Barbour Criticized for Slavery Insensitivity | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Barbour Criticized for Slavery Insensitivity

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Gov. Haley Barbour is asking the Mississippi Legislature to pass an incentive package for two companies to locate in Mississippi.

Gov. Haley Barbour earned the ire of many when he downplayed a controversy over state proclamations of Confederate History Month--which omitted any mention of slavery--in comments last weekend.

In an interview aired Sunday on CNN, Barbour said that criticism of Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, who issued a Confederate History Month proclamation two weeks ago that failed to mention slavery, was overblown. "(I)t's trying to make a big deal out of something (that) doesn't amount to diddly," Barbour said.

McDonnell later apologized for the omission and added language calling slavery "evil," but Barbour, who is also the current chairman of the Republican Governors Association, suggested that calling attention to the evils of slavery was unnecessary.

"I don't really see what to say about slavery, but anybody that thinks that you have to explain to some people that slavery is a bad thing, I think that goes without saying," Barbour said in the interview.

Barbour's words drew widespread criticism.

"The notion that slavery shouldn't be mentioned because everyone knows it's bad, but Robert E. Lee should be (commemorated) because, apparently, no one knows he was a great general, is, well, ignorant," Ta-Nehisi Coates wrote for The Atlantic.

"I'd say that Haley Barbour's studied ignorance was 'a bad thing,' but that would be a gross understatement," columnist Eugene Robinson wrote in The Washington Post. "What 'doesn't amount to diddly' is the revisionist notion--which Confederate History Month celebrations perpetuate--that the Civil War was about something other than slavery."

Barbour has declared April Confederate Heritage Month in Mississippi every year he has been governor. His office did not immediately respond to a request for the 2010 proclamation. In his 2009 proclamation, Barbour refers to "gain(ing) insight from our mistakes and successes" and "appreciat(ing) our heritage" but makes no mention of slavery.

Mississippi's Articles of Secession, by contrast, are quite direct about slavery's role in the state's rebellion, stating in the declaration's second sentence, "Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery--the greatest material interest of the world."

Marty Wisemann, director of Mississippi State University's Stennis Institute of Government, said that Barbour's comments may have played well to a staunchly Republican base in the South but were likely to hurt his stature nationally.

"I think he might have underestimated the fact that that wound had already been reopened," Wisemann said. "When you take that southern accent, and you add this comment to it, it might be a heavy load to get out from under."

Mississippi NAACP President Derrick Johnson said that the very idea of honoring the state's Confederate history was grossly mistaken.

"Any time you commemorate an event or an incident such as the Confederacy, whose premise was built on enslaving other human beings, it becomes a very big deal," Johnson said. "That's like saying that we should commemorate the birth of Hitler and the rise of the Nazi Party. All those things were atrocities against human beings that we should not repeat. We should learn from them, so we don't repeat (them), but we should not celebrate."

On April 26, State offices will be closed to honor Confederate Memorial Day.

Previous Comments

ID
157203
Comment

Two points from the article should sum up the issue with Barbour -"Mississippi's articles of secession, by contrast, are quite direct about slavery's role in the state's rebellion, stating in the declaration's second sentence, "Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery--the greatest material interest of the world." Regardless of the slant of the Sons of Confederate Vets, this direct quote, from a primary source, debunks any notion that the Conferdeacy began for any reason other than to protect Slavery, an institution that was morally and spiritually bankrupt. Period. and -"Barbour's comments may have played well to a staunchly Republican base in the South but were likely to hurt his stature nationally." Mississippians on the so called political "right" need to wake up and see that MS has the image it has because of the political decisions that are made by people who hold as a value that there are people who deserve and should live in abject poverty and that the people who are wealthy are to be valorized simply because they are wealthy. Stop supporting as a political certainty that vast, disproportionate inequality is a natural occurence of character and see it for the systemic evil it really is. This state is at the bottom of so many socio-economic indicators because of how it chooses to characterize people according to prescribed social castes. There is no way to justify the vast inequities in this state simply by character alone, when for generations purposeful state government policy was aimed to maintain black people as a permanent underclass, locked out of political and economic advancement. Then to end it legally, but support it structurally by not redressing the very communal inequities that your historic legal discrimination created is duplicitous and so un-American it's shameful.

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-13T13:02:19-06:00
ID
157204
Comment

Barbour did another horrifying disservice to our state's reputation with this statement on Sunday. He sends the exact-wrong message out about Mississippi, thus hurting our recruitment and economic-development efforts. It's us to the rest of us to show the world a very different Mississippi than Barbour projects. Step up, folks.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2010-04-13T13:05:31-06:00
ID
157206
Comment

Here's a link to Mississippi's Articles of Secession. Every Mississippian should read them so that you're ready to respond as people come at you with revisionist history about the Civil War and Confederacy not being about slavery. Here's how it begins, for the record: A Declaration of the Immediate Causes which Induce and Justify the Secession of the State of Mississippi from the Federal Union. In the momentous step which our State has taken of dissolving its connection with the government of which we so long formed a part, it is but just that we should declare the prominent reasons which have induced our course. Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery�the greatest material interest of the world. Its labor supplies the product which constitutes by far the largest and most important portions of commerce of the earth. These products are peculiar to the climate verging on the tropical regions, and by an imperious law of nature, none but the black race can bear exposure to the tropical sun. These products have become necessities of the world, and a blow at slavery is a blow at commerce and civilization. That blow has been long aimed at the institution, and was at the point of reaching its consummation. There was no choice left us but submission to the mandates of abolition, or a dissolution of the Union, whose principles had been subverted to work out our ruin. That we do not overstate the dangers to our institution, a reference to a few facts will sufficiently prove. The hostility to this institution commenced before the adoption of the Constitution, and was manifested in the well-known Ordinance of 1787, in regard to the Northwestern Territory.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2010-04-13T13:10:15-06:00
ID
157211
Comment

Thanks Ladd, Ward and the Jackson Free Press for this article. Every local news cycle has skirted the issue. Our local news stations droped this like a hot potato. I tried to call Channel 16, but the line stayed busy for hours. Maybe this means that people will give some feed-back on this issue. Thanks to Rachael and Keith on MSNBC, this was given much national media coverage. Keith said,"Gov. Barbour, if you had said that 100 years ago, you were appealing to the Confederacy; Now that you are saying it in 2010, you are appealing to the "Tea Party." This is so true because the ignorant, the low informational folks and the hate-filled get a real charge out of this kind of rhetoric. These folks who want to be a part of a Revolution has as it basis tenant, RACISM.

Author
justjess
Date
2010-04-13T14:38:59-06:00
ID
157212
Comment

Justjess, I grew up watching people turn their heads against bigotry and live in denial. I swore I would choose a different path. Of course, we will not skirt this issue. The governor embarrassed our state with those comments, and we will not skirt that fact. And the Articles of Secession are an integral part of our history, signed in that building down the street with the stars and bars flapping in front still. Every Mississippi needs to read it and have intimate knowledge of what was in it. *That* is how we move forward: by facing the past and joining together to get past it. Not by living in denial and saying crap that appeals to bigots. It is time to BURY the southern strategy that has kept our state on the bottom for so long, even as it's enriched the people who have pushed it.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2010-04-13T14:52:10-06:00
ID
157213
Comment

After reading the Articles of Secession excerpt, two words stand out to me: "These products..." Products? Do I look like a bottle of 409 to you? I'm not just some product - I'm a human being. The slaves were human beings. Human beings should be treated with dignity, regardless of color or origin.

Author
LatashaWillis
Date
2010-04-13T14:53:53-06:00
ID
157214
Comment

Do I look like a bottle of 409 to you? That is so the quote of, maybe, the decade. Go ahead.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2010-04-13T14:55:55-06:00
ID
157219
Comment

I'm glad Ward quoted from the articles of secession. When I used to teach US History at UT-Austin, I would schedule an entire class to discuss the causes of secession. I would hand out the Mississippi articles (and the Texas ones as well), and the discussion didn't take too long. Here's the point: Mississippi's political leaders in 1861 didn't shy away from slavery - they were proud of it. The document they produced was intended to communicate to future generations (us) the reasons why they chose to leave the Union. That reason is simple: the preservation of slavery. The bottom line is that the South seceded because they feared that Lincoln's opposition to slavery's expansion to the west would ultimately destroy the institution, and many also believed that Lincoln wanted to abolish slavery everywhere (not true by the way). The North started the Civil War because they did not want to allow the South to leave the Union. Only later did it become a war to end slavery for the North. Anyway, kudos for calling attention to this important historical document. Isn't it funny that folks who want to honor these secessionists and Confederate leaders ignore the very document that they wanted future generations to read and understand.

Author
Stuart Rockoff
Date
2010-04-13T17:16:54-06:00
ID
157221
Comment

Hey, why ya'll gotta hate on Haley. He's just a good ole fat redneck. He don't know no diddly bout no slavery and larnin and such. It's heritage, not hate. What do you expect from the leader of a state with the confederate flag as part of it's state flag? 'Cuse me I gotta go practice my banjo and say my prayers to Robert E. Lee, white Jesus bless his soul. The South will rise again!!

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-13T21:24:05-06:00
ID
157222
Comment

Careful, Drummin. Yankees gone thank you mean it.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2010-04-13T21:47:38-06:00
ID
157223
Comment

I hope they do. They better think twice if they think they're getting my guns. It's time to water the tree of liberty...

