Watching the Texas Debate


ohio texas

The Debate has begun and I will occaisionally impart some insights and feel free to share yours.

8:13 pm-Senator Obama sounds like he is a little under the weather and while I generally  like Hillary’s pantsuits, I am not feeling this outfit with the black and yellow piping.  To Wicked Witch meets Donna Karan.

First difference, Obama would meet with Raul Castro in Cuba and Senator Clinton would not.

8:51  Hillary got hissed over her answer to a question asking whether she was saying Obama was “all hat and no cattle.” She said she was “amused” by Senator Kirk Watson’ s inability to name one Obama accomplishment. 

8:56 The plagerism question-Obama  hits it out of the park.  Hillary attacks by saying “lifting whole passages from someone else’s speeches is not change you can believe in, its change you can Xerox.  She is booed and hissed again.   The focus group meter remains flat during her response.

9:11  Debate devolves into an argument over health care mandates.

9:18 Prepared to be commander-in-chief question.   The tenative manner in which Obama answers the question undercut the strength of what he says.    His answers get a consistent flatline from the focus group.  Senator Clinton speaks with more authority that the focus group responds to better. Her answer scores in the 60’s.    Obama puts some passion into his answer about neglect of veterans in the context of the War and he hits it out of the park with the focus group and gets into the 70’s.

Overall, the debate was a more or less a wash.  Obama came out the winner because of Hillary’s unnecessarily negative jabs and dissembling. 


56 thoughts on “Watching the Texas Debate

  1. MacDaddy

    The one thing that comes through for me is that, regardless of answers given, Sen. Clinton is not a likeable candidate. She was booed twice.

    The other thing is that Obama was smarter, looking toward biting into the hispanic vote, he knocked it out of the park in saying he was for passing an agreement, the Dream Act, which would allow hispanic kids, or immigrant kids, to get an education.

    The other thing is the last part where Sen. Clinton lifted Sen. Edwards statement (plagiarising, as it were), saying, “No matter what, we’re going to do fine. It’s the American people I worry about…” To me, it’s a statement signalling the beginning of the end for her, just as it was for Edwards. I think she is just coming to terms with the fact that she could very well lose this election to a guy who is more likeable, and a guy who has run a smarter campaign.

  2. propoghandhi

    You could almost register on her face Clinton’s realization that Obama’s rhetoric has reached a new pitch. He was brutally curteous towards her, and never allowed himself to be bated by her attempts to unseat him. Of corse it helps that the audienece booed her for her cheap barbs.

    PS – I believe Clinton’s haistyle is know as a mullet.

  3. MacDaddy

    Obama is using just the right amount of courtesy, I think. And you’re right– he never fell for bating, which actually made him appear more presidential…I think think the curtain is drawing down on the Clinton campaign.

    The fat lady may not be singing yet. But she practicing scales.

  4. Clinton’s own campaign people, save for Mark Penn, have been advising her to tone down the negative, while Penn has been agitating going for the jugular.

    It seems that Clinton took Penn’s advice and from the response she got tonight, she should be showing Mark Penn the unemployment line, but at this point in the game, it’s too late.

    She threw a “Hail Mary” TD pass and it got intercepted at the 1 yard line.

    Yes, Hillary’s hairstyle is known in circles as a “mullet” – and the last time I saw those styles was back in the ’80s. As for the pantsuits, unfortunately for Hillary, she has big legs, as in elephant shaped stalks that do not do well in a skirt or dress. She’s forced to wear those pantsuits, but I’d like to introduce her to Dana Buchman, whom I know she can afford, and she’d be hooked up tight. Donna Karan’s not doing a damned thing for her at all.

    Even the Big Dog has gone on record saying if Missy don’t get Texas and Ohio, she’d better start drafting that concession and conciliation speech.

    Mark Penn is DLC – and once again, a campaign that should have been won by a DLC-er, got jacked up again, and you know who’s going to get the blame for it?

    The Whore, that’s who. I think Mark Penn is his boy, and he looks no better at winning elections than Bob Shrum or Terry McAuliffe. The Whore isn’t delivering for the annointed candidate, and he’s too dang jealous and pissed at Obama stealing his thunder, to realize the direction the wind is blowing to get off the Titanic.

    The CBC Legislative Weekend is going to be a barn-burner this year, because if Obama gets the nod, you can’t keep him away from the activities, but Obama would send the even bigger message if he stays away on his own – that the CBC has become IRRELEVANT in the political diaspora.

    And judging from how the brothas are reacting to Donna Edwards showing up next January instead of their boy, Fat Albert Wynn, is already saying volumes. They are already beginning to treat her like Cynthia McKinney and she hasn’t even picked out her office, yet:

    Just when you KNOW they can’t shoot straight, this gang continues to prove ignorance can be a group concept.

