Magazine article The New American

Barack Obama's Legacy

Magazine article The New American

Barack Obama's Legacy

Article excerpt

With Obama promising Democrats that he is not leaving Washington, but will fight to retain his legislation and legacy, it pays to know what that consists of.

In late 1995, a little-known Chicago politician named Barack Obama, who was running for the Illinois State Senate, attended a private coffee social meet-and-greet at a townhouse in Chicago's Kenwood neighborhood. In attendance was departing state Senator Alice Palmer, who had handpicked Obama to be her successor. No one at that gathering could have imagined that the dynamic young leftist politician on the make, Barack Obama, would one day become president. But without question, Obama was with company who recognized him as an ideological fellow-traveler. And none was more so than the owners of the townhouse itself, a couple of local university professors named Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn.

Ayers and Dohrn, professors at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the Northwestern School of Law, were husband and wife, an academic power couple influential in left-wing political circles. But decades earlier, they had been something a lot less innocuous than coffee-klatch radicals. In the late 1960s and throughout the 1970s, Ayers and Dohrn had been leaders of the Weather Underground, a Marxist terrorist group responsible for multiple bombing attacks on corporate and U.S. government and military targets. The couple had spent years as fugitives before turning themselves in to the government in 1980. Ayers' charges were dismissed on various technicalities, while Dohrn spent little more than a year in jail for her activities. And in the way that leftist celebrities tend to do, both of them landed on their feet with plush university jobs. Neither of them appears to have tempered their beliefs in the slightest, with Dohrn still proclaiming herself a radical in the 1990s and beyond.

Barack Obama's association with Ayers did not end with the coffee party in 1995. While the two never became close friends (although persistent rumors that Ayers ghost-wrote one of Obama's books have never been confirmed or refuted), their political lives continued to intersect over Obama's years of activity in Illinois politics. Most notably, Ayers served for a number of years on the five-member board of directors of the Woods Fund of Chicago, a charitable group of which Obama was a co-founder in 1993. Ayers' tenure on the board, which met several times a year, overlapped with Obama's for three years, suggesting that Obama would have approved Ayers' membership.

Superficially, Obama and Ayers are very different personages. The latter famously refused to disavow acts of violence during his involvement with the Weather Underground, whereas the former is generally known as a genial, mild-mannered family man (although Obama's love of "droning" enemies of the American state suggests a passive-aggressive penchant for sanitized violence). But ideologically, the two are of a piece. After eight years of President Barack Obama, which have seen the advent of socialized medicine and a host of longstanding cultural Marxist priorities such as same-sex "marriage," there can be little doubt that our former commander-in-chief is in virtual ideological lockstep with the former left-wing terrorist and all of the broader aims that the radical Left of cultural Marxism and international socialism support.

As a general proposition, the radical Left is sympathetic with even the most violent cohorts of cultural Marxism, as the ongoing convulsions of anti-Trump violence--and the refusal of most on the "respectable" Left in the mainstream media and politics to condemn it--will attest. The attacks on President Trump and his supporters are almost unprecedented in virulence in American history, and there is no doubt that the entire leftist establishment is in near-unanimous sympathy with the mobs destroying property and assaulting innocents, with public figures who openly threaten the president with violence, and with Washington ideologues seeking to undermine the legitimacy of the Trump administration and the Right in general. …

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