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Updated: 2017-08-04T13:02:41.610-05:00

 



14 Comments

2010-09-11T21:55:51.722-05:00

A New DayTo Mac's cherished readers and fellow bloggers:While living life to it's fullest, Mac always had an optimistic view for tomorrow. "Tomorrow is a new day" he said so often. Since his passing, we've come to the blog from time to time to re-read a post or two and share a bit more about Mac. You kindred bloggers and fans have provided wonderful encouragement and support to continue his blog. Individually and here on the blog, you've often expressed your wishes to read more of Mac's works.You've also loved how Mac wove those nuggets of truth in his sidebar: "Change to Believe in"..."Good Lookin' Out"..."Speaking Truth to Power"...and "A Change is Gonna Come" These little gems underscore his overarching theme of truth and justice as reflected in his body of work both as a blogger/author and community activist. Here's a song that sums up his mission and legacy for me -- and one of his favorites: Solomon Burke's "None of us are free".And now here's the good news ~Mac's family has enthusiastically decided to carry his legacy forward with this blog. Together they will continue daddyBstrong's themes which were "not about the Daddy" but rather "About you: your boos, your fam, your hood, your country...your hopes and dreams of a better tomorrow." And of course they'll add their own unique voices -- building on Mac's legacy and doing him proud. I know you'll be back to welcome them to the blogosphere and spread the good word.In the meantime, I'll say goodbye and express my deep gratitude and affection for all of you who have held Mac's Minneapolis family in your hearts and offered your love, prayers and support as this gentle and brilliant man passed on to his eternal reward. Here's my favorite poem from Mac. It captures how very ALIVE this dear man was to his bones and soul cells -don't you agree?We do sing with you, Mac. Forever in our hearts.Sing with meI am one with the earth,wind and sky.I'm a towering, thunderous waterfall.I roar when hurling through mistand diving down to complete myself below,smiling while flowingin and out of liquid semi-circlesnaturally. Free.Sing with me.[...]



Rest in Peace, Macarthur Walton

2009-12-22T10:57:29.301-06:00

It is with profound sadness we inform MacDaddy's cherished fellow bloggers and followers, that the Daddy has passed on in the most peaceful manner at home surrounded by family and friends. We'll be adding more about our dear Mac but for now, leave you with a poem he wrote that summed up exactly how he lived and embraced his life fully since his cancer diagnosis five years ago.

JUST ONE MORE DAY

Tomorrow morn

Lord,
Let me live and know life for one more day
Just one more day

Let me wake to hurried neighbors revving cars
Racing to a closed-in office, chasing a rising sun
And sip smoking hot, black. fresh-brewed
from a Mickey's Diner cup
Reading the Star-Tribune, tasting buttered toast still warm

Tomorrow noon

Let me lunch on green salad, fresh fruit, green tea
with knowing companions
Plucking seedless, blue grapes from thick vines
Swapping warm smiles, tall tales and a joke or two

Tomorrow eve,

Let me dine on french bread, beef brisket, chilled wine
and a soft face
Nurturing hopes and dreams of a sweeter tomorrow
Grateful for your warm love and generosity in hearing me pray

Lord,
Let me life and know life for one more day
Just one more day



HAVE YOU HEARD OF BROWNSUGATOO?

2009-12-12T12:59:49.844-06:00

Listen up. The Daddy got a question for you: Have you heardBrownsugatoo? She's a black woman and spoken word poet with a lot to say and a bitter-sweet way of saying it. Sometimes harsh, at other times gentle, she still sometimes express in voice so tough it makes you want to sing the Black Panther anthem, "The revolution has come, it's time to pick up the gun." At other times, it makes you want to cry, in the powerful yet gentle voice of Nina Simone:"I love you, Porgy.Don't let him take me.Don't let him handle me with his hot hands.If you can keep me, I want to stay here.Safe and forever. I got my man." INHUMANE: STOP THE VIOLENCE AGAINST GIRLS, AGAINST WOMEN INHUMANEToday, Inhumane tugged at me,Spoke to me,And tore me to the core:“Teenage girl gang raped outsideA Richmond high school ‘door’.”The tears stungMy face was numb.Emotions just clawed at each other.‘Cause what I physically WANTED to do -Was dumb.So I wrote “release”…“Dumb bastards!”I screamed.“That was somebody’s daughter!”Guess it was a day too late,For y’all to be taughtThat she is a Queen.“Dumb bastards!”I screamed.“You were SOMEBODY'S son!”You could have been-NO, it IS too late.A throne for you?There is none.Copyright 2009C. Thomasa.k.a. brownsugatou[...]



SUPERBOWL WINNING COACH CALLS THE NCAA OUT FOR ITS DISCRIMINATION

2009-12-08T11:39:40.064-06:00

“We talked about him growing up and having that side – that Christian background – but really getting to the NFL and feeling like he was his own person...“When he kind of described that to me and the fact that he needed to get back closer to the Lord, that’s when I said, ‘I’m going to stay involved in this. I’m “We talked about him growing up and having that side – that Christian background – but really getting to the NFL and feeling like he was his own person...“When he kind of described that to me and the fact that he needed to get back closer to the Lord, that’s when I said, ‘I’m going to stay involved in this. I’m going to help you."--Tony Dungylisten up. Tony Dungy, one of the Daddy's heroes, works to keep men out of prison. The work of one of clients on Sunday shows that the may be on the way with helping another one. On Sunday, Michael Vick, with whom Dungy is working personally, scored a running touchdown and passed for another one before retiring with a bruised hand. You may recall that, while playing for the Atlanta Falcons, Vick was engaged in dogfighting and was convicted and served his term for two years. This was the first time Vick had been back to Atlanta to play. Here's a good story about it.Super Bowl-Winning Coach Called the Small Number of Head Coachesin Major College Football "Disgraceful."Super Bowl-winning coach Tony Dungy called the dearth ofminority head coaches in major college football "disgraceful."Dungy became the first black coach to win a Super Bowl in 2007 with theIndianapolis Colts. Now an analyst with NBC's pregame show, Dungy saidon the program Sunday night that minority coaches believe they havemore opportunity for advancement in the pros than in college.Of the 120 Football Bowl Subdivision coaches this season, just nine areminorities – and only Miami's Randy Shannon is at a BCS school. Sevenof the 32 coaches in the NFL are black, including Bills interim coachPerry Fewell.Asked whether the situation in the college game representsinstitutionalized racism, Dungy said, "The numbers would tell you thatit is."After the 2006 season, Dungy recommended then-Vikings defensivecoordinator Mike Tomlin for the head coaching position at a BCS school.Tomlin didn't get an interview. A month later, the Steelers hired himas their head coach, and within two years he led them to a Super Bowlwin."That's the difference between the NCAA and the NFL right now," Dungysaid.Dungy met last month with NCAA officials and has offered his help onthe issue. He called on school presidents to reverse the trend."They've got to step up and say, 'We're going to do the right thing.We're going to hire qualified people. We're going to hire the best manfor the job regardless of what boosters or anyone else has to say.'"Do you think the NCAA discriminates against black coaches?[...]



NINA SIMONE: "I LOVE YOU, PORGY"

2009-12-06T05:17:08.199-06:00

(image) (image)
Listen up: A friend emailed a brotha saying Luther Vanddross's song to his father was his favorite and asked "Who is your favorite?" I told him mine was Nina Simone's rendition of " I love you, Porgy."

