Have we forgotten about our responsib... Log Out | Topics | Search
Moderators | Register | Edit Profile

Email This Page

  AddThis Social Bookmark Button

AALBC.com's Thumper's Corner Discussion Board » Culture, Race & Economy - Archive 2003 » Have we forgotten about our responsibility? « Previous Next »

Author Message
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Troy

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Sunday, May 18, 2003 - 05:28 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

To quote Snake Girl Poisonous in an earlier post:
"We have, as a group, focused on racial unfairness for so very long...that we forgot to have "ideals of responsibility" for our men folk. Our community remains one of the most sexist and "boys will be boys" mentality groups outside Africa. We baby and forgive our sons anything, because "they suffer so much just being black".

Poor, poor R. Kelly...a BLACK MAN having to be held accountable for his actions. HOW COULD WE LET a black man be treated this way!?

So the Pimp mentality--even with a man like Kweisi Mfume--is "acceptable" to us.


When I was in elementary school 30 years ago, people made fun of you for being smart. This is STILL going on. We used to speak two languanges one for the street and one for off the street (the home, church, school, the office, etc). Today it seems kids ONLY learn the languange of the street. If a girl got pregnant while still in school Jr or Sr High, she was not praised and accomodated -- there was shame. When a child spoke to an adult they addressed that adult as Mr., Miss or Mrs., so-n-so. Today teenages treat seniors like one of their peers. Teenage boys will sit on the subway legs gapped open taking up two seats while pregnant women and old people stand right in front them. Grown men an womem walk down the street throwing their trash on the ground as if that is where is belongs. Sure I'm rambling and I can go on all day.

It just seems we have lost all respect for ourselves, our communities and our own education. All the while complaining about how rich white men and making impossible for us to do anything -- without ever once looking the the mirror.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Chick

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Sunday, May 18, 2003 - 07:10 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

O.K. Troy,

I totally agree that we have become too focused on racial inequality. To the point of having a "victim's" mentality regarding our color, however, I gotta raise a few other points with you.

First up, because I'm a female, I totally understand the fact that women are the transmitters of "heritage", "family history" and..."mores and folkways" to children. Adult males, according to sociology, are much less likely to pass on this extremely important Survival and Life Tool to children.

I notice in many of your posts, you seem to think that RACE itself should be removed and that we should focus on educating and intellectualizing our children to compete for "success" in the world...without a strong sense of race.

That's all good, but I still know that without specific racial awareness and self-identity we will destroy even more black children and create even more "every-man-for-himself" thinking citizens who corrupt, abuse and pimp our community and our culture.

Race is extremely important. Whites celebrate their race every single day in a myriad of different ways. Their Specific Racial Identity is not only celebrated everytime you turn on the t.v., but WE celebrate their identity more than they do.

So while I agree with you that we need to focus on our VALUE SYSTEM...let us not ignore that our value system is so seriously lacking mainly because we don't have any real community in the first place.

The Hip-Hop movement replaced the Civil Rights movement. One movement praised "moving together as a community...the role of Spirit in our lives...the belief in respect for elders...self-respect and self-Restraint...Civil Responsibility and awareness of national issues." Before 1985...nobody would dare call another black person, "Ghetto". We was all Ghetto! And damn proud of it--even the middle class blacks considered themselves "country" or "ghetto".

....the replacement movement preaches "individuality to the point of being unaccountable for ones own pregnancy, ones own violence...sanctions and promotes MATERIALISM (bling-bling)...sexual gratifation without strings (even if that means 35 yr. old men sexing 14 yr. old girls and blaming the CHILD) and selfishness in general."

When I hear Black people talking about they don't want to be "BLACK" anymore...that's just one more thing they're putting on the pile of respect and integrity to burn.

Blacks been here 400 years. At what point will we NOT BE for sale? As much as you complained about the evils of youth today...I see an even more powerful evil amongst black stockerbrokers, movers and shakers, Degree Holders. They offer NO leadership to "specific" ills of Black folk.



Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Girl

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Sunday, May 18, 2003 - 07:13 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Curtis Mayfield said:

"If there's a Hell...we all gonna go."

I'm bout ready to jump ship and buy me some land in Trinidad and wash my hands of black folks. They gett'n on my last nerve.




Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Troy

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Sunday, May 18, 2003 - 11:37 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Snake (fill in the Blank):

Yeah I'm well aware that by reading my posts I may come across as someone who thinks "that RACE itself should be removed and that we should focus on educating and intellectualizing our children to compete for "success" in the world...without a strong sense of race."

You may not know that almost 6 years ago I started this web site and http://aalbc.com. Hopefully that will give you some indication how important I think it is for Black people, my people to have a voice on the thing we call the world wide web.

I'm not trying to eliminate Black people. All I'm saying is that we are over using the race excuse and assume more responsibility for our condition today.

Of course the adults are no better. How do you think we got into this situation? If it is OK for the president of the NAACP to have 5 baby mommas I know I can have at least 2 or 3 right?


Trinidad does sound nice though...
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Cynique

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Monday, May 19, 2003 - 12:33 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Snake Chick, Snake girl, Poisonous Snake girl???I feel like Medusa with a head full of serpents. Are you all the same person - oops I mean the same reptile?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Heffa

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Monday, May 19, 2003 - 01:26 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Yes, Cynique. I haven't decided which one I like best.

I used to date a guy who had a snake. I loved it. He would let it crawl on the floor of the car while we were driving...or between my legs.

I miss that boyfriend.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Chris Hayden

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Monday, May 19, 2003 - 10:31 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Troy:

Sounds like you are getting a little old and crabby. I came up during the "good ole days" and it was no golden age, that's for sure. Youth have always been loud, rude, violent, people have always been stupid and unprideful--there are more blacks in college and in the middle class than ever I know you are going to say there are more black men in jail than in college, but that is as much a function of economics--most crime is perpetrated by poor people and residents of the inner cities, a large proportion of blacks live below the poverty line and in the inner cities--at one time this was true of the Irish and Germans, and then the Jews and Italians and it is our turn in the barrell along with Latinos and Asians (Skip the model minority myth, right now a bunch of Asian merchants in this town are being terrorized and shaken down by Vietnamese and Cambodian gangbangers)--to hope for some Utopia where we are all Ivy Leaguers or Rhodes scholars is unrealistic.

You think we have problems? Again I think it is probably your New York Centricity operating--come to outstate Missouri sometime and hang out around one of these trailer parks.

Most people are just average. There will always be those left behind--be best to concentrate on the successes than the failures.

Think of it--those misguided youth--how many of us who look down on them can offer them anything other than advice? I don't have a business or any way to offer them a living soo--

I mean, I see this breast beating all the time oddly among your more successful blacks--can't seem to enjoy their own success out of frustration that less successful blacks are making them "look bad". And they usually are doing it around other successful blacks--I'm sure nobody on this list has made people stand up on the subway or mocked anybody because they were smart--why not take your message to those who need it? No race is perfect. All races have their failures and screw ups.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Thumper

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Monday, May 19, 2003 - 03:38 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hello All,

The way I see it, and Troy I see your point and I mostly disagree, we seem to be skipping a step.

Troy, where I disagree with you is using race as an excuse. What you said is all nice and everything, and if we were living in Hanna-Barbera land with Yogi and Boo-Boo, our equality would have already happened. In the real world, we're still black in America. I'm sure there are many upper-, middle class blacks that believe they have made it and see no need to shout "Its the white man holdin' me down..." Racism is still prevalent. White folks have just gotten a little slicker with it. Now those middle class balck folks can have the mindset that race no longer matters, raise their children that race will have no influence in their lives, but I have to ask, what have those black middle class DONE to eradicate racism? What have they done to ensure that America is wearing the rose colored glasses wrapped in the good ol' red, white and blue? Have they made sure that all the civil right laws that SHOULD be passed, have been passed? Do we have the right number of agencies that will diligently enforce these laws and make sure that the violaters are punished? Have we reached the stage where job applications won't be thrown away because of the applicant's name is Torneisha or some variation? So, are you saying that it's OK for me to drive around in a Mercedes Benz SUV and not be worried about getting stopped by the police for DWB? *eyebrow raised* Well, it seems to me that before we go to DisneyWorld join hands and sing "its a small world after all", we black folks got work to do. There's no need in pretending that the fight have been won, and when we haven't stepped into the ring yet.

Second, Troy, for the black folks who are "tired" of being black, I feel pretty safe in saying this here since they wouldn't be reading this board being Black and ever so "tired", Man, all I can tell you is to stay away from them people because they got mad self-esteem, identity issues, ISSUES! Best, I can tell 'em is "Hey, dawg, you should pop a couple of Prozac pills, have a drink or two, seek somebody's therapy, have an orgasm or two, but do something cause, baby, you in a bad way." That's some serious self-hatred there. They can wish to be white all they want to, but wishin ain't going to make it so. Those people we need to pity and pray for 'em.

Third, and part of their problem is worrying what the whtie folks think. I'm sorry, but to me, if a black person live thier lives with the constant thought "what will white people think" in the back of their heads, those black people are still slaves, they are still in bondage. They have put the shackles on their very being, locked it, and threw the key away. Why should they care that deep? I don't get it. It says to me that they are dealing with white folks that ain't got good sense. As have been pointed out, we've been here for going on 400 years. Now, if white folks ain't got it in their heads yet, that we are all the same, odds are, they ain't going to get it. My advice is stop trying to convince them otherwise. That's an awfully hard head, and there ain't nothin' we can do that's going to change it.

Snake girl, I feel you on most of your posts, but I disagree with you on the Kwsei tip. I could care less how many kids the man has out of wedlock, that ain't my business. Now, I would have a problem if I was the one having to support them. As long as he's supporting and raising his children, more power to the man. He's doing what he's suppose to be doing.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Claxton

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Monday, May 19, 2003 - 05:49 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Actually, I want to hit on a point that Troy raised at the top of this thread. When I was in elementary school, I was the one being laughed at because I was smart. Of course, coming from a small town and being one of the few blacks doing any advanced classwork, I wasn't a particularly small target. I got picked on by my cousins, by other blacks not related to me, and by whites who found it strange that a black boy would know the kind of stuff I knew. But by the time I got to high school, few people were laughing at me. They realized that I was positioning myself to do some things in life that would make a difference. Didn't help my dating life any, until I was way out of college, but that's another story.

The point is, I didn't change me for anyone. No one should have to do that. If I used a 25-cent word with my teacher or my parents, you better believe I also used it with the people around me. More often than not, they knew exactly what I was talking about, even if they didn't know exactly what I was saying. Even now, people seek me out, not because of my color but because of the natural brainpower God gave me...The worst thing is for a child to hide that in shame. I nearly committed that sin, and I shudder to think of what it would've cost me.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Trumpet Playa

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Monday, May 19, 2003 - 05:55 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Great post Claxton.

I got some nutritional advice:

Brown eggs are 175% more nutritious than White eggs. Brown eggs are less fattening and stimulate brain cells similar to the way fish oil does.

Brown rice is 400% more nutritious than White rice. Brown rice is higher in protein as well and builds lean muscle quicker.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Cynique

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Monday, May 19, 2003 - 10:06 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Fellow Posters:
It's unfortunate but true, that being black in America is a life that comes with a built-in handicap. Because racism has stifled our reflexes, making it in this country is kinda like starting a race 2 seconds after the bang of the gun has sounded. Yet, we need voices like Troy's to remind us of the ways to make things better.

BTW, I found it interesting what Troy and Claxton had to say about the days of their youth because of the circumstances of my own formative years. Growing up in a town just outside of Chicago, a little village that has been integrated since it was founded back in 1870, I was lucky not to have had to adopt a "street" alter ego. I could always just be myself and because I was secure in my identity I never came across as a black person trying to act white. In fact, in high school all the white kids wanted to be like me and my crowd because they thought we were so cool. (And this was a long time ago.) And, the same situation existed in the dorm when I went away to college. But, deep down in side, we all knew that things would be different when we went out into the real world. The black experience is different things to different people, but - the black experience will never be the white experience.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 12:10 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Troy and Chris:

Troy-

There are some patterns that I think I see in your train of thought: preoccupation with the role of the individual and race.

It seems that you constantly return to the role of the individual, although you've agreed that both the individual and society are interconnected. And you also return to race and the discussion of the allusion of race, which for you illustrates that since there is only the human race then the poverty and poor standing of phenotypically black and brown people must be the result of their individual behavior not some innate disability.

The problem with this train of thought, if indeed i am correct, is that you have yet to address racism. It seems that you are conflating race with racism. Your discussion on race, ie "All I'm saying is that we are over using the race excuse and assume more responsibility for our condition today." suggests that you at one time or another you believed that our race was responsible for our short comings....and so that black people's behavior which was determined by their blackness resulted in poverty. Racism(not race) is Partially responsible for our shortcoming. Yet, you have not addressed racism only race.


