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myiq2xu's picture

Bostonboomer has an interesting article about Obama the community organizer over at riverdaughter's place, The Confluence.

I just want to highlight one portion, (quoting Ryan Lizza):

"Organizing remained central to Obama long after his stint on the South Side. In the 13 years between Obama’s return to Chicago from law school and his Senate campaign, he was deeply involved with the city’s constellation of community-organizing groups. He wrote about the subject. He attended organizing seminars. He served on the boards of foundations that support community organizing. He taught Alinsky’s concepts and methods in workshops. When he first ran for office in 1996, he pledged to bring the spirit of community organizing to his job in the state Senate."

It does appear that his history of community organizing is central to Obama’s identity, seemingly even more important to him than his work as a legislator. The mystery is how with all this community activity, Obama managed to remain ignorant of the fact that his benefactor, Antoin Rezko, wasn’t paying utility bills for his tenents, many of whom lived in Obama’s IL state senate district.

How is it possible that Obama was "deeply involved with the city’s constellation of community-organizing groups" and no one brought to his attention what Rezko was doing? Or not doing, to be specific.

Some of Rezko's properties (owned by Rezmar Corp., Rezko's business) were in Obama's state senate district. These tenants were Obama's constituents. It was Obama's job to know what was happening. It was no secret, stories about Rezko's problems were reported in the Chicago papers and on television.

Even worse, from Wikipedia:

In 1990, after Obama was named head of the Harvard Law Review, Rezmar Corp. offered him a job should he decide to return to Chicago, and although Obama turned that offer down he later did take a job, which he held from 1993 to 2002, with Davis, Miner, Barnhill & Galland, a law firm representing Rezko, Rezmar, and community groups in partnership with Rezmar, that helped Rezmar get more than $43 million in government funding. The firm's then senior partner, Allison S. Davis, has been a member of the Chicago Plan Commission since 1991, later went into business with Rezko, and in 2003 was appointed to Illinois State Board of Investment, which controls state pension funds, by Governor Blagojevich at Rezko's request. On July 31, 1995 the first ever political contributions to Obama were $300 from a lawyer, a $5,000 loan from a car dealer, and $2,000 from two food companies owned by Rezko. Starting in 2003 Rezko was on Obama's U.S. Senate campaign finance committee, which raised more than $14 million. Rezko threw an early fundraiser for Obama, and that fundraiser was instrumental in providing Obama with seed money for his U.S. Senate race.

Obama claims he knew nothing. His close relationship with Rezko continued until after Obama was elected to the US Senate. In fact, the deal with Rezko involving Obama's home took place after Obama was a Senator, as did the alleged meeting with Nadhmi Auchi.

Obama says he never heard any of Rev. Wright's controversial statements either, despite attending Trinity UCC for 20 years.

See a pattern?

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captainjohnbrown's picture
Submitted by captainjohnbrown on

The Dogs looked from the Corrente Wire to the Corner at National Review on Line and from the Corner at National Review on Line back to the Corrente Wire, but they could no longer tell the difference.

Cap'n John Brown

Aeryl's picture
Submitted by Aeryl on

Not one response to the post. An inconsistency, a correction of facts?

Didn't think so.

Instead factually reporting the truth about Obama's support for his constituents is a "new low".

Obama Rules, got it.

Bill Clinton for First Dude!!!

Submitted by Paul_Lukasiak on

...for an answer to the question:

Why did Rezko's wife want to buy that empty lot?

(and somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but the original listing was for both properties as a package deal)

Submitted by Paul_Lukasiak on

He was 24 years old. He was hired by Jerry Kellman, a Chicago organizer, to lead the Developing Communities Project (DCP), which would target African American neighborhoods on Chicago’s South Side by working with African American churches in the area.

I've been saying that the real question that the GOP will be asking about Jeremiah Wright isn't "why didn't Obama leave" but "why did he join in the first place".

and this comes out, which indicates that Obama worked with a whole bunch of south side AA churches -- so he knew what his options were -- and he went with Wright?

we are SO screwed if Obama gets the nomination.

myiq2xu's picture
Submitted by myiq2xu on

My point was not that Obama did anything illegal or unethical.

My point is that he was closely associated with someone and yet claims he knew nothing about that person's activities, even though it was his job to know.

------------------------------------------------
"Real ponies don't oink" - Patrick McManus

space's picture
Submitted by space on

but the Democrats are going to win in November regardless of Tony Rezko.

If Obama is the nominee he will win. If, unlikely as it may be, Hillary is the nominee she will win. John McCain is a kooky old midget. He's like the love child of Ross Perot and Admiral Stockdale. Plus his skeletons have closets with skeletons in them. Am I the only one old enough to remember the Keating Five? Please. Rezko is amateur hour.