  5. Here’s the story in case you don’t have access to Roll Call:

    CBC Furious at SEIU
    > February 19, 2008
    > By Lauren W. Whittington,
    > Roll Call Staff
    > ________________________________
    > Members of the Congressional Black Caucus are seething at the Service Employees International Union for the group’s involvement in helping to defeat Rep. Albert Wynn (D-Md.) in a primary last week, the latest manifestation of what some say is a larger problem that exists between the two groups.
    > Following a closed-door CBC meeting on Wednesday, the day after Wynn’s landslide loss to lawyer and community activist Donna Edwards (D), CBC Chairwoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick (D-Mich.) plans to reach out to SEIU President Andrew Stern and request a meeting to discuss caucus members’ concerns.
    > It is unclear whether Kilpatrick and a group of CBC members might meet with Stern or if he and some representatives of the union’s political team will be invited to address a CBC meeting.
    > Kilpatrick declined to comment on the SEIU matter for this story, because planning hasn’t moved beyond the CBC.
    > But Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) and several other CBC members said there was palpable anger within the group over Wynn’s treatment. He said members believe the eight-term lawmaker did not have an anti-labor voting record and they are perplexed as to why he was so aggressively targeted.
    > “The Black Caucus members are very upset,” Cummings said last week. “I’m very upset. I think my fellow members think he didn’t deserve that.”
    > Anti-Wynn ads paid for by SEIU’s Committee on Political Education blanketed local airwaves in the final weeks before Tuesday’s primary. SEIU-COPE reported spending at least $875,000 to communicate to voters in Maryland’s 4th district on Edwards’ behalf, with the bulk of that going for television advertising.
    > Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.) called SEIU’s involvement in the Maryland race “puzzling” considering the CBC and labor groups have a long history of being allies.
    > “I think there’s some real questions about why they were so upset with Al Wynn,” Meeks said. “Members of the CBC want to know what’s up.”
    > He added: “Someone’s going to reach out to have a meeting and we’re going to find out what’s going on.”
    > According to the federal voting scorecard located on SEIU’s Web site, Wynn was one of three Maryland Democrats to score a 100 percent record in the first session of the 110th Congress. In the 109th Congress, Wynn scored a 70 percent voting record according to the union’s scorecard, the same as fellow Maryland Democratic Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger. Wynn voted against the union’s interests on an amendment related to Internet freedom, the estate tax repeal and the presidential line-item veto.
    > SEIU spokeswoman Stephanie Mueller said the union’s decision to back Edwards was based on a combination of factors, including the incumbent’s overall voting record, not solely his votes on labor issues.
    > Wynn voted in favor of the Iraq War resolution in 2002 and bankruptcy reform in 2005, two positions that Edwards hammered the incumbent on during the race. She also pointed to the hundreds of thousands of dollars in corporate political contributions Wynn had accepted in an effort to paint him as more beholden to industry interests than his constituents.
    > “Our members did not feel that Al Wynn was representing their interests anymore,” Mueller said. “The Representative wasn’t listening to the constituents in his own district.”
    > SEIU did not endorse Edwards when she ran against Wynn in 2006. But Mueller said the union and its members were familiar with Edwards because she has been active in Maryland liberal causes for years.
    > One CBC member, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the meeting they are seeking with SEIU and the members’ feelings are the result of a culmination of things.
    > The Member said that aside from the union’s involvement in Wynn’s primary, his colleagues are upset about the “glaring disparity” in SEIU’s political action committee giving to vulnerable Democrats compared to its contributions to CBC members, most of whom sit in politically safe districts but have strong voting records on labor issues.
    > “It’s very disheartening,” the CBC member said, pointing out that SEIU represents a membership that is largely made up of African-Americans and minorities while the union’s leadership is majority white.
    > “I just think it was wrong,” the Member said of SEIU’s decision to target Wynn.
    > The Member asserted that CBC members are less likely to receive the maximum contribution from SEIU’s PAC largely because they are considered safe politically.
    > According to CQ MoneyLine, SEIU doled out a little more than $1 million to federal candidates and PACs in 2007. Of that amount, at least $98,000 was distributed among 22 members of the CBC and their PACs.
    > Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.) said the CBC needs to have a broader discussion with SEIU about the union’s pattern of giving.
    > “We have a need to talk with our friends in labor about the disparity in giving to those of us who have tremendous records,” Hastings said.
    > Mueller said the union always seeks to put their members’ interests first when it comes to their political contributions and that voting records are just one factor in deciding whether “that support matches what our members want.”
    > “There are obviously a number of factors that we consider when we look at our support for different candidates,” Mueller said.
    > Wynn had no comment on the union’s involvement in his primary, saying it’s behind him now.
    > “For me, it’s done,” Wynn said in a brief interview Wednesday.
    > Late last week, the 1.9 million-member union endorsed Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.), a member of the CBC, in the presidential race.

  6. TPJ,

    Thank you. It’s good to have you keep us informed on things like this. So, they’re already dissing Ms. Edwards? Hell no. They better straighten up. Al’s gone, and if they don’t fly right, they will be gone too.

    What a moment if Obama disses CBC.


    He should do a fundraiser ONLY for those who were there in the beginning, when it didn’t look like he had a chance….and tell the rest of them to go somewhere and sit down.

  7. As for the debate:

    He didn’t give her any wiggle room to play the White Woman Victim card, which is a good thing. He didn’t take her bait when she tried to lure him into taking potshots, which is also a good thing.

    Why am I not surprised that the most ‘genuine’ moment for her was as phony as a $3 bill, and copied from others, just like those fake-ass tears in New Hampshire.

    She attacked, he looked Presidential. All I wanted from tonight.

    PS- Did you read that DailyKos diary about how much she’s spent on consultants? Penn has basically robbed her blind.

  8. Rikyrah:

    Obama’s doing that fundraiser for CBC members that supported him would send a powerful message to the ones that dissed him, even from the time he first showed up in DC as a Senate candidate.

    The fools in the CBC annointed the Whore – Obama stole his thunder and made them look like fools because he didn’t shuck and jive with them.

    The ones in the CBC who were smart, were the ones who took a neutral stance in the whole thing. They haven’t alienated neither Obama nor the Borg Queen, and have room to negotiate with either party.

    One of the blogs suggested that Hillary would be a better asset and could preserve her legacy by morphing into a powerful Senator who does good, and gets meaningful legislation passed. If there is going to be a President Obama, he would do well to cultivate Hillary’s support in the Senate, considering for at least two years of his administration, he should have a Democratic Congress, and shouldn’t have to act like the Frat Boy in restoring the respect for the concept of Checks and Balances, especially in Foreign Policy matters.

    The problem what that whole scenario is the Borg Queen’s ego – humility is alien to her and I don’t think her ego would allow such humbleness in exchange for the greater good.

  9. And yeah, I read at Kos’ place how much she spent on consultants. Didn’t she have over $100 million dollars in her war chest at the beginning of this whole she-bang-a-bang?

    Now, she’s going broke and trying to tap her rich friends to donate through a PAC to circumvent FEC regulations to raise money that goes beyond what they are allowed to donate as required by law.

    It convinces me that she’s still employing DLC types who have 20 year losing track records in elections, and her money would have been better spent elsewhere. Additionally, if you can blow $100 million dollars and lose 25 of 36 election contests, that’s not recommendation to me that you would be the best person for the POTUS.

  10. zeitgeist9000

    Nice choice of picture!

    I think Clinton takes Ohio–it’s just a matter of how much. If Obama wins over the Latinos, which he didn’t last night, then I think he wins Texas, and Clinton bows out.

  11. TPJ,

    She’s collected $140 Million AND IS BROKE.


    They had NO PLAN for anything past SuperTuesday.



    And, it shows. It really does.

    Whatever happens, Obama’s campaign is going to be studied in Political Science classes for years to come.