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-13T21:49:45-06:00
ID
157224
Comment

Donna,I had vowed not to react to obvious attempts to rile us and take us off our game plan, but by making us review that attempt on Mississippi's part to secede from the union, as result of your exposure of the root of the Governors comments, we were forced to look at the document again, and this time we felt more strongly the hateful meaning of the words in the document and we were able to read deeper into the admission of inhumanity and the price thereof. Well we can thank the governor for one thing, though, and that is by drawing attention to that horrible secessionary document, he allows us to see how much money was made off the slave trade, and place a four Billion dollar price tag on slave property and earnings that then acts as a jumping off point for attaching years of interest to the reparation debt due us descendants of the inhumane institution that tarred and feathered us and castrated us and drowned us, and burned us alive as we writhed in the pain of lynching here in Mississippi. Right on Governor, we poor descendants won't need the $56,000,000 that you reject which the federal government wishes to attempt to make us somewhat whole by repairing recent unemployment damages by availing us this financial support, when we receive the reparation for terroristic treatment we endured from slave holding law making politicians who fought to keep us as third class animals with no rights to life and the pursuit of happiness promised by the Bill of Rights, and with certainly no pay for the hours of slave labor in the sun in rags eating slop like hogs; but much more is needed to repair the vestiges of such psychological trauma that makes us even today dispise our own natural features (as uncovered by Chris Rock in his movie Good Hair,where our women support a whole nation by wearing their hair and rejecting our own (if we had that money turning over for us in our own communities spent on our own industry, we wouldn't need any subsidy, federal, state or otherwise). But there I go, taken off my purpose and game plan of promoting holistic activities that heal our state (I guess reparations would heal our state pretty good though). At any rate, the Governor makes it clear that there still exists in our state a cancer that refuses to take blame for enslavement atrocities and cold heartedly denies wrongful treatment of human beings abused, treated callously and made to live worse than animals. If we are to heal as a state, and prosper beyond last place in the union, this sentiment must be put to rest. There was nothing honorable about secession on a point of inhumanity and greed (the same greed that has us bankrupt today as a nation). There was no integrity in how the Blackman and his family was treated then and surely not now should we be reminded of such unmitigated bigotry and hate. I am moved to ask God to change the mindset of those who harbour such insensitive hate mongering feelings. Doctor Daddy

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-13T22:16:15-06:00
ID
157226
Comment

Barbour should be speak to the NCAACP in response to the vile comments this Acorn-affiliated special interest group is hurling at him. These accussations and concerns are baseless, they have no diddly, escpecially considering the ineptitude of a good ole dumb fat redneck. He don't understand where ya'll black folks are pulling all this criticism from, he's jut trying to honor our ancestors in their justified God divined war against the savage blood-thirsty Northern Aggressors with their insatiable lust for our valuables and our women. Our ancestors for a better, more refined, freer American, where every American shall have the right to life of life/liberty/ and the pursuit of happiness. We Should honor these brave patriots, and the sacrifices they made, such as abandoning the care of their slave populations temporarily, most of which they regarded as brothers and sisters, thankful for their liberation from the Godless pagan lands of Africa, thankful for the saving of their souls under the one true God, Jesus. Back to the point, Barbour needs to lay down such positive factors when defending the confederacy in a debate to silence all those elitist Obama worshipers. (Disclaimer: I am writing this stoned)

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-14T03:23:42-06:00
ID
157237
Comment

DrumminD21311....I don't believe I'm responding to you, but that sounds like a bad hollywood movie... 'Gone With The Crap." Were you being fecitious?....if not well....looks like some dark religious drunkeness to me. (laugh out low) You know, all our lives we have been told that under law ignorance is no defense, yet now we are asked to set this legal requirement aside to excuse bankers and investors who say they didn't know, and those who act like they didn't know that "all" the people want to be able to freely pursue happiness and enjoy the bounties of "our" great Democracy--without the shackles of slavery and the vestiges thereof that linger in our hearts and minds because the book has to be cleared first! It is true that, dispite the rescue from the North for slaves, there exists a closer spiritual bond between races here in the South, yet that fact does not root out the consequences of the damage done to Mississippi's psyche, which is in need of repair. Where are the accountants....who can add the interest since 1861 compounded onto the 4 Billion Dollar Assessment admitted in the secession document, to arrive at a figure that can be split among slave descendants. A lot of that money would come to Mississippi y'all. Reparations has got to be good for the whole state!

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-14T11:01:59-06:00
ID
157244
Comment

I think "Gone with the Wind" is extent of most Mississippians' understanding of the Civil War (including Barbour), just as "The Ten Commandments" is the extent of their understanding of the Old Testament.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-14T15:30:19-06:00
ID
157246
Comment

My teacher told me slavery was guud fer us blacks, otherwise, we would have still been in Africa chunking spears, eating mud pies out our hands, and worse eating each other except for the kindness of europeans driving way over there to get and help us with all this steady work for several centuries. We probably owed them that. Since slavery was guud fer us and republicans are mad right now at Obama they accidentally left slavery out of the confederate proclamation or glorification. Anyone could have made the error. I don't know what the apology or uproar is about. Diddly, I guess.

Author
Walt
Date
2010-04-14T16:45:29-06:00
ID
157262
Comment

Dr. Earl Ofari Hutchison did a great column on this and the reasons for it. I don't know how to attach it, but it's called Why the GOP Plays the Slavery Card.

Author
Walt
Date
2010-04-15T16:50:50-06:00
ID
157263
Comment

Here's the link to the Hutchinson column. Right on target. Barbour's "folksy" talk plays right into the GOP base.

Author
Ronni_Mott
Date
2010-04-15T17:07:14-06:00
ID
157264
Comment

In my haste, I made a mistake about the amount of reparations due descendants of the American Slave, because I errantly added cost of labor into the cost of slave "property." The actual quote establishes that this property was "worth four billions of money, or we must secede from the Union framed by our fathers," which means that that was more than four billion dollars as it was underwritten by Gold bullion. Additional accounting must consider the profits made off the products of that labor as well. Mississippi wanted to fight rather than reliquish its cash cow, as it drafted its secession document that justified its position as slave (people)owning entity that controlled a product and market that was important to the world: "...institution of slavery�the greatest material interest of the world. Its labor supplies the product...the largest and most important portions of commerce of the earth. These products are peculiar to the climate verging on the tropical regions,..... none but the black race can bear exposure to the tropical sun. These products have become necessities of the world, and a blow at slavery is a blow at commerce and civilization." Anyone charged with the responsibility of assessing the worth of our suffering has to take the above factors in mind in order to arrive at a just compensation figure. Doctor Daddy

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-15T17:27:04-06:00
ID
157285
Comment

"On April 26, State offices will be closed to honor Confederate Memorial Day." You have got to be kidding me! Are state workers paid for this day off with taxpayer dollars? If this is the case I think Jim Hood should consider a lawsuit on behalf of MS taxpayers. Should I have to pay for a celebration of an act of treason committed by this state? At least if I am required to pay for health insurance I am getting something in return that I support, my health. I call for all the bottles of 409 and 409 sympathizers in this state to appeal to Jim Hood to clean up this mess. That is if the Office of the Attorney General can afford it in light of receiving the largest of the Governor's latest state agency proposed budget cut.

Author
HooYoo2say
Date
2010-04-17T05:17:50-06:00
ID
157288
Comment

Well, "shet" my mouth...."we" still payin fo slavery, and "they" profitin from just the memory of it (not to mention the holdings acquired from the profits there of, from which we must be paid reparations)." If the 409ers can't repeal unjust laws that honor atrocious treatment of "we the people" and exorcise the shame of a failed treasonous secession, then perhaps Barack can finish what Lincoln started, and protect the slave descendants from the cruel slave masters' descendants taking further liberties denying us our rights and holding us to debts that continue to accrue without a payout in sight.

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-17T12:14:20-06:00
ID
157290
Comment

Walt, were you the winner of the Northside Sun's op-ed award?

Author
Brian C Johnson
Date
2010-04-17T19:13:35-06:00
ID
157291
Comment

Can someone enlighten me? I can't understand that Mississippi is facing a budget shortfall and the "Good" gubner is cutting the budget of all State agencies but is not canceling confederate memorial day, which would save millions!

Author
et tu?
Date
2010-04-17T22:13:39-06:00
ID
157295
Comment

Some of us in Mississippi don’t think that it is cute, or hip or politically savvy to “matter-of-factly” oppose our elected presidential leadership, and we don’t consider it a good thing to be recognized as a big fat crimson neck, “bad ole boy,” representing a state that is the poorest, fattest, dumbest and sickest state in the union by making sour jokes about serious issues that affect our livelihood and way of living. Those of us who want to see a slimmer, healthier, smarter and more prosperous Mississippi plead for federal protection against Confederate ideals that neglect the poor and fight to keep the Blackman subjugated and outside of foreign and domestic policy making because he was once regarded as property, while plantation holdings accrue like the girth of such greedy political leaders on the backs of those denied political access and representation by reason of their poverty. We herein petition President Obama to help us keep the old slave holding south from rising again with its racist supremacy, Jim Crow Laws, and lynching. The demographics of the presidential vote demonstrate the kind of battle that rages here, where our children were admonished blatantly in school against showing pride in the fact that “at last” we have at least symbolic racial representation in the White house. This is why we feel that there should be federal laws enforced against invoking the memory of hateful treasonous conditions of the mind, and there must be binding national legislation against commemorating state intentions, however veiled, to glorify heinous acts against humanity (this shame should be buried so we can heal). There have to be put into motion legal actions that ensure that every American citizen has the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, particularly here in Mississippi where reparations are needed the most to make whole those impoverished by enslaving Confederate acts of the past that continue to hurt today.

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-19T00:58:20-06:00
ID
157296
Comment

I gotta question for black people. Why do you worship the god of your former masters? Didn't you guys have your own gods back in the day? Why did you abandon them and choose the god of the people whipping you? I don't think they were setting the greatest example.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-19T01:25:38-06:00
ID
157297
Comment

I gotta question for black people. Why do you worship the god of your former masters? Didn't you guys have your own gods back in the day? Why did you abandon them and choose the god of the people whipping you? I don't think they were setting the greatest example. Christianity didn't begin in Europe. It began in Mesopotamia, which includes North Africa. Besides that, the masters were hypocrites who twisted Bible verses in order to subdue a people who could not read it for themselves because they were not allowed to learn to read. If they could read it, they would have known about people of color such as: Prince Cush Hobab, son of Jethro (helped Moses lead the Hebrews through the wilderness) Moses' wife The queen of Sheba Simon of Cyrene, who helped Jesus carry his cross to Golgotha (By the way, do you think Jesus was white? I don't.) The Ethiopian eunuch whom Phillip witnessed to Even with all that information, I am not a Christian because the white man told me to be. I am a Christian because I want to be. This is way off subject, so I will end it there.

Author
LatashaWillis
Date
2010-04-19T05:16:08-06:00
ID
157298
Comment

DrumminD I never know when you are serious! It was more than whipping my other race brother (lol); it was termed "seasoning," didn't you watch Roots? That was some serious business that eventuallly brought in Willie Lynch with his scientific whipping, not of us, but of the two mules that pulled us apart in front of our families as we screamed in agonizing flames without our gonads which were cut off, to leave a lasting chromosmatic impression on our mates and offspring that persuaded us to worship even the devil if need be to end the tortuous terror by the master terrorist. Again, for which we should receive reparation and get some mass therapy so we don't hate ourselves for submitting and being unable to protect our family, and for wanting to look like the master.