Now, if this is true....i ask what did you think when you thought there was a such thing as "race." If it is not, and if you have the time and the inclination, please correct me.


And, i ask if you've considered that in all societies and in all of history...there was always a group that was discriminated against...and in the dominant group and "minority group" there was always poverty. If we look at poverty, there is the underclass, working poor, working class, and lower middle class, middle class, etc...What all this says saying is that INDEED we need to be good, responsible, and hard working people. YET, if poverty is a reality in all social systems(ie communalism, capitalisn, socialism), then you are trying to place too much responsiblity on the individual.

Basically, i'm stating that from begining to end, you seem to only look inward(at blacks) and not inward and outward(at society). You are right, we do have problems, and we need to address those internal problems as well as those external problems. By focuing on the individual you place all emphasis on the community, but none again, on society. This was a dilemma in the 60s; Some of the black leaders asked, if we wanted to integrate into a burning house....i say no! I will only use the flames to heat my home, make food, and just enough fire to protect myself...but do i want to get burned, I say no....


Chris:

I'm from Harlem and the Bronx...Troy's ideas are his own.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Chris Hayden

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 11:04 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Troys ideas are his own but they are still reflective of where he lives--as are all of ours. Harlem theBronx, Queens, Manhattan, Staten Island--these are NOT the rest of the country, is the point. Go to Peoria, Chatanooga, hell come here to St. Louis Missouri and you would be in for some culture shock, even if you only went to the black areas.

Black people from the five Buroughs act and think differently because of where they are--the other night Stanley Crouch pointed it out in the difference between WEB DuBois and Booker T. Washington (a difference WEB acknowleged later on when he admonished his collegues not to berate Washington because he was Up From Slavery, he had felt the lash on his back)--Washington had to exist in a climate where blacks were being publicly lynched and their body parts exhibited, New York Blacks at no time had to deal with repression and disenfranchisement on that scale (a reason why many of them, originally from North Carolina and Virginia were there in the first place)

Of course that is extreme--there are places where blacks live in states like Kansas and Colorado where race is a non issue for them.

I find Blacks from Chicago and LA, though they are more cosmopolitan, are more n sync with the St. Louis attitude--possibly because of the large numbers of Black folks who originated in Mississippi in Chicago and the more laid back Southern type atmosphere of L.A..
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 12:14 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Chris H:

I agree with what you say, to some degrees. The point is not to limit a person's analysis to some geographical box. You point, point of reference is always a factor, whether it is geographical, cultural, educational, gender, etc.... Still, it is clear that Troy and I think very differently, and we are both native New Yorkers. Your regional analysis is just an element, but there are other variables...thats all i'm saying. It seems that you have regional preferences. You have already labeled certain people more cosmopolitan...lol...and it Seems, that those places, ie LA and Chitown are similar to St. Louis...lol...interesting..lol

As you know, the great migration sent black southerners to the North, Mid West, and urban SOuth: Chicago,Philadephia, New York, New Orleans, Milwaukee, Detroit, etc....so Southerners were dispersed throughout in early post emancipation migration(Kansas) and then the 2 great migrations after wwi and wii. Although there is certainly diversity within the SOuth, you are mainly talking about black and white populations(besides, New Orleans, Florida). And the white folk are mainly protestants, so there isn't really much diversity. Now, however, if you have preference for Mississippi then say it...lol!
It seems that the diversity is found once one gets to Chicago and LA, so that these blacks in these places are acculturated SOUtherners. This is the same phenomena going on in NYC(you have to include the diverse Caribbean population, the French, Spanish, Danish, and especially the Bristish Caribbean population is huge in NYC; these populations have married eachother, so that in my family you will find african americans, puerto ricans, and domincans. Best friends from the British Caribbean...journeying from the Jamaica, London, and Canada) as it is in LA and Chicago, so perhaps you should identify another element, rather than the southern one to account for the differences. Either way, the regional is not enough to account for Troy's anaylsis... I have tried to identify what undergird's his conceptual framework, but i know it is necessarily limited, as is you regional analysis.



Troy's analysis really focuses on the role of the individual first, thus his rendering of New York is limited based upon that analysis. Hence, his geographical position is necessarily inaccurate, as most of us would be since none of us can possibly be that comprehensive unless we were really doing a comprehensive well researched analysis. We are all, for the most part, giving educated opinions, with a few facts here and a few assumptions there.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Ssss Girl Poisonous

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 01:10 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Black people in N.Y. are 10 times blacker thinking, blacker acti'n and blacker togetha than

black folks in L.A.

L.A. is like a sponge where all the self-hat'n blacks drift into huge pockets of white wave eurpho-REE uh.

they don't congregate mind you. With one another.

At least you can still respect the negroes in N.Y. and Chicago to a good degree. But them sorry "Don't call me black" mfs in L.A.



Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 02:33 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Ssss Girl Poisonous:

I have heard similarly about LA...but I was trying to make the point that region is only one element a person's analysis....thats all...Mr. Hayden added the rest, and so i elaborated on the potentials of his argument...lol
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 02:40 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have really enjoyed our informative discussion on the issue of whether racism or responsibility dictates our future. It is like watching 1 of those great tennis volley rallies between Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe during their classic '80's Wimbledon Championship Finals (Borg was the COOLEST mofo to ever lace up a pair of tennis shoes, bar none.)

Big Props to you Troy for mostly alone holding serve against the rest us.

But I fear we are all ensnared in a vicious circle akin to that of the proverbial "Which came first, the chicken or the egg?" For, this is 1 of those discussions where no matter how poignantly and eloquently 1 argues 1's side of the issue, 1 is invariably doomed to telling only 1/2 the truth.

We all know the problem with over-emphasizing individual effort/accomplishment is there are often too many unforeseen/uncontrollable factors that either promote or prohibit even the most earnest/industrious/decent people from achieving. Conversely, we would all probably agree that there are many blacks who use alleged acts of racism to excuse them of their responsibilities. But since every1 is different, with varying experiences/perspectives, abilities/failings, strength/weakness, fears/hopes, we can't solely prescribe either an internal or external-centered philosophy to draft easy, catchall solutions to addressing our ills.

Truly, the future survival and prosperity of African Americans requires both smart and ardent individual efforts and equally robust refutation of all harmful remnants of racism at all levels of society, be they individual, societal, cultural and institutional. For, poetically, the world makes of us what we sincerely make of it and again it of us and again...eternally~
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Cynique

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 02:54 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

What I am having a problem with in this ongoing debate is that some of you insist of focusing on the black underclass, giving sociogical explanations as to why its members are in the shape they're in. Why pay so much attention to failure? What would be more pertinent would be to examine why one black person makes it out of poverty and another doesn't. (That's what the bulk of the black middle class is made up of; people who are one or two generations from poverty.)The bottom line will be that one person made better life choices than the other. Maybe ascending to the black middle-class is not something so grand to aspire to, but it beats wallowing in the consequences of poor decisions. You cannot argue with success, limited as it may be. So black individuals have to give themselves a chance by avoiding the certain pitfalls, keeping in mind that white people who bog themselves down with a lot of baggage also end up in poverty.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 03:26 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

"What I am having a problem with in this ongoing debate is that some of you insist of focusing on the black underclass, giving sociogical explanations as to why its members are in the shape they're in. Why pay so much attention to failure? What would be more pertinent would be to examine why one black person makes it out of poverty and another doesn't."

Cynique, why do we have to return to the individual, however...if we know that it is both individual effort and social injustice that are responsible for poverty? Your statement, continues to place all responsibility on the individual. Even if we focused on one individual, we must engage their choices, schools, access to different resources, etc...which would lead us to both a sociological analysis and a biographical one. Additionally, we are necessarily looking at what the individuals have done backwards, rather than forwards. In other words, when we experience life, we don't necessarily know that our choices will necessarily lead us to the right decisions; we don't necessarily know that the path we take will lead us to the "promise land."

Why can't we focus on both: individual sucess and community empowerment?

There is no formula, only struggle and hope. The fact is, everyone can not reach the middle class; this social system can not sustain a numerally large wealthy sector...
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 03:59 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hi Cynique (& Troy),

I agree there often appears to be an over-emphasis on the suffering in the African American communities. I 2 at times tire of the hue & cry over the poor. But there is a flaw in what you appear to infer. Not all of the people populating the "black underclass" are undeserving of better. Not all of those who appear to wallow in poverty are solely responsible for their plight. And, actually, not everyone in the underclass is a "failure".

There are MANY people who are poor who push-it-to-the-max everyday. Many of them feed/clothes their children, take care of their elderly/ailing parents, participate on local school boards, sing loudly/proudly in their favorite churches every Sunday and bravely shoo gangs/drug dealers away from their doorsteps.

But sometimes, no matter how hard you fight, life just gets the best of you.

Maybe you have a young widow who has been left her with more infant kids than she can adequately manage. Maybe you have a husband/father who attempts to get a job are continually rejected because upon background checks the potential employers see a minor felony conviction (4 a piddling drug possession charge) that occurred +10 years ago that the state refuses to expunge from his record (& the state has permanently terminated his right to vote.). Maybe a young sister promisciously contracts VD because her father started molesting her when she was only 8 years old. Maybe you have a tall, strong, athletic brother who once had a scholarship to play basketball at his state college loses the opportunity to attend school and even the ability to walk via a stray bullet that was intended for rival gang members. Maybe a teenage girl drops out of school and summarily gets impregnated because her undiagnosed dyslexia prevents her from learning to read no matter how hard she tried. Maybe a hungry young brother shoplifts groceries for himself and his younger siblings because his crack-addicted mother uses all of the family resources to get high. Maybe a girl who was born into a world where he/she is passed around from 1 abusive foster home to another and yet another...throughout out her childhood.

I agree that for many unsuccessful people their condition is simply a factor of being weak and taking the easy way out. But for many others it is about having no clue about what is/not the way to go, not being able to get even a little help/support that EVERYBODY occasionally needs to make it, not being able to trust anyone around you (often with good reason), and, thus, eventually succumbing to the feeling that you were born to lose...acting accordingly.

I don't know about you, Cynique, but I have known a lot of people like that...and worse.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Girl

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 04:10 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

ABM...I am just falling in love with you, daddy.

Keep it comin. Now you aint never lied on that one.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 04:36 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Awwww shucks, Snake (-n-Bake). Yu dun' gon' 'n made ah brothah blush.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Cynique

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 08:21 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Yukio and ABM: Implicit in what you are saying is that "the poor will always be with us." They will. So black people just have to try and beat the odds. Whenever I say that "life isn't fair," someone always disputes this and wants to come up with different rationales. Would that we could fix The System. But doing so is all but impossible because we are dealing with the variables of the human condition.

ABM and Snake-whoever: Argggggh. LOL
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2003 - 10:46 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Cynique,

You are right "life isn't fair." Still, as you and Troy argue, individuals can make a difference in their own lives. I agree with individual and group self-determination, so that although the human conditions is always difficult, it does not mean that we should stop fighting against injustice, racism, sexism, etc, since these are not individual acts of racism, sexism, but instructural....I'm not about blaming the white man or the black man; I say that at home, school, and at the work place we succeed, but the battle doesn't stop there. It seems that you don't advocate group struggle. Again, i'm assuming this...since you have never, at least to my memory, said that you don't support group activism, so i apologize if i'm misrepresenting you. Along with our individual effort, we need to take control over the NAACP, Urban League, and other organizations and make them accountable for the black community. If this is done, then we can make Mfume more accountable(though i think that if child support is all he can do, then that is what he can do), etc....

There are also other local organizations that are doing things in the communities throughout the US( and of course, we can start new ones)....there are think tanks, interests groups, etc... that do research concerning issues that effect black people, and they provide research that effect public policy, legislation, etc...; All of this is necessary. -If we watch C-Span most groups, whether racial or purely political have these types of organizations doing work for them. Although they will preach individualism, they are clear that power is in organization, interest groups, lobbying, etc....

Again, I have never disagree with you and Troy concerning the need for black people to improve their lives through making better decisions. Yet, i also believe activism must counterbalance the injustice...How can we not continue our Freedom Movement? It hasn't ended...This site and others like it, should be read by all black people....we need to engage African and Caribbean literature...we are all connected...and i know i'm rattling on, but poverty is not our only problem...we are culturally hollow...culturally we have integrated without acknowledging our own culture, which is intricately linked to the broader US culture, but it is nevertheless our own..

Many of us are Americans of African ancestry--phenotypically blacks who are Americans...I'm cultivating myself to be truly African American....reading African, Caribbean, and African American literature is how i do this...of course, this has limits, and it is not necessarily "authentic," since culture is also something that you do...your values, etc...i'm trying to do my part...

