Saturday, July 30, 2011

Fred Hampton, Jr. on JR, Minister of Mis-information

Chairman Fred Hampton, Jr. of POCC

Chairman Fred Hampton, Jr. on
JR, Former POCC Minister of

In a conversation with this writer, Chairman Fred Hampton, Jr. of POCC, i.e. Prisoners of Conscience Committee, stated that JR defected from the organization last August, although he has yet claimed affiliation with the group, using the title POCC Minister of Information.

The Chairman stated that he bought a one way ticket from Chicago to the Bay Area to clarify his relationship with JR and to point out the many contradictions in the personal and political behavior of the former Minister of Information, i.e., Minister of Mis-information.

photo Kamau Amen Ra

Chairman Fred noted how JR helped destroy rapper Askari X by allowing him to be exploited by rap producers who produced the rapper's albums but paid him with marijuana, after pimping him all day in the studio. Askari, one of the Bay Area's greatest rappers, has long suffered with mental problems and is presently doing time in prison.

The son of slain Chicago Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, Fred Jr. recounted several occasions when the POCC organization had to put JR in check for reactionary behavior in various cities across America and abroad, including Libya when JR reportedly had Nation of Islam representative Akhbar Muhammad bumped from a panel with Malcolm Shabazz and Cynthia McKinney.

In the Chairman's mind, JR is possibly connected with the CIA and/or FBI, a connection we have suspected since we were with JR in New York and Newark on 9/11. JR has never provided us with a copy of interviews this writer conducted and JR videoed. For ten years, he as refused to provide us a copy of the interviews with people in Newark, including Amina Baraka, wife of poet Amiri Baraka, and in Philadelphia with poet Sonia Sanchez. Why is he hiding this information, if he is indeed the minister of information?

Chairman Fred says JR has pimped Malcolm Shabazz as he tried to pimp Fred. He says he and JR were never friends but simply members in the POCC organization. After the organization had to put JR in check on several occasions, he defected a year ago this August but has duped the radical community by still using the title of POCC Minister of Information, aka, Mis-information.

Fred, Jr. was scheduled to speak at Oakland's Eastside Arts Center this week but the space was suddenly unavailable. He suspects JR conspired with the Eastside Arts organizers to cancel his appearance which would have given him the opportunity to relay his position on JR to the Bay Area radical community that has attempted to shield and defend JR from allegations of police connections, including phone records that have him in three conversations with the killers of Oakland Post Editor Chauncey Bailey while they were parked in front of his house hours before his assassination. He maintains he was Chauncey's friend, yet why would he not inform Chauncey that killers were parked outside his apartment? He was never interrogated or subpoenaed to court.

According to Chairman Fred, JR gave him misinformation to events to delay his appearance in New York, Detroit and other cities. The Chairman of POCC claims JR has provided Malcolm Shabazz, his latest prey, with women to secure his loyalty, although these women were of dubious character since they were sleeping with JR in the morning and with Shabazz at night.

Chairman Fred says he had to put JR in check after his interview with Shabazz in which he attempted to provoke the grandson of Malcolm X into saying what he would do to the recently released killer of his grandfather. We have long maintained we have an agent provocateur in our midst. Chairman Fred agreed with this opinion one hundred percent.

The young man who was in his mother's womb as she lay in bed beside his father while police bullets rained into their bedroom, says Bay Area radicals have been in denial about the San Francisco Bayview editor and KPFA radio broadcaster, JR. They have held him up as a model of a radical youth, yet he is an opportunist of the first order. He made Oscar Grant a minor character in his film on the slain BART rider, JR was the major character. During the Oscar Grant riot, JR was charged with setting a garbage can on fire. Is this a revolutionary act?

After Eastside Arts exhibited reactionary behavior by denying him a space to speak, Chairman Fred was able to hold a session at a club in West Oakland. JR was present but had nothing to say.

It could be that we are dealing with a mental patient rather than an agent provocateur, although often they can be both. We have been informed that officials in one Bay Area city has had enough of JR's antics and are making plans to put him in check. We advise JR to take a long needed vacation for his own safety, something he failed to advise his "friend" Chauncey Bailey to do.
--Marvin X

Toward Pan African Unity

Toward Unity of North American Africans
10. Pan African Unity

Colonialism was/is so devastating it has made Pan African unity a most intractable project. Maybe before the end of the world, which is not far off since Mother Earth appears ready to recycle much human garbage from the global stockpile, yes, maybe just before the bell tolls, Pan Africans will decide to enter a program of detoxification and recovery from the ravages of imperialism and neo-colonialism. In America we call it domestic colonialism, the urban centers are basically colonies for dumping white supremacy goods and services upon America's wretched of the earth.

Pan Africanism has been promoted at least since the 19th Century, and of course in tune with world events, helped bring an end to raw colonialism and the beginning of modern African nation states. But hardly before the independence celebration was over, neo-colonialism stuck her butcher knives in the heart of Pan Africanism, After all, Nkrumah taught us neo-colonialism was colonialism playing possum. The colonial elite advanced to the neo-colonial elite. There was no therapy for the new African leaders, no detoxification and recovery from the addiction to global white supremacy, from greed and drunkeness of all things European.

The Pan African world thus continued to suffer from lacking the mental equilibrium to advance into true independence. Of course the colonial masters never actually intended to give up the reins of power, only pretend to do so. This happened throughout Pan Africa, from the continent to the Americas, including the Caribbean.

North American Africans would find themselves subjected to black elected politicians who ruled like their counterparts in Africa. In the Caribbean, black power literature was banned, even diplomats could not return from abroad with such incendiary literature. In the USA the black arts movement spread consciousness but it was diluted and polluted by a reactionary black studies that retreated from the cultural revolution in favor of tenured negro revisionist culture. As my associate, the young Pan African scholar from San Francisco State University, Ptah Allah El (Tracy Mitchell) says, "Black studies went to college and never came home."

Before his murder by the imperialists, Patrice Lumumba had told us it would be fifty years before the Congo would be free. We can apply his remarks to Pan Africa, just add another hundred years or two. We see Africa slowly creeping toward Nkrumah's dream of a United States of Africa, yet the African Union seems about to get aborted to become the agent of the new imperialism called Globalism.

America has established military bases in Africa and is using African troops to do her dirty work of reconquering the continent, as if she ever left. And what the Europeans don't retake, apparently the Chinese will grab, giving African leaders a few kibbles and bits in the form of infrastructure, which is sorely needed, but taking precious metals in return. The only positive African state appears to be Ghana. Is the ghost of Nkrumah at work?

The South African revolutionary leaders appear to have joined the billionaires club, private jets, European women, the whole cha cha. No real land reform, no water, no electricity, no housing, no jobs. Rape is pervasive, homicide, AIDS, bleaching cream.

And so the Pan African dream continues, sometimes approaching a nightmare. New York City is a microcosm of the Pan African reality, with Africans from throughout the Diaspora in the house, from the Continent, the Caribbean, the South, but no Pan African economic unity, or political, but a host of Pan African psychological issues stemming from the trauma and unresolved grief of colonialism and neo-colonialism.

North American Africans need to have dinner with their Diaspora brothers and sisters so we can reason together, but it ain't gonna happen until we recover from our tribalism and provincialism. Meanwhile I'm a "black American", said with utter contempt, hatred, jealousy and envy. Yes, I'm that black American, now do you want to unite with me or fight with me? Yes, this is my turf, you don't like my presence, go back to Nigeria, Senegal, Jamaica, Haiti, Cuba, Trinidad.

Yes, we have some Pan African family issues we need to resolve long before there shall be any Pan African political unity, there must be psychological unity. Don't tell me Mr. Haitian taxi driver that I must pay in advance because you know how we people are. Who in the hell is you people? You ain't "you people" too?

Pan Africans, let us reason together, saith the Lord. Let us have a healing ritual to resolve our Negrocities, as Amiri Baraka calls our bad habits. Otherwise, we shall continue as black men with white hearts!

