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Oct 28

Written by: Diana West
Tuesday, October 28, 2008 6:43 AM 

Only a Marxist turn of mind could call the fact that the Civil Rights Movement didn't result in "redistributive change" "one of the tragedies" of that movement. (Come to think of it, the trillion or so taxpayer dollars that went into the Great Society sink hole wasn't exactly small "change," and it was plenty "redistributive.")

Such a tragedy is how Illinois State Senator Barack Obama characterized this supposed failure to drive the country into what sounds alarmingly like socialism in a radio interview in 2001. Or, as the New York Times, put it, "in a seven-year-old interview," which the reporter who wrote the story no doubt thought sounded older and creakier. Obama also said in 2001 that the Warren Court "wasn't that radical" given that it didn't venture "into the issues of redistribution of wealth and more basic issues of political and economic justice in this society." (Andy McCarthy points out that the Warren Court sponsored  a "criminal rights revolution" here ...even if it was less radical than the vision promoted by William Ayers' indictment of the criminal justice system, A Kind and Just Parent, ... which Obama publicly praised.... Sorry, folks; it's all connected.)

Here, for the record, is a chunk of Obama's interview that NakedEmperorNews found in Chicago Public Radio archives and posted on Youtube: 

...the Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth and more basic issues of political and economic  justice in this society. And to that extent, as radical as I think people try to characterize the Warren Court, it wasn't that radical. It didn't break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution, at least as it's been interpreted, and the Warren Court interpreted it in the same way, that generally, the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties. Says what the states can’t do to you. Says what the federal government can’t do to you, but doesn’t say what the federal government or the state government must do on your behalf....

One of the, I think, tragedies of the Civil Rights Movement was because the Civil Rights Movement became so court-focused, I think, that there was a tendency to lose track of the political and community organizing acitivities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalitions of power through which you bring about redistributive change....

Why am I posting this again? Partly, through rereading and underscoring the  passages that remind me of my Soviet history class, to reassure myself I am not crazy and that this is a sensational story. News flash: The very possibly next Leader of the Free World ispretty much a  Marxist.

But look at the PrObamedia. Barely a mention of this incredible story. Nothing. Or worse than nothing. As the story broke on the Internet and the air waves yesterday, Mark Levin picked up early on an evolving media narrative, noting that Politico's Obama campaign blogger Ben Smith was already tamping the story down as so much "oppo" research. In other words, in the MSM, Obama's clearly Marxist leanings--first revealed on the campaign trail by Joe the Plumber's question, and now confirmed in this lawyerly interview--rate as nothing more than so much GOP political maneuvering, and have nothing to do with the national interest. 

Nor does the MSM find it even interesting. This morning, in the dead-tree press, the spin was all in the same direction. I can't find even a mention of the Obama "redistributive change" interview in the Washington Post--just a campaign report quoting John McCain saying that  Obama is "running to be redistributionist in chief. I'm running to be commander in chief." McCain went on: "Senator Obama is running to spread the wealth. I'm running to create more wealth. Senator Obama is running to punish the successful. I'm running to make everyone successful."

How did the Post explain these remarks? Responding directly to newly discovered remarks by Senator Obama in which the then-Illinois State Senator called the failure to achieve  "redistributive change" one of "the tragedies of the Civll Rights Movement," John McCain ...." 

No. The Post wrote:

"McCain's remarks showed the steep climb he faced in a contest that has turned almost singularly on the nation's faltering economy...."

The New York Times was marginally better in that the paper actually mentioned the tape, both in its campaign report, and in a separate story. First,. the campaign report, page A17, paragraph 5:

Mr. McCain offered the other side of that historic divide, accusing Mr. Obama of wanting to take money from those who have it and give it to those who do not. Mr. McCain seized on a radio interview Mr. Obama gave seven years ago to reinforce the argument that Mr. Obama wants to “spread the wealth,” as the Democrat put it on the campaign trail recently.

