White Paper: The Anti-American American President
Barack Obama: America’s Anti-American President — Governance and Security Implications
John F. Gaski, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Mendoza College of Business
University of Notre Dame
Notre Dame, IN 46556
The author is a long-time registered Democrat―and a long-time registered Republican― intermittently, not sequentially, which should dispatch any possible impression of partisanship. Dr. Gaski’s primary research field is the study of social and political power and conflict.
This analytical item revisits some public matters of the highest order that may have been under-appreciated or even considered settled. It weaves seemingly disparate issues into a coherent mosaic, previously opaque perhaps, deconstructing the philosophical profile embodied by the outgoing U.S. president, his ideology, and conduct of office. Revealed is a “forest through the trees” gestalt that may help to clarify the nation’s uneven recent turn or (mis)direction. Partisans of both the right and left will find much to dislike in the treatment.
by JOHN GASKI, Ph.D.
It is not just his personal history of conspicuous disdain for American institutions, such as the polity, economy, and world leadership role, although that tendency is clear enough in Barack Obama’s own writings and oratory: for example, referring to the private sector—in a capitalist country—as the “enemy,” as in his own brief business job “like a spy behind enemy lines” (Obama 1995, p. 55), he wrote; and his contempt for the middle-American proletariat revealed in his “bitter clingers” remark. Moreover, only a person with intensely negative sentiment toward America as a whole would want to “fundamentally transform” it. Tweak, improve, refine, or reform, sure, but transform? What are America’s fundamentals, anyway? Democracy and capitalism. Therefore, an ominous Obama—to anyone who accepts democracy and capitalism, at least.
And it is not only his long history of anti-American associations. The general outline of the Bill Ayers and Reverend Wright scandals are familiar, but the true depth of Barack Obama’s affront against his nation should be definitively delineated for posterity: Bill Ayers is an anti-American terrorist, a leader and alumnus of the Weather Underground terrorist group. Ayers was involved in bombings of police stations, the U.S. Capitol, and the Pentagon. He got off on a legal technicality and is unrepentant to this day.
It is astounding that a President of the United States could have any connection with such a person, but in this brave new world, contrary to Obama’s debunked cover-up claim that Ayers was just “a guy in the neighborhood,” the Obama–Ayers association was a long and close one. Obama’s political career indeed was born in the home of Ayers and his ’60s/’70s-terrorist wife, the notorious Bernardine Dohrn. Obama and Ayers also worked together as a committee of two at the Chicago Annenberg operation for several years. This president has, in fact, had a long-term connection with an anti-American, communist, terrorist revolutionary, and the mainstream media do not consider it very newsworthy! How would they cover a Republican with such an association? Frankly, it is inconceivable that a Republican (or Libertarian or traditional Democrat) would have a similar background, and this should be appreciated as a purely non-partisan observation.
Likewise with the avowed anti-American, anti-Semitic, Marxist preacher, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Obama’s endorsement of that unsavory ideological combination is inherent in a 20-year discipleship so strong that the rabid reverend baptized the Obama children. What do you suppose the outcry would be if George W. Bush, or any Republican, had consorted with David Duke for two decades—a comparable reciprocal to the Obama impropriety? In fact, Mr. Bush was nearly crucified politically for (a) a quarter-century-old Class D misdemeanor DUI arrest, (b) prosecuting a war that had the overwhelming endorsement of Senate Democrats, (c) poor grammar, (d) all of the above. In view of the correct answer, can we acknowledge a partisan double standard?
