Friday, March 14, 2008

Caveat Emptor

Andrew Sullivan is still fascinated by the Face, which holds him in such a spell that he can't believe anything bad about it. Describing his re-evaluation of Obama after the revelation of Jeremiah Wright's sermons, Sullivan writes:

A reader says that we cannot know what is in Obama's heart, and to a certain extent, that's true. ... I don't know how you can read Obama's writing or listen to any of his speeches and believe that Wright's ugliest messages are what Obama believes or has ever believed.

Mona Charen is less charitable. She believes that Barack Obama is one of the most skilfull con artists of all time. A man who hid the obvious in plain view by the simple expedient of appealing to his audiences' better natures. She wrote:

I am coming to believe that Barack Obama is one of the greatest con artists we've seen. His entire campaign has been about "coming together," a post-racial consensus, etc. Any mention of his middle name was immediately condemned as ignorant fear-mongering. He has played the role of racial unifier with great skill and finesse.

One of the more interesting Obama quotes was one he let fly before an audience at the Mississippi University for Women. "You all know the okey-dokey, when someone's trying to bamboozle you, when they're trying to hoodwink you?"

The subject of Obama's remark was Hillary Clinton's machinations. Hillary Clinton is one person who knows all about swindles. But to return to his question. No. Not everybody knows about the "okey-dokey". And often the more academically cloistered a person is; the less exposed to the cut and thrust of the streets one is, the less likely is one to know anything about being bamboozled and hoodwinked.

One of the problems with bringing up your son or daughter to be "too good" in a home in which violence is absent and consideration is uppermost is that they may get the mistaken idea that people out in the wild world always tell the truth and are always what they seem.

I've had the great good fortune to have met a large number of swindlers in my life. And here are my own rules of thumb for spotting them. First. They are always just a little too nice for comfort. Second. They have always have a story to tell. Whenever you deal with them something always "comes up". Third. They always suggest the possibility of getting a deal that is too good to be true.

A man who got took told me that "no swindler succeeds without the help of greed on your part. A man who is willing to pay fair price for something hardly ever gets fooled". This is some of the best advice I ever heard and it is mostly true.

Swindlers are hardly ever willing to admit to their lie, but when they are forced to it's a sight to behold. A long time ago, a few days after coming back from grad school I got a call from a friend who had entrusted $20,000 of his family's money to a labor lawyer in order to invest it. That sent my spider-sense tingling right off the bat because I knew what labor lawyers were like.

Anyway the labor lawyer promised my friend to invest the sum in high-yield securities but now the family had difficulty getting it back. And since I had some passing theoretical familiarity with finance, I agreed to talk to the lawyer. His office was in a place called the Diamond Building in one of the back streets of Quezon City. He had a couple of burly men in the front office and a secretary who was doing not very much but file her nails in a table in the reception area.

The lawyer had horned rimmed glasses and nice, open smile. He told me the $20,000 was locked up until maturity. So I kept at it. What type of security? With whom? What was the face value? The interest rate? But I kept a close eye on his face. He floundered around and he knew I could see him floundering around. So the moment finally came when he gave up on the okey-dokey.

His expression changed completely into some other face and then he snarled, "you ask too many questions. Be careful when you walk out nights." You really have to experience a moment like that to believe that such facial transformations can happen outside of the movies. I won't continue the story except to say that the next five minutes were truly interesting. The $20,000 were never recovered even though the crooked lawyer had what the British would call "a turn".

But it takes more than "a turn" to stop a real con-man. They keep going until they run into something as hard and slimy as themselves. Players live in a place where you don't want to go. Maybe the genius of the American political system is that it takes a brawler to get to the top. I think Hillary and Barack understand each other perfectly. Of Andrew Sullivan I have my doubts.




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102 Comments:

Blogger Elijah said...

A spiritual advisor and mentor for 20 years

Of course Mr. Obama was not cognizant of Mr. Wright's ideology

Now who exactly do you think Jeremiah Wright views as the captors, and Mr. Obama?

going to work every weekday, trying to make ends meet, provide for your families

but in reality nothing more than oppressors in the eyes of some

from Obama's 1995 memoir: discussing the Disavowal of the Pursuit of Middleclassness

"A - sensible, heartfelt - list There was one particular passage in Trinity's brochure that stood out, though, a commandment more self-conscious in its tone, requiring greater elaboration. 'A Disavowal of the Pursuit of Middleclassness,' the heading read. 'While it is permissible to chase 'middleincomeness' will all our might,' the text stated, those blessed with the talent or good fortunes to achieve success in the American mainstream must avoid the 'psychological entrapment of Black "middleclassness" that hypnotizes the successful brother or sister into believing they are better than the rest and teaches them to think in terms of "we" and "they" instead of "US."'"
..................

Disavowal of the Pursuit of “Middleclassness.” Classic methodology on control of captives teaches that captors must be able to identify the “talented tenth” of those subjugated, especially those who show promise of providing the kind of leadership that might threaten the captor’s control.

Those so identified are separated from the rest of the people by:

1 Killing them off directly, and/or fostering a social system that encourages them to kill off one another.

2 Placing them in concentration camps, and/or structuring an economic environment that induces captive youth to fill the jails and prisons.

3 Seducing them into a socioeconomic class system which, while training them to earn more dollars, hypnotizes them into believing they are better than others and teaches them to think in terms of “we” and “they” instead of “us.”

So, while it is permissible to chase “middleclassness” with all our might, we must avoid the third separation method – the psychological entrapment of Black “middleclassness.” If we avoid this snare, we will also diminish our “voluntary” contributions to methods A and B. And more importantly, Black people no longer will be deprived of their birthright: the leadership, resourcefulness and example of their own talented persons.

Change we can believe in

3/14/2008 11:44:00 PM  
Blogger some said...

Hillary isn't much of a con man. She's the very incarnation of the Devil You Know.

3/14/2008 11:44:00 PM  
Blogger Nomenklatura said...

Given that what each of these people are asking us to hand over are the keys to the entire country, control over our armed forces and enough destructive power to blow up the entire planet, we should perhaps be a little more cautious than Andrew in his vaporous enthusiasm recognizes is necessary.

The more valuable something is, the more anxious liberals are to give it away. It's no wonder con artists cluster around them.

3/14/2008 11:48:00 PM  
Blogger newscaper said...

I have been insisting, for a while now, that Obama skeptics who think he is a platitudinous lightweight, nothing but fluff, "all show and no go", are missing the bigger picture: that far from his smooth talk hiding mere emptiness (happy thoughts but no way to get there), that he is in fact being extremely deceptive (actually ugly thoughts, if you will.)

3/15/2008 12:04:00 AM  
Blogger Alexis said...

One aspect of our Constitution I like is its prohibition against ex post facto laws and bills of attainder. These are not minor achievements, for these expedients would be highly effective means to punish people not for any crime they may have committed, but for being unpopular with a legislature.

Barack Obama advocates reparations for slavery. This is not only wrong, but it is also an open invitation to the continuation of a racial caste system for several more centuries. Reparations may be due to those American citizens still alive who were deprived of their rights by illegal actions of the federal government. Yet, while black people who lived in Greenville, MS during the Flood of 1927 were victims of federal enslavement, most black people at the time were not deprived of their rights by illegal actions of the federal government. It is a principle of justice that only those who were directly oppressed by the federal government should be recompensed; those who cannot show they were in Greenville at the time must not be given any reparation.

For that matter, the City of New Orleans still owes reparations to those people from Saint Bernard and Plaquemines Parishes for its intentional flooding of those parishes. And as a corporate identity, the City of New Orleans is still morally liable for its solemn promises. It takes more than bricks and mortar to rebuild a city; New Orleans has yet to rebuild the reputation it lost in 1927! Perhaps the federal government could assume the obligations of New Orleans and deduct the reparations due to the people of Saint Bernard and Plaquemines Parishes from the federal aid New Orleans would otherwise receive. One should not assume that the American people have an obligation to rebuild a city that would show no mercy to its neighbors.

Barack Obama and his supporters may talk of hope, but they need to understand that our Constitution has many safeguards against injustice. This doesn’t mean injustice doesn’t happen; after all, the United States Census still insists on classifying people according to race. (Now, who is “slicing and dicing” here…?) Justice is not served by passing ex post facto laws. Justice is not served by attempted to foist the guilt felt by the descendants of slave traders onto people who had nothing to do with slavery and gained no profit from slavery either. If Barack Obama truly believes in reparations for antebellum slavery, he can give away his own personal fortune to atone for the crimes of his ancestors.

There is a limit to the recompense one should expect for ancestral crimes. After all, why shouldn’t the United States of America demand refunds of the tribute sent to Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya during the era of the Barbary Corsairs?

3/15/2008 12:07:00 AM  
Blogger Elijah said...

the time frame between 42 and 58 seconds, who's the right enemy?

"For the First Time in My Adult Lifetime, I Am Really Proud of My Country"

of course... Mr. Obama is just married to her, and like his race-based religious value system & spiritual advisor and mentor

...the association in no way reflects or is associated with Mr. Obama's own personal beliefs or convictions

3/15/2008 12:15:00 AM  
Blogger wretchardthecat@hotmail.com said...

It's a mistake to think that just because a person has matriculated from Harvard or Yale and wears an expensive suit that he or she is less savvy than Shifty down at the pool hall. Think Eliot Spitzer.

A guy like old Eliot can be just as sneaky as Shifty but a heck of a lot more dangerous. People at Spitzer's level are truly smart. Smarter than most people can even imagine. Going up against them is like like trying to juggle with an operating chainsaw.

3/15/2008 12:21:00 AM  
Blogger wretchardthecat@hotmail.com said...

If Mona Charen doesn't like Barck Obama, she has no use for John McCain either, describing him as a self-righteous bully.

What should the voters look for in selecting a political candidate? Moral perfection? A Mahatma Gandhi comes along only once in a while. By the time most candidates reach the apex of politics they've been through a hard winnowing.

One way to approach the problem is to judge which of the candidates retains enough motivation, either out of a residual loyalty to a principle, or plain self-interest, to serve his country better than the alternatives.

