Capitalism IS the Crisis, Part 2 of 4: Capitalism is Poverty

by Asad Ismi and Kristen Schwartz

For 500 years, capitalism has subjected the planet and its peoples to slavery, peonage, engineered famines, colonialism, recurrent economic crises, environmental devastation and unending wars.  Capitalism has killed more than a billion people, making it the greatest catastrophe humans have yet inflicted on each other and the planet.  30 minutes audio

VP Cheney, the Pot Calling the Kettle Black?

by Dr. Wilmer J. Leon, III

U.S. corporate media routinely invite documented criminals and liars to share their opinions on national policy and comparative morality. Former vice president Dick Cheney, a champion prevaricator, is invited to judge whistleblower Edward Snowden, a man who, unlike Cheney, “has not lied to the American people in order to garner support of the illegal invasion a sovereign country.”

Political Crossover: The Troubling Emergence of "Black Reaganism"

by Colin Jenkins

The nation’s top Black Reaganite is quite open about his admiration for “The Gipper.” President Obama takes every opportunity to praise his racist, reactionary predecessor, and to emulate his politics. So do lots of Democrats of all colors. The truth is, “Reaganism never really left – it merely flowed through the pipelines of neoliberalism.”

Listen to Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network, with Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey – Week of 6/24/13

Ralph’s DC Vigil for Lynne

“We all know that Obama and [Attorney General] Holder can move this with the stroke of a pen,” said Ralph Poynter, husband of people’s lawyer Lynn Stewart, whose Stage Four breast cancer worsens by the day in a Fort Worth, Texas, federal prison facility. A request for Stewart’s compassionate release from a ten-year prison sentence has stalled at the desk of Federal Bureau of Prisons director Charles Samuels. Asked how long he would maintain his vigil in front of the White House, Poynter replied, “I will be in Washington until Lynne is free or dead.”

Rich Men’s Fears Drive U.S. Hyper-Surveillance

The wealthy classes that rule the country “are very scared of the fact that the average American citizen may rise up and rebel against the redistribution of wealth to the top,” said Dr. Johnny Williams, professor of sociology at Trinity College, in Hartford, Connecticut. “The surveillance state isn’t creeping, anymore. It’s here.”

Obama Defiles Democracy

All-pervasive spying on the citizenry “is one more thing that we can add to the list of offenses that Obama has committed against every assumption of democracy and democratic rights,” said Omali Yeshitela, chairman of the Black Is Back Coalition. The revelations follow on the heels of the administration’s doubling of the bounty on Black liberation movement exile Assata Shakur. “That means anybody who supports Assata Shakur can be charged with supporting terrorism,” said Yeshitela. “I don’t think a white president could have gotten away with that.”

Humanitarian” Imperialism

Ajamu Baraka, an Institute for Policy Studies fellow and co-founder of the U.S. Human Rights Network, said “the U.S. strategic objectives in the Middle East is to prevent any effective opposition to its interests in the region.” In an interview with Kali-Ahset Amen, host of Atlanta radio station WRFG’s “Moving the Center” program, Baraka described the doctrine of “humanitarian” military intervention as part of “desperate attempt on the part of the U.S. and the West to maintain their global hegemony” through force of arms.

Richmond’s Slave Origins Deserve Preservation

Shockoe Bottom, the historic center of old Richmond, Virginia, and site of what was once the nation’s second largest slave market, should not be replaced by a shopping mall, said human rights activist and journalist Anna Edwards. “Shockoe Bottom is the birthplace of the city of Richmond,” said Edwards, an editor of Defenders for Freedom, Justice and Equality newspaper. Richmond, “like so many cities in the United States, was born out of slave societies.”

African Americans Should Show Some Humility, Says Scholar

Dr. Gerald Horne, professor of history and African American studies at the University of Houston, had a quick response to African Americans who might ask, “What have the Palestinians ever done for us?” The Palestinians “did a much better job than many of these Africans in North America in terms of lobbying on behalf of African liberation,” Horne told Norman Richmond, host of Regency Radio’s Saturday Morning Show, in Toronto, Canada. Blacks in America “should really have a bit more humility.”

