"Fascism and communism both promise "social welfare," "social justice," and "fairness" to justify authoritarian means and extensive arbitrary and discretionary governmental powers." - F. A. Hayek"
"Life is a Bungling process and in no way educational." in James M. Cain
Jean Giraudoux who first said, “Only the mediocre are always at their best.”
If you have ten thousand regulations, you destroy all respect for the law. Sir Winston Churchill
"summum ius summa iniuria" ("More laws, more injustice.") Cicero
As Christopher Hitchens once put it, “The essence of tyranny is not iron law; it is capricious law.”
"Government’s view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it." Ronald Reagan
"Law is where you buy it." Raymond Chandler
"Why did God make so many damn fools and Democrats?" Clarence Day
"If I feel like feeding squirrels to the nuts, this is the place for it." - Cluny Brown
"Oh, pshaw! When yu' can't have what you choose, yu' just choose what you have." Owen Wister "The Virginian"
Oscar Wilde said about the death scene in Little Nell, you would have to have a heart of stone not to laugh.
Thomas More's definition of government as "a conspiracy of rich men procuring their own commodities under the name and title of a commonwealth.” ~ Winston S. Churchill, A History of the English Speaking Peoples
“Laws are like cobwebs, which may catch small flies, but let wasps and hornets break through.” ~ Jonathon Swift
Saturday, June 30, 2012
Reagan didn't spread AIDS, unfettered, promiscuous homo-sex spread AIDs. Not heterosexual sex. Anal-genital sex spreads AIDs! m/r
The Gay Left Lies about Reagan — Again - Deroy Murdock - National Review Online
By Deroy Murdock
June 28, 2012 4:00 A.M.
With Gay Pride season in full swing this month, it’s time for yet another round of Reagan-bashing, courtesy of angry, left-wing gay activists.
In this year’s episode, the White House invited a delegation of gay Philadelphians to a June 15 Pride celebration — the first ever at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. To the sounds of the Marine Corps Band, several of these guests stank up the place by giving the finger to the official portrait of the late Ronald Wilson Reagan. They proudly captured this incident on camera, as the photos demonstrate.
“F**k Reagan,” Matthew “Matty” Hart wrote in the Facebook caption of a picture showing him waving his middle digits at Everett Raymond Kinstler’s oil painting of the 40th President of the United States. “Yeah, f**k Reagan,” Hart reiterated in the June 22 Philly Post. As he told writer Victor Fiorillo, “Ronald Reagan has blood on his hands. The man was in the White House as AIDS exploded, and he was happy to see plenty of gay men and queer people die. He was a murderous fool, and I have no problem saying so. Don’t invite me back [to the White House]. I don’t care.”
-more at link-
Gildersleeves - The Cops must have forgotten about the FIRST AMENDMENT!!!!! Natalie Plummer arrested for holding sign warning drivers about police speed trap
Natalie Plummer arrested for holding sign warning drivers about police speed trap | Mail Online
Pedestrian thrown in jail for 12 hours for holding up sign warning drivers about police speed trap
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2165792/Natalie-Plummer-arrested-holding-sign-warning-drivers-police-speed-trap.html#ixzz1zIxIgi34
This is why we have a right to shoot at them if they attempt a break in! Online threat — but SWAT team raids wrong house
Online threat — but SWAT team raids wrong house
-full short post-
Imagine you're sitting at home, comfortable on the couch, watching the Food Network, when all of a sudden a heavily armed SWAT team breaks down your door and storms into your living room.
That's what happened to 18-year-old Stephanie Milan, who was watching TV in her family's Evansville, Ind., home last Thursday (June 22), when a team of police officers broke down her storm door — the front door was already open — and tossed a flash-bang stun grenade into the room.
"The front door was open," Ira Milan, Stephanie's grandfather and the property owner, told the Evansvile Courier & Press. "To bring a whole SWAT team seems a little excessive."
Turns out, however, that the SWAT team had the address wrong.
