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Fear pervades Black politics, and makes us agents of our own oppression

Originally published: Black Agenda Report on March 5, 2020 (more by Black Agenda Report)  |

Many Black voters recoiled in abject terror at the very thought that the Democratic Party–“our” party, in many Black folks’ minds–might fracture under the challenge of the Sandernistas.

Black voters in South Carolina kicked off Joe Biden’s political resurrection last Saturday, and stuck with the worthless corporate hack through Super Tuesday’s primary contests. Although the craven Black Misleadership Class will no doubt shout hallelujahs that “hands that picked cotton now pick presidents” and claim Black voters exercised brilliant “strategic” judgment in making themselves indispensable to the corprate Democratic party establishment, the true motivator of Black Biden supporters is a pervasive and deeply corrosive fear. Not just dread of four more years of Trump, although that is central to Black political behavior, but abject terror at the very thought that the Democratic Party–“our” party, in many Black folks’ minds–might fracture under the challenge of the Sandernistas.

Voluminous data over many years has shown that African Americans are to the left of Hispanics on issues of bread and butter and, especially, war and peace, and far to the left of white Democrats. But, unlike Hispanics, Blacks cannot be depended on to uphold their own historical political consensus in Democratic Party primary elections for fear of weakening the chances of defeating The White Man’s Party. Hyper-conscious of their minority and despised status–and surrounded by hostile, race-obsessed white Republicans in the southern states–older Blacks cling to Democratic Party structures as if their lives depend on it. The ascent of Donald Trump has only tightened the duopoly trap, causing Blacks to invest their votes in candidates they perceive as “good for the party,” as if that is synonymous with Black interests.

Ruling class panic at the prospect of losing control of the top of Democratic ticket has deeply infected the party’s most loyal constituency. Thus, Black folks over 40, and many younger ones, are behaving like Malcolm X’s “house Negro,” who asks with genuine concern, “Is we sick, boss?” when the master is feeling poorly. The screechingly raucous, out-of-control Democratic debate in Charleston just days before the South Carolina primary appears to have scared the hell out of Black voters–and lots of white ones, too–who perceived “their” party coming apart at the seems and blamed the mayhem on Bernie Sanders. With Sanders and Michael Bloomberg bearing the brunt of the assault, Joe Biden appeared like the tranquil eye of the storm, a safe haven for fearful party loyalists. Biden’s endorsement by Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg on the eve of Super Tuesday, enveloped Obama’s former vice president in an aura of consensus.

Bloomberg’s presidential persona was punctured, but he wasn’t really in it to win it. The odious oligarch knew he couldn’t win the nomination of a party whose rank-and-file overwhelmingly support Sanders’ austerity-busting agenda, even if they doubt Bernie’s chances against Trump or his ability to get his program through Congress. The formerly Republican Bloomberg’s candidacy was a necessary (and affordable) charade to certify him as a born-again Democrat, thus legitimizing his billion-dollar bid to buy control of the party’s machinery to insulate it against infection by more upstarts like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) and her mentor, Sanders.

On Tuesday night CNN pundit and former Virginia governor and Democratic National Committee chairman Terry McAuliffe confirmed that the party welcomed Bloomberg’s billions. Bloomberg had already promised to pay the cost of 500 political operatives answerable to the DNC through the November election, no matter who wins the nomination. McAuliffe looked forward to Bloomberg putting his entire state-of-the art New York City headquarters in service to the party. The aim is to progressive-proof the Democrats by making the party a hostile environment for leftish politics. (See BAR, Feb. 19, “Bloomberg Wants to Swallow the Democrats and Spit Out the Sandernistas.”) Bloomberg’s presidential run is a way to “launder” his billion dollar purchase of the party infrastructure. Other oligarchs can be expected to make it a joint venture to shore up their class’s hegemony over the U.S. electoral system, to safeguard the ruling class agenda of endless war and the global Race to the Bottom.

The allure of Bloomberg’s gold has exposed the cockroaches of the Black Misleadership Class, hordes of whom scurried across the linoleum to enlist as mercenaries of Obscene Capital. This is the undiluted essence of Black Democratic “strategic” politics. Four members of the Congressional Black Caucus–Meeks (NY), McBath (GA), Plaskett (VI), and Rush (IL), plus the despicable former Tennessee congressman Harold Ford, and the Black mayors of Little Rock AR, Compton CA, San Francisco CA, Stockton CA, Charlotte NC, Columbia SC, Houston TX and Washington DC, plus former mayors of Columbus OH, New York City, Baltimore MD, Philadelphia PA, and Flint MI–whored for Bloomberg, and can be expected to be at his and the other oligarchs’ service for the duration of the party’s battles with leftish interlopers.

Bloomberg’s withdrawal from the race and endorsement of Biden only further sanctifies his larger mission to purge the party of any taint of leftism. Elizabeth Warren will now choose how she will express her “capitalist to the bone” sentiments. The Black Lives Matter elements–notably, Alicia Garza –that joined the party when they left the “movement,” will follow.

The rot is deep, a product of generations of capital-subordinate Black politics that followed the violent suppression of Black self-determinationist movements and the imposition of a counterinsurgency, mass incarceration regime at the end of the Sixties. Rather than resist the New Jim Crow/Same Old Rich White Man’s Rule, the Black Misleaderhip Class eagerly offered themselves as co-managers of oppression–for a small cut of the spoils, and the privileges of racial “leadership.”

It has always been clear to Black Agenda Report that the post-Sixties betrayals of the Black Misleadership Class necessitated that a future Black liberation movement must be largely an internal Black struggle to uproot the corrupted elements in our polity. False unity has become Black folks’ Achilles Heel, allowing Black charlatans free rein in our communities and reserving most elected positions for servants of Capital. The Democratic Party is a predatory edifice of Black disempowerment, from which our people must either free themselves, or become agents of their own perpetual oppression and accomplices in the degradation of humanity, worldwide.

Black youth see the truth, and will act on it, we are certain.

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