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-19T13:50:36-06:00
ID
157299
Comment

I've never seen Roots. I assume most people my age or younger haven't. Haley Barbour probably hasn't either. Roots is like a curse word in white homes. We're too busy watching Wayne Brady and American Idol. Obama should make every white person, including Barbour, watch Roots and write a 5-page paper about the experience.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-19T16:35:31-06:00
ID
157300
Comment

I think I finally seen someone nuttier than me in Drummin and maybe in the doctor, too. I enjoy y'all work, though. Yo Brian, you know I don't read or write anything for the Jim Crow Sun aka Northside Sun. I was trying to be funny in the remarks that made you ask the question. As far as the master's god is concerned, the slaves and us other blacks weren't praying to or worshipping the god that master did. We knew any god that liked ole master and granted any of his prayers wasn't any good either. We were and are worshipping and praying to the God that helped us overcome and get over ole master's barbaric ways and obstacles. One of the reasons I don't take my grandkids to visit state capitals around the country especially in the south, and I certainly wouldn't knowingly let others do it either, is because I don't want them being taught or mislead into believing that any of those dudes of the ole days are heroes or worthy of praise or worship. Most of the people whose pictures line those walls were horrible, sadistic and barbaric white supremacist unworthy of anyone praising or emulating them. I include the nation's capital in this vein with a few exceptions.

Author
Walt
Date
2010-04-19T16:54:56-06:00
ID
157301
Comment

Did y'all see that some of the terrible and egregious assholes (tea party) met in Jackson this weekend at the coliseum? I hear a couple of blacks were in attendance and gave speeches. They even alleged that other blacks see them as uncle toms. They don't speak for me. I see them as bountiful booty kissers aka BBK who hates blacks just like their jim crowing friends of the tea party.

Author
Walt
Date
2010-04-19T17:08:10-06:00
ID
157302
Comment

Nice post, Latasha. Walt, Drummin' makes you look almost tame. ;-)

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2010-04-19T19:57:34-06:00
ID
157303
Comment

Thank you all for healing me with heartfelt laughter, after conferring with three 92 year olders today--one was my 8th grade english teacher who taught me to write (Ms Helen Garlington--check her out on Youtube); the other was our Holistic Healing Teacher who shares working wellness solutions Dr. Cayenne; and the last and seemingly strongest was my Aunt Mary from Belzona--who already had me in stitches all day and into the night, and ending it before bed with the sometimes hilarious responses, deep world views and analytical machinations of the minds of blog lovers like y'all is just a blessing (and,thank you especially ladd).

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-19T23:32:48-06:00
ID
157304
Comment

I think it is time that we stop saying that Barbour is painting a bad picture of Mississippi and start acknowledging that he paints quite an accurate picture of the political and economic leadership in this state. He and his constituency comprise a social class that is not fazed by the social inequities that ravage this state. They see this reality as a natural occurrence of doing "God's will" and maintaining a system that supports continued white supremacy and black conscription into the lowest of social and economic conditions. This is what MS has been, is, and will be until more critical and progressive thought is used by more people not just in political power, but cultural power as well (churches, educators, media, etc.). We can not progress as a complete state until we begin to critically debunk the notion that a Mississippian's proper political and social perspective is "conservative". Not raising taxes is no moral imperative; it is a political perspective that benefits far too few people in a state that is the poorest, sickest, and most ill conceived politically in the Union. Not that more taxes is the answer, but that the notion of raising taxes is "sin" needs to be vehemently challenged, not accepted simply because it is the "conservative" way of doing things. As for the notion Black people at the Tea Party rallies, I think it’s absurd not because Black people aren’t or can’t be “Conservative” politically. It is absurd because the tea party movement is clearly a sham. It is not a grassroots movement; its corporate backed and has no factual basis for its strident views on taxes and government spending. The taxes for 98% of Americans have gone down since the Obama Administration has taken office. Most everyone agrees that the Wall Street Bailout was definitely a free market, or Big Business concession, so the Obama “Socialist” tag is bunk, and, judging from the demographics of those who are showing up at these rallies, this is more of a disgruntled middle class white man movement characterized by calls to “take back America”, which is hauntingly similar to the sentiment that led to the rise in Klan membership after Reconstruction, during the Red Scare, and the rise in White Citizens Councils after the passage of the Civil Rights legislation of the 50’s and 60’s. Why would any self respecting and historically knowledgeable Black person find comfort in such a gathering baffles my mind. I don’t know if they are “Uncle Toms”, but they are definitely not aware of history and identity politics in America if they think that this movement simply an outcry against taxation and government spending.

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-20T09:13:15-06:00
ID
157305
Comment

Government intervention in the marketplace, be it in the form of bailouts or otherwise, can not logically be considered a "free market" concession. Moreover, I question what that phrase could possibly mean -- the free market does not exist as a thing unto itself -- it is not an entity to which concessions or penalties can be granted or levied. Individuals and corporations operating freely in a market can be granted concessions or have penalties levied, but again, that's a case of government acting to show preference to some citizens at the expense of other citizens. I'm curious as well about the claim that the Tea Party is "corporation backed". I don't doubt that the Republican Party has attempted to borrow the political momentum of the Tea Party movement (to varying degrees of success, with the major hurdle being the GOP's underwhelming record of actually following through on promises to limit government power and lower spending), but I'd find it odd that corporations would start a movement that was (originally) protesting the Bush/Paulson bank bailouts.

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-20T10:44:29-06:00
ID
157306
Comment

I just lost my post. Am I the only person having problems submitting today?

Author
justjess
Date
2010-04-20T11:20:28-06:00
ID
157307
Comment

What sort of trouble?

Author
Todd Stauffer
Date
2010-04-20T13:11:19-06:00
ID
157308
Comment

Why the hell are Mississippians so proud of the Confederacy anyways? They lost! They were conquered. And it wasn't as if they lost but gained respect and concessions from the Union, they lost all their wealth and prestige in the process. They not only were racist, they were stupid and forged the path to their own destruction. The Confederacy reminds me of the Nazis. At least the German people are ashamed of their heritage. They don't go around flying Nazi flags on their trucks, celebrating Hitler or Rommel's birthday on the same day as Martin Luther's, reenacting the Battle of the Bulge and the invasion of Poland, and making their state institution's mascot Colonel Hitler with their futbol crowds chanting "Heil to ze Fatherland!"

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-20T14:59:23-06:00
ID
157309
Comment

Drummin- Are you sure the Germans are ashamed of their heritage? There WWII memorials for the soldiers who fought and died in WWII in Germany. If you did a little research you would find they do have re-enactments of the Battle of the Bulge in Belgium near Bastogne and other battles by WWII Axis war history buffs.

Author
BubbaT
Date
2010-04-20T16:18:03-06:00
ID
157310
Comment

Oh, so BubbaT makes my point for me. The Sons of the Confederacy are just like Neo-Nazis, as is their supreme leader Haley Barbour.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-20T16:22:11-06:00
ID
157311
Comment

Drummin-No I was just pointing out your ignorance.

Author
BubbaT
Date
2010-04-20T16:43:39-06:00
ID
157312
Comment

Also, JFP, if your listening, I went on over to good ole Clarion Ledger's website to mix things up, and of course, there were comments bashing Muslims and proclaiming they are "evil" and we are at war with Islam, etc, which I consider hatespeech. How do they get away with this? Do they have a defense? Would you allow such comments on your site in support of free speech? What if the word "Muslim" was replaced by "black people" or the N-word (no even I won't say it).

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-20T16:44:21-06:00
ID
157313
Comment

"Drummin-No I was just pointing out your ignorance." More personal attacks from BubbaT. That's strike two.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-20T16:45:50-06:00
ID
157314
Comment

Not a personal attack- you made the blanket comment the German people are ashamed of their heritage and there were no re enactments of the Battle of the Bulge. I pointed out you were wrong because you were uneducated, unaware, or uninformed about the subject, which is the definition of ingnorance. :)

Author
BubbaT
Date
2010-04-20T16:49:36-06:00
ID
157315
Comment

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/05/world/europe/05germany.html I think the blanket statement is a fairly educated one considering the Bavarian government STILL bans the publication of "Mein Kampf" in Germany.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-20T17:00:58-06:00
ID
157316
Comment

But the German gov't thinks it time to lift the ban on reprinting it. It's not illegal to own or read "Mein Kampf" or sell or trade it as long as you aren't using it to promote hatered or war in Bavaria or the rest of Germany. Most German libraries have verisons of it.

Author
BubbaT
Date
2010-04-20T17:11:52-06:00
ID
157317
Comment

Drummin/BubbaT: We're just coming off print deadline and looking this stuff over; let's keep it civil. @DrummingD21311 As for the Clarion-Ledger -- they're following the Big Media theory that you let anyone say anything anonymously on your site -- you're looking, perhaps, at the negative side of larger media companies getting what they wanted out of the Communications Decency Act of 1996, which made the providers of online services less accountable for items online than they are for items in print. (That's not to say that the posters themselves can't be held accountable, as some recent rulings that caused providers to hand over the IDs of anonymous bloggers have attested.)

Author
Todd Stauffer
Date
2010-04-20T17:16:09-06:00
ID
157318
Comment

Don't hand over my ID!! Hand over Bubba's though.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-20T17:30:34-06:00
ID
157319
Comment

Bubba, if you're going to call someone ignorant, you ought to at least spell it right. Just sayin'. (blowing you a kiss)

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2010-04-20T17:47:22-06:00
ID
157320
Comment

No, Drummin, we do not allow blatant hate speech or obviously libelous statements by commenters, even though as publishers, we are only responsible for our own comments, technically. (There's a big difference between someone libeling on their own site and a commenter doing it.) The courts are starting to catch up with all the anonymous libel. There are some folks who publish sites and comment on them who ought to learn the meaning of "absence of malice" before it's too late. The a-wipes are ruining the wild, wild unregulated west of the Internet, but then again those types are always why we lose freedoms. And the media outlets that have allowed unmoderated hate on their sites are going to suffer the backlash. It's already happening. It's sad when the only thing you ever here abou the Clarion-Ledger anymore is that their online comments are hateful and bigoted. Allowing all that crap for cheap page views was a very short-signed, desperate strategy. At least they require user names rather than allowing multiple posts by different people under the same "anonymous" label. The meme in the Web world is that people who do that (a) don't know how to tweak their own blog software and/or (b) are pretending to be different people commenting on their own site (perhaps so they can libel? They should be careful). Otherwise, those sites would make it easier for readers to follow, and add some degree of accountability, by requiring user names. It's an obvious case of "just because you can doesn't mean you should." Over the next year, I'm quite confident the backlash against trash-comments and blog is going to continue to grow. You already see it here in Jackson and all over the Web. The hate trend is wearing thin.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2010-04-20T17:56:11-06:00
ID
157321
Comment

Donna- LOL I should have caught that..hey I spelled it right the first time.

