Whoa. From the Black Agenda Report
Read it all.
In a literal sense, Barack Obama never lied to Black people, since he never offered African Americans anything. For their part, Black voters never requested anything from Obama. From Obama's standpoint, it turned out to be a perfect arrangement. Obama suspected he could get virtually every Black vote for free, and he was right. For the rest of the campaign, Black opinion was irrelevant. Black Americans appeared to fear that if they asked for the slightest political assurances on traditional Black concerns over peace, the social safety net, and race-based public policy responses to race-based problems, Obama might go poof!...and disappear. Who could say he wouldn't, since it wasn't Blacks who had summoned him to run for the highest office, in the first place? By saying nothing that might conceivably rock the Obama boat, Black voters (and so-called leaders) made themselves completely and utterly powerless to affect his campaign - which was fine with Obama and his corporate backers.
Because Black leaders in particular, and white progressives who should know better, had refused to pressure Obama during the early primary period, when the Left traditionally forces "liberals" to temporarily behave like progressives, the opportunity to make demands has long slipped away. The general election campaign has already begun, a period in which Democrats always move to the Right. Is anyone prepared to challenge the Rightists in Obama's organization?
This casts Obama's snub of the State of the Black Union in a different light and why he felt free to skip the 40th anniversary of MLK's assassination yesterday in Memphis, and why he failed to honor a request by the Congressional Black Caucus to hold a fundraiser for them. (For the record, Hillary Clinton has done all three.)