Here are the words to the song:
I loves you, Porgy,
Don' let him take me,
Don' let him handle me an' drive me mad.
If you kin keep me,
I wants to stay here wid you forever,
An' I'd be glad.

I loves you, Porgy,
Don' let him take me
Don' let him handle me
With his hot han'
If you kin keep me
I wants to stay here wid you forever.
I got my man.


What's your favorite song?



"I AIN'T GON STUDY WAR NO MO'"

2009-12-05T12:10:18.610-06:00

Listen up. In keeping with some of myreader's wishes, who say they're suffering from "post-election fatigue," I'm not writing about the election or the sorry state of the American economy. But I'm writing about American society, especially about the unnecessary and painful violence in our communities.So the daddy is thinking...I'm just thinking... just thinking... about Malcolm x, who said that on this day, from this day forward, on this earth, we declare that we have a right to fight for our freedom "by any means necessary." Minister Malcolm died from a hail of bullets from members of the Nation of Islam, the organization he helped create, leaving behind a wife and two children and the hopes of millions of African Americans.I'm just thinking...just thinking...about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who died from a violent gunshot as he stood out on the balcony of a hotel in Memphis, Tennessee. Dr. King said we must meet the power of violence as an organized people of love, as a nonviolent people, as a non-violent nation. He said we must have "the strength to love." And though the corporate media won't acknowledge it, he spent the last year of his life not talking about little white girls and little black boys holding hands and singing we shall overcome but focusing on war and poverty, reminding us that our government's preoccupation with war not only killed people abroad; it diverted much-needed resources to end poverty at home.Dr. King, an activist/intellectual, perhaps the most eloquent orator of any generation, a minister who could quote Shakespeare as easily as a passage from the bible, made it plain when he paraphrased an old religious hymn and said, "I don't know about you, but I ain't gon study war no mo."I'm just thinking...just thinking... about the millions of lesser-known Americansin cities like Philadelphia, Chicago, Los Angeles, Memphis and Atlanta who die every day from a hail of gunfire from gangbangers who are famous for missing their targets and killing innocent citizens, including children.Okay, African Americans, I want to ask you something:As a people who were enslaved and brutalized for centuries by others, shouldn't you be peaceful toward each other? Whether inside the home or out on the street, shouldn't another brother or sister be the last person you raise a hand or squeeze a trigger finger to harm? And if you must raise a hand or pull a trigger, shouldn't the only possible justification for doing so be to defend yourself as an individual or to defend your country against attacks?Okay, Americans of all ethnic, political or religious persuasions, I want to ask you something: As members of a nation that took this country by committing genocide against nations of Indians (the first Americans), as members of a nation that enslaved an entire group of people (Africans), as members of nation that spends much of its budget on either fighting wars or preparing for wars, as members of a nation with 47 million people without healthcare, with infrastructure so bad that you're afraid to drive across some bridges, shouldn't you be so angry, so... obsessed with forcing your elected officials to turn away from bloody wars and turn to the righteous quest of supporting you that you're willing to organize other Americans to march on Washington D.C. this summer and camp out there until your elected officials-- yes, Barack Obama-- pass laws to bail out working people, to insure them, to employ them, to rebuild America?I'm just thinking...just thinking...about rising each morning with the sun, sipping a cup of java, paraphrasing an old spiritual and saying like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., I don't know about you, but I ain't gon study war no mo."Can you say "I ain't gon study VIOLENCE no mo." Can you live it?[...]



LETTER #3: PREZ:" REMEMBER THE WORDS OF GENERAL PATTON?

2009-12-04T12:07:41.840-06:00

Yo, Prez!Can a brotha from another mother undercover from a former lover still call you Prez"Listen Prez: The Daddy knows you're from Chicago. He knows you probably remember it, when Fred Hampton and Mark Clark, two leaders of the militant Black Panther Party, were killed-- no, assassinated-- as they lay at home in their sleep. On September 8, 2008, I wrote you (Did you get it? Let's call it letter number, yesterday's letter as letter about your decision on Afghanistan as letter #3, and this one as letter #3} about leadership and General Patton's thoughts on it. The similarity between General Patton and Fred Hampton is that both fought unapologetically for what they believed in.In case you didn't get letter #1, I'm posting it again. I believe it is more appropriate for you now than at any other time. Dear Prez Obama: Remember the words of General Patton "The test of success is not what you do when you are on top. Success is high you bounce when you hit bottom."--General S. Patton Jr."Moral courage is the most valuable and usually the most absent characteristic in men."-- George S. Patton Jr.Dear Prez Obama:Can a brotha call you Prez?Listen, Prez, a brotha knows you are busy; so he'll keep it short and sweet. Yes, he knows you have big challenges ahead: the worst economy since the depression; two wars, one of which is getting worse by the minute (Afghanistan); high unemployment; over 47 million without healthcare. But guess what else a brotha knows? He knows:1. Big challenges create an opportunity to be a great president; and you don't want to be a good president but a great president, not for your ego but for the American people;2. You will be a president of tremendous courage, intellect and leadership;3. You will have the support of not only the American people but the world;4. Given your humble upbringing and experience as a community organizer, you will continue to possess the right instincts and mindset in approaching all pressing issues: Thinking first and foremost, how will your decision affect the majority of Americans; andYo, Prez, you will lead us out of this economic crisis, get the economy on the right track, bring us closer to universal healthca re, return our brave daughters and sons home from Iraq and improve the care once they get here. And history will record that you were one of our more successful presidents. Just remember the immortal words of General Patton:"In planning any operation, it is vital to remember and constantly repeat to oneself two things: 1. In war, nothing is impossible provided you use audacity.2. Do not take counsel of your fears.’"--------------------------------------------------Prez, did you make WHAT YOU BELIEVE is the right decision on Afghanistan? Did you make this decision calculating that it would give you the best chance of re-elected in 2012? Was it political decision made to appease some on in the Republican party or was it a decision based in your heart about what's best for the American people, the ones who are against this war? Are you truly listening to the generals in the armed forces today or learning wisdom from those in the past. The Daddy's suggestion? Read his most famous speech (Somewhere in Europe, June 5th, 1944) and a few books of General Patton.With audacity,The Daddy[...]



LETTER #2: PRESIDENT OBAMA YOU LET US DOWN, BUT THE PEN OF REDEMPTION IS STILL IN YOUR HAND

2009-12-04T07:29:08.181-06:00

(image) Dear Prez:

Can a brotha still call you Prez?

Listen, Prez. I was out at a coffee shop and heard some white boys sipping coffee and talking. What they said made sense. They said they voted for you, because they saw you as a man of peace. To them, that meant you were going to bring our brave soldiers home from Iraq and wind down our adventure in Afghanistan. Instead, they said, you have slowed down the exit from Iraq and is now planning to add about 34,000 soldiers to Afghanistan, a land of dusty roads and high, featuring winding roads with the bones of fighters on the side of them.