The Pan African Union of the Diaspora is the right direction, if and when such an idea reaches the grass roots and escapes the stranglehold of Pan African intellectuals who love pontificating but won't take their message to the streets where the need for Pan African love and unity is sorely needed, especially in the New York area.
--Marvin X

Friday, July 29, 2011

Unity with the Indigenous Peoples in the Americas

Toward the Unity of North American Africans
With the Indigenous Peoples in the Americas

There is clear evidence North American Africans were here before Columbus. We know Africans traveled here during the time (circa 900 AD) of the Ghana, Mali and Shonghay empires. Thus we have an integral relationship with the indigenous people throughout the Americas. Certainly we have a blood relationship with the kidnapped Africans who are scattered throughout the Americas, the millions in Brazil who speak Portuguese, the Spanish speaking millions in Columbia, Nicaragua, Peru, Honduras, Mexico and throughout the Caribbean.

Our oppressed condition is more in harmony with the indigenous and Africans throughout the Americas than with the oppressor Euro-Americans. Yet we are mostly ignorant of our historic relationship with our brothers and sisters. It brought tears to my eyes to discover Afro-Mexicans, Afro-Cubans, Afro Columbians, Afro-Hondurans, Afro-Brazilians, et al. Part of the tears was because I could not communicate with them in Spanish and Portuguese. In spite of language, there was an undeniable spiritual unity and brotherhood. There was instant love between us. The tragedy was than we didn't know each other existed.

Today, the moment has arrived for Pan American unity of us with our indigenous and African American brothers and sisters. At this hour we have much to learn from them. Yes, we have a black president for the first time in 400 years. But in Bolivia we have an indigenous man as president for the first time in 500 years and he, unlike Obama, is a revolutionary! The winds of revolutionary change are blowing throughout the Americas and we need to be in harmony with the winds blowing in Cuba, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Ecuador , Brazil, Venezuela and elsewhere.

They are striving to destroy the raw capitalist economic model imposed on them by Yankee imperialism, that has kept them in poverty, ignorance and disease for centuries. We have been in the identical situation but out leaders would have us continue in this state of economic wretchedness. We must unite and work with our brothers and sisters throughout the Americas to create a common future for ourselves that transcends the European white supremacy culture.
Our ignorance of the need for Pan American unity is quite similar to our attitude toward Pan African unity (but we will deal with Pan African unity is another essay).

We harbor racist attitudes toward our Pan American brothers and sisters just as the white man hates them, though he loves to exploit their labor and natural resources. Yes, he loves everything about them but them, to quote a poem by Paradise. But they have declared death on capitalism. They have declared that economics is not totally about profit but there is a social element, economics is for cultural development, not simply growth.

We must detox from our addiction to raw capitalism. And we need our Pan American brothers and sisters to help us detox and recover. You may need to unite and learn from the people who survive on rice and beans, who live on dirt floors without electricity and running water. You must rid yourselves of your white supremacy mentality of arrogance and superiority. Do not hate the indigenous people for wanting to come across the border to reclaim their land, yes, their land! How can you talk about Mexicans, at least they make their own soap, their own toilet paper, their own beer and tequila , their own clothes. You don't, so yes, we must unite to defeat this horrible monster called capitalism that has enslaved us and seeks to devour us, that has kept us divided and full of hatred, jealousy and envy of each other.
--Marvin X

Parable of Pimpin'

Parable of Pimpin

By Marvin X

I am not a pimp. I am a hustler, sometimes a trick. A hustler waits for no one to bring his money, he gets his own. It is beneath his dignity to wait or depend on a woman or anyone to get his hustle going. All he needs is product, almost anything will do, even a roll of toilet paper he can hustle. But the pimp's thing is women, he considers himself their manager and they consider him the same, usually by mutual agreement, often by torture, kidnapping and exploitation, including mind control, deprivation of sleep, food and isolation.

Having never been a pimp, I cannot speak with total authority, although I have been around pimps off and on my entire life, from growing up on 7th Street in Oakland to hanging with pimps in New York. My brother's claim to fame is pimping. He never desired anything else in life but pimping, as a result his life has been pimping and prison, nothing else. I have been deprived of his brotherly love because of his pimping and prison life.

Many of my friends were pimps, including some of my Muslim brothers who said they made their ho's make salat or prayer before they went out on the stroll. I was around Muslim pimps on the east coast who had their women selling bean pies and whoring to buy Crack.

More recently I had the pleasure of meeting several pimps-in-recovery at my theatre in San Francisco's Tenderloin district when we produced the Black Radical Book Fair in 2004. The pimps included Fillmore Slim, Gansta Brown, Jimmy Starr and Rosebud Bitterdose. They claim to have given up pimpin and have indeed written books and films on the gospel of the game.

In the case of Fillmore Slim, he is still greatly respected as the godfather of pimpin, especially on the West coast. He hooked up with me to see if I could help him get the message to young people that pimpin ain't easy and there's a price to be in the game. If you willing to pay the price, then go for it, but just know you are going to pay. Fillmore paid with several prison terms.

He says these young brothers call themselves pimpin but ain't hardly pimpin, ain't doing nothing but messin up the game. Don't have no style, no class. If you saw the BET awards last night, Prince was the only artist with class, the others looked like bums and derelicts, especially the hip hop brothers.

As Fillmore said about young pimps, they don't know how to dress. And he said they most certainly don't know how to treat a lady. They want to beat women. He said they don't understand if they don't beat her, she might come back. They want to kill another nigguh if she runs off with him. This ain't part of the game. Don't be killing people, he said, like you own the woman. You don't own nobody. When she choose you, she with you, when she choose somebody else, let her go. Fillmore said these young nigguhs act like they in love. And keep a night job, he says, because pimpin ain't easy.

Young brothers so close up on the ho a trick can't get to her. And the nigguh look more like a woman than the woman. You don't know who to turn a date with, the pimp or the ho. He got earrings in both ears, blond hair and pants hangin off his behind, living at his mama's house, pimpin on a bicycle. Nigguh please.

Pimp like Bush. Get you a real ho like Condi Rice that can ho all over the world, that can serve presidents, prime ministers, generals. Dr. Bey used to say, "If you going to do something, do it in a big way." Some would say Dr. Bey did right and wrong in a big way (may he rest in peace). And my daddy said, "If you gonna be something, be the best."

The white man is the world's greatest pimp: he pimpin you and yo woman, but you don't have a clue. On BET last night he pimped some of our greatest artists, had them parading as nothing but naked whores.

Nigguh pimps got babies on the street, eleven, twelve and thirteen. What they know about ho'in? They don't know how to put a rubber on a nigguh, let alone give head. They need to be in school. Get their GED. And the pimp needs to go with them to get his. Imagine the social consequences of over a million children dropping out of school each year, over 50% of them. Society, including the school, the religious community and the politicians are responsible for children choosing the pimp life, especially when our nation needs scientists and engineers if we are to have a future beyond pimpin and whoring.

posted 29 June 2006

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Neo Feudalism or Wage Slavery

Neo Feudalism or Wage Slavery

Ideally, capitalism desires cheap labor and resources in order to increase profits or capital to the maximum. The primary motive is profit, regarding labor as expendable or replaceable since there is an infinite supply of slaves or workers. And it assumed there will be a infinite amount of natural resources to exploit, ultimately at the point of the gun, i.e., obtainable by warfare.

We can use the African slave trade as a recent example of how capitalists kidnapped Africans and through behavior modification or brainwashing enforced by terror, the whip and gun, made them labor from can't see to can't see til eternity without paying them one dime. African land was in turn raped of all natural resources available, gold, diamonds, ivory, and other precious minerals and metals.

The industrial revolution made a minor change from chattel slavery to wage slavery that has persisted to today, of course for some workers wage slavery existed simultaneously with chattel slavery. The end of Reconstruction returned freed Africans to virtual chattel slavery when they became sharecroppers for racist white landowners, after the Africans were tricked out of their promised 40 acres and a mule. Landless yet forced to work the land without little compensation for their labor ultimately drove them Up South in the great migration of the latter 19th century.
Once there, the status of Africans was upgraded only slightly to the status of wage slaves, but never on par with the white workers, and this wage disparity has persisted to today. White labor is more important than black labor, and of course male labor more precious than female labor.

The unions gave workers a degree of improvement in their wages although the capitalist bosses fought tooth and nail to keep wages low, ultimately conspiring with union bosses to trick workers of their new found gains in job security, health insurance and retirement benefits.

