Black Leaders Rebuke Obama

John Conyers

Rep. John Conyers (D-Detroit), a 24-term congressmember who is highly revered in the African-American community, is openly dissatisfied with the president’s handling of the self-inflicted debt ceiling crisis.  Speaking of concessions the president is willing to make to avoid a default if the debt ceiling is not raised, Conyers told a reporter that he was angry.

“We’ve got to march on him,” Conyers said. “We want him to know from this day forward that we’ve had it. We want him to come out on our side and advocate, not to watch and wait to see what [lawmakers] are doing in the House and Senate. We’re suffering.”

Conyers and other leaders respected by the African-American community are voicing concern over the impact of the decisions of Obama’s Administration. They say the concessions the president put on the table will have the greatest impact on the most vulnerable in our society. Conyers and others are particularly concerned about the President’s apparent willingness during debt ceiling negotiations to make entitlement cuts and his lack of action on job creation.

“We’ve got to educate the American people at the same time we educate the President of the United States.” Conyers told a reporter this week. The Congressmember pointed out that the Republican leadership — neither Speaker Boehner nor Majority Leader Cantor — called for Social Security cuts in the budget deal. Says Conyers, “The President of the United States called for that, and my response to him is to mass thousands of people in front of the White House to protest this.”

Another esteemed outspoken former supporter of President Obama, Cornel West, a Princeton University professor, has come out strongly opposing many of the positions the president has taken. Dr. West, who campaigned vigorously for the Obama, recently said of Mr. Obama, he is “a black mascot of Wall Street oligarchs and a black puppet of corporate plutocrats.”

A frequent guest on Bill Maher’s program, West recently teamed up with Tavis Smiley to co-host a weekly radio program. The nationally syndicated show, Smiley & West, is produced by Public Radio International (PRI) and is a thought provoking hour of intellectual bantering between the two on issues of social and political consequence.

Smiley, a respected media personality who has a long history of championing the plight of blacks struggling in America, has been known to be critical of the President’s policies. For ten years, Tavis Smiley addressed issues that impact black America politically, socially, academically and economically through a host of black historians and activists that he showcased in his annual “State of the Black Union.” A controversy arose over then Senator Barack Obama’s failure to accept an invitation to speak at Smiley’s SOBU during the 2008 presidential primary campaign. Hillary Clinton accepted the invitation. Smiley took a lot of flack and was accused of being an Obama hater. But Smiley has consistently shined a light on the struggles of what has increasingly become America’s underclass and is a respected figure in the black community.

Now Smiley and West are kicking it up a notch. They are going on a roadtrip to highlight the plight of poor people in this country. They contend that poor people of all races, colors, and creeds seem to have been forgotten, ignored, or rendered invisible during this difficult and dangerous time of “economic deprivation and political cowardice”.

Senator Barack Obama enjoyed overwhelming support from African-Americans in the 2008 election. Some reports say 95% of the African-American community voted for Barack Obama, with a large percentage of those being first-time voters.

Representative Conyers and others on the left side of the aisle maintain that Obama is not losing his base but when several noted and respected black leaders voice dissatisfaction with the president, it won’t be long before others follow.

While President Obama has found it essential to compromise either because his advisers think this is the best course of action or because he is tempormentally prone to  make concessions, the consequences of his decisions fall disproportionately on the shoulders of the poor sharon kyleand the working and middle classes – while at the same time, the wealthy have never had it better.

All indications are that the people who put Obama in office in 2008 have not benefitted from the policies he’s enacted.  But 2012 is just around the corner.

Sharon Kyle
LA Progressive, Publisher


  1. says

    I tire of West. He and Smiley. He is a smart man and acts as if he knows nothing about politics. Smiley? Conyers know the game also. They had a chance to do this when the controlled the house and the senate. Where were they? They’ve had years to put forth bills etc. Where are they? I am not totally pleased with everything the president does, but I understand that this president in particular has forces against him that will the let the country go in the tank rather than allow success. They are suicide bombers/ But, West? Because others claim him a public intellectual, remember the emphasis on public. He abandoned the halls of scholarly pursuit years ago. Conyers? I suppose that African Americans and Latinos only started having problems with his election. Of course, he could act as if he is the president of only a portion of the country. Again, where are the bills from the the Black Caucus members to bring to vote, to publicize or even propagandize on the news? As a businessman, when you bring a problem top my attention, I expect you to bring solutions along with it, not just complaints. I can do bad by myself.

  2. Georgia Brewer says

    Obama has had a very steep uphill battle. Our national dialogue has turned so far to the right that progressive ideas once commonly accepted are now considered controversial or even socialist and unpatriotic. The left has been severely weakened by the loss of jobs, income and educational disparity and the loss of infrastructure.

