Sunday, June 18, 2006

Societal Change - The Pitch Fork vs Disciplined Innovation

I recall purchasing Dr. Claude Anderson's series of books in which he layed out the case that Black Americans should work to corner the market in the seafood industry. From catching the bounty to shipping it to the wholesalers to selling it via retail and restaurants. This, he believes, is a ground floor opportunity for Blacks to be suppliers of a commerical good that is in high demand in America and around the world.

As I listed to the "Keep Hope Alive" radio show and then a replay of the Shelley Wynter show - with Derrick Boazman substituting - I realized the gravity of the situation that Black Americans face. We are nearly - ALL CONSUMERS. The planned protest march on June 24 in front of select gasoline stations in order to lower the price of gasoline is a TACIT ADMISSION THAT WE ARE IN BONDAGE.

You see a PROTEST is a action to raise your voice to a power that has authority over you WITH THE EXPECTATION THAT YOU WILL GET HIM TO CHANGE as he sees your anger and frustration.

In this give an take world of the market economy - the players in the oil/gasoline industry - the OIL COMPANIES and [u]the OPEC NATIONS (the element that the average Black Quasi-Socialist Progressive Fundamentalist misses as he rants against corporations) have seen that DESPITE YOUR PROTESTS - your budget can allow you to send more of your money to them BECAUSE YOU NEED WHAT THEY ARE SELLING.

This anger alone is not going to have Black people actually STOP DRIVING. Hell, MOST OF THE PEOPLE GOING TO THE PROTEST ARE GOING TO DRIVE THEIR GAS POWERED CAR TO THE PROTEST. And will most likely fill up at the gas station because they need fuel.

As I have laid out several times in my "Capitalist Consumer Co-Conspirator" theory - the complict members of society FACT THE NOTION OF DEGRADING THEIR STANDARD OF LIVING SO THAT THEY MIGHT LIVE UP TO THE WORDS OF RHETORIC THAT THEY SPOUT. Most are not WILLING TO DO SO. All that is left then is angry protests hoping that "the man" might provide them with relief.

I have been posting over time SEVERAL instances of groups or individuals having grown tired of a certain constraint having INNOVATED a solution that will burst through system as they know it today and create a new benchmark for all to operate off of. THIS INCLUDES the $100 laptop in India and Brazil, both of which have a more cavernous "digital divide" than American could ever find justification to complain about their own condition. Another example are the various initiatives for developing small, solar powered water treatment units that bring clean water to those people around the world that are impacted with water borne diseases.

With all of this said - I am amazed at how myopic the American CONSUMER is with respect to the development of the next round of energy sources that will allow the masses to tell the OIL COMPANIES where they can stick their hoses.

I posted a story about George Washington Carver, having been recruited to Tuskeegee by Booker T. Washington but the school being short of funds to build a lab for him. He made his way to the junk yard to assemble all of the equipment that he needed and thus was history. Sadly the Black American today would take the course of looking at the University of Alabama and how much lab equipment THEY had and then lobbying the state government for EQUAL FUNDING for this equipment. The question of APPLYING THIS EQUIPMENT to actually solve a problem - well this was not a part of the bargan. Besides the federal government did not provide them with a grant to solve anything that was pressing in America. Undecided

In the AU Center we have Morris Brown shuttered. We have Clark AU having shuttered their engineering program because of budget cuts. [b]Let's put two and two together folks - SOME MAN (human being) is going to crack the code in the development of the next generation of energy for Black people, Americans, the entire world. With the system of patents and the high demand for alternative sources and the PROOF that there is a fertile market full of cash for those who can INNOVATE to bring forth this new generation of energy WHY DO WE HAVE PITCHFORKS IN HAND (SEE PICTURE BELOW) RATHER THAN BEAKERS AND LAB TEST EQUIPMENT BEING PURCHASED TO BRING THIS ABOUT?

Certainly the world of ENERGY is much, much more lucrative than the world of FISH.

What If Martin Luther King Jr. Were "King Tut"

There is a growing debate over the sale of the life work of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as represented in the various papers and other items that document his ascension to the throne of royalty in the Civil Rights Movement.

Since the sale of these items will take place in the form of an auction executed by Sotherby's auction house it is reasonable to presume that the highest bidder will be awarded the bounty that documents King's life works.

As I listened to various outlets for individual expression among Black people (radio, web, newspapers) I sense a great amount of concern that these articles will depart from the "control of the Black community" into the hands of an institution or individual that does not cherish MLK's life works as others believe they could do more effectively. One caller into a local radio station even said something to the effect of - if Europeans get their hands on these works they may use them to craft Dr. King's image into something that they can use for their own malicious works and further promote their own white supremacy.

I choose to take a step back from the modern events that are being laid down into the scrolls for analysis by some lucky few in the future. As they work to understand the ascension of Black people beyond Slavery, Jim Crow and the radical changes that globalization will have on the concept of the nation state - they will no doubt work to assemble a narrative for these times just as those of us living today seek to narrate the events of ancient times.

The debate over what happened in the Nile Valley of Egypt in Africa is the focus of many debates today. Black Americans who seek to reconnect with the African prior to his iterations with the European often point to the artifacts that remain behind today that evidence the presence of an advanced society that mastered the art of mathematics, philosophy, engineering and construction techniques.

