The Republican National Committee is launching television ads tomorrow in Indiana and Wisconsin that invoke the name of former Weather Underground member Bill Ayers and detail his ties to Barack Obama, the first such ads from either the national party committee or the campaign of John McCain so far in this election cycle.
Here's the ad:
"Senator Obama is crying foul and declaring his association with such individuals to be off limits," said Brad Todd who is overseeing the RNC's independent expenditure arm. "Fortunately, with the First Amendment still intact, he does not get to decide that."
I was going to open with the McCain-Palin campaign's "Ayers" video but I saw that and thought it might be the better opening.
I said my piece in the roundtable tonight regarding Oklahoma so I'll just quickly summarize.
1) Oklahoma community members had three choices regarding the presidential election:
a) Vote for Barack Obama.
b) Vote for John McCain.
c) Don't vote.
Since they're not allowed to write in a candidate and since no other candidates made their ballot, they had to make a decision.
I understood the difficulty and would have supported them in whatever their choice was.
2) For the non-stop sexism, for Barack's non-stop lying, voting for John McCain is not the end of the world. And it sends a message.
3) Good for them.
In terms of McCain-Palin. I actually like Governor Sarah Palin. She's a likeable person. I don't agree with all of her politics, but I have no problem with her personally and judging by her statements, she has no problem with me (I'm an African-American lesbian). In terms of Senator John McCain, he did not say, "Oh, let me take back my kind words of Mark Bingham!" when he found Bingham was gay. In 2001, a lot of politicians would. We saw the media take him from "HERO!" to not even mentioning his name.
McCain is not the current occupant of the White House. He will not be another four years of the same. He may be better, he may be worse but that 'criticism' went stale back in May.
And isn't it funny that no one ever says Barack & Co. are attacking McCain when they repeat that garbage? The press never calls that out, now do they?
So my point is that Oklahoma community members had a very difficult decision and spent several weeks attempting to figure out what to do. They made their decision and I'm proud of them. I'm not just fine with it, I'm proud of them.
I hope that's clear. I know tonight, the Oklahoma community members participating in the roundtable felt like they'd be facing a fire squad. That didn't happen and I hope they realize no one is bothered by their decision. The community was built by C.I. and she noted from the start that your vote was your vote. There was never a "You must vote for ___!" Four years ago, she was writing, "I am not going to tell you how to vote for president." And she hasn't. In fact, we don't even know who she's voting for (or if she's voting). And I think that point being raised repeatedly over the last four years has had an impact on the community.
Those of us who are Democrats remember that it wasn't all that long ago where a lot of members were supporting different people. There was Kucinich, there was John Edwards, there was Hillary (whom I supported), there was Bill Richardson, there were three members supporting Joe Biden and there were some supporting Mike Gravel. We made it through that without any hurt feelings.
And for non-Democrats, there was the question of whether to support Ralph or Cynthia. And they made it through that.
So it worked out fine and this works out fine as well. And I would say that even if you lived in a state where you had all the candidates on the ballot and you were voting for McCain-Palin. It's really easy to get stuck in what I call the Katrina vanden Heuvel Trap -- where someone orders you around. Most of the time, you just ignore the person but it's made very clear by their bossy behavior that they think they are the boss of you and that they can order you around so you say, "Bye-bye, pissy Katrina."
But I think we all have taken our cues from C.I. and this topic has been addressed repeatedly over the last four years. If someone is happy with their vote (or a decision not to vote), that is their business. And though I'm a lifelong Democrat, democracy is more important than the Democratic Party or any party.
Which is why I'll be voting for Ralph Nader. If Ralph wasn't a possibility for me and I couldn't vote for Cynthia, I'd be voting for John McCain and Sarah Palin this year as well.
When you read the roundtable tomorrow morning in the round-robin, you'll notice that C.I. drew out the Oklahoma members' fears so that those fears were addressed right off. But there are a lot more members in Oklahoma that were not part of the roundtable and if you're one and reading this, I want to be very clear that if I lived in Oklahoma, I would be voting for McCain-Palin. I wouldn't bat an eye.
There are many reasons for that but it would boil down, for me, to the homophobia Barack repeatedly used and is still using. That's not Democratic behavior. I wouldn't reward and send the message it was acceptable by voting for him. The sexism is appalling and that would be my secondary reason, but I remember Bill Clinton's presidency and I knew Hillary wasn't a homophobe. Barack is a homophobe who hangs out with homophobes. Wright, Meeks, go down the list. His inner circle is made up of homophobes. That's why he didn't bat an eye when it came to using homophobia as a campaign strategy.
And where are our gay organizations calling him out for the 'values' tour going on right now?
