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So it’s just a little bit scary to think that we literally have a theory here about how to stealthily use proposed reforms that don’t seem to be socialist to in fact bring about socialism, and that the people who believed in this theory were Obama’s sponsors, his funders, the people who trained him.
Another thing that the Midwest Academy did was to focus on creating these so-called populist coalitions, broad-based populist coalitions, around economic issues. They wanted to unify the inheritors of the ‘60s legacy with more culturally conservative, Reagan-style Democrats. So for that reason, they downplayed anything that had to do with divisive social or cultural issues like abortion, or foreign policy.
And oftentimes, when the Left hears you say that Obama’s a socialist, they say, Well, that’s ridiculous. I mean, look how he’s been foot-dragging on gay marriage, or, you know, he went into Afghanistan. But if you see the strategy of Obama’s socialist organizing mentors, it’s really exactly the same — you soft-pedal and try not to stir the pot on foreign policy and social issues, so that you can create a coalition around issues like healthcare, energy and banking. And of course, these are Obama’s favorite issues. They were also the favorite issues of his community organizing sponsors.
Now, that gives you a sense of a lot of what was going on in the book. I’ll quickly cover some of the other stuff, and then I’ll say just a little about the process of uncovering some of this stuff. There’s a chapter in the book — there’s really no time to go over everything in the book; this book is sort of chock-full of new information about Obama — there’s a chapter where I talk about Obama’s relationship with UNO of Chicago. UNO of Chicago — United Neighborhood Organizations of Chicago.
This is amazing to me. This is a whole community organization that Obama had extremely close ties to; was almost a leader of, really, in some sense. And no one’s ever heard of it. UNO of Chicago was a kind of Hispanic counterpart of ACORN, a very confrontational community organization. It also had an explicitly anti-American ideology, right up there with Reverent Wright.
And this was an organization — we don’t have exact numbers, but it’s clear from the numbers we do have that the composition of this organization was very heavily skewed, in comparison to the regular population, toward illegal aliens. So we had large numbers of illegal aliens basically running confrontation tactics on politicians in Illinois.
I tell one story about how Senator Charles Percy was trapped in the ladies’ bathroom by UNO of Chicago. And basically, they would confront these politicians and get them to give all sorts of money to the projects they wanted. And basically, a lot of these people were illegal aliens, with an explicitly anti-American ideology.
And so, you can read the story. This chapter that I talk about UNO of Chicago, I also go microscopically through “Dreams from my Father” and find the places where Obama is essentially covering up things.
UNO of Chicago itself, actually, is a great example. You can see where he suppressed the UNO of Chicago, just mentioning it a little bit, so he could say, “Oh yeah, I talked about that.” But there is no way that you would even remotely figure out what he was really doing with these folks if you read his memoir. Obama’s memoir changes the names of most people. And he even says that he uses composite characters. And in the book, I uncover some of the reasons for this strategy of disguise.
Now, let’s move on to the classics. And by the classics, I’m not talking about Beethoven, Bach and Brahms; I’m talking about Reverend Wright, Bill Ayers and ACORN. I have a lot to say about the classics. And most of it is new stuff. ACORN has an archive at the Wisconsin Historical Society that has barely been explored until very recently. Thousands and thousands of documents. And I managed to find a remarkable number of documents detailing Obama’s long and intimate relationship to ACORN.
Now, during the campaign, Obama said, The only, only thing I’ve ever had to do with ACORN is that I represented them in one lawsuit on the Motor Voter law in Illinois. No. That is a lie. And I don’t like to use the word “lie.” But in the book, I actually bring in the L-word for this one. Because you can just compare that very explicit statement during the campaign to this raft of documents, and you can see what he was covering up.
Not only that, but as a kind of subplot within the book, I talk about the origins of the financial crisis. Now, it’s been argued before by folks like myself that ACORN actually had a lot to do with subprime crisis because it dragooned banks against their will into making these dangerous subprime loans.
But what I found at the Wisconsin Historical Society Archives surprised even me. Because here we have ACORN’s own account of its meetings with Bill Clinton, of its meetings with Henry Cisneros, the HUD Secretary in the Clinton Administration; and all sorts of other people. And you see just how remarkably influential ACORN was in dragging the whole financial system into the subprime lending business. It’s an incredible story. It hasn’t been focused on near enough. And you’ll read that, with all sorts of new documents, in the book.
