The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Monday, September 15, 2008

The Enemy

Over the past six months I have repeatedly expressed concern about Barack Obama’s lack of experience, his lack of any meaningful legislative accomplishments, his growing list of highly questionable associations, and his extreme Left ideology. But the most troubling aspect of the Democratic Presidential candidate is how little we know about him. The MSM has done more to “vet” Sarah Palin in three weeks than it has in the 18 months that Barack Obama has been running for President. Because the media is clearly avoiding any negative information about their Chosen One, the man remains a cipher for most of the electorate.

We are, therefore, left to fend for ourselves. The problem is that his past history is very hazy. Very few “acquaintances” have been interviewed to give us insight, there is little investigative history about his time in New York after his graduation from Columbia, his time at Harvard, and his time in Chicago and his association with Wright, Resko and Ayers.

It turns out that the most telling insights about Barack Obama are presented in his own words in the memoir, Dreams of My Father, that he wrote before he decided to run for the Senate or for President. In Chapter 7 (pp. 55-56) he writes about the years after he graduated from Columbia and before he moved to Chicago:
… And so, in the months leading up to graduation, I wrote to every civil rights organization I could think of, to any black elected official in the country with a progressive agenda, to neighborhood councils and tenant rights groups. When no one wrote back, I wasn’t discouraged. I decided to find more conventional work for a year, to pay off my student loans and maybe even save a little bit. I would need the money later, I told myself. Organizers didn’t make any money; their poverty was proof of their integrity.

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…

I know that Obama was still a young man at that point, inexperienced and idealistic, but his use of the phrase “Like a spy behind enemy lines,” is illuminating.

Who, exactly was the “enemy?” It’s reasonable to conclude that the enemy was either wall street or corporate business or the world of finance. After I got my undergraduate degree, I looked at the world of business as many things—a mystery, a challenge, a complex system—but an enemy?

What a strange reference.

There is, of course, one ideology that does look at business as the “enemy.” It rails against the “big corporations,” condemns capitalism, uses “profit” as a dirty word, and suggests, as both Barack and Michele Obama have done, that there’s something not quite right about someone who chooses the world of business over service to the state. At its most benign, that ideology is socialist. At its most virulent, it’s Marxist.

Maybe when Barack Obama wrote pp. 55 – 56 he chose his words poorly, but I doubt that’s the case. He meant what he said. I can only wonder if deep down, the cipher still believes it.