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    “The More Effective Evil” Curtain Call and the Prospect of Hilary 2016

    by Danny Haiphong

    President Obama has proven far more effective than George Bush in consolidating the rule of corporate imperialism. It will soon become Hillary Clinton’s turn to neutralize Blacks and white liberals in pursuit of the imperial agenda. Her presidency would “further expose the collaboration between Democrats and Republicans when it comes to economic and foreign policy endeavors.”

    Obama as the “New JFK”: Nothing Great to Be

    by Paul Street

    As the anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination approaches, the media will be awash with comparisons between JFK and Barack Obama. The two do, indeed, have much in common. “President Obama has moved in the same doctrinally and politically imposed corporate and imperial grooves as Kennedy.”

    Blacks & Drones

    by BAR editor and columnist Jemima Pierre

    Two organizations that give qualified support to U.S. adventures abroad, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, have issued reports critical of civilian deaths by American drone strikes. However, U.S. foreign policy is rooted in domestic practice. “U.S. Blacks have long been placed within a disposition matrix better known as ‘stop-n-frisk’ and they have long been the victims of normalized state assassination.”

    Obama Reeks of Sulfur at the UN

    A Black Agenda Radio commentary by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

    There was nothing conciliatory about President Obama’s speech to the UN. His message was blatantly subversive of the UN Charter, reserving the right to launch pre-emptive wars for “humanitarian” purposes and to circumvent the world body through proxies and “coalitions of the willing” in quest of regime change. No less than George Bush’s message in 2006, it was a declaration of war against peace.

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    Crack Cocaine Flick

    by Raymond Nat Turner

    Drone Man’s

    Set to do drive-bys,

    With the world divided

    Between “NO” and “HELL NO!”

    You’ve got a friend…

    by Raymond Nat Turner

    Drone Man “tagged” you in a note

    He wants you to get out the vote

    Like tubes down a “detainee” throat

    Listen to Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network, with Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey – Week of 5/27/13

    Listen to Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network, with Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey – Week of 5/27/13

     

    U.S. Prison Torture Protests

    With California prison protests set to renew in July, the Stop Mass Incarceration Network will mark three Days of Solidarity with the 80,000 inmates in solitary confinement, nationwide, June 21 - 23. Solitary confinement, as practiced in the United States, “fits the international definition of torture,” said network spokesman Carl Dix. “In fact, they are held consciously in conditions that are driving them insane.” The network also plans a “Hoodie Day” for June 10, the start of George Zimmerman’s trial in the death of Trayvon Martin.

    Obama’s Empty Rhetoric on Global War

    President Obama’s speech on the future of U.S. targeted assassinations around the world contained “nothing concrete, anywhere,” said anti-war activist David Swanson, publisher of the influential website WarIsACrime.org. “By the president’s own concession, what he’s been doing for years is an unacceptable outrage,” said Swanson. “The president claims that he will respect the sovereignty of other nations, but there is no evidence that this is the case, and there is no mechanism for any of these criteria to be enforced by anyone other than himself.”

    U.S. Would Make Syria a Wasteland, Like Libya

    Washington and its allies and proxies are engaged “in an all-out effort at regime change in Syria,” much like the 2011 NATO war against Libya, said Sara Flounders, of UNAC, the United National Anti-War Coalition. “Libya today has no functioning government, which is really fine for the major oil corporations,” said Flounders. “They don’t have to worry about paying anybody anything, and the oil continues to pump.” Ultimately, what U.S. corporations want “is what they have in Bangladesh – a race to the bottom.”

    End UN Occupation of Haiti

    Delegates from across the western hemisphere will gather in Port-au-Prince, May 31 and June 1, for a Continental Conference against the 9-year United Nations occupation of Haiti. UN troops “are there to impose repression on a people that have refused to accept the violation of their sovereignty and their right to determine their own destiny,” said Alan Benjamin, a conference organizer and executive committee member of the San Francisco Bay Area Labor Council.

    Attempted Land Grab in Cameroon

    International protest appears to have halted a 73,000 hectare palm oil and lumber venture by the multinational Herakles Farms corporation in Cameroon. The deal had awarded Herakles a 99-year lease at only $1 per hectare a year. Studies confirm the company’s “intention to make huge profits in transfers and assets on the cheap,” said Anuradha Mittal, executive director of the Oakland Institute. Such transactions “should serve as a reminder that the land rush that has brought investors into the African nations is not driven by philanthropy, despite claims to the contrary.” Brendan Schwartz, of Greenpeace International, said the scheme “is not a development project,” but would, in fact, create “unemployment and underdevelopment.”