On the Obama–Wright nexus, one detail needs to be explicated for the public record. Barack Obama has compounded the offense by dissembling about his Wright background, which can readily be proven per the customary confidence level standards of social science, as follows: Suppose Obama had been present for half of Wright’s sermons over the 20 years, as he himself has estimated. If the reverend had delivered only one Marxist/racist/anti-American rant in his 20 years with Obama, the statistical probability that the future President was not present is 50%. Only twice, and the probability that Obama attended neither is down to (approximately) 25%. Three times yields a roughly 12½ percent chance of an innocent Obama, and so on. So after even a handful of objectionable, to say the least, Wright sermons over the period, the probability of Barack Obama telling the truth about not having been present would be so low as to be dismissed, literally about 3% after only five occasions. Thus is the statistical evidence that President Barack Obama has not been telling the truth about his indulgence of thoroughly vile hate speech, and it easily meets the scientific standard for robustness, i.e., less than or equal to 5%. Other supportive evidence is that the Dreams from My Father autobiography (1995) reports in detail much of Wright’s incendiary oratory. Apparently, Mr. Obama assumed little overlap between his book’s readers and the Wright-denial audience. (The entire population of public Democrats in the United States will affirm that there is nothing wrong with calling a U.S. President a liar; recall the chorus of “Bush lied.” Of course, conservatives and Republicans will concur as well―“Clinton lied”—so there truly is nothing non-mainstream or controversial about this type of conclusion applied to President Obama. Ideologues of any persuasion can probably achieve rare agreement upon summoning the specter of Richard Nixon, just to bolster the immediate point further.)
So now a rough operationalization of the anti-American construct is established, and it clearly does not rely upon domestic policy disagreement across the political divide. Nothing in the illustrative content portrayed thus far relates to policy. This allows us to pursue the seemingly radical hypothesis, as implied in the preceding summary, that a U.S. President, Barack Obama, maintains a uniquely hostile attitude toward the country he is sworn to serve. But the foundational substance gets more bizarre.
We know that not only were both of Obama’s parents socialists or communists, but even more of the main formative influences in the current president’s life were Marxist/communist, including the criminal Frank Marshall Davis and Saul Alinsky (whom Obama probably never met in person). Formally and for emphasis, since that apparently is necessary, an elliptical syllogism suffices: (1) Barack Obama’s vital formation was Marxist/communist (as well as Muslim, for that matter, which may or may not have any relevance), and (2) Marxism/communism is innately anti-American―given how “American” is defined by its founding documents, present legal system, politico-economy, and culture. (3) QED. Then, for trenchant reinforcement, Barack Obama relentlessly reminds us of his “community organizer” roots, which can be recognized as an anti-American thumb in the eye once Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals (1972) interpretation of community organizers is recalled. [True to the dispassionate academic paradigm, we do not assert whether socialism, Marxism, or communism is good or bad intrinsically, or even whether anti-Americanism is normatively desirable or undesirable. What is being adduced is the fundamental incompatibility between the departing American president’s basic personal and political orientation and the position he holds—and that this tension does, in fact, lead to genuine dysfunction, harm, and fault. Moreover, the ultimate origin of the Obama antipathy toward his country is not at issue. Regardless of whether the underlying source is the historical U.S. civil rights conflict, his father’s legacy of anti-colonialism, black liberation theology, childhood Islamic indoctrination, conventional radical politics, or visceral anger and hatred brought on by negative personal experiences and racial alienation (as documented throughout his Dreams memoir; also see Gledhill 2008), only the putative reality of this relation is the subject.]
Supporting Evidence: (Mis)conduct of Office
Yet it is much more than the objective elements of the Obama résumé, and the tangible reality seems not to have fully registered in the public, or academic, consciousness—hence, this refresher. To wit, Barack Obama’s recent, purposive misconduct in office has far surpassed any known precedent. He makes Nixon and Clinton look like patriotic pikers. [The patriotism imagery is fair, and fitting karma. Liberal Democrats are often the first to challenge others’ patriotism, so it is not out of line, even for a neutral umpire, to return the blessing. Countless examples of that very behavior can be readily mined (Gaski 2012, p. 10), notably Barack Obama’s public accusation that George W. Bush was “unpatriotic” because of the size of his administration’s budget deficit, of all things for Obama to criticize.] Specifically, never before have we seen a U.S. president so blatantly and intentionally harm his countrymen and country.
