Talking about growing public opposition to his tax increases, Barack Obama had this to say about those of us who understand the economic dangers of higher taxation.
"John McCain and Sarah Palin they call this socialistic. You know I don’t know when, when they decided they wanted to make a virtue out of selfishness."
You know, this comment as well as the "Get in their face" comment from a couple of weeks ago is starting to make me wonder if this guy has the potential to be even more polarizing than Clinton or Bush II. I mean jeez! There have been a couple of moments in this campaign where Obama has come off as a real jerk.
Friday, October 31, 2008
Talking about growing public opposition to his tax increases, Barack Obama had this to say about those of us who understand the economic dangers of higher taxation.
Posted by Falling Panda at 8:34 PM
From the moment that Bill Clinton began his run for the White House in 1992, the GOP was warning voters that the man could not be trusted. For all of his charm and knowledge, he was simply an individual with a propensity for fibbing profusely in order to advance his political career and agenda. We told you. You didn’t listen. Seven years later, we were proven right in a big way.
Devastated that their president had been outed as a liar, liberals and Democrats were salivating at the prospect of catching George W. Bush lying to the American public. At this juncture, most of them have deluded themselves into thinking that they did. At some point, the American left decided that there was no difference between being wrong and intentionally misleading people. Having disposed of that inconvenient differentiation, the left has spent the last eight years calling Bush every name in the book. Moronic bookstore propaganda categorizing all of the bad intelligence that the administration cited about WMD’s,are penned labeling the mistakes as lies. It’s maddening to anyone with half a brain or any ability or desire to do real research. Once again, if anyone has real evidence that George W. Bush has lied about anything during his administration, I will send you a crisp $100 bill. That’s a promise.
Hillary Clinton became the Democratic frontrunner as soon as John Kerry flip-flopped his way back to the Senate. Like her husband, Hillary fibbed constantly, in a seemingly pathological way. It’s as if she had seen her husband do it so many times that she figured it would work for her as well. Of course Hillary doesn’t have half the charisma that Bill does, and with simple research at every blogger's fingertips these days, she didn’t have a prayer of getting away with the same sort of B.S. as the former president.
Two huge whoppers come to mind. The first was the well known “sniper-fire” lie. The incredible thing about this one was that it was a washed-up comedian who brought the lie to our attention. When Sinbad is proven to be more trustworthy than your party’s presidential frontrunner, it’s time to rethink your options, which of course the Democrats did.
However, my favorite incident highlighting Hillary’s difficulty in telling the truth was when she lied about her own name. It sounds impossible, I know, but it actually happened. At an early campaign stop, the former first lady told a crowd that she was named after Mt. Everest pioneer, Sir. Edmund Hillary. When it came out that she had actually been born several years before anyone had heard of the man, I felt sorry for the gal. Seriously, to go that long without a first name must be extremely hard for a young child.
At some point in the campaign, Bill must have decided that Hillary was stealing his thunder as fabricator-in-chief. Betting that the American people had the long-term memory of a gerbil, he told us that he had been against the Iraq war from the start. Huh?
So what about the man who would be king? With the economic crisis propelling Barack Obama to what appears will be an electoral victory, is it too late to ask if he is honest and trustworthy?
In the wake of Obama’s 30-minute, TV love fest on Tuesday, many on my side, in a fit of election week madness, tried to label Obama’s decision to go back on his promise to fund his campaign using public financing, as a lie. It really wasn’t. Unless you believe Obama knew all along that thousands of five-year olds were going to empty their piggy banks in support of him, it was probably just a greed induced broken promise. If he does a lot of that as President, we're going to have a problem, but it’s no reason to label him as a liar.
His claim that William Ayer’s was “just a guy who lived in my neighborhood” came pretty close to crossing the line and Obama's since-abandoned talking point about John McCain wanting to fight a 100 year war in Iraq, can accurately be described as an egregious and misleading misrepresentation of what McCain actually said. These half-truths, however, are par for the course during campaign season and, as an honest observer of our nation’s political discourse, I can say that I believe Obama to be an honest man.
