Van Jones Resigns

I’m sad to say the bullies have won a round.  Van Jones resigned—shortly after I sent out my last post. 

 Calls and letters to Obama are still in order.  Let him know that it’s time he stood up to the bullies and the hate mongers.  Stop reaching across the aisle to a pack of vipers who refuse to budge an inch, let alone meet halfway, and remember who elected you and why.  Start reaching out to your base!

 This kind of attack is the new McCarthyism.  If we let it continue to be effective, it will hamper any possibility of enacting true progressive changes that the majority of people want.  It means that anyone with any hint of radical activity in their past (let alone their present) can first, be banned from public office.  What will be next?  Will we see media purges, like in the Fifties?  Will Fox not only maintain its own bully pulpit but drive out any progressive or even mildly liberal voices?

 Is questioning the truth of 911 going to become the new Red Scare test?  Hmmn, if they are that sensitive about anyone questioning the Bush administrations’ potential role or simple ineptitude about 911, perhaps they have something to hide?  Something like 35% of Democrats believe there is reason to suspect some administration involvement.  Like many people, I have my own private suspicions but long ago lost patience with the hard-core conspiracy theorists and lack the time to delve into all the details and engineering reports and the stand-off orders etc.  But there are plenty of people out there who have thoroughly gone into all the discrepencies.  I encourage you to light up the blogosphere with questions like “What is Fox News Covering Up about 911”?  I’m sure those 911 truth commission folks are already on it.  Because if we can’t ask questions in this country about even the highest public officials (especially about the highest public officials) then we don’t have freedom of speech. 

 Most important, we can make sure the work Van Jones was doing continues, that needed resources and green jobs do make their way to our inner cities, and that the efforts to align the environmental and social justice movements grow in momentum. 

 For those of us in working on social justice issues, that means coming to understand the vital role that the environment plays in all issues of survival and justice.  We can’t dismiss the issue of climate change nor trade off jobs for ecological destruction.  We’ve got to know that the survival and regeneration of communities is rooted in the health of the soil, the water, the air, the great cycles of climate.

 For those of us in environmental and ecological movements, it means asking some hard questions, like:

 How does this issue impact the people with the least resources?

What are we doing to bring resources, skills, tools and awareness to those who most need them?

Where does racism and discrimination and privilege exist in our own movements and organizations?   How do we challenge them?

 

The assumptions of privilege are often subtle.  It’s not so much “I won’t hire that person because of the color of her skin”—that sort of discrimination is easy to identify.  It’s more, “My view of the world is the view, my norms are the norms, and other perspectives are suspect or lesser.”  It’s hard to know that we might be treated differently because of the color of our skin, because we’re so used to being treated that way that we don’t even notice it.  Harder still to recognize that a lifetime of such treatment forms our assumptions about such things as, say, whether or not we perceive the police as our friends, or see America as a shining light of global benevolence, or feel comfortable hiking alone in the woods.

 That work can be uncomfortable, but also illuminating.  Every time we broaden our own perspective, we get a little bit smarter, and more effective.

 Ah, as always I have a lot more to say but I also have things to do today, so I’ll end with a link to an article on AlterNet that slightly, very slightly, cheered me up:

Don Hazen’s “Five Reasons Why Van Jones and Progressives are Better Off With Jones Out of the White House.”

http://www.alternet.org/story/142460/5_reasons_why_van_jones_and_progressives_are_better_off_with_jones_out_of_the_white_house/?page=2

For those of you on Facebook, there is a Stand With Van Jones Facebook group and I can’t find the link at the moment.  You might also post supportive comments on Van Jones’ own page.  (My woes trying to get on Facebook are another story.)

 

Joining and supporting Color of Change is another good option.  Give them some money, while you’re at it, to help their successful organizing of a boycott of Glenn Beck’s advertisers!

