Dreams and Fables: Why Would a Man Just Make His Life Up?

Dreams From My Father’s embellishments were not intended to be parable, allegory, or some other lyrical descriptor of simple lying; these defenses ignore that most people simply would not do what Obama did. Lying about qualifications is the largest sin one can commit when seeking employment or education, and selling a book certainly falls under employment.

Yesterday, David Maraniss -- author of the bestselling Barack Obama: The Story, his book which revealed that Obama fibbed about one two thirty-friggin’-eight incidents in his first autobiography -- noted that he has been troubled by the response to the book, as he hadn’t intended it to be used to assail Obama’s reputation. Yes, really.

Said Maraniss:

I mean, a memoir is far different from rigorous factual biography. So it's not as though I'm trying to say, aha, I got you, at each point, I'm just trying to present the way I really found it, which in many cases was different from what he presented.

He was writing a memoir that was shaped through the lens of race, almost entirely. So that led to certain distortions, composite characters, which he acknowledges.

You know, it's been fascinating for me. The right wing sort of is at once dismissing the book, but cherry-picking every single negative thing in it to use against Obama. It's almost why I didn't want to write this book.

Well, he wrote it when he was in his 30s before he was running for president. He had no clue that people like me would come along later and try to tell the real story.

I think he did it for reasons of trying to tell a story about his search for -- to find himself. I don't think he was trying to create a mythological character.

Yikes. There’s enough moral ambiguity, doublespeak, and simple nonsense in there to negate the whole passage as being simply incoherent. I am in my 30s and am not currently interested in being president (it sounds decent, yes, but right now I prefer a job that both challenges my intelligence and allows me to wear gym clothes and shave once a week): does Mr. Maraniss let me off the hook if I spew crap and lies until I hit 40? Can I assume everything Maraniss wrote before 40 is crap?