    Black Power vs. Capitalism

    Majority Black jurisdictions across the nation have seen their local school and governing bodies “set aside, so that the governor can appoint stooges to impose massively unpopular programs of austerity; wage, pension, benefits and service cuts; and privatization,” said Black Agenda Report managing editor Bruce Dixon, in a commentary on Black Agenda Television. “Quite simply, what austerity regimes do is turn local government from an entity that collects local taxes and fees, in order to pay its employees living wages and provide needed services, into a machine which collects local taxes and user fees from the poor and sends them straight to Wall Street as interest payments on an eternal, unpayable debt.”

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    Cornel West: Obama “Is a War Criminal”

    by Jacob Chamberlain

    I would rather have a white president fundamentally dedicated to eradicating poverty and enhancing the plight of working people than a black president tied to Wall Street and drones," activist-academic Dr. Cornel West told British journalists. Barack Obama, like his predecessor, should be tried for war crimes.

    Fortress America Besieged: War Penetrates Imperialist Sanctuary

    by Omali Yeshitela

    The Who and Why of the events in Boston are by no means clear, given the machinations of the U.S. secret services. One thing is certain, however: “The Obama regime will use the Boston bombing as an excuse to initiate even more odious attacks on freedom within the U.S. with the willingness of a frightened white population.”

    A Plague of Desolationists on the “Left”

    by Randy Shields

    “Desolationists believe that America’s non-stop bombing of other nations is either no issue at all or not nearly as important as being pro-choice or supporting gun control or marriage equality.” They are worse than useless. Plus, “with blacks standing down indefinitely, the working class doesn’t have the rage to stop Obama from taking the first swings of the wrecking ball to Social Security.”

    Freedom Rider: What Ails the GOP

    by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

    The Republicans have stripped down their constituency to only “the worst of the worst” Americans: “white supremacists, misogynists and other dead enders.” Obama’s Democrats have absorbed the rest of the GOP, to become the New Republican Party of austerity and war.

    Preventive Detention and the Death of the Democratic State

    by Chris Hedges

    The author, a journalist and plaintiff in a suit contesting the constitutionality of President Obama’s preventive detention law, asks: “Could I be seen by the security and surveillance state, because I challenge the official narrative, as a collaborator with the enemy?” The answer is: Yes – and so could you.

    Towards a Police State in New York

    by Belen Fernandez

    Hyper-surveillance of American Muslims leads U.S. secret police to draw strange cultural conclusions. They note that giving up "cigarettes, drinking, gambling and urban hip-hop gangster clothes" may indicate a Muslim's "progression along the radicalization continuum" toward "Jihadization." Of course, such acculturation might also make Muslims bigger targets for stop-and-frisk.

    Fleets of Drones Descend on Africa

     

    A Black Agenda Radio commentary by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

    U.S. drone bases are multiplying on the African continent. Niger has just “given the green light to accepting American surveillance drones on its soil”; neighboring Burkina Faso already has one; two new drone facilities are opening in Ethiopia and the Seychelles; and UN peacekeepers in Congo want U.S. drones. Drones have terrorized Somalia from AFRICOM’s base in Djibouti for the past seven years.

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    The White House Un-Reality Show

     

    by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

    Despite the fact that “it was Barack Obama who began the current austerity offensive in the weeks before delivering his first inaugural address,” the president was allowed to pose as a champion of the social safety net. Having redefined war, he once again claims to be a peacemaker. By cheering the inaugural speech, progressives are only encouraging Obama’s gaming and mendacity.”

    Listen to Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network, with Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey – week of January 14, 2013

     

    What Would Dr. King Do?

    Were he alive today, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. would “highlight Wall Street criminality,” “war crimes coming out of the White House, the Pentagon, and the State Department” and “the social crimes of the New Jim Crow, the criminal justice system, which is itself criminal,” said Dr. Cornel West, of the Union Theological Seminary, in New York. “Martin would be very, very sad when he looked at the fraudulent character of Black leadership, the massive capitulation to the White House.”

    The slain civil rights leader “would be in righteous opposition to the American regime of austerity and war, and to a president and his administration that is in the vanguard of it,” according to Dr. Anthony Monteiro, professor of African American Studies at Temple University, in Philadelphia. “King was, at the end of the day, a democratic revolutionary. He was calling for an uprising to the forces of injustice and war,” said Monteiro. In contrast, today’s “Black petit bourgeoisie are more interested in their own comfort than they are in social justice.”

