All of us should be aware (and ashamed) of this history. That such things took place in our country is something all Americans should know. This almost goes without saying. But what apparently does need saying is the reverse -- that the history of lynching should not be abused and belittled by politicians in hyperbolic fashion to make a much smaller point. Even if -- or perhaps especially if -- the politician in question is an African-American.
Archive of Articles for August, 2011
To his supporters, one of Ron Paul's most endearing qualities is his forthrightness. Paul doesn't mince words, he tells you to your face exactly what he thinks. And, to give the man credit, he keeps to his positions even when it would be a lot easier for him to either fudge an answer or tone down his beliefs, the way most politicians do (at certain times).
As we all know, we're not there yet. We're a little closer than we were when Dr. King was taken from us, but we've still got quite a ways to go yet. For inspiration on the journey which still awaits us all, I strongly urge all Americans to seek out Dr. King's actual words -- the words you're not used to hearing over and over again. Take ten or fifteen minutes and read the text of one of his speeches. Watch video, or listen to audio of Dr. King speaking. It will be well worth the time it takes.
This should force pundits across the political spectrum to re-evaluate Rick Perry's campaign. Instead of seeing through the lens of: "what my circle of friends thinks of Rick Perry's gaffes," this time the pundits should focus a little more closely on: "what Republican primary voters think of Rick Perry as a candidate." Because, so far, they seem to be flocking to support Perry -- to the visible detriment of Mitt Romney's standing in the polls.
Even with all those caveats, however, Obama deserves a victory lap at this point. At the heart of Obama's war plan for Libya was an enormous gamble that could have failed in any number of ways. It didn't. America successfully cleared the skies of Libya, and then "within days, not weeks" we bowed out of the lead role in the fight. The French, the British, and the rest of N.A.T.O. stepped up to the plate and performed admirably well. The American military continued in a support role -- exactly as Obama told us would happen -- and the outcome, at this point in time, has to be judged a clear success.
It's silly season in the political world, once again. And this year -- just like every year a Democrat occupies the White House -- an old favorite of a story is making the rounds. It involves some very thinly-veneered outrage, which is completely fabricated and hypocritical in the extreme.
The rebels are on the move in Libya.
Almost a full month ago, I placed four names in the "Frontrunners" category: Michele Bachmann, Sarah Palin, Rick Perry, and Mitt Romney. This list hasn't changed at all, although Palin will fall back the next time around if she doesn't announce in the next three or four weeks (more on this in a bit).
But perhaps I'm being too harsh. The reason the clip was edited down so much was that the other heckling clip was so much better -- Romney misspeaking, and then instead of just immediately walking it back, actually digging the hole deeper. In answer to a question about raising taxes on corporations, Romney answered (at first) that he wasn't going to raise taxes "on people." When the questioner yelled back "Corporations, not people!" Romney could easily have said something along the lines of "Sorry, I meant to say corporations -- I'm actually not going to raise taxes on people or on corporations, and here's why...." It would have just melded the whole thing into standard Republican dogma, and Romney would have been safe.
Since the news this morning out of Wisconsin is a bit depressing for progressives (and Progressives), I thought it was time to mark an important upcoming centennial there. On the first of September in 1911, the first constitutional workers' compensation law took full effect in Wisconsin. The law had been passed on May 3, 1911. By all rights, I should have written about it back then, or waited until September for the anniversary of the law taking effect, but I thought today was a good day to reminisce about when Wisconsin was at the forefront of the Labor movement, instead of where they find themselves today.