3/15/2008 12:40:00 AM  
Blogger some said...

"People at Spitzer's level are truly smart."

Well, sort of. After being sworn in, Spitzer went from one gargantuan political blunder to another, culminating in his truly bone-headed (ahem) failure to realize that his large cash transactions with the hooker agency would raise financial monitoring flags.

Spitzer is more like Hillary: he played dirty, and to win. But the checked-and-balanced office of Governor was far beyond his skill set. Was it the arrogance of privilege that kept him from adapting? Who knows.

3/15/2008 01:04:00 AM  
Blogger Peter said...

In language, attitude, and behavior Jeremiah Wright is a lot closer to a toxic Muslim imam than to a Christian pastor.

Wright's public honoring of the "greatness" of Louis Farrakhan, who publicly calls himself Minister while heading the Nation of Islam, and Wright's buddy trip with him to Lybia tell me that Obama is too clever by half in selecting this particular "church" and this particular "pastor" on which to hang is Christian bona fides.

You have to be an abject idiot to believe that Obama's 20+ year relationship with Wright, his donation of tens of thousands of dollars, his active participation in the most "sacred" liturgies, and his heretofore limpid denials do not mean conclusively that Obama has bought in completely to Jeremiah Wright's anti-American, anti-civilization jeremiad.

Gimme a break. That Barack Hussein Obama would be a serious contender for POTUS is an absurdity.

3/15/2008 01:29:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"If I had thought that was the tenor or tone on an ongoing basis of his sermons, then yes, I don't think it would've been reflective of my values or my faith experience...
If I had heard them repeated, I would've quit.
"
---
Of course, earlier today, AFTER HEARING THEM,
He said he WOULDN'T Ask Jerry to Step down!

Change is coming a mile a minute these days from Saint Barry.

I think some more video will be surfacing.
The above is obviously a boldfaced lie.

3/15/2008 02:09:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

The Silver Tongued one becomes tongue-tied without one of his pilfered happy-time scripts, esp when asked to explain anything that does not fit in w/the purity of the narrative of St. Barry.

3/15/2008 02:13:00 AM  
Blogger wretchardthecat@hotmail.com said...

As Victor Davis Hanson notes the Democratic Party is stuck in a nightmare scenario. Barack Obama has enough delegates to plausibly claim the nomination. But if the superdelegates fear that the Jeremiah Wright affair -- plus other stuff that may be coming down the pipe -- make Obama a tough sell in the general, what can they do, switch to Hillary? That would not only ignite a conflagration that would make Chicago '68 seem like a Sunday School picnic, but it would catapault Hillary into the nomination.

This apocalyptic situation means Barack Obama may have squeaked by already. He has scammed the entire DNC. He has them over a barrel. And purely from an amoral point of view the man is pure ice. Pure ice. He played it with a straight face for just long enough to ensure that the DNC sinks with him or swims with him.

Unfortunately Hillary Clinton has also won my grudging low-lifer's respect. She's amply demonstrated that there are no moral limits to what she will do. She in terms frightfulness and Barack in terms of pure moxie would be more than a match for Vladimir Putin. Barack may have "won", but she doesn't know it. Like some anaconda from a horror movie she won't know she's finished even after the reel ends.

Now watch these two take the party of liberalism apart.

3/15/2008 02:19:00 AM  
Blogger hdgreene said...

I thought I heard the Left Reverend Wright do something interesting in one of his Sermons. He basically took the old blood libel told by Medieval Christians that the Jews murdered Jesus -- Deicide, in the Christian context -- and substituted "Rich White Folk." Unfortunately, that does not mean he thinks kindly of Jews, who I think are now honorary "white folk."

And these White Folk are still at it, aren't they? I mean, look at what is happening to the Left Reverend Himself.

3/15/2008 03:42:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

benj quoted this from one of Barry's speeches:

""Unfortunately, all too often when we talk about unity in this country, we've come to believe that it can be purchased on the cheap.
We've come to believe that racial reconciliation can come easily - that it's just a matter of a few ignorant people trapped in the prejudices of the past, and that if the demagogues and those who exploit our racial divisions will simply go away, then all our problems would be solved.

All too often, we seek to ignore the profound institutional barriers that stand in the way of ensuring opportunity for all children, or decent jobs for all people, or health care for those who are sick.
We long for unity, but are unwilling to pay the price."
"
---
This from a man running as a Democrat, when the NEA/Democrat Monopoly Public School Complex, plus "black" pop culture doom a majority of young blacks to not getting a good basic education.

Paying the price to my eyes would be to force the NEA to give up their stranglehold, and allow black parents to send their kids to schools of their choice, esp private schools that would declare "black" culture, slang, and dress, verboten.

Not gonna happen in the Democrat Party, and the GOP seems to have lost any semblance of a spine.

3/15/2008 05:07:00 AM  
Blogger Peter said...

The profound institutional barrier Obama mentions is the US Constitution, and the price that's too high is your personal liberty.

If we stopped wasting time and money on these stupid, divisive elections then people could get their minds straight and learn to follow the enlightened directions of the Obama Fuhrer.

3/15/2008 05:22:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

3/15/2008 05:25:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Jindal Sets the Standard
Times-Picayune :

BATON ROUGE — The state Legislature on Friday wrapped up its second special session during the 2-month-old administration of Gov. Bobby Jindal by completing a full sweep of the governor's proposed package of business tax cuts and $1.1 billion in surplus spending priorities.

Jindal and his legislative allies won all the initiatives they set out to accomplish during the six-day session, including a controversial bill to grant a partial tax deduction for private school tuition.

Flanked by many members of his supporting team of lawmakers at an evening news conference, the governor framed the results as a positive statement on Louisiana's national image.

"This group should be proud of batting a thousand," Jindal said. "The country's watching us ... we know they'll like what they see."

3/15/2008 05:28:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Piling On [Cliff May]
Guess who said:
"The failure of the Iraqi state would be a disaster. It would dishonor the 900-plus men and women who have already died."

And who do you think said:
"I don't think it's appropriate for Congress to make those decisions about what happens in the field."
Bush? Cheney? Angelina Jolie?
Wrong camel-breath!

Both quotes were made by Senator Barack Obama, the first in 2004, the second in 2006. These quotes are in Michael Gerson’s Wa Po column today .

But Gerson notes that Obama later changed his tune:
calling for the withdrawal of all U.S. troops from Iraq by March 2008 – that would be right now – and had that policy been followed it “would have undone the Anbar Awakening, massively strengthened al-Qaeda and increased civilian carnage.”

LINK

3/15/2008 05:55:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Wright in "Dreams of My Father" [Rich Lowry]

Before he ever thought he would have to deploy Clintonesque spin to try to get himself out of a campaign controversy, Barack Obama wrote (an achingly good) memoir. In the book, Obama makes it clear that Wright when he first got to know him was pretty much the same Wright we're getting to know now (the one that Obama is at pains to say is on the verge of retirement). Wright was striking some of the same notes, saying racially venomous things and attacking the bombing of Hiroshima. Note this passage about the first sermon Obama heard from Wright, the source ultimately of the title of Obama's second book and one of the central themes of his presidential campaign:

The title of Reverend Wright’s sermon that morning was “The Audacity of Hope.” He began with a passage from the Book of Samuel—the story of Hannah, who, barren and taunted by her rivals, had wept and shaken in prayer before her God. The story reminded him, he said, of a sermon a fellow pastor had preached at a conference some years before, in which the pastor described going to a museum and being confronted by a painting title Hope.

“The painting depicts a harpist,” Reverend Wright explained, “a woman who at first glance appears to be sitting atop a great mountain. Until you take a closer look and see that the woman is bruised and bloodied, dressed in tattered rags, the harp reduced to a single frayed string. Your eye is then drawn down to the scene below, down to the valley below, where everywhere are the ravages of famine, the drumbeat of war, a world groaning under strife and deprivation.

“It is this world, a world where cruise ships throw away more food in a day than most residents of Port-au-Prince see in a year, where white folks’ greed runs a world in need, apartheid in one hemisphere, apathy in another hemisphere…That’s the world! On which hope sits!”

And so it went, a meditation on a fallen world. While the boys next to me doodled on their church bulletin, Reverend Wright spoke of Sharpsville and Hiroshima, the callousness of policy makers in the White House and in the State House. As the sermon unfolded, though, the stories of strife became more prosaic, the pain more immediate. The reverend spoke of the hardship that the congregation would face tomorrow, the pain of those far from the mountaintop, worrying about paying the light bill…
LINK

3/15/2008 06:18:00 AM  
Blogger What is "Occupation" said...

how do i put this nicely...

as a democrat since 1979....

to the party I say...

FUCK YOU....

I am voting for McCain....

3/15/2008 06:24:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Michelle Obama Speech: Wilmington, DE
Flash Video link works best for me.

ht-Deuce

3/15/2008 06:28:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

WIO, a four year old can see the opportunity he presents us, why can't you?
(see video @ 5 min)

3/15/2008 06:32:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Benj,
Almost forgot:
Barry is for Citizenship for all illegals, and giving Driver's Licenses to them in the meantime.
Would this be good for Blacks in the USA?

3/15/2008 06:37:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Michelle says they're still three years from paying off their educational debt.
(living in a 3 Million Dollar House)

3/15/2008 06:52:00 AM  
Blogger Fred said...

I still think THE most unexamined root in the entire root system of Obama's tree of his life is his mother, Stanley Ann Dunham. There isn't a lot out there, but what there is conveys a powerful sense of who she was. Obama was nursed by HER bitter milk. It set the table for everything else that followed.

And when you think of his indoctrination at the knee of his mother, then think of this process writ large over perhaps millions of American kids, who have breathed in these vapors from their Leftist parents, teachers, professors, and the mainstream media.

If Obama is defeated in November, it will only occur because there were just enough Americans in the over-40 crowd who either think rationally or who got the lesson right from the Jimmy Carter years.

3/15/2008 07:16:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

They say Barry is the speaker!
Should have run Michelle.
Seething resentment overcome by competence.

3/15/2008 07:22:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Fred,
The NY Times just did a big piece on her. I haven't read the advertisement yet, but it should be parsed, I would imagine.

