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Forums > Politics & Religion > Cornel West talks to the Root on Obama, Neo-liberals, Te-nehasi Coagtes.
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Thread started 12/20/17 10:53am

2freaky4church
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Cornel West talks to the Root on Obama, Neo-liberals, Te-nehasi Coagtes.

"My motherfucker's so cool sheep count him."
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Reply #1 posted 12/21/17 6:27pm

Dasein

2freaky4church1 said:

Always on point.

https://www.theroot.com/w...1821460694

https://www.theroot.com/w...1821403221

https://www.theroot.com/w...1821332870

Obama was a gangster.


West is so not on point:

He has no idea what being the president of the USA involves. It could be the case that a Black
American president who happens to be a liberal and Democrat in the face of DC peckerwoods who
kowtow to the military industrial complex simply cannot do the things West imagines a president
ought to be able to do.

Secondly, I would argue that West, who works from a Black prophetic tradition that is indebted
to and funded by Christianity, would benefit from investigating how he continues to seek, and ef-
fect, and articulate a Black American liberty and freedom via the same construal used by those
white Americans who were slave owners then and manage to marginalize and oppress Blacks now.
In other words: Black Americans using Christianity to achieve freedom and liberty from our oppres-
sors who are also Christians is ineffective and therefore precisely what the oppressors want us to
do. One of the reasons why Malcolm X's argument was more persuasive and forceful and cogent
than his contemporaries is because he was not a Christian making appeals to Christian ethics which
would have slaves and the oppressed actually pray for her slave-master and oppressor.

Mutherfuck. That. Shit.

The fact that you created this thread Freaky is fucking impressive. Yet, despite what you think, you're
actually not down, but when the day of reckoning comes, I will argue that you and your family not get
scalped.

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Reply #2 posted 12/21/17 7:06pm

13cjk13

Dasein said:

2freaky4church1 said:

Always on point.

https://www.theroot.com/w...1821460694

https://www.theroot.com/w...1821403221

https://www.theroot.com/w...1821332870

Obama was a gangster.


West is so not on point:

He has no idea what being the president of the USA involves. It could be the case that a Black
American president who happens to be a liberal and Democrat in the face of DC peckerwoods who
kowtow to the military industrial complex simply cannot do the things West imagines a president
ought to be able to do.

Secondly, I would argue that West, who works from a Black prophetic tradition that is indebted
to and funded by Christianity, would benefit from investigating how he continues to seek, and ef-
fect, and articulate a Black American liberty and freedom via the same construal used by those
white Americans who were slave owners then and manage to marginalize and oppress Blacks now.
In other words: Black Americans using Christianity to achieve freedom and liberty from our oppres-
sors who are also Christians is ineffective and therefore precisely what the oppressors want us to
do. One of the reasons why Malcolm X's argument was more persuasive and forceful and cogent
than his contemporaries is because he was not a Christian making appeals to Christian ethics which
would have slaves and the oppressed actually pray for her slave-master and oppressor.

Mutherfuck. That. Shit.

The fact that you created this thread Freaky is fucking impressive. Yet, despite what you think, you're
actually not down, but when the day of reckoning comes, I will argue that you and your family not get
scalped.

You're countering with truth and reason. Stick to batshit loony paranoid conspiracy theories if you want to continue the conversation.

[Edited 12/21/17 19:07pm]

Matthew 5:38-39
“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.
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Reply #3 posted 12/23/17 3:23am

deebee

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These days, I find it hard to listen to more than about a minute of West's "dear brother" schtick without wanting to pull my brains out through my ears; and my opinion of him has never really recovered from reading Adolph Reed's 'What are the drums saying, Booker?' article. It does also seem a little suspect that his attack on Coates comes as the 25th anniversary edition of 'Race Matters' is readying to hit the shelves.

That said, I do broadly agree with his critique of Coates. (I couldn't make it through any of the videos, so simply read his Guardian article.) It's hard to argue with the following: "In short, Coates fetishizes white supremacy. He makes it almighty, magical and unremovable. What concerns me is his narrative of 'defiance'. For Coates, defiance is narrowly aesthetic – a personal commitment to writing with no connection to collective action. It generates crocodile tears of neoliberals who have no intention of sharing power or giving up privilege."

