By Robert A. Vella
Those who rely on opportunism, instead of standing on principle, to right the wrongs of history, shall perpetuate that history to self-detrimental effect.
When the jury verdict was announced 21 years ago in the murder trial of O. J. Simpson, Black America rejoiced because one of their own had finally beat the system, while White America was appalled because their system had failed to convict someone they considered an outsider. Both perspectives warranted the intense scrutiny and condemnation they both subsequently received, but nothing at all has changed in America since then. Judging the O. J. verdict should have been based solely on his ultimate guilt or innocence, not on the color of his skin. We Americans, however, are not an ethical people.
So long as the
ArabsAmericans fight tribe against tribe, so long will they be a little people, a silly people – greedy, barbarous, and cruel…
From Politico – Sanders collides with black lawmakers:
In a letter sent to both the Sanders and Hillary Clinton campaigns, the CBC is expressing its resolute opposition to two key reforms demanded by Sanders in the run-up to the Democratic convention: abolishing the party’s superdelegate system and opening Democratic primaries up to independents and Republicans.
“The Democratic Members of the Congressional Black Caucus recently voted unanimously to oppose any suggestion or idea to eliminate the category of Unpledged Delegate to the Democratic National Convention (aka Super Delegates) and the creation of uniform open primaries in all states,” says the letter, which was obtained by POLITICO.
Obviously, the CBC is not motivated by the larger principles of democracy, but by the narrow self-serving desire to preserve their own political power. I wonder how long they’ll be able to hold onto that power once the last vestiges of democracy have wasted away.
And, it’s not just democracy under threat in America. Hillary Clinton’s victory in the presidential primaries has emboldened the neoliberal establishment which supported her to deal a death blow to the very notion of progressivism in the Democratic Party.
From The Washington Post – Reflections on Bernie:
Some critics of Sanders from the left credit him for organizing progressives but fault him for his unrealistic, outmoded policy agenda. In this recent New York Times piece, political analyst Mark Schmitt applauds Sanders and his followers for showing the party leadership that many of their constituents are ready for a “full-throated progressive agenda.” But Sanders’s agenda, Schmitt argues, won’t take hold as it is so clearly “out of step with the ideas that have been emerging from progressive think tanks.”
As someone who has worked at progressive think tanks for decades, that seems to discount the positive role of Sanders’s contribution to improving, shaping and possibly moving our agenda. It’s the kind of thinking that has thwarted progressives as we apparently have forgotten how to negotiate (an odd lapse for a movement with ties to labor unions).
The progressive agenda cannot move forward even incrementally if we simply rely on technocratic arguments: that based on the employment elasticities in this white paper, a minimum wage of $12 will have less distortionary impacts than one of $15; that “breaking up the banks” goes too far; that the think tanks haven’t yet articulated how we get to single payer; that spending another 10 percent of GDP on government is necessarily out of the question.
The principal financiers of that neoliberal establishment (i.e. Wall Street) are now flexing their political muscles as the Democratic Party nomination process moves forward.
From Politico – Wall Street donors seek to block Warren VP pick:
NEW YORK — Big Wall Street donors have a message for Hillary Clinton: Keep Elizabeth Warren off the ticket or risk losing millions of dollars in contributions.
In a dozen interviews, major Democratic donors in the financial services industry said they saw little chance that Clinton would pick the liberal firebrand as her vice presidential nominee. These donors despise Warren’s attacks on the financial industry. But they also think her selection would be damaging to the economy. And they warned that if Clinton surprises them and taps Warren, big donations from the industry could vanish.
On the Republican side, its establishment elites are still hoping to torpedo the irreverent nationalist Donald Trump at the party convention next month.
From The Washington Post – Anti-Trump delegates raising money for staff and a legal defense fund:
Supporters of a growing anti-Donald Trump movement announced plans Sunday to raise money for staff and a possible legal defense fund as they asked recruits to help spread the word with less than a month until the Republican National Convention.
Having started with just a few dozen delegates, organizers also said Sunday that they now count several hundred delegates and alternates as part of their campaign.
The group is led by delegates seeking to block Trump at the GOP convention next month in Cleveland by changing party rules so that they can vote however they want — instead of in line with the results of state caucuses and primaries. It is quickly emerging as the most organized effort to stop Trump and coincides with his declining poll numbers.
My, oh my, what a sordid little affair this election is turning out to be! I thought pornography was dirty… silly me!