3/15/2008 07:24:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Barry's Mom

3/15/2008 07:27:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Barry's most brilliant decision!

"And when Obama asked to stay in Hawaii for high school rather than return to Asia, she accepted living apart - a decision her daughter says was one of the hardest in her mother's life."

3/15/2008 07:31:00 AM  
Blogger Benj said...

Lived in West Harlem for 30years, been to West AFrica half-dozen times. Seen every kind of race-baiting, "mau-mau-ing" nonsense - Also read the racist New York Post every day. If you need help figuring out when someone is playing (or hiding) a race card, I can help. But - here's the deal - You don't have to be so nnnnnnnervous. See - Black Americans are a generous people Wretch - they've given us a good part of what's best in our music, the grace notes in our athleticism, the cool that defines American style, the universal moral models of the Movement...And today they're gifting us with another shot to live up to our better angels...Barack Obama is the author of what (conservatve) Rich Lowry allows is an "achingly good" memoir - Can't be done by a con man! End of that story.

But now, another story begins. Is Obama capable of turning this moment into a "transformative" one - Hope so. He didn't do very well last night - But maybe it's not all on him. The CNN guys Roland Martin - the Conservative Christian cat - and David Gergen were offering up the deepest public discourse I've heard there in years...We all n eed to rise up!!!

3/15/2008 07:33:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Fred,
Had Barry not stayed with the Grandparents/Punahoe, he damn sure wouldn't be where he is.
(ie, stayed w/mom)

3/15/2008 07:35:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Benj,
About my questions wrt to the Dems/NEA, and "black" pop culture?

3/15/2008 07:37:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Oh yeah, and his plans to empower those that are ethnically cleansing blacks across the land?

3/15/2008 07:39:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

I'll have to check out Gurkin's deep discourse.
Should be better than SNL.

3/15/2008 07:51:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

(a little Spitzer lingo there)

3/15/2008 07:52:00 AM  
Blogger J. Random American said...

Sen. Obama and Rev. Wright are saying the same thing: what their audience needs to here. The difference in meaning is due to a difference in audience not to a difference in the men.

3/15/2008 07:57:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"She felt that somehow, wandering through uncharted territory, we might stumble upon something that will, in an instant, seem to represent who we are at the core," said Maya Soetoro-Ng, Obama's half sister. "That was very much her philosophy of life - to not be limited by fear or narrow definitions, to not build walls around ourselves and to do our best to find kinship and beauty in unexpected places."
---
Yeah, whatever,
now please pass the joint.

3/15/2008 07:58:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

j random said...

"If you view them from a different perspective, looking at the audience instead of the orator, then perhaps Sen. Obama and Rev. Wright are saying the same thing after all. They are both saying what the crowd needs to hear.

Sen. Obama is saying what will get him votes in the Democratic Primary.

Rev. Wright is saying what will put butts in the pews and dollars in the collection plate.

If you assume that the most important thing about what someone says is its meaning then the disparity between what Obama and Wright say is mysterious.

But if you think that the most important thing about what someone says is how it motivates the listener to do what the speaker wants them to, then the similarity in their ability as orators is obvious.

If you assume that the most important things to learn from a spiritual advisor is theology and ideology, then it would seem that Sen. Obama has learned nothing from Rev. Wright.

But if you think that the most important things to learn from a 'spiritual advisor' are how to read a crowd, then craft and deliver a message that will bend them to your will... then it appears Sen. Obama has learned a great deal from Rev. Wright.
"

3/15/2008 08:06:00 AM  
Blogger Nomenklatura said...

"Moral perfection? A Mahatma Gandhi comes along only once in a while."

Take a closer look at Gandhi's life and you will discover that he was a con artist of exactly the Obama type.

3/15/2008 08:08:00 AM  
Blogger dchamil said...

Another hallmark of the con is involving the victim in some act that is at least somewhat illegal or unethical. In this way, the victim will find it difficult to go running to the cops when the con becomes obvious.

3/15/2008 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger Peter said...

the cool that defines American style

That would be the Italian kids who grew up in New York in the 50s.

3/15/2008 08:32:00 AM  
Blogger Fred said...

benj,

I think most Americans who are rational, who learned a lesson from the Carter years (I didn't; I remained a Leftist until 1986-87), and have a need to go beyond socialist solutions WOULD vote for a black American who was truly more centrist or right-of-center. I have NOTHING personal against Obama and I certainly am no racist. I just object to dissimulation in any candidate. Barack Obama is not forthright about who he really is and what he stands for, because to reveal that would pretty much end his viability as a candidate. We are exploring what information is out there about the formation of his mind because, well, he has been trying to hide that. And, as a former Leftist, hiding what you truly believe becomes second nature.

I have voraciously digested everything I can find about his influences in life. From his Marxist mother to Frank Davis to his associations with a professor at Columbia who was a member of the PLO. From thence to his soul mate, the angry, class-warfare mouth of Michelle Robinson, and there on to Rev. Jeremiah Wright. In a more rational era, people like Rev. Wright would be called heretics, which I consider him to be.

I used to read a LOT of liberation theology. And when I was a Jesuit seminarian I set before myself, when I eventually became a priest, the task of trying to find a way to rationally reconcile socialism with both Christianity and the way the world really is. It came down to human nature and what I discovered about how our neurons and synapses can be so fatally flawed that there will always be some sociopathic predators roaming around - and no "optimal structures" could paint utopian color schemes over THAT.

On one level, I can relate to where Barry Obama has been on his intellectual journey. I've been through dozens of books and hundreds of articles in philosophy and theology exploring these things. Perhaps far more than he could ever have done.

But the inbox pile of cognizant dissonance had to be dealt with, and I evolved in another direction.

If there was one high profile person in this world that I could spend two hours with in discussion, it would be Sen. Obama. Also, like him I too spent time in the Third World. And living in the favelas of Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro is a lot more jarring than the middle class neighborhoods of Jakarta.

3/15/2008 08:32:00 AM  
Blogger Peter said...

they've given us a good part of what's best in our music

I'll give you 5 points for Blues but that only ties with Bluegrass. 3 points for Gospel. No competition there. 3 points for Rock but Elvis gets 4 all by himself. And 5 points for Motown that nobody has been able to duplicate. But you have to subtract 10 points for Rap.

3/15/2008 08:43:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

:-)

3/15/2008 08:50:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Martha Reeves and the Vandellas!
...and if only Diana Ross weren't a witch!

3/15/2008 08:55:00 AM  
Blogger IrishCicero said...

I'm with you, Nomenklatura. Like the Democrats, Sullivan doesn't seem to grasp that denial and evasion got us here in the first place. More of the same won't help. The salvation of Obama is pure P.T. Barnum crap.

http://libertypeaklodge.typepad.com/headquarters/2008/03/post-7.html

3/15/2008 09:01:00 AM  
Blogger Insufficiently Sensitive said...

One aspect of our Constitution I like is its prohibition against ex post facto laws and bills of attainder.

Many Democrats don't. Hence the calls for putting President Bush on trial once he's out of office.

I'll give you 5 points for Blues but that only ties with Bluegrass.

Humph. Bluegrass, and the older Southern music from Scotch-Irish roots in general, have been bathed in black music for three hundred years and happily adopted many of the good parts. That's why New England music sounds so different, though originally from the same roots.

Agree to deduct 10 points for rap and its related angrier-than-thou-young-man relatives.

3/15/2008 09:10:00 AM  
Blogger pst314 said...

The desperate attempts by spin doctors to separate Obama from Wright's racist ideology reminded me of the old Chad Mitchell song "The I Was Not a Nazi Polka".

3/15/2008 09:49:00 AM  
Blogger Peter said...

fred

You got an answer for the Grand Inquisitor? Fyodor left me hanging.

3/15/2008 10:03:00 AM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

They keep going until they run into something as hard and slimy as themselves.

Might that not be someone who could also be described as a "self-righteous bully"?

3/15/2008 10:19:00 AM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

The difference in meaning is due to a difference in audience not to a difference in the men.


I wonder if Obama thinks that OJ is innocent on the grounds that he has a perfect right to behead his white wife if it sends a "message" to the LAPD, or if he thinks that OJ is guilty as hell of murder and should be sent to jail for the rest of his miserable life, never mind how incompetent the idiot Prosecutors were.

3/15/2008 10:28:00 AM  
Blogger Benj said...

Doug - My boy is going to public school in NYC - So this is, ah, REAL to me. Not much use for teachers' unions either (Big Hil supporters here in swill city) - Can't spell out a whole program in two secs here - but I'll note quickly I have dug O's repeated lines about the need not to teach to the Test. As well as his injunctions to turn off the tube/video game and his public rejection of the notion that a black kid reading a book is acting white. [Note to USAF guy - Not sure why you think I'd accuse blacks outside ghettocentric culture of Tom-ming - No sale. I don't do it - Nor would Obama. Writes beautifully in his memoir about one time when he played that game and was SHAMED by another homie.] Back to Doug - If you're REALLY interested in this subject, might check into the Algebra Project. Bob Moses - one of the greatest heroes of the civil Rights Movement runs it. Been trying (for 20 years now) to press for black kids - especially in the South to get all up in the higher math. (We're raising serfs in our inner city, he says, - Just as America used to do in the Delta.) Moses (and his project) are amazing - Look out for his book "Radical Equations" and go to the website for the AP - Way beyond J. Wright - But wouldn't be suprised if Wright's church sponsored something on the Project. Doubt George Bush or conservative "thinkers" claiming to be worried re the "soft bigotry of low expectations" have bothered to find out about Moses (or the other Brothers and Sisters who are WORKING not spinning this prob). Moses has always been a model of creative marginality - but - For all of you who go for Wretch's tony philosophical feints - I recall now that Moses's grassrootsy clarity re using, say, the subway map to teach positive and neg numbers - came with an offhand ref to Quine (who was his teachean or at Harvard). Course there are more references to what he learned from Fanny Lou Hamer. AFter all she was infinitely more important teacher than anyone he could have come across in the Ivy League...