Here’s the links again:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/CONTACT/

 

White House Phone numbers:

Comments: 202-456-1111?Switchboard: 202-456-1414?FAX: 202-456-2461

TTY/TDD

Comments: 202-456-6213?Visitors Office: 202-456-2121

Color of Change:

http://www.colorofchange.org/

6 comments to Van Jones Resigns

  • Starhawk, you ask Obama to remember who elected him and why, and to start reaching out to his base. Obama remembers who funded him and why, so he feels free to disappoint his popular base, as opposed to his monetary base, who owns him just like they own the rest of this rotten political establishment. If you think that is harsh, take a look at that American Clean Energy and Security Act Obama touted as “so balanced and sensible.” It is so balanced and sensible, chock full of loopholes, it has no teeth. Obama is as mainstream as they come. Whatever made you doubt that?

    The following two paragraphs I quoted for my blog from the White House blog.
    “Now is the time for us to lead. The energy bill before the House will finally create a set of incentives that will spark a clean energy transformation of our economy. It will spur the development of low-carbon sources of energy — everything from wind, solar, and geothermal power to safe nuclear energy and cleaner coal.”

    “Because this legislation is so balanced and sensible, it’s already attracted a remarkable coalition of consumer and environmental groups, labor and business leaders, Democrats and Republicans.”

    A historic energy bill, Obama called it. That is leadership Obama style for you. I prefer to call it greenwashing.

  • Sue S

    It’s not surprising Van Jones got outed. He was installed early in the administration’s evolution, when “change” was being promoted, and focus groups indicated people were hungry for a different brand.

    Marketing is everything. The new boss is an articulate, multiracial , Ivy League trained, spokesperson for the banksters and warmakers who bankrolled him to the presidency. The old boss, the bumbling scion of a wealthy white family who couldn’t put two words together, also Ivy league trained, was(is)the spokesperson for those very same banksters and warmakers. These forces shape our perceptions in ways we don’t even realize. They occupy our brains. They divert our attention all the time, stoking up frenzied outrage at the hate talk radio celebrities, seducing us to watch(and throw our shoes at) the politicians on teevee, coaxing us to forget that the Democrats(who now have control of Congress)are the same as the Republicans, as the endless wars are getting more extensive and expensive by the day, while the argument is focused on how there just isn’t enough tax money to pay for health care and protection of the earth.

    Until there is true campaign finance reform, and until we, the people, insist that our economic activity be based on peace, rather than war, the science of perception management will continue to be refined, and will remain the least violent way we are controlled.

  • Sara: in northern rural Alabama

    Hey Star, Will you address the H1N1 flu vaccine, specifically because I have heard from folks who read your book (5th Sacred Thing) that the vaccine is part of a government plot, and that all one needs to do is boost the immune system, and if they take the vaccine that their immune system will be depressed. Thanks. Sara (EAT ’06, Diana’s Grove)

  • Kim Bax

    “Like many people, I have my own private suspicions but long ago lost patience with the hard-core conspiracy theorists and lack the time to delve into all the details and engineering reports and the stand-off orders etc.”

    Starhawk, I think this comment is a bit careless (to say the least). Considering the pivotal nature of 9/11, and the way it resonates (very strongly), with The Tower card of the Tarot, and the deep meaning of finally tearing away all our illusions, why on earth do you still have “Private” suspicions? What fear keeps you from speaking out? And what fear makes you use the same language (and we all know the powerful, magical effect of language), as the structures of power-over? The terms “Conspiracy theorist” and “Hard core” are meaningless, except as a way of tarring and feathering (via language), those who HAVE taken the time and trouble to look with eyes wide-open. Further still, why have you never (to my knowledge, forgive me if I’m wrong), mentioned or openly supported the continuing struggle of The Jersey Girls (and many, many more relatives and friends), for a new, independent, judicial review of 9/11? Surely, sparing a few lines of open, unequivocal support for these brave and determined women as yet ANOTHER anniversary of 9/11 comes round, is entirely appropriate? Or do you, like Amy Goodman, and many others, choose to avert your direct gaze? It’s hard to understand how you just don’t have “Time” to look at the issues, even the term “Inadequate” for your explanation doesn’t quite convey my disbelief.

  • Kim Bax

    Just posted this comment to the “Truth Action” forum, re my comment above. Thought it might be of interest:

    http://truthaction.org/forum/viewtopic.php?p=35443#35443

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