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April 21, 2008


Monday, April 21st, 2008
My Vote’s for Obama (if I could vote) …by Michael Moore


I don’t get to vote for President this primary season. I live in Michigan. The party leaders (both here and in D.C.) couldn’t get their act together, and thus our votes will not be counted.

So, if you live in Pennsylvania, can you do me a favor? Will you please cast my vote — and yours — on Tuesday for Senator Barack Obama?

I haven’t spoken publicly ’til now as to who I would vote for, primarily for two reasons: 1) Who cares?; and 2) I (and most people I know) don’t give a rat’s ass whose name is on the ballot in November, as long as there’s a picture of JFK and FDR riding a donkey at the top of the ballot, and the word “Democratic” next to the candidate’s name.

Seriously, I know so many people who don’t care if the name under the Big “D” is Dancer, Prancer, Clinton or Blitzen. It can be Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Barry Obama or the Dalai Lama.

Well, that sounded good last year, but over the past two months, the actions and words of Hillary Clinton have gone from being merely disappointing to downright disgusting. I guess the debate last week was the final straw. I’ve watched Senator Clinton and her husband play this game of appealing to the worst side of white people, but last Wednesday, when she hurled the name “Farrakhan” out of nowhere, well that’s when the silly season came to an early end for me. She said the “F” word to scare white people, pure and simple. Of course, Obama has no connection to Farrakhan. But, according to Senator Clinton, Obama’s pastor does — AND the “church bulletin” once included a Los Angeles Times op-ed from some guy with Hamas! No, not the church bulletin!

This sleazy attempt to smear Obama was brilliantly explained the following night by Stephen Colbert. He pointed out that if Obama is supported by Ted Kennedy, who is Catholic, and the Catholic Church is led by a Pope who was in the Hitler Youth, that can mean only one thing: OBAMA LOVES HITLER!

Yes, Senator Clinton, that’s how you sounded. Like you were nuts. Like you were a bigot stoking the fires of stupidity. How sad that I would ever have to write those words about you. You have devoted your life to good causes and good deeds. And now to throw it all away for an office you can’t win unless you smear the black man so much that the superdelegates cry “Uncle (Tom)” and give it all to you.

But that can’t happen. You cast your die when you voted to start this bloody war. When you did that you were like Moses who lost it for a moment and, because of that, was prohibited from entering the Promised Land.

How sad for a country that wanted to see the first woman elected to the White House. That day will come — but it won’t be you. We’ll have to wait for the current Democratic governor of Kansas to run in 2016 (you read it here first!).

There are those who say Obama isn’t ready, or he’s voted wrong on this or that. But that’s looking at the trees and not the forest. What we are witnessing is not just a candidate but a profound, massive public movement for change. My endorsement is more for Obama The Movement than it is for Obama the candidate.

That is not to take anything away from this exceptional man. But what’s going on is bigger than him at this point, and that’s a good thing for the country. Because, when he wins in November, that Obama Movement is going to have to stay alert and active. Corporate America is not going to give up their hold on our government just because we say so. President Obama is going to need a nation of millions to stand behind him.

I know some of you will say, ‘Mike, what have the Democrats done to deserve our vote?’ That’s a damn good question. In November of ’06, the country loudly sent a message that we wanted the war to end. Yet the Democrats have done nothing. So why should we be so eager to line up happily behind them?

I’ll tell you why. Because I can’t stand one more friggin’ minute of this administration and the permanent, irreversible damage it has done to our people and to this world. I’m almost at the point where I don’t care if the Democrats don’t have a backbone or a kneebone or a thought in their dizzy little heads. Just as long as their name ain’t “Bush” and the word “Republican” is not beside theirs on the ballot, then that’s good enough for me.

I, like the majority of Americans, have been pummeled senseless for 8 long years. That’s why I will join millions of citizens and stagger into the voting booth come November, like a boxer in the 12th round, all bloodied and bruised with one eye swollen shut, looking for the only thing that matters — that big “D” on the ballot.

Don’t get me wrong. I lost my rose-colored glasses a long time ago.

It’s foolish to see the Democrats as anything but a nicer version of a party that exists to do the bidding of the corporate elite in this country. Any endorsement of a Democrat must be done with this acknowledgement and a hope that one day we will have a party that’ll represent the people first, and laws that allow that party an equal voice.

Finally, I want to say a word about the basic decency I have seen in Mr. Obama. Mrs. Clinton continues to throw the Rev. Wright up in his face as part of her mission to keep stoking the fears of White America. Every time she does this I shout at the TV, “Say it, Obama! Say that when she and her husband were having marital difficulties regarding Monica Lewinsky, who did she and Bill bring to the White House for ‘spiritual counseling?’ THE REVEREND JEREMIAH WRIGHT!”

But no, Obama won’t throw that at her. It wouldn’t be right. It wouldn’t be decent. She’s been through enough hurt. And so he remains silent and takes the mud she throws in his face.

That’s why the crowds who come to see him are so large. That’s why he’ll take us down a more decent path. That’s why I would vote for him if Michigan were allowed to have an election.

But the question I keep hearing is… ‘can he win? Can he win in November?’ In the distance we hear the siren of the death train called the Straight Talk Express. We know it’s possible to hear the words “President McCain” on January 20th. We know there are still many Americans who will never vote for a black man. Hillary knows it, too. She’s counting on it.

Pennsylvania, the state that gave birth to this great country, has a chance to set things right. It has not had a moment to shine like this since 1787 when our Constitution was written there. In that Constitution, they wrote that a black man or woman was only “three fifths” human. On Tuesday, the good people of Pennsylvania have a chance for redemption.

Michael Moore


April 14, 2008


LEVITTOWN, Pa. — Like many women over 50, Paula Houwen was eager to vote for Hillary Clinton for president.

“I was impressed when she was first lady. She wasn’t the country’s trophy wife,” the 56-year-old suburban Philadelphia pharmacist recalled.

Today, though, Houwen’s no longer a Clinton fan.

“I do not like the way Hillary Clinton has run her campaign,” she said.

Clinton’s strongest core of support — white women — is beginning to erode in Pennsylvania, the site of the critical April 22 Democratic presidential primary, and a loss here could effectively end her White House run.

A Quinnipiac University survey taken April 3-6 in Pennsylvania found that Clinton’s support fell 6 percentage points in a week among white women. Nationally, a Lifetime Networks poll of women found that 26 percent said they liked Clinton less now than in January, while only 15 percent said they liked her more.

“These are Democratic women who waited all their lives for a woman president, but Hillary is not turning them on,” said polling analyst Clay Richards.

The Clinton campaign is aware of the danger, and last week it began dispatching friends of Clinton from New York, Washington and elsewhere to key Pennsylvania communities to have “living room chats” with women.

“We thought this might happen,” senior Clinton adviser Ann Lewis said of the erosion. A key reason, she said, is rival Barack Obama’s ad barrage, notably his gentle but persistent reminders to TV viewers that he’s well-equipped to heal the ailing economy.

“I can’t overcome the media barrage, so we need to go back to talking to people about their personal concerns,” said Lewis, “and emphasizing her experience.”

Economic concerns are at the top of most women’s lists, and “Obama is coming across to more and more people as qualified on that issue,” Richards said.

Interviews in suburban Philadelphia, an area full of swing voters who are likely to determine the outcome of the primary, found other reasons for Clinton’s shaky support.

A lot of white women, and for that matter white men, want the race to end and increasingly consider Obama an acceptable nominee.

“There may be a general, reluctant acceptance that things just don’t look that good for Clinton,” said Susan Carroll, a professor of political science and women’s and gender studies at Rutgers University.

The most familiar echo among many Pennsylvania women when they discuss Clinton, however, is disappointment. Ask them when they became disillusioned with the woman who would be president, and they can cite almost the exact moment.

For Clare Howard, a meditation teacher from Southhampton, it was the night in January when Bill Clinton suggested that Obama did well in the South Carolina primary because of his race.

That went too far, said Howard, 60. “It was like they would do anything to win,” she said.

Joan Schmidt, 60, a school psychologist in Levittown, grew tired of hearing Clinton tout — and exaggerate — her experience.

Jane Dovel, 68, an artist in Doylestown, turned away from Clinton after hearing the New York senator’s reaction to Obama’s comments that Ronald Reagan had been a “transformative political figure.”

Clinton fired back that Republicans hadn’t had better ideas. “I don’t think it’s a better idea to privatize Social Security,” she said. “I don’t think it’s a better idea to eliminate the minimum wage.”

That’s not what Obama had said, recalled Dovel. “What Clinton said was a blatant lie,” she said. “From that moment on, she was history. She was not to be trusted.”

Obama’s increasing ability to convince these women that he’s on their side has contributed to their shift away from Clinton.

Most are old enough to remember John F. Kennedy, and it’s common to hear them say how much the Illinois senator reminds them of the young president. “He’s definitely someone who knows how to get everyone on board,” said Jill Saul, a Bristol teacher.

Howard was struck by how much her three children were impressed with Obama — much the way Democratic youngsters were taken with Kennedy.

“If I ever want to look my kids in the eye again,” she laughed, “I have to go with Obama.”

The Clinton forces realize that a new trend_ Clinton, after all, still leads Obama among white women by 28 points in the Quinnipiac poll — could quickly become a tidal wave if left unchecked.

So they’re planning more living-room visits, closed to the media and not publicized, as a way of reminding people of Clinton’s personal qualities.

Clinton is getting to be a tougher sell, though, because a lot of women have thought long and hard about moving away from someone whom they’ve wanted for a long time.

“If elected, I’m sure she’ll do a good job,” said Michele Scarborough, a Quakertown borough councilwoman. “But I just don’t feel she’s one of us.”

To read the Lifetime Networks poll, go to:

To read the Quinnipiac poll, go to:

McClatchy Newspapers 2008

Black Skinned Beauties!:QUEEN MOTHERS OF ALL BEAUTY!

April 14, 2008


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(A picture of charismaallover with Egyptian headdress)



AS you can see, I’m a beautiful girl because I’m dark in complexion. I like to look nice and beautiful always. My mum always encourages me every time I appear clean, that, I’m black and I’m shining. I sweep my room, lay my bed and clean our sitting room always. I learn how to be clean from my mum because she dresses well. She is my role model when it comes to looking good. - Iremide Oyelaja, 10-year-old, Pry 4. (THIS NIGERIAN MOTHER TAUGHT HER DAUGHTER TO BE PROUD OF HER BLACK BEAUTIFUL SKIN COLOR UNLIKE MICHAEL JACKSON'S FATHER WHO TOLD HIM HIS BLACK FEATURES WERE UGLY! TEACH YOUR BLACK CHILDREN TO LOVE THEIR BLACK FEATURES-NOSE,MOUTH,BLACK SKINNED BEAUTY!(IBADAN,NIGERIA)

AS you can see, I’m a beautiful girl because I’m dark in complexion. I like to look nice and beautiful always. My mum always encourages me every time I appear clean, that, I’m black and I’m shining. I sweep my room, lay my bed and clean our sitting room always. I learn how to be clean from my mum because she dresses well. She is my role model when it comes to looking good. - Iremide Oyelaja, 10-year-old, Pry 4. (THIS NIGERIAN MOTHER TAUGHT HER DAUGHTER TO BE PROUD OF HER BLACK BEAUTIFUL SKIN COLOR UNLIKE MICHAEL JACKSON'S FATHER WHO TOLD HIM HIS BLACK FEATURES WERE UGLY! TEACH YOUR BLACK CHILDREN TO LOVE THEIR BLACK FEATURES-NOSE,MOUTH,BLACK SKINNED BEAUTY!(IBADAN,NIGERIA)



Why do I sing Praises of your Beautiful, Black, ebony,velvet skin,”Blacker than the sky at midnight”{1},your full mushroomed mouth, your beautiful broad nose, your generous “Congo hips” {2}and full-flowered backside? Because for too long many of the Black Race have abused, dishonored you, degraded and denied you your crown, Queen of Queens,Queen Mother of the Black Race, Black Beauty Supreme! From you all the beauty of the Black Race springs forth.In fact all the world’s beauty springs from you,Mother of all beauty of all the races of the world! Your Black midnight,licorice,dark black chocolate,beauty, is Blackness concentrated in your beautiful “Black-blueberry”{3} face!

First in the order of creation is always given respect by Afrikan tradition. The 1st wife, the 1st elder, the 1st kingdom, the 1st original inhabitants, of the earth-all are considered with honor. So it should be with Black Beauty-our darkest -skinned Sisters are the 1st Mothers of the Universe-Black as a color came before all the many tones of brown,red,yellow and white. But for too long our Dark-skinned Queens have not been given the respect and place of honor they deserve. IN FACT THE WHITE BOY HAS INTIATED the cycle of reversing the true order of things by turning upside down the pyramid of Beauty, and placing white-light on top and relegating the most beautiful Black-skinned Beauties to rock bottom!

So Black people have been taught well how to deny our most

beautiful one her crown, taught how to reject our Blackest, most Afrikan features, full lips and nose and mouth and woollest hair, for the weaker characteristics of the white race. Shame on Black people! When will we wake up to this Black Beauty concentrated, from whence all our lesser beauty comes. When will we give the crown of crowns,the throne of thrones, to the Blackest Queen of Queens?

Most of us who suffer from”mulatto-mentality” and “yellow fever”, as Fela, our great Nigerian Musician calls it, will go on and on about what about us lighter queens-aren’t we/they beautiful too, yet you/we should be aware that such queens have gotten all the play in the past and that even in Black Egypt one of the reasons for its downfall was the allowing the lighter ones of the race, to place themselves above the rest of us in the name of lightness and pride of light-closer/to/whiteness. So if we’re yellow,to light brown/red, then we should give respect where respect is due and not live off of the artificial white thrill of having “white features” as if it is an advantage. Where would you be without your BLACKEST great Grandmother? We should honor the Blackest part of ourselves, thus giving us true pride of Blackness, not verbal signifyin’ but real testifyin’ that BLACK is beautiful! If the Blackest, most Afrikan-featured Sister isn’t respected as the Supreme Beauty of the Race,the Black woman’s beauty is not really respected at all for what it really is(only in terms of how closer to white we look). We all reflect the strengths of this concentrated beauty in ourselves, all the manifestations of how Blackness can present itself are seen in our faces. Down to the milk-lightest of us, our Blackness is what dominates us whether physically or mentally. But the Mother is greater than the child and so the Blackest is greater than all the other tones of the Black Race. If we don’t respect our Blackest Queen, we don’t respect our True Black selves. We must have a Black value for BLACKNESS in features and skin tone. We must have a Black Standard of Beauty based on the Black-skinned woman. ALL PRAISES DUE TO OUR BLACK-SKINNED QUEEN-MOTHERS!

Sister Yeye Akilimali Funua Olade

BLACK NOTES: Let me give tribute to Brother Damu,House of Umoja(San Francisco) for{1}
{2}Brother O.O. Gabugan in the poem “Black Queen For a Day”,{3}Sister Sonia Sanchez in her poem “,Queens of the Universe”,for the quoted words used in the first part of this article.


April 12, 2008


Why Gov. Bill Richardson didn’t endorse Clinton
Shari Vialpando / Associated Press
Gov. Bill Richardson, shown here in New Mexico on Tuesday, has drawn criticism from supporters of Bill and Hillary Clinton for endorsing Sen. Barack Obama. “I was loyal,” Richardson says. “But I don’t think that loyalty is transferable to his wife…. You don’t transfer loyalty to a dynasty.”
The New Mexico governor says he was dismayed by pressure from the Clinton camp, and impressed by Obama’s optimism. Besides, ‘you don’t transfer loyalty to a dynasty.’
By Mark Z. Barabak, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
April 12, 2008
SANTA FE, N.M. — Before he endorsed Barack Obama, before he drew the wrath of the Clintons and was likened to Judas, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson nearly endorsed Hillary Rodham Clinton for president.

But Richardson hesitated, and as the Democratic campaign turned ugly, he grew angry.

There was that “3 a.m.” TV ad, in which Clinton questioned Obama’s personal mettle. “That upset me,” Richardson said.

There were some ham-fisted phone calls from Clinton backers, who questioned Richardson’s honor and suggested that the governor, who served in President Clinton’s Cabinet, owed Hillary Clinton his support. “That really ticked me off,” Richardson said.

Still, even as he moved from Clinton toward Obama — “the pursuit was pretty relentless on both sides” — Richardson wrestled with the question of loyalty. After 14 years in Congress and a measure of fame as an international troubleshooter, Richardson was named Clinton’s U.N. ambassador, then Energy secretary: “two important appointments,” Richardson said.

He finally concluded that he had settled his debt to the former president: He had worked for Clinton’s election in 1992, helped pass the North American Free Trade Agreement as part of his administration, stood by him during the Monica S. Lewinsky sex scandal, and rounded up votes to fight impeachment.

“I was loyal,” Richardson said during an extended conversation over breakfast this week at the governor’s mansion in Santa Fe. “But I don’t think that loyalty is transferable to his wife. . . . You don’t transfer loyalty to a dynasty.”

He was impressed by the mostly positive tone of Obama’s campaign, and grew to appreciate the substance and depth of their private conversations. The more Richardson heard from the Washington heavyweights backing Clinton, the more convinced he became of the need for a change inside the Beltway.

It has been three weeks since Richardson embraced the Illinois senator, an endorsement that continues to rankle and resonate — the significance, it would seem, going far beyond the preference of a governor from a poor, rural state.

But this is a family fight, between kin of the Clinton years, so perhaps the raw emotions shouldn’t be surprising. “They’re very similar in personality,” said Art Torres, chairman of the California Democratic Party and a friend of both Bill Clinton and Richardson. “There was a bond established, and I think [the former president] feels a little hurt.”

