A video here of some quite amazing black preaching.
The two-faced one
This is typically psychopathic. Psychopaths can only keep up their "nice guy" act for so long. If he really were a nice guy he would not suddenly turn antisocial and abrupt
Early morning trainers and exercisers at the Greenville, Miss., YMCA on Mississippi primary day last Tuesday got a taste of Sen. Barack Obama's reclusiveness, which the traveling press corps has learned to accept.
After speaking at Tougaloo College on Monday night, Obama went to the "Y" at 6:30 a.m. for a workout. He greeted nobody and did not respond when people there called out to him. That aloofness has been the pattern in the Democratic presidential candidate's behavior toward reporters who cover him.
After finishing his workout, Obama returned to his gregarious campaign mode with a visit to black-owned Buck's restaurant in Greenville before leaving the state. He won Mississippi comfortably against Sen. Hillary Clinton.
Obama implicitly admits he lied
Buried in his eloquent, highly praised speech on America's racial divide, Sen. Barack Obama contradicted more than a year of denials and spin from him and his staff about his knowledge of Rev. Jeremiah Wright's controversial sermons. Similarly, Obama also has only recently given a much fuller accounting of his relationship with indicted political fixer Antoin "Tony" Rezko, a longtime friend, who his campaign once described as just one of "thousands of donors."
Until yesterday, Obama said the only thing controversial he knew about Rev. Wright was his stand on issues relating to Africa, abortion and gay marriage. "I don't think my church is actually particularly controversial," Obama said at a community meeting in Nelsonville, Ohio, earlier this month. "He has said some things that are considered controversial because he's considered that part of his social gospel; so he was one of the leaders in calling for divestment from South Africa and some other issues like that," Obama said on March 2.
His initial reaction to the initial ABC News broadcast of Rev. Wright's sermons denouncing the U.S. was that he had never heard his pastor of 20 years make any comments that were anti-U.S. until the tape was played on air. But yesterday, he told a different story. "Did I ever hear him make remarks that could be considered controversial while I sat in church? Yes," he said in his speech yesterday in Philadelphia.
Obama did not say what he heard that he considered "controversial," and the campaign has yet to answer repeated requests for dates on which the senator attended Rev. Wright's sermons over the last 20 years.
In the case of his relationship with Rezko, Obama has also been slow to acknowledge the full extent of his relationship. It was only last week that he revealed Rezko had raised some $250,000 in campaign contributions for him. The campaign had initially claimed Rezko-connected contributions were no more than $60,000, an amount the campaign donated to charity. Then the figure grew to around $86,000, and there were additional revelations that put the amount at about $150,000. Obama's $250,000 accounting was a substantial jump and clearly contradicted earlier campaign statements that Rezko was just one of "thousands of donors."
Mark Steyn on the speech
I found Obama's speech profoundly depressing. It was cold, precisely calculated, and, on the Chris Matthews Legometer, stunningly effective, and (as Victor says below) likely to have very wide influence. A reader makes the following point:
How can we call on the "good Muslims" to bravely denounce and actively counter the jihadi terror-endorsing clerics who give their children permission to kill and to hate on behalf of Allah when we seem to be afraid to ask the good African-American Christians to stand up against those, like Wright, who call for the "damn"-ing of America, blame everything on "rich white" people, blame Israel and Jews for a host of imagined sins, and tell their children it is their duty to Jesus to "destroy" people because their skins are white?
Pre-speech, Mickey Kaus offered the following advice, untaken by the Senator:
There are plenty of potential Souljahs still around: Race preferences. Out-of-wedlock births. Three strike laws! But most of all the victim mentality that tells African Americans (in the fashion of Rev. Wright's most infamous sermons) that the important forces shaping their lives are the evil actions of others, of other races. ...
That is the psychosis that has left so much of the Muslim world mired in backwardness -political, social and economic. It's sad that the first viable black candidate for the US presidency has chosen to endorse it domestically.
Jeff Jacoby on Pastorgate
I have known my rabbi for more than 20 years. The synagogue he serves as spiritual leader is one I have attended for a quarter-century. He officiated at my wedding and was present for the circumcision of each of my sons. Over the years, I have sought his advice on matters private and public, religious and secular. I have heard him speak from the pulpit more times than I can remember.
My relationship with my rabbi, in other words, is similar in many respects to Barack Obama's relationship with his longtime pastor, Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. But if my rabbi began delivering sermons as toxic, hate-filled, and anti-American as the diatribes Wright has preached at Chicago's Trinity United Church of Christ, I wouldn't hesitate to demand that he be dismissed.
Were my rabbi to gloat that America got its just desserts on 9/11, or to claim that the US government invented AIDS as an instrument of genocide, or to urge his congregants to sing "God Damn America" instead of "God Bless America," I would know about it straightaway, even if I hadn't actually been in the sanctuary when he spoke. The news would spread rapidly through the congregation, and in short order one of two things would happen: Either the rabbi would be gone, or I and scores of others would walk out, unwilling to remain in a house of worship that tolerated such poisonous teachings. I have no doubt that the same would be true for millions of worshipers in countless houses of worship nationwide.
