Top Leaderboard, Site wide
Shop the Truthdig Gift Guide 2014
December 19, 2014
Truthdig: Drilling Beneath the Headlines
Sign up for Truthdig's Email NewsletterLike Truthdig on FacebookFollow Truthdig on TwitterSubscribe to Truthdig's RSS Feed

Get Truthdig's headlines in your inbox!


The Senate Drone Report of 2019
Polar Bears Feel the Heat as Icy Habitat Shrinks






Truthdig Bazaar more items

 
Report

The Obama Deception: Why Cornel West Went Ballistic

Email this item Email    Print this item Print    Share this item... Share

Posted on May 16, 2011
AP / Pablo Martinez Monsivais

President Obama shakes hands with Princeton University professor Cornel West after speaking at the National Urban League’s 100th Anniversary Convention in Washington in July 2010.

By Chris Hedges

The moral philosopher Cornel West, if Barack Obama’s ascent to power was a morality play, would be the voice of conscience. Rahm Emanuel, a cynical product of the Chicago political machine, would be Satan. Emanuel in the first scene of the play would dangle power, privilege, fame and money before Obama. West would warn Obama that the quality of a life is defined by its moral commitment, that his legacy will be determined by his willingness to defy the cruel assault by the corporate state and the financial elite against the poor and working men and women, and that justice must never be sacrificed on the altar of power.

Perhaps there was never much of a struggle in Obama’s heart. Perhaps West only provided a moral veneer. Perhaps the dark heart of Emanuel was always the dark heart of Obama. Only Obama knows. But we know how the play ends. West is banished like honest Kent in “King Lear.” Emanuel and immoral mediocrities from Lawrence Summers to Timothy Geithner to Robert Gates—think of Goneril and Regan in the Shakespearean tragedy—take power. We lose. And Obama becomes an obedient servant of the corporate elite in exchange for the hollow trappings of authority.

No one grasps this tragic descent better than West, who did 65 campaign events for Obama, believed in the potential for change and was encouraged by the populist rhetoric of the Obama campaign. He now nurses, like many others who placed their faith in Obama, the anguish of the deceived, manipulated and betrayed. He bitterly describes Obama as “a black mascot of Wall Street oligarchs and a black puppet of corporate plutocrats. And now he has become head of the American killing machine and is proud of it.”

“When you look at a society you look at it through the lens of the least of these, the weak and the vulnerable; you are committed to loving them first, not exclusively, but first, and therefore giving them priority,” says West, the Class of 1943 University Professor of African American Studies and Religion at Princeton University. “And even at this moment, when the empire is in deep decline, the culture is in deep decay, the political system is broken, where nearly everyone is up for sale, you say all I have is the subversive memory of those who came before, personal integrity, trying to live a decent life, and a willingness to live and die for the love of folk who are catching hell. This means civil disobedience, going to jail, supporting progressive forums of social unrest if they in fact awaken the conscience, whatever conscience is left, of the nation. And that’s where I find myself now.

“I have to take some responsibility,” he admits of his support for Obama as we sit in his book-lined office. “I could have been reading into it more than was there.

Advertisement

Square, Site wide
“I was thinking maybe he has at least some progressive populist instincts that could become more manifest after the cautious policies of being a senator and working with [Sen. Joe] Lieberman as his mentor,” he says. “But it became very clear when I looked at the neoliberal economic team. The first announcement of Summers and Geithner I went ballistic. I said, ‘Oh, my God, I have really been misled at a very deep level.’ And the same is true for Dennis Ross and the other neo-imperial elites. I said, ‘I have been thoroughly misled, all this populist language is just a facade. I was under the impression that he might bring in the voices of brother Joseph Stiglitz and brother Paul Krugman. I figured, OK, given the structure of constraints of the capitalist democratic procedure that’s probably the best he could do. But at least he would have some voices concerned about working people, dealing with issues of jobs and downsizing and banks, some semblance of democratic accountability for Wall Street oligarchs and corporate plutocrats who are just running amuck. I was completely wrong.”

West says the betrayal occurred on two levels.

“There is the personal level,” he says. “I used to call my dear brother [Obama] every two weeks. I said a prayer on the phone for him, especially before a debate. And I never got a call back. And when I ran into him in the state Capitol in South Carolina when I was down there campaigning for him he was very kind. The first thing he told me was, ‘Brother West, I feel so bad. I haven’t called you back. You been calling me so much. You been giving me so much love, so much support and what have you.’ And I said, ‘I know you’re busy.’ But then a month and half later I would run into other people on the campaign and he’s calling them all the time. I said, wow, this is kind of strange. He doesn’t have time, even two seconds, to say thank you or I’m glad you’re pulling for me and praying for me, but he’s calling these other people. I said, this is very interesting. And then as it turns out with the inauguration I couldn’t get a ticket with my mother and my brother. I said this is very strange. We drive into the hotel and the guy who picks up my bags from the hotel has a ticket to the inauguration. My mom says, ‘That’s something that this dear brother can get a ticket and you can’t get one, honey, all the work you did for him from Iowa.’ Beginning in Iowa to Ohio. We had to watch the thing in the hotel.


New and Improved Comments

If you have trouble leaving a comment, review this help page. Still having problems? Let us know. If you find yourself moderated, take a moment to review our comment policy.

Night-Gaunt's avatar

By Night-Gaunt, May 16, 2011 at 2:03 pm Link to this comment

“We have got to attempt to tell the truth, and that truth is painful,” he says. “It is a truth that is against the thick lies of the mainstream. In telling that truth we become so maladjusted to the prevailing injustice that the Democratic Party, more and more, is not just milquetoast and spineless, as it was before, but thoroughly complicitous with some of the worst things in the American empire. I don’t think in good conscience I could tell anybody to vote for Obama. If it turns out in the end that we have a crypto-fascist movement and the only thing standing between us and fascism is Barack Obama, then we have to put our foot on the brake. But we’ve got to think seriously of third-party candidates, third formations, third parties.”

Now he’s getting it. But it was deliberately made hard for him and myself to do that. It was easier for me because I wasn’t as invested in Barak Obama as West has been so it was much harder for him. Good for him but I wonder what may befall him since his revelation?

The problem with a third party is that all parties not Democrat or Republican are at the bottom of Everest while they sit on the top. So with that problem of national exposure need for large quantities of money they will automatically be out spent by many orders of magnitude by the corporate lobbies. We have serious forces against us and our Republic.

