ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes


Home  ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more)


More than just a win, the nation needs an electoral sweep by the Democrats, a clear rejection of

Republican neocon politics. This sweep would give Obama a mandate to put into operation all of

his policies and programs, with something left over for true progressive to remake American politics



The Need for a Democratic Electoral Sweep

An Editorial by Rudolph Lewis


America is a conservative country. I am tired Rudy . . . and I am feeling overwhelmed . . .  and I don't know if I can meet their expectations.Wilson

Chasing the truths of politicians is enough to make anyone tired, especially when image is more emphasized than text and when speech is filled with deceit. Such is the case with John McCain's pick for VP. (My goodness she is a pretty woman, and with five kids and a governor to boot of a frontier state.)  McCain is sure to have a fun campaign if not a winning one. Governor Sarah Palin, however, will have little impact on the vote-getting potential of the Republican Party beyond its evangelical base for the presidential election. If one is to be a loser, nevertheless one should indeed look good.

The Republicans are looking forward rather to the future, as the Democrats were looking forward when choosing Obama to give their keynote address in 2004. The Republicans have been seriously hurt by the neocons. Key Republican are evacuating a sinking ship as we saw important Republicans step to the podium to denounce the betrayal of principle by Bush and his neocon allies at the Democratic National Convention, including Jim Whitaker of Alaska, Jim Leach of Iowa, and Susan Eisenhower. And you have already pointed out Paul Craig Roberts.

So in their heart of hearts the Republicans know they have only a snowball chance in hell of winning in 2008. The polls presently give Obama and 8-point lead but it is probably double that because the Black and Hispanic vote is never estimated properly. But the Republicans want to put on a good show and thus Governor Palin picked as the vice president nominee. But they know that Bush and his neocon allies have screwed up their chances for the next presidency. A bad war. A bad economy. Trillions of dollars in debt to Chinese and Japanese. A sinking dollar against the Euro.

Anyone paying attention knows that the American people are not stupid enough to strike out with a third term Republican administration ruining the country farther, however conservative the American public is. Matters political and economic are so dire and horrid Americans are ready and eager to vote against their racial prejudices and for definitively for pocketbooks getting thinner.

I have a fondness for the kinds of things being said by McKinney and Nader. On the whole, they are on target. But never the matter their candidacy is irrelevant at this stage. They cannot win, and winning at this stage is exceedingly all important. The Democrats have a much more progressive program than the Republicans that will be beneficial for the largest number of people, despite whatever reserve or criticisms we may have about their platform and their intent. 

Moreover, the Republicans have been so horrid and terrifying that they deserve to lose and they should lose punitively by large numbers to demonstrate how egregious their eight-year reign has been,  economically (e.g., withholding a rise in minimum wage for over a decade to the housing debacle to a doubling of energy prices) to militarily (torture at Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib, and millions dead needlessly) to national security (e.g., curtailing of civil liberties and a reign of military fear at home and abroad).

More than just a win, the nation needs an electoral sweep by the Democrats, a clear rejection of Republican neocon politics. This sweep would give Obama a mandate to put into operation all of his policies and programs, with something left over for true progressives to remake American politics that will stand for more than a generation. That would prepare the Democratic Party for a second term that would meet the Republican intent to reform its party and oust the neocons and the religious right as its base.

This kind of forward looking campaign is where all progressives want to take their stand and work exceedingly hard to register new voters and get out the vote. This kind of vision will undermine the cynicism of those who stand on the sidelines and consider American politics as merely a spectator sport. If one want to change American politics one must engage one’s neighbors about what is at stake. This kind of vision is worthy of service for those who sincerely love America.

I have published seven of the speeches made at the Democratic national convention. You and others might want to use them as a resource:

Michele Obama Obligation to Fight for the World as It Should Be  / Barack Obama America, We Cannot Turn Back

Hillary Clinton Time to Take Back the Country We Love   /  Bill Clinton The American Dream is Under Siege at Home

Joe Biden  The America George Bush Has Left Us / John Kerry We Must Listen and Lead by Example

Al Gore Seize this Opportunity for Change

I have published also one of the speeches of Cynthia McKinney to show that some of the recommended policies of the Green Party are being dealt with by Obama and the Democrats Radical in Pursuit of Peace and Justice. On these issues the Green Party could have joined with the Democrats in defeating the Republicans instead of taking a broad-brush swat at both parties. Below McKinney speech I wrote a further and more extended criticism of the Green Party. In addition, I have pulled together an entire page of links of speeches that can be found on ChickenBones Speeches and Sermons Table. it will be a great resource for organizers, scholars, and teachers.

