Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Obama's real agenda?

Obama's agenda: Overwhelm the system. (hat tip: Professor ed).

Do you believe this or is Mr. Root the one with the agenda?

I don't want to believe it--but I must admit that in some pessimistic corner of my mind I have feared that it may be true.

By the way, Snopes has verified that the source is correctly attributed.


Kevin said...

I think Wayne Allyn Root has found that he can make more money pandering to conservatives then he can selling books about 'The Joy of Failure!'.

That position is as supportable as Root's position on Obama.

Kevin said...

I'm confused about the Snopes citation... who cares if Wayne Allyn Root wrote this article?

professor ed said...

Kevin, I see I am not the only cynic in this land. But why not lay the cynicisim aside, just this once, and view this material for what it could be; an insight from a former college roomate into the possible workings of his former roomate--who now happens to hold the highest office in the USA.

Dennis said...


First, the Snopes citation comes from my skepticism--I often double check things through Snopes. My point was just that this was not a fabrication. It was not just made up by some high school dropout sitting in the corner of his mothers' dark basement.

Second, your comments would have been much more helpful to me if you had actually interacted with Mr. Root's arguments rather than just attacking the man.

Kevin said...

Professor Ed,

Root graduated from Columbia in the same year that Obama did. In another slander piece against Obama Root admits he never new him as he tries to imply Obama may not have actually attended Colubmia (citation).

Laying aside cynicism to accept unsubstantiated speculations that reinforce existing presuppositions, speculation, and fear is not a good idea.

Kevin said...

Dennis... my comment was an attempt to argue in the style of Mr. Root. His argument reads like rhetorical slander. He uses facts (a quote by Rahm Emanuel, the names of two professors from Columbia), he aligns himself with other notable figures his target audience might respect (Glen Beck), and praises the intelligence of Obama (so he can paint him as the grand schemer), even suggesting he understands Obama because he graduated from the same university in the same year (and yet as I cited elsewhere when it suits his purpose Root claims that he never new the man).

How do you argue with a speculative piece of slander? His entire argument is based on the assumption that you'll buy into any sort of anti-US scheme he can loosely tie to Obama. There's no evidence to support that Obama can or will do things he's cited to produce the actual results he wants you to fear.

So I stand by my speculative slander, that Mr. Root has found that he can do very well for himself by playing to the conservative crowd.

professor ed said...

Kevin: Thank you for the insightful citation. I should have, as you did, dug a little deeper. Yes, Snopes did verify Root as the author of the article, but your additional citation proves beyond a doubt that Root's statements regarding Obama's attendance at C.U. are "questionable" at best.

Dennis said...


Good points. And yet, on the other hand, Obama and the Democrats have practically overwhelmed the system with their insane spending frenzy (I don't think it was an accident that the Democrats did not pass a budget when they had control of both houses of Congress--a budget would require them to either limit their spending, or to make their intentions public. They didn't want to do either).

What can explain the fact that even though American is rapidly running toward bankruptcy, Obama's (and Democrats') solution is to spend more and more and more money?!

I would think that even intelligent Keynesians would admit that there comes a point of no return at which spending more and more money is counter productive!

So, here we have two Columbia professors--Cloward and Piven--who called for overwhelming the system precisely to bring in a socialist welfare state.

Granted, just because Obama attended Columbia does not mean he has ever even heard of these professors. But Democrat ideals of bigger government, redistribution of wealth, more socialized medicine, expanded welfare state, etc. are perfectly in line with Cloward's and Piven's vision.

Now that could just be a coincidence and we could label Root and Beck as wacko conspiracy theorists because they have no hard proof to tie the Cloward-Piven strategy to Obama, but on the other hand, if you've heard a rumor that robbers were breaking into houses in your neighborhood during the night you could 1) dismiss it as unsubstantiated rumors from non- authoritative sources or 2) you could lock the doors.

I think we have reason to be concerned that all this insane spending is not just stupidity but actually has an agenda.

I may be wrong--but I'm certainly going to "lock the door" by continuing to vote against Democrats in the next election because regardless of whether this insane spending spree is deliberate or a result of stupidity, the outcome is not good.

Dennis said...

By the way, you can read about Cloward and Piven here:

Dennis said...

I don't know why Blogger cut the last part of the URL off, but the part after the last underscore is "strategy" (without the quotes, of course)

Kevin said...

An answer to your original question
Do you believe this or is Mr. Root
the one with the agenda?

I do not see that Mr. Root provided any concrete evidence to make me believe that President Obama's agenda is "to create systemic failure, economic crisis and social chaos -- thereby destroying capitalism and our country from within". I'm not fan of Obama, but Root doesn't support his argument with anything other than speculation.

You admit you don't want to believe it, your logical response to Root's piece is to reject it, but he's tapped into your fear so you react to it.

Fear mongering is counterproductive
Your analogy about break ins is flawed. A rash of break-ins is equivalent to the overspending by our government. The cautious response for the break-ins would be to lock your door as you suggest, or in the case of our government to push back heavily on spending to demand a balanced budget, to expect our government to behave with some fiscal responsibility. Call your congressman.

