[Hi there. This is a guest submission from friend of ABLC, Emilia1956. -ABLxx]
image via Osborne Ink
Well, there’s an election year next year, and I wonder what the hyper-vocal Professional Left will do if Newt or Mitt come to sit in the Oval Office. They whine and whinge and name-call and block the people they perceive to be unwitting plebs of little knowledge, those of us who call out their short-comings and their less-than-subtle race issues. Maybe they think they’ll be loved and listened to once more if the Republicans win the White House.
They can think again. There are those of us who know who screwed this pooch, and your names have been taken.
Not a week goes by that the Professional Left doesn’t go actively looking for a stick with which to beat this President.
This week’s stick come in the form of Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sibelius’s overruling the Food and Drug Administration’s decision to allow girls under the age of seventeen to buy the Plan B morning after pill without prescription.
That got some people’s knickers twisted. Continue reading
Posted in Body/Health Shenanigans, Guest Contributors, Lady Bits, Our Pundits of Perpetual Disappointment, Puritopians, Submissions from Readers
Tagged Joan Walsh, Katha Pollitt, Katrina vanden Heuvel, Plan B, Professional Left, women's health
Is it accidental hagiography or just the world’s worst hit piece?
Pat Buchanan is still a colossal racist asshole, but Joan Walsh’s review of Buchanan’s new book*** is almost as bad as she spends nearly every word lashing together a raft to float on the sea of Uncle Pat’s haterade just to show how morally superior she is when it comes to the really, terribly high bar of calling him out on his rampant racism. It’s not like that’s difficult to do, you merely have to possess a working soul and some basic self-awareness, but Walsh strays dangerously close to using Buchanan’s odious tract to play the “earth may be flat, views differ” game, almost as if she has a need to do so….and then does a terrible job of it. This is evident in the last third of the piece, especially these two paragraphs. First:
The end of the book contains Buchanan’s template for success in 2012, which consists of restricting trade, halting immigration, slashing federal spending and — one point many progressives will agree with – “dismantling the empire,” and dramatically cutting military spending. (There’s a reason why when I first started out doing MSNBC’s “Scarborough Country,” I frequently agreed with Buchanan, as long as we discussed the Iraq war.)
Now, let’s understand the context here: Walsh has just spent about 2000 words up until this point saying that at best Buchanan is Gollum, a creature driven by his most base desires that should be pitied and viewed as an instructional relic, a walking warning label who serves best as a cautionary tale…and then on arguably the most important single American policy decision in the last ten years, she says she “frequently agreed” with Buchanan. I’m a little confused by that, it certainly seems Walsh more than pities the man if she can see eye to eye on him on Iraq. She’s saying he has his good points too, after spending so much time portraying him as without redemption.
My TheGrio.com post in response to Politico
Yesterday’s article in Politico about the so-called “Obamabots” was odd not because of what it said, but because of what it didn’t say. Missing from the article was any attempt to analyze or wrestle with the issues that separate the so-called Emo progs and the pragmatic progressives. Rather, the article was no sound or fury, signifying nothing.
Rather than make a good-faith attempt to unpack the arguments and reasoning of our “ragtag digital cavalry,” or to discern what drives us to “ride to the president’s rescue,” Politico dismisses us as “decidedly amateur supporters” whose intense loyalty and passion at a moment of wide disaffection can be reminiscent of Palin’s core backers.” Palin’s core backers? The misguided sycophants who have no grasp of facts or reality? Really, Politico? Ouch.
The Politico article argues that there is wide disaffection with President Obama. It is this narrative of “wide disaffection,” “disappointment,” and “enthusiasm gaps” that comprise the canard against which we bots push back.
There is no wide disaffection with Obama (and, contrary to Politico’s claim, there certainly is no wide disaffection in the “the supportive precincts of African-American talk radio). There is wide disaffection with Obama among a small percentage of supporters who are avid readers of bloggers with the loudest microphone.