The structure has changed and until we change it back we can’t win an election. Just won’t be possible. You can’t win playing by their rules on their game. Those who are doing it claim to be Conservatives but aren’t. They want freedom of Capitalism to the Nth degree. Others want a theocracy and disdain the Constitution & the Bill of Rights. They have taken over both parities though the Democrats haven’t been flushed of all their Progressives and Liberals just yet but in time it will happen. Whether as pawn or willing agent President Obama is doing what they want. That is our problem with the corruption of our system. We need to get together Democrat, Green, D-S, moderate Republican to find our common needs and fight for them. We are running out of time. Once they bring the economy down it will be too late.

Such is my analysis of it. (See the “Business Revolt” in 1933-1934.)

Report this
LocalHero's avatar

By LocalHero, May 16, 2011 at 1:48 pm Link to this comment

“a black mascot of Wall Street oligarchs and a black puppet of corporate plutocrats. And now he has become head of the American killing machine and is proud of it.”

No truer words were ever spoken.

And, Lafayette, I’d take Mother Teresa any day over any of the elitist, racist, warmongers who have held the office of president since the day this Fascist country was founded.

Report this
Mark E. Smith's avatar

By Mark E. Smith, May 16, 2011 at 1:48 pm Link to this comment

Nobody was fooled by Obama.

Some rich people or wannabe rich people saw that the corporations were donating more to Obama than to McCain and knew he would be better for rich people.

Some militaristic types knew from his Senate voting record that he would be better for the military-industrial complex.

Some Zionists knew he could be trusted to support Israel above US interests.

Some liberals wanted a black President, any black President, even a regressive black President, as a precedent.

Some were terrified by the media hype about Sarah Palin and believed that a President who enjoyed supporting wars that killed innocent people would be better than the risk of ending up with a President who enjoyed shooting wolves.

But nobody thought that openly pro-war, pro-bailout Obama was going to bring about change. Anyone who says they did is lying to themself.

Report this
drbhelthi's avatar

By drbhelthi, May 16, 2011 at 1:42 pm Link to this comment

The sad case of professor West is an excellent example of fantasy wishes
based on race, stated more directly by other bloggers.  Professor West failed
to apply his intelligence to the origin of “Barack H. Obama,” his upbringing,
his alleged education – apparently falsified by the C.I.A., in additon to the
neat but falsified certificates of birth- and his record in politics. 

If professor West values honesty so much, why does he not present information
that others of the genuine Negroid race have exhumed?  That the spoiled-brat,
Caucasian mother conceived him at about the age of thirteen, and delivered
him secretively, with no certificate of birth.  Which mother, with CIA
assistance, selected Dr. Barack Obama to be the sire, when “Barry” was over
six years of age.  That “Barry” has none of the physical, male, tribal
characteristics of Dr. Barack Obama.  And, that the loving old Kenyan Grandma
may be a loving old Grandma, but not the Grandma of the man who uses the
pseudonym, “Barack H. Obama” instead of the family name of his mother.  Or,
that of his former step-father, which he used for a while. 

That both sides of the family were long-term affiliates of the C.I.A., whose
secretive C.E.O. for over forty years was G.H.W.Bush Sr. has a bearing on the
illegitimate situation.  Which Bush family was punished by the U.S. Congress
for financing the NAZI during WWII.  That the GHWBushSr family has been
affiliated with the Republican Party for over forty years might also have a
bearing on the question, why hide behind the Democrats with the placement of
Obama?  Which selection equates the Democrat and Republican parties in the
practical goal of destroying the U.S.A.  One final- but valuable point -
proud members of Negroid heritage place value on being Negroid for over four
generations, which cannot be applied to Barack bin Obama, the lackey of Wall
Street Zionists and the Federal Reserve. 

No one born outside of wedlock deserves punishment for ones illegitimate
birth, or the promiscuous behavior of ones mother.  However, one whose
behavior has been deliberately illegitimate for twenty adult years, deserves
to be publicly revealed, stripped of falsifications and punished as law
requires for the falsifications.

Report this

By youthinasia, May 16, 2011 at 1:33 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I was banned for life from posting at Common Dreams when I took to task the many progressive writers - you may know who they are - (not Hedges, who supported Nader I believe) who not only lined up behind Obama in October 2008, but vilified Nader and his supporters.  I am now a Left Libertarian looking for a movement to join.  I’m pretty sure I won’t find that movement here, in the cradle of modern democracy…

I have no sympathy for West.  He should have known better.  Obama played him for a sucker.  Now what’s he gonna do?

Report this
prisnersdilema's avatar

By prisnersdilema, May 16, 2011 at 1:31 pm Link to this comment

It’s good very good, that the awareness of just what exactly president Obama is, a lying
corporate whore, is spreading.  Hopefully there will be a challenge to his party
nomination bid, that will lead to his loss at the polls. Unless that happens the Democratic
party will be destroyed. Evil men run this country and pull Obamas strings, unless their
greed is destroyed, and their secrecy - which is another form of greed- stopped, then the
human race will have a hard time surviving.

Report this
ghostofwatergate's avatar

By ghostofwatergate, May 16, 2011 at 1:24 pm Link to this comment

Dr West is losing touch. That expression should be slap “upside the head.”

But his sentiment is definitely justified.

Report this

By marie Burnett, May 16, 2011 at 1:10 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Dear Chris,

Thanks for showing us the inner rooms, for letting us hear a voice full of the
good old fashioned power of fearless truth telling .

Report this

By Aziza Gabrielle, May 16, 2011 at 1:10 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

There were no African American Studies programs in 1943. Dr. West was born in 1953. Class of 1973?

Report this

By Barry Graham, May 16, 2011 at 1:05 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Cornel West Has a Tantrum, and Chris Hedges Thinks It’s Political Analysis:
http://dogobarrygraham.blogspot.com/2011/05/cornel-west-has-tantrum-and-
chris.html

Report this
adrienrain's avatar

By adrienrain, May 16, 2011 at 1:01 pm Link to this comment

“I said, ‘Oh, my God, I have really been misled at
a very deep level.’” Just how I feel. But I am over
65, veteran of many political movements and
witness to many failures. The young people that
Obama inspired to vote for change may be lost to
us altogether. And THAT is sad. I had some
doubts about Obama; it was Will.I.Am’s ‘Yes We
Can’ that convinced me. What a tragedy.

Report this

By willymack, May 16, 2011 at 12:54 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I rejoiced along with millions of other Americans when Obama was announced as the winner of the 2008 Presidental election.
Then came his refusal to prosecute the bush crime family.
Then came the “health care” farce.
Then came the “economic reform” farce.
Then came the non-withdrawal from Afghanistan and partial withdrawal from Iraq.
Then came Dr. West’s condemnation.
We sorely need a viable Green Party or Progressive Party candidate in 2012, or maybe someone representing a coalition of both.
It’s time to shake things up a bit.

