Tuesday, April 29, 2008





Most people who have any interest at all in Sen. Obama's campaign for president are scratching their heads over what could possibly be governing Rev. Wright's decision to go public at this time. When I first learned that the reverend was being interviewed by Bill Moyers, I naturally assumed that he and the Obama campaign had decided upon a strategy of allowing the American people to see who the reverend really is, in order to offset the media portrayal of him. While I could understand the rationale behind such a move, it seemed to me that it was an extremely risky endeavor, and ill advised. Then I learned that not only was Rev. Wright being interviewed by Bill Moyers, but he was also going before the National Press Club, and all on his own accord, without bringing Obama into the loop. It was only then that I realized that we had a loose cannon on our hands, and we were also facing yet another political disaster.

I've learned a lot about my people during this campaign, but nothing has come into focus more clearly than the penchant for some of us to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Within an hour after Obama first announced his candidacy for the Democratic nomination you could hear the crabs stirring restlessly in the barrel. Then the first claw reached out, in the person of a supposedly enlightened Black talk show host–What kind of brother are you if you think announcing your candidacy for presidency is more important than coming on my infomercial? Then the next claw , from a so-called Black intellectual–I just want to know two things- how much do you love your people, and where you getting your money. Then came the Black politicians, pundits, and self-serving businessmen--and from there it became an absolute self-hatefest.

Thankfully, due to the thinly veiled dismissive remarks of our "First Black president", the people in the community began to see through the ignorance of our failed leadership, and came to rally around this impressive young brother. But unfortunately, we found that a history of envy, self-service, and egomania is a tenacious foe, and will only die after a slow, lingering, and agonizing struggle.

If we'er ever going to correct this situation in the Black community, instead of trying to defend our Black icons who behave inappropriately, we must refer back to the wisdom that we learned in order to survive on the street, and simply call a hat a hat. And in this case, the hat that Rev. Wright is sportin' is one of unabashed self-service.

Rev. Wright knows full well that his previous remarks have severely undermined Sen. Obama's pursuit for the Democratic nomination. He also knows that we are now at a crucial point in the nominating process. So why would he--literally, and in God's name--choose this moment to lose his mind?

His answer to that question is as lame as they come. He said, "They're talking about my momma", the Black church. His response was reminiscent of Hillary Clinton's lament about her yearning need to save America, and it came off just a phony. The Black church doesn't need Rev. Wright's defense–it was doing just fine under circumstances much more dire than we find ourselves today, and beyond that, it survived for countless generations before there even was a Rev. Wright, so he's gonna have to come up with something better than that.

Wright also pointed out that it doesn't matter what anyone says, whether they be pundits, the news media, or politicians, if it is God's will for Barack Obama to become the next president, he will be the next president. I'll come back to the validity of that statement in a moment, but if it is Wright's conviction that God has the ability to protect Obama, even from a mouth like his own, why does he think God needs his help to protect the Black church?

While Rev. Wright is clearly a learned man, it is just as clear that he's highly selective in the Biblical passages that he chooses to adhere to. How does his behavior square with the Biblical prescription to treat others as he would like to be treated, for example? If he was in Obama's position–a hare's breath away from becoming President of the United States–I wonder if he would want some loose cannon of a preacher strutting around on stage antagonizing voters to milk his thirty minutes of fame? I don't think he'd like it at all.

But the reverend tries to justify his distraction by pointing out that while Obama is a politician, he, Rev. Wright, speaks for God, and as mentioned earlier, indicates that if it's God's will for Obama to be president, nothing can stop it. But he's wrong. All it takes is one silly old self-serving preacher to, indeed, stop him in his tracks, with just one thoughtless turn of a phrase, because God helps those who help themselves–and at this moment in history, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright is of absolutely no help whatsoever.

I always point out to my religious friends that we can only know God's will by what he has done, and what he has done is made birds to fly, fish to swim, and man to think. Yet, in this current situation, Rev. Wright has conveniently chosen to go spiritual on us in lieu of his common sense–and that's in spite of the fact that next to life itself, common sense is the most precious gift that God has bestowed upon man. If the reverend disputes my contention, I invite him to try jumping of the building he spoke so eloquently in and see if God intervenes. God gave us common sense to handle such matters.