I trust that he’s going to do what he says he’s going to do. He’s going to raise taxes. He’s going to hold talks with the Mullahs without preconditions. He’s going to renegotiate NAFTA. He’s going to do all of these really dumb things and no one is going to stop him. Why? Because “Hope”, “Change”, “George Bush”, Fist –bump.
Call me old fashioned, but I believe that character matters immensely in making a choice as to who should serve in our nation’s highest office. Barack Obama’s character flaws are big ones. He has exhibited exceedingly poor judgment when it comes to who he associates with and has put politics above doing what’s right for the country on several foreign policy issues of the utmost importance.
But a liar? I don’t believe so. Not anywhere close to the perpetually pathological duo of Bill and Hillary. In that sense, as bad as an Obama presidency may be, we probably dodged quite a bullet on the honesty front.
Posted by Falling Panda at 2:30 PM
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Some are shrugging off the recent implications by John McCain and others that Barack Obama is a socialist or an individual with Marxist leanings. However, if the candidates own words are any indication, Barack Obama is clearly not the man that his starry-eyed rally-goers, believe him to be.
PRUDEN: A game-changer by Obama
Wesley Pruden (Contact)
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
If your toilet is stopped up by something really big and smells really bad, you'll probably need a plumber. Joe the Plumber, as it turns out, diagnosed the trouble, and yesterday we learned what it was. It smells really bad.
The tape recording of an interview that Barack Obama gave to Radio Station WBEZ in Chicago in 2001 surfaced, and in that interview Mr. Obama, then a law professor and a state senator, lays out how he would redistribute the wealth. He sounds like a man with a plan.
The interview explains a lot, beginning with the attempt, abetted by a mainstream media that no longer tries to hide its slavish obeisance to the Democratic campaign, to destroy Joe the Plumber and shut down discussion of the implications of what the candidate said.
Mr. Obama doesn't think much of the Constitution, or even of the Supreme Court justices who have rewritten it over the years to accommodate notions of "social justice." The Warren Court, which wrote finis to public-school segregation with its unanimous Brown v. Board of Education decision in 1954, has been decried since as radical, but it wasn't radical enough. Earl Warren only pretended to be a soldier of the revolution.
One of the "tragedies of the civil-rights movement," Mr. Obama says, is that the Supreme Court did not address redistribution of wealth, probably because of the inherent difficulty of achieving such goals through the courts. The Supreme Court did not break from the restraints of the Constitution and "we still suffer from that." Mr. Obama is not "optimistic" that the Supreme Court can achieve redistribution of wealth - of taking from the workers to give to the deadbeats - but he obviously thinks he knows how to do it. A president with a compliant Congress, which he expects to be in January, can do it through legislation and "administration."
The Barack Obama of this interview clearly does not think much of what the Founding Fathers bequeathed to us: "The Constitution reflected the enormous blind spot in this culture that carries on to this day. The framers had that same blind spot ... the fundamental flaw of this country."
Mr. Obama is a gifted politician, with the smarts to understand that this could be the "game-changer" that leaves his campaign, almost picture-perfect until now, in ruins. He understands that he has to fly under the radar for now. That's why his campaign apparatus moves swiftly to dismiss questions about the Obama paper trail, such as it is, and to crush anyone bold and foolish enough to inquire into the real Barack Obama.
Joe the Plumber learned the hard way what happens to such questioners, and when a television reporter in Florida asked Joe Biden whether his running mate is a Marxist economist, good old Joe, usually eager to talk about everything, acted as if the interviewer had accused him of serial killing or child molesting. Some things just aren't to be talked about, not now. Not Barack Obama's radical notions about redistributing the wealth - which is, after all, the essence of Marxism. Not about how he intends to replace fundamental American values with values that most Americans, if they knew about them, would regard as alien and hostile.
