Petty Bourgeoisie in Crisis and Conflict

PAIDS and the Black Middle Class

…Politically Acquired Ideological Deficiency Syndrome (PAIDS) …
A negro does not believe any other system will ever exist in our lifetimes.
A negro will never work for the Revolution.
A negro may try to convince you that capitalism is forever, that it cannot be destroyed, and that nothing better can possibly exist+
Negroes will work for Imperialism under any circumstances, and will work against the liberation movement in one way or another.

….PAIDS is the trouble with negroes

One chief problem with the analyses that cross our daily travels is they almost invariably fail to see the big picture. These attempted breakdowns of events in society, and to black folks in particular, resemble the five blind men who fondled an elephant. One felt the trunk and thought it a snake; another felt the leg, believing it was a tree; the third felt the ear and assumed it was a fan; still another touched its tusks, saying it was a spear. Finally, the last stepped in the elephant’s dookey, and thought it was a mud slide.

Like the blind men, few of us have a comprehensive breakdown of what we are dealing with in this bloodsucking capitalist system. Up to our necks in dookey, we think it’s just a mud puddle. Yet the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Hence, to understand the whole reveals the raison d’etre of its parts, their reason for being.

Probably the biggest failure to understand this derives from the black middle class. Two books, The Black Bourgeoisie by E. Franklin Frazier and The Crisis of the Negro Intellectual by Harold Cruse, explain more to black Americans than the sum of all other works on the genre combined. These two giant exponents of revolutionary analysis give us the best look into the heart of the black middle class and its failure to provide effective leadership. They define the black petty bourgeoisie as a class in crisis, frustrated by its linkage to capitalism and the black working class community which gives it legitimacy. Remove its ideological leadership over the masses of African people, and its relationship to capitalism becomes useless.

The duality of black middle class consciousness, that is, the divided mindset based upon servility to Imperialism and leadership over the black colony, produces a confusing mishmash of ideas and ideologies that cannot help our community move ahead.

Dual consciousness has its basis in the class contradiction. It is, as Malcolm X pointed out, at once identifying with the slave master while striving to represent “a positive image” to the slave. Simultaneously, these “positive images” lack substance. Images all lack substance. An image is a picture, a statue, a representation of something real or imagined. For that reason, the NAACP annually produces its Image Awards. Black magazines and newspapers continually talk about presenting positive images. Mentoring is a method for fostering images. What happens, tho, when the image proves to be false or corrupt or superficial, as all too often proves the case?

Today’s youth culture has come to believe in the images on the dollar bill, images which can be exchanged for something of real value, even if the images themselves prove superficial. The youth have little use for leaders, anymore, because the rhetoric of the black middle class has too many deficiencies and not enuf depth. This class fails to link capitalism with parasitism on the black community. It fails to organize effectively and inadequately supports revolutionary sectors in the black colony, even while racism obviously enjoys legitimacy in capitalist society. The black middle class seems only interested in its own comfort, promotion and exclusivity in the midst of a holocaust taking place in Haiti, the Congo and right here.

In some cases, the black middle class forms the frontline in the war against the black community and its working class soldiers.

It is the middle class that helped arrest, jail, convict and imprison Jamil Al Amin in Atlanta. It is the middle class waging war against Mukasa Dada. The black middle class opposed the anti-apartheid divestment campaign on HBCU campuses across the country. The black middle class in league with Imperialism produced the backwards culture of gangsta rap, and reactionaries like Stanley Crouch and Juan Williams. It produced Clarence Thomas, Ward Connerly, Michael Steele and other enemies of the black community. This reveals the essence of Politically Acquired Ideological Deficiency Syndrome. Because the black middle class lacks an anti-imperialist analysis, because it poses itself as the leadership of the black masses, it remains uncritical of sell outs because PAIDS means getting over and selling out in some way or another.

So the inadequate analyses of the civil rights era left our community bereft of genuine leadership, especially following the US government war against revolutionary movements. Ideas got coopted. Mukasa Ricks started the momentum for the slogan “Black Power”, even tho it had earlier beginnings with Malcolm X and Robert F. Williams. Then, the slogan got quickly transformed to mean something else, “green power, money,” as Floyd McKissick redefined it. Fred Hampton’s Rainbow Coalition, meant to build solidarity for the Black Panthers in their work thru out the black colony, became something else when Jesse Jackson took over the concept. So in this way, crucial elements of our most rapidly growing and most relevant trends became watered down and reformed to better suit the needs of capitalism.

