Obama’s Re-Elected: What is the Fate of the Latino Vote? Dems, GOP or Independent?

Pablo Paredes, Favianna Rodriguez and Javier Gonzalez spoke powerfully on our HKR Roundtable

We continue our Hard Knock Radio roundtable series; Asking the question ‘What next in the Aftermath of Barack Obama being Re-elected?

Our guest include Pablo Paredes of 67 Suenos , Favianna Rodriguez of Solespace and Javier Gonzalez of the Soundstrike.. Click the link below to listen to our HKR Interview

One of the most compelling stories focuses on the rush from both the GOP and Dems to lock down Latinos and make them a cornerstone and key voting block in their respective parties. To listen to Fox News pundits and GOP leaders, one would not know this was the same political party that championed harsh anti-immigration laws like SB 1070 in Arizona and HB 56 in Alabama.

One would not know this was the party that gave Arizona governor Jan Brewer a louder and longer standing ovation than the Vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan during the RNC in Tampa Bay.. One would not know this is the same GOP that has highlighted Sheriff Joe Arpaio who has long crusaded against Latino people.

During our HKR round table we spoke about a variety of topics including;

1-Why there is a sudden change of heart within the GOP to be more inclusive and friendly with Latinos? We talked about the need to have cheap labor and use Latinos as a voting bloc.

2-Whether or not political parties want Latinos only for their votes or are they willing to make room at the table to share and implement their ideas, policy positions and strategies? We talked about the importance of making sure importance issues aren’t put on the back burner..

3-How recent grassroots movements and fights have been hijacked by some mainstream Civil Rights orgs and opportunistic media pundits who have attempted to redefine a fight for social justice and make it about electing or re-electing a candidate.We talked about how during the historic immigration marches of 2006, many who never worked within the community were suddenly showing up with 100k grants talking about they were experts and representative from Latinos

4-We discussed the deeper meanings behind migration. Our guest gave a historic and cultural breakdown of migration, noting that it’s a behavior all human beings and most creatures do. You move from one place to another for survival, food, etc..

We talked about how flawed foreign policy including NAFTA and American backed regime change in Latin America as well as Climate Change/Global Warming. We also talked about how other issues outside of immigrations have impacted the Latino community, most notably foreclosures, where many have lost homes and land..

5-We talked about the harsh impact agribusinesses and companies like Monsanto have had on Latin American countries and Latino farmers who are here in the states.

6-We talked about important next steps to take and the important role art, culture and continued grassroots organizing will have in shaping and informing people’s political outlook in the years to come. We talked about how its important to be more than just a voting demographic..

All of our guests agreed that its all about people power! As Favianna noted; “We can’t just sit back and trust our elected officials right now, not when most are moving towards the center and away from the left”.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYiwXc87OAs

Reporting Live From Tampa the RNC Wrap Up: Clint Eastwood Steals the Show in a Bad Way

For those who don’t know, political conventions are elaborate, very scripted multi-million dollars productions designed to project a compelling message drawing you to the presidential candidate.. Here at the RNC in Tampa Bay, tons of resources were devoted to trying to make people forget about the ‘legitimate rape‘ comments made earlier this month by prominent Republicans like Todd Akins.

The RNC Convention was designed to make you forget that GOP candidates like Tom Smith of Pennsylvania were running around equating out-of-wedlock pregnancies to rape. The RNC convention was designed to make everyone forget that a youthful looking VP Presidential hopeful, Paul Ryan focused on defining ‘legitimate rape’ and would prohibit an abortion under any circumstance..

In spite the ‘diversity of speakers’ on stage at the RNC it was still pretty much a sea of whiteness

The RNC Convention was designed to make the overwhelmingly white, GOP seem vastly diverse. It seems like these guys found just about every person of color they could think of to take the stage and say a lil something about how they love Mitt Romney and how great republicans are. They found some conservative Black and Brown folks who are relatively unknown and have absolutely no pull in their respective community to act like they have the masses on lock..

When they ran out of Black and Brown speakers they made sure to get some multi-racial funk, jazz and gospel bands along with singer Bebe Winans to take up the rear and perform to a crowd that was over 95% white and in more than a few instances quite hostile to people of color.

The camera people were instructed to pan to people of color in the audience, with RNC handlers strategically moving Black and Brown bodies to camera ready locations throughout the building.  On top of that signs and hand-held fans that read Hispanics for Mitt were handed out to all-white delegates of Kansas. Global Grind Editor-in-Chief Michael Skolnik was the one who was tweeting live and first reported this, was in utter shock that the GOP was orchestrating this fake diversity.

