Posts Tagged ‘Nazi’

The Barack behind the curtain exposed

During the campaign, Obama’s critics, including yours truly, told you that he was too radical, unqualified, totally inexperienced, untrained for leadership or management, narcissistic, and so on. You can see what I said back then farther down my headline news articles page.

69 million people did not believe us and voted for him on election day.

Now, week by week, those who supported him are turning against him. And those who were already against him are turning more against him than they were in November, 2008.

Not just health care

Why? Not because of health care as the pundits seem to be saying. True, the turn coincides with the health care debate, but it’s more about Obama than about health care. This in spite of his saying, “It’s not about me.”

In fact, with Obama, everything is about Obama. Like most presidential candidate finalists, he is a sociopath. (I strongly urge you to read that Web site definition of sociopath. Now that we know Obama much better, it is chilling to read.) Sociopath-ness is roughly speaking extreme egomania combined with difficulty recognizing that there is more than one person on earth, that the rest of the human race are not merely useful farm animals.

Mystique

I talk in my book Succeeding about the short-lived effect of mystique when others get to know the person who supposedly has it. Mystique is “an air or attitude of mystery and reverence developing around something or someone.”

Obama is not the only person with mystique. Navy SEALs have it. Service academy graduates. Ex P.O.W.s. Ivy Leaguers. FBI agents. And so on.

I have experienced the mystique effect as a result of graduating from West Point, Harvard Business School, Army ranger school, and being a Vietnam veteran and a book author. When a person with some sort of mystique arrives at a new job, he is “The West Point guy” or the “Harvard MBA.” But after I was there for a couple of weeks, I became just Jack, a unique individual with strengths and weaknesses like everyone else.

The Great Black Hope

When he was elected and inaugurated, Barack was “The Great Black Hope.” But, inevitably, in the fish bowl of the White House, he was unable to prevent the public from finally seeing who he really is. He tried, like the Wizard of Oz ranting and raving from behind the curtain. But the microscopic press scrutiny did what Dorothy’s dog Toto did in the Wizard of Oz movie. It pulled back the curtain and revealed Barack Obama for what he really is: a 48-year-old guy with no experience or training in leadership or management. A petulant guy who gets extremely irritated when things don’t go his way. An astonishingly overconfident guy who thinks he can charm the pants off foreign crowds (yes in France and Germany; no in Russia), foreign leaders (name one), Cambridge cops, the American public (falling polls), Congressional Republicans (none voted for a couple of his main bills), and the press (even they are turning against him one by one).

Brazen liar

Obama lied. He lied during the campaign and it didn’t hurt him. As he likes to say, “I won.”

He lied more after the inauguration, and combined it with a bum’s rush telling us we had to enact his laws immediately or the world would come to an end. And he got away with that for a while—about three months.

Apparently, he figured his success at lying meant he could keep on lying and bum’s rushing us for two full terms in the Oval Office. Then he learned what another tall, skinny, Illinois, legislator-lawyer turned president once said.

You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time. Abraham Lincoln

With his hyperdangerous, extreme overconfidence, Obama figures the rules that apply to ordinary mortals do not apply to him, including that one.

Actually, the rules apply to him, too, including that one.

Now they see the real Barack

The public, including tens of millions of his former supporters, now see him as a dishonest radical who really does not know what he is doing and who is trying to bluff his way through the most difficult job on earth. They now recognize the bum’s rushes for what they were and are now saying “Slow down!”—literally shouting that phrase at some town hall meetings.

They see that the allegations that the stimulus money would hardly get out the door in 2009 as accurate. They are not buying Obama’s claims that his “stimulus” turned the economy around (only $70 billion has been spent, a drop in the bucket considering total U.S. consumer spending is about $9 trillion a year). Americans are horrified by the monstrous current and projected deficits. They recognize that he overpromised when he said the stimulus package would keep unemployment from exceeding 8%. They see his foreign policy as making speeches but accomplishing next to nothing and a more dangerous world than on Inauguration Day with more dying in Afghanistan, renewed violence in Iraq, allies reducing troop strength in Afghanistan and Iraq, Iran openly suppressing its people, North Korea detonating nukes and test firing long-range missiles, an administration at war with our CIA.

It is dawning on the American people, that this man who never crossed the Rio Grande until recently, never served in the military or diplomatic corps, never worked in government except as a state senator and U.S. Senator who was always campaigning for president, and rarely traveled other than to live in Indonesia as a 6- to 10-year old, is not prepared to oversee foreign or defense policy.

It took him 17 meetings and phone calls to approve shooting the Somali pirates. I am not ready to be president, but I did serve in the military and in various managerial positions. When the military requested the second meeting with me on the pirates matter, I would have chewed them out. “Figure it out for chrissake! Haven’t we spent enough training you and paying you?” See my article on the subject.

Lashing out irrationally at opponents

Obama’s reaction to his declining poll numbers and flagging health care support has been to accuse opponents of being Nazis, being a rent-a mob paid by insurance companies. He says the criticisms of his health care plan are lies in spite of video clips of his saying the opposite being played over and over on radio and TV shows. He sometimes contradicts himself in the same speech. He often says stuff that is the opposite of what he said on prior audio or video tapes. He never admits his lies or mistakes.

In contrast, while governor of California, Ronald Reagan once said his “feet were set in concrete” on a particular issue. Later, he recognized he was not going to win and joked, “The sound you hear is the concrete around my feet breaking.”

Obama is utterly incapable of such honesty or character.

Tangled web

Another rule Obama thinks does not apply to him was articulated by Sir Walter Scott,

Oh what a tangled web we weave, When first we practice to deceive

Actually, that rule applies to him, too.

Who is angrier at him?

It is a toss up who is angrier at him: the liberals to whom he lied, or the conservatives. He figured he was so charming he could get away with the most brazen lies no matter whether they were directed at his supporters or his opponents. Air America, a leftist radio net work recently called him a “charming liar.” Leftists also called him Cheney, a fascist, a sell-out to the drug companies, They play clips of him over and over promising, during the campaign, not to do precisely that which he subsequently did. His promises of transparency, bills being posted for at least five days on his Web site, not taking non-federal campaign contributions, no earmarks, etc., etc. All promises broken without the slightest apology or explanation.

The anti-war crowd gave him a key Iowa primary victory early in his campaign. Now he is surging in Afghanistan. All he has given them on the wars is changing the terminology and a promised future shut down of Guantanamo (with no plan as to where to put the detainees). They thought they were voting for a pull-out guy. Instead, they re-elected a total Bush clone with regard to war policy.

Ann Dunham’s weasely boy Barry

The American people welcomed Barack the “historic” black president for change. Now they are starting to recognize they got scammed. He may have a black father, but he is not a symbol. He is just a man, a brazenly dishonest man, a “charming liar” who is not charming enough to get away with his lies, a suicidally overconfident con man, a man whose instincts when he encounters opposition are self-destructive, a radical leftist, and an incompetent. His half black DNA, it turns out, is irrevelant. The salient fact is that he is an inept liar and every bit as dangerous to the nation as if he were 100% white.

How long will it take for blacks to start worrying whether they chose the wrong guy for first black president and that this guy will ultimately set their cause back by his incompetence and dishonesty? Blacks helped put a black sociopath in the Oval Office. About the only racial advance that represents is informing non-blacks that there are black sociopaths, too.

The great savior Barack Obama has been inevitably revealed to be just Ann Dunham’s weasely boy Barry—the bullshit artist whose picture is now in the dictionary next to the definition of a “legend in his own mind.”

‘Content of his character’

In his famous “I have a Dream” speech, Martin Luther King, Jr. said he dreamed of “a day when his four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”

On election day, 2008 and Inauguration Day 2009, Barack Oama was judged by the color of his skin. Now, not the inauguration, is the real realization of King’s dream. Barack Obama is finally, in the late summer of 2009, being judged by the content of his character, not the color of his skin. It turns out the color of his skin was concealing the fact that he has no character.

Is the U.S. Army’s armor branch a fraud?

“There’s been some thinking about our tanks. They’re not great in urban environments. They’re too imposing. They scare civilians.” Then, as calmly as he could, [Charlie Company Commander, 1/34 Armor Captain Pat] Chavez told them they would be going to Iraq without their tanks.

From page 99 of the 2008 book In a Time of War by Bill Murphy, Jr.

Wherever it says tank, substitute Humvee

Among the subordinates he was speaking to was Lieutenant Todd Bryant, West Point Class of 2002. He had chosen armor for his branch at West Point. At West Point, your ability to get the branch you want depends on your class standing after four years of academics. (I graduated from West Point in 1968. I was going to choose armor as my branch my first year at West Point, but I was turned off completely at Fort Knox, the armor headquarters base, the summer before my sophomore year, when they told us for every hour they operated the then M-60 tanks, they had to perform ten hours of maintenance. I never liked working on cars and the armor branch suddenly sounded like you spend almost all of your time supervising soldier mechanics. I chose communications instead.)

After going through armor (tank) training and working long hours to get their tanks ready for Iraq, Bryant and his men were being told they were going to war without their 70-ton M1 Abrams tanks.

So what were they going to use instead of tanks?

Humvees.

Poof! You’re an infantryman

There is another branch of the Army called the infantry. Their traditional image is that they walk everywhere. But that’s no longer the case. They generally ride nowadays. In what? Humvees.

So by denying Lieutenant Bryant’s unit their tanks in Iraq, the U.S. Army turned 1/34 Armor into 1/34 Infantry (albeit without acknowledging that). This in spite of the fact that the men in 1/34 Armor had only the most minimal infantry training in basic training (e.g., learning how to shoot a rifle and how to maneuver as a ten-man squad in the woods) and in spite of the fact that billions were spent designing and building their tanks, training the men and officers in how to operate and maintain them, and training the armor officers in tank tactics.

Why have an armor branch if when you send them into combat you are going to designate them as infantry and force them to fight as untrained infantry?

IED protection

One of the virtues of an Abrams tank in Iraq is that if an IED goes off underneath it, the occupants probably will not be hurt. It would have to be a special IED called a shaped charge or EFP to penetrate a tank.

An IED did go off under Lt. Bryant’s Humvee. They never found his legs. After making a few incoherent sounds for a few seconds, he died.

At a West Point dinner in 2009, I sat at a table with a woman whose son was in Iraq. He had graduated from West Point recently. He wanted the armor branch but did not get it. Then, after the branch-choice night at West Point, he was told there some additional armor slots and asked if he wanted one. He did. He was thrilled. His mom was thrilled for him.

Tanks lite

He is now in Iraq with his armor unit. Do they have tanks? No. They are riding around in 30-ton M2A2 Bradley Fighting Vehicles.

Is that a tank? No. It looks a little like a tank. It has treads and a turret and metal sides with no widows or doors. So why is it not a tank?

It has no cannon, just a 25mm 242 chain gun, a heavy machine gun or light cannon. Guns of this size were common in World War II aluminum fighter planes where they were used to shoot down other aluminum fighter planes. The Bradley also has TOW missiles, but it has to stop to shoot them. Infantrymen also have TOW missiles. It also has no armor except on the front. The strength of that armor is classified, probably because the Army is embarrassed at how lousy it is.

The hull base is aluminum. It is a scout vehicle, not a tank. Scout vehicles run around at fairly high speeds out in front of an Army unit looking for the enemy. Their job is not to fight the enemy. It is to locate them and report back. The only reason they even have any armor or weapons is simply to defend themselves in a dangerous part of the battlefield. Wikipedia says it provides “at least some armored protection.” That’s code for “barely any armored protection.”

Humvees also commonly have a .50 caliber machine gun, which is a little smaller than a 25mm. Humvees also have TOWs.

False sense of security

I am not an expert, but my impression from various sources is that the Bradley is not an armored vehicle. It is a faux armored vehicle which gives mainly a false sense of security to its occupants. The Bradley’s ammunition and fuel storage scares experts, but the empirical results from actual combat indicate surprising survivability. The movie The Pentagon Wars was about the fight within the military to try to remedy the Bradley’s many deficiencies.

I am suspicious as to whether the Bradley’s armor can stop a .50 cal. bullet. That is a common heavy machine gun used by most military and irregular military forces around the world. Sniper rifles are often .50 cal. nowadays.

Bottom line, the Bradley is not a tank. So much of the training and tactics taught to armor personnel do not apply to the Bradley.

Armor casualties in Vietnam

One of my West Point roommates was wounded twice in Vietnam. On one of those occasions, the driver next to him was killed by the burst of gunfire that wounded my roommate.

What branch did that roommate choose? Armor. Was he in a tank when he got wounded? Nope. Tanks were generally not usable in Vietnam because of the jungle. He was in the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment. That unit rode around in M113 APCs.

Were APCs tanks? Nope. Were they like Bradley Fighting Vehicles? No. They have no turret and only weight about one-third of what a Bradley weighs.

‘Armored’ Personnel Carriers

APC stands for Armored Personnel Carrier but the word “armored” is a joke. If you fired a .50 cal. bullet at an APC, it would go in one side of the APC and out the other. I know that because I was in the Army at the time. Like the Bradley, its “armor” is made of aluminum. One of its main design requirements was that it be light enough to be carried around by helicopters and C-130 airplanes. The phrase “aluminum armor” is a contradiction in terms. Aluminum is soft, as everyone knows, and it actually bursts into flames at high enough temperatures, like those generated by military warheads. Thermite grenades, which are used to burn through metal, use aluminum powder as one of the ingredients that burns when the grenade is set off.

Here is a comment from Wikipedia about its “tankness:”

Though it was never designed to serve as a light tank, the M113 was the most widely used armored vehicle of the U.S. Army in the Vietnam War, earning the nickname ‘Green Dragon’ among the Viet Cong, as well as APC and ACAV (armored cavalry assault vehicle) by the allied forces, as it was used to break through heavy thickets in the midst of the jungle to attack and overrun enemy positions.

Note also the phrase “personnel carrier.” A tank is a fighting machine. An APC is a battlefield passenger van. It is a merely a box with two benches in it to carry 11 passengers. It typically has a .50 cal. machine gun to protect itself, but its designed mission was to transport troops around the battlefield. What kind of troops? Infantrymen.