A brief bill of particulars, none of which should be a surprise:
1. Barack Obama was derelict in his obligation to protect American personnel at Benghazi, Libya before and during the fatal 9/11 attack, although he had abundant requests and opportunity, then went AWOL, in effect, while the slaughter was in progress, as his critics colorfully but accurately term Obama’s non-response. Error is one thing, but gross recklessness signifies culpability. Regardless of why he committed the negligence, casual if unintended complicity in the multiple murder of American Foreign Service officials is rather anti-American behavior objectively. And, given the established circumstances, this summary description seems very temperate. A further troubling but undisputed fact: We do not know the whereabouts of the President of the United States at the time of the Benghazi incident, or whom he was with. Why not? Obviously, he does not want the public to have that information.
Of course Mr. Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have needed to resort to perhaps the most audacious diversionary cover story in political annals. Based on what is known already, and despite the House Republicans’ amateurish attempt to illuminate, Benghazi-gate is arguably the biggest scandal of executive branch misfeasance or malfeasance in American history. It can be hypothesized, somewhat trivially, that if a Republican had done anything remotely close, with flagrant official dishonesty soon exposed, s/he would be out of office in short order. The difference is a symptomatic measure of one political camp having a captive propagandist media (as is well-established empirically, e.g., Baron 2006), rather than a nation with the vigilant free press the Founders imagined—and knew was essential to freedom.
2. To undermine national security by forgoing almost uniformly the taking of prisoners in the terror war (because new ones would have to be warehoused at politically incorrect Guantanamo), even though their intelligence value is a key defensive, life-saving weapon, is nothing less than abetting the enemy during wartime. There is a constitutional name for that offense, is there not? Abiding by the rule of U.S. law also does not require Mirandizing the few apprehended terrorists we do serendipitously happen to secure (e.g., Tsarnaev, al-Libi. Neither is it required to capriciously leak classified information for political advantage, as has been done more than once by the Obama White House.) That President Obama and his Attorneys General maintain this stance for transparent domestic politics as impelled by a well-recognized commitment to the left-wing base and its rigid ideology (Wall Street Journal 2013)―not that the right side of the spectrum does not have rigidities of its own―is only an aggravating factor. Some readers may know that radical leftism is inherently anti-American, the same as most right-wing fanaticism is.
2a. Recently a revealing extreme was reached with release of five Taliban terrorist leaders, among many other Gitmo prisoners. This action meets the intentionality test on three grounds: First, no one, not even Barack Obama, could realistically believe that re-circulation of the Taliban “fab five” would not provide material assistance to the terrorist enemy. Also, Obama himself has acknowledged his awareness that the former prisoners could return to anti-American terrorist activity—and released them anyway. This establishes consciousness aforethought. Finally, Mr. Obama’s own government advisers in the military and cabinet had earlier rejected this prisoner swap on grounds of danger to the United States. What changed? Again, this provides evidence of prior cognition or intent.
The only remaining issue is how gravely the action violates U.S. law and security. Under existing federal law, one may not provide resources to a terrorist organization, so this case is not at all comparable to historical post-hostility exchanges. The doctrine of “leave no man behind” has been transmogrified unrecognizably into capitulation.
3. The Obama administration put the United States on a trajectory toward national bankruptcy. Its deficit spending had been an order of magnitude greater than any other experienced in U.S. history; Bush-43’s deficits were a small fraction of Obama’s. (No, Mr. Obama did not cure the recession or prevent a depression. The misnamed “great recession” actually ended during the last Bush fiscal year; U.S. Dept. of Commerce 2011.) It is now clear that Barack Obama never had any interest in constraining federal spending, thereby creating endless geometric magnification of the national debt. Partisan arguments about the proper proportion of spending versus taxation components of deficit reduction are peripheral spinnage. These dangerous deficits are a fact, and Obama’s red ink has us in uncharted macroeconomic territory. For a prospective decline in the annual deficit from over a trillion dollars, four years running, to half a trillion or so to be seen as progress is instead a sign of fiscal doom.
When a country goes bankrupt, it is not like individual or corporate bankruptcy. Think of Greece, Zimbabwe, or Weimar Germany. Think of all dollars becoming practically worthless—and the Obama government’s role in that loss. Then, a bankrupt nation cannot afford to defend itself. Ponder the consequences of that rather reckless upshot. (And think of what secret deal President Obama evidently made with Russia’s Medvedev and Putin on U.S. disarmament, as he once inadvertently telegraphed over an open “mike” but did not want to share with the American people, for some reason.) Together with the ongoing emaciating of the military, the only spending category President Obama ever trimmed, there seems to be a pattern, and plan.