    The only answer is that all of us who hate institutionalized injustice must articulate our common values and act as one. Instead of splitting hairs, we must join together – Labor, Blacks, Asians, Latinos, Whites, American Indians, LGBT, students, immigrant groups, feminists, animal rights, environmentalists, health care activists and more. All the splits we see today existed in the 1970’s, and all those “Studies” Programs (“Chicano” “Black” “Womens”) cemented the idea that we have different perspectives. Yes, we ARE different, but we are also alike in some major ways! We are not the Tea Party! We believe in equal opportunity, in social/economic justice and that “when we all do better, we ALL do better!”

    So, although I am pretty angry about Obama and his search for compromise no matter how empty, how he has thrown the most vulnerable under the bus, how he escalated the wars even though he promised not to, that the ACA did not include single payer, etc., I will vote for him again. Any other candidate would have done worse. Look at what Bill Clinton did with AFDC and NAFTA (ugh), and yet we can all agree, he left the country in much better shape than George Bush the Second did. In a very reactionary, conservative environment, Obama has made important changes that have bettered us all. I am proud we elected him, even though he is more conservative than I am by a long shot.

    Yes, I write the President and my Congressmembers all the time – I protest, I demand, I gripe – but I will still back the President and the Democratic Party.

    We have to claw this country back from the brink of insanity, fight back against the Ethos of Selfishness, and re-introduce civil dialogue based on mutual respect and tolerance. We are the true majority, if only we could stop focusing on our differences and start fighting alongside each other for our common values.

  3. Timi Burke says

    I get frustrated when people attack Obama instead of the Vested Interests who blockade his efforts to fulfill his election mandate. My point is for Progressives, Liberals, Democrats to wake up to being manipulated to blame Obama in this grotesque assault on Democracy perpetrated by money- and power-Conservative thugs, instead of seeing that Obama would gladly pass a Liberal agenda if we rallied behind him in united denunciation of the right-wing manipulation of our system.

    You may wonder what I mean, since everybody voices their contempt of Fox News. Yes, but the Left has been successfully divided and disparate denunciations don’t have the force of a united voice, united behind our Democrat leader, the POTUS.

    The Left has been pathetically easy to fracture. Since Day One, Fox & Friends starts off the day’s gossip with “Boy, Obama failed to pass xyz and his Progressive Base sure are angry about it!”. During the day, the media (which is owned by conglomerates whose goal is ratings and profit, not journalistic integrity) pontificate “Is Obama failing his Progressive Base and are they deserting him because of it?”. By drive-time after work, talk radio puts it to a 2-second sound-bite “Obama’s Progressive Base are deserting him because he’s failing to make good on his campaign promises”. Then, the voter listens in the car and thinks: “Well, hell yeah, I voted for him to do all that, and now I’m deserting him cuz I’m angry!” Then, when the Pollster calls, that disenchanted voter gives answers that drive down Obama’s support, which is then broadcast and used to bolster the next day’s manufactured reality.

    Doubt me? Then use your imagination to visualize a cigar-smoke-filled backroom of Conservative Movers and Shakers, immediately after Obama’s election. What would they be talking about? I submit they were planning how to disintegrate Obama’s Liberal Mandate by an unprecedented GOP blockade to all his desired legislation goals, coupled with the media propaganda machine against him and everything he stands for, which itself is unprecedented in scope due to Murdoch’s buying influence on even ‘mainstream’ outlets.

    Still doubt me? Well, remember when the articles made the rounds late 2009, with Progressive pundits pining for the days of good ol’ LBJ, lamenting, “He would have gotten the Public Option by twisting arms!” I was curious about this and did some Wiki research. Turns out 1964’s Civil Rights Bill wouldn’t have passed today — it wouldn’t have even been brought up for a vote. Turns out the original version of the Bill had to be ‘watered-down’ (sound familiar?), then, of the final Senate vote of 70+ for passage, only 46 were Democrat votes. Get it? The most important Liberal legislation in the last 50 years wouldn’t even have been up for a vote. And you guys are pointing at Obama, asking why he can’t pass what you’d like?

    • notfooled says

      Timi – We should rally behind the president, when the president continues to propose things that are to the right of his Republican’s counterparts, as Conyers has pointed out?

      Have you ever heard of battered-woman syndrome?

      Is that some kind of cruel joke.

      The president of the united states, one of the most powerful singular figures in any political system, short of dictatorship, is suddenly neutered?

      It’s progressives fault for not standing behind him? Are you serious?

      He controls an entire branch of government. He has the veto pen. He issues signing statements. He controls the US Department of Treasury. He controls his talking points. He gets to setting the tone of the debate. He gets to put things on the table. But he is powerless? And its progressives who have made him weak by not standing by him?

