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Rep. Ocasio-Cortez: Trump's Agenda Driven by 'Ethnicity and Racism'

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/07/21/rep-ocasio-cortez-trumps-agenda-driven-ethnicity-and-racism


White guy to the bone here, AOC, she’s not one of US? OK, I am almost twice her age an do have a crush, but, let’s get real. She’s smart. She does her homework. She’s brave. She has friends (who don’t look like me, but I couldn’t care less). The founders of this nation knew that they lived in flawed times. They did their BEST to cobble a better way. As a nation we have failed in so many ways. We have succeeded in more. PROGRESS! Vote PROGRESS! As if your life and your progeny’s lives depend upon it.


AOC exercises her role as Representative according to the best practices standard of what the boomer generation - most of whom DID have Civics Classes - have been educated to expect.

Our challenge is to keep a sharp eye on the interface between the scurrilous get of Milton Friedman et al (Chicago Boys) who set us and the Americas, north, south and central, up for the intensification of the cannibalism by the financial system - AND the TRANSFERENCE of DEBT from the economic realm to the socio-psychological realm (from withdraw of civics education to technological hypnosis with NRA lobbyists, war video games/competitions/endless war to the manipulation of the failure of Public Education to siphon off the PUBLIC INVESTMENT in well educated citizens - ALL of which are models of practices of self-reinforcing cycle of cause and effect spinning off into space away from the roots of our Social Contract. The latter not addressing the well being of the planet because in our early history the planet was not so desperately in need of citation in the Social Contract.


what we are witnessing is merely the latest application of Nixon’s “southern strategy.” Ever since the signing of the Civil Rights act the Republican Party has deftly used racism, and it’s ugly stepsisters misogyny and xenophobia, as a tool to rally the rubes to their cause. And the rubes fell for it, gleefully in most cases.
Along with voter suppression and gerrymandering, racism is the hope white Euro America has to hold onto power in the 21st century


Another way to say that is neoliberalism is a cancer in society and, unchecked, it will devour everything leaving our complex modern systems in a festering pile of waste.


Well, WiseOwl, I am in the same leakey boat as you! Old enough to parent of any of the "Squad). I, also, crush on all 4 of these beautiful, intelligent, and profoundly courageous women! They are the best of the country, love them all and wish them the best in their careers and personal lives! And, by the way; PISS on the trump parasite!!!


Can’t argue that - but the term ‘neoliberalism’ tends to short circuit into the Beltway activities rather than the full scope of human activity all those corporate lobbyists are impacting. And its not just economics - as Citizens United and predatory capital would want eyes focused on, but all that is cannibalized in the profit imperative of “externalization”. Which, most unfortuately in its delusional rampage, is EVERYTHING here on planet Earth
Yup, its hard to know when less is more or when less is simply less.


I don’t know about “deftly” - seems to me more like secrecy with illicit monies, snake oil, manipulation and owning the media. Whack doodle with bludgeons in the dark seems to be the methodology so that one wakes up to seeing only the carnage.

Totally agree. I see neoliberalism as encompassing the entire ethos of modern global society. It’s like a religion, so naturalized that people are hardly aware of how it shapes our relationships and our future–such as it is. We are like the proverbial fish that is unaware that the world is greater than its watery home. We need to learn to see and challenge the habitus that keeps us trapped and unable to change.


I am reminded once again of the old admonition “The devil is in the details”. This strikes me as a good case in point to tease apart the ṕut-their-knickers-in-a-twist strategy of the Trump/Bannon/Conwoman/Mercer/et al.

We tend to think of this admonition as calling attention to a negotiation with ex post facto presentation in good faith. IMHO this has been turned on its head to mean - 'Shovel the details so fast that documentation is ‘hell’ - and accountability is made as impossible as possible. Then benefit from the chaos sown to further shovel shite.