If you believe that Barack Obama is so thick that he is not aware of any of this—contrary to the near-universal recognition of the president’s inherent intellectual gifts―then you can dispense a pass on the intentionality issue. Otherwise, Barack Obama must be held accountable for willfully bankrupting America, along with the full range of catastrophic international consequences. And he seems so preternaturally sanguine about it all. Curious, and a bit anti-American by Obama’s own enunciated standard, is it not?
3a. A minor road bump on the Obama-facilitated express to national economic collapse was the sequester, yet the president found ways to use even that contrived device against the American people. Never has a president so overtly and consciously meant to harm his fellow countrymen as when Barack Obama directed his administration to make sequester cuts as painful as possible to the public, so as to advance his cynical partisan scheme of blaming Republicans. The same has been witnessed with the pre-engineered tragedy along the Mexican border. This type of gratuitous cruelty against Americans is unprecedented, and completely conforms to what the Constitution’s framers meant by “high misdemeanors,” that is, serious misconduct in high office. The behavior is, however, akin to the foreign-directed mischief recounted nearby.
3b. Still in the economic realm, no previous American president has ever set out to target certain domestic industries for destruction. Mutual friction or attempted nationalization, such as Truman and steel or TR and coal, sure, but even FDR’s hostility to some sectors did not reach the Obama manic level, reified as the declared war on coal and the undeclared wars on petroleum and health insurance. Lincoln vis-à-vis slavery was more of a long-running social movement against a production factor, not an industry per se, and prohibition against beverage alcohol was passed over President Wilson’s veto. To reinforce, although dramatic effect is hardly necessary, these are not foreign industries receiving a president’s hostility, but American industries.
4. Then there was “Fast and Furious,” the wild machination of Barack Obama and Eric Holder designed to cause gun violence on our Southern border by arming the drug cartel, again for domestic political effect. Because the firearms were intended for possession by the criminals, the case for this premise is comfortably rested. No, again, the Bush administration had no equivalent program. They tracked and interdicted the weapons involved in their much smaller plan.
We can be thankful that the Obama–Holder partnership had more limited success with this intrigue than they envisioned: Only one or two U.S. border agents were murdered with a gun they placed. However, over 1000 Obama/Holder-planted firearms are still unaccounted for. So can we accept “anti-American” as an objective descriptor? Is there really anything extreme about that designation in this context? That such discussion even attaches to a U.S. president is tragic and very distasteful, but circumstantially inescapable now.
5. Not to overlook the bureaucracy, we witnessed the Obama administration’s assault on the First Amendment by means of the IRS and NSA. These scandals have actually combined to become a unifying force, drawing the condemnation of partisans and ideologues from both ends of the political spectrum, which further upholds the non-partisan character of this compendium. Contempt for the rule of U.S. law is a patently anti-American posture of the first magnitude, from any perspective, but especially on the part of a U.S. president. Far beyond anything Nixon and Clinton did with the IRS, politicizing and corrupting the agency is Barack Obama’s legal culpability and his indelible personal legacy. Although it takes up the least space on a printed page, this scandal may be the biggest of all.
6. Augmenting the contribution to a weakened U.S. national defense attributable to the looming economic disaster, Barack Obama as president renounced the historical bi-partisan consensus on strategic deterrence. His aspiration to reduce his country’s nuclear weapons inventory toward zero is no less than a naïve dream or mad scheme. (This brief section will not resonate with those who have not learned the most basic lesson from military history, i.e., that weakness begets war; Fischer and Bloomgarden 1989; Singer and Small 1974.)
