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Just as in late 19th Century France, where Alsacian and other jews thought they were  in France's mainstream what with the declaration of universal rights that had been the great hallmark of the French revolution and the spread of revolutionary values of egalite and fraternite throughout Europe (albeit forcibly by Napoleon initially and later through the agitation and empowerment of middle classes),  nonwhite Americans have thought themselves liberated and included in the American mainstream as a result of the post World War II civil rights struggles (and labor struggles on California farms), Court rulings and progressive legislation.  And yet when fabricated evidence was used to falsely label Dreyfus as a traitor, the entire French establishment piled on and let loose a wave of antisemitism that undermined civil society throughout Europe culminating in the atrocities of the Second World War.  Isn't that what is happening now in the United States?  Instead of there being a "Have You No Decency Moment", the American media establishment, at the behest of oligarchs and playing to prejudice, is attacking Obama as the other and judging him by standards never before applied in US history.  One would think the forgeries and lies behind much of these attacks would be shouted from the mountain top and stop this cancer affecting our government and society. But they are ignored as the media and the Village attack the President for basically being black, while the legal and political foundations of our country are being rapidly undermined.  J'Accuse.    

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Comment Preferences

  •  The Best and the Brightest...Victims Edition. n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PrahaPartizan
  •  I don't know about this: (5+ / 0-)
    the media and the Village attack the President for basically being black
    I agree that the traditional news media is inconsistent, misguided, and perhaps corrupt. But as I recall, they went after Bill Clinton with similar gusto.
  •  Obama is simply an incomplete flawed politician (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Farugia, hmi, Aspe4, native, schumann, PrahaPartizan

    His machine is outstanding at getting him elected but it's not so terrific at the political aspects of executing policy, rewarding friends and punishing enemies.  

    If you don't deliver the goods for your constituents and political allies, soon they don't have your back.  

    Just like me, you think you can put my Social Security on the table and think I'm going to have your back when you wind up in some petty scandal?

    No, because I don't care about YOU, I care about ME.

  •  Not entirely true: (4+ / 0-)
    he entire French establishment piled on and let loose a wave of antisemitism that undermined civil society
    A group of Frenchmen head by Emile Zola who called themselves "Dreyfusards" fought the anti-Semitism of the French military establishment and defended Dreyfus.

    Zola wrote a stirring editorial titled "J'Accuse" in which he called out the duplicity and cover-your-ass mentality of the French officer corps.  

    •  Yes, Zola was wonderful. Worth quoting: (4+ / 0-)

      "Where is that truly strong, judiciously patriotic administration that will dare to clean house and start afresh? How many people I know who, faced with the possibility of war, tremble in anguish knowing to what hands we are entrusting our nation’s defense! And what a nest of vile intrigues, gossip, and destruction that sacred sanctuary that decides the nation’s fate has become! We are horrified by the terrible light the Dreyfus affair has cast upon it all, this human sacrifice of an unfortunate man, a “dirty Jew.” Ah, what a cesspool of folly and foolishness, what preposterous fantasies, what corrupt police tactics, what inquisitorial, tyrannical practices! What petty whims of a few higher-ups trampling the nation under their boots, ramming back down their throats the people’s cries for truth and justice, with the travesty of state security as a pretext.

      Indeed, it is a crime to have relied on the most squalid elements of the press, and to have entrusted Esterhazy’s defense to the vermin of Paris, who are now gloating over the defeat of justice and plain truth. It is a crime that those people who wish to see a generous France take her place as leader of all the free and just nations are being accused of fomenting turmoil in the country, denounced by the very plotters who are conniving so shamelessly to foist this miscarriage of justice on the entire world. It is a crime to lie to the public, to twist public opinion to insane lengths in the service of the vilest death-dealing machinations. It is a crime to poison the minds of the meek and the humble, to stoke the passions of reactionism and intolerance, by appealing to that odious anti-Semitism that, unchecked, will destroy the freedom-loving France of the Rights of Man. It is a crime to exploit patriotism in the service of hatred, and it is, finally, a crime to ensconce the sword as the modern god, whereas all science is toiling to achieve the coming era of truth and justice.