Posted in Obama 2012: Yes We Will!, Our Pundits of Perpetual Disappointment, Puritopians
Tagged Bush, DADT, debt ceiling, Glenn Greenwald, Joan Walsh, Politico, Pragmatic Progressives, Professional Left, puritopians, The Grio
Joan Walsh and David Sirota will *never* get it, and I am giving up.
This week’s comment of the week comes not from this blog, but from Salon.com. It was submitted in response to Joan Walsh’s meandering and defensive article on Melissa Harris-Perry’s suggestion that maybe — just maybe — race is a factor in the seemingly relentless (and often fact-deficient) criticism of President Obama.
Salon commenter Jcwtts1 writes:
Let me begin in the simplest way. Race and Racism are two different things. What happens in discourse, especially internet discourse, is that those two issues become conflated.
This is dangerous for both sides. On the one hand, you have the dismissive white response that is typical. “Just because I criticize the president doesn’t make me a racist.”
[This post is first in a series of four posts about the Melissa Harris Perry Kerfuffle. The other posts can be read here, here, and here.]
As Zandar has already written here and here, Professor Melissa Harris-Perry set off a firestorm with her article in The Nation. In that article, Professor Harris-Perry argued what many black (and white) Americans believe to be true: that the disappointment felt by disaffected white liberals may be a result of their tendency to hold African-American leaders to a higher standard than their white counterparts (notice I said “may”):
The 2012 election may be a test of another form of electoral racism: the tendency of white liberals to hold African-American leaders to a higher standard than their white counterparts. If old-fashioned electoral racism is the absolute unwillingness to vote for a black candidate, then liberal electoral racism is the willingness to abandon a black candidate when he is just as competent as his white predecessors.
Professor Harris-Perry’s statement came as somewhat of a shock to white liberals (as gauged by the harsh response Professor Harris-Perry has garnered on Twitter and in the comment section of her post at The Nation), and it is interesting which white liberals have come out against Professor Harris-Perry’s article — almost as if they were positive Harris-Perry was talking about them.
I will address three of these liberals in separate and consecutive posts, and then end on a post which is solid advice that every liberal and/or progressive should heed.
First up? Joan Walsh.
Melissa Harris-Perry responds
This weekend’s post on Melissa Harris-Perry’s piece at The Nation about the lack of real discussion about race among liberals touched a few nerves at ABLC, and I am very glad to see the fact she handily responds to her critics at the Nation today.
I logged onto Twitter on Sunday night and discovered that my recent article for The Nation was causing a bit of a stir. Some members of the white liberal political community are appalled and angry that I suggested racial bias maybe responsible for the President’s declining support among white Americans. I found some responses to my piece to be fair and important, others to be silly and nonresponsive, and still others to be offensive personal attacks. But those categories are par for the course.
I make it a practice not to defend my public writings. Because I often write about provocative topics like race, gender, sexual orientation and reproductive rights, if I defended every piece I wrote against critics I would find little time to sleep. But the responses to this recent article have been revealing in ways that I find typical of our contemporary epistemology of race. Often, those of us who attempt to talk about historical and continuing racial bias in America encounter a few common discursive strategies that are meant to discredit our perspectives. Some of them are in play here.
Do read the entire piece, it’s worth it if only to arm yourself with the knowledge of the fallacies that have been thrown at people who have brought the topic up in the past.
The ending is worth it:
Salon.com used to be one of my favorite websites. I would even promote it to my friends and family – back a few years ago. I was always a little annoyed by the ads I had to watch to get a day pass, but I tolerated it. I watched as the site gradually morphed from being anti-Bush to anti-Obama, in many ways they seem to have just replaced the names. I stopped reading them very soon after noticing this shift.