As such, it's curious to see the spat represented as a modern-day Martin vs Malcolm split - with West presumably cast as the 'moderate' vs Coates's 'radical' - as there's not a flaccid White liberal alive who doesn't just adore Ta-Nehisi Coates and the 'virtuous guilt' his writing arouses in them. And though that same narrative would seek to portray West as some sort of 'turn-the-other-cheek' preacher hobbled by his religiosity, the fatalism Coates proffers in analysis that centres on immovable ahistorical abstractions that are predestined to loom forever over society seem to allow for no worldly actions. If 'Whiteness' is really a "glowing amulet" possessed of a mystical power, as per his quasi-mystical language - not far from talk of curses and 'evil' - one might as well get on one's knees and pray for all the good it'll do. West merely postures at being an activist, but, well, at least he's posturing in the right direction.

That said, I think there are much better Left critiques of Coates out there (see below), and West is joining a bandwagon that's already made off without any need for him. In fact, I tend to think there's much better analysis being done than either of these two is capable of producing, and it's a little sad to see them hogging all the attention. I also kind of think that, for all of Coates' shortcomings, he's clearly selling something that resonates with people, and one has to address rather than simply dismiss that. If White liberals and Black bougies want something fatalistic and metaphysical, there must be conditions and forms of impoverishment of the debates we're embedded in that make that seem desirable. Like Marx said of religion, it's "the soul of soulless conditions." I don't think you get around that just by shooting the messenger.

https://www.viewpointmag....lack-body/
https://www.viewpointmag....si-coates/
https://www.counterpunch....si-coates/

"Not everything that is faced can be changed; but nothing can be changed until it is faced." - James Baldwin
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Reply #4 posted 12/23/17 4:26am

deebee

avatar

Dasein said:

He has no idea what being the president of the USA involves. It could be the case that a Black
American president who happens to be a liberal and Democrat in the face of DC peckerwoods who
kowtow to the military industrial complex simply cannot do the things West imagines a president
ought to be able to do.

But couldn't that defence (the first sentence) be invoked to negate the vast majority of criticisms of any president ever, except for the relative few criticisms made by a former president - and, even then, apologists might say the critic doesn't know what being the president of the USA involves today? None of us really know all the ins and outs of what being the president involves; does that mean we can't criticise Trump? Surely the question is whether or not our criticisms are valid.

"It could be the case" that Obama was full of zeal for change but was thwarted by the MIC, well, ok, but I'd like to see the evidence for that. While I'd take him in a heartbeat over the scrotum there now, and I think he did an infinitely better job of being the face representing America to the world, I've never really seen where the mythology of Obama the Little Engine That Couldda gets its credence from. He seems a decent and likeable guy, but he's entirely embedded in that elite class who have no reason to kick against the status quo - from the start of his political career right through. He defended a neoliberal politics and played his role as Don of the American Empire dutifully during his tenure. Doubtless, he faced opposition, but there's still a gulf between his politics and the pursuit of radical, social democratic change West is gesturing towards. I don't think that's because Obama's particularly 'unrighteous' or unprincipled or anything, pace West's personalised moralisms; that's just what comes with the position and who the system allows to ascend to its summit.

"Not everything that is faced can be changed; but nothing can be changed until it is faced." - James Baldwin
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Reply #5 posted 12/23/17 6:57am

2freaky4church
1

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You are either with MLK or not. Cornel is, Coates is not.

"My motherfucker's so cool sheep count him."
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Reply #6 posted 12/23/17 6:58am

2freaky4church
1

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Mods, wasn't that a personal threat?

"My motherfucker's so cool sheep count him."
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Reply #7 posted 12/24/17 4:42am

Dasein

deebee said:

Dasein said:

He has no idea what being the president of the USA involves. It could be the case that a Black
American president who happens to be a liberal and Democrat in the face of DC peckerwoods who
kowtow to the military industrial complex simply cannot do the things West imagines a president
ought to be able to do.

But couldn't that defence (the first sentence) be invoked to negate the vast majority of criticisms of any president ever, except for the relative few criticisms made by a former president - and, even then, apologists might say the critic doesn't know what being the president of the USA involves today? None of us really know all the ins and outs of what being the president involves; does that mean we can't criticise Trump? Surely the question is whether or not our criticisms are valid.

