OBAMA TO FLINT: "Let the pathetic fuckers eat cake!"
Escalating Michigan crisis overwhelms Obama’s visit to Detroit
President Barack Obama arrived in Detroit, Michigan Wednesday amid
an intensifying political crisis and escalating working class protests.
21 January 2016
Governor Rick Snyder desperately sought to fend off demands for his resignation amid a growing body of evidence that a generation of youth in the city of Flint were irrevocably poisoned by lead and will suffer lifelong consequences.
At least ten people have died and thousands more have suffered permanent damage to their health in connection with the deliberate and criminal policies carried out by the state, federal and local governments in Flint.
Snyder’s State of the State address on Tuesday, which was met with protests by hundreds of workers and young people, only fueled popular anger against his administration. The next day, highly redacted emails released by the state government showed that the Snyder administration had sought to downplay and trivialize complaints from Flint residents that people were being sickened by tainted water in the city.
Snyder’s hand-picked emergency manager for Flint had, in 2014, ordered that the city’s water supply be switched from the Detroit system and drawn instead from the notoriously polluted Flint River, in order to cut costs.
Obama landed in Detroit in the midst of the widening Flint protests as well as ongoing protests by Detroit teachers against intolerable conditions in that city’s public schools. Sick-outs and demonstrations organized by rank-and-file teachers in defiance of both the city administration and the Detroit Federation of Teachers union, which had begun last week, shut down the majority of public schools on Wednesday.
Protesting teachers described freezing cold schools covered in mold, with gaping holes in the floors that posed a hazard to the children.
In the face of this growing crisis, which some have compared to Hurricane Katrina, the president delivered a bizarre speech in which, appearing to have lost touch with reality, he boasted that “all kinds of good things are happening.”
Obama’s audience at a joint United Auto Workers-General Motors facility in downtown Detroit, consisting of toadies and functionaries from among the local Democratic Party and trade union officialdom, including the president’s “good friend” UAW head Dennis Williams, cheered at every banality he uttered.
Obama had planned his trip to Detroit, timed to coincide with the Detroit auto show, as a victory lap after last week’s State of the Union address, in which he hailed the resurgence (i.e., profit surge) of the US auto industry and the “success” of the economic turnaround supposedly engineered by his administration. He managed to surpass the phony optimism of that speech in his remarks in Detroit, which were even more banal and delusional.
Even as most TV news networks preempted his speech to report that the Dow Jones Industrial Average had dropped 566 points in intraday trading, Obama declared, “The United States of America right now has the strongest, most durable economy in the world.”
“You can feel something special happening in Detroit," Obama continued. “Today you've got buses that are running again. Streets that are well lit again. New homes and businesses getting built.”
Just a few miles from where Obama was speaking, over a hundred Detroit teachers protested the destruction of public education in the city, with some calling for “class struggle” and “revolution.” State officials filed a request for a court injunction Wednesday seeking to compel the teachers to return to work.
While Obama did not mention the continuing sick-out protests, he did make a perfunctory comment on the Flint crisis, saying, “I am very proud of what I've done in Michigan... but I know that if I were a parent I would be beside myself.”
Obama, whose Environmental Protection Agency knew about the water disaster for months without doing anything to inform city residents, bears as much responsibility as the Snyder administration for the disastrous conditions that exist in Detroit and Flint.
Immediately upon taking office, Obama moved to continue and extend the Bush administration’s bank bailouts, which provided trillions of dollars in free cash to banks and major corporations, even as he made clear that there would be no federal bailouts for states and municipalities facing funding crises. That was tantamount to an injunction to state and local governments to carry out sweeping cuts in social services and infrastructure spending. What followed were hundreds of school closures and hundreds of thousands of teacher layoffs across the country, along with brutal cuts in the wages, pensions and health benefits of public employees.
BLOG: THE REALITY OF OBAMANOMICS!
In 2009, Obama made a 50 percent wage cut for all newly hired autoworkers as well as benefit cuts for retirees a prerequisite for providing federal aid to GM and Chrysler, contributing to a dramatic reduction in workers' living standards in states such as Michigan, Ohio and Indiana.
