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The Expansionist
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
 
Wipeout in the Making? I have said all along that, absent some astounding misstep of the most enormous moment, Barack Obama cannot possibly be elected President in 2008, because this country is simply not ready for a black President. I have complained that media know full well that he cannot be elected, but they keep talking nonsense to keep an audience watching their commercials or reading their print advertisements. The discussion really needs to be what, if anything, Obama can do to salvage any chance whatsoever of winning the White House.
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Now comes a New York Times/CBS News poll that shows that there is a substantial racial divide in this country that makes his being elected very difficult. The AOL version of the story includes its own polls. After a full day of responses, the results in the first poll, "Do you think America is ready for a black president?" were 59% NO, 41% yes. Second poll, "Are you personally ready for a black president?", 53% YES, 47% no. Here we have a perfect example of the so-called "Bradley effect", in which people disown racial motivations as regards themselves, but ascribe racism to OTHER people. Bizarrely, the "Bradley effect" is now said to have been named for a phenomenon that occurred when L.A. mayor Tom Bradley ran for governor of California. The reality, which I remember because I'm old enuf to know what actually happened, is that when the same Tom Bradley first ran for mayor of Los Angeles, in 1969 against the incumbent, a white man named Sam Yorty, he was projected to win by a big margin, but actually LOST. As I recall, it wasn't even close, as did not even call for a recount. Bizarrely, that election is NOT used as proof of race affecting what people are willing to say to pollsters, tho it was the first time I noticed that people plainly LIED to pollsters to say they would vote for a black man when in fact they had no such intention.
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The third AOL poll question was "How big a role do you think race will play in the outcome of the presidential election?", to which 68% said "Major", 28% said "Minor", and a piddling 4% said "None at all".
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The fourth AOL question was "What's your race?", to which 77% said white, 9% said black, 6% said "Other", 5% said Hispanic, and 3%, Asian. The number of respondents to these straw polls (not 'scientifically' randomized) averaged 400,000.
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The last of AOL's five Internet polls (this one alone controlled by a fill-in box where respondents were required to copy graphic letters and numbers, to prevent automated voting) showed 68% for McCain, 32% for Obama, with an electoral map in which every single state, without so much as a single exception, is RED. For some reason, the number of voters in that straw poll was only about 292,000. Still, even with the graphic-verification protection to results, EVERY SINGLE STATE OF THE UNION went for McCain. Every, single, one.
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Will the media ignore that? Answer: yes. I watched large parts of the various evening newschannel political talkshows, from Countdown with Keith Olbermann on MSNBC to the O'Reilly Factor on Fox News Channel and Larry King Live on CNN, and saw not one word of acknowledgment of any such poll involving hundreds of thousands of Americans. Did I simply miss the discussion that did occur? Did everyone on the staff of every political talk show on MSNBC, CNN, and the Fox News Channel somehow MISS the AOL polls? I heard some discussion of the takeoff for those polls, the New York Times/CBS poll, but not the AOL Internet poll, not even the one controlled by the need to type in graphic characters.
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Did they give no credence to those results? Or did they refuse to show them out of the understanding that the people know full well that all this talk of a "hotly contested Presidential race" is media hype, and if they admitted that BaLack Obama hasn't a snowball's chance in hell they would either have nothing at all to talk about or would have to speak to the ugly realities of "Race in America, 2008", and ask hard-hitting questions about how on Earth BaLack Obama is going to overcome anti-black racism to win the White House?
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On the wider issue of race relations in the Nation:

The [NYT/CBS] poll also found a deep black-white divide on broader racial questions. For example, 55 percent of whites believed race relations in the U.S. were good; only 29 percent of blacks did. And 53 percent of whites said members of both races had equal chances of getting ahead in society. Just 30 percent of blacks said they believed that.

In that this blog is read by people outside as well as inside the United States, let me advise that the word "nigger" (no, not rap's "nigga") is one of the most frequently uttered epithets, and when not uttered, perhaps the single most often thought epithet in the Nation, as white people see blacks misbehaving in public or see reports about black crime. Decades of attempting to conceal the race of criminals and suspects from published reports, even to the point of avoiding race entirely in "descriptions" that are supposedly intended to help catch wanted persons, have failed to disconnect the black race from crime in the public mind. The immediate assumption of most people, of all races, is that the 'perpetrator' (that most-favored word among police) of many categories of street crime is black or, much less often, Hispanic. And most people are usually right.
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Black comedians have commented on that. "Oh, lord, it's one of us", think decent black people when they hear a news report of one of those typically black crimes, then wait for the pictures of the stunned neighbors.
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Every now and then, we guess wrong. For instance, in the DC-area sniper case years ago, blacks and whites were both inclined to suspect some deranged white nut, so were stunned when it turned out to be a pair of blacks, an older, malignant 'mentor' and a young protege. That was a shocker.
