by Chris Hedges
The moral philosopher Cornel West, if Barack Obama’s ascent to power was a morality play, would be the voice of conscience. Rahm Emanuel, a cynical product of the Chicago political machine, would be Satan. Emanuel in the first scene of the play would dangle power, privilege, fame and money before Obama. West would warn Obama that the quality of a life is defined by its moral commitment, that his legacy will be determined by his willingness to defy the cruel assault by the corporate state and the financial elite against the poor and working men and women, and that justice must never be sacrificed on the altar of power.
Perhaps there was never much of a struggle in Obama’s heart. Perhaps West only provided a moral veneer. Perhaps the dark heart of Emanuel was always the dark heart of Obama. Only Obama knows. But we know how the play ends. West is banished like honest Kent in “King Lear.” Emanuel and immoral mediocrities from Lawrence Summers to Timothy Geithner to Robert Gates—think of Goneril and Regan in the Shakespearean tragedy—take power. We lose. And Obama becomes an obedient servant of the corporate elite in exchange for the hollow trappings of authority.
You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.
Collectively, Maya Angelou, John Lewis and Bill Russell represent the very best of the American spirit. They won their future — and created a better today — with steely determination, an abiding faith, uncommon courage and a burning desire to make America true to its promise.
Their life’s work prove that a better, brighter future does not just happen. It’s ours to create.
via The Grio