Attention to the endorsement might have quickly passed but for the strenuous protest of Bill Clinton and others. Speaking for the campaign, advisor Mark Penn suggested Richardson’s endorsement came too late to be much help to Obama. “Everyone has their endorsers,” he said.

But then James Carville, the pundit, strategist and Clinton loyalist, hurled a lightning bolt by comparing Richardson to Judas and his surrender of Jesus for 30 pieces of silver.

Soon after came an odd back-and-forth concerning a private conversation in which, supposedly, either Hillary Clinton or Richardson dismissed Obama as unelectable. (Neither party will discuss particulars, but Richardson said he never made that statement.)

Days later, just when interest in the endorsement seemed to wane, former President Clinton exploded in a rant about Richardson at the California Democratic Party convention. He later apologized, but his tirade in a closed-door session with superdelegates rekindled the story for several more days.

People close to Clinton said he views the governor’s action as a personal betrayal. “I think [Richardson] really owes a big chunk of his success and his career to the Clintons,” said an associate who has discussed the matter with the former president and requested anonymity to speak candidly.

“Look,” Richardson responded, “I was a successful congressman rescuing hostages before I was appointed. I was a governor afterward, elected on my own.”

Even more than the endorsement, Clinton’s associate said, the former president was angry because he thought Richardson broke his word. The two men watched the Super Bowl together at the governor’s mansion — Clinton made a special trip from California in bad weather — and the former president walked away convinced that Richardson would endorse his wife or, at least, stay neutral.

Richardson was, in fact, close to backing the New York senator that day, though his advisors — many of whom backed Obama — urged him to wait. “I remember talking to the president and saying, ‘I’m leaning. But I’m not there yet.’ He denied pledging neutrality if he changed his mind. “Sometimes people hear what they want to hear,” Richardson said.

Normally the most gregarious of politicians, the governor during the interview this week was subdued as he slowly worked his way through a plate of scrambled eggs, bacon and green chiles. His voice was soft, and he rarely smiled.

His endorsement had been highly coveted, due largely to his stature as one of the country’s most prominent Latino leaders. The pursuit began soon after Richardson quit the presidential race on Jan. 10.

He retreated to New Mexico and the governor’s adobe mansion. He sulked a bit, grew a beard, rode his quarter horse and tended to state business. “I didn’t want anything to do with national politics,” Richardson said, figuring he would keep out of the nominating fight until it was over. But slowly he reengaged, watching the debates and fielding calls from Clinton, Obama and their surrogates.

Their manner of courtship — one wooing, the other arm-twisting — seemed to reflect the candidates’ different personalities and campaign styles, he said.

Obama preferred the soft sell, calling Richardson every three days or so — “dialing the phone himself, no operator” — for long discussions about policy and campaign issues. The two developed a bantering relationship, building on the camaraderie they shared off-camera during debates, when they would roll their eyes at some of their rivals’ statements.

Clinton was more persistent and tactical. There were eight or more phone calls a day, Richardson said: “Bill calling, Hillary calling, friends of mine that were in the Clinton administration, Clinton operatives, Clinton Hispanic operatives, New Mexico Clinton Hispanic operatives.”

Some callers, who suggested Richardson had an obligation to back Clinton, did more harm than good. “I think the Clintons have a feeling of entitlement . . . that the presidency was theirs,” Richardson said, and the persistent lobbying from “Washington establishment types” convinced him of a need for some fresher faces on the scene.

He began admiring Obama back when they were rivals, and the sentiment grew the more they talked about foreign affairs, the environment and other issues. “I saw real growth in the guy,” Richardson said, “a tremendous growth in policy and expression and experience.”

And no, Richardson said, there was never talk of the vice presidency, or any other job in an Obama administration. “I never say never in politics, but I’m not pining for it,” he said. (Nor, he suggested, would he settle for just any Cabinet post, having served before.)

With his mind made up, and dreading the conversation, Richardson called Sen. Clinton a few hours before his endorsement of the Illinois senator was announced. He sat in his den, smoking a cigar with ESPN in the background. Their discussion, Richardson said, “was proper but heated.”

The two have not spoken since. Nor has he heard from Bill Clinton, who told people he was upset that Richardson did not call him as well. (The governor said he tried but never got through.)

The response from the Clinton camp — “the ferocity, the intensity” — has surprised him, Richardson said, though he knew he risked fracturing his relationship with the couple. His wife, Barbara, had warned him, he said: Richardson moved his hands apart, as if to signify a break.

“She also has great affection for the Clintons,” the governor said — she decorated their home with photos of the two couples together.

“He’s very much a part of my life,” Richardson said of the former president. The pictures are still hanging in the mansion’s private quarters.


April 12, 2008


Tavis Smiley Quits Tom Joyner Show
April 11, 2008
Activist Said to Be Hurt by “Hate” Over Obama Stance
After nearly 12 years as a fixture on radio’s syndicated “Tom Joyner Morning Show,” activist, commentator and broadcast personality Tavis Smiley has quit the program, Joyner told listeners on Friday.

Tavis Smiley
“He called me yesterday and said, ‘I quit,'” Joyner said on the air.

Joyner said Smiley told him he was working on too many projects, but believed the real reason was that “he can’t take the hate.

“He can’t take the hate he’s taking over this whole Barack Obama thing. People are really upset with him. He’s always busting Barack Obama’s chops. They call. They e-mail. They joke. They threaten. You know Tavis like I do. He needs to feel loved.

“We’re so emotional about this Barack Obama candidacy. If you don’t say anything for Barack Obama, you’re considered to be a hater. . . . It’s just that it hurts so deep when the people you love don’t agree with you.

“He loves black America and black America has been very critical of him,” Joyner said of Smiley. “It hurts. It hurt me to hear black Americans criticize him.”

Joyner said Smiley’s resignation was not effective immediately, but Joyner considered it to be so. “I asked him to reconsider,” Joyner said, and although Smiley agreed to do so, “he had pretty much made up his mind.”

Late Friday, Smiley issued a statement saying “it is my intention to take on the issues of the day in my commentary twice every week with the same energy, passion and commitment until the end of June.” (See next item).

Smiley had been critical of Obama for not attending Smiley’s annual “State of the Black Union” symposium on Feb. 23. Of the presidential candidates, only Sen. Hillary Clinton accepted the invitation. Obama said he would send his wife, Michelle, but Smiley insisted that was not good enough.

“I’m catching hell,” Smiley acknowledged in an interview then with Michael H. Cottman of

“Who Died and Made Tavis King?” asked a headline on over a column by Melissa Harris-Lacewell. “Does Tavis realize that Obama is trying to win an election?”

Joyner explained to Journal-isms Friday night that Smiley’s 2006 “Covenant With Black America” was written with the idea of challenging candidates in 2008 to take a stand on its proposals, and in that spirit Smiley had challenged Obama. The “Covenant” Web site says, “As we move toward the national elections of 2006 and 2008, Black Americans are entitled to have questions answered and visions shared of where our leaders want to take this country and a blueprint for how we get there.”

Others, such as the Web site, noted that in February 2007, Smiley complained when C-SPAN’s broadcast of the “State of the Black Union” gathering at Hampton University was interrupted for the kickoff of Obama’s presidential campaign, and that when the controversy erupted over the sound bites aired from the Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s sermons, “Smiley charged that Obama should have defended his pastor, not condemned him.”

Joyner co-hosted the “State of the Black Union.” Not only have Joyner and Smiley been friends and allies, but Smiley’s twice-weekly commentaries brought political analysis to the Joyner program, which also serves up music and comedy.

Joyner’s “decision in 1996, to hire former Black Entertainment Television host Tavis Smiley to provide daily political commentary on The Tom Joyner Morning Show, was pivotal in raising political activism and awareness among blacks via the airwaves,” Chandra R. Thomas wrote on last Saturday, in a story called “How Black Radio Found Its Voice.”

Joyner urged listeners to call or e-mail Smiley or even their friend, professor Cornel West, who has been a part of Smiley’s forums. “I think we should all let him know that black America still loves him.”

Smiley addressed the Obama controversy in a Feb. 14 commentary on the Joyner show, but it apparently failed to persuade listeners.

Among the projects Smiley is working on are a documentary, a bus tour and a book publishing company. But Joyner said both he and Smiley have always been multi-taskers.

Joyner asked one of the show’s comedians, Huggie Lowdown, to make Smiley the “‘Bama of the Week” for resigning.

Smiley: I’m Not Leaving the Joyner Show Until June
Tavis Smiley issued this statement late Friday:

There is no way to put into words the love and respect that Tom Joyner and I have for each other, or the love affair that I’ve had with TJMS listeners for almost 12 years now.

Due to the overwhelming amount of phone calls and e-mails I have received from listeners and other media, I wanted to briefly clarify a few issues that I will address more fully in my regular TJMS commentary on Tuesday morning, April 15, at 8:20 a.m. ET.

I did not “quit” the Tom Joyner Morning Show effective immediately. In July I will celebrate my 12th anniversary with the show, and as I discussed with Tom, it is my intention to take on the issues of the day in my commentary twice every week with the same energy, passion and commitment until the end of June.

Contrary to what has been suggested, I have decided to clear some things off my plate so that I can devote my time and attention to some exciting and empowering projects that The Smiley Group, Inc. and other divisions of my company have underway this summer, this fall and beyond.

I look forward to continuing the dialogue on Tuesday and in the coming months.


April 12, 2008


Clinton Pastor Backs Reverend Wright
Staff Reporter of the Sun
April 2, 2008

WASHINGTON — One of the Democratic presidential candidates has a pastor who opposed both Iraq wars, supports same-sex marriage, opposes the death penalty, and has been a passionate critic of American foreign policy. The clergyman isn’t the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, Senator Obama’s spiritual leader who has become a household name and a campaign issue for his fiery rhetoric, but the Reverend Edward Matthews, a little-known Arkansas preacher who is the closest Senator Clinton has to a pastor of her own.

While Mrs. Clinton says she would have quit Rev. Wright’s church, Rev. Matthews expressed sympathy for Rev. Wright in a 35-minute phone interview with The New York Sun.

“We preachers get irresponsible,” Rev. Matthews, the former pastor of First United Methodist Church in Little Rock, said yesterday with a laugh. His take on Rev. Wright’s now-infamous exclamation, “God Damn America,” is that many pastors, himself included, say things “that if we had to say it over again we probably wouldn’t say it in the same way.”

Rev. Matthews served as pastor of the Little Rock church from 1990 to 1998, overlapping with the final two years that the Clintons lived in Arkansas capital before Bill Clinton became president. First United Methodist remains the only church of which Mrs. Clinton is a member, according to a campaign spokesman, despite the fact that she has not lived in Arkansas for 16 years.

Rev. Matthews stayed in touch with Mrs. Clinton during her years as first lady, performing the funeral service for her father, Hugh Rodham, and attending White House prayer breakfasts at Christmas.

More recently he campaigned for Mrs. Clinton late last year during the run-up to the Iowa caucuses, and he taped a testimonial for one of her Web site features, “The Hillary I Know.”

In the interview with the Sun, Rev. Matthews voiced a sense of solidarity with the embattled Rev. Wright, the recently retired pastor of the United Church of Christ in Chicago, where Mr. Obama has been a member for more than 20 years. He bemoaned that clips of Rev. Wright’s sermons had been taken out of context and said he understood and at one time in his life even shared some of his critical views of America.

Rev. Matthews, 73, cited in particular the period during the Vietnam War, when he spoke out against America’s stance on colonialism. “I’ve come pretty close to saying in some sermons, I guess, what Jeremiah Wright did,” Mr. Matthews, referring to a time in the 1960s after he returned from a stint as a missionary in the Congo. He described his preaching style as “about as blasé as they come” compared to Rev. Wright’s, but he said that both his sermons during the Vietnam era and Rev. Wright’s today shared a critique of American foreign policy and the belief “that America’s going to have to get its act together, you know, that if we’re going to be a leader, we can’t just say, ‘America right or wrong.'”

He said that Rev. Wright’s sermon was “a totally different animal when you look at its full context,” rather than the minute-long clips widely circulated on the Internet and played nearly on a loop on cable news, which focus on his exclamation, “God Damn America” and his racially charged criticism of Mrs. Clinton.

Rev. Matthews is one of several clergymen who are likely to have influenced Mrs. Clinton over her lifetime. The pastor who made the most lasting impression, according to Mrs. Clinton’s memoir, was Rev. Donald Jones, the youth minister at the Methodist church Mrs. Clinton attended while growing up in the middle class suburb of Park Ridge, Ill. She writes that Mr. Jones introduced her to the cause of social justice and the civil rights movement. He has also been credited with aiding her transformation from “Goldwater girl” to loyal Democrat.

During Mrs. Clinton’s White House years, her pastor was J. Philip Wogaman, who served as minister of Foundry United Methodist Church in Washington, where she and her husband often attended services.

A Clinton campaign spokesman, Philippe Reines, would not identify who Mrs. Clinton now considers to be her pastor. “She is a practicing Methodist who attends church as often as her schedule allows,” Mr. Reines said. As an explanation for why she has not joined a church in Washington or New York since leaving Arkansas in 1992, he indicated that it was customary for Methodists to only belong to one church at a time.

While Rev. Matthews said he could not recall any times when his sermons generated controversy for Mrs. Clinton, he characterized his position on several hot-button political issues as to the left of hers, citing specifically her support of the death penalty and her opposition to same-sex marriage. “She’s disagreed with me on several things, but she remained a member of the church. We’ve remained close friends,” he said.

Rev. Matthews said he “totally, consistently” opposed the Iraq war, and he also opposed the first Gulf War in 1991. Asked if he was disappointed in Mrs. Clinton’s vote to authorize the American invasion in 2002, he said: “I disagree with her. Disappointed? That’s probably too strong a word.”

Rev. Matthews’s view of the war is consistent with opposition by national leaders of the United Methodist Church. The church is now considering a move to divest from Israel, but Rev. Matthews said he had not taken a position on that issue and had never discussed it with Mrs. Clinton, who has voiced strong support for the Jewish state.

Rev. Matthews said he heard Rev. Wright deliver a sermon in February, when the Chicago minister was invited to speak at an Arkansas college as part of Black History Month. Rev. Wright, he said, was emotional and even “irate” at times.

“If you are very close-minded, you would have gotten up and walked out of that. But I appreciated what he was saying.” Rev. Matthews said. “I wouldn’t have said it that way. I wouldn’t have been so animated.”

After initially declining to comment on the matter, Mrs. Clinton injected herself into the Wright controversy by telling the editorial board of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, “He would not have been my pastor.”

Her comments added fuel to the firestorm days after Mr. Obama had sought to defuse the issue with a speech on race in America in which he repudiated Rev. Wright’s offensive statements but said, “I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community.”

In the interview, Rev. Matthews said he had not spoken with Mrs. Clinton about Rev. Wright, but he tried to reconcile her statement, which he noted came during the course of a “hot” political campaign, with a woman that he described as “very open-minded” and tolerant of opposing viewpoints.

“It would be totally out of character for her to say, ‘I’m going to leave a church because I’m mad at Jeremiah Wright,'” Mr. Matthews said. “She’s just simply saying that if these were ongoing, regular kind of things, I probably would not stay a member of that church. That doesn’t mean I would quit liking him or quit respecting him or quit wanting him to be able to say what he wants to say.”


April 9, 2008

Is Obama already improving America’s image abroad?
After steady falls throughout George Bush’s term in office, global perspectives about America are growing (slightly) more positive. The annual attitudes poll commissioned by the BBC of over 17,000 people in 35 countries shows an improvement in US ratings in 11 countries and a fall in only 3. Overall 35% of people said the US had a positive influence in the world, compared with 31% a year ago; the percentage that discerned a negative influence fell from 52% from 47%. (full results)

“Analysts involved in the survey said a number of factors were at play. The US presidential primaries have showcased a less ideological, more approachable America and at the very least raised hopes of a more conciliatory approach to foreign policy once President Bush steps down.”The image of the US is already being influenced by the prospect of one of the candidates becoming president,” says Dr. Kull of PIPA. “All three talk more about multilateralism and cooperation; all express concern about the US image in the world; all express substantial concern about climate change and signal readiness to take action on that front.” (CSM)

While it is certainly true that all three candidates are viewed in a better light than Bush, the evidence gathered by The World Wants Obama Coalition (polls for example) show that Obama is by far the most popular candidate, and therefore can be given most of the credit for the improvement in the US’ image abroad. It will be interesting to see the results of the BBC attitudes poll next year if it happens a few months after President Obama’s inauguration. Our prediction is that such a poll would show a very large improvement in attitudes to the US.

Obama’s candidacy reverses anti-Americanism among immigrants in Holland
A powerful example of the way Senator Obama is changing international attitudes towards America comes from Reverend Axel, a German who ministers to a church in Amsterdam, Holland. He’s only visited the US as a child and has two American cousins, but his experiences of interfaith dialogue with Muslim immigrants in Amsterdam has given him a dramatic impression of Obama’s candidacy. When uncommitted Superdelegate Debra Kozikowski asked people to convince her which candidate to support with her vote, Axel explained:

“I live in a very multicultural neighborhood. Within 500m around the church I work in, there is a synagogue, a small Buddhist shrine, a Hindu temple and three mosques… more than 80 nationalities are represented in my district. The majority of the young people in my neighborhood are children of immigrants from Muslim countries: Morocco, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Egypt and a few others… Since 9/11, my neighborhood has seen quite a big share of Anti-Americanism: demonstrations, lots of graffiti, the burning of the American flag… my cousin Scott from Pennsylvania… got beaten up by a gang, because of his American accent. Other American friends of mine, who lived a couple of streets away, felt forced to move to another area of town which was safer for them. Shops selling US products closed down after their windows were thrown in several times. Even in my work, Anti-Americanism flared up: In an effort to reach out to the neighborhood and to bridge religious divides, my parish, in corporation with one of the more open mosques in the area started a group called ‘Dialogue’ in 2003 which every week attracts about 50 people from all backgrounds with at least 50% being Muslim. Regularly after big political events in the US (with Bush’s reelection having the worst effect) or in the Middle East, discussions in this group quickly turn fiercely political and often viciously Anti-American. I must confess, although some people were merely regurgitating talking points of radical propagandists, over the years, I could also feel genuine pain of feeling discriminated against. And although often, people wrongly expanded their anger towards the ignorance and intolerance of the Bush administration to all things American, I often could understand or even share their dislike of American politics.”

