Sleaze – The Chicago Way
“So, what do you know about protocols?” asked the Vice President of Engineering for a network engineering company. It was the mid-1980s, and I wanted a job. I was clueless – it sounded Greek to me. I was so clueless that I didn’t even realize it was Geek, not Greek. So I answered his question the only way I could. I looked the man straight in the eye, opened my mouth and removed all doubt. “I can be nice to anybody,” I replied. He hired me anyway.
Decades later America needed a president. “So, what do you know about running a country?” asked the voters. It was 2008 and he wanted a job. He was so clueless that it sounded foreign to him. He was so utterly clueless that he didn’t even realize it was representative government the voters were talking about – not tyranny. So he answered the question the only way he could. He looked America straight in the eye, opened his mouth, and removed all doubt. “I’ve been a Community Organizer,” he answered proudly. We hired him anyway.
In Washington, where Congress rules,
Are few brave men, and countless fools.
The laws we live by, and each new bill,
Are decreed to us by the fools on The Hill.
Back in the 1970s, I was studying print journalism at a large university. PCs hadn’t yet been invented; even the Osbourne 1 wasn’t introduced until 1981. The student newspaper’s computer system consisted of a PDP-8/PDP-11 cluster and a fine assortment of VDT-100 dumb terminals. I was the newspaper’s Sports Editor. The school’s basketball coach and I didn’t get along. Officially, we hated each other, but had kept our feud at a simmer. That was about to change.
One day I wrote a glowing, wonderful, sickeningly sweet story about the basketball coach. I gushed in my praise of the man. If the story had arms, it would have thrown rose pedals at the coach’s feet when he read it. But I made the mistake of letting my true feelings about the man show through in the name I gave the story’s file on that computer system. I laid out the story on the front page of the sports section and went home to bed. During the evening, the Night Editor needed another story for the front page. He swiped my article about the basketball coach and plopped it right at the top of the front page. The only problem was that the story was too long for the space allotted to it on the front page. So he had to “jump” the story to another page. Unfortunately for me, he didn’t notice the filename. Even later that night, the newspaper’s typesetter began his work on the front page. At the end of the text that fit on Page 1 he referred to my filename and used it as the reference for the page jump – “See Sleaze on Page 14.” Then on Page 14, in nice huge 48-point type, the story continued with the headline “Sleaze”. The coach and I never spoke to each other again.
During 1985 Barack Hussein Obama moved to Chicago. It didn’t take him long to become associated with black militants and other assorted leftists in the Windy City. He found work as a Community Organizer for the “Industrial Areas Foundation” (IAF), which had been founded by the Marxist radical Saul Alinsky. Obama also worked with several other radical groups in Chicago including Alinsky’s “Developing Communities Project” (DCP), of which he was named Director; the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN); and Project Vote. Acorn was founded by Wade Rathke, who was an associate of the Weather Underground’s William Ayers. Obama made yet another connection to William Ayers when he received funding from the Woods Fund of Chicago – a group to which Ayers reportedly had connections.
Obama’s connections to the radical Chicago scene were further strengthened in 1989 when he became acquainted with Michelle Robinson, who worked at the Chicago law firm of Sidley Austin. Reportedly, the owner of that law firm was a friend of…drum roll please…William Ayers. Another drum roll…also working at Sidley Austin was Bernadine Dohrn, who had planted a bomb at a police station in San Francisco in 1970 that killed a policeman and partially blinded another police officer, according to an FBI Report. Of course, we are all familiar with the affinity Ayers and Dohrn have for explosives. Their targets included the U.S. Capital Building, the Pentagon, and New York City Police Headquarters, among others.
In 1992 Obama and Michelle Robinson were married by their spiritual mentor – the Rev. Jeremiah Wright – still another connection to a Chicago radical. Rimshot!
In 1995 Ayers launched yet another radical organization, an education foundation named the Chicago Annenberg Challenge. One of the grants awarded by the foundation went to an organization run by Mike Klonsky, a former head of the Marxist-Leninist Community Party of America. Obama was named the first Chairman of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, a position he held until 1999. The Obama campaign issued a statement in response to a query from Stanley Kurtz of the National Review Online in which, the campaign claimed, Ayers was not involved with the recruitment of Obama to the board of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge. And in April of 2008, Obama attempted to distance himself from Ayers, claiming that Ayers was just “a guy who lives in my neighborhood,” and “not somebody who I exchange ideas with on a regular basis.” Yeah, sure, and the sun doesn’t rise in the East. Does the word “Sleaze” ring a bell?
