Santa Clara Law School Professor Steve Diamond, who is no conservative, seems to have found a witness able to establish a relationship between Barack Obama and William Ayers going back to the mid-1980s.
Barack Obama visited the house of Tom and Mary Ayers, parents of former Weather Underground activist turned education professor Bill Ayers, in the mid-1980s to thank the Ayersâ€™ for their support of his education, according to Allen Hulton, the letter carrier who delivered mail to the Ayersâ€™ Glen Ellyn home at that time. Glen Ellyn is a suburb of Chicago, southwest of the city. …
At the time of their encounter, Hulton recalls, Obama â€œlooked about 19 years oldâ€ but was probably in his early 20s. Obama graduated from Columbia University in 1983 and moved to Chicago in 1985 at age 24 or 25 to head up the DCP, a fledgling community organization modeled after similar groups started by Saul Alinsky, on the south side of Chicago. The DCP had secured a grant from the Woods Fund, endowed by the Woods family, to finance the hiring of Obama.
The Woods family owned Sahara Coal Company, which supplied coal to utility companies in the Midwest possibly including Commonwealth Edison. Tom Ayers was Chairman and CEO of Commonwealth Edison from 1973 until 1980. Ayers died in June of 2007 at the age of 92 in Hyde Park where he had been living with his son Bill and Dohrn.
â€œMrs. Ayers told me that her family had been helping out a brilliant young black man,â€ Hulton said and whom he believes she said was from Kenya. Hulton said that over the period of six to ten years that he delivered mail to the Ayers home he had numerous conversations with Mrs. Ayers, one conversation with Thomas Ayers and several brief encounters with Bernardine Dohrn who he said lived at the home for several months at one point in time. He never met or saw Bill Ayers at the home. …
One day Hulton found himself on the sidewalk outside the Ayers home at 199 N. Montclair Avenue near the corner of Revere Road just after he had delivered the mail. The house was â€œvery nice and attractive and more expensive than some in Glen Ellyn because it was closer to downtown, but it did not stand out among the houses on that block.â€ He said the largest and most expensive homes were actually on Revere, around the corner from the Ayersâ€™ home.
As Hulton was on the sidewalk walking away from the Ayers house a tall and thin young black man was coming up the same sidewalk towards the Ayers house.
Hulton recalls that Obama said hello and introduced himself and stopped to chat with him in front of the Ayers house. â€œI recall that his ears stuck out a little bit. He was more gaunt then than he appears now. His name was an unusual one and when I saw his photo during the campaign it brought back my memory of the event,â€ Hulton said.
Mr. Obama explained that he had taken the train out from Chicago to visit the Ayersâ€™ in order to thank them for their help with his â€œeducation.â€ At this time, Mr. Obama had recently graduated from Columbia and would soon enter Harvard Law School. Hulton and Obama â€œspoke for a few minutes, first chatting about the Ayers family,â€ Hulton said. Hulton said he did not learn whether the help Obama received from the Ayersâ€™ was financial or in some other form. …
Mr. Hulton recalls that he probably asked what Mr. Obama was studying in school and at one point Mr. Obama said that he intended to become President of the United States. Mr. Hulton said he was â€œtaken abackâ€ by the statement but recalls that he did not think Mr. Obama was â€œarrogant, but just self assured and a person with a lot of self confidence.â€ â€œIt was not said with hubris,â€ Hulton recalled, â€œbut with an air of self-assuredness.â€
â€œI told him there was no reason why he couldnâ€™t become president,â€ Hulton recalled. Obama was dressed â€œnicely but casually, a slacks and shirt, not jeans and a t-shirt, but definitely not a coat or tie,â€ he said. After the brief conversation Hulton continued on his route and did not turn back to see whether the Ayersâ€™ were at home or whether Obama entered their house.
As her above photo proves, Anne Leary ran into Bill Ayers recently and they had a brief conversation.
There I was, sitting in Reagan National Monday morning, sipping a Starbucks by the United counter before going through security. I had a little time, so I was browsing through the news. Some military guys had borrowed a chair from my table. I looked up from time to time to enjoy the sun streaming through. That’s when I saw Bill Ayers, an instant blight. Scruffy, thinning beard, dippy earring, and the wirerims, heading to order. I gathered my things, got my camera ready, and snapped a shot right when he got his coffee.
I asked–what are you doing in D.C. Mr. Ayers?