The Courier & Press said the police had been investigating "anonymous and specific online threats made against police and their families on the website topix.com," and had obtained a search warrant for the Milan house. An Evansville police officer said one of the threats that came from the Milan household mentioned explosives and said, "Evansville is going to feel the pain."
Whoever made these threats, the Courier & Press said, likely remotely routed them through the Milan's open Wi-Fi connection, which means it could have been used from an outside location. It's possible the Milans, or specifically Stephanie, were targets of "swatting," a particularly nasty prank by which the perpetrator — often through hoax 911 calls — tricks a SWAT team into raiding a house of his choosing.
Last July, Parry Aftab, a prominent Internet security advocate, became the victim of such an attack. Police swarmed her northern New Jersey home after pranksters placed a 911 call through a computer that cloned her number and said a man had killed four people and was holding another hostage in her house.
Sharpton Set to Eulogize Rodney King at LA Funeral - ABC News
Friday, June 29, 2012
Judge Napolitano: Roberts Didn't Make The "Constitutional Decision"
June 29, 2012
Judge Andrew Napolitano weighed in on this decision on today’s Fox and Friends. He said, "I don’t think he made the right decision. I don’t think he made the sensible decision. I don’t think he made the Constitutional decision because, basically, what he said was the Congress can’t force you to do anything, but it can tax you if you don’t do it."
Thursday, June 28, 2012
CURL: Roberts to the rescue for Romney - Washington Times
By Joseph Curl
Thursday, June 28, 2012
Traitor! Turncoat! Benedict Arnold!
Those contemptuous epithets and more were hurled by Republicans and conservatives at Supreme Court Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. moments after he single-handedly saved Obamacare, joining liberals on the bench to break a 4-4 tie.
The Supreme Court has abandoned us," Texas Gov. Rick Perry declared. "Simply disappointing," Florida Gov. Rick Scott moaned. "Activist court," Rep. Michele Bachmann cried.
Even Ari Fleischer, the former spokesman for George W. Bush, who appointed Chief Justice Roberts to the court, joined in. "I miss Justice Harriet Miers," he whined.
But they all miss the point, and, more, by looking purely at the political, miss the forest for the trees.
In voting to uphold Mr. Obama's disastrous health-care overhaul, the chief justice took away the president's main line of attack that surely would have been deployed had the court voted 5-4, along party lines. The Divider in Chief, already bent on stoking cultural warfare — upper-middle class vs. lower-middle class, white against black against Hispanic, gay against straight, believers against non-believers — had no doubt hoped to win one more target for his bilious bifurcation.
Were the five justices appointed by Republican president to have stuck together in opposition, Mr. Obama would have toured the country (at taxpayer expense) to decry the court's action as nothing more than an act political usurpation — how dare those five men take away the will of the people?!
But Justice Roberts did just the opposite (and, bonus, also strictly adhere to the original intent of the Constitution). Obamacare is unconstitutional if it were to be enacted via the Commerce Clause, but not if it's simply a tax, the justice wrote. "Because the Constitution permits such a tax, it is not our role to forbid it, or to pass upon its wisdom or fairness."
In so doing, Justice Roberts has just busted Campaign 2012 wide open.
-more at link-
Supreme Court Health Care Ruling: The Mandate Can Stay - ABC News
MATT NEGRIN (@MattNegrin) and ARIANE DE VOGUE (@Arianedevogue)
June 28, 2012
In a landmark ruling with wide-ranging implications, the Supreme Court today upheld the so-called individual mandate requiring Americans to buy health insurance or pay a penalty, the key part of President Obama's signature health care law.
The court ruled 5 to 4, wiith Chief Justice John Roberts siding with the majority, that the mandate is unconstitutional under the Constitution's commerce clause, but it can stay as part of Congress's power under a taxing clause. The court said that the government will be allowed to tax people for not having health insurance.
"The Affordable Care Act's requirement that certain individuals pay a financial penalty for not obtaining health insurance may reasonably be characterized as a tax," Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the ruling. "Because the Constitution permits such a tax, it is not our role to forbid it, or to pass upon its wisdom or fairness."