Gas will be at $4.00/gal and the Republican will be angrily demanding we stay the course. I don't think so.

vastleft's picture
Submitted by vastleft on

But your "sorry to disappoint you all..." statement is a pretty dickish thing to say to a community of dedicated progressives.

I do cling to the hope that despite having two centrists running for the Dems -- one of whom goes out of his way to burnish Republican frames -- this is still a "change year," as 2006 was, and thus that McCain with all his barbecue-basted BFFs in the media doesn't stand a chance.

space's picture
Submitted by space on

See, when I read stuff like "we are SO screwed if Obama gets the nomination," the phrase "dedicated progresive" doesn't pop into my mind. YMMV.

I have no interest in getting into a thread war. But I find these Resko attacks to be particularly lame.

Do you really think that I can't list dozens of "associations" between the Clintons and some seriously sketchy folks that the GOP would be rolling out if Hillary were to be the nominee? Some of which would be completely garbage guilt-by-association. Some of which would be, in the words of Obama, "boneheaded" in appearance even if substantively innocent. And some of which make my stomach turn.

But the truth is that, no matter how much I may fruitlessly wish that the Clintons could measure up to my personal standards of ethics, their failure to do so would hardly be fatal in a race against McCain.

Aeryl's picture
Submitted by Aeryl on

I can’t list dozens of “associations” between the Clintons

That was called the 90's. Sorry you missed it.

And I notice that with the Obamafans/HillaryHaters(they are so hard to tell apart) it's never "dozens of 'associations' between Hillary Clinton" as if Hillary and Bill Clinton are a two headed chimera, only one soul. If someone tried to bring and "association" of Michele Obama's, there would be outragem rightly.

The Clinton Rules, silly me I keep forgetting.

Bill Clinton for First Dude!!!

space's picture
Submitted by space on

Which is why I don't take too kindly to self-professed "progressives" aping wingnuts and getting all Jeff Gerth on Obama's ass.

Why you think the smear by innuendo of Whitewater was a tragedy when it happened to the Clintons but a model to emulate against fellow Democrats is beyond me.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

why can't ALL associations get aired and questioned?

why is it emulating Whitewater when it's against Obama, but not when it's Hillary in Bosnia, or Hsu, or other bundlers of hers, or his Library's donors, or their income tax, or the hospital story, or her laugh, or her cleavage, or chelsea's privacy, or ...

space's picture
Submitted by space on

Just so we're clear, I hate it when Democrats adopt b.s. RW frames. Always. Always.

That means I hate it when Obama waxes positively about Reagan. And it means I hate it when Obama invokes the "crisis" of Social Security. But it also means I hate it when Hillary says she is going to send George H.W. Bush around the world to improve the image of America abroad.

I hate it when Democrats attack progressive activists and grass-roots supporters. Always. Always.

That means that I hate it when Obama picks a fight with Paul Krugman. But I also hate it when Hillary attacks MoveOn.

Aeryl's picture
Submitted by Aeryl on

It's too late. Regardless of who started first, the plain and simple fact that the left blogoshpere abdicated it's responsibilities when the candidate it didn't support was getting the media hatred, means that now we must accept that's how the election is going to be decided, b/c this is what the media will focus on. Clinton stands up better under this kind of attack than Obama.

Bill Clinton for First Dude!!!

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

and he has run on his personality and judgement--and not on specific issues. His benefactors and friends and mentors, etc, are important, and they're part of his "story"--the story that he tells in books and on the stump and everywhere.

He's not known, and needs to be. If questions come up, and some associations are with criminals or old 60s radicals (when he's disparaged the fights of the 60s over and over, etc), then we should know.

space's picture
Submitted by space on

I read a lot of comments to the effect of "It's unfair! What's good for the goose is good for the gander!"

But you can't have it both ways. You can't complain that the Clintons shouldn't have been subject to endless witchhunts during the 90s and then demand that ALL associations of Hillary's opponents get aired and "vetted".

The Clintons have been attacked for many things and many associations over the past 16 years. Some of them were completely bogus. Some of them were legitimate criticisms, if overblown. And some of them were, if anything, underplayed.

It is only possible to distinguish between those if you are willing to maintain consistent principles. The point isn't "it's emulating Whitewater when it's against Obama." The point is that it's emulating Whitewater whenever you take wrong-doing by a third party and then try to associate your target with the wrong-doing by playing fast and loose with dates, contacts, relationships, and statements in order to create a false picture of what really happened.

space's picture
Submitted by space on

There is no reason to attack Obama about anything unless you personally believe it is a problem. None. If it is crap, the best way you can help Democrats in November is to NOT give false credence to bullshit.

