Stanley Kurtz, NRO has another blockbuster report, (previously on the Rev. Wright) this time on Acorn and Barack Obama. For background on Acorn, Kurtz cites Sol Stern's 2003 piece in City Journal. They first drew my notice when they were harassing the University of Chicago hospitals.
Kurtz explores in depth Barack Obama's community organizing experience with Acorn--read this as organizing demonstrations--useful stuff, huh--really improves people's lives. No, the actual work is left to others, who actually care for indigent sick people, for example. Probably good training for a political campaign, though. Note this is Obama's sole claim to experience for the presidency, other than his juiced up state-legislative record for a year in Springfield , oh and his degree in international relations.
Radical Acorn, starting out against welfare reform with loony LaRouche-like beliefs, now mostly under the radar in urban America. Read it all, but here a few excerpts:
Acorn’s new goals are municipal “living wage” laws targeting “big-box” stores like Wal-Mart, rolling back welfare reform, and regulating banks — efforts styled as combating “predatory lending.” Unfortunately, instead of helping workers, Acorn’s living-wage campaigns drive businesses out of the very neighborhoods where jobs are needed most. Acorn’s opposition to welfare reform only threatens to worsen the self-reinforcing cycle of urban poverty and family breakdown. Perhaps most mischievously, says Stern, Acorn uses banking regulations to pressure financial institutions into massive “donations” that it uses to finance supposedly non-partisan voter turn-out drives.Yes, they've implemented this strategy in Chicago, with their attacks on Wal-Mart, forcing it out of the city limits with the consequent job loss, to the point that the city relaxed its stance. But then the unions targeted those alderman who voted for Wal-Mart and brought down many in the next election. Acorn Chicago's former president, Ted Thomas, has been alderman for some time. And of course, the banks have been pushed into making a lot of iffy home loans, courtesy of Acorn, part of the housing bubble bursting that we see now. Kurtz on their tactics:
Chicago is home to one of its strongest chapters, and Acorn has burst into a closed city council meeting there. Acorn protestors in Baltimore disrupted a bankers’ dinner and sent four busloads of profanity-screaming protestors against the mayor’s home, terrifying his wife and kids. Even a Baltimore city council member who generally supports Acorn said their intimidation tactics had crossed the line.Hmm, don't think Mayor Daley would like that Barack. Storming the City Council was bad enough. (This happened when Obama was no longer formally with Acorn.) Kurtz:
On July 31, 1997, six people were arrested as 200 Acorn protesters tried to storm the Chicago City Council session. According to the Chicago Daily Herald, Acorn demonstrators pushed over the metal detector and table used to screen visitors, backed police against the doors to the council chamber, and blocked late-arriving aldermen and city staff from entering the session.And this Baltimore connection rings a bell. From one of my Obama-Che posts, back in February:
Reading the Herald article, you might think Acorn’s demonstrators had simply lost patience after being denied entry to the gallery at a packed meeting. Yet the full story points in a different direction. This was not an overreaction by frustrated followers who couldn’t get into a meeting (there were plenty of protestors already in the gallery), but almost certainly a deliberate bit of what radicals call “direct action,” orchestrated by Acorn’s Madeleine Talbot. As Talbot was led away handcuffed, charged with mob action and disorderly conduct, she explicitly justified her actions in storming the meeting. This was the woman who first drew Obama into his alliance with Acorn, and whose staff Obama helped train.
Obama endorsed in 1996 by the DSA: Democrat Socialists of America. He was also endorsed by the far left New Party:Kurtz raises questions about the legality of Obama's funding his political ally Acorn through the Woods Fund and Joyce Foundation. (NY Times article, my post, and WSJ story, my post.) Then, of course, there's the Acorn vote fraud, while posing as a "non-partisan" entity. Kind of like the post-partisan poseur and peddler of hate/hope, Barack Obama, whom they have endorsed.What was the New Party?Strong in the mid to late '90s the New Party was an electoral alliance dedicated to electing leftist candidates to office-often through the Democratic Party.As far as Obama and ACORN we know about that already.
Two organisations formed the backbone of the New Party-the Democratic Socialists of America and the US's largest radical organisation, Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN)
UPDATE: Baltimore Communists for Obama.
Will Acorn fell the Obama tree? One more radical tie.
UPDATE: Michelle Malkin: Greatest Hits: All of Barack Obama's Men of Bad Faith. Oh yes, then there's Obama's eminence grise, George Soros, who also funds Acorn. LGF.
UPDATE: James Taranto, WSJ, picks up on the Rev. Pfleger fiasco at Obama's church, with a few pungent comments, and notes the earmarks Obama funneled to Pfleger's own church, which The Swamp reiterated yesterday. The Left continues to say this has nothing to do with Barack Obama--yet he sought out the most radical pastors in Chicago to start his political career, openly claiming them as his spiritual mentors. And remember, early on in his presidential run he openly appealed for a faith-based, common good Democrat message. He made faith an issue, and he can't disavow his radical pastors now that it is no longer politically expedient for him.
Michael Kinsley in Time lectures us that we shouldn't link Obama to former radicals and should forgive them. Why? They are unrepentent, haven't served time, and have even been lauded and rewarded by their leftie friends at universities--they have been sought out by one young professor Barack Obama to fund his fledgling political career and give him credibility as one of them. And poor Kinsley imagines himself the real victim. He was a peaceful protester. But people did die Michael, people were injured and paralyzed by their group-- and attempted murder on the family of a judge. If John McCain were connected to the Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh, would Kinsley give him a pass? We are to forget about Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn.
If this was just one association or a one time occurrence with Barack Obama maybe Kinsley would have a point--but this is not the case. Incredibly, Kinsley also defends Obama as part of the business as usual Chicago machine culture. But as I've said before, for someone so cautious he took care to repeatedly vote present in the Illinois legislature, who is running for president in part because he isn't bogged down by the long legislative records that helped sink John Kerry and Al Gore, Barack Obama has an astonishing number of radical associations we keep learning more and more about. This is disturbing stuff. And the MSM keeps trying to bury it, or sanitize it, or excuse it.
UPDATE: More from Dan Riehl on Acorn, Obama, Chicago politics.