The simple fact that God blessed man with a mind, is prima facie evidence that it is his will that we use it. That's what Obama's doing. His candidacy alone is God's answer to the prayers that lingered on the lips of a million slaves. And even as Wright struts across the stage promoting his own image, Obama is hard at work desperately trying to find an answer to the prayers of millions of our contemporaries across this land, and around the world–people who are praying to save their homes, to find a job, to put their kids through school, and others, who simply pray that their children survive a brutal and unjust war.

So Rev. Wright, while your delivery is extremely witty, and your words are quite eloquent, I'd appreciate it much more if you'd refrain from preaching your sermon and start living us one.

Eric L. Wattree


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Tuesday, April 22, 2008





Hillary Clinton has done a lot of talk about the value of experience, and her selfless dedication to America during these primaries. But it's just that--talk, and many of her supporters are beginning to see it. She's trying to be all things to all people. In order to prove her executive experience, she all but claims to have been co-president with her husband. Then to prove that she's tough enough to handle the job, she claimed she had to corkscrew into a war zone while dodging sniper fire, because it was too dangerous to send Bill. And earlier on, when she began to fear that Obama might just win the nomination, and critics said she was too hardcore, she went before a gathering of women in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, valiantly fighting back tears, and with a softly cracking voice, she said the following:

"It's not easy . . . it's not easy. I couldn't do it if I didn't passionately believe it was the right thing to do. This is very personal for me. I have so many ideas for this country, and I just don't want to see us fall backwards. It's about our country, it's about our kids. We do it--each one of us--because we care about our country. But some of us are right, and some of us are wrong; some of us are ready, and some of us are not. Some of us know what we'll do on day one, and some of us don't."

It was a stellar, and now familiar performance (she's used the same wistful persona on several occasions since, but without the tears), and it went a long way towards helping her to win New Hampshire, and rightly so--that kind of talent shouldn't go unrewarded. In spite of the fact that she was ostensively choked with "emotion", her talking point was right on que ("Some of us know what we'll do on day one, and some of us don't").

Thus, one would think that someone as passionate about America as Hillary would fully understand and appreciated the integrity of a man like Gov. Bill Richardson of New Mexico. Instead of simply taking the easy way out and caving in to cronyism, the governor, one of the most experienced politicians in America today, looked back over his vast experience and came to the conclusion that he had to support Senator Barack Obama over the wife of his long-time friend and former boss. But instead of having the class to say I'm sorry I didn't earn your support, and I understand how you must have agonized over your decision, Clinton surrogate, James Carville, labeled Gov. Richardson "Judas." Now I ask you–is this world-class, presidential politics, or kids throwing sand in a nursery school?

That incident alone shows why America should take Hillary's contention that she's running to protect our children, and in the best interest of the country with a box of salt. First, the statement is both highly presumptuous and condescending–what makes her think that she's the only one who can save America? And secondly, it's a lie–that's right, yet, another one. Hillary is running for one reason, and one reason only-- to quench her own unquenchable thirst for power.

It was Gov. Richardson who acted in the best interest of our kids and country, and not because of who he chose to support, but because of the way he made his decision–like a statesman, as opposed to the petty, red-faced, and power-hungry politicians who are jumping up and down about it.

They claim that Richardson's not a team player, but the fact is, he's the ultimate team player, they're just on the wrong team. The Clintons' angry response to Richardson's simple act of integrity says it all–they're committed to business as usual. Sure, they want change, but only a change in power--from Republican hands, to theirs. Richardson, on the other hand, has demonstrated that he heard the American people loud and clear, then acted on it in spite of what must have been tremendous personal stress.