Today, instead of a scientific class analysis of racist confrontation, folks get deluded by a color theory. That is like fighting fire with fire, instead of fighting it with water. Because Imperialism uses a color theory to build and maintain the racist conflict. Theories about Ham, about “survival of the fittest”, about Aryan supremacy and all sorts of nonsense populate the white community and the best the black middle class can do is create more myths. We need a scientific analysis that will remain consistent despite changing conditions, and will provide us with a basis for building  communities of resistance. You cannot build a community of resistance when working for a career. That career can be inside a capitalist corporation or it can be a career making speeches and writing books that do nothing for our advancement.

We have to understand that Imperialism faces a crisis. During this period, the shot callers do not want to see social upheaval turn this country inside out. So they have diluted the racist system by having you focus on a part instead of the whole. They have elevated the status of Imperialism’s neo-colonial program. And one negro in the whites house with PAIDS, who has pulled the US out of the World Conference Against Racism, playing a role similar to Colin Powell’s 2001 act, cannot possibly recognize nor articulate the contradictions facing black people in America or around this planet. We have to begin fighting back against Imperialism.

The time is now to demand Reparations. We must make the demand while the government is doling out $800 billion to bloodsucking financial institutions. We must say we need a program to get our communities on their feet. We must demand this money to help our people not just in this country but thru out the Caribbean and Africa. Working class Africans cannot afford to come down with PAIDS. We have to build our own communities. We have the skills. History only requires our unity and resolve.

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Guest Commentator, Amiri Baraka

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We Are Already In The Future!

At election’s denouement, to the Right the outraged, self loathing of the loser & the losers, including one dude standing mutely in Michigan, a Republican delegate, in a Klan suit, describing Obama as an “Islamic communist”. To the Left, the self important drears who had urged us to throw our votes away, as they objectively, in the name of their “principles”, gave votes to John McCain.

Even dizzier, we supposedly hear from the left right corkscrew terrorist , Al Qaeda insults that Obama is a “house slave” But as I sd in an instant rejoinder, “Anyone who thinks suicide is revolutionary ain’t  all that bright to begin with. And as for that slave calling, best they refrain from drawing our attention to the fact that some of the Arab ruling class always thought of Black people as slaves”. But we are willing to be momentarily cool, remembering Mao’s dictum, “fight your enemies one by one”.

But back to reality. We have just won an election. We, meaning the masses in the US, indeed the people of the world. (I was in Italy, France, Spain, Norway during the period leading up to and through the election. In Italy just before the election at my readings I urged the Italians to call the states, since I knew they had a bunch of relatives over here, and tell them to vote. In city after city the crowds all seemed to cheer for Obama’s victory.) And whoever seeks to downplay that victory is fool or enemy.

We shd understand the white supremacy junkies on the right. Their last pop was Old Dutch cleanser and seltzer water, so they have had almost to cold turkey off that WS they been shootin up, though still dizzy from its fumes. But the Left or soi disant wd be Left or some who style themselves, what? , progressive, moderate, wheeze wheeze. Some of these, certainly the vote wasters, sound almost as pitiful. As one pitiful pundit warns us, “Obama’s election is to save capitalism…not bring equality to the society.” What a silly person.

First of all the very election of Obama has done more to bring some aspect of equality to the society than reams of pseudo leftist posturing. Which, all returns in, is meant merely to show the writer is smarter than you are. But what, dreary pundits, wd a McCain victory have done?  And suppose your wasted vote had contributed to such? To always be on the outside nitpicking away with not one sign of useful political practice or construction, this is too often what the Left has become. I say it again, people who have never and cannot elect a dog catcher but who are full of immense ideas about politics. Bah, Humbug!

No single election, my friends, will ever bring us Socialism, if that’s what you really seek. The struggle is protracted, hasn’t that been said? We have yet even to convince the “revolutionaries” they are in the United States. But Obama is not even in office yet these pundits of pitifulness already have the hole card on what his governance cannot or will not do. This is especially irritating from those commentators who counseled us not to vote for him in the first place. One wonders if they think their counsel, which meant nothing, is more valuable than having an actual person of color with the widest mandate in history actually elected president?