The present economic melt down is the grand opportunity for capitalists to again approach chattel slavery in their wage war with workers. Outsourcing enabled the capitalists to destroy American workers, black and white, male and female. If American workers are prepared to enjoy the wage slavery of workers in outsourced countries, then there may be a few jobs for them. We recently heard that India is prepared to outsource jobs to America, at Indian wage slave levels, of course. An American MBA would therefore receive the same salary of his Indian counterpart, $14,000.00 per year rather than the American salary of $140,000.00.

American corporations desire the same wages from American workers if they can get it, if not, they simply out source. Capitalism does not discriminate when it comes to exploitation of labor, i.e., it cares no more about the white worker than the black worker, except in the dumb white worker's racist mind the black has always been in competition with him, this was the great fear of emancipation among white workers.

Today outsourcing is the cause of shrinking jobs in America, but again dumb white workers are blaming immigrant labor, blacks or even China. In the case of China, white workers do not understand American capitalists are in partnerships with Chinese corporations to rip off American jobs.

We have thus reached a point in time wherein the stage is being set for a workers revolution, if only the workers will get it clear in their minds what's really going on, how they are being hoodwinked and bamboozled by the greedy capitalists who have been rewarded for robbery by use of the global financial system through the perennial pyramid scheme banking network guided by the banker's bank The Federal Reserve, in cahoots with Wall Street and the military/corporate/university/prison complex.

Also understand the vital role of the petrochemical and pharmaceutical bandits who poison us with devitalized foods leading us from the dinner table to the hospital to the graveyard wherein we are laid to rest in poverty after a life of wage slavery in the hostile environment of job, home and the general society wherein we were overcome by consumerism or the world of make believe.

The corporations and banks are again flowing with cash after getting reimbursed from their losses in the global sub prime loan scheme/scam. The bosses are receiving mega salaries with mega bonuses, meanwhile the American workers suffer salary decreases, pervasive job insecurity, loss of benefits such as health insurance and retirement.

When will they protest, when will they demand economic justice? Never as long as the media magicians perpetuate the world of make believe and lull them to sleep watching video games, sport and play, i.e., pussy and dick stories and music videos on giant televisions. Let us not leave out fairy tale religiosity at the Ten Per Cent Club called church, the ultimate opiate of the people although they are being drugged from cradle to grave.

The era of jobs for life is over. Corporations desire contract workers at every level to escape the cost of permanent wage slaves. The largely unqualified black worker pool is expendable and eligible for incarceration if it attempts to rebel against its social-economic insecurity through criminality and/or revolution.

Once in the criminal justice system, the unemployed and unemployable black workers suddenly become a commodity, a valuable product of the prison/corporate complex. Rather than provide the blacks with skills to obtain jobs with living wages, they are made wards of the state at the cost of fifty to sixty thousand dollars per inmate per year, providing necessary jobs for white workers, even though many blacks are also employed at the department of corrections.

The capitalists could provide jobs with a living wage to the two million plus inmates, more than it costs to send them to Harvard, Yale and Stanford, but they rather employ slave catchers called police to round them up, often after they have dropped out or pushed out of public schools that Dr. Julia Hare calls holding cells for the departments of correction. Why should Johnny and Johnny Mae be inspired by a curriculum based on white supremacy mythology?

With a great percentage of black men on probation, parole or incarcerated, the destabilization of community is complete, thus neighborhoods ripe for gentrification. And even upon release from incarceration, they are only presented with mostly minimum wage jobs. In the South, many blacks must hold down three minimum wage jobs to make it. The fear of economic insecurity makes them submissive to racist bosses who will fire them at the first instance of organizing for improvements in salary and working conditions, and especially for spreading any semblance of radical consciousness on the job, or in the community for that matter. Even Up South in the north, the blacks work in fear, afraid to purchase literature during their lunch break for fear the boss will discover they have black consciousness.

As the economy continues in meltdown, we see few opportunities for the national advancement of North American Africans. With wages shrinking, jobs disappearing, incarceration increasing, the social-psychology of the hood is reaching the breaking point. Black mental health is deteriorating rapidly. People are trying to figure a way out of the morass.

I recently offered a woman my book How to Jump Out of the Box. She saw the title and said that's what she needs, and her friend too who was with her. Then she saw a quote by Buddha and hesitated to get the book but caught herself, "Oh, I guess it don't matter who said what, if I can get out the box." I nodded.

But how shall we get out of the box? Where do we go from here? What shall we tell our youth searching for a job when there are none? What shall we tell those smart enough to attend college, yet their future is bleak as well, unless they configure a solution in face of the continued desire for virtual slavery by the greater society.

Economic independence is the only solution, not sitting around waiting for the rustication of capitalism that shall not occur without radical structural change in a system that perpetuates greed rather than social concern. Trillions are lost in the foreign wars that benefit none but the military related corporations headed by former generals. And the supreme irony is that America can promise terrorists in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and elsewhere education, jobs and housing if they will only lay down their guns and pledge allegiance to the puppet regimes the US is backing in her so-called war against terrorism, while who can be a greater world terrorist than the USA itself. She is the number one arms merchant of the world, thus she is the greatest purveyor of global violence. According to Nelson Mandela America is the reason there is no peace in the world.

Meanwhile cities are going broke, states as well, not to mention the looming national deficit, including the outstanding loan due China that is growing weary of the American dollar and is trading in her own currency and switching to Euros, for the Chinese are wise enough to know the American king is no more, half naked and soon to be butt naked in the sun.

Imagine Capitalists owing Communists trillions of dollars. How could this be? We've been taught the Communists were imbeciles and Capitalists were the smart guys. But we know the capitalists practice socialism among themselves and push their rotten capitalism on the deaf, dumb and blind masses, the wage slaves who shall never inherit the earth until they bury the capitalists in their own vomit. We doubt they will suddenly decide to share the wealth, so it must be seized from them by mass unity and ultimately this may include violence. Liberty or death! If you seek a better life for yourselves and your children, you must join the revolution. Fanon said revolution is not only the solution to your economic health but your mental health as well. Mao told us the reactionaries shall never put down their butcher knives, they shall never turn into Buddha heads! Sonia Sanchez says resist, resist, resist!
--Marvin X

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Toward Gross National Happiness

It's not all about the material, is it, El Muhajir?
--Fahizah Alim

Economic Growth versus Development

In the world of economics, growth is the primary metric. It's all about the numbers, and so we try to reach the sky with growth, quarterly, annually. As long as there is growth, we know we are on solid ground. The assumption is that growth is infinite, for there are infinite possibilities for growth if we search for new lands to exploit the labor, resources and addiction to consumerism or things we have programed people to desire, even beyond their needs.

As we look at the global economic crisis and the slowdown in growth, perhaps it is time to ponder this wanton desire for growth, especially when it propels people to spend beyond their means to satisfy the bloody capitalist swine who perpetuate the world of make believe, including the addiction to growth as the only barometer of successful economic policy.

But we know a child may grow but not develop, thus perhaps we should consider development as essential to economic policy. How many people were employed with jobs at a living wage in the last quarter? How many had health insurance coverage on the job. Did we reach wage parity with Black and white men, white men and white women? How many claimed they were happy on the job in the last quarter or last year? How many feel secure?

What does it really prove to have increased growth and profits? Well, it's all about profit, right?It's all about making a profit with the cheapest labor and resources, even if we need to start wars to obtain such, even if we must remain on a permanent war footing to satisfy the bastards in the military/corporate/university complex who earn mega salaries with bonuses while the workers are rapidly slipping into poverty or require two salaried persons in the household to make it.

And because the workers have become addicted to things or conspicuous consumption, their lives suffer underdevelopment while the bosses drive them to increase the growth metric, no matter the development metric, especially the human development, after all, we are not talking of abstractions.

We are entering an era, especially here in the Americas, where Latin American or Indigenous peoples are discarding the blatant free market capitalism of the Europeans. The peoples of the Americas want an alternative to naked exploitation of labor and natural resources. Some rather keep their natural resources in the ground rather than give away for little or nothing. Bolivia is considering such with its new found lithium deposits that is needed for batteries and electronic devices. Other nations rather keep their oil in the ground, after all, it is exploited yet the people remain in poverty, ignorance and disease.

And so we are at the precipice of a new economic order. Progressive minded people are urgently seeking alternatives to solve the present global crisis brought about from pure greed and arrogance by the white supremacy bandits.

Is more better or less? Having more is no guarantee of happiness. In the US, workers have two and three cars, closets full of shoes and clothes, yet mates are estranged, suffering physical, verbal and emotional abuse, and of course many chose to remain prisoners of love because they enjoy the golden handcuffs of material security, neglecting to consider their spiritual security.

