4 comments on “Obama’s Peace in the Valley

  1. If “the working class movement is so weak” and there is “no independent working class party” the lion’s share of the blame has to go to the trade union bureaucracy that has kept the unions tied to capitalism via its alliance with the Democrats. Coming in second is the mainstream liberal left that tails after them.

    Needless to say, the latter lacks the influence amongst workers that the CP had in the 1930s and 1940s when it killed any chances for “a real party of labour” in order to get on board FDR’s “Popular Front” bandwagon. In spite of the raw deal having long ago replaced the “New Deal” as the only item on the Democrats’ agenda, they have remained there ever since…and made sure that the “progressive” milleau that they dominate stays there as well.

    Nonetheless today’s reformists still carry clout amongst activists in the “movement” milleau. Leslie Cagan, Carl Davidson and Co. can go where actual Democratic Party politicians can’t and do their bidding for them, rendering any and every mass movement they get their hands on useless as an instrument for any kind of radical social change. Those are the kind of people who sold the false bill of goods on Obama just as they did on Kerry and Gore and every other Democrat that came before them.

    As events in the auto industry clearly show, ousting the sell-out bureaucracy in the unions is the most important task facing rank and file workers. For those of us in the radical milleau, doing the same to the movement bureaucrats and coalition kingpins who keep the mass of activists and the movements they operate in under the thumb of the Democrats is equally as important or we will be having this same exchange every election.

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  2. Is it really true that we were sold a false bill of goods?the information was there for all to see……if we don’t see it,well,that’s probably because the working class movement is so weak…there are some struggles,but there is no independent working class party to apply the blow torch to the Democrats or the Republicans…..without that independent class party people aren’t left many options…..the whole world is happy that the Bush gang is no longer on the scene…..and,yeah,Obama makes lots of nice noises about ‘change’,but we all know he is a centrist Democrat trying to manage a capitalist economy in the interests of the owners……the US,like many other capitalist democracies,needs a real party of labour

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  3. Clearly the vast majority of those who voted for Obama were sold a false bill of goods, particularly insofar as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are concerned. Few and far between are those getting any of the “change” that they may have “hoped” for…outside of the $13 a week tax rebate from the “stimulus” that won’t even buy a beer and a pack of cigarettes at the same time. However, those in the mainstream liberal-left “progressive” milleau, who helped sell them that false bill of goods, are another story. Most of them were so fixated on Bush and the “neo-cons” as the sole source of America’s ills for the past eight years that any Democrat would do…regardless of what they, in fact, would do if and when they get into office. Nonetheless, it was taken for granted that it would still be better than having Bush there…even if, for all intents and purposes, it was pretty much the same thing. After all, any and every Democrat who was a Senator or a Congressperson, including Obama, repeatedly voted to give Bush every cent he asked for to keep the wars and occupations going as well as the authorization to shred the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

    For not a few of this crowd, bombing Iraqis and Afghans and bailing out bankers are just fine and dandy as long as they’re being done by a dapper and debonair Democrat who can use big words in the name of “human rights” and “shared sacrifice” instead of an ersatz cowboy who can barely put together a sentence and whose main point of reference was Bible-thumping Christian fundamentalism. And given the role that white guilt tripping and identity politics have played in the post sixties liberal-left world view as a replacement for viewing the working class as the main agency for social change, having a Black guy in the Oval Office was as good as good could get even if his policies offered nothing to the vast majority of Black people, outside of condescending Cosby-style blame-the-victim Sunday School lectures that even pissed off Jesse Jackson. At least they could finally feel good about being Americans again!

    These elite, effete intellectual snobs could care less about those at the receiving end of Obama’s DU and cluster bombs in Afghanistan and Pakistan anymore than they could about those Bill Clinton and Wesley Clark butchered in Yugoslavia back in 1999, just as their predecessors turned a blind eye to those that JFK’s war in Indochina and “counter-insurgency” campaigns in South and Central America claimed as victims. For it was the latter, whose rhetoric about the “Alliance for Progress” opened up “New Frontiers” for the death squads south of the border. And after a decade of dullness under Eisenhower, a few dead workers and peasants in some jungle in Indochina or slum in South America was a small price to pay for the glory and glamour that went with Kennedy’s “Camelot.”

    One thing that’s for sure is that none of them could care a whit about unionized auto workers, that is those lucky enough to keep their jobs, being forced to slave away at the same salaries fry-cooks at Mickey D’s make. For their hero Obama, echoed by countless columnists from the liberals favorite newspaper, the NY Times, and all making six figure salaries, decreed from day one that America’s “greedy” workers had been living high off the hog for way too long and that now it was time for them to their belts…so that Wall Street’s waistline could get even wider. All of them have been howling for blood insofar as the auto industry is concerned, while, at the same time, thinking nothing of the trillions in welfare for Wall Street that Obama and his Goldman Sachs guilded youth have doled out with no strings attached and no questions asked.

    The real problem is that by identifying the “left” with an openly anti-working class administration, the “progressives” help to push working people into the arms of the right who can then pose as “populists.” That’s what happened when Clinton was in office and the bulk of the mainstream liberal-left and the labor leadership refused to lift a finger against his neo-liberal “globalization” and “human rights” imperialism in order to hold back Newt Gingrich’s “Republican revolution.” They put up with NAFTA, welfare repeal, the “war on drugs” and the bombing and starving of Yugoslavia and Iraq. The ranks of the right and the militia movement swelled as a result. Give Obama a year or two of impoverishing workers and the middle class in order to further enrich Wall Street and the next congressional elections will see a resurgent Republican right leading a “tax revolt.” (Remember, when the original bank bail-out was unveiled last October, it was the Republicans who at first opposed it while Obama and the Democrats lined up behind it from the get-go.) That is, unless the real left and, more importantly, the rank and file of the labor movement, can get their act together and start to oppose the Obama regime for being the errand boys for Wall Street and imperialists that they are.

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  4. Re civilian casualties in Afghanistan – how many incidents like this do there need to be before any outrage is expressed? Karzai says “unacceptable” followed by “how high do I need to jump?” How twisted that the onus of proof is on grieving Afghanis who are forced to drag dead bodies to the authorities. And still no one is listening…

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