Archive for January, 2010

JPMorgan vs. Goldman Sachs: Why the Market Was Down 7 Days in a Row

January 30, 2010

by Ellen Brown

We are witnessing an epic battle between two banking giants, JPMorgan Chase (Paul Volcker) and Goldman Sachs (Rubin/Geithner). The bodies left strewn on the battleground could include your pension fund and 401K.

The late Libertarian economist Murray Rothbard wrote that U.S. politics since 1900, when William Jennings Bryan narrowly lost the presidency, has been a struggle between two competing banking giants, the Morgans and the Rockefellers. The parties would sometimes change hands, but the puppeteers pulling the strings were always one of these two big-money players. No popular third party candidate had a real chance at winning, because the bankers had the exclusive power to create the national money supply and therefore held the winning cards.

In 2000, the Rockefellers and the Morgans joined forces, when JPMorgan and Chase Manhattan merged to become JPMorgan Chase Co. Today the battling banking titans are JPMorgan Chase and Goldman Sachs, an investment bank that gained notoriety for its speculative practices in the 1920s. In 1928, it launched the Goldman Sachs Trading Corp., a closed-end fund similar to a Ponzi scheme. The fund failed in the stock market crash of 1929, marring the firm’s reputation for years afterwards. Former Treasury Secretaries Henry Paulson and Robert Rubin came from Goldman, and current Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner rose through the ranks of government as a Rubin protégé. One commentator called the U.S. Treasury “Goldman Sachs South.”

Goldman’s superpower status comes from something more than just access to the money spigots of the banking system. It actually has the ability to manipulate markets. Formerly just an investment bank, in 2008 Goldman magically transformed into a bank holding company. That gave it access to the Federal Reserve’s lending window; but at the same time it remained an investment bank, aggressively speculating in the markets. The upshot was that it can now borrow massive amounts of money at virtually 0% interest, and it can use this money not only to speculate for its own account but to bend markets to its will.

But Goldman Sachs has been caught in this blatant market manipulation so often that the JPMorgan faction of the banking empire has finally had enough. The voters too have evidently had enough, as demonstrated in the recent upset in Massachusetts that threw the late Senator Ted Kennedy’s Democratic seat to a Republican. That pivotal loss gave Paul Volcker, chairman of President Obama’s newly formed Economic Recovery Advisory Board, an opportunity to step up to the plate with some proposals for serious banking reform. Unlike the string of Treasury Secretaries who came to the government through the revolving door of Goldman Sachs, former Federal Reserve Chairman Volcker came up through Chase Manhattan Bank, where he was vice president before joining the Treasury. On January 27, market commentator Bob Chapman wrote in his weekly investment newsletter The International Forecaster:

“A split has occurred between the paper forces of Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan Chase. Mr. Volcker represents Morgan interests. Both sides are Illuminists, but the Morgan side is tired of Goldman’s greed and arrogance. . . . Not that JP Morgan Chase was blameless, they did their looting and damage to the system as well, but not in the high handed arrogant way the others did. The recall of Volcker is an attempt to reverse the damage as much as possible. That means the influence of Geithner, Summers, Rubin, et al will be put on the back shelf at least for now, as will be the Goldman influence. It will be slowly and subtly phased out. . . . Washington needs a new face on Wall Street, not that of a criminal syndicate.”

Goldman’s crimes, says Chapman, were that it “got caught stealing. First in naked shorts, then front-running the market, both of which they are still doing, as the SEC looks the other way, and then selling MBS-CDOs to their best clients and simultaneously shorting them.”

Volcker’s proposal would rein in these abuses, either by ending the risky “proprietary trading” (trading for their own accounts) engaged in by the too-big-to-fail banks, or by forcing them to downsize by selling off those portions of their businesses engaging in it. Until recently, President Obama has declined to support Volcker’s plan, but on January 21 he finally endorsed it.

The immediate reaction of the market was to drop – and drop, day after day. At least, that appeared to be the reaction of “the market.” Financial analyst Max Keiser suggests a more sinister possibility. Goldman, which has the power to manipulate markets with its high-speed program trades, may be engaging in a Mexican standoff. The veiled threat is, “Back off on the banking reforms, or stand by and watch us continue to crash your markets.” The same manipulations were evident in the bank bailout forced on Congress by Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson in September 2008.