  12. Zeitgeist9000

    I believe it’s when you manipulate the Google search engine such that a specific topic shows up when you do a search of a thing.

  13. Isaiah58

    I’ve enjoyed lurking here. This is my first comment. I just want to say that I live in Ohio and my sister lives in Texas. Every few days we compare notes on how the Obama campaign is going where we are. And I think Hillary is in big trouble. The main reason is not just the difference in fund raising. It’s the difference in the number of volunteers.

    Obama has a well organized group of volunteers where my sister lives (College Station/Bryan) both on the Texas A&M Campus and in town. As you probably know, A&M is a very conservative school normally. But Obama is big on campus there. There is no sign of any Hillary organization in town at all. Her entire campaign seems to be about ads on TV and radio.

    Here in Columbus we see the same thing. Hillary has ads on TV and radio now. But Barack has sent me emails. Just tonight I got a robocall from Mayor Coleman urging me to go vote early for Barack. I went to a meeting of volunteers the paid stafff called when they just got to town. With less than 24 hours notice, 700 of us showed up. The field organizer had us stage an impromptu phone bank on the spot. Boom. 700 calls in under 10 minutes. I went to the meeting expecting to see lots of people I know. Usually you see the same people at community meetings, especially community meeting where folks will be asked to work. I only knew two other people there. At one point, a campaign staffer asked everyone who was volunteering for a political campaign for the first time to raise their hand. THREE FOURTHS OF THE PEOPLE RAISED THEIR HANDS. That’s why I didn’t know anyone. They are all new.

    Polling has no way to measure what is going on in this campaign. Polls only talk to people based on participation in past elections. My prediction is that Obama is going to win Ohio by 10 to 15 points. He will win Texas by about the same amount.

  14. Andrea

    I don’t know SB. It was all entertainment and continued political drama. The debate was not about the substance of showmanship but rather to see how Hillary would perform and how he as a leader would handle her and others who although down are more strategically powerful in TRIANGULATION.

    Hillary played the ending up and confused the hell out of me. I think it was perfectly tactical to do what she did and have us (me) stumped thinking one way like she knows it is over when she could still come out fighting while acting like she was fatally wounded. That is when she plays innocent and utilized the last bit of surrogacy to fight for her since she realizes she is out of tricks that won’t ricochet back to her. All is fair if your constituency still fights because they feel sorry for you. A lot can happen in this upcoming with the media changing its tone from ridiculing her to fighting her poetic for once as a literary figurine. The media will do anything to keep it going and if they have to start bending it from what is clearly the end, they can sway public opinion to give her another chance. Hillary knows this and that is why she played the end that way. It was code in so many ways.

    Yeah…she is cornered not having money, but the feminists are still trying to revive her STILL. These chicks are a scary gang of thugs. And simply, we women know when a man is scared of us (the smarter more strategic, calculating ones) even if it is simply righteous terror of the fear of intimidation they want to dodge from chancing to experience from us. We women do have the proxy to play up angles in ways men can’t. Not all about sexism is disenfranchising to women…as you see with Hillary, by example, and her vampire feminists crew. They live to terrorize in the name of righteous indignation. And I think even after Hillary is done, they will still have grudge on Obama because it seems to them that he stole their White Privilege away from. He is not supposed to ever play into seeing himself as equal or even better than them the living icons of virtue.

    Whereas Obama seemed detached throughout the debate, she played up the end to TRIANGULATE empathy from Obama with gained sympathy from the audience. He fell for it eventhough he knew he had to play that part on camera. People were proud of her for showing some grace but all that posturing was still not completely authentic with all that smiling. All that smiling was maniacal.

    I mean really…at the place where she is she should not be smiling. But to perform like that is the profile of a liar and a good one at that. It was a performance to not reassure us in America, it was code to decieve on so many levels. While Obama was real in showing how disengaged he was in committing to perform like he did in LA that last time. He was performing too but it was a performance of showing rendered minimal gratitude in not being too audacious and uppity at kicking her while she was/is down. The rules are not fair for him as her contender to do a dance after his touchdowns.

    She could dance in the endzone, coon, and ham it up but he learned from New Hampshire that he can’t afford to be too happy side-by-side of her or in reference to promoting his teams achievements because it fuels the feminists that are trying to keep her alive.

    Hispancis are not trying to keep Hillary alive as much as they just want to be courted so they like all parties sweating them. But the women who support her are a base that will continue to chip at his campaign even after she will leave. these women are diabolical. And eventhough Hillary is a fake feminist they don’t care. She is the closest thing they could get to latching onto to use her as the poster-child of retained relevancy.

    They will help to rewrite and revise the story of the campaign to avenge her and their feminist drive. It actually will help to give them reinvention by proxy of feeling disenfranchised of having what to them will look like a charlatan drugged the American people on hope. They would take it to there not realizing the feminist crusade in itself is a negative, depressing and polarizing movement that never created inroads for inclusion to society. They are a dissident group yet they don’t see themselves that way because of righteous supremacy.

    It was like she knew she was being cute and thought that she would play the moment up, which is now called THE MOMENT.

    I can’t even hate. Obama was too, too cautious of her where it was only articulated as if something was wrong with him. He knew and yet again she got him still. And still though, she overpowered his detachment to guard himself from her. I sensed a scared man eventhough he is winning. He knows she is not to be trusted but he was on camera and the debates were live political theatre. He had to play THE GOOD GUY and not the cocky young BLACK KID. He couldn’t gloat or smile or really be too showy. He actually had to do about as minimum to not set her off further in performance because she is a girl that obsesses over “Anything you can do I can do better; I can do anything better than you.”

    But then she played up his cautiousness as a weakness and woo’d the audience to regain some poetic imagery of a heroine.

    I hope next Tuesday he comes across more enthused so that she is not looking like the graceful contender who was once champion and is still standing wanting a rematch. The political theatre could shift the narrative of a great story for the people to champion her as the underdog and him as the cruel oppressor.

    She faked it and it worked. She faked it until she made it to at least look like she will survive and that is the oldest trick in the book. That energizes your base if they know you still at least have stamina. You could be lying but you are just trying to by time and psyche out the perception of others to not catch the rouse being played.

    It does not matter how much money has been lost, if her base of Establishment brokers really wanted to, they could infuse more money. It’s not so much about her winning, it is about the needed opportunity of Obama not looking so good or as good.

