Jeremiah Wright

CNN Headline: “Is Obama the ‘Wrong’ Kind of Christian?”

For years CNN was my only news source.  Then they became “Fox News Lite” and I was done with them.  This CNN headline only reinforces my decision to drop them completely.  Although the article turns out to be positive, the connotation, in my opinion, appears to be aimed at some of the more fact challenged folks who hear this stuff all day on Fox News.

Why the provocative headline?

Daily Kos

WTF??

Yes, that’s the headline on CNN right now.  However, the preview of the article states:

He’s been called the anti-Christ. But Obama is a “different” kind of Christian, progressives say — one who’s challenging the religious right’s grip on the national stage.

Not exactly what the headline connotes, is it?  And the article is actually positive for Obama — about how his “progressive” faith is challenging the dominance of the religious right in national discourse.  For example, though it mentions Rev. Wright, it states that Obama’s real inspiration is Martin Luther King.

But the casual reader who stops by the website (I was only there to find out what’s going on with Iran — first — talks, then denial, then the NYT headline that there are talks. CNN had nothing!*) sees the headline about Obama being the “Wrong Kind of Christian” and probably won’t read the article.

You would think the headline could be “Obama — a Different Kind of Christian” or “Obama’s Faith — a challenge to the religious right’s brand of Christianity.”  And no, putting “wrong” in quotes doesn’t help that headline.

Nearly two weeks before the election that’s irresponsible at best.

UPDATE:  Let them know.

*What is going on?

 

The GOP’s “Played-Out” Race Card

I have to say, Melissa Harris Perry is spot on with her piece in The Nation‘s “Sister Citizen” column.

The Nation

Conservative strategists have been toying with how to use race against President Obama in this year’s election. Since Obama’s May 9 announcement supporting same-sex marriage, some Republicans have been salivating about the delicious possibility of dampening black voters’ enthusiasm for the president by casting him as out of touch with their religious sentiments. Then the leaked Joe Ricketts plan, “The Defeat of Barack Hussein Obama,” revealed GOP strategists’ idea of employing “an extremely literate conservative African-American” to discredit Obama among white voters by reminding them of his link with the Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Thus, the black church would be both a wedge to weaken black support and a tool to discourage white supporters.

I’m a little surprised to find conservatives offering such clumsy and stale campaign game plans. They seem intent on repeating the strategic mistake made by Illinois Republicans nearly a decade ago—a mistake largely responsible for making possible the swift ascendance of Barack Obama from state senator to president.

In 2004 Obama won the Democratic primary for Illinois’s open Senate seat in a crowded field of contenders. His strongest competitors were well financed and backed by the powerful Daley machine and by many prominent African-American elected officials and religious leaders from Chicago.

Although Obama was well liked by his constituents in Illinois’s 13th Congressional District, he had been beaten badly in 2000 when he challenged incumbent Bobby Rush in a primary for the state’s predominantly black 1st District. Against Rush, Obama faced serious racial credibility problems. His connections to the South Side were concentrated in Hyde Park, known for its relative whiteness compared with the rest of the neighborhood. He was not a particularly fiery public speaker and lacked access to the racialized cultural narrative of defiance that Rush used throughout his career.

Continues here…

Palin advises Romney: ‘Go rogue’ and use Rev. Wright to attack Obama

Sarah Palin speaks to Fox News

She’s baaack and as clueless as ever!

The Raw Story

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin says presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney should “go rogue” and attack President Barack Obama for his former associations with Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Marxists and radicals.

During an interview on Fox News on Monday, host Sean Hannity told Palin that he thought the president’s former pastor was “relevant” even though Romney had repudiated a proposal to use Wright in attack ads.

The half-term Alaska governor replied: “I thought so in 2008 and that’s why I went rogue, if you will, and disagreed with some of John McCain’s advisers when they said, no, a lot of these issues like past associations and Rev. Wright and Bill Ayers and those that helped shape Obama’s world view needed to be off the table and not discussed. I disagreed then, I disagree now.”

“Barack Obama in 2008 was an empty vessel,” she continued. “The public did not know who or what filled this vessel in order to create what has become a very confused and mission and visionless leader for our country. Well, now it’s not too late to change course and this next go around understand what has filled up that vessel. Who are these people? Who are the radicals, the Marxist professors that he said he would hang out with, some of his friends and associations.”

