Our media is so poor, so dumb, so ignorant, so insanely out of it, that they make Bill Ayers look like the sane guy in the room. Jebus.
Now if you watch this thing it’s clear that Ayers is still a radical, a Boomer radical, i.e. a tenured professor radical who isn’t really getting his hands dirty or is that hardcore nowadays. He’s pretty pathetic in my mind. He only sees the evil of the Vietnam War but not of the Weathermen. That’s straight up crazy and disgusting in my view, but he’s up front about it, so you can’t fault the guy for lying or hiding something.
But there’s nothing else to it. Those are his views and we learn yet again (for anyone who had a brain) that there was no secret relationship between Ayers and Obama. And this is the really bizarre part of this whole thing, I’ve never grasped. If you listen to the discussion (particularly the first couple minutes) a couple of things are clear:
Then State Senator Alice Palmer asked Ayers to host a coffee in his host which he did as he later says WITHOUT HAVING MET Obama. i.e. What is clear is that this is local machine party politics and he knew the State Senator, was a support of the Democrats in the area, never met the guy, and held a little thing for him. Obviously Obama is a young guy and is just following along the machine.
The key line is “I knew about as well as thousands of other Chicagoans. (my emphasis).”
The notion about Ayers describing himself as a “family friend” which the interviewer (Chris Cuomo) not being able to read English I suppose can’t understand (after having it explained to him) refers to a word used in Ayers’ new afterword to his book (don’t think Billy isn’t cashing in on this). Ayers clearly explains “family friend” is how OTHER people (“the blogosphere” in his words) characterized the relationship. i.e. NOT HIS OWN CHARACTERIZATION. Not how he Ayers would define the connection (nor of course Obama). Ayers says the relationship was Professional and Public.
i.e. Professional meaning not about Ayers’ views–since Obama was there to work on a board with him and a whole mess of other people and Obama has shown no inkling to being drawn to the radical-militancy of an Ayers. And PUBLIC meaning not about secret meetings (i.e. they were public). Not friends. Not mentor. Not influence. Nada.
Which is exactly what Obama said all along. Wow. No, it can’t be. There must be some hidden secret agenda. Somebody tell Sarah Palin.
This again goes back to the strange decision the right had to go the David Freddoso line of attack or the Jerome Corsi conspiracy mongering line. What you could criticize in this whole thing if you were a Republican/conservative is that it clearly shows that Obama was a Chicago-Democratic machine city pol. That is the Freddoso line of attack. But it was clear by this past summer, certainly after Clinton failed to make any hay on Ayers and/or Rezko in the Dem primary that such a line wasn’t going to be enough. So out came the Corsi conspiracy stuff. The dark suspicions and all the rest. Obama couldn’t say anymore because there wasn’t anymore to say, and if he made something up to as it were Come Clean, then he would have been retroactively accused of lying. And since there wasn’t actually anything else to say, then it was perfectly fertile ground for fetid projections from the wingnuts.
I’m sure glad all that time was spent on this oh so important issue. I mean anybody who follows politics knows how this works. An eager beaver like Obama is not going to spend capital in his early days of climbing the ladder on some wacko like Ayers who has been accepted back into the left-wing Dem circles of Chicago. The issue for the purity patrol types is that he didn’t stand up and refuse contact with him, so that he (Obama) wouldn’t get contaminated on the patriotic front. But here I think Ayers’ point about the desipcable nature of actions during the Vietnam War has a partial validity. Namely God knows any Republican candidate has associations in the past (particularly in the Military Industrial Complex, hello McCain) that have violence in their past. Welcome to America people. The real issue is not the violence per se, it’s the radical side to Ayers. It’s that he criticized the government that sends some folks into a lather. If it was violence that was the issue (or generaly wingnuttery, hello conservative movement) there’s enough of that to go around.
What the McCain Campaign and assorted elements on the right in the campaign did that I could never understand was not grasp that Obama wasn’t that kinda liberal. He moved through those circles, he had to play the game. He had to move up the ranks through that world. No doubt about that fact. But the guy is like a super-America lover. It’s a love based in a certain vision of what America represents.
That is to quote Obama:
“It was a Creed written into the Founding Documents, Yes We Can.”
That’s definitely one view of the Founding Documents or the reason to love America. There are others. Some that could help balance out the blindspots in Obama’s vision of America. e.g. Maybe the Founding Documents were written because “NO WE CAN’T.”
NO WE CAN’T as a people be trusted except under the rule of law (see Bush and Torture). NO WE CAN’T rely on democratic procedures alone to protect civil rights (see California and Prop 8′s failure).
But that aside this guy wasn’t Dukakkis or Gore or Kerry. Much less Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton. The GOP embraced that argument at the cost of some serious long term peril for the party. [I think they were bound to lose anyway, but they could have lost without appearing so F'in Insane].
The Sarah Palin-ites of the right wing had been sold those lines for years as a sorta cynical ploy by the elite in the GOP, except they believe it and have called the upper crusts on it and have in many ways relativized them. [Goodbye Northeast to GOP]. Palin and likeminded individuals didn’t get the memo that it was a kinda wink-wink nudge nudge line of attack. They want their pound of political flesh for those who are politically impure, presidential or otherwise. And so the GOP sinks further into bat shit insanity. Leaving us with the pathetic Democratic Party and the even worse whiny/bitchy sides of the progressive blogosphere (bleh and double bleh).
Fortunately yours truly has always been impressed that Obama has a history of dealing with and at times playing the left (see above), so I take some comfort in the fact that I voted for the guy principally because I trusted his instincts, not because he was going to heal the planet or whatever crap he had to say to get elected and get a bunch of looney self-impressed folk to sing songs or cry or think the universe is heading up in light because of his ASCENSION no less to power. [Hint: By linking to the Ascension of Jesus I'm mocking all this; I don't secretly think Obama is the Second Coming or for his Jewish devotees I suppose The First Coming]. Since he know has to deal with the nutty left, his background has served him well in that regard.