For a moment I thought he might be on my flight back to Chicago. Charming. Initially I guess he thought I was laying claim to his coffee or something. He gave me an uneasy cheesy smile when he realized I was taking his picture. I asked him if he was speaking at GW? (Only I said GFW, guess I had the VFW on my mind) He said oh you mean GW, he said no…was trying to decide if I was a fan, then said he was giving a lecture in Arlington to a Renaissance group on education–that’s what I do, education–you shouldn’t believe everything you hear about me, you know nothing about me. I said, I know plenty–I’m from Chicago, a conservative blogger, and I’ll post this. …
Then, unprompted he said–I wrote Dreams From My Father. I said, oh, so you admit it. He said–Michelle asked me to. I looked at him. He seemed eager. He’s about my height, short. He went on to say–and if you can prove it, we can split the royalties. So I said, stop pulling my leg. Horrible thought. But he came again–I really wrote it, the wording was similar. I said I believe you probably heavily edited it. He said–I wrote it. I said–why would I believe you, you’re a liar.
He had no answer to that. Just looked at me. Then he turned and walked off, and said again his bit about my proving it and splitting the proceeds.
But the question remains–is Barack Obama a fraud? Is his myth-making creation and only major accomplishment a product of Bill Ayers’ imagination? (or his own) Is our President Barack Obama’s biography written by an unrepentant domestic terrorist?
Perhaps I’ll become Bill Ayers’ favorite conservative blogger and he can prove his authorship himself–turn over your notes Bill.
I’m inclined to think Ayers was just messing with her, mocking Jack Cashill’s contention that Dreams was ghostwritten by Ayers. “Prove it, and we’ll split the royalties.” I read as sarcasm.
But I wasn’t there, didn’t hear his tone. You never know. Anything’s possible. One could, by a greater reach of imagination, suppose Ayers was defiantly admitting the truth to taunt her, knowing there is no way she can possibly confirm it.
Paglia urges Obama to get himself a Chief of Protocol and learn some manners. And, in impressive defiance of the MSM coverage embargo, she actually comments on Obama’s stonewalling on his birth certificate and education records.
Arriving at the White House, he understandably stayed in his comfort zone by bringing old friends and allies with him — a team that had had a fabulous success in devising the hard-as-nails strategy that toppled the Clintons, like crumbling colossi, into yesterday’s news. But these comrades may not have the practical skills or broad perspective to help Obama govern. Like Shakespeare’s Prince Hal ascending the throne, Obama may have to steel his heart and banish Falstaff and the whole frat-house crew.
Obama’s staffing problems are blatant — from that bleating boy of a treasury secretary to what appears to be a total vacuum where a chief of protocol should be. There has been one needless gaffe after another — from the president’s tacky appearance on a late-night comedy show to the kitsch gifts given to the British prime minister, followed by the sweater-clad first lady’s over-familiarity with the queen and culminating in the jaw-dropping spectacle of a president of the United States bowing to the king of Saudi Arabia. Why was protest about the latter indignity confined to conservatives? The silence of the major media was a disgrace. But I attribute that embarrassing incident not to Obama’s sinister or naive appeasement of the Muslim world but to a simple if costly breakdown in basic command of protocol.
Enough already! These slips are worsening the anti-Obama backlash, which began with the administration’s bungled handling of the grotesquely swollen stimulus package. Conservatives seem deliriously drunk with their cartoon picture of Obama, to whom is glibly attributed every pathology in the book. Yes, there were ambiguities about Obama’s birth certificate that have never been satisfactorily resolved. And the embargo on Obama’s educational records remains troubling. . But I am still waiting for hard evidence about the host of other charges that are continually being hammered against him — from his alleged fidelity to the crypto-tactics of Chicago leftist Saul Alinsky to the questions raised by right-wingers about the production of Obama’s two memoirs. Out of respect for the presidency, conservatives need to put up or shut up about these issues.
I found her “put up or shut up” demands concerning Obama’s assimilation of the political agitation techniques of Chicago radical Saul Alinsky and the theory originated by Jack Cashill that William Ayers might have ghost written Dreams from My Father less impressive.
Mr. Obama does a fine job of supplying proof of his commitment to Saul Alinsky-style agitation, the technique of seeking illegitimate forms of political power through media spectacles of public demonstrations of ressentiment by an aroused canaille manipulated into emotional paroxysms by the flattery of supposititious grievances.