The RNC was designed to get an ultra hard-right, xenophobic, evangelical base to warm up to Mitt Romney, who just a few months prior they considered a fake conservative whose religious background (Mormonism) was dooming him to hell. The call to action was to humanize Mitt, make him likeable and have him be the friendly face of a Leave it Beaver 1950s bygone era that the GOP is determined, to return to. When they say Take Back the Country.. it’s code for ‘do whatever it takes policy-wise and economic-wise to put ‘minorities’, gays and women back in their subservient place. It’s code for ‘get rid of all safety nets and let the poor fend for themselves‘.

Mitch McConnell

The over arching theme for the RNC was if you’re poor, jobless and deep in debt, its your fault for not working hard enough. In interview after interview we did with folks like; Herman Cain to Ann Coulter to Rick Santorum to Newt Gingrich to countless surrogates the party line was ‘poor people are poor because they wanna be poor’… I want folks to read that again and reflect on that for minute..

I had a chance to Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell, when I asked him if he thought some of the GOP policies would hurt the economically disadvantage?  I asked him what would you say to someone in the hood who is struggling about getting on board with some of the GOP Policies.. McConnell, looked at me and did not answer. His handlers and secret service rushed him away even though we were standing face to face. This philosophy of blaming the poor for their plight is rooted in a prosperity religious bent many here at the RNC seem to hold. The thinking is, if you are somehow economically bad off, it’s because you don’t have enough faith in God..

The RNC had been very strategic in using culture and cultural icons to put a friendly face to their intolerance. They have two highly produced movies they put out.. One was put together by the late Andrew Breibert, a former FBI informant Brandon Darby and Citizens United where it bashes the Occupy Movement, and erroneously makes the case that Occupy was a big money backed organization designed to help Obama and the Democrats. The movie depicted members of Code Pink as key members of OWS, something that is so far off the mark, that eveb Stevie Wonder can see it..

A scene from Obama 2016

The other movie, Obama 2016, was put together by former Ronald Reagan staffer Dinesh D’Souza and Gerald Molen who produced Schindler’s List. Itwas designed to demonize President Obama and show the root of his supposed rage by tracing it back to Kenya. The film says Obama grew up to have a strong disliking for colonization and colonial powers. As a result, the film suggests that Obama hates America and basically wants to get revenge on white folks. It’s a very sophisticated, polished Willie Hortonizing type of flick.. The RNC also produced some high-polished videos on welfare which needs to be banished and education which needs to be privatized.

The RNC tried to glitz things up, by calling on, Dirty Harry actor Clint Eastwood.  Someone had the bright idea, that the best was to humanize stiff, robotic Mitt Romney was to have the legendary actor sell his good virtues to America. That was a big mistake.. Clint threw away the script, abandoned the GOP game plan they spent hours and countless dollars perfecting and basically did some off the cuff type crap which in the end is likely to cost Romney major points in what looks to be a close election..

Clint Eastwood blew up the spot in a bad way w/ a bizarre conversation w/ an invisible President Obama

Clint came to the stage with slurred incoherent speech and bizarre monologue directed at an empty chair that he said contained an invisible President Obama. The whole ordeal was painful and  had everyone wondering the soundness of Mitt Romney’s business acumen. What kind of business man spends millions crafting an image only to throw it away with the recklessness of having an out of touch Clint Eastwood ‘steal the show’? At the end of the night instead of talking about Romney speech,it was Clint Eastwood that was trending on social media platforms that was being talked about endlessly.

What took the cake was when Eastwood, midway threw his act, pretended to slit the throat of Barack Obama..The cameras panned away, some cheered because they really want the President dead and others looked shocked..

Clint Eastwood’s behavior overshadowed Mitt Romney’s strongest speaker and secret weapon Senator Marc Rubio who was gonna set the tone for the GOP moving forward and with his Cuban background, remind everyone within ear shot that the GOP loves Latinos in spite of crazy anti-Brown People laws like SB 1070 and the crowd showing great enthusiasm and giving rousing standing ovations for folks like Az Gov Jan Brewer and Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

During last nights proceedings there were several disruptions both from members of Code Pink as well as upset delegates repping for Ron Paul. The Paul delegates held up signs stating how the RNC had been hijacked and Democracy was stolen. With each disruption the crowd would stand, clap and chant loudly USA, USA USA..