And so we suffer psychosomatic diseases from stress, cancer, stroke and heart attack, only then do people realize things are an illusion of the monkey mind. They are horrified when they see the poor people pushing shopping carts down the street, yet expressing happiness and joy, yes, while drinking their rot gut wine, but the couple is passionate with each other, laughing and joking as if they were in a palace.

Some economists, Robert Reich, for example, say we have reached the limit of growth, that the only thing possible now in order to have peace in the world is for the rich to share the wealth, yes, return some of the ill gotten gain to the wretched of the earth. Bill Gates and Warren Buffet are the example of what must be done. They have given back or plan to give billions back to the people. They are encouraging other rich persons to do the same. Perhaps these men understand it is not about growth but development and the transformation of the human spirit beyond the material. Call it joy and happiness!
--Marvin X

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Chasm between black wealth, white wealth biggest ever

By Alexandra Alper

NEW YORK, July 26 | Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:53pm EDT

NEW YORK, July 26 (Reuters) - The wealth gap between whites and minorities in the United States has reached the widest in a quarter century after the economic crisis hit nonwhites the hardest, a study released on Tuesday showed.

The median wealth of white households is 20 times greater than that of black households and 18 times that of Hispanic households, according to an analysis of newly available government data from 2009 by Pew Research Center, an independent think-tank.

That is the largest wealth gap since the data was first collected 25 years ago and is about double the level in the run-up to the 2007-2009 recession.

"Plummeting house values were the principal cause of the recent erosion in household wealth among all groups, with Hispanics hit hardest by the meltdown in the housing market," Senior Researcher Rakesh Kochhar said in the report.

The disparity surged from 2005 to 2009 as the housing market's collapse bled equity from homes.

Minority wealth is more concentrated in homes than among whites, which helps explain the widening: from 2005 to 2009, Hispanic median net worth shrank by two thirds and blacks' by 53 percent against a 16 percent drop for whites, Pew said.

More than half the net worth of Hispanics and blacks is concentrated in homes compared with 44 percent for whites.

Housing prices fell 27.3 percent from the fourth quarter of 2005 to the fourth quarter of 2009, according to the Case-Shiller National home price index.

In 2009, black median household wealth -- the sum of assets minus debt -- stood at $5,677, compared with $6,325 for Hispanics and $113,149 for whites, the Pew report said.

Blacks and Hispanics lost a greater percentage of wealth than whites in the stock market and mutual funds also.

High long-term unemployment and shrinking incomes, themselves a result of the economic slump, also may have contributed to minorities' dramatic dips in wealth.

In June, 16.2 percent of blacks were unemployed, compared with 11.6 percent of Hispanics, and 8.1 percent of whites, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Hispanics saw the largest drop in wealth, in part because many live in the regions of the country hardest hit by the housing bust -- Arizona, California, Florida and Nevada.

The Pew analysis is based on data from the U.S. Census Bureau's Survey of Income and Program Participation, a questionnaire distributed to 43,000 households. (Editing by James Dalgleish)

Another View of the Baraka, Kola Boof Affair at Harlem Book Fair

Kola Boof was behaving inappropriately. Boof interrupted a program, which was a tribute to Louis Reyes Rivera. Boof hopped up on the stage and wouldn't allow the tribute to continue. Boof was cussin' and being very belligerent toward the audience because we had grown impatient with her antics. Several folks were heckling Boof.

Boof had finally agreed to leave the space after someone from the Harlem Book Fair convinced her. Apparently, the Harlem Book Fair folks double booked the space.

As she was leaving, Boof lashed out at Amiri Baraka, who was holding his and Amina's grandchild.

--Joyce Jones

North American African Economic Unity

North American African Economic Unity

There is little joy in the hood this holiday season. Not much money appears to be circulating. In Oakland a Kwanza gift show was full of vendors only, disappointed that very few persons showed up to buy gifts. At the Berkeley Flea market vendors complained that business was pitiful. At Oakland's only large store downtown, Sears, a clerk said there were no costumers after working all day.

If America is in a recession, the hood is in a depression. The Obamian Voodoo economics, derived from the Bush I era has failed to trickle down, so the economic situation is dire, resulting in people suffering depression and severe stress in interpersonal relations. Of course the violence continues on the streets, along with terrorist threats heard from those talking on their cell phones to mates and partners. People are naturally disappointed to be without in the land of plenty. For sure, the folks shopping downtown San Francisco may be downsizing to a degree but not to the level of poverty in the hood. The shoppers in San Francisco's Union Square are shopping and ice skating, singing Christmas Carols and sipping lattes and Irish coffee.

How shall the hood come out of this economic morass? What is the plan for the immediate and long range solution to the perennial economic crisis? What are the ghetto economists saying, thinking, planning, if anything, for they appear to be singing Silent Night.

Youth and adults are bereft of a solution, though a few still search for work. A young man was smart enough to get a candy wagon and work the Broadway corridor downtown Oakland. But most youth are restricted to selling their bags of marijuana, maybe some pills and cough medicine, although pimping and whoring is the latest underground endeavor since people don't have money for dope like the old days, plus prison is the likely result, so the boys have resorted to pimping, and the girls take up the slack when the boys go to jail, yes, the girls are pimping too.

But we know this is no solution, especially in the long term. We have long recommended the micro loan bank to help youth and adults become entrepreneurs, especially those with criminal records or with recalcitrant attitudes that make them unfit for a normal job even if one existed.

We need only look at our indigenous brothers and sisters selling fruits and vegetables on the street, or fresh juice. Many brothers sell movies and come up, and clothes are always a good hustle. It simply requires a little thinking, perhaps clear thinking minus the marijuana, and we can come up. One can come up selling all the paraphernalia necessary to get high, the swishers,
cigarette paper, matches, lighters, pipes. If we think, there are infinite possibilities. If we spend time singing the blues, we shall miss the boat heading upriver to the bank.

You can sell the homeless paper and come up. I did as a Crack fiend, getting $20.00 per paper on average, making $300.00 to $400.00 per day. Of course the money went to the dope man for my Crack habit. I don't make that now selling my books. Of course I don't have the motivation I had as a dope fiend. A dope fiend is a highly determined individual who is going to get his dope by any means necessary. The recovering addict appears to be unable to think with that same motivation, although ultimately he must, if he sincerely wants to step up his game.

These dire economic times are forcing us to think out the box, to transcend our dependence on the white man's job. We must now consider cooperative economics, or how can we pool our resources to come up. We did it in the dope game, we can do it with legitimate products, especially if we can overcome mistrust and greed. We do this by working my book How to Recover from the Addiction to White Supremacy. Once we overcome fear and distrust, we can work together. We can buy wholesale, keep the price low and sell fast. Make sure we have multiple sources for the goods we need. And treat your customers with compassion. Don't insult them as I sometimes did on drugs or even sober, sometimes. You can give layaway and credit, just don't kill a brother or sister because they owe you twenty dollars. Why would you go to prison over a twenty dollar debt? It doesn't make sense are you are not thinking. Life is a thinking man's/woman's game!

A rich friend of mine loaned a man ten thousand dollars. The man refused to repay, so my friend's brother wanted to kill the man. My friend told his brother to let it go, that he didn't want to jeopardize his millions over ten thousand funky dollars!

We can get through this moment and any other time that may be a little trying and stressful. Think in unity, transcend individualism. We should buy our food collectively at the wholesale house, not the retail grocery store. Why are you shopping at Safeway and Lucky, just to feel good paying high prices, when in reality you're a trick. Half the goods at Safeway and Lucky you can purchase at the Dollar Store, so what is your problem? You just want to be a blues singer, you love the blues. Better to sing a Spiritual or listen to some Gospel rap that's talking about faith and hope. Somebody better get a healing up in here!
--Marvin X

Monday, July 25, 2011

Job Crisis Shall Get Worse--Robert Reich

Published on Monday, July 25, 2011 by
Why Washington is About to Make the Jobs Crisis Worse
by Robert Reich

We now live in parallel universes.

One universe is the one in which most Americans live. In it, almost 15 million people are unemployed, wages are declining (adjusted for inflation), and home values are still falling. The unsurprising result is consumers aren’t buying — which is causing employers to slow down their hiring and in many cases lay off more of their workers. In this universe, we’re locked in a vicious economic cycle that’s getting worse.