      You can’t be serious.

      • timoburke says

        @notfooled: to your first point, with the departure of the Progressive Base, the only hope of re-election is for Obama to appeal to the Middle. With the Media either owned by Murdoch or emulating him, “The Middle” has been artificially driven rightward. This is a winning strategy because it’s like chess: with Obama staking-out the middle of the board, he drives his opponents to extremes. For instance, the debt-limit: if Obama had held-fast to Liberal positions, then Murdoch et al. wins, because they’re expert at painting those as “dangerous for America”, etc. Instead, by co-opting Conservative positions, it’s driven the GOP farther Rightward, and they are the one who now appear “dangerously extreme” to the voting public. This is typical Obama strategic finesse, and lost on ideologues, no matter how noble their ideals be.

        Also, your assertion the POTUS is powerful enough to make the Progressive agenda happen, is divorced from the unfortunate reality fashioned these days by the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy. For instance, during the Health Care battle, all Dems ought to have rallied behind the Prez. Gauging that the battleground had been pushed Rightward, this would have been the time to sell the general public a moderate version of our agenda. Instead, by abandoning the Prez and rebuking him for not delivering your Progressive demands, you weaken his entire mandate: it’s called ‘losing political capital’. This, in the face of the Right’s blistering insane hysterical propaganda against any Leftist agenda, only leaves him the strategic avenue of refuting such accusations by becoming more Moderate, to appeal to Independents who are required to win elections.

        I assert that Obama doesn’t control his entire branch of government — the GOP’s secret holds on 90+ Department nominations resulted in his nominees dropping out and to make the government agencies run, he had to elevate the existing Asst Directors up to the top position — and these were hold-overs from BushW. So, instead of his chosen Liberal Director filling his/her Department with a Democratic staff, we get whole sections of his Administration subverting his politics, just dying for the opportunity to make him look bad by ignoring him. Case in point is Attny Gen Halder announcing Obama’s Administration wouldn’t waste Fed dollars persecuting Med Marijuana patients. Then, Michele Leonhart (Bush’s DEA Asst Director, now elevated to Director due to Senate Hold) insubordinates that by continuing raids on dispensaries. This succeeds in undermining Obama’s authority by making him look bad, plus alienating erstwhile supporters, thereby suppressing the likelihood they’ll bother to vote for him again.

        I also assert he does not set the tone of the debate, because as soon as he does so, the public is demagogued into fearing him and his agenda. So, I submit your notions of his power are based upon how things ought to be, not upon the bizarre reality the post-Bush Conservative Powers That Be have generated.

  4. LD says

    One more thing. SIS is about to stage another US deadly sabotage event around Obama’s need to increase action in Libya, which this event will kill no fewer then 1000 US citizens and redirect to Neo congressional pressure for Obama to play a stronger role in Libya. This is Greek drama comedy/tragedy, and the victims are already dead. This kind of activity is a feature of the occult protocol, and you will not talk them into an alternative state of mind. ULTRA is largely a sociopath corporate organization, and it follows contract law and Neo legislation only which circumvents the Bill of Rights and holds captive domestic and economic infrastructures ANAI. I am sure you are getting the picture.

  5. LD says

    The correct understanding regarding your issues with the European community and colonialism is much of oppressive circumstances originating with the Vatican and British monarchy issue on the Medici and Machiavelli protocols and occult rendition, what modern version of the latter is the Patriot Act, and these circumstances have been largely perpetrated in the US through such organizations as the Shriners, Skull and Bones and Bohemian Grove.

    Currently, Rupert Murdoch is alleged to be involved in hacking phone accounts which is collapsing his media empire. In reality, what he was doing was (working in cahoots with the British monarchy, Jose Manuel Boroso and US politicians) using Echelon surveillance technology to target, stalk and kidnap for torture.

    The “white” administrative model that has empowered Britain to press Herself into world cultures is the occult protocol: the double bind, extreme prejudice, identity politics/militancy and deadly sabotage. This model does not recognize the rule of law and relies primarily on humanitarianism, democratic process and occult functions to establish dictatorship cloaked in corporate enterprise and a domestic agenda that engineers helplessness.

    More importantly, Neither Medici nor Machiavelli are effective without occult rendition, and yet together this triad is one of the most powerful dictatorships humanity has ever realized. Notwithstanding, this model lacks a conscience and is successful only if it’s parishioners are willing to corrupt human dignity, hence, “…white folks’ greed runs a world in need,” which is absolutely true.

    People are awaiting salvation which the only way this is going to happen is if we unite in Christ consciousness and acknowledge this issue the way it is presenting on the culture. The double bind puts you in circumstances where you become unable to think clearly. Extreme prejudice ignores the rule of law. Identity politics attempts to persuade you against your beliefs. Deadly sabotage is what it is, and the worst of it bears the following explanation.

