Listen to Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network, with Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey – 3/24/13

Chicago Teachers Prepare Electoral Challenge to Mayor Emanuel

Massive school closings have made Chicago “ground zero” in the battle to preserve public education, said Michael Brunson, of the Chicago Teachers Union. Fifty-four schools have been targeted for closure, this year, most of them in Black and brown neighborhoods. “People don’t want to move into a community if they don’t have a school they can send their children to,” said Brunson. “It’s part of a downward spiral that disinvests from our communities and causes them to crumble.” The teachers union plans to register 100,000 new voters to challenge mayoral control of the schools.

NYC Parents Boycott High Stakes Testing

With their parents’ permission, students at 33 New York City schools will opt out of scheduled standardized tests. “We feel that there is too much riding on these exams that have so much to do with the dismantling of the public school system,” said Cynthia Copeland, a parent and member of Time Out From Testing. “It’s this constant teaching to the test; there’s no real learning going on.”

Newark Protests Against Social Security Cuts

The People’s Organization for Progress held demonstrations, in Newark, New Jersey, to protest President Obama’s proposed cuts to Social Security and other entitlement programs. Chairman Larry Hamm noted that POP endorsed Obama “in both elections after much discussion and debate.” But, “now we turn around and have to fight the very guy we voted for.” Obama, said Hamm, is “the first Democratic president to actually propose cuts to Social Security.”

Obama is “Face of Capitalist Empire”

From the start, Obama has been leading the charge to betray Social Security and the foundation of the Democratic Party’s policy platform, which is the New Deal,” said Kevin Alexander Gray, the Columbia, South Carolina writer and activist. “Obama is the face of the capitalist empire; that’s what he believes in,” said Gray. “What troubles me about Black Obama supporters is, they just seem to ignore it. It’s all about misguided racial pride.”

EEOC Dismisses Black Complaints, Blames Sequestration

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission claims that sequestration-mandated spending cuts will add to the agency’s backlog of employment discrimination cases. But Ricardo Jones, the former chief investigator for the EEOC’s southern New York region, says the Commission is already dismissing the vast majority of Black complaints, and “hasn’t paid overtime to any investigator or mediator at the EEOC for the past 15 years. According to Jones, the Commission “only finds reasonable cause 3.1% of the time. That’s worse than the Bush administration.”

The Big Nausea: Waking Up With an Obama-Ache

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Who will defend the indefensible Obama? Answer: There will be fewer and fewer Obamapologists, as each day passes. “For the monumentally dysfunctional Black Misleadership Class, the winding down of the Age of Obama is cause for frantic repositioning, and for the revising of their own histories.”

Freedom Rider: Obama and the Class War

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

Back in 2006, Barack Obama sold his soul to Wall Street bankers, who then supported his run for the presidency. “Barack Obama became president because he told the Rubins and Altmans of the world that he was on their side while simultaneously convincing millions of voters that he was on theirs.”

Eric Holder's Ploy to Divert Attention from Obama's Expanded Prisons Budget

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

Attorney General Eric Holder claims to have just discovered racial disparities in prosecution and sentencing in the United States. That’s like Robert E. Lee claiming to be surprised at the existence of slavery. Holder is making noises like a prison reformer to divert attention from the fact that Obama’s budget calls for increased funding for prisons, in the midst of austerity. It’s a con game.

 
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Detroit City Council Grovels to Power, Inflicts Further Harm on City

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

The majority on the Detroit city council have done further harm to the besieged metropolis, voting to allow emergency manager Kevyn Orr’s former law firm to represent the city’s interests. “It will be argued that the people’s representatives have effectively given thumbs up to the nullification of Detroit,” thus weakening any legal challenges to corporate dictatorship over the city.

 
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“Operation Ghetto Storm”: The New Face of U.S. Fascism

by Ajamu Baraka

The pace quickens in the killing of Black people in the U.S. Operation Ghetto Storm, a new report by the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, clocks the rate of extrajudicial executions of African Americans at one every 28 hours – up from last year’s report titled Every Thirty-Six Hours. The murder of Blacks is integral to “the government’s overall strategy of containing the Black community in a state of perpetual colonial subjugation and exploitation.”

Barack Obama: Wall Street’s Perfect Manchurian Candidate

by Pascal Robert

Barack Obama has been in Wall Street's pocket since at least 2006, when he spoke to the fat cats who would bankroll his campaign and staff his government. The video tells the sorry tale and puts the present in context. “Listen to what he says about the antiquated programs from the 1930′s that people on the left ‘wrongly cling to,’ meaning Social Security.”

Manchester, Texas: Tip of the Environmental Nightmare

by BAR editor and columnist Marsha Coleman-Adebayo

Gina McCarthy, President Obama’s choice as the new administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, should hear the children's voices in Houston’s Manchester community, whose life prospects have been shrunken by environmental racism. “We are being poisoned and we want to know why this is being allowed.”