Author
BubbaT
Date
2010-04-20T19:11:50-06:00
ID
157322
Comment

Hey y'all, this here is Haley Barbour. I decided to comment because I've just come across this forum, and shucks, I sure don't want citizens of the great state of Mississippi to hate or mislabel me. You see, I'm just a good ole boy, just a good ole fat redneck that enjoys my sweet tea and the smell of magnolias just like everyone else. I think all this hoopla is just diddly raised by those damn carpetbaggers. Us here in the South know that's it all about heritage, not hate. Anybody that's ever come here knows that everbody loves each other and we are much less segregated or racist than those yankees up North. Our ancestors were patriots and fought defending states' rights, just like our good ole main street patriots still fight for state's rights against the tyranny of the socialist Obama administration. Everybody knows that the new health care plan will only bankrupt Mississippi. So join with me as we fight. I'm Haley Barbour and I approved this message.

Author
Haley Barbour
Date
2010-04-20T19:45:54-06:00
ID
157323
Comment

Well BubbaT at least Germany's memorials are in honor of a war they fought against other countries instead of memorials and celebrations of a horrific war waged by one part of their country against their fellow countrymen from another part. However Germany cannot be proud that their citizens sat idly by as an entire segment of their population were victims of genocide. What everyone in this country should be proud of and celebrate is the fact that at least half this country took a stand against a hateful and inhumane treatment of a fellow human being. You don't see the Northern states celebrating their stand and defeat of this Godforsaken practice because although they won the war they take no pride in the loss of life of so many on both sides of the country. Can you honestly commemorate the sacrifice of a soldier without giving credence to the cause for which this great sacrifice was given? I say not and I believe those that continue to issue this proclamation are in agreement. Hence the intentional omission of the very cause for which these soldiers sacrificed their lives and took the lives of others in the defense thereof. To deem the cause as unjust only serves to discredit the sacrifices of those who fought to uphold it.

Author
HooYoo2say
Date
2010-04-21T03:35:27-06:00
ID
157325
Comment

Mark Asserts that : “the free market does not exist as a thing unto itself -- it is not an entity to which concessions or penalties can be granted or levied. Individuals and corporations operating freely in a market can be granted concessions or have penalties levied, but again, that's a case of government acting to show preference to some citizens at the expense of other citizens.” Which is exactly my point. President Obama stepping in to bailout Wall St. investment banks because they were “too big to fail” is favoring the corporate interests in the economy more than the working class; “preference to some citizens at the expense of other citizens” as you say. My point is that this action is a nod to Corporations, and therefore the Tea Party’s assertions that President Obama is “Socialist” are unfounded. The fact that Pres. Obama had to step in shows that the “free Market” needs government regulation to have any benefit for society, and therefore really isn’t “free” at all. Mark Also asserts: “I'd find it odd that corporations would start a movement that was (originally) protesting the Bush/Paulson bank bailouts.” It is well documented that the Tea party’s first and earliest organizers were two right wing lobbyist think tanks “Freedom Works” and “Americans for Prosperity”, both are known for “astroturfing” grass roots movements. Check here http://thinkprogress.org/2009/04/09/lobbyists-planning-teaparties/ . These think tanks are funded by corporate interests in oil, missile defense, and manufacturing. This only shows that the movement is using rhetoric about taxation and corporate bailouts, but in reality it is really about the unfounded fears of disgruntled middle and working class whites about what they perceive as a radical socialist agenda from a Black president that is taking “their” country away. When you look at the policies, facts, and actions of the President, their claims are not substantiated.

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-21T10:22:55-06:00
ID
157327
Comment

How soon y'all forget! Both the Wall Street and the automaker bailouts were completed during the previous administration of George W. Bush, *not* Obama. And since when are corporations "citizens"? They are not citizens, although business lobbyists have been pushing in that direction from all sides. Let's be clear: In November 2008, Bush gave $700 billion in taxpayer dollars to Wall Street with no oversight and no strings. Then, in December he handed $17.4 billion to the big three automakers. Granted, he had allies in the U.S. Congress, but let's not blame the Obama administration for something they did not do.

Author
Ronni_Mott
Date
2010-04-21T10:54:42-06:00
ID
157328
Comment

Blackwatch, how does the fact that Bush (not Obama, as I and Ronni have already noted) stepped in and bailed out corporations and banks somehow show "that the “free Market” needs government regulation to have any benefit for society, and therefore really isn’t “free” at all."? I know that the bailouts happened -- that's historical fact. That they happened isn't an argument for their necessity, however. Government has done many things that, in retrospect, have proven to be unwise. Scholars still disagree whether government intervention ended the Great Depression or merely exacerbated it. I'd be happy to read an argument for the necessity of the bailouts, but it would have to be a bit more substantial than saying, "Government stepped in, which proves it was necessary!"

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-21T11:07:51-06:00
ID
157329
Comment

On a related note -- how do you guys feel about General Motors' largest investor levying fines against Toyota? I'm sure there's no conflict of interest there.

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-21T11:09:02-06:00
ID
157330
Comment

Ronni, I am aware that the bailouts were first imposed by the Bush administration, but the Obama Administration also approved of the Bailout and gave GM and Chrysler more money. Your point further proves my point that these Tea Parties are not so much about gov. intervention, but about fear and ignorance of the facts. Also, I wasn’t trying to imply that corporations were citizens. I was just trying to note that the Bailouts helped corporations, with tax payer (citizens) dollars.

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-21T11:16:02-06:00
ID
157332
Comment

Yoohoo- You said"You don't see the Northern states celebrating their stand and defeat of this Godforsaken practice because although they won the war they take no pride in the loss of life of so many on both sides of the country." You sure about that? Of the 70 something Civil War re enactments scheduled this year in the U.S. 35 are in Northern states.

Author
BubbaT
Date
2010-04-21T11:45:15-06:00
ID
157342
Comment

Mark, You seem to have a habit of assigning words and ideas to me that weren’t mine to begin with. I never stated that the bailouts were necessary, I noted that government regulation was necessary for free market economies to have any social benefit. The bailouts showed that regulation was necessary. The bailout came about precisely because of deregulation of the market, which allowed for funny investments in mortgage backed securities and credit swaps that caused the meltdown. As far as whether government intervention helped end or exacerbate the Great Depression, you can believe what you want, but in an article surveying professors of economic history and theory: when asked whether "as a whole, government policies of the New Deal served to lengthen and deepen the Great Depression," 74% of respondents who taught or studied economic history disagreed, 21% agreed with provisos, and 6% fully agreed. Among respondents who taught or studied economic theory, 51% disagreed, 22% agreed with provisos, and 22% fully agreed. http://www.jstor.org/pss/2123771?cookieSet=1 So, it is split among theorists, but historians of economic history seem to agree that government spending like that of the New Deal and the ARRA serve to help end recessions.

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-21T13:24:53-06:00
ID
157343
Comment

[quote]You seem to have a habit of assigning words and ideas to me that weren’t mine to begin with. I never stated that the bailouts were necessary, I noted that government regulation was necessary for free market economies to have any social benefit. The bailouts showed that regulation was necessary. The bailout came about precisely because of deregulation of the market, which allowed for funny investments in mortgage backed securities and credit swaps that caused the meltdown.[/quote] Apologies for the misreading. It happens. The conclusion doesn't change much, however -- my rebuttal remains largely the same. You are arguing that the fact that government saw fit to enact a "solution" demonstrates that the problem arose from too little government involvement. The problem with that argument is the innumerable unstated assumptions. Merely stating that a problem existed can't deliver the cause of that problem. You believe that the problem was caused by too little government regulation, but you've offered nothing other than the fact that the problem existed. We might argue that in fact the cause of the problem was too much government regulation, or that the amount of government regulation was fine, but incompetently applied, or that the amount of government regulation was fine, and it was competent in its application, but inconsistent in its enforcement. There are countless numbers of possible explanatory causes that don't result in a flat "too little government regulation".

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-21T13:40:05-06:00
ID
157346
Comment

Mark, I have read your blogging conversations with others on here and I have seen your penchant for arguing in semantics when the facts seem to speak against your perspective. To cut to the chase, lets try to establish a basis for our discussion, a mutually agreed upon premise, if you will. What has caused the recession we are currently in? I know that there could be multiple factors, so if you see multiple factors, please list them. Then we could start our conversation there. Hopefully, in the course of the conversation, you will begin to understand my sentiment that the free market needs regulation in order to serve any meaningful social benefit, in that an unregulated free market is too susceptible to devastating booms and busts that would serve to eventually fracture the social cohesion that is necessary among the resulting social classes for a thriving society.

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-21T14:34:31-06:00
ID
157348
Comment

I can't honestly say your characterization of me makes me particularly eager about pursuing the discussion, but in the spirit of good will... ...I'd suggest almost nearly the exact opposite of your claim. I think the history of world economics and American economics in particular suggest that the free market, largely unregulated except for checks against coercive behavior, anticompetitive collusion, and true market monopolies, produces a much less severe boom and bust cycle. Additional "regulation" generally serves to constrict economic decisions according to the priorities of government officials rather than according to the priorities of the individuals involved. In a free market, prices are not arbitrary numbers created simply to squeeze profit out of the working man, but actually represent the real economic cost of transactions. When prices go up and down, it's the result of those economic realities changing, and the price change provides the incentive or disincentive to engage in those economic transactions. In this current recession, I think you see rampant abuse in the private sector because of the poorly conceived "regulation" and spurious application of legislation based on government priorities. To wit, the Fed continually dropping interest rates and pushing mortgage programs that introduced much higher risk than the free market would typically entertain apart from that influence. Freed from the constraints of government priorities that too frequently are completely out of whack with actual economic realities (for example, attempting to make housing "attainable" for people, but ultimately being unable to change the actual cost of the housing), and operating with the knowledge that risky behavior has real consequences (unlike banks assuming those mortgages had government backing and automakers begging for bailout dollars), the circumstances that produce the kind of massive market bubbles we've seen just aren't nearly as likely. Some businesses will fail, but that is okay -- better the occasional and minor failure of a few businesses, than massive bubble burst of entire industries and the resulting shaking down of the citizenry to pay for the failure. Wayne's post just appeared, so I'll add a comment: I don't, in any way, support the uneven playing field granted to large corporations by our government, and I don't care if it's a Republican or a Democrat signing the legislation, it's still the coercive redistribution of goods and services by government fiat. The irony is that if our government didn't constantly prop up the massive corporations, we'd likely see a market much friendlier to small businesses. Instead of our government giving with one hand and taking away with the other, why not cut down all the subsidies and tax breaks as well as the punitive fines and over-regulation? Even if the resulting balance of economic power remained nearly the same, we'd have the added benefit of not washing all that money through the massively inefficient government sector.