I have criticized Hillary and Bill for many, many, many things over the years. But not once have I criticized them for anything I wouldn't have criticized another Democrat for. And not once did I criticize them for something that I didn't believe was legitimate. And if I did think that something was legitimate, I criticized them because I thought it was wrong, not because I was worried about what Rush Limbaugh would say.

If you personally have a problem with Obama's relationships with Wright or Rezko and you think that Obama's relationships are worse than McCain's relationships with countless wingnut bible-thumpers and lobbyist-advisors, then fine. I disagree, but fine. Just don't give me a bunch of concern trolling about what the GOP will say. I really couldn't care less.

myiq2xu's picture
Submitted by myiq2xu on

when there are so many unanswered questions?

The Clintons had already been investigated and cleared on Whitewater in 1992, before he was elected. The GOP spent millions investigating again. Twice.

Are you certain that $50 million from now the investigations will find nothing on Obama? He hasn't even been investigated once, and refuses to answer questions.

If he has nothing to hide, why is he hiding?

Instructive is the case of Henry Cisneros Jr., former Sec. of HUD. After an investigation that continued for three and a half years, Cisneros was forced to resign when he confessed to a single misdemeanor count of lying to the FBI about how much he had paid his former mistress.

You see, Cisneros admitted to paying her hush money, but he lied about how much money he paid her.

3 1/2 years of investigation for that.

------------------------------------------------
"Real ponies don't oink" - Patrick McManus

space's picture
Submitted by space on

If the press or Hillary's campaign wants to dig into Obama's past, go for it. You want to "vet" Obama? Knock yourself out.

But I'm not talking about vetting or investigating. I'm talking about so-called Democrats prematurely concluding that Obama can't win in November based on a virtual non-story. Not cool.

You know, Harry Truman paved his way to the Presidency by attacking war profiteering. I would respectfully suggest that if Hillary had spent the past several years using her position on the Armed Services Committee to emulate Truman and challenge the waste and corruption that is enriching McCain's contributors, America would be better off, the world would be batter off, and her campaign would be better off:

When he heard rumors of such profiteering, Truman got into his Dodge and, during a Congressional recess, drove 30,000 miles paying unannounced visits to corporate offices and worksites. The Senate committee he chaired launched aggressive investigations into shady wartime business practices and found "waste, inefficiency, mismanagement and profiteering," according to Truman, who argued that such behavior was unpatriotic. Urged on by Truman and others in Congress, President Roosevelt supported broad increases in the corporate income tax, raised the excess-profits tax to 90 percent and charged the Office of War Mobilization with the task of eliminating illegal profits. Truman, who became a national hero for his fight against the profiteers, was tapped to be FDR's running mate in 1944.

cenobite's picture
Submitted by cenobite on

But I’m not talking about vetting or investigating. I’m talking about so-called Democrats prematurely concluding that Obama can’t win in November based on a virtual non-story. Not cool.

I think Sen Obama will win the nomination and lose to McCain. That is my considered opinion based on a number of factors. I hope I am wrong, but I fear I am correct. Does that make me "not cool"?

myiq2xu's picture
Submitted by myiq2xu on

Hillary didn't solve global warming, cure cancer, or end world hunger either.

She's a real slacker, huh?

BTW - What has Big O been doing since he reached the Senate, besides running for President?

------------------------------------------------
"Real ponies don't oink" - Patrick McManus

bringiton's picture
Submitted by bringiton on

Truman got the VP slot as a result of maneuvering by Democratic Party Chairman Bob Hannegan, like Truman a creature of the Missouri Prendergast political machine. Roosevelt had committed to allow the Party convention to nominate his Vice President with everyone’s full knowledge that the VP would soon succeed him.

Hannegan manipulated FDR’s secretary into changing the order of names in a VP nomination recommendation letter dictated by FDR, moving Truman to the top when FDR actually preferred Justice William O. Douglas. At the convention, the incumbent VP Henry Wallace had a plurality of early support but Hannigan successfully united the anti-Wallace factions behind Truman.

FDR had made his mark by attacking Tammany Hall and loathed machine political power; he had put Truman’s name second on his recommendation letter as a feint, a sop to the notion of the convention making a choice, never expecting that he would have to accept a machine politician as a running mate. Once the convention nomination was finished, FDR had no choice.

Truman got to be president through his connections with the last great political machine and Party insider deception and manipulation. Still, it somehow worked out fairly well.

BTW, actual citizen voters had no influence whatsoever on either the Presidential or VP choices. Plus ça change….

myiq2xu's picture
Submitted by myiq2xu on

FDR kept Truman out of the loop about everything. For example, when FDR died, Truman was completely unaware of the existence of the Manhattan Project.