In Keiser’s January 23 broadcast with co-host Stacy Herbert, he explains how Goldman’s manipulations are done. Keiser is a fast talker, so this transcription is not verbatim, but it is close. He says:

“High frequency trading accounts for 70% of trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Ordinarily, a buyer and a seller show up on the floor, and a specialist determines the price of a trade that would satisfy buyer and seller, and that’s the market price. If there are too many sellers and not enough buyers, the specialist lowers the price. High frequency trading as conducted by Goldman means that before the specialist buys and sells and makes that market, Goldman will electronically flood the specialist with thousands and thousands of trades to totally disrupt that process and essentially commandeer that process, for the benefit of siphoning off nickels and dimes for themselves. Not only are they siphoning cash from the New York Stock Exchange but they are also manipulating prices. What I see as a possibility is that next week, if the bankers on Wall Street decide they don’t want to be reformed in any way, they simply set the high frequency trading algorithm to sell, creating a huge negative bias for the direction of stocks. And they’ll basically crash the market, and it will be a standoff. The market was down three days in a row, which it hasn’t been since last summer. It’s a game of chicken, till Obama says, ‘Okay, maybe we need to rethink this.’”

But the President hasn’t knuckled under yet. In his State of the Union address on January 27, he did not dwell long on the issue of bank reform, but he held to his position. He said:

“We can’t allow financial institutions, including those that take your deposits, to take risks that threaten the whole economy. The House has already passed financial reform with many of these changes. And the lobbyists are already trying to kill it. Well, we cannot let them win this fight. And if the bill that ends up on my desk does not meet the test of real reform, I will send it back.”

What this “real reform” would look like was left to conjecture, but Bob Chapman fills in some blanks and suggests what might be needed for an effective overhaul:

“The attempt will be to bring the financial system back to brass tacks. . . . That would include little or no MBS and CDOs, the regulation of derivatives and hedge funds and the end of massive market manipulation, both by Treasury, Fed and Wall Street players. Congress has to end the ‘President’s Working Group on Financial Markets,’ or at least limit its use to real emergencies. . . . The Glass-Steagall Act should be reintroduced into the system and lobbying and campaign contributions should end. . . . No more politics in lending and banks should be limited to a lending ratio of 10 to 1. . . . It is bad enough they have the leverage that they have. State banks such as North Dakota’s are a better idea.”

On January 28, the predictable reaction of “the market” was to fall for the seventh straight day. The battle of the Titans was on.

http://webofdebt.wordpress.com/jpmorgan-vs-goldman-sachs-why-the-market-was-down-7-days-in-a-row/

Obomber’s Latest Lies

January 29, 2010

by Dave Lindorff

President Obama gives a good speech. He’s smooth, unruffled by audience response, good at a timely ad-lib remark, and knows how to win over a tough crowd–all skills that were in evidence at last night’s State of the Union address. But he’s also good at telling whoppers.

Here are a few.

Talking about health care, and the stalled bills in House and Senate which have become so encrusted with pro-industry amendments that the whole process should be referred to as the Health Industry Enrichment Act, Obama said at one point, addressing the doubts many in Congress and among the broader public have about those bills, “If anyone from either party has a better approach that will bring down premiums, bring down the deficit, cover the uninsured, strengthen Medicare for seniors and stop insurance company abuses, let me know. Let me know. Let me know. I’m eager to see it.”. . .
The second big whopper was Iraq. There the president, to loud applause, said he would have all combat troops out of Iraq by August of this year. At another point, though, he went further, saying that “all our troops” would be “coming home.” The truth, though, is that they won’t be. In fact, though, as many as 50,000 US troops will remain in Iraq after this August. Whether they will be “in combat” or not is really not up to them. If they are attacked, of course they will be in combat. They may well be sent into battle too, though who knows if we’ll hear about it. There are unlikely to be too many members of the press with them, as the focus shifts to Afghanistan. But 50,000 is a lot of troops–much more than the US has in South Korea, for instance. It’s hardly an end to the war in Iraq. . . .
Third, the president slipped by the new big war, Afghanistan, in an astonishingly abrupt single paragraph. Think about it. He has ordered an escalation of that conflict, where the US already has committed 70,000 troops, with another 30,000 on the way, not counting perhaps 50-60,000 more private mercenaries, and has called for a new aggressive strategy of capturing and holding territory–a strategy that is bound to increase both US and innocent Afghani casualties–and he only said a couple of sentences about it.

