The unedited address should destroy Obama’s carefully cultivated image as a unifier and healer and a nice guy. Unifiers don’t suggest that the L.A. riots and 9-11 and Katrina have anything in common other than the fact that they happened in America. Unifiers and nice guys don’t lie about the U.S. government’s actions just to stir up a sympathetic audience. Unifiers don’t go out of their way, and off their script, to pit one race against another.
Obama does that explicitly in another part of the speech that is also not “old news.”
“We need additional federal public transportation dollars flowing to the highest need communities. We don’t need to build more highways out in the suburbs,” where, the implication is, the rich white people live. Instead, Obama says, federal money should flow to “our neighborhoods”: “We should be investing in minority-owned businesses, in our neighborhoods, so people don’t have to travel from miles away.”
The solution, Obama says, is a series of new federal programs, including one to teach punctuality to the poor: “We can’t expect them to have all the skills they need to work. They may need help with basic skills, how to shop, how to show up for work on time, how to wear the right clothes, how to act appropriately in an office. We have to help them get there.”
“Our” neighborhoods? Obama lived in Chicago’s tony Hyde Park and still maintains a residence there. Hyde Park is one of the city’s richest neighborhoods.
In the “roads” and “neighborhoods” riff, Obama pits the suburbs against the city and says that taxpayer dollars should be used to “invest” in “minority-owned businesses.” That attitude that government has the right to “invest” in this way turns up all over Obama’s current policies, though most of his administration’s high-profile investments have gone to political supporters touting the latest “green” energy scheme, not necessarily minority investors. The suburbs and neighborhoods passage also show that Barack Obama is at heart a redistributionist when it comes to wealth. We have known this since his famous encounter with Joe the Plumber four years ago, but this speech plus the other videos that have been unearthed this year show that redistribution has remained a consistent idea driving Obama’s politics.
In dismissing the suburbs and discussing “our” neighborhoods, Obama sounds like Eric Holder, who in congressional testimony referred to “my people” when talking about the New Black Panther voter intimidation case. Though Holder’s controversial and divisive comment is old news now, it’s not old news that the president got there first several years ago.
It’s also not old news that some in the news media knew that this tape was out there five years ago, yet chose not to report it. It’s not old news that many in the media are dismissing it now.
More: So, according to Ann Althouse, those of us pointing out Obama’s race-baiting in this video “look ugly,” but the man in the video who is engaging in the race-baiting doesn’t. With all due respect to the professor, that’s ridiculous.
More: Althouse also walled off the Obama phone video in the same post. So tell us then, what’s acceptable to talk about? The Obama phone lady provides evidence that the president is buying votes in a swing state and increasing dependency on the government. The 2007 video provides evidence that Obama is a race hustler who lied in order to stir up racial tensions. Why should this be out of bounds to talk about?
More: Shorter Ann Althouse: Romney and Ryan had nothing to do with the 2007 video, but it’s dragging them down. It’s not dragging down the man on the video doing the race-baiting, and never will, and never should. Because, racism.
Is that about right?