-more at link-
Here’s a key quote from the decision by Chief Justice John Roberts, who says the court can’t protect Americans from their political decisions.
Members of this Court are vested with the authority to interpret the law; we possess neither the expertise nor the prerogative to make policy judgments. Those decisions are entrusted to our Nation’s elected leaders, who can be thrown out of office if the people disagree with them. It is not our job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices.
Time to Dump all 2,700+ pages in Boston Harbor!!! - or any other place for trash! Republicans: Ruling focuses election on Obama's health care tax
Republicans: Ruling focuses election on Obama's health care tax - Washington Times
The 'camel's nose, head and hump' is in our tent.
Planners Inspired by Supreme Court Decision » The Antiplanner
posted in News commentary |
Welcome Back George Orwell! Supreme Court upholds ObamaCare and Americans have lost the right to be left alone
Remember Kelo vs. New London CT. The Supreme Court demonstrated with that decision that it can never be trusted to uphold the right of individuals in the face of the abuse of the State. By the way, the Kelo land is now a weed infested vacant lot, Pfiser never built the complex that was touted as for the general good of the community over the property rights of the individual.
We can only hope for some positive outcome as happened after Kelo: The Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision against Kelo and her neighbors sparked a nation-wide backlash against eminent domain abuse, leading eight state supreme courts and 43 state legislatures to strengthen protections for property rights.
Supreme Court upholds ObamaCare and Americans have lost the right to be left alone | Fox News
Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/06/28/supreme-court-upholds-obamacare-and-americans-have-lost-right-to-be-left-alone/#ixzz1z6WFwVsT
A Staged Plan of Entrapment to Just Bolster Gun Control by a Gov't Out of Control - Fast and Furious: A Timeline
By NRO Staff
June 28, 2012
• October 26. Department of Justice officials meet to discuss the problem of mounting violence in Mexico. They decide to change strategy, aiming to eliminate gun-trafficking pipelines. There is no mention of “gunwalking” during the meeting.
• November. The operation is launched. It is designed and run by the ATF Phoenix field office.
• In a gunwalking operation, guns bought by straw purchasers, individuals in America with clean records, for drug cartels are allowed to “walk” across the border into Mexico, instead of being seized by ATF agents.
• The stated aim is for ATF agents to follow the paths of guns from straw purchasers through middlemen and into the hierarchy of the powerful Sinaloa drug cartel. The tracked weapons are to be used as evidence to pin larger crimes against the cartel as they work to break it up or at least eliminate the gun-trafficking routes. According to whistleblowers and investigators, however, agents never made the attempt to actually trace the guns.
• January. Agents with the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force, a multi-agency network run by the Justice Department, are brought in to help. The manpower includes investigators from the Homeland Security Department, the Internal Revenue Service, and the Drug Enforcement Administration.
• The operation is soon named “Fast and Furious” by field agents because some suspects operate out of an auto-repair shop and street-race.
• March. Some ATF agents are concerned that weapons distributed through gunwalking might be used for crimes in Mexico or even the United States.
• October. The brother of the former state attorney general of Chihuahua, Mexico, is killed. The ATF learns that Fast and Furious weapons were found at the scene.
• December 14. U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry is killed in a firefight while on patrol. The ATF would determine that two of the guns involved in the shooting came from Fast and Furious. The operation continues another six weeks.
• Soon after Terry’s death, ATF agents speak with Senator Charles Grassley (R., Iowa), the ranking minority member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, to seek his help in stopping the operation.
• July 4. ATF director Melson secretly meets with Issa and Grassley, explaining that the priority at the Department of Justice appears to be the protection of senior officials from political fallout.
-go to link-
They are the core of the ends justifies the means congressional communists. Note that as political leaders in the struggle for the laboring poor, they never seem to suffer or want for anything.
Black Lawmakers Plot 'Walkout Strategy' During Holder Contempt Vote - Influence Alley
June 27, 2012 By Shane Goldmacher
The letter, a draft of which is being circulated for signatures, accuses the GOP leadership of "rushing recklessly to a contempt vote." The letter is being circulated among the Black, Hispanic, Asian and Progressive caucuses, among other.