"It could be the case" that Obama was full of zeal for change but was thwarted by the MIC, well, ok, but I'd like to see the evidence for that. While I'd take him in a heartbeat over the scrotum there now, and I think he did an infinitely better job of being the face representing America to the world, I've never really seen where the mythology of Obama the Little Engine That Couldda gets its credence from. He seems a decent and likeable guy, but he's entirely embedded in that elite class who have no reason to kick against the status quo - from the start of his political career right through. He defended a neoliberal politics and played his role as Don of the American Empire dutifully during his tenure. Doubtless, he faced opposition, but there's still a gulf between his politics and the pursuit of radical, social democratic change West is gesturing towards. I don't think that's because Obama's particularly 'unrighteous' or unprincipled or anything, pace West's personalised moralisms; that's just what comes with the position and who the system allows to ascend to its summit.




Sure - that defense could be invoked to negate all criticisms of any president ever, and it would
hold. We simply do not know the nuances, complexities, and particularities associated with the
office. So, even and/or when the defense is invoked by a president we don't happen to like, or,
invoked by those wishing to defend a president we disagree with, it remains cogent and coherent.
It could be the case that Obama wanted to usher in all the things Brother West wanted him to but
simply could not for the same system that allows for certain individuals to ascend Washington DC
summits could also be the very same that halts progessive Black American presidential Demo-
crats from suddenly transforming the US American consciousness too: here, West wanted Obama
to do just that but what if Obama couldn't? My point is that West's argument (and all arguments
that seek to criticize presidents) is much more forceful or complete if it takes into consideration
there are functions and features of this particular (and unique) office that we do not know about.
So, your work here to question the validity of the "Obama myth", {which should be done} to reveal
how Obama actually represented yet another example of an embedded politician from the elites,
{which is a fair assessment} has no application for what was my purpose for criticizing West.

And posting a picture of Obama and Branson playfully fighting each other proves nothing other than
at some point Obama and Branson were playfully fighting each other. You would make for a great
propagandist.

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Reply #8 posted 12/24/17 4:43am

Dasein

Crybaby.

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Reply #9 posted 12/24/17 5:11am

Dasein

deebee said:

These days, I find it hard to listen to more than about a minute of West's "dear brother" schtick without wanting to pull my brains out through my ears; and my opinion of him has never really recovered from reading Adolph Reed's 'What are the drums saying, Booker?' article. It does also seem a little suspect that his attack on Coates comes as the 25th anniversary edition of 'Race Matters' is readying to hit the shelves.

That said, I do broadly agree with his critique of Coates. (I couldn't make it through any of the videos, so simply read his Guardian article.) It's hard to argue with the following: "In short, Coates fetishizes white supremacy. He makes it almighty, magical and unremovable. What concerns me is his narrative of 'defiance'. For Coates, defiance is narrowly aesthetic – a personal commitment to writing with no connection to collective action. It generates crocodile tears of neoliberals who have no intention of sharing power or giving up privilege."

As such, it's curious to see the spat represented as a modern-day Martin vs Malcolm split - with West presumably cast as the 'moderate' vs Coates's 'radical' - as there's not a flaccid White liberal alive who doesn't just adore Ta-Nehisi Coates and the 'virtuous guilt' his writing arouses in them. And though that same narrative would seek to portray West as some sort of 'turn-the-other-cheek' preacher hobbled by his religiosity, the fatalism Coates proffers in analysis that centres on immovable ahistorical abstractions that are predestined to loom forever over society seem to allow for no worldly actions. If 'Whiteness' is really a "glowing amulet" possessed of a mystical power, as per his quasi-mystical language - not far from talk of curses and 'evil' - one might as well get on one's knees and pray for all the good it'll do. West merely postures at being an activist, but, well, at least he's posturing in the right direction.

That said, I think there are much better Left critiques of Coates out there (see below), and West is joining a bandwagon that's already made off without any need for him. In fact, I tend to think there's much better analysis being done than either of these two is capable of producing, and it's a little sad to see them hogging all the attention. I also kind of think that, for all of Coates' shortcomings, he's clearly selling something that resonates with people, and one has to address rather than simply dismiss that. If White liberals and Black bougies want something fatalistic and metaphysical, there must be conditions and forms of impoverishment of the debates we're embedded in that make that seem desirable. Like Marx said of religion, it's "the soul of soulless conditions." I don't think you get around that just by shooting the messenger.

https://www.viewpointmag....lack-body/
https://www.viewpointmag....si-coates/
https://www.counterpunch....si-coates/


It does not follow that for you to be authentically engaged in the struggle for Black liberty against
whiteness that you must then follow up your anti-Whiteness strictures with some kind of political
action or that you then spur your readers into some kind of action. Because I am not making that
unnecessary leap, it's actually not hard to argue against:

"In short, Coates fetishizes white supremacy. He makes it almighty, magical and unremovable.
What concerns me is his narrative of 'defiance'. For Coates, defiance is narrowly aesthetic – a per-
sonal commitment to writing with no connection to collective action. It generates crocodile tears
of neoliberals who have no intention of sharing power or giving up privilege."