All true, but remember, race is the form in which class politics is fought out in the USA. If race wasn’t so effective in producing electoral outcomes which empower the ruling class they wouldn’t do it or would tack this way and that on it (Obama).

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The bull in the china shop strategy, no doubt. Trash the joint and carry off anything of value.

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We’re dealing with more than neoliberalism here. We’re deaing with neofascism, which is not the same thing. Neoliberalism functions through the institutions of bourgeois democracy. Fascism rules by tearing these down and subjugating society.


You are partly right but we are watching the transition of neoliberalism into fascism. Neoliberalism begets fascism as people lash out against the invisible hand (embedded and cancerous crony capitalism). It’s happening all over the world. Fascism is a spasm of social exclusion and abuse by desperate people trying to find a sense of social control, while having their attention directed against the “other.” The elite at the top will always remain the same.


In terms of r-party control of the Senate, it’s now structurally baked in. 26 red states give McConnell or whoever replaces him (and the replacement will be further to McConnell’s right) virtually uninterrupted power for the foreseeable future. And the electoral college ain’t far behind.

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I think we have to take it even further back than race. Race is the easy target. The question I ask is WHY is the target needed (or believed that it is needed in the first place). For that I look at slavery/enslavement (its non-racist element, eg: debt), WHY did Europeans NEED to begin to “colonize” in the first place, and what were the conceptual motivations and ‘royal’ machinations with the corrupt elements of the Constantinian (roman emperor) institutions in reaction to which WE see the ‘modern’ public demand for separation of Church and State.

This country was founded on institutional criteria of colonization using language and concepts from the Roman Catholic Church PAPAL BULLS in what is known as the Doctrine of Discovery.

These have NEVER been taught as basic to our history. Yet the premises have been reaffirmed in US LAW in Supreme Court decisions as recently as the 1990s with Mackintosh being cited in
Sherrill v. Oneida. Here is the Opinion of the Court

This is why I spin around and point to the expression “The devil is in the details”.


And if you read The Apocalypse of Settler Colonialism, historian Gerald Horne outlines how colonization and enslavement were already happening, inside Britain and Europe as well as via other regimes, WITHOUT the excuses of “whiteness,” “scientific racism” or white supremacy, which were developed later as useful divide-and-conquer tools to stoke more fuel into the colonizing juggernaut.

The Irish (for example among others) were colonized and pressed into labor in service to conquerors, before the “New World” became the broad new canvas for colonialism, and long before the Irish were “whitened” in the Americas to co-opt their “whiteness” in service to the colonizing project.

(And of course the Irish resisted their impressment and their co-optation, many times and under a variety of horrible circumstances. But i’m just sketching an illustration.)


I love it when somebody posts a title that other authors on the subject refer to as “must read”

Centering his book on the Eastern Seaboard of North America, the Caribbean, Africa, and what is now Great Britain, Horne provides a deeply researched, harrowing account of the apocalyptic loss and misery that likely has no parallel in human history. This is an essential book that will not allow history to be told by the victors. It is especially needed now, in the age of Trump. For it has never been more vital, Horne writes, “to shed light on the contemporary moment wherein it appears that these malevolent forces have received a new lease on life.”

Gerald Horne returns to the scene of the crimes that birthed the modern world. With cinematic flair, he takes us through what at first may appear to be familiar terrain—slavery, dispossession, settler colonialism, the origins of capitalism—but by extending his analytical lens to the entire globe, he delivers a fresh interpretation of the 17th century. His careful attention to European militarism, technology, national and imperial political dynamics disrupt the now common Anglo North American story of the emergence of whiteness, racial slavery, and class consolidation. Thanks to Horne, what Marx once called the ‘secret of primitive accumulation’ is no longer such a secret.

