The Chicago Annenberg Challenge was created ostensibly to improve Chicago's public schools. The funding came from a national education initiative by Ambassador Walter Annenberg. In early 1995, Mr. Obama was appointed the first chairman of the board, which handled fiscal matters. Mr. Ayers co-chaired the foundation's other key body, the "Collaborative," which shaped education policy.This last paragraph brings home the bottom line for me as a Democrat. Does anyone truly doubt that if a rising Republican politician had spent five years working with an unrepentant abortion-clinic bomber who described himself as a "a small f fascist" or as a "small n nazi," that he would still be seriously considered as a national politician? So why the double standard on behalf of Barack Obama?
The CAC's basic functioning has long been known, because its annual reports, evaluations and some board minutes were public. But the Daley archive contains additional board minutes, the Collaborative minutes, and documentation on the groups that CAC funded and rejected. The Daley archives show that Mr. Obama and Mr. Ayers worked as a team to advance the CAC agenda.
One unsettled question is how Mr. Obama, a former community organizer fresh out of law school, could vault to the top of a new foundation? In response to my questions, the Obama campaign issued a statement saying that Mr. Ayers had nothing to do with Obama's "recruitment" to the board. The statement says Deborah Leff and Patricia Albjerg Graham (presidents of other foundations) recruited him. Yet the archives show that, along with Ms. Leff and Ms. Graham, Mr. Ayers was one of a working group of five who assembled the initial board in 1994. Mr. Ayers founded CAC and was its guiding spirit. No one would have been appointed the CAC chairman without his approval.
The CAC's agenda flowed from Mr. Ayers's educational philosophy, which called for infusing students and their parents with a radical political commitment, and which downplayed achievement tests in favor of activism. In the mid-1960s, Mr. Ayers taught at a radical alternative school, and served as a community organizer in Cleveland's ghetto.
In works like "City Kids, City Teachers" and "Teaching the Personal and the Political," Mr. Ayers wrote that teachers should be community organizers dedicated to provoking resistance to American racism and oppression. His preferred alternative? "I'm a radical, Leftist, small 'c' communist," Mr. Ayers said in an interview in Ron Chepesiuk's, "Sixties Radicals," at about the same time Mr. Ayers was forming CAC.
I am a small d democrat as well as a big D Democrat. And Ayers is not an adherent of democracy! He decided that, since the democratic will of the American people had disappointed him in the 1960s by not ending the Vietnam War quickly enough, he and his fellow radicals would force the American people to change their mind through a bombing campaign aimed at the Pentagon, the Capitol building in DC, and that well-known center of war planning, the NY city Police Dept. headquarters.
In a similar vein, I have long felt there was something smelly about Pat Buchanan's long support for Nazi death camp guards like John Demanjuk (spelling?). Sure enough, Buchanan has come along in recent years with the ridiculous thesis that the U.S. never should have warred against the Nazis, that poor Adolf Hiter was forced into a war against Britain and the West that he did not want by Winston Churchill, among others.
Just as Buchanan has revealed what many long suspected about his pro-Nazi tendencies, I think Obama's association with anti-American radicals like Ayers and out-and-out racists like Rev. Wright tells us that Obama's true politics lie with the radical left. One decade-plus association with Wright or Ayers alone would be troubling enough! Two such associations tells us either:
a) Obama is a dupe who cannot figure out on his own what these men are like; or
b) Obama is a cynic who thinks he can build his political career in Chicago with the likes of these guys, and still go on to claim he's a post-partisan, post-racial moderate.
So far, Obama has actually been able to get away with option b, to my amazement. We'll see if he's be able to make it last until November 4.
Hat Tip: TigerHawk