‘Tank’ sign

Between the world wars, the Army was short of money. The Great Depression was going on. So they held maneuvers in which they used trucks as tanks. They had white cardboard signs that said “Tank” on them. I have seen films of those maneuvers and the “tanks” on various cable TV channels. I have also seen old newsreel film of inflatable fake tanks that were used by the Allies during World War II in England to trick the Germans into thinking the D-Day invasion was going to be in the Pas de Calais area instead of the actual landing area: Normandy.

The high-ranking armor officers in Vietnam and Iraq and Afghanistan should reprise those old “Tank” signs and put them on the Bradleys and Humvees that their “tankers” are riding around in—or the inflatable Sherman Tanks. Or maybe they could get fake tank tops to put over the Bradleys. You used to see Volkswagen bugs that had their front hoods (trunks) replaced by fiberglass imitation Rolls Royce grilles. Armor officers in Iraq could get fiberglass or styrefoam Abrams covers for their Bradleys and thereby pretend that choosing the armor branch, going to armor school, and swaggering around in their tanker boots really had some connection to the reality of their lives as untrained mechanized infantry.

Freaking pathetic—and these are grown, middle-aged men playing these games—and getting young men killed in the process.

Capabilities and limitations

When I was cadet at West Point, we were often given briefings about the “capabilities and limitations” of various items of military equipment. What are they for the Abrams tank?

Although it is a whiz bang, amazing machine that often stars in Military Channel and History Channel documentaries about its capabilities, like firing accurately while moving at high speed over moguls, a chain is only a strong as its weakest link.

Generally, tanks are designed to operate in desert or other large fields with little vegetation. Their main job is to kill other tanks which is done high-noon, cowboy style by shooting the enemy tank on sight before he shoots you. Tank cannons use extremely high velocity ammunition (and loud!) so they only have to point at the enemy tank and shoot. No need to calculate distance and arc the fire on a parabolic trajectory like artillery.

Tanks are vulnerable to enemy soldiers that can creep up close to them. Civilians have disabled many tanks since they were invented in World War I by throwing Molotov cocktails on them. A Molotov cocktail is simply a glass bottle of kerosene with a cloth wick in the opening. The wick is set on fire then thrown on the tank where it breaks and sends flaming liquid all over the vehicle including into any openings.

I was impressed with the Army’s constant discussion of capabilities and limitations. That is sort of a theme of my book Succeeding which is about surveying your strengths and weaknesses and running your life accordingly. The problem is the military is not keeping that in mind with regard to tanks. There seems to be a mindset that tanks and armored divisions have no need to justify their existence and therefore there is no need to consider what they can do or cannot do. In fact, they are like some odd tool that you would buy at Brookstone. When you need it, it’s great to have, but you rarely need it. Military planners and officers need to create a revised list of the capabilities and limitations of tanks then revise the Army’s tank unit deployments, share of budget, size of units, training, and use in combat accordingly. If they don’t get to it quickly, heads should roll.

Only ‘disabled’

Oddly, Wikipedia makes the following point about Molotov cocktails:

Molotov cocktail thrown at a tank, particularly in the area of the engine block, can destroy the machine making enough heat to ignite the fuel reservoir and melt some connection pipes. It should be noted while Molotov cocktails may be a psychologically effective method of disabling tanks and armored vehicles by forcing the crew out or damaging external components, most modern tanks cannot be physically destroyed or rendered completely inoperable by Molotov cocktails; only "disabled".

I also recall reports from early in the Iraq war that the Abrams could be disabled easily by the enemy firing an RPG into its tail end (engine compartment) from some distance away. The tail end contains the jet turbine engine which needs to take in lots of air and expel lots of exhaust gasses thereby creating two Achilles heels.

Only “disabled?” Uh, what’s the difference between being destroyed and being disabled? That the guys in the tank get to live another few minutes?

To be effective, or just to keep its crew alive, a tank must be able to move, see, communicate with other U.S. forces, and shoot. If it loses any one of those abilities, it is all but useless to its army. Furthermore, if it loses any one of those abilities, its crew probably only has minutes to live. Once the tank is immobilized, or loses its ability to communicate or to see or to shoot, it cannot escape or call for help or defend itself.

Lilliputians versus tied-down Gulliver

Even the most unsophisticated civilian gang can set fires on the tank that kill the occupants with heat or by setting off fuel or ammunition within the tank. Enemy with access to military munitions or civilian chemicals can put thermite grenades on parts of the tank to burn through them. Normal explosives like hand grenades or rifles or mechanics tools can be used to destroy the engine, antennas, external machine gun and cannon barrels, periscopes by enemy standing on or next to the tank. If they have more time and it’s necessary, the enemy can even use cutting torches and other heavy duty demolition tools to open the tank. If other American units do not rescue it, the enemy can kill the occupants by cutting off their oxygen, water, or even food. If a body of water and heavy moving equipment are available, they can push the tank into water deep enough to submerge it. A big enough explosive charge can flip it over, blow the turret off, or crack it open.

A disabled tank is useless at best and almost certainly about to be fully destroyed.

Thick vegetation or urban environment

Enemy fighters can creep up close to the tank in thick vegetation or urban areas. Remember the line from the first paragraph of this article:

They’re not great in urban environments.

That’s a gross understatement. They are almost helpless in urban areas if even a single enemy has the courage to work their way close to them with a Molotov cocktail, RPG, thermite grenade or other simple weapon. Talk about asymmetric warfare: an Abrams tank costs $3.45 million; a Molotov cocktail, $1.

Multi-story buildings

Tanks are vulnerable to enemy shooting RPGs at them from second or higher stories of buildings because tanks have thinner armor on top than on their front and sides.

Soft ground

Tanks are extremely heavy. While their treads enable them to traverse varied ground that wheeled vehicles could not traverse, soft ground immobilizes tanks. Many disabled tanks in wars were disabled by soft ground. Many of those were then destroyed by the enemy.

Bridges

Bridges are another mobility problem for tanks because of their weight. Each bridge can carry a certain amount of weight. If the tank exceeds it, it needs another stronger bridge built to cross the river or other body of water.

Narrow twisting roads

In addition to being heavy, tanks are wide and the driver has poor visibility. During my tour in Vietnam, two guys in my units died. One was driving a self-propelled 8-inch howitzer. That is a tank with its turret removed and replaced by a huge open air cannon, sort of a convertible tank with the top down and a bigger gun. He could not see well at a particular stretch of road in Vietnam and the vehicle rolled over killing him. This happened in spite of the fact that the III Corps area of Vietnam where we were was generally as flat as a pool table.

During the Bosnia War, I recall reading that the allies had debilitating trouble using tanks in that mountainous area because of narrow roads and weak bridges.

Oceans and continents

Because they are so heavy, it is almost impossible to move significant numbers of them great distances rapidly. Accordingly, they have to be forward deployed around the world in advance—transported to those locations by ships and trains. And if the U.S. and its allies do not have air supremacy in the battle in question, our tanks will be wiped out within hours by enemy aircraft.

Top-secret map

There is probably a top-secret map of the world at the Fort Knox headquarters of the U.S. Army armor branch. I expect the map would show the surprisingly few open areas around the world where tanks can operate—deserts, plains, rolling hills with few trees. It would also show the bridges around the world that cannot accommodate a 70-ton Abrams tank. And it would show the narrow roads where tanks cannot go.

A tank route, like a chain, is only as strong as its weakest link. A particular area of the world could be great tank country in general, but if there is a choke point where the tanks cannot get from one part of the theater to another because of a single weak bridge or narrow mountain road, then tanks are of little or no use there. The enemy can simply cross the bridge to the side without the tanks or walk up the twisty narrow road past the point that tanks cannot negotiate.

The map also shows all the urban areas where tanks would be too vulnerable. The enemy can easily neutralize tanks, as they have in Iraq, by simply retreating into urban areas where tanks dare not go.

Is this map top secret to keep our enemies from knowing what it says? Hell, no! They can easily, and probably already have, create the same map. It’s top secret to keep the Congress, the press, and the public from knowing how extremely limited tanks are—so limited that their existence in large numbers, along with the existence of a full armor branch, is dubious at best.

Light Army versus heavy Army

Page 137 of the 2009 book The Gamble, which is about the 2006-2008 war in Iraq, has this telling discussion.

[Lt. Gen.] Dubik saw the entrance of the light Army, comprised nowadays of three divisions, the 82nd Airborne, the 101st Airborne, and the 10th Mountain. Those light-infantry units, lacking tanks and much other armor, had been easier to deploy, and so were assigned the odd jobs of the Cold War, from peacekeeping in the Sinai and Somalia to hurricane relief in Florida. The heavy Army, with its tanks, armored personnel carriers, self-propelled artillery pieces, and thousands of other pieces of gear, remained focused on the plains of Central Europe, where its mission was to be prepared to blunt the onslaught of a Red Army. “We were the window-doers throughout the Cold War,” said Dubik…“The ‘real Army’ didn’t do windows,” he said, until forced to do so in Bosnia in 1995. The heavy Army also led the invasion of Iraq in 2003, perhaps feeling it was its turn, after the Special Operations and light infanry had invaded Afghanistan two years earlier.

Note the phrase “remained focused on the Central Plains of Europe.” That was my sense when I was in the Army and has been since as I see media stories about the Army. You heard a lot of discussion about the Fulda Gap when I was in the Army. I do not know how ready the U.S. Army was to stop the Russians coming through the Fulda Gap, but the Russians would have been wise to attack anywhere eles because the whole U.S. Army seemed to be designed to stop a Russian tank attack through that area.

The notion that the U.S. Army should be so designed is my complaint. “Doing windows” appears to be the fate of the U.S. Army for the forseeable future. Tanks don’t “do windows.” The problem is what they do do barely exists.

Note also the phrase “…perhaps feeling it was its turn…” That is the sort of childish clamor for attention and getting in on the “fun” that governs much use of the various U.S. military forces. We need to stop indulging the desire of Army brass for expensive photogenic toys and getting “its turn” and focus on what the Army really needs to be equipped for and good at.

Tanks versus aircraft

In World War II, they had a number of ways to kill enemy tanks, namely:

• bazookas

• artillery

• anti-tank guns

• other tank guns

• aircraft bombs or rockets

Which was most effective? Aircraft. What defenses does the Abrams have against aircraft? Not much. Wikipedia says,

It also fires HEAT shaped charge [anti-armor] rounds such as the M830, the latest version of which (M830A1) incorporates a sophisticated multi-mode electronic sensing fuse and more fragmentation which allows it to be used effectively against armored vehicles, personnel, and low-flying aircraft.

They also have very limited capability to generate smoke or chaff (aluminum foil strips shot into the air like confetti). Smoke hides the tank briefly if there’s little wind and chaff hopes to confuses radar guidance systems until it falls to the ground within seconds of being shot into the air.

As far as I know, no tank has ever shot down an enemy aircraft.

Defenseless against aircraft

But as I said, the main killer of tanks in World War II was fighter planes dropping bombs, firing 37mm cannons, or firing rockets. Those were dumb bombs and dumb rockets. Current military aircraft can kill tanks almost at will, especially, the A-10 Warthog U.S. jet that was designed specifically to kill enemy tanks. It has a Gatling gun that shoots spent uranium (the most dense metal) 30mm bullets that go right through tank armor and destroy the crew and inside with sheer force and the heat generated.

Bombers can also destroy or disable tanks with plain old high-explosive smart (e.g., http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AGM-65_Maverick) or dumb bombs, as can accurate artillery. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CLGP#Cannon_Launched_Guided_Projectiles.

Helicopters can also easily destroy tanks with rockets and anti-tank cannons.

Here is an interesting line from the Wikipedia article on anti-tank warfare:

Anti-tank missiles were first used in a helicopter-borne role by the French in the late 1950s, when they mounted SS.11 wire-guided missiles to Alouette II helicopters. While initially, there were many teething problems, the possibilities were clear, such as providing the ability to attack the more lightly armored top of the tank. Some claimed that the tank was essentially obsolete at that stage.

That is my tentative conclusion as well, only I am drawing that conclusion in 2009, not the late 1950s. I have seen on TV some sort of bomb that explodes in the air and sends individual anti-tank bomblets at a bunch of tanks on the ground homing in on each individual tank and destroying it. One shot; a dozen or more tank kills.

Checkmate.

Billy Mitchell analogy

I recently read and reviewed the book A Question of Loyalty about Army Air Corps General Billy Mitchell. He was court martialed and forced out of the Army for saying more or less what I am saying here about the vast superiority of air power over a big, complex, venerable weapons system. Only his fight was with the navy over the fact that a plane could sink a battleship. Navy brass were outraged, but they were none too eager to agree to a test.

Mitchell raised enough hell that Congress demanded a test. The Navy tried to rig the rules, but Mitchell and his men sank the left-over World War I German battleship anyway. The navy still had their beloved battleships when World War II started, but they were pretty much a joke by the end of the war. They had a brief renaissance beating up on third-world countries like Vietnam and Lebanon, but they have since become museum pieces literally.

Would the Army be interested in similarly testing whether its tanks can stand up to any sort of enemy aircraft? I expect they would readily admit they would not have a chance. Sooooo, please explain again why do we have 7,000 of them?

If they are so strong, why do they need so much protection?

Tanks raise a question that has been asked about aircraft carriers. Doctrine in the armor branch calls for tanks to operate in teams and preferably with mechanized infanry. Part of the reason is combined arms team enhanced offensive effectiveness and all that. But much of it is to protect the damn tanks because they are so valuable and vulnerable. Similarly, aircraft carrier “battle groups” are a mob of other ships around aircraft carriers to protect them from enemy aricraft, ships, and submarines.

If aircraft carriers and tanks need so much damned protection, why don’t we just leave them home?

I wrote another article similar to this one in which I wonder if navy surface ships are not also anachronistic sitting ducks.

Desert Storm tank success?