West appears to have a strict definition of a "Black American neoliberal Democratic president" and of
a "Black American left leaning polemicist-writer" and if you don't comport yourself to his exact con-
ception of these two roles, he's gonna have a cow. And, do we know that Coates has actually said
that his writings recognizes, fatalistically, the "immovable ahistorical abstractions that are predestined
to loom forever over society" and that we should just take an "L" in response? Or, if he hasn't said
this explicitly, I would like to see excerpts from his writings that support this reading you've

presented.





[Edited 12/24/17 6:08am]

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Reply #10 posted 12/26/17 9:28am

2freaky4church
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Miss the 60s. Had real warriors.

"My motherfucker's so cool sheep count him."
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Reply #11 posted 12/29/17 12:29pm

uPtoWnNY

Dasein said:

One of the reasons why Malcolm X's argument was more persuasive and forceful and cogent
than his contemporaries is because he was not a Christian making appeals to Christian ethics which
would have slaves and the oppressed actually pray for her slave-master and oppressor.

Mutherfuck. That. Shit.

DAMN STRAIGHT! That's why Malcolm is my hero and why I rejected christianity (and all religion) ages ago.

Only brainwashed folks of color would love their enemies, pray for them or turn the other cheek. Sadly, too many of us still go for that shit.

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Reply #12 posted 12/29/17 4:30pm

nd33

It seems to me like the reason liberal people hesitate to criticise Obama is because he’s black and maybe as an aside because he speaks eloquently (compared to the current jackass)

If we look past those superficial things, he’s a true blue neocon like the previous presidents and therefore he did exactly what’s expected whilst in office - not take a big stand for/against anything of monumental substance.

Same exact thing in the push for Hillary to be President, except substitute the “he’s black” in my first paragraph for “she’s a woman”.
Music, sweet music, I wish I could caress and...kiss, kiss...
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Reply #13 posted 12/30/17 6:36am

2freaky4church
1

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Eloquant speakers are more dangerous. Remember Hitler?

"My motherfucker's so cool sheep count him."
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Reply #14 posted 12/30/17 6:52am

Ugot2shakesumt
hin

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Mr West has "opinions". Some of them autoundingly naive for someone who pretends he's smarter than Obama. And if Obama doesn't takes his opiniopns seriously, he pouts.

He's a child, as most elderly usually revert to.

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Reply #15 posted 12/30/17 8:51am

2freaky4church
1

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No bleating. Give examples? This is not Twitter.

"My motherfucker's so cool sheep count him."
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Reply #16 posted 01/03/18 5:12am

Dasein

"Forget Coates vs West - We All Have a Duty to Confront the Full Reach of US Empire"

The Intercept



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Reply #17 posted 01/03/18 5:29am

poppys

Ugot2shakesumthin said:

Mr West has "opinions". Some of them autoundingly naive for someone who pretends he's smarter than Obama. And if Obama doesn't takes his opiniopns seriously, he pouts.

He's a child, as most elderly usually revert to.

What is up with you and "the elderly"? Cornel West is 64. You said the Las Vegas shooter did it because he was too old and his mind was gone. He was also 64. I can't take this bias seriously.

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Reply #18 posted 01/08/18 5:06pm

Dasein

uPtoWnNY said:

Dasein said:

One of the reasons why Malcolm X's argument was more persuasive and forceful and cogent
than his contemporaries is because he was not a Christian making appeals to Christian ethics which
would have slaves and the oppressed actually pray for her slave-master and oppressor.

Mutherfuck. That. Shit.

DAMN STRAIGHT! That's why Malcolm is my hero and why I rejected christianity (and all religion) ages ago.

Only brainwashed folks of color would love their enemies, pray for them or turn the other cheek. Sadly, too many of us still go for that shit.


I agree with this post 100%.


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Forums > Politics & Religion > Cornel West talks to the Root on Obama, Neo-liberals, Te-nehasi Coagtes.