Monday, May 5, 2008

If You Aren't for the Right, Obama is the Best Choice; If You are for Progressive Change, Obama is the Only Choice by Norman Markowitz

The North Carolina and Indiana primaries are at hand and Hillary Clinton
has jumped on John McCain's bandwagon to call for a suspension of the
federal gas tax. Barack Obama has called that Ia gimmick, not a policy,
which of course is exactly what it is.

Senator Obama has a serious longterm energy policy, one that has been
postponed for 28 years in the U.S. After Ronald Reagan became
president he literally dumped the alternative energy programs begun in
the Carter administration, pursued policies that reversed energy
conservation programs that had been advocated even by Richard Nixon and
Gerald Ford, and encouraged the auto industry to produce new gas
guzzling vehicles. Reagan's "energy policy" was to give Big Oil more
and more subsidies to find more and more Oil and also to back Saddam's
Iraqi regime in its war against Iran to, among other things, undermine
OPEC by having these two major Oil producers produce more and also break
with OPEC monopoly pricing policies in order to finance their war
efforts(policies that in the short run did help bring down oil prices
but in the long run were economic, political, and social disasters).
Bill Clinton did nothing to reverse Reagan's policies.

Senator Obama has a energy program and the others don't. Meanwhile,
mass media continues to combine time tested Big Lie and Guilt By
Association tactics to tell people over and over again that a vote for
Barack Obama is a vote for Reverend Jeremiah Wright. Michelle Obama was
even compelled to reply to a network television interviewer who asked
her to respond to Wright's comments about Louis Farrakhan by saying
that what does this have to do with the education of her children(or
any body's children, or jobs, housing, health care, wages, the national
debt, the consumer debt, the Iraq War, and other issues of less
importance than the views of Reverend Wright) but the barrage continues.

I saw the front page of the Murdoch tabloid The New York Post(which
it always pains me to look at because it was a liberal labor paper until
Murdoch bought it in the 1970s and turned it into a camp rightwing
scandal sheet). There was a picture of Reverend Wright looking
ridiculous, and a headline that he had stolen someone's wife. This is a
precursor of the Republican campaign if Obama is the nominee, and it
shows the deep contempt that the Right has for the American peoples as

Barack Obama is the candidate who can challenge and reverse the
disastrous course that the nation has been on for the last three
decades. He is by far the stronger candidate because he can mobilize
people to fight for a progressive program and he can respond to them,
rather than cynically use them, as Hillary Clinton has to advance her
career and interests. At this point, Clinton defeating Obama would be,
given both what he has accomplished and the kind of campaign she has
run, a major setback for progressive forces in this country. I and I am
sure most of our readers would hold our collective noses and support
her, which would be the right and necessary thing to do, but her
chances of winning a major victory and/or winning at all would be
significantly less than Senator Obama. If she did win, a great deal of
energy would have to be expended in pressure group politics against her

Let's hope(even though the pollsters say it isn't going to happen) that
Obama wins in North Carolina and Indiana and John Edwards throws his
delegates to him and the Super Delegates tell Clinton to throw in the
towel for the good of the country and the party. Let's continue to work
for an Obama victory, which will be a real victory.
Norman Markowitz


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