Mr. McCain read aloud part of the radio interview in Dayton, Ohio, in a speech to supporters, who booed the notion of “redistributive change,” as Mr. Obama put it. “That’s what change means for the Obama administration — the Redistributor,” Mr. McCain said. “It means taking your money and giving it to someone else. He believes in redistributing wealth, not in policies that grow our economy and create jobs.”

But Mr. McCain mangled his script in Ohio, garbling a line about “Barack the Redistributor.” Later, at a feisty rally in Pottsville, Pa., he suggested incorrectly that Mr. Obama’s comments had come “in a radio interview today,” though they were actually made in 2001. But he nailed his new applause line: “Senator Obama is running to be redistributionist in chief. I’m running to be commander in chief.”

So, we two measly words--"redistributive change"--from the blockbuster Obama interview, and a paragraph about McCain mangling, garbling and suggesting incorrectly. That's keeping the public informed about the issues--NOT.

Onto the separate article, "McCain Campaign Cites Comments in 2001 on Courts in Attack on Obama."

"Comments in 2001 on Courts"? Well, yes, in that the assassination of Abraham Lincoln could be described as "Incident in 1865 at Play."

The McCain campaign and Republicans on Monday seized on a seven-year-old interview that Senator Barack Obama gave about the courts and civil rights, contending it provided further evidence of Mr. Obama’s extremist economic positions.

I know we're supposed to say "extremist" instead of Islamic for fear of offending Muslims; are we also supposed to say "extremist" instead of Marxist or Socialist for fear of offending Marxists and Socialists? 

Senator John McCain of Arizona, the Republican presidential nominee, pounced on the interview, which Mr. Obama gave on Chicago Public Radio in 2001.

Two mentions of who VERY OLD the interview is in two consecutive  paragraphs. Must be very relevant. Maybe Obama was 8-years-old again in 2001.

At a rally in Dayton, Ohio, Mr. McCain said the interview showed that Mr. Obama “believes in redistributing wealth, not in policies that grow our economy and create jobs.” In doing so, Mr. McCain continued to strike a campaign theme that began with an exchange that Mr. Obama had with “Joe the Plumber” on Oct. 12 about taxes.

The interview with Mr. Obama, which made the rounds on conservative Web sites in an edited form on Monday and was posted on YouTube, probed his views on the civil rights-era Supreme Court. At the time, Mr. Obama was a state senator and professor at the University of Chicago Law School. He said the Warren Court, as it was known, “never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth.”

Further into the interview, Mr. Obama seemed to lament that the civil rights movement became intensively battled in the courts and never took the grassroots steps to achieve “redistributive change.”

“One of the, I think, the tragedies of the civil rights movement was because the civil rights movement became so court-focused, I think there was a tendency to lose track of the political and community organizing and activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalitions of power through which you bring about redistributive change,” he said. “And in some ways we still suffer from that.”

Mr. Obama did not express regret that the courts did not take steps to spread wealth, as Republicans contended. But neither did he speak dismissively in the interview about the concept, according to the edited tape.

What Republicans? They aren't quoted or named. But who cares? Obama said what he said--or, in NYT-speak--he "seemed to lament" what he "seemed to lament." Isn't that the massively important point?

Not to the NYT, which continued, quoting further from the interview:

“Any three of us sitting here could come up with a rationale for bringing about economic change through the courts,” Mr. Obama added, “I think that as a practical matter that our institutions are just poorly equipped to do it.”

His spokesman Bill Burton emphasized that point in a statement on Monday--

No, he didn't. He just batted the story down . Look--

“This is a fake news controversy drummed up by the all-too-common alliance of Fox News, the Drudge Report and John McCain, who apparently decided to close out his campaign with the same false, desperate attacks that have failed for months,” Mr. Burton said. “In this seven-year-old interview, Senator Obama did not say that the courts should get into the business of redistributing wealth at all.”

Red herring--emphasis on red--anyone? Obama "seemed to lament" the civil rights movement didn't achieve "redistributive change." That's the story. And it's not a fake news controversy.Any reporter not wearing Obama buttons on his eyeballs could see that.



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