Fred - AGain - You've now mentioned a couple times you'd like to have that conversation with O. Hang on to that thought. Fact is he's an interesting head. AS you know if you've read his book(s). You mention that you're intent on finding out more about him and have clearly looked here and there - but not sure you've read the man's own memoir. Why not crack his book if you haven't. Lowery is right about that - it's achingly good. Though as Obama rightly notes in the new intro - bout 50 pages longer than it needed to be...Can't get all up in the lib theo/third world questions you're raising here - But I'll cut and paste a Message from a personal hero - priest who's worked in Haiti for 20 years. Not a beamish sort -not too into Lib theo either I suspect - But I think he'd pick up on the dangers of the phobic culture that Wretchard and co. are nuturing at this moment. (I know you could put the FEAR on WRight too - and you'd have a strong point. But the question is - do you want to win an argument and lose the best chance THIS country has seen in decades to move into the Light? Your call.)

Thanks Insuf - Lotsa pretty convincing musicolgical stuff re Afro roots of all forms of country music (which I love) - ya'll 'member Hank's homie Tee Tot (sp?)

Peter - Check out Flash of the Spirit - Lovely stuff on the West AFrica's "canons of the cool." Me - I'll take Lester Young and Billie Holiday over, ah, goodfellows...But these are matters of taste PS - Elvis was ELVIS - Out of the Blues - Just like OBama? - BTW - Ever read what John Lennon who LOVED Elvis more than anyone said when he first encountered Little Richard? Wasn't Rich a wonder on the Grammies?

PS Rap is a pretty amazing form - extraordinary possibilities - not realized for most part yet - but might read American master Dylan on how Rap ripped up his mind in the 80s - the future is unwritten there - but sense we're getting pretty far afield...We should have pity on our Filipino friend...But then again, this really is,ah, our discussion so perhaps he should just grin and bear it...

Christmas in February
By Fr. Rick Frechette
Fr. Frechette, a priest-doctor (and hero of our time) who’s worked for a generation in Haiti, wrote this Christmas reflection last December, but it will always be in season.

HOW BEAUTIFUL UPON THE MOUNTAINS ARE THE FEET of the one who brings good tidings, who proclaims peace; who brings the good news of salvation; who announces to Zion, Your God reigns! (Isaiah 52:7)

St. Nicholas surely had this kind of feet. His pilgrim journeys not only gladdened the heart of humanity in his day, but his reputation was so great that it has carried his name forward for 1700 years, to our own day.

Unlike many saints whose popularity is confined to a region or a country, St. Nicholas is one of the few saints known and loved in almost all the world. Even in his secular form, he represents wisdom, kindness and generosity, as should any present day successor of the apostles, known to us as bishops.

St. Nicholas was able to live out a vibrant and hopeful message in a time of great suffering, controversy and confusion. The gladness of his news, when contrasted with very dark human experiences of his day, is like a bright star in the black velvet, midnight sky.

Our Christian tradition makes no denial of darkness, not even when the extra lights of the holidays do their best to make the darkness vanish in an artificial way. Sometimes the darkness we must fight is inside where Christmas tree lights can never reach.

Recently in the vast Port-au-Prince slum called Cite Soleil, a sickly young woman asked me to help her. Her name was Solange. She was so small and slight, I was surprised when she told me she was in her twenties. When I listened to her heart, the gushy murmurs made me picture her heart valves as thick, shredded sponges. I was sure she had valve damage from previous rheumatic fever, which is still very prevalent here. A cardiologist friend confirmed this and thought surgery was still possible, so I arranged for Solange to to have an operation done in the Dominican Republic.

A few days after Solange left, we had bad rains, then terrible rains, then worse rains still, and then a full stop flood. We went into high gear, helping thousands of flooded neighbors get out of the water to shelter. While in the midst of all the flood chaos, I got a call from the Dominican Republic saying that Solange had died during the night. They didn’t know what to do with her body or how to let her family in Haiti know that she was dead.

So we handled a disaster within a disaster, using cell phones during flood relief to arrange the return of Solange’s body to Haiti by airplane, and to call the family to come to find us in the floods so we could give the news personally and not by phone.

My head started to spin. The family will probably blame us for her death. They will want money. They will say I should have left her alone, that the trip was too tiring for her. When the body comes on the plane there will be difficulties getting it through immigration. Bribes will be required. The family will want us to pay for the funeral, etc, etc, etc…

Fatigue, frustration, and cynicism know how to twist the mind and heart. They are the weapons of the Antichrist.

Having worked myself up into an angry and defensive posture, when the family asked us to drive the body all the way to Thiotte (a six hour drive), I recited in full voice a list of everything we had already done for Solange, and what it cost in terms of money and effort. Soon the force of my words started to fade. There was her body, in front of me, in a simple coffin. There had been no problems at immigration, no bribes to pay. Just compassionate officials who helped things move rapidly for the grieving family of paupers. I realized with embarrassment that I should be using my mouth for blessing her body, for praying for her family standing before me in their grief, and not for my unsolicited defense. The family was kind and understanding. No demands. No blame. They were only asking for a ride to Thiotte. If we couldn’t help, they would try to manage another way.

Then I was completely caught off guard. The family told me they were going home to Thiotte because their simple home was destroyed by the water and mud of the floods, and they had no place to go with Solange. They had no place but home. Their life was all loss. Then, they thanked me for sending Solange to the Dominican Republic. If she hadn’t gone, they said, she would have had a terrible death in the water and mud.

Who had the sicker heart? Me or Solange? How did St. Nicholas, and so many great people through the ages, keep the right heart in the face of danger and stress and disaster? They had a special gift, a keen intelligence as to what was really happening inside people and in their true situations, that could not be blunted or distorted by preconceptions or habits of response based on fatigue or cynicism. What a great gift to ask for at Christmas, from the real Santa Claus -- a keen, intelligent heart.

Esmine was kidnapped last Thursday. Yes, it is all starting up again. After coming out of the bank with a good bit of money to pay for the schooling of her three young children, she was grabbed by strangers and gone. How? Had someone inside the bank tipped off the ones outside? Was she betrayed? Days pass, negotiating with kidnappers for money the family did not have. They were threatening to kill her. These are not idle threats, as two kidnapped children had been killed during the previous ten days. I put up half the ransom for Esmine. I even went to do the drop off for the kidnappers. “Leave the money at the third telephone pole, on the left, after the bridge.”

How I despised what the kidnappers were doing, when I remembered the children that were killed by them and how they died, when I thought of Esmine’s distress and her distraught children at home. I even felt anger against Esmine, for getting kidnapped in the first place and somehow pulling me into it. I wanted to hide out by the pole and beat them when they came for the money. “Lord, keep our hearts from becoming like those of our oppressors!” It really is all about heart, a struggle with darkness in the heart.

Emerline was released at four in the morning, and came to see me at the hospital right away. She had been beaten, she was humiliated, she was full of fear of the streets, of society, of the future. She rolled on the ground in front of me, crying out her grief, but also sputtering out words of thanks for our help in freeing her. I couldn’t get her to stand up, and I didn’t have the heart to look at her on the ground so defeated, so I looked to the sky above. The moon was a bright crescent, but its full round border was visible by the aurora of the far off sun. And, to the left of the crescent in all its glory, was the morning star.

I understood immediately. The moon was Esmine. Her glory, her godlight, was diminished by the dark evil of her captivity and humiliation, but was faintly still there. The crescent was the part of her that still enjoyed light, and somehow promised a healing light for the remaining silhouette. God was the aurora, the sun underneath and unseen, a subtle light illuminating Esmine’s wound that could be healed by hope. And the morning star? That’s the best part. The morning star is you, and me, and anyone, anywhere, at any while, who stands in solidarity with the one who is in darkness and the shadow of death -- to offer even imperfect or limited light...

You can’t believe how hard it is to bury the dead. No one wants them. We bury about 100 a week. Their poverty and humiliation still hound them after they are dead. Their disgraceful condition, their lack of a spot even to drop dead on, their exile from a final resting place, are haunting realities. When we recently brought a score of corpses of the destitute to their final resting place last week, we were met by a posse of peasants who demanded money and would not let us pass to the twenty graves we had dug. There was quite a fight between my team, who were there to manage all the coffins and the graves, and the peasants who insisted they could make a fortune on that land by saving it for a cell phone company antenna. They insisted their deal with the company would be ruined by our bones.

I knew it was State land. I knew the dead have been dumped there for 30 years. But I had no energy left to fight and I called for the gravediggers, the team of 20 pall bearers, and all the coffins to go to a place in Cite Soleil the Mayor said we could have for funerals, but which we had not yet prepared for lack of resources. My team refused to leave and wanted to defend the dead. The small music band that always comes to play for the funerals (I call them the “other” grateful dead) struck up a lively tune. The fight was on. The police soon came, and went to the highest bidder…me. Yes, I could outdo the protesting peasants -- gas money, a little money for lunch, a little extra for Christmas. The dead now rested in peace.

The human heart beats in darkness, against darkness, and easily becomes darkness. But it longs for light, true light. At Christmas we celebrate the presence of a new heart beating among us. Small at first, but over a very few years it grows in strength, wisdom and grace. If we want, this sacred heart beats first next to ours, then with ours, and then in ours. Each beat generates light, the true light that the darkness cannot overcome. Darkness loses its power, and falls from its throne as victor. It becomes simply “opponent.” Even its opposition is self defeating, since it only increases longing for the Sacred Heart, whose power and light we come to share. This power and light reveal His name, but we find we have always known it. His name is “Wonderful, Counselor, Almighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

May it be ever in our hearts and on our lips.

3/15/2008 10:34:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

If it promotes the gospel of social justice, it's all good.

3/15/2008 10:34:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

(for Nahncee)

3/15/2008 10:36:00 AM  
Blogger Elijah said...

benj could you please provide further understanding

This is a simple question.

Precisely, specifically -

What race/group composes the captors from Mr. Obama's race based religious value system (below)?

Disavowal of the Pursuit of “Middleclassness.” Classic methodology on control of captives teaches that captors must be able to identify the “talented tenth” of those subjugated, especially those who show promise of providing the kind of leadership that might threaten the captor’s control.