But to run off howling about it’s not this and it’s not that, when we do not yet have a viable analysis of what it really is! Not to understand how that victory was achieved is to willfully miss a rare opportunity of learning how to master the capitalist electoral system. One of the reasons we do not yet understand how to harness the electoral process to a revolutionary and socialist agenda is that  too many of the very people who should be leading such a process denounce and/or avoid it. To do what? Make statements and demonstrate. To withdraw from the most acceptable way of gaining power in the society defies understanding by any rational means. Except for the hold that infantile leftism and anarchism have on too many wishing to present themselves as revolutionary.

Barack Obama raised hundreds of millions of dollars, much of it as a result of using the internet culture, for fundraising and organizing. Let the foolish Right agonize over their attempt at denigrating “Community Organizer”. Now they have at least felt a C.O. foot planted up their B &A Hinds.

Obama raised 150 million dollars in October alone! He beat both Hilary Clinton & John McCain fund raising. At one point he wanted to buy one hour of time on CNN to lay out a complete campaign message, but CNN vetoed it. And here we thought that money was the ultimate boss. What the Right cannot forget nor the milksop Left is that Obama was/is smarter than both of them! And more in tune with the popular mind, not only of the 98% of the Afro American population but, obviously of the great majority of Americans. This, in itself, is a fantastic new precedent that must be acted upon immediately, before the corporate right media and all our “independent” smarty pants commentators cloud over the main issues.

The “bottom line” of Obama’s campaign was his initiation at the grass roots  level in his appeal. The 04 Democratic convention is widely seen as the opening of his campaign and I can accept that, but even to be there to do that. A first term senator of color from Illinois. How did he get to be a Senator in the lst place? I watched the biopic on CNN and what I got from it is a skill developed as a, what?, community organizer. To organize significant groups around their own interests and with that connecting them in motion around some larger issue. Obama carried his Chicago, his Illinois constituency with him and as he made more powerful meaningful connections, like an extension cord, his total reach and power expanded.

For the Left, they should never speak another word about “politics” unless they can understand and explain to their own constituents, how this Black man, Ok, this person of color, Ok, this half white  dude, became President of the United States. Because it is just such grounding in basic everyday electorally oriented politics that the Left denounces and eschews. To all our detriments. In the main, the Left holds rallies and makes statements. Community Organization is almost as foreign to them as the Right. (But then the Right does its “community organization” through their media.)

Usually, when the Left talks about “the people” or “the masses” they come out of some comic book academic manual confusing the US, the most highly developed 21st century monopoly capitalist society, with 19th century Russia or early 20th century China. Both largely peasant societies with small but developing working classes. The US is neither.

The US is both debtor and predator state, at the same time. With a highly developed yet debt burdened working class who are told every day that they are the middle class. There is a middle class, a petty bourgeoisie, a very very affluent sector, who are the lieutenants and paid liars, the middle management who are also deeply in debt. There is also a petty petty bourgeois, the teachers, government workers, civil servants, office workers,  &c. Racism still internally divides these classes horizontally, with the Afro American people still at the bottom, yet those same Afro American people, nearly 50 million, have a gross national product of 600 Billion dollars a year , the 16th largest in the world.

There have already been Four Revolutions in the United States. The first in the 18th century, for “independence” (quotes because in some ways it never completely happened. Check out British holdings in the US). The 2nd in the 19th century, the Civil War, which ended chattel slavery (& w/the 13th, 14th 15th amendments) and competitive capitalism, ushered in monopoly capitalism and began to free the white worker from the land.

The 3rd revolution was the 50’s to 70’s Civil Rights and Black Liberation Movements which ended petty apartheid & segregation (Civil Rights Bill, Voting Rights Bill, Brown vs. Bd of Ed). Though a case could be made that this was an extended motion that was initiated by the post Civil War move out of the south  by millions of Black people transforming the Afro American people from a largely peasant rural people to a working class. An urban proletariat.

