Posted 5 years ago on Sept. 6, 2012, 4:12 p.m. EST by LeoYo
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Joan Walsh Talks With Truthout About What's the Matter With White People
Thursday, 06 September 2012 10:44 By Mark Karlin, Truthout | Interview
Joan Walsh, the former editor of Salon (and now editor at large), has in recent years become the go-to MSNBC commentator on working class issues. Born into an Irish middle class family in New York, she offers a personal and analytical perspective on why so many white working class families defected from the Democratic Party. Her viewpoint on blue collar politics is insightful at a time that the progressive movement is still wrestling with how to rebuild the New Deal coalition in a contemporary format.
Mark Karlin: Which brings us to the issue of race. I just read an opinion piece that Romney will need 61% of the white vote to win, given a turnout of non-whites somewhere below 2008 but above 2010. To what extent do many white middle, blue collar and elderly whites vote Republican because of their perception – egged on by GOP campaigns – that the Democrats represent giveaways to minorities. I am thinking, particularly of the poor whites in Appalachia who vote Republican year after year. I recall reading a Washington Post article about a dirt poor rural white county in Kentucky, where I think darn near everyone received some sort of government aid. The county would literally die without the federal government. Yet, the residents voted overwhelmingly Republican.
Can the Black Middle Class Survive: Obama Is in the Oval Office but the Black Bourgeoisie is Foundering
Thursday, 06 September 2012 10:36 By Steven Gray, Economic Hardship Reporting Project | Op-Ed
Something is happening in the culture that conflicts with the dreamy image of black progress that Obama's presidency projects. In this supposedly post-racial moment, we no longer even have the license, or the language, to identify a fundamental source of the problems we see mounting in the offices in Chicago's Loop, and on the streets of suburban Orlando: the enduring effects of racism. That's no longer an acceptable explanation for society at large. Hardly anyone, it seems, wants to admit the truth: nearly a half-century of financial, political and social gains are being reversed, perhaps permanently, and the post-civil rights era may come to resemble Reconstruction's fleeting progress. "The whole premise of the civil rights movement was to give our children a better future than we had. But it's all going backwards," said Marian Wright Edelman, a veteran of that movement, adding: "We face the worst crisis since slavery."