Thursday, July 30, 2009

 

The Real Issue Behind The "Birthers" Craziness

Andrew C. McCarthy looks past the Birthers silliness to get to the nut of the matter in his NRO article Suborned In The U.S.A.

The primary qualification supporters offered for Obama’s candidacy was his compelling life story, as packaged in 850 pages’ worth of the not one but two autobiographies this seemingly unaccomplished candidate had written by the age of 45.

Yet we now know that this life story is chock full of fiction. Typical and disturbing, to take just one example, is the entirely fabricated account in Dreams from My Father of Obama’s first job after college:

Eventually a consulting house to multinational corporations agreed to hire me as a research assistant. Like a spy behind enemy lines, I arrived every day at my mid-Manhattan office and sat at my computer terminal, checking the Reuters machine that blinked bright emerald messages from across the globe. As far as I could tell I was the only black man in the company, a source of shame for me but a source of considerable pride for the company’s secretarial pool. They treated me like a son, those black ladies; they told me how they expected me to run the company one day. . . . The company promoted me to the position of financial writer. I had my own office, my own secretary, money in the bank. Sometimes, coming out of an interview with Japanese financiers or German bond traders, I would catch my reflection in the elevator doors — see myself in a suit and tie, a briefcase in my hand — and for a split second I would imagine myself as a captain of industry, barking out orders, closing the deal, before I remembered who it was that I had told myself I wanted to be and felt pangs of guilt for my lack of resolve. . . .

As the website Sweetness & Light details, this is bunk. Obama did not work at “a consulting house to multinational corporations”; it was, a then-colleague of his has related, “a small company that published newsletters on international business.” He wasn’t the only black man in the company, and he didn’t have an office, have a secretary, wear a suit and tie on the job, or conduct “interviews” with “Japanese financiers or German bond traders” — he was a junior copyeditor.

What’s unnerving about this is that it is so gratuitous. It would have made no difference to anyone curious about Obama’s life that he, like most of us, took a ho-hum entry-level job to establish himself. But Obama lies about the small things, the inconsequential things, just as he does about the important ones — depending on what he is trying to accomplish at any given time...

...The fact is that Obama’s account of his background is increasingly revealed as a fabrication, not his life as lived; his utterances reflect the expediencies of the moment, not the truth. What is supposed to save the country from fraudulence of this sort is the media. Here, though, the establishment press is deep in Obama’s tank — so much so that they can’t even accurately report his flub of a ceremonial opening pitch lest he come off as something less than Sandy Koufax. Astonishingly, reporters see their job not as reporting Obama news but as debunking Obama news, or flat-out suppressing it. How many Americans know, for example, that as a sitting U.S. senator in 2006, Obama interfered in a Kenyan election, publicly ripping the incumbent government (a U.S. ally) for corruption while he was its guest and barnstorming with his preferred candidate: a Marxist now known to have made a secret agreement with Islamists to convert Kenya to sharia law, and whose supporters, upon losing the election, committed murder and mayhem, displacing thousands of Kenyans and plunging their country into utter chaos?

McCarthy's problem with Obama is not that he believes Obama is not an American citizen; it is the man's utter dishonesty, which permeates every aspect of his public presentation; he simply refuses to tell the unvarnished truth. As soon as he believes even the slightest fabrication will better serve him, out it comes (Ergo, I suppose, the all-pervasive TOTUS), no matter how large or small. Conversely, if a little or a lot of obfuscation, all the way up to lying by omission, will serve Obama, then that's okay too. Further, if that obstacle happens to be a person rather than a fact or circumstance, Obama throws him "under the bus", a phrase made famous by Barack Obama having thrown so many people "under the bus" in service to the fabricated narrative that is Barack Obama. Whatever works, you see.

