Black Agenda Report October 3, 2012 — Occupy the Debates, Int'l Criminal Court on Trial, How Mass Incarceration Changes Everthing

3 October, 2012Black Agenda Report

This week in Black Agenda Report

by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

I’ll be watching the debates. Not on CNN or ABC, but online at Occupy the Debates or at Democracy Now or Free Speech TV, where the third party candidates and others have a chance to answer questions and comment in real time.



by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

The International Criminal Court has turned into its opposite: an injudicious, selective enforcer of imperial policy, rather than a global standard of criminal law. The cast of defendants have all been African and outcasts from the U.S. imperial orbit, from the ICC’s inception. “The ICC has been used as an instrument of war; not an instrument of peace, but war by other means. It’s time to ‘scrap it.’”

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

Black celebrities a generation ago like Muhammad Ali, Jim Brown, Curt Flood, Roberto Clemente, and of course, Harry Belafonte and his mentor Paul Robeson used their prominence not to hobnob with with the White House, but to help those picketing outside the mansions of governors and presidents, the imprisoned and oppressed. How far have we fallen since then? Now the same black celebs who wine and dine at the White House are mystifying “politics” while mouthing slogans of the far right….


Obama on Wrong Side in Shell Oil Human Rights Case

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford

Shell Oil, which profits most from the Ogoni people’s degradation and oppression, claims it is just a bystander, an innocent party.”

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

Mass incarceration affects every aspect of Black life. “It is not mysterious that a group with large numbers of its members locked away would have higher rates of HIV or lower rates of marriage or amedian net worth of only $4,955.” So great is the weight that imprisonment imposes on Black America, “every negative statistic that bedevils the black community” is tied to the phenomenon.


By Ajamu Baraka

iiWho is killing whom in Syria and why? And to whom should we be listening —- to our corporate media, State Department, and the same corps of “human rights activists” who applauded the Western invasion of Libya, and the dispatch of US special forces to Africa?

An Evening In Harlem NY With Black Agenda Report & Friends


by Mike Pirsch

The Occupy movement was based on the proposition that the State serves the interests of the 1%, while the rest of us are left out in the cold. But, why do 99% of Americans vote for presidential candidates of “the financial industry dictatorship and its enforcer, the military empire” every four years? If 20% voted for progressive parties, it would “frighten the financial dictators more than a thousand Occupys.”

by David Swanson

War is the worst thing that humans do, from which the evils of genocide and crimes against humanity flow. Yet, in our political culture, people convince themselves that supporting supposedly “lesser evils” is a glorious enterprise. In truth, “aLesser Evilist today is not choosing less evil policies, but the same policies in what he or she hopes will be lesser amounts.”



by Elias Amare

Eritrea, a small African nation on the Red Sea that won its independence from Ethiopia in a 30-year war and was once praised by the West for its policies of self-reliance, is now demonized as a “rogue state.” Washington showers Ethiopia with billions in economic and military aid.“The US and its European allies must reverse their misguided policies of propping up tyrannical client regimes in the Horn of Africa and play a constructive role of peace by de-escalating their militarization of the region.”




U.S. Tries to Bully Iran Into Submission

Iran poses no threat to the world, said David Swanson, publisher of The real “source of tension” with Washington is that “Iran, since its revolution, has insisted on remaining independent of U.S. control. The Pentagon wants an Iran that cannot strike back” if it is attacked by the U.S. or Israel.

Obamacare Provides “Inferior” Protection

President Obama’s health care law is “an agreement between the federal government and big business” that “doesn’t protect Americans from bankruptcy and premature death,” said Dr. Reginald Clark, a health issues scholar who lectures at California State University, in Los Angeles. Most people will only be able to afford “inferior” levels of federally mandated health care coverage, he said.

U.S. Election Duopoly

Both Republican and Democratic presidential candidates are deep in the pocket of ‘clean coal,’ as they are in the pockets of Big Ag, Big Insurance, military contractors, Wall Street and other centers of real power,” said BAR managing editor Bruce Dixon. For a progressive analysis of the debates between the two business parties, go to, beginning October 3.

Federal Employees’ Due Process Rights Threatened

Provisions of the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act pending before Congress would allow judges on federal workplace boards to deny due process to employees that complain of discrimination, said worker rights activist Dr. Marsha Coleman-Adebayo. “This really does harken back to Jim Crow, when our cases were considered amusement for the Bubba crowd,” said Coleman-Adebayo, whose battle against discrimination at the Environmental Protection Agency led to passage of the NO FEAR whistleblower protection legislation, in 2002.

Paramilitaries on the Rise in Haiti

With the encouragement of the U.S.-backed government, paramilitaries are occupying 20 former Haitian Army bases, according to Jeb Sprague, author ofParamilitarism and the Assault on Democracy in Haiti. The militiamen want to become part of a new national military. The U.S. also favors bringing back the Haitian Army, which was disbanded under deposed president Jean Bertrand Aristide. “They want it there in place if the UN force eventually leaves, to beat down the people,” said Sprague.

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