Sigh...Here they go again, making stuff up, spreading false information, all on a fool's errand--trying to substantiate the big lie that Obama's something other than what he claims to be in order to scare people or play them for suckers.
I'm the Carl Davidson mentioned here, and I've certainly always let everyone know I'm both a lifelong student and admirer of 'the Old Mole,' Karl Marx. Always have be, even though I'm not a member of any communist group these days, only a socialist one, CCDS. Guess that makes me a 'post-Communist.'
Yes, I was a leader of SDS and never stopped opposing racism and unjust wars and yes, I was an organizer, along with dozens of others from left to liberal, of the rally Obama spoke at in 2002. Obama spoke at another antiwar rally in Chicago, too, along with other Members of Congress and Chicago Aldermen, to their everlasting credit. At best, I'm an acquaintance of Obama, certainly not among those anyone would reasonably call his friends. Prior to this nonsense, I doubt if he would recall my name.
I am webmaster for 'Progressives for Obama', but as anyone can see, if they care to, we have a wide range of left, progressive and liberal signers, nearly 500 of them. A mixed bag, as it should be.
But here's the lies: Neither Tom Hayden, Mike Klonsky nor I were ever in the Weatherman faction. In fact, we we strong opponents of its nonsense back then, when it counted, and have been ever since. Weatherman is dead and defunct, and has been so for more than 30 years, long before Obama was of age. And nearly everyone who was ever in it has criticized it in one way or another, even as they maintain their opposition to the Vietnam war.
On the other hand, Henry Kissinger and others in our upper crust have the blood of a million Vietnamese on their hands from that war, and John McCain was shot down, after dozens of carpet bombing runs, trying to blow up a light bulb factory with Vietnamese women workers as the target. Only McNamara made an attempt at self-criticism, and not a very good one. These are things some like to forget, but I won't.
Yes, I worked with the Small Schools Workshop. It's a national leader and treasure in turning around the country' high schools. It's services have been used by dozens of school systems, including Chicago's, which is why Mayor Daley praised Ayers for it. My work and small role in it was to go into the toughest, poorest schools in Chicago, with a truckload of old computers and some screwdrivers, and teach kids there to repair them, build their own computers from scraps, get them certified as technicians, and then employed in family-building jobs, so they had choices in life other than the army or those leading to prison. I had a number of successes and I'm quite proud of it, and even had conservative GOPers in Illinois supportive of this work.
And if Obama even remembers my name, it's because I was on a team bugging him to spend more money on inner city after school programs like these.
I'll defend it against any rightwing critics any day of the week. The recent NYT article by Scott Shannon set the record straight on all the foundations. Read it for yourself, and make up your own mind. Or read the short version on CNN Fact Check.
Our group, 'Progressives for Obama', has no connection to Obama's campaign. We set it up that way because, strictly speaking, we never even endorsed him, but said he was a liberal speaking to the center, and while we wanted to see him defeat McCain, we wanted to be free to express our differences, which we do regularly and openly. So he's not responsible for anything we say or do, nor are we for him, and we'll keep it that way. We want to defeat John McCain and Sarah Palin. The pro-war, rightwing populist card they are playing to 'turn the page' on the economy would be a terrible joke if it weren't so dangerous to everyone in the country, especially retirees with pensions tied up in the market.
I don't hide behind anything. We picked 'progressives' as a term for those who want to move forward and break with the reactionary neoliberalism of Bush-McCain-Palin. It accurately includes liberals, socialists and even a few moderates. You might be surprised to know that most of the 'hard left' groups in this country oppose both us and Obama, favoring the Greens, Nader or boycotting the election.
Finally, as for going to Cuba, I still think all Americans should be allowed to do so, which the right still won't let you do, even though citizens of just about every other country in the world are free to do so. That way you could check it out for yourselves, see all of it first hand, warts and all, and make up your own minds. But no, in the name of 'freedom,' McCain-style, you're willing to deny your own freedoms.