Hannity noted that Democrats and the media were willing to bring up Romney’s alleged 1965 gay bullying incident, putting a dog on his car roof, the so-called war on women and “throwing granny over the cliff” by privatizing Medicare — but Republicans were refusing employ the same type of tactics.

“Amen, brother,” Palin agreed. “A one-sided, cease-fire call is not something to agree to. Some of these GOP operatives, Sean, they seem to have the fighting instinct of [Sesame Street character] Mr. Snuffleupagus. And if you remember him, he would hide, he would back down, he would run the other direction.”

“It’s disgusting, the double standard,” she added. “And I’m really tired of, again, too many in the GOP establishment just kind of kowtowing to what the left will dictate in terms of how this election is going to go.”

Palin also reiterated her advice that Romney pick tea party favorite Rep. Allen West (R-FL) as his vice presidential running mate.

“I love people who understand the Constitution and will fight tooth and nail and are willing to put their lives and their families lives on the line to defend our republic. That is who I want to see as that teammate for the GOP nominee.”

Video…

RNC Chairman Says Republican Proposal For $10 Million Of Race-Baiting Anti-Obama Attack Ads Is Obama’s Fault

 

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus

This, from the first GOP operative that says there’s no GOP “war on women”…

Think Progress

In an interview on CNN’s State of the Union with Candy Crowley this morning, host Crowley asked RNC Chairman Reince Priebus about a widely-denounced proposal for a pro-Mitt Romney outside group to run millions of dollars in race-baiting attack ads highlighting controversial statement’s by President Obama’s former pastor.

Rather than denounce the proposal or the dangers of having a small group of rich outside donors and corporations free to spend as much as they want to influence elections, Priebus blamed Obama.

After lamenting that Romney and his party had to spend a day and a half dealing with the fallout from the Super PAC proposal, Priebus told Crowley:

I know how it works. It’s the Democrats and Barack Obama that want the story out there. He wants the story to play out in the media, because for every day that [Obama adviser] David Axelrod and this President don’t have to talk about their broken promises when it comes to jobs, the debt, and the deficit — the more time they can talk about hypotheticals that may or may not come true — is a day they want to win on. So, look, this president’s got a bigger problem and his problem is no matter what he puts out there, no matter what distractions he puts out there, he can’t change the truth and escape the reality of where we are in this American economy. And it’s no good.

Watch the video:

It was, of course, actually a Republican strategist with a long history of race-baiting ads who proposed these attack ads for a Super PAC led by a billionaire determined to defeat President Obama’s re-election.

And it was Mitt Romney who, back in February, made similar attacks on President Obama saying: “I don’t know what is worse, him listening to Rev. Wright or him saying that we must be a less Christian nation.” When asked this week about the comments, Romney told reporters“I’m not familiar precisely with exactly what I said, but I stand by what I said, whatever it was.” This, of course, the same Romney who repudiated the Super PAC proposal as “character assassination.”

Republicans Appear Desperate By Coming Out With Conspiracies About Obama

This is the thing:

1)   The more the opposition threatens to or in fact actually says things about the POTUS on a personal basis, the more many minorities of all stripes will rally around him at the polls.

2)   They aren’t talking about his policies, they’re attacking him personally and that would in fact be their “Waterloo”.

I’ve referenced “Obama Derangement Syndrome” in previous posts.  ODS is essentially their problem.

3)   Make no mistake about it, although, these guys aren’t going away.  They have six months to execute their plans to make President Obama a “one term president”.

Here’s a small sampling:   

Drudge Goes Birther

Republican Congressman Goes Birther: Obama Is ‘Just Not An American’

New Super PAC Plans to Spend $10 Million to Link Obama to Jeremiah Wright

Romney attacked Obama for his association with Jeremiah Wright in February.

The Defeat Of Barack Hussein Obama–Politics Of Destruction Must 

The Obama Hate Machine: The Lies, Distortions, Personal Attacks 

Strategist Behind Proposed Reverend Wright Attack Ad Has Long History Of Race-Baiting

G.O.P. ‘Super PAC’ Weighs Hard-Line Attack on Obama

A campaign playbook by high-profile Republican strategists.

The stench of the Republican attack machine is getting stronger by the day…

The New York Times

A group of high-profile Republican strategists is working with a conservative billionaire on a proposal to mount one of the most provocative campaigns of the “super PAC” era and attackPresident Obama in ways that Republicans have so far shied away from.