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-21T15:03:09-06:00
ID
157350
Comment

Mark, You note: “…I think the history of world economics and American economics in particular suggest that the free market, largely unregulated except for checks against coercive behavior, anticompetitive collusion, and true market monopolies, produces a much less severe boom and bust cycle.” So you admit that the free market, unchecked or “unregulated” would have issues with monopolistic and coercive tactics that would create a situation where true competition would not thrive. This is precisely what regulation guards against. The booms and busts occur when these factors play too heavily into the market. The problem with regulating these things in the minds of the free market fundamentalists is that it stifles the unbridled pursuit of profit, or “greed” that motivates the capitalist to partake in these types of schemes. What about the free market, unregulated, would prevent these types of things from happening? I argue that the free market comes with a price, the uneven and most times unjust distribution of capital and other resources that serves to concentrate both poverty in the hands of too many and wealth in the hands of too few. And, as history and current observation points out, this creates a gulf between the rich and poor that widens and widens. Without the government regulating and providing a safety net for the poor, societies with free markets would implode on themselves. Now, you characterize the current crisis as the result of the government trying to interfere with the housing market by “pushing mortgage programs that introduced much higher risk than the free market would typically entertain apart from that influence”. Interesting that you seem to think that poor people in unaffordable houses (because of government mandate) seemed to cause this crisis. Question, when in history have poor people in any free market economy caused a recession? So, people weren’t defaulting on home loans before? Banks didn’t foreclose on homeowners in great numbers until 2008? The reality was that the value of the investments that bankers bought into plummeted when ARM’s (created by those very investment banks, to construct their mortgage backed securities) came due, and people’s money instantly lost value when there was no money to be made on the interest from the defaulted loans. When a poor person defaults on a loan, the only person harmed are the loan holder and the poor person, when billions of dollars (from people’s pensions, charitable foundations, etc.) are invested in securities that were based on these loans, then billions of dollars are lost, and we a have a (global) recession. Large sums of money being invested in things that quickly lose value (stocks bought on margin in 1929, mortgage companies in the mid 1980’s, mortgage backed securities today) cause recessions, not poor people defaulting on predatory home loans. Funny that you also suggest that deregulation would cure this, but in each instance, more regulation could have prevented these things from happening, and especially in the later part of the 20th century, these recessions happen only a few years after deregulation is championed by the government. History seems to bear this out.

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-21T15:39:16-06:00
ID
157351
Comment

I'd like you to find me the "free market fundamentalist" in the Republican Party, the Libertarian Party, the Austrian School of economics, the townhall.com website, or whatever right wing catch all floats your boat, that wouldn't support the responsibility of government to enforce market laws to guard against collusion and attempts to monopolize markets. Heck, Adam Smith wrote often enough about the dangers of market monopolies and the proclivity of capitalist to engage in collusive price-fixing, so it seems odd his ideological children wouldn't heed his words. If your argument is truly directed at some unnamed party that supports no government oversight or regulation of the free market in any form at all, then I wish you'd identify your opponent, as he is invisible in American politics, so far as I can see. I take issue with your complaint that the free market too often "unjustly" distributes wealth. Your standard of justice seems to assume that our greatest concern ought to be some egalitarian distribution of funds, so that no one has any reason to envy his neighbor. I'd argue that historically, when governments make a more even distribution of wealth a priority (by direct or indirect means), the temporary increase in wealth by the poor is offset by a longterm decrease in wealth for everybody. I'd likewise argue that despite some apparent growing disparity between the "wealthy" and the "poor" in America (which frequently isn't nearly so dramatic when the class mobility of actual people is considered, rather than simply comparing the numbers of the economic "classes" divided into quintiles as is often the case), the poor in America are much better off in terms of material wealth than what we considered "middle class" 100 or even 50 years ago, as well as compared to the "wealthy" of much of the world. I believe this isn't an accident. I don't believe it's an accident that the opening up of the economic markets in Communist China has produced a rapidly increasing standard of living for the entire population (rather than the rich preying on the poor in a newly deregulated market, as your market would seem to predict). We're off into a back-and-forth swap of economic worldviews, and we're probably boring everyone else, but I'm enjoying it anyway. Regarding the recession -- you'll note that I don't think it's merely the loan defaults that caused the situation. I stated that the private sector abused the situation by repackaging all these risky loans and selling investments with implicit government backing. This continued on and on for years while the government was watching and nobody was willing to address it. Without the government creating false incentives, the situation never arises in the first place. And half the people that enjoyed massive personal profit from the situation were given government positions to "fix" the problem.

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-21T16:04:28-06:00
ID
157354
Comment

Mark, You are correct in that we do have a fundamental difference of perspective when it comes to “economic worldviews” as you call it. The difference is not a philosophical one, but a ontological one in that you have proposed that history has born out that “…when governments make a more even distribution of wealth a priority…the temporary increase in wealth by the poor is offset by a longterm decrease in wealth for everybody. … the poor in America are much better off in terms of material wealth than what we considered "middle class" 100 or even 50 years ago, as well as compared to the "wealthy" of much of the world.” You assume that what you have stated is fact, when what you have done is set up a circular logic in which your conclusion is simply a restatement of your premise. This happens because you use your premise as a fact that the poor are more well off (which is relative, how is this notion substantiated simply because the poor in America are not as poor as the poor in a third world country?) Also, how is this phenomenon the direct result of open or “free” markets as you suppose? Doesn’t American Imperialistic, Gestapo type “shakedowns” like the support of the Shah in Iran in the 1950’s and the subversive actions of the CIA in South America-supporting the Contras because they would be friendly to US Business interests in Nicaragua in the 1980’s, etc- relate to your claim about open markets resulting in a higher standard of living for Americans, rich or poor? You see, if this were simply about free market competition, why all of the subversive foreign policy of the US in order to “open markets”? You speak of “third world” poverty, yet don’t mention the reality that many third world countries are so debt ridden because most of the natural resources in those countries are owned by outside interests who, more times than not, have ties to the US or European economic powers. The so called “longterm wealth” of the US is directly proportional to the longterm debt of these countries, assumed simply because they either had to agree to debt, or agree to continued colonialism (check places like Haiti and the debt they had to assume for over throwing French Colonial Governments). The economic standing of the US has very little to do with doing capitalism “right” as it is that the military might of the US has proven to be a valuable tool in controlling resources in other countries, and the ability to influence world commerce through control of these resources (“foreign” oil, diamond and other mineral mines in Kenya and other parts of Africa, etc.) which has been achieved largely through coercion and collusion, the very things you, Adam Smith, and other market fundamentalists claim are not good capitalistic practices. It seems to be very convenient to point toward the relative wealth of the US on the world stage and attribute it solely to “open markets” , yet, if you scratch the surface, you’d see that interesting things are done to open these markets. This is why I said the distribution of wealth is largely unjust. The competition for these scarce resources is hardly level and fair. People are advantaged and disadvantaged simply because of the relative social standing, both domestically and abroad (I haven’t even mentioned the history and present reality of unfair competition domestically, but the history is just as observable). It is flawed to talk about the relative wealth of the poor in the US comparative to the poor elsewhere without recognizing that this reality isn’t simply about markets and fair competition, but it is also about imperialism, exploitation, and militarism that is too often used to protect business interests, which is masked as “democracy”.

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-22T08:46:37-06:00
ID
157356
Comment

And there we are. I see the massive and sustained economic growth of the American economy as a result of the freest markets in history. You see it as a pattern of exploitation and military domination.

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-22T09:01:49-06:00
ID
157364
Comment

Mark, I well understand where both you and stand. The question is, which perspective is more born out in history? In other words, who's perspective is grounded more in history (rather than ideology), the "freest markets" or the imperialist militarism abroad or meritocracy or class exploitation here at home?

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-22T12:58:46-06:00
ID
157369
Comment

Hey did y'all miss Haley Barbour's post? I think it's pretty sensational that he would post on here.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-22T13:13:56-06:00
ID
157373
Comment

Mark you are not boring us, and I too am enjoying this e-debate. Oh, and, by the way....Mark, I feel that it is disingenious to simplify the deep analytical points presented by Blackwatch by simply stating "And there we are." without benefit of your previous at length discourse and presentation. As a political scientist, I must view this as an admission of defeat or your concession speech. Blackwatch are you a Poli.Sci. graduate? We were taught, as we studied the subversive tactics of certain US agencies in Latin America back in the sixties that Political scientists are privy to sobering realities unaccepted by the general public. The truth of the matter is that the answer is a complexity of socio/economic/politico relationships that shape our system of government and form of democracy that bear witness to Blackwatch's premise and proposition.

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-22T13:41:15-06:00
ID
157375
Comment

DrumminD21311, I saw the post allegedly authored by Haley Barbour. I'm sure that most of the people who read it was/is hoping that it is a hoax and that no Governor with any decency, pride and respect would sit his "fat red-neck" "good ole boy" hind-part on the stage with President Barac Obama's wife just weeks ago, but, would float to this site and call him a Socialist. What would that make Machelle and what is to be said of the Barbour's allowing themselves to be flanked then seated next to a socialist or the wife of a socialist? Very confusing. Perhaps Ladd will check out the authenticity of the queried blog.

Author
justjess
Date
2010-04-22T13:57:24-06:00
ID
157376
Comment

Jess- LOL not confusing. I would put money on it that if Donna checked the ip address of the Barbour post it would be Drummin's.

Author
BubbaT
Date
2010-04-22T14:13:32-06:00
ID
157377
Comment

Y'all don't be gullible now. The fake-Barbour post wasn't even very good satire! And Barbour is not going to post on the JFP site. I'm sure he wishes we would just go away (no.) I haven't checked the IP; obviously, it was fake.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2010-04-22T14:29:54-06:00
ID
157381
Comment

LMAO! http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/04/22/michael-steele-for-decade_n_547702.html Steele was asked to explain why an African-American should vote Republican at a university-sponsored discussion on the conservative movement. The RNC chairman's response: "You really don't have a reason to, to be honest -- we haven't done a very good job of really giving you one. True? True." How has this not been brought up?!!

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-22T15:41:27-06:00
ID
157383
Comment

Dr. Dad, My academic background is graduate level Sociology, with some education and political sociology courses during my matriculation. The information I cite is readily available to anyone who wishes to research the history and machinations of global imperialism. And to be sure, I am not against the notion of free market competition for resources. I am just an adovate for making that competition fair and just; while all the time noting that abject poverty and excessive wealth concentration/accumulation cause more problems than they solve.