I am african American, my cousins are from the Caribbean, Latin America, and my mother is Africa. We need political power, cultural power, economic power, and social power; this can not be done individually...I will not live to see the promise land, but I will live to see improvement, as my parents and grandparents, saw with the civil rights and black power movements, as freed people saw with the termination of slavery--although these people, out ancestors, fought and won better conditions, they continued to fight...this is all i'm talking about...this is the African American tradition....since we land on this damn land, we have been raising hell for freedom....
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Cynique

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 12:13 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I think we would agree, Yukio, that our hearts are both in the right place. You're just a little more optimistic than I am when it comes to effectively bringing about change. To me, the problem with black organizations is that their leaders are just preaching to the choir. The messages never gets through to the people who need to hear them the most. Communities are always having town meetings, and neighborhood vigils and the only people who show up for these events are the ones who are all ready concerned, law-abiding citizens. The offenders and deadbeats and perpetrators who need to reform their ways don't participate in constructive activitity but just continue to follow their negative lifestyles. But, I admire you for your tenacity and vision and I'm glad there are intelligent activists like you around to put things in perspective.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Sssssss

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 12:47 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am african American, my cousins are from the Caribbean, Latin America, and my mother is Africa.
--Yukio


NOW SEE...that's what I'm talking bout. I guess I was wrong bout you Yukio. My lawd....she IS BLACK!! Done me proud.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Troy

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 03:18 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Chris:
I suspect you know very little about NY. NY is one of the most stratified places in the country. For example, the upper East side (of Park Avenue fame), on of the most fluent neighborhoods on the planet is physically adjacent to East Harlem one of the poorest neighborhood in the city. At the same time there are very mixed neighborhoods, neighborhoods that pride themselves on their diversity. As a result New York do not think alike. Some New York think are country bumpkins, some are captains of industry, and some New Yorker don't even speak. They do not think alike and you find many people who think like you do. Yukio make a good point illustrating the differences in our perspectives as native New Yorkers. But go ahead, keep attributing a person's current physical location to be a strong predictor of the mindset -- you'll be fooled every time.


Yukio:
This statement "The fact is, everyone can not reach the middle class" is simply false. Why do you think this is the case?

Sure many people say this, but they are incorrect as well. Looking at the Forbes list you see many of the Billionaires "earned" the fortunes. Gates dropped out of school 'cause he understood something most college graduates never understand. You don't get really wealthy depending upon an employer for your livelihood. Bob Johnson, Oprah and most of the others got paid due to there own efforts, taking advantages of opportunities and god given talents, and not focusing on there disadvantages.

Anyone person with normal faculties can get out of poverty in this country. To believe otherwise is a recipe for failure. Sure there are countries where this is not the case. 200 years ago America was one of them.

Many people start out in or go temporarily into poverty (I've been there myself). This is not unusual. What is unusual is the generational poverty we are seeing. Again I submit that this condition TODAY has more to do with the individuals involved rather a failure of government, society, the NAACP, or even racists.

Thumper:
You missed my point. I never, ever said racism does not exists on will never go away. I try to avoid wasting time and energy hoping for things that will never happen.

What I'm trying to do with this web site, on this thread, in my personal life is help people understand racism (not that I have all the answers -- far from it) and it effect on us. We have to understand racism and deal with it. But more importantly we have to understand how we perceive and process internally what be believe racism -- real or not.

All I'm saying is that we as a people focus too much on racism, so much so that we use it for an excuse for everything:

Me: "Kwesi way you go and make 5 baby mommas?"

Kwesi: "Look at how much I'm doing for the community. Why should you care about my personal life? Besides you are not perfect either"

Me: "Sure we applaud your efforts for the community, but don't thing you as the leader of the oldest black civil rights organization in the country are a little more obligated to provide a better example for the people you lead?"

Kwesi: "Man as long as I take care of my kids what difference does it make?

Me: So you think you are taking care of all of these children at the same level that you would be able to if you were in a monogamous, committed relationship with the children's mother?

Kwesi: Man if is hard out here for a man black. Don't you know? Maybe is it because you live in NY or maybe it is because you are middle class. You folks are all alike self-hating, crab in the barrel Negroes.

Me: Kwesi why can't you simply admit 5 baby mommas is extreme, and that it has a negative impact on your credibility. Stop blaming others for your indiscretions.

Kwesi: Well what do you want me to do? I can't undo the past?

Me: I don't know. You are right the damage is done...
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 05:22 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

You know, I really should leave this issue alone, as I am sure no one is going to change their minds on this issue.

But I guess it is as my wife always says, "Silly Boy! It's like you just can't help yourself."

You know, Troy, I sincerely want to believe that every1 can "du betta" by just working hard, keeping their noses clean and taking advantage of opportunities as they present themselves. But there are several spurious assumptions and omissions within the whole rugged individualist doctrine. And it does not help folks to tell them that they can improve there situation if you avoid tell them the WHOLE story behind how 1 gets ahead.

Bill Gates father was already a wealthy/successful attorney before Bill Jr. ever earned a dime on Microsoft. Of course Bill knew the principles of wealth. Hell, his dad was a living example for him. And Junior knew that he would not starve if this newfangled personal computer, DOS thingy did not work out. So don't underestimate the freedom afforded young Gates by knowing he can try all kinds of things because, if everything fell through, he could have Papa Gates bail him out...and maybe even get him back into Harvard.

Bob Johnson had black folks practically protesting on the street to get his (now squalid) BET on cable. And sure Oprah is talented and charismatic. But she had her smart grandmother and her hardworking, straight shooting dad backing her up. She had buddy and Kennedy's spawn Maria Shiver backing her up. And she has had and still has some immensely talented people who work day/nite to keep the Harpo gravy train rollin along.

I'll bet Gates has become the richest man alive because his daddy taught him a thing, or 2 or 100 about how to structure/negotiate organizations & contracts, interview/read people and when to sign a deal and when to walk away. And Oprah's grandmother taught her to read at age 3 and her dad disciplined her with a firm/gentle hand and made her read and draft a report on 1 book every week. Sadly, few have this kind of training and support system while living in "housing projects", Troy.

Would Winfrey be OPRAH and would Bill Gates be "The Master of Universe" (Time Magazine) had their fathers abandoned them as is often the case with legions of kids in the inner city? Doubt it. Oprah would like be the baby momma to several men. Gates would be 1 of the many burned out hippies that missed their turn PC riches.

The moral of this story: Everybody needs a little help, playa.

I'll bet if you look closely people who become even moderately successful, 99% of them had several people and organizations backing them up. That doesn't mean they didn't work their tails off. But NOBODY makes it alone.

I think we mostly agree about individual people making individual decisions. But when generation after generation after generation fails, you have to wonder whether if the problems transcend what hapless people can do. Sure there will be some that prevail no matter the circumstance. God just as there were some that braved the Underground Railroad to freedom. Bless the Harriet Tubman. But it took the Emancipation Proclamation, Civil War, and Congressional and Presidential authorization/ratification via an Amendment to the Constitution to formally liberate all black people.

And it is not strictly a race issue. Man, there are places in the South, Appalachia, western Pennsylvania where white people make poor black foks look like The Jeffersons. I have been there. There are places where the best meals white foks eat is week-old road kill. There are places were maggots are a nutritional staple. Do yourself a favor; drive thru some of these small, out of the way towns in America. It will change your WHOLE perspective about issues of white/black. But make sure you take a whole pack of big, tuff white dudes with you if you go. You wouldn't want to get caught alone in one of those "Deliverance" dramas.

The issue is not just about whether the theoretical opportunity to "get out of poverty" exist for people with "normal faculties" (Though, I would be interested in how you defined that term as I think it to be material to this discussion.). Of course opportunities reign in abundance. The question is whether or not some people have so many roadblocks tossed in front of them that they hardly even have time to think about what is available to them, whether they can get the help/compassion they need to push thru the tuff times and whether after they have worked themselves to the bone that the racists, the government(s), police, prosecutors, judges, businesses, criminals, etc. won't pull the rug out from under them.

I grew up in poverty, Troy. Food stamps, Wicke booklets, cold apartments, disconnected utilities, hunger, hand-me-downs, "flooding" pants, ketchup "samiches"...the whole schmele. And most of my childhood I had no idea where I would wind up when I became and adult.

The only things that separated me from the fates of all of my childhood friends (e.g., disease, drugs, death, murder, incarceration and mayhem) was a mother who was (& still is, Praise God!) so fearsome that she could make Suge Knight piss his pants, a maniacal obsession with reading 20 cents comic books (I'll bet +1/2 the brothahs who regularly read this site owe a bow to the Great Stan Lee and the Immortal Jack Kirby.) and teachers, black/white/male/female, who all in some way said to me "You know son. There is something about you. You are kind of special. And I'm going to help you to make it."



PS: BRAVO on the Kwesi dialog. I understand and agree 100% with the message you convey. I wonder if Kwesi does as well.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Chris Hayden

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 05:24 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Troy--I will not, on the whole, be fooled. Just like ABM said, a parade by the Ku Klux Klan (hate to keep bringing them up but they do serve to make a point) is unthinkable in New York City but not in many other communities and it is because the left wing is stronger there. I bet CPUSA has open offices in New York--they could never do that here. Country bumpkins? How many trailer parks do you have in New York City? how many Country Music stations? How many bars where they have confederate flags on the wall? How many tractor pulls do they have in New York? How many stock car racetracks? Stratified? That isn't proof of anything--people of different economic strata you have everywhere--how that strata acts and reacts with the others is where you will see the difference. An example. The last time Iwas in New York I was going all over to poetry readings. I went to this one one Sunday Afternoon down on Atlantic in Brooklyn. When I got there it was all little old Jewish ladies. Here I probably would have been asked what I wanted or been asked to leave. Once they found out I was a poet, it was just like--read your poetry. It ain't like that all over the country. In many parts of the country even blacks ain't welcoming you with open arms if they don't know you or you ain't with somebody they know. You just hate to get put in a box, my friend but your comments and thought processes time and time again reveal that they are influenced by where you are living. For instance in places in New York You got men, women walking around holding hands openly, kissing. Here, and many other places in the country that would invite harassment or violence. People in New York see that more and are more tolerant.

New Yorkers may not think alike, but they don't think or talk like St. Louisans, Chicagoans or too many other people in the country. They think and act more like Europeans, blacks whites and others. You might not like that because you probably are one of those guys who wants to defy categorization or not get put in a box. Can't help you with that.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Girl Poisonous

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 05:27 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I agree with Troy and ABM.

Kweisi Mfume got away with murder. But because all the baby mamas were BLACK and because he was so damn fine...black women didn't complain.

I think it's disgusting. He thinks he's still in Africa...but even in Africa, he would forced to buy a big mansion and put them all in one central spot. He would also be forced to marry all 5 women.

Black children today...are so ill regarded by "black Adults".





Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Cynique

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 06:53 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

What do all of you folks who are disputing what Troy contends, suggest as an alternative? Should members of the underclass just say, "Hell, my chances of making it out of poverty are slim to nothin, so why the f..k should I stay in school and not avoid pregnancy?" And, let's not forget that many people on welfare are able to get off of it and improve their lot BECAUSE THEY MAKE UP THEIR MINDS THAT THEY CAN DO BETTER. OK, so there is no one sure way for people to get ahead in life. When all is said and done, everybody has to play the hand they're dealt so maybe we ought to explore the concept of "luck" instead of the jinx of racism.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Susan

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 07:39 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I think both extremes are incorrect. Those on the one end that says, all my woes in life are due to racism. And, the other end that says, too many blacks use racism as a crutch, as the reason why they can't or won't do better in life. I think the truth and reality lies is somewhere in the middle.

Susan
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Chris Hayden

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 07:55 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Troy:

As usual I had to go through several posts and think about what you are saying to get to it because you are so COSMIC--

OK enough butterin up. You think that my saying you are New Yorkcentric is an insult--maybe I'm wrong. It is not an insult. Though I attempt to be a citizen of the world I am, sad to say, St. Louiscentric in my thinking. I was stunned and gratified at the acceptance me and my poetry got in non black settings up in New York--a New York poet probably would not have given it a second thought.

Yukio, you assume when I say that about Troy I automatically think that all New Yorkers, and all Black New Yorkers, think alike. They don't think alike but they probably think more like each other than they do people from other towns and cities, etc. Another example--I have found that people from other towns who eat barbecue are disgusted by our habit of piling the potato salad on top--we think nothing of it, being St. Louiscentric we assume everyone will enjoy it that way. When first exposed to blacks from the Northeast me and my friends thought--"Damn, they talk white." when we heard their Northeastern accents. Of course they did not--they had an African American patois that was mixed in with a northeastern accent. I can go to Chicago and mix right in--well mostly. I remember they called Coca Cola "pop' at one time and we down here called it soda. And they said CAH-when they meant car (of course a lot of us pronounced it Caw).