Those so identified are separated from the rest of the people by:

1 Killing them off directly, and/or fostering a social system that encourages them to kill off one another.
2 Placing them in concentration camps, and/or structuring an economic environment that induces captive youth to fill the jails and prisons.
3 Seducing them into a socioeconomic class system which, while training them to earn more dollars, hypnotizes them into believing they are better than others and teaches them to think in terms of “we” and “they” instead of “us.”
4 So, while it is permissible to chase “middleclassness” with all our might, we must avoid the third separation method – the psychological entrapment of Black “middleclassness.”

If we avoid this snare, we will also diminish our “voluntary” contributions to methods A and B. And more importantly, Black people no longer will be deprived of their birthright: the leadership, resourcefulness and example of their own talented persons.

3/15/2008 10:57:00 AM  
Blogger Elijah said...

On a similar topic:

Precisely, specifically -

What race(s) or group(s) serve the "strong" or the "powerful" that Mr. Obama utilizes as a classification system when discussing his judicial ideology?

understanding of the Constitution

3/15/2008 11:13:00 AM  
Blogger Peter said...

benj

You got your feet on the ground but your head is somewhere else out there. The bigotry of low expectations comes from the people you can reach out and touch every day, not from some face you see on the evening news.

That calculus book has been in the public library for a very long time. Nobody ever needed the President's permission to go get it.

3/15/2008 11:15:00 AM  
Blogger 9-of-Diamonds said...

"...do you want to win an argument and lose the best chance THIS country has seen in decades to move into the Light? Your call.)"

Seriously. This whole Jim Jones-esque obsession is getting old, and we still have quite a ways to go.

In the last Obama thread we established that black suburbanites are materialistic sell-outs - but now they're not? Strange. If Obama eschews the whole "blacker-than-thou meme in his memoir, it's probably just to make himself more palatable to white moderates. Someone who has associated with the likes of Wright for so long probably accepts an Afro-chauvanist/anti-intellectual attitude (and is at best more than willing to tolerate it in others).

Not sure what the rambling about Haitian slums is supposed to teach us. Perhaps it's a vision of what the U.S. will look like once the Messiah is done with us?

3/15/2008 11:17:00 AM  
Blogger Benj said...

What race/group composes the captors from Mr. Obama's race based religious value system (below)?

You offer this as "simple question"? To which I'm directec ot supply a precise answer. Sorry - I don't knwo WHAT the hell you're going on about...Though it does remind me of a parody I read once of ahistorical "Marketing 101 Courses" taught all over Americ. A few snatches below...

MILLSTONEs IN APPLIED ECONOMIC THEORY

324 Futures Trading invented Emperor Constantine grants 1,000 year monopoly to upstart firm.

1200s East Africans specialize in being captured by other tribes, sold to Arab traders and sent to sugar plantations in Cyprus. Other Africans adopt this strategy, dominating America's domestic service and agricultral sector for centuries...

1717 Ashlety T. whiplash of South Carolina outsources Cotton-picking to West African entrepreneurs. Makes millions.

1998 Saint Thomas Friedman pens Summa Economica: The MArket is Heaven and All's Right with the World. Thought ceases...

3/15/2008 11:27:00 AM  
Blogger Clioman said...

"You can't cheat an honest man."
- Mordecai Jones

3/15/2008 11:39:00 AM  
Blogger Elijah said...

1
"Sorry - I don't knwo WHAT the hell you're going on about"...

Odd that one who purports understanding of Obama and his perspective cannot answer a basic question of the man's race-based religious value system (or judicial ideology for that matter).

2
"Though it does remind me of a parody I read once of ahistorical "Marketing 101 Courses" taught all over Americ. A few snatches below"

Would this also be an example of intellectual sloth serving the purpose of obfuscation

3/15/2008 11:42:00 AM  
Blogger Cobb said...

You cannot cheat an honest man, and the honest voter for Obama is not seeking a referendum on American race relations. Nor is the honest critic.

So who honest remains?

3/15/2008 12:24:00 PM  
Blogger Elijah said...

So who honest remains?

or conversely,

If you truly want honesty, don't ask questions you don't really want the answer to

3/15/2008 01:09:00 PM  
Blogger wretchardthecat@hotmail.com said...

been to West AFrica half-dozen times. Seen every kind of race-baiting, "mau-mau-ing" nonsense - Also read the racist New York Post every day.

You seem to have left out all mention of the French. The French can't be missed in West Africa.

the moon was Esmine. Her glory, her godlight, was diminished by the dark evil of her captivity and humiliation, but was faintly still there. The crescent was the part of her that still enjoyed light, and somehow promised a healing light for the remaining silhouette. God was the aurora, the sun underneath and unseen, a subtle light illuminating Esmine’s wound that could be healed by hope. And the morning star? That’s the best part. The morning star is you, and me, and anyone, anywhere, at any while, who stands in solidarity with the one who is in darkness and the shadow of death -- to offer even imperfect or limited light...

Every single day people in the Third World stand behind their Esmines, Shirleys, Juniors and and Esmundos. They feed them rice-water because there's no milk. They eat root crops because there's no rice. In some places 90% are never going to learn to read. Many will watch their children die in their arms while standing in line at a much-photographed government or UN clinic from perfectly preventable dysentary-related dehydration. Knowledge might have saved them. But dependency killed them.

And the vast majority will have died because of the imbecilic polices of the left; as showcased in its extreme form by Robert Mugabe. They all take the form "we're going to help you". And the worst of it is that these murderous policies are advanced under the putative banner of caring, love and opposition to racism. But let me tell you what I think they are.

They are stage setting, mere props so that Bwana can swoop down and save the odd victim from the carnage. So that he can feel good about saving one or two people from the morass. And the saving is real enough. But so, too is the carnage from which he picks and chooses.

Who's going to bring us to Esmine? The guy who came together with Tony Rezko? The guy with Che Guevara's poster on his campaign headquarters wall? Who's going to heal the nation? The crew that's healing the democratic party. Hillary Clinton? And who's going to bar the borders? John McCain? The only logical part of politics is when you get to choose in terms of character, policy and fundamental loyalty. Race? What's that?

Not everything is about race. The people who think that it is are the worst racists of all. They can never see a person except in terms of his color.

I began this post talking about swindlers. Never trust a man who says he can get you something for nothing. In my life I've learned never to trust anyone who constantly talks about race to assert that he isn't a racist.

3/15/2008 02:13:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Never trust a man who swoops into someone else's blog to post pages and pages and pages of drivel because he knows no one would read it if he were to set up his own blog.

3/15/2008 02:24:00 PM  
Blogger whiskey_199 said...

I disagree on a number of issues Wretchard.

One: Obama is not very smart. He's gone from racial politics where he had to be a racist Black Nationalist and machine pol to national politics with lots of scrutiny by enemies who will not operate on the small time level. He is likely to both crash and burn at the National Level, taking down the Democratic Party with him, and also at the local level. There are plenty of whites in IL, his Black Nationalist politics guarantee a challenger and vote splitting on purely racial lines. Which means he loses and the White Candidate wins. That's the downside of racialist politics. The biggest group in numbers wins.

Two: There is a whole different level between the patty-cake ruthlessness of Obama, Hillary, and Spitzer and the REAL brutality of Putin or Ahmadinejad. The latter actually killed people personally, without turning a hair, and would have no qualms about personally threatening to do so credibly to either of the former. In person and up close and personal. Doing it themselves if they have to. This makes them far more dangerous and intimidating. American grifters are small time nothings compared to the genuinely tough guys of Russia or Iran or Cuba or Venezuela or Pakistan. Does anyone honestly think Hillary or Obama would have it in them to execute a man with a pistol themselves? Get the victim's blood all over them? Or doubt Putin and Ahmadinejad have already done so?

Three: Blue Dog Dems are concerned with re-election FIRST. A battle Chicago-style is better for THEM than being identified with "God Damn America" which insures their defeat by any Republican challenger. Heck it's better to SWITCH parties if required. Than to lose their sinecure and have to go out and WORK. So, for THEM the smart move is dump Obama. Hillary even if defeated won't risk their seats. Meanwhile "safe" seats like Pelosi's are of course motivated the way you describe.

Four: because of the disparity of interests, the Blue Dogs are likely to push for Hillary, in a fractured convention, and eventually get defeated by the "safe" pols like Pelosi. Guaranteeing a Chicago-68 fight and probably switching to the Rep Party.

Five: We are seeing in this process the terrible weakness and narrowness of the Dem Party, and it's likely downfall into marginal, uber-liberal elitist politics mixed with overt racialist stuff ala Wright. Blacks are NOT the majority, only 12% and culturally there already signs of whites being fed up with Black racialism: laughing at Donovan McNabb's statement that Black QBs are judged more harshly ("Eli!" and "Rex!" were shouted with laughter by the press), mockery of Rap videos (SNL's "Chronic of Narnia"), and SNL's mockery of Obama. If nothing else Angry Black Nationalism is OLD, more than 40 years old, and people are tired/bored of it.

Six: Mahatma Ghandi was a nasty piece of work. An anti-Semite, and anti-Black racialist who held both groups racially inferior. Give me plain old competent/tough guys.

Seven: Blacks would be best served by "swinging" their vote from Dems to Reps to extract maximum concessions of things that are of interest to them. That they have not done so is proof of static, stasis-driven identity politics by "Leaders" such as Wright, Farrakhan, Sharpton, Jackson etc. trumping self-interest.

3/15/2008 02:55:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr1 said...

Benj,
". Doubt George Bush or conservative "thinkers" claiming to be worried re the "soft bigotry of low expectations" have bothered to find out about Moses (or the other Brothers and Sisters who are WORKING not spinning this prob"

Apparently you didn't pay attention to his attempts to give funding to inner-city churches for their programs.

3/15/2008 02:56:00 PM  
Blogger Alexis said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

3/15/2008 07:12:00 PM  
Blogger Alexis said...

One aspect of the Obama campaign I dislike is how it is all too often assumed that someone who does not want to vote for Barack Obama must be fearful, prejudiced, or ignorant. Granted, there are fearful, prejudiced, and ignorant voters who dislike Mr. Obama just as there are fearful, prejudiced, and ignorant voters who like Mr. Obama.