“In a nutshell, I support Barrack Obama because of what his candidacy has changed in the mindset of many of these ordinary Muslims in this inter-religious group which I moderate together with the local Imam. Shortly after Iowa, Obama was first mentioned by Mustafa, an elderly man, who emigrated here from Morocco and never before had said anything nearly positive about America. In fact, he quite shocked me, as he interrupted Bahaar, a young Muslim of Pakistani descent, who had just started a monologue about the devilish American culture and how he wanted to kill Bush, the crusader. Mustafa stood up and told him: “Well you better hurry up, then: Bush is gone by the end of this year, and you know, I think, the next President will be much, much better: He was against invading Iraq and has lived in Indonesia when he was young!” This totally changed the tone of the discussion that night and in fact, in all meetings of our group ‘Dialogue’ since then, we hardly have discussed anything else except Obama’s rise, his stance on foreign policy, his life story, what it says about American culture and what impact it may have on how the world sees America. I have to say, that personally, after moderating this group for five years now, I’m simply overwhelmed about the impact of Obama on ordinary Muslims! The last meetings were by far the most constructive and healing we have had so far. Lots of the participants are reviewing their prejudices against America or are now at least able to differentiate between American politics and Americans. The day before yesterday, at our last meeting, hot-headed Bahaar summed it up very well: “Well, I guess if Americans vote for someone like him… they can’t be all that bad!” For him, this is a radical turn of 180 degrees!!!”

“So you see, it’s amazing, what only Obama’s run has created over here: Lots of people in my neighborhood, who until now, simply believed what the propagandists told them about American politics, got active and looked up in-depth information about the US primaries and about Obama. Often also, he got covered on Al-Jazeera and other Arab TV networks and every time, I witness the effect in my neighborhood. Yesterday, I went out shopping and suddenly spotted a poster of the Obama–campaign in the window of my grocery-dealer, who immigrated to Holland from Iran. He told me that he saw him on television and got so excited that he downloaded the poster from the internet and put it up. He would love him to become president, because with him, “finally, someone will talk to the idiot running my country!” And get this: A couple of days ago, my 73 year-old neighbor Mohammed who came here from Egypt asked me to look up “on the computer”, how he can donate €5 to Obama’s campaign, because he would love an American president who understands ordinary people in Muslim countries. He was very disappointed when I told him that only US citizens can donate. He vowed, however, to pray for Obama later at the mosque!”

“As far as I’m concerned: I cannot underestimate, how much the election of Barrack Obama for next President of the USA would improve the perception of America by ordinary people around the world and especially by people living in developing and/or Muslim countries. And quite frankly, after two disastrous Bush-administrations, I can hardly wait!!! I sincerely hope, that this little story of mine can help you decide who to support on the convention of the Democratic Party!”

at 4/07/2008 Labels: Islamic World, Netherlands Bookmark this post:

Jacq said…
This is wonderful. I’m sending it to my friend for his birthday. Nothing could make him happier.

09 April 2008 04:59
lisaseviltwin said…
That was a beautiful post. It brought tears to my eyes.

I came over here from & the poster had this quote listed:
“Lots of people… who until now, simply believed what the propagandists told them about American politics, got active and looked up in-depth information about the US primaries and about Obama.. .”

That quote applies equally to many people here in the USA!

Even before he becomes president, Barack Obama is bringing people together. Thank God.

We’ll gladly accept the prayers of all of you out there. I think that’s a beautiful way to support this movement.

Thank you all from the bottom of my heart.

susan – USA

09 April 2008 07:01
myelinate said…
completely beautiful article. I truly believe all the prayers of people from all faiths are having a very positive effect on our political life here in the USA. Plz keep praying for Sen. Obama & all of us. BTW, what a great site you have here! I look forward to exploring it in the days to come! I followed a link from, I read stuff there everyday! Peace & love to the world!
I just thought of something! I would love to become penpals with one of the people from the group described, I’m sure a lot of Americans would. People all over the world have a lot more in common than different. We Americans are a better people than our current govt would suggest, which I’m sure is the case for just about every people on the planet!
Blessings and peace again, keep praying for each other!

09 April 2008 09:36
mskate said…
I just watched the “Yes, We Can” video on the French version of YouTube. It’s amazing how the world has caught the Obama fever!

09 April 2008 12:16
John Hay said…
Yes there is no doubt Barack’s appeal is worldwide. I invite readers to see my Barack profile
titled: “The Power of One” including the Akin video.

It is delighting Obama supporters all over the world. Now a growing number of Obama people are using it to motivate and encourage volunteers in the campaign.

John Hay
Go Obama yes we can!

09 April 2008 12:45
ecg3817 said…
I have always said that Barack Obama can change the world…but to hear that he is touching people all over the world right now is wonderful….People all over the world must come together…Barack Obama can make this happen….He can bring peace and understanding…so that we can start to fix some of our problems…

Please….people all over the world… pray for Barack Obama everyday…

We Love You….Yes We Can…

Barack Obama ’08

09 April 2008 15:41

Dates for Global Action
April 12: One Voice for Change rallies
Apr/May: Bridges for Obama photos

Previous posts
▼ 2008 (52)
▼ Apr (7)
Is Obama already improving America’s image abroad?…
Obama’s candidacy reverses anti-Americanism among …
Baby in Guinea Bissau named after Obama
Bridges for Obama – Global photo project
The world wants Obama – on YouTube!
“The Name of another America is Obama” – Uri Avner…
La France avec Obama!
► Mar (17)
There’s no one as Irish as Barack O’Bama!
UFOs sighted – Ugandans for Obama!
Controversial Egyptian singer backs Obama
Obama favourite in UK across all demographic group…
Obama inspires poet in Barbados
Times of London Poll: 69% for Obama
Bollywood-style tribute to Obama
Obama’s worldwide family
A Poll of Poles favours Obama
The Global movement supporting Obama is growing
Article: Germans Would Vote for Him
Jamaica Reggae tribute
Global voting websites
Swiss prefer Obama
Action: suggest policies to the Obama campaign
Poll Results: Japan, Brazil, South Africa, Iraq & …
Support for Obama at U.S.-Islamic World Forum
► Feb (25)
Palestinian Student in Gaza Launches a Campaign to…
Massive Obama victory in Democrats Abroad primary
Opinion: Obama will be good for the Turks — and t…
Kenya: Mine’s a pint of “Obama” please
Poll/Opinion: Russians for Obama
AlterNet: “One Major Difference Between Clinton an…
62% of Iraqis favour Obama
New York Observer: “Obamamania! Europe Can’t Get E…
Action: Donations for voter registration & turnout…
63% of Londoners favour Obama
openDemocracy – “Taking Obama seriously” – Anthony…
“Obama can transform the world’s image of America”…
“Obama win could win over the world” – Prof. Nalap…
It ain’t over yet! (& some videos!)
Humour: Support from “Obama city” in Japan
Action: Avaaz “Time to Change Course” petition
Why Democrats must choose Obama – Clive Crook in F…
Action: Write to unpledged superdelegates
The Guardian – Tahmima Anam
The Times (London), leader by Camilla Cavendish
Many Indonesians cheer Obama in Democrat race
Germans prefer Obama to Clinton
ABC News: “Obama’s international appeal”
Les Français préfèrent Barack Obama à Hillary Clin…
Calyspo legend The Mighty Sparrow sings for Obama
► Jan (3)
Asian diplomat says Obama’s victory would have dra…
► 2007 (2)
► Nov (2)
His foreign policy
Foreign Affairs article (Sep 07)
Obama’08 campaign website entry
Platform for Americans Abroad
Senate voting record
Senatorial website
The War We Need to Win (speach)
Wikipedia (policies page)
YouTube search
Blogs and websites
Africa for Obama
Flemish (Belgium) –
French – Adriana Evangelizt’s blog
French – Obamafrance.blogspot
French Committee 4Ob
Italian – Sogno Obama
Russian –
Swedes for Obama (in english)
UK – Brits4Obama
UK – England for Obama
World bridges photo campaign
Facebook groups (global)
A World Stand for B.O!
B.O. International Supporters
B.O. One World
FEB2 – The World Stands for Barack
Obamaism worldwide
The int. community votes 4Ob
The Whole World for B.O.
Young People Around the World Inspired by Ob
Facebook groups (local)
Arabs Support B.O.
Australia says YES!
Australians 4Ob
British Labour Party 4Ob
Brits 4Ob
Brits for Barack
Canada 4Ob
Canadians 4Ob
Danes 4Ob
Europe, Middle East & Africa Supports You
Europeans for B.O.
France 4Ob
Germany 4Ob
J’aimerais trop que Barack Obama soit Président!
Latinoamerica Apoya A Barack Obama
Les Socialistes avec B.O.
Ob supporters in Egypt
Obama ’08- Australia says YES!
Obamawonks (for US Foreign Policy wonks)
Paris 4Ob
Pour un ticket Obama / Edwards
UK – B.O. for President
UK for B.O. 2008
Immigrant communities in US
Asia-Pacific – Obama Ohana
Asian Americans 4Ob
Irish Americans 4Ob
Korean Americans 4Ob
Latinos – Amigos de Obama
South Asians 4Ob


April 9, 2008


April 07, 2008

Spike Lee: Hillary, ‘Massuh Clinton’ ‘would lie on a stack of Bibles’

The filmmaker Spike Lee, in New York Magazine, weighs in on the presidential race:

What do you think of Obama?
I’m riding my man Obama. I think he’s a visionary. Actually, Barack told me the first date he took Michelle to was Do the Right Thing. I said, “Thank God I made it. Otherwise you would have taken her to Soul Man. Michelle would have been like, ‘What’s wrong with this brother?’ ”

Does this mean you’re down on the Clintons?
The Clintons, man, they would lie on a stack of Bibles. Snipers? That’s not misspeaking; that’s some pure bulls***. I voted for Clinton twice, but that’s over with. These old black politicians say, “Ooh, Massuh Clinton was good to us, massuh hired a lot of us, massuh was good!” Hoo! Charlie Rangel, David Dinkins—they have to understand this is a new day. People ain’t feelin’ that stuff. It’s like a tide, and the people who get in the way are just gonna get swept out into the ocean.

By Ben Smith 11:57 AM
comments (272)
Amen, Spike!

Posted By: micahelinphilly | April 07, 2008 at 11:56 AM


Posted By: Petra | April 07, 2008 at 11:58 AM

Spike Lee is the man BUT! He could have been a little more articulate…IMO

Posted By: Chanell | April 07, 2008 at 11:59 AM

I’ve long felt that Spike Lee is an arrogant egotistical SOB. But on this topic, I say, RIGHT ON, and TELL IT LIKE IT IS BRO!

Hehe, that was a little tough.

Posted By: MonitaJB | April 07, 2008 at 12:00 PM

wow — real classy.

yes, the clinton’s are slave owners, and respected black politicians are domesticated house slaves.

that languague really helps unite the democrats and the country. but it’s clinton and her supporters that are racists.

Posted By: tim | April 07, 2008 at 12:01 PM

This is clearly off message to have any prominent black speak out in behalf of Obama. Someone get Lee back in the broom closet with Sharpton and Jackson. STAT.

Posted By: Mark Simmons | April 07, 2008 at 12:02 PM

Hummm, I am totally in agreement with Spike Lee……Must be damn cold in hell right now….I knew Global warming was a Lie.

Posted By: Carlisleboy | April 07, 2008 at 12:08 PM

Those who criticize Spike’s comments should study history more. Or read more. They are parrelled from the classic novel ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’.

Posted By: Retnep | April 07, 2008 at 12:10 PM

AMEN brother, Amen. Serial LIARS the Clintons are. How come no one asks Chelsea why she sat QUIETLY as her mother told the sniper story? Chelsea KNOWS it was a lie A WHOPPER,because she was there. She must know first hand what incredible liars her parents both are.

Posted By: KMG | April 07, 2008 at 12:18 PM

Spike is right on, but I would add that the Clintons are equal opportunity massuhs. Look how they villified Richardson when he failed to say yessuhm.

Posted By: carmen | April 07, 2008 at 12:21 PM

It might not have been PC, but what Spike said in essence is that: (1) he supports Obama candidacy and was happy that he could give Micheele and Barack a topic of discourse during their courtship. (2) the Clinton’s are factually dishonest (we know this to be true on a number of occasions) and that even under subpeona they would craft a story to suit their purposes and agenda until proven otherwise and (3) that old-line Black political leaders feel some type responsibility to uphold the house of Clinton because they were much better to them than any other Democratic leaders in recent history (also subjectively true). Outside of the personalized attack in Spike delivery, I don’t see any reason to doubt the accuracy of his statements.

Posted By: Eyeswideopen | April 07, 2008 at 12:23 PM

Meanwhile. Unreported by this Blog. Bloomberg news raises issue of Clinton tax deductions for “maintenance services.” Clearly, it “pays” to be a maid at the Clinton household: “Among other details the couple listed $250,000 in cleaning and maintenance expenses on their home for 2003 and 2004 for which they took a partial deduction for their separate home offices.”

Posted By: Earl | April 07, 2008 at 12:24 PM

Its about time that African Anericans stopped putting up with the Clintons and all Democratic politicians that continually take their support for granted. Name one thing that Clinton did for African Americans? Remember Clinton signed Welfare reform that made working people take two different jobs at McDonald’s because he eliminated support for low income working people. But he passed NAFTA to help his corporate buddies ship jobs overseas to make record profits. The only people Bill and Hillary care about are Bill and Hillary. Look at the record not what comes out out their mouth during an election.

Posted By: Richard | April 07, 2008 at 12:25 PM

Spike lee is the man!

Posted By: great19899 | April 07, 2008 at 12:25 PM

He shouldn’t have made a pubic statement like that… but he is right about what he said. People already know it’s true so he didn’t need to say it.

Posted By: louis | April 07, 2008 at 12:28 PM

oh my did he really say it that bluntly ???? cough cough its true its true.

Posted By: TEDDY | April 07, 2008 at 12:28 PM

It is true. The Clintons are congenital liars (David Geffen will attest to this too) and they did nothing for any group. They are mediocrity at its finest.

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 12:28 PM


Posted By: Dom | April 07, 2008 at 12:28 PM

Hillary Clinton 2006: In her speech Monday, Clinton, who has never served in the House, told the audience that “when you look at the way the House of Representatives has been run, it has been run like a plantation, and you know what I’m talking about.”

Posted By: Penn-Poll | April 07, 2008 at 12:30 PM


Posted By: EDFromNH | April 07, 2008 at 12:37 PM

those Clintons have gone too far. the lies have got to stop… i bet if you dig a little deeper we will see that their involved with this Columbian deal, that her advisor backs. his stepping down is just abother lie and cover up. She wants the nation to think shes so against fair trade and Nafta that she denounced Penn. Im sure he’s the fall guy for the Cintons investments. Their millions of dollars should be investigated.

Posted By: Flo Nightingale | April 07, 2008 at 12:39 PM

As a middle aged, middle class white woman, I agree 100 percent with Spike Lee in his assessment.

Posted By: vwcat | April 07, 2008 at 12:43 PM

Thanks Spike, for telling it like it is. The Clinton’s black support is going down the drain the more Hillary stays in the race.

Posted By: Michael | April 07, 2008 at 12:45 PM

Republicans have been saying for years that the Clintons take black support for granted. In SC, a lot of blacks began to realize that.

Posted By: Mark | April 07, 2008 at 12:49 PM

He is just speaking the truth. WAKE UP HILLRAISERS you are being used.

Posted By: joe st louis | April 07, 2008 at 12:50 PM

Probably the best summary I’ve heard of the choice we have in this primary. The Clinton’s were the best choice we had for the 90s. But in case anyone isn’t aware, this is no longer the 90s. We can choose the conservative DLC establishment Democrat, or we can choose the netroots Democrat who has effectively created the new fundraising base of the party, is about to redraw a more robust electoral map to victory, and who is generating the most excitement. Obama is ushering in a new era where progressives walk tall.

Posted By: jgeeting | April 07, 2008 at 12:50 PM

LOL! Spike should leave some comments on Politico. Ben can you have him as a guest blogger? He’s evaluating this the same I and most of my African American family and friends feel. SAY IT LOUD! I’M AMERICAN AND I’M PROUD!