Obama supported the 2013 declaration of bankruptcy for Detroit and the plan enacted by Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr in 2014 to exit bankruptcy by slashing the pensions and health benefits of city workers and retirees, selling off city assets to speculators at a fraction of their real value, privatizing the city lighting system, and moving to hive off the city’s water and sewerage department and set up a new regional water authority. The latter measure was the direct precursor to the decision by Flint’s emergency manager—presently the emergency manager of the Detroit public school system—to begin using water from the toxic Flint River.
The only truth in Obama’s Detroit speech, although unwitting, was his statement, “What’s true of Detroit is true of the country.” It is a fact that the “blessings” his administration has bestowed on the people of the United States are best exemplified by the conditions in southeastern Michigan.
Detroit and Flint are testaments to the failure of American capitalism and the criminality of its ruling elite.
If reports of an imminent indictment for Hillary Clinton are true – that is, if we’re not being played by the administration – then Democrats must be immersed in intense, behind-the-scenes maneuvering to avert a disaster or mitigate...
"In this regard, D’Souza explores the connection between mafia-friendly con-man, Saul Alinsky, who died living the Goodfellas dream life in Carmel, California, and his two most famous pupils, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. The author also investigates the emotional tie between the President and his father -- a consummate con-artist and polygamist. Instead of focusing on “anti-colonialism,” as in prior paternal analyses, D’Souza now emphasizes outright criminality and skillful lying, traits that connect the failed elder Obama to his wildly successful offspring who, in true Chicago style, perpetrates his cons inside the system. (E.g. If you like your insurance plan, you can keep it.)"
Will Obama pardon Hillary?
If reports of an imminent indictment for Hillary Clinton are true – that is, if we’re not being played by the administration – then Democrats must be immersed in intense, behind-the-scenes maneuvering to avert a disaster or mitigate the fallout. That surely involves the White House, which may well have the final say on Hillary’s future. Depending on the extent of the evidence, the administration might be unable to quash an indictment outright without threatening another Saturday Night Massacre, but it might be able to navigate a lesser charge. With an assist from the president, that could conceivably make an indictment politically survivable.
Obama is already on record in a 60 Minutes interview in October stating that he didn’t believe Clinton’s use of a private email server, though a “mistake,” endangered national security. “I don’t think it posed a national security problem,” he told Steve Kroft. “I do think that the way it’s been ginned up is in part because of – in part – because of politics.”
If he feels that way after an indictment, and the indictment is only for email offenses, Obama could pardon Clinton from further prosecution, much as President Clinton pardoned the indicted financier Marc Rich 20 years ago. He could claim that a pardon was crucial to preserve the election process and therefore necessary for the good of the country.
The political backlash would be tremendous, but that has never bothered the Obama administration. Its political backlashes never incite media interest for long, and Democrats in general – and Obama and Clinton in particular – write off all criticism as partisan and groundless. The base might even become energized in support of its beleaguered candidate. Soon we’d be hearing that it’s time to move on, that the matter had been dealt with and was “in the past.” Given the Republican reluctance to press the attack against Democrats in national elections – witness McCain and Romney – that might be the end of the scandal.
However, if the indictment were for corruption and not just for email misuse, a pardon becomes problematic and Clinton’s continued political viability much less likely. Withdrawal still wouldn’t be automatic, not for a Clinton, but the party bosses might mobilize against her, believing her vulnerability too much of a risk. That could depend on how late in the election cycle an indictment comes.
We were told last week, through an interview with former U.S. attorney Joseph DiGenova and a report on Fox News, that the FBI was widening its investigation to include corruption and possibly other charges. We are also being assured that the FBI and its director James Comey, an Obama appointee, are impartial and independent.
But could these leaks be setting the stage for a complete exoneration of Clinton? She could claim, as she already has, that she only made a mistake with the email handling, one that she regrets, and that now the FBI has cleared her of other charges after an exhaustive investigation. At that point, a pardon cleanses her résumé.
What effect the outcome of this investigation, let alone a pardon, will have on the public’s trust and faith in America’s justice system is another matter. For that reason alone, this probe – the latest of many in the careers of the Clintons – will be one of the most politically significant investigations in the history of the republic. How politicized has our government become? Is justice still blind? We’re about to find out.