Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

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Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Why William Ayers matters

Greta van Susteran had an interview with Michael Barone last night and asked him if Obama's relationship with William Ayers is a legitimate issue. Michael Barone said that yes, he is a legitimate issue, and he's one that the media should be paying a good deal more attention to. Despite a couple of pieces on CNN and FOX about his relationship with William Ayers, the media isn't paying a lot of attention to him. Barone cites three reasons why this is such an important issue:
Obama stresses his commonality with the American people. Do most people feel comfortable working closely with unrepentant domestic terrorists who still want to overthrow the capitalist system in America?

Obama presses educational issues as part of his campaign. He spent years working with Ayers on the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, which pushed efforts to create primary educational organizations that would create political activists for the Left - and which largely failed in any of its intended purposes.

Obama has lied and obfuscated about his relationship with Ayers. Clearly, Ayers was not just “some guy in the neighborhood”, but a political adviser at least on educational issues who provided a key launch for Obama’s political career.

I agree with Captain Ed that the first point should have more to do with Obama's judgment. That has been a key point that Obama keeps stressing to people that his judgment is sound, and he'd only surround himself with people that have experience and sound judgment. Ayers is hardly in that mold. In fact, no one closely associated with Obama -- Ayers, Dohrn, Rezko, Wright, Pfleger, Khalidi -- fits into that category, and we can throw David "Mr. Astroturf" Axelrod into the mix, as well.

The latter two points are key to Barone's argument that William Ayers is a legitimate issue, and he even points out that if we're going to send reporters up to Alaska to dig through Sarah Palin's garbage then we should at least put a level of serious scrutiny into the relationship that Barack Obama and William Ayers had, and continue to have. The Obama camp is busy spinning this away with the "Obama was only 8 years old when the Weather Underground launched their bombing campaign" which doesn't even pass the smell test. NO ONE legitimately said that Obama was working with him when the Weather Underground was committing their acts of terrorism in this country. We only questioned why he would work with an unrepentant terrorist. The other spin coming out of the Obama camp is that Ayers was just a guy in the neighborhood, and both his and Obama's kids went to the same school. (Now this doesn't even come close to passing muster unless the Obama camp wants us to believe that Ayers' kids have been held back almost 20 years in school. The age difference kills this meme immediately.)

See, Obama can't get people to believe he was unaware of who William Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn were. Even when they helped him kick-off his political career in 1995, he had to have known about their past. It was int he early eighties when they turned themselves in, and shortly thereafter, Dohrn was implicated in the Broadway Baby murder and robbery. Even if we suspend our disbelief for a moment, Ayers interview with the New York Times in 2001 where he proclaimed he didn't "think we did enough" should have been a big, ol' red warning flag for Obama, and yet he continues his association with this man.

If John McCain associated himself with Eric Roberts or Ted Kaczynski, you know damn well the Obama camp would be bringing that up continuously. But he didn't, and he hasn't ever associated himself with a terrorist. (Losers in Congress, on the other hand, is a different matter.) But Obama has, and the man clearly doesn't feel sorry for what he did as a part of a radical, domestic terrorist group. He feels no remorse for the bombings, for the "Days of Rage" in Chicago, or for the lives he and his associates took. Hugh Hewitt posted the videos from the SDS reunion in 2007, and anyone with even half a brain can see that neither Ayers or Dohrn have changed their views at all.In fact, if one examines the yeoman's work of Stanley Kurtz at National Review on this subject, you'll see that the Annenberg challenge was nothing more than a petri dish for Ayers to create a new group of revolutionalized, radicalized "New Left" foot soldiers in his continuing assault on American values, and the American system of government.

Publius II

ADDENDUM: I should have checked the news before I posted this up, but the McCain camp isn't lying down over the Ayers controversy. They released a statement today from one John Murtaugh: [Emphasis mine]

“When I was 9 years-old the Weather Underground, the terrorist group founded by Barack Obama’s friend William Ayers, firebombed my house. Barack Obama has dismissed concerns about his relationship with Ayers by noting that he was only a child when Ayers was planting bombs at the Pentagon and the U.S. Capitol. But Ayers has never apologized for his crimes, he has reveled in them, expressing regret only for the fact that he didn’t do more.

“While Barack Obama once downplayed his relationship with Ayers, today his campaign took that deceit one step further. Barack Obama now denies he was even aware of his friend’s violent past when, in 1995, Ayers hosted a party launching Obama’s political career. Given Ayers’ celebrity status among the left, it’s difficult to believe. The question remains: what did Obama know, and when did he know it? When did Obama learn the truth about his friend? Barack Obama helped Ayers promote his book in 1997, served on charitable boards with him through 2002, and regularly exchanged emails and phone calls with him through 2005. At what point did Barack Obama discover that his friend was an unrepentant terrorist? And if he is so repulsed by the acts of terror committed by William Ayers, why did the relationship continue? Any honest accounting by Barack Obama will necessarily cast further doubt on his judgment and his fitness to serve as commander in chief.

“Barack Obama may have been a child when William Ayers was plotting attacks against U.S. targets — but I was one of those targets. Barack Obama’s friend tried to kill my family.”

For those unfamiliar with Mr. Murtaugh read Captain Ed's post from April about him, and remember that William Ayers didn't show a lick of concern for the children who might have been harmed or killed in the war he waged against this nation.

For Obama to now claim he was unaware, at all, of the history that William Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn had is beyond silly. It's beyond stupid. He actually thinks that such a lie is going to make this all go away. It's not, and Team McCain is clearly going to make this an issue even if the media would rather sweep it under the rug.

Publius II


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