------------------------------------------------
"Real ponies don't oink" - Patrick McManus

space's picture
Submitted by space on

Expecting Hillary to use her position, as one of thirteen Democratic Senators on the Armed Forces Committee, to provide oversight over military spending is akin to expecting her to cure cancer.

Well, good night.

myiq2xu's picture
Submitted by myiq2xu on

Is your first name "Waste of?"

I'm still waiting for an answer - what has Barry done as a Senator? How many hearings has he held?

SASQ - none

------------------------------------------------
"Real ponies don't oink" - Patrick McManus

Submitted by lambert on

Mr. Cadet, then you learned wrong.

But of course you knew that.

i>[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

RedSox04's picture
Submitted by RedSox04 on

given that most people I knew who voted in the early primary states listed "electability" as the primary reason they voted for Obama, and given that a high percentage of my Obama-supporting friends still state that as a reason to prefer Obama over Hillary (although they're less cocky now then they used to be: I'm sure I'm not the only one who heard nonsensical claims like "the Republicans can't smear Obama because he's a new type of politician"), I think it's perfectly reasonable to question whether Obama is, in fact, electable.

I for one think he's not. I don't think that's a good reason for voting for someone, but I would say that anyone voting for Obama because they think he's more electable is an idiot. He's gotten kid glove treatment so far, and his negatives are still ridiculously high. On top of that, the fact that white and Latino working class voters won't embrace him is seriously problematic, and I think reflective of his campaign approach of trying to paint the GOP and the Clintons as the same (from which he is offering "Change"). You cannot win as a Democratic Presidential candidate (perhaps not as a candidate period) without winning the working class vote, and for whatever reason (racism is the convenient claim of most Obama supporters I know, none of whom are working class; I think there's also an element of "seeing through the bullshit" there; the actual cause is irrelevant), these people find Obama anathematic.

Submitted by lambert on

Here.

You know, if you think about it, Lord Kos's new 48-state, no women, no working class, no Latino strategy just might have some problems. Notice how there's no more talk about a filibuster-proof supermajority? Axelrod seems to have told the OFB to stop pushing that. Why, I wonder?

[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

myiq2xu's picture
Submitted by myiq2xu on

I remember an article by little lord k0s from before he started drinking the kool-aid where be broke down the numbers to show that that wasn't gonna happen.

I don't recall the details, but basically the number of GOP seats in play just isn't enough.

Most of the current GOP Senators are in solid red states, and that is especially true of the ones up for reelection this year.

------------------------------------------------
"Real ponies don't oink" - Patrick McManus

bringiton's picture
Submitted by bringiton on

AP headline. A survey of 250 undecided superdelegates got 117 replies. The dominant (1/3) response was that primaries are nice and all but neither the elected delegate totals nor the popular vote matters most; the dominant issue deciding their vote is electability against McCain.

Many of the Democratic superdelegates who are still undecided say the most important factor in their decision is simple — they just want a winner in November.

Problem is, after nearly four months of primaries and caucuses in 46 states, territories and the District of Columbia, they still aren't sure who that is, don't seem be in any hurry to make up their minds and aren't interested in any artificial process that might force them to choose between Barack Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Most of the more than 100 undecided superdelegates who discussed their decision-making with The Associated Press in the past two weeks agreed that the primaries and caucuses do matter — whether it's who has the most national delegates or the candidate who won their state or congressional district. But few said the primaries will be the biggest factor in their decision.

"I think it's really important that we keep our eye on the prize, and the prize is the win in November," said Gail Rasmussen, an undecided superdelegate from Oregon.

That's good news for Clinton, who cannot catch Obama in delegates won in the few remaining primaries and caucuses.

If Clinton can stay in the game by grinding out a few more wins, she might just pull it out. What a fantastic, chaotic, glorious exercise this has been. Many thanks to Howard Dean, whose hands-off freeing of the process fostered this improvisational theater of the absurd. Just think how much we've learned about each other.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

http://www.bostonherald.com/news/opinion... --
"... What they want is victory - at virtually any cost.

Typical Americans want to know if Obama, a liberal community activist with little political or executive experience, is tough enough to face our enemies in a troubled world. Massachusetts Democrats could not care less - they just want to make sure he’s tough enough to take on McCain.

And because the answer is “probably not,” Obama is struggling among what should be his most ardent admirers. Massachusetts liberals like him as a guy, and they certainly support his politics. But they really hate losers. Especially after the last eight years. ..."

myiq2xu's picture
Submitted by myiq2xu on

That the states Hillary has won add up to 270 electoral votes?

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"McGovern - Mondale - Dukakis - Obama

The few, the lame, the losers