And those sentences were full of lies. Obama said the US is “training Afghan security forces so they can begin to take the lead in July of 2011, and our troops can begin to come home,” but he knows his own advisors are telling him that those Afghan military forces are incapable of being expanded to do that job. The whole country is basically illiterate and not capable of being trained to handle much of the equipment, the military and police are hopelessly corrupt, and the tribal system makes a unified national army a pipe-dream. He said the US will “reward good governance,” but in fact has allied itself with a corrupt narco-regime led by Hamid Karzai, whose own brother is a leading drug kingpin.

There were more lies and misleading statements through the speech, for example his lie that his administration has “prohibited torture,” but these three alone make it amply clear that the president was not doing his constitutional duty of giving Congress an accurate report on the “state of the union.”

http://counterpunch.com/lindorff01292010.html

The Annotated Obama

January 29, 2010

by joe bageant

I’ve managed to sit still through a few state of the union speeches, through the remarks of Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, one Bush (the pappy, I never could gut out one of The Dub’s ) and a Clinton. Brother Clinton finished me off, made me give up on state of the union speeches altogether.

Still, there was the off chance — OK, vain hope — that Obama might come out swinging in the wake of the Massachusetts massacre and the Supreme’s recent sale of Congress to corporations. As in: The senator from Wal-Mart now has the floor. So I poured myself a stiff one and fell into a deep cush recliner in front of a mongo brain-wrapping TV screen. Not that I would ever own one, mind you. I watch it at my friend and fellow writer Fred Reed’s house. That way he gets the rap for being a torpid brainwashed American pig.

Obama’s opener was predictable enough, the obligatory patriotic reference for the blood and balls crowd:

…when the Union was turned back at Bull Run and the Allies first landed at Omaha Beach…

Then came the hearkening back section, in this case to 1965, a time when blacks had hope and liberals had a few guts:

… and civil rights marchers were beaten on Bloody Sunday…

More than half of Americans were not yet born in 1965, and four fifths surely have never heard of Bloody Sunday at Selma. But what the hell, it’s a speech, right?

And again, we must answer history’s call…

Along with millions of other cranky old lefties, I wanted to scream back, Then pick up the fucking phone, damn ya!. . . .

read the whole article at http://counterpunch.com/bageant01292010.html

The Kidnapping of Haiti

January 28, 2010

by John Pilger

The theft of Haiti has been swift and crude. On 22 January, the United States secured “formal approval” from the United Nations to take over all air and sea ports in Haiti, and to “secure” roads. No Haitian signed the agreement, which has no basis in law. Power rules in an American naval blockade and the arrival of 13,000 marines, special forces, spooks and mercenaries, none with humanitarian relief training.

The airport in the capital, Port-au-Prince, is now an American military base and relief flights have been re-routed to the Dominican Republic. All flights stopped for three hours for the arrival of Hillary Clinton. Critically injured Haitians waited unaided as 800 American residents in Haiti were fed, watered and evacuated. Six days passed before the US Air Force dropped bottled water to people suffering thirst and dehydration.

The first TV reports played a critical role, giving the impression of widespread criminal mayhem. Matt Frei, the BBC reporter dispatched from Washington, seemed on the point of hyperventilation as he brayed about the “violence” and need for “security”. In spite of the demonstrable dignity of the earthquake victims, and evidence of citizens’ groups toiling unaided to rescue people, and even an American general’s assessment that the violence in Haiti was considerably less than before the earthquake, Frei claimed that “looting is the only industry” and “the dignity of Haiti’s past is long forgotten.” Thus, a history of unerring US violence and exploitation in Haiti was consigned to the victims. “There’s no doubt,” reported Frei in the aftermath of America’s bloody invasion of Iraq in 2003, “that the desire to bring good, to bring American values to the rest of the world, and especially now to the Middle East … is now increasingly tied up with military power.”

In a sense, he was right. Never before in so-called peacetime have human relations been as militarised by rapacious power. Never before has an American president subordinated his government to the military establishment of his discredited predecessor, as Barack Obama has done. In pursuing George W. Bush’s policy of war and domination, Obama has sought from Congress an unprecedented military budget in excess of $700 billion. He has become, in effect, the spokesman for a military coup

For the people of Haiti the implications are clear, if grotesque. With US troops in control of their country, Obama has appointed George W. Bush to the “relief effort”: a parody surely lifted from Graham Greene’s The Comedians, set in Papa Doc’s Haiti. As president, Bush’s relief effort following Hurricane Katrina in 2005 amounted to an ethnic cleansing of many of New Orleans’ black population. In 2004, he ordered the kidnapping of the democratically-elected prime minister of Haiti, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, and exiled him in Africa. The popular Aristide had had the temerity to legislate modest reforms, such as a minimum wage for those who toil in Haiti’s sweatshops.