They're silent and attacking Sarah Palin.
I don't think less of anyone who has made the decision not to reward the Democratic behavior for this appalling behavior.
Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"
ANNCR: Barack Obama and domestic terrorist Bill Ayers. Friends. They've worked together for years.
But Obama tries to hide it. Why?
Obama launched his political career in Ayers' living room.
Ayers and Obama ran a radical "education" foundation, together.
They wrote the foundation's by-laws, together.
Obama was the foundation's first chairman.
Reports say they, "distributed more than $100 million to ideological allies with no discernible improvement in education."
When their relationship became an issue, Obama just responded, "This is a guy who lives in my neighborhood."
We know Bill Ayers ran the "violent left wing activist group" called Weather Underground.
We know Ayers' wife was on the FBI's 10 Most Wanted list.
We know they bombed the Capitol. The Pentagon. A judge's home.
We know Ayers said, "I don't regret setting bombs. .... I feel we didn't do enough."
But Obama's friendship with terrorist Ayers isn't the issue.
The issue is Barack Obama's judgment and candor.
When Obama just says, "This is a guy who lives in my neighborhood."
Americans say, "Where's the truth, Barack?"
Barack Obama. Too risky for America.
JOHN MCCAIN: I'm John McCain and I approve this message.
Rosa Clemente in New York October 9-11
Tuesday, 07 October 2008 23:01
from Rosa Clemente
Peace and Hello to all my New York City People:
As the billionaires on wall street get bailed out, and more and more people are tired of a two party stranglehold, join me, as I celebrate my electoral independence, I am in town, for three exciting days of campaign activities, attending a press conference for assistance and solidarity for Haiti, marching for the freedom of Politcal Prisoners and Prisoner of War, as well as these media appearances, hope to see you! "The Green Party is not the alternative, it is the imperative!" Rosa A. Clemente, Green Party Vice-Presidential Candidate
GritTV, with Laura Flanders, to air Wednesday October 8th, 2008, at 8:00pm & 1:00am ET, on Free Speech TV(DISH Network ch. 9415) www.lauraflanders.com
Where we Live, with Sally O'Brien Thursday October 9th, 2008 at 8:00pm on WBAI 99.5FM, www.wbai.org
The Truth, with Jeff Johnson on to air on BET Friday October 10th, 2008 at 10:00pm (EST)
[. . .]
THURSDAY OCTOBER 9th, 2008 @ 3:30pm
Open Community Forum with Green Party Vice Presidential Nominee ROSA CLEMENTE, to be televised on Manhattan Public Access
@ MNN Television Studios
Manhattan Neighborhood Network
537 West 59th Street,
New York, NY 10019
(between 10th and 11th Avenues)
Green Party VP Candidate -
Discusses the Economy, Foreign Policy, Education, Gender Equity, Racism, Social Justice, & the Environment
LIVE WITH THE COMMUNITY
Featuring Community Organizations:
-Grassroots Artists MovEment (G.A.ME)
-Brenda Stokely from NY Solidarity Coalition With Katrina / Rita Survivors
- La Peña del Bronx
-Video Screening of Final Outlaw's"HIP HOP 4Ever"
THIS IS A LIVE TO TAPE EVENT: IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT ALL AUDIENCE MEMBERS ARRIVE AT 3:00PM SHARP!
Please Contact: (917) 940-8961 or (917) 239-8992 with Questions or to RSVP for this event
ABOUT G.A.ME - The Grassroots Artists Movement (G.A.ME) is a membership organization dedicated to addressing sociopolitical and economic realities facing low-income Black and Latino communities. Galvanizing the influence of hip-hop artists and culture, G.A.ME unites artists and community members to work side-by-side for social justice. G.A.ME runs youth leadership and community development programs that provide tools for positive change. __________________________________________________________
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 10th, 2008
YES! to international assistance and solidarity to Haiti, NO! to the military occupation of Haiti and the attacks on Haitian sovereignty!
The Brecht Forum, 451 West St. @ Bethune St. in West Village, between W.
Rally at Madison Square Park at 5th Ave and 23rd St.
Evening Concert to Benefit the Prisoners@ the Knitting Factory @ 74 Lenard
Rebel Diaz, The Wordstock Poetry Collective, Maroon Society,
Gist the Essence, Collective Flow, United Front
New York Univeristy(NYU)
Jericho 10th Anniversary Weekend of Resistance
Saturday, October 11, 2008 @ 12 Noon
Rally at the Harlem State Office Building
(Corner of 126th St. & A.C. Powell Blvd.)
March through Harlem @ 1 p.m.
Closing Rally in Morningside Park @ 2 p.m.
Between 112th & 114th near Morningside Ave. entrances