If John McCain wants to change the game over the next seven days, he'll have to break through the media screen to spell out, clearly, often and in detail, the implications of what Barack Obama actually means when he talks about how to redistribute the wealth. To redistribute wealth, you first have to confiscate it from those who earned it with hard work, and the way to do that is with confiscatory taxes. Then you give it to those who didn't earn it. Such explanations, made with cool detachment, once would have been the work of the newspapers and even the television networks. But not this year. Mr. McCain can expect real grief from the media when the polls tighten.
There's nothing ambiguous about Mr. Obama's radical views, as revealed in this interview. He clearly thinks the Constitution was a "tragedy," that the men who wrote it were not the revolutionary heroes plain Americans regard them to be, and their work must be corrected by the surviving radicals of the '60s and their progeny. Anyone who listens to this interview, available on YouTube.com, understands why Michelle Obama was never proud of her country until she thought the opportunity was at hand to destroy the country to save it, and why Barack Obama could spend 20 years comfortably listening to the Rev. Jeremiah Wright exhort God to damn America.
Wesley Pruden is editor emeritus of The Washington Times.
Then there's this interesting tidbit:
Posted by Falling Panda at 2:02 PM
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Sphere: Related Content
How many awful things do you have to say about the residents of a state before they decide that they're not going to vote for you?
And to think. If Nancy Pelosi had her way, this guy would be Majority Leader.
Posted by Falling Panda at 2:17 PM
Monday, October 20, 2008
Anyone who was surprised by Colin Powell's recent endorsement of Barack Obama, obviously doesn't pay any attention to Bill Kristol, who has been saying that it was coming for over two months.
And why not? Powell is socially, very liberal and is admittedly, very excited at the historic nature of Obama's candidacy. I think he's a also a bit upset that many on the far-left have falsely accused him of intentionally misleading people or being duped by the Bush Admin. in the lead up to the Iraq war.
So let him go. Frankly I don't know too many Republicans who have much use for the General, other than as a political tool. He was right about the Powell Doctrine, but he's wrong on just about everything else.
Here the People Rule
By WILLIAM KRISTOL
Published: October 20, 2008
According to the silver-penned Peggy Noonan, writing in The Wall Street Journal over the weekend, “In the end the Palin candidacy is a symptom and expression of a new vulgarization in American politics.”
Skip to next paragraph
Leave aside Noonan’s negative judgment on Sarah Palin’s candidacy, a judgment I don’t share. Are we really seeing “a new vulgarization in American politics”? As opposed to the good old non-vulgar days?
Politics in a democracy are always “vulgar” — since democracy is rule by the “vulgus,” the common people, the crowd. Many conservatives have never been entirely comfortable with this rather important characteristic of democracy. Conservatives’ hearts have always beaten a little faster when they read Horace’s famous line: “Odi profanum vulgus et arceo.” “I hate the ignorant crowd and I keep them at a distance.”
But is the ignorant crowd really our problem today? Are populism and anti-intellectualism rampant in the land? Does the common man too thoroughly dominate our national life? I don’t think so.
Last week, the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press released its latest national survey, taken from Oct. 9 to 12. Americans are dissatisfied with the way things are going in the country and of course concerned about the economy. But, as Pew summarized, “there is little indication that the nation’s financial crisis has triggered public panic or despair.”
In fact, “There is a broad public consensus regarding the causes of the current problems with financial institutions and markets: 79 percent say people taking on too much debt has contributed a lot to the crisis, while 72 percent say the same about banks making risky loans.”
This seems sensible. Indeed, as Sept. 11 did not result in a much-feared (by intellectuals) wave of popular Islamophobia or xenophobia, so the market crash has resulted in remarkably little popular hysteria or scapegoating.
And considering what has happened, the vulgar public on Main Street has been surprisingly forgiving of those well-educated types on Wall Street — the ones who devised and marketed the sophisticated financial instruments that have brought the financial system to the brink of collapse.
Most of the recent mistakes of American public policy, and most of the contemporary delusions of American public life, haven’t come from an ignorant and excitable public. They’ve been produced by highly educated and sophisticated elites.