    Black Women’s Wage Gap

    The wage gap between men and African American women is 70 cents on the dollar, according to a study of U.S. Census Bureau data by the National Partnership for Women and Families. Sarah Crawford, the group’s director of workplace fairness, said “nearly 40 percent of households headed by African American women are living in poverty, so this lost pay in particularly critical for those families. The difference in earnings amounts to more than $14,000 each year.”

    Fictional Fiscal Crisis

    The conservatives, the Republicans, the business lobby, have been allowed to control the debate” over fiscal policy “because they’ve created the idea that we have this big deficit crisis,” said Dean Baker, co-director of the Washington-based Center for Economic and Policy Research. “And it really is a fiction.” Such false assumptions are why “programs like Medicare and Social Security are on the chopping block.”

    Pace of Police Killings of Blacks Increases

    Kali Akuno, one of the authors of last year’s Malcolm X Grassroots Movement report on extrajudicial killings of Blacks, said “we are already noticing that, by our count, there’s been ten Black men who’ve been killed by police in 2013, and that’s faster than the pace of 2012.” Akuno spoke earlier this month on a National Forum on Police Brutality and Institutional Racism, on Your World News, hosted by Solomon Comissiong and Peter Fowler.

    Obama’s War Mongers

    Virtually everybody on the top echelon of the Obama foreign policy team, they all backed the Iraq War,” points out Sam Husseini, communications director of the Institute for Public Accuracy. Republican Senator Chuck Hagel, tapped for Secretary of Defense, fits the bill. John Brennan, the White House intelligence advisor who got the president’s nod to head the CIA, meets every week with Obama “to decide who they are going to kill,” said Husseini. “He at one point claimed that there were no civilian deaths from the drone program, though we know there are civilian deaths.”

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    Your Brain on Obama: Waiting for the Man

     

    by Randy Shields

    The “Obama Phenomenon” is a world-class consciousness-destroyer, guaranteed to burn a hole in your soul. Millions of once-progressive minds have fallen victim to the scourge. “Obama users have turned on friends and colleagues who kept their principles regardless of which capitalist flunky commits the crimes.”

    Betraying Our Legacy: Barack Obama-Bathing his Hands in the Blood of Innocents

     

    by Harold Green

    African Americans have lost a great deal in the last four years: more Black household wealth has vanished than at any time in history, for example. Even more disastrously, Black America may have lost its moral and political moorings. “With Barack Obama at the helm, we seem not to be concerned about continuing our legacy of resistance and fighting for justice.” We risk becoming complicit in the most heinous crimes against humanity.

    Freedom Rider: Malala the Worthy Victim

     

    by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

    In U.S. war films, the American soldier fighting in a strange land befriends a local child, creating a personal bond of humanity, while busily killing scores of the kid’s adult countrymen. American corporate media perform much the same sick exercise, identifying children among the “worthy victims” of the other side in U.S. foreign wars. Children deemed unworthy of American sympathy are left to the tender mercies of drones.

    Black Ethics and Drone Politics

     

    by BAR editor and columnist Jemima Pierre

    They ought to call it the Nobel Death from the Sky Prize. “Barack Obama is leading a multi-country gangster-style drone war that kills people whose identities aren’t known, and that has left more than 3000 dead, including 176 children.” Yet Black America remains largely silent in “the face of such overwhelming death, despair, and destruction done on our behalf by our Black president.”

    Fifteen Issues this Election is Not About

     

    by Bill Quigley

    The ties that bind the two corporate parties and their presidential candidates are much stronger than any differences that separate them. That’s why a progressive platform could be built almost entirely around opposition to those positions shared by Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. Below is a litany of issues that will not see the light of day in corporate campaign 2012.

    When Will Radical Become the Norm?

     

    by Solomon Comissiong

    Americans have methodically been taught to believe they reside within the world's most free and open "democratic” society,” with the highest standard of living on the planet. It’s a lie, yet those who point out that the narrative is false are “characterized as ‘radicals’ or even social deviants,” rather than truth-tellers. America desperately needs a new normal.

    Obama Wins A Round in His Quest to Imprison Americans Without Trial

     

    A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford

    The Obama administration has won a courtroom victory in his bid to detain U.S. citizens without trial. The president already executes foreigners at will. “That’s the evil beauty of these Bush-Obama laws: they cut across international borders and render all the people’s of the world equal in one important respect: President Obama claims the right to kill each and every one of them.”

