Obama Deconstructed: An Interview With Jack Cashill
April 4, 2011
By Roger Aronoff
Donald Trump’s recent comments calling for President Obama to show his birth certificate have brought added pressure on him to do so, because it seems to have been the impetus for at least some discussion of it in the mainstream media. But in reality, the unwillingness of Obama to release his original, long-form birth certificate is just one piece of much larger narrative that brings into question much of Obama’s past.
In an exclusive interview with Accuracy in Media, journalist and author Jack Cashill recently discussed his new book, Deconstructing Obama: The Life, Loves and Letters of America ’s First Postmodern President. In it, Cashill makes a convincing case that Obama did not write the two books that helped launch his candidacy, Dreams from My Father and The Audacity of Hope. He argues that Dreams was actually written by William Ayers, the unrepentant terrorist who was a founder of the communist Weather Underground.
Through comparative writing samples, comments at unguarded moments by Ayers, and reporting by author Christopher Andersen in his book Barack and Michelle: Portrait of An American Marriage, Cashill is very persuasive. By comparing Obama’s book to Ayers’ book, Fugitive Days: A Memoir, Cashill finds examples of the same unlikely spelling errors in each, a number of the same listed literary influences, and similar qualities and features in the writing that are understandable for Ayers, but not likely at all, according to Cashill’s analysis, for Obama.
Herb Meyer, for one, was persuaded. Meyer was Special Assistant to the Director of Central Intelligence and Vice Chairman of the CIA’s National Intelligence Council during the Reagan administration. In a review for the website, American Thinker, Meyer writes:
“On page after page, chapter after chapter, Cashill shows why it simply isn’t possible for Obama to have produced such a high-quality autobiography. For instance, Obama wrote nearly nothing before Dreams from My Father, despite being president of the Harvard Law Review, and what little he wrote in the years after Harvard is clunky and sophomoric. And yet Dreams from My Father contains some of the most elegant, evocative sentences ever penned by a politician.”
Added Meyer, “Cashill brings the reader to understand that in 2008 ‘Barack Obama’ wasn’t a candidate but a carefully created myth. The leftist mainstream media bought that myth, which is why they blew off Cashill and his overwhelming amount of evidence that so much about Obama was fraudulent. That’s why Obama’s close relationships with Ayers and with the vicious America-hater Jeremiah Wright were ignored by the mainstream media during the campaign…”
Even Obama’s supporters on the Left have called for him to release his birth certificate, because they assume there is nothing to hide. Chris Matthews, David Corn and Clarence Page all urged Obama to do so, because, as Corn, the Washington bureau chief for Mother Jones magazine, said, “then we can make even more fun of the birthers.”
Back on December 27th of last year, on MSNBC’s Hardball with Chris Matthews, the three of them rather reluctantly joined the chorus, but they did so nonetheless. Here is the relevant portion of that transcript:
MATTHEWS: But the department [in Hawaii] just said the other day that there is such a thing. It exists. The original document of his birth is available in storage. They have it in storage, they say. If it exists, why not put it out?
CORN: I would—I would...
MATTHEWS: I’m just asking the obvious question. Why not—will there be any harm done by releasing the original document?
CORN: I will take the brave position of saying that if they can find it, they should put it out there, and then we can make even more fun of the birthers.
PAGE: I’ll take the brave position of saying, yes, put it out there, and the birthers are still not going to believe it. They’re going to say, ‘Well, that governor is part of the conspiracy, too,’ because he‘s a Democrat.
With more than 10 states in the process of attempting to pass laws requiring presidential candidates to release their birth certificates in order to be on the ballot in those states, even in 2012 in most cases, the subject takes on added importance.
Cashill is also critical of the conservative media, who until the recent Donald Trump comments have largely avoided discussing any of these topics. But he was on C-SPAN’s Book TV recently discussing his book and taking questions.
Besides these issues, we talked about the downing of TWA Flight 800, about which we both produced documentaries looking into what happened back in 1996, when that plane exploded over the Atlantic, killing all 230 aboard. We both, after extensive research and interviewing eyewitnesses and experts and reviewing the available evidence, are convinced that it was brought down by missiles. We also briefly discussed his books on Muhammad Ali and on intellectual hucksters, which prepared him for Deconstructing Obama.
Below, in quotes, are excerpts from my interview with Cashill. You can listen to the entire interview or read the transcript here.