Listen, Prez: I know you have already done some great things while in office. Diplomatically, you have changed foreign leaders attitude toward the United States. For 8 years they believed that the U.S. was nothing but a bully that chose to go it alone in dealing with foreign conflicts. Now, they see in you a chance to go back to diplomacy in dealing with a challenging world. Domestically, you signed a bill that will give women a better chance of suing employers for discrimination against women. You hired men and women who were fired from the Justice Department by Karl Rove and his merry mob of Bush thugs. You signed a bill that will regulate the tobacco industry, making it nearly impossible for the tobacco industry to maket cigarettes to our kids. You passed sweeping credit card reform
legislation aimed at limiting abusive and deceptive credit card practices. You provided 1. 25 billion to black farmers to settle their claim of discrimination against them by the U.S. agricultural department which had gone on for years.

But you know what, Prez? All these important changes can't erase the fact that you have now chosen to further place American soldiers in a quagmire with no end in sight, no exit known, no clear goals to justify staying there and with a government so corrupt that the president's own brother is a drug dealer.


Listen, Prez: You shown great leadership in many areas of civic life. It's time for you to show leadership in one more area: move America away from the imperialistic tendency to engage in unwinnable wars. You can begin by pulling our troops out of Afghanistan. Yes, leave a contingency of troops to train Afghanistan soldiers to defend themselves (say 5,000), but bring our brave but tired soldiers home.
Use the funding saved by bringing these soldiers and equipment home to shore up the argument for paying for healthcare reform with public option.

Prez: The guys at the coffee shop spoke critically of you. They say you let them down. But redemption is still in your hands. All you have to do is use that pen to write a memo to bring our sons and daughters home from Afghanistan.

Do the right thing.

Blessings,

The Daddy



HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!!

2009-11-26T12:45:36.421-06:00

(image) HAPPY THANKSGIVING! HAPPY THANKSGIVING! HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
HAPPY THANKSGIVING! HAPPY THANKSGIVING! HAPPY THANKSGIVING! HAPPY THANKSGIVING! HAPPY THANKSGIVING! HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
HAPPY THANKSGIVING! HAPPY THANKSGIVING! HAPPY THANKSGIVING!




WHAT ARE YOU THANKFUL FOR ON THIS THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY?

2009-11-25T19:27:07.030-06:00

"We can renew our nation the same way that we have in the many years since Lincoln's first Thanksgiving: by coming together to overcome adversity."-- President Barack Obama"After Obama gives his turkey pardon on Wednesday, the pardoned bird (rumored to actually be two birds) will fly first class to California to head up the Disney Thanksgiving Day Parade. They will then live at Big Thunder Ranch in Frontierland at Disneyland in Anaheim, California."--HULIQ.comListen up. Today, the Daddy is feeling the Progressive Report and its list of things to be which to be thankful. So the Daddy is posting this list as a starter to get you thinking, to get you to answer this one question: "What are you thankful for on this Thanksgiving weekend?"THANKSGIVING 27 Reasons To Give Thanks We're thankful President Obama is thinking long and hard about committing more troops and money to Afghanistan.We're thankful President Bush feels liberated now.We're (not) thankful Dick Cheney has elected to move from his undisclosed location to the media spotlight.We're thankful Al Franken has gone from playing self-help guru Stuart Smalley on Saturday Night Live to helping rape victims receive justice from their employers.We're thankful for the healing power of beer.We're thankful there are some on the right who think Glenn Beck is "incoherent," "mindless," "erratic," "bizarre," and "harmful to the conservative movement."We're thankful for long hikes on the Appalachian Trail.We're thankful Michael Steele understands that he can't "do policy" and that no one has any reason to trust his "words or actions."We're (not) thankful for "birthers," "deathers," "tenthers," or "tea baggers."We're (not) thankful conservatives believe they love America so much that they can root for our President to fail and for our nation to lose out on hosting the Olympics.We're thankful NFL players refused to "bend over and grab the ankles" for Rush Limbaugh.We're thankful six companies have resigned from the Chamber of Commerce due to its denial of climate change science.We're thankful Falcon "Balloon boy" Heene wasn't actually in the balloon.We're thankful Lt. Dan Choi and Lt. Col Victor Fehrenbach bravely spoke out against Don't Ask, Don't Tell.We're thankful Shep Smith doesn't always drink the Fox News kool-aid.We're thankful more than 80 companies refused to lend their sponsorship to Glenn Beck's hateful rants.We're thankful there are progressive organizations in D.C. lobbying for a two-state solution in the Middle East.We're (not) thankful for the filibuster.We're thankful that more than 20,000 of you stood up to Bill O'Reilly's harassment machine and called for impeachment hearings against torture advocate Jay Bybee.We're thankful that Iran's authoritarian rulers live in fear of their own population.We're thankful we'll no longer have to listen to nativist rhetoric on CNN and global warming skepticism on ABC News.We're (not) thankful for bailed out CEOs who think they're doing "God's work" by doling out billions in bonuses.We're thankful for the legacy of the Liberal Lion.We're thankful Bill O'Reilly won't be following us home for Thanksgiving.We're thankful a "wise Latina" sits on the Supreme Court. We're thankful our boss helped rescue imprisoned American journalists in North Korea. We're thankful for our readers and the support you give us.So what are you thankful for on this Thanksgiving? [...]



HOW MUCH LONGER WILL WE TOLERATE SAVAGE HOMOPHOBIA IN OUR COMMUNITY?

2009-11-25T09:25:58.925-06:00

Listen up. Today, The Daddy is feeling a post he saw at The Intersection of Madness and Reality, run by Rippa, one of the best bloggers out there. It's about the fact that many of us turn a blind eye to the discrimination and actual assaults on gay people. The article isn't asking that we embrace homosexuality, join hands, and go singing in the rain with gay people. It simply asks that we recognize that we should treat them with civility and respect like everyone else. Check it out.* Note the photo of a make-shift memorial for Lawrence King, a gay 15 year old teenager who was murdered at E.O. Green School in Oxnard, California. King was killed in class by a fellow student on February 12, 2009. How Much Longer Will We TolerateSavage Homophobia in Our Community?By Seattle Slim Look, let me premise this by saying that I don't agree with homosexuality. Yes, I said it. And I don't care if anyone agrees with me or not on that. It is just a sexual preference, and I think people, straight and gay, put way too much stock into who people ultimately choose to screw. Because of that, I am patently against homophobia and the attack on this poor child, 9th grader Jayron Martin, is nothing short of savage. He was threatened with an ass kicking by some bully punks for being gay. He went to his school leadership for help and they turned their backs on him (Click here for more info). While I may not agree with homosexuality, they are fellow human beings. I'm a Christian and I know full and damned well that we are supposed to treat others the way we want to be treated. I also know that the Bible clearly states that God loves us all, even the people we as humans don't believe are worthy of His love. Thank God it's not up to us, and it's up to Him. I sure as hell wouldn't want to be beaten for being straight, or being in an interracial relationship with a white guy. Even though I don't agree, I don't think, nay, I know it's wrong as hell to attack people for their sexual preferences, specifically for being homosexual. That's not alright. Just this April, Carl Joseph Walker committed suicide because kids taunted him by calling him gay. No one even knows if he was gay or not, he was just different, and that was enough to start the gay taunts. Sadly, he was not the first suicide, nor the last, due to sickening homophobia. Young black boys have this screwed up idea of masculinity because the fathers aren't in the home, or the fathers don't give a shit. That's bad in and of itself, and harmful to them, but if you add homophobia, you've got a toxic cocktail of disdain and hatred. We need to stop turning blind eyes to this form of sexual harassment; this homophobia. Had the Horace Mann Leadership Charter School not turned a blind eye to homophobic taunting and teasing, Carl Joseph Walker might still be alive today. Jayron could've been killed, but of course, he's gay so his life must be expendable, right? Most authority figures in schools could give a damn less about young black boys and girls, but they apparently throw "different" kids to the wolves without batting an eye. And don't think these beast won't come after you or your kids if you so much as get on their reactionary radar. These same beasts are from the same animal species that killed Derrion Albert, taunted Carl Joseph Walker and attacked a Haitian woman and her son in the Dunbar Village rape back in 2007. If we don't stand up for youths and adults like Jayron, whether or not we agree with their lifestyle or sexual preference, not a soul will stand up for us when these feral ass kids turn on us. Jayron should've been protected. He should've never been attacked. His story is a litmus test for all of us and we should be paying attention. How many more black boys and girls will have to be chased, beaten or drive[...]