Needless to say, the public’s not always right, and public opinion’s not always responsible. But as publics go, the American public has a pretty good track record.
In the 1930s, the American people didn’t fall — unlike so many of their supposed intellectual betters — for either fascism or Communism. Since World War II, the American people have resisted the temptations of isolationism and protectionism, and have turned their backs on a history of bigotry.
Now, the Pew poll I cited earlier also showed Barack Obama holding a 50 percent to 40 percent lead over John McCain in the race for the White House. You might think this data point poses a challenge to my encomium to the good sense of the American people.
It does. But it’s hard to blame the public for preferring Obama at this stage — given the understandable desire to kick the Republicans out of the White House, and given the failure of the McCain campaign to make its case effectively. And some number of the public may change their minds in the final two weeks of the campaign, and may decide McCain-Palin offers a better kind of change — perhaps enough to give McCain-Palin a victory.
The media elites really hate that idea. Not just because so many of them prefer Obama. But because they like telling us what’s going to happen. They’re always annoyed when the people cross them up. Pundits spent all spring telling Hillary Clinton to give up in her contest against Obama — and the public kept on ignoring them and keeping her hopes alive.
Why do elites like to proclaim premature closure — not just in elections, but also in wars and in social struggles? Because it makes them the imperial arbiters, or at least the perspicacious announcers, of what history is going to bring. This puts the elite prognosticators ahead of the curve, ahead of the simple-minded people who might entertain the delusion that they still have a choice.
But as Gerald Ford said after assuming the presidency on Aug. 9, 1974, ”Here the people rule.”
One of those people is Joe Wurzelbacher, a k a Joe the Plumber. He’s the latest ordinary American to do a star turn in our vulgar democratic circus. He seems like a sensible man to me.
And to Peggy Noonan, who wrote that Joe “in an extended cable interview Thursday made a better case for the Republican ticket than the Republican ticket has made.” At least McCain and Palin have had the good sense to embrace him. I join them in taking my stand with Joe the Plumber — in defiance of Horace the Poet.
Posted by Falling Panda at 2:18 PM
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Sphere: Related Content
The situation is looking fairly dire for Sen. McCain at the moment. The MSM is salivating over the reported anger being expressed at McCain rallies, some of which has been inappropriate and over the top. As if the left hasn't spent the last eight years behaving in a similar fashion.
Even if the Dow stabilizes, at this point the economy simply won't work as an issue for the party in power.
In the meantime, Obama's surrogates and supporters in the media are playing the race card in what appears to be a preemtive strike against what they see as coming attacks, focusing on Obama's former associates.
Both are intertwined.
The right isn't as angry at Obama as they are at McCain. At this moment they see the senator as shying away from attacks on Obama for his relationships with Wright and Ayers. These relationships have proven to be a salient issue with the electorate and if McCain goes through tomorrow's debate without hitting Obama hard on this, he has, in all likelyhood, blown his last good chance to significantly close the gap.
If McCain hasn't figured this out yet, the Democrats certainly have. All of this talk about racism and intolerance and the increased talk of the "Bradley Effect" is a preview of what is to come, if McCain begins hitting Obama hard on Wright/Ayers.
In addition to claiming that McCain is trying to shift focus away from the economy, the left will also claim that McCain's attacks are a subliminal swipe at Obama's inner city Chicago roots.
I don't think it will work.
McCain must try and get Obama's dubious associations into the news cycle and he must do it now.
Obama's supporters will inevitably say that these things don't matter and that we should be talking about something else. The McCain campaign should respond by suggesting that we let the voters decide what matters and what does not.
Posted by Falling Panda at 10:17 AM
Monday, October 13, 2008
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Friday, October 10, 2008
What's so intreguing about all of this is that it's all connected in a full circle way to both Barack Obama and the crisis on wall street.
While Obama was a community organizer, he worked very closely with ACORN, which is now making attempts at voter fraud on a massive scale in order to push up the numbers for Obama on Nov. 4th.
