Urbin Report

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Barak Obama's accomplishments

Protein Wisdom has the round up, and it isn't pretty.

From June 1985 to May 1988, Obama was a community organizer with the Developing Communities Project in Chicago, working primarily to organize a housing project called Altgeld Gardens. According to the Boston Globe:

For all its impact on Obama, Altgeld Gardens today seems far from the kind of success story politicians like to tout.

Dozens of buildings are boarded up, with fences surrounding much of the property. The roads are a potholed mess. Blinking lights illuminate a series of towers where police have mounted cameras.


That’s change you can believe in. Moreover, Hazel Johnson, who has lived at Altgeld Gardens since 1962 – and was an organizer long before Obama appeared on the scene – claims Obama has exaggerated his role in getting asbestos removed from the projects. Otherwise, Obama did not get much done — and even had difficulty explaining what a “community organizer” did.
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In his first race for the state Senate in 1996, Obama employed Chicago rules to invalidate the voting petition signatures of three of his challengers, thus running unopposed on the Democratic ticket in a heavily Democrat district:

“That was Chicago politics,” said John Kass, a veteran Chicago Tribune columnist. “Knock out your opposition, challenge their petitions, destroy your enemy, right? It is how Barack Obama destroyed his enemies back in 1996 that conflicts with his message today. He may have gotten his start registering thousands of voters. But in that first race, he made sure voters had just one choice.”

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Though Obama served in the Illinois Senate for seven years, he built his entire legislative record in Illinois in a single year, when Illinois Senate Majority Leader Emil Jones appointed Obama sponsor of virtually every high-profile piece of legislation, angering many rank-and-file state legislators who had more seniority than Obama and had spent years championing the bills. During this period, he lost the 2000 Democratic primary run for the US House of Representatives to incumbent Bobby Rush by a margin of two to one.
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Much of Obama’s lofty message of unity and hope really came from campaign consultant David Axelrod, who “long ago hatched the idea that Democrats’ campaigns should revolve more around personality than policy.” Indeed, much of the rhetoric was already test-driven in 2006 by one of Axelrod’s other clients, Gov. Deval Patrick of Massachusetts. Not that such themes are in any way unique to American presidential politics, as demonstrated by Bill “The Man from Hope” Clinton and George W. “Uniter, not a Divider” Bush.
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Again, there is not much to admire in either snake oil, tyranny or flowery speeches trying to sell either. Moreover, remove Obama from a TelePrompTer and he is every bit the gaffer as any other average politician, though few have had the audacity to base their foreign policy on a debate gaffe.

In sum, Barack Obama’s record, judgment and message are at best entirely undistinguished in the field of presidential politics. At worst, we have Axelrod’s campaign of personality attracting a cult of followers so creepy that even many Obama backers are put off by it, to a man who admits he is a “blank screen,” with a message that is either illusory or tyrannical. It is in those people that I find little to admire.

There is more. Go read the whole thing.