    Her grandstanding is entertainment and it scores empathy with her base of lesser-educated people and emotional women that want their 60’s take on the feminist movement to not seem anymore irrelevant and obsolete. Hillary is their only hope for regaining visual relevancy hence the age of Paris, Lindsay, and Britney pissed on it instead of carrying the uptight torch of hating all things but themselves — aggrieved White Women.

    That smiling that Hillary displayed could mean that she and all angry White Women are going to give him, Obama, in the future torture as payback — if she loses. I don’t think this rivalry will ever end until one of them is in the grave to be honest. His false scribbling on the notepad tells so much that he can’t stand her and could not wait until it was over and she and all that smiling knows she is still under his skin even as she is bleeding slowly.

    I would have loved to see what he notes he scribbles and what he really wishes he could scribble on his pads everytime he debates with her. She knows he is seething and besides writing points to say, he would probably want to scribble her face. Each time she plays up the crowd, he doddles or takes a drink of water. It’s a sign of discomfort to me. I understand. I empathize but I think he learned another lesson.

    If you don’t kill your enemy, they will continue to come back after reinvention only to infiltrate and contaminate under facades.

  15. Denise

    Allow me to clarify my previous post.

    I am referring to general practices; stuff that is absolutely UNRELATED to this presidential campaign. More importantly, I’m referring to stuff I observed long before the POTUS campaign started.

    Just as a general rule, if folk have certain connections (to whomevah!) and/or cheddar, they can manipulate every variety of Web-based content to either protect or advance their agendas.

    Believe that! :: snap :: LOL

  16. Denise

    p.s. I think SB will break the one million hits threshold before the political convention season starts.

    Ehbody knows this blog joint is rockin’! 😆

    Um, at what time does the SOTBU telecast start today??

  17. Andrea


    That is what I am talking about as well too. A lot can happen in a week in temperment and tone. The media is so hungry for political drama the story ending in Texas and Ohio is not what they want. Never have we have such a contentious political primary of an Establishment member being uprooted. We had the Matrix series of movies which is fiction but we have not had anyone in real life and real-time this successful in uprooting the gatekeepers to a certain degree. Society has shifted and paradigms have shifted. The problem though is that after you get it, people will want to instantly revert back because the unknown is scary.

    Media just simply likes to see its narcissistic power in seeing how much they can alter and taint something that relies on them as them.

    I just don’t feel good about all this time until March 5th. Too much can happen and some very ambitious media goons can sway public opinion just because the drama seems to have subsided. And that is when usually the possum bites you.

    Everything can be tainted. More than just Hillary’s campaign re-energizing, I see the media really being the culprits because the media has not had such high traffic in a long time. They need the drama to continue instead of having 2 candidates or even independents candidates getting involved to tackle more intrinsic issues rather than just the broad ones.

    I do think that this blog has had a hand at shifting the paradigm shift.

    THANKS SB!!!!!

    Thanks for re-engineering some editiorial departments at media outlets. They read this. Believe me. They take cues on what they can talk about that is taboo by measuring Skeptical Brotha’s temperment and therefore ours who talk back to him. It’s free R & D for them to learn and catch-up on what they are too afraid to ask simply with courage. So they come here.

    Believe me.

  18. I see Cornel West is doing a good job of revving up the crowd at the Negro Super Bowl (aka State of the Black Union).

    I’ve covered these events, and even sitting at home this year, I can still write that Tavis is marketing his ass off, and everyone in New Orleans will not have anything of substance to take back to their communities except Jonathan Demme’s DVD, and another one of Tavis’ books about ACCOUNTABILITY.

    I’m sorry, but nobody in the Black Political Circles started talking about accountability until Black Agenda Report and CBC Monitor did back in 2005.

    Tavis steals ideas from everyone else…and you ever notice he never has Jesse and Al, or Cornel and Mike Dyson on the same forum at the same time?

  19. Andrea

    I got an email from the student, Stephanie, on the stage right now from Dillard a few weeks ago and we have been talking the past few days…mostly phone tag. What I sense is that in spite of all the criticism that Tavis has faced these past 2 weeks, it is the same ‘ole routine.

    I told her my story of detail about Tavis and I could sense last night she is just another token student leader to sit on the stage and has to provide a face of handpicked leadership and offer gratitude to King Tavis. As far as my story, I could tell it was too much for her too handle when she was thinking Tavis was altruistic. And that is what I see is the problem with most people. They don’t know the backstory and behind-the-scenes dealings of this man.

    I went there with her last night and told her that I knew she had to NOT EMBARRASS her school so with that she has to provide for the camera the proper tone of victimization but that most of what I knew and had experienced by so many in those circles she is among is a lot of posturing. I had a relationship with Dillard but as well I know how and why Student Affairs pick certain students to represent the school. I gave her an example that after what I shared with her and if Harvard/Boston was faced with a similar natural disaster that depleted their school and cities’ environment, their student leaders would not abide with the status quo and instead take risks to speak with a critical thinking unbought and unbossed tongue.

    She did tell me that she did feel like one day of service the day before the event was not enough. I went further and forced her to call it was it was. It was a performance. You can’t fix anything with one day of community service. It’s cute. She said not all the panelists were there yesterday as well which she found conflicting with what she thought in that they should have been there doing the ‘dirty work’ with them. One day of service surrounding around self-promotion is not altruistic service.

    I could tell that what I was saying and had already said put her in a delicate position. And I told her that I knew what I was doing in putting that responsibility on her. When I told her that most people don’t consider that Tavis does not offer TRANSPARENCIES of his sponsorship and how much the panelists get paid, she seemed to not have considered these ideas as issues. Her education does not cover the extensive language of understanding what is marketing and what is real activism.

    I don’t think however that she can be impartial to the temptation and influence of what she is a part of today because she is influenced by the celebrity of celebrity leadership. And that is what I see is most important to star-struck people not understanding that celebrity can’t fix us with boutique symposiums. Innovation is absent and self-interest is abound all that are there even if they are there altruistically. The model of the SOTBU creates a top-down model of pathological need for desperate media representation by a few who control and dictate what is valid to be heard. Stephanie did not know what I was talking about but I could tell she was trying to keep up. It was depressing. I went to bed upset and angry because I keep seeing the mass manufacturing of false leadership in well-meaning people who think Tavis’ model is golden and the virtuous example of self-sacrifice.