What about the last big tank battle in Desert Storm? The armor branch would point to that as evidence of how great the armor equipment and their men were. Seems to me that U.S. and allied aircraft including helicopters and jets could have easily and quickly destroyed all the Iraqi tanks, and damned near all the Iraqi troops, with no casualties and no friendly-fire incidents. Why didn’t they? I suspect that they were held back by Army armor advocates who wanted to use the battle to justify their existence and gather some career-building glory.

Why is there no friendly-fire problem, especially when most U.S. tank casualties were caused by friendly fire from U.S. aircraft? Because if you do not use the tanks at all, they are not there to be hit by friendly U.S. aircraft. Some allied vehicles in Desert Storm were hit by friendly vehicles shooting at them. And as far as I know, no U.S. aircraft has ever accidentally shot down another friendly aircraft with an anti-tank weapon.

Kids’ game

Make sure you understand what I am saying. It appears that U.S. armor were used, and some of the men in them were wounded or died, in Desert Storm, not because they were needed, but because they did not want to be left out of the fun. As if it were all some sort of kids’ game complete with sibling rivalries (Army armor branch versus Army helicopters versus Navy, Air Force, and Marine aircraft) for the attention of the parents (Pentagon).

Actually, I feel that way about almost the entire Desert Storm ground war in Iraq and Kuwait. Aircraft could have, and should have, done the whole thing with regard to enemy troops in the open. American ground troops were killed and wounded, mostly by friendly fire, in a sort of sham ground war against hundreds of thousands of Iraqi troops who either wanted to surrender or who were defenseless against allied aircraft. Not only would the war have cost far less in terms of blood. it would also have been far cheaper in terms of money if we had left most of the Army and Marines home, notwithstanding the old shibboleth that air power alone is not enough; you need ground troops. Not if the stupid sons of bitches go out in the desert and sit in trenches and/or tanks like the Iraqis did in Desert Storm. Norman Schwarzkopf and his Army and Marine underlings were “playing Army,” like some sort of Battle of El Alamein war reenactors.

Summary

You can tell the men from the boys by the size of their toys. It would appear that tanks are a very expensive, anachronistic toy for armor officers. They still have a limited role to play. The refusal of the Clinton Administration to send armor to Somalia reportedly exacerbated the Blackhawk Down incident. 18 American Rangers and Delta Force soldiers died. We had to borrow a U.N. (Pakistani) tank to extract the survivors. On the other hand, Mogadishu is one of those tightly-packed, narrow streets urban areas where tanks are vulnerable to attacks from up close that can disable them.

The problem is we have about 7,000 Abrams tanks so that we can fight a battle like the huge Battle of Kursk between the Nazis and the Soviets in 1943. But I read somewhere that no other country, including Russia, any longer has such great numbers of tanks. So the battle we have spent billions getting ready for cannot possibly take place because no enemy of comparable tank size exists, not to mention finding a place to hold it.

The U.S. Army appears to be afraid to send tanks to Iraq. As of March, 2005, 80 Abrams tanks had been knocked out of action by the enemy there according to the Wikipedia Abrams tank article. If we are afraid to expose the Abrams to the enemy other than in desert battles that seem unlikely to ever happen, and which we can easily win with aircraft, why are we spending hundreds of millions on tanks, tank training, and tank personnel?

It reminds me of what I said about the airborne (paratroop) divisions. There has not been a significant combat parachute jump since Operation Varsity in 1945 in Germany. There were only a relatively few significant size parachute drops of infantry in all of World War II. Arguably, they were all disasters and the general behind-closed-doors consensus was not to do them any more. Yet every weekday with nice weather at Fort Bragg, Fort Campbell, and Fort Benning, you can see huge parachute drops. These cost billions over time and are almost a total waste of time. Apparenly, airborne divisions only exis so that young men can brag about being paratroopers and so that officers con be assigned to those units as evidence of their crown prince status on the career ladder. General David Petraeus, for example, was commander of the 101st Airborne Division in Mosul before he became Iraq then Centcom Commander. (I was in the 101st for a month in July 1966 and in the 82nd for four months before I went to Vietnam in 1969.)

Our armored and airborne divisions’ equipment should be mothballed. A small cadre of soldiers should be kept on active airborne status and some small tank units should be spread around the Army like heavy artillery units are. The U.S. military and its civilian supervisors need to stop making decisions about the make up of the Army on the basis of letting military officers have expensive, but rarely useful toys to play with. We also need to stop buying expensive equipment mainly because it lets Congress take credit for jobs in their district. Soldiers need, but do not have, more unmanned drone aircraft, armored humvees, robots, better body armor, and so on. But those are small, not photogenic, and do not create as many jobs as tanks and ships and fighter planes. So the Army goes without them. But the object of the entire enterprise is supposed to be to accomplish the U.S.’s military missions and protect its troops, not to amuse officers and let Congress use the military budget to buy votes.

The current size and use of armored equipment and personnel appears to be an outrage and a fraud on the American people and on low-level American enlisted men and officers. They choose armor branch, spend months or years learning how to operate, maintain, and employ them tactically, only to be sent at the last minute to fight and die as untrained mechanized infantry. The main role of the tank—to kill other tanks—has long since passed to manned and unmanned aircraft which do it far more efficiently.

Anticipating some criticism I answer as follows:

Possible criticism My answer
I am a great guy. I work on Abrams tanks at Anniston. I do a great job. I want to keep my job. The part I install works great. Therefore your article is wrong. All irrelevant. I did not write about any of that other than to say the Abrams is a whiz bang machine. The issue is whether its weak links and Achilles’ heels render it useless or near useless in too many situations.
Tens of thousands of great soldiers have soldiers have served honorably in tanks in battle and many of them died doing so. I agree. Too many of them died because of poor design, weak spots in the designs and inapporpirate or unnecessary use of tanks. I did not comment on the bravery of tank crews in the article. I think it takes some extra bravery just to be in the armor branch even in peacetime because heavy equipment is dangerous in the best of conditions. But that’s not what the article is about.
You’d be terrified if a tank was coming at you. At Fort Knox when my West Point class was going through armor training, I was an extra man once. I had to ride in a jeep in front of the company of tanks that was attacking over a hill behind me. At one point, I turned to look back at the tanks. That was one scary sight. I particularly remember the sand boiling out of the tops of the treads and the turrets swinging back and forth like some malevolent, angry, giant insects looking for someone to sting. Very scary, sir, but can they survive a Molotov cocktail or an RPG to the engine compartment?
The Abrams can shoot a Coke can out of someone’s hand while moving from 3 km away. Impressive! And if that is what I need done and your tank can get to within 3KM of that Coke drinker, I will call you. But If I am fighting in Baghdad, I will probably not have any use for a 3km cannon.

Secretary of Defense Gates says a similar thing on 4/7/09

I posted this article first around 4/4/09. On 4/7/09, the Wall Street Journal had a front page story saying Secretary of Defense Gates unveiled a sweeping overhaul of weapons priorities to reorient the U.S. military to winning unconvenional wars, like Iraq, rather than preparing to fight China or Russia. One of the items in Gates’s new plan was cutting back on “the Army’s next generation of armored vehicles.” That doesn’t go far enough. They need to cut back on the last generation of armored vehicles and reassign and retrain the vast majority of existing tank personnel to infantry or mechanized infantry units.

I have condemned too much time and money and personnel being devoted to the following:

• tanks

surface ships

• manned fighter planes

paratroopers

Gates predicted, accurately I believe, that Congressmen who benefit politically, and companies that benefit financially, from the overly expensive, unneeded weapons programs will fight the cuts tooth and nail for their own selfish reasons. I predict the bad guys will win. They always have. And our new anti-war commander in chief doesn’t have the moral courage or integrity to stop them this time either any more than he stopped the earmarks he promised would end if he was elected. The “leaders” who are responsible for making our national defense as strong as possible have no interest in doing so. Both the generals and the civilians in question are only interested in using the national defense budget to feather their own nests, in spite of the fact that U.S. servicemen die as a result.

On 3/26/10, I saw a Soviet general interviewed about the Soviet war in Afghanistan on a Military Channel program called “Fields of Armor”. Th e Soviet said Afghanistan revealed that the days of armor were over. That Soviet Afghan war ended in 1989—more than 20 yars ago.

I appreciate informed, well-thought-out constructive criticism and suggestions. If there are any errors or omissions in my facts or logic, please tell me about them. If you are correct, I will fix the item in question. If you wish, I will give you credit. Where appropriate, I will apologize for the error. To date, I have been surprised at how few such corrections I have had to make.

On what date has Obama scheduled his Kristallnacht?

I have compared Obama to Hitler, notwithstanding readers telling me that’s over the line. No, it’s not. See my line-by-line comparison in my Obama victory article. The other articles where I saw similarities between Obama and Hitler are:

http://johntreed.com/outlawopposition.html

http://johntreed.com/Obamaflag.html

One similarity is Obama’s efforts to use businesspersons and investors or “speculators” as scapegoats. Hitler used the Jews.

I increasingly see headlines about Obama’s anger at Wall Street and big corporations. It succeeded enough that a Republican Senator, Grassley of Iowa, called on AIG CEO Edward Liddy to commit suicide. The guy has only been in the job since September and gets paid $1 a year for crissake! AIG executives have had their lives threatened.

On 3/19/09, I saw scenes of demonstrators chanting and marching in front of AIG. Congressmen are yelling at business executives at hearings which border on show trials of those executives.

Watching all these denunciations and the stoking of as much anger as possible, I wonder,

When is Obama’s Kristallnacht?

The original Kristallnacht was the night between November 9th and 10th, 1938.

Kristallnacht” is German for “crystal night.” They called it that because the streets of German cities were covered with broken glass. Where did the broken glass come from? Shop windows of shops owned by Jews.

Kristallnacht was a coordinated attack, in the form of seemingly spontaneous riots, on Jews all over Germany. 91 were murdered and 20,000 to 30,000 were arrested and sent to concentration camps. More than 200 synagogues were destroyed and thousands of homes and businesses were ransacked. All Jews in Germany were forced to pay a collective huge fine (one billion Deutsche marks—$5.5 million 2009 U.S. dollars) for the assassination of the diplomat. The Nazi government collected the fine by confiscating 20% of all Jewish property. The government also confiscated the insurance payments to the shop owners for the riot losses.

This is somewhat similar to the unconstitutional 90% tax on executive bonuses levied almost overnight by the Congress on the pretext of the AIG bonuses. Jews were denounced as “parasites,” not unlike the denunciations of corporations and banks who received bailout money and behaved in their normal ways thereafter.

Hitler also used the Jews as a way to distract the German people from the economic problems that had not been eliminated by the Nazis. Here are two quotes from the Wikipedia write up on the word “scapegoat.”

Scapegoating is an important tool of propaganda; the most famous example in modern history is the singling out in Nazi propaganda of the Jews as the source of Germany’s post-World War I economic woes and political collapse.

Scapegoating is an effective if temporary means of achieving group solidarity, when it cannot be achieved in a more constructive way. It is a turning inward, a diversion of energy away from serving nebulous external purposes toward the deliciously clear, specific goal of ruining a disliked co-worker’s life. … Mobbing can be understood as the stressor to beat all stressors. It is an impassioned, collective campaign by co-workers to exclude, punish, and humiliate a targeted worker. Initiated most often by a person in a position of power or influence, mobbing is a desperate urge to crush and eliminate the target. The urge travels through the workplace like a virus, infecting one person after another. The target comes to be viewed as absolutely abhorrent, with no redeeming qualities, outside the circle of acceptance and respectability, deserving only of contempt. As the campaign proceeds, a steadily larger range of hostile ploys and communications comes to be seen as legitimate.

Who coordinated the original Kristallnacht? The Nazi party which had been in power since 1933.

The pretext of the original Kristallnacht was the assassination of a German diplomat by a German-born Polish Jew. The pretext for Obama’s Kristallnacht is the payment of $165 million in retention bonuses to AIG executives for remaining with the company until a certain date, a common arrangement with Wall Street executives, major college football coaches, and professional athletes. Essentially, the company is willing to pay a guy, say, $5 million. However, they back-end load it—say $2.4 million in regular salary and $2.6 million as a bonus for staying for two years or whatever. They make sure he stays there for a reasonable period of time. Democrats are also stoking anger over other routine events like corporate parties, living up to contracts with foreign counterparties, renovations of corporate executive offices, and so forth.

In fact, there are an endless number of such incidents that Democrats can feign outrage at. Corporate executives are politicians like the Congress. There is also an endless number of politician scandals if you want to look for them.

I appreciate informed, well-thought-out constructive criticism and suggestions. If there are any errors or omissions in my facts or logic, please tell me about them. If you are correct, I will fix the item in question. If you wish, I will give you credit. Where appropriate, I will apologize for the error. To date, I have been surprised at how few such corrections I have had to make.

Obama’s plan to eliminate the opposition party

In my article on Obama’s victory, I noted that there were a number of disquieting similarities between Obama and Hitler.

I have since seen additional similarities.

Hitler’s party won the most seats in the German government in two early 1930s elections. He was legally appointed Chancellor of Germany as a result of partliamentary coalition political agreements. The problem was he had no intention of ever submitting himself to the voters again—at least in an election with a viable opponent.

With each passing day, and Obama has only been in office two weeks as I write this, he comes out with yet another statement that indicates he intends for the Republican Party to not be a viable opponent come 2012.

• Item: use of “emergencies” to acquire more power. Obama’s Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel said, “A crisis is a terrible thing to waste.” Others have observed that the so-called “stimulus” package contains many provisions that have nothing to do with stimulating the economy. Rather, they are ancient Democrat dreams of greater government control. One waters down the extremely successful welfare reform law signed by President Clinton. Another increases federal government control over doctors’ decisions.

These have been slipped into the “emergency” bill like date rape drugs into a woman’s drink. The 1,071-page bill did not come off the press for Congressmen and Senators to read until midnight on 2/12/09. The vote on it took place on 2/13/09—so soon that no Cengressman or Senator had a chance to read it before voting on the biggest spending bill in U.S. history. The American people, like the date-rape victims, will only figure out what was done to them after the fact. Since Obama’s date rape was successful this time, expect to see additional date rape drug-like power-increasing provisions in future “emergency” bills.