When I was last in Haiti, I watched very young girls stooped in front of whirring, hissing, binding machines at the Port-au-Prince Superior Baseball Plant. Many had swollen eyes and lacerated arms. I produced a camera and was thrown out. Haiti is where America makes the equipment for its hallowed national game, for next to nothing. Haiti is where Walt Disney contractors make Mickey Mouse pjamas, for next to nothing. The US controls Haiti’s sugar, bauxite and sisal. Rice-growing was replaced by imported American rice, driving people into the cities and towns and jerry-built housing. Years after year, Haiti was invaded by US marines, infamous for atrocities that have been their specialty from the Philippines to Afghanistan.

Bill Clinton is another comedian, having got himself appointed the UN’s man in Haiti. Once fawned upon by the BBC as “Mr. Nice Guy … bringing democracy back to a sad and troubled land”, Clinton is Haiti’s most notorious privateer, demanding de-regulation of the economy for the benefit of the sweatshop barons. Lately, he has been promoting a $55m deal to turn the north of Haiti into an American-annexed “tourist playground”.

Not for tourists is the US building its fifth biggest embassy in Port-au-Prince. Oil was found in Haiti’s waters decades ago and the US has kept it in reserve until the Middle East begins to run dry. More urgently, an occupied Haiti has a strategic importance in Washington’s “rollback” plans for Latin America. The goal is the overthrow of the popular democracies in Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador, control of Venezuela’s abundant oil reserves and sabotage of the growing regional cooperation that has given millions their first taste of an economic and social justice long denied by US-sponsored regimes.

The first rollback success came last year with the coup against President Jose Manuel Zelaya in Honduras who also dared advocate a minimum wage and that the rich pay tax. Obama’s secret support for the illegal regime carries a clear warning to vulnerable governments in central America. Last October, the regime in Colombia, long bankrolled by Washington and supported by death squads, handed the US seven military bases to, according to US air force documents, “combat anti-US governments in the region”.

Media propaganda has laid the ground for what may well be Obama’s next war. On 14 December, researchers at the University of West England published first findings of a ten-year study of the BBC’s reporting of Venezuela. Of 304 BBC reports, only three mentioned any of the historic reforms of the Chavez government, while the majority denigrated Chavez’s extraordinary democratic record, at one point comparing him to Hitler.

Such distortion and its attendant servitude to western power are rife across the Anglo-American corporate media. People who struggle for a better life, or for life itself, from Venezuela to Honduras to Haiti, deserve our support.

www.johnpilger.com

US runs ‘secret’ military operations in Yemen

January 28, 2010

Washington has involved in secret joint operations in Yemen after President Barack Obama approved US military and intelligence teams to be dispatched to the country, the Washington Post revealed Wednesday.

The operations begun six weeks ago, involving troops from the US military’s clandestine Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), whose main mission is tracking and killing suspected terrorists, the Post reported.

The American agents are helping the Yemeni army develop tactics and providing Sana’a forces with electronic and video surveillance, as well as three-dimensional terrain maps, the report said.

In addition to “highly sensitive intelligence,” the US is sending weapons and munitions to be used against what the White House describes as an al-Qaeda cell operating in the Arabian Peninsula, it added.

In late December, President Obama even approved a strike against a compound in southern Yemen where US citizen Anwar al-Aulaqi was allegedly meeting with regional “al-Qaeda leaders,” the report added.

“We are very pleased with the direction this is going,” the Washington Post quoted an unnamed senior administration official as saying of the cooperation with Yemen.

Washington has also been sending a steady stream of high-ranking officials to visit Sana’a, including the rarely seen JSOC commander Vice Adm. William McRaven, White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan, and head of US Central Command Gen. David Petraeus.

Earlier in January, the White House pledged $121 million in aid to help the unpopular Yemeni government crush uprisings.

However, amid rising concerns over the US role in military operations in Yemen, the government continues to its offensive against the country’s Shia minorities in the north.

Backed by the Saudi military, the operation has left hundreds killed and tens of thousands displaced in the battle zone, prompting repeated warnings of a humanitarian disaster in the making from international organizations.

http://www.presstv.ir/detail.aspx?id=117176&sectionid=3510203

US Military’s Haiti “Relief” Ops A Rehearsal For Troop Deployments in Latin America

January 28, 2010

by Glen Ford

When the U.S. sent thousands of troops into Port au Prince airport, earthquake relief was clearly not the primary mission. Otherwise, ships and whole military units would not have arrived with only supplies for themselves.