Posted By: Erik | April 07, 2008 at 12:51 PM

Amen to that

Posted By: jarno Hussein | April 07, 2008 at 12:57 PM

In 1961, a young African-American man, after hearing President John F. Kennedy’s challenge to, “Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country,” gave up his student deferment, left college in Virginia and voluntarily joined the Marines. In 1963, this man, having completed his two years of service in the Marines, volunteered again to become a Navy corpsman. (They provide medical assistance to the Marines as well as to Navy personnel.) The man did so well in corpsman school that he was the valedictorian and became a cardiopulmonary technician. Not surprisingly, he was assigned to the Navy’s premier medical facility, Bethesda Naval Hospital, as a member of the commander in chief’s medical team, and helped care for President Lyndon B. Johnson after his 1966 surgery. For his service on the team, which he left in 1967, the White House awarded him three letters of commendation. What is even more remarkable is that this man entered the Marines and Navy not many years after the two branches began to become integrated. While this young man was serving six years on active duty, Vice President Dick Cheney, who was born the same year as the Marine/sailor, received five deferments, four for being an undergraduate and graduate student and one for being a prospective father. Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, both five years younger than the African-American youth, used their student deferments to stay in college until 1968. Both then avoided going on active duty through family connections. Who is the real patriot? The young man who interrupted his studies to serve his country for six years or our three political leaders who beat the system? Are the patriots the people who actually sacrifice something or those who merely talk about their love of the country? After leaving the service of his country, the young African-American finished his final year of college, entered the seminary, was ordained as a minister, and eventually became pastor of a large church in one of America’s biggest cities. This man is Rev. Jeremiah Wright, the retiring pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ, who has been in the news for comments he made over the last three decades. Since these comments became public we have heard criticisms, condemnations, denouncements and rejections of his comments and him. We’ve seen on television, in a seemingly endless loop, sound bites of a select few of Rev. Wright’s many sermons. Some of the Wright’s comments are inexcusable and inappropriate and should be condemned, but in calling him “unpatriotic,” let us not forget that this is a man who gave up six of the most productive years of his life to serve his country. How many of Wright’s detractors, Rush Limbaugh and Bill O’Reilly to name but a few, volunteered for service, and did so under the often tumultuous circumstances of a newly integrated armed forces and a society in the midst of a civil rights struggle? Not many. While words do count, so do actions. Let us not forget that, for whatever Rev. Wright may have said over the last 30 years, he has demonstrated his patriotism.,0,92000.story in honor of “christian

Posted By: bill | April 07, 2008 at 12:59 PM

This is exactly what Spike is trying to do here people. No one is commenting on the fact that Hillary CLinton lied about her experience. They are counting on the fact that race is going to be the topic of discussion and not looking at the true issue and its not race, but race is very prevalent in todays society.

Posted By: Hello!!! | April 07, 2008 at 01:01 PM

What is wrong with the people in this country? The Clintons are obviously liars. They don’t tell the truth until they are forced. Hillary lied continuously and even when Sinbad admitted she was lying she still denied it by saying that he was a comedian. I can’t see people blaming Obama everytime some body says something bad about Clinton. Obama is not responsible for all of the crazy folk or their crazy comments. But the above comments seem to be true about her lying on a stack of bibles. I want suppot a candidate lying about a small thing like this. Imagine what she will lie about in the future if she became president.

Posted By: penning | April 07, 2008 at 01:01 PM

Heh. But under no circumstance are we to believe that Black people are voting for him just because he’s Black… Being Black I can tell you that is absolute bull dung. My relatives have very good policy driven reasons to vote for him, like he’ll inspre Black people to achieve, which has nothing to do with him being Black. Or “I like his wife,” then a realtive shrieked “she’s a real Black woman!” It is so anti-intellectual it is pathetic. Although I do know people that readily admit they just want to vote for a “Black” person. I can respect a person that admits it.

Posted By: theworldisnotenough | April 07, 2008 at 01:04 PM

As an African American I know what you are saying brother, but you could have used another analogy. We have enough issues to deal with as individuals trying to understand each other. Also, why do people feel that Obama is responsible for everything that another black man says? You will find many black people using terms that are not likeable by other blacks or white and vice versa. I think we need to focus on what Obama has tried to convey in his speech on race and whatever comes out of his mouth. He has no control over other people, just as you and I have no control over other people on this blog, so why charge it to Obama, I don’t think that is fair at all.

Posted By: Angelene Frederick | April 07, 2008 at 01:05 PM

Spike for once you are talking like an AMERICAN . I’ve got a old pick-up complete with gun rack for you brother .

Posted By: nat turner | April 07, 2008 at 01:06 PM

I’ve never been a fan of Lee, but his comments are absolutely accurate. The Clintons have long shown themselves to be rank opportunists who will cozy up to anyone, as long as that person is useful to them. The moment that usefulness ends, the person is discarded. The same with groups. When Bill badly needed the black vote to win the White House, he and Hillary masqueraded as the best friends that blacks ever had. Now, that a black man and the black vote is standing between Hillary and her goal, the Clintons have resorted to every shameless trick to inject race into the campaign in an effort to hobble Obama.

Posted By: richard hincha | April 07, 2008 at 01:07 PM

Obviously, seeing the sort of statements the the Clinton supporters make,(Ed Rendell) many questions surround Clinton’s candidacy.

Posted By: TEE | April 07, 2008 at 01:08 PM

Hey sarcasm off who ever told you that white people were entertained by Spike Lee’s movies? They lied to ya man

Posted By: There is One God and Obama is His Name | April 07, 2008 at 01:10 PM

I am a Native American and find Spike Lee as a funny guy. The Massuh is a bit to much. But I understand why he said it. But African Americans have a chance to vote like they have been doing for years. Bill got the minority vote like Obama is getting now. It’s the moronic Media that is twisting this into a race issue that now won’t go away.. White people, don’t get mad at Blacks, get mad at your own WHITE MEDIA for spinning this into a race bait and fetch race..

Posted By: RED SKY | April 07, 2008 at 01:11 PM

Spike, don’t forget Stephanie Tubbs…”I’m committed to Mussah Clinton!” all she is missing is the knotted scraf wrapped around her head…Mammy.

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 01:19 PM

Spike, just did the right thing! (sorry bout that pun).

Posted By: Calvin | April 07, 2008 at 01:24 PM

From reading these comments, it seems like the white mans biggest fear is an outspoken black man. Don’t be afraid, because our next president will be a black man. hahaha

Posted By: Genius | April 07, 2008 at 01:24 PM

Speaking truth to power! Preach on, brother Lee!

Posted By: thebronze | April 07, 2008 at 01:26 PM


Posted By: rafael Hussein | April 07, 2008 at 01:39 PM

Vanessa, what has Senator Obama ever done or said that is racist? I would like to know, and I don’t mean to sound nasty. It’s just that, I know some people who harbor prejudices. Some of them I consider friends. Does that make me a racist?

Posted By: Tony | April 07, 2008 at 01:43 PM

what does massuh mean?

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 01:50 PM

At least Spike noticed that the Clintonestas and Democrats like them are nothing more then liberal plantation owners keeping the blacks dependant on the government. We can only pray he opens his eyes a little further and eventually votes for empowerment for all Americans and votes Republican.

Posted By: Right-minded Frank | April 07, 2008 at 01:50 PM

Dem2008 says “you can grab any black artist and they’ll say that….because they want a 1/2 black president”…. That’s the CRAP Hill-Billy supporters are thinking, that Obama’s in because of Black Pride. Well, there’s apparently a lot of that Black Pride in a lot more whites, blacks, Asians, etc. combined that Hillary is BEHIND in the popular votes, delegates, money raised, states won. Face it: Hill-Billy is losing votes of all colors.

Posted By: Jim | April 07, 2008 at 01:53 PM

You all know Spike Lee has been angry for years!!! I agree with his comments on Rangel and David Dinkins!!! They want more money for themselves. They both live in neighborhoods that separate themselves from the average African American!!!

Posted By: djw | April 07, 2008 at 01:57 PM

I’m an Obama supporter. I also am a black man. For those of you who are trying to use this “massuh clinton” comment to say that Spike is criticizing Hillary then you need to read it again. He’s actually criticizing black political leaders who follow the Clintons around blindly. I don’t agree wholeheartedly with that criticism, but he’s free to express it. This is America. However, he did criticize Clinton herself but only for the Sniper lie, and she totally deserves that one.

Posted By: Gary | April 07, 2008 at 02:16 PM

RIGHT ON! Spike Lee, you can tell a brother from Brooklyn, the place of the well grounded, my roots!! Lee is surely correct on both counts here and pretty soon we’ll be throwing life rafters out to the ocean for all those field n—–s who are gurgling and sputtering and choking they made a mistake and come save them!!! OBAMA ’08!!!!!

Posted By: RuthieM | April 07, 2008 at 02:26 PM

Ben, wow you twisted what he said for a headline. He is saying what everyone I know is saying about the Clintons. They lie and they would do so on a stack of bibles. Not exactly news. As for the last part, he isn’t attacking Hillary. He is going after the people who support her out of some debt to Bill. And I agree, they can either move out of the way or get ran over, regardless of race.

Posted By: TNDem | April 07, 2008 at 02:32 PM

Hillary Lied about her years in the White House, the records show. Hillary Lied about Whitewater,Travelgate,FBIgate,Troopergate,Rose Law Firm tax lawyer Vince Foster get’s killed right before the FBI indictment, Bosniagate, Naftagate,Head of Campaign Strategygate with Nafta. Head of her Campaign Mrs Williams work for a lending Group that bilked homeowners out of Millions. Now they support the Sheiks of Dubai and Abu Dabai that funnel MILLIONS to know terrorist organizations in the Middle East for Protection, security and favors..,2933,265925,00.html Fired more campaign supporters because of wrong doings. And White women and hillbilly’s think she can do no wrong. This is comedy, GET ‘EM SPIKE!

Posted By: RED SKY | April 07, 2008 at 02:32 PM

Is Spike Lee black?

Posted By: cal | April 07, 2008 at 02:36 PM

Why is it that only Obama’s supporters words become his words? The last time I checked he was a grown man who can speak for himself.

Posted By: Sandra | April 07, 2008 at 02:37 PM

Some of you people are just silly. I guess it takes an African American to know that “Massuh” comments were directed at African American politicians, so why are so many white people in here up in arms over the comment? Unfortunately, what he said was true. Apparently, he just didn’t say it to your liking. Get over it.

Posted By: Link | April 07, 2008 at 02:37 PM

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 02:40 PM

Spike Lee’s comments are situated in a historical discourse that examines the interplay between systemic effects of slavery and internalized racism. Before making these emotional, knee-jerk, reactive comments, you would do well to educate yourself in the discourse before passing judgement. When you understand the context, FULLY, you understand the social commentary that Lee makes. His choice of words seems a non point. The thrust of any artistic movement or artist is freedom of expression. — The tit for tat that consistently reigns on these blogs is so unproductive. Pick up a book sometime and don’t be surprised to find that everything you learned from your K-12 teachers wasn’t the “God’s honest truth”. Wake up and Grow Up.

Posted By: Educate Yourselves | April 07, 2008 at 02:41 PM

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 02:42 PM

In addition to still being a terrific filmmaker (that bank heist movie a cpl yrs ago w/ jodie foster is great) he is dead on accurate.

Posted By: natenyc | April 07, 2008 at 02:43 PM


Posted By: scadenhead | April 07, 2008 at 02:45 PM

For the love of God please tell me what does massuh mean? I am not American and google isnt helping.

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 02:46 PM

Soon massuh will become the “m” word?

Posted By: cal | April 07, 2008 at 02:50 PM

I’m feeling you Spike, right on! JH Houston,Tx

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 02:53 PM

African Child, you have to understand that black Americans have been raised as victims. They’re taught that they are not as good as the whites, and can’t compete with them. Your ancestors captured and sold their ancestors, so they have good reason to be ****ed. Unfortunately, they’ve been taken advantage of by black leaders as well as everyone else who thought they could make a buck off of them. Without a strong father figure in the home, they’re doomed. And, way too many don’t have that.

Posted By: Sam | April 07, 2008 at 02:53 PM

Spike, why aren’t we seeing more prominent, young, accomplished, black people speak out. Where’s: Denzel Washington, Jay Z, Sean Diddy, Emmit Smith, Tiki Barber, etc. etc. Barack does reflect a new day, a new vision. He excites young people because we yearn for a “color” free society where we’re all equal. Where is everyone, why aren’t they speaking out and helping to close the deal here?

Posted By: JohnA | April 07, 2008 at 02:57 PM

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 02:46 PM, get a hold of the TV movie Roots. Massuh is what the slaves called their masters.

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 03:01 PM

JohnA, why aren’t we seeing more prominent, young, accomplished, white people speak out? You’ve got the whole Hollywood crowd who donated millions to the Clintons. Where is their outrage at having been duped by such liars? Shame on Hollywood.

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 03:05 PM


Posted By: DeniseGA | April 07, 2008 at 03:10 PM

Lee is talking about black politicians so uncritically voting for Clinton. So mussah is in that context. How is he being racist?

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 03:18 PM

Let’s remind all the HILL-BILLIES here that if this were one of the (three left) Hollywood stars still supporting Hill-Billy’s campaign talking smack about Obama, the Hill-Billies would be really quiet right now. They would be reading all the PA polls instead, which all show Obama gaining and tying Hill-Billy Clinton.

Posted By: Jim | April 07, 2008 at 03:21 PM

I think it’s great that people like Obama can have an influence on film makers like Spike Lee. Lee’s always been a bit fanatical in his choice of words, maybe Obama in the White House will even out his temper and give him a balanced perspective. And can I remind you paranoid racists out there that Obama is half white – any argument that he is racist is laughable. He’d have to hate himself. Obama 08!

Posted By: Jungleboy | April 07, 2008 at 03:46 PM

I agree. Anyone who says that Obama is racist or not a patriot is simply showing their own ignorance. The only thing they accomplish is making themselves look like a fool and alienating anyone who already wasn’t that ignorant. Now if you want to argue policy, then we can have a discussion.

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 03:50 PM

You go Spike Lee. Gobama.

Posted By: Cascadian | April 07, 2008 at 04:04 PM

Why are all the ARCHIE BUNKER wannabees keeping Spewing the news about Obama old Pastor? The Media got your heads spinning with pig dung. Rev Wright in my own NATIVE AMERICAN words, the Rev got ahead of himself since 9-11. In his old age and media hyped wisdom, took what was on many Americans and Europeans minds and ranted it into his own words.. Yes it was dumb of him to do it and tape it. But a racist he is not!! Crazy Yes.. Angry Loud mouth, Yep! Anti-American with the freedom of speech, NO.. Racist calling out a person whom seems racist, is like calling a cat, hey cat.. The Media hyped it again and called him a racist and anti-American. How conveinient… They want this to be ugly and get their highest ratings in years.. WAKE UP PEOPLE!! Then all the Racist show up from their caves, like they need more racist rants to co-inside with their racist veiws. There you go. Rev Wright should fit well with White Racist society idea’s or better yet, to all those who opposed the war, Rev Wright is your man of action since he served this country well. He gave God’s word to Obama. Obama took the Christian word and nothing else to his soul. Rev Wright until 9-11 did he start to spew DISPLACED ANGER, not HATE.. But racist only see hate, so they can feel hate when they want to see it.. What a silly bunch you are.. It’s like Catholic’s all knew for 40 plus years that the Priest were molesting children, but keep going to the same churches even now.

Posted By: RED SKY | April 07, 2008 at 04:13 PM

I agree with Spike that the Clintons will lie at any time. goooooo Spike Obama rocks..

Posted By: NWBurnout | April 07, 2008 at 04:16 PM

I think that most whites and some Blacks miss the point Spike Lee is trying to make. I don’t think HE is making it about race. I think (in my opinion) what he is trying to say that older Black politicians play to this allegiance to the Clintons much like some slaves during slavery times. I don’t think he is calling anyone a racist or can one infer that he is a racist. I think that when anyone mentions that Obama is Black or makes any reference to it, it’s pulling race into this election. I don’t know what rocks people have been under, but race is in this election. Any time a Black American runs for public office it’s about race. Skin color is not anything we can hide, take off, or ignore. It is who we are, whether the masses want to realize it or not. You can hate Spike Lee for his comment, but all in all, it’s his opinion. Just like you have yours. Stop being so judgemental. If you don’t like Obama, exercise your right to vote and vote for someone else. In the end you will be doing yourself a disservice because no matter what you say, he is the best candidate to lead this country into a more positive situation both domestically and internationally.

Posted By: annonymous | April 07, 2008 at 04:19 PM

Sydney – the last thing the Clintons would want is to be judged by their character. They never did anything for any of their consituents, simply enriching themselves through their powerful positions. They lie constantly. They have treated women abhorrantly. They have led to the deaths of thousands of Mexicans simply trying to find their way to a better way of life in order to score cheap political points and in no way make our country safer. Do I need to go on? Obama on the other hand is brilliant and has dedicated his life to serving others. More than words, Sydney. For everyone who keeps talking about Obama’s so-called lies, I want an itemized list of them. I’m sure they’ve been debunked but you simply don’t care to provide that part of the story so I will.

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 04:21 PM

HILL-ARIOUS! So true Spike. As a young black woman I have seen my parents and others of the negroid persuasion say the same thing. Black people who are not doing research… but are voting for the Clintons’ ??cause Clinton been good to black folks” is frustrating. Thankfully, the younger generation is doing their homework!!!

Posted By: Tahari Austin | April 07, 2008 at 04:23 PM

I feel sorry for the poor saps who think that anybody is “bringing race into this”. These are the same idiots who think that racism doesn’t exist just because it’s underground. No one has set race relations back. In fact. They’re getting better, because it’s being talked about. If you ain’t about progression, the fall back! This is white guilt in reverse lol. No one faults white people for having predjudices, but it makes it three times worse when they act as if they don’t have any. Spike Lee’s movies were all about politics in some way, so the unlearned need to fall back. He isn’t going to pull any punches, and he definitely isn’t gonna sugar coat his speech to save anyone’s feelings. Dead on man, dead on.

Posted By: Queixada | April 07, 2008 at 04:24 PM

All the white people here pretending to be black can stop perpetrating. People with half a brain can spot you a mile away..

Posted By: Queixada | April 07, 2008 at 04:32 PM

I agree with what Spike Lee said, its the truth. But he could have said it better. It makes for a good quote in the media. They are going to try to see if his quote ruffles some feathers.

