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It’s Not the Economy, Stupid

It’s racial politics. And you don’t beat them by adopting them.

by
Mary Grabar

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November 10, 2012 - 11:39 pm
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Sadly, racial identity politics, originated as a divide-and-conquer propaganda campaign by the Soviets in the 1920s, and then picked up again in earnest in the 1960s by those like communist history professor Howard Zinn, determined the election. Today, Weatherman founder, terrorist, and former professor of education Bill Ayers continues the Soviet disinformation campaign of attributing racism to capitalism.

To my dismay, not only did the usual suspects, like George Stephanopoulos, promote this old propaganda line, but many “conservative” analysts fell into the trap on the day after.

The George Soros-funded site AlterNet celebrated with an article titled “What Propelled Obama to Victory and Sent the Plutocrats and Racists to a Brutal Defeat”:

The diverse, creative, younger coalition that propelled the first black president — a guy whose middle name is Hussein — to the presidency, beat back what may well have been the last stand of Ronald Reagan’s coalition of plutocrats, white working-class men and religious conservatives.

The GOP’s most reliable supporters remain white, married couples who identify themselves as Christians, a group that continues its sharp decline in numbers.

The same site fulminates at the large size of Christian families, and hyperventilates about overpopulation. But the celebration over a “sharp decline in numbers” reveals an ideological callousness. I think of Bill Ayers’ plans to eliminate about 25 million Americans who would refuse to be reeducated after the revolution.

But celebration over changes in ethnic and racial makeup happens in more respectable venues. Back in September, at the last Decatur, Georgia, Labor Day Book Festival, a political science professor and author of The Polarized Public? Why American Government Is So Dysfunctional predicted to the almost all-white audience that Democrats would prevail this election season. Political polarization was attributed to “extremism” on the part of conservatives, whose numbers were thankfully diminishing due to demographic changes. The fact that audiences at Obama rallies consisted of large numbers of minorities (according to the slides shown) was heralded.

What struck me about the audience, many of whom wore Obama insignia, was the applause and sighs of relief upon hearing that the Democrats were going to win on the basis of demographics. These middle-aged, college-educated book lovers had no qualms about the fact that their winning strategy did not rely on ideas or even ideology. An air of moral self-congratulation, carried over from the “marches” of the 1960s, was displayed in the facial expressions and comments.

This audience may not consciously register that they are using minorities (and therefore stereotyping them) to advance progressive politics, but the late Howard Zinn did. In 1969, he wrote in an essay titled “Marxism and the New Left”:

In the United States, the traditional idea that the agent of social change will be the proletariat needs re-examination, when the best-organized of the workers are bribed into silence with suburban houses and automobiles, and drugged into compliance with mass entertainment.

Presaging the Obama strategy, Zinn suggested that “unorganized workers,” like “white collar workers, domestic workers, migratory and farm laborers, service industry workers,” may play a part in social change.

Then he tellingly posited:

Recent experience suggests that Negroes — and perhaps Negroes in the ghetto — may be the most powerful single force for social change in the United States. Marx envisioned the industrial proletariat as the revolutionary agent because it was in need, exploited, and brought face to face in the factory. The Negro is in need, exploited and brought together in the ghetto.

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