A discussion of race, politics, media and the like… What I see is what you get.

Posts tagged “Wisconsin

What Republicans Are Trying To Prove

Introducing, to some of you for the first time, the Republicans…. They haven’t changed their tone or policies in 30 years and their aims remain the same…all over the country…they ALL believe in this radical ideology. It’s about time we all believe what they have been telling us…

Toward the end of the clip, pay close attention to how Melissa Harris-Perry weaves race into the 30 year political debate on how the Republicans have attached government services to minorities and the poor. The propaganda that she unearths is true at all levels…

The Maddow Blog – What Republicans are trying to prove.



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Are We All Black Americans (Niggers) Now?

Wow… The descriptive nature of this piece is so intense…I have nothing more to add.
Please share this with anyone who will listen…

Are we All Black Americans Now | The Nation

In the months following September 11, my colleague Cornel West offered this insight: national political elites used the devastating attacks to promote the “niggerization of the American people.” West understood that long before 9/11, African-Americans were intimately familiar with terrorism. Through the Jim Crow century, they were routinely and randomly brutalized and murdered by well-organized groups of whites acting beyond the confines of the official state but with the tacit consent of their society. Under the shadow of lynching, black Americans learned what it meant to feel, as West describes, “unsafe, unprotected, subject to random violence, and hated for who they are.” After 9/11 far too many Americans, unaccustomed to this sense of collective intimidation, felt helpless to halt an unjustified war or the erosion of civil liberties. Thus, whether or not they were black, Americans were “niggerized” by the attacks.

In recent months, I have been reminded of Professor West’s analysis because one way to read our current moment is as a blackening of America. The social, economic and political conditions that have long defined African-American life have descended onto a broader population, and it has been instructive to watch how the nation has responded.

Initially, conservatives argued that Tea Party activists had every right to be disgusted with national leadership and to demand swift economic intervention to combat the near 10 percent unemployment rate. Since the mid-1970s, except for a brief dip between 1998 and 2002, unemployment among African-Americans has routinely exceeded 10 percent, yet African-Americans were rarely encouraged to blame systems or organize collectively. Instead blacks were stereotyped as lazy and undeserving. This characterization has been an effective ideological tool for politicians intent on limiting social programs, cutting welfare, ignoring cities, slashing job training and neglecting housing.

Within months, the Tea Party shifted its focus to the deficit. As it did, policy debates about the poor and unemployed came to mirror decades of discourse about black Americans. Extensions of unemployment insurance were decried as “creeping socialism.” Echoing theories of dependency leveled against African-Americans for decades, one conservative blogger suggested that extending unemployment benefits would create “a permanent entitlement and would perpetuate unemployment.” Perhaps, in this moment, Americans understood how dangerously corrosive the characterization of the poor as “idle” is for black people.

This past November the TSA introduced screening procedures that many Americans—liberals and conservatives alike—deemed intrusive, random and demeaning. But for decades urban police forces have regularly employed race-based traffic stops and pedestrian stop-and-frisks in African-American communities. These policing practices have done little to make neighborhoods safer, but they have contributed to massive incarceration rates for black men. Justifying their racially punitive behavior as a reasonable response to potential crime, police forces have acted largely with the consent of white Americans, some of whom later decried the TSA’s new procedures. Perhaps, for a moment, they felt the stinging humiliation that routinely accompanies black life.

Few events more clearly demonstrated the blackening of America than the standoff in Wisconsin. Like the nineteenth-century leaders of Southern states who stripped black citizens of voting rights, public accommodation and civic associations, Wisconsin’s Republican majority dismantled the hard-won basic rights of Wisconsin workers. Like those Confederate leaders, the Wisconsin GOP used intimidation, threats and even the police against demonstrators and rival officials. As the saga unfolded, many Wisconsin citizens felt stunned that their once-secure rights might be eliminated. For a moment, perhaps, they glimpsed the experience of black men and women who watched the shadow of Jim Crow blot out the promises of emancipation.

The 1880s were also the decade when efforts to create corporate personhood were initiated by wealthy railroad barons. In a 2010 article, James and Tomilea Allison (psych professor at Indiana University and former mayor of Bloomington, respectively) traced how these corporate interests misrepresented past cases so that the Supreme Court eventually relied on nonexistent precedent to twist Fourteenth Amendment protections intended for newly freed slaves to instead offer shelter for profiteering corporations. More than a century later, these arguments were crucial to the Citizens United decision, which putatively endowed extraordinarily wealthy corporations with an “equal” right to electoral influence but in practice gave them breathtakingly unequal representation. Perhaps, as they are reduced to a fraction of a citizen, other Americans now catch a glimpse of what it means to be codified as only three-fifths of a person.

Today corporate greed, conservative ideology, manufactured right-wing populism and progressive complicity are making more and more Americans into, as Professor West might characterize them, “niggers.” Rather than try to escape the pain of experiencing some small familiarity with blackness, Americans could choose to learn from generations of African-Americans who resisted dehumanizing processes of domination and inequality. During the 2008 election Obama’s detractors tried to smear him by suggesting that “Hussein” was a terrorist’s moniker. As a demonstration of solidarity, thousands of Americans informally declared that they too would be known by the middle name Hussein. It was purely symbolic, but it rested on a belief in the power to change meaning by embracing rather than eschewing that which is labeled subordinate, alien, dangerous and shameful. By embracing our collective blackness, perhaps we can find the fortitude and creativity necessary to face the continuing erosion of our national social safety net in the face of a persistent economic crisis. – Melissa Harris-Perry


Your thoughts!!??  Please share…

Are We All Black Americans Now? | The Nation.