The Lies of Empire: Don’t Believe a Word They Say

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

The U.S. reprises Iraq, inventing a WMD threat from Syria. The FBI concocts home-grown terror through stings, while the NSA claims it has secretly saved many lives. “Why this steady stream of government-invented terror, if the real thing is so abundant?” And, isn’t the U.S. arming and funding the same jihadists they are supposed to be listening for on our telephones?

Obama-Inspired Surrender of Black Leadership Makes Real Criminal Code Reform, Mass Incarceration Rollback Unlikely

by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

There's a House Judiciary Committee Task Force on Overcriminalization committed to combing through the federal code looking for ways to lock up fewer people. Should we get our hopes up, or get our fight for justice and rolling back the state on? Will the black misleadership class be any help? Probably not much. Should that stop us? Let's hope not.

Freedom Rider: Obama’s Syrian Press Pass

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

The corporate media are the megaphones of humanitarian death, as dispensed by the U.S. and its allies. If Obama says “Assad must go,” the high-paid press do all in their power to make the public crave his blood. “The media are loyal to the system, not to their profession, their readers, or their listeners.”

It Was Good That Blacks Expressed Frustration with Obama – But Don’t Call It “Direct Action”

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

The sheer weight of the damage done to Blacks under Obama’s watch prompted some of his strong supporters to demonstrate in front the White House, this past Monday – a first, from that quarter. However, the event was mislabeled as a Day of Direct Action, which it was definitely not. That's like announcing you're launching armed struggle, and then challenging Obama to an arm wrestling contest.


Be Vigilant for Lynne Stewart – As She Was For All of Us

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

Ralph Poynter, husband and comrade of people’s lawyer Lynne Stewart, is on vigil in Washington, DC, “appealing to the sense of humanity” of the powers-that-be. However, “it appears that Attorney General Eric Holder and President Obama, himself, are allowing Lynne Stewart’s days of life to drain away.”

The Naked Imperialism of Humanitarian Intervention

by Ajamu Baraka

The U.S. imperial juggernaut attempts to bamboozle its home audience with the fiction that its war against Syria is a “humanitarian” venture. “The immediate priority for anti-war, anti-imperialist, human rights activists in the U.S. is to strip away the moral pretext of humanitarian intervention and expose its ugly, imperialist reality.”

Zen Throat-Cutting in Detroit

by Tom Stephens

When Capital comes to collect, laws don’t matter; even unjust laws are being broken to speed the process of stripping Detroit of its last “asset.” The question must now be raised: “At what point do you destroy a city to satisfy the creditors?”

Capitalism IS the Crisis, Part 1 of 4: Capitalism is War

by Asad Ismi and Krisin Schwartz

For 500 years, capitalism has subjected the earth's peoples to permanent crisis of endless war, massive poverty, environmental degradation and economic instability. Capitalism has been built through slavery, imperialism, colonialism and neocolonialism. More than a billion people have been killed by capitalism making it the greatest crime committed against humanity.

The Best Corporate Brand Yet: President Barack Obama

by Danny Pforte

The Obama brand has worked wonders as the face of U.S. imperialism and rule of the rich. Black America is the brand’s “most prized” consumer. “The Obama brand has used the media to pervert the history of the Black struggle for justice by using the dead-end, ideological conclusion that the first so-called ‘Black president’ is ‘racial progress.’”

The War on Africa: U.S. Imperialism and the World Economic Crisis

by Abayomi Azikiwe

The U.S. anti-war movement must adjust its focus to the realities of U.S. imperialist war policies. That means paying more attention to Africa, which “is a focal point for military intervention by the Pentagon, the CIA and NATO.”