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    Wrong Song In The Key Of Death (Call The Villain)

     

    by Raymond Nat Turner

    Bomb 'em to stone man

    Free-fire zone man

    Jim Jones man

    Villain called Drone Man

    Debating Dr. Dyson: Facts vs. The “Wall of Words”

     

    by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

    Obama is the “most progressive president since FDR.” So says Dr. Michael Eric Dyson. The president has also solved the problem of predatory lending. If there were any facts behind these assertions, the United States would rate a lot higher on the Global Well-Being Scale. Unfortunately, the First Black President’s ability to push forward the Right’s agenda makes him the “more effective evil,” says Glen Ford.

    Listen to Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network, with Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey – Week of July 23, 2012

     

    CIA and U.S. Military Officials Sued in Targeted Killings

    The Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) charge the United States violated international law and its own Constitution with the killing of three Americans citizens in Yemen, last year. “These deaths are connected to a broader program of targeted killing that, in our view, has no lawful basis,” said CCR lawyer Padiss Kebriaei. American-born cleric Anwar Aulaqi, his teenage son and an associate were never formally charged with any crime.

    No Compromise with Stop-and-Frisk

    New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is “trying to gather up Black politicians and Black ministers who will sit down and negotiate ‘reforms’ to stop-and-frisk,” said Carl Dix, a founder of Stop Stop-and-Frisk. “But, you can’t reform injustice – you have to get rid of it.” Dix took part in the final day of a family vigil for Ramarley Graham, the unarmed Black teenager killed by police in his Bronx home in front of his family.

    Half a Million to be Disenfranchised by Photo ID Laws

    At least 500,000 eligible voters will find they can’t vote on Election Day, due to photo ID laws passed in ten states, according to a report from the Brennan Justice Center. Keesha Gaskins, co-author of the report, said many of those affected “live more than 10 miles from an ID-issuing office” and “lack access to a vehicle.” The Black Belt South and Brown Belt areas bordering Mexico are “really graphic examples of where these problems” arise, said Gaskins.

    Black Radio Facing “Demise”

    With radio in general confronting a “dying revenue stream,” Black-oriented commercial broadcasting “may be entering an era in which there will be no concessions to culture” and to Black political and social development by the mega-chains that own the media, said Dr. Todd Burroughs, of Morgan State University, in Baltimore. Burroughs is among the signatories to a letter asking the Federal Communications Commission to investigate “the demise” of Black radio.

    Black Soldiers Crucial to American War of Independence

    Black soldiers “were the most experienced fighters” at Yorktown, comprising a quarter of the soldiers under General George Washington’s command in the decisive battle, said Alan Gilbert, author of Black Patriots and Loyalists: Fighting for Emancipation in the War for Independence. Gilbert disputes estimates that only 5,000 Blacks fought for American separation from Britain. However, far more Blacks served with the British, who promised freedom, while Washington’s Continental Army did not.

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    Freedom Rider: Bloodthirsty Americans

     

    by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

    Barack Obama, who lots of deluded people not too long ago imagined was a man of peace, wants the American people to think of him as a cold killer. He’s betting that’s the kind of president his countrymen desire. Violence-wise, the U.S. is the home of the depraved. Conclusion: “Our president is a totally amoral psychopath, and the revelation of his condition has not hurt his popularity.”

    Eye of the Drone

     

    from Harper’s magazine

    The United States, indicted as “the greatest purveyor of violence in the world” by Dr. Martin Luther King, 45 years ago, is today the main purveyor of high-tech terror on the planet. President Obama’s real “Kill List” is full of men and women whose names and lives are unknown to their executioners, including about 40 tribal leaders slaughtered by drones in Pakistan, last year. So traumatized are the surviving villagers, “people in the same family now sleep apart because they do not want their togetherness to be viewed suspiciously through the eye of the drone,” and “few children attend school because they fear for their lives walking to and from their homes.”

    Attorney General Eric Holder: Wrong on the Law, the Politics, and on the Wrong Side of History

    by Wilmer J. Leon III, Ph.D.

    The first Black president and first Black attorney general have so twisted the Constitutional guarantees of due process of law, that “not only can American citizens be indefinitely detained, they can also be assassinated by their own government at the will and whim of their President.” Eric Holder’s interpretation of the nation’s basic law is both sinister and incompetent. “Holder sounds a lot like former Bush administration counsel John Yoo, the author of the opinion justifying torture.”

    No, Drones are Never OK!

     

    by BAR editor and columnist Jemima Pierre

    If any American group should be appalled at U.S. drone policy, it is Blacks, who “have seen the unspeakable become acceptable. We should know better.” Those who send the drones deny the fundamental humanity of their targets. “There is something deeply wrong about killing someone accused of a crime before giving that person a right to prove her or his innocence.”

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