Friday, October 17, 2008

Obama & Bill Ayers

The infamous Bill Ayers has a blog. Oh, wow, man, I'm having a radical acid flashback. (I must divulge at this point that I did work for ACORN on a project in the Atlanta area in the late 1970's. Even as a fully bearded long-hair who seldom wore shoes, I was quite skillful at collecting donations door-to-door in conservative middle class neighborhoods. I can remember one training session in particular. The instructor, not Obama as he was only 18 at the time, gave the descriptions of two Southern Black women. One was well dressed, hard working, and successful. The second was overweight and drinking a beer while lounging on the front porch. The instructor asked the class what we thought. After a couple of answers, I chimed in, "They may be the two descriptions of the same person. Bells and whistles went off, confetti fell, joints were lit; I was the star pupil.)

I cudda bin ah contendah!

Candidate Obama states that Mr. Ayers has not been advising his campaign nor will he advise him in the White House. He doesn't have to, they have already been of the same mind for decades.

Both Obama and Ayers worked together for several years at the Chicago Annenberg Challenge. Ayers was instrumental in proposing the educational reform programs to be funded as well as the groups to receive the funds to implement the ideas. Obama chaired the board to disburse the funds. The Chicago Annenberg Challenge's own summary indicates that, after disbursing well over 100 million to various projects, no palpable difference could be found between the educational improvements made by those programs with similar schools not receiving the CAC's funding.

To get a taste of Bill Ayers' philosophy of education, here is one excerpt of the speech Bill Ayers gave to The World Education Fourm in Caracus, Venezuela, in November 2006:
I taught at first in something like a Simoncito—called Head Start—and eventually taught at every level in barrios and prisons and insurgent projects across the United States. I learned then that education is never neutral. It always has a value, a position, a politics. Education either reinforces or challenges the existing social order, and school is always a contested space – what should be taught? In what way? Toward what end? By and for whom? At bottom, it involves a struggle over the essential questions: what does it mean to be a human being living in a human society?1
The whole speech is quotable. Basically, however, it is a 'Viva La Revolución' speech. The United States Constitution was put in place, after all, to benefit the rich, White men of the American revolutionary war era. Social justice, yada, yada, yada.

Both Obama and Ayers worked together for years on the board of the Woods Foundation. This board would disburse funds for various community organizers and social policy issues. Here are some of the recipients:
The Woods Fund has given sizable grants to the Midwest Academy; the Tides Foundation; the Tides Center; the Nature Conservancy; AGAPE Youth Development; the Arab American Action Network; the Center for Community Change; Trinity United Church of Christ (where Barack Obama was a congregant); the Chicago Interfaith Committee on Worker Issues; the Community Justice Initiative; the Center for Law and Human Services; the Center for Tax and Budget Accountability; Grassroots Collaborative (for American Friends Service Committee); Latin United Community Housing Association; the Center for Economic Progress; the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless; the Chicago Rehabilitation Network; the Heartland Alliance for Human Needs and Human Rights; the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights; the Juvenile Justice Initiative of Illinois; Latinos United; the Lawyers Committee for Better Housing; the National Center on Poverty, Inc.; Protestants for the Common Good; the Public Action Foundation; the Community Justice for Youth Initiative; the Safer Foundation; the Woodstock Institute; Work, Welfare and Families; the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN); the About Face Theater Collective; Day Laborer Collaboration; Business and Professional People for the Public Interest; the Coalition of African Service Providers; the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law; the Funders' Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities; Urban Outreach; and the Proteus Fund.2
I am not familiar with many of these organizations, but if Barack Obama and Bill Ayers were interested in funding them, I expect that most, if not all, are left wing organizations with high sounding mission statements. I do know Trinity Church and ACORN.

Obama spent many years on the Joyce Foundation board. This foundation funded many anti-gun organizations under the high sounding guise of inspiring debate.

Spending 20 years under the ministry of his Afro-centric 'victims of the White oppressive system' preaching pastor, Jeremiah Wright, helped solidify Barack's pre-existing radical-leaning mindset that had begun to form, possibly even from his childhood. Perhaps it started with childhood mentor and friend Frank Marshall Davis in Hawaii, perhaps he was spanked too hard by the doctor when he was born. Perhaps... well, most of his records and associations from Columbia University are verboten.