Posted By: Will n louisville | April 07, 2008 at 04:36 PM

I must say I agree with Spike on this one.

Posted By: Lady Hussein | April 07, 2008 at 04:40 PM

She signed a pledge – no delegates in FL or MI

Posted By: mom | April 07, 2008 at 04:42 PM

I feel the same way as Spike Lee, I never thought I’d say that.

Posted By: Daniel | April 07, 2008 at 04:54 PM

Could we tone it dowm a bit. I support Obama but could be keep the emotions under raps. I will take the will and vote of all Americans to elect Obama. He needs to ride the tide social justice and fair play for all. Never have I seen this amount of white voters in support of a non-white candidate. People America has grown.

Posted By: chris | April 07, 2008 at 04:56 PM

“Massuh Clinton was good to us, massuh hired a lot of us, massuh was good!” Have a white person say these words and he/she has Sharpton and Jackson crawling all over him/her for racism. Black guy Spike says it and it is fine. Double standards all around.

Posted By: Silas Warner | April 07, 2008 at 05:18 PM

Spike and Jeremiah speak the sad but obvious truth: Massuh Clinton is doing the black people the way he did Monica and the way he does anyone who gets in his way, he RIDES EM DIRTY. Throw in Missus Hillary and its nothin but a THREESOME. They be RIDIN DIRTY and SWITCHIN OFF.

Posted By: NOMOHILLARY | April 07, 2008 at 05:22 PM

Judge the Clintons by their characters? Bwahhhhhh! Even King would role his eyes on this one.

Posted By: morally bankrupt | April 07, 2008 at 05:59 PM

Spike: I have bad news for you. You voted for Clinton twice and now see that it was just pure BS. CONGRATULATIONS!!! That automatically makes you… a republican. Welcome to the club! We all agree with you. Clinton was pure BS.

Posted By: franky | April 07, 2008 at 06:23 PM

Some people keep saying they will not support Obama because someone black said blah blah blah. Some of you hypocritical (white people)people are an inch away from being full blown racist anyway, if anytime someone black says something offensive it equates to statements like ” I for one WILL not support Obama” . Well dont. WITH OR WITHOUT THE PRESIDENCY CHANGE IS ALREADY HERE. SO DEAL WITH IT ANY WAY YOU MUST.

Posted By: tracksta | April 07, 2008 at 06:55 PM

Awesome! Alright Spike!

Posted By: AG | April 07, 2008 at 06:59 PM

Yo. Well, I would have to agree with the brother. P.S. What does “Massuh” mean?

Posted By: sophia*nyc | April 07, 2008 at 07:54 PM

Newsflash folks…Spike Lee is a MOVIE DIRECTOR. Why are you people now blaming Obama for Spike’s comments? Sheesh….get a grip for God’s sake!

Posted By: Gilberto Gil | April 07, 2008 at 08:40 PM

Spike Lee is being funny, provocative, in his words as he is in his films. Sheesh. He likes getting rises out of people. All the people here saying that this is “Obama injecting race into the campaign” or whatever are really grasping at straws, for reasons we all know. (Seen the polls today? Seen the superdelegate count? Seen the Mark Penn fiasco?) Thanks, Ben for sharing this moment of entertainment and thanks, all of you intrepid posters, for adding your own humorous notes.

Posted By: lostintranslation | April 07, 2008 at 08:42 PM

Spike cracks me up – always. He’s hilarious.

Posted By: rikyrah | April 07, 2008 at 08:58 PM

to Massuh_Spike You say 99% of blacks are voting for Obam a anyway huh. We are supposed to allow your selfish azz people to destroy this country before realizing it’s time for Them to leave political office. Screw that shyt. You’re mad because people choose not to let you all fukc this country up any further and just stand by. Thats the real issue, you people believe this country is yours, to completely fuk up and destroy if necessary. If its to be fixed, it must be shown to the world THAT YOU FIXED IT. You people believe that no job , political office, or position of status is to be given to a minority until the prestige and power are all being orchestrated by some man behind a curtain. They will release the presidency when they have a secret government already in place. Then the presidency is equivalent to a figurehead position, ie queen of england

Posted By: tracksta | April 07, 2008 at 09:20 PM

thank you Spike Lee! You forgot about Congresswoman Shelia Jackson-Lee, Maxine Waters and Stephnie Jones-Tubbs those wash women will do anything for Massuh and nim. You know some black people still think they are on a COTTON PLANTATION…

Posted By: AlligatorShuz | April 07, 2008 at 09:37 PM

As a black 54 year old woman I am amazed and saddened, although not surprised, to see so many white people that still don’t have a clue. I’m not playing “the victim” because I live a good life in the greatest country in the world but anybody that thinks it is easy to be black in America is living in their own narrow-minded reality, not the real world, and to have the audacity to be so angry is alarming. Try walking a mile in my shoes and see if you’re singing the same song. Your ignorance is astounding.

Posted By: Rademi | April 07, 2008 at 09:43 PM

Spike Lee you hit it on the nail!

Posted By: ceci | April 07, 2008 at 10:10 PM

This is not a race issue, not by a long shot. Spike is right about the BS. It is the dawn of a new era. Senator Obama comes in with a clean slate and a vision of change. How much progress he makes remains to be seen. However this is clearly a step in the right direction. We are now in our twentieth year of governance by two families. Should we make it twenty eight. I don’t think so. We’re in close proximity but we are not Cuba. Let freedom change.

Posted By: NYC | April 07, 2008 at 10:41 PM

When black people act on their self interest, its because their black. But when white people act in their self interest, its patriotic/normal. Shut up.

Posted By: Queixada | April 07, 2008 at 10:44 PM

“Ben is such a tool…his last five posts are SPIKE LEE (angry black man)…(high profile)Clinton Boycott…Obama can’t win over white men…Denver Hookers?…and that “shadowy” SEIU…Wonder who he’s rooting for? Seems like anybody but Obama. Lame.” Can we please stop ragging on Ben. Honestly, EVERY post he makes he’s supposedly picked a side. He makes one about Clinton messing up or being wrong, he’s an Obama-lover. He makes a post about something Obama said being controversial or Obama making a mistake and suddenly he’s Clinton’s personal aide. In all honesty Ive seen Ben make just about as many posts supporting Hillary as he has Barrack. So enough with blaming Ben Smith for news you don’t like. And for the record, so this doesn’t look like some Clinton supporter defending their candidate, I’m voting for Obama. I just don’t like people blaming the reporters for the bad news.

Posted By: | April 07, 2008 at 10:49 PM

Totally agree with you, Spike. The day of Bill Clinton as the big, white massa man is over. I’d would go you one step further: these two Clintons would lie to God’s face.

Posted By: Dayahka | April 07, 2008 at 11:23 PM

Clinton Body Count: The life you save may be your own. Liars, thieves, and conspirators!!!

Posted By: Gary | April 07, 2008 at 11:25 PM

I am a 55 year old white man in Mississippi and I totally agree with Spike Lee. It bewilders me that so many peole do not see through the Clintons. Hillary is worse about lying than Bill. I am definitely in Obama’s corner.

Posted By: Larry | April 08, 2008 at 12:18 AM

AmeriKKKans spend too much time on Black and White! The same AmeriKKKans call themselves Christians, attend church, and pretend that they are 100% perfect!

Posted By: Tupac | April 08, 2008 at 12:30 AM

Blacks can say things like that about other blacks, just like blacks can use the “N” word. That’s just how it is. But he’s right on about the Clintons. I voted for Lying Bill twice, too, but I will never vote for Hillary. Bill was a personable SOB, but she just leaves me cold.

Posted By: Jayne1955 | April 08, 2008 at 12:46 AM

People Stop allowing these racist people to waste your time. Stop denouncing/condeming your social circle upon their request. I am no more responsible for my twin brothers statements than he is for mine. I came across a post by some women who stated “do catholics leave the church when they find out a priest has been sticking his dyck inside childrens azz and or mouths . To hell with the sanatized word molestation. Say it like it is, so the kids (victims) can understand. Sling that trash right back in there faces, they got way more **** under the rug than anyone in this country.

Posted By: tracksta | April 08, 2008 at 01:10 AM

Dear Kathy, You white savages were living in caves and feeding on rodents when Africans built the Pyramids and many more engineering marvels in Sudan (Mero?) and Ethiopia or Abyssinia (Axumite Empire). Read a little bit of history and visit some African countries before you open you filthy and ignorant mouth. Blacks started civilization some 9000 years ago but as witnessed through out history, nothing is permanent, hence they live off of “food stumps”. However, their eventual return to their historic place is only a matter of time. In the meantime, just to jolt your fuzzy memory a bit, there wasn’t a country called US, Britain or France when the Abyssinians were one of the four great powers of the world along with China and Persia, pioneering the way from barbarism to civilization. In case you don’t know, they are the only African (black) power to ever defeat a modern European colonial power (Italy) and send shock waves through you lil whiteys neck of the wood. Not just that; after the the American civil war was over, both the unionist and confederate ruthless and racist generals like William T. Sherman and William Wing ?Old Blizzards? Loring enlisted in the Khedive of Egypt army and invaded Ethiopia to only be annihilated by a black army.
In effect Ethiopia, an African country, fought three continental armies of North American led by Colonel Loring, Asia Minor led by the Ottomans and quasi-African-Arab-European Egypt led by Ismael Pasha, the Khedive of Egypt. The plans of the Khedive to conquer the ?Barbarian Habashis? and take their Blue Nile Basin was childish in itself as the Ethiopians with little arms that they possessed, had a more sophisticated and intelligent plan that sent the pitiful invaders running to the shoreline of Mistewa (Massawa) where they were having real fits of nervous breakdowns.
Of course blacks have a proud and heroic history. Just because they didn’t come to Europe and America recently, to burn and plunder whites’ wealth, and enslave, rape and hang some of you from the tree as you have done to blacks in your murderous recent past, that doesn’t mean that blacks are any less intelligent than whites. If anything, it proves that blacks don’t have your kind of “intelligence,” which simply is an innate visceral reaction of a racist and murderous grid. Cheers!

Posted By: Remember Adewa | April 08, 2008 at 01:38 AM

vince f is a trip (in a good way)! all i can say is PREACH, spike, PREACH!!! OBAMA ’08!

Posted By: sickofhermess | April 08, 2008 at 01:54 AM

Race has been a part of this campaign especially leading up to the voting in the heavily black populated areas(by the media and citizens alike never letting us forget about Race in America). Why is most people so afraid of a black president? History will still be history. You can’t erase history with the first black president! Are the citizens of the US really afraid that they will have to put President Obama in the American History book oppose to the notation only in the Black History Book in February (The official Black History month). Needless to say the shortest month of the year. Furthermore, only one month for Black History. We have 12 months, why not split it 50/50 or take it away and call it American History and include all Americans regardless of color. I personally take offense to Black History. Regardless of person’s color, history is history. Or is it “his story?” February, Black History Month and Barak Obama record breaking fundraising month (oh so sweet). Isn’t that ironic? March, not so bad either. Oh, my . . . we must change history! Why is the US so afraid of a black president? Here’s to you Rachel and likes of Rachel . . . Why do you think African American need to be vindicated? Ok, lets assume we need to be vindicated. It will take 100 black presidents doing the right thing (not just for black and white but for all races). Posted By: rachel | April 07, 2008 at 12:32 PM

Posted By: PeaceLily | April 08, 2008 at 02:37 AM

Spike is not the only one callin’ em like he sees em! Hillary has done her share!

Posted By: myshell | April 08, 2008 at 08:37 AM

e-mail: bsmith@politico. com

Truth-tellers unite! Spike is on-target, just like Olbermann. Truth hurts a bit.

Posted By: knixphan | April 08, 2008 at 01:22 PM

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April 2, 2008


Backer: “I’d Say Barack Obama is Going to Be the Next President”Tuesday, April 1st, 2008Article
Though Congressman/superdelegate Emanuel Cleaver supports Clinton, he says of Obama:

“I will be stunned if he’s not the next president of the United States.”

Likens race to uphill football game: “Even though I don’t expect the Kansas City Chiefs to beat the Indianapolis Colts, I cheer for the Kansas City Chiefs.”


April 1, 2008


Obama is the change that America has tried to hide
Only one candidate offers the radical departure for the 21st century the US needs, for its own sake and the rest of the world’s
Alice Walker The Guardian, Tuesday April 1 2008 Article historyAbout this articleClose This article appeared in the Guardian on Tuesday April 01 2008 on p32 of the Comment debate section. It was last updated at 00:05 on April 01 2008. I have come home from a long stay in Mexico to find – because of the presidential campaign, and especially because of the Obama-Clinton race for the Democratic nomination – a new country existing alongside the old. On any given day we, collectively, become the goddess of the three directions and can look back into the past, look at ourselves just where we are, and take a glance, as well, into the future. It is a space with which I am familiar.

When I joined the freedom movement in Mississippi in my early 20s, it was to come to the aid of sharecroppers, like my parents, who had been thrown off the land they’d always known – the plantations – because they attempted to exercise their “democratic” right to vote. I wish I could say white women treated me and other black people a lot better than the men did, but I cannot. It seemed to me then, and it seems to me now, that white women have copied all too often the behaviour of their fathers and their brothers. In the south, especially in Mississippi, and before that, when I worked to register voters in Georgia, the broken bottles thrown at my head were gender-free.

I made my first white women friends in college; they loved me and were loyal to our friendship, but I understood, as they did, that they were white women and that whiteness mattered.

I am a supporter of Barack Obama because I believe he is the right person to lead the United States at this time. He offers a rare opportunity for the country and the world to do better. It is a deep sadness to me that many of my feminist white women friends cannot see him, cannot hear the fresh choices toward movement he offers. That they can believe that millions of Americans choose Obama over Clinton only because he is a man, and black, feels tragic to me.

When I have supported white people, it was because I thought them the best to do the job. If Obama were in any sense mediocre, he would be forgotten by now. He is, in fact, a remarkable human being, not perfect but humanly stunning, like King was and like Mandela is. He is the change America has been trying desperately and for centuries to hide, ignore, kill. The change it must have if we are to convince the rest of the world that we care about people other than our (white) selves.

True to my inner goddess of the three directions, however, this does not mean I agree with everything Obama stands for. We differ on important points, probably because I am older; I am a woman and person of three colours (African, Native American, European); I was raised in the south; and, when I look at the world after 64 years of life, there is not one person I wish to see suffer.

I want a grown-up attitude to Cuba, for instance, a country and people I love. I want an end to the war immediately, and I want the soldiers to be encouraged to destroy their weapons and drive themselves out of Iraq. I want the Israeli government to be made accountable for its behaviour to the Palestinians, and I want the people of the US to cease acting as if they don’t understand what is going on. But most of all I want someone with the confidence to talk to anyone, “enemy” or “friend”, and this Obama has shown he can do.

It is hard to relate what it feels like to see Mrs Clinton (I wish she felt self-assured enough to use her own name) referred to as “a woman” while Barack Obama is always referred to as “a black man”. One would think she is just any woman, but she is not. She carries all the history of white womanhood in the US in her person; it would be a miracle if we, and the world, did not react to this fact. How dishonest it is, to try to make her innocent of her racial inheritance.

I can easily imagine Obama sitting down and talking to any leader – or any person – in the world, with no baggage of past servitude or race supremacy to mar their talks. I cannot see the same scenario with Clinton, who would drag into 21st-century US leadership the same image of white privilege and distance from others’ lives that has so marred the country’s contacts with the rest of the world. But because Clinton is a woman and may be very good at what she does, many people (some in my own family) originally favoured her. I understand this, almost. It is because there is little memory, apparently, of the foundational inequities that still plague people of colour and poor whites.

When I offered the word “womanism” many years ago, it was to give us a tool to use, as feminist women of colour, in times like these. These are the moments we can see clearly, and must honour devotedly, our singular path as women of colour in the US. We are not white women, and this truth has been ground into us for centuries. But neither are we inclined to follow a black person, man or woman, unless they demonstrate considerable courage, intelligence, compassion and substance.

We have come a long way, sisters, and we are up to the challenges of our time, one of which is to build alliances based not on race, ethnicity, colour, nationality, sexual preference or gender, but on truth. Even if Obama becomes president, our country is in such ruin it may be beyond his power to lead us to rehabilitation. If he is elected, however, we must, as citizens of the planet, insist on helping him do the best job that can be done; more, we must insist that he demand this of us. And remember, as poet June Jordan and Sweet Honey in the Rock never tired of telling us: We are the ones we have been waiting for.

© 2008, Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive and All rights reserved.
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April 1, 2008 2:54 AM

Personally, I agree with more or less everything you said. However, you could have been more persuasive like mentioning some of the legislation authored or co-authored by Obama. By not being more concrete, you’ve invited the racist, sexist comments by the ignorant that have appeared already.

For a blog post that goes into more detail on how Obama stacks up to Hillary, see


April 1, 2008 3:07 AM

Thank you, Alice Walker. I have read a lot of articles and blogs about this campaign, but none has better encapsulated the reason why Obama offers the world such a precious and necessary opportunity.

What good fortune to have the chance to elect a president who truly understands that we are the people we have been waiting for, at this particular point in our history. The Bush administration has poisoned the world with misguided motivation, intended to benefit the few over the many. The people they have been ignoring desperately need to be given an opportunity to sort things out for themselves, without interference from those who have proven themselves to be hopelessly out of touch with their needs. Indeed, we need leaders who both understand those needs and will provide us with the resources we need to get on with our lives.

How amazing that we are now being offered this opportunity. Let’s hope we recognize it before it is too late.