Obama and ACORN pushed heavily for the Community Reinvestment Act, which encouraged banks to give loans to low income folks who might not be able to pay them back. As we see now, many of them couldn't.
Here's one example of what ACORN has been up to recently:
1 VOTER, 72 REGISTRATIONS
'ACORN PAID ME IN CASH & CIGS'
By JEANE MacINTOSH Post Correspondent
PAWNS IN 'FRAUD': Freddie Johnson, yesterday in Cleveland, and Lateala Goins told of filling out voter registrations multiple times in the ACORN scandal revealed by The Post yesterday.
Last updated: 9:10 amOctober 10, 2008 Posted: 4:00 amOctober 10, 2008
CLEVELAND - A man at the center of a voter-registration scandal told The Post yesterday he was given cash and cigarettes by aggressive ACORN activists in exchange for registering an astonishing 72 times, in apparent violation of Ohio laws.
"Sometimes, they come up and bribe me with a cigarette, or they'll give me a dollar to sign up," said Freddie Johnson, 19, who filled out 72 separate voter-registration cards over an 18-month period at the behest of the left-leaning Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now.
"The ACORN people are everywhere, looking to sign people up. I tell them I am already registered. The girl said, 'You are?' I say, 'Yup,' and then they say, 'Can you just sign up again?' " he said.
Johnson used the same information on all of his registration cards, and officials say they usually catch and toss out duplicate registrations. But the practice sparks fear that some multiple registrants could provide different information and vote more than once by absentee ballot.
ACORN is under investigation in Ohio and at least eight other states - including Missouri, where the FBI said it's planning to look into potential voter fraud - for over-the-top efforts to get as many names as possible on the voter rolls regardless of whether a person is registered or eligible.
It's even under investigation in Bridgeport, Conn., for allegedly registering a 7-year-old girl to vote, according to the State Elections Enforcement Commission.
Meanwhile, a federal judge yesterday ordered Ohio's Secretary of State to verify the identity of newly registered voters by matching them with other government documents. The order was in response to a Republican lawsuit unrelated to the ACORN probe in Cuyahoga County, in which at least three people, including Johnson, have been subpoenaed.
Bribing citizens with gifts, property or anything of value is a fourth-degree felony in Ohio, punishable by up to 18 months in prison. And it's a fifth-degree felony - punishable by 12 months in jail - for a person to pay "compensation on a fee-per-registration" system when signing up someone to vote.
Johnson, who works at a cellphone kiosk in downtown Cleveland, said he was a sitting duck for the signature hunters, but was always happy to help them out in exchange for a smoke or a little scratch. He'd collected 10 to 20 cigarettes and anywhere from $10 to $15, he said.
The Cleveland voting probe, first reported by The Post yesterday, also focused on Lateala Goins, who said she put her name on multiple voter registrations. She guessed ACORN canvassers then put fake addresses on them. "You can tell them you're registered as many times as you want - they do not care," she said.
ACORN spokesman Kris Harsh said the group does not tolerate its workers paying people to sign the voter-registration cards.
ACORN's political wing has endorsed Barack Obama for president, but Ben LaBolt, a spokesman for the Obama campaign in Ohio, said ACORN has no role in its get-out-the-vote drive.
During the primary season, however, the Obama camp paid another group, Citizen Service Inc., $832,598 for various political services, according to Federal Elections Commission filings. That group and ACORN share the same board of directors.
In Wisconsin yesterday, John McCain blasted ACORN.
"No one should be corrupting the most precious right we have, that is the right to vote," he said.
It's a right Johnson will exercise. "Yeah, I've registered enough - I might as well vote."
It's maddening that everyday, Barack Obama goes out there and ties the current crisis around the necks of Georg Bush and John McCain, when it's Barack Obama himself, and others of his ideology, who served as the catalyst for this entire mess in the first place.
But that's politics.
Let's hope the other side remembers this when they're complaining about hearing the names Bill Ayers and Jeremiah Wright repeatedly, over the next four weeks.Sphere: Related Content
Posted by Falling Panda at 4:43 PM
Main Street really isn't feeling the effects of the market crisis just yet. It may not have to, as long as the markets don't lose their cool over losing some of their value.