Back to earth, and reality: Irrespective of how few nukes Russia would retain clandestinely under Obama’s demonstrably quixotic vision of a zero-option strategic accommodation (Kyl 2010), what will be the combined total of nuclear weapons for Russia, China, North Korea, Iran, Pakistan—and even France, for good measure—relative to our country’s prospective new strategic arsenal of zero (down from the former and indomitable 25,000 or so)? The ratio of strategic forces suddenly becomes infinity, and not in the United States’ favor. Even if we would maintain 1000 nuclear warheads, as allowed under the latest START proposal, the U.S. inventory would be dwarfed by the aggregate total of the above rogue roster. Does that prospective answer make you feel safer, whether an American or not, or is it the height of imprudence by a U.S. president in the face of acutely anti-American international operators, nation-states and otherwise? Could it even be a prescription for national suicide, and how can any normal American president be so cavalier about it? Empirically, how often does a major power’s peace overture restrain potential aggressors?
Do you really feel that world peace or even your own country’s security is enhanced when aggressive outlaw states such as some of those listed are more powerful strategically than the U.S.—the nation that saved the world from tyranny, maintained the balance of peace during the Cold War period, and has exercised its power more temperately overall than any other superpower in world history (yes, including the atomic bombing to end World War II, which is estimated to have saved hundreds of thousands of lives, net)? And the objectivity of the last proposition is confirmed as one futilely seeks a counterexample. Unfortunately, Barack Obama has demonstrated that he does not think of his country in that benign way. Hence, the “anti-American” allegation grows more and more supported. One can only hope that a new president will reverse this high-risk trend.
7. Maybe the most fundamental Obama offense, and another candidate for most serious, is his adventure into the nouveau-dictatorial governing practices of flouting the judiciary (e.g., ignoring National Labor Relations Board court rulings) and circumventing Congress and established law by arbitrary executive fiat (e.g., ObamaCare employer mandate and congressional waivers). This issue has been dissected well enough elsewhere (Henninger 2013) so it will not be incorporated here except via this reference. While the president’s partisans appear to relish the overreach of unilateral governance by executive order, this extra-constitutional behavior must also be called anti-constitutional, so an impeachable offense, rightfully, and anti-American ipso facto.
One application of this despotic Obama tendency does merit special mention. A secure border is an imperative for nationhood. No border: no nation. Our 44th president’s imposition of virtual amnesty for illegal aliens (still the correct locution) through non-enforcement of our border, in contravention of his legal duty, has been literal subversion of national security and national existence by diktat. Could any executive action be more anti-American?
8. Just to punctuate, we have Obama’s recurring anti-American calumny, a piece of which has been euphemistically labeled his “world apology tour.” This deprecatory, anti-U.S. rhetoric obviously did not produce the promised positive impact on the nation’s international standing—but has had the natural impact. Recently, on foreign soil again, President Obama accused the United States of violating Mexican sovereignty at the same time Mexican nationals were illegally violating U.S. territory in terms of its immigration law! That also is objective fact whether one approves of the practice or not.
A variant of this genre is Mr. Obama’s persistent accusation of torture against the United States of America on the grounds of three revealed episodes of the terrorist interrogation technique known as “water-boarding.” Regardless of how readers feel about the substance of the claim, they should be sensitive that large numbers of U.S. citizens and admirers, or even neutral observers, can regard it as unadulterated anti-American slander because water-boarding had never been officially defined as torture by the international bodies that take it upon themselves to author the taxonomy of such practices (Taylor and Wittes 2009, pp. 5-6). Adhering to the objective, substantive aspects: Water-boarding was never defined as torture until it became known that the U.S. government had used the method, that is.
9. In the Syria WMD debacle, President Barack Obama humiliated his country globally with an appeasement façade, orchestrated in collaboration with the more-than-willing Vladimir Putin and Bashar Assad, no less, only to try to save face for himself in the wake of his “red line” bluster. It did not succeed, at least for his country. No matter how the crisis and hoax play out, the nationally embarrassing status as of this writing is as described, its effect on global U.S. power will continue to be negative, and Obama’s cynical gambit cannot be whitewashed.
10. Barack Obama’s crypto-treaty with the government of Iran is providing that regime with the capability to obliterate Israel, America’s best ally in the region. Iran has publicly declared that very intention, and has violated the agreement since its inception, despite the favorable terms. If and when history’s verdict is that Obama is an accessory in the incineration of six million Israelis, the imagery and linkage as well as the reality will compound the disaster for the president’s legacy—a well-deserved stigma.
