[News] Why Barack Obama is the More Effective Evil

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Wed Mar 21 13:45:21 EDT 2012

Why Barack Obama is the More Effective Evil

Wed, 03/21/2012 - 11:06 — Glen Ford

BAR executive editor Glen Ford made the following 
presentation at the Left Forum, Pace University, 
New York City, March 17. On the panel were Gloria 
Mattera, Margaret Kimberley (BAR), Suren 
Moodliar, John Nichols, and Victor Wallis. The 
discussion was titled, The 2012 Elections: Lesser Evil or Left Alternative?

Power to the people!

Let me say from the very beginning that we at 
Black Agenda Report do not think that Barack 
Obama is the Lesser Evil. He is the more Effective Evil.

He has been more effective in Evil-Doing than 
Bush in terms of protecting the citadels of 
corporate power, and advancing the imperial 
agenda. He has put both Wall Street and U.S. 
imperial power on new and more aggressive tracks 
– just as he hired himself out to do.

That was always Wall Street’s expectation of 
Obama, and his promise to them. That’s why they 
gave him far more money in 2008 than they gave 
John McCain. They were buying Obama futures on 
the electoral political market – and they made out like bandits.

They invested in Obama to protect them from harm, 
as a hedge against the risk of systemic disaster 
caused by their own predations. And, it was a 
good bet, a good deal. It paid out in the tens of trillions of dollars.

If you believe that what Wall Street does is 
Evil, then Obama’s service to Wall Street is 
Evil, and there is nothing lesser about it.

They had vetted Obama, thoroughly, before he even 
set foot in the U.S. Senate in 2004.

He protected their interests, there, helping 
shield corporations from class action suits, and 
voting against caps on credit card Interest. He 
was their guy back then – and some of us were saying so, back then.

He was the bankers’ guy in the Democratic 
presidential primary race. Among the last three 
standing in 2008, it was Obama who opposed any 
moratorium on home foreclosures. John Edwards 
supported a mandatory moratorium and Hillary 
Clinton said she wanted a voluntary halt to 
foreclosures. But Barack Obama opposed any 
moratorium. Let it run its course, said candidate 
Obama. And, true to his word, he has let the 
foreclosures run their catastrophic course.

Only a few months later, when the crunch came and 
Finance Capital was in meltdown, who rescued Wall 
Street? Not George Bush. Bush tried, but he was 
spent, discredited, ineffective. Not John McCain. 
He was in a coma, coming unglued, totally ineffective.

Bush’s bailout failed on a Monday. By Friday, 
Obama had convinced enough Democrats in 
opposition to roll over – and the bailout passed, 
setting the stage for a new dispensation between 
the American State and Wall Street, in which a 
permanent pipeline of tens of trillions of 
dollars would flow directly into Wall Street accounts, via the Federal Reserve.

And Obama had not even been elected yet.

Obama put Social Security and Medicaid and all 
Entitlements on the table, in mid-January. The 
Republicans had suffered resounding defeat. 
Nobody was pressuring Obama from the Right.

When the Right was on its ass, Obama stood up and 
spoke in their stead. There was no Evil Devil 
forcing him to put Entitlements on the chopping 
block. It was HIM. He was the Evil One – and it 
was not a Lesser Evil. It was a very Effective 
Evil, because the current Age of Austerity began on that day, in January, 2009.

And Obama had not even been sworn in as president, yet.

Who is the Effective Evil? I haven’t even gotten 
into his actual term as president, much less his 
expansion of the theaters of war, his unique 
assaults on International Law, and his massacre 
of Due Process of Law in the United States. But I 
want to pause right here, because piling up facts 
on Obama’s Most Effective Evils doesn’t seem to 
do any good if the prevailing conversation isn’t 
really about facts – but about intentions.

The prevailing assumption on the Left is that 
Obama has good intentions. He intends to the 
Right Thing – or, at least, he intends to do 
better than the Republicans intend to do. It’s 
all supposed to be about intentions. Let’s be 
clear: There is absolutely no factual basis to 
believe he intends to do anything other than the 
same thing he has already done, whether Democrats 
control Congress or not, which is to serve Wall 
Street’s most fundamental interests.

But, the whole idea of debating Obama’s 
intentions is ridiculous. It’s psycho-babble, not 
analysis. No real Left would engage in it.