The American commandeering of the airport at Port au Prince and de facto seizure of sovereignty over Haiti looked exactly like an invasion and occupation – except that Haiti had already been invaded in 2004 by the U.S., which then turned over occupational duties to its servants in the United Nations. To speak of a U.S. “invasion” of Haiti is getting a little bit redundant. The Americans never left, and they and their flunkies walk all over Haiti like an old rug.

Clearly, however, the U.S. was not on an earthquake rescue mission. U.S. naval units sailed into Haitian waters without bothering to load up with food, water and medicine at the nearby U.S. base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. What kind of “relief” mission was this, in which the rescuer comes empty-handed? Thousands of paratroopers were flown in from Fort Bragg, North Carolina – and then sat at the Port au Prince airport for several days, claiming not to have transportation into town. They could have walked! The city is just beyond the airport fence and downtown and the port are only a couple of miles away. A BBC reporter noted that, several days after the paratroopers landed, they sent small relief missions to outlying areas. Meanwhile, literally right down the street was the vast shantytown of Cite Soliel. But the Americans didn’t go there.

The United States military, except for its special operations units, is the “heaviest” fighting force in the world. That means, the Americans require more logistical support – more pounds of equipment, more fresh food, more support personnel for every grunt with a gun – than any military on the planet. When the U.S. decided to airlift thousands of troops into Port au Prince, commanders knew the logistical needs of that force, alone, would overwhelm the airport’s capacity, leaving little room for actual relief supplies. The Americans knew they would be creating a bottleneck that would become an impediment to relief efforts by the rest of the world. But they hogged the air and runways, anyway. What was the purpose?

“The Americans knew that they would be creating a bottleneck that would become an impediment to relief efforts by the rest of the world.”

The explanation is quite simple. For the Americans, the operation was not primarily a rescue mission. Often, they carried only supplies for themselves. I don’t buy into speculation that the Americans were attempting to worsen the Haitian situation through deliberate delays, in order to justify taking over the country. It was clear from the first day that the earthquake was a visitation from hell that would create more than enough drama than the U.S. would ever need – and besides, the Americans and their minions were already in charge of Haiti. But the Americans’ actions make perfect sense when understood as an air and naval exercise to test the capabilities of the U.S. Southern Command to move its own men and machines from one place to another, quickly. The Southern Command’s 4th Fleet was just taken out of mothballs last year, and has been staging exercises in the Caribbean to threaten Venezuela. The U.S. has just opened 7 new bases in Colombia, and would be anxious to test its ability to support them with quick infusions of large units of troops and equipment. The Haiti earthquake was a good excuse. But the mission was not about them.

For Black Agenda Radio, I’m Glen Ford. On the web, go to http://www.BlackAgendaReport.com.

BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com.

Subverting the Constitution at Harvard Law

January 25, 2010

For OpEdNews: Jim Fetzer – Writer

Madison, WI (OpEdNews) –As someone who has promoted the investigation of political events that appear to have involved “pulling the wool” over the eyes of the public, I must say that I have never read a more corrosive approach toward the Constitution than “Conspiracy Theories” by Cass R. Sunstein and Adrian Vermeule of the Harvard School of Law. The massive blunder at the core of their conception is to take for granted that virtually all “conspiracy theories” — and certainly the most historic, such as JFK and 9/11 — are obviously false! That is about as gratuitous a begging of the question as I have ever encountered — and I taught logic, critical thinking, and scientific reasoning for 35 years. No one can know which theories are true or false without investigating them. That this is coming from faculty at Harvard Law is simply stunning. . . .

read the full article at http://www.opednews.com/articles/Birds-of-a-Feather-Subver-by-Jim-Fetzer-100121-980.html

Fascism Cometh

January 25, 2010

The thought occurs to me that at the time of “Shock and Awe” I maintained the action would split the country right down the middle. Since then, several more incidents have operated to split the halves. Seems the fractures are growing and the splinters more pronounced – and it is getting so that Humpty Dumpty is beyond repair – similar to trying to pick up an egg that has been dropped on the floor. Never was the tactic of divide and conquer so obvious. Soon to be “obvious” consequences will render the operation of Nazi Germany to that of the minor leagues.

Ron Paul: After ‘CIA coup,’ agency ‘runs military’

January 21, 2010

US House Rep. Ron Paul says the CIA has in effect carried out a “coup” against the US government, and the intelligence agency needs to be “taken out.”

