Wednesday, April 06, 2016

The Obama Legacy

Few Americans beneath the 1% have benefited much from Obama’s seven years in office. The absence of tangible gains for non-affluent Americans is especially glaring for African Americans, who turned out for Obama in record numbers in 2008 and 2012. Obama’s race helped motivate millions of voters (including droves of liberal white voters) to mark ballots of him with little or any regard for his power-serving record. Obama has barely lifted a finger as president to confront the nation’s profoundly entrenched institutional racism.

Black median family income under Obama has fallen by one fifth. Black home ownership has declined and the Black-white wealth gap has risen. In 2009, white households were seven times richer than black households. Now, white households are eight times wealthier. Deep and deadly racial bias remains endemic across the nation’s giant, globally unmatched criminal (in)justice system of mass surveillance, arrest, imprisonment, and felony branding.

Frantz Fanon wrote in his book, 'Black Skin, White Masks', “is not so much the color of your skin as the power you serve and the millions you betray.”

Who can forget his mega bailout and his ongoing political and fiscal protection of the leading, parasitic financial institutions that crashed the economy and crafted a business-rule-as-usual “recovery” for profits over people. Obama has had a long record of lending assistance to the rich and powerful, championing TPP and TTIP. We all remember the Affordable Care Act, a blatant negation of longstanding majority U.S. support for national single-payer health insurance. Obama has defended corporate insurance and pharmaceutical oligopolies that regularly threw millions of American lives by the wayside of market calculation, causing enormous disruptive harm and death for the populace

New Yorker writer Larissa MacFarquhar wrote after extensive interviews with candidate Obama in May of 2007, “Obama is deeply conservative.” MacFarquhar cited as an example of this reactionary sentiment Obama’s reluctance to embrace single-payer health insurance on the Canadian model.

Obama administration was staffed by Wall Street agents who would give the nation what the liberal columnist William Greider memorably called “a blunt lesson about power, who has it and who doesn’t. They have watched,” Greider wrote, “Washington run to rescue the very financial interests who caused the catastrophe. They learned that government has plenty of money to spend – when the right people want it” And little to spend on the rest of us, the wrong people, soon to be known as “the 99%,” left to ask “where’s my bailout?”

On December 10, 2009, Obama was given the Nobel Peace Prize. Peace prize? The same day 12 civilians were killed by U.S. Special Forces during a late night raid. “Why are they giving Obama a peace medal?” another village resident asked. “He claims to want to bring security to us but he brings only death.”

In the Afghan village of Bola Boluk, where a U.S. bombing killed dozens of civilians the previous spring. “He doesn’t deserve the award,” a young woman said. “He bombed us and left us with nothing, not even a home.”

While Obama’s Secretary of State Hillary Clinton expressed “regret” about the loss of innocent life, neither she nor Obama would issue an apology or acknowledge U.S. responsibility for the blasting apart of civilians. The United States, Obama has said both as a U.S. Senator and as president, should not apologize for its “mistakes”. This, he explains, is because the United States is “an enormous force for good in the world,” one that prefers to “look forward,” not “backwards.” Mark Halperin and John Heilemann’s reported in their book “Double Down: Game Change 2012”, the President once joked to his aides that, thanks to the drone weapon, “it turns out I’m really good at killing people.”

All this carnage came courtesy of a Nobel Peace laureate. 

Clinton is cut from the same cloth, representing Wall St interests. She plays the race card by accusing Sanders of being racially incorrect by daring to criticize Obama. She adds the gender card labeling the opposition as “angry white male Berniebros.”


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