USING BIBLE QUOTES TO PRAY PRESIDENT OBAMA DIES, CAN YOU BELIEVE IT?

2009-11-23T19:06:42.947-06:00

Listen up. This morning, The Daddy is having feelings which seem to fluctuate between anger and sadness. It's about what appears to be an increase in slogans which speak to President Obama-- our president, America's president!-- being dead. These slogans can be found on bumper stickers, mugs, even teddy bears. What's more, the slogans come from biblical quotes.The slogans actually talk of President Obama dying or hoping he dies real soon. But here's the question that keeps turning in The Daddy's head: how can the mind of a fellow American be so twisted that he or she would want their own president dead?Trying to wrap my arm around this question, I came across this interesting article in Think Progress by journalist Amanda Terkel that talks about this phenomenon. Check it out:Using Bible Quotes to Pray That Obama's 'Days be Few'by Amanda TerkelNovember 20, 2009A new slogan is making its way onto t-shirts and even teddy bears: 'Pray for Obama: Psalm 109:8,' which reads, 'Let his days be few; and let another take his office.”The newest far-right craze is an anti-Obama slogan that is making its way onto t-shirts, bumper stickers, mugs, and even teddy bears: “Pray for Obama: Psalm 109:8,” which reads, “Let his days be few; and let another take his office.” The meme is also taking off on Twitter, with conservatives calling it “hilarious.” Commentators have noted that it’s unclear whether the intent is to hope for an end to Obama’s time in office — or an end to his life. But a look at the lines in the rest of the psalm hint at the latter: Let his days be few; and let another take his office.Let his children be fatherless, and his wife a widow.Let his children be continually vagabonds, and beg: let them seek their bread also out of their desolate places.Let the extortioner catch all that he hath; and let the strangers spoil his labor.Let there be none to extend mercy unto him: neither let there be any to favor his fatherless children.Let his posterity be cut off; and in the generation following let their name be blotted out.Let the iniquity of his fathers be remembered with the LORD; and let not the sin of his mother be blotted out.Let them be before the LORD continually, that he may cut off the memory of them from the earth. Diana Butler Bass at Beliefnet explains that Psalm 109 is one of the “imprecatory” prayers, “a lament in the form of petition to destroy one’s enemies.” While perhaps intended to be a joke, she notes that the psalm actually “entreats God to destroy the president”: It is the personal prayer of an individual, someone who has been dealt an injustice by another–and usually more powerful–person. The words of Psalm 109 are those of deep agony, the longings of a victim for retribution and justice. This psalm is considered one of the most difficult of all the psalms–full of violent images of vengeance and death. Quite a few of the “Pray for Obama” items are being sold at CafePress.com, although many of them have been taken off of the site (here’s a cached version of some of them). Cafe Press representative Margene H. told ThinkProgress that while the site took down some of the “Pray for Obama” items today, it is now in the process of reinstating them: We initially pulled the Psalm 109:8 content from our products today because broader media dialog indicated that these designs potentially suggested violence towards the president. Based on current public discourse and further review of the actual content, we have determined that it is fair political commentary and we are in the process of reinstating this merchandise. As with all of our content, these designs will continue to be reviewed and if at any time their meaning is construed as advocating violence we will revis[...]



WALTER MOSLEY, ONE OF AMERICA'S GREATEST WRITERS

2009-11-22T10:09:35.746-06:00

"You could tell by some people’s homes that they came to L.A. to live their dreams. Home is not a place to dream. At home you had to like your father did and your mother. Home meant that everybody already knew what you could do and if you did anything different, they’d laugh you right down into a hole. Festered in it, after a while, you either accepted your hole or you got out of it. There were all kinds of ways out. You could get married, get drunk, get next to somebody’s wife. You could take a shotgun and eat it for a midnight snack. Or you could move to California. In California, they wouldn’t laugh at you or anybody. In California, the sun shone for three hundred days in the year. In California, you could work until you dropped. And when you got up, there was another job for you. --Walter Mosley, From Black Betty, page 31Listen up. A brotha received an email last night. It said that I was a very good writer and asked what writers do I read the most. I said James Baldwin and Walter Mosley. She said she never heard of him. After telling her he wrote the book that turned into the film "Devil in a blue dress," I sent this bio of Mosley to him. Those of you who haven't heard of him or read one of his books, The Daddy recommends that you write a note to yourself to buy one of his books as a gift to yourself for Christmas.You'll love the writing of a guy who transformed himself from programmer to mystery writer, professor at New York University, and one of America's greatest writers. Here's the bio I sent to my friend:The author Walter Mosley was born in 1952 Los Angeles, California. He attended Goddard College and Johnson State College, and has been a computer programmer. He is currently a professor of English at New York University. Walter Mosley's mystery novels have often been compared to those of Raymond Chandler, mainly because they share vivid settings on the seamy side of Los Angeles in the middle decades of the century, a less-than-rosy view of human nature, and tough but noble main characters in Philip Marlowe and Ezekiel Rawlins. There's another similarity: like Chandler, Mosley wields elegant, economical prose to create unforgettable characters. Chief among them is series protagonist Easy Rawlins. In many ways Rawlins is a kind of black Everyman, reflecting the great migration from the South in mid-century. He grew up in Houston, fought in World War II and works hard for a better life in Los Angeles, keenly aware of the boundaries imposed upon him by racism. But Easy is no stereotype; endlessly complex, he continues to surprise and reward readers. Chandler once wrote that the best mysteries are those you would read even if the last chapter were torn out; Easy Rawlins is a character who would make you do just that. Rawlins is not a private eye; he makes his living at everything from real estate to janitorial work. He's a sometime fixer, drawn into mysteries, often against his will, because some friend or connection needs his help. Like many other Black detective/mystery authors (witness Chester Himes), Mosley novels use the side-kick accessory to blunt the dark side of the protagonist's character. Beginning in the early 1940s, the Ezekiel "Easy" Rawlins novels use this most effectively with Easy and his sometimes buddy, Mouse.In the course of five novels, he's lost a wife and daughter and gained a couple of adopted children, made tidy sums of money and lost them, drunk a lot of whisky and given it up, fought despair and anger and, provisionally at least, won. The sixth published novel is the first Mosley wrote, the first in the series, the first not set in the Watts section of LA, though it is strengthened by reading it after the first p[...]