The Obama Administration recently pulled off a very spectacular Alinskian tour de force reducing Congress, the mainstream media, and major portion of the American public to the stature of a howling mob over the manufactured issue of the injustice of AIG paying contractually-specified employee compensation bonuses subsequent to receiving federal bailout monies. When 1/10 of 1 percent of the federal contribution becomes the focus of national attention, and the public has no attention to spare concerning the disposition of the other 99.9%, you know that Saul Alinsky has triumphed.
The public firing of the CEO of General Motors was obviously another Alinsky moment in Obama presidency.
As to the ghost-written memoir theory, I don’t believe it rises to anything closely resembling the level of pertinence of the question of Obama’s Constitutional eligibility for the office he was elected to, or to that of his unsavory radical political background. There is also no real possibility of proving such a thing one way or another. Jack Cashill found several arguments for similarities between DFMF and William Ayers’s own memoir and other writings. Either one finds Mr. Cashill’s arguments persuasive or one does not. I don’t believe it is provable either way.
Apparently, those poor jihadis in Algeria who recently fell terribly, terribly ill had been playing around with something very naughty.
All this must sound very familiar to the President Elect’s buddy William Ayers. The very same thing that happened to Bill Ayers’ Weathermen associates way back in 1970 happened to these Worthy Oriental Gentlemen. They were tripped up by their own incompetence and their infernal devices being developed to harm others backfired on themselves.
An al Qaeda affiliate in Algeria closed a base earlier this month after an experiment with unconventional weapons went awry, a senior U.S. intelligence official said Monday.
The official, who spoke on the condition he not be named because of the sensitive nature of the issue, said he could not confirm press reports that the accident killed at least 40 al Qaeda operatives, but he said the mishap led the militant group to shut down a base in the mountains of Tizi Ouzou province in eastern Algeria.
He said authorities in the first week of January intercepted an urgent communication between the leadership of al Qaeda in the Land of the Maghreb (AQIM) and al Qaeda’s leadership in the tribal region of Pakistan on the border with Afghanistan. The communication suggested that an area sealed to prevent leakage of a biological or chemical substance had been breached, according to the official.
“We don’t know if this is biological or chemical,” the official said.
The story was first reported by the British tabloid the Sun, which said the al Qaeda operatives died after being infected with a strain of bubonic plague, the disease that killed a third of Europe’s population in the 14th century. But the intelligence official dismissed that claim.
Camille Paglia feels a reflexive, not exactly objective, need to bash Republicans every time she criticizes democrats. One must be even-handed, after all. Her observations on the failure of the MSM to investigate the democrat candidate and her defense of Sarah Palin, though, are well worth reading.
In the closing weeks of the election, however, I became increasingly disturbed by the mainstream media’s avoidance of forthright dealing with several controversies that had been dogging Obama — even as every flimsy rumor about Sarah Palin was being trumpeted as if it were engraved in stone on Mount Sinai. For example, I had thought for many months that the flap over Obama’s birth certificate was a tempest in a teapot. But simple questions about the certificate were never resolved to my satisfaction. …
Obama could have ended the entire matter months ago by publicly requesting Hawaii to issue a fresh, long-form, stamped certificate and inviting a few high-profile reporters in to examine the document and photograph it. (The campaign did make the “short-form” certificate available to Factcheck.org, a project of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania.) And why has Obama not made his university records or thesis work widely available? The passivity of the press toward Bush administration propaganda about weapons of mass destruction led the nation into the costly blunder of the Iraq war. We don’t need another presidency that finds it all too easy to rely on evasion or stonewalling. I deeply admire Obama, but as a voter I don’t like feeling gamed or played.
Another issue that I initially dismissed was the flap over William Ayers, the Chicago-based former member of the violent Weather Underground. Conservative radio host Sean Hannity began the drumbeat about Ayers’ association with Obama a year ago — a theme that most of the mainstream media refused to investigate or even report until this summer. I had never heard of Ayers and couldn’t have cared less. I was irritated by Hillary Clinton’s aggressive flagging of Ayers in a debate, and I accepted Obama’s curt dismissal of the issue.