Now, Bill Ayers. It isn’t just that Obama happened to sort of kind of know Bill Ayers. We’re really talking about a very long and intimate political partnership.
During the campaign, the big controversy was — you know, I looked at various documents about their past relationship and said, I don’t see how Ayers could not have brought Obama onto the board of this foundation that Ayers ran. And at that time, I was attacked, and the Obama campaign called me all sorts of nasty names. Now, David Remnick, Obama’s sympathetic biographer, has basically admitted that this is what happened.
But what I found in my research is that Obama returned the favor. Ayers was on the board of the Woods Fund, along with Obama, and we’ve known that. But it’s crystal clear, when you do the research, that it was Obama who brought Ayers onto the board of the Woods Fund. And between that, they were funding Bernadine Dohrn’s work, having a high time helping all of their group of socialist friends.
And that’s the real point of the Ayers chapter, is that there is a broader socialist community in Chicago. I’ve really only been able to scratch the surface here. And Obama worked with those people when he was an organizer, and he funded them. He funded them, so he was supporting them. And he understood very well all these hardball tactics that they used. And yet he was funneling money into their coffers.
But they had something in those days that they — and they still use these terms — they call it the inside-outside strategy, or the good cop-bad cop strategy. The idea is that you get a state legislator — and this is what Obama was when he was in the Illinois state legislature — who’s your good cop. He has to seem very nice. He has to seem willing to compromise and talk to all sides very courteously. But behind the scenes, he cooperates with these groups who are trying to trap, you know, senators in the ladies’ bathroom and such like. You know, that’s the good cop-bad cop strategy. So it’s not that Obama is a post-partisan pragmatist; it’s that he is a good cop in this hidden game that these socialist community organizers play.
Now, last but not least, there is Reverend Wright, our favorite. And I’ve got all sorts of new stuff on the Wright-Obama relationship. Now, I don’t have a specific document where Obama says, Hey, Jeremiah, you know, loved your “God damn America” sermon. But I got a lot of stuff in there, you know, where Obama was attending the church on a weekly basis, when Wright was having practically a civil war in his own congregation. Because some people were so angry at him for saying things like he had said on those tapes that we saw in the campaign. It wasn’t just those few times. He was saying it a lot. And his own congregants were getting mad at him. Wright was in a battle with them, and Obama was attending the congregation on a weekly basis at that time. And there’s lots of other stuff on Wright’s political history.
I’ll just very quickly try to run through some of the process of discovering this material.
During the campaign, I was alerted to the fact that libraries are not as open and free as they seem to be when I tried to get into an archive containing documents of a foundation that Bill Ayers had created and that Barack Obama had headed. And I was originally told I could get into this archive. And then, all the sudden, I was told there was some problem — you can’t get in. We ran our huge public campaign to force them to let me in and see these documents. Many conservatives know all about this. But very few other people have heard of this, because the mainstream media didn’t cover it.
Finally, I got in, I found the archives — all these papers that Ayers and Obama are working together. So I go on a talk radio show, Milt Rosenberg Radio Show. He’s a professor at the University of Chicago, very highfalutin talk radio show. And the Obama campaign tries to stop me from going on the radio. Seven thousand people inundate the station demanding that I be taken off. The campaign calls WGN station to demand that I be taken off.
So at that point, I realized that rather than announce my book project when I signed the contract, as would ordinarily be done, we just wouldn’t say anything. Because I dreaded being discovered in these archives. Because the truth is that the archivists and the librarians have a tremendous amount of discretion in what they can show you or not show you.
So I began, at the New York Public Library, following up on the Ayers issue, looking into Ayers’ community organizing background. Most people don’t know he’s a community organizer. And a missing reel of tape led me to another library, the Tamiment Library in New York, which houses the most important socialist archives in the country.
So in addition to finding material on Ayers, that’s where I first dug up these programs from the Socialist Scholars Conferences that Obama attended. My jaw dropped when I saw James Cone and various other people that I knew were important in Obama’s life. I realized that the socialism issue was important.
Following up on the James Cone issue, I found an obscure pamphlet that only existed in one or two places in the country — in the public library in Chicago, the Harold Washington Library in Chicago. This was a pamphlet by James Cone about the links between black liberation theology and socialism. Michael Harrington, the famous socialist, had a commentary there.