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There are 'white' crimes too, like embezzlement or running a methamphetamine lab. In a very large proportion of the crimes reported, the audience, of all races, guesses right as to the race of the perpetrator. White-collar crime tends also to be white-race crime. Violent street crimes involving guns, black. Muggings involving knives, black or Hispanic. Low-level drug-pushing, mainly black, but Hispanic in Latin neighborhoods. Mid-level drug distribution, black or Hispanic. High-level drug distribution, white.
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When it comes to the ordinary irritants of urban life, white people in many U.S. cities are constantly offended by blacks. In many parts of NYC, for instance, once you step out your front door, you are likely to be panhandled by blacks, offered drugs by blacks, solicited by black prostitutes. Blacks sit on the steps of subway stations, making it hard for people just to get up or down the stairs. Blacks block subway doors, so you can't get in or out without pushing past someone who won't move, either at all or by more than two inches, even if you say "Excuse me" or "Getting off". Blacks mosey across streets, at nite, wearing dark clothing and a headset, with their back to traffic, as tho they are daring you to hit them. Little do they know how hard it is for a driver to see any pedestrian in dark clothing at nite (and, especially, at nite in the rain). They may well find that their arrogance produces their death or maiming. And then the driver, not just the family of the idiot killed or maimed, is traumatized. And don't think the driver and his family and friends don't know who's responsible.
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Dozens of times a day, white people, Latinos, and Asians in the great cities of the United States are hassled and irritated by passive-aggressive and outrite-aggressive blacks with a chip on their shoulder, and they resent it. You may not hear the chorus of "Nigger!", but it's there. Picture a comic book panel with thought-balloons all saying "Nigger!"
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For their part, the blacks with a chip on the shoulder assume no responsibility for the hatred they engender. No, it's not that whites, Orientals, and others are driven to rage by the outrageous behavior of blacks. No, they were just raised to be racists, and it's all whitey's fault (or Koreans' fault, or ...). Never mind that some immigrants travel more than 10,000 miles, from countries in which they had no preconceptions of blacks whatsoever, because they never saw a black person in their home country, but within six months of arriving come to be wary of / fear / hate blacks.
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A white employer hires blacks because s/he feels s/he has to, and then the black employees do shoddy work, take overlong breaks, call in 'sick' much more often than employees of any other ethnicity, give their fellow employees and supervisors a hard time, and threaten legal action if they're fired or even disciplined!
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This is why whites feel that blacks are treated (at least) fairly, and have the same opportunities as anybody else, because it really is not the intent of most employers nor fellow-employees to discriminate. They are willing to grant the benefit of the doubt to a new hire. But lurking in their mind is the suspicion that a large proportion of blacks are not going to be conscientious, are not going to do their fair share, and white, Asian, or Latino employees are going to have to make up the difference.
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Black failure in school has nothing to do with the schools. At a Federal judge's order, Kansas City spent $2 billion over 12 years to improve the largely-black public schools, and got NOTHING to show for it, NO appreciable improvement in test scores nor dropout rates. Nothing. The old saying, "You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink" holds for leading kids to the well of knowledge.
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The Nation at large spends $2 billion each YEAR to incarcerate common criminals, most of whom are black, even tho the Nation is 80% white. Local taxes are high in large part to fund schools that blacks disrupt and drop out of, and white people are blamed for black failure. It's never blacks themselves, oh no. And that fuels white rage.
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Obama needs, for his own reasons, to pretend that he can win if he just does things right. I'm pretty sure that if he really believes he can win, he is delusional. Perhaps he's using drugs again. He admits, after all, having used marijuana and cocaine for some two years in his youth, and drug counselors often speak of people who 'once' had a drug problem not as "former addicts" but "recovering addicts", who never win a permanent, undeniable victory, but merely manage to stay away from drugs another day, one day at a time, in perpetuity, till death.
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What Obama, uniquely, can do is be a Super-Cosby, telling blacks that white society is perfectly willing to give blacks an even break — his nomination proves that — but that when people hold out the hand of friendship and opportunity, and it is slapped down, hard, it isn't soon again extended.
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It is Obama's obligation to wake blacks, "his own people" (tho he is equally white in ancestry), to their SELF-destructive behavior and tell them that society has three doors they can go thru. One is the Golden Door of opportunity; the second, the door to a life of unending failure; the third, the door to a prison cell, or the death chamber. Whites, Orientals, South Asians, Hispanics, and immigrants from all over the world who accept absolutely no blame for slavery because they played absolutely no part in it, are running out of patience. We have, to our mind, "bent over backwards" to give blacks every chance to succeed, and if they don't, "It's all you", and we are almost ready to break the back of black resistance to conformity to the moral standards of polite society. Play by the rules and you'll have a rich and fulfilling life. Break the rules and we will crush you.