Well it has come full circle now and the main writers for the site are openly antagonizing Democrats and supporters of President Obama. Last night on Twitter, Joan Walsh and Glenn Greenwald both lobbed loaded tweets into the mix, apparently trying to goad some of us into a Twitter brawl. The funny thing is, the circle of folks I travel with on Twitter, for the most part, ignored them. We surmised that they were trying to increase attention and thus traffic for their failing site. Here is a tweet that clearly shows Ms. Walsh’s dislike for all of us who support our president…(emphasis mine)
Oh. Hi there. Thanks for stopping by.
I thought I would welcome those of you who might be first-time visitors.
I’m Allan. I’m an Angry Black Lady.
So this happened:
Natasha Lennard’s article included the following paragraphs:
“What u said was that Obama was against what happened in NY which is inherently dishonest. U made like he lobbied against the bill,” read one tweet; “why did you lie?” demanded another; and “@maddow has Hate and Racism towards Obama!” wrote another. The playwright and journalist J. Samuel Cook tweeted, I feel sorry for all the #LGBT Americans whose victory last night in New York is overshadowed by @maddow’s and @ltdanchoi’s hatred of Obama.”
Allan Brauer, a blogger at AngryBlackLady.com, wrote that Maddow was refusing to acknowledge a quote from a letter Obama wrote to an LGBT group in California in opposition of Prop. 8. “I want to congratulate all of you who have shown your love for each other by getting married these last few weeks,” Obama wrote in 2008. Others point to the fact that Obama’s view is “evolving” to illustrate that Maddow’s use of the word “against” did not do justice to the president’s view on marriage equality. [emphasis added]
Maddow may have been a bit too strong in her initial comments, but clearly she touched a fragile, irrational nerve in the body of Obama’s diehard supporters.
When ABL sought out the author for clarification, she acknowledged (via Twitter) that my comments were a “fair critique,” which suggests Lennard is differentiating my feedback from that emanating from the “fragile, irrational nerve in the body of Obama’s diehard supporters.” Hey, I’m a white male, so I’m accustomed to my opinions being given greater credence. But whatever. I don’t feel the need to slam other people for how they expressed their feedback to Rachel, even if I don’t agree with all of it.
I’ve had a few things to say since I joined the team here at ABLC, including some reflection on how people communicate via Twitter, and how some public figures are navigating this highly interactive, two-way medium more effectively than others.
But for now, a few thoughts in no particular order:
Posted in Allan, LGBTQ Shenanigans, Obama 2012: Yes We Will!, Our Pundits of Perpetual Disappointment, Political Shenanigans, Puritopians, What the Crap!?
Tagged Barack Obama, Glenn Greenwald, Joan Walsh, Natasha Lennard, NY Marriage Equality, Rachel Maddow, Salon, same sex marriage, Twitter
Cool story, bro!
I’m on day five of some of the most intensely personal and soul-wrenching attacks that I have experienced in my lifetime: Attacks on me for being too sensitive about race. Attacks on me about enjoying being offended about race or seeing everything through the prism of race. Attacks on me for being mentally or emotionally unstable or a drama queen. Attacks on me for being angry and losing my temper, thereby making my grievances easily ignored (that will be explained further below). Attacks on me for failing to focus on other liberal issues (feminism, the growing plutocracy) aside from what some white liberals see as “my” or “black people” issues. (Note that issues affecting the black community tend to be construed as only our issues, and never progressive or liberal issues.)
I would like to set that aside for a moment and explain a little bit about me, so, hopefully, those who witnessed “The Sunday Wrangle” or who saw the wrangle through Joan Walsh and Zaid Jilani’s frame of reference will understand my perspective, and, hopefully, those who perceived my “outburst” last night as being “vile” or “bad” will either amend that thinking or, at least, will attempt to understand.
Tumer Willis or “What Are You Angry About?”
Posted in It's Not a Tumah, Now That's Some Racist Bullsh*t, Personal Tales, Political Shenanigans
Tagged @vcthree, ABL Derangement Syndrome, fuckery, Joan Walsh, racism, Salon, Salon.com, Think Progress, tl;dr, Zaid Jilani