Book and Movie Reviews…
2016: OBAMA’S AMERICA
WILL AMERICA SURVIVE INTACT IF OBAMA IS RE-ELECTED?
By H. Hawke August 31, 2012
While Dinesh D’Souza’s documentary film, 2016: Obama’s America, may fall short in proving its thesis that Obama has modeled his governing style on Barack Obama Senior’s anti-colonialist worldview the film contains plenty of other impeachable content. It’s based largely on D’Souza’s 2010 bestseller, “The Roots of Obama’s Rage.” In that book D’Souza describes Obama as “a man driven by the ideology of his father and the first American president to seek to reduce America’s strength, influence, and standard of living.”
D’Souza compares America’s traditional Founding Fathers, Washington, Jefferson and Adams with a list of Obama’s and the contrast could not be more striking.
Among those who have been most influential in Obama’s life are terrorist and bomber Bill Ayers, Frank Marshall Davis, a communist the FBI kept a close watch on, Edward Said, a prominent ant-Israeli activist, Roberto Unger, a Brazilian Socialist who refused to go public with his connection to Obama because he thought it would harm him and of course Jeremiah Wright, a major threat to Obama’s carefully orchestrated, white-friendly image.
Racism was a major component in Obama’s 2008 campaign and seems to be the only tactic in his 2012 presidential bid. While concealed when used to silence powerful opponents like Hillary and Bill Clinton its use was deliberate.
According to the brilliant Shelby Steele’s analysis, white voters, eager to cast off a lifetime of racist guilt, were grateful to Obama for providing the opportunity to do just that. Obama happily obliged all the while keeping his radical, anti-American, anti-white, anti-colonialist side well hidden. He was the ultimate Manchurian candidate.
Obama knew white people wanted to help him and knew he could win their support by subtly pressuring them to vote for him in order to prove they were not racist.
Previous black figures like Jesse Jackson had been unelectable because of their blatant assertions that whites were racist. Obama’s softer tack of pretending to assume whites weren’t racist and then offering them the chance to prove that was a move of sheer Machiavellian genius. And it worked. The voters didn’t know Obama and they didn’t want to know him. Now white Americans feel betrayed.
D’Souza claims Barack Obama adopted his father’s failed third world policies. Barack Obama Senior was an avowed anitcolonialist who was also antiChristian and antiAmerican. Those beliefs seem to have been passed down to his son although the two only met in person once, when Obama was ten.
“What really motivates Barack Obama is an inherited rage—an often masked, but profound rage that comes from his African father; an anticolonialist rage against Western dominance, and most especially against the wealth and power of the nation Barack Obama now leads”
Obama’s goal, according to D’Souza, is to remake and transform the United States to reflect his father’s vision. That includes punishing America for its success, redistributing America’s wealth not only nationally but globally to compensate for America’s control over third world countries and leveling the nuclear playing field so that America has no advantage over any other country. As proof that his vision is accurate, D’Souza points out Obama has done nothing to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, has spent money as if the deficit doesn’t matter and seems to be orchestrating the economy’s collapse. Obama wields debt as the ultimate weapon of mass destruction.
He has also cut the military precipitously. He wants to go from 5000 nuclear warheads to 1500 and then to 300, ending America’s nuclear superiority and allowing all countries to have equal power, a naive notion predicated on an assumption of honesty.
While 2016: Obama’s America, has its faults and the thesis has its weaknesses it is a must-see film especially for those who have not been following the agonizingly slow unmasking of a man who few knew when he was (s)elected president in 2008.
The footage is often breathtaking with gritty clips of Indonesia and Kenya.
As D’Souza points out, Obama doesn’t like America, is critical of it and wants it to fail. And if re-elected Obama will be free to pursue what he really wants, the total destruction of the America that exists today.
Grade: B- ***
So many books about Obama; So little time:
We have a book review in the offing of Richard Miniter’s book:
Leading from Behind: The Reluctant President and the Advisors Who Decide for Him-
by guest writer, H. Hawke
Leading from Behind and sneaking in through the backdoor
A look at the Obama/Jarrett Connection
By H. Hawke
“Harry S. Truman famously said, “The buck stops here.” That’s a classic example of leading from the front. Obama’s slogan seems to be, “I’ll take the credit but not the blame.That’s leading from behind.”‘
The excerpt above is in the final passage of Richard Miniter’s scathing new exposé of Barack Obama’s dearth of leadership qualities and the resultant disastrous effect on his presidency. It considers specific examples of his most significant failures from the Fast and Furious scandal to the Netanyahu debacle as well as his bungling of what some tout as his successes, the passage of the Affordable Care Act and the killing of bin Laden.