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If Obama can get that message across to "his people", his failed attempt at the Presidency will have achieved something of value. If he goes easy on "his people" for fear of being condemned for "talking down to black people", he will have squandered a unique opportunity to do enormous service to blacks, here and abroad, and to the Nation. And don't think white, Asian, and Latino rage at blacks does not affect U.S. attitudes toward Africa, and the Nation's utter disinclination to spend much treasure, nor lose even one American life, to end genocide in Darfur, brutal dictatorship in Zimbabwe, or any of a plethora of horrible conditions across The Dark Continent. When the next Ethiopian famine arrives, don't be surprised if Americans sit on their hands and let Ethiopians starve because we have HAD IT with American blacks.
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Are the multitudinous misdeeds of a criminally-inclined black underclass in the United States the doing of the people of Africa? Of course not. But sub-Saharan Africans are black, and racial disdain or hatred learned from long years of reacting to black abuses in the United States don't distinguish between blacks in Africa and blacks in the United States. "Why should we save Africans from their own stupidity? Look at all we've done for blacks here. Do they appreciate it? No. Why do anything for people who don't appreciate it?"
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Comedian Chris Rock (who is black, in case you don't know) made a famous distinction between black people and "niggers":
You can’t have anything valuable in your house. Niggers will break in and take it all! Everything white people don’t like about black people, black people really don’t like about black people. It’s like our own personal civil war. On one side, there’s black people. On the other, you’ve got niggers. The niggers have got to go. I love black people, but I hate niggers. I am tired of niggers. Tired, tired, tired.”
Many non-black Americans make something of the same distinction, except many Americans don't know much about blacks, given the de facto geographic and socioeconomic segregation of much of the Nation. There are entire states from which blacks are almost wholly absent, and people go thru their entire day, and most of their life, seeing nothing but white faces. Conversely, in many areas, mainly but not exclusively urban, blacks see almost no white faces. Formal, legal desegregation was devastating to the black entrepreneurial class, when small black stores by the tens of thousands were wiped out by competition from large, white-owned stores whose economies of scale permitted them to offer a wider range of merchandise at lower prices. The fact that the Nation is still segregated, albeit nonlegally and non-formally, hasn't changed that. Small, black businesses have a hard time competing with larger, white businesses, and even some of the stores in the heart of black neighborhoods, which locals might resort to, given time constraints, such as a convenience store at the corner, are owned and operated by immigrants, not blacks. The response to these challenges has, for the most part, not been to try harder and work smarter, but to bitch and moan, resent and act out, often violently, in robberies, looting, and arson, or just to give up and leave the real world for the "sweet release'' of drug-induced euphoria, where problems disappear — as long as the drugs last. Never mind that drugs solve nothing but actually make everything worse. It is so much easier to resolve anxieties by taking a drug than it is to work your way out of debt and hopelessness, that for many it's no contest as to which way to go: work hard and perhaps fail anyway, or just accept failure and escape into drugs?
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BaLack Obama is, again, uniquely qualified by his own life history, to help lead blacks away from that self-confuting and irrational choice. But how does he, how does anyone do that, in the miserable economy of 2008, when crushing debt at usurious interest rates, high unemployment in the 'hood, and offshore outsourcing of everything that can be moved out of the United States combine to make working your way out of poverty and into the good life thru conscientious study and honest labor seem like a dirty joke?
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That's the challenge. Obama may think he can meet that challenge only by becoming President. But since he's not GOING to be elected President, he must find other ways to meet that challenge — unless his run for the Presidency is an exercise in egotism, not a crusade for principles.
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So let him be the Black President of the United States: that is, the President of the Black United States. The Man who stands up to The Man and shows black kids whose future is now very iffy that, tho it is audacious to hope, it's not foolish. Hope is not for chumps. Nine to five is not for fools. A steady paycheck is not the only point to education, but it's a good point. And the easiest way to get ahead is not to go backward. Just as "a penny saved is a penny earned", a teenage pregnancy not incurred is a future, well-cared-for baby earned. A term in prison saved is a lifetime without a record earned. A drug addiction avoided is a lifetime of hiding the past or losing jobs at the interview saved. You may start at a low point, by why dig yourself a hole? Blacks made this mess themselves. They will have to clean it up themselves.
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Whitey can't do it, because whitey didn't do it. Whitey didn't skip school or pay no attention in class; whitey didn't take the drugs that cost black youth years of their lives, nor do any of the other things to blacks that make so many of their lives bad, and nearly hopeless. Whitey didn't make blacks fail, and whitey can't make blacks succeed. Blame may feel good, but it doesn't achieve a thing.
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(The current U.S. military death toll in Iraq, according to the website "Iraq Coalition Casualties", is 4,121 — for Israel.)

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