The pork portion of the bill is also a Hitler-like use of an emergency to get more power over the economy. Hitler was elected fair and square, but then there was a fire of unknown origin at the Reichstag (national legislature). Hitler used the fire, which most believe the Nazis started, as a ruse to declare an emergency and grab more power. If Obama had done what the majority of the American people believed should have been done—mostly tax cuts—it would reduce his power. But Obama believes like Emanuel that this crisis is an opportunity to increase power. Increasing power is what he is about, not fixing the economy.

• Item: the Fairness Doctrine or “enforced media accountability” as one liberal talk show host now calls it, which is mainly intended to cut the radio air time of Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and the like in half and use that air time to broadcast free of charge Democrat rebuttals to the audiences of Limbaugh, et al. Technically, Obama says he opposes the Fairness Doctrine, but the Democrat leaders are in favor of it. Obama can let them be the bad guys and still make it the law of the land. As Rush correctly points out, “enforced media accountability” requires the repeal of the First Amendment clauses relating to free speech and a free press. They have “enforced media accountability” in dictatorships all over the world. Here, we have the ability to change the channel.

• Item: Obama has repeatedly singled out Limbaugh and Hannity in speeches and directed Republicans to stop listening to them.

• Item: Obama took the Bureau of the Census away from the Commerce Department for the first time and gave it to his Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel. Emanuel is the hyperpartisan former Chicago Congressman who was in charge of increasing the number of Democrats in Congress in the 2006 and 2008 election. If Gregg had any integrity, which it turned out he did, he would, and did, refuse to be the Commerce Secretary and demand his Senate seat back. There will be a census taken in 2010. It will determine how many people live in each state and thereby determine how many congressmen and electoral votes each state gets. Democrats want their safe states, like California, to get more electoral votes. They also want each Congressional district to be as small as possible geographically so they can gerrymander Republican voters into districts where they can never win. And Democrats want states that have voted Republican in recent elections to lose population and therefore congressmen and electoral votes. The actual count is done by temporary employees hired by the Bureau of the Census. Unlike elections, there are no poll watchers to make sure the count is accurate. Democrats typically argue that homeless and immigrants are undercounted. By claiming there are lots of homeless, they can shrink the size of inner city districts and thereby use some of the guaranteed Democrat votes there to provide majorities in adjacent districts that have enough Republicans to make them competitive. By gerrymandering no-longer-needed Democrat neighborhoods into the districts with about half Republicans, they can turn the Republicans in those districts into a minority and thereby make those districts safe for Democrats. Increasing the number of people in Democrat districts also increases the amount of federal money that goes to those districts in programs where the money is allocated by population, and decreases the amount that goes to Republican districts. I expect Emanuel will hire ACORN to take the census in areas with many blacks and Latinos—given the excellent work they did, from the perspective of Democrats, registering voters in places like Ohio. [I say this with only slight tongue in cheek.] Here is a quote from the Wikipedia writeup on ACORN:

During 2007 and 2008, ACORN gathered over 1.3 million voter registration forms in 21 states; this number included 450,000 first-time voters. The remainder included address changes and approximately 400,000 forms that were rejected for various reasons, including duplications, incomplete forms, and fraudulent registrations. ACORN-submitted registrations in San Diego County, California had a rejection rate of 17 percent for all errors, compared to less than five percent for voter drives by other organizations, according to county officials.

• Item: Obama will grant citizenship to all illegal aliens and invite all their relatives to join them in the U.S. as citizens as well. Democrats have already said that Republicans who oppose the extension of citizenship to relatives are hypocritical with regard to “family values.” This will massively increase the number of Democrat voters and turn the Republicans into a permanent minority nationwide. It has already happened in California, my home state.

• Item: the “Stimulus” package is mainly pork (infrastructure which is government-owned property) and government jobs that Democrats can use to buy votes rather than stimulating businesses (tax cuts) to expand and hire more people

• Item: Obama is seeking legislation to let union organizers intimidate workers into voting for unions by eliminating secret ballots in union elections. Unions are overwhelmingly not only Democrat voters but also Democrat election workers.

I appreciate informed, well-thought-out constructive criticism and suggestions. If there are any errors or omissions in my facts or logic, please tell me about them. If you are correct, I will fix the item in question. If you wish, I will give you credit. Where appropriate, I will apologize for the error. To date, I have been surprised at how few such corrections I have had to make.

Colin Powell is a racist

The media has reported that over 90% of U.S. blacks support Barack Obama. I said that a few may do it because of his resume, character, and positions on the issues. In other words, those few blacks would support Barack Obama if he was a white guy named Barry O’Brien who also had a razor-thin resume, a left wing voting record, and a desire to “spread the wealth around.”

The vast majority of the rest of the blacks who are supporting Obama are doing so for one reason: his father was an African. In other words, they are racist. Colin Powell is apparently one of those racists.

Colin Powell endorsed Obama on NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday, 10/19/08.

Why did he do that? Many others believe it was racist including Rush Limbaugh. Others like O’Reilly have at least raised that question indicating they saw such a possibility. O’Reilly said it was part animosity toward the Bush Administration and Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. I suspect that’s true, but only part of it. I saw the endorsement speech. I concluded Powell’s affection for Obama was purely racist.

You can see the video and transcript of the endorsement yourself at http://www.groundreport.com/Politics/Powell-Endorses-Obama-Criticizes-McCain-VP-Pick-Ca.

I am going to quote portions of it and show why I say it makes no sense other than racial.

Powell Speech Reed Comment
I have some concerns about the direction that the party has taken in recent years it has moved more to the right than I would like to see it, but that’s a choice the party makes. What’s that got to do with McCain? Conservatives are extremely unhappy with him. He has taken the Republican party toward the center with his various maverick positions. Which Republicans did Powell work for? Reagan and two Bush’s. He claims McCain is to the right of Reagan?!
And I’ve said to Mr. Obama, you have to pass a test of ‘do you have enough experience?’ Obama not only has less experience than any presidential candidate in history, he is far behind whomever has the second least experience. He has never held an executive position, that is, one where he managed other people. He dabbled in teaching in law school. He was a 23-year-old editor of an international trade newsletter. All his other jobs were essentially campaigning behind various do-gooder fronts.
I have especially watched over the last 6 or 7 weeks as both of them have really taken a final exam with respect to this economic crisis that we’re in and coming out of the conventions.

Huh!?

First, who is interested in Colin Powell’s take on how to manage an economic crisis? What the hell would he know about it? Check his resume on Wikipedia. It’s all military, national security, and Secretary of State. No domestic or economic experience or training.

Secondly, what did either McCain or Obama do regarding the crisis? Nothing. Both made a couple of phone calls. Both voted yes on the bailout. McCain shot his mouth off a little. Obama displayed a cool, calm, and collected demeanor. In fact, neither McCain nor Obama has a freaking clue about economic crises. The current crisis is unprecedented. Few people on earth, if any, know what to do. Reduced to substance, Obama said nothing and did nothing other than vote yes. To put it another way, Obama merely showed that he learned the lesson from the deodorant commercial: “Never let ’em see you sweat.” There was no “final exam” to use Powell’s phrase. That will come on Inauguration Day. God help us no matter which one gets elected.

And I must say that I’ve gotten a good measure of both, and in the case of Mr. McCain, I found that he was a little unsure as to how to deal with the economic problems that we were having. And almost every day there was a different approach to the problem. McCain was unsure. Who wouldn’t be? 47-year-old Obama doesn’t know any more about it than 72-year-old McCain, if he even knows as much. His silence on the matter is just another example of his being “present.” He’s like the guy at your company who got promoted to big boss because he stood back and avoided ever doing anything that might piss anyone off. Others tried to take action and were passed over because someone did not like the action they took.
I don’t believe [Sarah Palin]’s ready to be President of the United States, which is the job of the Vice President.

He cites no evidence. This is nothing but a Democrat party talking point. Essentially, it’s an intellectually-dishonest debate tactic known as “name calling.” He simply declares her unready, but offers no facts or logic to back it up.

Sarah Palin probably would not get an interview if the most important job in the world were filled like important executive positions normally are. But the same is more true of the other three major candidates. She has more executive experience (mayor and governor) than the other three put together.

Mr. Obama at the same time has given us some more broader inclusive reach into the needs and aspirations of our people. He’s crossing lines– ethnic lines, racial lines, generational lines. He’s thinking about all villages have values, all towns have values, not just small towns have values.

Bull! Obama is making strong efforts to register blacks and get them to the polls. That’s racist. He also called his grandmother “a typical white person” and rural voters desperate people who are clinging to their guns and Bibles. He keeps describing McCain as “out of touch” which is code for too old. He said “they’re” gonna tell you I’m black. In fact, he is the only one who keeps saying that, not “they.”

Obama and his people are constantly playing the race card, calling almost every criticism of Obama racist, including criticism of his association with white terrorist Bill Ayers.

If Obama did not have a black father, none of us would have ever heard of him. He would not be the Democrat presidential candidate. So said Geraldine Ferraro, the first woman major party VP candidate. She was quite correct. The Obama campaign has been based primarily on race since the beginning.

I’m also troubled by…what members of the party say, and is permitted to be said, such things as, ‘Well you know that Mr. Obama is a Muslim.’ Well, the correct answer is, ‘He is not a Muslim, he’s a Christian, he’s always been a Christian.’

That’s a barefaced lie. An old woman said that at one of McCain’s town hall meetings and McCain instantly corrected her. It was all over the TV.

I believe that Obama, McCain, Hillary, and George W. Bush are closet atheists. In other words, Obama is neither a Christian nor a Muslim. You would not have been at any risk of being run over by any of them if you stood in the church doorway when they went to college or spent their early adult years. I think they just pretend to be Christians because it is required in elective politics. If they quit politics you would once again be safe in those church doorways.

But the really right answer is, ‘What if he is? Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this country?’

Powell is babbling here. The answer to his unnecessary question is that there is something wrong if he is Muslim or was and falsely says he never was. It’s an honesty question.

Also, a lot of Americans are rightly concerned that many Muslims, including many in the U.S. think God wants all Americans and other infidels killed and plan to fulfill that wish. They are also rightly concerned that one avowed Muslim tactic is to infiltrate Western societies by shaving off their beards and seeming to be non-religious. Like I said, I doubt Obama believes in God, let alone the Muslim version of God.

And John McCain is as nondiscriminatory as anyone I know, but I’m troubled about the fact that within the party, we have these kinds of expressions. There are 300 million people in the U.S. In presidential elections, about half of them vote Republican since the Reagan elections when a higher percentage did. To say that you are not going to vote for McCain because unnamed persons in his party—that is some of the 150 million Republicans—said something Powell did not like is ridiculous. Of course, you could say the exact same thing about the nut job Democrats who call for the death of Nancy Reagan and Dick Cheney, the gang rape of Sarah Palin, etc.
I think he is a transformational figure, How so? Because he’s half black? Apparently. There is nothing else about him that suggests transformation. His accomplishments other than graduating from affirmative-action Ivy League universities have been less than mediocre—so microscopic they are invisible. His legislative record is run-of-the-mill leftist. He promises to change everything, but he has never previously changed anything in his 47 years.

Also, compare Powell’s life with that of McCain and Obama and ask what aspect of Powell’s experience caused him to support a Democrat against a Republican. I put the similarities with McCain in red and those with Obama in blue.

  McCain Powell Obama
birth year
1936
1937
1961
military career
midshipman/officer 27 years including Vietnam
ROTC cadet/officer 39 years including Vietnam
0
party
Republican
Republican
Democrat
race
Caucasian
Jamaican
Mulatto
federal service
Congressman from 1982-1986; Senator since 1986
National Security Advisor under Republicans Reagan, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs under George H.W. Bush, Secretary of State under George W. Bush
Senator since 2005
invasion of Iraq 2003
favored
favored
said he opposed in a speech
accent and grammar
no accent; normal educated American grammar
no accent; normal educated American grammar
faux, uneducated, Deep South black accent and grammar (I heard a 2001 recording of Obama speaking. He had no accent then. Real accents are learned in childhood. Obama apparently acquired his current accent as a fake affectation after he was in his 40s.)
cocaine use
none known or likely
none known or likely
admitted cocaine use

Do you see anything in that list that indicates Powell has more in common with Obama than McCain? The only thing I see is race. Most people would think Powell’s Jamaican parents come closer to Obama’s Kenyan father race-wise than to McCain’s Caucasian parents. Otherwise, McCain and Powell have not only had very similar lives, they have almost been side by side in their government service serving as military officers at the same time in Vietnam and elsewhere and serving in Washington at the highest levels of the federal government in the 80s and 90s.

Both ‘bargainers’

Another reason I see for Powell supporting Obama over McCain is they are both what Shelby Steele calls “bargainers.” (Steele is a black American author, columnist, documentary film maker, and a research fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University.) Here is an excerpt from an article I wrote about Obama and Jeremiah Wright.

Steele says that prominent blacks fall into two categories:

• bargainers (Obama, Oprah, Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, and I presume Colin Powell and Condoleeza Rice)

• challengers (Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Jeremiah Wright)

He also says some, like Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, fall into a third category, who ignore their race and behave as individuals. Seems to me that’s the only way any of them should act.

Bargainers, according to Steele, tacitly agree not to say “shame on you” and embarrass whites about slavery and segregation in return for white support of the individual in question.

In his 10/31/08 column, Thomas Sowell seems to say that Powell has changed sides—abandoning the “bargainer” mode that got him promotions, fame, and high positions in three white administrations for a new “challenger” persona that makes him more popular with blacks. Sowell notes that, in his memoirs, Powell said he opposed racial quotas. Ha! If there were no racial quotas, no one would have ever heard of Colin Powell. He would have been a high school principal in a bad neighborhood in New York City or something similar.

But Sowell says that at the Republican National Convention, Powell not only demanded racial quotas and preferences, but he did so with a raised fist. I missed that. What a two-faced weasel! Apparently Powell was a closet anti-white racist throughout his 40-year career of sucking up to white bosses. Now, in his 70s, he has come out of the closet and revealed what he is really about. He also criticized Tiger Woods for saying he did not like being labeled “black.” (Tiger Woods is only 25% black. He is also caucasion, Native American, Thai, and Chinese. Unlike Obama, Woods denies none of his ancestors.)

