is under strong influence of the Zionist political pressure.
    Obama implicitly admitted that Wright’s views were rooted in opposition to Israel’s deep ties to apartheid South Africa. Israel supplied South Africa with hundreds of millions of dollars of weaponry despite an international embargo.
    In 1987, Jesse Jackson who said: “Whoever is doing business with South Africa is wrong, but Israel is … subsidized by America, which includes black Americans’ tax money, and then it subsidizes South Africa” For many African Americans, it was a hypocrisy that so many Jewish leaders who supported Civil Rights and the anti-apartheid movement would be tolerant of Israel’s complicity.
    Today, we witness acceptance of an “anti apartheid” South African Jewish Nobel Laureate, Nadine Gordimer, to participate and celebrate Israel at 60 at the International Writer’s Festival in Jerusalem despite intense pressure to boycott the event.
    Thus, Reverend Wright, who has sought a broader understanding of the Middle East than one that blames Islam and Arabs for all the region’s problems or endorses unconditional support for Israel can not be used by people like Adolph Reed who want to get at Obama.
    Obama among the candidates still is lesser an evil to be considered since the “left” has done nothing to change the political scene for an environment less hostile to views other than support for Israel and there is no alternative who can be elected president therefore, Obama is the only choice.
    Contrary to Reed’s view, Obama can be elected a president because neocons wanted McCain to run against Obama using race card to defeat Obama. Apparently, Dixton and Reed believe in the same reasoning. I think this is not correct especially when the race card and Rev. Wright “controversy”, golden assets, have already been used by Hillary fully to bring Obama down but she could not do it because she has been exposed totally as an established Zionist who is willing to obliterate millions of people to be elected. Therefore, using the race card again in November is not going to be effective, and Obama has a good chance of winning.

  19. Shabnam said on May 8th, 2008 at 8:20pm #

    I apologize to type Dixton instead of Dixon in some places

  20. Shabnam said on May 8th, 2008 at 8:21pm #

    I apologize to type Dixton instead of Dixon in some places.

  21. Rich Griffin said on May 9th, 2008 at 3:17am #

    Wow! you Obamaniacs are nuts!! (;

  22. Kay said on May 9th, 2008 at 10:04am #

    I’m with Chris Crass…all three candidates represent the special interests and not the American people.

    We’re doomed no matter what tine of the fork we choose.

  23. Garrett said on May 9th, 2008 at 12:50pm #

    Max wrote: “Is it imaginable that Obama if faced with a Depression could reinvent the system. I don’t see evidence of that, but necessity can sometimes be the mother of invention, but hardly a natural change agent.”

    It’s up to concerned, engaged citizens to force a realization that necessity is already upon us and has been for a very long time. Millions have been “faced with a Depression” all of their lives. Of course, most are not engaged in the political process, partly due to a lack of time (working 2 low-paying jobs and raising kids will do that). Privileged progressives (not the DLC type) — and I should probably include myself in that group even though I’m far from wealthy — have a significant responsibility. We have to find a way to engage the less priviliged *and* convince legislators that corporatism/imperialism is, simply put, downright EVIL. Again, I do bear some responsibility. I must do more…but, to quote John Lennon, “I’m not the only one.” I hate to think that real change will require a 1929-style Great Depression.

  24. Mike McNiven said on May 9th, 2008 at 1:47pm #

    Today, Obama did his best to make even the dumbest agents of darkness know how he is willing to continue the violations of the Palestinian Rights for eight more years! ( the occasion was the so-called 60th “birthday” of Israel, the audience: the very well certified zionists )

    Thank you Mr.Dixon!

  25. Garrett said on May 9th, 2008 at 1:59pm #

    Of course, what is it that I should be doing? I’m not entirely sure, but there have been articles posted on this website that contain some worthwhile suggestions (for instance,

    I wonder, though, if I should do something more radical. If so, what might that be? And do I have the necessary courage to disrupt my life as is?

  26. Max Shields said on May 9th, 2008 at 4:12pm #

    Matt Kosko had this to say about the 3 candidates. I think it speaks to the dilemma. The convesation between these candidates are really beside the point, but they are convergent on all of the major issues.

    Shabnam, you’re post seemed to be providing the usual cover for a pol who has chosen to run, play the DLC game, ditch who ever needs ditching, and well read teh article by Kosko:

    “Is That All There Is?
    McCain, Clinton, Obama and the Wages of Lesser-Evilism

    Leftists both within and without the Democratic Party have been for years operating under the delusion that, in order to oppose Republican policies, they must work to help the cause of any candidate that has a “D” after his/her name, regardless of how personally distasteful the candidate is or how unappealing the rightward moving Democratic platform is. This “lesser of two evils” approach is dangerous, foolish, and damaging to leftist causes as it keeps many normally progressive people locked into a party that’s tenants and leadership have long ago stopped representing progressive ideals and instead have furthered the interests of Republicans and large corporations.

    At first glance, “lesser of two evils” voting doesn’t seem like such a bad idea. We support the candidate who is the “least worst” until such a time that we can run a real candidate who truly represents us. However, no one seems to be able to say who that candidate is and when we will ever see him or her. In fact, no one has ever even attempted to explain why a party that already is ensured the progressive vote under this “Republicans are worse” mentality will every seek to change, especially since a more centrist approach has given Democratic candidates a hell of a lot more financial support from various corporate interests. ”