Report this

By DSalter, May 16, 2011 at 12:47 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

More fake progressive pewling and mewling.  Get over yourselves.  This president has done more for the country in two years than Bush did in 8; and you damn well know that he has had to work against the damage caused by W and the continuing obstruction of the Republicans who are now owned by the TeaParty.  You and the whiny prof who is obviously pissed because he’s not sitting at the President’s right hand need to set your sights on the real dangers facing this country—wrapped in the tiger’s hide clearly worn by the commenters on this page.  Get to work to help the president or get out of the way.

Report this

By Betty1950, May 16, 2011 at 12:42 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

But, IMO, the alternative would be so much worse I will vote again for Obama.  4 more years with him would be better than 4 years of some Republican.  A Republican that would open up the White house to the Baggers.

Report this

By Richard, May 16, 2011 at 12:41 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I am a leftist, a liberal, and proud (rightfully) of that part of my identity. I have, like Prof. West, felt disappointment with Pres. Obama’s choices from time to time. However, unlike Prof. West, my view of Pres. Obama is not tainted by personal pique, hubris, or racism.

Prof. West is pissed because he didn’t get a ticket to the inauguration and had to watch from his hotel room? Boo. Hoo.

Prof. West thinks that every “white brother” and every black man raised in a predominantly white cultural context has a fear of a “free black brother” due to the “history” between them, and invokes a Kansas background as a reason for that?  F**k you, Cornell.

I am a lifelong Kansan.  I am a descendant of slaves.  And I am ethnically about as black an blank sheet of paper.  Let me lay down a bit of Kansas history: look up “Bleeding Kansas” sometime.  Hundreds of Kansans fought and laid down their lives resisting Missourians crossing the border to try to force Kansas, through terror and violence, to become a slave state instead of a free state.  Slavery was never a part of the history and heritage of Kansas.  Freedom always was.  A “free black brother” meeting a “white brother” from Kansas should meet in mutual pride, knowing their ancestry is one of a shared struggle toward freedom.  So f**k you, Cornell.

A little personal history: some of my ancestors were slaves, but none of them were African. My ancestors were among a group kidnapped from a wagon train and held as slaves by the Mormons in Utah in the 1800s.  Slavery was not uniquely the experience of the now “free black brothers” nor is every “white brother” a shareholder in the heritage of the plantation. To assume otherwise is to ignorantly embrace stereotypes over the unique nature and experience of each human life.  So f**k you, Cornell.

Prof. Cornell West, you have allowed your personal hubris and lazy, half-assed political and moral philosphy to override your intellect and derail your contribution to history into a sad attack on President Obama motivated by pettiness, spite and facile pseudo-philosophy.  So f**k you, Cornell.

Report this

By Ellen Cantarow, May 16, 2011 at 12:25 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Some of us realized and/or were told by friends that Obama was a corporate hack even while he was campaigning. In any case thanks for the terrific interview. Obama’s administration has really dragged the US into corporate hell and that includes the Tea Party “leadership” backed by the Koch Brothers. We do need a third party. More clamor and organizing needed.

Report this

By GoyToy, May 16, 2011 at 12:16 pm Link to this comment

West voted for Obama because he is black (mulatto, 50/50, or whatever). Others saw through the bullshit, but not the respected Harvard professor. Wow, Harvard’s standards must really be going down. It’s supposed to attract the really smart people, right?

Report this
katsteevns's avatar

By katsteevns, May 16, 2011 at 12:14 pm Link to this comment

West is awesome!!!!! I remember him pushing for Obomba and wondering if someone had slipped him some Kool-Aid . I thought then that if West could not wake up his people to the Obomba Drama, nobody could. Glad he finally came to his senses. His books are outstanding.

Report this
Ed Lytwak's avatar

By Ed Lytwak, May 16, 2011 at 12:14 pm Link to this comment

I knew Obama was a fraud and plutocratic lackey when he threw the Rev. Wright under the bus just so he could appeal to the clueless-white center and get elected.  Oh, maybe it was Satan that made him do it.

Report this

By Ralph Kramden, May 16, 2011 at 12:10 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I agree completly with what Cornel West has to say about Obama. I do suspect that some people fall into the trap believing that a man’s skin color does in some ways influence his political views. I sensed that during the presidential campaign. I’m not saying that Cornel did this, but there was a slight element of this involved. I voted for Nader because he warned us against the sponsors of Obama. He was right, again. It would be useful to reacall Thurgood Marshall’s statement when someone was urging him to vote for a candidate “because he was black.” Marshall said: “A black snake will bite you just as readily as a white snake.” This happened with the Hispanics when they did not opposse Gonzales as Attorney General because “He was Mexican.”

Report this

By TDoff, May 16, 2011 at 12:00 pm Link to this comment

PS. The SignOn.org address is http://signon.org/sign/the-us-needs-you?source=c.fwd&r_by=176465

Report this

By TDoff, May 16, 2011 at 11:39 am Link to this comment

P.S. Gerard is right, too many words can be a waste of energy and time. But on occasion, a few words can cause a meaningful action. MoveOn was started by a few words in a petition suggesting Congress quit babbling it’s excessive verbiage re: the Lewinsky affair, censure Clinton, and get on with the nation’s important business.
Please go to SignOn.org, and consider my petition(s) to ensure GOP defeat in the 2012 presidential campaign.

Thanx, TDoff

Report this

By Morpheus, May 16, 2011 at 11:26 am Link to this comment

That’s what happens when the banks and big business own you.

“WAKE UP AMERICA!”  -  JOIN THE REVOLUTION
Read “Common Sense 3.1” at ( http://www.revolution2.osixs.org )

We don’t have to live like this anymore. “Spread the News”

Report this

By willyjsimmons, May 16, 2011 at 11:25 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Let’s be real: supporting Obama provided the perfect
opportunity for “liberals” and fauxgressives to exact
vengeance on “the Clinton’s and the DLC” (Why bring
them up at all in this piece?  It distorts what
really happened with the Obama campaign in 2008).

Obama played it perfectly. (With the help of Chuck
Schumer et al)

The idea that Obama even offered preferable policy
positions is a gross lie.

Cornel West, Michael Eric Dyson, and literally the
entire “black misleadership class” (h/t Glen Ford and
Bruce Dixon) got a lot of splainin to do promoting
Obama over policy when they should have known better.

To say that it wasn’t until Obama started forming his
cabinet to raise suspicions, totally neglects the
very people who ran his campaign to begin with.