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-22T15:48:15-06:00
ID
157388
Comment

Blackwatch you certainly learned to write and reason well to have majored in Sociology. You whipped Mark hands down, although he followed the party platform and showed comeback. If he would stop bullcrapping so much and become a Democrat he could probably get some real benefits from his skills some day. I'm surprised you spent so much time talking and arguing with a republican. They only hear their own voices or the party's anyway, and if you can show me a republican concerned or interested in justice, equality, fairness or even the truth in this day and time, I'll show you monkeys born with elephants hanging from their behinds. You just won't see this. Everyone with any sense and honesty knows we (America) got in the position we and Europe are in due to robbing, stealing, killing, fraud, exploitation, slavery, Jim Crow, and cornering the market against those unable to fight us off, et al. The last thing Mark or any republican wishes to see is a real free market, just regulations and fairness. Mark is an interesting read though if you're looking for republican fodder and support for the status quo. Keep up the good work Mark. You should have Steele's job!

Author
Walt
Date
2010-04-22T17:47:32-06:00
ID
157394
Comment

I see the massive and sustained economic growth of the American economy as a result of the freest markets in history. You see it as a pattern of exploitation and military domination. It is mind boggling that you see these things as mutually exclusive, Mark. Yes, capitalism has provided sustained economic growth for America, but at the cost of what? We have a nation that consumes 25 percent of the earth's resources with a meager 3 percent of its population. Our growth is protected by a defense budget that is larger than every other nation's defense budget on the planet. Combined. All of this growth was fueled by a post World War II boom (WWII costs were almost completely financed by the "massively inefficient government sector," btw, purposely increasing the deficit), which made us a global superpower. In many cases, America's private industry and manufacturing powerhouses sprung from reconverted (government-owned and run) munitions factories turned back to private industry after the war, while the government turned its attention to roads and other domestic infrastructure, and helping to rebuild defeated and destroyed nations, in addition to funding a massive GI bill that educated and provided opportunities (such as home ownership) to an entire generation of American men returning from the war. The massive American economic boom of the 50s and 60s had a lot to do with the fact that there was little to no international competition, much of which had been bombed into oblivion and was being rebuilt from scratch. Being the relatively unscathed survivors, we turned that into the biggest bullies on the block. "Pure" Capitalism (or free-market fundamentalism if you prefer) with its mandate of continual growth and expansion, must, almost by definition, exploit all available (and finite) resources (human, animal, vegetable and mineral) and dominate its competition (industrial, informational, ideological or otherwise) to continue its growth. As a global economic system, it is as unsustainable as the resources it gobbles up in its path. Like I said, it's mind boggling that you can't see any of this downside.

Author
Ronni_Mott
Date
2010-04-22T19:54:33-06:00
ID
157397
Comment

Gee, Thanks Walt...I guess? I don't know if there was anything to win in the "debate" with Mark on the issue of free markets, but one thing I can say is that too often the thinking concerning these issues gets grounded in ideology rather than sound thinking, historical analysis, and pragmatic policies. Many times, in talking with people around the state concerning issues of inequalities, I find that many leaders(black and white) are only trying to justify inequalities (rather than eliminate them) by showing that the source of the disparities we see are due mainly to poor people not having the discipline, morals, or work ethic to succeed. Rather than trying to look at the more observable history and policy holes that characterize the context under which poor people in this state live, they would much rather champion "individual morality" in order to "prove" Christian (read conservative) Evangelical values. We have to do better at critically assessing the cause of such disparities, especially considering that the poor are disproportionately women and people of color. This reality points to more than individual morality, but that too many poor and minority people face systemic and/or environmental challenges that constrain their (moral) choices. These systemic challenges are well within the purview of political/economic leadership in the state. But, if the predominant sentiment is to maintain the status quo and complain about individual morality, we will continue to see what we see today. You can't legislate morality, but can legislate justice.

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-23T08:43:16-06:00
ID
157398
Comment

I'm not sure if there's much purpose in continuing to (attempt to) defend my position, given that I'm just a bullcrapping Republican entirely unconcerned with justice, fairness, equality, or truth, but I'll address a few points. Ronni, I don't see those things as mutually exclusive, and if you were paying attention, I don't think Blackwatch nor I were arguing that our positions entirely excluded the others -- speaking for myself, I do recognize that the global dominance of the United States and the mixed internal record on workers' rights has contributed to our economic "success" -- I'm merely arguing that those things aren't the primary cause of it. While I dare not speak for him, I'd suspect Blackwatch feels the same, that certainly the expansive opportunity available in a free market has contributed to the economic success, but the over-riding pattern has been of economic growth through military might and exploitation. A summary of those positions shouldn't be confused with a comprehensive sociopolitical statement. The notion that free market growth requires some kind of stripping of finite resources just isn't supported by history. Markets expand and contract in unexpected ways. Wealth creation through business isn't some kind of alchemic conversion of pure resources and labor into money. There are entire industries and market sectors that didn't even exist 50 years ago. So far as my desire to maintain the status quo...I'm fairly certain that our current situation is a lot closer to (and moving quickly toward) your best-of-all-possible worlds than it is mine, Walt.

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-23T09:13:07-06:00
ID
157402
Comment

Blackwatch, you guys (and gals?) are really heavy and I love it. The only thing I would add to your most astute observations is the question: How much of our poverty is due to the almost unsurmountable odds placed in the path of ex-slaves?...and, how much is due to the psychological trauma hiding in the minds and oppression stifled ambitions of urban ghetto filled, and Mississippi backwoods and delta crammed descendants of those who were never paid for their contributions to building the infratructure and wealth of this Nation? If we are lazy and morally bankrupt, is it due to the despair that results from exploitative, abusive, heinous treatment, the aftermath of forced conditions created by those who brought us from Africa and have never accepted responsibility for the plight caused by this and the fact that they have yet to repair the damage of such treatment? Or is it due to systematic exclusion of those who are for what ever reason unable to conform to the dictates of our so called free market society? I guess that's more than one question...but, for me,...as ever,...the solution and answer to them all is REPARATIONS! (It is funny and maybe ironic that since I have begun blogging, I have been taken away from my holistic healing focus as a means for uplifting Misissippi to a state (pun intended)of wellness to embracing Reparation as the key.)

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-23T10:42:28-06:00
ID
157403
Comment

Mark, I'll give you this: You are a master of side-stepping your own statements. You clearly stated your position as "I see the massive and sustained economic growth of the American economy as a result of the freest markets in history," in opposition to your understanding of Blackwatch's posiiton, thus: "You see it as a pattern of exploitation and military domination." If that isn't a statement of mutual exclusivity, I don't what is. It's simply tiresome to debate someone who continually comes back with some version of "you misunderstood me." And the fact that history doesn't support the fact that free market growth strips finite resources is only valid in that global free markets never existed prior to the 20th century.

Author
Ronni_Mott
Date
2010-04-23T10:51:07-06:00
ID
157404
Comment

So why did you address me and not Blackwatch, who in his response to my statement, moved on to the question of which perspective is more supported by history, but found no fault with the summary of the two positions? Perhaps he understood that it was just that -- a summary -- not a fully fleshed out and comprehensive description of the two positions? Why are you chasing this point that clearly has no basis? Blackwatch disagrees with me, but at least he's addressing the actual substance of the issue, not trying to scold me for how binary my thinking is or whatever the current JFP buzzword might be. It sure would be nice to comment here without constantly being subjected to complaints about how "tiresome" it is to argue with me.

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-23T11:01:25-06:00
ID
157405
Comment

Realized I didn't address your last sentence, Ronni. Arguing that capitalism will strip finite resources to the point of depletion simply ignores how prices work. They aren't arbitrary numbers created by robber barons. They signify the actual relationship of scarcity and demand. What's ironic is that actual examples of resource depletion (real estate in CA, Nixon's gas rationing, etc) are the result of leftist policies, not the free market.

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-23T11:22:15-06:00
ID
157406
Comment

Dr. Dad, To answer your question about individual morality that is said to be the source of the wide disparities along racial and class lines in MS, I think that the psychological effects of slavery and Jim Crow and the systemic exclusion of poor and minority people aren’t so much mutually exclusive as they are symptomatic of a hard reality; that human social relationships are harmed, ruptured, and perverted by the ruthless pursuit of economic resources, and thus power, that is the over arching and substantive value driving the free market fundamentalism of our time. Everything that you’ve mentioned is directly tied into the goal of resource accumulation/concentration and market control. Many theorists support the notion that racism has perceived psychological benefits for racists, and see this as the basis for social systems built upon racism. I am more materialist in my critique. Though there are indeed many people who don’t benefit financially, but psychologically, from racism, enough elites do prosper fiscally to perpetuate its existence. If money weren’t to be made and hoarded in Slavery, Jim Crow, and their systemic offspring we observe today, then I do not think there would be much use or efficacy for racist beliefs and practices (both covert and overt). Now, will reparations be an effective solution to the disparities that we observe? Only if the reparations would serve to fundamentally restructure society in that power relations between the descendents of slaves and the descendents of slave holders would drastically change. Will a check do this? How about tax free existence? Free education? What types of reparations would fundamentally change the social structure in this country? I don’t know, but the only justice I see would have to come from a fundamental change in the social structure, where rights, privileges, freedoms, autonomy, dignity, and self respect weren’t so tied to the domination or relative political relationship of people. There needs to be a fundamental change in how we see the value of humanity in order for us to see this social re-structuring. I don’t know how any one time reparation or concession would lead to that.