The other universe is the one in which Washington politicians live. They are now engaged in a bitter partisan battle over how, and by how much, to reduce the federal budget deficit in order to buy enough votes to lift the debt ceiling.

The two universes have nothing whatever to do with one another — except for one thing. If consumers can’t and won’t buy, and employers won’t hire without customers, the spender of last resort must be government. We’ve understood this since government spending on World War II catapulted America out of the Great Depression — reversing the most vicious of vicious cycles. We’ve understood it in every economic downturn since then.

Until now.

The only way out of the vicious economic cycle is for government to adopt an expansionary fiscal policy — spending more in the short term in order to make up for the shortfall in consumer demand. This would create jobs, which will put money in peoples’ pockets, which they’d then spend, thereby persuading employers to do more hiring. The consequential job growth will also help reduce the long-term ratio of debt to GDP. It’s a win-win.

This is not rocket science. And it’s not difficult for government to do this — through a new WPA or Civilian Conservation Corps, an infrastructure bank, tax incentives for employers to hire, a two-year payroll tax holiday on the first $20K of income, and partial unemployment benefits for those who have lost part-time jobs.

Yet the parallel universe called Washington is moving in exactly the opposite direction. Republicans are proposing to cut the budget deficit this year and next, which will result in more job losses. And Democrats, from the President on down, seem unable or unwilling to present a bold jobs plan to reverse the vicious cycle of unemployment. Instead, they’re busily playing “I can cut the deficit more than you” — trying to hold their Democratic base by calling for $1 of tax increases (mostly on the wealthy) for every $3 of spending cuts.

All of this is making the vicious economic cycle worse — and creating a vicious political cycle to accompany it.

As more and more Americans lose faith that their government can do anything to bring back jobs and wages, they are becoming more susceptible to the Republican’s oft-repeated lie that the problem is government — that if we shrink government, jobs will return, wages will rise, and it will be morning in America again. And as Democrats, from the President on down, refuse to talk about jobs and wages, but instead play the deficit-reduction game, they give even more legitimacy to this lie and more momentum to this vicious political cycle.

The parallel universes are about to crash, and average Americans will be all the worse for it.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License

Robert Reich is Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley. He has served in three national administrations, most recently as secretary of labor under President Bill Clinton. He has written twelve books, including The Work of Nations, Locked in the Cabinet, and his most recent book, Supercapitalism. His "Marketplace" commentaries can be found on and iTunes.

Diallo: The Maid's Tale

The Maid's Tale

She was paid to clean up after the rich and powerful. Then she walked into Dominique Strauss-Kahn's room—and a global scandal. Now she tells her story.

by Christopher Dickey and John Solomon
July 25, 2011--

"Hello? Housekeeping."

The maid hovered in the suite's large living room, just inside the entrance. The 32-year-old Guinean, an employee of the Sofitel hotel, had been told by a room-service waiter that room 2806 was now free for cleaning, "Hello? Housekeeping," the maid called out again. No reply. The door to the bedroom, to her left, was open, and she could see part of the bed. She glanced around the living room for luggage, saw none. "Hello? Housekeeping." Then a naked man with white hair suddenly appeared, as if out of nowhere.

That's how Nafissatou Diallo describes the start of the explosive incident on Saturday, May 14, that would forever change her life—and that of Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the managing director of the International Monetary Fund and, until that moment, the man tipped to be the next president of France. Now the woman known universally as the "DSK maid" has broken her public silence for the first time, talking for more than three hours with NEWSWEEK at the office of her attorneys, Thompson Wigdor, on New York City's Fifth Avenue.

"Nafi" Diallo is not glamorous. Her light-brown skin is pitted with what look like faint acne scars, and her dark hair is hennaed, straightened, and worn flat to her head, but she has a womanly, statuesque figure. When her face is in repose, there is an opaque melancholy to it. Working at the Sofitel for the last three years, with its security and stability, was clearly the best job she'd ever hoped to have, after years braiding hair and working in a friend's store in the Bronx as a newcomer from Guinea in 2003.

Diallo cannot read or write in any language; she has few "close friends," she says, and some of the men she has spent time with, whom she does not call fianc├ęs or boyfriends, but "just friends," appear to have taken advantage of her. One, now in a federal detention center in Arizona awaiting deportation after a drug conviction, won her confidence—and, she says, access to her bank accounts—by giving her fake designer bags: "Six or seven of them," she says. "They weren't very good." Her face goes almost blank. "He was my friend that I trust—that I used to trust," she says. Related: The Strauss-Kahn Timeline »

Some of Diallo's most upbeat moments in the interview came when she recounted the small promotions and credits available at the Sofitel for a job done well. She was supposed to clean 14 rooms a day for a wage of $25 an hour plus tips, according to her union. It's an achievement, Diallo said, to get a whole floor of your own because it saves the time wasted going up and down in the elevator to clean random individual rooms. Another maid had gone on maternity leave in April, Diallo said, and she'd gotten the 28th floor. "I keep that floor," said Diallo. "I never had a floor before." When every door has a "Do Not Disturb" notice, maids save precious minutes by going to the hall closet and quickly refilling their cleaning carts with soap, towels, and other amenities. Diallo's eyes lit up talking about the routine and about her colleagues. "We worked as a team," she said. "I loved the job. I liked the people. All different countries, American, African, and Chinese. But we were the same there."

Occasionally as Diallo talked, she wept, and there were moments when the tears seemed forced. Almost all questions about her past in West Africa were met with vague responses. She was reluctant to talk about her father, an imam who ran a Quranic school out of the family home in rural Guinea. Her husband died of "an illness," she said. So did a daughter who was 3 or 4 months old—she wasn't sure. Diallo was raped by two soldiers who arrested her for a curfew violation at night in Conakry, the Guinean capital. When they had finished with her, they released her the next morning, she said, but made her clean up the scene of the assault. At first she said she couldn't recall what year that happened, but later she said it was 2001. Diallo had managed to get her surviving daughter, now 15, out of Africa and to the United States "for a better life," she said. But precisely how that happened was not a subject she or her lawyers would explore. Again, her eyes stared downward, welling with tears.

When Diallo reached the point of her alleged assault in the Sofitel, however, her account was vivid and compelling. As she told NEWSWEEK, she had used up a lot of time waiting for guests to check out of room 2820 before she cleaned it. Then she saw the room-service waiter taking the tray out of 2806, one of the hotel's presidential suites. The waiter said it was empty. But still she decided to check. This is her account.

"Hello? Housekeeping." Diallo looked around the living room. She was standing facing the bedroom in the small entrance hall when the naked man with white hair appeared.

"Oh, my God," said Diallo. "I'm so sorry." And she turned to leave. "You don't have to be sorry," he said. But he was like "a crazy man to me." He clutched at her breasts. He slammed the door of the suite.

Diallo is about 5 feet 10, considerably taller than Strauss-Kahn, and she has a sturdy build. "You're beautiful," Strauss-Kahn told her, wrestling her toward the bedroom. "I said, 'Sir, stop this. I don't want to lose my job,'" Diallo told NEWSWEEK. "He said, 'You're not going to lose your job.'?" An ugly incident with a guest—any guest—could threaten everything Diallo had worked for. "I don't look at him. I was so afraid. I didn't expect anyone in the room."

"He pulls me hard to the bed," she said. He tried to put his penis in her mouth, she said, and as she told the story she tightened her lips and turned her face from side to side to show how she resisted. "I push him. I get up. I wanted to scare him. I said, 'Look, there is my supervisor right there.'?" But the man said there was nobody out there, and nobody was going to hear.

Diallo kept pushing him away: "I don't want to hurt him," she told us. "I don't want to lose my job." He shoved back, moving her down the hallway from the bedroom toward the bathroom. Diallo's uniform dress buttoned down the front, but Strauss-Kahn didn't bother with the buttons, she said. He pulled it up around her thighs and tore down her pantyhose, gripping her crotch so hard that it was still red at the hospital, hours later. He pushed her to her knees, her back to the wall. He forced his penis into her mouth, she said, and he gripped her head on both sides. "He held my head so hard here," she said, putting her hands to her cranium. "He was moving and making a noise. He was going like 'uhh, uhh, uhh.' He said, 'Suck my'—I don't want to say." The report from the hospital where Diallo was taken later for examination notes that "she felt something wet and sour come into her mouth and she spit it out on the carpet."