Sowell also faults Powell for the “moral crime” of letting a New York Times reporter go to jail for refusing to identify who told him that Valerie Plame worked for the CIA and for letting Scooter Libby go to jail for remembering events differently from a reporter. Powell knew all along that it was his subordinate Richard Armitage who told the Times that Plame worked for the CIA. But Powell remained silent and let those two people go to jail needlessly.

Two affirmative-action empty suits in a pod

I also think both Powell and Obama are affirmative-action empty suits. Powell is a hyper wimp who opposed Desert Storm when he was head of the U.S. military. That was the 100-hour war to throw Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait which he had invaded. Even the U.N. approved the expelling of Saddam from Kuwait by military force! Powell wanted to rely on economic sanctions. Saddam Hussein would still be there if we had.

Although he had a 39-year military career and held all the top jobs the military has to offer, a career Army officer of that time said Powell “left no footprints.” That is, he came, he got positions and promotions, but he did not do anything other than preside. Sound familiar? In other words, Powell voted “present” when he was in those high positions.

Powell says he just decided to support Obama, that he was undecided until 10/19/08. Yeah, right. I say he decided in favor of Obama the day he learned his skin color and that nothing Obama ever said or did or promised would have changed that support.

Maybe racist is not the right word

I believe Powell endorsed Obama because of the race of Obama’s father, but I also believe that this racism on the part of Powell and the vast majority of the 90% of blacks who support Obama is very different from the normal way the word “racist” is used. Racism usually means that the racist believes his race is superior to the other race. That was the brand of racism exhibited by the Nazis and by white supremacists.

But black support for Obama seems to be an upside-down version of that: a desperate group inferiority complex that may be salved if one of “their people” wins the highest office in the world. This in spite of all the gains made in recent decades by American blacks, not the least of which is Colin Powell himself. He was the first black to be Chairman of the Joint Chiefs and the first to be National Security Advisor to the President and the first to be Secretary of State. Furthermore, he was named to those positions by three Republicans: Reagan and the two Bushes. His Secretary of State successor was Condoleeza Rice, a black woman also appointed by a Republican Bush.

Yet, after all the progress by blacks in general and his own extraordinary individual progress, he throws the Republican party that gave him those positions under the bus in a heartbeat. He supports the Democrat party that has not given blacks such positions because, as has been famously reported many times, the Democrats actually do relatively little for blacks because they know they can take black votes for granted. Democrats just talk the way blacks want. When judged by their actions, they treat blacks far worse than Republicans.

But none of that matters to Powell. That fact that Obama’s father was a drunk, bigamist, serial impregnator and abandoner of his many wives and children matters not. The fact that Obama’s mother was white and that Obama was raised entirely by whites and an Indonesian stepfather matters not. The mere fact that Obama’s absentee biological father was a native of Kenya, Africa trumps all. It trumps Powell’s loyalty to the men and party he served. It trumps Obama’s razor-thin resume. It trumps Obama’s leftist ideology which is the opposite of the ideology Powell allied himself with when his career was benefiting from those alliances. It trumps Obama’s associations with many people whom Powell would never have associated with.

Indeed, it is interesting that both Powell and Obama associated with people—Republicans in Powell’s case and radicals in Obama’s. Early on, they used those associations to advance their careers. Then, when they no longer needed the associates in question, they dumped them without the slightest hesitation or apology.

An Obama election will not deliver blacks to the promised land. On the contrary, this election has revealed, surprisingly to non-blacks, how far the inside of most black minds is from a post-racial world. Blacks will know they have truly arrived in the post-racial world when the black support for a black or quasi-black major candidate reflects that candidates’ character, experience, training, and positions on the issues, not his skin color—when the percentage of blacks who support a major black candidate is around the normal black support level for non-black candidates in races where neither candidate is black—namely about 50%.

I urge voters to decide, not like Powell, purely on the basis of the color of Obama’s skin, but rather like Martin Luther King hoped: by the content of the candidates’ character. I already voted absentee. I voted Libertarian to say to the two major parties, “I am not happy with either of you. Move in the Libertarian direction.” I have only voted for a major party candidate for president twice in my life: Democrat in 1972 and Republican in 1980. I have no dog in the McCain-Obama fight. Neither of them should be allowed within a mile of the presidency.

Maybe just a careerist

I have called these men words that end in “ist:” racist, athesit, leftist. But I often wonder if there is only one “ist” that applies to the likes of Obama or Powell or Hillary—that all of their behavior is opportunistic and they only resemble leftists, for example, because that is what will advance their career at a given moment.

That word is “careerist.” One on-line dictionary defined that as,

Pursuit of professional advancement as one’s chief or sole aim

The Wikipedia article says,

Careerism is not simply the desire to succeed. In the work place, careerist individuals are often seen as conniving workers who will stop at nothing to succeed.

The word “sociopath” also comes to mind with regard to people like Obama or Hillary.

It is defined by the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual: "The essential feature for the diagnosis is a pervasive pattern of disregard for, and violation of, the rights of others that begins in childhood or early adolescence and continues into adulthood." Deceit and manipulation are considered essential features of the disorder.

Here are the symptoms from that article. A person with the disorder need not have all of them; only some of them.

* Persistent lying or stealing

* Recurring difficulties with the law

* Tendency to violate the rights and boundaries of others

* Substance abuse

* Aggressive, often violent behavior; prone to getting involved in fights

* A persistent agitated or depressed feeling (dysphoria)

* Inability to tolerate boredom

* Disregard for the safety of self or others

* A childhood diagnosis of conduct disorders – this is not a symptom but "a history of"

* Lack of remorse, related to hurting others

* Superficial charm

* Impulsiveness

* A sense of extreme entitlement

* Inability to make or keep friends

* Recklessness, impulsivity

* People with a diagnosis of antisocial personality disorder often experience difficulties with authority figures

Sound like anyone we know?

Jeremiah A. Wright and Barack Obama

The Reverend Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. was Barack Obama’s pastor for 20 years before he retired. The church is Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago. With 10,000 members, it is the largest congregation of any United Church of Christ in the U.S.

The church is described as an African-American church by Wikipedia and it certainly appears to be almost exclusively for blacks in videos of the congregation. With regard to the church’s racial orientation, the “About us” page of the church’s Web site says

We are a congregation which is Unashamedly Black and Unapologetically Christian… Our roots in the Black religious experience and tradition are deep, lasting and permanent. We are an African people, and remain "true to our native land," the mother continent, the cradle of civilization. God has superintended our pilgrimage through the days of slavery, the days of segregation, and the long night of racism. It is God who gives us the strength and courage to continuously address injustice as a people, and as a congregation. We constantly affirm our trust in God through cultural expression of a Black worship service and ministries which address the Black Community.

On March 17, 2008, Obama defiantly refused to quit the church. That means we can restate the above “About us” declaration as an “About me” declaration by Obama thus,

[I am] Unashamedly Black and Unapologetically Christian… [My] roots in the Black religious experience and tradition are deep, lasting and permanent. [I am] an African [man], and remain "true to [my father’s] native land [Kenya, but but not to my mother’s native land, the United States of America]," the mother continent, the cradle of civilization. God has superintended [my] pilgrimage through the days of slavery [except since my father was a Kenyan, none of my ancestors was ever a slave], the days of segregation [which neither I nor any of my ancestors experienced], and the long night of racism. It is God who gives [me] the strength and courage to continuously address injustice as a [black]. [I] constantly affirm [my] trust in God through cultural expression of a Black worship service and ministries which address the Black Community.

It is the right of any American to feel this way, but these are disqualifying views for a presidential candidate. For example, the phrase, “I am an African man and remain true to my father’s native land of Kenya,” directly contradicts the presidential oath of office:

I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

The very idea of a church catering to a particular race is racist. The fact that there are many black churches does not change that. I am not aware of any white churches—other than Nazi or other white supremacists ones—and if there are any other churches that have few or no blacks members, I would assume they are unhappy and embarrassed about it and trying to change it.

Church is supposed to be about God. Indeed, the IRS is reportedly considering revoking the tax-exempt status of this and other churches of all colors who violate the legal definition of a non-profit organization by getting involved in politics.

Anti-white, anti-U.S. speeches by Wright

Wright has made a number of crude, profane, melodramatic, theatrical Southern-dialect-complete-with-bad-grammar, nutty, belligerent speeches that included wild accusations about racism in America, e.g., the U.S. government creating the AIDs virus to perpetrate genocide against blacks.

Not reverent

The reverend is not very reverent. He said that “Bill Clinton did us blacks like he did Monica Lewinksy.” He also said Clinton was “ridin’ dirty.” The Reverend is apparently referring to the former President’s repeatedly availing himself of Ms. Lewinsky’s fellatio services.

Wright claims to have a doctorate degree. Indeed he does from the United Theological Seminary near Dayton OH. In case you are wondering—as I was—United Theological Seminary is accredited by the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada, the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, and the Ohio Board of Regents.

Wright also has a bachelors degree and a masters degree in English from Howard University (an accredited black school in DC) and another masters degree from the University of Chicago Divinity School.

Wright was born and raised in Philadelphia. I was born and raised in the NJ suburbs of Philadelphia.

Talk like a grade-school dropout from Mississippi

So why does a guy from Philadelphia with degrees from universities in DC, Chicago, and OH, including a masters in English for God’s sake, talk like a grade-school dropout from Mississippi? Apparently because the vocabulary, grammar (or lack thereof), and pronunciation of Mississippi grade-school dropouts is the official linguistic affectation of America’s black “leaders.”

In my article on Obama, I noted that he, too, has adopted that affectation—using phrases like “I been here befoh” in a speech at Selma, AL last year and saying “You all” in other speeches more recently. Obama was born and raised in Hawaii and Jakarta, Indonesia and went to college at Occidental (Pasadena, CA), Columbia (Manhattan), and Harvard Law School (Cambridge, MA) and has chosen Chicago as his political base.

Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr. not only made a point of getting a doctorate degree (albeit in part by committting plagiarism in his dissertation), he also made a point of speaking like an educated man. I surmise he did that because he was trying to overcome the Uncle Remus, Stepin Fetchit, Kingfish stereotype of ignorant blacks. It is probably safe to assume that he would be appalled by black men with doctorates and Harvard Law degrees like Wright and Obama pandering to ignorant voters and congregation members by talking like the worst stereotypes of ignorant blacks.

Wright’s congregation

The only thing more disturbing than Wright’s words and demeanor in his anti-American sermons, are the behavior, words, and demeanor of the people in the video background in his congregation. They appear to be experiencing orgasms of pleasure as a result of his outrageous accusations. They wail and shout and leap to their feet and, in one scene, ran up to touch him. Another scene seemed to show a woman giving the Nazi salute. Obama has been called a rock star. In that church, Wright’s congregation’s response to Wright makes Obama look like a rock star piker when you compare his audiences’ response to him.

‘Guilt by association’

Predictably, liberal apologists for Obama like Alan Colmes and the New York Times have tried to spin unhappiness with Obama’s long association with Wright as mere “guilt by association.” That is an intellectually-dishonest debate tactic I call “sloganeering.”

Criminal guilt is not the issue

The phrase “guilt by association” also attempts to distract the listener red herring style by invoking a word from criminal justice principles. Under U.S. criminal law, we believe, “It is better to let nine guilty men free than to convict one innocent man.” The standard of proof in U.S. criminal trials is “beyond a reasonable doubt.”

I have a news flash for Colmes and the other Obama apologists: the U.S. presidential election campaign is not a criminal trial.

We are considering whom to elect to the most important job in the world, the most important job in history. An accused criminal may be presumed innocent until he is convicted by a criminal court, but a presidential candidate is not presumed president until convicted in a criminal court. We do not believe that it is better to elect nine individuals with poor judgment regarding associates president than to reject one good-judgment presidential candidate. Americans have a higher standard for their presidential candidates, namely, they must not only avoid impropriety. They must avoid the appearance of impropriety. Criminal trial guilt is a far higher standard than the appearance of impropriety and is a ridiculous standard to apply to such a profoundly important position.

Association

Is who a presidential candidate associates himself with relevant to whether he should be “President of the United States of America” to use the phrase Obama is so fond of? Suppose a candidate associated with Mafia members. Suppose he associated with drug dealers. Suppose he associated with prostitutes. Suppose he associated with foreign spies. Would we dismiss such associations as mere “guilt by association?”

Of course not. Rather, we would look at whom he is associating with, why he associated with him, how close the association was, and how long he associated with him. There is also the what did Obama know about Reverend Wright and when did he know it question. Finally, when he knew it, what did Obama DO about it?

The answer to the last question is he bobbed, he weaved, he shilly-shallied, he avoided, he soft-pedaled, he minimized, he let others speak for him. Clearly, Senator Barack Obama does not want to say or do anything with regard to Wright at all if he can avoid it. By behaving thus, Obama shows that he is black first and American second and that is a disqualifying characteristic when it comes to the office of “President of the United States of America.” Black first and American second is the description of a candidate for president of the NAACP. If Hillary were a woman first and American second, she should run for president of NOW. (I loathe her but I must say that she has not behaved like a woman first, American second. She has criticized and fired women who deserved it and some who didn‘t.)

As has been reported widely in the press, Obama’s association with Wright goes back 20 years, includes being married by Wright, having Wright baptize his children, and crediting Wright as an inspiration and mentor in his book Audacity of Hope, the title of which Obama said came from a sermon by Wright. Obama appears not only to have associated with Wright. By his own admission, Wright has had a long-running powerful influence on Obama. He calls Wright an “inspiration and mentor.” It sounds like Wright is the father Obama never knew. Obama’s recent attempts to dismiss Wright as a crazy “old uncle” are both dishonest and disloyal.