-more at link-
Wednesday, June 27, 2012
They both serve the same function. Legalized theft and extortion to no one's benefit but their own!
They know nothing and regulate everything.
Planet Gore - National Review Online
By Henry Payne June 27, 2012
Tuesday the Washington Court of Appeals gave the EPA a blank check to run roughshod over U.S. industry without Congressional input. This breathtaking affirmation of an agency’s power over the U.S. economy is a timely reminder (in this week of Decision Obamacare) of how a narrow 5-4 Supreme Court ruling can profoundly change America’s economic landscape.
Just five years ago, in Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency, five judges gave the EPA the power to regulate inert, non-toxic, non-particulate carbon dioxide (the gas human beings exhale) as a “pollutant” under the Clean Air Act — a clear violation of the intent of the Congressional legislation.
The Obama EPA since has jumped at the chance, ignoring Congressional reluctance to pass cap-and-trade legislation and establishing itself as a rogue agency tasked with fighting phantom global warming by dictating industrial CO2 emissions levels. The EPA’s first victim was the auto industry —
-more at link-
The closest Andrea Mitchell has been to a WAWA is driving by in her lib-limo! This is Fraud and Slander.
How do the old dinosaur media people at MSNBC, and their ilk, still think they can get away this chicanery in a time of ubiquitous video and audio recording devices in nearly everyone's hands?
ANDREA MITCHELL SMEARS ROMNEY WITH DECEPTIVE EDIT
Jimmy- "I got you now, Barry"
Jimmy Carter attacks Barack Obama over assassinations and drone attacks - Americas - World - The Independent
Tuesday, June 26, 2012
- Kennedy, ranked as Number One President (said Arthur Schlesinger, Kennedy biographer, in his administration, Democrat activist and biased pollster of liberal historians)
- New York Times, the Best Newspaper in the Country (according to the NY Times)
- Cronkite, the most trusted man in America (Said CBS - see the following)
- And of worst of all, "I'm from the Government and I'm here to help you."
When you hear the last one, Get your guns and run for the hills!
Walter Cronkite wasn't the Most Trusted Man in America? Q&A with author Joseph Campbell - YouTube
The first is the kind was described by Red Smith like this:
“Writing is easy. You just sit down at a typewriter and open a vein.”The second is the kind done by people like Tom Friedman (from Gawker):
Thomas Friedman Writes His Only Column Again
Fabulously wealthy CEO whisperer and newspaper columnist Thomas Friedman is little more than a human-shaped random word generator programmed with the "Computers and Internet" section of a fourth-grade vocabulary textbook and fitted with a mustache. He writes one single column, sometimes using different proper nouns or cycling through slightly new platitudes, in order to allow a new headline to be written. The Only Thomas Friedman Column That Exists—which ran right on schedule yesterday—opens like this:TRAVELING in Europe last week, it seemed as if every other conversation ended with some form of this question: Why does it feel like so few leaders are capable of inspiring their people to meet the challenges of our day?Whether traveling in Europe or Israel or Pakistan or The Arab Street, Thomas Friedman has astoundingly boring conversations with people who speak in vague, nonsensical phrases. He continues:There are many explanations for this global leadership deficit, but I'd focus on two: one generational, one technological."There are many explanations for [broad phenomenon], but I'd focus on two: one [generational, cultural, or sociological], one [technological, biological, scientific, or economic]." Thomas Friedman knows how to write a freshman-year research paper at the last minute.
...The latter method of arranging words on a page -- the Friedman method -- requires absolutely no effort whatsoever, is devoted entirely to protecting the policies and privileges of the political and economic elite, pays astonishingly well, confers upon the writer world-wide prestige, and shapes both the parameters of public discourse and the thinking of powerful people.