Richard Fernandez is a hopeful man, for he thinks we can expect more from our elected leaders than expecting them to sell us hope. He thinks we can expect more from our elected leaders than catering to the subliminal desires of voters. He may be expecting too much, for hope peddlers have been around for millennia and will always exist so long as there are those who think they can buy hope.

There is a difference between a girlfriend and a girlfriend experience. One doesn’t get a girlfriend experience from a girlfriend unless she is a rented girlfriend. One can make coffee at home, but a coffee experience is bought at a coffee house. At many restaurants, one doesn’t merely buy food, but a dining experience. Likewise, there is a difference between hope and a hope experience. Hope is seeing a chance for one’s life to get better. A hope experience is when someone tries to sell hope to you, especially when a politician wants your vote.

One cannot buy friends. One cannot buy love. One cannot buy hope.

Richard Fernandez says Barack Obama cannot possibly deliver what he promises. He has a point, for how can Mr. Obama credibly claim to be a healer on the issue of race if he cannot even convince his own pastor to stop demonizing America in general and white people in particular? If Mr. Obama cannot change the heart of Jeremiah Wright, how can he presume to bring Americans together?

Yes, Barack Obama appeals to deep yearnings in American politics. There are many white voters in America who desperately want to vote for an eloquent, elegant, well-dressed black man, especially those who want to vote in a manner that can supposedly prove they are not racist. Of course Mr. Obama caters to this desire; if he didn’t, there would be other politicians who would. One could just as easily condemn peacocks for showing off their tail feathers to peahens as condemn Mr. Obama for peddling a hope experience to eager clients. “Obamamania” is less about Barack Obama himself than it is about people who project their desires onto one man and hope he lives up to their expectations. Barack Obama the man is nowhere near as dangerous as Barack Obama the social movement, for Barack Obama’s movement acts like the Boulangerism of our time.

Barack Obama is charming. That is precisely his problem. One of the perks of growing up around first-class liars is that one becomes deeply suspicious of anyone who is charming. Anyone who is too smooth, too dapper, too polished, and too overtly friendly will set off alarm bells within anyone who has been lied to too many times before.

I would rather buy snake oil than buy a hope experience.

3/15/2008 07:22:00 PM  
Blogger George said...

..I eventually became a priest, the task of trying to find a way to rationally reconcile socialism with both Christianity and the way the world really is. It came down to human nature and what I discovered about how our neurons and synapses can be so fatally flawed that there will always be some sociopathic predators roaming around..

Thank you Fred. You brilliantly describe original sin, and why we need limited government and an objective press (media).

3/15/2008 07:40:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Barry's Head is Going to Fall Off!

Everytime Barry answers Anderson Cooper, his head is tilted almost 45%.
I don't recall seeing that when he was riding the Crest of his wave of bullshit.

3/15/2008 07:59:00 PM  
Blogger eggplant said...

Check out the latest Daily Presidential Tracking Poll. Barack Hussein's numbers are starting to crumble. The people are beginning to look under the veil and they don't like what they see. Also the moonbats and Hillary's people are slugging it out over at DailyKos, see link.

The national election may boil down to a race between moonbat induced chaos versus the economy's decline. If the Democratic presidential candidate can maintain any sort of credibility --AND-- the economy tanks then the Democrats win. However if the economy can just hang on --AND-- the moonbats wreck the Democratic party then we'll have a repeat of George McGovern's crushing defeat in 1972.

It's remarkable that so much is dependent upon random chance.

3/15/2008 08:40:00 PM  
Blogger Benj said...

Wretch - didn't mean to set you up - But you're not fit to shine the shoes of the Priest you're mocking (and neither am I). He went to Haiti in the late 80s. Saw that what was NEEDED was a doctor - went home to med school. Came back - Raised money to build and run a hospital in Port au Prince. Also runs a mobile clinic and an orphanage for over 500 kids in Kenscoff - a hilly spot outside of Port au Prince. Also happens to be a hellified Catholic writer...But then YOUR idea of an exemplary Catholic thinker/writer is Bill f'ing Buckley - I'm reminded just now of the line that ended your Buckley thread a few days back. Remember? - The poster recalled how his pop turned to him as he watching Firing Line - "That's the most self-satisfied son-of-a-bitch I've ever seen." Well Wretch - maybe you can give Buckley a run for his money. Hard act to follow but you're a comer - that last Saudi-ugly placing of ALL your people at "the bottom of the barrel" - because they failed (unlike you) to get out of their country...That was Buckley-worthy...Fred!!! Sorry to call you out - but I feel that Passionist priest looking at you right now. (Nah - that's unfair - Fr. Frechette knows from Benedict - no compulsion in him.) Still, gotta ask - was Fr. Frechette's meditation contemptible to you? Jesus! - Doubt the good Father even has a political line - he certainly wasn't an Aristide man and he's not a Man of the Left - but apparently any expression of solidarity is verboten over here. Ah To Be a Hard Man. (Like nanhcee-boy.)

Just invoke Mugabe - Forget Bechtel and United Fruit and BP and Freeport McMorin and etc etc... Forget the West's trade policies that make it almost impossible to make a profit if you're a farmer in Africa...BTW - one of the sharpest critics of Mugabe - Kenyan author of "The Zanzibar Chest" - is also brilliantly clear re the West's killing trade AND aid policies. But nope - all suffering is the fault of the fools on the "left" who aim to assuage it. Course we all know the deep cover truth about those on "the bottom of barrel" - they'll always be with us. So if you hear of a "do-gooder" - reach for your gun/pen...

Oh yes - Wretch - that line re France/Africa. I'm sure you're more worldly than moi - Just don't think you know spit about America. My wife is Senegalese. Her french is better than her english. Wolof better than her french.

Somebody asked why I posted Fr. Frechette's piece - Wretchard got it (bad). But I'll be more explicit. I think it fits in with O's ideas about faith and "The Audacity of Hope." My boy O isn't being very daring right now. Hope he steps up and USES the chance he has now to push the program of evoking/sublating the double truths of American history. - But, as I say, that's on all of us.

Even on you, Nahncee. If you can lay off your sadistic fantasies for a post or two...As for my drivel. As they used to say in pulp novels. You shoulda seen the other guy's...I started posting here as an, ah, Obama-inspired experiment in democratic discourse. Figure I'm usually pushing folks who think of themselves as being on the left - so why not try to reach and/or aggravate people on the right? You may have noticed N. - there have been a fair number of folks who have had at me. A few have even acknowledged that some of what I've offered has been (mildly) ponderable. Trust me bro, I'm really not so needy as you assume. Check the supporters section at FIRSTOFTHEMONTH.ORG - You'll recognize some of the names. Hate em too - And then there's FIRST OF THE YEAR: 2008, the anthology of stuff from our rag that comes out March 31 from Transaction Publishers - may sink like a stone - but it's sposed to become an Annual dealio - First one has stuff ranging back over 10 years - 70 contributors,...Big names and small. I'm certain at least ONE of em has heard of the Belmont Club.

3/15/2008 08:43:00 PM  
Blogger Alexis said...

As Senator from Illinois, Barack Obama has little choice but to promote the very agricultural policies that make it difficult for African farmers to survive. Senator Obama comes from an agricultural state, and if he courageously took on agricultural subsidies, he wouldn’t have much of a chance getting elected to the Presidency, let alone reelected to the Senate.

The present mess in international agriculture is the result of US-EU rivalry. The European Union flatly refuses to stop subsidizing its farmers and the United States is unwilling to practice unilateral disarmament in agriculture. Policies promoted by Democratic Senators are ensuring that maize prices go through the roof with the effect of starvation in the third world, but their farm constituents are happy and that is what matters in a democracy. Consider this – plans are afoot for coal powered ethanol plants in midwestern states. It’s bad for the environment, bad for the economy, bad for feeding hungry children, and doesn’t even make America less dependent on foreign oil. Brazilian ethanol is kept out of the United States because it would otherwise undercut local boondoggles, but even if ethanol were imported it would cause even more deforestation there.

Personally, I think the United States should be willing to let in foreign sugar, adopt European standards for its wheat, and adopt Japanese inspection standards for its beef. That said, the European Union (particularly FRANCE) continues to promote an agricultural regime that promotes dire poverty in Africa, Asia, and South America.

For that matter, has Barack Obama come out and opposed the “War On Drugs”? Iraq may get the headlines, but America’s prohibition policy on marijuana, cocaine, and narcotics is making life hell not only for people living in America’s inner cities, but much of Central and South America. The United States subsidizes exports of nicotine all over the world, and yet it sought to spray coca crops in Bolivia! Isn’t it a double standard to subsidize tobacco farmers here yet tell Bolivian coca farmers and Afghan opium farmers they can’t make a living? Shouldn’t be a no-brainer why so many Bolivians are mad at the United States? Yet, Senator Obama isn’t looking at the root causes of blowback against American policies in South America and the collateral damage caused by those policies; he’s only looking at Iraq where the casualties are easy enough to see.

Is this a man with the courage to oppose farm subsidies that hurt Kenyan farmers? Is this a man with the audacity to oppose subsidies to corporate farms? Is this a man with the nerve to call for an end to a drug war that has caused misery for our southern neighbors? No. This is what passes for courage from a man who talks about the audacity of hope.

3/15/2008 10:30:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Betcha a pitcher of green beer that Alexis is an Obama staffer.

3/15/2008 10:32:00 PM  
Blogger jj mollo said...

Nahncee,

Why do you think Alexis is an O staffer? Sounds like a free-trader to me. Basically called him a coward for going along with ag subsidies.

3/15/2008 11:09:00 PM  
Blogger jj mollo said...

Benj,

Forgive me, but I find your comments very difficult to follow. Could I suggest that you try to summarize them. Maybe you could bold-face key points. Maybe you could break them up into smaller essays, each of which covered a single point. They are also excessively long. I try to read them but I get lost. I don't think you are concentrating your fire very well.

Another issue is that everybody here respects Wretchard. It's probably counter-productive to abuse him.