THE REBELLIOUS SIXTIES? YES, I REMEMBER

2009-11-17T13:10:06.289-06:00

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Listen up. As an African American, a student of American history and a person who sometimes entertains the illusion that he is a writer, The Daddy had been trying to write this book for a long time. It weaves a historic yet personal tale about the excitement and the dangers of the turbulent sixties. It shares a personal story, or stories, about this period as a learning experience which helped shape who we, the children of the sixties, are today and the values we try to inculcate in our children.

The poems in section II are personal. The heroes discussed in section III are primarily political. But the signature poem in the second part of Section III is intensely personal, involving two college student's deep, undeniable love, painful, unforgettable loss, and bitter-sweet memories that neither time,maturity, or subsequent affairs could erase from the heart. Ultimately, it was these intensely personal memories set in the midst of the civil rights, black power, and anti-war movements and my attempt to recall them honestly that took this book so long to write.

The Daddy prays that you will click on the Lulu.com logo on the sidebar and purchase the book. He hopes you will appreciate it. Those who have said that they were impressed with its honesty and its ability to take them back to the sixties and early seventies, when they were in college.

One of those who read the book was Verna Monson, one of the two editors of the book and child of the sixties herself. This is what she wrote:

"Mac Walton's The Rebellious Sixties? Yes, I Remember is part-memoir, and part-tribute to the civil rights movement that intertwines themes of racism, sexism, poverty, homelessness, violence, and war. Walton's poems span several decades -- recalling the Atlanta of his childhood, of anti-war rallies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, of the homeless in Minneapolis, and of encountering the hollow transformation of friends through the decades following the civil rights movement. Walton weaves poetry of clashing values and personal upheaval with poetic portraits in tribute to heroic men and women of the civil rights movement. The Rebellious Sixties evokes a time of hope and change, passion and loss. Walton confronts the rawness of racism, hatred, and violence faced by African Americans thrust into a society unprepared for change."

This book was written in memory of Emmitt Till, a 14 year old black manchild whose brutal and tragic death sparked increased protest and the end of apartheid in the southern part of the United States of America.

Blessings,

The Daddy



EUGENE ROBINSON SAYS, "BRING THEM HOME, MR. PRESIDENT"

2009-11-15T08:09:14.913-06:00

EUGENE ROBINSON SAYS, "BRING THEM HOME, MR. PRESIDENT" Listen up. The Daddy already knows that some of you don't want to talk about war. But some things we just have to face. Remember: these soldiers are ours. That means we can't celebrate and remember them on one day out of the year. We must honor and celebrate them by doing everything we can to get them out of Afghanistan.In Truthdig, Eugene Robinson, Editor of the Washington Post and Pulitzer-Prize winner for journalism, just wrote a brilliant piece. Even if you don't read it all, read some of it. You'll still get a lot out of it. Our soldiers are involved; an so is our integrity as a nation: Check it out: by Eugene Robinson Posted on Nov 12, 2009The most dreadful burden of the presidency—the power to send men and women to die for their country—seems to weigh heavily on Barack Obama these days. He went to Dover Air Force Base to salute the coffins of fallen troops. He gave a moving speech at the memorial service for victims of last week’s killings at Fort Hood. On Veterans Day, after the traditional wreath-laying at Arlington National Cemetery, he took an unscheduled walk among the rows of marble headstones in Section 60, where many of the dead from our two ongoing wars are buried. As he decides whether to escalate the war in Afghanistan, Obama should keep these images in mind. Geopolitical calculation has human consequences. Sending more troops will mean more coffins arriving at Dover, more funerals at Arlington, more stress and hardship for military families. It would be wrong to demand such sacrifice in the absence of military goals that are clear, achievable and worthwhile. And what goals in Afghanistan remotely satisfy those criteria? The Washington Post reported Wednesday that the U.S. ambassador in Kabul, Karl Eikenberry, recently sent two classified cables to officials in Washington expressing what the newspaper described as “deep concerns” about sending more troops now. Gen. Stanley McChrystal, chosen by Obama to lead U.S. forces in Afghanistan, has asked for perhaps 40,000 additional troops to carry out a counterinsurgency campaign. Armchair Napoleons in Washington, comfortably ensconced in their book-lined offices, insist that Obama must “listen to the generals.” But Eikenberry was a four-star general until Obama named him ambassador earlier this year. He commanded U.S. troops in Afghanistan in 2006-07. He as well needs to be heard.n what were described as sharply worded cables, Eikenberry reportedly expressed serious doubts about the willingness of Afghan President Hamid Karzai to tackle the corruption and mismanagement that have made his government so unpopular and ineffectual—and that have allowed the Taliban to effectively regain control of much of the country. Karzai, you will recall, committed what observers described as widespread, blatant election fraud in “winning” a new term in office. In many parts of Afghanistan, the Karzai government is seen as so weak and corrupt that the Taliban has been able to move in as a lesser-of-two-evils alternative. It is axiomatic that a successful counterinsurgency program requires a partnership with a reliable, legitimate government. If the Karzai regime is not such a partner, the goal that McChrystal would be pursuing with those extra 40,000 troops would not be achievable. Obama is also reported to be considering scenarios in which he would send roughly 30,000 extra troops, somehow persuading our unwilling NATO allies to make up the difference, or send about 20,000 troops and modify the McChrystal plan, opting instead for a “hybrid” strategy that’s par[...]



A VETERAN'S DAY PRAYER

2009-11-11T11:07:52.265-06:00

On this Veteran's Day, a Prayer for Peace "But fame is theirs - and future days On pillar'd brass shall tell their praise; Shall tell - when cold neglect is dead - "These for their country fought and bled."~Philip FreneauToday, this Veteran's day, the daddy is praying for the end of war in Iraq, the end of our presence in Afghanistan (except to leave a small group of soldiers to train and support Afghanistan troops), for closer monitoring and enforcement of laws against those who assault our women in uniform, and for greater funding and less red tape to help soldiers who come home maimed and traumatized mentally, physically, and spiritually.A Veteran's Day Prayerby Rev. Scott ElliottGood and loving God we are gathered here today on the eleventh day of the eleventh month. It is the traditional day for Veteran’s Day and our thoughts are of the women and men who have served our nation in times of war and truce. We stand before you grateful for the dedication of these heros who have lived and died, suffered and cried and stood with pride on ship, battlefield and parade ground. We ask that these women and men experience your healing and comforting presence for the wounds they have known and still know, for the losses they have endured and always will endure. We also ask that your healing and comforting presence be experienced by the families and loved ones who have suffered with them and who have had to endure living without them. We especially ask that your presence be experienced by the veterans of tomorrow, those soldiers and sailors who are in harm’s way today. Please, gracious God, guide them to safety, guide them to justice and righteousness in even the toughest of conditions. Bring them home to their families and loved ones. Comfort those families and loved ones, and teach us how we might help them with their troubles and be your compassionate presence to them as they experience anxiousness, anguish and the loneliness and pain that comes with the knowns and unknowns of war. Finally, God, for veterans, for all who are in the service, for America, for the world, we pray for peace. Lead the leaders of the world to the day when “they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; [to a day when] nation shall not lift up sword against nation; neither shall they learn war any more” (Isa 2:4). We long for your peace, for your shalom. In Christ’s name we pray, Amen.[...]