At the end of the day Mitt Romney gave what many deemed a lackluster speech. Skolnic pointed out that during the first part of the speech only the delegates loyal to Mitt were cheering, everyone else was either bored or unimpressed. It was only when he started talking about ways the GOP planned to make money did they warm up, and then only slightly.

Many are speculating that this election is gonna hinge not so much on undecided middle of the road voters which has long been the tradition, but instead its going to hinge on who can get their base out. The GOP has peeped that there is not a lot of enthusiasm for President Obama among key demographics and they are playing to that big time.. House speaker John Boehner spoke to this the other day when he stated loudly that he is looking forward to Black and Brown voters not showing up to the polls. GOP leaders are quick to point out that Obama has lost the enthusiasm of young voters, Black voters and Brown voters who are still upset that this his administration hs deported more than one million people, which means over one million families were broken up.

The biggest irony is even though the GOP has blatant anti-immigrant sentiments, they are hawking Obama’s deportation record while Black conservatives and even quite a few whites are actually stating that Obama has no agenda for Black people. I cannot make this stuff up folks. Look for this rhetoric to be given big microphones over the next few weeks..  Such talking points may not sway voters per say to the GOP, but it may lead to many staying home in November.

Obama supporters like to point out that the president has 94% of the Black vote and 80% of the Brown vote etc.. All that may be true. The problem is percentages don’t reflect actual numbers.. Obama may have 94% of the Black vote of those who actually show up to vote. There is talk that over 90 million people may NOT show up to the polls in November. That’s what Boehner is banking on. The RNC folks seem confident that if lack of enthusiasm for Obama doesn’t keep folks at home then the 26 states employing voter suppression tactics and laws will.

The bottom line is the folks I came across at the RNC are really angry and unrestrained in expressing and acting upon that anger. They are angry about the economy, and their way of life slipping before them. That anger has been directed toward folks of color, women, unions and students. I would not underestimate that anger.. lots of money being spent on the Presidential election, even more money is being spent on the local elections.. The GOP is pushing to win all those small seats that folks wanna ignore..

written by Davey D

Barbara Lee Smashes on the GOP for HCR Repeal

Many of us on the left side of the political spectrum weren’t too happy with all the compromises made to get this Health care bill passed. We wanted single payer, or at least public option, instead we got something that delivers 50 million new customers to insurance companies. The GOP members who are bent on repealing HCR apparently feel that all of us should be on our own to deal with Healthcare… What are your thoughts? For those who don’t know the House just voted to repeal Healthcare Reform

Here’s what our Congresswoman had to say…


Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Barbara Lee (CA-09) issued the following statement today condemning GOP efforts to repeal patients’ rights. The Republican-led House is expected to repeal the healthcare legislation today.

“Every minute we take on this bill to repeal the important freedoms provided by the health reform law is a critical minute we are not focusing on jobs,” said Congresswoman Barbara Lee.  “What a sham and a shame. Our business should be focusing on getting our economy moving by directly creating jobs and stimulating the economy.

“Instead the Republican leadership wants to add $230 billion to the deficit and empower health insurance companies to take away patient’s rights to make their own health care decisions. By repealing health reform, Republicans will give insurance companies the power to deny coverage to children with pre-existing conditions, deny young people up to the age of 26 the option to stay on their parent’s plans, and drop coverage for pregnant women and breast and prostate cancer patients

“Repeal will further squeeze our seniors by forcing them to pay more for their prescription drugs, and endanger the future solvency of the Medicare Trust Fund.

“Worst of all, the Republican plan to repeal the new law does ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to improve health care for anybody in this country – whether to make health insurance more affordable, to provide greater coverage, to reduce costs, or to improve quality of services.

Literally their idea is to return to the same failed system that has left 50.6 million people, including 7.5 million children, without health insurance.

In the current economic environment – where more people are without coverage and jobs are scarce – making it more difficult for people to access health care or to keep their health coverage makes no sense. Instead we should strengthen and improve the current health care law, first by adding a public option to provide choice and competition and expanding Medicare for all.

“Our goal should be to realize a world where access to health care truly is a fundamental human right and not a privilege enjoyed by the wealthy few.

“Rather than continuing with this political charade, we must answer the President’s call to come together in a spirit of civility and through honest debate find solutions to the current economic crisis and put America back to work.”

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