    The Patriot Act was lofted not to fight terrorism but to establish a legal precedence for occult rendition. Such a function is necessary to 3G to mystify a population targeted for enslavement. In this case, occult rendition involves the method used by Murdoch et alii to kidnap young women and children for torture, and they are currently using this in the US to resource satanic rituals in the UK and Rome, which is why Murdoch is being used to shield the monarchy on a lesser issue. The message is a clear and resounding DICTATORSHIP.

    Information about this process was presented to a national policing agency April 22 which precipitated Obama’s, Schwarzenegger’s and Soros’ attempting to shield themselves from public scrutiny through a myriad of domestic issues we are well aware of, Bin Laden through Strauss-Kahn. In reality several abductions fell on an occult calendar following Obama’s inauguration, which when this broke on the public he scrambled to organize diversions.

    You aren’t going to confront Obama about this and he get on his knees and realize Christ. He’s sponsored by the Jesuits and is pressing their agenda against his Christian sensibilities and commitment to Islam. He isn’t even authentically committed to the Islam brotherhood. He’s a Jesuit first and last, and this organization will protect him unflinching, unless he retracts. Then they’ll do to him what they did to Gabrielle Giffords for her retraction on gun control, build a memorial to his works and increase their occult activity. They do thin in forward flight, which means they are not going to stop.

    You have a powerful organization, but you are powerless against the occult protocol unless you can diffuse occult rendition, and the only way you will do this is to educate your audience on this horrification and empower individuals to press Christ’s message ongoing and loudly that we are going quietly into the night.

    Like I said, this generation of Christ will not be in the physical. It’s a consciousness building platform where people have to be reinforced in their fundamental beliefs and how to recognize what they are dealing with in 3G, which is the Medici and Machiavelli protocols and occult rendition. You are already familiar with occult rendition from the pre civil rights area abuse of Blacks throughout the US. Whitechapel is another example. The Patriot Act institutionalizes this inhumanity for the new millennia, and it was designed around a 1938 German law which legalized art robbery. The Patriot Act legalizes kidnapping, and there are no limitations on the age or sex of individuals targeted for occult rendition.

    You have to strengthen Christianity with the knowledge of what Christians are fighting against to restore their dignity and make them willing to confront this. The occult protocol is about as anti-Christ is it gets, and it has the ability to transform even the most devout Christians into babbling idiots unchecked by a lack of perception about how it presents domestic. Islam much as it is a gift to humanity is also a sedition model, and it was created by the Sanhedrin who possessed a open ad abiding hatred of Christians: however, our fight is not with Islam.

    Our fight is with the Anti-Christ, which happens to be the Jesuits and their myriad subordinate SSO organizations, three of which have been previously mentioned . This alpha SSO controls the Vatican and London. It’s EU administration is Domus Dei Lodge 5151, and it oversees the EU Masons, the Shriners, Bohemian Grove and Skull and bones ANAI. By now you are realizing Obama has duped us all. He was a product of corporate marketing and engineering, and like many such enterprises he lasted from store shelf to grocery bag only. He fall apart when you got him home where you learned his warranty is honored in the UK only.

    Cain’s your salvation if you will get behind him, but it’s going to take a concerted effort to get people motivated to vote for him. He’s a genius the equivalent of Ron Paul and in many way exceeds him, just his press will require around the clock protection to keep him alive if he gets elected. You can turn off the EU politics by making people aware that ULTRA is nothing more than a snake ball, and anyone, neos in particular, associated with this organization is a snake. It’s that simple. Then we need leadership that will redirect to out constitutional republic, which is Cain or Paul, and hopefully both. Christine O’Donnell is our court as well.

    Remember, anything Neo will coil itself around you, so best to recognize this if you are going to be effective in the up and coming presidential elections.

  6. Todd Deloney says

    Well it’s nice to see the Black Leadership finally stepping it up. The should have heard the Agitator words long ago, Obama policies will not benefit the Negro. We felt that when he won the election, and now the Chickens are Coming home to Roost!

  7. says

    In 2008, I was prepared to vote for Barack Obama if it had been a close call in California:

    Since it wasn’t, I voted for Ralph Nader and especially for his Vice Presidential running mate, Matt Gonzalez. As I explained in my blog at the time, I was afraid that Obama was telling the truth about his plans for Afghanistan and compared the troop levels that appeared to be necessary for what the American government viewed as “victory” to the troop levels that didn’t help the Soviet Union avoid defeat.

    Now, I’m really glad I voted Peace & Freedom Party in 2008 for Nader and Gonzalez. John Conyers and others are absolutely correct about the need for protest against his policies.

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