If that ignominy were not enough, also included in the Obama-Iran deal was a cash payment of $150 billion for the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism. It would be implausible to assume that none of the future terrorism enabled by those funds will be directed at the United States. Nothing more need be said about the anti-American character and result of Barack Obama’s conduct in this sordid matter.
11. Finally, discarding the gains of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars simply returns us to the status quo ante: state-sponsored staging areas for terrorists—including ISIS now, as well as al-Qaeda—which led to the original 9/11. Slightly reckless and irresponsible for a U.S. president, might we say?
What of Obama’s termination of Osama bin Laden, and his drone strikes against al-Qaeda? How do those actions square with the anti-American conclusion? Now that we have seen, throughout the Obama presidency, the pattern of domestic politics guiding all policy, and if the plausibility of the presidential cynicism hypothesis has been adequately established, it all becomes reconcilable. If an American president adverse toward his country wanted to effectively cover up that reality with his electorate, (1) allowing the G. W. Bush/CIA plot against bin Laden to continue and (2) the remote quasi-video game of drone warfare would be valued as neat and tidy ways of planting the useful, false, diversionary perception. The Osama bin Laden killing was a major campaign talking point for Barack Obama in the 2012 election campaign, after all. Case rested. Judging motives should always be a last resort, but that is where we are with Barack H. Obama.
The truth is hiding in plain sight as the trees obscure the forest. Barack Obama’s entire life has been a pattern of willful associations with individuals and groups that collectively expose his own leanings which are inimical to American institutions and values—from F. M. Davis and the Alinsky-ites, through the Marxist profs and student groups that so attracted the future U.S. president, to the heinous Ayers and Wright, not to mention the Chicago socialist cell Barack Obama admitted he joined. Again, it used to be generally recognized that socialism is anti-American by definition. (Yet America is not reciprocally anti-socialist or anti-communist, per se. In its remarkable embodiment of true liberty, U.S. law allows the free and open observance of socialism, communism, and countless other “-isms” that are actively hostile to the nation itself.)
For emphasis, the totally conventional operative assumption throughout is that an American president should be, at minimum, pro-American. Across more than two centuries of U.S. history and its associated commentary, there is no record of anyone ever needing to proffer that proposition—until now. As Gledhill poignantly reports in his review of Obama’s Dreams volume, one finds “not . . . a single positive sentence about the United States” (2008, p. 38). I submit that individual inspection will confirm the Gledhill assessment as accurate. For a social critic such as the young Barack Obama to do a critical review of his country is not unusual. For a destined U.S. president’s comprehensive manifesto to signal that he favors nothing about his country is something very new.
But then, as president, Barack Obama went much further. He has gone too far. He personifies a torrent of anti-American actions so mean-spirited and hostile to the citizens of this country that his victims seem too dazed to grasp its nature and magnitude. If they could, this type of report would not be needed to make the case. It is past time to speak the unspeakable: What does all this reveal about the true sentiments and motivations of the person who occupied our White House between 2009 and 2017? Unless Barack Obama is so unsophisticated that he cannot perceive the destructive acts and consequences as outlined here, then he was doing it to our country purposefully. (And there should be scarce question about the premises because they are all observable, established, objective fact. Go ahead and double check. In matters of human behavior, interpretation and conclusions can always be subject to argument, but the premises here are posited as objectively grounded—and the author is prepared to debate any challenge to them.) In view of the foregoing litany, it is not the least bit extreme to label President Barack Obama as anti-American. It may be remarkable and staggering, but not injudicious.
In the interest of balance, can we not similarly accuse leading Republicans of deliberately harming Americans, for instance by opposing social spending? Not even close. The long-term ratio of social spending supported by Republicans compared with Democrats is so high as to neutralize the accusation (de Rugy 2004). Anyway, this spending issue represents only a policy difference between two factions favoring different routes to the mutual end of optimal national welfare.