The Obama election is the 4th Revolution! What is needed now is for the would be Left,  the revolutionaries, , the progressive sector of the body politic, the Communists to correctly analyze and project widely just what kind of revolution this is. But more than that, lay out exactly what is to be done at this point, the entry to a new stage of US social development, like we used to say, What is the key link, to make the next forward motion.

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We shd know that the stage of society to which we are moving toward would be some kind of Peoples Democracy. Fundamentally, this is the social base of Obama’s victory, the so called Post racial coalition. We understand that there is yet no such reality  existing concretely in the institutions and relations of US society, except that is the oncoming  force that won the 4th Revolution and it is this force that must harnessed as a living material entity in transforming US society.

This would place us near the most advanced stage of bourgeois democracy. We can see Monopoly capitalism crashing down around their and our heads! We have agreed to give the rulers a trillion dollars so they can continue to be rich and the rulers. But for the would be Leftists to tell us that Obama’s Only or  that his “primary function is to save capitalism by building a united front to rescue capitalism NOT to bring about a more egalitarian, antiracist anti sexist pro environment society”. Why would anyone who was actually struggling for Democracy say that? It sounds like the sour grapes of the people who wanted us to waste our votes , but even though they tailed 98% of the Afro American and half of the rest of the American people, still want to give us advice and instructions. Actually, it is they who need advice and instructions.

To make such a one sided infantile Leftist or Trot like analysis of the election would only turn that overwhelming majority whom you tail anyway, even more sharply and outspokenly against you. There is neither balance nor real analysis in that statement. Just an attempt to be again, more revolutionary than the people. But the task of the revolutionary is to lead the people by taking what they already know and giving it back to them with the focus of the present the past and the future.

Plus to see Obama’s victory as simply a victory for monopoly capitalism is so thoroughly anarchist that it rejects the most important essence of the entire Obama drama, i.e. it was the highest stroke of the Civil Rights and Black Liberation Movements yet. We bled to integrate lunch counters, buses, public toilets, water fountains, was that struggle just to create a united front to save monopoly capitalism? Do you think Obama’s victory less than those? It was a concrete victory for Democracy. Don’t you understand that you cd say the victory of the North in the civil war was just to preserve capitalism? Yes, at a higher level. But don’t you think the concomitant advance of the Afro American people worth noting?

So to say Obama’s only function is to save monopoly capitalism, we say,”I’m glad you can dig it, but that’s not all… “To claim merely an anarchist or infantile position and not deepen the analysis so we can understand that monopoly capitalism cannot survive unless it adopts some aspects of social democracy. Obama’s election is the first aspect of that social democracy. In the same way that FDR’s “New Deal” could not survive, even as a method of maintaining monopoly capitalism unless it adopted important features of socialism, social democracy, i.e., social security and Unemployment insurance, the WPA public Works project to put people back to work. Even the artists. I said before that what Obama must bring us is “A New New Deal”! That is why it is so important that he hit the ground running, in much the same way that Roosevelt did in his first 100 Days. (See ….) I was glad to hear that he was reading accounts of the emergency bills Roosevelt passed before the reactionary congress could block him. Obama faces the same exigency. We need a “fast break” strategy with a few”alley oop” dunks perhaps. Before the opposition can resolidify itself.

We have a great unity among the people now with Obama’s victory and we and the people must move forward with that catalyst. We must unite principally against still existing racism and white supremacy. We must also unite against the domination of monopoly capitalism over the people’s needs. The theft of a trillion dollars has infuriated the people, certainly we can unite them, build a united front around the need to destroy surviving racism and white supremacy and for creating greater regulations on monopoly capitalism. If we give the investment banks a trillion dollars we should own those investment banks. If we give another two hundred fifty billion to the auto industry, we should own that auto industry.

We cannot wipe away monopoly capitalism with one election but our minimum program must include regulation of it, Public ownership reversing the trend of outsourcing, and sending factories out of the country, usually out of working class and minority neighborhoods. Certainly we can build a united front around these things.

We should be listing those things we can do, those things that Obama’s election has enabled us to do rather than spending time telling people that what they and he did was nothing!

In attacking monopoly capitalism we shd support small capitalism and minority capitalism and fight that those businesses and institutions in working class and minority communities get the dollars that we are giving the investment banks and auto industry.