-more at links-
Climate change key to collapse of ancient Indus civilization - Technology & Science - CBC News
Catching a whiff of himself
The Rosett Report » Ahmadinejad in Rio
Since his “election” in 2005, Ahmadinejad has appeared seven times at the annual openings of the General Assembly debates in New York, and will presumably pop up for an eighth roadshow in Manhattan, courtesy of the UN, this September. He has spoken at a 2008 conference of the Food and Agriculture Organization, in Rome; at a 2010 nonproliferation summit in New York; and of course in 2009 he was a star speaker at the Durban II bigoted conference on anti-bigotry, in Geneva.
And this week, when some 50,000 eminences, professional climate junketeers and other worthies carbon-emitted their way to Brazil for the UN’s Rio+20 conference  on “Sustainable Development,” there came, of course, that Ahmadinejad moment. Eighteen minutes and 16 seconds of Ahmadinejad, actually — you can watch it on video here  – in which UN authorities announced the “honor” of inviting “his excellency” to take the podium. The current leaders of the Free World — those would be the Canadian delegates — walk out. Maybe some others do, too. Still in the room is an audience that will applaud at the end of Ahmadinejad’s speech, and a presiding UN official who will thank him for it. Ahmadinejad ascends the stage, and with a multilateral backdrop of flags, before a lectern decked out with the UN logo, he preens himself in the world spotlight. Webcast to the world, he addresses the chamber.
That’s the UN. That’s how it works. Never mind that Iran’s government, in mocking violation of sanctions imposed by the UN’s own Security Council, is enroute to producing nuclear weapons. Never mind that Iran’s regime, represented here by Ahmadinejad, sponsors terror networks around the globe, tortures and murders dissidents at home, and has led the modern world in juvenile executions. Never mind that Ahmadinejad has threatened to wipe the nation of Israel off the map. At the UN, all excellencies, however unexcellent, are invited to enjoy the prestige of the podium.
Does it matter? Does this routine really do any harm?
Yes, it matters.
Monday, June 25, 2012
MSNBC Host on the War on Terror: America Needed a Racial Enemy | FrontPage Magazine
The three-day Take Back the American Dream Conference 2012 is a creation of former New Left radical Robert Borosage, founder, director, president and/or board member of various progressive organizations like the Institute for America’s Future and the Campaign for America’s Future (CAF), the organizers and hosts of the conference. CAF describes itself as “the strategy center for the progressive movement.” In addition to speakers like Borosage and Melissa Harris-Perry, the conference boasted leftist rock star Van Jones.
Ms. Harris-Perry, or Harris, or Perry – let’s just say MHP, as she goes by on her website –anchors the weekend Melissa Harris-Perry Show on the leftist mouthpiece MSNBC. A former neighbor to now-President Obama, MHP is also a Tulane Professor of Political Science, having previously served on the faculties of the University of Chicago and Princeton University after studying at Wake Forest, Duke and even seminary.
There must be something in the rarefied air of such prestigious academic institutions that renders its intellectuals incapable of acknowledging the reality that lesser mortals easily grasp. One doesn’t have to have a wall full of academic honors to see that on 9/11, America was attacked by a very real enemy who had openly declared war on us, had been waging it for many years before 9/11, and have been ever since. Apart from rabid conspiracy theorists and the lemmings brainwashed by the fact-challenged hatemongers at MSNBC, the average American sees this truth clearly. But progressive professors who aren’t satisfied with the simplicity of Occam’s Razor feel compelled to abandon inconvenient facts and shoehorn the sweep of history into their race-obsessed, anti-American theoretical constructs.
Thus for MHP, the obvious reality that Islamic fundamentalists are waging war against us isn’t enough.
-more at link-
Peace Trains’ Jews Against Israel | FrontPage Magazine
If one believes that mankind has to be emancipated (read it: liberated) from Judaism, one then insists that Jews be powerless and assimilated. That’s why the new Jewish Marxists have turned anti-Zionism into one of their very highest priorities.
From the 1970s, Israel’s universities and Western intellectual circles had become home to a new generation of Jewish intellectuals who demonize and boycott Israel, and ultimately undermine the survival of the Jewish people after the Holocaust.