"I got up," Diallo told NEWSWEEK. "I was spitting. I run. I run out of there. I don't turn back. I run to the hallway. I was so nervous; I was so scared. I didn't want to lose my job."

Diallo says she hid around the corner in the hallway near the service lobby and tried to compose herself. "I was standing there spitting. I was so alone. I was so scared." Then she saw the man come out of 2806 and head for the elevator. "I don't know how he got dressed so fast, and with baggage," she said. "He looked at me like this." She inclin-ed her head and stared straight ahead. "He said nothing."

The entire incident had taken no more than 15 minutes, and maybe much less. According to a source familiar with the phone records, nine minutes after Diallo entered the room, Strauss-Kahn made a call to his daughter.

The maid had left her cleaning supplies in room 2820 when she went to check on Strauss-Kahn's suite. Now she retrieved them and returned to the suite in which, she says, she had just been attacked. Disoriented, she seems to have sought some kind of solace in resuming her routine. "I went to the room I have to clean," she explained. But she couldn't think how or where to start. "I was so, so, so—I don't know what to do."?Prosecutors, losing faith in Diallo's credibility, would later raise an issue about this sequence of events. They said she told the grand jury that after the attack she hid in the hallway, but subsequently changed her story to say she cleaned room 2820 and then began to clean the DSK suite. She disputes that she changed her story, and hotel room-access records support what she told NEWSWEEK.

Many aspects of Diallo's account of the alleged attack are mirrored in the hospital records, in which doctors observed five hours afterward that there was "redness" in the area of the vagina where she alleges Strauss-Kahn grabbed her. The medical records also note she complained of "pain to left shoulder." Weeks later, doctors reexamined the shoulder and found a partial ligament tear, she said.

If there is one inconsistency for defense lawyers to dwell on in the hospital records, it is a passage that says her attacker got dressed and left the room, and "said nothing to her during the incident." In her interview with police and her account to NEWSWEEK, Diallo recalled several statements Strauss-Kahn made during the alleged attack.

Defense lawyers are expected to challenge the nature of her injuries, her recollection of events, the veracity of elements of her life story, and her conduct with other men if the case proceeds.

Diallo's supervisor, making the rounds, found her in the hallway. She could see Diallo was shaken and upset and asked what was wrong. "If somebody try to rape you in this job, what do you do?" Diallo asked her. The supervisor was angry when she heard of the assault, Diallo recalled. "She said, 'The guest is a VIP guest, but I don't give a damn.'?" Another supervisor came, then two men from hotel security. One of them told Diallo, "If this was me, I would call the police." At about 1:30 p.m., an hour after the first supervisor was told of the alleged attack, the hotel dialed 911.

At that moment, Dominique Strauss-Kahn was still one of the most powerful men in the world. As head of the IMF, he was the lead player in attempts to keep the European, and indeed the global, economy from plunging into a potentially apocalyptic recession. He was also getting ready to declare his candidacy for the presidency of France in an election only a year away. If he were to defeat Nicolas Sarkozy, the hugely unpopular incumbent, DSK would then govern a country that is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council and has the world's third-biggest arsenal of nuclear weapons.

Prosecutors have identified a hotel concierge who says DSK made an unwanted advance to her the previous night. They have also identified a blonde American businesswoman observed going into the same elevator as Strauss-Kahn at 1:26 a.m. in what appears to have been a consensual relationship. (The French magazine Le Point reported implausibly in July that Strauss-Kahn had even admitted to his wife, the heiress and former television personality Anne Sinclair, that he had had sex with three women that Friday and Saturday as "a last glass before hitting the road for the [French] presidential campaign.")

What's more certain is that after checking out of the hotel at 12:28 p.m. on May 14, Strauss-Kahn went to lunch with his youngest daughter, Camille, who had been studying at Columbia University. From there, he went to JFK airport to catch Air France Flight 23 overnight to Paris. The next day he was supposed to meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. But as he waited to board the plane, Strauss-Kahn apparently couldn't find his IMF cell phone. On another mobile, he called the Sofitel to ask if it had been found in the suite. The police, now on the scene at the hotel, had an employee say yes (although in fact the phone was not there) and ask where they could get it to him. The Air France terminal, Gate 4, he said, and asked them to rush to get it to JFK before takeoff. Instead, the Port Authority police were notified, and just before the plane was ready to taxi away from the gate, they took Strauss-Kahn off it. "The NYPD need to speak with you about an incident in the city at a hotel," one of the cops told him.

While Strauss-Kahn languished in "the box," the interview room at the Manhattan Special Victims Squad in Harlem, Nafissatou Diallo was taken to the hospital for examination, then back to the hotel with the police to walk through what had happened to her, showing them where she stood, where she fell, where she spit. As the day wore on, she became increasingly frantic about her daughter alone at home. Finally the police took her back to the Bronx at 3 in the morning. Neither she nor the girl could sleep. "She was so scared," Diallo remembered.

But when Diallo watched the morning news, she was terrified: "I watched Channel 7 and they say this is [the] guy—I don't know—and he is going to be the next president of France. And I think they are going to kill me." The phone started to ring in her apartment as reporters found her number. Others appeared at her door. She woke her daughter and told her to pack her bag and get ready to stay with a relative. She told the girl how powerful DSK must be: "Now everybody say everything about me, all the bad things." The girl tried to reassure her mother. "She says, 'Please, Mom, don't hurt yourself. I know one day the truth will come out.' I was so happy when she said that."

That afternoon, Diallo went back to the Special Victims Squad to look at a lineup of five men. "My heart was like this," she says, patting her chest. But she knew him immediately. "No. 3," she said, and left as quickly as she could. Later she was housed in a hotel with her daughter for weeks, almost incommunicado, neither of them allowed cell phones after they were placed in protective custody by prosecutors. It would be almost two months before she was allowed to return to her apartment to pick up her possessions. "I don't know why I have to do these things," she says. "Is it because he is so powerful?"

To this day, we do not have DSK's account of what happened in suite 2806. Since his arrest, Strauss-Kahn has shielded himself with highly skilled lawyers and investigators who have kept his version of events off the public record. His lawyer, William Taylor, told NEWSWEEK, "What disgusts me is an effort to pressure the prosecutors with street theater, and that is fundamentally wrong." To charges of criminal sexual assault, attempted rape, and related offenses, Strauss-Kahn entered a plea of not guilty. Meanwhile, his supporters have attacked the maid's account, her reputation, her background, and her associations. But Strauss-Kahn's antecedents surfaced with a vengeance as well.

In 2008 DSK admitted to an affair with a subordinate at the IMF. Speaking to investigators, he called it "a personal mistake and a business mistake." In July a young French journalist and novelist, Tristane Banon, filed charges against him in Paris for what she claims was an attempted rape in a Left Bank apartment where she went to interview him in 2003. She told fellow guests during a TV appearance in 2007 that he had come after her like "a chimpanzee in rut," and her account bears some similarities to Diallo's as she describes a man who seems to lose control completely when at the height of sexual desire. Banon's mother, Anne Mansouret, is an ambitious politician in her own right who is often identified with Strauss-Kahn's rivals in the French Socialist Party. She recently claimed that she herself had had consensual but "brutal" sex with him in 2000. Among DSK's acquaintances from Paris to Washington to New York, dinner-party conversation is rife with tales of close calls and wild encounters. One French magazine calls him "Dr. Strauss and Mr. Kahn." He also has long enjoyed a reputation as being hugely charming and seductive.

DNA evidence in suite 2806—the result of all that spitting that mingled the maid's saliva and Strauss-Kahn's sperm—makes it virtually impossible to deny there was a sexual encounter between DSK and Diallo. Strauss-Kahn's lawyers raised the possibility early on that it was consensual and have left it to others to speculate about the circumstances under which that might have been the case: that Diallo expected money that she did not receive, or that the sex got rougher and more aggressive than she would accept. The New York Post published stories attributed to an anonymous source that claimed Diallo was at least a part-time prostitute. Her lawyers, Kenneth Thompson and Douglas Wigdor, are now suing the Post, saying the story is false. The newspaper stands by its story.