The development of small capitalism in those communities and state ownership of these financial institutions would be steps forward in terms of the development of a Peoples Democracy. Is this socialism,

No, but we must first regulate and weaken monopoly capitalism, in tune with the peoples newly awakened appetite for expanded democracy and their hard times which we know and can make them better understand is caused by the domination of monopoly capitalism and imperialism, including the Iraq war.

It is up to us, the Left, to build on the powerful democratic coalition Obama’s campaign and election have already built. We must strive to make such a democratic coalition more than just an  temporary election campaign call and fight to turn  such ideas and momentary commitment into a powerful new base on which to focus Obama’s first term, but also to build this into a permanent aspect of US society. The anti war forces are another key aspect of this coalition and a means to call for a refocusing of the 10billion dollars a month now spent on the Iraq war.

We shd try to build a broad united front out of the consensus coming out of the 63% of the electorate that voted for Obama! One wonders how people in the Black Left who were at the North Carolina meeting and some others, can really call for an smaller united front than the hundred or so people who were there. What we need is a unity based on real struggle over actual objectives and motives, i.e. being “open and above board” without “conspiracy and intrigue”.

There are forces who dropped out of the Black Radical Congress because they were angry about alleged CPUSA “domination”, domination of what, and to what end? Just as a somewhat earlier canard that they cdn’t be in any group where there were white people. We wonder is this some fear of not being able to struggle for the correct line in these forces presence?

Too often it seems that some of the Black Left are really nationalists straining for a new identity by claiming to be Left but never Marxist Leninists. Some are Black Nationalists who claim “Left” by being influenced by Trotskyist or Anarchist stands.

At any rate we need an even broader United Front guided by genuine revolutionaries, communists not Trot influenced Black Leftists.
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There are questions about Obama’s appointments even before he is inaugurated. Just as there were questions about him refusing public funding. On the second issue, it shd be obvious by now that Obama saw the public funding, as it is now constructed, to be a ruse to cripple his fund raising, while the Republicans would run ragtime and out raise him, just as Hillary would have done.

On the chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, we should try to understand that this was a very smart choice. The constant calumny against Obama that he is a Muslim. The Right kept screaming his middle name, Hussain, in hopes that would stop the Obamacoaster that enveloped the country. The constant questions about his support for Israel or from the other side about his relationship to the “Zionist entity” were a constant negation Obama faced. Even now, after the election, the fool, al Qaeda’s Zawahari, hurls insults about Obama. Just as some ignorant American anarchists threaten to disrupt the inauguration because of “Obama’s Zionism & Militarism”.

Rahm Emanuel’s selection is due to confound those who are not thoughtful about just what challenges Obama faces. The ever lurking actual Zionists will always make trouble until they can have what they really want, not peace, but the entire Middle East as a fiefdom ruled by Israel.

The Emanuel appointment stops Zionist mischief at the door. Karl Rove’s television appearance blasting Emanuel as  “combative, ill tempered and foul mouthed” and that he was Obama’s worst appointment , were very encouraging to me. Let the rumor mongers and mischief makers and other nattering nabobs try to cause havoc at the gates. I trust Emanuel to handle that as chief of staff, both the constant undermining questions of the Zionists as well as the others who want to make Obama a Zionist. To be a friend of the Israeli people is no crime, to foster a Zionist dictatorship over the Middle East would be a crime. We cannot see Obama doing the latter.

The first necessity of the Obama precedent is to put out a call for a nationwide Democratic Coalition, to heighten even further the attack on white supremacy and racism. Even to fight to get these made illegal, unlawful. This would be the essence of the Post racial coalition, which has already shown its potential power with the election of the President. The Kennedy years could have set something of a precedent, but his assassination along with the assassinations of Malcolm X, Dr. King, Bobby Kennedy, peaked with the election of Nixon and then the takeover at the end of the 70’s by the Reagan steamroller which has been with us in essence until today.

Those assassinations were a Right wing coup, an oil smelling coup that at its denouement was the invasion of the Middle East and the outright takeover of the oil fields, plus the move of the financial markets to Dubai, as alternate to London and Wall St. Monsters covered with and bathing in oil . The crash of the financial markets in the US and to some extent worldwide can mark the end of this domination if we will move on the new precedent of Obama’s election.

