Wednesday, January 21, 2015

"I Have No More Campaigns to Run...I Know 'Cos I Won Both of 'Em": President Barack Obama is an Uppity Rude Rapscallion Negro Who Does Not Know His Place!

I am having some fun over at the Daily Kos. Liberal racists are such an easy crowd.

Near future plans: there will be a new podcast episode this Thursday. I also have a longer essay to share on Friday.

For the immediate present...

President Barack Obama successfully trolled the White Right in his seventh State of the Union Address before the United States Congress on Tuesday evening.

In my schadenfreude vision and hope, a member of the White Right shot at the cockroaches on the wall of his home with a pellet gun, while yelling at the TV about the evil Black President who "steals the white man's air" in their rage-filled response to Obama's witty quip.

Right-wing bloviators and their racially resentful and overtly bigoted public will howl--and will do so for the next few days--about the "disrespectful" and "rude" Black President (who to their eyes, introduced "petty politics", and "his arrogance", into a "sacred" American ritual).

As is their habit, for white conservatives and their allies, Barack Obama, who in reality is a very centrist Rockefeller Republican neoliberal operating under the guise of a Democrat, is a black rapscallion uppity negro who does not know his place.

And people of conscience and intelligence must never forget that the word "uppity" is an excuse for violence and murder when historically used by whites against African-Americans:
Although rape is often cited as a rationale, statistics now show that only about one-fourth of lynchings from 1880 to 1930 were prompted by an accusation of rape. In fact, most victims of lynching were political activists, labor organizers or black men and women who violated white expectations of black deference, and were deemed "uppity" or "insolent." Though most victims were black men, women were by no means exempt.
The plutocrat oligarchs laugh the whole time at the Vaudeville post-modern politics spectacle.

I know this to be true; I still allow myself, being the wrestling smart mark that I am, to enjoy the whole damned show, all the while I wonder what gems of truth and honesty about the Tea Party GOP and the White Right, more generally, that Obama will share some years from now in his autobiography and chronicle of his years as President of the United States of America.

What were your thoughts about Obama's State of the Union Address? Any insights, reactions, humor, disappointment, or the like to share and reflect upon?

Of course, what did you think of Obama's beautiful smile and damn sharp wink?


kokanee said...

I watched his speech. For me, it was a love hate relationship. There are two Obamas. One is a progressive liberal and one is a militaristic neocon.

I loved that he took it to the Republicans. “If a bill comes to my desk that tries to do any of these things, I will veto it.” I read that he threatened to veto four times. He vowed to keep the Internet open. He proposed free community college. He proposed increasing the minimum wage and paid sick leave. "Middle-class economics works." That was the good stuff.

What I hated was his fealty to the military. "My first duty as commander in chief is to defend the United States of America," he said. He talked about going to after the terrorists and the Islamic State. He even quietly asked for "use of force" against IS much like Bush asked for the 9/11 terrorists. This is a bad thing. Finally, I didn't like the appeal to Republicans at the end of the speech. There's no negotiating with the wing-nuts. Only tough talk is called for.

joe manning said...

Obama's grace and intelligence dashed the rapscallion characterization. His perfect oration, and optimistic vision made the R's "uppity negro" retort look lame. Better late than never, he put real issues front and center, something that the GOP is loathe to do. The "I'm not a scientist either" was a high point that made the R's look like numbskulls.

Buddy H said...

Many of the news outlets are going with the "I won both of 'em" story of him being cocky, but his comment was in response to the republicans' sarcastic applause for "I have no more campaigns to run"

Which to me is REALLY cocky and disrespectful. A form of heckling.

Char said...

Chauncey, for a laugh, I clicked your link to the Daily Kos piece. White-centric liberalism is funny. Rserven hijacked the conversation in a shameless effort to plug her book, then expected kudos from you for participating in a march. Because Whites opposing White oppression is a favor to minorities, not a moral and social obligation.

Then there's Azubia, coming to the defense of Rserven. The White privilege on display is best shown by quoting Azubia directly:

"I have been put firmly in my place here tonight and had my nose rubbed in it. The fact that the person who did that was stunningly correct was destroyed by his being a real asshole in the process. Just as the author being a real asshole to rserven makes me not much give a fuck about their data, right or otherwise. Take it under advisement, these guys are enjoying the hell out of slapping down some privileged white liberal attitude.

"They don't need our help, our compassion, our humanity( as fucked up and misguided as it may be) or our bodies on the line for their freedom.

"They've got DATA."

You may have truth, but don't get too "uppity" in conveying that truth to the beneficent White savior. Remember, protecting the feelings of White-centrics (including White-centric liberals) takes priority over social justice.

White-centric liberals are just as reluctant to address their bigotry as the conservatives they wave their fingers at. Each prioritizes not being called racist over not being racist.

The Daily Kos comments would make for a good debate about the nature of White privilege. Is it strictly passive, as some suggest, or can it be activated? I argue that it is both, operating like a character's skills in a role playing game. To those familiar with RPGs, some skills are passive. They are in effect without needing to be activated by the player. Active skills require some voluntary action to engage them.

Rserven's privilege seems passive. She appears unaware of hijacking the conversation to Whitesplain away Chauncey's data. She is also unaware of the narcissism Chauncey correctly challenges her on. White privilege dictates that racism is not a White problem, so Rserven expects special recognition for the times that she has promoted equality.

