The Problem With Obama

Okay, sure, I would love to see America beloved by the world again.  I would thrill to see immigrants openly weeping as President Obama’s motorcade swept along the Champs Elysees.  And three million people gathered to welcome him to his father’s homeland of Kenya.  And the fourth largest nation in the world, Indonesia, virtually shut down as millions crowd the road from the airport to downtown Jakarta, the world’s largest Islamic nation, in love with an American president who studied there as a ten year old child.  And yes, if America were admired, she would be stronger in dealing with the Chinese on trade and the Iranians on their nuclear ambitions and the Russians on everything else.  And the American economy would be flooded with investments.  But as Lee Corso says on College Gameday, “Not so fast.”

The Obama dream is intoxicating but who is he?  Has he really been vetted?  And why can’t we say his middle name?  Barack Hussein Obama?  We can say James Earl Carter and no one is offended.  We can say William Jefferson Clinton or George Herbert Walker Bush.  Why is everything so off limits with Obama?  What’s behind the Hussein? 

Doesn’t mean he is bad or that there is necessarily something that will disqualify him.  The American people can be very tolerant.  We elected Grover Cleveland even though he fathered a child out of wedlock.  But as Rudolph Giuliani can testify, we do want to know everything.  There is no such thing as a private life for a public person, at least the premier public person in our society, our president.  We want to know.  And that does not make us voyeurs or bad people or judgmental or racist.  It makes us smart.

Looking good, sounding good, is not good enough for a marriage partner or a business partner and it should not be enough for a president.  How can newspapers, who haven’t even completed their Obama bios, now endorse him?  What is going on here?  Why should the Clinton’s be assigned to do what good journalists should be doing?  Why should we expect the Clinton opposition research team vet Obama for the nation?

When we learned that Mel Gibson’s father was a Holocaust denier it put a whole new wrinkle on the production of The Passion.  It didn’t mean we wouldn’t go see it or that we don’t like his movies. The Patriot was amazing.  But it was instructive to know.  So what does Obama’s father have to say about life and Islam and the world?  And what does his stepfather think? What do his cousins think?  What do his friends from Indonesia think? What are we afraid to hear?  Why should we wait and hear it after it’s too late and he is the president?  Why not now?  Doesn’t mean we won’t vote for him.  Just means we want to know. 

What did Michelle Obama mean when she said she is proud of America for the first time, seeing people respond to her husband’s campaign? Was she not proud of America when black and white firefighters raced up those stairs of the world trade towers, trying to help people, dying to save others?  Was she not proud of America when the passengers of the flight 93 rushed the cockpit and stopped the terrorists from attacking the Capitol and killing duly elected members of congress?

What does Obama’s pastor think?  Honoring Louis Farrakhan?  And if Obama does not agree with what many see as the anti-white rhetoric of his church, why does he go there?  We would not feel comfortable with a candidate belonging to a country club that discriminated against Jews or Blacks.

We know everything about the Clinton’s, even things we want to forget.  And we know more about John McCain after his imprisonment and torture in Vietnam that we have ever known about the character of any candidate for president, including Washington. So what is so political incorrect about knowing a little bit about Barack Hussein Obama?  Would it hurt to know a little bit more before the coronation?


Published by Doug Wead

Doug Wead is a New York Times bestselling author whose latest book, Game of Thorns, is about the Trump-Clinton 2016 election. He served as an adviser to two American presidents and was a special assistant to the president in the George H.W. Bush White House.

11 thoughts on “The Problem With Obama

  1. At least on the matter of profile, Obama has been thoroughly forthright. Tax returns released. Two memoirs. Countless newspaper bios, though you claim that some amount haven’t finished them, yet.

    What more is there to know? What don’t we know about Barack Obama, other than what he would do in hypothetical situations we can’t even predict yet?

    How much of an influence can his father have had, a man who had nothing to do with him growing up? Or his stepfather? Or his friends from Indonesia who were elementary schoolers at the same time that Barack was an elementary schooler?

    If the youngest years of youth matter that much, I’d question the character of a man who, until shot down for what was not the first time, was every bit the fortunate son as you could imagine. That man’s name is John McCain.

    If it were a matter of character only, I’d vote for Obama over McCain any day. McCain nor either Clinton can’t win that argument. They know it and, until the “going back on campaign funding promise” issue, I’m not sure they had even tried.

    The only example you provide of something we don’t know is simply the matter of his choice of church. My money is on “pandering to his constituency,” to use a phrase I don’t care to dress up.

    He’s a politician. I’ll accept that much. Clinton is guilty of far worse, and McCain is still only marginally behind Obama on matters of character.

  2. eyeingtenure:

    Hypothetical situations as President. I believe the Presidency is a bit like one big hypothetical situation. It sounds as if we shouldn’t ask any questions of someone running for office.

    I was the athletic director for a small club in my hometown. I was on my high school student council and lead a mission trip a few years ago. Maybe I’m qualified to run for President.

    So he is raised by two fathers of the Muslim decent. He takes his oath of office on the Koran, refused to face the flag during the national anthem and won’t wear a pin to honor the troops. His wife is proud to be an American for the first time in her life- and the media gives them a pass on the whole deal.

    Mike Huckabee had a bookshelf in a Christmas ad and he’s violated the will of the people and the separation of church and state.

