Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Progressive, yes, but Liberal or Radical Progressive?

Portside recently sent out this brief comment about the criticism of John Conyers:

Date: Sun, 29 Jul 2007
> From: Claire Carsman
> Subject: John Conyers
> It's appalling that people on the left have chosen to
> attack John Conyers. How are we ever going to build a
> unified movement with ridiculous tactics like that.
> And not to ignore the underlying racism.
> Claire Long Beach, CA

Frankly, I'm amazed that the atrocious behavior of John Conyers is receiving so much defense. On the progressive left, this must be the dividing line between liberal and radical. I'm a radical who sees Conyers' inaction as completely, totally, and absolutely unjustifiable. Every (let me emphasize -- every, single, each, and all) excuse I have heard in Conyers' defense has rung hollow. After hearing all the excuses there is only one logical conclusion: Conyers can't come up with a valid excuse because he has none. Perhaps Conyers is to be pitied, because circumstantial evidence points to the sad truth that he would probably like to bring the bill of impeachment, but Speaker Pelosi is ordering him not to do so. Since he can't just come out and say this openly, he is left to give the clearly bogus rationalizations that we have heard.

Portside readers like Claire Carsman wonder how are we going to build "a unified movement" by criticizing Conyers, yet she doesn't ask why Conyers is breaking up the unified movement by refusing to act? Why is it that Conyers should get a free ride as the liberal gatekeeper against the radicals while the radical's complaint at being locked out of Congress is then called the source of the problem?

This divide on the left was recently revealed in the attempt by Hillary Clinton to cover it up. In the most recent Presidential debates, Clinton was asked to define liberal and state if she is a liberal. She waffled and evaded and said that liberal used to be a positive word but isn't any longer, so now she considers herself a "modern progressive." I used to relish the label progressive until I heard if from her lips. The question is begged: what is a "modern progressive" -- is it a liberal progressive or a radical progressive?

I'm a radical progressive and proud of it. Let the liberal progressives like John Conyers, Nancy Pelosi, and Hillary Clinton continue to wield their gatekeeping power against the radical progressives like us, so be it; that's real politik. Radicals criticizing Conyers have been called racists, but let me say it plain: it is the radicals in the progressive movement who are continually treated as the house slaves by the liberal Democrats, always expected to give our votes and money but never to raise our voice in criticism. But don't for a minute think that we radical progessives are going to hush up like good servants or slaves and keep quiet while the liberal masters lock up Congress, keeping it for themselves, and in so doing aiding and abetting George Bush's crimes against humanity and the Constitution.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Democrats' Continuing Disgrace

Congressman John Conyers, Chairman of the House Judiary Committee, continues to be the most significant Democratic gatekeeper preventing serious consideration of impeachment. In this he is apparantly doing the bidding of Speaker Pelosi for political points. Impeachment supporters and activists in the group Code Pink along with Cindy Sheehan have even gotten arrested attempting to publicize Conyers' stubborn refusal to allow consideration of impeachment.

Now, Jean Damu and Alona Clifton come to the defense of John Conyers with another unfortunate example of the phenomenon that occurs when people who identify themselves by race and color close ranks to protect themselves against criticism from others who they don't identify with. Demu and Clifton are attacking the legitimate criticism of Conyers' failure to be a profile of couage as "racism." This kind of turning the defense into the offence has now become itself a classic neo-racist tactic. One has to give Damu and Clifton credit for the adroit use of rhetoric to turn a discussion of impeachment in to thier racist attack on the so-called "white left."

In a gutsy demonstration of idiotic logic, Damu and Clifton state that Conyers's should be excused "because he determined the political will did not exist within
Congress to impeach the president." Excuse me!? They then go on to claim what a great congressman Conyers is because every year -- even knowing the political will does not exist within Congress to approve a reparations bill -- Conyers introduces the bill (this year H.R. 40) anyway. If Conyers can introduce a reparations bill every year knowing it will fail, then certainly Conyers can introduce an impeachment bill one time knowing that this is the one and only time it can be introducedwhether it fails or not!

Damu and Clifton even ask "What does impeaching George Bush have to do with ending
the war in Iraq?" Well, if that is not obvious to them, then they have no business writing political commentary at all. Either they are deaf and blind or they are just plain pretenders of ignorance.

Sorry, but not every criticism of an African American is racist and not this one either. And Camu and Cliftons' dumb remarks only prove the speciousness of their racist attack. Turning the valid criticism of Conyers cowardice into a racial issue is just unconscionable.

Every one of Conyers' excuses for why he won't proceed with impeachment are just plain lame and bogus, especially in the face of the public support for impeachment, much less considering that it is just the right thing to do to defend the Constitution whether or not the majority of the House recognize it. Let the majority of Gongress vote against it if that is the legacy of history that they want to leave. Today, however, it is Conyers and the Democratic leadership, especially Speaker Pelosi, who are leaving the legacy of failure to defend the Constitution and ultimately just setting the stage for future presidents to act as Bush has done!

For another critique see

Gregory Wonderwheel

Monday, July 02, 2007

The Democrats'. Disgrace

The President has commuted the sentence of convict Scooter Libby so that Libby won't have to do the prison time he was sentenced to do. The Democrats are crying "Discrace!", but it is the Democrats who bear the responsibility for this most recent discrace.

Since the Democrats have refused to charge Bush with his crimes of starting wars based on lies, why shouldn't the criminal Bush commute the sentence of his convict henchmen? The Democrats have let it be known that Bush can do what he wants and the most they will do is whine about it. So what does he care whether the Democrats conplain? If the Democrats had come into office in January 2007 with a bill of impeachment Bush would never have felt he could interfere with Libby's sentence. It is the Democrats' disgrace that they have let Bush have a free pass and not impeached him. This is what they get for it.