The recent outbreak of revelations regarding the mass surveillance and data mining operations against American citizens by the NSA made it rather serendipitous that I’d finally get around to finishing this poster — a parody of this Apple iPhone ad — this week.
Actually, this idea’s been rattling around for nearly a month, inspired by the revelations concerning the Justice Department’s data slurping of Associated Press phone records, the surveillance of Tea Party groups’ tax records by the IRS, the fiasco at the US “consulate” in Benghazi, Obama’s tap-dancing over the Keystone XL pipeline, the US State’s shielding Monsanto against consequences for its bullying of farmers over the accidental spread of GMO plants onto their lands — and the notorious “Obama Phone Lady” video from the last Presidential freak circus.
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By now, it’s pretty common knowledge that whenever El Presidente and Lady Obama speak to Black audiences, they’re really speaking to white audiences, and that their remarks to Black audiences are guaranteed to be packed to the gills with disrespect, condescension, offensive stereotypes, and shopworn bromides about “personal responsibility”. A classic example of this backhandedness can be found in El Presidente’s recent — and already infamous — commencement speech at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. Not since his notorious Father’s Day speech on the campaign trail in 2008 did El Presidente emit such a great, steaming load of bite-me, rolling out the trendy Black “street” slang like “brother” and “on point” in what was basically a slicked-up Bill Cosby rant, where the only thing missing was El Presidente telling the Morehouse Men to pull up their pants.
Could you imagine El Presidente speaking to an audience of white college grads this way? Could you imagine him at, say, the University Of Virginia, admonishing fresh graduates to get a haircut and stop piercing their noses and wearing those sloppy ripped jeans and playing those Green Day albums and smoking weed and partying ’til all hours? Not a chance.
What’s really sad about all this, though, is that for the most part, Black Americans totally eat this stuff up. It doesn’t seem to matter that The First Black President hasn’t done squat about the Black unemployment rate, the Black foreclosure rate, mass incarceration and racist police violence. Barack Obama tells Black America to eat shit, and Black America reaches for a fork.
…and, here’s what some other folks are saying about El Presidente and Lady Obama jerking Black America’s chain in their recent college commencement speeches:
“How The Obama Administration Talks To Black America”, Ta-Nehisi Coates, The Atlantic, 05.20.13
“As Commencement Speakers At Black Schools, The Obamas Pile On The Homework”, Courtland Milloy, The Washington Post, 05.21.13
“The Obama ‘Dog Whistle’”, Margaret Kimberly, Black Agenda Report, 05.22.13
So we know President Bush the man. And what President Clinton said is absolutely true — to know the man is to like the man, because he’s comfortable in his own skin. He knows who he is. He doesn’t put on any pretenses. He takes his job seriously, but he doesn’t take himself too seriously. He is a good man.
--Barack Obama, speaking at the dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Library, 04.25.13
The dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Library this week gave the US media a chance to engage in one of its current favorite pastimes: rehabilitating the public images of thoroughly loathsome and reprehensible public figures. They’d hardly had time to catch their breath after canonizing Margaret Thatcher before it was time for their toughest challenge ever — rehabilitating George W. “The Decider” Bush. Yeah, that’s right, it’s Shark Jumping Time.
Y’know the worst thing about this wretched speech, though? He’s paraphrasing Bill Clinton, f’cripesake. Between this and the Thatcher veneration and Chelsea Clinton interviewing the GEICO Gecko, I’d say this pretty much indicates the death of the US media.
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For your further entertainment, here’s a couple of classic op-ed stinkburgers from the Washington Post from this past week. Feel their sliminess wash over you.
“George W. Bush, A Principled President”, Michael Gerson, Op-Ed Scribbler; author, Heroic Conservatism, The Washington Post, 04.25.13
“George W. Bush Is A Victim Of A Rush To Judgement”, Stephen Knott, Professor, U.S. Naval War College, The Washington Post, 04.25.13