Anyone who voted to authorise the invasion of Iraq, the most disastrous political decision of my lifetime, was out of touch. That Senator Clinton refuses to take responsibility for her part in this makes it clear that she will err again, and thus exacerbate the suffering that Ms Walker so rightly deplores. This is the kind of denial that makes one remember sniper bullets that didn’t exist. Clinton’s goddess of the past seems to be lost, and disoriented, and it makes one wonder about the other two.

The posters above are wrong, and Ms Walker is right. Obama is not perfect, but he offers us much of what we need, and a lot more besides.


April 1, 2008 3:15 AM

I am a supporter of Barack Obama because I believe he is the right person to lead the United States at this time.

Good for you, Ms. Walker. Unfortunately, not all Americans are ready to be led in the post-racial, post-partisan direction that Mr. Obama offers. But it is a direction in which we must go.


April 1, 2008 3:34 AM

Texansrule is not what the rest of the world dislikes about The US but the fact you have a strong military and economy it is the way your government uses the military to exercise it’s ill perceived God given right to further it’s own military and economic interests at the expense and suffering of other countries around the world, through bribery, war, veto’s, trade embargo’s and your own brand of international terrorism.

How you can sit there and worry about what Obama will bring to the table after 8 years of Bush is simply shocking, it seems to me that people like you are the ones who fear any kind of change to the present status quo. And with the economy on the slide already will 3 years down the line no doubt be blaming Obama (when he comes to power)

Everyone of your points has been feebly thought out and you smack of some Old time bigoted white Southerner whose ideology is on the ropes, what did you expect Obama to say to Rev Wright ? Lets face it, he wasn’t far from the truth.

You seem way off track of current world political debate and purposely blind to the crimes your own government has committed on the world, or firmly camped in the ‘for the greater good’ argument until catastrophy and terror hit your own doorstep, you appear a small minded fearful man afraid that all he knows will change forever with the election of Obama. I hope I am wrong.

Get over it, you will see it will be better.


April 1, 2008 3:54 AM

I grew up white in white south africa, a racist country with no knowledge of the world outside or self knowledge. I grew up with the people like those who make the racist and nasty remarks on this site. I witnessed a change move through the country and I watched people change with the changes. The thing that saddened me most was watching vicious Mandela opponents turn into Mandela supporters overnight. My own family was torn apart by the conflict. Even before his release, my brother was convinced that Mandela was an evil instrument of the ‘communists’.
Then Mandela revealed his grace and political genius and people came around.Not only did they support him, they conveniently rewrote their political biographies. They invented new and bold tales about how they oppposed apartheid and how they were instruments of change.

I guess I should try to emulate Mandela’s empathy and I should be hopeful that all the people with nastiness within them will eventually find the compassion in their hearts to accept and forgive.
I know Obama has that empathy. So, like Alice Walker, I too believe in Obama and although I am white I believe I can also speak with some experience. Get over it whiteys, a black man can and will
lead us. And we will all be better for it. Trust me. I’ve been there.


April 1, 2008 3:58 AM

Johnmastrangelo and FearDearg – “obama is just another elite guy who went to the ivy league. he is just a pol from chicago who can give a good speech, i wish he was a big deal but he is not.” Change “Obama” to “Roosevelt” and “Chicago” to “Albany” and it expresses what you might have thought in 1932. People voted massively for FDR as a rebuke to the Republicans, not because he was a progressive; in fact, before his Presidency, he didn’t have much of a record as a progressive. As President, largely thanks to the strength of his oratory he set the Congress and the people on the road to recovery. He earned a reputation among the wealthy elite (who were too stupid to understand that he saved capitalism from itself) as a traitor to his class. Hillary is a singularly uninspiring technocrat – otherwise the US might have enacted national health coverage during Bill Clinton’s presidency. Our desperate straits call for a leader who can inspire just like FDR. Obama’s the one.


April 1, 2008 3:59 AM

It’s quite pathetic how white people who are racist always try to disguise that fact by turning things around and accusing black people of being “racist,” as if that somehow gives them license to express their own hatred. The sad part is the denial…


April 1, 2008 4:01 AM

It is obvious that America is not ready for a black president or significant change. To characterize Obama, his wife, and his pastor and Alice Walker as racist is only testament to the depth and breadth of fear and ignorance so pervasive in American political discourse surrounding race and class. This pathological lack of self reflection allowed a homicidal half-witted chimp to lead the country into a ruinous and destructive $3 trillion dollar war only to benefit the interests of the corporate oligarchy. Obama is certainly no revolutionary and his connections to corporate interests is not substantially different from any other contenders. If his presence is enough to trigger such a paranoid reaction I hold little hope for the country.


April 1, 2008 4:32 AM

Dear Brits, please ignore the horribly offensive comments from the trolls on this site. They all came over from a link on the Drudge Report, a favorite site of Rethuglicans. They are not representative of the majority of Americans. They are in fact terrified of Obama, because they know they can’t beat him, hence the hysterical postings to try to tear him down. Obama has formed a powerful and growing coalition of youth, educated Americans and people of ethnicity, and this coalition will take him all the way to the White House in November. He has raised more money than any candidate in history. He has built the most massive grass roots campaign, powered by the people, of any candidate in American history. And contrary to the postings here that accuse him of being corporate, his campaign is entirely funded by small donations from more than a million people. As Alice Walker writes here, he truly is a transformative leader. The fact that some people don’t comprehend that yet just proves her observation that some of us are still looking to the past.


April 1, 2008 4:46 AM

Dear Uniting, I read every word. Thank you to my soul for using your intellect and resources to say much of what we Obama supporters know, but won’t take the time to articulate. Your post is an example of how we can and should make positive arguments for our candidate. In my laziness and malaise, I defeatistly conclude that if I have to spell it out for some people, they aren’t likely to hear anyway. But, you’ve shown that spelling it out can be done well, and it reflects positively on us as supporters. If I may speak for Obama supporters, Obama supporters are not naive, we are sound and rational thinkers in good company, as is our candidate. Thank you for showing us in that light, Uniting.


April 1, 2008 5:02 AM

Sadly, the jump on this story in the US belongs to The Drudge Report. It should be renamed The Dregs Report, because the vast majority of its readers represent the dregs of American society. You can always tell when an article has been posted there, because the comments section becomes filled with the ignorant ranting of our shortest mental midgets.

Fortunately, these people are a dying breed. Their irrelevance to America’s future is well-known to anyone in the US that matters.

This was a great column, and gets right to the heart of the Obama/Clinton question. On the one hand we have a forthright candidate, who owns up to his blemishes and doesn’t attempt to sweep them under the rug, and on the other we have a mendacious career politician who will literally say anything to get elected, up to and including fabricating stories about non-existent foreign policy experience.

Clinton represents a dying breed of politician, one that a great many younger Americans can’t wait to see in the rearview mirror. Obama represents a different kind of politics, and a different kind of vision for Americans. I haven’t been excited about a candidate in a very long time. It’s clear from the tenaciousness with which the old guard is trying to bring him down that the establishment is terrified of an Obama presidency.

Hopefully, our citizens, and the superdelegates, will not let this opportunity to elevate our nation pass us by. Hopefully the rednecks and bigots who do nothing but consume mind-numbingly poisonous right-wing media and talk radio will cease reproducing and spreading their incredibly narrow-minded views.

There are a large number of American citizens who are frankly embarrassed by these Neanderthals in our midst. I hope that our brothers and sisters around the world recognize that we’re not all as bereft of brain cells as our countrymen posting their hateful garbage on here.


April 1, 2008 5:02 AM

“Obama will probably win the election, more due to the ineptness of his opponents rather than any talent on his part.”

You’re joking right? He rose from nowhere in four years and is now about to beat the most entrenched political machine in Democratic politics. Sure, the Clintons have made plenty of mistakes, but Obama’s campaign formulated a brilliant strategy at the outset, have executed it nearly flawlessly, and now have the Clintons and all their minions with their backs to the wall. That took brilliance.


April 1, 2008 5:21 AM

OK .. so some of the headier statements by some Obama supporters are a little much…but his statements are coherent, thoughtful, and, yes, eloquent. Since when is it suspicious to be able to make a compelling and coherent speech? Since it went out of fashion with dubya?
But, and here’s the thing, I am unaware of a single spiteful or hateful word in any speech the man ever made. Which is more than we can say for the trolls here with all their Barack “hussein” Obama innuendo and potty-mouth crap.
But keep it up guys. You remind us all of what we want to change away from. You help make the man look better by the day.
Good article too.


April 1, 2008 5:29 AM

Alice Walker; thank-you for your beautiful words. Toni Morrison was also eloquent in her support of Senator Obama. A good choice.

People talk about his lack of experience. My favorite Presidents lacked experience; Teddy Roosevelt – he started the National Park System; Abe Lincoln – Tried to end slavery(read Douglas Blackmon)and keep this country together; John F. Kennedy – Could admit when he was wrong and fought for equality. They all had good judgement, which is essential for a good president.

I believe Senator Obama has good judgement. I known Senator Clinton is a teller of tales. I do respect Senator McCain for his service to our Country. But my vote goes to Senator Obama because of his transparency of his record, his refusal to disown a person (because the world has viewed seconds of his words, without looking at the entire canvas of a human being that has produced so much good for a community in need), because of his intelligence, and yes, his words. He is wise, and straight forward and this Country needs this right now (actually we always need this). Senator Obama is not superman (remember Congress has the power) but like Czechoslovakia, after Soviet Rule, they elected an intellectual. This was good.

Finally, I am not a blogger, but I had to comment on your piece. As a white woman, I understand your comments about race(without relating to them). It is true that as a white person, I automatically get a pass in life (as long as I’m ablebodied – my brother was mentally retarded, his white skin provided no advantage). And reading some of the comments from individuals that actually think your words are racist just baffles me about how ignorant and unkind us Americans can be. I’m so sorry for these sad words from fellow countrymen of our beautiful, wonderful Country. They probally feel it is easier to go through life blindfolded.



April 1, 2008 6:42 AM

Posted by: nicemerkan

“He isn’t qualified to be a U.S. Senator. There is no legislation and nothing that he has accomplished in the Illinois or U.S. Senate. So I don’t get why I should vote for him.”

This is completely untrue.

In the Illinois Legislature he pretty much single-handedly pushed through Death Penalty reform legislation that now requires all interviews of suspects in capital crimes to be audio or video taped, severely reducing the number of false confessions, and thereby the number of false convictions.

Then there’s the Coburn-Obama Bill that created a searchable internet database of federal spending,

Obama also sponsored an amendment that requires lobbyists to disclose the candidates, PACs, or political parties they collect or arrange contributions for. The amendment was passed by unanimous consent and attached to the Senate ethics bill, which was signed into law on September 15, 2007.

The Lugar-Obama proliferation and threat reduction initiative was signed into Law on January 11, 2007.

And this is just a very, VERY short list. Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, seems to have gotten little more than naming a bunch of post offices passed into law. See for yourself from her own website (click the “Bills Sponsored” buttons):

For the record, Barack Obama also enjoys the support and endorsement of several prominent Republicans:

Susan Eisenhower, granddaughter of Dwight D.:
Doug Kmiec, former head of the Office of Legal Counsel (U.S. Assistant Attorney General) for Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush:
Tom Trimarco, former Secretary of Administration and Finance under Mitt Romney:
Illinois Senator Kirk Dillard:

Make no mistake, Barack Obama is a man of substance who will bring this country together and forge positive change in ways neither Senator Clinton nor Senator McCain could ever hope to.


April 1, 2008 7:23 AM

Ms Walker,

I apologise for the personal vituperation addressed to you on this thread. You are a great writer and I thank you for all that you have taught me through your writing.

I wish I could agree about Mr. Obama, but I wonder about his lack of experience. Also, I think the Republicans should not get away with creating a mess and expecting others to clean it up.

All said and done, it is up to you and your compatriots. I only hope the best person, white or black, man or woman, wins


April 1, 2008 7:30 AM

“Omar, you and the other Muslims love Obama because finally you think you have someone who will help a billion + Muslims achieve their dream of destroying a tiny Jewish state of a little more than 5 million Israeli Jews. Obama will not be president and the Muslims will continue to be disappointed. The key to Mideast peace is in the attitudes of the Muslim world.”

No, you are wrong, I did not said anything about destroying and killing Israeli Jews, What I meant is we want a fairer and more balanced stance from the US regarding the conflict.


April 1, 2008 7:37 AM


From a British Obama fan. Go and check his website.

Check out his issues section
See that he’s funded by over a milion grassroots donors and not special interests.

Then comeback and make some informed comments….



April 1, 2008 7:55 AM

First it is quite funny reading these posts by semi-literate white men slanging off Alice Walker and insisting on their superiority.
However I also think that these comparisons with MLK and Nelson Mandela are unhelpful. While there are a few points of contact with King, Mandela is totally different. His history of going to prison for his beliefs, his writings there. His refusal to compromise even when offered early release and his incredible lack of bitterness make him something special. Incidentally if the person above who suggested a similarity with McCain does not know the difference between a bomber pilot being captured and imprisoned for a few years and Mandela’s history then honestly there is no hope.
In general false analogies from the past are not the best way to describe the present. We look through the distorting lens of our weltanschaun and claim to see resemblences in that of another person from another culture and another time, and with a different personal history. Yes I prefer Obama, but for what he is, not what he symbolises. He strikes me as being a typical middle of the road Democrat, something like a soft Conservative in European terms, and neither messiah or devil.


April 1, 2008 8:02 AM

The new racism posits that any discussion of race is racism.


April 1, 2008 8:49 AM

Obama is a man with a good heart in place.

I can not understand why TexanRules and other bashers dont jus t listen to Obamas speeches. Obama is speaking true words about the root problems of America. If America acted with good intentions around world America would really be loved. Until now America has acted around the world in a way that has gathered distrust. China, Russia, America, all made of the same wood. But if America started acting good, like putting Israel act with responjsibility and justice with its land grabbing and killing, America would be respected and loved. That is not the case now.


April 1, 2008 9:19 AM


PHEW!!! thanks for your post, i was getting really depressed. The US still is the No1 superpower, and that makes your president THE most influential person on Earth. It is therefore no surprise that other nationalities follow the race for the White House with almost as much interest as they do their own country’s elections. The policies that your administration introduces, its stance on both national and international issues, its impact on the world economy… America exerts a massive influence on every other country (as much as other countries might try to deny it!). To sit impotently by and watch the phenomenal global opportunity that is Barack Obama be wasted by ignorant hicks is frustrating beyond words. It’s good to hear that that the diatribes on this page are NOT representative of the views of the majority of Americans.


April 1, 2008 9:39 AM

i see so many red necks are commmenting. It is sad! i bet if Obama was “white” the comments will be different!


April 1, 2008 10:17 AM

Ms. Walker,

I am a major Obama supporter and Democrat, albeit a straight white male Deist and former Protestant. I know, my voice is increasingly irrelevant as we may soon be eradicated from the party, similar to what many Europeans and Arabs would likely endorse of the Jews, but not quite yet, so you will have to tolerate us WASP male Democrats a bit longer as we ride out a wave of fetishism and exoticism (I don’t mind that part of it actually, especially with the ladies, my demographic is becoming the “new black” at many L.A. clubs and lounges that I frequent.) I am a big fan by the way, of your literary work and most of your political views (and yes, that includes fair treatment for Palestinians, as that seems to be the only issue that is discussed on the Guardian boards), and find The Color Purple to be one of the great epistolary novels of all time. Yes, all time. I crap on the Modern Library and the list trend it started.

Your opinion piece brings back a lot of good memories: keggers, getting laid for the first time, and competitive sports. These things all happened 15+ years ago, when I was in late high school and early college, the first time I was exposed to progressive politics and philosophies in detail and an academic context. So thanks for the bit of nostalgia, but I think next time I’ll download a Lemonheads or Gang Starr track. America has problems, trust me I know, but you and some of the old guard of African-American leaders are way out of touch (like Pluto, man!), and the only way Obama will lose is if you keep writing things like this. #1: Your piece is out of date, and when you over-emphasize the race frame, inaccurate (especially a two-tone frame). Watch Austin Powers I please, a lot has changed since the 60s. #2: It hurts Obama politically. You scare the people in the middle of the road, and not just whites, but Latinos and Asians. Do you notice you don’t even mention them? They’re 20% of the country, and they vote for Obama in far lesser numbers than whites do in Dem primaries.

So why write this? Ego, boredom, I’m not sure. (That’s for both me and you both. You can’t tell from this, but I’m an aspiring writer as well. Matter of fact if you like this, maybe you could pass on something to your literary agent? I haven’t written much lately to be honest, too many distractions, major blockage. You have to wonder why I’m on a UK board at 2 in the morning on a Monday.)

Your experience and mine were very different. I had it a lot harder to start with. Joking, I joke sometimes, not very well, but I joke. But seriously, the experiences I mentioned 15 years ago all happened with a mixed race crowd, and not just blacks and whites. America can never fully atone for what it did to black people, you can’t undo a history like that. And not everyone will accept the people’s history in the first place. But we can create a new present and future, that’s all we’re trying to do here. So let Obama win, that’s all I’m asking.

And when’s your next novel coming out? I’m too cheap to buy it, but will read a library copy, or at least skim a copy and tell my friends I read it and it was fabulous. (But I really did read Color Purple and a few of your stories, and meant what I said about them.)


April 1, 2008 10:24 AM

For an excellent article on why Obama is different read Jonathan Raban’s piece in the London Review of Books (available online – just google LRB).

I agree with Alice Walker about Obama, although I don’t share her general view of the world.