Azubia makes the case for the existence of an active component of White privilege. This is a person who publicly demonstrated ignorance on an issue, was schooled, and chose to engage in avoidance as a response. Azubia is the reminder that the most progressive of White liberals can willfully activate aspects of White privilege whenever being down for the cause becomes too much for them.

Jim Wagner said...

I had the speech on last night but was only half-paying attention to most of it. Kokanee sums up my feelings pretty well; I also noticed and was appalled by the tossed-off "oh, by the way" request for the right to go after ISIL.

I've been paying more attention to the first two episodes of The Nightly Show and wonder if you have any plans to write on it, Chauncey. It's not an immediately firing-on-all-cylinders hit like The Colbert Report was, but then Colbert had had years to hone his blowhard character on The Daily Show. Larry Wilmore is very explicitly *not* just playing "Senior Black Correspondent." He's trying to do something quite different, and nearly unprecedented (not to mention the fact that I don't think he's ever spent this much time in front of the camera), so I expect it will take a little while for the show to really find its groove. But I think it's very promising and exciting thus far. Some have already compared the show's format to Bill Maher's, but to me it feels closer to Melissa Harris-Perry. And the third-act "Keep It 100" segment is a brilliant idea.

Anyway, a bit off topic for this thread, I know, but Wilmore will be covering the SOTU tonight, so maybe not!

The Sanity Inspector said...

It was a defiant speech, coming after this past election. Someone said it was a touchdown dance by someone who had been tackled for a safety. The speech had a little something for everyone: "Look at all this cheap gas!" followed by "Look at all this global warming!" The zinger about winning twice was to be expected from someone so sure of himself that he felt it was okay to lecture the Supreme Court justices during a previous SOTU speech. But it didn't sit well alongside his earnest sounding call for more civil politics.

chauncey devega said...

Oh Sanity, you need your meds. Obama made that quip after the Republicans--a gross and ugly and rude group of people if there ever was one--clapped about his not running for office again.

Civil politics? Yeah. Tell the GOP thugs who have thrown racial slurs, birtherism, and heckled him during SOTU speeches.

We need to get you to rehab brother. Let's do some research together.

The Sanity Inspector said...

As for having no more campaigns to run, I'm not so sure about that. He'll be 55 when the next President is inaugurated, that's awfully young to retire to the lecture/consultant/honorary professor circuit. John Quincy Adams returned to Congress after his Presidency, and William Taft became Chief Justice of the Supreme Court after his. Maybe Obama will attempt something equally ambitious.

Dan Kasteray said...

Obama was a nice start, next black president we get let's have him or her be a real radical

chauncey devega said...

Never forget that Presidents are selected and not elected in America.

Radical? Black? President? Not. Gonna. Happen.

SW said...

Initial reaction: I thought his delivery was excellent. Substantively, he dished some good ideas. I especially like how he was clear that any progress on the right's beloved Keystone Pipeline will only be considered in the context of a broader infrastructure bill. That seems to be the basis of a potential negotiation, though I'm not holding my breath.

The both real and faux stodginess on the right seems to have both a social and political purpose. Socially, as has been mentioned, they don't respect the black guy. Politically, they continue to reveal that their party is devoid of any ideas, and not because they are stupid, per se. But because the presentation of any ideas would box them in by giving Obama a place to start a negotiation. The very, very weak rebuttals by the amateurish Jodi Ernst reinforces the well known concept that the right prefers absolutely nothing, to any potential compromise with President Obama.

Oh, I also thought Michelle looked absolutely stunning.

Wild Cat said...

Ha! Yeah, he's such a racist shit on other websites.

chauncey devega said...

Let's play nice. I can only speak for Sanity here on WARN. He is often fundamentally wrong and misguided but always polite. On occasion he is "sane".

Dan Kasteray said...

Dare to dream, it'll be a costly battle making it come true but that's no excuse not to dream big

DanF said...

He trolled the crap out of the Republicans in that speech (I hope other Democrats were taking notes). Based on the poll I saw on response to the SOTU, he knocked it out of the park - 75% positive approval. So the only one's worried about Obama's smack-down are the hard core, perennially butt-hurt.

kokanee said...

Start by voting for parties that aren't owned by big money.

Gable1111 said...

He'll, i'll settle for Fred G. Sanford!

Miles_Ellison said...

The lid got torn off of Hell when Obama, a pragmatist moderate, was elected. A radical black presidential candidate would be assassinated before he was halfway through his announcement.

Rusty Shackelford said...

I loved it when he tossed the GOP the Palin wink.

bresson2 said...

To me, the obvious thing (that a lot of people are missing) is that the Repugs are the ones who showed disrespect by applauding in the first place. When Obama said he wouldn't be running again, he intended it in a perfunctory manner to continue on to the next thought in the speech. The Repugs saw the opportunity for snark, seized it, and interrupted the president with their applause, deliberately breaking his rhythm. You can watch the speech online and see how this moment comes across like an abrupt break in the speech, an interruption by the Repugs.

That is what was rude. That is what was disrespectful.

When a bully hits you, Obama made the best possible move you can make. He hit back harder. And his punch landed truer.

This was a victory on the part of the prez. So quite naturally, the other side is now trying to spin it as a defeat, with the corporate media aiding and abetting as usual.