    See, Political Junkie…she has never heard the voices like the voices here or at the Black Agenda Report or the CBC Monitor. She only knows mainstream Black College thought-process and ideologies which goes along with this status quo performance of edutainment. The only voices the students know is that which is more mainstream and dumbed-down eventhough approved by gatekeepers they think have their best interest at heart. HBCUs don’t like “talk’ like this or the poisoning of their students’ minds to awaken them to think outside of the prescribed model of the Establishment associated with Tavis.

    She wants me to come to the school and share my story about why I stopped doing UN and coming to New Orleans and I told her that they don’t really want that truth. So I will see what she says and what she tells me later.

    I told her that I wasn’t coming back to be friendly and make the school feel-good. And what the SOTBU is is to service feel-good sentiments and entertainment under false illusions of progress. So people stay stuck thinking that that is progressive movement.

  20. Andrea:

    You did Stephanie proud and she returned the favor.

    Tavis tried to set her up – she handed him his ass.

    He asked the question “What if Obama loses; what happens to your energy?”

    She told him “We’re like Moses who told the people to keep their eye on the goal – Joshua’s out there.”

    In other words “If not Obama, we don’t stop until we get our ‘Joshua'”.

    And the Standing O she got put Tavis in his place.

    I’ll say it now of Tavis Smiley – HATER.

    And Sheila Jackson-Lee, not to mention Stephanie Tubbs-Jones, got shamed today; if Tavis is so “balanced” why didn’t he have CBC members who support Obama in the House?

    It is all about toting water for the Clintons.

    I’m going to repeat myself.

    Tavis Smiley = HATER.

    You notice that wallpaper in the Background? ExxonMobil, Mickey D and Wells Fargo. Not to mention that African-American Historical exhibit being sponsored by Wal-MART.

    As if Wal-MART can undo all the discrimination they’ve caused and continue to cause, by frontin’ an African-American Historical exhibit.

    Wal-MART – who has the Borg Queen sitting on their corporate Board and to my knowledge, only gave up that seat when she ran for the Senate.

    Tavis undermines his own credibility taking payola from these corporate monsters, so how do you call out members of Congress who are feeding at the same pig’s trough?

  21. And everytime Jackson-Lee or Tubbs-Jones mentioned their support for the Borg Queen, it was met with silence and skeptical expressions, even from the old guard.

    Black people aren’t stupid – eventually we all get there, and what I mean by “there” is that they know Tavis has done ten of these forums and nothing’s changed in America for Black people that can be measured in terms of substance.

    As I said in an article I wrote for Black Commentator three years ago, in covering an SOTBU in Houston:

    I’ll tell you why I attend such events – because I want to ask these questions, and determine for myself the correct courses of action to take. If any of these noted speakers are not willing to step into the fray with you, get their hands dirty, do the hard work, make themselves available to hear your concerns and provide you with concrete solutions (for which they should be held accountable), then we shouldn’t support such venues, because we can always attend a Kanye West, Kirk Franklin or Norman Brown concert, if all we want to do is feel better about ourselves. We shouldn’t be so willing to give up a Saturday (in my case as well as others, spend the money to travel to these venues) to feel good about ourselves while we listen to people talk loud and say nothing.

    Full article here:

  22. Denise

    I understood Senator Obama’s absence, but were any of the other “race transcending” black pols in attendance? I wonder if any were invited?

    Again, the SOTBU is not a litmus test of blackness or “authenticity”, and I reject any effort to treat it as such. OTOH, I see nothing absolutely nothing WRONG with the event or with those who chose to participate.

  23. Denise, in all fairness, I don’t think anyone on this board made the SOTBU a litmus test for authenticity or Blackness of anyone.

    But, in the past two weeks, when Tavis tried to shame Senator Obama in to showing up at the SOTBU, he turned his own event into said litmus test.

    There is nothing wrong with the event, as long as its’ marketed as an event and not a forum designed to prescribe remedies for the ills of the Black Community.

    Tavis has marketed the event as such, when he says he’s bringing “the best and brightest of Black America” on stage to impart their wisdom and knowledge onto us.

    I’ve attended three of these events, and I can guarantee the same individuals (listed below) will always have a seat on that podium, no matter what’s going on, and I know there are more “best and brightest of Black America” should Tavis deign to get off his lazy ass and go look for them:

    Michael Eric Dyson
    Jesse Jackson
    Cornel West
    Al Sharpton
    Na’im Akbar
    Eddie Glaude

    Notice that they’re all men? No sistas get the same repeat, year after year, at least since I’ve started to follow this shindig. But those five brothas have shown up consistently.

    Which is why I treat it as an event, because if it were a forum for doing constructive activities to take back our communities, there should be activities going on, directly connected to this and some follow up or evaluation of effectiveness within six months.

    Democratic Debate – Check.
    Republican Debate – Check and only Tom Tancredo showed up. Huckabee, McCain, Giuliani, Grandpa Fred or Mittens didn’t think Black people’s issues were important enough to get their asses to Morgan State and debate.

    So Tavis has done his bit to be annointed as a Black Leader, but only if he’s willing to be held to the same standards of accountability as he’s demanding of Obama. He should not be willing to demand something of Obama that he’s not demanding of the Borg Queen, or anyone else not toting his water.

    I’ve never said his event was WRONG – my position is that there’s nothing for people to take with them in terms of constructive guides towards action. I posted an article I did at Black Commentator a couple of years ago which outlines what should happen at these events and how to evaluate effectiveness or not.

  24. Denise

    I hear you, Rikyrah. I got the impression that many of the panelists were Obama supporters who were quite proud of his campaign.

    Overall, I think today provided a nice mix of opinion and perspective. I was glad to see Michael Steele and the EEOC chairwoman (GOP appointed) on stage if for no other reason than to highlight that all of us are not Democrats.

    Similarly, the absence of perspective from the new Democratic vanguard today was indeed a missed opportunity. I’ll leave it at that since I don’t know the particulars.

    Finally, while some of the SOTBU topics and format may seem tired to us political junkies, let’s not forget that every year, someone – especially a young person – watches it for the FIRST TIME. If nothing else, they get a taste of the diversity of black opinion and exposure to our opinion leaders.

    That alone makes this symposium worthwhile for me.

  25. Denise


    I know you didn’t say the SOTBU was wrong, and I respect your insight.