Listen to Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network, with Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey – Week of 6/17/13

BAR & Friends Anticipate the End of the Age of Obama

In the wake of the disasters that have befallen Blacks under his watch, President Obama’s exit in 2017 may “provide an opportunity to move the masses away from the Democratic Party and towards a discussion of alternatives,” said Margaret Kimberley, editor and senior columnist for Black Agenda Report. Speaking at a BAR-organized Left Forum workshop titled “Black Politics at the Tail End of Obama – and Beyond,” Kimberley noted that “Black politics had been on life support for some time before 2008, but his election marked the day that the plug was finally pulled.” The supreme irony, said Kimberley, “that the election of a Black man meant the end of Black politics, cannot be overstated.”

The Black Class Divide

Polls show that upwardly mobile Blacks often share with whites an “utter contempt and hatred for the Black poor,” said Dr. Tony Monteiro, professor of African American studies at Temple University, in Philadelphia. “This class division, this ideological division,” can be seen in the politics of “the Cory Bookers and Michael Nutters” – the Black mayors of Newark and Philadelphia, respectively – “and other Black agents of the 1%,” Monteiro told the workshop.

Back to Basics

We’re going to have to let go of top-down, patriarchal, backward leadership models like the Black Church, and we’re going to have to let go of the Democratic Party,” said BAR managing editor Bruce Dixon. We must “rediscover” basic organizing skills, “so that people who are most concerned about various issues can take leadership” of community organizations. And, we must “let go of the idea that we can come up with some creative act or persuasive argument that’s going to give us media access to galvanize huge numbers of people in some short period of time,” said Dixon.

Eyes on the Prize

We’ve got to get back to old fashioned Marxist and Left Black Nationalist understandings of how race, racial identity and sham electoral democracy function within the overall context of capitalism and empire,” said writer and activist Paul Street, author of The Empire’s New Clothes: Barack Obama and the Real World of Power. The renewed movement must be informed by the facts of “how labor markets work, how the criminal justice system works, how the real estate market works, instead of a game of Black and Latino and female faces in high places.”

The Doctrine of Mandatory Black Failure

Journalist Pascal Robert, a frequent contributor to Black Agenda Report, speaking at a Left Forum workshop on the Economy and Ecology of Haiti, quoted Napoleon’s rational for sending 60,000 troops to attempt to crush the Haitian Revolution, in 1802. “My decision to destroy the authority of the blacks in Saint-Domingue,” Robert quoted the Frenchman, “is not so much based on considerations of commerce and money, as on the need to block forever the march of the blacks in the world.” We must realize, said Robert, “that there is a part of western foreign policy that invests in the importance of failed models of liberation. There is a psychic benefit to western imperialist nations to make sure that certain Black and brown nations stay failed, and do not ever give examples of success.”

Freedom Rider: The Snowden Litmus Test

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

No sooner had they learned Edward Snowden’s name, than bipartisan supporters of the National Security State proceeded to vilify him. “The congressional double cross only serves to confirm that once again there is unanimity in Washington about how best to screw the people.”

What to Think Whenever You Hear "The Worst of the Worst"

A Black Agenda Radio commentatry by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

There's “military intelligence,” and “humantiarian intervention.” There's “public-private partnership” and “public charter school.” Official criminals are nothing if not proficient at inventing deceptive language to stigmatize their victims, to conceal and excuse their misdeeds.


Rep. Clyburn: Putting Obama First – Civil Liberties, Peace, Justice, and Reality Last

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

Black Congressman James Clyburn’s “gut” tells him that whistleblower Edward Snowden is conspiring with others to “embarrass” President Obama. “Clyburn’s gut isn’t a bit queasy about the dramatic expansion of the National Security State, as long as Big Brother is Black.” In the narrow worldview of the Black Misleadership Class, it’s Obama uber alles.

Detroit and America’s Racial “Exceptionalism”

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen ford

A great Black metropolis is about to be disassembled, thoroughly financialized for sale – yet there is no national outcry – “which can only mean that there exists an effective white consensus that African Americans are not fully deserving of those rights.”


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