Detroit: The Parable of the Banksters and the City

by Tom Stephens

The corporate takeover of Detroit is “a completely unprecedented spectacle” of infinite corruption and brazen bullying by the 1%. “Jones Day and its megabucks corporate client list are perfectly positioned to profit from Detroit’s ‘restructuring’ thru land speculation, privatization, and related neoliberal scams.”

South Africa: Chris Hani Would be Angry at ANC “Adopting Our Class Opponents' Policies”

by the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa

In the 20 years since the assassination of South African communist leader Chris Hani, the contradictions inherent in the agreement leading to electoral democracy have come to a head. "Comrade Chris would have condemned the brutal killing and slaughtering of workers in Marikana in defense of the minerals/energy/finance complex ruling oligarchy interests.”

A Tribute to Chris Hani on the 20th Anniversary of His Assassination

by Carlos Martinez

Chris Hani was a man of the people who saw the struggle for socialism and African liberation as inseparable. A leader of both the South African Communist Party and the African National Congress, Hani “realized that national liberation, though essential, would not bring about total economic liberation.”

Listen to Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network, with Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey – Week of 4/15/13

More Whites Swept Into U.S. Gulag

The racial incarceration gap has narrowed, slightly, with more whites and going to prison in recent years. “It’s almost like law enforcement is looking for more feeders for their beds,” said Soffiyah Elijah, executive director of The Correctional Association of New York. “As the economy continues to decline, poverty is closely associated with who law enforcement goes after,” she said. “So, you find more whites being swept up in the system.”

New Book Exposes Manning Marable’s Lies About Malcolm X

The central lie” of Manning Marable’s book Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention, “is the idea that Malcolm X was not an African Internationalist, not committed to revolution, but that when push came to shove, he was really part of the American dream and the American structure,” said Dr. Todd Burroughs, a professor of communications at Morgan State University. Burroughs and Dr. Jared Ball are co-editors of A Lie of Reinvention: Correcting Manning Marable’s Malcolm X, a collection of essays by prominent Black intellectuals and activists. “It was a shame that we had to do the book,” said Burroughs. “For him to mess it up this badly is a travesty.”

U.S. Will Bring About World War Three

The U.S. and its allies are running amuk, much like the Axis powers in the 1930s, said Dr. Francis Boyle, professor of international law at the University of Illinois, at Champaign. “After 9/11, we’ve had the United States, Britain, France and NATO literally rampaging around the world, destroying and invading states,” said Dr. Boyle. “They are going to lead us into a Third World War over something.” Boyle’s newest book is titled Destroying Libya and World Order: The Three-Decade U.S. Campaign to Terminate the Qaddafi Revolution.

Is This Barack Obama's 2nd Term? Is it Bill Clinton's 3rd? Or Is It Ronald Reagan's 9th?

By BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

They say that elections do matter, and that there are real differences between Republican and Democratic presidents. But backing up the view to 30 years, that difference looks a lot more like continuity, both at home and in America's global empire.

Freedom Rider: Fear of a Dead Planet

By Margaret Kimberley

Fracking is a corporate oil extraction technology. It uses vast quantities of water and irretrievably poisons water tables for entire regions before it brings up an ounce of oil or gas. Refining fracked oil & gas takes several times the energy and is vastly more polluting than conventional gas and oil, and once refined, burning even the cleanest gas and oil is altering the climate, possibly killing the planet. Fracking is fracked up.

School Privatization Fraud: Michelle Rhee May Yet Join Beverly Hall in the Dock

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

“Michelle Rhee may yet pay for her the damage she has inflicted on society and its children.” The former DC schools superintendent and privatization poster girl has been exposed to charges of fraud, along with her sister in crime, former Atlanta superintendent Beverly Hall. The real criminal enterprise is codified in No Child Left Behind and Race to the Top, headed up by the Bush and Obama gangs.

 
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Africa: Imperialism’s High Mark of Conquest in the 21st Century

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

The US-NATO military curtain has fallen the length and breadth of Africa. “Zimbabwe and tiny Eritrea are among the few nations on the African continent that have not yet been absorbed into the AFRICOM matrix.”

 
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Obama Aims To Cut Social Security & Other Federal Benefits? And This is a Surprise?

President Obama's proposal to cut Social Security by "chaining" it to the consumer price index will cost seniors a good 10% of monthly benefits a decade from now.  Republicans didn't force him into this, it's his opening proposal for negotiating.  Is anybody even surprised?  

Fisher v. UT Austin: The End of Affirmative Action as We Know It?

by Sally Chung

The U.S. Supreme Court’s history of affirmative action rulings has led to a dead end, in which the University of Texas “has to argue in favor of the system it really ought to be arguing against.” The legal catch-22: “Those who want to advocate for racial consciousness can only do so by recourse to reasoning, set forth by the Supreme Court, intended to restrict racial consciousness.”

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