PRESIDENT OBAMA TAKING OVER THE WAR IN AFGHANISTAN: GOOD LUCK WITH THAT

2009-11-10T09:22:09.202-06:00

"In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes.We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together."--President Eisenhower's farewell address to the nation, January 17, 1961"...this system of waste and private profit from public funds...which, when you think about it, is what these wars, the stock market and health care all have in common." --U.S. officer quoted in Truthdig, November 9 Listen up. The Prez has decided to provide his General McChristal the troops he wants to "win the war in Afghanistan," although he didn't define to the Daddy's satisfaction what the hell winning would look like in a country with few Al Queda people there, with a dusty, mountainous country, with a complex tribal system which acts as its own government, with a lucrative drug economy (heroin), and a government corrupt to the bone.Whatever winning means to McChrystal and his horde of leaders on the ground, what it will mean to us back here are four things:1. The war in Afghanistan is the Prez's war now. No longer can he blame it on his predecessor. Sure, Bush made the blunder of getting us there with only about 12,000 troops to train Afghanistan army and to look for Osama Ben Laden, who, it was believed, was still in the area trying to escape to Pakistan. But Bush never cared about Afghanistan. His sights were on Iraq.2. In making the decision to send additional soldiers to Afghanistan, The Prez is making a long-term commitment of 10 years or more. We'll be there a long time.3. With this long-term commitment will come increased numbers of U.S. casualties, increased funding to run this war, funding the U. S. no longer has, and a significant lowering of The Prez's popularity. No, this low popularity will have nothing to do with race but policy, which is just as it should be. It's a poor decision of historic proportion; and, as Americans soldiers's death rise and this drawn-out war rages with few improvements, he will deserve all the criticism he gets.Welcome to the real world, Prez. This real world consists of the one you inherited and the one you have made. Good Luck with that.Do you feel The Prez's decision to send a significant number of troops to Afghanistan, raising our level there to as much as 100,000 is a good idea? “Afghan soldiers leave the KMTC grossly unqualified,” this lieutenant, who remains on active duty, said. “American mentors do what they can to try and fix these problems, but their efforts are blocked by pressure from higher, both in Afghan and American chains of command, to pump out as many soldiers as fast as possible.”Afghan soldiers are sent from the Kabul Military Training Center directly to active-duty ANA units. The units always have American trainers, know as a “mentoring team,” attached to them. The rapid increase in ANA soldiers has outstripped the ability of the American military to provide trained mentoring teams. The teams, normally comprised of members of the Army Special Forces, are now formed by plucking American soldiers, more or less at random, from units all over Afghanistan.“This is how my entire team was selected during the middle of my tour: a random group of people from[...]



IAVA AND THE PLIGHT OF WOMEN IN THE MILITARY

2009-11-09T07:44:32.215-06:00

Listen up. One of the veterans The Daddy trusts on military issues is Paul Rieckhoff Executive Director & Founder Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA). When this duede lays it down, you can take it to the bank. And speaks in a common language, so his members and his readers know immediately where he's coming from. As the commercial song I heard yesterday says, "When it's real, you know it's real." A few days ago, Rieckhoff emailed me and others andtalked about the plight of women in the military. It's a short piece, but check it out. Note that he said IAVA is issuing a "groundbreaking" on the plight of women in the military:Dear Mac,If you blinked, you might have missed it. With the media still covering Michael Jackson's death, and the circus surrounding reality TV stars Jon and Kate Gosselin, you might have missed an important story that broke this week. The Government Accountability Office (GAO), the investigative arm of Congress, released a stunning new report detailing significant barriers faced by many female veterans when accessing VA care. Some of the crucial findings include: Privacy standards for women veterans at VA facilities aren't being met.Comprehensive primary care is still not available for women veterans at all hospitals and clinics.The VA still has shortages of qualified women's health and mental health care providers. This is unacceptable. With more women serving than ever, the VA must work to ensure they receive the care they've earned. Female troops have shown incredible courage in defending our country, and are entitled to the same support and recognition as their male peers. We want you to know IAVA is working every day to make this a reality. We're on the front lines on Capitol Hill and in the media, fighting for better care and benefits, and ensuring that women's issues are a top priority. Next month, we're releasing a groundbreaking Issue Report on women in the military, based on extensive research and the experiences of IAVA Member Veterans. Want to be the first to read it? Sign up for mobile alerts by texting REPORT to 69866. We'll send you a text message as soon as the report launches. Thank you for standing with us. Sincerely,PaulNote: The Daddy can't wait to read this report from one of the finest military organizations out there. How about you?[...]



PRESIDENT OBAMA, NANCY PELOSI: CONGRATS

2009-11-08T11:11:49.794-06:00

"The United States Senate must follow suit and pass its version," Obama said. "I am absolutely confident it will, and I look forward to signing comprehensive health insurance reform into law by the end of the year."--President ObamaListen up. The Daddy said some harsh things about The Prez. Namely, he said The Prez was not being aggressive in pushing the Public Option in getting into law healthcare reform. I said in yesterday's post:"The Prez today. The Daddy is upset that, at the precise time he needed to be on hill, fighting for the health reform bill, he was speaking to kids at some school. The Daddy is further upset by his lackluster stance on the Public Option, saying he would prefer it but he is willing to listen to people with other ideas as well. Remember: this is the most important part of healthcare reform and the most significant way to keep Insurance costs down. Remember: Inclusion of the public option is, ultimately, the way the healthcare bill is going to be judged."The Daddy was wrong.First, a brotha simply assumed that the Obama administration was not involved. Now that the bill has been passed, news has been coming out that the White House has been working closely with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.Second, the Obama administration seems to have learned a key lesson from Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, when she was trying to get a healthcare bill out of the House: House representatives are very sensitive about White House intervention or influence. They don't like to feel they are being pushed around OR told what to do. Consequently, it was a good idea for The Prez to strike a balance between strong-are, aggressive intervention (which isn't The Prez's way of doing things anyway) and consensus leadership. The Daddy is happy to say The Prez's strategy won out on this one.This historic bill , which represents the biggest overhaul of the U.S healthcare since Medicare, which no other U. S. president has been able to get of the house since Lyndon Johnson get out of the house in the 60's, places pressure on Senate Republicans to meet its obligations and go along with democrats or resign themselves to a party that has truly been the part of NO: a party that has failed to meet its date with history and turned its head away from that history and all Americans in the process.President Obama, Speaker Nancy Pelosi: Congrats:[...]



BARACK OBAMA,, LANGSTON HUGHES' MOTHER SAYS LIFE AIN'T BEEN NO CRYSTAL STAIR

2009-11-07T09:45:53.292-06:00

Listen up. The Daddy is feeling The Prez today. The Daddy is upset that, at the precise time he needed to be on hill, fighting for the health reform bill, he was speaking to kids at some school. The Daddy is further upset by his lackluster stance on the Public Option, saying he would prefer it but he is willing to listen to people with other ideas as well. Remember: this is the most important part of healthcare reform and the most significant way to keep Insurance costs down. Remember: Inclusion of the public option is, ultimately, the way the healthcare bill is going to be judged. And don't get a brotha started on the The Prez's stalling on his failure to change U. S military's ridiculous DADT (Don't Ask Don't Tell) policy. So what's the point? It's this:No matter how hard, sometimes you got to fight for something or you can be indirectly influenced or even bullied (Remember Gen. McChristal's report to Obama saying if we don't get an increase in U.S. troops, we will fail in Afghanistan?) or privately (behind doors between the sheets) to falling for anything.Well and good. But you know what? A brotha is also thinking about the tremendous weight on The Prez's shoulders: Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, the immigration issue, the killing of soldier's by other soldier's at home and abroad (Remember the Lavena Johnson case?).That being the case, The Daddy thought of a poem by Langston Hughes, a poem which reminds us that, for a black man or black woman, it doesn't matter what you do, life is going to be tough. The poem's called, Mother to Son. It's a poem The poem contains lessons The Daddy thinks would be good for all of us to remember. Check it out and check out the metaphor crystal stair:Mother to Son by Langston HughesWell, son, I'll tell you: Life for me ain't been no crystal stair. It's had tacks in it, And splinters, And boards torn up, And places with no carpet on the floor -- Bare. But all the time I'se been a-climbin' on, And reachin' landin's, And turnin' corners, And sometimes goin' in the dark Where there ain't been no light. So boy, don't you turn back. Don't you set down on the steps 'Cause you finds it's kinder hard. Don't you fall now -- For I'se still goin', honey, I'se still climbin', And life for me ain't been no crystal stair.Can you put yourself in Obama's place and see the difficult problems and critical decisions he has to make?[...]