In her interview with NEWSWEEK, Diallo didn't disguise her anger at Strauss-Kahn. "Because of him they call me a prostitute," she said. "I want him to go to jail. I want him to know there are some places you cannot use your power, you cannot use your money." She said she hoped God punishes him. "We are poor, but we are good," she said. "I don't think about money."

Perhaps. But on the day of the incident, by Diallo's own account, she made two telephone calls. One was to her daughter. The other call was to Blake Diallo, a Senegalese who is from the same ethnic group but no relation. He manages a restaurant, the Cafe 2115 in Harlem, where West Africans gather to eat, talk, politic, and sometimes listen to concerts. Nafissatou describes Blake as "a friend," and one of the first things he did for her after the incident was to find her a personal-injury lawyer on the Internet.

More problematic were a series of phone calls that Nafissatou Diallo received from Amara Tarawally, whose uncle owned the bodega where Diallo worked when she first came to the United States. Originally from Sierra Leone, he divided his time between New York and Arizona, where he sold T shirts and fake designer handbags. But last year he was busted in a sting operation run by Arizona police when, according to cops, he paid them almost $40,000 cash for more than 100 pounds of marijuana.

On July 1, The New York Times reported the existence of a taped conversation between Diallo and Tarawally. The article said they talked the day after the incident at the Sofitel and quoted a "well-placed law enforcement official": "She says words to the effect of, 'Don't worry, this guy has a lot of money. I know what I'm doing.'?" But at the time, prosecutors did not have a full transcript of the call, which had been conducted in a dialect of Fulani, Diallo's language. The quote was a paraphrase from a translator's summary of the tape, and the actual words are somewhat different, sources told NEWSWEEK.

In July NEWSWEEK talked to Tarawally in Arizona. He insisted that the quotation must refer to a later conversation and in any case was taken out of context. Diallo said she no longer talks to Tarawally. He used her bank account to move tens of thousands of dollars around the country without informing her, she said. She denied he ever gave her money to spend. "Like I say, he was my friend," Diallo told us. "I used to trust him."

But the list of reasons for prosecutors to doubt Diallo's credibility does not begin or end with Tarawally. In a letter to DSK's defense lawyers on June 30, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. cited several lies and deceptions in her past. She had claimed deductions for two children on her taxes instead of one. She had understated her income to get cheaper housing. And, most important, she had lied on her asylum application.

Diallo, a widow, came to the United States in 2003, leaving her then–7-year-old daughter behind in Guinea with a brother. Having entered the U.S. under dubious circumstances and without working papers, she lived with family members for some time, eking out an income braiding hair and then working in a bodega in the Bronx.

In late 2003 Diallo applied for asylum. Because she had suffered genital mutilation as a child, and doctors confirmed that fact in a medical report, she probably would have qualified for asylum in any case, given current law and practices. And she insists she was raped after curfew by two soldiers. (This is not unheard of in Guinea. In 2009 soldiers conducted mass rapes and killed as many as 160 people in a Conakry sports stadium, according to human-rights organizations.) But bad as the realities were in Diallo's homeland, she admits the account that she gave the U.S. government on her asylum application was heavily embellished. Her fictionalized narrative worked to get her a green card and allow her to bring her child to America. But her past misstatements may make it impossible to win a criminal case against DSK based on her testimony.

Prosecutors are likely weeks away from making a decision on whether to proceed with the -charges. They remain confident that the forensic evidence shows a sexual encounter and impressed by the consistency of the story Diallo told to two maid supervisors, two hotel security guards, hospital personnel, and detectives during the first 24 hours. The prosecution team has "no idea what it is going to do yet," a person close to the case said. The investigators are "treating it like any other case that runs into these problems, and that means gathering all the evidence."

Given the issues of Diallo's credibility, investigators have been building a "suspect profile" of DSK, interviewing other women who claim to have been assaulted or who had consensual affairs, trying to establish a pattern of behavior and comparing it to Diallo's account. In mid-July they talked with the lawyer for Tristane Banon. Though not required to do so, New York prosecutors have begun the process of asking French authorities to let her speak to U.S. officials, providing the alleged victim some political cover in her home country, where the DSK case is a media rage.

Almost immediately after the indictment was secured and long before the public knew of the problems with Diallo's past, prosecutors began digging around in her financial records and interviewing friends, looking for any evidence of extortion or criminal activity. The review found ties to shady acquaintances and suspicious transactions, to be sure, but no evidence of a premeditated plot against Strauss-Kahn.

It's possible that Diallo is a woman who has lived for the last few years on the margins of quasi-illegal immigrant society in the Bronx, associating with petty con artists and dubious types trying to get a foothold in this country. But that does not preclude her having been the victim of a predatory and powerful man. Nor does it mean she will rule out an attempt to make some money from the situation.

Given the climate of suspicion that developed around her, Diallo's last three encounters with authorities, on June 8, 20, and 28, were difficult sessions, as prosecutors grilled her like a defendant. The mistrust between Vance and Diallo's lawyers boiled over on July 1, when Thompson held a news conference in front of the courthouse and accused the district attorney of abandoning Diallo.

Since then, both sides have tried to smooth matters over. Thompson has signaled a willingness to let his client be interviewed again if prosecutors let her see a transcript of the disputed prison call, and that is something prosecutors say they are willing to do. But the distrust and tensions could be renewed again after prosecutors learn of Diallo's decision to go public after weeks of remaining in protective custody. Diallo says she gave the interview to NEWSWEEK to correct the misleading portrayal of her in the media. Her account of what happened has remained the same all along, she says. "I tell them about what this man do to me. It never changed. I know what this man do to me," she says.

Looking to the future, Diallo says she would love to go back to working in a hotel, but maybe in the laundry. She wants never again to have to knock on a door and call out: "Hello? Housekeeper."

All Of Me

All Of Me

Marvin X at West Oakland's Defermery Park for Geronimo Ji-Jaga, July 17, 2011

Reading with Marvin X are Toya and Aries Jordan, students at Marvin X's Academy of da Corner. Coming Soon from Academy of da Corner Reader's Theatre: The Mythology of Love, a womanhood/manhood rite of passage by Marvin X.

Upcoming Events

July 29, 7pm

The Pan African Mental Health Peer Group to Recover from White Supremacy Type II,
Friday, July 29, 7pm, 1222 Dwight Way, Berkeley, off San Pablo.

August 4, 1pm Elders Council

The next meeting of the West Oakland Renaissance Committee/Elders Council is Thursday, August 4, 1pm at the Post Newspaper Office, 14th and Franklin, 12th Floor, downtown Oakland.

For more information, email:

Friday, July 22, 2011

Parable of the Gangsta

Parable of the Gangsta

Parable of the Gangsta

He wanted to be a gangsta since childhood. He watched his big brothers gang banging, in and out of prison, the funerals, parties with more wine than they had at the Last Supper. Females were always on hand serving the brothers, raising their babies, visiting them in jail and prison. Big cars, flashy clothes, bling bling, the little brother watched and waited his turn.

When it was time for him to join, he got ready for the initiation. On that day he was required to kill and rape. He was ready. No matter his mother was a hard working house cleaner who took the bus to work. She wanted none of her children's ill gotten gain. She was a Christian woman who tried to get him into college, rather than go the path of her other sons.

But he had other plans. He didn't want to be a square. He hated squares. They were, in his mind, suckers for the white man. He saw them with their suits and ties and brief cases, thinking they were all that and a bag of chips. He saw them in the dope house coping, along with their square girls. When the girls got sprung, they would leave the square nigguhs for the dope man.

He watched the square brothers get broke and turn tricks with the dope man in front of their women. He vowed to his dead gangsta brothers he would not be a square, but would be like them, even though they didn't want him to end up like them, in prison or a coffin early in life. Thursdays was gang initiation night in the hood.

Most people stayed off the street on Thursdays, unless people got off work late and had to walk home. Anyone could be a victim if caught on the street. He drove around looking for a victim, not far from his house. It didn't matter who it was. On a dim lighted street he saw a woman and snatched her onto the ground, tearing off her clothes. She screamed and yelled but he didn't care, especially since he was loaded on dope and out of his mind.

He didn't bother to look at the woman's face as he raped her. When he finished he turned her around and got the shock of his life. She was his mother! He ran to his car in shame and horror.When he got home he took out his gun and shot himself in the head and fell to the floor dead. He was now a gangsta.