Not only must this new Democratic Coalition take on White supremacy and Racism but to oppose and struggle to end the domination of monopoly capitalism over the people of the US, end the war in Iraq and in essence its domination of  the world. State ownership, nationalization, new funding for non monopoly and small business. This democratic coalition must be built into a permanent electoral presence as well to combat the still powerful and ruthless forces of white supremacy and the domination of society by monopoly capitalism.

The Public Works’ New New Deal would see Katrina damaged New Orleans as a top priority and seek to reconstruct the entire gulf ravaged area from Louisiana to Texas. The sagging infrastructure of bridges and tunnels and urban structures must be repaired. This is one solution to chronic unemployment. Certainly these inner cities are in need of public dollars for employment and reconstruction. Just as in the depression 30’s Roosevelt’s new deal even supported the arts, we must see that our new Democratic Coalition demands the same kind of support after years of the Republicans attacks on public support of the Arts.

We want to build a new Democratic Coalition as an engine for the bringing of a People’s Democracy. Any narrowing of the “Post racial coalition” that elected Obama is a mistake.  We must fight to make it real. Those who think that tailing “Labor” mostly the labor bureaucrats or pushing economism as a substitute for political organizing and fielding candidates for every position we are able to are merely continuing the marginalization and irrelevance of the Left. The call for an anti racist anti monopoly Democratic Coalition is correct and necessary and the only move that will give the genuine revolutionaries leadership of the progressive political struggle in the US.

Amiri Baraka
11/29/08

Whose “Malcolm X” are we talking about?

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The Umpteenth Assassination of Malcolm X

Just a few words on Omowale Malcolm X and the two media hacks who recently broached the subject. Stanley Crouch and Tariq Nelson are totally wrong about Malcolm, who spent his life fighting racism. The two repudiate Malcolm’s life (Crouch crab) with typical white supremacist boilerplate. In fact, they kowtow to the Klan idol erected for them by the likes of arch neocon Pat Buchanan (see Parasite) and others.

Malcolm X grew up in a household where his Garveyite father was lynched by the KKK, and his mother starved out by racist society. A Jim Crow social services agency broke up his family. Malcolm’s brilliance in the public school system was thwarted by the segregationist educators themselves. When Malcolm grasped the vision that his father had left for him, his energy and commitment awakened a brand new era of struggle for the black community. Were it not for his contribution, black middle class mobility would be thirty years behind; yet had Malcolm’s efforts succeeded, the masses of African people would also be moving forward on their own. Adversity builds character and principle, something notoriously absent from all Crouch’s writing.

The scenario painted by Crouch and Nelson, and I say “they” because Tariq Nelson seconds Crouch’s neo-colonialist dogma, echo FBI and John Birch views of circumstances surrounding Malcolm’s death. Plus, the counterinsurgency that killed Panthers like John Huggins and Bunchy Carter had nothing to do with fratricide anymore than Crouch and Nelson have any fraternal relations with black liberation. Their character assassinations of black revolutionaries lacks even the most remote fraternal sentiments. And that is the framework that we must use for those who gunned down Malcolm X, and other black liberation proponents.

Stanley Crouch’s alienation from black power and even the civil rights movement puts him out of touch with history, with the black community and with reality. The counterinsurgency that slaughtered Patrice Lumumba, Amilcar Cabral, Eduardo Mondlane, Walter Rodney, Maurice Bishop, and numerous others was part of a broad international effort to stop African progress. This included the FBI, CIA, NATO, MI6, the SADF, the Special Branch, the Flechas, Renamo, Mobutu Sese Seko, Jonas Savimbi’s UNITA, Buthalezi’s Inkatha, US organization, USAID. Then Crouch and Nelson will want to lament the violence and crime and unemployment in the black community and the crisis in the Congo, by blaming guess who? Black people!

Africa’s revolutionary patriots were at times killed by forces claiming membership in the liberation movement. Crouch’s a-historical idiot logic may characterize that as fratricide, too. But Crouch does a grave disservice to the entire history of black liberation from the first Africans who fought colonialism or made any form of resistance to those of us who carry on the struggle today. His words deface the valiant freedom work by Mother Harriet Tubman, who personally rescued over 300 people from chattel slavery.  They dismiss the entire history of black freedom fighting for a job sitting at a desk selling newspapers, or for a party hack in the White House just for skin colorism. While Crouch and Nelson apply Occam’s razon on behalf of Imperialism, their poot butt silouettes will eventually be obscured by the giant legacy cast by black freedom.