The government has a role to play in all this, but playing too much of a role is only setting us up for more woe. If Barack Obama is to be elected - which looks very possible at this point- it would be incredibly damaging to raise taxes in 2009. One hopes that he would have the good sense to postpone additional tax hikes until the Bush Tax-Cuts expire in 2010 or longer if necessary so that we can regain confidence. The absence of which is at the center of our current market problems.
Fact and Comment
Fear Will Subside
Steve Forbes 10.02.08, 6:00 PM ET
Forbes Magazine dated October 27, 2008
Although you'd never know it from market volatility, the financial fever in the U.S. may be about to break. The Treasury, of course, must move with alacrity in removing those impaired mortgages and other exotic instruments off of bank balance sheets. Just as important, the Administration must deal decisively with the insanity of mark-to-market, or so-called fair value, accounting that has forced institutions under severe pressure from regulators and accountants to maniacally mark down to absurdly low levels the value of unmarketable securities and assets, thus destroying entities that have positive cash flows. Congress has made its intent clear: It wants mark-to-market scrapped or at least suspended for a good, long time. Sensible reform here would sharply alleviate the severity of the credit crisis. Foot- dragging on this would be criminal as well as destructive. And the SEC should get its act together on short-selling.
Taken together, these measures will allow banks and financial institutions to catch their breath and not fear that they will be gratuitously plunged into insolvency. A recuperation will then begin, which would be hastened if the Administration abandoned its weak dollar policy. In fact, a strong dollar commitment would stem the panic.
Meanwhile, Europe and Asia will find ways to stop the contagion there, just as we are haltingly, clumsily doing here. The great danger going forward will be the political reaction. Will we apply growth-stunting regulations in the name of "never again"? Will we raise taxes in part to punish the "rich," harming the capital creation so necessary for growth? The answers will determine whether we have a Reaganesque recovery or the drawn-out stagnation of the 1930s.
Why a panic unseen in almost everyone's lifetime? Never before in American economic history have we undergone such a confluence of irresponsible behavior, of measures taken and not taken that have been demonstrably destructive. Recent shenanigans over the bailout bill defied credibility. Our financial system was on the verge of a Great Depression wreck. Policymakers in those days could at least plead ignorance in their disastrous decisions.
The U.S. economy is in recession, and the slide is gaining momentum. Europe is also in a recession, and Asia's growth rates are slowing down markedly. Yet Congress couldn't resist playing brinksmanship partisan politics. The Administration deserves a severe knuckle-rapping as well. More important, President Bush--not to mention Hank Paulson and Ben Bernanke--never convincingly explained to the American people why the legislation was a dire necessity, flawed as it was. Most Americans thought of it as a gratuitous handout to greedy Wall Street executives. Even so, House Republicans should have made sure the bill passed on Monday, Sept. 29. Occasionally members of the national legislature must act in the national interest even if--temporarily-- constituents don't realize the magnitude of the impending horror.
Put the bailout's $700 billion price tag in perspective: American households, until recently, had net assets of $56 trillion. A 2% decline in the value of those financial and hard assets overwhelms that $700 billion.
This whole crisis was absolutely unnecessary. The list of villains is long and ugly. The housing bubble and the promiscuous issuance of exotic junk securities would never have reached the level they did had the Fed not been so recklessly loose in its monetary policy. Our central bank behaved like a bartender who continues to ply low- to no-cost booze to already inebriated customers. The White House and Treasury Department went along with the Fed's weak-dollar policy, which wrought havoc on the world by creating a commodity bubble and a catastrophic loosening of lending standards and investing prudence.
The mark-to-market madness gratuitously destroyed Lehman Brothers and numerous other institutions.
The SEC should be criticized severely for doing away with the uptick rule on short-selling--no shorting of a stock unless it has moved up in price--and for its failure to enforce rules against naked short-selling--requiring a short seller to first borrow a stock before he shorts it.