NPR and Fox News analyst Juan Williams did an excellent job dissecting Obama’s spin attempts on the 3/13/08 O’Reilly Factor. Williams, who is black, said Obama joined Wright’s church when he came to Chicago as a way to jump start his political career, which he apparently assumed would never go beyond representing a black Chicago district in Congress. One assumes that Obama ended up there after studying Michael Barone’s Almanac of American Politics to find the Congressional District where he was most likely to win office. Obama did run for Congress there and lost. In other words, Obama’s moving to that part of Chicago and joining Wright’s church seems to be a cynical ploy to quickly get black street cred and black authenticity and to replace, in the minds of black Chicago voters, Obama’s white mother, foreign father, and totally white upbringing.

If Obama wins the presidential election, his main activity from election day until some time after inauguration will be picking his associates for his administration. There is a book that comes out every election year called the Plum Book. According to the Government Printing Office, “the Plum Book lists over 7,000 Federal civil service leadership and support positions in the legislative and executive branches of the Federal Government that may be subject to noncompetitive appointment,” You can see the 2004 version at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/plumbook/2004/index.html. So while Obama apologists are swearing associates do not matter, come the day after the election, associates will be about all that matters for several months with regard to the new President. We have to wonder what job the Reverend Wright was in line for before his inflammatory sermons were broadcast. Secretary of HUD? Secretary of Education?

Wright was on an Obama campaign committee

The Politico Web site says Wright was a member of Obama’s African American Religious Leadership Committee…

The Obama campaign couldn’t immediately say whether he’d remain on the committee.

Why not? Why does Obama even have a committee with the phrase “African American” in its name? I can understand a health insurance committee, a national defense committee, an energy committee, but not a committee named after a race.

If Obama considers removing Wright from the committee a tough decision, what is going to happen when the red phone rings?

Obama had originally intended to have Wright introduce him for his announcement that he was running for president. He scotched that plan when a February 2007 Rolling Stone article described a speech in which Wright complained about racism. Obama claimed that his reason for eliminating Wright from the presidential announcement was to avoid harm to Wright’s church. May I see a show of hands of those who believe that? Me neither.

The New York Times <http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/15/us/politics/15wright.html>  reports:

In the interview last spring, Mr. Wright expressed frustration at the breach in [his] relationship with Mr. Obama, saying the candidate had already privately said that he might need to distance himself from his pastor.

With regard to judging Obama on his associations, there is not just one bad choice association with Wright. There are at least three, the others being Wright’s association with Louis Farrakhan, whose “Million Man March” Obama attended, and Obama’s unrelated association with former radical activists William Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn and Obama’s “association” with his wife who appears to be Jeremiah Wright Lite. So another question that arises is how many associations with anti-Americans can this would-be “President of the United States of America” have before we can legitimately question his judgment and his true views on the country he wants to lead.

‘Controversial’

Obama and his apologists are, in part, trying to soft-pedal Wright’s sermons by calling them merely “controversial.” The word “controversial” implies that some people like the statements and others do not and leaves open the question who whether the statements may have merit. “Controversial” my ass. They are wrong. If Obama can’t see that, he is not fit to be a scout leader, let alone a president.

Equivalent to Geraldine Ferraro’s statement

Another Democrat spin is that Obama’s association with Wright is no more than Geraldine Ferraro’s statement that he would not be where he is now if he were not black (which is correct—for one thing he would have won fewer votes and delegates because of losing the increased black turnout and 90% black vote for him—he also would have lost all the whites who are eager to vote for a black to show their lack of racism). Democrats have also equated Obama’s association with Wright to endorsement of McCain by two nutty white ministers, and Billy Graham’s taped anti-Semitic comments in the Nixon Oval Office 37 years ago.

Good luck with that. Ferraro, a hero of the Democrat party for being the first female major party vice-presidential candidate in 1988 and for her life-long service to the party, is now persona non grata in that party because of white Democrat fear of the slightest hint of anything that could be construed to be racism by the most ignorant, illogical, chip-on-the-shoulder, looking-for-trouble black. McCain could have been a little more forceful in denouncing the kooks who endorsed him, but he had no relationship with them. Everyone denounced Graham’s comments including Graham himself.

‘Smear campaign’

Another Democrat spin being put on criticism of Obama’s association with Wright is that it is a “smear campaign.” That is an intellectually-dishonest debate tactic known as “name calling.” The other variation on name-calling that we can expect is for anyone criticizing Wright to be labeled as racist. The latter tactic seems to work great when it comes to silencing politically-correct critics, but I suspect it reaps the whirlwind in the voting booth where Americans cannot be intimidated.

The issue is not whether anyone is “smearing” Wright or Obama but whether the statements made by Wright are truthful and, given that they are not, why Obama would continue to associate with and praise Wright after he became aware of them. The character and judgment of a presidential candidate are legitimate topics of inquiry by the media and voters and legitimate subjects for criticism by those who think Obama is not the best candidate.

Farrakhan

In 2007, Trumpet Magazine, which is published and edited by Wright’s daughter, presented the Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. Trumpeter Award to Louis Farrakhan. The award announcement said he, “truly epitomized greatness.” Wright said Farrakhan “[w]as one of the 20th and 21st century giants of the African American religious experience” and praised Farrakhan’s “integrity and honesty.” Wright went to Libya with Farrakhan in the 1980s. Last year, Wright said, “When [Obama’s] enemies find out that in 1984 I went to Tripoli to visit Colonel Gadaffi with Farrakhan, a lot of his Jewish support will dry up quicker than a snowball in hell.”

Is the Reverend relishing this prediction? Sounds like it. With friends like these, Obama doesn’t need any enemies. Obama is Willie Hortoning himself by parsing words in his denunciation of Wright.

Our associations

I have associated with two guys in my life who later did bad stuff. One guy changed and when he did, I immediately admonished him that he was going the wrong direction. When it became apparent that he was determined to go that way, I publicly disassociated myself from him. The other guy liked to break rules for the sake of breaking rules—like John McCain’s self description actually. As soon as I saw that, I admonished him that it was not a good idea. When he called me up one day to ask me to break a rule for him, I ended my association with him. He later went to prison.

If my wife and I somehow ended up in a church service where the pastor said anything remotely resembling what Wright said, we would listen to about 20 seconds worth of it, exchange married couple glances that said, “We’re out of here,” and leave.

Think about your own associations. Have you ever associated with anyone like Wright or Farrakhan or Ayers? What did you do when you realized what they were about? I’ll bet it wasn’t continue associating with them for twenty years and naming them to an official position in your organization and writing a book that used their words as the title.

Out of context

Obama accuses critics of cherry picking Wright quotes out of context and ignoring Wright’s good work. But then Obama does the exact same thing: disassociating himself only with selected statements or “I reject outright the statements by Rev. Wright that are at issue.” Obama seems to be saying, ‘I disassociate myself from the comments that Wright made that you white people are upset about, but not one smidgeon more. And I am doing this in spite of the fact that there is nothing wrong with what Wright said, it’s just that you white people are oversensitive.”

Gee! What statements were those, Barack? He rejects “the statements” but will not say which statements he rejects. Furthermore, he will not says which statements the Reverend made that he accepts. He is afraid of losing the support of the many who support Wright—both in the Chicago congregation and around the U.S.

You gotta pick a side, Barack. At the moment, you are the Michael Jackson of politics trying to play both sides of the black-white race game. I’ll bet the two of you passed in opposite directions—him on the way to his face whitening or nose job and you on the way to your classes on how to speak like a Southern black. Like Michael Jackson, you are trying to have your race both ways. When you seek white votes, you are post-racial guy whose color is irrelevant. When you seek black votes, you are a poor grammar spouting, Jeremiah Wright embracing, black-separatist-church-joining brother who uses the phrase “our people.” And you complain about racism like would-be white man Michael Jackson whenever it suits you. In the words of comedian Robin Williams to Jackson during his child abuse trial, “You can’t complain about racism until you pick a race, honey.”

Are you with the Reverend Jeremiah Wright and his supporters, or with the 90% of the American people who think Wright hates America? You’re trying to stand on both sides. That’s not an option when the sides in question are so diametrically opposed as Jeremiah is to whites.

Jeremiah Wright, Jeremiah Wright’s congregation, Michelle Obama, and the various people who are appearing on TV to “defend” Obama and Wright are digging the hole deeper and deeper. Instead of helping Obama distance himself from Wright, they seem to replicate Wright delivering their own angry speeches against whites. Invited to defend Obama, they instead defend Wright, making the whole situation worse for Obama. They may be unwittingly destroying the most successful black presidential candidate in history, a man they desperately want to become president. If Barack and Michelle Obama cannot see that they need to renounce Wright immediately, unequivocally, and comprehensively, they are too dumb to be President and First Lady.

Wright’s victory tour

After hiding for a time after the firestorm hit, Wright has now emerged and gone on a “victory” tour speaking to various packed house audiences who adore him. Asked about Wright’s recent comments, Obama looked stricken and could manage nothing more than a statement that Wright is entitled to say whatever he wants. Yeah, Barack, we already knew that. Thanks for stating the obvious and defeating an argument that no one has made (that Wright is obligated to remain silent).

With friends like Wright, Obama doesn’t need any enemies.

Wright has gone out of his way to dis Obama. He mocked Obama’s calling him his “spiritual mentor,” making fun of the phrase in a childlike taunt as if “spiritual” referred to ghosts. I would not have thought that a career pastor would find the word “spiritual” so foreign and inappropriate to the sentiment Obama was expressing. As I said elsewhere in this article, Obama seems to have latched onto Wright as the father he never had. Barack Obama Sr. abandoned Obama, Jr. and his mother at age two. (According to Time magazine, Obama, Sr. impregnated four different women and abandoned all of them and the resulting children.) Now, Obama’s adopted father—Jeremiah Wright—is going on national TV and mocking Obama’s referring to him as “my spiritual mentor.” In other words, Obama has been rejected—harshly—by both his biological and his adopted fathers, and softly, by his mom who left him in Hawaii while she went back to Indonesia as a single woman when Obama, Jr. was 11 to 18 years old. Rough. And there doesn’t seem to be much indication that his Indonesian step-father was much interested in him either. Obama’s biological parents and step-father are all now dead.

With fathers and “spiritual mentors” like these, Obama doesn’t need any enemies.

‘Politician’

Wright also dismissed Obama as a “politician” who says whatever he needs to in order to get votes, implying that Obama is lying about denouncing some of Wright’s statements.

Wright also depicted himself as much higher on the moral food chain—a pastor—who answers to a “higher authority.” Actually, I believe the word from believers is that we all have to answer to that same higher authority, not just pastors. Furthermore, while pastors are generally more honest than the average person, the Reverend Wright is a shameless, bad liar as the many videos of his sermons starkly reveal. Politicians lie, too, but they usually have a more difficult audience to convince than the morons who attend Wright’s church.

‘Criticism of me is criticism of the black church’

Wright also invoked the now familiar game of black race hustlers: alleging that anyone who criticizes them is racist. Years ago, one heard that often about Jews and Israel. That is, if you criticized some Jews or Israel, you were instantly labeled as anti-Semitic. I have heard neither the anti-semitic accusation nor the complaint that it was leveled unfairly in recent years—except in rare cases like Louis Farrakhan saying Judaism is a gutter religion or Jesse Jackson referring to New York City as Hymietown. Those comments were anti-Semitic.

But many blacks and liberal whites are still playing the anyone-who-criticizes-a-black-is-racist game—as if we haven’t figured it out. Actually, you don’t even have to criticize a black anymore, just mentioning a black in a sentence that criticizes anyone get you labeled a racist. Rush Limbaugh got fired from Monday Night Football for saying that sports writers were accentuating the positive and de-emphasizing the negative regarding the on-field performance of Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb because they wanted a black quarterback to succeed. Limbaugh was not criticizing McNabb. His position was that McNabb was good, just overrated, a common sportscaster sentiment about various athletes. Rather, Limbaugh was criticizing sports writers, mostly white. But he got fired by white empty suits who were intimidated by the racist accusation, no matter how baseless. I suspect we are not very far from a Saturday Night Live skit making fun of those who attack all critics of blacks as racist no matter how egregious the behavior of the black person being criticized.

An education on lots of blacks

This has been an education for me and I suspect a lot of non-black Americans. Apparently, huge numbers of blacks are in love with victimhood—so much so that they cling to ancient grievances and imagined recent ones to keep victimhood alive.

Black after black appears on TV and gets asked about Wright’s comments. Other than some commentators, black after black defends Wright, tells us about Tuskeegee, talks about the 60s civil rights movement as if it were still ongoing and needed. They absolutely refuse to denounce Wright’s comments vaguely claiming that many feel that way or that we have a long way to go or that blacks are being mistreated everywhere in America every day.

I said to one black guy who wrote me that the civil rights movement has long been in what the military calls a “mopping up operation.” He agreed, but I sense that lots of blacks, maybe a majority, want to believe that the civil rights movement was not victorious 40 years ago, that the race war still rages. They won’t take yes for an answer on emancipation and intergration and color blind decisions about people. As I said in my article on blacks and whites, our response should be to stand, hands on hips, weary of the continuing bullshit victim act, and say ,“How about you guys let us know when you are ready to admit this ended long ago and get on with normal life.”

Media coverage

I made an effort to watch many different channels with regard to the Wright issue. PBS’ Washington Week in Review totally ignored it. CNN, covered it but the comments seemed extremely understated and inclined to give Obama the benefit of every doubt until investigative journalists dig up whether Obama was lying when he said he had no idea Wright had these views until 3/13/08. I did not find the CNN commenters credible when they said they were going to wait for additional evidence before concluding Obama knew anything. They just seemed afraid to say the obvious.

Even Cooper Anderson or Anderson Cooper (Gloria Vanderbilt couldn’t afford to give the guy a first name?) seemed highly skeptical that Obama could not know about these extremely strongly stated views of Wright’s. Fox’s talking heads were very aggressive wondering if this would destroy Obama. Hannity called for Obama to resign from the Senate which I thought went well beyond the evidence.

Many black callers to talk shows seem not to understand what the fuss is about. That’s disturbing. Are all blacks talking like this when whites are not around? Is Obama one of those who does that?