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On Obama, Powell, Rice and ‘House Negroes’

A. Peter Bailey wrote a great article, if only because we don’t have enuf discussion around Omowale Malcolm X these days. As many people kno, the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense was rightly considered “the angry children of Malcolm X”. If any group carried on that giant man’s legacy of anti-racist polemics and principled ideological struggle, it was the Panthers.

I say that to remind Bailey that where he apparently agrees with statements issued by CIA agent Al Zawahiri (in order to spark this discussion), this is problematic! Al Qaida is a CIA terrorist organization. Al Qaida uses all the tactics of violence from the colonial era, tactics used by the Portuguese flechas in Mozambique, Guinea-Bissau and Angola. Al Qaida uses the same type violence deployed by Tipu Tib, and by King Leopold’s forces in the Congo and Central Africa. These same bloodthirsty tactics used by apartheid Rhodesia and South Africa had been defeated during Africa’s epic anti-colonial struggles. Only a neo-colonial force would use the methods of suicidal violence, sectarian anarchism and brainwashing adopted by Al Qaida, taught to them by the White House’s CIA corps from the time of Jimmy Carter. Thus, I don’t think Malcolm X would have been flattered that the Al Qaida pigs have used his turn of words to describe anybody, except themselves.

Moving on, about the house negro controversy Bailey states:

If Brother Malcolm was still with us today, I believe he would use it to describe those “Negroes” who are constantly called upon by white television and radio talk show hosts, journalists and academicians who are looking for a “house Negro” to attack black folks whom they consider insufficiently grateful for “all the good whites have done for them.”

We have to remember, Malcolm X himself popularized the term “Black” and gave it a political context. It is as different from “Negro” as a revolution is from reform. Which means that lots of people genuinely might never kno the difference. The last four paragraphs of Bailey’s article places in perspective the very ideological meaning of the word as christened — to use that term for lack of a better one — by Malcolm. Yet we are jumping ahead of ourselves.

Bailey goes on to mention his disapproval inasmuch that:

…such “house Negroes” are Ward Connerly, Jesse Lee Peterson, Clarence Thomas and their cohorts in the political, journalistic and academic arenas.

Bailey is dead on the point tho he hesitates to make a complete sweep, as Malcolm most likely would have done. In not finishing the job with style, A. Peter Bailey leaves the barn door open and a few jackasses have escaped.

Here are the ones too stupid to bolt: Connerly, for those who do not kno, is president of the California Board of Regents, appointed responsibility for striking down quotas for black students and other minorities. Rev. Jesse Lee Paterson makes his living lambasting critics of the white power system on behalf of the neoconservative right. Of course, Clarence Thomas is the underqualified Supreme Court lackey who lacks any understanding of democracy and votes with his bosses 100% of the time.

Now why does Bailey believe Malcolm X may have approved of Barack Obama, Condoleeza Rice and Colin Powell? For a hint, we quote his own words…

One doesn’t often see white power propagandists such as Sean Hannity, for instance, calling on them when they want to launch an attack on a black person whom they want to put in his or her place.

C’mon, brother Bailey, that’s a weak argument with even weaker logic! Hannity isn’t any great expert. If he were, the petty job of interviewing traitors, sell outs and other stooges would be beneath him. You must remember, the neocons need to cultivate the most abysmal failures amongst the oppressed nation because the neocons themselves feel threatened by widely recognized and thoro black intellectuals who can challenge their idiot logic and duplicity. People like Na’im Akbar, Abdul Alkalimat, Angela Davis. If Hannity cannot hold his ground with them, he cannot possibly have an intelligent conversation with a secretary of state even if they have the same basic ideological views.

While Obama, Rice and Powell may not have made their careers off the defeat of the black liberation movement (PSYCHE!) they made their careers from getting white people to not think of them as black?! Notice the difference when you split those hairs? And Bailey neglects the crucial, bootlicking appearance Powell put in for US imperialism at the 2001 World Conference Against Racism. There, Powell deliberately tried to derail the entire conference by insisting that zionism is not racism. Then the pig walked out. Somebody left that barn door open again, my brother.