But it wasn't true for Obama, whose long and admiring relationship with Wright, a man he describes as his "mentor," remained intact for more than 20 years, notwithstanding the incendiary and bigoted messages the minister used his pulpit to promote.
In Philadelphia yesterday, Obama gave a graceful speech on the theme of race and unity in American life. Much of what he said was eloquent and stirring, not least his opening paean to the Founders and the Constitution -- a document "stained by the nation's original sin of slavery," as he said, yet also one "that had at its very core the ideal of equal citizenship under the law; a Constitution that promised its people liberty, and justice, and a union that could be and should be perfected over time." There was an echo there of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., who in his great "I Have a Dream" speech extolled "the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence" as "a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir."
The problem for Obama is that Wright, the spiritual leader he has so long embraced, is a devotee not of King -- who in that same speech warned against "drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred" -- but of the poisonous hatemonger Louis Farrakhan, whom the church's magazine honored with a lifetime achievement award. The problem for Obama, who campaigns on a message of racial reconciliation, is that the "mentor" whose church he joined and has generously supported with tens of thousands of dollars in donations is a disciple not of King but of James Cone, the expounder of a "black liberation" theology that teaches its adherents to "accept only the love of God which participates in the destruction of the white enemy."
Above all, the problem for Obama is that for two decades his spiritual home has been a church in which the minister damns America to the enthusiastic approval of the congregation, and not until it threatened to scuttle his political ambitions did Obama finally find the mettle to condemn the minister's odium. When Don Imus uttered his infamous slur on the radio last year, Obama cut him no slack. Imus should be fired, he said. "There's nobody on my staff who would still be working for me if they made a comment like that about anybody of any ethnic group."
When it came to Wright, however, he wasn't nearly so categorical. Oh, he's "like an old uncle who says things I don't always agree with," Obama indulgently explained to one interviewer. He's just "trying to be provocative," he told another. "I don't think my church is actually particularly controversial," he said. Far from severing his ties to Wright, Obama made him a member of his Religious Leadership Committee -- a tie he finally cut only four days ago.
Such a clanging double standard raises doubts about Obama's character and judgment, and about his fitness for the role of race-transcending healer. Yesterday's speech was finely crafted, but it leaves some serious and troubling questions unanswered.
More like a baloney sandwich
Helping a destitute mother stricken with cancer is not enough for the final move in the Obama speech. What you need is a more telling, human anecdote. And we get it -- both barrels.
"Ashley said that when she was nine years old, her mother got cancer. And because she had to miss days of work, she was let go and lost her health care. They had to file for bankruptcy, and that's when Ashley decided that she had to do something to help her mom. She knew that food was one of their most expensive costs, and so Ashley convinced her mother that what she really liked and really wanted to eat more than anything else was mustard and relish sandwiches. Because that was the cheapest way to eat."
Did you get misty at that moment? Or was it when the "quiet" "elderly" black man rose up and said, ""I am here because of Ashley." You were supposed to. In the end, the speech is all about -- again -- bringing out the crying towels right down to the last, heart-wringing menu item of "mustard and relish sandwiches. Because that was the cheapest way to eat." I don't know about you, but it seems to me that if you cut out either the mustard or the relish you could eat cheaper still.
It also seems to me that you have to be born bone ignorant in a pea patch to think that in this country at this time you have to subsist on such fare. In all fairness, the speech gives us enough "telling" details to determine that Ashley claimed to be making these sandwiches somewhere around 1994. But that still doesn't put this saga in the dark ages of social welfare in the United States.
Looking back, I seem to recall massive public programs on the federal, state, and local level that work against this sort of diet. In the more recent past, I seem to recall a move last month in the congress to increase school lunch programs beyond lunch and breakfast to a third meal as well. For decades I seem to recall food stamps. For even more decades I seem to recall armies of social workers for the state and the federal government raging about the land. And looking at my entire lifetime, I also seem to recall endless private charitable programs that work against this sort of diet.
I can't speak for the distant past, but from what I've seen living in New York City, Southern California, South Carolina, and Seattle over the last few years is you have to work hard, very hard, to go hungry in this country. I've helped out from time to time in a program that feeds the homeless up on Queen Anne. From conversations with the people who show up and those who serve, I've learned enough to know I could eat for free in Seattle at various venues from now until "the last ding-dong of doom."
I could be wrong. There could be swathes of famine sweeping over the land that the media is keeping from us. Bad sandwiches could be a new and undiscovered indictment of America that cries out for a new Federal program to slap some government bologna in them. Perhaps I am just being my churlish self. As I have been repeating to friends over the last week, "I try to become more cynical every day, but lately I just can't keep up."
I have real trouble keeping up when I listen, as I did again today, to yet another anecdote in which we are required by the speaker to reach for the better angels of our nature, our votes, and our wallets. Still, I sure wish there was a video of that moving moment in the early days of the Obama campaign. I wish there was a video in which I could see this now mythical Ashley rise up and testify. I'd watch it over and over. Oh well, I suppose in the next few days the campaign and/or the media will whip up and interview or two with Ashley. It'll pluck at your heart strings now that she's been fully briefed.
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