American Pravda’s big and little lies about the Obama-Ayers relationship

Palin has the AP, not just running scared, but spinning lies.  I’m careful about quoting the AP, because their stuff is proprietarial, but to the extent they have the public ear, they better damn well be honest, and the following story, which I print and fisk in relevant part, is not honest:

Sarah Palin defended her claim that Barack Obama “pals around with terrorists,” saying the Democratic presidential nominee’s association with a 1960s radical is an issue that is “fair to talk about.”


At issue is Obama’s association with Ayers. Both have served on the same Chicago charity and live near each other in Chicago. Ayers also held a meet-the-candidate event at his home for Obama when Obama first ran for office in the mid-1990s, the event cited by Palin.

But while Ayers and Obama are acquainted, the charge that they “pal around” is a stretch of any reading of the public record. [Note the careful language about “the public record” since so much of what went on between Ayers and Obama is not in the public record.  Thanks to yeoman work from Stanley Kurtz, though, we know that they had a very close relationship leading up to and including work on the Annenberg Challenge.  We therefore know that, while Obama and Ayers may not have been beer-drinking buddies, Ayers probably mentored Obama, and Obama was certainly happy to have a long professional association with a self-professed, self-confessed domestic terrorist who only regrets not doing more.  See here, here and hereJoshua Muravchick has more on that relationship, too.  It’s beyond disingenous for the AP reporter to read the phrase “pal around” so literally that it would exclude any relationship other than a weekly beer-drinking fest lasting some decades.] And it’s simply wrong to suggest that they were associated while Ayers was committing terrorist acts. Obama was 8 years old at the time the Weather Underground claimed credit for numerous bombings and was blamed for a pipe bomb that killed a San Francisco policeman.  [Again, disingenous.  Yes, Obama was a small boy when Ayers was active.  However, Ayers has never apologized or repented.  He’s regretted only that he didn’t go far enough and would do it all again.  Ayers’ bomb-making days may have stopped, but he is the same man and he is currently, and has long been, Obama’s social and political mentor.]

At a rally in North Carolina, Obama countered that McCain and his campaign “are gambling that he can distract you with smears rather than talk to you about substance.” The Democrat described the criticism as “Swiftboat-style attacks on me,” a reference to the unsubstantiated allegations about 2004 Democratic nominee John Kerry’s decorated military record in Vietnam.  [How much substantiation do you need aside from dozens of eye-witnesses, plus Kerry’s own verbal slip-ups?  Swift-boating has come to mean any accusation we, the Democrats, deny, regardless of the absence of evidence on our side, and the overwhelming amount of evidence on yours.]

During her stop in California, Palin was asked about an Associated Press analysis that said her charge about Ayers was unsubstantiated, a point made by other news organizations, and the criticism carried a “racially tinged subtext that McCain may come to regret.”  [To a hammer, everything is a nail.  To an MSM reporter, every criticism of Obama is racially tinged.  I, for one, am baffled about the racial connection, considering that Ayers is white.]

“The Associated Press is wrong,” Palin said. “The comments are about an association that has been known but hasn’t been talked about, and I think it’s fair to talk about where Barack Obama kicked off his political career, in the guy’s living room.”  [You go, girl! That’s precisely what needs to be said.  Sarah is calling the AP and other members of the MSM on the fact that their refusal to report a story does not constitute proof that the story does not exist.]

In fact, Obama was questioned about Ayers during a prime-time Democratic debate against Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton prior to April’s Pennsylvania primary.  [He was questioned, and he lied.  AP forgets to add that he downplayed his association so much that his statements were falsehoods.  Or, as Muravchik explains in the same article I linked to, above:

The details of Obama’s association with Ayers remain somewhat shrouded because both Ayers and Dohrn have refused to discuss it, while Obama and his spokesmen have prevaricated about it. When, during one of the televised primary debates, George Stephanopoulos asked about his connection to Ayers, Obama replied:

This is a guy who lives in my neighborhood, who’s a professor of English in Chicago who I know and who I have not received some official endorsement from. He’s not somebody who I exchange ideas from on a regular basis. And the notion that somehow as a consequence of me knowing somebody who engaged in detestable acts 40 years ago, when I was eight years old, somehow reflects on me and my values doesn’t make much sense.

Later, Obama’s campaign manager, David Axelrod, added: “Bill Ayers lives in his neighborhood. Their kids attend the same school.” If this is true, Ayers’s children must be slow learners, since they are thirty-one and twenty-eight while Obama’s are nine and six. But Obama’s own reply, though less bald-faced than Axelrod’s, was thoroughly disingenuous. Thanks to the meticulous investigations of the Left-leaning blogger Steven Diamond (, the story of Obama and Ayers’s collaboration has been seeping into the public record despite extraordinary efforts to seal it.

You can go to Kurtz’s articles, to Muravchik’s article, or to Diamond’s website ( to see just how untruthful Obama was — but AP readily lets it pass.]

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  • Oldflyer

    On another blog someone posted that the American people are so forgiving that we will forget Bill Ayers. I hope not.

    The hurdle will be to break through the media barricade that has been put around Obama and get the story to the American people.

    McCain was thrown off stride by the economic “crisis”. I still think he could have played that to his advantage, but I suppose, like Bush, he felt he had to reach across the great divide for the good of the country.

    At any rate, the time has come for him to get in gear. The attacks on Governor Palin have taken their toll. She can keep the base fired up, but McCain has to make the case with any uncommitted or wavering voters.

