BA Radio on the Progressive Radio Network, with Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey – Week of January 28, 2013

Housing is for people, not banks

Obama's inagural speech shows him to be...

aiming to raise retirement age, according to Kevin Alexander Gray;

the drone war president, accordong to David Swanson;

double-talker on climate change, according to Marsha Coleman-Abedayo;

the same old neoliberal Obama, according to Paul Street.

Housing is for People – Not Banks

Housing policy at its core should have as its primary end providing housing” for people, rather than as a national wealth-building mechanism, said Tim Sullivan, of Boston-based United for a Fair Economy. Sullivan is author of the group’ annual report, State of the Dream 2013: A Long Way Home. Black families possess only a small fraction of the wealth of whites, and housing makes up a much greater share of the small Black slice. Seventeen million homes are vacant, yet millions are homeless, said Sullivan. “First and foremost, housing should be seen as a human right.”

Obama’s inaugural speech showed him to be:

“…as big a war criminal as many of us on the Left consider George Bush,” said author and activist Kevin Alexander Gray, in Columbia, South Carolina. “I think the idea of a president giving a speech while simultaneously giving orders to kill people through the use of drones – of that being some kind of powerful, progressive speech, is absolutely ridiculous.” In suggesting that the age of retirement be raised for Social Security, Gray said Obama “is willing to say to Black people: you work till you die.”

inventor of drone wars. Thousands of troops will remain in Afghanistan after 2014. “Meanwhile, President Obama has invented a brand new kind of war called the drone wars, and taken that new kind of war into new nations,” said activist and author David Swanson, publisher of the influential website War Is A “It’s an expansion of war,” not an ending of it.

a climate change double-talker. Obama “talks out of both sides of his mouth on climate change,” said Marsha Coleman-Adebayo, former Environmental Protection Agency official turned whistleblower and a founder of the No Fear Coalition. “He says we have to protect future generations, but at the same time he’s most likely going to approve the Keystone pipeline, which is another assault on the atmospheric life of this planet. So there’s this constant double-talk.”

the same old neo-liberal Obama. “It’s kind if surprising to see how willing folks that describe themselves as being of the Left are, after four years of a presidency that proceeded to be a monument to the unelected dictatorship of money and empire, to give credence to his words,” said Paul Street, activist and author of The Empire’s New Clothes: Barack Obama and the Real World of Power. If you read the speech closely, “it’s the same old deeply conservative, state capitalist, neo-liberal Obama.”


Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network is hosted by Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey. A new edition of the program airs every Monday at 11:00am ET on PRN. Length: One hour.