But I couldn’t find the pamphlet — it was at the library — until I got up to an obscure room on the fourth floor. Why did I have to go to this obscure room I didn’t even know existed? Because this pamphlet had been in Harold Washington’s own library. And the room I found also contained all of the archives of the Harold Washington administration. So this was a goldmine.
And I started going through these archives and, lo and behold, I found all sorts of stuff about Obama — Obama’s own documents with his name on them, writings that his — material that his community organization had sent to the Harold Washington administration. It all tracked along what was going on with “Dreams from my Father.”
I was trembling as I had these documents, but I tried to seem very nonchalant, so that the librarians wouldn’t know what was going on. I was actually found out in a couple of places. Most places didn’t find me out. But I don’t want to go into too much detail, because I might need to go back to these places.
So I find these documents. And some of them will be in like an Obama Presidential Library. The only problem is they’re historic documents that you would want to put in the Presidential Library, but they got names on them like Jeremiah Wright. They got names like John Ayers, Bill Ayers’ brother, who Obama had a political connection to, I found out, long before he was supposed to have been in touch with Bill Ayers.
But one of the things they had in this archive was notes made by the advance men preparing Mayor Washington for any visit that he would make to any public place and also commenting on the visit. And from this, I discovered that on a visit to — that Harold Washington made to Reverend Wright’s congregation, there was a state senator in that congregation, but it wasn’t Obama. This was before Obama. This was when Obama was just getting to know Reverend Wright. And I didn’t know that at that time there was a state senator in Wright’s congregation — his name was Howard Brookins.
So I immediately became curious. And then the next link in the chain came, and I went to Springfield, Illinois, to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library. And I found the papers of Howard Brookins. And, lo and behold, they were absolutely filled with letters from Reverend Wright, saying, This is how you should vote, this is who you should ally with, these are the people you should nominate. And Brookins was doing all of that stuff.
So I write about this in the book. You get a sense of how politically involved Reverend Wright was; what he expected of a state senator from his own congregation.
And there are a lot of chains like this. A lot of them go around in circles, and I end up going back where I started. But I’m just giving you an example of how one clue leads to another and eventually opens up a whole world.
Now, I’ll finish by just briefly talking about where we are today. As I’ve already hinted, I think that Obama really has this long-term socialist realignment strategy in mind — a strategy he would’ve learned about all the way back in 1983. His attacks on businesses, his attacks on the Chamber of Commerce, all the stuff about fat cats, his attacks on the Supreme Court in highly unusual circumstances during the State of the Union address, because of the public funding money issue — those are all attempts to jumpstart a populist, anti-business movement of the Left, and at the risk — at the short-term risk of pushing business interests out of the [Republican] Party.
And I think Obama’s basic strategy is to get in place what he’s gotten in place. That’s why it was worth it for him to take all these short-term risks. He wants to get the healthcare bill, for example, in place. And then, if he can just get to the point where people who don’t have health insurance get angry when the Republicans try to repeal, he hopes that that will also jumpstart the movement.
Attacking, going to Hispanics and telling them to attack their enemies — it’s the same thing. The notion is that there needs to be a grand coalition in the Left — the populist, anti-business people and highly activated minority groups — blacks and Hispanics. The thought was always, going back to these Socialist Scholars Conferences, that those groups will create the new majority coalition.
But the only way to kick-start that coalition is to make them angry, to get them mad at someone who’s trying to take something away. So you basically run Alinsky-ite tactics against a whole state, like Arizona, and you get Hispanics mad, tell them to punish their enemies — that’s all an attempt to jumpstart this. And of course, I argue this in a great deal more detail in the book.
But the underlying theme is people who believe that Obama is a socialist — they think the proof of it is that he’s politically suicidal. Look what he’s doing. He’s sacrificing everything for the sake of his crazy ideological victories. But what I’m trying to say is he’s crazy like a fox. He’s taking short-term risks because he’s got a long-term play in mind. He wants to take the risk that it takes to get this legislation on-line.
Then he wants — dares the Republicans — remember, he said, “Go for it” to the Republicans when they talked about repeal — then he wants to dare the Republicans to try to take it away, use that to generate anger, which will reignite the base that he has lost. And then, he gets the big prize, which is the country is realigned and pushed substantially to the left. And for him, it’s worth it to take all these short-term risks.
So don’t get cocky — we’re dealing with a very serious adversary here.
To watch the video of Stanley Kurtz’s speech on DHTV, click here.
To order Radical-in-Chief, click here.
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