  • Ymarsakar

    I still think he could have played that to his advantage, but I suppose, like Bush, he felt he had to reach across the great divide for the good of the country.

    I keep telling these people that no matter how many times they offer their hand as an olive branch to the Dems, the Dems will chew it up once the Dems feel safe once more to play power politics with American lives.

  • Ymarsakar

    The good of the country is not served by serving those sabotaging the nation.

  • Ymarsakar

    Hey Book, you know that a lot of young Democrats distrust the MSM as being biased towards Big Corporations and Republicans, right? So guess where these young “tech savvy” people go for their news. Google and Yahoo. And where does Google and Yahoo gets their news? AP and Reuters, same place as the MSM.

    Catch 22, as they say.

  • Ellie2

    A Democracy relies on getting the truth to the people, that is the purpose of the First Amendment. The “Press” is really failing in its duty. I am becoming convinced that to turn things around, we need to take back the schools.

    I look back on my HS civics class. That’s where I first got interested in politics. There was never any question of not voting, as there wasn’t for my parents’ generation. The teacher was a first generation American who loved this country and taught us well what it takes to make it work: first and foremost, an educated electorate.

    We need choice in schools. Why doesn’t someone who is paying for private schools because the Public school is failing (or isn’t safe etc) sue for a refund of the portion of their property taxes that go to the schools (which is a big hunk of it)? Look at what Madalyn Murray O’Hair accomplished, with a lawsuit and a judge.
    And a kid in school.

  • Allen

    I’m not really a fan of the works of Ayn Rand, but some of her work is interesting. I was up in the Sierras this weekend and re-read part of The Fountainhead.

    The interesting aspect was about how a collectivist would associate an idea of a creator with themself.

    Nunn/Lugar and Obama/Lugar.

    One is a creative idea, and the other is glomming onto the creation of others. In fact, doesn’t this describe Obama’s whole political career?

  • 11B40


    Today’s Media Question: What’s Black & White and Red all over.

    No, but seriously, how did Senator Obama’s (over)educated parents end up with a parenting manual that didn’t include some version of “you lay down with dogs, you get up with fleas” or, at least, “be careful who you hang out with.”

    Ellie2: As a product of 13 years of Catholic education (with no repeats), I am in agreement with your assertion. I am always amazed, when reading about public education and its current and continuing problems, that no one seems to be interested in doing a “best practices” analysis of the Catholic school system past and present. It seems to me to be an excellent example of a not-exactly-welcome immigrant group putting its collective hand in its own collective pocket to solve the problem of getting children an adequate education with little or no help from the government.

    Allen: I don’t think Ayn Rand would concur, but thanks for the “glomming.”

  • Mike Devx

    It would be fun to have an “Atlas Shrugged” thread, to hear details of what you all think about it. (Those of you who’ve read it.) I personally know of two people who’ve read it besides me and neither is ever interested in discussing it, even what they remember from reading it years and years ago.

    I’m a fan of ‘Atlas Shrugged’ though there certainly are things I don’t like about it. Am I a huge fan? Well, I’ve read it through four or five times, most recently about three years ago, and I actually think I’m ready to have another go at it.

    There’s a lot to enjoy.

  • Bookworm

    I have to confess that Rand’s prose puts me off. I’ve never managed more than a chapter or two in her books. If Jane Austen is your yardstick of perfect writing (as she is mine), some things just will never work.

  • Mike Devx

    I forgive the prose style of “Atlas Shrugged” because I accept going in that this is an intellectual trying her hand as a novelist.

    If examining it purely as literary art, my personal opinion is that it’s obviously vastly deficient. On the other hand, it would be easy for me to point to novels of near-perfect literary art that I deplore due to the very evil of the philosophies lying just beneath the written words.

    I’ve always found the plot and essential mystery (Who is John Galt and where are people disappearing to?) to make up for the clunky prose.

    I certainly understand how the prose itself is enough to make the novel unreadable for many people. As a forceful, uncompromising defense of values – and of the worth and importance of values and the terrible cost of bad values – I will always find the book astonishing and rewarding.

  • Quisp

    I imagine a lot of people are pulling their copies of Atlas Shrugged from the back of the bookshelf after last week’s bailout debacle. It’s impossible not to draw parallels.

  • Ymarsakar

    I liked Ayn Rand’s writing more than Jane Austen’s.

    Jane Austen writes of the everyday concerns and tribulations going on, between the lines, of her characters. Ayn Rand writes about philosophy and sets up philosophical conundrums from the bottom up.

    As people may have guessed, I prefer philosophy over to most everyday discussions of weddings and what not.

    I’ve never managed more than a chapter or two in her books.

    Find one of her shorter stories like Anthem. If you don’t get an emotional reaction after reading all of it, it is unlikely you will get the same kind of epiphany from The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged.

    Also, the same catharsis reaction I got from those books I also got from Terry Goodkind’s “Faith of the Fallen”. Goodkind is a disciple of Ayn Rand due to the fact that he had a Catholic upbringing and couldn’t accept the notion of burning in hell for rejecting some religious doctrine.

    It’s also nice in Rand’s books that you get to see the grasping parasites getting pummeled. In real life, people like Ted Kennedy, John Kerry, Teresa Heinz, Dobbs, and Franks and all those others get away with parasitism. They not only get away with it, they become wealthy and power in the bargain.

    In Rand’s books, the main character suffers from the depredations of these sick freaks but in the end, the main character is triumphant, not defeated. That’s a nice message.

  • Ymarsakar


    This is kind of funny if you know Cassandra and have read the Fountainhead.