Report this

By Ralph Kramden, May 16, 2011 at 11:19 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I voted for Ralph Nader as he had warned us about who was supporting Obama. Follow the money seems to be an accurate barometer of a candidate’s position. Never mind the words, check what he does. Cornel West is totally right about this spineless coward. Obama never risks an ounce of flesh when he sends his hired killers on a hit. As Chomsky ponts out, within days he had ordered hits on Osama, Gadaffi and that guy in Yemen. Moreover, the death of a son and two of Gadaffi’s grandchildren did not seem to even register with this Al Capone. Al Capone never targeted family members so Osama is worse than Al Capone. I also agree that Obama is a white man with black skin. He lacks the post-slavery instincts because he has none. All Obama wants is to be able to throw 3-million-dollar weddings for his daughters as Clinton did.

Report this

By SarcastiCanuck, May 16, 2011 at 11:13 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Wow,I don’t think a beer summit is going to cool Mr.West’s jets this time.I think him and Obama need a ‘Twenty Four Pack and a Couple of Doobies Summit’,to settle this falling out.Throw in Joe the Plumber and you got a great photo op for Obabma 2012 posters.
  With any luck Mr West,the upcoming rapture this Saturday will take us to heaven.There aren’t any republicans or democrats up there.

Report this
johnnyfarout's avatar

By johnnyfarout, May 16, 2011 at 11:08 am Link to this comment

“…scared white”, now that is the phrase to address. I have run through this scenario a few times in writings and conversations with friends. My vision of the reality O’Bama faced on entering the Whitehouse. It springs from the disillusionment that occurred during the Viet Nam War all across America. The student peace movement and the few radical organizations that formed during it, tried to analyze what was going on at the top power levels of America. That an empire was in action was obvious. The mistake the empire thought it made was the draft. I recall the slogan “ 1, 2, many Viet Nams”, meaning that the rising consciousness of the Empire’s victims ( the Vietnamese needed no awakening), and those being conscripted to the armies, needed to fight back. Once Kent State, and Cheyney State, and Wounded Knee, and the Ruby Ridge confrontations happened we all thought that statist violence was going to expand at home and we were afraid .It was obvious no opposition to the status quo would be tolerated and the lies and guns were out. The Movement was neutralized under Nixon’s administration and never got back up off its ass once knocked down by the killings. We all said that the only way Americans would fight back through all this was if their lifestyles deteriorated or the regimentation reached so deep into the culture that no choices were any longer available. It seems now that the way around the citizenry and their living concerns is to privatize everything. Disaster Capitalism is thriving. I don’t think we need examples to get the picture. Now we have an orator Black Man in the Oval Office. All this populism accompanied him. It seemed from his speeches that the Movement had educated vast numbers of people and some change in the NeoCon and Neo Liberal Empire was possible, from the top down with a people’s advocate in elected office. Up comes O’Bama… the best talking black man put his foot on the front steps of the powerful. Just imagine his meetings after being sworn in, with all these white jaded honkies and crackers when he sits politely down and schedules the meeting with the Pentagon Brass. “Let’s get down.” he thinks. The brass come in all hardened and stiff with the Empire they have built and he starts talking kooky populist naïve shit to them with his poet oratory and fancy education, and all his legalistic pro-people nonsense. Imagine these men kind of snickering, and not only imagining him in his underwear, but also telling him some other imaginings they have.

Report this
johnnyfarout's avatar

By johnnyfarout, May 16, 2011 at 11:08 am Link to this comment

[I had to divide this in two to get it posted… too many words it says] O’Bama’s hair immediately goes white, his mouth goes dry, and he realizes the folly of standing up against the waves of this juggernaut. There is no mercy in these men and certainly none in the empire. Neo-liberalism, at bottom, is no different from neo-conservatism. The 2 party system is an illusion, a rubber stamp, a politburo for the designs of the vast powers represented in these men. SDS had an analysis of the Ruling Class of this American Empire that had the “Cowboys” pitted against the “Yankees”. That simple American version hasn’t been carried forward to any great depth that can serve us nowadays, but the poetry of it is enticing. It doesn’t mention the races in America per se, but behind those words is a telling truth of how that European Invasion of the New World wounded the future of the planet. Once they got as far as they could go, LA and the Far West…they attacked Asia. They killed a Yankee president and put in a Cowboy, then we had Cowboys everywhere riling up the Scotch-Irish and their tendency to die in any war that comes along with the black population falling into the cemeteries right beside them. It looks from today’s perspective that the Ruling Class has moved to the mountain top and is fighting all across the Empire’s frontiers: the one answer to all problems of the marketplace… war. The wars will come home eventually…so clean your guns and stock up on ammo like good boys and girls. Bless yourself if it makes you feel better. My fear is that the secret societies are going to scare the bejeebers out of everyday nincompoop Americans again. Then the boots will be on our faces at home as the disasters multiply across a failing planet. I want to be wrong. That’s how we all feel…as this unfolds… we want to be wrong. As Bush II ruled from his gut, it’s there that we hurt for our future. I wonder if anything can be done. Up against the wall motherfucker!

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, May 16, 2011 at 10:55 am Link to this comment

As a conservative, i dont agree with West often. i also notice in passing that fascism came up in the article. Whats a Chris Hedges article without fascism? i dont agree with Hedges often either.

But what I cant disagree with is West’s narrative concerning how he was treated. Its not like there wasnt enough seats at the inauguration. Its not like Obama is so busy that he cant call, this President has plenty of ‘down time’ Obama plays golf more than any president.

In sum: Cornel West was used and now Obama doesnt need him.

What West doesnt know is that very soon Obama is going to need him again. Yep, the re-election is just around the corner.

Do you think West will help Obama again?

Report this

By solerso67, May 16, 2011 at 10:32 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

@amondrool

what was he supposed to do? actually slap the president in the head? spit in his face maybe?

Report this

By gerard, May 16, 2011 at 10:22 am Link to this comment

Trouble with places like Truthdig is that they invite words, and words tend to take the energy out of action.  This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t talk or write, but some of those words might better be aimed at specific suggestions of how specific things might be accomplished in just what specific way or ways.

What issues should be first in line for action? Specifically, what action(s) might have the best chance for success, and why?  How can effective access to power be gained? What groups are already working on the chosen issue(s)?  How can their experience be applied and boosted?  What about timing?  What would be a plausible order of proceeding, step 1, step 2, etc.?  How can hope and encouragement be generated and sustained? 

Stuff like this may seem boring, but it’s the life-blood of social movements.  Pontificating on what’s wrong is just the first step—essential, but also
self-defeating in time.

Of primary importance in this day and age (considering the easy spread on fear and loathing) is an understanding of the psychology and practice of nonviolent methods for bringing about social and political change while at the same time refusing to continue the previous vicious methods that have destroyed social decency and reduced personal self-respect.

Step 1:  Google Albert Einstein Institute and read, absorb and think seriously about the suggestions in the works of Gene Sharp and others.

Cornel West is right as far as he goes: “We must never allow hope to be eliminated or suffocated.”
The next step is right around the corner.