—Robin D. G. Kelley, author, Freedom Dreams: The Black Radical Imagination

This is history as it should be done. Acutely perceptive and solidly documented, lucidly presented and uncompromising in its conclusions, The Apocalypse of Settler Colonialism reveals the roots of our present socioeconomic nightmare with a force and clarity unrivaled by anything previously available. Gerald Horne, already a leading voice in forging a counterhegemonic understanding of the ‘empire of liberty’ we now inhabit, has truly surpassed himself. This book simply must be read.

—Ward Churchill, author, A Little Matter of Genocide

Gerald Horne strengthens his stature as one of our leading global historians with this ambitious and engaging book. Taking settler colonialism seriously as central to the development of whiteness, he brilliantly situates changes in that tiny part of the 17th century world in what would become the U.S. within far wider worlds of increasingly racialized commodities and cruelties. Among much else Horne demonstrates that colonies were not marginal to capitalism nor to the politics of the colonial powers.

—David Roedgier, University of Kansas; author, Class, Race, And Marxism

Drilling down in the 17th Century Atlantic world made by European colonialism through invasions, occupations, ethnic cleansing, and enslavement of Indigenous Peoples of the Americas and Africa, historian Gerald Horne reveals the roots of white nationalism and capitalism, the pillars of the United States political-economy today. This brilliant, concise monograph is a must-read for all who propose to change the social order.

—Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz, author, An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States

One of the preeminent global historians of repression and resistance, Gerald Horne has done it again. The Apocalypse of Settler Colonialism follows the “three horsemen” that gave rise to the West: slavery, white supremacy, and capitalism. Horne’s erudite look at this seventeenth-century apocalypse brings together the hemispheric struggles of Black and Indigenous peoples for reparations. He shows that transnational solidarity is the greatest foe of settler colonial domination.

—Dan Berger, University of Washington; author, Captive Nation: Black Prison Organizing in the Civil Rights Era

The Apocalypse of Settler Colonialism interrogates the roots of white supremacy, enslavement, and racism in the United States. Horne focuses on reconstructing England’s emergence as an empire and the impact of Cromwell’s ‘Glorious Revolution’ on its colonies in the Western Hemisphere in the 17th and early 18th centuries. He notes the ascendancy of the class interests of the ‘surging merchants’ or bourgeoisie in England and their white settler counterparts in the colonies, particularly in North America. The relationship between England’s Caribbean sugar colonies, particularly Jamaica and Barbados, with its settler colonies, is also explored. Horne’s text has relevance for our contemporary political reality and the persistence of settler colonialism ideology, structural racism, and racial capitalism today. His assessment that calls for a ‘massive program of reparations’ from African and Indigenous people to ‘repair immense damage inflicted over centuries’ is provocative and intriguing. The Apocalypse of Setter Colonialism is a must-read for all wishing to understand the historical roots of race oppression in the U.S. today.

—Akinyele Umoja, Professor and Department Chair, Department of African-American Studies, Georgia State University; author, We Will Shoot Back


Hi WiseOwl:
YES, AOC is doing what WE THE PEOPPE is supposed to do----to work on creating a, “more perfect union.” I really love the Preamble, because it is so clear as what this nation and the People are to do. : )


Cortez is obviously right on the mark, on this issue and so many others. While a big fan of Sanders, I have never seen in my life any American politician who cuts directly to the point time after time on issue after issue like AOC. What is sad is the absence of participation by the other supposed representatives in the congress, the senate, the executive, and in the Supreme Court. The so called “Squad” also speaks truth to power, and Sanders, but that’s about it for the entire US government. which including appointed positions in the executive is over a thousand people strong. That comes to one half of one percent of our federal government who actually is patriotic and representative of the people, or about one percent of those who vote on legislation actually representing us. You could argue that Trump represents the republican voters but he doesn’t, all of his promises are lies, he only represents the billionaires. Ultimately, the American experiment has completely, totally, and utterly failed.The 99% of the people are represented by 1% of the federal government, and the 1% richest people are represented by 99% of the federal government. Time to tear the whole failed experiment down completely and create a representative government.