And according to an article, by Mark Leibovich in the New York Times, Clintons Sort Friends: Past and Present, Gov. Richardson isn't the only one who's beginning to see the light. Nancy Larson, a Democratic National Committee member from Minnesota, indicated that after Chelsea Clinton learned that she was switching her allegiance from Hillary to Obama, Chelsea pressed her to know why. "She was really pushing me. She kept asking me why I was doing this. She just kept asking, 'Why? Why?' "

The article goes on to point out that "Mrs. Clinton has been losing potential endorsers and superdelegate backing from grass-roots activists like Mrs. Larson as well as elected officials, party luminaries and former Clinton White House aides (the most recent being former Labor Secretary Robert Reich, who endorsed Mr. Obama on Friday)." And that "there is no shortage of powerful Democrats who are quick to accuse the Clintons of defining loyalty as a one-way street, with little regard for the sacrifices they have made for a couple whose own political needs seem to their critics always to come first."

And therein lies the problem–if the Clinton campaign hasn't shown anything else, it has clearly demonstrated that Hillary's needs, wants, and desires come first--before friends, before party, before country--and that's an exceedingly ugly trait, even to us little people.

Previously, Clinton supporters viewed Hillary's single-mindedness as a sign of focus and determination, but the mean-spirited scratching, clawing, and lying that she's done during these primaries have betrayed a serious flaw in her character–a desperate, even, pathological need for power, and at any cost.

So, yes, Clinton supporters are beginning to jump ship in unprecedented numbers. Many remember the early years, so they're leaving with deep regret. But Hillary's extreme behavior has awakened their sense of responsibility, so they must leave, as a simple matter of conscience.

Eric L. Wattree


Stay on top of what's going on around you. From Hip Hop to world and national news--stay informed about those things that impact both the Black community and the entire world as interpreted by Dr. Boyce Watkins, and some of the nation's top Black writers. Stay in touch with Your Black World www.yourblackworld.com/. It's your piece of the net.

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Monday, April 14, 2008




I realize that many of you feel that you owe the Clintons your loyalty, and others are waiting to ensure that you act in the Democratic Party's best interest, but when is enough enough? Even the most rabid Clinton supporters have to recognize by now that Hillary can't possibly secure the Democratic nomination without literally tearing the Democratic Party apart–and Hillary knows that better than anyone. So it must be clear to everyone by now that Hillary is no longer in this race to win. Hillary's sole purpose at this point is to stay in the race as long as she can, and sling enough mud on Barack Obama to prevent him from winning in November. Then, since at McCain's age he's not expected to remain in office but one term, Hillary will still be young enough to run in 2012. I've mentioned Hillary's strategy before, but it bears repeating, since it stands as a monument to mean-spirited selfishness.

But that shouldn't surprise us, because Hillary's entire life has been centered around self-service, and what's now beginning to look like a sociopathic fixation her own ambition. Every since she entered the White House as First Lady, everything Hillary's done has been in the service of her ambition to become President of the United States. Her failed attempt to provide universal healthcare and her run for the senate was all designed to buildup her resume for the job. That explains why she's so hostile towards Barack Obama.

Throughout Bush's second term Hillary has been acting, and treated, like the president-in-waiting. In fact, I wouldn't be a bit surprised if she's already decided what color she intends to change the drapes in the Oval Office. Then here comes Barack Obama, this young upstart who has the audacity to seek her office. Initially she simply tolerated him. Then as he became more popular, she became dismissive, but once it became clear that he might actually win, she panicked–first she tried to play on our emotions with tears, then she tried becoming gracious and sincere, and finally, when that didn't work, she morphed into who she really is, angry and mean-sprited (Who does he think he is–does he really think he can become president based on a speech? ). So make no mistake about it, this has become intensely personal to Hillary. At his point, she could care less about her supporters, the Democratic Party, or the American people–all she cares about is taking back what she has convinced herself that she's personally entitled to.

But seeing Hillary in this mode has turned out to be a fortunate opportunity for both the super-delegates, and the American people as a whole, because it has allowed us to see the chinks in her armor while she's under pressure. It has also given us the opportunity to see the flaws in her character, and how she's viewed through the eyes of her opponents.