Hence my concern about Ayers has been very slow in developing. The mainstream media should have fully explored the subject early this year and not allowed it to simmer and boil until it flared up ferociously in the last month of the campaign. Obama may not in recent years have been “pallin’ around” with Ayers, in Sarah Palin’s memorable line, but his past connections with Ayers do seem to have been more frequent and substantive than he has claimed. …
Given that Obama had served on a Chicago board with Ayers and approved funding of a leftist educational project sponsored by Ayers, one might think that the unrepentant Ayers-Dohrn couple might be of some interest to the national media. But no, reporters have been too busy playing mini-badminton with every random spitball about Sarah Palin, who has been subjected to an atrocious and at times delusional level of defamation merely because she has the temerity to hold pro-life views.
How dare Palin not embrace abortion as the ultimate civilized ideal of modern culture? How tacky that she speaks in a vivacious regional accent indistinguishable from that of Western Canada! How risible that she graduated from the State University of Idaho and not one of those plush, pampered commodes of received opinion whose graduates, in their rush to believe the worst about her, have demonstrated that, when it comes to sifting evidence, they don’t know their asses from their elbows.
Liberal Democrats are going to wake up from their sadomasochistic, anti-Palin orgy with a very big hangover. The evil genie released during this sorry episode will not so easily go back into its bottle. A shocking level of irrational emotionalism and at times infantile rage was exposed at the heart of current Democratic ideology — contradicting Democratic core principles of compassion, tolerance and independent thought. …
I like Sarah Palin, and I’ve heartily enjoyed her arrival on the national stage. As a career classroom teacher, I can see how smart she is — and quite frankly, I think the people who don’t see it are the stupid ones, wrapped in the fuzzy mummy-gauze of their own worn-out partisan dogma. So she doesn’t speak the King’s English — big whoop! There is a powerful clarity of consciousness in her eyes. She uses language with the jumps, breaks and rippling momentum of a be-bop saxophonist.
Now that it’s over, Bill Ayers condescends to speak to the press.
Ayers said he blames what he called liberal media outlets for failing to dismiss Obama’s acquaintance with him as a case of guilt by association, likening it to the way the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth created a narrative that helped doom Sen. John F. Kerry four years ago.
“The dishonest narrative is that guilt by association has some validity,” Ayers said, saying the performance of the media was “kind of shameful.”
One day last summer, Ayers said, he received two threats on his office computer while he was in his downtown office. One said a posse was coming to shoot him; another said a gang would kidnap and waterboard him.
A university police officer who had known Ayers for years arrived and told him, “Gosh, I hope the guy who’s coming to shoot you gets here first.”
“The most effective informer the F.B.I. ever placed among the Weathermen” (NY Times) Larry Grathwol describes how William Ayers and other Weather Underground leaders cheerfully planned to deliver the United States to foreign occupation, and proposed to murder 25 million Americans.
Grathwohl: I brought up the subject of what’s going to happen after we take over the government. You know, we become responsible for administrating, you know, 250 million people. And there was no answer. No one had given any thought to economics. How are you going to clothe and feed these people? The only thing that I could get was that they expected that the Cubans, the North Vietnamese, the Chinese and the Russians would all want to occupy different portions of the United States. They also believed that their immediate responsibility would be to protect against what they called the counter-revolution. And they felt that this counter-revolution could best be guarded against by creating and establishing re-education in the Southwest where we would take all of the people who needed to be reâ€‘educated into the new way of thinking and teach them how things were going to be. I asked, “Well, what is going to happen to those people that we can’t reâ€‘educate, that are die-hard capitalists?” And the reply was that they’d have to be eliminated and when I pursued this further, they estimated that they’d have to eliminate 25 million people in these reâ€‘education centers. And when I say eliminate, I mean kill 25 million people. I want you to imagine sitting in a room with 25 people, most of whom have graduate degrees from Columbia and other well-known educational centers and hear them figuring out the logistics for the elimination of 25 million people and they were dead serious.
Sam Schulman, in the Weekly Standard, contemplates the crucial role of class solidarity in this year’s election, concluding that Sarah Palin (the Admirable Crichton of 2008), not Bill Ayers, is the real revolutionary.
A must read.