Author
Renaldo Bryant
Date
2010-04-23T11:35:59-06:00
ID
157410
Comment

Blackwatch, in researching the question of repair for the damages of slavery, into which your response persuaded us to delve, we note the definition of Reparation: repair or restoration of something to a good condition. As result of your response we were immediately forced to ask the following question. How do you repair the damage done to the descendants of the African Slave? We conclude that this a complex issue, yet it is too important to be dismissed with the “ole one check won’t do much” rationale and argument, put forth also by Williams and Ogletree(this remedy occurs everyday in legal dispute resolution in the courts)?! In formulating a list of the kinds of things that should be considered to determine the nature of a reparation remedy, including the check payment for damages, we reject the position that white people will feel that the check is the end of their responsibility (Williams), as the absence of atonement presently says loads about how they are or will be affected, so such consideration does not inter into our deliberation. Our list of points to consider include the following: Perhaps those African Americans of Slave Descent who are welloff might forego their rights to said repair check(checks could be prorated to account for economic status of recipients). Shouldn’t there be a team of Accountants and Doctors and Psychologists and Healers and Clergy and Entrepreneurs and Politicians and Sociologists gathered to assess damages and determine the amount of the check, and devise a plan for resolving this issue? Certainly there is an economic disparity consideration involving a financial wholeness aspect of the restoration to a good condition of living; And of course there needs be psychological restoration component for sound mental faculty, free of inferiority complex and self loathing to the repair. Then there has to be educational upgrade to prepare recipients of the Reparation for being employed in technical fields. We must also restore the health of these slave descendants. So, a check is good.. it’s a start…something to get the process rolling, perhaps there have to be strings attached to the checks…like no drug or alcohol purchase, and mandatory educational upgrade, and the purchase of new housing and the purchase of new transportation (if the people want to spend some of that money on Cadillacs, that's ok….that’s what the economy needs--the purchase of more butter and less guns, so to speak). Perhaps there should also be a technical assistance clause for ensuring that personal investment in business and self employment has a chance of survival in a “free market” situation, (perhaps investment of portions of this check should receive government protection from unscrupulous investors). As a citizen of the poorest, sickest, and least educated state in the union, I am convinced that Mississippi would benefit the most from such a legislation aimed at righting the wrong of African enslavement atrocities; we took the brunt of this wrongful treatment, which is one of the reasons we are last. Let us be first in the Repair! And if that repair comes in the form of a check, ( unlike Wiliams who posits: “Thus...end up with select members of the African American community with a little more money ..., while the Caucasian population will feel ...the deal is sealed”) we say: let that check cover all the realities discussed above and be large enough to make us whole and restored to a good condition (Additionally, who says it has to be one check; I am sure a lot of social restructuring will go on with the amount of money needed for said repair! In fact when it comes to resolving long seated chronic diseases, there is no viable quick fix available, with holistic healing it may take as long as it took to get into the condition to get out of it, meaning in this case it may take 400 years of checks or structured payments to straighten this mess out).

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-23T19:56:04-06:00
ID
157411
Comment

Mark said " Arguing that capitalism will strip finite resources to the point of depletion simply ignores how prices work. They aren't arbitrary numbers created by robber barons. They signify the actual relationship of scarcity and demand. What's ironic is that actual examples of resource depletion (real estate in CA, Nixon's gas rationing, etc) are the result of leftist policies, not the free market." Ironic? No Tragic and predictable? Yes. Mark let's review the last few economic "busts" in US history and try to define the, paraphrasing Mark's words here, the scarcity manipulating "robber barons" associated with them. Current rise in gas prices (not a bust yet..but it's coming)= under regulated big investment banks in the commodity futures market Sub-Prime Loan Derivative bust = under regulated big investment banks. West Coast Energy Shortage bust = under regulated big corporation (Enron) Telecom bust= under-regulated big corporations (Worldcom) and big accounting firms (Arthur Anderson) Silicon Valley "dot com" Bubble bust = under-regulated big investment banks. Savings and Loan bust = under-regulated big and smaller corporations. Junk Bond bust = under-regulated big investment banks and Wall Street brokerage houses. 1970's Oil Crisis = non-regulated international and domestic Oil Cartel Once again Mark, your own words tell the truth despite your attempt to ignore or discount historical facts.

Author
FrankMickens
Date
2010-04-24T08:27:10-06:00
ID
157412
Comment

Frank, the comment you quoted had to do with Ronni's claim that free markets lead to resource depletion. Simply making a list of fraudulent companies and burst industries bubbles and writing "under-regulated" next to them isn't even on point.

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-24T09:13:07-06:00
ID
157413
Comment

Mark, I was not responding to Ronni. I quoted and responded to what you said. You said " What's ironic is that actual examples of resource depletion (real estate in CA, Nixon's gas rationing, etc) are the result of leftist policies, not the free market." To make my point I simply followed your lead and provided my list to rebutt your list. Kinda reminds me of the "old rubber and glue" and "goose and gander" children's chants. From the mouth of babes! You also said "simply making a list...isn't even on point" So I guess the list you provided was also not on point. The real point is, history has shown that robber barons, in an under-regulated capitalist economy, will first strive to manipulate supplies to create artifical scarcity's and then "bust the system". Of course, in my opinion, taken to its logical conclusion, the under regulated robber barons will fish until there are no more fish, cut trees until there are no more trees, pollute the air and water until there is no more clean air or clean water. Want another list to back this up? Be careful in your response. Remember, "bounce and stick"!

Author
FrankMickens
Date
2010-04-24T11:33:44-06:00
ID
157414
Comment

Mark....."under-regulated" was/is precisely the point. These weren't "fraudulent companies" that Frank speaks of, they were encorporated business entities, but they were carrying out the greedy, and selfish "under-regulated" "free market" business philosophies, policies and principles (the 3 P's if you will), that lead/leads to where we are now, reeling from the bankrupcy their unregulated business practices cause.

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-24T12:07:25-06:00
ID
157415
Comment

My apology Blackwatch. I'm not very use to dealing with sociologists although I have 2 master level social workers working with me. Yes I know social work is different from sociology. Although I majored in psychology (arguably a similar profession) in undergraduate school before switching courses and going to law school I failed to understand and appreciate the value and contributions of sociologists to society and the black community for quite a while. I though I had gotten over the ignorance but once again you caught me at it. Dr. Kenneth Clark will pivotal to Brown v. Board of Education and Thurgood and group likely would have failed without his research and other contributions.

Author
Walt
Date
2010-04-24T12:57:33-06:00
ID
157419
Comment

Mark, Adding to the responses from Frank Mickens and doctor daddy, when I said unregulated free markets deplete resources, I had these examples in mind (among others): • Overfishing to extinction (see Newfoundland cod) • The 6,000 square mile oxygen-depleted dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico (one of about 150 worldwide) caused by industrial waste (especially from agricultural pesticides) in the groundwater flowing into the oceans via streams and rivers. • Deforestation of the Amazon rain forest to create more farmland. • Strip-mining and blowing the tops off of mountains for more coal. • The growing global scarcity of non-renewable resources used in industry, including minerals such as gold, oil and natural gas. Every one of these examples point back to the irresponsible use of resources in a way that disregards the consequences of that use (with the exception of how much it adds to a corporate bottom line). As to the Nixon's gas rationing being the result of leftist policies ... what?!? The OPEC oil embargo (which caused gas rationing) came as a result of the U.S. policy of supporting Israel and resupplying that country with weapons during the 1973 Yom Kippur war, which occurred four years into Nixon's watch and at his request. Tricky Dick would roll over in his grave at the thought of being called "leftist." As to the housing bubble/crisis, most economists agree that the problem began with seller and buyer speculation, exacerbated by risky mortgages, and made even worse by Wall Street repackaging the high risk mortgages as legitimate investment opportunities. It was a house of cards made infinitely worse by unregulated investment bankers. The notion that somehow it was all caused by too much regulation is a vast oversimplification and mostly revisionist fiction. Examples of businesses colluding to control supply and demand (and thus, artificially inflate prices) are also numerous, despite such activity being illegal in most industrialized countries. Take the diamond market, for example, that has paid hundreds of millions in fines over suppressing supplies to artificially inflate prices. OPEC regularly fixes prices for oil. My guess is that the number of cases actually prosecuted are far outstripped by what actually happens in the marketplace. It's not simply a matter of supply and demand that controls prices; quite often they are indeed quite arbitrary. Ultimately, it might seem from some of my posts that I am virulently anti-business or anti-profit. That is not at all the case. What I am is virulently anti-greed, which as so many spiritual texts will tell you, is a root poison to the soul of humanity. We must, as Blackwatch pointed out, rethink the value we place on ourselves, our fellow humans, and, by extension, to the earth. It's all connected.

Author
Ronni_Mott
Date
2010-04-24T17:17:49-06:00
ID
157437
Comment

Sorry Blackwatch Kenneth Clark was a psychologist. How about E. Franklin Frazer and W.E.B. Dubois though, probably my greatest influence as a thinker, writer and social observer and critic. He was right on time.

Author
Walt
Date
2010-04-26T16:08:58-06:00
ID
157438
Comment

Isn't W.E.B. Dubois considered an "Uncle Tom?" I think I got off "The Boondocks."

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-26T16:17:52-06:00
ID
157504
Comment

Wow, Drummin that was low...let's not name call yall. YOU KNOW WE STARTED OFF TALKING ABOUT the insensitivity to the memory of slavery on the part of our Governor, then we dealt with the meaning of conferate thinking and actions that we are made by our governor to commemorate, from there we looked at free enterprise and government regulation, to labeling partisan legislation and government policy toward helping the poor, to the meaning of the Secessonary Document and the admission of culpability and establishment of a sum of reparation, to irresponsibiiity of unbridled business entities and a bankrupt nation, to the unregulated free enterprise system caused depletion of natural resouces, and a failure of Democratic and Republican leadership both to shepherd our earth with care, concern and protection. Now, we insult ancestors like W.E.B. Dubois? Well, for me this is a good stepping off point as I am forced to devote more time to my book (Adventures In Home Birthing)and my wife. But, before I take a blogging sabatical, I must report the information I uncovered regarding a just settlement for the crimes committed against the African Slave and his American born descendants by the Confederacy that our proud Governor wants us to honor. You may be stunned to learn (as I was) that according to calculations that measure the worth of money since 1861, particularly using one of the seven methods of calculation models--the Production Worker Compensation model, whereby the calculations were good through 2009, and establish that the amount of the repair owed each African American of Slave Descent is $5,billion, six hundred and thirty six million, three hundred and sixty three thousand dollars. (See Samuel H Williamson, "Seven Ways to Compute the Relative Value of a U.S. Dollar.....") http://www.measuringworth.com/uscomare/ Such a sobering amount of remuneration humbles me and makes me want to quickly (with due process)make a just settlement, as I recognize the fact that we are all ill and in need of tender touching from a sincere heart, along with a purging and cleansing of our bodies and minds and placing the highest standard on things we ingest as we engage in longevity aimed activities that will allow us to stay on a healing path. Besides the above view, I must commend Donna Ladd for her brave committment to reporting the truth about our race relations in Mississippi and point us in the direction of seeking the correct perspective to guide our moves to heal our state.

