Monday, March 17, 2008

Obama busted

UPDATE: Mickey Kaus finds a problem with the NewsMax timeline: Obama was speaking July 22 at a Miami event. So, as Just One Minute says:

[I]f Obama was not attending church the specific day NewsMax claims he was, this gotcha is gone, and Obama's ludicrous claim that he was unaware of Wright's incendiary black separatism has not yet been disproven.

UPDATE II: The NewsMax story is specific about the date, specific about the content of the sermon, and specific that Obama "nodded in agreement" with Wright's rhetoric. Just One Minute wonders if there was time for Obama to have attended the 7 a.m. service and then flown to Miami in time for the 1:30 p.m. La Raza rally.

Meanwhile, Marc Armbinder does a "nyah nyah" at Bill Kristol for biting on the NewsMax story. What's most interesting to me about Armbinder's post is the first commenter, McCLum:
We are suffering from prejudice born from slavery and still 150 years after liberation we are fighting about race. Sure blacks are upset. Sure the situation calls for people who are oppressed to try to find solutions. . . .
Their are those who want to keep the status quo. Who benefits; businesses like McDonalds, Wallmart and other low paying oppressive companies who pay employees below poverty wages. Defense contractors who want us to always be at war. Oil companies who want to stop green energy and green technologies of any kind.
There's a peek inside the "progressive" mind, full of nonsense. Just a few quick rejoinders:
  • Any American who thinks they're "oppressed" needs to wake the hell up. I was in Africa last month. Uganda is a lovely country, but the per-capita GDP in Uganda is $1,100. If the people in Rev. Wright's congregation are "oppressed," what word can describe the people of Uganda? (And in point of fact, many members of Trinity Church are comfortably middle-class.)
  • Wal-Mart and McDonald's are not "oppressive companies," and the fact that entry-level service jobs pay low wages is not the result of willful oppression by greedy corporations. It's simply a function of markets, and these low-wage jobs are actually an important source of economic opportunity, especially for young people.
  • The idea that wars are caused by defense contractors is a rehash of an old lie, the "Merchants of Death" myth.
  • Oil companies are not opposed to "green energy" and, in fact, major oil companies like BP and Exxon have invested millions in alternative energy technologies and fuel-economy technology.
Excuse the mini-rant, but I can't stand to see people propagate falsehoods as "McCLum" did in Armbinder's comments. I don't know who it is that fills people's heads with such nonsense.

UPDATE III: (Via Hot Air) Jackie and Dunlap of Red State Update have a lot of (arguably irreligious) fun with the Rev. Wright story:

UPDATE IV: Andrew Sullivan employs ideological labels against NewsMax, calling the site "a far-right Internet propaganda vehicle" run by "far right smear artists."

OK, first of all, whatever factual problems there are with the NewsMax story -- and it has not been conclusively proven false -- they're only reporting one episode in a much larger story that's been extensively covered by many other news organizations. And NewsMax is no more "far right" than Huffington Post is "far left."

Second, if Andrew Sullivan's going to throw rocks at NewsMax, we should point out the glass house of the former New Republic editor who hired Stephen Glass.

* * *
Ronald Kessler of NewsMax makes a big catch:
Contrary to Senator Barack Obama’s claim that he never heard his pastor Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr. preach hatred of America, Obama was in the pews last July 22 when the minister blamed the “white arrogance” of America’s Caucasian majority for the world’s suffering, especially the oppression of blacks. . . .
In fact, Obama was present in the South Side Chicago church on July 22 last year when Jim Davis, a freelance correspondent for Newsmax, attended services along with Obama. . . .
In his sermon that day, Wright tore into America, referring to the “United States of White America” and lacing his sermon with expletives as Obama listened. . . .
Addressing the Iraq war, Wright thundered, “Young African-American men” were “dying for nothing.” The “illegal war,” he shouted, was “based on Bush’s lies” and is being “fought for oil money.”
(Via Memeorandum.) So now the scandal gets new "legs" because of Obama's false denial.

Team Hillary's got to be loving this. Now Newsweek weighs in with a ponderous examination of Wright and Trinity Church, and the Wall Street Journal's on the story, too.


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