Snake Girl Poisonous--what punishment would you levy on Mfume? Permanent banning from public life? Stoning? The babies are here. What are you to do after that. I am always amused at how people sniff at the crazy folks or the folks with "low" morals who get out front--I think the question should be asked, why don't the "good" "moral" people get out there? They are usually the ones telling blacks to take it slow, don'te get impatient, keep quietetc.

Cynique--I think memers of the underclass have to make up their own minds to deal with the situation--if they can. I can say, "There but for the grace of God go I." I had right thinking parents and relatives and neighbors who did help me. I have met and worked with kids who didn't have a chance--Daddy dead, gone or in prison, Mama in jail or on crack--some relative raising them who is burnt out. They have been molested, they are just going up--they ain't had a chance. There's just some people that ain't got a chance whoever's fault it is. There is a concept of luck.

But on the subject of racism--it has changed methods of operation and one way it touches almost all of us is in the self-loathing many blacks still carry despite the Black is beautful movement.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Girl

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 08:07 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Chris...I already said that I would go out on a date with Mfume. He's a cutie.

But I WOULD NOT vote for him to hold public office, no. I don't like the fact that he's STILL a known womanizer.

But stone him? Ban him from public life? You haven't been reading my posts. Snake Girl ain't into all that. I've committed a cache of my own sins, darl'n.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Chris Hayden

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 08:39 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Snake Girl--If he is still womanizing and it interferes with his business--that is, he sets himself up for extortion, or he has to flee out of bedroom windows carrying his pants or he hits on other guy's wives--ok.

If it was in the past, I'd have to give him a chance. By the way, I always wondered why he left Congress to head of the NAACP. Was this why?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Girl

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 08:56 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I don't know why he left congress. And again, I ain't totally against the man. He's very intelligent--down with his people. But at some point, we have to slap these politicians on the wrist.

By continuing to be a womanizer--Mfume sort of licks his tonuge out at us. The NAACP will put up with this behavior, so why shouldn't he?

He's awful. But he's really in the majority. Our community has a lot of bad elements that we no longer attach shame to....13 old girls on the corner with a baby on they hip! And it's acceptable today. How you gonna stone them girls and them put Mfume on a podium of respect and leadership?

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Claxton

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2003 - 10:42 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

This has been a really interesting thread, and everyone's made some great points down the line. But I think what all this boils down to is that there's truth in all of it. There is no such thing a "The Black Experience", not in the universal sense. What flies in St Louis for our people there might not fly in New York or Charlotte or anywhere else. My experience as a black man differs from that of Chris and Troy, for example, because of my geographical location, my upbringing and my age. Same holds true for black women, white people, right on down the line.

There's no lack of diversity within our own culture--that much is true on this board--and that's a good thing. It shows that we're not mindless sheep who kowtow to a way of thinking simply because those before us did it.

I'll even go one step further with that. We know Troy, Cynique, Thumper, Yukio, Chris, et al, because we're used to each other's styles of writing and usernames. Now we have in our mix Snake Girl/Snake Lady/Snake Mama/Snake in the Grass/Garter Snake/Tree Snake/Jake the Snake Roberts, who has not only provided some nice insigts to the board, but also keeps us guessing about what username's going to show up next. Talk about keeping things interesting!

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Girl

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 12:12 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Claxton, I'm Dolores Morris in Brooklyn.

But I make my money stripping as "Snake Girl". I wrap a python around me after I dance.

Good money, good security. The White Rabbitt is a nice place to work. Good tips.

In daytime...I'm a receptionist for a MAJOR publishing house.

Cynique and that Susan woman keep accusing me of being "Kola"...but naw...I'm just a fan of Kola's who decided to step in.

So now you know me.

Thanks for being nice.



Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Troy

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 01:20 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Chris: I'm not insulted by being called NY Centric. I'm just trying to help you understand my perspective and prevent you from making the same mistake with others.

ABM: I think you may be missing my point. Look at it this way. People typically fail without anyone else's help. And they can easily rationalize that failure with racism. If the individual is to succeed thay have to make an effort to do so. Once they do they typically take advantage the resources available to them -- incluing other people.

I see and know far too many able bodied men who choose not to work. Many of these people are simply spoiled rotten. They are too good to be a janitor, but have no problem accepting welfare or living off mom or some other woman -- or worse taking from someone else. None of these men should be living below the poverty line. Some of these men have baby mommas too.

Do you think these men living at home will be in a position to teach their children anything of value? These men are breeding furture generation of the impovershed. Those who escape have to reinvent the wheel because none of the information transfer (which you described Bill Gates as having) never happens

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Girl Poisonous

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 02:37 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Troy made a very strong ON POINT observation right there.

Nodding in agreement (while sucking on a chicken wang). Batting big pretty eyes.

Uh..huh.



Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Susan

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 08:05 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Snake Girl, I haven't accused you of being Kola or anyone else, for that matter.

Susan
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Girl

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 08:20 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Susan, I must of misread your comments on another thread. I certainly thought that's what you were inferring...as Cynique was outright saying it.

Please accept my apologies.




Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 10:45 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Say your sister foolishly tumbles out of your family's yacht and is being helplessly flung to-and-fro amid the relentless waves of the Pacific Ocean. Which of the following would you do?
A) Say to her "Too bad. So sad. Don't frown. Jus' drown."?
B) Lambaste her for stupidly standing too close to the edge of the boat?
C) Criticize her woefully inadequate dogpeddling technique as her lungs fill up with briny seawater?
D) Or quickly but clearly assess the situation, gather yourself, calmly assure her that she will be ok, then reach out and snatch her careless a$$ out of the deep just before an enormous Great WHITE Shark can zoom in for a swift and nasty kill?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Chris Hayden

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 10:54 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Snake Girl:

Maybe then it is up to the folks in the NAACP--of which I am not a member. They accepted him as their leader I suppose with full knowlege of what his background was, so that's on them.

INTERESTING THOUGHT: Suppose a woman had had five children out of wedlock by five different men--would she have been elected to Congress or become the Head of the NAACP? For the record in this case I would hold to my original position--that that was all in the past and I would only want to know how well she could do her job. I would even think more of her--provided of course she hadn't just abandoned the kids--and, naw she wouldn't have had to raise 'em and take in washing and all that--if she had even placed them with a good relative or put them up for adoption--but say-suppose she had abandoned them--but that was all in the past and she'd got herself together? Aren't we supposed to believe in redemption?

TROY--Claxton has added more clarity to my argument about folks being location-centric (yeeesh. I would be plumb tickled to death to be known around here as New York-centric--but I am Country City Country as most of the folks in Nellyville and Snake Girl has nailed my point. It would be unthinkable in St. Louis for a woman to have a reputable job by day and be an exotic dancer by night, further to do that and use her real name--it is more a case of conservative hypocrisy than anything else.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 10:59 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Snake (-on-the-Make),

Go'on and shake that moneymakah, Baby! (But don't let the money make you. :-))

But considering the high "prevert" quotient on the web ("present company included"), perhaps you should have avoided publicly acknowledging stripping as a part-time vocation.

And "...wrap a python around me..."??? ((dastardly grinning)) Gurl! You are jus' tryin' na' get a brothah "started"!
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Bloodberry Adder

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 11:21 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Just wanted to thay "Hello". Sssst
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Cynique

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 02:45 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Yes, ol cynical Cynique remains skeptical about "Snakola Girl", wondering how somebody who holds down a full-time job at a publishing company and works as a stripper by night seems to have so much time to inundate the board with the typically long posts that contain certain buzz words, and espouse the familiar arguments about "saving our babies" - clues that point to a "former" female poster who supposedly went into exile. LOL. But it doesn't matter because all the male posters seem to be getting a charge out of it. And we do have to give this chamelon her just due for being so creative, for being able to take on these different personas. It's a tribute to her skills as an author who is apparently very good at crafting characters. But, I digress. So, pardon me while I take time off from my day job as casting director for a major movie studio who works nights part-time as a undercover agent for the CIA to make this observation about the subject under discussion. Does the NAACP really exert a lot of influence or actually carry much weight in the current black struggle? Its days of being an effective tool for combating racism are long past. It's just getting by on its reputationm and has become moreless a tradition. Apathetic NAACP chapters all over the country are merely going through the motions. In fact, the head of one of its Chicagoland chapters had to be removed from office for embezzling $10,000. I'd be curious to know the average age of its membership. Most young peoplel today probably don't even know who Kweisi Mfume is. So much for his image as a role model. Mfume would be much more impressive as a high-profile religious figure, someone who could point to himself as a prime example of a sinner who has repented. That way, it would be easier to forgive him for his transgressions. Personally, listening to his elusive answers to Troy, leads me to believe that the same glibness which enabled him to impregnant 5 different women, probably served him well in seducing the NAACP into hiring him as their president. And while we're at it, lest we forget, Julian Bond who holds another high office in the NAACP was at one time a coke head womanizer. Jeeze. bottom line: For me, Mfume still gets a thumbs down. Now, guys, I have to run, gotta go attend a cattle call so I can look over the crop of nubile young actresses vying for the title role in a new movie going into production entitled "The Secret Life of the Virgin Mary." Then, it's on to my CIA job where I work nights in a 711, posing as a contact for Osama Bin Ladin. Busy, busy....
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Organized

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 03:18 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Cynique, could you please review this thread and point out which of Snake Girl's posts were "long"?

I've went to about six different threads. She's got like 3 long posts as opposed to 11 very brief ones. Why are you picking on her and what if she was Kola Cynique? Then what?




Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

anonymous

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 03:25 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Any fool can see that ABM is the creator of Snake Girl!

He always took up for Kola and said he didn't want her to leave the board, etc.

Then Snake Girl shows up and "loves" ABM. Agrees with everything he posts (which Kola used never did and never flirted with him).

That seems more plausible to me.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 03:37 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Have you READ my posts, anonymous? Do you really believe were it my intent to deceive you and others, that it is likely that I would be able to do so in a more effective fashion than that to which you mistakenly allude?

Hey! Is this my psychiatrist trying to check up on me? Come on, Dr. Spock. You never let me have any fun!
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 23, 2003 - 04:02 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

anonymous &/or Eyebrow Raised,

Sounds like you are suffering from an acute case of "hateration" for what you absurdly think is going on between me, Kola and Snake (-by-the-Lake).

But let me tell you something...

"I'm the only me as far as I can see. I'm the only me as far as I can see. I'm the only me as far as I can see. I'm the only me as far as I can see."


One more time....

"I'm the only me as far as I can see...~"
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 02:38 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Interesting comments!

Troy: Again...i went on a lil vacation, but i'll address you question. Also again, i don't completely disagree with you; but also again, i think that life is the product of both our individual and group efforts, and of course God and luck!

You ask:
"This statement "The fact is, everyone can not reach the middle class" is simply false. Why do you think this is the case?"

Well, let me make a few clarifications, first. The middle class is broad, so that it must be understood within the context of folk making 40 gs to 150 gs. Ok...lets go, as Jay-Z says...

This is about political economy, the nature of the economy, and how you interpret and/or understand wealth/poverty, and really the social experience. Finally Troy, we fundamentally see the world working differently...we have paradigmatic differences.

1.All workers are not and can not be skilled /professional workers. The economy needs people to work in the service sector, factories, retail, etc...All of these jobs are low salaried and low waged jobs. More importantly, capitalism requires that there is a hierarchial class structure, that necessarily has a small percentage of the population owning most of the wealth, and since poverty and wealth have always been generational, the mechanisms that facilitate wealth would continue to be with the wealth(Of course there are books out there, seminars, etc...). This is a basic structural analysis.

2.Then, within the lower paying jobs, we have to accept that there are hard working people called the "working poor." These people are those who are not criminals, and have a "stable" family. And of course there are the stable and unstable working classes. Again, these are assidious workers, not people with socalled poor individual decisions.

3.Some people work to live not necessarily to be wealthy...In other words, they don't have careers, just a job to pay the bills.

4. Race has never just been about pigmentation. You still have not address my point on Racism and not race. When i discuss black people, my analysis is always embedded in the relationships among race, class, and history, so as not to confuse "race" with the work of racism: racism is a job, so to speak.... Slavery, Jim Crow, Colonialism, etc...have always been about labor, resources, and production, and reproduction(reproduction in the sense that a poor group of black people are generationally reproduced if there resources comparatively over time remain the same). If this is the case, then it would be difficult for blacks to reach the middle class if there communities lack resources that other communities have. I do think that some individuals can leave poor communities, but not the entire community.