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-29T00:55:54-06:00
ID
157510
Comment

I highly recommend reading this article by Lawrence Mishel of the Economic Policy Institute: http://www.epi.org/analysis_and_opinion/entry/mishel_weighs_in_on_fiscal_responsibility_and_priorities/ To those conservative JFP readers, yes, the EPI is a left leaning organization. However in this time of economic struggle he and David Walker, president and CEO of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, one of the nations most right leaning conservative economic think tanks co-authored an op-ed titled, "Address Jobs Now, Deficits Later" It is refreshing when running across rare intellectual and reasonable fact driven articles void of political posturing. "Address Jobs Now, Deficits Later" was published on the website Politico: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0210/33444.html

Author
HooYoo2say
Date
2010-04-29T10:43:34-06:00
ID
157512
Comment

DrumminD21311, You asked if W.E.B. DuBois were an "Uncle Tom". I went to school in Tennessee and there was much talk about DuBois from students because he taught at Fisk University and left quite a legacy. Many folks started to doubt his understanding of black folks when he wrote The Talented Tenth. There was also concern because he did not believe that black should focus on "social intergration". His focus was on political representation. DuBois was the first A-American to receive a PhD from Harvard. He experienced pure hell from different groups of Whites (Tea Party) acting folks. He was called a "Socialist" and a "Communitst". How familiar are those labels?? This man founded the NAACP and was the first Black to serve on its Board of Directors. He was also an Alpha. DuBois was a thinker and a great political activist. DuBois gave up U.S. citizenship and became a citizen of Ghana. I think that he was in his 90s when he changed countries. One quote I shall never forget and one that sums up his life is: "In my own country for nearly a century, I have been nothing but a nigger."

Author
justjess
Date
2010-04-29T11:21:53-06:00
ID
157513
Comment

[quote]DuBois was the first A-American to receive a PhD from Harvard. He experienced pure hell from different groups of Whites (Tea Party) acting folks. He was called a "Socialist" and a "Communitst". How familiar are those labels?? [/quote] Those labels must have been very familiar to DuBois, since he frequently spoke and wrote admiringly of Joseph Stalin and the hope of Communism, and at the age of 93 joined the Communist Party. Of course, I'm sure it was just all a bunch of racist white Tea Partiers who wanted to label him. Is it not possible to recognize his importance and work in other areas without forcing ourselves to pretend that he wasn't a Communist? Or immediately assuming that anyone who found fault with DuBois' political philosophy is a racist?

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-29T11:33:06-06:00
ID
157515
Comment

Justjess, it seems that labels is the key word in this present examination, and as far as i can see it is related to my belief that we stretch freedom of speech too far when we allow "the people" to misrepresent the office of the presidency with libelous labels, that distort the president's character, and erode the dignity due the position. Shouldn't these "people" be proscecuted? Further, in following up on my previous blog, which I said would be my last for a while,as far as the payment of reparations is concerned, precedent laws establishes that this repair should should occur (according to the 5th and 14th amendments) in a speedy trial with "due process."

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-29T12:25:05-06:00
ID
157518
Comment

It is interesting, Mark, that you say that DuBois was a member of the Communist Party. The Communist Party denies that. There is an old "Negro Spiritual" with these lines: "He looked beyond my faults and saw my needs." I am not saying that DuBois was a god: I am saying that he understood the plight and the problems of black folks. His philosopny was more closely related to that of Malcolm X. If black folks had focused on political and economic intergration rather that of being with or being near, some of our suffering would have ended sooner. Even Dr. King was said to have been too concerned with intergration of the people; rather, it would have been to the advantage of black people to..... I jsut realized something: Mark, if the only thing you can report of W.E.B. DuBois is an alledged connection with the Communist Party and to use the other part of your blog to defend the Tea Party, this is a waste of computer time. Good By PS: Thanks, Doctor Daddy

Author
justjess
Date
2010-04-29T13:23:29-06:00
ID
157522
Comment

"Wow, Drummin that was low...let's not name call yall." Oh yeah, that was soooooooo low. He's only been dead 50 YEARS! Too soon? I was not relaying my own personal sentiments about Dubois. I know very little about him. I was just echoing comments I have heard about in recent black cartoons (I watch a lot of cartoons), such that he was "bougie" and such. Maybe that label arose from a book titled "The Talented Tenth." I think "Freaknik" as the cartoon that slammed him on Adult Swim, and "The Boondocks" I don't think paints a flattering picture of him. Black cartoons and Chappelle's Show are most young white people's source for black history.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-29T13:44:54-06:00
ID
157523
Comment

Well, it seems that we are approaching the point of being ridiculous. If cartoons will be the source of the delivery of black history, the problem is greater than I thought. I complained during the 50ties because there was only one page of "Negro History" in the volume of my World Book Encyclopedia. My father paid over $300.00 for those books. Now in 2010 to hear from a White Gentleman that he gets his black history from cartoons and without any other acknowledgement of serious historical writings, I am without words. That sucks: BIG TIME!!!

Author
justjess
Date
2010-04-29T14:12:27-06:00
ID
157531
Comment

W.E.B Dubois as portrayed in "Freaknik:The Musical:" We are next introduced to the Boule, or the “ten-percenters” (a spoof of the talented tenth) who were founded by W.E.B. DuBois to keep the remaining 90% of ‘down.’ The members of the Boule are spoofs of Oprah, Jesse Jackson (who continuously threatens to ‘cut Freaknik’s nuts off’ – similar to statements the real Jesse Jackson made about then-candidate Obama), Al Sharpton (voiced by Charlie Murphy), Russell Simmons, and Bill Cosby. According to whoever made this cartoon, Dubois is a villain of the black community. I wouldn't know, as I am white :) We learn white history in school, not black history. I remember a black teacher in my school that I really liked that emphasized black history was hated and considered racist by all the white parents.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-04-29T18:17:30-06:00
ID
157533
Comment

The doublespeak is thick here today. Doctor Daddy, I'm not sure which Communist Party you're talking about, but the New York Times reported it when DuBois officially joined at age 93. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke at a public event about DuBois's communist beliefs, so if I've been fooled, at least I'm in good company. I'm not sure if I really "defended" the Tea Party movement. If being unwilling to believe that every person who has attended a Tea Party hates black people constitutes "defending" the Tea Partiers, then I suppose I'm guilty. Finally, these aren't "blogs". What we are submitting are posts or comments, but not blogs. There are blogs on the JFP site, but that refers to the original author's writings, not the responses posted below it.

Author
Mark Geoffriau
Date
2010-04-29T18:35:01-06:00
ID
157551
Comment

Part of what drives me up the wall about romanticizing the Confederacy is that the Civil War was an absolute disaster for most (white) people in the South. We often hear that the majority of southerners did not own slaves, though that was not true of the Deep South. Regardless, so many poor whites were seduced into giving their lives, and for what? So that their wealthy neighbors could continue to exploit and terrorize their black neighbors. I thought of it today because of a story about the National Archives' new exhibit on the Civil War. This line in particular struck me: Wealth allowed alternatives and created resentments; in the South a “20 Negro law” meant that planters with 20 or more slaves would be exempt from service. Could it be any clearer than that? Wealthy slave-owners were exempt from the draft, while poor whites were forced to serve. Most folks in the South got suckered into the war, falling for all the high-fallutin' talk about "sacred honor" and "freedom" when what was really at stake were the interests of entrenched wealth. "Confederate Memorial Day" would be a more fitting tribute if it was called "Won't Get Fooled Again Day."

Author
Brian C Johnson
Date
2010-04-30T12:50:13-06:00
ID
157558
Comment

Sorry, you all misunderstood my statement, which regarded the fact that we should not stoop to name calling, labeling, hatefully categorizing and castigating in our academic examinations. Further, my words were confused with another's position, conversely, (my only concern as far as the Dubois debate is concerned is that I was not interested in labeling him and using that as fire to stir up some hatefilled retorts to devide our brethren) my words dealt with the charge of Communist libelously (false and harmful accusations) labeled as being the character of our President. AS you were straightening me out on the nature of our posts (which by the way i thank you for, i do have several other blogs that i deposit whispers from my heart) you neglected to comment on my most important issue taking precedence over the fake "stir" over where Dubois was coming from--where is my (our) Reparations? Straighten me out on that one, my brother, because I've got four brilliant children (with two more coming behind them) now in college who need the things that reparation will make easier on me like their tuition and study abroad award assistance money, and travel and enrollment in the best universities they qualify for).

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-04-30T14:06:55-06:00
ID
157570
Comment

DrumminD, You and the young Whites you spoke of have no excuse, when it comes to acquiring knowledge about this or any other subject, since the internet makes it possible for you to attain data and information ad infinitum on most any topic. When we came through our knowledge aquiring stage during the 50's and sixties, we had to go to the library which was usually miles away...look into the card catalogue to find appropriate books and subject matter, then search through the books to find the info related to our search, then copy title, author, publisher, and date of publication, then search through volumes of book call numbers to find the books which a lot of the time were checked out by someone else in your class. Then, we had to ccpy little snipits and quotes and the above noted info onto 3 x 5 index cards, then go back home to sort through all the data and draw our conclusions as we reported on our research, then wrie it out in pen and perhaps type it up. Now, all you have to do is turn off the cartoons and click on Google and type in your search words and pull up more information than you can use, go to specific sites, select and highlight desired info, copy that data along with the URL for the site and the bibliography, then take it back to your document and paste it. There is no excuse for not learning about any subject from any angle you desire to get an informed opinion on it! So, please no more couch potato TV Show intellectualizations, thank you!

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-05-01T22:07:26-06:00
ID
157585
Comment

Don't shoot the messenger. I'm not defending my ignorance, only identifying it, and ruminating on how prevalent I assume it to be. I'm not the enemy. Take it up the rest of the "white folks." Btw, I'm not that young, I used index cards at the library as well. Don't most students still do this? Most journal articles are still only widely available in print.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-05-03T15:10:31-06:00
ID
157586
Comment

Unfortunately, your excuse Drummin does not let you off the hook; you are still reponsible for bringing reliable facts and information with your "stirrings," that I assume you want to have considered seriously.

Author
doctor daddy
Date
2010-05-03T16:32:25-06:00
ID
157587
Comment

DuBois was a brilliant and fantastic intellectual and person although some people argue probably truthfully that he was uppity. I'm surprised he didn't take up arms like Nat Turner did considering how horribly racist white people were back then. Any argument that he was a communist or socialist detracts nothing from him in my view. Only a fool would continue to kiss the tails of whites Americans, believe in any system concocted by them and for them, or assume any real kindred spirit with them in face of so much white supremacy and barbaric treatment by them against blacks. Mark prefers Booker T. Washington and Michael Steele who believe in the superiority of their masters no matter how the master treats them and their kind. Drummin, you're quite likable. I'll only suggest that you stay off drugs. They kill brain cells. Smile. Cheers!

Author
Walt
Date
2010-05-03T17:21:31-06:00
ID
157591
Comment

Is anyone else haveing problems seeing posts since Drummin's on the 29th I can't see them under the article just in the recent comments section?

Author
BubbaT
Date
2010-05-03T19:12:04-06:00
ID
157592
Comment

The white man shut us down.

Author
DrumminD21311
Date
2010-05-03T20:05:36-06:00

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