3/15/2008 11:16:00 PM  
Blogger Wadeusaf said...

Benj,

My allusion to "tom" was in reply to your classification of the Rev's tweeking.

Dang, you 'first' guys write windy. I Appreciate the sentiment of some of your writings, although I must admit I miss the alluded to... of much of it.

I asked on the previous thread, for some proof that 'O' words contain any substance, opposed to a mirage of an image made of heat bent angles and mirrored to project on to smoke. I support bills of the type you site, but that is too little to sway my mind.

If the remainder of the stuff 'O' is selling has equal substance, It has not been packaged well, nor with appropriate care. The fault no doubt lies in doing business in Chicago. They don't dress it up as nicely as in New York or San Francisco (the Pols there can tend to prefer the freedom and utility of the jumpsuit just as much as Chicago Pols).

"O" is not impeccably clean, like President Truman was. His current "bill" is a nightmare piece of legislation. With political formula being passed off as a plan, 'O' appears to support the stuff of a quick fiscal death, social incontinence, and international defeatism. If I am wrong, please correct me. But as this is more than a just philosophical difference, it is substantive and measurable, I do not think empty platitudes or recycled platform schemes will do.

If 'O' can champion change, let him convince us in a substantive way, that his policies will lead us to a real solution to the health care mess, end the theft of citizens Social Security investment and Provide a legitimate means for Iraq to have the time and support it needs to stand up.

I Doubt He can.

But I will give you this much, Benj, his words sound good!

3/16/2008 12:32:00 AM  
Blogger Zenster said...

benj: See - Black Americans are a generous people Wretch - they've given us a good part of what's best in our music, the grace notes in our athleticism, the cool that defines American style, the universal moral models of the Movement...And today they're gifting us with another shot to live up to our better angels...

Golly gee whillikers ... I suppose that these "generous people" explains why in decades of hitchhiking I've received rides from blacks the times I can count on one hand.

Of course, "what's best in our music" couldn't possibly include the Western European Orchestral Tradition that has shaped everything from Satchmo to Jimmy's music. Perish the effing thought.

The "grace notes in our athleticism" had nothing to do with the Babe, Mantle or Maris (I had the privilege of seeing Mays play). Heaven forefend!

The "cool that defines American style" was in no way connected to Ira Blue, Coyle & Sharp or Firesign Theater. Nope, nothing there!

The "universal models of the moral movement" can't be connected to the hard-working decent American middle class, nosiree! It's gotta be Reverend King cheating on his wife or Jessie Jackson cheating on his wife or self-aggrandizing super-moral Kobe Bryant cheating on his wife too. Nope, nope, nope.

If Obama is "gifting us with another shot to live up to our better angels", one of those angels is named Lucifer.

DON'T MAKE ME PUKE!

3/16/2008 12:49:00 AM  
Blogger wretchardthecat@hotmail.com said...

You're not fit to shine the shoes of the Priest you're mocking

I'm not mocking anybody, but if the shoes fits, wear it.

3/16/2008 01:16:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

You know a lot about Obama because of where he parks his behind on Sunday mornings. There is more to learn by listening to Obama's wife.She made an hour long speech at Villanova University. I linked to it here. You may want to advance it to the fifteen minute mark where she starts hitting her stride.

3/16/2008 01:30:00 AM  
Blogger 3Case said...

As to Michelle Obama: Fat, dumb and happy, new millennium-style.

As to the disgraced Governor of NY: "People at Spitzer's level are truly smart." I prefer the word "cunning". Were he smart, he would not have left the easily readable paper trail.

3/16/2008 08:44:00 AM  
Blogger pst314 said...

"Black Americans are a generous people Wretch - they've given us a good part of what's best in our music"

Except when they're complaining that Whitey "stole" their music.

"the grace notes in our athleticism"

There was no grace before black people?

"the cool that defines American style"

Um, have you noticed that at the heart of "cool" is a certain cynical, callous amorality?

"the universal moral models of the Movement"

Forget about the Enlightenment, because it was created by a bunch of Dead White European Males.

3/16/2008 09:04:00 AM  
Blogger ex-democrat said...

shorter Benj: "what you gonna believe: this hodge podge of banality and platitudes or your lyin' eyes??"

3/16/2008 09:10:00 AM  
Blogger buffy said...

I have a challenge to the people at the Belmont Club blog. Someone here should do research on what the not so Rev. Wright has preached (you know.... about the things that make America ready for damnation)and what Calypso Louie Farrakahn preaches. I bet some ingeniously smart person can put the two race mongers side by side on a Youtube piece and hear the exact same thing. What do you say??? Do I have any takers?

3/16/2008 09:26:00 AM  
Blogger 3Case said...

I used to read a lot of Andrew Sullivan. He has a great style and utilization of the language. I quit when I realized that while he is very intelligent, he is not very bright.

3/16/2008 09:38:00 AM  
Blogger Elijah said...

Anyone can read the Disavowal of the Pursuit of Middleclassness; Mr. Obama states it is a "sensible and heartfelt" list in his memoir.

Who are the captors?

Perhaps as long as America continues to protect what leftists and Islam regard as the global order of social injustice, all reforms and social advances within the existing structures of American democracy are illusory.

Finally, if America is so inherently oppressive, why are millions of immigrants pouring across its borders?

Why are so many of you oppressing others?

3/16/2008 10:18:00 AM  
Blogger Elijah said...

''Our confrontation with America used to be like confronting a fortress from outside. Today we have found an opening to enter the fortress and to confront it from within.''

There is the beginning of a permanent global war to cement the domination of the U.S. Government and its allies...Islam is being demonized, while racism and xenopobia are deliberately
propagated...Opposition to the war is at the heart of our movement

- Social Movements Manifesto, World Social Forum, 2000

"Go and wonder around our streets..! You will witness how our people have embraced Chavez and Ernesto Che Guevara. Nearly in every house, you will come across posters of Che or Chavez. What we are saying to our socialist friends who want fight together with us for fraternity and freedom, do not come at all if you are going to say Religion is an opiate. We do not agree with this analysis. Here is the biggest proof of this in our streets with the pictures of Chavez,Che, Sadr and Hamaney waving along together. These leaders are saluting our people in unison. So long as we respect your beliefs, and you respect ours, there is no imperialist power we cannot defeat!"

- Hasan Nasrallah

"...we are not lacking in friends. Our friends around the world have better personal and intellectual reputations than the Israeli 'gang of evil'. I would like to introduce the reader to some names, such as Tariq Ali, John Berger, Noam Chomsky, Eduardo Galeano, Naomi Klein, Harold Pinter, Arundhati Roy, José Saramago, and Howard Zinn."

- writer Jihad el-Khazen in the Lebanese based publication Dar al-Hayat

For readers unfamiliar, these are the leading intellectual lights of the international left.

3/16/2008 10:55:00 AM  
Blogger Elijah said...

Officials to Block Qaddafi Gift to Farrakhan
By RICHARD W. STEVENSON
Published: August 28, 1996

Colonel Qaddafi pledged $1 billion to the Nation of Islam after meeting with Mr. Farrakhan in Libya in January. Mr. Farrakhan has described the pledge as a ''humanitarian'' gesture, and last week he formally asked the Office of Foreign Assets Control at the Treasury Department for the necessary permission to receive the money. The United States, which has long labeled the Qaddafi Government a supporter of terrorism, bars nearly all economic ties with Libya.

After his news conference today, Mr. Farrakhan left on a return visit to Libya, where he is scheduled to receive a award from Colonel Qaddafi. Officials said Mr. Farrakhan's application to the Treasury Department includes a provision to receive the $250,000 honorarium the Libyan award carries in addition to Colonel Qaddafi's $1 billion pledge.

''Considering who we're dealing with here, a betting man would not be wise to bet on license approval,'' said one Government official familiar with the application. ''He would bet the ranch on litigation thereafter.''

It is unclear whether Colonel Qaddafi has $1 billion to give Mr. Farrakhan, or whether he would follow through on his pledge if the United States gave its approval. Mr. Farrakhan has said he would use the money for voter registration drives, charitable contributions and economic development opportunities for black people.

After meeting with Mr. Farrakhan in January and making the $1 billion pledge, Colonel Qaddafi was quoted by the state press agency as saying:

''Our confrontation with America used to be like confronting a fortress from outside. Today we have found an opening to enter the fortress and to confront it from within.''

3/16/2008 11:01:00 AM  
Blogger Benj said...

Respect is due to Wretch. I enjoy (and that IS the word) his unobvious angle on the world. Writes good too. Hear you re coming on too hard there. But, hey, he can take it. And - at the risk of repeating myself - I think we're at a pretty crucial moment of American "history in the making." And I just don't think Wretch knows enough about the inside truths of our country to be so dismissive of O. My man is not pure, he IS a pol. But he has hundreds of pages of closely imagined text - and even a few deeds - that suggest he possesses an exceptional moral imagination. When someone like that comes along in MY country (and has a shot at the bulley pulpit!) - I don't want smart people trashing him or the sense of possibility his public persona embodies...When it comes to O vs. Wretch, for me it's a matter of patriotism. (And it's personal too as anyone who's followed the back and forths can figure out.)

Wretch - About those shoes...- Here's what you said: "[Esmines] are stage setting, mere props so that Bwana can swoop down and save the odd victim from the carnage. So that he can feel good about saving one or two people from the morass..." Sorry man - if that's not an expression of contempt for Fr. Frechette - what is? He's no Bwana-wannabe. Just a genuine hero-of-our-time who saw Need and acted. (Saved more than one or two Haitians - more like thousands.)BTW - Obama isn't walking in Fr. Frechette's shoes either! (3 years as a community organizer can't compare to 25 as a doctor-priest in Haiti.) But, unlike you, O's first impulse is to cultivate human solidarity not do dirt on it. His moral instincts are better than yours Wretch. You need to quash your inner Buckley.