There no doubt was a transition period in which many of the strong figures that represented the leaders of this society having died had to be replaced by a new generation of individuals who, being a collection of their unique experiences in the world and who were thus "men of their own time", represented a change in course from that of the old style leadership.

With this as a basis - there is no doubt that the new generation had to make some key decisions in how they would maintain the tracks of history that these bygone leaders had laid down for them. From what I can tell the tombs, holy sites and written materials were protected via the use of "booby traps", curses and prayers of protection upon these hallowed items that represented the lives and accomplishments of those who had carried them to the point where they where charged with driving the vehicle.

Unfortunately for the ancient Egyptians it was the "tomb raiders" from the West and their co-conspirators within their own society that provided directions to the raiders that was the undoing of much that was safely preserved inside of Egypt. Today many of these artifacts are spread all over the world - some by agreement, a good portion by theft.

Today, 2006, there is a body of work that is in a similar light as that which was buried within Egypt. This time, however, it is not the tomb raiders that are of concern - it is the people who control these items and who seek to load up their safe deposit boxes. They seek to liquidate the memory of MLK, allowing these items to escape from their control.

I have no problem if these items were transferred to an institution that had a logical coupling with the King Center. The key problem is that, like the national monument being proposed for King in Washington DC - the King Center has little financial resources to honor and maintain these works as they should be.

Somewhere in the middle of the "Big Payout" and the storage of these items in the basement of the house formerly occupied by the late Corretta Scott King is a reasonable compromise solution that achieves a maximization of both the honor and integrity of these items and the financial compensation that those who stand to benefit from the sale hope to achieve.

Dr. and Mrs. King spoke so frequently of placing consciousness above money. I hope that the four children that they indoctrinated with these and other teachings will apply this philosophy in the transfer of title of these items.

Some day 500 or 1000 years from now some researcher will look back upon the legacy of Dr. King and will similarly attempt to piece together a narrative of the man's life based on the artifacts that remain to tell the story.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Some Blacks Don't Know Justice

The federal sentencing of former Mayor Bill Campbell who brought reproach to the mayor's office in Atlanta brought out some ugly truth among Black people - my people. Using the comments made on a local radio station as my evidence - some Black people don't know justice if it were to bite them on the back side.

I am amazed at the number of people who rap people such as Bill Campbell into their racial fold and THINK that they are "protecting this man" because he is a BLACK MAN WHO WAS DONE WRONG. They have no concept that this man was shown to be a "BLACK MAN WHO WAS DOING WRONG".

I don't care to detail the facts of the case as they are abundantly found elsewhere. The purpose of this post is to detail the actions of these defenders and how they repetitively execute the same tactics to obfuscate the point of WHAT CAMPBELL WAS SHOWN TO HAVE DONE.

First is the "Why hasn't Dick Cheney been locked up?". Sorry ma'am - Dick Cheney was not on trial for anything that he did. Bill Campbell was on trial. You were silence when the White folks who recently were convicted for public corruption were locked up - "Duke" Cunningham, Linda Shrenko and others - why do you so quickly depart from the facts of the Campbell case as you look for White folks who got over doing what Campbell was shown to have done?

Next we have the "Black kids are going to see how the Feds took this Black leader down and they will be fearful of standing up to be a leader" people. This is closely followed by the "THEY don't want to see a Black man stand tall as a leader and THEY will seek to cut him down". Hold it a minute! Who appointed Bill Campbell as a "Black leader" rather than a "public official who is Black"? You prove your fraud by not including Condi Rice, Colin Powell, Clarence Thomas and Ken Blackwell into your fold. We all know that membership into the "Black leaders club" is both subjective and conditional on if you like him or not. If asked you could not come up with a list of qualifications for a "Black Leader" other than him towing the line in what YOU believe.

It is clear to me that no "Black Leader" has a blank check on what he or she is able to do, superceeding any accountability that he might have to the laws of the country. Some folks will say "The White politicians have been doing this for years and they never served jail time". Step back and think what you are saying. Over the years - Black folks caught hell in this country from corrupt White officials!!! The Civil Rights Movement fought to change this environment and BEGIN TO HOLD ELECTED OFFICIALS WHO WERE CORRUPT ACCOUNTABLE. How is it logical to seek to give a pass to corrupt Black officials so that they can "catch up" to what the White folks have done?

The biggest mistake of all is to assume that "these corrupt Black elected officials were working on behalf of Black people while they were on the take". The evidence shows otherwise. From personal experience I saw how the Minority Contracting Program with the city of Atlanta has worked -particularly at the airport. This program has allowed various small, minority owned businesses to have an opportunity to contribute to the most expansive economic engine in the southeast. When Bill Campbell got into office and ran the program as a "pay to play" scheme the minority businesses that were shut out of the process because they did not "pay the king". These scorned business begain to complain that the system was rigged unfairly against them. How was this any different than what a Black contractor would have faced in 1950 at the airport?

I plead with my people to separate their desire to see racial advancement from the corrupt individuals who know your sentiments in this regard and will latch onto them and sell you anything. While it is true that the Black community should not put all of it's eggs into one basket and thus one "Black Leader" because this man might be killed and thus the movement crashed - it is more true that the "movement" should never allow itself to be comprimised by failing to see the flaws in one man and believing that he is indispensible to the cause. When you lose your integrity the movement's end is no longer worthy.