More than 90% of the allegations of “Israeli war crimes” cited in the shameful Goldstone Report were provided by 16 NGOs who received close to $8 million from the New Israel Fund, an organization headed by former Meretz MK and neo-Marxist Professor Naomi Chazan.
The list of “deranged Jew-haters which, if listened to, will do nothing other than pave the way to the next calamity” (as the brave Caroline Glick once called them), is long and very rich. Steve Plaut has drawn up a thorough list of them for the Middle East Quarterly and in his Freedom Center pamphlet, Jewish Enablers of the War Against Israel.
Tel Aviv University students and professors recently commemorated the “Nakba,” the “catastrophe,” as the Arabs call the date of the creation of the State of Israel in 1948. Ayal Nir, a lecturer at Ben-Gurion University, in his Facebook page, called to “break the necks of right-wing activists.” Israeli Professor Shlomo Sand achieved celebrity status in Europe by publishing a book denying the existence of the Jewish people, while Professor Oren Yiftachel called Israel “a white… pure settlement colonial society.” Larry Derfner, a former senior staff writer for The Jerusalem Post, publicly stated that the killing of Israeli citizens was a justifiable weapon for Palestinians in order to overcome the “occupation.”
At the Ben-Gurion University, Neve Gordon accused the IDF of being “war criminals” and promoted the boycott of Israel in a Los Angeles Times editorial.
-more at link-
When his camapign sign looks like it says: 'FORWARD BACKWARDOBAMA.COM' We’re Just Not That Into Obama
In that case, race was the reason for his election in 2008, wasn't it?
The reality is, most white people don't even pay attention to his race. They are too depressed by his overwhelming incompetence. Case in point, the same depression struck during Jimmy Carter's term.
We’re Just Not That Into Obama - Michael Barone - National Review Online
The president’s backers use race as an excuse for his ebbing support.
JUNE 25, 2012 By Michael Barone
As Barack Obama’s lead over Mitt Romney in the polls narrows, and his presumed fundraising advantage seems about to become a disadvantage, it’s alibi time for some of his backers.
His problem, they say, is that some voters don’t like him because he’s black. Or they don’t like his policies because they don’t like having a black president.
So, you see, if you don’t like Obamacare, it’s not because it threatens to take away your health insurance, or to deny coverage for some treatments. It’s because you don’t like black people.
This sort of thing seems to be getting more frequent, or at least more open. As White House Dossier writer Keith Koffler notes, HBO host Bill Maher accused Internet titan Matt Drudge of being animated by racism because he highlights anti-Obama stories.
MSNBC’s Chris Matthews asked former San Francisco mayor Willie Brown if Representative Darrell Issa’s treatment of Attorney General Eric Holder was “ethnic.” Brown said it was, and Matthews said some Republicans “talk down to the president and his friends.”
There’s an obvious problem with the racism alibi: Barack Obama has run for president before, and he won. Voters in 2008 knew he was black. Most of them voted for him. He carried 28 states and won 365 electoral votes.
Nationwide, he won 53 percent of the popular vote.
-more at link-
Sunday, June 24, 2012
Everyone’s a Racist - Ian Tuttle - National Review Online
Avoiding the truth by scrapping the dictionaries
‘Here’s a little secret,” Keith Olbermann told viewers in 2010. “When racist white guys get together and they don’t want to be caught using any of the popular epithets that are in use every day in this country about black people . . . the racist white guys resort to euphemisms and code words.”
At least Olbermann acknowledged that not all white people are racist; but three and a half years into the first “post-racial” presidency, one might get that impression. Take the list Olbermann enumerated on air: “Cocky, flippant, punk, and especially, arrogant.” Last week, Congressional Black Caucus executive director Angela Rye added cool to the list: “Even cool, the term cool, could in some ways be deemed racial.”
