PrestoPundit

AMERICA’S GREATEST PHILOSOPHER,

Posted by PrestoPundit on 03/25/2008

Thomas Sowell, on Barack Obama and The Audacity of Rhetoric:

It is painful to watch defenders of Barack Obama tying themselves into knots trying to evade the obvious ..

Barack Obama’s own account of his life shows that he consciously
sought out people on the far left fringe. In college, “I chose my
friends carefully,” he said in his first book, “Dreams From My Father.” These friends included “Marxist professors and structural feminists
and punk rock performance poets” — in Obama’s own words — as well as
the “more politically active black students.” ..

Obama didn’t just happen to encounter Jeremiah Wright, who just
happened to say some way out things. Jeremiah Wright is in the same
mold as the kinds of people Barack Obama began seeking out in college
— members of the left, anti-American counter-culture. In Shelby Steele’s brilliantly insightful book about Barack Obama
— “A Bound Man” — it is painfully clear that Obama was one of those
people seeking a racial identity that he had never really experienced
in growing up in a white world. He was trying to become a convert to
blackness, as it were — and, like many converts, he went overboard.

Nor has Obama changed in recent years. His voting record in the
U.S. Senate is the furthest left of any Senator. There is a remarkable
consistency in what Barack Obama has done over the years, despite
inconsistencies in what he says. The irony is that Obama’s sudden rise politically to the level of
being the leading contender for his party’s presidential nomination has
required him to project an entirely different persona, that of a
post-racial leader who can heal divisiveness and bring us all together.

The ease with which he has accomplished this chameleon-like change,
and entranced both white and black Democrats, is a tribute to the man’s
talent and a warning about his reliability.There is no evidence that Obama ever sought to educate himself on
the views of people on the other end of the political spectrum, much
less reach out to them. He reached out from the left to the far left.
That’s bringing us all together? Is “divisiveness” defined as disagreeing with the agenda of the
left? Who on the left was ever called divisive by Obama before that
became politically necessary in order to respond to revelations about
Jeremiah Wright?

One sign of Obama’s verbal virtuosity was his equating a passing
comment by his grandmother — “a typical white person,” he says — with
an organized campaign of public vilification of America in general and
white America in particular, by Jeremiah Wright. Since all things are the same, except for the differences, and
different except for the similarities, it is always possible to make
things look similar verbally, however different they are in the real
world.

Clear thinking. Clear writing.  A large dollop of good sense.  And all the courage anyone could ever hope to have.

Among the many desperate gambits by defenders of Senator Obama and
Jeremiah Wright is to say that Wright’s words have a “resonance” in the
black community.

There was a time when the Ku Klux Klan’s words had a resonance
among whites, not only in the South but in other states. Some people
joined the KKK in order to advance their political careers. Did that
make it OK? Is it all just a matter of whose ox is gored?

While many whites may be annoyed by Jeremiah Wright’s words, a year
from now most of them will probably have forgotten about him. But many
blacks who absorb his toxic message can still be paying for it,
big-time, for decades to come.

Why should young blacks be expected to work to meet educational
standards, or even behavioral standards, if they believe the message
that all their problems are caused by whites, that the deck is stacked
against them?

That is ultimately a message of hopelessness, however
much audacity it may have. While many whites may be annoyed by Jeremiah Wright’s words, a year
from now most of them will probably have forgotten about him. But many
blacks who absorb his toxic message can still be paying for it,
big-time, for decades to come.

Why should young blacks be expected to work to meet educational
standards, or even behavioral standards, if they believe the message
that all their problems are caused by whites, that the deck is stacked
against them? That is ultimately a message of hopelessness, however
much audacity it may have.

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