Cross-Posted at Daily Kos but originally conceived at EENR BLOG:
I hope you come visit at EENR BLOG!
Barack Obama’s campaign spent at the rate of nearly $1.5 million a day in February as he racked up the victories that pushed him ahead of rival Hillary Rodham Clinton in their chase for Democratic nomination delegates.
Clinton spent about $1 million a day, picking her states and her advertising markets more selectively.
It was a fierce duel fueled by extraordinary fundraising. Obama, the junior senator for Illinois, raised $55.4 million in the month and still had about $30 million in the bank for the primaries going into March, according to his report to the Federal Election Commission on Thursday.
According to Jerome Armstrong:
Obama has raised over $192M and Clinton has raised over $173M so far
Chris Matthews, blowhard extraordinaire, aside from saying how he thought that John Edwards would endorse Clinton on Leno last night, like many of the fools at this site who jump off the speculation cliff, also offered this tidbit: To date, the fundraising in the campaign is at $790 million. That’s $790,000,000.00.
I find this whole thing more distasteful than ever, and far from what progressives ought to stand for.
We can pretend that we are not in the pocket of the moneyed interests, that we are not being manipulated, but the proof is in the dollars.
Instead of being about the needs of the poor and the voiceless, we have become about the needs of the rich and famous.
Margaret Kimberly at The Black Agenda report, one of the true progressive voices remaining, says:
The rush to tag along with Barack Obama’s presidential juggernaut shows beyond doubt that progressive “movement” politics is “on its death bed” in the United States, on both sides of the racial divide. Move On gave its millions-strong mailing list no choice but to endorse one or the other of the political twins, Clinton or Obama, affirming its allegiance to “lesser-of-evils” politics. The Nation magazine noted the glaring evidence that Obama is no progressive – and then rewarded him with an endorsement for “reaching out to independent and Republican voters.” Race pride motivates veteran activists and rank-and-file African Americans to imagine Obama’s program for racial equality actually exists, despite all evidence to the contrary. White and Black Democrats reveal that they want nothing more than a ceremonial “seat at the table” – anything to avoid the hard work of opposition to corporate rule.
Ms. Kimberly continues:
After eight years of Clintonian triangulation, and another eight years of Bush lawlessness, the center isn’t what is used to be. The center will accept an occupation of Iraq, as long as there is pretense that it will end. The center will not undo the Bush attacks on the Constitution. The center will tell black people that they are “90% of the way” towards equality. Actually, Obama already declared that “there is no black America” so the fight for equality will become irrelevant.
Black voters are overwhelmingly pro-Obama. Now supposedly anti-war and progressive organizations have also thrown in the towel. Race pride, however misguided in this case, explains Obama’s appeal to black Americans. White progressives have no such excuse. Nevertheless they have chosen to suspend disbelief and jump on the winning bandwagon.
The stampede to Obama reveals the emptiness of the Democratic left. They are every bit as cynical as the man they support. They want a seat at the table. They don’t really care what is decided at that table as long as they are included. Pro-war, anti-war, who cares? Just spell the name right on the White House invitation and let the triangulation begin.
The shortsidedness of progressives, who now worship the ability of Democrats to raise so much money, is the failure to comprehend that it is a fleeting advantage. When the other side regains their natural advantage, and they will, watch the crying game begin. But for now, just keep those checks coming in y’all, to the tune of a couple of million a day. Yep, we have our priorities right on track!
In a commentary, Bruce Dixon, a rank and file member of the Black Panther Party in 1969-1970, a 1970s rank-and-file union activist in a string of factories, plants and workplaces, a 1980s community organizer in what were then some of the nation’s poorest neighborhoods, to organizing and consulting through the 1990s, said:
Unless activists both inside and outside the Obama campaign are organizing their own meetings, raising their own demands, and building their own networks apart from those of the campaign’s they won’t even have the names, or the phone numbers or the email addresses of the thousands of young and old people eager for change who have come forward to work on the campaign. The day after the election the “Obama movement” will be just like those “movements” that elected Black mayors in cities across the land. Over.
So where is the “movement” making this demand of public financing on the the candidates, to remove the money from the system? Clinton relishes in raising money from corporatists and lobbyists. Obama does it by stealth. Kos wets his pants over money. But when the conservatives find their own candidates that cater to the natural corporate constituency and the American public, Kos’s pants, and those of others who are now in glee, will be full of something else.
Right now, I feel ashamed that our Party and the so-called movement that is about the future, a better future filled with transparency that is obscured, has shown its true colors—-GREEN!