Now we have seen Obama’s Chicago-style politics play out at the national level for more than a year and a half. We have been exposed to the sleazy way health-care reform was legislated. We have witnessed extravagant vacations on the taxpayers’ dime. We have watched takeovers of major corporations, and the creation of a gigantic slush fund, the magnitude of which has never before been seen in American politics. We get the uneasy feeling that just possibly, people with connections to the administration are personally profiting from all the sleaze.
The retirement plan for Tammy Faye,
Bears no resemblance to a 401K.
And then there is the case of Vera Baker, who allegedly engaged in an affair with Barack Obama. Baker has a professional background in political fundraising. With a business partner, Muthoni Wambu, Baker founded Baker Wambu & Associates during 2000. This fundraising firm signed on as a fundraiser for the Congressional Black Caucus. Baker developed a professional relationship, no pun intended, with Obama and joined his 2004 campaign staff for his Illinois Senate campaign as Finance Director. The National Enquirer later ran a story claiming evidence of an affair between Baker and Obama had been caught on a security video. Hill Buzz, though, expressed doubt that the affair ever took place. “We never believed Obama had an affair with a woman, because Obama does not appear to like women,” reported Hill Buzz. Continuing on, the Hill Buzz story further noted “As American Standard recently wondered, there are no former girlfriends, either on the scene or noted in any of the books William Ayers or Jon Favreau wrote for Obama. No high school girlfriends. No college sweethearts. But, there sure are plenty of men he’s spent an odd amount of time with.” Now, I am certainly not accusing Obama and Baker of having an affair. And I am not accusing Obama of being homosexual. I do not possess information to support contentions such as those. But the National Enquirer raised the question about a potential affair, and as far as I know, Vera Baker has denied that an affair ever took place, but Obama has not commented on the subject. Regardless, rumors swirled around the Obama campaign on this subject and you can easily dredge up information on this topic by Googling it.
The problem here may have nothing to do with impropriety, but the perception of impropriety has given the Vera Baker story legs, so to speak.
“Is nothing sacred?” asked the Hart.
Who read the Bible, but skipped one part.
A little verse regarding vice,
That admonished restraint with Donna Rice.
Now we are approaching the 2010 midterm elections. All indications are that the Democrats are going to suffer a defeat for the ages in November. Rumors and political analyses abound about the possibility of the Republicans taking control of the House of Representatives, and perhaps, even the United States Senate. What’s more, political pundits are beginning to speculate that Obama could even resign before the end of his first term – a theory I don’t believe for a heartbeat. Obama finagled his way to the highest political office of the land. I can’t believe he isn’t going to see it through. Power is intoxicating and he’s drinking it up from the public trough.
There are more rumors that he will be impeached. If the Republicans win back Congress, that certainly becomes a possibility. But, I predict, that even if an attempt is made in that direction, that it will fail. I suppose it all depends on what the definition of the word “sleaze” is. Shades of Clinton come to find.
Finally, the rumor mill is grinding away at the possibility that Obama won’t run for a second term. Once again, I don’t believe it. Yes, Obama uttered words to the effect that he would rather be a great one-term president than a mediocre two-term president. But honesty, do you believe him. I mean, it’s not like, allegedly, he has ever been caught in a lie before – note the legal disclaimer.
Now, why would the main stream media and the blogosphere both be discussing a) Obama quitting before his first term is over, b) impeachment, and c) pulling an LBJ and declining to run for a second term? The answer is that the majority of Americans can now clearly see the failure of the Obama presidency. The sleaze and corruption are shining through. The incompetence is inescapable. The arrogance is as obvious as his upturned nose. Obama’s lack of personal ethics is stunningly apparent. The corruption of Congress is plain to see – the most ethical Congress ever. The deliberate attempts to cut America down to size are infuriating patriots from sea to shining sea. Unlike me, Obama apparently doesn’t have the ability to be nice to everybody. He is a fraud. He is clueless. And his arrogance doesn’t allow him to see himself for what he really is. Therefore, I believe that Obama will indeed run for a second term. And just like the 2010 midterms, the Democrats are going to suffer a second rousing defeat in 2012 because of Obama. In the meantime, Obama will put America through Hell. Heaven help us until the day he leaves office, voluntarily or otherwise.
So back to Denver in his shame,
A candidate now, but just in name.
A lesson learned. A battle fought.
What fun he had, but he got caught!
In the interest of clarity, I must disclose that I wrote all of the poetry in this column during the 1980s. I started tinkering around with political satire poetry in 1986 and the verses in this column are extracted from unpublished poems I wrote surrounding events from that era including the Jim and Tammy Faye Baker PTL business empire collapse, Gary Hart’s alleged affair with Donna Rice, and a generic poem about Congress. Other than these extracts, the balance of those poems will never see the light of day – though I grin every time I recite them in my mind.