      "When people spin this in partisan terms to obfuscate the truth, it does a real disservice to normal people not in the big club in DC. Many of them will be hurting...That is why I write."--priceman

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri May 17, 2013 at 01:32:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Among others comparison flaws, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mikey, PrahaPartizan

    now I'd like to see a show of hands as to how many here believe that a Jew could be elected president in these here United States. Yet it remains the case that Mr. Obama, despite these complaints of persistent racism, has been elected 2X.  J'accuse, indeed.

    •  Dreyfus was not the President of France (0+ / 0-)

      He was merely a soldier of middle officer rank.  You want comparisons with France, how about Leon Blum, elected to Prime Minister in 1936, hounded from office not just for being a Socialist, but for being a Jew.

      "We have always known that heedless self-interest was bad morals, now we know that it is bad economics." Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Jan. 20, 1937

      by Navy Vet Terp on Fri May 17, 2013 at 01:42:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  i believe a jew could get elected president (5+ / 0-)

      one need only look at the number of jewish senators:

      carl levin
      frank lautenberg
      dianne feinstein
      barbara boxer
      ron wyden
      chuck schumer
      ben cardin
      bernie sanders
      al franken
      richard blumenthal
      brian schatz

      and representatives:

      henry waxman
      sander levin
      eliot engel
      nita lowey
      jerrold nadler
      brad sherman
      jan schakowsky
      susan davis
      steve israel
      adam schiff
      eric cantor
      allyson schwartz
      debbia wasserman schultz
      stephen cohen
      john yarmuth
      jared polis
      theodore deutch
      david cicilline
      alan grayson
      lois frankel
      brad schneider
      alan lowenthal

       in our government for proof that at least one party's voters is hardly averse to electing jewish democrats to high office. by the data, it would seem that the american electorate is if anything more willing to vote for jewish candidates than black or latino ones, something made all the more striking by the fact that there are no states and few is any congressional districts where the electorate is majority jewish.

      •  And yet (0+ / 0-)

        I'll believe it when I see it.

      •  A Jew was elected VP in 2000 (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        onanthebarbarian, PrahaPartizan

        At least, when one goes by the national popular vote and not the SCOTUS one. . .

      •  I'm a Jew and I don't think so (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        hmi

        I don't think it correlates for Jews, why I do not know. I get it that there have been very few Black Senators yet we have a Black President. I just don't think numbers of Senators and Congresspeople translate to if the country is ready to be lead by a given minority. There are more Women in Congress than Black people, for example. Yet no woman President.

         I'm in a lliberal east coast city. I remember when Liberman was on Gore's ticket. This was before he turned traitor  (to Dems) and before many on the left despised him quite so much.

        I don't "look" or "seem" Jewish and I heard plenty negative about having a Jew as President back then.  And again he was only on the ticket as VP. I felt like a spy.Though it's not nearly as bad as in Europe, in some circles I still hear occasionally hear antiJewish sentiments, just not amongst educated people.  My friend from Texas who converted hears it all the time at home.

        Like racism against Black people but more subtle, the historical predudice against Jews (which our country held overtly until WW2, though many don't realize that) still percolates subconciously in many Americans. (Please note I am not comparing the two prejudices in intensity). I am sure of this because I see what comes out on the left especially (a horrible revelation I had at OWS). Some people's subconcious ideas are hooked by what is going on in Israel. The very outspoken right wing Jews (Cantor, Adelson, AIPAC) cause some (too many) people to make blanket assumptions  of Jews in general. (not here--most people here know most Jews are more liberal). To be clear, I am not condoning anything that Israel does and am Not saying that criticizing the State of Israel is AntiSemetic;I am saying that "the Jews" and "Israel" are different entities and to say pajorative judgemetal things about Jews (meaning in general and thus denoting all sweepingly) because of what the right wing Israeli government and her supporters do is antiSemetic.