Congress has long shielded the wild--and criminal--profligacy of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. These two monsters played a critical role in the horrible proliferation of subprime mortgages. Borrowers and speculators were given mortgages that no sane lender would ever have approved a few years ago. The rating agencies blissfully gave AAA status to this toxic material. Now, in the downturn, these agencies are going in the opposite direction--cutting ratings so that no one can accuse them of being too easy. It was just such a cut that sent AIG, the largest insurer in the world, right off the cliff. And the prospect of a downgrade destroyed Wachovia (nyse: WB - news - people ).
Posted by Falling Panda at 12:10 PM
Wednesday, October 08, 2008
THE OBAMA-AYERS CONNECTION
By DICK MORRIS
Published on TheHill.com on October 7, 2008
In the best tradition of Bill Clinton's famous declaration that the answer to the question of whether or not he was having an affair with Monica depended on 'what the definition of is
"is". Barack Obama was clearly splitting hairs and concealing the truth when he said that William Ayers was "just a guy who lives in my neighborhood."
The records of the administration of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge (CAC), released last week by the University of Illinois, show that the Ayers-Obama connection was, in fact, an intimate collaboration and that it led to the only executive or administrative experience in Obama's life.
After Walter Annenberg's foundation offered several hundred million dollars to American public schools in the mid-90s, William Ayers applied for $50 million for Chicago. The purpose of his application was to secure funds to
"raise political consciousness" in Chicagos public schools. After he won the grant, Ayers's group chose Barack Obama to distribute the money. Between 1995 and 1999, Obama distributed the $50 million and raised another $60 million from other civic groups to augment it. In doing so, he was following Ayers's admonition to grant the funds to "external" organizations, like American Community Organizations for Reform
Now (ACORN) to pair with schools and conduct programs to radicalize the students and politicize them.
Reading, math and science achievement tests counted for little in the CAC grants, but the school's success in preaching a radical political agenda determined how much money they got.
Barack Obama should have run screaming at the sight of William Ayers and his wife, Bernadette Dohrn. Ayers has admitted bombing the U.S. Capitol building and the Pentagon, and his wife was sent to prison for failing to cooperate in solving the robbery of a Brink's armored car in which two police officers were killed. Far from remorse, Ayers told The New York Times in September 2001 that he "wished he could have done more."
Ayers only avoided conviction when the evidence against him turned out to be contained in illegally obtained wiretaps by the FBI. He was, in fact, guilty as sin.
That Obama should ally himself with Ayers is almost beyond understanding. The former terrorist had not repented of his views and the education grants he got were expressly designed to further them.
So let's sum up Obama's Chicago connections. His chief financial supporter was Tony Rezko, now on his way to federal prison. His spiritual adviser and mentor was the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, of "God damn America" fame. And the guy who got him his only administrative job and put him in charge of doling out $50 million is William Ayers, a terrorist who was a domestic Osama bin Laden in his youth.
Even apart from the details of the Obama/Ayers connection, two key points emerge:
a) Obama lied and misled the American people in his description of his relationship with Ayers as casual and arm's-length; and
b) Obama was consciously guided by Ayers's radical philosophy, rooted in the teachings of leftist Saul Alinksy, in his distribution of CAC grant funds.
Since Obama is asking us to let him direct education spending by the federal government and wants us to trust his veracity, these are difficulties he will have to explain in order to get the votes to win.
Now that Obama is comfortably ahead in the polls, attention will understandably shift to him. We will want to know what kind of president he would make. The fact that, within the past 10 years, he participated in a radical program of political education conceptualized by an admitted radical terrorist offers no reassurance.
Why did Obama put up with Ayers? Because he got a big job and $50 million of patronage to distribute to his friends and supporters in Chicago. Why did he hang out with Jeremiah Wright? Because he was new in town, having grown up in Hawaii and Indonesia and having been educated at Columbia and Harvard, and needed all the local introductions he could get to jump-start his political career. Why was he so close to Rezko?