How can Bailey legitimize Sean Hannity’s choice of flunkies, who just cannot even remotely relate to Powell and Rice on a mental level. Hannity cannot discuss international affairs or any serious area of the State Department for his viewers because Hannity is a media hack. A spin doctor. A yellow journalist and nobody worth citing except to use his own words against him.

Should Hannity interview Connerly or Thomas, themselves nothing more than paid shills for the most racist segment of mainstream American politics — so inept at holding real jobs that they have minimal qualification for the positions they do hold — what does that say about Hannity and US democratic standards. It suggests the old boy network means more to capitalism than quality personnel, which is why capitalism is a failure. What does this say about the racist class system and the notion of enforcing quotas on the bourgeoisie for us as Africans rather than building the liberation movement.

Furthermore, we must say that Malcolm’s analogy of the house and field negroes was nothing except a homily on class. Much to his credit, Bailey hasn’t taken Malcolm’s example to introduce us to the absurd concept of the house negro as hero, muddling the idea that Malcolm X sought to convey. That is not what Malcolm X meant. He did not mean it to talk about differences in skin color amongst black people in America, either. The black (see “Negro”) middle class has taken on the job of obscuring what our Shining Prince intended by dulling the discussion of class by grinding off the edges. Malcolm meant this comparison as an introduction to class stratification in our community; the relationship of one class to both the oppressors and the oppressed creates opportunities for that class based upon their strategic role in society.

Because of the black liberation struggle, the middle class (house negroes) were given accelerated mobility within the capitalist system in exchange for turning their backs on democratic standards. In other words, when the government crackdown on black liberation forces occurred, the black middle class looked the other way. Today, this historic role has made the colonized middle class of all nationalities fit to assist the anti-democratic standards of the United States. It explains why former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales so willingly pressed to erode constitutional guarantees. It shows how city governments in predominantly black cities like Atlanta can make such ridiculous laws like those prohibiting sags. Facilitating repression has been the trade off for colonized advancement and mobility.

Indeed, Bailey cites some great words by Malcolm X at the end of his article. The four paragraphs talking about black nationalism is what revolutionaries today consider self-determination, something which on paper that Obama, Rice and Powell will never touch with a ten-foot pole even if a blue-eyed Jesus Christ himself guided their shoe shining paws. Which is perplexing, because Bailey makes a train wreck of his own argument by not following the logic or applying a dialectical method to his own premise. One thing Bailey did accomplish, was inserting Malcolm back into the discussion as it concerns blacks in America, and for that he deserves his props. Here is the piece he quotes on self-determination:

“The organization of Afro-American Unity will organize the Afro-American community block by block to make the community aware of its power and potential; we will start immediately a voter-registration drive to make every unregistered voter in the Afro-American community an independent voter; we propose to support and/or organize political clubs, to run independent candidates for office, and to support any Afro-American already in office who answers to and is responsible to the Afro-American community….

“And in this manner, the organizations will increase in number and in quantity and in quality, and by August, it is then our intention to have a black nationalist convention which will consist of delegates from all over the country who are interested in the political, economic and social philosophy of black nationalism. After these delegates convene, we will listen to everyone. We want to hear new ideas and new solutions and new answers….

“We must establish all over the country schools of our own to train our children to become scientists and mathematicians. We must realize the need for adult education and for job retraining programs that will emphasize a changing society in which automation plays the key role. We intend to use the tools of education to help raise our people to an unprecedented level of excellence and self-respect through their own efforts.

“The political philosophy of black nationalism means the black man should control the politics and the politicians in his own community; no more. The black man in the black community has to be re-educated into the science of politics so he will know what politics is supposed to bring in him in return. Don’t be throwing out any ballots. A ballot is like a bullet. You don’t throw your ballots until you see a target, and if that target is not within your reach, keep your ballot in your pocket….’’

So while Malcolm X introduced the concept of house and field negroes to begin the discussion of class, I don’t think he honestly would have confined it to that level. Malcolm X introduced class that way in order to develop our understanding of class forces at work in society. Malcolm X was a revolutionary. He waged a polemical battle against racism and Imperialism, and for that he was killed. Long live Malcolm. Power to the People!