5. Finally, life is not a formula, Troy. In each situation, the variables and conditions are never the same. There are people that work and have worked as hard as Oprah, Gates, and Johnson, and they are not rich. God and life has blessed them. Their wealth is not soley the product of their efforts. If i can summarize, and put things in perspective, it is clear that capitalism is not a social system that allows everyone to reach the middle class and that no society can have all people in the middle class because there are always jobs that need to be filled where the wages are low. Those people are usually at the upper echelon because of generational wealth. Similarly, most of those poor and working class people are hard workers, yet they aren't in the middle class. Some just don't aspire to; some people can work in walmart and live a comfortable satisfied life, yet they are poor. And finally, racism can not be extracted from political economy.

Chris Hayden:

I understand your point and agree with your assessment in a general way, but i think Troy's analysis has less to do with being a New Yorker and more to do with how he sees the world. Although he has argued and agrees that one's life chances are not soley determined on their individual effort, most of his arguments fundamentally deal with what individuals do. Reread my May 21 post to Troy. Many of his arguments in this thread and on race in general, primarily stem from what we do as individuals. I am similar; Most of what i've said boil down to the constitutive relationships between the individual and society, and since we are talking about black folk, embedded in my analysis is racism and political economy. In other words, there are things that Troy and I, however different our arguments, are consistent on....we are consistent with our theroretical framework....and New York is only an element not the foundation of how we articulate what we think.....with these framework, we therefore, necessarily see New York differently.....
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 28, 2003 - 04:38 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Yukio,

Although I agree with most of what you state above, I must clarify part of your discussion.

Capitalism is the private ownership of capital goods resulting from decisions about investments, pricing, production and distribution that are determined via competition on in a "free market" (Consult a Macroeconomic text book for detailed clarification.).

I said that to say that Capitalism does NOT as you suggest inherently require "...hierarchical class structure..." An individual street corner peddler is every bit as capitalistic as the +$100 billion auto manufacturer General Motors. And considering the peddler can not doctor the political/economic systems to limit and often eliminate opposing "free market" activities, the peddler likely functions much more akin to the classical capitalistic precepts than does the mighty GM.

Nor are sufferers of poverty [AKA the "losers".] and your "...small percentage of the population owning most the wealth [AKA the "winners".]..." the natural consequence of capitalism. Rather, the "losers" and "winner" are actually the result of an economic system that derives from (or deviated from) capitalism that could be termed "Corporatism". I define Corporatism to be a form of capitalism that involves persons/companies acquiring mammoth financial resources to wield to influence laws/politics to maximize their interests and severely limit/eliminate opposing objectives and interests of competitors, employees, the press and the public at large.

One could effectively argue that many of the ills that you credit to Capitalism are in fact the result of an economy that is, sadly, not as capitalistic as we are deceptively encouraged to believe.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Wednesday, May 28, 2003 - 07:52 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

ABM:

Thanks for the clarification. Let me respectfully engage your points, because (1)although you claim to "clarify," you're actually disagreeing, and (2)you're language actually makes what i said murky, not clear.

Your argument is really about semantics...the name of the system doesn't change what this social system(corporatism/capitalism) does to people. This was my point, which you're clarification does not change.


You state:
"Nor are sufferers of poverty [AKA the "losers".] and your "...small percentage of the population owning most the wealth [AKA the "winners".]..." the natural consequence of capitalism. Rather, the "losers" and "winner" are actually the result of an economic system that derives from (or deviated from) capitalism that could be termed "Corporatism". I define Corporatism to be a form of capitalism that involves persons/companies acquiring mammoth financial resources to wield to influence laws/politics to maximize their interests and severely limit/eliminate opposing objectives and interests of competitors, employees, the press and the public at large."

There are obvious problems with this paragraph. (1)First you say that "corporatism" deviates/derives from capitalism, suggesting that corporatism is of but different than capitalism. (2)Then you actually say that corporatism is a "form of capitalism." There is a contradiction between you description and definition, so please allay this tension (clarify).

Now lets dig further into you corporatism analysis.

You define capitalism as: "Capitalism is the private ownership of capital goods resulting from decisions about investments, pricing, production and distribution that are determined via competition on in a "free market" (Consult a Macroeconomic text book for detailed clarification.)."

This definition is not very different from your corporatism definition. The primary difference are that in the capitalism definition, you do not address the capitalist class'usage of their economic power in the political spectrum to reproduce their wealth. Here is the problem. You are using descriptive definitions that are ahistorical. I would argue that corporatism is indeed a "form of capitalism," that is fundamentally capitalist, and the result of a change in form not content. Hence, instead of solely relying on Macroeconomic text book, you should additionally "consult" a historical text on the transformation and the development of capitalism. DOing so, would tell you that that (1) earlier capitalist(usually individuals/family enterprises) always used their economic resources to influence politics inorder to ensure their wealth. (2) Though corporations existed since colonial times, it emerged in the late 19th century concomitantly with the industrial revolution, particularly railroads, and marketing and financing, which allowed them to integrate production and distribution. The major differences again between my #1 and #2 is periodization(historical) and that instead of capitalists being individuals/family enterprises, they were corporations(form). "The private ownership of capital goods resulting from decisions about investments, pricing, production and distribution that are determined via competition on in a "free market"," remains the same. The key constituents of capitalism being private ownership of capital and the "free market." The problem in you that there has never been a truly free market, so that capitalist, whether we're discussing individual/family enterprises or corporations(national and multi-national) always influenced politics, and therefore laws influencing interstate commerce, international commerce, labor relations, taxing, etc...

Lets move on!
You state:
"I said that to say that Capitalism does NOT as you suggest inherently require "...hierarchical class structure..." An individual street corner peddler is every bit as capitalistic as the +$100 billion auto manufacturer General Motors. And considering the peddler can not doctor the political/economic systems to limit and often eliminate opposing "free market" activities, the peddler likely functions much more akin to the classical capitalistic precepts than does the mighty GM."

Of course it is inherently hierarichial, ABM. Again this is about semantics! Indeed the street peddler is a capitalist as is the GM manufacturer. Yet, how does one define class in this case? Several possible answers,I'm sure, but I'm not an expert, so i only have one. Lets address what your example suggests. Your analysis, i argue, obfuscates practices with the individuals' relation to the means of production, wealth, and political power, so that the peddler would indeed practice a purer(is that a word...lol) form of capitalism than the GM manufacturer because they indeed, as you state, because the peddler has limited and inherently less access to wealth and political power. Yet, i argue that it there relation to the means of production, wealth, and political power that determine class not out practices.

The peddler could not procure the capital that the GM manufacturer would have access to, since the peddler could not possibly meet the requires that a GM manufacturer, who does not represent himself but his corporation that functions as an entity, a virtual person.....Furthermore, this street peddler may not make as much as the assist manager in the diary section of the Pathmark. Is this an issue of purely categories or are we really talking about salaries, wages, and access to capital and political power, which is indeed facilitated and augmented by Capitalism.

Again, capitalism or its more recent form corporatism (which are now, unlike the late 19th and early 20th century mult-national corporations) does require an inherently hierarichal class structure. (Consult recent scholarship on World-Systems theory for detailed clarification...lol).

Thumper: you are a troublemaker...but if you win, i need a loan.

ABM: I'm just joking!
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 30, 2003 - 12:39 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Awwwwhhh, sukey sukey now! Lookin' like dis' here fish is'ah scrappah!


Yukio,

It was not my intent to "disagree" with you or to "obfuscate" the points that you made in your essay. And my points were not semantic at all. Rather, I was intended to get at the heart of issue: And that is whether the root causes of poverty, racism, unequal distribution of wealth and class hierarchy (I will term "PRUC". Clever. Yes?) are born inherently from the very CONCEPT of Capitalism or whether the PRACTICE of Capitalism cause PRUC.

Or does the mere concept of a handgun inherently result in death, murder and mayhem? Or does how and by whom a gun is used result in such?

I stand by what I previously asserted, though I can certainly appreciate where/why we may differ. And I will assume that EVERYTHING that you have stated is factually true and sincerely believed.

But, sadly, I wonder whether much of it is relevant.

We humans have ALWAYS had PRUC. So why is it inherent to Capitalism, which is a form of commerce that has in force barely 200 years, when PRUC was just as "popular" during centuries and eons prior?

I won't go point-counterpoint with you on everything you/I said/meant. Because at this stage in this discussion, such semantic swordsmanship would prove inefficient and pointless (& migraine-inducing). Really, does it matter when/how/which came first, Capitalism? or Corporatism? or...hell...Satanism?. And whether you believe something could be a "form" of, "derived" from and "deviated" from something might depend on whether you can believe Lucifer was a "form" of an angel who "derived" from an order of angels but chose to "deviate" from angelic beliefs and practices.

Of course there can never be completely "free markets". Nor can there be completely free speech/expression and free religion (or free sex, drugs & hip/hop music for that matter). But markets can be made more "free" by eliminating many of the barriers to free trade that cause PRUC to begin with, thus making them more "Capitalistic".

I, like you, am acquainted with the "historical text" in which the actions of people who have been labeled Capitalist have created, influenced and often scarred the social, economic, political and cultural landscape of America and beyond. However, I would argue that much of what has been attributed to Capitalism has occurred and likely would have occurred, though manifested differently, had what we term Capitalism never been uttered or executed. For, before there were monolithic Corporations reigning over us, there were Pharaohs, Monarchs, Sheiks, Lords, who dictated how we should live, think and be, which result in most odiferous forms of PRUC throughout recorded time.

I understand why you would insert historical context within your discussion of Capitalism. However, to fairly/clearly assess a phenomenon, we should separate the precepts of concept from the practice of it as flawed execution might falsely blight the potential benefits of the concept. And the reason why I defined Capitalism absent all the historical texture that you provide is I don't agree that those nuances matter to the degree that you argue they do.

I think that we have PRUC because of the lack of faith/adherence to basis capitalist precepts. I argue that racism, sexism, farm subsidies, legalized price fixing, trade tariffs/quotes/duties, no-bid government contracts, political backroom/closed-door dealing, political cronyism/nepotism, fuel/mineral/automobile/media oligopolies are all HIGHLY anti-capitalistic activities that restrict open markets and tilt the scales in the favor of the few and artificially create/heighten/perpetuate PRUC against the many.

One can observe seemingly persuasive parallels between related activities yet draw entirely fallacious conclusions. For example, we might agree that capitalism is often associated with and accompanied by PRUC. But does 1 necessarily give birth to or are the consequence of the other? Because, if you argue that class hierarchy is caused by capitalism, then you must at least ask whether Classism existed prior to Capitalism, which surely it did. And if we then agree that Classism existed prior to Capitalism, then one could argue that although current Class phenomenon are influenced by Capitalism, they as a whole are not necessarily caused by them.

I think we agree their are corollaries between capitalism and PRUC. Where we may part company is where, how, why and to what degree all of these issues interrelate. For me to argue there are direct/unique causal relationship between the 2 would require that I assume that PRUC did not ever exist prior to the advent of what we arguably term Capitalism, which is certainly not the case.

Did PRUC occur during Pharaohs' Dynasties? Yep. What about the Greek/Roman Empires? You betcha. What about European Kingdoms? Un humm. Chinese/Japanese Dynasties? Sure thing.

And even in modern times, there were/are Classism among non-Capitalistic societies. There was Classism in pre-Mao China (there still was/is privleged positions within the People's Republic). There was certainly Classism in Czarist Russia (as were there class distinctions within the Soviet Union among its more learned, athletic, military citizens). And don't forget India color-coded caste system (which is, sadly, still very much in force).

Those societies were hardly if at all Capitalistic societies yet all suffered PRUC.

I agree that it is true those who constitute what you term to be the "capitalist class" use their power to maintain wealth. But they are certainly not unique in this regard. The real point is the capitalist class does much of what was done by their noncapitalistic predecessors (e.g., Pharaohs, Emperors and Kings) did century's prior.

So what good is it to disproportionately focus on PRUC when discussing the merits of Capitalism, when PRUC will still reign even if Capitalism did not exist? If PRUC has existed within EVERY human society/system, how can we correctly limit this phenomenon to any 1 such system?

You appear to say we have PRUC because of or as a necessary consequence of capitalism. I disagree. I say PRUC is not the consequence of any 1 or few complex socio-economic-political systems. Rather, PRUC is borne simply from that core, primal, timeless need that some people have for asserting their power/will over others for their own personal interest, comfort and security, thus using whatever socio-economic-political to meet that end. PRUC is the result of people being people, irrespective of whatever economic systems are employed. All of the history of mankind supports that. That we attribute fancy dogma to the conditions is merely a pedantic aside from that eternal point.

Lastly, a peddler may operate a lot closer to the classical Capitalistic precepts than a mega-conglomerate. Yes, she does have less power to "uncapitalistically" doctor and manipulate markets. Also, Classical Capitalism asserts that the merchant operates a lot closer to his/her primary suppliers/consumers, making for the most immediate/efficient commerce possible. Therefore, according to the core precepts of Capitalism, the politically potent GM, with legions and strata of parts manufacturers/suppliers, distributors and dealers throughout the globe, is not nearly as capitalistic as a child farmer who is peddling her freshly picked 15-cent apples on a dirt road in the Mississippi Delta.