Rachel Maddow: Connecting the dots from Wisconsin to D.C.

If you missed the Rachel Maddow show last night, you might want to check this out. I encourage you to watch all the segments from last night (These are just the first two segments. Click the link to find all the videos from last night.) and if you are not outraged to action about the Republican tactics used…then I’m not sure what happened to you soul. In a democracy…this should be illegal.

Rachel Maddow: Connecting the dots from Wisconsin to D.C..

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Rachel Maddow: Michigan’s Dystopian (Corporate Republican) Future And Naomi Klein’s Shock Doctrine

I live in Michigan…and this hits home.

Republicans are the enemy of the working people.


It’s time to understand the tactics of your enemy and make real counter-moves. This is not a game.

via YouTube – Rachel Maddow: Michigan’s Dystopian (Corporate Republican) Future And Naomi Klein’s Shock Doctrine.

Degrees and Dollars

This article, pointedly, argues why the issues in Wisconsin are not only relevant to middle-class union workers…but also to you college educated seemingly insulated white collar workers who feel that unions have lost their way and their value. I know a few of these guys/gals. Too busy protecting themselves by degrading those who seem to be beneath them not understanding that their protection lies in defending their neighbors and fellow citizens. When you ask these people if their employer would let them go if it made sense monetarily and the profit motive were strong enough, they will tell you “yes”. You would think that these reasonable people would, by extension, understand that they are not special and could be out of work at the whim of their employer. But they rarely make that connection. Maybe they are not as smart as they give themselves credit. Instead of practicing this sort of isolationism that our culture seems ti trumpet, we all need to realize that our strength lies in our community. We are all in this together. Until we understand this, they will be coming after you next, and in a lot of ways, they already have.

It’s corporate power vs the people.

Who’s side are you on……?

The belief that education is becoming ever more important rests on the plausible-sounding notion that advances in technology increase job opportunities for those who work with information — loosely speaking, that computers help those who work with their minds, while hurting those who work with their hands.
Some years ago, however, the economists David Autor, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane argued that this was the wrong way to think about it. Computers, they pointed out, excel at routine tasks, “cognitive and manual tasks that can be accomplished by following explicit rules.” Therefore, any routine task — a category that includes many white-collar, nonmanual jobs — is in the firing line. Conversely, jobs that can’t be carried out by following explicit rules — a category that includes many kinds of manual labor, from truck drivers to janitors — will tend to grow even in the face of technological progress.
And here’s the thing: Most of the manual labor still being done in our economy seems to be of the kind that’s hard to automate. Notably, with production workers in manufacturing down to about 6 percent of U.S. employment, there aren’t many assembly-line jobs left to lose. Meanwhile, quite a lot of white-collar work currently carried out by well-educated, relatively well-paid workers may soon be computerized. Roombas are cute, but robot janitors are a long way off; computerized legal research and computer-aided medical diagnosis are already here.

And then there’s globalization. Once, only manufacturing workers needed to worry about competition from overseas, but the combination of computers and telecommunications has made it possible to provide many services at long range. And research by my Princeton colleagues Alan Blinder and Alan Krueger suggests that high-wage jobs performed by highly educated workers are, if anything, more “offshorable” than jobs done by low-paid, less-educated workers. If they’re right, growing international trade in services will further hollow out the U.S. job market. – Paul Krugman

Degrees and Dollars – NYTimes.com.


Tea Party Tailspin…

I’m not sure why more pundits don’t say this…but the electorate that voted in the 2010 midterms was completely different than the electorate that voted in the 2008 presidential elections. Its like you had two completely different sets of people voting. If everyone who voted in 2008 voted in 2010 the Republicans would have made little, if any, gains in national offices or state houses. They, the Republicans, received no mandate from the country. The President, clearly received one in 2008. The latest NBC-WSJ poll

released last week proves this…

During the right’s season of anger, passion and convictions galvanized Tea Party supporters into an army of activism. But the vehicle is outliving its fuel. The movement is losing momentum. In fact, Tea Party-backed governors like Scott Walker in Wisconsin could be providing the rallying cry on the left to pick up the mantle of anger and send the momentum back the other way.

If Tea Party leaders continue to operate as if anger is still a major part of their arsenal and Republican politicians continue to feel pressured into untenable positions, Democrats could enjoy their very own Charlie Sheen-ism come 2012: “Winning!” – Charles Blow

via Tea Party Tailspin – NYTimes.com.

A Clenched Fist On Every Lapel

In lieu of the Oscars this evening…

We should ALL be in solidarity with our union brothers and sisters…whether they work in Wisconsin or Hollywood.

The benefits of collective bargaining for workers in the film and television industries — a category that includes actors, writers and directors as well as so-called technicians — are obvious: We are more or less adequately compensated when we apply our rare skill sets, acquired and honed during years of apprenticeship and hard work, to make films from which investors may profit in perpetuity. The Motion Picture Industry Health Plan provides affordable health care to us and our families….

What’s happening in Wisconson, where Governor Scott Walker disingenuously blames unions for budget shortfalls he created with ill-advised tax cuts for the rich — indeed, where the governor is trying to bust unions altogether by making it illegal for public sector employees such as teachers, police and firefighters to bargain collectively — is that workers are standing up for their rights. Democratic state senators are heroically resisting what Nobel laureate Paul Krugman views as a domestic application of “the shock doctrine,” a term coined by best-selling author Naomi Klein. Dr. Krugman describes the doctrine as follows: “right wing ideologues exploit(ing) crises to push through an agenda which has nothing to do with resolving those crises and everything to do with imposing their vision of a harsher, more unequal, less democratic society.”

A Clenched Fist On Every Lapel.