Speaking to an audience of like-minded libertarians at a Campaign for Liberty regional conference in Atlanta this past weekend, the Texas Republican said:

There’s been a coup, have you heard? It’s the CIA coup. The CIA runs everything, they run the military. They’re the ones who are over there lobbing missiles and bombs on countries. … And of course the CIA is every bit as secretive as the Federal Reserve. … And yet think of the harm they have done since they were established [after] World War II. They are a government unto themselves. They’re in businesses, in drug businesses, they take out dictators … We need to take out the CIA. . . .

for ther est of this article and video clips of ron paul, go to
http://rawstory.com/2010/01/ron-paul-cia/

Living a Black Fantasy: The Obama Delirium Effect

January 21, 2010

By Glen Ford

Barack Obama’s presence in the White House is bad for Black people’s mental health. Even as the African American economic condition deteriorates by the day, Blacks perceive a world in which their prospects are improving. Something did change for the better for Black people in 2009. The problem is, it only happened in their minds.

There is a world of perception and a world of reality. There is also another realm, a domain of willed fiction that is impervious to reality and treats facts like enemies. It is the Delusion Zone and, judging by the results of a recent Pew Research Center survey [1], large majorities of African Americans have been trapped there for at least the year since Barack Obama took up residence in the White House.
Life in the Delusion Zone is animated by the purest magic, a place where catastrophe is instantaneously transformed into its opposite. Examine an item from the real world Washington Post [2] of January 15, whose headline screams, “U.S. unemployment rate for blacks projected to hit 25-year high.” Contrast that with the Pew findings [3] released the same week, which concluded that “blacks’ assessments about the state of black progress in America have improved more dramatically than at any time in the last quarter century.”
The judgments of a nationally representative sampling of 812 blacks can’t be wrong, can they? Yes, they can. Obamamania appears to destroy brain cells and disable both short- and long-term memory.
Consider that the proportion of African Americans that say Blacks are “better off than five years ago” has nearly doubled since 2007, from 20 percent to 39 percent. What actually happened in the interim between 2007 and 2009? The negative assessment of the Black condition in 2007 compared to five years before, makes sense. Black unemployment in 2002 stood at 11 percent. By 2007, Black unemployment had dropped to 8.3 percent, significantly better than at the height of the Bush first term recession five years before. However, by 2007 the housing foreclosure crisis was casting a dark gloom over Black America, and December 2007 would retroactively be declared the first month of the Great Recession. It was, therefore, rational that only one in five Blacks would rate African Americans as better off in 2007 than in 2002.
The latest Pew poll, conducted mostly in November of 2009, showed twice as many respondents felt Blacks were better off than five years earlier, in 2004. This, despite the fact that Black joblessness stood officially at 15.6 percent in November 2009, and heading higher, compared to 8.7 percent in November 2004. In five years, Black unemployment had nearly doubled, and the housing foreclosure crisis had ravaged Black neighborhoods, with no let up in sight. Any rational five-year assessment offered in November of 2009 would have been as gloomy as the numbers.But Black folks weren’t being rational. Thirty-nine percent of them – nearly twice as many as in 2007 – told Pew pollsters Blacks were better off in 2009 than five years before, when by all economic measurements the opposite was true.
What happened between 2007 and 2009, besides the worst recession since the Great Depression, with Black unemployment projected to hit 17.2 percent by the third quarter of 2010? Obama happened.
Obama-induced chemical imbalances messed up Black people’s minds regarding the gap between Black and white incomes. Asked if the racial gap had grown smaller in the last ten years, 56 percent said “yes” in 2009, compared to 41 percent in 2007. In fact, the racial wage gap had grown significantly. In 2000, Black households made 64.8 cents for every dollar made by whites. By 2008 Black households had slipped three cents, to 61.8 cents on the white dollar – approximately the same size gap as existed in 1989 and 1979. Blacks are worse off, income-wise, than ten years ago, and except for a brief uptick in Black household income during the Clinton bubble-boom of the Nineties, the Black-white earnings gap has remained virtually unchanged for the past 30 years.
ObamaL’aid is a mind-altering substance, a hallucinogen. It makes Black people see progress when they are actually facing disaster. Obama-on-the-brain also behaves like an opiate, blocking out pain. African Americans’ ability to apprehend political and economic danger is compromised by Obama-induced delusion, while the opiate effect prevents Blacks from knowing where and how badly they have been hurt. That’s a fatal combination.

BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com

http://blackagendareport.com/?q=content/living-black-fantasy-obama-delirium-effect