Filed under: — @jphoganorg @ 8:30 pm

It is nearly two years and two months that President Barack Obama has been our chief administrator - especially if you include the months of "transition" where Bush admin worked with them in an unprecedented manor for our times.

Are we now to a tomorrow where the "remarks" given in "response" and tonight scheduled so for two of opposition to President Obama to "more downloads" to private media for later repeated listening?

That said: In the words of Barack Hussein Obama, and in no particular order: His words, some, picked now from DREAMS OF MY FATHER (2nd ed.):

p.163 > "Both Marty and Smalls knew that in politics, like religion, power lay in certainty — and that one man’s certainty threatened another’s."

     "I realized then, standing in an empty McDonalds parking lot in the South Side of Chicago, that I was a heretic.  Or worse — for even a heretic must believe in something, if nothing more than the truth of his own doubt."

p.143 > "’Excuse me, mister,’ he shouted. ‘Do you know why sometimes the river runs that way and then sometimes runs this way?’"

     "…The answer seemed to satisfy the boy, and he went back to his mother.  As I watched the two of them disappear into dusk, I realized I had never noticed which way the river ran."

     "A week later, I loaded up my car and drove to Chicago."

p.140 > "Every path to change was well trodden, every strategy exhausted.  And with each defeat, even those with the best of intentions could end up further and further removed from the struggles of those they purported to serve."

p.139-40 > "Through a tall window, sunlight streamed down on a bust of Dr. King."

     "’I like it,’ the director said after looking over my resume.  ‘Particularly the corporate experience.  That’s the real business of a civil rights organization these days.  Protests and pickets won’t cut it anymore.  To get the job done, we’ve got to forge links between business, government and the inner city.’"

     "On the spot he offered me the job, which involved organizing conferences on drugs, unemployment, housing.  Facilitating dialogue, he called it.  I declined his generous offer, deciding I needed a job closer to the streets.  I spent three months working for a Ralph Nader offshoot up in Harlem, trying to convince the minority students at City College about the importance of recycling.  Then a week passing out flyers for an assemblyman’s race in Brooklyn — the candidate lost and I never did get paid."

     "In six months I was broke, unemployed, eating soup from a can.  In search of some inspiration, I went to hear Kwame Toure, formerly Stokely Carmichael of SNCC and Black Power fame, speak at Columbia.  At the entrance to the auditorium, two women, one black, one Asian, were selling Marxist literature and arguing with each other about Trotsky’s place in history." … "At the end of his remarks, a thin young woman with glasses asked if such a program was practical given the state of African economies and the immediate needs facing black Americans.  Toure cut her off midsentence.  ‘It’s only the brainwashing that you’ve received that makes it impractical, sister,’ he said. … The woman remained standing for several minutes while she was upbraided for her bourgeois attitudes.  People began to file out.  Outside the auditorium, the two Marxists were now shouting at the top of their lungs."

     "Stalinist pig!"

     "Reformist bitch!"

p.134-5 > "…I saw the African-American community becoming more than just the place you’d been born or the house where you’d been raised. … –I believed that it might, over time, admit the uniqueness of my own life."

     "That was my idea of organizing.  It was a promise of redemption."

p.133 > "In 1983, I decided to become a community organizer."

     "There wasn’t much detail to the idea; I didn’t know anyone making a living that way.  When classmates in college asked me just what it was that a community organizer did, I couldn’t answer them directly.  Instead, I’d pronounce on the need for change.  Change in the White House, where Reagan and his minions were carrying on their dirty deeds.  Change in the Congress, compliant and corrupt.  Change in the mood of the country, manic and self-absorbed.  Change won’t come from the top, I would say.  Change will come from a mobilized grass roots."

     "That’s what I will do, I’ll organize black folks.  At the grass roots.  For change."

p.125 > "It wasn’t your father’s fault that he left, you know.  I divorced him."

p.122 > "Unwilling to make that choice, I spent a year walking from one end of Manhattan to the other.  Like a tourist, I watched the range of human possibility on display, trying to trace out my future in the lives of the people I saw, looking for some opening through which I could reenter."

p.123 > {Barry’s sister on finding him in NYC after first year:} "’Barry’s okay, isn’t he?  I mean, I hope he doesn’t lose his cool and become one of those freaks you see on the streets around here."

p.115 > "Where did I belong?" … "What I needed was a community, I realized, a community that cut deeper than the common despair that black friends and I shared when reading the latest crime statistics, or the high fives I might exchange on a (Hawaii) basketball court.  A place where I could put down stakes and test my commitments."

p.100 > "To avoid being mistaken for a sellout, I chose my friends carefully.  The more politically active black (Oxidental) students.  The foreign students.  The Chicanos.  The Marxist professors and structural feminists and punk rock performance poets.  We smoked cigarettes and wore leather jackets."

p.98 > "Anyway, most of the other black students at Oxy didn’t seem all that worried about compromise.  There were enough of us on campus to constitute a tribe, and when it came to hanging out many of us chose to function like a tribe, staying close together, traveling in packs."

p.82 > "We were in goddammed Hawaii.  We said what we pleased, ate where we pleased; we sat at the proverbial front of the bus.  None of our white friends, guys like Jeff or Scott from the basketball team, treated us any differently than they treated each other.  They loved us, and we loved them back.  Shit, seemed like half of ‘em wanted to be black themselves — or at least Doctor J."


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