ELLEN GOODMAN: WHAT OPTIONS FOR AFGHAN WOMEN?

2009-11-06T12:15:07.330-06:00

Listen up. November 11 is Veteran's Day; and, as you probably have guessed, The Daddy has been posting a series of articles related to the military, especially the war in Afghanistan to get you set for that day. Of course, a brotha is biased. He wants President Obama to get our soldiers out of Afghanistan, bring the home, except a small group to train Afghan soldiers to fight for their own country. But other progressives have their own perspectives. One of them is Ellen Goodman.Ellen Goodman is asking, "If you pull out, what' going to happen to Afghan women?" "Who will protect them?" Ultimately, she is saying that discussions about changes in Afghanistan needs to go far beyond military matters (How many troops?). They need to include a discussion about the prospects of women, or lack thereof, that Afghan would face in a U.S. pullout. Check her out:What Options for Afghan Women?by Ellen GoodmanIt’s been 11 years since I looked through a photo album smuggled out of Afghanistan by a brave young woman. “This is a doctor,” she said, pointing to one picture. “This is a teacher.” It was impossible to tell one woman from another under the burqas enforced by their Taliban rulers. Back then, the world turned a cataract eye on Afghan women. Under virtual house arrest, they were barred from work, from school, from walking alone or even laughing out loud. It was arguably the greatest human rights disaster for women in history. After 9/11, when we went after al-Qaida and the Taliban, which had hosted these terrorists, many saw collateral virtue in the liberation of Afghan women. Indeed, President George W. Bush played this moral card in his 2002 State of the Union speech when he declared to thunderous applause: “Today women are free, and are part of Afghanistan’s new government.” Mission accomplished. Many women shed their burqas, opened schools, entered parliament. Equal rights were written into the constitution. But slowly, as America turned to the disastrous misadventure in Iraq, Afghan women’s freedoms were casually traded in like chits for power. Now again, we’re focusing on this beleaguered country and its sham leader. The discussion is cast in military terms—more troops, less troops. Yet I keep thinking about the women who are once again pushed to the outskirts of the conversation, as if they were an add-on rather than a central factor.Have you heard this old proverb? Whether the rock hits the pitcher or the pitcher hits the rock, it’s going to be bad for the pitcher. Women are the pitcher in this story. If we abandon the country, or even the countryside, don’t we abandon those girls who have gone to school even when risking acid thrown in their eyes? If we prop up the deeply corrupt government of President Hamid Karzai, are we just supporting warlord fundamentalists instead of Taliban fundamentalists? The options are so chilling that even Afghan women’s groups are divided. RAWA, the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan, wants us out. WAW, the Women for Afghan Women, “deeply regrets having a position in favor of maintaining, even increasing troops” rather than “abandoning 15 million women and children to madmen.” American women seem equally torn—ambivalent is far too gentle a word. The Feminist Majority, which championed Afghan women long before it was popular, has stopped short of asking for more troops. Ellie Smeal’s anger at American funding of warlords is matched by the fear that if we back out, it will create “terrib[...]



TRUTHOUT TO CONGRESS: STOP FUNDING ENDLESS WAR

2009-11-05T11:11:41.295-06:00

"All men are timid on entering any fight. Whether it is the first or the last fight, all of us are timid. Cowards are those who let their timidity get the better of their manhood."--General George Patton Jr., from War as I Know It (1947)."All men are timid on entering any fight. Whether it is the first or the last fight, all of us are timid. Cowards are those who let their timidity get the better of their manhood."--General George Patton Jr. Listen up. The Daddy is reading up on General Patton. He's is trying to learn some things on his own so he will not feel so ignorant when he meet friends for coffee on Sunday, most of whom are Vietnam vets. But, hey, they're not just vets. They're straight-up military historians.You know what? The Daddy feels that some of this stuff that Patton is writing about soldiers applies to civilians too. For example, when Patton says, "...all of us are timid. Cowards are those who let their timidity get the better of their manhood." A brotha is also feeling Truthout. Truthout is another one of those online progressive magazine The Daddy checks it everyday. A few days ago, Truthout's editorial staff wrote a fascinating and piercing piece about Afghanistan. It urges congress to stop funding endless wars and the oval office to stop signing off on it. Check it out:Truthout to Congress: Stop Funding Endless WarOn the war's eighth anniversary, we urge our president, our Congress and our country to cut the military purse strings and reject an escalation of violence in Afghanistan. Yesterday, the Senate passed $128 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. This appropriation could fuel a "surge" in deployment of US troops to Afghanistan; Gen. Stanley McChrystal recommends an increase of up to 40,000 soldiers. If the American people had voted on this latest defense spending bill, they might well have rejected the funding. Most polls find that a definitive majority of Americans oppose an escalation of combat troops in Afghanistan. A recent McClatchy survey found that only 35 percent favored sending more troops. This widespread public skepticism is understandable, given the war's mounting fatality rate. In August, one American died in Afghanistan every 14 hours. September also took a heavy toll, and 17 US soldiers have already died in Afghanistan in October. President Obama has lately shown well-warranted caution in preparing to deploy more US troops, and remains wary of McChrystal's calls for a quick escalation. Still, he has not wavered in his support for the war. "If left unchecked, the Taliban insurgency will mean an even larger safe haven from which al Qaeda would plot to kill more Americans," the president said less than two months ago. "So this is not only a war worth fighting. This is fundamental to the defense of our people." In the lead-up to last year's election, we hoped that Obama's hawkish rhetoric on Afghanistan was simply a savvy campaign choice, intended to capture the votes of "moderates," who feared the prospect of a soft-on-terror commander in chief. Now we wonder whether Obama has succumbed to his own warlike words. Though the Obama administration has rebranded the "war on terror" as "Overseas Contingency Operations" (or - to distance the name even further from its brutal reality - "OCO"), its ill-conceived mission and methods remain the same. Truthout calls on the Obama administration and Congress to embrace a firm s[...]



GEROGE MCGOVERN TO PRESIDENT OBAMA: GET OUT OF AFGHANISTAN!