Liberals have spent the past four years tearing out page after page of Merriam-Webster. “Articulate” and “bright” were forbidden early in the 2008 primary season, with Obama defenders dredging up a classy Chris Rock joke that “articulate” is “some s**t you say about retarded people that can talk.” But CNN, Legal Affairs, and other media outlets had bestowed the same compliment on John Edwards during his meteoric rise years before. A 2004 Slate headline called Edwards “bright and articulate and really, really youthful,” while Steve Benen wrote at the Carpetbagger Report in 2003 that “Edwards is a very bright, articulate, and aggressive lawmaker.”
His own "Three Cups of Corruption" that he wants us to swallow. Obama's ideas about what he can do to America has more to do with Hugo Chavez than the U. S. Presidency.
Ironically, David Maraniss seems to still harbor Obama sycophancy. But the facts and David Maraniss's honesty could not cover up the blatant lies and self delusion of this impostor for a president. m/r
Obama’s Great American Novel - Mark Steyn - National Review Online
We’re too busy inventing ourselves to be interested in the truth.
By Mark Steyn
June 23, 2012
Courtesy of David Maraniss’s new book, we now know that yet another key prop of Barack Obama’s identity is false: His Kenyan grandfather was not brutally tortured or even non-brutally detained by his British colonial masters. The composite gram’pa joins an ever-swelling cast of characters from Barack’s “memoir” who, to put it discreetly, differ somewhat in reality from their bit parts in the grand Obama narrative. The best friend at school portrayed in Obama’s autobiography as “a symbol of young blackness” was, in fact, half Japanese, and not a close friend. The white girlfriend he took to an off-Broadway play that prompted an angry post-show exchange about race never saw the play, dated Obama in an entirely different time zone, and had no such world-historically significant conversation with him. His Indonesian step-grandfather supposedly killed by Dutch soldiers during his people’s valiant struggle against colonialism met his actual demise when he “fell off a chair at his home while trying to hang drapes.”
David Maraniss is no right-winger, and can’t understand why boorish non-literary types have seized on his book as evidence that the president of the United States is a Grade A phony. “It is a legitimate question about where the line is in memoir,” he told Soledad O’Brien on CNN. My Oxford dictionary defines “memoir” as “an historical account or biography written from personal knowledge.” And if Obama doesn’t have “personal knowledge” of his tortured grandfather, war-hero step-grandfather, and racially obsessed theater-buff girlfriend, who does? But in recent years, the Left has turned the fake memoir into one of the most prestigious literary genres: Oprah’s Book Club recommended James Frey’s A Million Little Pieces, hailed by Bret Easton Ellis as a “heartbreaking memoir” of “poetic honesty,” but subsequently revealed to be heavy on the “poetic” and rather light on the “honesty.” The “heartbreaking memoir” of a drug-addled street punk who got tossed in the slammer after brawling with cops while high on crack with his narco-hooker girlfriend proved to be the work of some suburban Pat Boone type with a couple of parking tickets. (I exaggerate, but not as much as he did.)
Oprah was also smitten by The Education of Little Tree, the heartwarmingly honest memoir of a Cherokee childhood which turned out to be concocted by a former Klansman whose only previous notable literary work was George Wallace’s “Segregation Forever” speech. Fragments: Memories of a Wartime Childhood is a heartbreakingly honest, poetically searing, searingly painful, painfully honest, etc. account of Binjamin Wilkomirski’s unimaginably horrific boyhood in the Jewish ghetto of Riga and the Nazi concentration camp at Auschwitz. After his memoir won America’s respected National Jewish Book Award, Mr. Wilkomirski was inevitably discovered to have been born in Switzerland and spent the war in a prosperous neighborhood of Zurich being raised by a nice middle-class couple. He certainly had a deprived childhood, at least from the point of view of a literary agent pitching a memoir to a major publisher. But the “unimaginable” horror of his book turned out to be all too easily imagined. Fake memoirs have won the Nobel Peace Prize and are taught at Ivy League schools to the scions of middle-class families who take on six figure debts for the privilege (I, Rigoberta Menchú). They’re handed out by the Pentagon to senior officers embarking on a tour of Afghanistan (Greg Mortenson’s Three Cups of Tea) on the entirely reasonable grounds that a complete fantasy could hardly be less credible than current NATO strategy.