    I was using that language to set up my question about why none of the race transcenders participated.

    It’s all good 😉

  26. Andrea


    The fact is: Tavis picks who Tavis likes or whom Tavis wants to embarrass. Tavis does not invite anyone who is too independent and consciously strategic unless….unless…you continue a relationship of allowing him to be your representative conduit to relay information to the community. And with that, he wants access to broker you. Part of that is ownership of you by association in an indirect way of simplying redistricting clearer affiliation and loyalty to him and his constituency. That is what is underlying about Obama not being there, for one.

    Two…he is tight with the old ladies in the Black Establishment. I remember when this guy got a shirt from me and he was one of a few guys working at Essence. This was back in 2005. He said working there at Essence is like having a lot of aunts at your job. I think it is a similar relationship and environment of Tavis and women in the Black Establishment…if they are older. It’s peculiar and he is treating as their doting son. In return he protects their interests as if they are surrogate mothers. It’s weird.

    I was in Houston for that SOTBU and I had some dealings with Tavis and Sheila Jackson Lee the week of the coming event. Tavis has a strange relationship with domineering older Black Women yet he is resistant to younger, spontaneous independent Sistas. I know this becuase I have heard similar stories from other Black female activists who are Gen Xers. We all picked up on the peculiarity of how he chooses who he likes and who doesn’t like. There is a formula that has dysfunction all over it in how he is so prejudiced against a certain female demographic unless they are part of the Establishment too.

    I didn’t have anything against it until the SOTBU in Atlanta. I listened to Jehmu Greene tell the audience that the Establishment was stifling. I was sitting in the audience with a Spelman student and a Dillard Student on both sides of me. This was the Spring before Katrina and one of Dillard’s students came to stay with me on her Spring Break. Well it was those two young women that pointed out that their was a prejudice in the audience from women to the women panelists and that the women in the audience clapped more for male panelists remarks while the also responded to Tavis’ cautiousness against sentiments Jehmu made about generation prejudice and what Dr. Connie Rice said about sexism.

    The Spelman student and the Dillard student picked up on a lot of engineered slights to support Tavis’ affinity to stroke the males more and hence also support the women’s (in the pews) drunkedness on the model of male dominance in leadership. Remember: we were in Bishop Long’s church and Atlanta is very much so in favor of patriarchial models. It was strange.

    That was one of the first times I noticed something was unhealthy about his events being there in person.

    But also I think that was 2nd one I went to at the time and I learned that the structure of the event was simply an EVENT. It was not built to provide solutions. It was like church and theatre combined. There was little exercise of democracy provided in that you listened to very predjudiced viewpoints of people grappling with limits of time to truly draw a picture and instead but perform and try to make a point. The environment fostered grandstanding and aggrandizement instead of what the audience needed in learning how to actualize from the insight offered from the panelists.

    I realized Tavis and his team were not the best and the brightest to truly produce the think-tank symposium as anything other than a theatrical event.

    I had critical ideas that could help him produce a more effective endeavor but Tavis is kind of like Hillary in that he hires people with limited vision like him. I wasn’t offering and I am still not offering (free focus group research and development for him).

    Last year I saw Angela Glover Blackwell at the Center for American Progress and I didn”t tell her who I was. However I questioned her on a few ideas and she was not catching what I was throwing at her. Now this woman knows policy and what she is doing. The problem though is that she does not not know the new innovative ideas I was dangling in front of her for her to grasp. That told me partly of what is at fault with that whole clique. No matter how intensely they care about leading, they are all too absorbed with their legacies and their ideologies to want to listen to new ideas. It’s egocentric and narcissistic.

    I could name instances talking to Eddie Glaude and even Cornell West…they are offering a forum in the same model without any outside-of-the-box thinking. Tavis surrounds himself with people like him and disdains ideas that challenge him.

  27. Andrea

    Political Junkie,

    Thanks, but I can’t take credit for that Joshua and Moses line with Stephanie. Now I am always using that anecdote but she pulled that one herself.

    I liked it because I know how much Tavis only thinks young people are window-dressing. He uses them as props to make himself and that clique of theirs feel more important as if they are divine crusaders for young people to idolize. It’s a sick ritualistic framework of creating a younger constituency to support him by default.

    It makes me sick because the kids have a hard time shaking him and the hold the Establishment has on them.

    That is what Steph and I were talking about and it was not what she wanted to hear. She wanted to believe in him for all that he markets and advertises of himself to be.

  28. Andrea,

    Once again, you are just dropping some serious truths, and I appreciate it.

    I am so thru with Tavis it’s not even funny.

    He’s SUSPECT.

    Bob Johnson is more honest than Tavis Smiley – did anyone ever think that statement could be written?

  29. We also need to get on board to help Dennis Kucinich – the Democratic Party has decided he needs to go, too; just like Steve Cohen.

    If we can educate our people to vote their interests that would ensure re-elections of both progressives.

    Nikki Tinker = Corporate Mammy; SB has already pointed that out. And the Black Preachers in Memphis are upset because their money train departed when the Dark Sith lost that Senate race, and his State Senator uncle headed to the Big House.

  30. Chesapeake

    Thanks for all the insight. Although I still see the value in Tavis and the SBU (after all, self-promotion is to be expected since status is one of the great temptations and intoxicants of man), I’m recognizing more and more limitations. Beyond the compaints y’all have launched, you will find no sign of spin-offs from the Covenant resulting in legislation, bills, orders, opinions, briefs, international conventions, treaties, agreements, etc.

    The SBU can’t be everything to everyone, but after 9 (I think) years, shouldn’t we see these kinds of effects?

    The Covenant has given people some tools, but if the SBU is what it purports to be, shouldn’t Tavis and the leaders and moderators be either fostering or tracking targeted efforts?

    Or is the mantra “you are the leaders/change you’ve been waiting/looking/hoping for” a statement that we should take things (if we choose) from where the SBU left them?

  31. Chesapeake, you hit the nail on the head. After almost ten years of these events, we should see some progress, SOMEWHERE.

    You know US. After two or three times, everything becomes habit or routine. That’s what Tavis’ event has become – a routine showcasing of people who talk loud and say nothing. And there’s no progress or anything to track or monitor because there’s no accountability built into the process.