2009-11-04T22:25:25.116-06:00

“I’m convinced that war is going to turn sour. I’m convinced we’re not going to prevail there.”--former senator George McGovern.Listen up. There's an old dude hanging out in America, in South Dakota, who The Daddy respects to the highest and views as one of his heroes. Why a hero? 1. As a veteran, he won the distinguished Flying Cross award for heroism during World War II;2. As a legislator in the senate, he proposed bills and supported bills for working people: Increase in the minimum wage, better healthcare for working people, especially for the children and the elderly; and3. He was the first senator to speak out against the Vietnam war on the floor of the senate. George McGovern was courageous.Now, he's speaking out again. In Truthdig, an online progressive magazine with some of the best journalists around, McGovern gave this unsolicited advice to President Obama: Get out of Afghanistan. Check it out.By Narda Zacchino George McGovern has some advice for President Barack Obama: Get U.S. troops out of Afghanistan. “I’m convinced that war is going to turn sour. I’m convinced we’re not going to prevail there,” McGovern, the 1972 Democratic presidential nominee, said Sunday at a Truthdig event in West Los Angeles. The former U.S. senator from South Dakota noted that “some of the best reporters over there are telling us that the Taliban are getting stronger and we’re getting weaker in the minds of the people, and that you have a corrupt government involved in drugs, involved in just plain old-fashioned stealing and corruption. It’s a lousy government, and it’s very difficult, even for a great country like [the U.S.], to make them look good. So I think we have every reason to withdraw.” McGovern’s comments came on the heels of a New York Times report that Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s brother, Ahmed Wali Karzai, on the CIA payroll for nearly eight years, is suspected by many top American officials of being involved in that country’s lucrative and illicit opium trade. President Karzai himself drew criticism after the United Nations declared one-third of his votes in his Aug. 20 re-election to be fraudulent, forcing a runoff with Dr. Abdullah Abdullah. Karzai’s rival eventually withdrew, saying the runoff would not be any less rigged. The vote was canceled and Karzai was officially declared the winner Monday.Against this backdrop, and with October the deadliest month yet for U.S. military personnel in Afghanistan with 55 killed, Obama has put off a decision on whether to send thousands more troops to that country as requested by the top U.S. commander there, Gen. Stanley McChrystal. McGovern said Sunday he did not want to see Obama head down the path of Democrat Lyndon Johnson, for whom another quagmire, the Vietnam War, spelled the end to his presidency. The former legislator, who won the Distinguished Flying Cross for heroism during World War II, noted he was the first member to oppose the Vietnam War on the floor of the Senate. A historian, McGovern said he would remind Obama that foreign powers have been trying unsuccessfully to prevail in Afghanistan “ever since Alexander the Great. Genghis Khan even made a shot at it. The British throughout the 19th century were in there several times trying to pacify the [country] and finally gave up. The Russians were there for 11 years, 1979 until 1990, they put in 100,000 crack soldiers, 25,000 of them killed ... in Afghanistan,[...]



AFRICAN RESISTANCE: THE FIRST SLAVE REBELLION

2009-11-01T08:44:17.639-06:00

" Very few, if any, African-Americans accepted their status as slaves. Most, if not all, slaveowneres were completely aware of this and, in general, they lived in fear of the African-Americans under the control. Not only did slaveowners expect slaves to run away, letters and diaries give strong evidence that slaveowners (and even non-slaveowners) in the south believed that rebellion was imminent. They had lived with this fear since 1792 when the Haitian Revolution proved unambiguously that slaves were ready to revolt and could do so with a passion that was awe-inspiring. Added to this mix was the fiery rhetoric of abolitionists, both black and white. The most frightening, to the slaveowners, of these abolitionists was Henry Highland Garnet who had escaped from slavery at the age of ten. In 1843 he called for a slave strike and suggested that it escalate to a slave revolt. By this point, the south had been rocked by three slave revolts which had struck fear to the very hearts of slaveowners."--Slave RebellionsListen up. Today, The Daddy is feeling all those blacks who came before him: The ones who fought bravely to carve some kind of existence in this foreign land.Because we know so little about our history, because some of us, especially the elite or "bugee" blacks among us, are so cynical and sarcastic about the plight of blacks today, it may be convenient and comforting to rest our head on the comforting shoulders of cynicism and escapism. It may be easy to say to friends at house gatherings and parties that "Blacks don't do shit," "Black folks ain't about nothing," that Africans have done little, if anything to fight for their freedom and some land of their own to run their own lives as they saw fit. Far from it, Africans were already used to living their own lives free of white dudes like Abraham Lincoln or representatives of white colonialists giving them bibles and bible thumpers while steadily killing off our people and making deals with chiefs to take African land.A good example of Africans trying to break free and live their own lives was the rebellion of some enslaved Africans in 1733. You see, today, November 1, is the day of the first successful African rebellion, which took place in 1733. Here, enslaved Africans on the island of St. John, which today is part of the United States Virgin Island, defeated the Danish Army and took over the island, planting their own flag.----- List of insurrections (partial list) 1712 New York Slave Revolt(New York City, Suppressed)1733 St. John Slave Revolt(Saint John, Suppressed)1739 Stono Rebellion(South Carolina, Suppressed)1741 New York Conspiracy(New York City, Suppressed)1760 Tacky's War(Jamaica, Suppressed)1791–1804 Haitian Revolution(Saint-Domingue, Victorious)1800 Gabriel Prosser(Virginia, Suppressed)1805 Chatham Manor(Virginia, Suppressed)1811 German Coast Uprising(Territory of Orleans, Suppressed)1815 George Boxley(Virginia, Suppressed)1822 Denmark Vesey(South Carolina, Suppressed)1831 Nat Turner's rebellion(Virginia, Suppressed)1831–1832 Baptist War(Jamaica, Suppressed)1839 Amistad, ship rebellion(Off the Cuban coast, Victorious)1841 Creole, ship rebellion(Off the Southern U.S. coast, Victorious)1859 John Brown's Raid(Virginia, Suppressed)[...]



GO PHILLIES, GO BLANTON!

2009-10-31T17:15:02.028-05:00

(image) "I don't think he's ready for it on three days' rest," I think you're taking a chance on really pushing him."
--Phillies manager Charlie Manuel on why he made the decision to use Joe Blanton instead of Cliff Lee for game 4.

Joe Blanton

" I'm glad I’m not a manager. We don’t think that far in advance. We really want to win [tonight’s] Game 3. After that’s over, we’ll see who’s pitching Game 4."

--Mark Texira, first baseman for the New York Yankees.

Listen up. The bronx bombers won the game on Wednesday night. But the pitching was great by both pitchers, A. J. Burnett and the incomparable Pedro Martinez.38 and a player who has lost a few miles on his fastball, Martinez seems to have gained tons of wisdom on how to pitch. He especially acquitted himself well. He threw 87 and 88 miles an hour fastballs inside and curves and sliders outside. He kept the hitters off balance for 7 innings.

Tonight, it will be a question of whether starter Joe Blanton can keep the Yankees heavy hitters-- Texira, Rodriguez, and Posada-- off balance and therefore unable to hit the ball out of the park. Blanton started Game 4 against Tampa Bay last year and combined with four relievers on a five-hitter in a 10-2 win that gave the Phillies a 3-1 Series lead. He homered off Edwin Jackson in that game, the first Series home run by a pitcher since Oakland's Ken Holtzman in 1974. Blanton was 12-8 with a 4.05 ERA this season.


Another question is whether the bullpen will hold up. Surely, Blanton won't go t00 long. The Yankees have a history of getting to him early.

Go, Phillies!