        I do not think this country would elect a Jewish President any time soon. I wonder if the Dems could bare to nominate one. I never felt this way before relatively recently and am saddened by that. Yet it is nothing compared to the African American experience, as far as I know, even today. And I "pass", so to speak, as well.

    •  I agree but seemingly off topic (0+ / 0-)

      I notice there has been no Jew as VP or President or Speaker of the House.

  •  Blackness is Their Tool Not Their Purpose. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cjo30080, wu ming, Quicklund

    They attack him because he's a Democrat. They've been attacking Democratic Presidents, ex presidents and candidates just as viciously beginning with Limbaugh's opening rants against ex-pres Carter for years before Clinton came along.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Fri May 17, 2013 at 01:17:23 PM PDT

  •  No. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cjo30080, greenbell, PrahaPartizan

    He's another politician being piled on by the forces of character assassination that have plagued every successful Democrat who rises to the level even of Presidential candidate, much less President, since Gary Hart.

    If you don't like it, do something to democratize the media. As long as the media is owned by five very rich corporations who can be easily bought or convinced by their rich friends to engage in this sort of thing, it will keep happening.

    The President being black is a bonus to them, an easy way to gin up hatred. But the method is the same, merely the contents alter a bit. If you want to change this crap, attack the method and the players using it, not the message contents. Or, go ahead and attack the message contents because they're destructive and untrue--but if you want to make these people stop, you're going to have to take apart their infrastructure, create a true alternative media, something along those lines.  Simply disproving the content of their message won't do a damn thing. We've done that many times before.

    No, Obama isn't Dreyfus.

    "When people spin this in partisan terms to obfuscate the truth, it does a real disservice to normal people not in the big club in DC. Many of them will be hurting...That is why I write."--priceman

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri May 17, 2013 at 01:17:25 PM PDT

  •  Simply put : No. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PrahaPartizan

    Republicans hate Obama's guts just like they hated Clinton's guts and just like they would and will hate the guts of whoever Democrat would be at the same position.

    Most Republicans are not small-d democrats. They are authoritarians to the core. They just cannot accept the legitimacy of anyone without an R in front of his/her name. Only they have the truth and the right to rule. Anyone else is either an impostor, a fraudster who cheated at the polls, or someone was elected by libtards dolts who are not true Americans and should not have a voice anyway, or so is the way many, many Republicans think.

    By itself it's not a big problem. All democracies have their authoritarians. But Republicans benefit from a pliant media and, even worse, a pliant opposition who both persist to feign to believe that the Republican party is a reasonable, responsible, good faith partner in national politics, when all evidences are they haven't been anything but since at least 1994/1995 and the Gingrich "revolution", and possibly since the early 80s and the election of Ronald Reagan.

    And unless Obama ends up spending four or five years a prisoner at l'Ile du Diable or Guantanamo, please leave Cpt Alfred Dreyfus out of that. Certain comparisons are best avoided.

    I deal in facts. My friends are few but fast.

    by Farugia on Fri May 17, 2013 at 01:23:29 PM PDT

  •  Shirley Sherrod (3+ / 0-)

    would be a far more apt comparison to Dreyfus.  To those who abandoned her when the wolves attacked, I say, "J'accuse!"

    Ever get the feeling you've been cheated?

    by ActivistGuy on Fri May 17, 2013 at 01:58:19 PM PDT

  •  the salient difference (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PrahaPartizan

    is that the french (and european) populace was never anywhere near being majority or plurality jewish, during the dreyfus affair and afterwards. america is rapidly moving towards a majority-minority electorate, and is already there in many states and congressional districts. as such, even though the right wing and its establishment mouthpieces might echo the sort of attacks as 19th century europe, it is unlikely that the political consequences of those attacks will play out in the same manner.

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