    I carry the knife wounds from elected officials like Harold Ford, Jr., Al Wynn, Kendrick Meek, because I work with a group that built accountability into what we do and then we attempted to hold them accountable to us. The CBCMonitor Report card listed “brightline” issue votes, like the Bankruptcy Bill, Telecomm immunity, and continued funding of the Iraq War. I can truthfully say that after our first report card in September 2005, Harold Ford no-showed at his own CBC Weekend Events because he didn’t feel like explaining why, out of a 100% possible score, he scored only 5% (which is an “F”), because that would have required explaining why, for 10 years, he sold out Memphians who sent him to DC to look out for their interests. Steve Cohen has done more in two years than Harold did in 10, yet the ignorant ass preachers in Memphis want to replace Cohen.

    Kendrick Meek upped his score when his Miami district laid into him for his votes and told him they didn’t send him to Congress if he wasn’t going to represent them like his mother did.

    Al Wynn got a primary challenge and now he’s gone; thanks to Donna Edwards.

    People in North Carolina and Alabama would field a challenger to Artur Davis and Mel Watt, if they could find another “Donna Edwards”. That is the message we managed to send to the Congressional Black Caucus – we will field a challenger in your district if you screw your district over in your legislative votes.

    Does not matter if the challenger is African-American like Donna (which is better because they can’t play the race card) or white, Latino, Asian or Jew Progressive – if their stand on the issues are what we need, that’s who gets the help.

    The days of celebrating Black Faces in High Places are over, and that’s all Tavis can hang on to. Because if we tell Al, Jesse, Cornel and Mike Dyson to go sit down, he has no SOTBU again, ever.

    He doesn’t get any more opportunities to steal ideas and codify them into books that “he makes no profit from” either.

    And if any of you truly believe Tavis isn’t getting paid from those books or this event, I have beachfront property in Phoenix for sale.

    We have to save our damned selves and stop waiting for folks like Tavis to do it for us.

  32. Chesapeake

    TPJ, accolades extended to you folks at the CBCMonitor. We desperately need to hold each other accountable to continue to develop.

    Here’s where I’m not sure whether we disagree: I believe the SBU has its place. I’m starting to believe that the SBU has maxed out … that the Covenant and the report of progress in the “Covenant in Action” is the best the SBU can do under its present organization and purposes.

    If that’s the case, it’s okay. Tavis and his “events” serve a purpose of taking issues to a stage open for the world to digest. Besides, how deep can an event go into issues like labor, fair wage, employment, immigration, and justice if the leaders want those sponsors to return year after year. You can’t take money or supply from the kingpin and expect not to repay in some way. Moreover, you can only be so candid and transparent on TV in this country. CSPAN, PBS, PRI, and NPR have limits, ya know?

    So, don’t “sit [them] down.” Challenge those good ideas with better potential realities. Challenge them with not only “intellectuals” but also people who live and walk this stuff. People with OTJ training are considered experts, too! Also, accept the challenge and be accountable.

    The accountability is in the challenge. As an example, Meek, whether by force or acquiescence, accepted the challenge and accountability. Kudos! That’s what these folks who have been saying the same things every year need in order to grow. If they’re so arrogant as to shun accountability (which may be the case with some, but some will invite it), then we can deal from there and perhaps accept their contribution.

    Here’s a challenge – When are we going to develop enough so we can move from the singlular focus on “helping ourselves” (a constant theme of the SBU) to concerted exertion leadership of this country and world to “helping others” by dealing with human rights violations, corporate colonialism, and theft of resources against people of color all over the world? The addition of TransAfrica this year was cool, but can I really deal with my family if I can’t for fifteen minutes get my mind off me?

  33. Chesapeake, I don’t think we disagree at all.

    The SOTBU would be worthwhile if Tavis allowed the people in the audience to participate in the discussion, instead of bringing ten people on stage and allowing them to speechify one by one.

    I admit, I was jazzed when I attended my first SOTBU in ATL back in 2005.

    I started getting suspicious in Houston, and by the time he got to Hampton, he’d marketed the event as a weekend vacation package, and that’s when I got through with Tavis.

    We need to have that gathering and the conversation. But does Tavis have to be the one always moderating? I’d even go if they gave the responsibility to Mike Dyson or Eddie Glaude – just someone who could ask the questions that need to be asked.

    Roland Martin would be a good moderator, and thanks to his CNN exposure, he’d be better than Tavis, cause he’s positioned himself not to have a personal agenda.

  34. Roland Martin would be a good moderator, and thanks to his CNN exposure, he’d be better than Tavis, cause he’s positioned himself not to have a personal agenda.

    Did you ever hear ROland Martin’s explanation on why he refuses to go to either SOTBU or the CBC Weekend anymore?

    I have problems with Roland, but right is right.

    He got disgusted that they never went to the ‘next level’ with these weekends. He was like, how come the CBC can’t dig into their pockets and begin to create and cultivate a Black Politically Engaged base of support? He asked, what would it take for them to hire a database firm (preferrably Black- recycling those dollars), get them to collect all the information on those attending, and hooking then up with the ‘CBC Agenda’ (TPJ, stop laughing -if they were doing their job, they’d have one). Roland also felt that this should be done with the SOTBU . He was like, do you think that all those conservative groups leave those folks alone when they go home? Hell no…they are the ‘troops’ that help them get whatever they want passed legislatively.

    Here are heaven sent, oppotunities for databases of at least interested, if not active Black folk, and they leave them alone, not utilizing technology or even being smart.




    Now, is that because he’s stolen $30 billion?

  35. After Markos lit him up, the Whore apologizes for his Chris Shays remarks:

    Ford Statement On Shays Comments

    The following is a statement from Harold Ford Jr. regarding comments about Chris Shays which were taken out of context:

    “Chris Shays is my friend, and I was proud to serve with him in Congress. It’s unfortunate he’s not a Democrat.

    However, I plan on endorsing the Democratic nominee for Congress in Chris’s district and everywhere in the country for that matter – as I plan to work for the Democratic nominee for President with all my energy and heart.

    My comments were clearly taken out of context.

    The best opportunity for real, positive and sustained change in America’s standing in the world, our quest to create world class schools in every urban and rural area in America and shifting our dependence from foreign oil to cleaner and renewable sources is by electing Democrats.