Because he funded Obama's campaigns and helped him buy a house for $300,000 less than he otherwise would have had to pay.
Not a good recommendation for a president.
Posted by Falling Panda at 6:53 PM
Saturday, October 04, 2008
Can They Catch Up?
by William Kristol
10/13/2008, Volume 014, Issue 05
The odds are against John McCain and Sarah Palin winning this election. It's not easy to make up a 6-point deficit in the last four weeks. But it can be done.
Look at history. The Gore-Lieberman ticket gained about 6 points in the final two weeks of the 2000 campaign. Ford-Dole came back more than 20 points in less than two months in the fall of 1976. Both tickets were from the party holding the White House, and both were running against inexperienced, and arguably risky, opponents.
What's more, this year's race has already--twice--moved by more than 6 points over a span of only a few weeks. The race went from McCain up 2 (these are the Real Clear Politics averages) on September 14 to Obama plus 6 on October 2, less than three weeks later. In the four weeks before that, the race had moved from Obama plus 5 on August 12 to McCain plus 2 on September 12.
So while there's reason for McCain-Palin supporters to worry, there's no reason to despair.
Despair is what the Obama campaign is hoping and working for. If a campaign can convince supporters of the other candidate that the race is effectively over, the enthusiasm and volunteer efforts drop off--as does, ultimately, their turnout on Election Day. Just as important, undecided and loosely affiliated voters become persuaded there's no real contest and lose any incentive to look closely at the candidates. This explains the efforts of the Obama campaign--aided by a colluding media--to sell the notion that
the race is over, that McCain supporters should give up, and undecided voters should tune out.
That's why the events at the end of last week were so important.
On Thursday night, Sarah Palin more than held her own in the vice-presidential debate against Joe Biden. She may well have stopped the McCain campaign's slide and, with her assaults on Obama's tax-and-spend liberalism and his willingness to lose in Iraq, set up McCain for a strong performance in Tuesday night's debate.
On Friday, enough House Republicans came around to pass the $700 billion financial bailout. It's no magic bullet, either in terms of the economy or the McCain campaign. But it gives both a chance.
McCain's decline in the second half of September is easily explained. A huge financial crisis coming to a head less than two months before Election Day is going to hurt the candidate of the incumbent party. The situation was made worse by the perception that not only was a Republican administration presiding over a financial meltdown, but congressmen from the same party were obstructing efforts to deal with it.
McCain's decision to come back to Washington to try to work out a deal was therefore sensible. While the Bush administration and the congressional Republicans were squabbling and Rome burned, McCain had no chance. Now there is a deal, and the political bleeding may have been staunched. McCain can go on the offensive for the final weeks.
But what kind of offensive?
The positive component is pretty straightforward: McCain and Palin are common sense conservatives and proven reformers. The record of reform can be emphasized and contrasted with Obama's and Biden's record of conventional, go-along, get-along liberalism. And implicitly: If McCain and Palin are reformers and outsiders, it's not Bush's third term. More important is the negative message. The McCain campaign has to convince 51 percent of the voters they can't trust Barack Obama to be our next president. This has an ideological component and a character component.
Character is a legitimate issue. Obama hasn't shown much in the way of leadership or political courage, and he's consorted with dubious figures. It's fair to ask whether Barack Obama is personally trustworthy enough to be president, and the McCain campaign shouldn't be intimidated from going there.
But one shouldn't underestimate the ideological issue, and the potency of the fact that Obama and Biden are orthodox liberals. They're for raising taxes, federally funding abortions, naming activist judges, and losing wars. The American people may think--they do think--the country's on the wrong track, that the Bush administration has made too many mistakes and that the Republican party's no great shakes. But they haven't suddenly become liberals. And they probably aren't crazy about the prospect of a liberal administration governing unchecked, hand in hand with a liberal Congress. During the next four weeks, the McCain-Palin campaign should make this risky prospect vivid.
Posted by Falling Panda at 12:40 PM