Say, you know what we need more of? Saul Alinsky and food stamps.
I [bleep] you not.
The nation’s food stamp program is an essential part of the American safety net. Why? Because people can’t be productive — in school, at work or looking for work — if they are hungry and fearful about not having enough food to feed their families.
The program serves 46 million people, almost as many people as Medicare. And that’s despite the fact that more than one-third of those eligible for the benefit are not receiving it. If all those who qualified for food stamps enrolled in the program, it would include 20% to 25% of Americans.
Not surprisingly, given the large numbers who participate, food stamp recipients are a diverse bunch, including the elderly, the disabled, one-parent families, two-parent families, low-wage workers, students, soldiers and the unemployed.
But if Republicans have their way, they will turn food stamp recipients into the new “welfare queens.”
The conservative Heritage Foundation has reprised the false charges once leveled at welfare, suggesting that food stamps may make recipients “dependent on government.” And Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich has said that “the African American community should demand paychecks and not be satisfied with food stamps.” (This, despite the fact that only 22% of food stamp recipients are black.)
I told you! Being anti-food stamp is not being anti-black! Calling Obama the food stamp president is not racist. Du-uh!
But Gingrich’s point is still valid, even vital. Food stamps (or their equivalent) may be necessary, but they are not good. (And that’s before considering the rampant abuse of EBT cards—72,300 hits and counting.) To end poverty, people need jobs, not welfare—which means Gingrich is right again! Paychecks not food stamps!
But we’re used to the celebration of welfare around here. Democrats like Nancy Pelosi even laud welfare as economic stimulus.
But who would celebrate an avowed socialist radical like Saul Alinsky?
Bill Moyers, that’s who:
Saul Alinsky is not around to defend himself, but that hasn’t kept Newt Gingrich from using his name to whip up the froth and frenzy of his followers, whose ignorance of the man is no deterrence to their eagerness, at Gingrich’s behest, to tar and feather him posthumously.
It’s all quite clever and insidious, a classic lesson in how to slander someone who cannot answer from the grave, reminiscent of the tactics Gingrich used in those GOPAC memos back in 1996, when he suggested buzz words and phrases to demonize opponents: corrupt, decay, pathetic, permissive attitude, self-serving, and, of course, radical.
In the case of Saul Alinsky, most of the crowd knows nothing about the target except that they’re supposed to hate him. And why not? There’s the strange foreign name — obviously an alien. One of them. And a socialist at that. What’s a socialist? Don’t know — but Obama’s one, isn’t he? Barack Hussein Obama, Saul Alinsky — bingo! Two peas in a pod, and a sinister, subversive pod at that.
Well, his name is Saul Alinsky. What’s Gingrich supposed to call him?
And is Moyers suggesting they aren’t two peas in a pod? Not as such:
The two men never met, although when Obama arrived on the South Side of Chicago as a community organizer, some of his grass roots work with the poor was with an Alinsky-affiliated organization.
Maybe not peas—but certainly lima beans:
Alinsky died in 1972, when Obama was 11 years old. But three of Obama’s mentors from his Chicago days studied at a school Alinsky founded, and they taught their students the philosophy and methods of one of the first “community organizers.” Ryan Lizza wrote a 6,500-word piece on Alinsky’s influence on Obama for The New Republic, noting, “On his campaign website, one can find a photo of Obama in a classroom teaching students Alinskian methods. He stands in front of a blackboard on which he has written ‘Relationships Built on Self Interest,’ an idea illustrated by a diagram of the flow of money from corporations to the mayor.”
In a letter to the Boston Globe, Alinsky’s son wrote that “the Democratic National Convention had all the elements of the perfectly organized event, Saul Alinsky style…. Barack Obama’s training in Chicago by the great community organizers is showing its effectiveness. It is an amazingly powerful format, and the method of my late father always works to get the message out and get the supporters on board. When executed meticulously and thoughtfully, it is a powerful strategy for initiating change and making it really happen. Obama learned his lesson well.”
Obama is about as sincere and real as he is a fan of the Chicago White Sox.
Oh wait, you never heard? (Major League Baseball has pulled down all clips, citing “copyright.”)
After throwing out the first pitch at the Nationals-Mets game today in D.C., Barack Obama visited with the Nats TV broadcast team, which included former White Sox pitcher Rob Dibble.
Obama to Dibble on why he wore a White Sox fan to throw out the first pitch in Washington: “I’m a Southside kid, I gotta make sure (White Sox owner) Jerry Reinsdorf doesn’t get to angry with me.”
Dibble: “Having played with the White Sox for a short time, I know how the Cubs fans and White Sox fans go back and forth. Who was one of your favorite White Sox players growing up?”
Obama: “You know uh ….. I … I thought that … uh …. you know … the truth is a lot of the Cubs I like too! But, uh
… I did not become a Sox fan until I moved to Chicago. Because I uh …. I was growing up in Hawaii so I ended up actually being an Oakland A’s fan.”
Obvious follow-ups: so, who were your favorite Oakland Athletics?
And you said you were a Southside kid, yet you didn’t move to Chicago until you were in your 20s—WTF?!