An irrational response to the financial and governmental problems in the US is to jump to an indefensible conclusion about the intentions of one (and only one) of the powerful people who can affect some change. Attacking Obama shifts the discussion from fiscal responsibility to a person's motives. Instead of arguing for stronger financial controls, instead of understanding the actual issues (in this case spend less than we bring in) you're now putting effort into arguing about Obama. It's a personal attack, it's not a logical argument. More than that it's distracting. For people who don't like Obama... they'll like him less and fear him more... for people who aren't ready to buy into the analysis of Obama's motives they'll write it off... where is the benefit. It seems absurd to say that you must attack Obama's person in order for people to buy into the idea of fiscal responsibility.

Using your analogy about break-ins, this would be like responding to break-ins by telling people that the reason the break-ins were occurring was because there was an arm of the Russian mob moving into the city and they were breaking into houses to steal your day-timer so they could kidnap you and your children and sell them into slavery. All of this MAY be true, but it's so out-of-the-ordinary... it requires someone to buy into so much that it's a waste when just suggesting that people lock their doors because of the increase in break-ins accomplishes the primary objective of getting people to lock their doors.

This type of article, the fear mongering, the pandering... it's counter-productive. Focus on the issues. If the issue is real, if you can explain why we have spent too much money and why we need to reduce spending and why raising taxes will not help... then you can win and argument and change some minds. Attacking Obama with unsubstantiated claims doesn't move people and doesn't facilitate debate.

Some speculation
Analyzing a real problem, coming up with a proposal for a solution, and understanding some of the details is hard work. Oftentimes no one wants to read about real stuff like that. However, taking information you already know, slandering a person who your target audience already dislikes, and basing your argument on speculation is relatively easy and people like it.

George W. Bush was frequently accused of hating Muslims b/c of the wars and war on terror. Most of the vicious articles written about him were the same kind of thing that Root wrote. They should be ignored and rejected.

Kevin said...

a budget would require [Democrats] to either limit their spending, or to make their intentions public. They didn't want to do either.

I agree. The Democrats are concerned about their power and I believe know that they cannot come up with a reasonable plan that is both fiscally realistic and meets all of their constituents wants. Instead they ignore the issue (negligence!) and attack the Republicans in order to look like they're the only way to protect the poor, the old, the environment, whatever...

That does not mean they have some grand scheme to destroy the economy so they can create a Marxist state. I think it speaks more to the crop of Democrats who are in power right now, they gained power handing out cash when there was some... hating on Bush... and now they've got nothing to say and no real skills to deal w/ a cash shortage and a population that knows it and is rejecting more spending (mostly).

Kevin said...

On economic failure
Doom and gloom sells, but show me a doom and gloomer who predicted the TEA party and the general reaction to the fiscal problems we have now and I'll listen. Suggesting that this current crisis is bad and that it will have consequences but that the over time we'll generally move back towards a more sustainable position is not nearly as exciting as "the end is near!".

Why not just cut benefits?
Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are huge expenses. If things really got bad wouldn't one valid response just be to cut the services provided by these programs? If, as Obama suggested during the debt ceiling debates, that the US may not be able to send out checks... if that time actually happened, people would demand cuts. Sure they may try to increase revenue to the government too, but the gaps are too big... so cuts would have to come.

Kevin said...

I think we have reason to be concerned that all this insane spending is not just stupidity but actually has an agenda.

I don't see how whether or not a politician has an agenda or is just stupid affects how you actually interact with the issue. Perhaps when you're trying to get a characterization of someone piecing together their actions can lead to idea of what they are trying to do... but we're not voting for a new President now, and focus on the core issues can illuminate why Obama's decisions have failed. Beat him on his actions, not some unknowable agenda.

Dennis said...

I will concede that the point you make repeatedly--focus on the issues, not on the motives or person--is generally valid.

On the other hand, I liked your illustration of the Russian Mob. If the rumors were about the Russian Mob(and not just common criminals) breaking in, I would probably not just lock the door, I may also bar the windows and buy a security system! And I may not wait until the rumor was proven beyond reasonable doubt.

Sometimes the people--their motives and intentions--can make a world of difference.

When LBJ or Jimmy Carter were in power I disagreed with their policies but never doubted their love for America.

With Obama, we have a man who spent decades in an America-hating church and praised the pastor of that church (and whose wife said in all honesty that she had never been proud of America before); a President who has appointed to high positions of power people who are unapologetic socialists, a Communist, and even a person who thinks sexual freedom should trump the First Amendment!; a President who has bowed (figuratively and literally) to foreign governments including our enemies, and who has snubbed our allies, a President who, if not socialist, clearly leans in that direction, a President who is overwhelming the system with debt--then quite frankly, I start getting just a little concerned that we are--to borrow from your analogy--not just dealing with a common criminal but with the Russian mob!

Please bear in mind, however, that I am not actively advocating or promoting the idea that Obama is a closet Communist or fascist. But I am candidly admitting that I sometimes wonder.

I am not so naive as to think that America is different than all other countries or empires in world history and could never fall.

If someone living five years before the fall of the Soviet Union had said that the USSR would fall in five years, EVERYONE would have said they were crazy! I'm certainly not predicting the fall of America but I am saying that the cost of freedom is eternal vigilance (seems like I've read that somewhere before :-)