What about Republican support for the big banks that wrought the 2008-09 financial meltdown upon our country? The banks did not cause that event; prior government intervention in the mortgage market by the other party did, primarily and frankly (see Friedman 2011; Gaski 2012, pp. 6-7; Morgenson and Rosner 2011. A mini-digest: Why would banks want to lose money by making so many bad loans? And who ran Fannie and Freddie?)
More generally, this Obama-versus-America phenomenon is not merely policy-oriented, not a simple matter of policy disagreement. All political practitioners, observers, and mavens, ideologues or not, naturally tend to feel that their public policy preferences are correct, so that any opposing policy prescriptions are wrong and, therefore, contrary to the national interest—“anti-American” in the present motif. One can only wish that the foregoing enumeration were that routine, rather than the fundamental and grave profile of incompatibility we excavate.
A Sidebar Interjection: Partisan?
The author can hear the reader accusations of partisanship through the pages and from some distance away in space and time. Let us reflect on the definition of the word “partisan”: (adj.) “unreasonably devoted to a party or faction”; (n.) “a blind or fanatical adherent . . . of a party or cause” (Britannica 1959). That is, “partisan” means opposing a political or ideological position or group just because it is the opposition, rather than for substantive reasons. Therefore, any other legitimate motives for one’s opposition or criticism render it non-partisan in orientation.
Similarly, “non-partisan” does not mean that one may only criticize the two major U.S. political parties or ideologies equally. What if the two are not equally wrong on a particular issue? There is no a priori or empirical reason to believe that the two major political parties in the U.S. are always identically right and wrong, or equally good and bad. If that were true, it would be a probabilistic freak. In the same way, for example, a book or article about Richard Nixon’s crimes is not ethically obliged to give equal space to criticism of Jimmy Carter.
Any suggestion of partisan content here is therefore disqualified as inadmissible because it presumes motives—a non-legitimate argumentation mode unless possessing considerable state-of-mind evidence. (Sometimes, of course, political groups and individuals do furnish that evidence via the totality of their conduct, including examples such as those discussed in the earlier section.) The author is the one in a position to best know the partisan or non-partisan nature of the argument in this case. Unfortunately, the reader can only judge under uncertainty based upon the full montage of surrounding text and this particular disclaimer—except for two other fortuitous and incidental evidentiary features: (1) The information in the author’s note should be sufficient to provide objective confirmation of non-partisanship. (2) Likewise, other author publications with conversely-directed policy criticism are validating (Gaski 2012a; Gaski and Sagarin 2011).
Beyond this, the author is well-aware that many readers may believe, by custom, that it is not legitimate to criticize U.S. Democrats on this or any other issue, only Republicans. We need to get over that, toward the non-partisan goal avowed, and the hope is that this demonstrably non-partisan and anti-partisan item can be an instrument for such an equitable purpose. Abundant empirical data verify that the public media and academic milieu in the U.S. and other countries are overwhelmingly left-leaning or liberal ideologically (in the modern Western sense; e.g., Baron 2006). A serious journal intersects with both worlds. It should not be considered out of line, therefore, to air a divergent, heterodox perspective, especially if non-ideological.
Further evidence of the need for this step back from partisanship (of the prevalent kind) may be (1) the hostile reaction of some readers at this very moment and (2) the fact that this author actually feels it necessary to elaborately justify criticism of a category of politician. That measure is not ordinarily required for criticism of the opposite camp.