Do not despair, my brother, relief is on the way. Obama-Biden will win by necessity.

posted 3 September 2008 

*   *   *   *   *


Rudy: By the way, from what I've seen of her, I think Palin is great in front of an adoring crowd, but basically an intellectual lightweight. (Unless destroying Alaska's wildlife reserves qualifies as groundbreaking policy.)  The conservative to look out for in the future, I think, is Bobby Jindahl. South Asian-American. Very conservative. Rhodes Scholar. Governor of Louisiana.

My guess: the Republicans lose this one and start pushing Jindahl hard, on his manifest intelligence, on the strength of the improved response to Gustav, versus Katrina; on his "resurrection" of a white and Latino New Orleans, and on his ability to capture non-black minorities as well as the Republican base.Keenan

*   *   *   *   *'s 25 Best Selling Books



#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 - Stackin' Paper by Joy King

#20 - Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 - The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 - Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter


#1 - Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable
#2 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

*   *   *   *   *

Life on Mars

By Tracy K. Smith

Tracy K. Smith, author of Life on Mars has been selected as the winner of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. In its review of the book, Publishers Weekly noted the collection's "lyric brilliance" and "political impulses [that] never falter." A New York Times review stated, "Smith is quick to suggest that the important thing is not to discover whether or not we're alone in the universe; it's to accept—or at least endure—the universe's mystery. . . . Religion, science, art: we turn to them for answers, but the questions persist, especially in times of grief. Smith's pairing of the philosophically minded poems in the book’s first section with the long elegy for her father in the second is brilliant." Life on Mars follows Smith's 2007 collection, Duende, which won the James Laughlin Award from the Academy of American Poets, the only award for poetry in the United States given to support a poet's second book, and the first Essence Literary Award for poetry, which recognizes the literary achievements of African Americans. The Body’s Question (2003) was her first published collection. Smith said Life on Mars, published by small Minnesota press Graywolf, was inspired in part by her father, who was an engineer on the Hubble space telescope and died in 2008.

*   *   *   *   *

The Last Holiday: A Memoir

By Gil Scott Heron

Shortly after we republished The Vulture and The Nigger Factory, Gil started to tell me about The Last Holiday, an account he was writing of a multi-city tour that he ended up doing with Stevie Wonder in late 1980 and early 1981. Originally Bob Marley was meant to be playing the tour that Stevie Wonder had conceived as a way of trying to force legislation to make Martin Luther King's birthday a national holiday. At the time, Marley was dying of cancer, so Gil was asked to do the first six dates. He ended up doing all 41. And Dr King's birthday ended up becoming a national holiday ("The Last Holiday because America can't afford to have another national holiday"), but Gil always felt that Stevie never got the recognition he deserved and that his story needed to be told. The first chapters of this book were given to me in New York when Gil was living in the Chelsea Hotel. Among the pages was a chapter called Deadline that recounts the night they played Oakland, California, 8 December; it was also the night that John Lennon was murdered. Gil uses Lennon's violent end as a brilliant parallel to Dr King's assassination and as a biting commentary on the constraints that sometimes lead to newspapers getting things wrong. —Jamie Byng, Guardian / Gil_reads_"Deadline" (audio)  / Gil Scott-Heron & His Music  Gil Scott Heron Blue Collar  Remember Gil Scott- Heron

*   *   *   *   *

The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

*   *   *   *   *

Ancient African Nations

*   *   *   *   *

If you like this page consider making a donation

online through PayPal

*   *   *   *   *

Negro Digest / Black World

Browse all issues

1950        1960        1965        1970        1975        1980        1985        1990        1995        2000 ____ 2005        


*   *   *   *   *

The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

*   *   *   *   *

The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

*   *   *   *   *

*   *   *   *   *

ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more)






update 18 April 2012




Home    Obama 2008 Table    Speeches and Sermons Table

 Related files: The Need for a Democratic Electoral Sweep   Reaching Racial Heights   Putting the Country First   Reaganite Denounces Bush      A Theology of Obligation & Liberation   Obligation to Fight for the World