Report this
Lafayette's avatar

By Lafayette, May 16, 2011 at 10:21 am Link to this comment

THE BLEEDING-HEART LEFT

We should judge a person on their acts and not on what they say or what is said of them.

On that count, given the political circumstance within our three-part system of governance, I figure he’s doing about a well as can be honestly expected. He never promised that he could walk on water.

This article is based upon personal opinion and should be taken as just that - personal opinions.

Obama may not be any angel, but what politician in his position as ever been one. Billy boy? JFK? Certainly not Dubya and neither Reckless Ronnie.

Heaven help us the day we elect a Mother Teresa into the Oval Office.

Report this

By ilkin, May 16, 2011 at 9:46 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

very thoughtful article
i love how the best critiques come from the most progressive persons on the left, while the right can hardly articulate their nonsensical hate

Report this
kerryrose's avatar

By kerryrose, May 16, 2011 at 9:38 am Link to this comment

rico

Yikes, that was an offensive post, but I have to agree somewhat.  This picture undermines any strength of conviction expressed in the blog for West.  It is the picture of groveling and one wonders whether it is personal humiliation or righteousness that drives him.

Report this

By Capt Rick, May 16, 2011 at 9:35 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Chris i don’t know if you voted for the president. but make no mistake, anybody that voted for him and is NOW disjointed deserves what he gets. We encouraged all to vote Nader in 2008, but many VOTERS WERE SUCKERED IN BY Obadias SMOOTH TALK. question;; how SAVVY ARE YOU WHO VOTED FOR HIM? ABOUT ANYTHING? What CAN YOU SAY THAT HAS ANT MERIT/Your passion seems to rule you common sense////
you MAY HAVE BLOWN YOUR CHANCES IN 2008.and now have to live with it.
live WITH IT.Many mainstream voters should be charged with voter malpractice and gross negligence of civic duty to let in another Robber Barron into the White House!!!!!!!!
Unfortunately, Chris we all go down together.

Report this
kerryrose's avatar

By kerryrose, May 16, 2011 at 9:35 am Link to this comment

Obama’a lack of backbone and loyalty has been evident since the beginning.  From the parade of staffers who silently left the WH after any hint of progressivism to the Shirley Sherrod debacle.

Obama has no moral vision.

Report this

By ma77hew, May 16, 2011 at 9:27 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Towering Heroes! Two of our greatest minds and progressive leaders!

Brother Cornel West and Brother Chris Hedges.
Bless both of you and your messages.

What I would do to attend their lectures/sermons on a weekly basis….man oh
man! How soaring would that be? How mind expanding and invigorating?

Having said that there is this….

Cornel West is one of my very favorites! But if we pick our leaders like we
choose the products we buy based solely on the twisted flag waving messages
that the corporate media gives us…I’m sorry but we deserve to be deceived.
This is our Democracy, our Republic we have a duty to do the work, to read, to
turn over the stones and look beyond the puppet show that is the election
coverage. The facts were there, all the indicators were there in black and white
and green for that matter. Obama’s voting record was always in favor of the
corporate state, Joe Lieberman was Obamas Mentor!!! What more of an
indicator, warning flag do you need? I do not feel you needed a divining rod to
figure out how Obama was going to lead. You just needed to look beyond what
was shoved into your face or look beyond your own hopes and illusion. This is
why I followed Chris Hedges and voted for Nader.

I adore Brother Cornel West but I feel he fell victim to power and turned away
from facts and messages he felt deep in his heart and saw much earlier, to be
apart of history.

I can’t say with certainty that I would not do the same. The air gets very thin up
there in those ranks. I still love you Brother West. And I will continue trying to
love my crooked neighbor with my crooked heart.

Peace and Love

Report this

By TDoff, May 16, 2011 at 9:18 am Link to this comment

It’s interesting, the concept that the assassination of Osama (whether real or fake) was a ‘Wag the Dog’ maneuver to avoid a sex scandal. Was Obama trying to divert our attention from the fact that Netanyahoo and AIPAC are continuously f*****g him? Or that the nation’s corporations and their lobbyists are always jamming it up his a**? Or that the Joint Chiefs are laughing as they tickle his testicles and call him a Wuss?

Let’s hope that now that Seal Team 6 has had a successful practice run, even if it was a fake, Obama puts them to work solving the US’s real problem. How about daring simultaneous midnight raids on 1. The safes at Monte Carlo, 2. The vaults of the Swiss Banks, 3. The computers in the world’s corporate headquarters in the Cayman Islands, 4. The safety-deposit boxes of the Oil and Gas Bidness CEO’s in Houston and Dallas?

Once we’re back in control of most of the world’s cash, we can afford to keep effing-up as we have been for the past three decades, it won’t matter who’s president, a republican thief/dummy or a democrat thief/dummy. If our kids and grand-kids overcome the genetic deficit we’re endowing them with, by the mid-21st century, they should be able to come up with a solution for the next debacle.

Or not, who cares, most of us won’t be here to see it.

Report this

By phreedom, May 16, 2011 at 9:09 am Link to this comment

Thank you Chris,

Professor West is right on, as far as I am concerned.
But you know, we all got taken by the idea, that the
facade that Obama had to project to win, well, was a
well kept, mutual secret between he and us, that it
was in fact a facade only, a device, an expedient.

Unfortunately, the hoopla was so intense that we also
began to believe that somehow the energy we spent on
his election would actually turn the man into the man
the facade represented, and of course then, Obama
would march forth after his election being the man he
appeared to be to win, and beat the bad guys. The
delusive jubilation combined with years of exhausting
fear caused us to extend the “clintonian crisis”, by
again trying to will into existence , reify, a real
life leader of the enlightened and civilized world,
here(in the U.S.), from more of the same old, and/or
wholly fictional.

My wife and I are only coming out of a kind of
depression about all this disappointment, having woke
up to how Professor West conveys is his embarrassment
and frustration that another mythological political
campaign, mustered by the illusionary hope it
misrepresented, somehow, someway, would turn out
other than the only way it actually could. 

To add injury to our massively hobbled delusive hope,
we further, bought the romantic notion, that, at
least at first, those who would be put in charge
would need be those who knew where the bodies where
buried? We now know that those who know where the
bodies are buried only know where to bury their
victims as not to have the evidence of their crimes
be uncovered by the evidence of the crimes of their
predecessors. That’s is the only reason anyone needs
to know where the proverbial bodies are buried in our
current culture.

On and on I could go, the bottom of my self inflicted
frustration and self violation I may never know?

