29 September 2016 — Black Agenda Report
While inside the debate moderator Lester Holt failed to ask questions about joblessness, medical care, student loans, police murder or mass incarceration, New York police outside the debate showed the world how to suppress free speech with a soft hand, diverting more than two thousand protesters into “free speech zones” long lines and checkpoints and spaces artfully designed to prevent groups from concentrating in one place or finding each other.
A vote for the Green Party is not a protest gesture — it is a vote for a platform of peace, social justice and a livable planet, and against the Parties of Lies. The Democrats “continue to be seen as the antiwar party even as they use regime change more successfully than George W. Bush ever dreamed.” Trump is a scarecrow for political children, but Clinton is a real, live, proven monster. Vote Green – boldly! — for civlization, and against death.
Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, the indomitable heroine of the South African freedom struggle, celebrated her 80th birthday surrounded by friends and enemies, including the once-revolutionary, now-capitalist Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, who was complicit in the massacre of Black miners at Marikana. She promptly demanded that he fund a campaign for the miners’ widows and orphans. “Critics underestimate Winnie Mandela at their peril.”
This Monday showed there were multiple ways to fix a crooked presidential debate. The first way is to exclude everyone but the representatives of the two capitalist parties. A second way explored elsewhere in this issue was outside crowd control, and a third, as FAIR’s Adam Johnson explained, was to let the crooks decide what questions they’d be asked.
The fantastically-timed new Census figures showing large income advances, based on recently altered measuring sticks, cannot mask the deep crisis afflicting capitalism and its political parties: the Republicans and Democrats. The decaying economic order produces gross inequalities, mass insecurity, extinction-threatening wars and climate instability, and deepening moral turpitude within the ruling circles. It’s called system meltdown.
Police violence provides the “spark” that draws crowds instantly to the streets, but apartheid and inequality are the “underlying tinder that fuels the fires of rage across Black America today.” It may also have “sunk in with millions of Black Americans that the symbolic election of a technically First Black President is nothing compared to the deep structurally and institutionally entrenched racism of the American System.”
Trump is “simply a political manifestation of all America has ever been: arrogant, belligerent, dishonest, and motivated by sheer avarice.” The Democrats offer only “vapid identity politics” in which “Black, female, gay, and transgender comprador brothers and sisters of American empire drop bombs on Syrian children and protect police for snuffing out the lives of unarmed Black motorists.”
As the farcial and nightmarish presidential contest winds into its final month, we try to make sense of the senseless, and point to the only avenue of possible salvation…
The corporate project to destroy of local democracy has reached its zenith in Detroit, the nation’s Black metropolis. Neoliberal dogma holds that “Detroiters can’t do anything, don’t know anything, and our communities should be disregarded when ‘reviving,’ ‘restructuring’ and even ‘resurrecting’ Detroit.” A landmark suit challenges that dogma in the courts. The people must also challenge it in the streets.
It’s been 70 years since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that nobody can be compelled to salute or otherwise honor the flag, but students across the country report retaliation for “pulling a Kaepernick” at school events. In parochial schools, constitutional protections carry even less weight. Camden, New Jersey’s Catholic diocese maintains that “free speech, including protests, is not a guaranteed right.”
The United Nations, acting as a foreign policy arm of the U.S., allowed a quarter million Somali children to starve to death in 2011. Another drought, and continued occupation and war, now endangers the lives of hundreds thousands more kids. “The UN is responsible for feeding the internally displaced persons its war against the Somali people has been creating for a decade now, and simply fails to do so.”
The author studied the lives of South African men that had been jailed for violent crimes – and discovered the abused and forsaken child at the core of each of them. “Preventing and reducing stubbornly high levels of violence in South Africa can only be achieved if the country focuses on ensuring that children are not exposed to violence or toxic stress at home, and that they are warmly cared for.”
Hillary Clinton and her party are bad medicine, dispensed in incrementally fatal doses. The Democratic-leaning public seeks a cure for what ills society, but gets poison, instead. “No sane progressive should associate themselves with a political party that often and dramatically alters their demands to the point where they become indistinguishable from the Republicans.”
Despite a near-total lack of corporate media coverage, the national prison strike that began September 9 continues at facilities in 11 states, said Pastor Kenneth Glascow, chief outside spokesperson for the Free Alabama Movement, centered at the state prison in Holman. “Some are on hunger strike, some are doing the work stoppage” to protest involuntary servitude at slave wages, said Glascow. “In the near future, we will start boycotting some of those companies that use prison labor.” U.S. unemployment is “not just about ‘outsourcing’” jobs to foreign countries, he said. “It’s also ‘in-sourcing,’ using prison labor.”
Clinton Election Heightens Danger of World War
If Hillary Clinton wins the White House, she will likely name Samantha Power, the current U.S. ambassador to the UN and an architect of the so-called “humanitarian” military intervention doctrine, as her secretary of state or national security advisor, said Duboisian scholar and veteran social activist Dr. Anthony Monteiro. “It is clear that the Clinton foreign policy would be guided by the Pentagon and her own predisposition to settle accounts in the Middle East and with the Assad government and with Russia, militarily,” said Monteiro. “We on the Left — and, especially, the Black Left – have to begin to raise the question of war and peace as the central question in this election.”
Uhuru Conference: “Africans Need Our Own Theory”
The International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement (INPDUM) held its national conference in Ferguson, Missouri, this month. “We’ve been borrowing theory from everybody else,” said Movement president Kalambayi Andenet. “What is our interest? We need our own theory, and that’s African internationalism.” INPDUM is part of the African People’s Social Party, chaired by Omali Yeshitela. “We are a revolutionary organization,” he said. “If anybody is going to govern, to rule Black people, it’s got to be Black people, themselves.”
Ethnic Cleansing in Ethiopia
Hundreds of protestors have been killed in recent months in the Amhara and Oromo regions of Ethiopia, victims of the central government’s policy of “ethnic cleansing” of the nation’s two largest population groups, said Tsigereda Mulutega, vice president of the Ethiopian People’s Congress for Struggle (SHENGO). The Ethiopia regime is dominated by people from the Tigrayan ethnic group, which comprises only 6 percent of the population. Ethiopia is the biggest U.S. foreign aid recipient, next to Israel, said Mulutega. Therefore, “it is in the interest of U.S. taxpayers to say ‘no’ to crimes against humanity in Ethiopia.”
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