    This is why I will support Democrats everywhere to beat Republicans to ensure that our next Democratic president has wide House and Senate Democratic majorities to work with to change America for the better.”
    Posted by Chris D. Jackson at 6:12 PM

    I’ll do it for you , Rikyrah:


  36. Rikyrah, Roland’s my friend and I disagree with him but he began to hip me to those SOTBU’s and no follow up, which I think is a source of frustration for everyone concerned.

    I needed to go to the emergency room for oxygen regarding your “CBC having an agenda” comment. The last time they had an agenda, John Conyers had a head full of hair and it was coal black – Dellums sported an AFRO and a dashiiki, and John Lewis was coherent.

  37. y’all,

    In case you were wondering, I did watch the SOTBU in its entirety and will post on it later. Suffice it to say that I was disillusioned by the entire dreary affair and its shameless corporate sponsorship.

  38. Sb, looking forward to your post.

    Rikyrah and crew:

    How long did it take for The Whore to come out with that “taken out of context remarks”?

    LOL, he must really want to go to Yearly Kos this year. It would be worth registration fee just to see this Whore in whole ballrooms full of progressives, even though Markos prentends to be a progressive.

    The Whore has to kiss and make up – can’t front off the DLC as being Democratic any more. We might see him get pink-slipped if that 50 state strategy succeeds in taking out some DLC members with the ReThugs.

  39. Cliff

    In defense of Tavis Smiley.

    I have to come strong in the midst of a firestorm of female powerful heavyweight thinkers.

    Which other black leader/moderator have galvanized the leadership the likes of

    Michael Eric Dyson
    Jesse Jackson
    Cornel West
    Al Sharpton
    Na’im Akbar
    Eddie Glaude

    for nine strait years? Yes TPJ, these are heavyweights?

    Yes, some strong sisters need to represent, but I thought I saw some, HMMMM.

    “Tavis has a strange relationship with domineering older Black Women yet he is resistant to younger, spontaneous independent Sistas.”
    You know why?
    Younger Sisters can seem to be too strong and domineering with their intelligence, and can be intimidating.

    You knew I was coming after you, Andrea, after you let this one go…

    “It was not built to provide solutions. It was like church and theatre combined.”


    Think about it.
    The Construction of the Black Agenda and the motivation to enact the ideas as prescribed in it are thereby providing solutions to preceding problems faced by black America from the poisonous political system.

    The often-repeated phrase “holding accountable the political figure, the aspects of the ramifications of the black agenda no matter who is in office”, has been a pervasive solution throughout the years.

    BTW, Andrea’s girl Angela Glover Blackwell was there this year and did repeat.
    “Notice that they’re all men? No sistas get the same repeat, year after year, at least since I’ve started to follow this shindig.”
    Close out argument TPJ.
    “Tavis surrounds himself with people like him and disdains ideas that challenge him.”

    I see no one else doing what he is doing, every year in February, but challenge him and match his actions, how about 25%?

    Close out argument Andrea.

    With Love 🙂

  40. Cliff

    I had no idea how idea how powerful master Clinton was. I am surprised Bill has not learned how to “Crip Walk”, and smoke a blunt, while eating barbeque with Hillary and the rest of us who can’t see the light.

    Here is their mindset, but we can help them see themselves.

    “You can’t be serious, they’s been running thangs all this time, you thank thay jus gons ta let’s one of us in ta steel tha show?”

    “Obama can’t have it both ways. He has to one day admit he is either Black or not. So far he has been able to pronounce he is Black genetically but he has distanced himself and made himself ambiguous politically. ”

    In your mind try applying pressure on them politically. Then apply that same amount of pressure on Obama, politically. The results will definitely not be the same because in is known scientifically and genetically that pressure of one’s own weighs heavier than that of the oppressor.

    I don’t know what I’m talking about though, except through the Spirit.

    “Yes We Can!!!!!” 🙂

  41. Rikyrah and crew:

    How long did it take for The Whore to come out with that “taken out of context remarks”?

    LOL, he must really want to go to Yearly Kos this year. It would be worth registration fee just to see this Whore in whole ballrooms full of progressives, even though Markos prentends to be a progressive.

    The Whore has to kiss and make up – can’t front off the DLC as being Democratic any more. We might see him get pink-slipped if that 50 state strategy succeeds in taking out some DLC members with the ReThugs.

    I thought it was hilarious – the original DailyKos post. I was like, what has the Dark Sith done now?

    But, he’s nothing, if not slicker than grease.

    Kiss kiss…makeup with the DailyKos crowd…or the appearance of it.

    This is another reason I prefer Obama – he clearly is a believer of the 50 state strategy.

    Oh, and SB, found this nickname for TBQ on another board…goes in line with your Star Wars themes…..Hillpatine.

  42. Andrea


    I was not surmising completely on speculation. What I say and type is due to evidence. Evidence to validate is not something I am reaching for. I am a credible source and the only way I can be a credible source is to go further and HINT that…maybe…I have been in a position other than just an audience member but instead someone a Black Establishment Big-Whig and several journalists have lobbied to Tavis to spotlight.

    Cliff, you continue to slying try one-up me when I don’t come to this blog to compete with you or others. And to be honest I don’t feel the contention from others even when we disagree, but I have noticed your trend.

    So before you go any further, take that I know what the fuck I am talking about. I just might not be telling the whole story because…I would have to disclose some other sources that rather stay in good graces with the Establishment and as well…people have been asking me to write a book about all of the actual experiences I have been through. I am not writing them all on blogs because I rather make sure all the stories tell a complete story. With that said, I wish you would shut the hell up when you feel the itch to try to dominate me.

  43. Cliff

    Emotions Queen.

    Emotions 🙂

    When you are challenged you swing hard, and I love your writings, especially when you are challenged. Since you obviously have a lot of education and knowledge, and willing to share with us, your experiences is very commendable. You are a heavyweight, and I’m just trying to add on some more pounds of knowledge.

    BTW, I am honored to be able to challenge a black establishment, Big-Whig, through this conduit that SB built. Trust me I had know idea what I was getting myself into when I (by the grace of God) started wrestling with the IMUS snake.

    “Thanks for re-engineering some editiorial departments at media outlets. They read this. Believe me. They take cues on what they can talk about that is taboo by measuring Skeptical Brotha’s temperment and therefore ours who talk back to him.”


    Didn’t know this was that serious.
    Didn’t know this was that influential.
    I love my heavy powerfully influential, serious, highly educated sitstas.

    Queen. 🙂

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