I suspect he will now lose some black votes for his disloyalty to Wright and the black victimhood cause. I also suspect he will lose many white and young people votes on the grounds that he seems conflicted about extreme views that those voters do not come anywhere close to sharing—and indecisive and bewildered—an inexperienced pol who is amazingly slow to learn that you cannot straddle every fence. He is also losing votes on the basic issue of whether he is ready to handle the most difficult job in the world. He doesn’t even look ready to handle a single wacko associate. So much for charisma, rock star, change, and hope.

More ‘out of context’

Another tactic the Democrats are trying out is claiming that video of Wright’s incendiary sermons are taken “out of context.” That is another intellectually dishonest debate tactic that I wrote about in my article on intellectually dishonest debate tactics. Here is what I said before I ever heard of Jeremiah Wright.

20 Accusation of taking a quote out of context: debater accuses opponent of taking a quote that makes the debater look bad out of context. All quotes are taken out of context—for two reasons: quoting the entire context would take too long and federal copyright law allows quotes but not reproduction of the entire text. Taking a quote out of context is only wrong when the lack of the context misrepresents the author’s position. The classic example would be the movie review that says, “This movie is the best best example of a waste of film I have ever seen,” then gets quoted as “This movie is the best…I’ve ever seen.” Any debater who claims a quote misrepresents the author’s position must cite the one or more additional quotes from the same work that supply the missing context and thereby reveal the true meaning of the author, a meaning which is very different from the meaning conveyed by the original quote that they complained about. Merely pointing out that the quote is not the entire text proves nothing. Indeed, if a search of the rest of the work reveals no additional quotes that show the original quote was misleading, the accusation itself is dishonest.

Furthermore, those who claim a quote was taken out of context need to point to other statements in the context that directly refute and relate to the statement objected to. They cannot point to character-witness type statements and claim those refute the accusation that the speaker said and believed the offending remarks. For example, if Adolf Hitler said, “I will build the Autobahn, the world’s first limited access highway system, and I will kill all the Jews,” you cannot say that leaving out the Autobahn part is taking the Jew-killing statement “out of context.” The Autobahn (world’s first limited-access highway) portion of the statement does not refute or even relate to the Jew-killing one. It just shows that Hitler multi-tasked. No one criticizing Hitler’s evil statements feels an obligation to give him credit for the Autobahn in every discussion.

Wright’s supporters claim that he has made hundreds of speeches and that the media cannot show any parts of them unless they show all of them. As they well know, that is not going to happen. Furthermore, the media who are running the clips have not claimed they present a comprehensive biographical portrait of Jeremiah Wright. There is no interest in such a biography.

The issue is that one could not find comparable clips from the pastors of most Americans or of prominent politicians like President George W. Bush or Senator Dianne Feinstein or Hillary Clinton or John McCain.

‘Sound bites’

A minor variation of the out-of-context tactic is calling videos of Wright “snippets” or “sound bites.” As everyone knows, electronic media are forced to use brief video and audio tapes of newsworthy events in order to fit their tight time slots. Some media, like NPR and PBS TV Lehrer Report, do fewer, longer segments. But as I said, that meant PBS’s Washington Week in Review ignored the Wright story. And also, PBS has lousy ratings. So demands that electronic media stop using sound bites and use longer video or audio clips are simply false choices.

Ultimately, the media use sound bites because they know their viewers will change channels if they use longer segments. It is not the media that choose sound bites. It is viewers. Indeed, the very people who complain about sound bites are the same ones who will switch channels if someone shows longer, less interesting audios or videos.

A while ago, the top Obama story was about his use of the phrase “Just words” to explain his lack of actions to point to to prove his fitness for president. Now, his supporters are now trying to have that both ways. Now they say Wright’s sermons are just words and ask us to judge him by other things that he done like his various actions on behalf of others.

So which is it? Words matter, or they don’t? If they matter, as Obama said in his “Just words” speech, then they matter when Jeremiah wright says them, too.

Caricature

Another spin that the democrats are trying to use is that the videos of Wright are caricatures. That is totally invalid.

According to Webster’s New Universal Unabridged Dictionary, a caricature is

the deliberately distorted picturing or imitating of a person, literary style, etc. by exaggerating features or mannerisms for satirical effect; a bad likeness; poor imitation; something so distorted, ugly or inferior as to seem a ludicrous imitation

By definition, a caricature is created by one person about another. Political cartoons are caricatures in the form of a cartoon that exaggerates whatever the cartoonist wants to exaggerate about the target’s views and personal appearance. Saturday Night Live actors also draw live video caricatures of politicians by portraying them in ways that exaggerate characteristics of the politicians regarding how they look, dress, speak, or their positions on various issues.

While the videos of Wright certainly meet the definition words of exaggeration, ugly, ludicrous, neither he nor his supports can fairly claim it as caricature because he did it to himself! If what he says and does in those clips is “distorted, a bad likeness, a poor imitation,” he has no one to blame but himself. If it is a caricature, he caricatured himself and he needs to come forward and say himself that he does not believe what he said, that he was just kidding, and explain why he did it.

‘Move on’

Yet another Democrat tactic (they need a lot of them when they are really screwed as is the case with this incident) is to respond to questions with the order, “Move on.” In other words, “I refuse to answer your question because you have got me dead to rights in an indefensible situation. Therefore my best shot is to order you to change the subject bluffing that I have authority to order you around and hoping you will fall for it.”

Moveon.org is named after that tactic, which was used during the Bill Clinton-Monica Lewinsky-Whitewater-Paula Jones-Juanita Broderick-Kathleen Willy impeachment scandal.

Obama’s on-camera response

Obama himself appeared on Fox News on 3/14/08 in a too-brief interview with Major Garrett. His answers and explanations were tortured. It reminded me of a guy who was asked what the preacher talked about in his Sunday sermon. “Sin,” the man said. “What did he say about sin?” “He was agin it.”

I know Obama was talking about Reverend Wright. But as far as how he feels about Reverend Wright, I’m not sure. It’s clear he wishes Wright had not been videotaped saying those things. Beyond that, I can’t tell whether he is for Wright or “agin” him.

On CNN, Obama seemed to say that he was unaware of what Wright’s views were until 3/13/08. He did not say that he was “shocked, shocked” to learn this, à la Casablanca’s Captain Renault. In fact, Obama forgot to look surprised at all when he said this was the first he heard that Wright held these views.

Obama is also very fond of his “like a crazy old uncle” dismissal of Wright. None of his allies are using that, but he has used it at least three times. Rush Limbaugh pointed out that the analogy is invalid because you can’t pick your relatives but you can pick your pastor. You tolerate the old uncle saying crazy things because he is your relative and you cannot change that. But you do not have to tolerate such behavior from non-relatives and no responsible person does tolerate it.

Also, it would appear that Wright’s dismissing Obama as a politician and mocking his calling Wright his “spiritual mentor” are Obama’s “crazy old uncle” chickens coming home to roost, if you’ll pardon the expression. Or to use another Wrightism, he and Obama are ridin’ each other dirty. (Gee, this is fun. I can understand why Wright looks so gleeful doing it.)

Obama’s denunciation of Wright on 4/29/08

Finally, on 4/29/08, Obama threw Wright under the train, as he had previously done with his “typical white person” and apparently still living grandmother.

Obama claimed he took the action he did on 4/29/08 because Wright “amplified” his prior remarks. No, Wright didn’t. He just repeated them. If anything, Wright actually toned them down a little. For example, he screamed “The government lied about creating the AIDS virus to kill blacks!” in the original sermon. At the National Press Club, he changed it to the “U.S. government is capable of doing stuff like that as evidenced by the Tuskeegee incident.” [Emphasis added] Big difference.

Obama did not throw Wright under the train because of any change or “amplification” by Wright. Rather, he threw Wright under the train because, as Wright alleged, Obama is just a politician who will say whatever he needs to to get elected. Obama took the 4/29/08 action because of the persistence of Wright’s effect on the campaign and on the voters and polls.

The salient impression I got from Obama’s 20-year association, and 4/29/08 dissociation with Wright is that Obama is weak. He associated with Wright all those years because his ultimate political ambition was to represent the district where Wright is a leader in Congress. He knew Wright was wrong, but he went along to get along. That’s unethical, immoral, and dishonest. But as many would say, that’s politics. If he had strength of character, he would have walked away from Wright the first time Wright lied or encouraged anti-white or anti-American feelings.

Then, to his surprise, Obama, got picked to speak at the 2004 Democrat national convention, and was a big hit. He realized that he had the potential to win higher office, like U.S. Senator, not from the 70% black First District of Illinois, but from the entire, mostly white state of Illinois.

At that point, an intelligent and decisive person would have realized that the alliances and associations built in the South Side of Chicago ghetto with the likes of Wright and Farrakhan and Ayers needed to be quietly dismanteled.

Once he realized Wright was a bad guy, and that the white public was going to find out about it, he should have decisively and unequivocally separated himself from Wright. He did not because he is not strong, not decisive, and is relatively inexperienced at the mixture of chronic lying and occasional changes of position that are required of politicians.

If Obama gets elected, and the phone rings at 3AM, it appears that Obama will respond weakly and indecisively and only months later finally realize that he has to change a prior position.

Obama is too afraid of looking inconsistent. Sometimes, changing your mind is the best course of action and when it is, just do it. Don’t weasel around about it for months while the entire population of the U.S. is wondering why you cannot see the need to make the change.

Obama is also too afraid of losing his racist black base. His foolish reluctance to separate from Wright was primarily caused by his fear of reaction among black voters. As I have said repeatedly, he is black first and American second and that disqualifies him from being president.

Refused to quit the church

On 3/17/08 I heard a clip where Obama defiantly refuse to quit the church—a course of action that TV reporter Juan Williams said Obama should immediately take.

Jason Riley of the Wall Street Journal Editorial Report TV show on Fox News made a good point. He said that Obama chose a church where Obama’s own mother would feel unwelcome. Indeed, and I would add that his white grandparents who actually raised him while his mother stayed in Indonesia would also feel quite unwelcome at the church. Obama spoke fondly of his white grandmother in his first book Dreams from my Father. I talked about Obama’s near denial of his white mother and upbringing and attempts to pass as a black in a separate article. The Wall Street Journal’s Jason Riley is black.

Another black, author and radio talk show host Larry Elder said the whites who voted for Obama in Idaho, Iowa, and all the other states would also feel unwelcome in Obama’s church.

I assume that Obama’s 4/29/08 speech breaking relations with Wright also means he will terminate his membership in Wright’s church. True, Wright is retiring and has been replaced by a younger pastor, but that guy has gone out of his way to show the world that he is on Wright’s side, which is to say the wrong side.

What will Wright do now? Ask a child psychologist. One would expect a child who is getting attention from misbehaving to continue to do so and even escalate the misbehavior to get even more attention.

Obama’s speech and Shelby Steele’s opinion article

The big event on 3/18/08 was supposed to be Obama’s speech on race. In that speech, Obama stupidly continued to try to have it both ways: to remain a member in good standing of the Trinity United Church of Christ and to remain the favorite candidate of white Democrats.

He admitted he lied previously when he claimed he had never heard Wright say any of the incendiary things. Not that he said, “I lied.” He’s a lying politician. They do not admit to lying in a straightforward manner. Rather, he simply changed his story and hoped no one would notice. Nice try. Now, he admits he has heard Wright say “controversial” and “incendiary” or “angry” things. Hey, Barack, you’re leaving out the fact that he said things that were false, irrelevant, ignorant, profane, crude, wrong, unChristian, and outrageous, not just “controversial” and “angry.”

The moral equivalence spin

He tried to attack white people in general by saying that his grandmother—“a typical white person”—once said she was afraid of groups of blacks that were walking toward her on the street. I once heard Jesse Jackson say that he was chagrined that, if he heard footsteps behind him on the sidewalk at night, he would be relieved if he looked back and they were white. He blamed it on general racism against blacks making them feel alienated or some such. I have also seen surveys that said both blacks and whites were more afraid of blacks than whites.

Barack Obama is just another lying politician—and one who does even less homework than the typical lying politician to prevent getting caught lying. He and his wife and daughters would probably be more inclined to cross the street to avoid a group of black teenagers than a group of white ones. Why? The incidence of crime by blacks is significantly greater than the incidence of crime by whites. (By the way, I do not believe that was the case when I was a kid in the 50s and early 60s and we would not have crossed the street to get away from an oncoming group of blacks back then. The situation seems to have been changed by militant black organizations like the Black Panthers and evidenced by black race riots in the late 60s and 70s.) The comments by Obama’s grandmother and Jesse Jackson are simple logic, based on tons of hard evidence.

‘Stop the loop?’

After the speech, Obama’s aides all wanted to know if the speech would result in the press stopping “The loop,” that is, the repeated playing and replaying of Wright’s outrageous remarks.

Apparently not. It’s now in Republican campaign ads, too, even against white Democrat politicians who have endorsed Obama. But it’s also probably too late. Americans have “The Loop” memorized by now. Plus, it will only stop it temporarily. Hillary and McCain claim they are above using The Loop against Obama. They were thrilled to have the cable news channels and talk radio play it. Now they are unhappy about it being stopped, but they cannot say so. However, while Hillary and McCain claim to be above using The Loop, Hillary is also above losing the nomination and McCain is also above losing the election. If they think they need to do so to win, they will themselves play The Loop again when it appears they may lose if they do not.

How did Obama end The Loop for now? He uses a similar tactic to Bill Clinton—seeming to be a plaintive, small child. Clinton did it by biting his lip and using a tremulous child’s voice. Obama does it with wide-eyed innocence and a quiet, halting way of speaking like a fearful child. Neither came out and whined, “Mommy, they’re picking on me” in those words, but both “say” it with the timber of their voices and body language whenever they get caught doing something they’re not supposed to be doing. Once they turn themselves into a picked-upon small child, their critics are made to look like bullies and have to stop.

In fact, the more worthwhile use of your time would be to read Shelby Steele’s same day Wall Street Journal opinion article. The article is brilliant. Steele is black and an expert in race relations, American social culture, and identity politics at the Hoover Institution.