I’ve been really disappointed by The Guardian’s approach to reporting Obama’s progress (‘Hilary loses…'; ‘Hilary won’t give up’ etc) so much via Hilary, Hilary and more Hilary. I find it bizarre. Why is Hilary seen as having some right to rule? I’ve compared and contrasted the Independent and Guardian coverage of Obama and have now moved over to the Indy as my main paper. The Guardian’s tendency to talk about Obama and race in such negative terms has been quite an eyeopener. Sometimes you have to vote with your feet, speaking of which…


April 1, 2008 10:56 AM

WoW! I didn’t expect such an onslaught of white racist defensive comments? I happened to be present at my first pre convention speak of any party in my 25 years of California living. I attended Obama’s talk in San Francisco last august, at the invitation of the Bay area’s business women. I was very moved and swept up by the experience. Yes it did have a feeling of great hope, coupled with the most lax security. Even though I have many reservations with regards to Obama’s centrist position. Humanists like myself with overt socialist tendencies, must oppose warmongering lunatics like McCain. I have been waiting for his bid for some time now. Anything but McCain, preferably Obama to the RICH Dominatrix of the Democratic party. I live in hope that peace shall one day reign on earth! LoveX23

= = =

berettacx4 – – – 5:48 am:

“After I read this and stopped laughing, I asked myself ‘Who the hell is Alice Walker?’ Never heard of her…”


Alice Walker is one US America’s internationally best known and wisest writers. It’s a bit unsettling to see her enthusing about a corporate war candidate for USS business-as-usual but her superior insight still shines through.


April 1, 2008 11:27 AM

The USA is in trouble , thats for sure. In the past military might was enough to be a world leading nation.
Those days are over, Irak proves it.
So , the USA needs a leader who can bring the nation in a new “uplift”. Sen.McCain is branded as the new man “because he knows how to lead a nation in war”. What war ?? Where ?
It is still the old fashioned idea of the 20th century ,bad for the future of the USA. Forget that sort of “leaders”.
It is not for nothing that americans brand China as a main enemy. The new american leader must be able to cope with the economic developments in the future , he should not fight “old” wars.
USA , wake up. Stop dreaming of the past.
And it might well be that a young and bright person as Obama is be the right man for the moment.


April 1, 2008 11:32 AM

A very good article indeed, unfortunately the racist morons that still inhabit America have sullied these pages with their filth. Hey morons: I have some bad news for you, your racist, torture loving, rightwing media controlled, corporate owned, militarist, fascist admiring, culturally depraved land, is finished – you’re history morons, especially the morons from Texas. The dollar soon won’t be worth the paper it’s written on. You speak about the greatness of American military power and how Obama will reduce this, but you yourselves are gutless, politically and ethically spineless. America is now held in contempt throughout the world and you don’t care, you take pride in it even. You are political morons because you are ignorant of what the Republic used to stand for. The Founding Fathers racist though they were, at least created a Republic, (which had a Constitution) which had the potential to develop into a real Democracy, but it never did. But even this is gone, replaced by one of the ugliest empires to ever exist – what Bush has done in Iraq is equal to anything Hitler did in Poland. But morons, your days are numbered: you’re even too dumb to run an empire. And when your filthy empire is gone, there will be no beautiful Roman aqueducts: neither will you bequeath the world as the Brits did: the noble game of cricket, a game beyond your primitive understanding. There will be nothing left but a grubby chain of Burger Kings. And the world will say with one voice: “good riddance to bad rubbish”.


April 1, 2008 11:32 AM

The comments here shows that there is still a great divide between whites and non whites. King’s dream is still a dream and nothing more.


April 1, 2008 11:35 AM

1. Once again it is telling that many of the criticisms here are ad hominems. Interesting isn’t it that so many find this a valid form of “criticism”.

2. It is also interesting that there is little discussion of what experience Clinton really has. As far as I can tell Clinton doesn’t have much more experience than Obama. It is also clear that Clinton is running on the coattails of her husband. Isn’t that interesting.

3. Clinton is a baby boomer and carries all the baggage of the baby boom generation. This, along with the fact that she is running on the coattails of her husband and is yet another example of the US’s political aristocracy, are reasons alone to vote against her. Isn’t it interesting that so much of her support appears to come from old baby boomers and crypto racists.


April 1, 2008 11:39 AM

I find it of no surprise that Alice has drawn out the ever-present negativity and ignorance of people who have little, or no understanding of other people’s experiences of life. Wow, how the guns are out to get her on this subject, where she is clearly expressing a view of the world through the eyes of a black woman who, at the age she is, has obviously seen many a change as far as the rights of people of colour etc go. To say that she is racist is not only wrong, but also shows a lack of the possibility that you may just try and empathise for one second with what many people have experienced throughout the ages – what, because you haven’t been effected, does that then mean you are unable to open your eyes and your ears to something different? She is clearly expressing a positive vision of the future for the US if Barak Obama where to achieve the status of ‘President of the United States’ – and I think it is clear to most that a performing monkey would do a better job than the present ‘joke’ of a president! And to those who feel that Condaleeza Rice would have been a more appropriate person for Alice to support – I think it is worth mentioning that although her credentials are pretty spectacular, you have to question the sanity of a woman of colour standing alongside one of the worst leaders in world history, smiling and pandering to his disastrous decisions championing his causes, and still remaining able to sleep at night!!! this is not someone to look up to as far as i’m concerned, whatever her race or sex. Obama makes alot of people uncomfortable, because many like to stick to what they know! I still believe that McCain will win the election because lets face it – people love an old war veteran – there’s nothing better to get the old patriotic juices flying. And just a comment to Texan’s Rule (who I see has had their comment deleted) – not everyone hates the US, but most people I know are certainly not jealous of the US. You have a severe lack of understanding about the role your Country as far as the rest of the world is concerned – there is a world outside of your country and you’d do well to use your passport to go and see it – I forgot, you probably don’t have one!!!!!!


April 1, 2008 12:06 PM

If the United States ever needed an injection of morality, it is now. The atrocities the US has been involved in during the Bush adminstration has wrecked the United States’ reputation … from Americans torturing suspects in Baghdad’s Abu Ghraib jail to the CIA waterboarding terro suspects and the holding without trial of so many without trial in Guantanomo Bay. Barack Obama may well become the United States’ Nelson Mandela, but he will find the going tough if he is elected president. As far as I know, not one member of the US Congress has a son fighting in Iraq. And the talk is of the 4,000 US troops who have been killed so far. What about the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis. The US has always been an insular country and is not alone in terms of self-interest. But the US prides itself on being the world’s leader and is expected to live up to high standards. I would love to see Obama win the primaries and then beat the 100-year-Iraq-war John McCain to the presidency. What can one say of Hillary Clinton … just another liar who has been caught telling pathetic untruths. Of the three, Obama is the only contender with class and a sense of justice.


April 1, 2008 12:22 PM

I was trying to figure out how being elected to the US Senate was anything like being imprisoned on Robben Island, but then I thought: “Hey, it’s April Fool.”
Clever, very clever.


April 1, 2008 12:26 PM

I perfectly agree with Alice on this article. Obama represents the best hope that America has in redeeming its very battered image and its economic downturn. He is a very intelligent and thoughtful leader. Surely he would be a breath of fresh air after the George Bush years. I do not hold anything against Hillary but there is nothing spectacular about her other than the fierce and unbridled ambition that has characterised the Clintons over the years. Those that oppose Barack do not have anything concrete against him other than his skin colour. I know several republicans that genuinely hope that Obama would pick the nomination so they can vote for him in the general elections. As far as we are concerned, the democratic party nomination is certainly a foregone conclusion, Obama will win and there is nothing Hillary or anyone else can do about it.


April 1, 2008 12:32 PM

This is a woman who demands our respect. She has always seemed a bearer of wisdom. I think she’s got it right about Barak Obama.


April 1, 2008 12:33 PM

As I have commented elsewhere, Obama is too good for America.


April 1, 2008 12:39 PM

These Troglodytes and knuckle scrappers from the Drudge Report crack me up… Here are a few facts for you dim wits to chew on.
1. Alice Walker is the author of a book called the Color Purple. This book describes in graphic detail the brutality of a BLACK MAN towards the BLACK WOMEN around him… so much so that a lot black intellectuals deemed the book to be an ANTI BLACK MALE diatribe. So she can hardly be the RACIST you twits claim… can she?
2. This book has also been made into film by Steven Spielberg (ever heard of him?) starring Oprah Winfrey (ever heard of her??) and Danny Glover (how about him?). Yet some of you have never heard of it … and appear proud of the fact. Out of curiousity..What is it that you guys read exactly?
3. On Israel… There are lots and lots of people, including a fair few number of Israelis who have Israel’s best interests at heart who, nevertheless, recognise that its very existence is imperiled by its current policy towards the Palestinians. The Likud vision is not the only JEWISH vision on Israel – not by a long chalk.
4. Obama is the best candidate running in your elections Why? Try these reasons for size… a) He is the only one with the intelligence to call time on a stupid and inept policy towards Cuba that has failed for the best part of 50 years.. a policy that has achieved the very opposite of its stated aim but which your lily-livered politicians are too scared to change for fear of upsetting a bunch goons in Miami. But hey! why not carry on with the stupid willy waving that passes for Foreign policy? b) He appears to be the only candidate who understands that capitalism needs rules and stringent regulations or else you’ll end up with a mess like the Sub Prime mire you find yourselves in right now.. AGAIN AND AGAIN
(c) He had the wisdom and courage to say that the war in Iraq was stupid, moronic, unjustifiable and would turn out to be costly in the extreme… 4000 dead soldiers, tens of thousands of maimed young men and women; and a Trillion dollars later… Boy! was he ever RIGHT??!!
Finally.. If you don’t listen to him and get past your infantile obsession with race that blights your fine country… it’s not just your jobs that will end up overseas… it’s your influnce too. Unless you can educate ALL of your Children to to the level that the Europeans and Japanese take for granted you’ll not only lose jobs, you’ll lose the ability to even compete! Right now, the Arabs, that you fear so much, are buying up chunks of your best banks, best Real Estate, best manufacturing… infact they are the ones keeping your economy afloat because you insist on living beyond your means. Obama understands that there’s nothing morally superior about low taxes any more than there’s anything inherently praise-worthy about high taxes… You need the RIGHT LEVEL OF TAXATION… and a so-called first world nation that can’t even guarantee the health care of it’s citizens cannot begin to claim to have the RIGHT LEVEL OF TAXATION.
My own view for what it’s worth is an outsider.. is that Obama is waaaaaaaay too good for America


April 1, 2008 12:51 PM

It’s nice to see someone say they like Obama because he’s a good candidate with strong policies that they identify with rather than place him in the white-guilt narrative that seems to have been commonplace among Guardian commentators re his campaign. His vision for America and his ability to get it done is what’s drawn me to him as a candidate rather than any ‘starry eyed idealism’ as one poster on hillaryis44 said. A group of people who support Obama as the realisation of some romantic notion of politics may exist but it is by no means the majority of his supporters any more than Clinton’s support can be said to be only old feminist ‘womyn’ with daddy issues or McCain’s the ‘hoo-ra’ brigade. Unfortunately the lunatic fringe of any candidates supporters always shouts the loudest and so tend to become seen as the majority by those who support the other candidate, this does us all injustice.


April 1, 2008 12:57 PM

So many adverse comments. Some of ‘em a bit nasty, even racist I fear. But nobody’s denying the Man has CHARISMA.
The only one with even more is… guess it …our very own Gordon Brown.


April 1, 2008 12:58 PM

The comments in response to this article have truly shocked me. I thought what AW wrote was honest and brilliant. I’m not even American and it spoke to me! Some people obviously just don’t get what Alice is trying to say, and that’s a shame.


April 1, 2008 1:00 PM

Even funnier still is this idea that if Obama were a white man he’d have been out of the race for President by now… Really?? Let’s examine this claim… A white guy with Obama’s eloquence?; A white guy with Obama’s intelligence?; A white guy with Obama’s grace under pressure who was able to craft and deliver a speech like obama did on race?? A white guy with his charm? … such a white guy running against a woman weighed down with Hilary Clinton’s negatives and McCain’s wooden-ness??? You actually believe that such a white guy will be out of the race by now??… I reckon that the Steroids they put in American beef must mess up some of your brains. Jeez… it’s all one can do to get some white Americans to accept that Elvis is really dead!! A white Obama will waltz to the Presidency. EAAAAAAAAAASY. he’ll be JFK, Elvis and Larry bird rolled into one!


April 1, 2008 1:02 PM

I hesitate to use the word brave to describe a piece of writing given the daily struggle of many people on the planet for simple survival. But it must take real courage Alice to raise the issues you have discussed knowing the attack dogs are waiting to vent their spleen.

Peace to you sister – keep drawing on that wonderful inner strength.


April 1, 2008 1:11 PM

To all those saying Alice Walker is living in a fantasy world by saying America is in ruins – you must be Americans living in America. Step outside of your bubble. The whole world is laughing at the mess that’s become of your country. I challenge you to prove that Barack Obama would be a worse president that George W Bush.


April 1, 2008 1:26 PM

Aha, since we’re on the topic of people killing their own people, I don’t see any African nations in list of countries with the top 10 murder rate, but I do see the US at number 6. Add to that the US’s number 3 position on the list of countries by number of execution, plus the thousands of poor and young Americans(all races) that are packed off by your stupid politicians to die for their lies… what did I hear about a mess of a nation where people are killing each other…???

The comments on this article make me wonder two things 1) Barack Obama is too good a candidate for the Americans 2) Democracy as a system is too good for the Americans. It wouldn’t matter so much if your democratic choices affected only you, the problem is they affect the rest of the world. Proof of the pie is GW Bush being voted into office. TWICE!!


April 1, 2008 1:29 PM

Wow. Good to see the U.S. hasn’t changed. Don’t bother with the issues at hand- boil it down to race and begin insulting each other. If the rest of the world has wondered what it’s like to discuss the issues in America this thread is a perfect example of how it works (or doesn’t work).


April 1, 2008 1:31 PM

Alice Walker, one of the great FICTION writers of our time


April 1, 2008 1:41 PM

The fact is that, in her own name, Hillary Rodham couldn’t have gotten anywhere. She finished at the bottom of her law school class, failed the DC bar exam, and only by following Bill to Arkansas was she able to get a job, pass the Arkansas bar exam that 85% of the takers passed, and — because of Bill — begin to get notice.
She is a liar and as her Bosnial sniper tale shows, not a very smart one.
She has betrayed the principles of her party to gain support from ultra-right wingers like Richard Mellon Scaife. Does anyone actually believe that such support comes free?
With such a track record, where would anyone but the wife of a former president be? Did you say “long gone and forgotten”?

By contrast, Barack Obama, given his race, his name, and his family, would never have been noticed except for his very unusual intelligence — not only of the mind but of the heart.
He showed us a new kind of politician when he went to Southern Illinois with the same openness, the same message, the same vision that he presented to South Chicago. Here was a man who was trustworthy, real.He was a man who could unite people. He is indeed right for America, but those who gave us the B-C regime and have been giving us too much like that for all too long, will not back down easily.The disgust most feel toward Bush and the Republicans make that party a poor bet now. Thus Scaife, Murdock, et al., will now be pushing their agenda with the Democrats and Clinton.

Hillary Clinton says many things, some true and good. But considering the nature of her obligations, how can any true Democrat believe and support her? The only reasons I hear are gender and (shhhh!) the R-word.


April 1, 2008 1:43 PM

I’m genuinely surprised by the tone of a lot of the responses here.

I’ve been following the Democratic primary closely – both the Clinton and Obama campaigns. I’m a British Obama supporter and have been trying to do my bit re ‘clicking’ and blogging in the campaign.

The blogging involves trying to educate and inform posters across the states in newspapers because there is a misconception out there – pushed by the right wing media and the Clintons that he is a ‘muslim’, therefore ‘terrorist’ sympathiser and now through a few dumb comments by Rev Wright which were actually a quote from an ex mid east ambassador Edward Peck, the slur is that he’s a black supremisist. But that’s probably too much rational information for most people on here…

As for financing Obama, over 90% of the funding – nearly $200million so far has come from the grassroots over the internet. He has not take any lobbyist or PAC money. When people point out that he has taken X thousands from big corporations, this is bunched money by individual employees. However anyone is free to reasearch this the information is freely available.

The reason I’m surprised is that maybe I should have ben blogging on the Guardian – who’d have thought it?

For me, and the majority of his supporters we couldn’t care less what color he is. But it’s understandable that it has been, and is becoming less so, an issue for americans. Alice Walker’s perspective is also understandable but that’s just one facet of what is an incredible campaign and opportunity for America and for international relations.

The Guardian has obviously not been educating it’s readership. Maybe the paper should start publishing his take on the issues and how he would address them. Anyone can visit:

…and find out for themselves. Maybe that’s too much to ask of the intellectual Guardian bloggeratti…

Sometimes you need to look outside your own backgarden for real change and hope to learn something.


April 1, 2008 1:48 PM

I can’t believe the racist comments on this thread.

An internationally recognised woman writer makes an appeal to our humanity and so many above are proud to declare their lack of it.

I suppose these are the same people who denounce the Rev. Wright’s apparent racism.

Tell me something, why is it ok for you to be racist but not ok for black people to criticise white behaviour and attitudes?


April 1, 2008 2:03 PM

Many times we look at ourselves and want to be ideal citizens, however our actions have always failed us.
The writer mentions truth in the fact that minorities have always been marginalized in the US, she may be a little harsh towards Clinton. But in my view she is actually describing the a group of Americans who judge persons not by the content of their character, but by the color of the skin. Considering the gains Obama has made from when he launched his campaign, it is evident that there are some who listen to the 2 great Democratic candidates and see that he is a leader worth giving a chance.
In my view, we should not stereotype individuals, but listen to them with open minds and then make decisions. I believe if this was the case, the Democratic party would already have a candidate.