But to close this rant up, we really need to start
paying attention to mandatory consumption initiatives
and laws. Democracy is gravely threatened by a
precedent being established which would require
citizens to purchase certain consumer goods or
services, such as healthcare insurance. We must start
defending the freedom “to not afford”,  especially
when what we are required to afford is only the
possibility of access/possession of a service or
product,, ultimately being forced to pay for a
service not actually provided, and/or payment for a
product who’s utility is not actually obtained.

Romney’s recent claim that he will undermine national
Obamacare, is a smoke screen people, a bait and
switch, since it was Romney’s misconceived brainchild
of mandatory health insurance payments in
Massachusetts(again, not payment for actual health
care services) which was the model for Obama’s
national plan, also requiring the purchase of health
insurance. Whether state or nation based/wide,
mandatory payment for nothing more than health
insurance should be unconstitutional, on both the
state and federal levels. Hey, at least require us to
pay for healthcare services??

This is that odd thing that is happening in our two
party system, there is this true competition for 1
actual political office(power), but yet a collusion
of the competing campaigns to make sure a particular
policy is implemented despite the outcome of the
election. Our politics are campaigns to acquire
power, and not stages or forums to delineate and
later implement differences in policy.

Rhuen Phreed
11 Marlborough Street, #22
Boston, MA, 02116

Report this

By SamBrown, May 16, 2011 at 9:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

West is just another huckster with something to sell. The “I am a true black man who holds the moral high ground” schtick is really irritating. You’re an educated man, speak like it. I couldn’t last two minutes in the same room with him without wanting to slap *him* “upside his head”.

Report this

By Alan MacDonald, May 16, 2011 at 9:02 am Link to this comment

Now there’s a real ‘truth-dig’—- it’s the truth and it digs at the phony facade of semi-progressive neo-liberalism that Obama wears as his thin veil and faux-protective mantle while he works for the disguised global corporate/financial/militarist EMPIRE, which has taken over our former country by hiding behind the facade of its TWO-Party modernized Nazi “Vichy” sham of faux-democratic government.

But the facade is falling away by the hour while more and more people are seeing the harsh light of reality about this disguised EMPIRE—- which is now becoming naked, and cruel, and vicious, and as always violent in all respects; violent abroad as the tip of the Empire’s spear is thrust again and again directly into the face of any ‘troublesome’ peon subjects in the oil territories “abroad”, and thrust more subtly (so far) in peon-citizens’ faces by economic oppression, massive inequality, racism, increasing police-statism, class-warfare, and ultimately “tyranny at home”.

Or as Hannah Arendt presciently warned of all empires, based on her painful experience under the Nazi Empire:

“Empire abroad entails tyranny at home”.

God help us brother West, for Obama surely won’t,

Alan MacDonald
Sanford, Maine
Liberty & democracy over violent empire—New America People’s Party 2012

Report this

By MeHere, May 16, 2011 at 8:53 am Link to this comment

It seems that Dr. West misread much more than Obama, the individual.  He
misread the control the two-party system has on everything regarding
elections and the power of corporations and lobbies. He also misread the voting
population —the least and most educated as well as the lowest and highest
earners— who essentially keep voting according to the TV and the rest of the
MSM.  In addition, C. West may have misread the degree to which personal
greed and consuming have become dominant factors in our culture leading to
complete disregard for real concern about others and the desire for more
sensible government.  But he can’t ask much more from Obama because Obama is not the problem, much less the solution —he merely represents the problem.

It is promising to hear that Dr. West is seeing US politics in a different light.

Report this
Arabian Sinbad's avatar

By Arabian Sinbad, May 16, 2011 at 8:53 am Link to this comment

I’ll bet you that most of those who would come to the defense of Obama would be brainwashed Zionists or Christian-Zionists. After all, he has proven to be the most Christian-Zionist supporter of fascist, Zionist, Colonialist Israel, or perhaps their first real president.

Remember! Sometime half a year ago, thinking he might be a free soul, he entertained the idea of pressuring Israel to stop building its illegal militaristic colonial posts, nicely called “settlements” in occupied Palestine. Then he must have gotten a polite scolding from Israel and its terrorist supporters at best, or a serious threat at worst from those who control him. The result was that the whole so-called initiative to start a new gimmick called “Middle East Peace Initiative” was openly declared dead on arrival. No explanation was needed!

Instead, he devoted his time, energy and American already strained financial resources to direct and produce a bad theatrical Hollywood-style movie to murder Osama Bin Laden who died of illness years ago! I am deadly curious to just know one day who was the decoy that they supposedly murdered in that building owned by the CIA in Pakistan! 

And the worst part of this is that a large number of sheepish, naive and brainwashed Americans have swallowed this bad fictional movie as a real event of history.

In an environment where things are constantly going from bad to worse, a political-military trick was needed to divert the attention and stop a popular uprising. And the political-military establishment, with Obama at the helm, hired the best in Hollywood to produce the latest cheap fiction, which is most likely will pass as real glorious history by sheepish, brainwashed and gullible consumers!

Report this

By David, May 16, 2011 at 8:53 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

How is it that I, an under-employed writer with nothing higher than a Bachelor of Science degree and a stay-at-home dad, saw perfectly clearly in 2008 what Barack Obama was, what he would become, whose interests he would serve and what he would do—and Dr. Cornel West, a brilliant philosopher in academia and public intellectual, couldn’t?

Report this

By tussah, May 16, 2011 at 8:51 am Link to this comment

It interests me that so many, even Cornel West, are still trying to figure out ‘why’ Obama acts and governs the way he does in seeming juxtaposition to who he ‘said’ he was during the campaign.

It no longer matters why Obama is the way he is and acts and governs the way he does.  What we see is what we get, the proof is in the pudding, the die is cast, if the shoe fits, he’s wearing it.

At this point it is beyond moot and borders on self indulgent distraction to ‘wonder about’ or decry Obama’s behavior.

An Obama second term could be a lot worse than the first.  We must not be afraid to vote Obama out of office.

Report this

By roofi gee, May 16, 2011 at 8:47 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

THINK? If there was some other Obama like president electd, would things have been different? I say most likely not. BECAUSE most people would have sculpted under the influence of the power of sturcture of their environment, in the similar way like Obama did! Understand what Philip Zimbardo explains of human nature and then try to apply it to a larger group and you will see your own scope of existance and behavior.

http://www.ted.com/talks/philip_zimbardo_on_the_psychology_of_evil.html

Once, you understand the power of structures, you would realize that the battle is not against some individuals but more importantly against the mechanisms within which they are a gear.

Report this

By felicity, May 16, 2011 at 8:28 am Link to this comment

Unfortunately, we seem to be right in step with other
great nations of the past - inexorably following the
trajectory of primitive, republican, imperial,
decadence.  It’s probably of little import who is at
the helm, not to excuse Obama, but to recognize the
inexorable trajectory we’re on.