PS: Yukio, I don't mind being "undressed" by a lady, so long as she is willing to put in some serious work after she's managed to pull my pants down. ((wink))
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 30, 2003 - 01:48 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

ABM:

You are shifting the discussion, which is legitmate, as long as you correctly assess what I'm doing, and you have not! Initially, you attempted to "clarify" my analysis, but you didn't address my point, as you have not done again this time. And unfortunately, you have further soiled my points, since your reply seems to focus on origins and what produced or did not produce PRUC, while I was addressing Troy's question of why i thought everyone could not enter the middle class. My answer asserted that class hierarchy was inherent within capitalism. It did not argue that PRUC was solely the result of capitalism nor the PRUC did not exist before capitalism. Then i stated that your clarification did not change my points, and proceeded to illustrate how your semantics were flawed, and I did, since you shifted or clarified my points that corporatism not capitalism were responsible for PRUC...lol! And i argued that corporatism is a form of capitalism...and now you say that its irrelevant, yet you've introduced the term and argued that it was something different. And you have tried to argued, badly, that classical capitalism would have been a better system...lol I ask how would you know? You haven't seen it work, and you can discuss classical capitalism conceptually, but (1) it would only be an abstraction, and (2) capitalism and all social systems in within history have always had hierarchies, not necessary class hierarchies, but hierarchies nevertheless. This means that inequality is indeed natural, but he content and form of these inequalites have their own particular histories.

The crux of you argument is here, in these few lines:
"We humans have ALWAYS had PRUC. So why is it inherent to Capitalism, which is a form of commerce that has in force barely 200 years, when PRUC was just as "popular" during centuries and eons prior?"

Again, I've never said that "PRUC" was inherent to capitalism; I said class hierarchy was inherent to capitalism. Secondly, you acronym PRUC is cute, but is collapses categories that really need to be teased out, studied not as a unit, but was categories that have particular relationships, which have been dictated by history. First of all if there is poverty then there is unequal distribution, and obviously these terms are really too general to analzye. Race and class, however, have their own specific histories that one can actually periodized. I will not historize this for you, but I will only say that they emerge with capitalism, not that they are necessarily the result of capitalism.

In consideration of you misreading of my posts, all of what you have written are "irrelevant" to my points...lol!

I would suggest that you consult the emergence of racism and class...were there classes in a feudalist society? And did those classes understand themselves as classes as we do? Can we really understand these terms, ie "class" and "race" by extracting out of their own history...are we assuming that these terms worked or functions the way they do in our society? Was there racism in feudal europe? Did they understand themselves as separate races and were their understandings of race the same as ours(for example, if you read early 19th c. theorists, their conceptualization of racism is what we may call today nationalities and ethnicities). If there was racism in city-states, feudalist societies, etc...does racism have the same significance as racism and race in the New World, which changed produced a black/dichotomy, rather than tribal, districts, village, or even national identities(I would say so, since New World Slavery changed the game, where on a world scale labor was racialized)....In other words, ABM, placing these categories in a neat unit, ie PRUC does more harm than good.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Chris Hayden

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 30, 2003 - 12:01 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Yukio and ABM:

Very interesting discussion. The kind of discussion we as blacks need to engage in.

I think here in the 21st Century, all isms are dead. There is no pure Capitalism just as there was no pure Communism.

Human beings are incapable of living according to abstracts. Isms are just a cover for the usual way of doing things, hierarchy, concentration of power and resources in a few hands.

The 21st Century will be marked by struggles for naked power for its own sake without any qualifications or obfuscations, without any doctrines or ideological dressing. People will either acquiesce, flee, revolt or align themselves with one powerful person or faction or another for advancement or even the necessities of life.

It will be kind of like the fuedal system--and in that system there were three classes, aristocratic warrior class, clergy and commoners and they all knew what classes they belonged to and what their duties were in relation to each other class.

Some studies have indicated that this system was not rigid, the lifestyles of the aristocrats and of life in the feudal times was such that half the aristocratic class died out in each generation, which necessitated replacement from some other class--ie promotion of promising commoners.

There has always been racism, too--read what the Ancient Greeks wrote about all other peoples (they divided all people into other Greeks, whom they hated, and Barbarians, who they despised) or the Romans have to say about the Germans, Gauls, etc.

Right now we are in about the same period the Roman Republic was right before the struggles between Marius and Sulla--the lower classes have been more or less humbled, the institutions of the Republic are increasingly shown to be fraudulent or ignored, power and money are taking the place of duty and piety in society.

There will always be what ABM calls PRUC. Let us be frank--if any of us suddenly had all power and could pick who was in position of authority who would we pick but people akin to us or like us in thought? The thing that makes possible so many wonderful accomplishments of humanity--the ability to subsume the needs and desires of the individual to work collectively--also leads to lemminglike behavior and the madness of crowds.

To date, I see no effective way for a society or nation or people to tell when it is going over the abyss, or to stop the headlong rush once started.

If there are problems with Capitalism, racism, hierarchy, what can we do to solve them, is the question. I think it is going to be difficult to do as long as the winners in this society and those who serve and identify with them don't see any problems.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 30, 2003 - 01:03 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Chris Hayden:

I don't disagree with your general points, but the point that i was attempting to make is that how Greeks understood race and how capitalism particularly emerged with a new and world-scale understanding of racism is necessarily different(among greeks, prisoners of war regardless of their color were enslaved(blackness nor race was fundamental to the reproduction of their social system...in new world slavery only black people were enslaved and their contributed to the financing of the industrial revolution..the main difference is that free african labor was necessary to modernity(and capitalism) this necessarily changes the significance of racism...and just using the term without historiciizing does more harm than good. To identify the existence of race, inequality, etc... is only part of problem, since if we really are interested in "solving" anything, we must understand the particularities of these categories and not lump them all together as if they are a neat package. In otherwords, you can not go to Latin America and Africa and use the terms race, black, white, etc... the way they do in the US...this is even more difficult if we are trying to compare how society to feudalist societies, where although they were divided into classes( better known as social class in social science language)...the particular relationship among these classes were determined by landlords and peasants and monarchies...although we can all them classes the way they worked were extremely different than classes in capitalism, and so these differences can be overlooked, which could lead us to limited strategies to address inequality.

Personally, i don't think we can solve anything...we can, however, fight for change and justice..knowing, if we really understand history, that we can never really solve inequality...which is at the basis of all "PRUC"...again PRUC is problematic and really not useful if we are really trying to understand the relationships among these elements.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Girl

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 30, 2003 - 02:51 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

And my dear Yukio...don't lets not forget that the ancient Greeks were still very brownskinned themselves back in these days you speak of.

Lets not forget--that just like modern day Brazil, Puerto Rico and Palestine--the Greeks implemented "marriage/mating" laws to FORCE a gradual elimination of their Africoid genetic makeup in favor of the Cauco-Baltic one, which was also a presence in their land.

Even today..go to a church service in Greece..you find the people lining up to kiss the "chocolate" colored foot of their Virgin Mary. This is their one acknowledgement of Guilt--that they killed their real mother.

Because the ancient Greeks were a form of "nilotic peoples"....it makes perfect sense that their SLAVES could be any color whatsoever. Of course, the WHITER they became...the more that changed.

And another thing, Yukio...

...One major revolutionary thing that we can do in your so called call for "CHANGE" and "JUSTICE"...is that we can let authentic Black people begin to represent themselves--as themselves. That would be a major help. So very often, I think you're spinning your wheels and not being cognizant of the difference between "CHANGE" and "exchange". Your inability to acknowledge just how hateful and evil mixed raced people have "historically" been to authentic Black people has always put me on pause with your claims of Pan-Africanism...because with all your intelligence, you have still COPPED OUT in the White man's manner by not addressing that COLOR remains the very biggest problem in solving the racial crisis of black people. What good is progress if that progress is only for the Mixed Race desirables who appoint themselves "representatives" of the Black people and then uphold their own caste system?

Venezuela, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic remain some of the most RACIST, COLORIST bastions in this hemisphere. Their churchs are still often segregated by color (lights in front--brown in middle--blacks in the back)...they still systematically encourage their youth to "marry someone lighter than you". They embrace their Spanish/White blood and deplore their African blood.

As they say in South Africa...."The White man created Apartheid...but the Colored man perfected it."

As an African mother and wombbearer (an authentic Black woman from Sudan), it's the knowledge of that fact which means the most to me...because the one thing I will not allow is for women like yourself to do what you've always done...."preach black" while watching my black babies be systematically bred off this planet.

I've seen your face before.






Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 30, 2003 - 05:18 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Snake Girl:

When i initally started reading your post, i was heated...but now, i'm just disappointed..not that you care..lol!

Reread the posts and then respond...lol! My posts nor any of the other posters were addressing mixed race people nor racism, or the lack there of, in Latin America or the Spanish Caribbean...so reread! Chris Hayden's response to my posts, perhaps, led you to believe that I was talking about the presence of racism, but i wasn't! The conversation stemmed from my reply ti Troy's question, then my engagement with ABM, who also morphed my points. I guess i need to be more clear...or ya'll need to take more time reading what i write..lol...but as i usually say, its probably a lil of both: misreading and poor writing.

Anyway Kola: You should read the posts....and then wash ya mouth out with soap...cuz you've misspoken!

It is funny how the mention of Latin America causes you run ya mouth without getting the message of the post(they were mentioned to illustrate not that there wasn't any racism, but that the meaning of race is necessarily different.

For example, we can return to other posts where one of the problems to engagement was the fact that you and others has a different definition(meaning) to race. Many african americans are really americancentric so our understanding of race is necessarily limited...as your understanding of race is also limited by you African centrism....the point that there are many meanings of the same word RACE in different places would suggest that we can not confuse the presence of the word and attach a nineteenth and twentieth century meaning to the word because we see it in print. Again, reread what i wrote, slowly...and find for me, if you will, where i state that these countries are not racist or where i state that there is no segregation. Find it, Kola! You can't can you!

Kola and others in general:
The message was very basic...It was not that racism(the dominance of one race against another) did not exist in feudal times or in Greece, but that New World Slavery(not slavery in Greece or Africa, etc..) and Modern Colonialism(not Greek Colonialism) are fundamental to understanding Capitalism and Modernity in such a way that the racism of Greece is not comparable. I'm talking about the significance of slavery for Greece and England for example and the social systems that existed in their respective periods. The question i addressed is, How fundamental was slavery and race to these social systems?... If we don't historize Race then racism in Greek could be mistakenly understood as the same as New World Slavery(recall how some argue that Africa was responsible for New World Slavery and how they confuse slavery in Africa with slavery in the Americas...this is what we are doing when we compare race and racism in Greece with New World Slavery) Historian Robin Blackburn says in The Making of New World Slavery: From the Baroque to the MOdern 1492-1800, "The slaver systems of the Americas embodied a new type of slavery and plantation, constituting, by 1714, a major source of colonial wealth." In other words, the African became synonymous with Slave, so that only Africans were enslaved. Before New WOrld slavery Africans were not the sole labor of an entire world economic system, so that the racism of the Greeks, as i've said before and for the last time, did not have a monumental of an effect on their political economy as New World Slavery and COlonialism had on the WORLD.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Snake Girl

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 30, 2003 - 06:05 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Yukio, you're right, love.

I misread what you said. Please forgive me, I am genuinely sorry that I misunderstood what you were saying about the Greeks.

Again, I apologize sincerely.

Kola


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Friday, May 30, 2003 - 07:20 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Kola:

No LOve LoSt...
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Monday, June 02, 2003 - 04:44 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

All they do all day is "he said, she said"...


She said: "You are shifting the discussion, which is legitmate as long as you correctly assess what I'm doing, and you have not!"
He said: What "shifting" have I done. My initial point was "Capitalism is the private ownership of capital goods resulting from decisions about investments, pricing, production and distribution that are determined via competition on in a "free market". And "I said that to say that Capitalism does NOT as you suggest inherently require "...hierarchical class structure."" Everything thing I have written thus far has been in support of that point. Had you focused your retort on that rather than regaling use in your irrelevant recitations of pre-20th century socio-economic history/systems, you might not have had to go so far to say so little.