“ Iran doesn’t guard its nuclear secrets as tightly as he guards his birth certificate. What’s this all about? What kind of crazy thing is this? Why do we even have to ask? Why didn’t the media ask these questions two, three years ago when they could have—and should have? Why didn’t our media—the conservative media—raise these questions?
“…if I’m right, not only is Obama not a genius, but he’s a liar of some consequence. He disowned Ayers—he barely knew this guy, “a guy in the neighborhood”—and not only that, but he had allowed this guy, a self-proclaimed Communist, to crawl around inside of his head for a mind meld of some proportion that we did not want to happen in our White House—because, even now, Ayers has extortionate power over Barack Obama.
“But when you’re watching this in the campaign, and you’re onto this story, you’re saying, “Why isn’t anyone in the major media asking how it is that this radical anti-Semite, Khalid al Mansour, was pushing Obama into Harvard twenty years before the election?” Isn’t this worth investigating, this connection? No it wasn’t—it was worth burying…But they just buried that whole story, and when I saw that—I mean, you know this, and you and Accuracy Media have been confronting this for years, how they bury stories that they simply don’t want to share with the rest of the world.
“…but at the end of the day—and I’ve looked at Obama’s life very carefully—I think what’s underestimated about Obama—and it tempers his radicalism—is his ambition. He is ambitious. He uses people. He’s used them all his life. I think he was using al-Mansour, rather than the other way around. I think he was using Bill Ayers. I mean, Bill Ayers was trying to use him too, but the calculation that went into Dreams from My Father in 1995 wasn’t to elect the President of the United States , it was to elect the Mayor of Chicago. As Mayor, Obama could do Ayers a world of good, because Ayers was a power broker in Chicago, a big educational honcho. The same year the book came out, ’95, Ayers had appointed Obama chairman of the $150 million slush fund called the Chicago Annenberg Challenge. He launched his campaign that year, with a fundraiser from Ayers’ house. Yeah, Obama was Ayers’ protégé…The guy is steely and ambitious—and do not underestimate that ambition.
“It’s a disgraceful moment in the history of journalism, not on Stephanopoulos’s part—actually, he was the only good player in it. He asked a legitimate question in the debate, in the primary debate. It’s in April of 2008. He asked Obama, “What do you say to those Republicans, to the American people who think that your association with Bill Ayers—” and he describes Ayers—“will cause you not to be elected in November?” And then Obama answers with that famous line, “Bill Ayers is just some guy in the neighborhood.” That’s a paraphrase, but is pretty close to it. He kind of skates away from it. Then he scolds Stephanopoulos for daring to ask this question about a man who committed “detestable acts in the ‘60s when I was only eight years old.” In fact, the Weather Underground didn’t form until the ‘70s. All of his bombings were done in the ‘70s…What’s interesting about what happened next—we didn’t know about JournoList at the time, but it was in effect—was that was these Left-leaning correspondents and pundits in Washington and New York collaborated on how to respond. The next day, immediately after the debate, they savaged not Obama for waffling and lying, but Stephanopoulos for daring to ask that question.
“There’s unintended humor here. This is David Axelrod. He’s very close to the camp—he’s the campaign’s main strategist. It’s not like he was just some clown who didn’t know better. When Politico comes to him—and Politico’s a very influential inside-the-Beltway publication, allegedly centrist, but not, it obviously skews Left—and asked him about whether they (Obama and Ayers) knew each other, Axelrod said, “Yeah, their kids went to school together. That was their only contact.” Now, Ben Smith, who’s writing about this for Politico, later, under pressure from his readers, adds what he calls an “update.” It should have been labeled “Humiliated Correction.” Because when Obama’s oldest daughter starts kindergarten, Bill Ayers’s youngest child is 23 years old.
“There’s a ruthless quality about the guy, by the way. Keep that in mind. And then he had to write The Audacity of Hope. Now, it’s sort of a memoir, kind of a policy brief that came out about two years later. David Remnick, the New Yorker editor, Pulitzer Prize winner, and a chief Obama biographer, tells us that, yeah, he wrote a chapter a weekend because he fell behind. The chapters are 50 pages long. Obama can’t write. This book is an entirely different style than Dreams from My Father. It’s clearly written by a different author…The chief suspect—I would say the only real good suspect—is Jon Favreau, his young speechwriter, who has written most of his famous speeches, starting back to 2004.”