I have no doubt that New Gingrich and Republicans 
in general have worse intentions for the future 
of my people – of Black people – than Michelle 
Obama’s husband does. But, that doesn’t matter. 
Black people are not going to roll over for 
whatever nightmarish Apocalypse the sick mind of 
Newt Gingrich would like to bring about. But, 
they have already rolled over for Obama’s 
economic Apocalypse in Black America. There was 
been very little resistance. Which is just 
another way of saying that Obama has successfully 
blunted any retribution by organized African 
America against the corporate powers that have 
devastated and destabilized Black America in ways 
that have little precedence in modern times.

Obama has protected these Wall Streeters from 
what should be the most righteous wrath of Black 
folks. To take a riff from Shakespeare’s Othello, 
“Obama has done Wall Street a great service, and 
they know it.” He has proven to be fantastically 
effective at serving the Supremely Evil. Don’t you dare call him the Lesser.

He is the More Effective Evil because Black Folks 
– historically, the most progressive cohort in 
the United States – and Liberals, and even lots 
of folks that call themselves Marxists, let him 
get away murder! Yet, people still insist on 
calling him a Lesser Evil, while he drives a stake through Due Process of Law.

I have not spoken much about the second half of 
Obama’s first term in office. That is the period 
when the Left generally becomes disgusted with 
what they call his excessive “compromises” and 
“cave-ins” to Republicans. But that is a 
profoundly wrong reading of reality. Obama was 
simply continuing down his own Road to Austerity 
– the one he, himself, had initiated before even 
taking office. The only person caving in and 
compromising to the Republicans, was the Obama 
that many of YOU made up in your heads.

The real Obama was the initiator of this 
Austerity nightmare – a nightmare scripted on 
Wall Street, which provided the core of Obama’s 
policy team from the very beginning. That’s why 
Obama’s so-called Financial Reform was so 
diligent in making sure that Derivatives were virtually untouched.

The real Obama retained Bush’s Secretary of War, 
because he was determined to re-package the 
imperial enterprise and expand the scope and theaters of war.

He would dress up the war machine head-to-foot in 
a Chador of Humanitarianism, and march deep and deeper into Africa.

He would make merciless and totally unprovoked 
war against Libya – and then tell Congress there 
had been no war at all, and it was none of their business, anyway.

And he got away with it.

Now, that is the Most Effective Evil war 
mongering imaginable. Don’t you dare call him a 
Lesser Evil. Obama is Awesomely Evil.

Obama has advanced the corporatization of the 
public schools beyond Bush’s wildest dreams, 
methodically constructing a national, parallel 
system of charter schools that, in practice, 
undermine and subvert the traditional public 
schools. In some places, they have replaced, or 
soon will replace, the public schools. The hedge 
funds and billionaires are ecstatic! The teachers 
unions then endorse their undertaker, foolishly 
believing he is the Lesser Evil.

So, what does the Left do in this election? The 
Left should do what it is supposed to do here in 
the Belly of the Beast at all times: disarm the 
Beast. This is their singular duty – not to 
advise the Beast, but to disarm it. At this time 
on the world historical clock, that means ripping 
the farcical “humanitarian” veil from the face of 
U.S. wars – and that face is Obama’s face.

No genuine anti-war activist can endorse the 
war-maker, Obama. If you want to resist actual 
imperial wars, you must fight Obama. Period. 
Anything else is to endorse or acquiesce in his wars.

You can attend the United National Anti-War 
Coalition conference in Stamford, Connecticut, 
next weekend, where you can meet with an array of 
organizations to begin a calendar of activities 
that will stretch past Election Day. You can join 
with UNAC in working to stop Obama from doing a 
repeat of Libya in Syria and Iran. If you can’t 
bring yourself to do that, then I have no advice 
for you, because the alternative is acquiescence 
to Obama’s cynical duplicities.

If the Green Party or any other party firmly 
opposes Obama’s humanitarian, Orwellian farce, 
then support them. If they don’t, then don’t lift a finger for them.

If you are going to fight for anything, you’ve 
got to fight for the right to fight. That means 
fighting for the rule of law. So, if you don’t 
plan to go underground or into exile anytime 
soon, you must fight the president who claims the 
right to imprison or kill any person, of any 
nationality, any place on Earth, for reasons 
known only to him. The man who excelled George 
Bush by shepherding preventive detention through 
Congress – Barack Obama, the More Effective Evil.

Fight him this election year. Fight him every year that he’s here.

Power to the People!

BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted 
at Glen.Ford at BlackAgendaReport.com.

Freedom Archives
522 Valencia Street
San Francisco, CA 94110

415 863-9977

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