She said: "...Initially, you attempted to "clarify" my analysis, but you didn't address my point, as you have not done again this time. And unfortunately, you have further soiled my points, since your reply seems to focus on origins and what produced or did not produce PRUC, while I was addressing Troy's question of why i thought everyone could not enter the middle class.
He said: It was not my intent/desire to address and/or critique all of the points that you had originally expressed to Troy. And you should recall the first thing I said was: "I agree with most of what you state above...." Why would I say that were it my desire to disagree with you. I was simply clarifying the basic meaning of Capitalism and separating it from the cause of class hierarchy. This whole diatribe began from what you said:"...capitalism requires that there is a hierarchical class structure, that necessarily has a small percentage of the population owning most of the wealth..." My point was/is that actually Capitalism in its purest/truest sense does not demand hierarchy and UDOC, rather Capitalism is actually the antidote for such social-economic imbalance.

She said: My answer asserted that class hierarchy was inherent within capitalism. It did not argue that PRUC was solely the result of capitalism nor the PRUC did not exist before capitalism.
He said: Nor did I say that you said it was SOLELY the result of Classism, PRUC. Nor was it my intent to "...change [your] point...". But I did say PRUC, which includes "Class", is NOT inherent to pure Capitalism, which is where we (appear to) differ. If anything, classical Capitalism is a natural opponent of all artificial socio-economic barriers/strata because it depends entirely upon how effectively/efficiently an entity prepares/markets goods, not whether one was born to a specific family, race, economic class, etc. And further, my argument was it is the unwillingness of those to abide by the classical precepts (coined as "Corporatism") of Capitalism that lead to "hierarchical class structure", racism, poverty....PRUC.

She said: Then i stated that your clarification did not change my points, and proceeded to illustrate how your semantics were flawed, and I did, since you shifted or clarified my points that corporatism not capitalism were responsible for PRUC...lol! And i argued that corporatism is a form of capitalism...and now you say that its irrelevant, yet you've introduced the term and argued that it was something different. And you have tried to argued, badly, that classical capitalism would have been a better system...lol I ask how would you know? You haven't seen it work, and you can discuss classical capitalism conceptually, but (1) it would only be an abstraction, and...
He said: First, I did not disagree with you, rather I attempted to provide some specificity (& clarity) to the point you were making. The only reason I introduced "Corporatism" was to distinguish Capitalism in its purest form/intent from "Corporatism" which I consider a deviant strain of Capitalism that is currently being employed to cause "hierarchical class structure", racism, poverty and unequal distribution of wealth. My dear, I think you would agree that something can be of/by something but yet act/behave counter to its origin/source.
And now you are saying that YOU argued that "Corporatism" is a form of capitalism? What is your point of saying that? Are you saying that I disagree? Huh?? I was the 1 who initially said, "Rather, the "losers" and "winner" are actually the result of an economic system that derives from (or deviated from) capitalism that could be termed "Corporatism". And it was I who defined Corporatism to be "...a form of capitalism that involves persons/companies acquiring mammoth financial resources to wield to influence..."
And I never said that Corporatism being a form of Capitalism were irrelevant, I said, "Really, does it matter when/how/which came first, Capitalism? or Corporatism?" And I said that in response to your informative, but irrelevant, diatribe about pre-20th Century industrial revolution and railroads financing mumbo jumbo. Are you arguing the intent/actions of the early Capitalist undercuts Capitalism as a template to achieving greater socio-economic freedom? If that is what you argue, I disagree.
Of course we haven't seen pure/classical "Capitalism" work. Nor have we seen total equality for blacks or females "work" either. (Nor have attempts to achieve world peace or cures for world hunger.) And such efforts may never "work". But that doesn't stop us from pursuing such, does it? Of course not. Because, although we may never achieve some perfected state of equality, in pursuing equality, we at least gain some of what we need to be liberated. And you should know that most theories such as Capitalism are used as the basis point for embarking on a journey to an improved state/plane, not to achieve some final, perfect, utopian end. You can't nor should not eliminate ALL forms of hierarchy (Class or otherwise). But applying the Capitalistic principle allows for examination of how society might be improved (e.g., less class hierarchy) if artificial/needless barriers/hierarchy are reduced/eliminated.
Perhaps a PERFECT example of what I am talking about is...Thumper's Corner. Here, bright/informed people are able to share new, exciting, opinions on near infinite subject matter. Talented, controversial authors, many of whom who may be under-supported or rejected by mainstream (white) publishers/distributors may market their books here, possibly reaching and inspiring countless people, be they black/white, old/young, strong/feeble, beauteous/homely to become more tolerant, understanding and free.
But Imagine if IBM wholly owned/controlled the Internet. Would we be able to fully express ourselves? Would we be able to use profanity? Would we able to criticize our government, politicians, rich/power (e.g., how much we loathe/distrust the Bush Administration) the way we so easily do here in Thumper's Corner were the Web controlled by Bush's corporate crony's Halliburton? Of course not. If most big/powerful corporations had their druthers, it would be much more difficult, more expensive for Troy/Thumper's to operate. And you could bet your a$$ that the majority of the stuff that hits this board (much of it by our bold impresario/director Troy/Thumper themselves) would never see the light of day.
But because the web market is still pretty open, with relatively few restrictive laws - it is fairly CAPITALISTIC - it is still mildly easy/inexpensive to get on the Web and express yourself in a fairly uninhibited manner. Simply: It is good dose of capitalism that permit you and I, 2 fairly anal retentive strangers, to ponderously argue about issues to which we will likely have little, if any, affect on.

She said: (2) capitalism and all social systems in within history have always had hierarchies, not necessary class hierarchies, but hierarchies nevertheless. This means that inequality is indeed natural, but he content and form of these inequalites have their own particular histories.
He said: Huh??? ((scratching forehead)) Show me 1 structured social hierarchy that was NOT a functioning or defacto Class hierarchy. And you accuse ME of dealing a tricky hand of semantics?

She said: The crux of you argument is here, in these few lines: "We humans have ALWAYS had PRUC. So why is it inherent to Capitalism, which is a form of commerce that has in force barely 200 years, when PRUC was just as "popular" during centuries and eons prior?"
He said: Yes, I said that. And by the way: YIPEEE!!! Thanks for at least getting that quote right.

She said: Again, I've never said that "PRUC" was inherent to capitalism; I said class hierarchy was inherent to capitalism. Secondly, you acronym PRUC is cute, but is collapses categories that really need to be teased out, studied not as a unit, but was categories that have particular relationships, which have been dictated by history. First of all if there is poverty then there is unequal distribution, and obviously these terms are really too general to analzye. Race and class, however, have their own specific histories that one can actually periodized. I will not historize this for you, but I will only say that they emerge with capitalism, not that they are necessarily the result of capitalism.
He said: You are right, you never said PRUC (Come on! Ya gotta love that moniker! HAHAHA!!!). But this conversation had begun with discussion about race, UDOW, poverty and class. I think a careful examination of history - pre-Capitalism/Corporatism, et al. - of those conditions would reveal that they have the same or very similar root causes, which what I have previously (laboriously) argued. I don't disagree that these phenomena have there own specific elements, criteria and effects that deserve individual attention. But I dare you to show any examples of poverty where some, a few, did not own control most of resources/political/military power or UDOW. And I dare you to show me instance of ...And again, MANY such conditions have preceded the advent of what we know to Capitalism...which takes use back to what/where we seem to continually disagree.

She said: In consideration of you misreading of my posts, all of what you have written are "irrelevant" to my points...lol!
He said: Yeah...well...I said it first. So yours don't count. NANHH!!! NANHH!!! NAH!!! NANHH!!! NANNHHHH!!!

She said: I would suggest that you consult the emergence of racism and class...were there classes in a feudalist society? And did those classes understand themselves as classes as we do? Can we really understand these terms, ie "class" and "race" by extracting out of their own history...are we assuming that these terms worked or functions the way they do in our society? Was there racism in feudal europe? Did they understand themselves as separate races and were their understandings of race the same as ours(for example, if you read early 19th c. theorists, their conceptualization of racism is what we may call today nationalities and ethnicities). If there was racism in city-states, feudalist societies, etc...does racism have the same significance as racism and race in the New World, which changed produced a black/dichotomy, rather than tribal, districts, village, or even national identities(I would say so, since New World Slavery changed the game, where on a world scale labor was racialized)....In other words, ABM, placing these categories in a neat unit, ie PRUC does more harm than good.
He said: The specifics of class in all of those societies might be important and interesting. But you conveniently avoid my primary point about what cause Classism in general, which at it core is not a function of a specific time, geography or race. Again, I contend it is not any 1 socio-economic systems that cause class hierarchy. As I said before, Class hierarchy...PRUC...whatever you wanna call it..."is borne simply from that core, primal, timeless need that some people have for asserting their power/will over others for their own personal interest, comfort and security, thus using whatever socio-economic-political to meet that end. Or...although the masters may look/act differently over the spans of time & space, when they beckon, the responses of the serf, peasant, indentured servant, commoner and slave are be very much the same.


In conclusion...
Yukio, I can appreciate (and tolerate) your wanting to indulge your lofty/extensive database about class, racism, et al. Fine. Have a whirl, "Pearl"! But let's not confuse general information with refined reasoning. Just because you can recite rote historical data ad infintum does not mean that you can effectively use such info to draw out and act on legitimate/useful/relevant conclusions. You might REALLY benefit from putting down some of those Racism/History books and sample a few texts on Logic and Effective Thinking. Because what good is education if you can not make good sense and use of what you know?




PS: I have checked them several times and I find my "semantics" to be firmly and perfectly situated how/where they need to be, thank you very much. But, Hey Baby. If you wanna play around with them a lil'...yu GO gurrrll! But please warm your hands first. :-)
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Monday, June 02, 2003 - 09:03 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

ABM:
We disagree on the importance of history; You seem to accept timeless categories, and I see categories influenced and effected by time, the particular economy, etc...This is our main disagreement, as well as the fact that I do think class hierarchy is inherent in capitalism( you use the terms class interchangebly in any context. I wouldn't dare do that, so that our dialogue is necessarily impossible, because from the beginning we can not agree on the importance of the basics). In addition, from the beginning to the end, my points have always been concerned with change and the present, so that the specifics are important to how blacks proceed with strategies, this is what Chris and I discussed, and this sentiment was also what Troy and I were consumed with. These differences are responsible my posts and our disagreements.

I thought your initial response was poor because, you were being so picky with whether the present system was corporatist or capitalist. In my opinion to say that corporatism is a form of capitalism(you also said it derived from or deviated from...to derive and be a form of something is necessarily different)is nothing more than to say that corporatism is capitalism--a more developed form concomitant with the industrial and deindustrial change during the twentieth century. I included history to argue/illustrate that pure capitalism never occurred, except only as a concept. If this is indeed the case, then you point that capitalism is not inherently hierarchical is erroneous. Since capitalism emergence in world history was a process, the bourgeois class was actually inferior to classes within the monarchy, so that although they were not initally the dominant class, (1) capitalism was not quite the dominant economic system, regardless the economic system hierarchy was always inherent (there was never a level playing field) and (2) those who became wealthy capitalists once capitalism became the main ecomic system had a greated access to wealth than peasants, and so that priest or king status didn't matter, but competition with those with greater resources did, and if resources are never equal, and politics and law are governed by those with greater access to wealth and power, then capitalism/corporatism is necessarily inherently, like all others, class hierarchy since the economic system does not exist in a vacuum, but always in relations of power.

YOu stated:

2.We humans have ALWAYS had PRUC. So why is it inherent to Capitalism, which is a form of commerce that has in force barely 200 years, when PRUC was just as "popular" during centuries and eons prior?

DOn't disagree with this either. My point is that the questions you asked, assumed that i actually even addressed causality and origins, and I didn't...and the shift that you made to causality necessarily was based on a misreading of my points(see below, where i address how you shifted 3 times).

Concerning poverty reread my May 21 response to Troy:
"And, i ask if you've considered that in all societies and in all of history...there was always a group that was discriminated against...and in the dominant group and "minority group" there was always poverty. If we look at poverty, there is the underclass, working poor, working class, and lower middle class, middle class, etc...What all this says saying is that INDEED we need to be good, responsible, and hard working people. YET, if poverty is a reality in all social systems(ie communalism, capitalisn, socialism), then you are trying to place too much responsiblity on the individual."

So i don't nessarily disagree with you concerning the timelessness of poverty and inequality, but i did/do disagree with how we understand race and class, since (1) within capitalism them have a very specifc history and conditions, and (2) that specificity requires that we acknowledge their nuaunces in order for us to address them more effectively.




You did shift; You had three eras. (1)You shifted from clarifying my assertion that class hierarchy was inherent in capitalism to (2)whether PRUC were inherent to capitalism, and finally to (3)what the root cause(s) of classicism were.

Remember your theses or key arguments:
"Rather, I was intended to get at the heart of issue: And that is whether the root causes of poverty, racism, unequal distribution of wealth and class hierarchy (I will term "PRUC". Clever. Yes?) are born inherently from the very CONCEPT of Capitalism or whether the PRACTICE of Capitalism cause PRUC."

"But you conveniently avoid my primary point about what cause Classism in general, which at it core is not a function of a specific time, geography or race."