    I’m not saying that being a Muslim, a secular humanist or a unpatriotic guy disqualifies you for the Presidency. Wait a minute- that’s exactly what I’m saying and I’m not ashamed to say it. If the press we’re talking about these things there is no way he would have a chance at the Presidency.

    Rush Limbaugh (not my favorite guy- but he’s funny and right a lot of issues) had a great parody on his show today.

    Mr. Snerdley (his sidekick wingman- who happens to be a black guy) was Rush’s “Certified Black Enough to Criticize Obama” commentator today.
    This was not only funny but so true of the treatment of Barrack Hussein Obama.

  3. When I worked in the White House, 1988-91, I had to provide the FBI with the names of hundreds of friends and each of them was quized and asked to name other “Doug Wead friends” which widened the circle and guranteed any enemies would be included as well. Of course, I had to detail any drug use. In fact, Mr. Obama would not have even been allowed to serve on the staff then because of his acknowledged past cocaine use. Just an FYI. That was the rule back then. fair or not.

    And what was very challenging, I had to come up with the name of someone who lived on the same block with me for every year of my life. LOL. I was sure that I could not do that but the FBI agent said, “Just try, you’ll be surprised.” And sure enough, eventually, with help from old friends and family and other sources I completed the task.

    So sure, if security will demand such detail from the people who will work in the Obama White House, why shouldn’t we voters know such details for the person running the White House?

    I am not saying that his life or record will be worse than the Clintons or McCains, just that we ought to know what it is. Nor do I think that what some of his friends or relatives think or say should be deal breakers. I just want to know. I know about Tony Rodham and Roger Clinton. Why not a little about Mr. Obama’s family?

  4. Barack Obama did not take the oath on the Koran; let’s get that straight right away. Obama is as Christian as any other average politician as the last century. That is, he at least claims to believe this church stuff.

    Unlike as you suggest, these discussions are not, a priori, bad to have. They will happen because this whole thing is new. The idea of a black man credibly running for president is novel. The news writes news, strictly speaking, because these stories are new. The press will talk about these things because talking is all that the press does.

    The idea of a woman credibly running for president is novel. Let the boomer pundits have their criticism and analysis — the biases against race and gender are weaker in today’s America than any other country in the history of ever, and they’re getting even weaker.

    “Talking about these things” is what allows us as a nation to get beyond our prejudices. Talking doesn’t work in all places — Iraq has sectarian violence, and they know what the other side is all about — but it does work here.

    We should ask questions of Obama. It’s just that these questions don’t help us. They’re good questions, to be sure, but most of those that can be answered have already been answered.

  5. Mr. Wead: Again, Obama’s personal history and his family history has been detailed rather extensively, and in my view easily as much as any other candidate. Questions have been answered in one memoir even titled, “Dreams from My Father.”

    As he’s a U.S. senator and likely presidential nominee, I’d be surprised if the FBI — which does not issue detailed press releases, unfortunately — has not already grilled Obama and his college friends and his elementary school friends and his family pretty extensively.

    To reiterate: I do agree that questions should be answered, but answers to most of those questions are already out there. Considering that there is a wealth of information about Obama in the media, it’s a shame that I’ve found most of my information at Snopes.

  6. This post turned out to have great timing with McCain’s latest antics in regard to Obama’s middle name.

    Apologizing to Obama on behalf of Bill Cunninghams comments in Ohio was quite surprising. I don’t know much about political campaigning but why would McCain be more concerned with appeasing moderates and independants instead of solidifying his base?

    Who would have thought the use of someones middle name could be so offensive and intolerant. My wife says mine occasionally and I use the middle names of each of my children on a daily basis. I’d better change my ways.

    Wonder how this political correctness McCain is displaying will play out in Texas? I’ve been there twice and I fell in love with the independant streak of Texans and the disdain for political correctness in the lonestar state.

  7. Obama is as Christian as any other politician in the last century. I don’t know what that means and if it is true where that takes us. If he is just as Christian, I guess for me to play devils advocate- you’re saying that it matters that he is as Christian as any other candidate. I wouldn’t think such a thing would matter to you.

    Obama’s faith is between he and God. I’m not going to be presumptious and say he is or isn’t an authentic Christian. I have read a few NY Times articles about the hodgepodge of faith he grew up with and the United Church of Christ is about as liberal a faction as I’ve read about. Preface “I”. When Christian churches start borrowing from other world religions to make up their theology that gets a little dangerous. Most world religions are inclusive. One can’t believe the christian bible to be truth and the Muslim Koran. Their claims to salvation or heaven are inclusive. If one is right the other is wrong and vice versa. Let me say that we can borrow tremendous principles from other faiths, but not doctrine.

    I’m not sure what this has to do with Obama eluding the media, but I think it’s important to know what Obama believes, because his beliefs will shape his policy and his governance.

    I apologize for my error in regards to Obama swearing in on the Koran. I didn’t find anything that said he emphatically was sworn in on the bible, but I did see that the Obama rumor circulation was started by the Clinton camp earlier this year. The irony of this is that the media has been so cautious to vett Obama that I didn’t catch this in the news, the print or the blogs. I take it my other 4 points were correct since no one has refuted them.

  8. My last post should read Most world religions are exclusive and their claims are exclusive not inclusive.

    It pays to proofread when you post, but what fund would that be.

  9. It’s funny how you wrote this and then two days later it became a national story. Luck or good timing?

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