Ultimately, on a tangential but important point, I cannot prove that Barack Obama is a socialist and I cannot prove he is a communist—but it is easy to prove that he is one or the other. If you will, the deductive case: When in the U.S. Senate, Barack Obama’s voting record was to the left of that of Bernie Sanders of Vermont, the only self-identified socialist in the legislative body (National Journal 2013). Therefore, Mr. Obama is either a more extreme socialist than Senator Sanders or something to the left of that. Alternatively, the inductive proof is the overwhelming Obama biography of self-selected socialist/Marxist/communist affiliations as reviewed here, which he chose volitionally and enthusiastically. Add to that his virtual seizure of U.S. “means of production,” not so much through ownership but more efficiently from control via intimidation. Every business owner or CEO in the United States came to know that the Obama government would not hesitate to snuff out his or her business. Incidentally, or not, Barack Obama was also endorsed by the Communist Party of the USA in 2004, ’08, and ’12. And how many other U.S. presidents knowingly appointed communists to their administrations? (President Truman famously allowed some to continue in his employ, but there is no proof that he knew their communist connection when first appointed; Wikipedia 2013.) Obama is even proto-Stalinist in the approach of demonizing or destroying those who disagree with him. No? Recall the leaking of sealed divorce records of two Senate opponents in 2004. Recall his 2012 campaign’s picturesque theme of “kill Romney,” which belied the simultaneous but hypocritical “civility” posture. Quite an example from an American president! Truman’s “give ’em hell” is now seen as charming and quaint. Will future historians ever say the same about Barack Obama’s brass-knuckle-type tactics? It may depend on whether the history is written in English, Arabic, or Mandarin.
Has Obama himself not been subject to demonization? A major surprise to this author has been the search finding that Republican opposition has actually “pulled its punches” and moderated its criticism of Barack Obama. Conjure up the meek John McCain candidacy on this score: for example, the campaign chairman’s strange rule of no criticism of Obama. Cases of national or office-holding Republican leaders resorting to the kind of personal attacks that Obama regularly has launched at adversaries are extremely difficult to find, very much a modern myth or caricature, contrary to the popular non-wisdom. (In many cases, though, politicians of both major parties demagogue any criticism as “demonization” or “negative attack.”)
Truly, Barack Obama is a different variety, plumbing new depths of political ruthlessness to augment rare political skill and opportunism. Those who forewarned about him may have understated the prognosis. Coming from the notorious Chicago machine as he does, which is a form of organized crime, after all (Campbell 2005; Kahn and Majors 1984), perhaps we should not be so surprised. Of course, this particular president also happens to be an admitted felon by “virtue” of his self-proclaimed cocaine use and trafficking, and felony is the highest defined category of violation of U.S. law—an intrinsically anti-social, anti-American act. (Unless every lifetime use occasion was gratis, then trafficking, at least on the purchase side, was involved. If the unsubstantiated rumor of George W. Bush’s cocaine use is ever verified, he will deserve the same assessment.) To have 100% certainty that a U.S. president is felonious is not unique, but very rare. Is it not timely, or overdue, for the question to be asked: Does our nation really have to submit to this institutionalized hostility from within, including the moral and practical equivalent of sabotage, as spotlighted here? What, fundamentally, should we think of all this? (Again, the reader will find no sentiment in this document to the effect that socialism, Marxism, or even Stalinism is bad—only anti-American inherently. The author does acknowledge subjective opposition to “mean-spirited,” “destructive,” “hypocritical,” “ruthlessness,” “felony,” “hostility,” “sabotage,” etc.)
So are we accusing Mr. Obama of everything from the crucifixion, to the plague, to the Holocaust? No, that is what George W. Bush’s political opponents did with him, and still do. The focus here is on what Obama has actually done objectively.
The implications of having a national chief executive with the psychographic traits of Barack Obama are self-evidently monumental, but that is the condition the American people volitionally (if ignorantly?) chose. Not having advance access to an analytic exposé of this document’s nature may appear to have been a contributory factor, but the Obama voters did have access to all the pre-election facts contained herein, nonetheless.
In the interim, though, President Obama received special public deference, most notably the critical forbearance and outright support, even adulation, by the normally aggressive and jaded news media. Because of that background, a salutary sense of exposing the Wizard of Oz(bama) behind the curtain may be construed here, and even a proper dose of “the emperor has no clothes”—which, as can be recalled, was a supremely rational act of civil disobedience. This entire contrarian presentation is tendered in that positive spirit. It is offered as a necessary and timely balancing instrument.
Above all, scholars and other observers should not turn a blind eye toward watershed events with national security overtones, even if a politicized news media and a large segment of professional historians choose to do exactly that. I further submit that nothing resembling this unusual review could have been compiled for any other U.S. president. Barack Obama is undeniably a unique case study, but perhaps in one more way than has generally been imagined.
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