April 1, 2008 2:06 PM

deb1: ‘As for financing Obama, over 90% of the funding – nearly $200million so far has come from the grassroots over the internet. He has not take any lobbyist or PAC money. When people point out that he has taken X thousands from big corporations, this is bunched money by individual employees.’

I think that needs expnading on a bit and to ask questions about what precisely it is that encourages ‘individual employees’ of oil companies to make donations to politicians:

‘Obama doesn’t take money from PACs. He also doesn’t take money from lobbyists.

‘But he does accept money from executives and other employees of oil companies and two of his fundraisers are oil company executives. As of Feb. 29, Obama’s presidential campaign had received nearly $214,000 from oil and gas industry employees and their families, according to an analysis by the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. Clinton had received nearly $307,000 from industry workers and their families and Republican Sen. John McCain, the likely GOP presidential nominee, received nearly $394,000, according to the center’s totals.

‘Two of Obama’s fundraisers are Robert Cavnar, the chairman and chief executive of Houston-based Mission Resources Corp., and George Kaiser, the president and CEO of Tulsa-based Kaiser-Francis Oil Co.
In January and February alone, Obama received nearly $18,000 from Exxon Mobil workers, according to Federal Election Commission records. Most of the donations were of $250 or less; the money came from workers ranging from executives to engineers to geologists to shift supervisors. Overall, he has raised about $34,000 from Exxon Mobil workers since the beginning of his campaign. Exxon Mobil employees have given Clinton about $16,000 since the beginning of last year.’

This is interesting too:


April 1, 2008 2:06 PM

While having a great deal of respect for Alice Walker, we simply have to move on from the theory of enlightened individuals transforming oppressive political structures.

The much praised president Clinton attacked the US poor, armed the Kurd-massacring Turks, bombed a life-giving pharmaceutical plant in the Sudan, increased the national security budget and arms to Israel… On the subject of colour, Bush snr appointed an Arfican-American as a supreme court judge, but African-American males are almost 6 times as likely to be incarcerated as whites…

The American people have to understand that the president is the figurehead of an aggressive imperial economic system – with the most aggressive, economically and socially divisive consequences domestically – driven by the interests of the US-based corporate capital elite.

The American people, like us Europeans, need to break the mould and establish democracy.


April 1, 2008 2:43 PM

April 1, 2008 12:33 PM
“As I have commented elsewhere, Obama is too good for America.”


I share your views to a point. It is true that the USA population seem to be afraid of new things. Fear of communism cost them developing a universal healhcare; the US cities are among the most unsafe in the developed world, roads and bridges are now crumbling, the war in Iraq is eating away the over 10 billion dollars a month, the housing market and the rest of economy is in free fall downward turn; the dollar is in a steep decline; the George W. Bush is the worse leader in the USA’s entire history. And, then, suddenly, out of nowhere the unexpected happened! Barack Obama, a son of a white radical woman and a black African man from the 1960s generation appears on the political scene!

He has all the necessary qualities of a great president, skills, intelligence, courage, determination and the will to unite his country’s fractured politics, restore the US prestige in the world stage. What is the media in the US has done so far: attack him, well not always but almost always, the media in the US has been trying to diminish Barack Obama’s greatness. But, to their defense, many in the democratic party, and outside the party, are backing him over Hillary Clinton. So, this might be a turning point in American political culture.

The media has often focused on vicious right wing attacks of Barack Obama- he had to fight rumors that he is a ‘closeted Muslim’ because that fact his father is a black man from Kenya. Hillary’s boomer surrogates, most of whom are his mother’s generation [Obama, mother, Staley Ann Dunham was born in 1942 and died of Ovarian cancer in 1995, Hillary was born in 1947, so she is only 5 years younger than Barack's mother].

However, unlike Hillary, Barack Obama’s adventurous, idealist mother, Stanly Ann Dunham, lived the true ideals of the 1960s generation. So, it is fair looking at this primaries is as a struggle between the progressive left and the reactionary right but also as a struggle between the worse aspects of the 1960w left and those representing its hopeful potential to bring about social, economic and political transformation in a massive scale. Barack Obama represents[via his mother] the progressive hopes of the left while Hillary, a war mongering woman who voted for the Iraq war, represents the worse aspects of the boomers generation.


April 1, 2008 2:43 PM

Why dnt the Americans take a little time to think about their impacty on the world. Obama does not seem to think that everything america thinks it is true or nescessarilly good. He is the only candidate with a batts chance in hell of increasing American influence by reducing Amarican posturing.

Americans are only concerned with someone ready to answere the phone at 4am and make split second decisions. The rest of the world wants a US President who will use dipomacy in advance to avid the 4 am call.


April 1, 2008 2:47 PM

Dear Drudge Report readers,

I appreciate that you’re well out of your depth here, but at least try using a spell-checker (UK English to be polite, after all we did invent the language) and please try and refrain from using unnecessary language. After that you might want to work on formulating intelligent arguments.

Your poor country clearly has many problems. Have you considered regime change?

Alice – the Mandela comparison is over the top and you could’ve done more to substantiate your support for Obama with examples of the policies he’s helped push through. Otherwise I’m in complete agreement with you.

The amount of racist comments here sickens me, but sadly reminds me of my time in the US. This bunch of neanderthals make Mugabe sound tolerant.


April 1, 2008 3:08 PM

Let me say first that I regard Obama as the most talented and appealing American national politician to come along in decades.

He has a sense of grace that only emphasizes the basically sleazy nature of that other recent intellectually bright politician, Bill Clinton.

But dramatic change to America is not possible.

Its rigid Constitution with many anti-democratic provisions, its intense Civic Religion Cult, the illiberal nature of much of its press and public education, and the absolute rule of money in politics – these and other factors make the United States a mighty slow ship to turn.

What’s more important is the relatively weak nature of the office of the president. Many foreign observers think of the office as the most powerful in the world, but that is only true in war.

In domestic affairs, the office of president is actually quite a weak one. Even in aspects of foreign affairs, it is the Senate that has real power, and just look at the crinkled, fat, jaded faces that make up that body.

Obama’s own party is barely progressive anymore. Its small majority includes horrific figures who are Republican in all but name.

I believe Obama will get the nomination and will win the election, but that will only be because Americans are sick with seven years of stupidity and blood. Once Obama is sworn in, his ability to do anything of real consequence will be tremendously limited.

He faces, moreover, a set of disasters left behind by Bush. The room to do anything dramatic will be almost non-existent.

One hesitates to even state the following dark thought, too, but America has a history not unlike Italy of the early modern era with the Borgias and other nasty clans. The last determined, progressive politician who moved people greatly in America died in the street, and a few years later his brother died the same way.


April 1, 2008 3:08 PM

Since people have been prattling on about Obama supporters having no concrete reason to like him bar himself I thought I’d give some reasons why I support him. Note this isn’t comprehensive and is more concerned about why I support him over Hilary, trying to get into a debate of him over McCain invokes the whole left/centerist/right discussion which would require a much longer discussion than the 30 min posting limit and 5000 char word length avaliable here

- He has always stood against the Iraq war, Clinton didn’t

- He is a strong supporter of net neutrality

- As someone with a background in constitutional law I believed he is the best candidate to reign in the abuse of executive power and trampling of US citizens’ rights that has occured under Bush, given the naked ambition for power of Clinton’s campaign I don’t trust her to do this

- He has a better chance of winning than Clinton does

You might think this is a short list, I agree he shares many positions with Clinton, but on those positions, pro-choice, for UHC, troop withdrawal, anti-torture, better regard for the American middle and lower classes and so on I think Obama’s arguments in support of them are more nuanced, he has a better machine and better funding, and he isn’t such a poisoned candidate as Hilary is, there’s little to stick on him, the Wright controversy is only a big story in the minds of his opponents wheras there seems to be a lot of inconsistency and outright lying coming from Clinton’s campaign.

Obama is a fantastic orator, he’s got a great support network, a lot more money and so I believe he is better placed than Clinton to beat McCain and implement the policies I would like to see in a US government. I do think their policy platforms are very similar, but where differences occur I favour Obama’s angle to Clintons.


April 1, 2008 3:09 PM

Personally I enjoyed reading Alice Walker’s comment – although I am an ardent Obama supporter

There are also several thoughtful comments addressing both sides of the debate (in terms both of candidates and parties)but what saddens me is the inability of such a large number of contributors to comment without being (a) downright rude and/or (b) offensive – or indeed being so offensive that their comments have had to be deleted in part or in whole.

Is this really representative of the quality of debate in US politics today?

If it is then things are even worse than I know them to be already.

Whatever it may think the world needs a strong USA as a force for justice and fairness. As of today the US ability to carry out this role is severely compromised by (among other things) the damage to its credibility following its conduct over recent years (and that applies to other countries too).

The election of Barack Obama – if he is able/allowed to deliver on his agenda – can do much to restore that credibility, and – even ignoring for now all the other areas where his agenda would bring benefits to the US internally – that alone is one good strong reason for hoping for his candidacy to succeed

Yes there are debates to be had around deliverability. Yes let’s have these debates – but, please, lets have them at an intelligent, mutually respectful level, instead of the kind of comment posted in some places here, which simply damages your country and its image even further.


April 1, 2008 3:15 PM

Dear Ms Walker
First may I say that I admire your work. I am also an African American female. At first I did not care for Barack Obama. I did not think that he could or would be a good candidate for the presidency. But I opened my mind and realized that the change he is advocating is needed.

Your article was right on. And of course some of white America does not understand or wants to understand. That is why they were so upset with Rev Wrights comments. It also is the top of arrogance to believe that a nation that has been held down and is still being held down is happy about it and has no anger. It always amazes me when some white Americans tells minorities to get over it??? That is very easy to say when the discrimination is not happening to you.

I am from a small town in Michigan that is predominately White. I went to school where there were only 8 African Americans to 200 whites. I made white friends and have white friends but I realize that they could and never will understand the positions that I have taken. My parents had to have a white man buy the house that I grew up in and sell it to them because they would not sell to African Americans. I am old enough to remember colored only bathrooms and to have seen my fathers manhood questioned by bigoted police officers.

I am voting for Barack Obama because he is a leader not because he is African American. By the way he is just as much white as he is African American. And he does not share the common thread most African Americans have which is slavery in our family heritage.

The point I am making is that this is America. Veterans of all colors like my husband and Rev Wright fight daily so that we can have these exchanges. Maybe it is time that we embrace our differences because in doing that we will eventually learn to appreciate more fully the diversity of this great country of ours.


April 1, 2008 3:26 PM

Thank you for a thoughtful post. Although I am not a woman of color, I wonder if our years also bring us to support Sen. Obama. Today, in the winter of my life, Sen. Obama brings me hope. His background, heritage and experience speak to the young, not only in the U.S. but in the world. By energizing the young, he has brought hope to the old — hope that our country can get back on track and help lead a troubled world. He has exhibited an ability and desire to move a stagnant mindset toward something positive and decent. Our domestic problems have been covered over by waging war and posturing. Fear has come to rule us. Sen. Obama’s world view and practical steps for turning our lives in a more positive direction are qualities our leaders have lacked. I am grateful this man has stepped up to take on this daunting task. It will not be easy.


April 1, 2008 3:35 PM

Thanks for the honest article, Alice. Obama represents the hope that America will finally actually cross that bridge to the 21st century that Bill Clinton talked about years ago. We can finally leave our retrograde posture and approach the future with intelligence and empathy. I am somewhat disheartened by some of the posts to this article. Some people seem to think that we should select a resume rather than a leader. For my part, I appreciate the fact that Obama is clearly highly intelligent, has an open mind willing to listen to many different points of view, and has the judgment to make up his own mind. I further like the fact that he is a relatively young man with young children who clearly has a stake in a more peaceful and prosperous world. I love the fact that although he has had a privileged and elite education, he has not had a privileged and elite life and has not opted for material privileges as a first option. Because he is not a politician of long years’ tenure, he doesn’t “owe” as many people – he doesn’t have a cadre of “fat cats” threatening Democratic officials – and because his campaign is substantially supported “bottom up” rather than “top down”, his broad base of support is less tainted by people trying to purchase access and power.

As for Hillary Clinton, I agree wholeheartedly with Walker. Many people have conveniently forgotten that Black people were ardent supporters of the Clintons throughout Bill’s administration (remember that that is why Rev. Wright visited the White House!) and were intitially favorably inclined towards Hillary, a brilliantly talented woman, even as they preferred the freshness of Obama. Unfortunately, Clinton chose to vaporize that enormous reservoir of goodwill with Black voters and in particular with Black women voters. The race-baiting, deceitfulness and dishonesty feels like a slap in the face. Clinton had the opoprtunity to be a truly transformational candidate, but did not have the faith to do so and has relied on old, tired and divisive campaign tactics to further her campaign. Should Clinton somehow become the nominee, it will for voters be yet another situation where we will hold our noses and vote for the lesser of two evils.


April 1, 2008 3:39 PM

Perhaps, critics of Obama many of who prefer Hillary and Bill Clinton who prefer McCain to Obama might want to read this Mother Jones piece and the video link there in. He promises 100 years of war with Iraq and nuking of Iran. He seems to have problem with facts so sent; Libierman’s is now acting as a MCCain’s version of Karl Rove politics! It is creeply!


April 1, 2008 3:40 PM

Reality 101

“Obama is not America’s Nelson Mandela, he is America’s Vladamir Lenin, and his destructive socialist agenda would wreck the USA economy”

Jesus dude, I’d like the same pill you’re taking! You do live in a parallel reality (101). Obama = Lenin? A guy with a socialist agenda? Have you got any clue about what you’re saying?

And sorry, the US is already wrecked, thanks to George Bush, senior and junior…


April 1, 2008 3:51 PM

I wish that I could find more hope in Obama than I do. On the one hand, whatever else is the case, I do think that it is significant that he is able (and willing) to speak as he does. British readers may not be fully aware of how remarkable it is to hear an American politician speaking in nunaced paragraphs rather than in grunting sound bites (as in, “Heckuva job, Brownie”, “Bring ‘em on!” or, more recently and from another source, “So?”). All of that said, I fear that for me there are only two reasons to vote for Obama — Clinton and McCain. Certainly none of the effusive, abstract, unevidenced proclamtions of Alice Walker give me more reason for confidence than I had before I read her piece. But we have the choices we have, so on April 22 I will vote for Obama, and hope to be able to do so again in November.


April 1, 2008 4:07 PM

first, i seen every comment that was made towards Barack Obama, you guys say this because your uneducated and you really don’t know what your talking about, you either a woman who wants to see a woman in the office, your either a older american who don’t want change, your either a black person who voting for hillary only because you want to be white just like she is. see i am tired of the old politics and the old ways of america, i am a young adult whos wants change in this country, i don’t want the same old people back in the office again, come on, what kind of change is that, none in my eyes. see BARACK OBAMA,stands for change and he can bring this country together and has the experinces to back it up, OBAMA been in the political eye ever since 1992, so who ever said he has been in it for two years is wrong(go do your homework,baby) another thing is, he has passed over 800 bills that important(gun control, education,healthcare,etc, things that matter) some that even has his name on it, he also cares about children, wanting to make sure they recieve the right education, all HILLARY Is worried about is the older americans, she is not concerned about childrens issues at all, he is a down to earth person, she is not, she is more concerned about the suits she wears, then the younger generation, just because you are a wife in the WHITE HOUSE dosen’t make you qualified, half you that are saying this things, are blind, she is an exaggerater, very dishonest, and is nasty person, for those that support that kind of mess,you just as bad as she is, i am not trying to put her down, but she doesn’t have a good track record, she doesn’t even have any experince what so ever,she passed 20 bills in her time as being a senator, all in which was minor things, like honoring people or giveing awards to athletic leagues, i don’t want a president who don’t have good track record over me, i am going to ask you guys(clinton supporters) a question, say that your child came home after a game they played,and they lost, they were upset and felt like they should have won,are you a going to tell them the best thing to do to win is to beat up on your opponent, use a stick to hit them in the knee cap to win,that is the strategy that she is using, i am turned off with hillary, her time in oval office is over and it is now Obama, he is the change for the 21st century, so stop hatin’


April 1, 2008 4:12 PM

Great article.

Time too for fools to think instead of regurgitating worn out thoughts and sarcasms.

How about this?

“The world is grown so bad, that wrens make prey where eagles dare not perch”.


April 1, 2008 4:16 PM

One would wish that Alice Walker’s of this world, after returning from Mexico after all these years would just not indluge this comparison of an African Politician and an American because they both happen to be black men. Mandela owes his responsibilities to South Africa and end of apartheid in that country.

Some of these white conservative that compare Mandela to the likes of McCain are not only way of line but rather hypocrites of the first order. McCain, has a very dubious record in Vietnam. His is an admiral’s son and received preferential treatment all along. He was nothing but a gun ho pilot that is responsible for destruction of two fighters planes. After he was shot down on account of his own mistakes, he was literally saved from drowning by a Vietnamese peasant farmer, whom for 3 decades did not even acknowledge or thanked him and his Senate office dismissed as some crack pot, till a reporter produced evidence etc. McCain has no other heroic military record other then spending the hideous unnecessary war as a POW.

Obama for all intends and purposes has more primary votes then all the republican candidates put together. The Republicans in this country are less then a 1/3 majority. Even Hillary has more votes then all the republicans put together. But this country virtue of this rotten to the core two party system, leaves much to be desired and republicans are not in form or way entitled to half or more then half representation in the political process or representation in this country.

There is absolutely nothing wrong to elect a woman President, but Hillary with his own brand of arrogance, lies, being a self interest, self righteous politician, presenting her own non existing experience, introducing race, religion and implying that the Presidency is an entitlement, is far from fit to hold the office.


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