During the book Miniter also pulls back the curtain on Valarie Jarrett’s role in The White House and her Svengali-like influence over both Barack and Michelle Obama. Miniter attempts to answer the question, how can a woman with the title of Assistant to the President for Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs not only dominate policy in the domestic sphere but also “in the Obama Administration’s most sensitive and secret foreign policy operations?”
Miniter reveals many of the facts surrounding the president’s association with this most elusive of figures and uncovers the sheer incompetence of the woman who has the president’s ear far more than anyone else in his circle.
Valerie Jarrett has figured prominently in the lives of both Michelle and Barack Obama starting from the moment when Michelle introduced her fiancé to Jarrett over dinner in 1991. Jarrett had offered Michelle a job with the Chicago Mayor’s office after an associate told her Michelle wanted to leave the prestigious law firm where she had been working. That dinner began a 20-year alliance between the Obamas’ and Jarrett, an alliance which remains impregnable today.
According to Miniter, Jarrett and Barack had much in common. Both had spent time outside the United States, Jarrett in Iran and Obama in Indonesia. Both shared a vision of the United States as “one country among many rather than as the center of all wisdom and experience.” And Jarrett had served as mentor for Michelle since they first met.
When Jarrett left the Mayor’s office to become Commissioner of Chicago’s Department of Planning and Development Michelle followed. There, Jarrett’s reputation as a “deal-buster” if friends or allies didn’t share an opportunity to profit solidified. Jarrett soon moved on to a position as CEO of The Habitat Company. Many of the public housing projects under her control turned to slums.
The Boston Globe raised concerns about her management abilities, especially in Grove Parc, saying “the project was worse than the slums it replaced. 99% of the units are vacant.” In 2006, federal inspectors “graded the condition of the complex as so bad the buildings faced demolition.”
In 2011, Rahm Emanuel, who has no love for Jarrett, a primary reason, Miniter contends, he stepped down as Obama’s Chief of Staff, said Chicago had “received $30.5 million in federal stimulus money to revitalize Grove Parc by tearing it down.” But Jarrett remained unfazed and unchallenged. She next unleashed her incompetence and greed on the University of Chicago Medical Center where she served as Chairman of the Board of Trust. She hired Michelle Obama as Director of Community Outreach and the two proceeded to operate a patient dumping scheme so pernicious it was noted in the 2006 Office of the Inspector General’s fraud database.
A Chicago newspaper reported the scam worked by refusing to admit patients lacking proof they had sufficient insurance or cash to cover expenses.
“Most of the victims (of this scheme) were poor African Americans who lived near the hospital that turned them away.” Continuing her path of corruption, Jarrett introduced Obama to Tony Rezko as the candidate sought donors for his Senate campaign. When Obama was faltering during the 2007-2008 primaries he brought Jarrett into the campaign and gave her an “essentially limitless role.” That caused bad blood among staffers including David Plouffe and David Axelrod. Despite the friction Obama invariably backed Jarrett during heated controversies. When Obama won the 2008 election “Michelle Obama insisted Jarrett have a role” and Obama told Emanuel “I want her in the White House.”
Miniter offers a glimpse of the ongoing vendetta between Jarrett and Emanuel. “When Emanuel showed up for a tour of the West Wing he was annoyed to learn Jarrett had gotten there first and had already put dibs on the relatively large suite of offices formerly occupied by Karl Rove.”
According to Miniter, “Jarrett’s role was unprecedented. She met at least twice a day with the president with no one else present.”The tales of Jarrett’s retribution against staffers who crossed her is already legendary and is rumored to have sparked the resignations of Robert Gibbs, Rahm Emanuel and Bill Daley, among others.
Despite Jarrett’s record of incompetence, fraud, and corruption, both Obamas treasured her advice. When Obama was (s)elected in 2008 Jarrett became a prime strategist at all White House functions even though her ambiguous official title did not qualify her to participate in the meetings she attended nor in the decision making she engaged in.
The list of policy disasters credited to Jarrett is long and includes humiliating the president on the world stage by convincing him to attend the 2016 Olympics Selection Committee Meeting in Norway in an attempt to convince the group to choose Chicago as the Olympics site. Jarrett had “predicted victory, adding that when Michelle Obama finished her pitch there won’t be a dry eye in the room.” It was a complete failure. The committee dropped its consideration of the United States after just the first round of balloting. Miniter dubbed it “a defeat of Olympic Proportions.”
Jarrett also had a hand in promoting and supporting Obama’s relationship with Eric Holder. Miniter writes she is “exceptionally close to the attorney general” and quotes her as saying, “There isn’t a day that we don’t talk.”Miniter claims she serves as an “essential intermediary between Holder and the White House on many projects.”