In that regard, I never thought I'd live to see so many Republicans supporting a Clinton with such enthusiasm. Rush Limbaugh has been threatened with indictment for encouraging his conservative listeners to crossover and vote for Hillary during the Ohio primaries. That one act alone goes farther towards repudiating Hillary's repeated claims that Obama is inexperience and can't win than anything that anyone can possibly say. Obama's so-called "inexperience" notwithstanding, the Republicans are essentially saying, "Please send us Hillary."

The reason for that is simple. The Republicans see a deeply flawed candidate, and they realize that Hillary's nomination represents the Republican Party's only chance of returning from the dead. They know that the conservatives' hatred of the Clintons is so pervasive that it represents their one and only chance of re-energizing their base. They also know that if Hillary does manage to get the nomination, it can only happen at the expense of an irreparable rift in the Democratic Party–a rift that may very well completely destroy the party as we know it.

On the other hand, Obama is a Republican nightmare--he's captured the imagination of many young Republicans who were too young to remember the feeling of optimism during the Kennedy era, yet, are attracted to the excitement surrounding Obama. The excitement of their young, Democratic peers is new to them, and they like it. At the same time, Obama has also reconnected many older Republicans with their youth–a time when they were young, full of enthusiasm, and fully supported the optimism that engulfed the nation under John Kennedy. These older Republicans remember Camelot, and the opportunity to revisit the optimism of their youth excites their soul.

Thus, the Republican leadership realizes that if Obama becomes the nominee, they don't have a chance. They know that they'll not only lose the November election, but it will usher in a new era in the body politic that will render the Republican Party dead in the water for years, and maybe even decades to come. Republican success is based on anger and dissent, and as is clearly apparent even within the Democratic Party, Hillary's very nature would feed that beast in spades. But Obama's strong suit is consensus, and bringing the country together, so the Republican Party would have to re-assess their entire approach to the political process.

So it seems that the future of this nation has been dropped right in the lap of the superdelegates, but your decision should be relatively easy. If you indulge the self-serving whims of Hillary Clinton, you're surely going to destroy the Democratic Party, since the only way that you can give her the nomination is to ignore the wishes of the majority of the Democratic and Independent voters across this land–including the many young Democrats who have gotten involved in the political process for the first time in response to Senator Obama. If you do that, Democrats and many Independents will stay away from the polls in droves, resulting in Democratic officeholders all over this country being turned out of office–including many of you.

So in this case, justice, common sense, and your own self-interest has converged to suggest the right thing to do-- simply declare for Obama and tell Hillary to get a grip on reality–and the sooner you do it, the better off the nation will be.

Eric L. Wattree


Stay on top of what's going on around you. From Hip Hop to world and national news--stay informed about those things that impact both the Black community and the world by some of the nation's top Black writers. Stay in touch with Your Black World www.yourblackworld.com/. It's your piece of the net.

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Friday, April 04, 2008




Hillary Clinton's ravenous ambition and sense of entitlement has clearly blinded her to reality. If she wasn't so blinded by the arrogance of believing that America owes her the presidency, she'd realize that her antics in this election is not only undermining any chance she has of becoming president, but it's also wreaking havoc on the Clinton legacy. The one thing the Clintons had going for them was America's belief that, with all their flaws, they were primarily motivated by what was in America's best interest. But that's no longer the case. Now we see the Clintons for what they are–a couple who's willing to lie, cheat and steal to promote their own greed and self-interest. That, in turn, has caused many Americans to take a second look at both, their character, and Bill's presidency through the lens of this new information, and a large number of them don't like what they see.

Now, many Americans are beginning to ask themselves questions, like how can we trust Hillary to answer that call at 3 a.m. When she seems to be totally oblivious to facts that are staring her in the face–especially when those facts don't conform to what she wants to see? For example, doesn't she realize that by continuously slinging mud at Obama instead of addressing the issues that it's making her look desperate and less than concerned about the fate of the Democratic Party? And what about her judgment? What could she have possibly been thinking when she repeatedly endorsed the Republican nominee over Obama? Then there was the Bosnian matter. Didn't she realize before she told that blatant lie about the Bosnian trip that there were news cameras there to document that she was lying? And if that wasn't stupid enough, she then went on The Tonight Show and tried to joke about it, as though lying to the American people was all in fun. Now, as a direct result of that lie, a Pew research survey indicates that 29% of Democrats asked describes Hillary as phony. In addition, she's also placed herself in a position where every syllable she utters, and every scrap of paper she releases is going to be scrutinized with a fine tooth comb--and that doesn't bode well, considering her dubious past.

