[Marxism] Fwd: Cornel West: “He posed as a progressive and turned out to be counterfeit. We ended up with a Wall Street presidency, a drone presidency” - Salon.com

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Sun Aug 24 08:50:15 MDT 2014


Cornel West: "It’s like you’re looking for John Coltrane and you get 
Kenny G in brown skin." Brilliant.


Q: So that’s my first question, it’s a lot of ground to cover but how do 
you feel things have worked out since then, both with the economy and 
with this president? That was a huge turning point, that moment in 2008, 
and my own feeling is that we didn’t turn.

A: No, the thing is he posed as a progressive and turned out to be 
counterfeit. We ended up with a Wall Street presidency, a drone 
presidency, a national security presidency. The torturers go free. The 
Wall Street executives go free. The war crimes in the Middle East, 
especially now in Gaza, the war criminals go free. And yet, you know, he 
acted as if he was both a progressive and as if he was concerned about 
the issues of serious injustice and inequality and it turned out that 
he’s just another neoliberal centrist with a smile and with a nice 
rhetorical flair. And that’s a very sad moment in the history of the 
nation because we are—we’re an empire in decline. Our culture is in 
increasing decay. Our school systems are in deep trouble. Our political 
system is dysfunctional. Our leaders are more and more bought off with 
legalized bribery and normalized corruption in Congress and too much of 
our civil life. You would think that we needed somebody—a Lincoln-like 
figure who could revive some democratic spirit and democratic possibility.

Q: That’s exactly what everyone was saying at the time.

A: That’s right. That’s true. It was like, “We finally got somebody who 
can help us turn the corner.” And he posed as if he was a kind of Lincoln.

Q: Yeah. That’s what everyone was saying.

A: And we ended up with a brown-faced Clinton. Another opportunist. 
Another neoliberal opportunist. It’s like, “Oh, no, don’t tell me that!” 
I tell you this, because I got hit hard years ago, but everywhere I go 
now, it’s “Brother West, I see what you were saying. Brother West, you 
were right. Your language was harsh and it was difficult to take, but 
you turned out to be absolutely right.” And, of course with Ferguson, 
you get it reconfirmed even among the people within his own circle now, 
you see. It’s a sad thing. It’s like you’re looking for John Coltrane 
and you get Kenny G in brown skin.

full: 
http://www.salon.com/2014/08/24/cornel_west_he_posed_as_a_progressive_and_turned_out_to_be_counterfeit_we_ended_up_with_a_wall_street_presidency_a_drone_presidency/



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