Bargainers and challengers

Steele says that prominent blacks fall into two categories:

• bargainers (Obama, Oprah, Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, and I presume Colin Powell and Condoleeza Rice)

• challengers (Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Jeremiah Wright)

He also says some, like Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, fall into a third category, who ignore their race and behave as individuals. Seems to me that’s the only way any of them should act.

Bargainers, according to Steele, tacitly agree not to say “shame on you” and embarrass whites about slavery and segregation in return for white support of the individual in question.

One personal comment. I am not interested in that bargain. My Irish ancestors came to Boston in the late 19th century. They owned no slaves and I am sure they were too busy fighting discrimination against Irish to be guilty of that which Obama and Oprah would absolve me of if I vote for him or watch her. My German ancestors immigrated to the Northeast portion of America in the early 20th century. They owned no slaves while they were losing their home to foreclosure in the Depression. My West Virginia ancestors, as I explain elsewhere in this article, seceded from Virginia and fought with the Union in the Civil War because they refused to support Virginia’s slavery. And my Cherokee great great grandmother Emmaline sure as hell did not own any slaves. Plus, I am not my ancestors. Neither are any other living whites. In other words, you can shove your white guilt.

Playing on white guilt

Steele says Obama is playing the bargainer race game for all it’s worth and his lead in the Democrat nominating process stems directly from his success at letting whites absolve themselves of guilt by voting for him, from letting blacks declare an end to their inferiority as a result of Obama’s success, and from press fear of getting in the way of either of those events. Steele says,

…in the end, Barack Obama’s candidacy is not qualitatively different from Al Sharpton’s or Jesse Jackson’s. Like these more irascible of his forbears, Mr. Obama’s run at the presidency is based more on the manipulation of white guilt than on substance.

‘A mediocrity’

Politically, Steele says Obama’s actions since college reveal that he is a “mediocrity.” There are no accomplishments in either his record as a legislator or his time as a black community organizer or black civil rights attorney. His sole skill seems to be making a good impression on whites.

Steele says Obama’s positions on issues are all but identical to Hillary’s and that he refuses to explain how he will unite us or how he will accomplish any of the other campaign promises any more than he has accomplished anything else in his life thus far.

Obama himself, in a moment of probably ill-advised (for a politician) candor, said,

I serve as a blank screen on which people of vastly different political stripes project their own views…

Empty

Indeed. That’s why he says nothing but platitudes like “hope” and “change” and “the future.” That’s why people call him an “empty vessel.” (I said “empty suit” was more like it.)

But one of the other rules of politics is that if you fail to define yourself to the public, your opponents will do it for you—to your detriment.

Empty vessel or empty suit, Barack Obama, the former cipher, is now being filled and defined—not by his opponents, but by his friends. Turns out, he ain’t from da hood. And he ain’t no Colin Powell or Condoleeza Rice either. Yet he persists in trying to be Colin X or Condoleeza Sharpton—Dr. Jekyl when he campaigns and Mr. Hyde when he goes to church.

Obama still does not know who he is

Where is the great judgment he claims his early opposition to the Iraq war reveals? There is no way to reconcile what normal Americans expect him to be and what the congregation at Trinity United Church of Christ expects him to be. He has to do what he refuses to do: choose one or the other. Otherwise, he will be carrying the Reverend Jeremiah Wright on his back for the rest of the campaign.

Obama has often said that he had an identity crisis stemming from his Kenyan father and white mother and white upbringing. He used it to justify his cocaine use. The problem is that he seems never to have been able to resolve it and is still in its grip at age 46. He chose to be black—an option not really open to him considering that his mother was white—and appears to have chosen joining a “hate-filled, Anti-American black nationalist” church—to use Steele’s words—to do penance for having a white mother and to exorcise her offensive DNA from his soul. Steele says,

[Obama] was driven by insecurity, by a need to “be black” despite his biracial background. And so fellow-traveling with a little race hatred seemed a small price to pay for a more secure racial identity.

Black columnist Thomas Sowell said Obama’s membership in the TUCC was an example of the converted trying to be “more Catholic than the Pope” or in this case, blacker than thou.

Jeremiah Wright famously said,

Not God bless America! No! No! No! God Damn America!

By joining and remaining in this church, and by bringing his 25% white daughters to this church throughout their lives, Obama seems to saying, “And God damn my white ancestors and the white blood in my body and in the bodies of my daughters.”

Steele ends with,

[Obama’] public persona thrives on manipulation of whites (bargaining), and his private sense of racial identity demands both self-betrayal and duplicity. His is the story of a man who flew so high, yet neglected to become himself.

Is Obama, in effect, a newcomer to America?

After watching several days of coverage of the reaction of Obama and his supporters to the Wright controversy, I conclude, as the various talk show hosts seem to, that Obama and his backers just don’t understand the impact this has had on whites, Asians, Latinos, and other non-black Americans. Why would that be?

They react to questions about the controversy as if they were recent arrivals from a foreign country and they were expecting the American people to react to this story the way people in their previous country would react.

What country is that? Isolated poor black communities around America. Communities where people talk like Reverend Wright every day, communities where the black citizens have little or no contact with non-black people on a day-to-day basis.

Roughly speaking, Barack Obama is a guy who spent two thirds of his childhood in Hawaii and one-third in Indonesia. Since then, he has spent seven years of his life either in college at Occidental (Pasadena) or Columbia (Manhattan) or at Harvard Law School (Cambridge, MA) and 22 years in a poor black community in the South Side of Chicago.

Obama’s church is in the First Congressional District of Illinois. He ran unsuccessfully for Congress there. Here are some excerpts from Michael Barone’s Almanac of American Politics about that district [my comments in red]:

The South Side of Chicago has been the nation’s largest urban black community for nearly a century now. [That supports my suspicion that the politically ambitious Obama chose that place to move to, after college, because it looked like a place where he could get elected as a black in spite of never having any connection with the area.] …this ghetto…headquarters of the Nation of Islam and home to its leader Louis Farrakhan…[current Congressman Bobby Rush]…became…[a member of] the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee, then went AWOL [from the Army] and founded the Illinois Black Panther Party where he recruited Fred Hampton who was later killed in a police raid. Rush served six months in prison for illegal possession of firearms…“I don’t repudiate any of my involvement in the Panther Party…” His son was murdered by a man wielding a handgun as he returned to his South Side home…Rush defeated Barack Obama for the Congressional seat in 2000. In that election, President Clinton endorsed Rush. The district was 70% black in 2002.

Rush was a pastor in that district.

Wikipedia says that the 1st District of Illinois has the highest percentage of blacks of any Congressional District in the U.S.

Barack Obama did not just live in this community. He went there to have a political career. His bio says he was a black community organizer and civil rights lawyer. It sounds like what he really was was just a wannabe politician laying the groundwork for his runs for Congress and State Senate. He was straining every day to become this community’s favorite son and its representative in every sense of the word. Blacker than black.

If a tourist came here from a foreign country to see what America was like and spent his whole five-day vacation in Illinois’s 1st Congressional District, I suspect most Americans would say that would give them an extremely distorted view of America. Barack Obama did not spend five days there. He spent 22 years and he was not a tourist, He was trying to convince the locals he was one of them. To do that, you must love and ingratiate yourself with their local “warlord” or “Imam” Jeremiah Wright

It appears that the 1st District of Illinois is essentially a foreign country. If so, Barack Obama has not lived in the United States since he was in high school in 1977.

Obama is ‘Donnie Brasco

“Donnie Brasco” is the fake name FBI agent Joseph Pistone adopted as part of his efforts to infiltrate the New York City Bonano crime family. That true story was chronicled in the movie title Donnie Brasco. He was a college graduate, former Office of Naval of Intelligence employee who became an FBI special agent. To infiltrate the mob, he had to go native, learning to talk like them (e.g., “fuhgeddaboutit”), act like them (slapped his real wife around once because of an inability to get out of character when he went to see her), and live among them.

To infiltrate the Trinity United Church of Christ congregation, white boy Barry Obama from Honolulu and the Ivy League had to go native, learning to talk like them (e.g., “I been here befoh, you all”), act like them (give no sign he had any objection to the minister spewing hate about his maternal ancestors and the paternal ancestors of his daughters), and live among them. After 22 years of that, he has become one of them, meaning the black community in the South Side of Chicago, and stopped being a mainstream American. That’s why he is oblivious to how the Reverend Wright’s behavior is so unacceptable to mainstream America and why he refuses to disown Wright and the community that loves Wright.

Politically, Obama has turned himself into guy who could go no higher than Congressman from the First District of Illinois. Not president of the U.S. Not even U.S. Senator from the state of Illinois. Against a decent opponent, which he did not have when he won his U.S. Senate seat, Obama would not be able to win a statewide election because of his now revealed “black first and American second” world view.

Brasco and Obama had slightly different goals. Brasco had to win the Bonano Family trust so he could gather evidence about their crimes to present in court. Obama had to win the trust of the people in the Trinity United Church of Christ so he would get their votes and endorsements to launch his political career. Both men had to conceal their true motives for ingratiating themselves into the group and their true identities.

Daughters

Many in the media have expressed consternation at Obama’s willingness to let his daughters listen to Wright’s sermons, and that was without remembering that Obama’s daughters are 25% white. Pistone/Brasco had a wife and kids, too, but he left them out of his undercover work. Since Mafia guys also try not to involve their wives and kids in the business, he had no trouble explaining why his wife and kids were not there. But once you accept Obama’s goal, leaving the wife and kids out of his infiltration was not an option. The congregation would have figured out quickly that they were good enough to vote for Obama, but not to be around his wife and children. The kids had to be there in the church every Sunday to advance Barack Obama political ambitions.

I am less worried about what they heard on Sundays than about their safety and education during the week. Remember this is a Congressional district where the Congressman who defeated Obama saw his own son murdered. Where does Obama send his daughters to school? God forbid it’s Chicago’s public schools, but sending them to an expensive private school would separate him from the congregation.

Trash talker

Another thought I had watching Wright gyrate and dance and gesticulate and gleefully mug as if he is having the time of his life: he reminds me of Venezuela President Hugo Chávez and Iran President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. They taunt the United States and President Bush like school children to attract attention to themselves and to pander to a dumbest common denominator group of people in their community. All three of them strive for the most outrageous things they can think of: Chávez’s saying he could still smell the sulfur at the UN lectern where Bush had spoken the previous day, Ahmadininejad holding a conference to deny the Holocaust, and Wright changing the words of God Bless America to “God Damn America!” The networks and cable stations have had every type of analyst imaginable discuss Wright, but not the one they really need: a child psychologist.

Juan Carlos, the King of Spain, famously told Chávez to “shut up” at the Ibero-American Summit in Chile on 11/10/07. The problem with Wright is there is no one of Juan Carlos’s stature or character in the black community—not in Chicago, not nationwide, and certainly not Barack Obama, to tell Wright the same thing that Juan Carlos very appropriately said to Chávez.

Ancient or imaginary

It is noteworthy that all of Wright’s grievances against the “rich white people who rule America” are either ancient (e.g., slavery which ended 143 years ago) or imaginary (e.g., the U.S. government is giving drugs to blacks). In fact, if that’s all that blacks can complain about, their lives must be darned good. A similar conclusion could be drawn from their actions as opposed to their words. They hate living in a country ruled by rich white people, but apparently not as much as they hate living in one of the many countries ruled by poor black people (e.g., Haiti, Nigeria), as evidenced by the fact that they are still here.

Thomas Sowell’s column

Since the Wright story broke, I have been looking forward to columnist Thomas Sowell’s take on Wright. His column runs in the Friday edition of my local paper and the one on Wright was in the 3/21/08 edition.

Either great minds run in the same channel or Sowell has been reading this article by me. He used three of the same quotes I did: “What did he know and when did he know it?,” “shocked shocked,” and Shelby Steele’s statement that Obama “neglected to become himself.” Sowell and Steele are both fellows at the Hoover Institute at Stanford.

Is it just me?

Is it just me, or does the Reverend Wright seem to long for the “good old days” of legal discrimination against blacks and legal segregation of the races?

Is it just me, or did Reverend Wright seem to be thrilled to death that white U.S. Public Health Service doctors unethically pretended to treat 399 black men who had contracted syphilis, thereby allowing them to suffer tumors, heart disease, paralysis, blindness, insanity, and death, just so they could study the autopsies?

Is it just me, or did the Reverend Wright seem unhappy that more blacks did not die in the attack on Pearl Harbor, which he accused the government of knowing about in advance?

Is it just me, or did the Reverend Wright seem sorry that America has not suffered more 9/11s since 9/11?

Is it just me, or did the Reverend Wright seem to wish that his government really did invent AIDS to kill all blacks?

I don’t think the guy is about anything Christian. He is about self-righteously bitching and moaning about injustice by whites against blacks and he clearly wishes there were more injustices and more recent injustices for him to complain about. He is opposed to “rich white people” doing the right things, as they did with the Emancipation Proclamation, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and, in his mind if not mind, affirmative action. Reverend Wright and his congregation get off on white injustice toward them—real or imagined, ancient or current. He wishes “rich white people” would do more unjust things toward blacks because he is in the complaining business and injustice toward blacks is good for his business.

In shameless hypocrite fashion, Wright is moving into a $1.9 million mansion built for him by the poor people in his congregation in a gated suburb of Chicago. Who else lives there? “Rich white people” make up 98% of the gated community’s residents. His final sermon could have been just, “See ya, suckers.”

I don’t know why Obama is getting all worked up about Wright’s looped “snippets.” They’re just words.

Here is a pertinent quote from historic black hero Booker T. Washington:

"There is a class of colored people who make a business of keeping the troubles, the wrongs, and the hardships of the Negro race before the public. Having learned that they are able to make a living out of their troubles, they have grown into the settled habit of advertising their wrongs—partly because they want sympathy and partly because it pays. Some of these people do not want the Negro to lose his grievances, because they do not want to lose their jobs." —Booker T. Washington

I appreciate informed, well-thought-out constructive criticism and suggestions.

John T. Reed