"It is understandable that
folks imbibe large quantities of ObamaL'aid in
anticipation of experiencing the ‘dream' so long
For an overwhelming number of Black folks, Fat
Tuesday and Super Tuesday were the same in both
coincidence of date and emotional impact. Both were
welcomed as causes to celebrate for celebration's sake.
The Mardi Gras in New Orleans was no doubt a joyous
occasion, as usual, to "let the good times roll," this
past Tuesday - despite the fact that the Gulf region has
been sucked into the bottomless Black Hole of Disaster
Capitalism, from which it will never return in the
absence of a broad and sustained people's movement.
In the rest of the nation on Tuesday night, African
Americans celebrated Barack Obama's "Big Mo" - his truly
amazing momentum towards capturing the Democratic
presidential nomination. The white elite have caught the
flavor and the fever, as well. Carl Bernstein, of the
Watergate journalism team Woodward and Bernstein, quoted
Black luminary Vernon Jordan as saying, "It's hard to
run against a movement," as an explanation for Hillary
Clinton's inability to crush Obama. But of course, the
Obama campaign is not a movement - it's a parade, a
corporate-engineered, multi-million dollar enterprise
that promises Black and poor people virtually nothing of
substance, just like that of his opponent, Hillary
Obama puts on a far better show than his political
twin, Clinton; his float is the gaudiest in the line of
march. Barack's parade crews throw the plastic dubloons
and beads farther and with much more enthusiasm than
Hillary's - but the trinkets come from the same
manufacturer: the corporate wing of the Democratic
Party. After the parade is over, both crews will park
their flatbed trucks and disassemble the colorful
facades in the same grimy industrial zones.
Obama campaign is not a movement - it's a parade."
Black folks have been waiting - forever - to see one
of their own crowned King of the national Mardi Gras.
Who can argue in the presence of such pent-up desire?
Yes, an Obama victory would bring "change" of a kind - a
change of complexion in the Oval Office. And, as the
prospect of this cosmetic change becomes more and more
plausible, it is understandable that folks imbibe large
quantities of ObamaL'aid in anticipation of experiencing
the "dream" so long "deferred." But dreams and Mardis
Gras end with the rising sun and the familiar clanging
of the real world. In that real world, Hillary Clinton
and Barack Obama are the same political animal, by every
substantive measure. Both would increase the suffocating
military budget, strangling any possibility of
rebuilding New Orleans or any other American city. All
their promises of domestic renewal - expressed or
wishfully imagined - are as fleeting and phony as the
masks on the faces of the characters on the floats on
Canal Street, New Orleans, on Fat Tuesday.
A Mardis Gras parade is not a movement. Corporate
electoral campaigns are not movements. ObamaL'aid just
gets you drunk. For Black folks, this may be a very long
For Black Agenda Radio, I'm Glen Ford.
BAR executive editor
Glen Ford can be contacted at
This e-mail address is being