In contrast, when Truman left office he was offered
many very lucrative positions in the private sector. 
He declined, saying that they didn’t want him, they
wanted the office. He explained that it wasn’t for
sale, he couldn’t sell it if it was because it
belonged to the American people.  Contrast Truman
with the line of presidents (and other prominent
politicians) we’ve had since and the ‘trajectory’
becomes crystal clear.

Report this

By Heather, May 16, 2011 at 8:10 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

God Bless Dr. West for having the strength to tell it like it is. He’s saying what I’ve
been saying, BO is a colossal disappointment. It turns out that his campaign of
hope was just bs and he’s a liar like the rest of them. Thank you Dr. West and
thank you Mr. Hedges for interviewing Dr. West.

Report this

By TDoff, May 16, 2011 at 7:56 am Link to this comment

West, as a stalwart progressive-leftist, is right! Obama does need a good slap upside the head.

A good hard whack on his left ear might blow-out the Zionist Emanuel so busily licking his right ear, and might even dislodge the feci clinging to his anus, e.g. Lil’ Timmy Geithner et.al.

Might even jump-start a few brain cells functioning again, causing him to recall his presidential campaign.

And to recall whether what he said was what he meant, or whether he was just a’jivin’ and a’shuckin’ to get the ‘Big Prize’, and become Busch Light (or Dark).

But he better realize that if he was just fakin’ it, and the whole ‘presidential thing’ was a con, there is a greater power that may well rise up and bite him in the a**, if’n he don’t stop this nonsense and straighten-up.

Pay attention, Big Black Bro, and shape-up ‘fore it’s too late, or somethin’/somebuddy’s gonna grab your skinny self and try to shake some sense into you. And even if you survive, you’ll be scared-white, and then where will you be? Despised by all, respected by none, with no place to hide.

Report this
rico, suave's avatar

By rico, suave, May 16, 2011 at 7:55 am Link to this comment

Yeah, that photo just screams, “I wanted to slap him in the head.”

That was the most ingratiating, “yes massa” expression I have ever seen. West is a malleable and sycophantic as everyone else when it comes to Obama.

Report this

By frank rodriguez, May 16, 2011 at 7:52 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

We who feel the betrayal of the ‘hope’ kindled by this president need to be careful that we don’t play into the hands of those who would rejoyce in our discontent. I’m not an advocate of ‘lesser of two evil’ voting, but let’s not be blinded by righteous anger. The truth is nothing will really change as long as the political system is beholden to big money. It’s gullible and naive to think and hope otherwise. The change will have to rise from the bottom up. Where is the ‘American Spring?’

Report this

By thepoliskeptic1, May 16, 2011 at 7:34 am Link to this comment

First thing I’ve read by Hedges that just seems silly. West acts like a clown, stating the obvious as though it were his personal revelation.

Report this

By jd, May 16, 2011 at 7:26 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Bravo. Dr. West.

I never trusted Obama since I saw his support for the Iraq invasion when he was a senator, but I voted for him as the lesser of evils. Still, I have been really surprised at his utter capitulation to Wall St. and the oligarchs. I had hoped for some compassion for the masses of people who now have to suffer the consequences of the crimes and cruelty of the oligarchy. Instead Obama acts as their servant—while our children go uneducated and we murder innocents abroad.

Dr. West tells it exactly as it is and his words and example are worth repeating. Until people wake up and resuscitate democracy the situation will continue to deteriorate.

Report this

By camustranger, May 16, 2011 at 7:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

think it’s pretty clear Hedges values (or in lamotte’s words, likes) integrity, dignity, respect (of self, others, and nature), trust, compassion, health, transparency, equity, beauty, truth… and clearly disapproves of (or in lamotte’s words, doesn’t like) greed, dishonesty, exploitation, violence, war….

Report this

By Elizabeth Tjader, May 16, 2011 at 7:10 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I’d also like to thank Dr. West. Most of us who voted for Obama were also swept away by his charismatic and hope filled promises. I too drank the Obama kool-aid. And I’m choking now. He will NEVER get my vote again. In a way, his lies are more unforgivable and egregious than those of George Bush’s. We expected little from Bush. I expected much more and far better from Obama, especially with that prestigious list of academic credentials and community organizing skills. Another case in point: a liar is a liar, whether he articulates brilliantly or rides a Ford F250 horse. Mike Papantonio from Ring of Fire radio also made the analogy once of Obama and his need to be accepted by the affluent white fraternity. How the truth hurts. This one stings like a mother.

We need millions more voices like that of Dr. West’s. And I thank Chris Hedges for his courage to tell the truth every week. He’s one reason I look forward to getting up on Mondays.

Report this

By bogi666, May 16, 2011 at 7:06 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I hate to say that “I told you so” Cornell, but I did in 2008 advising you that ObomberBush has no ancestry of slavery and to expect ObomberBush to identify with African American, he’s a Kenyan American, just doesn’t fit the facts. I admire Cornell and the fact that he is willing to face up to being deceived and in fact get in ObomberBush’s face in the tradition of Code Pink my admiration of West is increased. Having lived outside the USA in a black majority country where being a victim of society racism and crying about police brutality due to racist police doesn’t hold water. This is why immigrants from Jamaica, Africa, the West Indies do better in this country than not only African Americans but whites as well.Being from black majority countries they are secure in their person and recognize racism but they turn it into a game to their advantage.

Report this

By Laws456, May 16, 2011 at 6:48 am Link to this comment

@Robespierre115

Don’t be too upset with West, I totally understand where you’re coming from and what you’re saying. You can’t be mad at folks for having hope. At least he’s not saying it’s not Obama’s fault and solely placing blame on the GOP. We should pay attention to folks like Chomsky but they’re not visible enough. I like Chomsky, and read most of his sh*t, he’s most def on point, but again people don’t see him enough and Americans need to have their emotions played with in order to do anything, appealing to them with logic just doesn’t cut it any more.

Report this

By Amon Drool, May 16, 2011 at 6:48 am Link to this comment

“I think my dear brother Barack Obama has a certain
fear of free black men,” West says.
“When he meets an independent black brother it is
frightening.”

“He makes a beeline to me right after the talk, in
front of everybody,” West says. “He just lets me have
it. He says, “You ought to b ashamed of yourself.,
saying I’m not a progressive. Is that the best you
can do? Who do you think you are?’ I smiled and shook
his hand.”

I SMILED AND SHOOK HIS HAND.  !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!??? 
from what obama said to West, one can assume he
doesn’t consider West a ‘free’ and ‘independent’
black brother; and West’s response affirmed that
judgment.  but as commenter ‘still trying’ said,
better late than never.