Mainstream Chicago regards Ayers as rehabilitated–but why? He hasn’t, like Chuck Colson, repented, or paid his debt to society by serving a prison term. He doesn’t even enjoy the prestige of a Clinton presidential pardon. Susan Rosenberg, a fellow Weatherman for whom Mrs. Ayers did go to jail rather than implicate in the execution murders of several cops, enjoys that distinction. What makes the Ayerses respectable is purely a matter of upper-middle-class solidarity. You can see the ranks close around them in the texture of Richard Stern’s elegant prose. Stern, a novelist and a long-serving University of Chicago English professor, reassures us:
I’ve been to three or four small dinner parties with Ayers and his wife, Bernardine Dohrn, once hailed as the Weather-men’s Dolores IbÃ¡rruri (“La Pasionaria”), a fiery, beautiful muse. .â€‰â€‰.â€‰â€‰. Dohrn is still attractive, while Ayers maintains an adolescent fizzle in his sexagenarian bones.
Carefully, Stern engages with the glamorous couple on equal terms, before judging them:
At dinner, thirty-eight years later, Ayers and Dohrn did not seem to hold [my criticism of the 1970 University of Chicago student uprising] against me, and I didn’t hold their fiery and criminally violent behavior against them. As in Chekhov’s wonderful story “Old Age,” time had planed down the sharp edges and brought one-time antagonists into each others’ arms.
As the Ayerses’ social equal, Stern can estimate them fairly.
As far as I know, Ayers and Dohrn are loyal to the selves which led both of them to jail (though not for long), but they were busy doing other things, useful things, Ayers as educator, Dohrn as a legal counselor. They’d raised the child of a Weatherman who’d been jailed, they were taking care of Bernardine’s ill mother, they were doing many things educated community activists were doing.
What the Ayerses now teach, think, and do hardly matters as long as they observe good form, the form of “educated community activists.” Stern wants us to hear a mellow Chekhovian tone in their lives (and his prose). Perhaps, but in his moral reasoning I hear Oscar Wilde’s Cecily Cardew, in The Importance of Being Earnest, observing that the Ayerses “have been eating muffins. That looks like repentance.”
Last night, Barack Obama denied launching his political career in the living room of William Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn prior to his first run for the Illinois State Senate in 1995.
That denial must be based upon quibbling over the difference between a formal announcement at a Ramada Inn, September 19, 1995, and an “introduction” to prominent liberal Hyde Park democrats over coffee at Chez Ayers whose specific date is uncertain but which occurred around very much the same time. Lynn Sweet.
The precise chronological order of Obama’s 1995 campaign events is obviously less important than the question of his association and long term relationship with terrorists and the nature of their crimes.
While defenders of unrepentant Weather Underground terrorist Bill Ayers cling to the rationalization that he never killed anyone during a spree of bombings in the 1970s, his wife, Bernardine Dohrn, built and planted the bomb that killed a San Francisco police officer in 1970, an FBI report claimed. …
While Ayers himself has never been implicated in a death among the high-profile bombings of the Capitol, the Pentagon and several other targets of the Weather Underground he served as a leader, it’s not true that there were no fatalities associated with the attacks.
On Feb. 16, 1970, Sgt. Brian V. McDonnell of the San Francisco Police Department was killed by shrapnel from an anti-personnel bomb planted on a window ledge at the force’s Park Station. The pipe bomb was filled with heavy metal staples and lead bullet projectiles. Another officer, Robert Fogarty, received serious wounds to his face and legs, and was partially blinded in the attack.
Dohrn, then living in a Weather Underground cell on a Sausalito, Calif., houseboat, has long been suspected of involvement in the bombing.
An FBI informant, Larry Grathwohl, who successfully penetrated the organization from the late summer of 1969 until April 1970, later testified to a U.S. Senate subcommittee that Ayers, then a high-ranking leader of the organization and a member of its Central Committee (but not then Dohrn’s husband), told him Dohrn constructed and planted the bomb.
Grathwohl testified that Ayers had told him specifically where the bomb was placed (on a window ledge) and what kind of shrapnel was put in it. Grathwohl said Ayers was emphatic, leading Grathwohl to believe Ayers either was present at some point during the operation or had heard about it from someone who was there. In a book about his experiences published in 1976, Grathwohl wrote that Ayers, who had recently attended a meeting of the group’s Central Committee, said Dohrn had planned the operation, made the bomb and placed it herself.
Grathwohl recounted in his report that Ayers complained to other Weather Underground operatives that they were not contributing enough to the bombing campaigns, pointing out that Dohrn built the bomb and planted it herself.
Sgt. Brian V. McDonnell, SFPD, murdered February 16, 1970