Harvard Law School (after Obama's failure of a stint at community organizing) is... well, Harvard. Nonetheless, there are many questions about his leap to Harvard from Chicago as well as his time and associations in or near Cambridge, MA.

I am amazed that there are so many who are determined to vote for this man in the Presidential election next month. The few smooth words and position policy statements (more accurately, pitting the proletariat masses, the 95%, against the bourgeoisie, the 'rich') were accurately summarized by Obama himself, "I want to Spread the wealth around." That damn proletariat is getting too uppity middle class and satisfied with their lives to effectively rise up in revolt against the oppressive bourgeoise without fantastical rhetorical assistance.

His nearly lifelong associations with revolutionaries of the likes of Bill Ayers are apparent and plentiful. He reminds me of a suave, slick, smooth talking Romeo STD strutting into a club to get himself laid. It is amazing to hear the silly, cheap lines that work in efforts toward that end. Of course, I'm for social justice... I'm not a racist... Here's a donation... and you got my vote!

2 comments:

Cynthia said...

Grampy,

You wrote "His nearly lifelong associations with revolutionaries of the likes of Bill Ayers are apparent and plentiful."

Can you elaborate? Who else?

Steve Burri said...

Cynthia,

Thanks for stopping by, reading, and commenting.

First, I would like to ask you if you are associated with the Chicago Interfaith Committee on Worker Issues named on the Wood Foundation grants listed in the post?

Second, I would like to clarify that the lifelong associations claimed are of the serial variety, not that any one association has been lifelong.

Frank Marshall Davis: Gerald Horne writing in 'Political Affairs Magazine, Marxist Thought Online: In his best selling memoir ‘Dreams of my Father’, the author speaks warmly of an older black poet, he identifies simply as "Frank" as being a decisive influence in helping him to find his present identity as an African-American...1

Frank Marshall Davis, considered communist, was an association in Obama's early life of some (decisive) influence.

Obama's Columbia years and much of his Harvard Law School years are closed to public inspection. Why? He's running for POTUS and this should be vetted.

Pastor Jeremiah Wright, Obama's pastor for about 20 years and certainly an inspiration to Obama's writing and thought. In his own version, Rev. Wright is as radical as William Ayers.

Rev. Michael Phleger, a cohort of Jeremiah Wright. Chicago Trib: One of those long-time supporters was Rev. Michael Pfleger, the politically active leader of St. Sabina Church. He gave Obama's campaign $1,500 between 1995 and 2001, including $200 in April 2001, about three months after Obama announced $225,000 in grants to St. Sabina programs.2

William Ayers and his wife, Bernadine Dohrn. Dohrn: Speaking to a Weather Underground "war council" in Michigan in 1969, Dohrn gave a three-fingered "fork salute" to mass murderer Charles Manson. Calling Manson's victims the "Tate Eight," Dohrn gloated over the fact that actress Sharon Tate, who was pregnant at the time, had been stabbed with a fork in her womb. "Dig it. First they killed those pigs, then they ate dinner in the same room with them, they even shoved a fork into a victim's stomach! Wild!"

I remember those days well. These two give all appearance of only one regret; that they didn't do more.

I am very concerned about Senator Obama's association with Rashid Khalidi: Khalidi was a member of the Woods Fund board, where he granted $75,000 to the Arab American Action Network, which was run by his wife.

LA Times: His many talks with the Khalidis, Obama said, had been "consistent reminders to me of my own blind spots and my own biases. . . . It's for that reason that I'm hoping that, for many years to come, we continue that conversation -- a conversation that is necessary not just around Mona and Rashid's dinner table," but around "this entire world."3

I want to know of Khalidi's association with the late Arafat and his defense of Palestinian terror.

I don't like to include Rezko in this list. Those of Rezko's ilk buzz around politicians like flies. Grants and loans to Rezko probably had hopes of helping those needing low-income housing, but, nonetheless, turned into junk.

Cynthia, that's the start.