As an example, Jarrett and Holder worked closely on the March 18, 2008 speech on race relations given to tamp down fallout from the Jeremiah Wright controversy. Perhaps the most shocking allegation in Miniter’s book is the role Jarrett played in the bin Laden killing. According to the author, Jarrett interfered in plans to raid the Abbottabad compound in Pakistan.The situation was so tense and Jarrett’s interference so detrimental the team charged with finding bin Laden resorted to desperate measures.
“Absorbed by feuding among Obama’s inner circle, the cabinet members and officials charged with national security sometimes kept White House senior staff and the president himself in the dark as vital decisions loomed. Incredibly, they needed to keep the president’s most trusted adviser, Jarrett, from killing the bin Laden mission in its cradle.” “Obama canceled the mission three times at Jarrett’s urging according to an official affiliated with the Joint Special Forces Command.” Miniter points out that Jarrett, who “rarely attended principals meetings was adamantly opposed to taking out bin Laden.” “Jarrett worried about the backlash against the president if the operation failed and even if it succeeded.” He calls her influence over the president “a measure of her power and omnipresence that surpassed her domestic affairs title.”
In one of several interesting observations about Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s reactions to Jarrett’s meddling, Miniter wrote, “Clinton privately fumed about Jarrett’s relentless presence and her injection of political considerations at every turn.” It was clear to all involved in the bin Laden plan that Jarrett and Obama’s primary concern were for his presidency, not the American people or national security. Eventually, Jarrett convinced Obama to leave the decision on whether to launch the raid to Leon Panetta, calculating that Panetta would not make the call in fear of hurting his career. But “Panetta was more worried about missing the opportunity to get bin Laden.”
In the end it was Panetta, Gates, Clinton and Daley who forced the issue. Daley went so far as to pledge he would fully support Panetta “even if it meant disclosing the president’s indecision should the operation fail.” Forging ahead with the plan to take out bin Laden meant leaving the White House out of the loop, a move that bordered on insubordination. But after Jarrett and subsequently Obama’s recalcitrance the group felt they had no choice. However, as soon as the raid proved successful Obama took a victory lap to boast of his role although he had nothing to do with planning or executing the mission.
According to Miniter, “Obama’s handling of the bin Laden raid may be the single biggest blunder of his presidency. Far from being an example of decisive leadership, it is a case study of a leader who puts his personal needs ahead of his constitutional duties.” While Miniter’s portrait of Jarrett provides plenty of detail about this most elusive of Obama’s advisers, the book hits the president hard on a multitude of glaring failures of policy and personality.
In his chapter about the Debt Crisis Miniter writes, “If the United States were a parliamentary democracy Obama would have been removed by a “no confidence” vote in the late summer of 2011.
Miniter accuses Obama of delaying negotiations over the debt ceiling while “warning of default and attacking his political rivals. When that pressure failed, he bargained between bouts of emotional outbursts.” What’s worse he upended months of deliberations on the eve of a historic deal.”In the end, his political rivals in the House would never trust him again and his political allies in the senate would be forever wary of him.”A true leader can work with the leaders of other parties. Reagan worked with O’Neill, Clinton with Gingrich and Bush with Pelosi. Miniter accuses Obama of failing to work with leaders with whom he had disagreements and in the end failing to avert a downgrade in America’s creditworthiness.
Miniter is just as critical of Obama’s handling of the health care debacle, claiming the president squandered half of his first term on an unpopular, out of control, massively expensive program which the country didn’t want and can’t afford. Miniter calls the president’s performance a “study of a man ducking hard decisions and then taking credit for others’ work, principally Pelosi’s. In similar fashion, Miniter lays the blame for the Fast and Furious scandal squarely at Obama’s feet.The gun walking scheme was orchestrated by Attorney General Eric Holder although to this day he disavows any knowledge of it. Holder’s response, or rather, lack of response to questions from the House Oversight Committee and Chairman Darryl Issa prompted hundreds of House of Representatives members and Senators to sign a petition calling for his resignation. Holder became the first Attorney General in United States History to be charged with contempt of congress. “Every leader has to terminate subordinates who fail in their appointed tasks, especially when they fail to tell the truth,” Miniter writes. “Holder’s tenure has been studded with stunning failures yet he remains on the job.” Miniter concludes that either Obama is pleased with Holder’s performance, proving he hasn’t “properly managed his team” or he can’t manage personnel effectively by taking corrective action.”
Either way, Obama fails to lead.
Miniter’s account of Obama’s shameful treatment of Israel is as equally scathing as his assessment of Obama’s other failures.
“Leading from behind” is a must-read for anyone seeking information on the widespread dysfunction in the Obama White House, much of which is engineered by none other than Valerie Jarrett, and the many instances in which Obama has abdicated his responsibility to serve as a true Commander in Chief.
(H. Hawke, aka/ Basil99 and Wyntre)