--Marvin X


Based on a true story.
from the Wisdom of Plato Negro, Parables/fables, Volumes I and II, Marvin X, Black Bird Press, Berkeley, 2010, $100.00.

Hustler's Guide to the Game Called Life

Hustler’s Guide to the Game Called Life

The worse sucker in the world is a pitiful no-hustling, job-ass nigguh waiting for the white man to give him a paycheck or a woman to bring him money as in pimping. Let’s be clear on the last point—the pimp has no relation whatsoever to the hustler. The pimp is a bitch ass nigguh too trifling to do for self and make his own money. The true hustler will never wait on anybody to bring him shit—he gets his with his own wits and game. It is beneath his dignity as a man to wait around for somebody to help him when he can hustle with toilet paper and come up.

The square nigguh can’t figure out his ass from a hole in the ground, but sits around like a frog on a lily pad trying to figure out how to come up. He will pray to a mystery God to help him when the God within himself has already answered: Nigguh , get yo black ass up and do for self!

And you nigguhs with Supreme Wisdom are just as pitiful because you got it but didn’t get it—Supreme Wisdom. If you are God then wake up the town. Shake up the universe by letting your little light shine. Get yo ass out the mosque and do something for self. What does a hustler need to fellowship with some dead ass nigguhs sending all their money to Mississippi. Even the dead preacher don't send his money nowhere but his pocket.

I am a revolutionary hustler standing on the shoulders of my ancestors who made something out of nothing, who took animal food and cooked it into a gourmet meal, who were raped, lynched, tar and feathered, who couldn’t read or write but came through it all to see a better day.

You pitiful motherfuckers whining about the white man should be shot in the head as a disgrace to your ancestors, Nat Turner, Denmark Vesey, Gabriel Prosser, David Walker, Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Ida B. Wells, Ella Collins, Mae Mallory, Queen Mother Moore, Fannie Lou Hamer, Clara Muhammad, Betty Shabazz, Coretta Scott King, Booker T., DuBois, Garvey, Noble Drew Ali, Master Fard Muhammad, Elijah, Malcolm and Martin.

How can you get up each morning and go to your wage slave job with the white man and call yourself African, Black, Colored or Negro. You a bitch ass nigguh and should be pimped until your drawers fall off, then given a fake gold watch after thirty years loyal service. A one week general strike will cause the fall of America! Can you sacrifice one week for your freedom? No, you must collaborate with your woman and her addiction to white supremacy conspicuous consumption. You are a co-dependent that needs to detox with her and your children.

The Hustler is a rebel, outlaw, incorrigible and recalcitrant, the type the white man had no choice but to kill or allow to go free, yes, that crazy nigguh each town had that nobody fucked with, not even the white man.

The Hustler is fearless and don’t give a fuck—his life and death are all for Allah! He fears nothing and serves nobody but Allah! His objective is not to satisfy a woman, he is content to let her satisfy herself as long as she doesn’t interrupt his flow. Most importantly, the Hustler is independent, meaning he will never move in with a woman to be under her control, at her whim and emotional disposition, to be thrown out in the middle of the night when she calls her real boyfriend, 911, otherwise known as the peckerwood, pig, devil.

It is proper for a man and woman to move into a place together or she can move in with him. The hustler cannot put himself in a weak situation that will interrupt his flow. Either you are about business or romanticism, make up your mind. Now if his woman is a hustler too, there is no limit to what they can do together, and ideally, a hustler needs a hustling woman, not one of those job loving women who look down on the hustling life, otherwise known as a square, willing to get pimped for life by the white man and make her man a ho too.

In his independence, he usually, and most often, must hustle alone because all around him is a bunch of punk ass, jealous nigguhs who are out to down him or prevent him from coming up in a big way. There are those well heeled hustlers who will only help him a little, never in a big way so he can come up and possibly surpass them in the game.

Most people fear the hustler or won’t join with him because they fear the unknown—how can they start out with nothing each day but come up at the end of the day? It is the beginning that scares them. Therefore, the real hustler must leave his friends alone when he discovers they ain’t real hustlers but punks who got to go pray during prime time hustling hours. What the hell are you praying for when God has already answered? When God gives you a product to work, work it!

In the hustler’s mentality, business is war, something he learned from the Japanese who have executed this philosophy to the max, and now China is learning the game, with India following suit. Where is Africa in the game? Somewhere down the line trying to be the world’s greatest criminal that will get them nowhere except to drown in their greed and corruption.

The hustler will sell anything and everything to come up, for he knows he can get anything and everything again. He will sell the clothes off his back because he knows he can get a new pair of shoes, it is only a matter of time. There is no shortage in the universe. Everything Job gave up he got back double for keeping the faith.

The hustler is self confident because he knows the game and how to play it. He doesn’t burn bridges because he needs contacts, networks of fellow hustlers who are for real and not running scams. He has respect for the game and all true fellow hustlers, but he scorns fake hustlers who think they are getting over but will ultimately only go under and never be heard from again in the game.

These are the motherfuckers who fuck up the game for the real hustlers with their punk ass actions and insincerity. You can look at them and smell their phoniness. They are rats of the worse kind and are thus short-lived in the game—they only fool square ass nigguhs much like themselves who don’t know shit from Shinola.

From The Wisdom of Plato Negro, Parables/fables, Volume II, by Marvin X, Black Bird Press, Berkeley, CA, 2010, $100.00.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Oakland Post Opinion on Chauncey Bailey, Rupert Murdoch Connection

Chauncey Bailey, Rupert Murdoch, Media, Police and Politicians connected
by MarvinX

The charges against media mogul Rupert Murdoch, the UK police and politicians has implications and parallels with the Oakland political establishment, the Chauncey Bailey Project and the Oakland Police Department.

The situation in the United Kingdom reveals the collusion of politicians, the Media and the police. Shall we say they had a symbiotic relationship or was it more sinister and synergistic, for allegedly Mr. Murdoch's newspaper paid the police to help them hack into the phones of murdered persons. And it has been asserted that Murdoch’s American media organizations may have hacked into the phones of 9/11 victims. Politicians served at the behest of Mr. Murdoch's media empire, seeking his support, Murdoch acknowledged that they slipped him into the back door of the Prime Minister’s residence.

The whistle-blowing journalist who worked for Murdoch and was investigating the corruption scandal was found dead 24 hours before Murdoch’s testimony before the Parliament. The Scotland Yard police said the death would not be considered “suspicious”. In 1987, another journalist, Daniel Morgan, was murdered because he, like Chauncey, was about to expose a drug conspiracy linked to police corruption. Shortly before Chauncey was murdered, a group of mothers wanted him to meet with them at an Oakland Church to intervene between them and the police because they said the police were shaking down their sons for money, drugs and jewelry, without arresting them, letting them go free, putting their lives in danger with dope dealers.

As with the British treatment of Murdoch, Oakland politicians sought the blessings of Dr. Yusef Bey, founder of Your Black Muslim Bakery, and father of the now convicted murderer of Chauncey Bailey. Politicians who lined up at Dr. Bey’s door included Barbara Lee, Sandre Swanson, Keith Carson, Don Perata and Jerry Brown.

Derwin Longmire, the officer in charge of the investigation, was the chief mentor of the bakery boys. They were finally convicted of three murders, including Chauncey Bailey. Under his mentorship, the bakery boys imagined themselves as police, purchasing a bus and cars equipped with police lights. They were arrested for impersonating police and kidnapping, after they stopped a woman on the freeway. Most importantly, why didn’t the OPD inform Chauncey that the bakery boys were planning to kill him, since they had informants at the bakery and had them under surveillance for two years with tracking devices and tapped phones.

The Chauncey Bailey Project was formed at the request of Paul Cobb, but when he asked that they pursue the angle of police corruption, they dismissed Cobb’s suggestion, especially the Oakland Tribune which had a longtime embedded reporter at the OPD.

Even though officer Longmire was charge of the crime scene, he refused to interview an eye witness, although he later made a personal visit to the eye witness while he was in jail, with his tape recorder, and tried to convince the witness that he didn't see what he actually saw. Why did he decide to interview the witness and how did he know the man was in jail? And he recorded the interview, something he neglected to do when he put the two murder suspects in a room together, after which one made a confession? As in the London reporter’s death, Longmire, too did not think his behavior was suspicious.
--Marvin X

Marvin X is editing an anthology of writings on Chauncey Bailey.

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