McCarthy points to Obama's "Islamic ties are good" period to further demonstrate:

[T]he records of the Catholic school and the public school Obama attended during his last year in Indonesia identify him as a Muslim. As Obama relates in Dreams from My Father, he took Koran classes. As Obama doesn’t relate in Dreams from My Father, children in Indonesia attended religious instruction in accordance with their family’s chosen faith. Moreover, acquaintances recall that young Barry occasionally attended Friday prayers at the local mosque, and Maya Soetoro-Ng, Obama’s half-sister (born after Lolo and Ann moved the family to Jakarta), told the New York Times in a 2008 interview, “My whole family was Muslim, and most of the people I knew were Muslim.” In fact, back in March 2007 — i.e., during the early “Islamic ties are good” phase of Obama’s campaign — the candidate wistfully shared with New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof his memories of the muezzin’s Arabic call to prayer: “one of the prettiest sounds on earth at sunset.” Kristof marveled at the “first-rate accent” with which Obama was able to repeat its opening lines.

The point here is not to join another crackpot conspiracy, the “Obama as Muslim Manchurian Candidate” canard. Obama was only ten years old when he left Indonesia; there is no known evidence of his having made an adult choice to practice Islam, and he is a professed Christian. The point is that he lies elaborately about himself and plainly doesn’t believe it’s important to be straight with the American people — to whom he is constantly making bold promises. And it makes a difference whether he was ever a Muslim. He knows that — it’s exactly why, as a candidate, he originally suggested his name and heritage would be a selling point. Obama’s religious background matters in terms of how he is perceived by Muslims (Islam rejects the notion of renouncing the faith; some Muslims, like Libyan strongman Muammar Qaddafi, make no bones about regarding Obama as a Muslim; and — as the mainstream media took pains not to report during the campaign — it is suspected that significant illegal donations poured into the Obama campaign from Islamic countries and territories). Obama’s religious background also matters in terms of how he views American policies bearing on the Muslim world.

McCarthy observes that without the Birthers, we wouldn't know about Obama's multiple citizenships, because the press was certainly not interested in reporting that and many other things about Obama. His Kenyan citizenship, for example, is certainly relevant,

especially when Obama’s shocking 2006 conduct in Kenya is considered. But we don’t know about his Kenyan citizenship because the media thought it was newsworthy. We know it only because of the birth-certificate controversy: Pressed to debunk the allegation that Obama was born in Kenya, his embarrassed supporters felt compelled to clarify his Kenyan citizenship.

By contrast, the question whether Obama ever was an Indonesian citizen is still unresolved, as are such related matters as whether the foreign citizenship (if he had it) ever lapsed, and whether he ever held or used an Indonesian passport — for example, during a mysterious trip to Pakistan he took in 1981, after Zia’s coup, when advisories warned Americans against traveling there. By the way, many details about that journey, too, remain unknown. Obama strangely neglected to mention it in his 850 pages of autobiography, even though the 20-year-old’s adventure included a stay at the home of prominent Pakistani politicians.

There may be perfectly benign answers to all of this. But the real question is: Why don’t the media — the watchdog legions who trekked to Sarah Palin’s Alaska hometown to scour for every kernel of gossip, and who were so desperate for Bush dirt that they ran with palpably forged military records — want to dig into Obama’s background? ...

The answer is clear to those of us who pegged Obama as a lying charlatan from the beginning. The media do not want the truth about Obama to be known because he is very much their construct: by lying about him, ignoring relevant questions and shouting down, even defaming, his critics, they have packaged him into everything they wanted in a successor to Bush, shaped his story just as carefully as he has, in accord with their recipe for an anti-Bush. The media have too much invested in Obama right now; he is, to borrow a popular expression, too big to fail, at least for now.

But wait until the cracks forming even now widen to the point at which they can't be covered up. Then you will see the media begin to turn on Obama to save their own hides, just as they did with Jimmy Carter despite their almost universal hatred of Reagan. Then we'll see who throws who under the bus.

Meanwhile, the issue remains:

What is the true personal history of the man who has been sold to us based on nothing but his personal history?

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