[Marxism] Ron Daniels on Obama's re-election

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Jul 14 08:06:58 MDT 2011

Ron Daniels is a long-time leader in the Black struggle who was 
executive director of Jesse Jackson's Rainbow Coalition and a 
presidential candidate of the Peace and Freedom Party in 1992 and 
has run on other 3rd party tickets from time to time. In other 
words, he operates on the "inside-outside" basis of the 
Progressives for Obama camp.

However, Obama's performance has made it difficult for such folks 
to put forward the kind of "New New Deal" rhetoric that you heard 
in 2008. In fact, Daniels has 2 articles posted in a 3 part series 
on ZNnet that at first blush look like he is breaking once and for 
all with the Democrats.

The first is titled "Implications for the Progressive Movement" 
that catalogs all of Obama's flaws:

"Rather than responding to the misery of the millions of 
unemployed by articulating the rationale for additional stimulus, 
Obama and the Democrats have cowered in the face of the 
Conservative’s demand  for draconian cuts in government spending. 
Obama is blithely touring the country visiting businesses he 
believes illustrate how jobs will be generated in a retooled 
economy in the future."

Part two is titled "Beyond Obama and the Democrats" 
and--based on that title--would lead you to believe that Daniels 
has washed his hands of the Democrats.

The first sentence, however, tips you off:

"In my most recent article, I argued that the progressive movement 
must devise a strategy that looks beyond Obama and the Democrats 
but includes supporting the President's reelection in 2012."

It is filled with the kind of circumlocutions you get from Bill 
Fletcher Jr., Carl Davidson and many other veteran 
"inside-outside" operatives. But I wonder if either of those two 
guys would have come up with this: "The centennial of the birthday 
of the late Vice-President Hubert H. Humphrey, one of the great 
liberals of the 20thCentury, passed with hardly a mention."

As NYT's readers might know, Hubert H. Humphrey received the same 
glowing treatment from Rick Perlstein, a highly celebrated liberal 
historian, in an op-ed piece a couple of months ago. You also 
might know that Todd Gitlin, the odious "decent leftist" who 
backed the war in Afghanistan, has never forgiven 60s radicals for 
not backing Hubert Humphrey against Nixon in 1968.

At least with Humphrey, you were getting a continuation of LBJ's 
Great Society, with all its flaws. With Obama you are getting 
neither a commitment to domestic progressive change or peace. In 
fact, what you are getting with Obama is Richard Nixon.

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