Report this

By Laws456, May 16, 2011 at 6:41 am Link to this comment

As usual, Dr. West is on point. Everything he speaks is true, especially about the President. I think the most important thing we can do as supporters/former supporters of the President is to come to grips with the situation and get over that feeling of betrayal or disappointment. It’s ok to be fooled one time. If you allow it to happen more than once, you’ve got a serious problem. I was saying to some friends on Sunday evening that I can’t vote for Obama again and I suggest they don’t either.

I think the best thing that could happen to this country is for a Republican to win in 2012. If Obama wins again, some people will say, let’s just give him another 4 years to do such and such. That’s a mistake. If a Republican wins, they’ll continue their policies and maybe, just maybe enough people will get out of the house…I think people don’t want the pain, the pain of being arrested, beaten, detained, some killed, some maimed, but that is what it’s going to take to straighten this mess out. Here’s the thing though, everything that I and others say goes totally against our consumer lifestyle. And to get others to realize that life is about much more than your own personal circle of fam and friends is a big job, So like I said, vote GOP in 2012.

Report this
Arabian Sinbad's avatar

By Arabian Sinbad, May 16, 2011 at 6:36 am Link to this comment

Obama as “a black mascot of Wall Street oligarchs and a black puppet of corporate plutocrats. And now he has become head of the American killing machine and is proud of it.”
===================================================
Thank you Cornel West for uttering these words of truth which best describe the true colors of Obama. These are almost exactly the same feelings that have been crossing my mind and brewing within my heart about the big disaster and fraud that Obama turned out to be.

His comfort with his Jewish mentors from Chicago who moved with him to the White house, and those others he kept adding to his entourage, has always bothered me, but I did my utmost to suppress them with what turned out to be a false hope. Now that I heard the verdict of Cornel West on him, I feel somehow liberated for not having to be deceived by the latest American disaster called “President Obama.”

To right-wingers I say: “Don’t celebrate that many deceived by candidate Obama are turning against him, for he turned out to be one of your types. However, this does not automatically translate into votes for you!”

As Cornel West ended his conversation with Chris Hedges, it’s serious time now for a third, fourth, and even a fifth party, to offset the corruption and tyranny of the two-party system. It is serious time likewise for a popular protest movement to change the sad reality of business as usual!

Report this

By surfnow, May 16, 2011 at 5:11 am Link to this comment

The only difference between Bush and Obama is that we always knew one was lying; the other one we held on to a faint hope that maybe he really was for real.

Report this

By madisolation, May 16, 2011 at 5:07 am Link to this comment

Good for you, Dr. West. Use your voice to steer the people away from Obama and steer them toward someone else—anyone else—in 2012. To vote for this political marionette is to betray yourself, your family, your friends, your country, and everything you believe in.
“...brother Barack Obama had no sense of gratitude, no sense of loyalty, no sense of even courtesy, [no] sense of decency, just to say thank you.”
Instead Obama lambastes and tries to shame you in public, using his newly-acquired power not for good, but to make you feel less of a human being. Why make excuses for him, like saying he came from a white background and that’s why he acts the way he does? Sometimes the simplest explanation is the best: Obama acts the way he does because he is an ungrateful, disloyal, rude individual who thinks he is superior to others. Those kinds of people come in all colors and from all backgrounds.
Furthermore, here’s what’s wrong with this country:
“‘That’s Dr. Cornel West. Who do you think you are?’ You can go to jail talking to the president like that. You got to watch yourself.”
...Why should we accept that we could go to jail for criticizing a rude, ungrateful, drone-dropping human being to his face, just because he could lie with a straight face and convince enough people put a mark by his name on a piece of paper? He’s no better than you or me. He didn’t suddenly acquire an untouchable magnificence when he was sworn in. He’s a human being and not a very nice one, at that.

Report this

By JJW, May 16, 2011 at 4:57 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

We didn’t have much choice.  Hillary beating Bush’s war drums or Obama who had made one speech against the war and then once in the Senate, he hid the entire time.

In reading his books,  we learn Obama has no clue as to what he wants to do or become.

Report this

By /Rosemary Molloy, May 16, 2011 at 4:45 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I’m just a little old lady in pokey south Jersey, and I’m no match for the learned liberals who supported Obama.  But how is it I knew what he was all about when he picked Biden for his running mate?  I didn’t need to study and ponder and agonize and run around making excuses until it was just too clear—.  I voted for Nader.

Report this

By loophole, May 16, 2011 at 4:42 am Link to this comment

fred lamotte,
Sounds like he likes Cornel West, doesn’t it? Besides, I don’t think it’s Mr. Hedges job or intention to make you feel better, if that’s what your getting at…

Report this

By Fred LaMotte, May 16, 2011 at 4:22 am Link to this comment

Is there anyone, or anything, that Chris Hedges actually Likes?

Report this

By still trying, May 16, 2011 at 4:15 am Link to this comment

Better to awaken late, Mr. West, than not to wake at all. So many are still asleep to the fraud Obama, and will probably vote for him again, even as he robs them of whatever they have. Folks are really reluctant to admit that they have been conned.

Report this

By Paul McGuire, May 16, 2011 at 4:12 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Perhaps now, at long last, the Democratic Socialists of
America will throw off the decades-old hallucination
which led them to think of actually having a role to
play in the Democratic Party.

Report this
Robespierre115's avatar

By Robespierre115, May 16, 2011 at 3:01 am Link to this comment

West has no one but himself to blame for being a complete idiot. This is why we should cherish minds like Noam Chomsky who basically spelled out everything that was going to happen with Obama in 2007, while Cornel was dancing like a court jester.

Report this

By ardee, May 16, 2011 at 2:50 am Link to this comment

I have always been a fan of the words and works of Cornel West, however uneven or sloppily sentimental they may, on occasion, become. This ending is a brilliant and inspiring paean to social protest, something this nation sorely needs:


”.... But we’ve got to think seriously of third-party candidates, third formations, third parties. Our last hope is to generate a democratic awakening among our fellow citizens. This means raising our voices, very loud and strong, bearing witness, individually and collectively. Tavis [Smiley] and I have talked about ways of civil disobedience, beginning with ways for both of us to get arrested, to galvanize attention to the plight of those in prisons, in the hoods, in poor white communities. We must never give up. We must never allow hope to be eliminated or suffocated.”

Report this

Page 4 of 4 pages « First  <  2 3 4

 
Monsters of Our Own Creation? Get tickets for this Truthdig discussion of America's role in the Middle East.
Right 1, Site wide - BlogAds Premium
 
Right Skyscraper, Site Wide
Right 2, Site wide - Blogads
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 
 
 

A Progressive Journal of News and Opinion   Zuade Kaufman, Publisher   Robert Scheer, Editor-in-Chief
© 2014 Truthdig, LLC. All rights reserved.

Like Truthdig on Facebook