So to conclude:
1. I asserted even before you responded that your poverty, and necessarily, race, inequality, etc...were indeed in all social systems.
2. I was never interested in causality, results, origins--but in contemporary conditions and strategies to address the present, so that history and the specifics are fundamental, where as your analysis was not shaped for the purpose of necessarily addressing strategies and the present.

3. And finally...
"But let's not confuse general information with refined reasoning. Just because you can recite rote historical data ad infintum does not mean that you can effectively use such info to draw out and act on legitimate/useful/relevant conclusions. You might REALLY benefit from putting down some of those Racism/History books and sample a few texts on Logic and Effective Thinking. Because what good is education if you can not make good sense and use of what you know?"

This is all cute and arrogant, but I could say the same about your socalled logic, but i won't. It is clear to me that we were dealing with alot of different variables and assumptions, so that our logic is necessarily different, even though we use the same language...this is key not either of our ability or inability to use logic or effectively think. Good day and be yourself...your posturing is getting old!
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Monday, June 02, 2003 - 10:39 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

"Around and around and around it goes. And where it will stop?...NOBODY knows..."


She said again: We disagree on the importance of history; You seem to accept timeless categories, and I see categories influenced and effected by time, the particular economy, etc...This is our main disagreement, as well as the fact that I do think class hierarchy is inherent in capitalism( you use the terms class interchangebly in any context. I wouldn't dare do that, so that our dialogue is necessarily impossible, because from the beginning we can not agree on the importance of the basics). In addition, from the beginning to the end, my points have always been concerned with change and the present, so that the specifics are important to how blacks proceed with strategies, this is what Chris and I discussed, and this sentiment was also what Troy and I were consumed with. These differences are responsible my posts and our disagreements.
He said again: I can't say that I agree or disagree with you about the "importance" of history as much as maybe we disagree on how best to interpret and to use that history. If you choose to argue class is inherent in capitalism that is ok. Smart and reasonable people agree to disagree everyday. But all I ask is that you don't ascribe false/fallacious interpretations/intentions to my comments because you have routinely misquoted/misinterpreted most of what I have previously stated which is unfortunate and unnecessary. You seem intent on wallowing in the minute details of near infinites catagories of sociology phenomena. Fine. However, I try to contextualize what has and does occur within the grand scheme of human history and existence. Simply, I see the forest, baby...but you like playing in the trees.

She said again: I thought your initial response was poor because, you were being so picky with whether the present system was corporatist or capitalist. In my opinion to say that corporatism is a form of capitalism(you also said it derived from or deviated from...to derive and be a form of something is necessarily different)is nothing more than to say that corporatism is capitalism--a more developed form concomitant with the industrial and deindustrial change during the twentieth century.
He said again: Again, those are your opinions and I respect them. But they do not comprise the entire substance or the spirit of what I mean. You want to wallow in Industrial Age drivel. But in case you have not noticed, we are in the Information Age (or Misinformation Age depending on who/what you believe). I am talking about what is happening RIGHT NOW. History is instructive. But to mire this discussion in what occurred 100+ ago is hardly useful (thus irrelevent). Part of the problem with compartmentalizing everything according to race, geography, era, etc. is you miss valid, relevant and useful information and relationships that transcend the feeble boundaries of time & space.

She said again: I included history to argue/illustrate that pure capitalism never occurred, except only as a concept. If this is indeed the case, then you point that capitalism is not inherently hierarchical is erroneous. Since capitalism emergence in world history was a process, the bourgeois class was actually inferior to classes within the monarchy, so that although they were not initally the dominant class, (1) capitalism was not quite the dominant economic system, regardless the economic system hierarchy was always inherent (there was never a level playing field) and (2) those who became wealthy capitalists once capitalism became the main ecomic system had a greated access to wealth than peasants, and so that priest or king status didn't matter, but competition with those with greater resources did, and if resources are never equal, and politics and law are governed by those with greater access to wealth and power, then capitalism/corporatism is necessarily inherently, like all others, class hierarchy since the economic system does not exist in a vacuum, but always in relations of power.
He said again: WHEWWW!!!! I have never, never....NEVER said that there were not class hierarchy within economic systems that were deemed Capitalistic. What I argue is, at their bare essence those were NOT CAPITALISTIC systems to begin with. Now, if your argument is we can't completely get rid of class hierarchy because pure/classical Capitalism is not possible I would have to helpless concurred. However, you went about regaling us on your knowledge of the purpose and intent of pre-20th century moguls/barons that did not necessarily have anything to do with what does/not constitute the classical definition of Capitalism. I am arguing the basic precepts of Capitalism transcend the mere intentions of some greedy fools who lived/died a century ago much like Einstein's E=mc2 transcends Hiroshima, Three Mile Island and Chernobyl.

She said again: YOu stated:
2.We humans have ALWAYS had PRUC. So why is it inherent to Capitalism, which is a form of commerce that has in force barely 200 years, when PRUC was just as "popular" during centuries and eons prior?
He said again: Yes, I said this. Thanks again for quoting me correctly.

She said again: Don't disagree with this either. My point is that the questions you asked, assumed that i actually even addressed causality and origins, and I didn't...and the shift that you made to causality necessarily was based on a misreading of my points(see below, where i address how you shifted 3 times).
He said again: ???? HAHAHA!!! I'm sorry, but I don't know what the $@#! that means, Yukio.

She said again: Concerning poverty reread my May 21 response to Troy:
"And, i ask if you've considered that in all societies and in all of history...there was always a group that was discriminated against...and in the dominant group and "minority group" there was always poverty. If we look at poverty, there is the underclass, working poor, working class, and lower middle class, middle class, etc...What all this says saying is that INDEED we need to be good, responsible, and hard working people. YET, if poverty is a reality in all social systems(ie communalism, capitalisn, socialism), then you are trying to place too much responsiblity on the individual."
So i don't nessarily disagree with you concerning the timelessness of poverty and inequality, but i did/do disagree with how we understand race and class, since (1) within capitalism them have a very specifc history and conditions, and (2) that specificity requires that we acknowledge their nuaunces in order for us to address them more effectively.
He said again: Man! This just like Bill Murray's "Ground Hogs Day"

She said again: You did shift; You had three eras. (1)You shifted from clarifying my assertion that class hierarchy was inherent in capitalism to (2)whether PRUC were inherent to capitalism, and finally to (3)what the root cause(s) of classicism were.
He said again: Yeah. Ok. What? Do I get a secret toy surprise? No seriously. What was wrong with that? Was trying to get to the heart of the issue that had evolved from our discussion. Mind you, I would like have not shifted or gone in such detail had it not been for how you responded to my initial post, which was ONLY intended to clearly define Capitalism. Honestly, I think if you had simply said I understand/agree with your definition of classical/pure Capitalism but it is not possible in the imperfect world we live, I would have had to grugdely agree and termination this this discussion. But, I suppose spurred on by Thumper's prior challenged, you sought to engage me in some kind of "Vulcan" mind war or something. Now, I enjoy a tussle as much as the next bloke...so long as we don't get undies in bunch. K?

She said again: Remember your theses or key arguments:
"Rather, I was intended to get at the heart of issue: And that is whether the root causes of poverty, racism, unequal distribution of wealth and class hierarchy (I will term "PRUC". Clever. Yes?) are born inherently from the very CONCEPT of Capitalism or whether the PRACTICE of Capitalism cause PRUC."
"But you conveniently avoid my primary point about what cause Classism in general, which at it core is not a function of a specific time, geography or race."
So to conclude:
1. I asserted even before you responded that your poverty, and necessarily, race, inequality, etc...were indeed in all social systems.
2. I was never interested in causality, results, origins--but in contemporary conditions and strategies to address the present, so that history and the specifics are fundamental, where as your analysis was not shaped for the purpose of necessarily addressing strategies and the present.
He said again: Well now, that was very nice/neat little package you put together, My Dear. I profoundly disagree here. I think your "conditions and strategies" only lead to a myriad of discussions/studies that never get anywhere. Whereas my arguments are simply this: Look folks. We know who the culprits are. Yes, they may wear different garb than their predecessors. But the game and the player are at their core ALWAYS the same. And if we understand that, we can begin to seriously address problems/issues.

She said again: 3. And finally...
"But let's not confuse general information with refined reasoning. Just because you can recite rote historical data ad infintum does not mean that you can effectively use such info to draw out and act on legitimate/useful/relevant conclusions. You might REALLY benefit from putting down some of those Racism/History books and sample a few texts on Logic and Effective Thinking. Because what good is education if you can not make good sense and use of what you know?"
This is all cute and arrogant, but I could say the same about your socalled logic, but i won't. It is clear to me that we were dealing with alot of different variables and assumptions, so that our logic is necessarily different, even though we use the same language...this is key not either of our ability or inability to use logic or effectively think. Good day and be yourself...your posturing is getting old!
He said again: "Ah Daa Daa Dee, Daa Daa Dee and Dat's all folks!!"



PS: Tell the truth. I know that you getting REALLY turned on during this little tete-a-tete, aren't you?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Tuesday, June 03, 2003 - 01:02 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

ABM:

You don't accept my interpretations...thats all. I have not misquoted you, but you have misquoted me.

You should reread your own posts; we don't need to address the same minutiae again and again. You said: WHEWWW!!!! I have never, never....NEVER said that there were not class hierarchy within economic systems that were deemed Capitalistic.

As i said that you said class hierarchy was not inherent to capitalism, while i said that it was. The difference between my and your statement is the absence of the word "inherently," which necessarily changes the sentence. Reread what you originally brought up in your post: 5/28/03-I said that to say that Capitalism does NOT as you suggest inherently require "...hierarchical class structure..."

Even in your 6/02/03 quote of my post it says:
She said again: I included history to argue/illustrate that pure capitalism never occurred, except only as a concept. If this is indeed the case, then you point that capitalism is not inherently hierarchical is erroneous.

And indeed we do see things very diffferently. I believe that understanding the diversity of histories enables us to understand how life is specific to the conditions under which people live. Not only has the garb changed, but the Game and the player(s) are not the same since the conditions are different, and Game is more diversified, there are more players, and the conditions of the Game are different, so we need new strategies. We have always known the Game and our relationship to it, but the strategies we have chosen have not always been the best. And i don't say that I have a panacea nor a plan, but i do understand that if we are dealing with the present and different conditions then we need strategies that are applicable for the present.

Review what i wrote. Perhaps the space made it difficult for you:
I quoted you and responded, 2.We humans have ALWAYS had PRUC. So why is it inherent to Capitalism, which is a form of commerce that has in force barely 200 years, when PRUC was just as "popular" during centuries and eons prior?

DOn't disagree with this either. My point is that the questions you asked, assumed that i actually even addressed causality and origins, and I didn't...and the shift that you made to causality necessarily was based on a misreading of my points(see below, where i address how you shifted 3 times).

In other words, I never said that PRUC was inherent to capitalism, but your question seems to state that i did; i presume you stated this since my points included poverty, race, and and unequal distribution of resources. These were just elements that contributed to the impossibility of everyone reaching the middle class--my initial response to Troy.

Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Tuesday, June 03, 2003 - 10:35 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hey "Lord Grand High Exalted Mystic Ruler" Thumper,

Since YOU helped incite this little squabble between Lady Yukio and me, would you please call a victor already? Because apparently neither she nor I am mature enuff to just let this thing lie.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Rita

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Tuesday, June 03, 2003 - 11:33 am:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

ABM

I'm not Thumper but I will declare a victor. You both are victors. Unlike alot of post you'll were able to disagree and not resort to name calling or any other demeaning words. So, thanks to the both of you for some intresting reading. And Thumper for being the instigator.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

ABM

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Tuesday, June 03, 2003 - 03:01 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I am glad your enjoyed my and Yukio ranting. Thanks for the compliments. That was kind, generous and diplomatic of you.

Hey, what color blouse are you wearing?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Yukio

Rating: N/A
Votes: 0 (Vote!)

Posted on Tuesday, June 03, 2003 - 03:05 pm:   Delete Post View Post/Check IP Print Post    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

ABM:
I didn't know we were fighting or that this was a contest...jus a disagreement here and a disagreement there... Although ABM, you drew the first blood, as the brute Stallone said, so you are responsible...lmao.. for the "little squabble."

Rita:

Thank You!

Thumper:
Can I borrow 5 doll'ahs

Topics | Last Day | Last Week | Tree View | Search | Help/Instructions | Program Credits Administration

Advertise | Chat | Books | Fun Stuff | About AALBC.com | Authors | Getting on the AALBC | Reviews | Writer's Resources | Events | Send us Feedback | Privacy Policy | Sign up for our Email Newsletter | Buy Any Book (advanced book search)

Copyright 1997-2008 AALBC.com - http://aalbc.com