USAF - Glad you allow O's "words are good." If you explore further - his memoir for instance -you'll see that the words really are ACTS of imagination. Wish there were more legislative deeds to invoke - but when it comes to a "record" - I'd emphasize two things (1) the guy LISTENS to people he disagrees with - (It's HIS example there that made me try this experiment at this Club - BTW - Instapundit just linked to a piece by Cass Sunstein that underscores this aspect of O's public personality.) (2) He's big on accountabilty/transparency in government - There's PLENTY of evidence here - He WANTS us to hold his ass accountable because he KNOWS he needs an involved populace to take on lobbyists/money power. Think of it this way - he's as proud as most guys who can write a pretty good book. He's not in this just to be Pres (like, say, Hillary). The guy wants to be a GREAT president and to do that - he needs us to become a great people. (PS USAF - You're probably already a great American - Better than I'll EVER be - but you guys in the armed forces shouldn't be the only folks providing Americans with a Model of Service.)

Which brings me to the proud middle class hitchhiker who never got a ride from a Brother - Man - you put a whole new spin on Jeremiah, Hillary and the cabbie. So the real problem in America is that a white guys never got rides from brothers? - Too Good!

Alexis - Your post justifed my overly long calls and responses. Bless you for your clarity re Euro/U.S. trade policy and for O's complicity in all that as a Farm State senator. I'm hoping (!)- now you can really MOCK me Wretch - that as Pres O could get a little breathing room here...Also Bless Alexis for mentioning Bolivia. Knuckleheads who think they're "radicals" are enthralled with that blowhard Chavez - But the real democatic ACTION has been in Boliva. They pulled off a real revolution there. Mr. O would be able to tell the diff between Evo and Co and Chavez/Fidelistas etc. The world is a complicated place - America isn't always right OR wrong. Obama understands that.

Final word: I think Mona Charen had a bit part flirting (as a married woman) with Norman Mailer in "Armies of the Night." Not surprised to hear she despises McCain (as well as Obama). Johnny Mac probably reminds her of her own dovish past. Doubt she was one of the principled people who began rethinking VN war after the Boat People...Probably just figured out which way the wind was blowing as we headed toward the Age of Reagan...Can't truss her.

Hey - we're back to where I/we started a couple weeks. Both McCain and OBama are men with imaginations. And - sorry to rub Wretch wrong again. Both are very aware of the American Dilemna. In McCain's last book, Hard Call, he returns repeatedly to crucial moments in America's racial struggle. He invokes the heavy decisions made by Lincoln, Shaw (the Boston Brahmin who died leading his African American regiment in an assault on a Confederate fort) Truman, Branch Rickey. (Jackie Robinson gets a little play in that chapter too but...) What's telling, though, is that McCain never manages to write up a "hard call" made by black man/woman in the struggle for racial equality. (Somebody may have noticed that lacuna as there's an add-on page near the end of the book invoking the black New Yorker how jumped on the tracks to save somebody from a train - (Genuine hero - though he never gave that hitcher a ride! - but not exactly a player in American history.) Neither McCain (nor Hillary) can get their minds around the democratic imperative that informed America's struggle for racial equality. A struggle in which numberless everyday people fo color made hard calls. Maybe McCain will get his Change there this fall...God Bless America... Lift Ev'ry Voice Sing...

3/16/2008 12:56:00 PM  
Blogger ex-democrat said...

even shorter benj: "kool aid good!!"

3/16/2008 01:17:00 PM  
Blogger Elijah said...

benj, who are the captors?

3/16/2008 01:28:00 PM  
Blogger Elijah said...

it is strange that millions of immigrants are freely crossing into this "goddamned America" and "oppressive society."

one might assume that these immigrants see a heaven in Mr. Jeremiah Wright his congregation's hell.

benj, who are the captors in America's oppressive society?

3/16/2008 01:35:00 PM  
Blogger Wadeusaf said...

Benj,

First, The screen name is incidental, and why it is, is in my profile. I was once in the Air Force, That was a long time ago. about the time that rides, once commonly given to service men up and down the Atlantic seaboard and probably beyond, stopped being offered or accepted.

As a matter of duty and respect. up until 1968, Our family gave many a serviceman a lift, especially on the New Jersey turnpike where the fella's from all services were trying to get to or from home it seems, and it didn't matter the color or the uniform. I can only speak for myself, I would not today offer a stranger a ride in or out of uniform, and I certainly would not accept one today, unless caught up in the most dire of circumstance.

From what I have heard of "O"'s words, his ideas and vision, I will pass on the opportunity to swoon. His stated political philosophy is enough to lose my vote, and confidence although repackaged and in a different suit of clothes I could be persuaded to listen to his ideas of accountability and transparency. That is one area in which everyone can win. But a Daily machine Pol from Chicago, who has openly admitted to the ACT of accepting a bribe, (even if he does not recognize the house purchase as an ACT of bribery, it is a bribe by any definition), preaching about accountability (when he cannot account for the source of the funds that bought his house [OIL FOR FOOD perhaps]) should not be surprised when the folks that take him seriously are folks seeking ABBH.

That is real, not imagined. That is not an imaginary ACT, but a solid criminal case waiting. That is nearly a Senator Valadingham leaving the country. I think it is that serious.

3/16/2008 05:18:00 PM  
Blogger Martin said...

Obama is a trained, experienced Saul Alinsky community organizer. Of course he's a con-man.

3/16/2008 08:21:00 PM  
Blogger pst314 said...

"But you're not fit to shine the shoes of the Priest you're mocking"

Talk about a Cult of Personality! Fuehrerprinzip, anyone?

"My man...has hundreds of pages of closely imagined text - and even a few deeds - that suggest he possesses an exceptional moral imagination."

Mussolini had thousands of pages of closely imagined text - and many deeds. He certainly possessed an exceptional moral imagination--exceptionally evil, but exceptional nonetheless. (No serious scholar denies that he was one of the foremost intellectual figures of the Left of the early Twentieth Century.) But good people rejected Mussolini in the 1930's, just as we do his Twenty-First Century inheritors.

"I don't want smart people trashing him or the sense of possibility his public persona embodies...When it comes to O vs. Wretch, for me it's a matter of patriotism."

So, we're not allowed to disagree with Obama, much less oppose him, because that would be unpatriotic. Zieg Heil!

"And it's personal too as anyone who's followed the back and forths can figure out."

The political is personal and the personal is political. Yeah, we've seen that before.

Speaking of Obama and fascism, Here is a brief explication of the fascist roots of the black liberation pseudo-Christianity that Obama associates himself with.

3/17/2008 07:38:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

"they've [black people] given us a good part of what's best in our music"

Objection, your honor. If you're talking about the type of cool that can be found in the sax work in bars in New Orleans, or perhaps even the type of R&B Hall and Oates were trying (with some success) to emulate in the 80s, then I withdraw my objection. If, however, you're talking about Gangsta rap or similar, you're out of your mind.

Also negative "black" contributions to American culture: firing pistols sideways, the pimp look, the word "bling", black women with blond hair, Dennis Rodman, commonly calling each other "nigger" while decrying any non-black doing it as racist, calling any non-black racist for any reason whatsoever or none at all, and Chris Rock.

In fairness, I do sincerely believe that the positives of black contributions to our culture outweigh the negatives, but let's not pretend they're not a mixed blessing, either.

3/17/2008 10:32:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

From Dennis Perrin:

"Jeremiah Wright's supposedly inflammatory statements about 9/11 and the ongoing specter of racism are uncontroversial to those following the real world. We live in horrific, corrupt times, and while I don't agree with everything Wright says, he's certainly not speaking fiction, primarily when it comes to American foreign policy. We are hated not so much for our freedoms, such as they are, but specifically for our mass murder, our torture, our occupations. There are other, cultural elements that are part of the overall mix, yet they are doubtless secondary to those seeking refuge from our cluster bombs and client armies. Wright's sermons about reaping what you sow is nothing new, especially in the Christian tradition. But to hear cable chatters and assorted reactionaries tell it, such time-honored concepts don't apply to the United States. The God who watches over us and guides our trigger-happy hand excuses any and all slaughter committed in His Holy Name. He wouldn't have endorsed that song about how He blesses us were the opposite the case."



http://dennisperrin.blogspot.com/

3/17/2008 11:28:00 AM  
Blogger Mad Fiddler said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

3/18/2008 09:13:00 AM  
Blogger Mad Fiddler said...

I will be inclined to pull out my wallet and make a big fat contribution to the fund to pay reparations to the descendants of slaves held in the United States, when the descendants of those who sold their brothers, uncles, cousins, and captives to the slave traders in African ports acknowledge THEIR culpability in the whole scheme of slavery in the rest of the world.

The "STAIN of SLAVERY" is on the entire human race, because it has been practiced by almost all races in all places in all times. To claim that the United States needs to atone for the sins of the entire human race is just bullshit.

My ancestors, as far as I know, seem to include Europeans (Irish & English & Italian) hispanic and Native American.

Hmmm. Let's see. For centuries the English brutally oppressed the Irish, and the Italians since Roman times had slaves. And Native American tribes held slaves, too. Looks like I'm guilty as hell, drat the luck. But at the same time, most of my ancestors were the peasants, serfs, slaves, and indentured servants sold into bondage. So most of my own ancestors were the suffering bastards who were oppressed by the few miserable son-of-bitches who were the slave owners and capitalist brutes who mistreated them.

How do I balance that out?

As the simultaneous inheritor of those who were enslaved and oppressed I should pay myself reparations on behalf of those who were the sonofbitching oppressors.

I end up just owing myself, cause the government has already collected as taxes all the wealth that one set of ancestors stole from the rest.

Shit.

3/18/2008 09:59:00 AM  
Blogger Zenster said...

Peter: But you have to subtract 10 points for Rap.

You, Sir, are far too generous by orders of magnitude. Gangsta Rap represents a nadir of modern culture in so many ways as to defy all conception.

Mad Fiddler: The "STAIN of SLAVERY" is on the entire human race, because it has been practiced by almost all races in all places in all times. To claim that the United States needs to atone for the sins of the entire human race is just bullshit.

Permit me to mention how the very last nation on earth to prohibit slavery was SAUDI ARABIA, which did so in 1962. Islam has traded more slaves than America or all other white cultures could ever dream of.

3/18/2008 08:54:00 PM  

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