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norman kelley

norman kelley
Washington, District of Columbia, USA
Norman Kelley is an independent journalist, author, and former segment radio producer at WBAI 99.5 FM Pacifica Radio. He has written for Society, L A Weekly, The Brooklyn Rail, The Village Voice, The Nation, New York Press, Newsday,, The Black Star News, New Politics, Black Renaissance/Noir, and The Bedford Stuyvesant Current. He is also the author of the "noir soul"/ mystery series that features "Nina Halligan" in Black Heat (Amistad), The Big Mango (Akashic Books), and A Phat Death (2003). Norman Kelley was also a contributing writer to Brooklyn Noir (Akashic Books, 2004) and DC Noir (Akashic Books, 2006) and Gig: Americans Talk About Their Jobs at the Turn of the Millennium (Random House 2000). He edited and contributed to R&B (Rhythm and Business): The Political Economy of Black Music (Akashic Books, 2005; 2002).

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JANUARY 20, 2010 8:52PM

"The tragedy of Obama": The Dead Aim of Michael Lind

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Read this assessment of Obama first year as POTUS  by Michael Lind, who nails it with a seldom mentioned nugget of the 2008 campaign: Obama  "received more Wall Street money than his Republican rival John McCain and his rivals for the Democratic primary nomination."   

Is this bit of political knowledge in "Game Change"? If you know, please tell me.

 *(See "Sold Out: How Wall Street and Washington Betrayed America," p 115;

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Hi Norman, I read the exact same line. I don't know if it is literally true but Obama took huge amounts of money from the wealthy that's fer sure.
Matt Taibi at Rolling Stone during the campaign pointed out that Obama by that point had received $20 million more than McCain from Wall Street. His assessment was that Wall Street knew that Obama wasn't going to do some of the things he was publicly saying he would do and that they knew he was going to be Wall Street's friend and protector.
politics is the art of the POSSIBLE.
…and he tabbed Tim Geithner to be his Treasury Secretary.
Kathy: What is considered POSSIBLE at any given time is that which the people in power define as such. When Bush was in office from the time that pollster began asking voters about impeachment, summer of 2005 by Zogby, a majority wanted him and/or Cheney gone (depending on whether that question was asked). Similarly, from at least 2006 a majority (which grew to 70%) have wanted the Iraq war over immediately. This is also true of most of the US troops stationed there, to say nothing of the Iraqi people's sentiments. Yet, what the two major parties have defined as the POSSIBLE is very different. According to both parties, torturing people, including to death, is not unacceptable. If it were, then Bush and Cheney would now be in the docket at the Hague. If politics is the art of the possible, then you have to also correspondingly conclude that therefore "politics" have nothing to do with public sentiment...
It's never occurred to you that maybe the rich were as sick of the mess Bush made of the country as everyone else? We probably qualify as rich. We knew our taxes (an eyewatering sum, let's just say we paid the US Gov't this year more money than I'd ever imagined having in my life) would go up with Obama. We donated to his campaign.

We wanted to end the trashing of the constitution and everything America stands for. We wanted universal health care. We wanted a president to be proud of.

And, also, we wanted a change in the political culture. We wanted Washington to focus on getting things done, not partisan infighting. Not wonderful us versus awful them. Nor the evil, greedy rich versus the salt-of-the-earth, deserving poor. Nor the hard-working, high-achieving, value-building successes versus those lazy, parasitic welfare queens.

We wanted America's future to be built by all Americans, for all Americans. Rich and poor. Black and white. Old and young.

That's why we voted for Obama.
I think Obama ought to continue doing what he is doing (in my opinion, getting as much as he can out of the political climate in which he is working)…

…and I think the so-called liberal/progressives who think he is a traitor and who think hi is screwing the progressive cause ought to continue to savage him as much as they can…and continue to partner with the right wing determined to undermine him at all costs…

…and in 2012 we will finally be rid of him…

…and can get people in the mold of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney back in control so that we can get our country back on course.

That is what I think!

...he said with his tongue planted firmly in his cheek!
Having actually read The Audacity of Hope (unlike the millions who bought it and didn't read it) Obama's centrist waffling came as no surprise to me. That the rightwingnuts are calling him a communist shows how little they know about him or communism -- or anything else.

The disenchantment the Left now feels can be chalked up to another classic case of unrealistic expectations about a poltician, tho in fairness to the disenchanted, Obama certainly did everything he could to raise those expectations with his rhetorical pandering.

As I put it elsewhere:

As for BHO, the trouble is a lot of people expected him to be the next FDR, but he's only the next WJC -- the other first black president. Let's hope that unlike WJC he has sense enough to keep his nose -- and other parts of his anatomy -- clean -- or the "family values" hypocrites will make the Bill and Monica tragi-comedy look like -- well, a tea-party.
Several possibilities: (1) Obama is a liar and part of "the con" (2) He's the most naive man on the planet! (3) He assumed the presidency only to find he had no real power and that power lies solely with corporations and big banks. They control the world, and world leaders, presidents, premieres, etc. are for "show".

But, hey, none of this matters because the collapse of the world economy is imminent. The "Transformation", as indigenous peoples call it, is coming along with the end of western civilization and especially the end of the USA, a massively corrupt nation, hypocritical, imperialistic, militaristic, a nation that totally defiled and corrupted the ideals it supposedly stood for. There was never any such thing as "freedom and justice for ALL..", never for one tiny second!! So, now, we get what we deserve for allowing such criminals as lobbyists, Big Pharma, Big Tobacco, on and on, to run our country....
Said Tom Cordle:

"Having actually read The Audacity of Hope (unlike the millions who bought it and didn't read it) Obama's centrist waffling came as no surprise to me. That the rightwingnuts are calling him a communist shows how little they know about him or communism -- or anything else."

Tom, I read the "Audacity of Hope" and saw the same thing: a lot of "on one hand and then the other..." When Obama said that he would take public financing and then danced around it, I thought: "Okay he want to win, but his word to the public apparently doesn't amount to much."

So, I can't say that I'm disappointed. Actually, I have not been impressed with him since the whole health-care policy/politics.

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