As a matter of fact, it seems that the process has already begun. Dan Calabrese reveals in his column that former general counsel and chief of staff of the House Judiciary Committee, Jerry Zeifman, indicated that he fired the 27 year old Hillary Rodham from the House Judiciary Committee staff and refused to give her a letter of recommendation due to her lying and unethical conduct. Zeifman said that during the Watergate investigation Hillary lied in a legal brief, them removed evidence from public access that would document her conduct.

In addition, Christopher Hitchens wrote in an article for Slate Magazine that Hillary's lie about flying into Bosnia under sniper fire was just the tip of the iceberg in the Bosnian story. Hitchens points out that while Hillary arrived in Tuzla in 1996, the real story began four years earlier in 1992 when Bill Clinton promised to take action to prevent the ethnic cleansing of Bosnia. Hitchens points to Sally Bedell Smith's book, For Love of Politics, where she indicates the following:

"Taking the advice of Al Gore and National Security Advisor Tony Lake, Bill agreed to a proposal to bomb Serbian military positions while helping the Muslims acquire weapons to defend themselves—the fulfillment of a pledge he had made during the 1992 campaign. But instead of pushing European leaders, he directed Secretary of State Warren Christopher merely to consult with them. When they balked at the plan, Bill quickly retreated, creating a 'perception of drift.' The key factor in Bill's policy reversal was Hillary, who was said to have 'deep misgivings' and viewed the situation as 'a Vietnam that would compromise health-care reform.' The United States took no further action in Bosnia, and the 'ethnic cleansing' by the Serbs was to continue for four more years, resulting in the deaths of more than 250,000 people."

Revelations such as the one above, along with the truth about NEFTA, and the Clinton antics during this campaign is rapidly changing America's view of the Clintons-- including Bill's legacy as president. Regardless to what one's position is on the matter of universal healthcare, allowing the death of 250,000 people is much too high a price to pay to promote any legislation–and especially when that legislation ultimately went down to defeat.

But at this point, one must wonder about Hillary's commitment to universal healthcare in the first place. Now that we've seen the several faces of Hillary, along with the Clinton's Machiavellian approach to politics, one is tempted to wonder if Hillary was really as committed to universal healthcare as she claimed, or was she simply building a resume for this future run for the presidency. Her commitment seems especially suspect now, since it has recently been revealed that she failed to pay the healthcare premiums for her own campaign staff.

According to Politico.com , Hillary has failed to pay $292,000 in healthcare premiums for her own staff. And what makes this episode even more ironic is the fact that Hillary's failure to pay those premiums reinforces a point that Obama has repeatedly made during the campaign. Hillary claimed that Obama's plan was flawed because it didn't cover all of the people. In response, Obama said that his plan covered anyone who wanted to be insured, but he didn't make it mandatory that every adult be insured because under Hillary's plan if a person couldn't afford to pay the premium they'd be fined for missing the payment, which would create an additional financial burden on many people. Now maybe Hillary will understand Obama's point. If Hillary's campaign staff had been insured under her plan, in addition to having to pay the $292,000 in back premiums, she'd also be facing a fine.

It's sad to watch the Clintons go down in flames. I would have been quite comfortable with having Bill step into history as one of our great presidents, and to see Hillary live out an illustrious political career, whatever that entailed. But in the end, it's beginning to look like it is the intent of destiny to set the record straight. What we now know about the Clinton's ugly greed for power has brought additional scrutiny into their lives, and at this point, it looks like it's going to be their undoing. While it's painful knowing that I was wrong about them, I'd much rather to be informed than to be right.

Eric L. Wattree


Stay on top of what's going on around you. From Hip Hop to world and national news--stay informed about those things that impact both the Black community and the world by some of the nation's top Black writers. Stay in touch with Your Black World www.yourblackworld.com/. It's your piece of the net.


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