Timed to upend the Democratic National Convention in September, the plan would “do exactly what John McCain would not let us do,” the strategists wrote.

The plan, which is awaiting approval, calls for running commercials linking Mr. Obama to incendiary comments by his former spiritual adviser, the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr., whose race-related sermons made him a highly charged figure in the 2008 campaign.

“The world is about to see Jeremiah Wright and understand his influence on Barack Obama for the first time in a big, attention-arresting way,” says the proposal, which was overseen by Fred Davis and commissioned by Joe Ricketts, the founder of the brokerage firm TD Ameritrade. Mr. Ricketts is increasingly putting his fortune to work in conservative politics.

The $10 million plan, one of several being studied by Mr. Ricketts, includes preparations for how to respond to the charges of race-baiting it envisions if it highlights Mr. Obama’s former ties to Mr. Wright, who espouses what is known as “black liberation theology.”

The group suggested hiring as a spokesman an “extremely literate conservative African-American” who can argue that Mr. Obama misled the nation by presenting himself as what the proposal calls a “metrosexual, black Abe Lincoln.”

A copy of a detailed advertising plan was obtained by The New York Times through a person not connected to the proposal who was alarmed by its tone. It is titled “The Defeat of Barack Hussein Obama: The Ricketts Plan to End His Spending for Good.”

The proposal was presented last week in Chicago to associates and family members of Mr. Ricketts, who is also the patriarch of the family that owns the Chicago Cubs.

Brian Baker, president and general counsel of a super PAC called the Ending Spending Action Fund, said Mr. Ricketts had studied several advertising proposals in recent months and had not signed off on a specific approach to taking on Mr. Obama.

Continue reading here…

UPDATE:

Joe Ricketts, the TD Ameritrade founder for whom this proposal is named, has just come out with a statement that he will not use Jeremiah Wright to attack President Obama.

Bachmann Predicted The World Would End In 2006: ‘We Are In The Last Days’

It seems the crazy has encapsulated Michelle Bachmann for years!

Think Progress

As GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann (R-MN) surges in the polls, more information is coming to light about her past that reveal the depths of her political and religious extremism. The Bachmanns’ counseling clinic practices discredited and damagingex-gay therapy to “cure” homosexuality.

Slate’s Dave Weigel has reported an audio recording of Bachmann praying for the notoriously anti-gay ministryYou Can Run But You Can’t Hide, run by the radical preacher Bradlee Dean. Bachmann offered the prayer in 2006 (though the recording was uploaded in 2008). In it, Bachmann predicts, “We are in the last days,” and says, “The harvest is at hand” — a Biblical allusion to the Rapture when some believe God will take saved Christians from the earth and leave the non-believers to face several years of torment and tribulation before the second coming of Christ:

BACHMANN: Lord, the day is at hand. We are in the last days. You are a Jehovah God. We know that the times are in your hands. And we give them to you…The day is at hand, Lord, when your return will come nigh. Nothing is more important than bringing sheep into the fold. Than bringing new life into the kingdom…You have weeded that garden. The harvest is at hand.

Listen here:   

As Weigel noted, it’s not terribly surprising that Bachmann is among those evangelical Christians who believe the end of the world is imminent. But it’s still disconcerting that someone campaigning to lead America into the future believes that its days are numbered and millions of its citizens are doomed. Bachmann has toned down her religious rhetoric considerably since hitting the campaign trail.

Also jarring is Bachmann’s belief that “nothing is more important than” converting people before the world ends. As she weighs in on critical debates like whether or not to let the U.S. default on its obligations, it’s troubling that Bachmann is rooting for the apocalypse.

During the prayer session Bachmann asked God to expand the anti-gay ministry of Bradlee Dean. Dean has been described as “Bachmann’s Jeremiah Wright” since his radical statements pose a political problem for the candidate. Dean has repeatedly called for gays and lesbians to be put in prison and has said executing gays is “moral.” He also directs his invective at Muslims and Democrats.

Sarah Palin Slams Michelle Obama in Racially Charged Passage From New Book

The Huffington Post – Geoffrey Dunn

In passages leaked from her forthcoming book America by Heart, Sarah Palin — the erstwhile quitter governor of Alaska, who now, by all indications, fancies herself as President of the United States — has taken another cheap shot at First Lady Michelle Obama.

In a passage on perceptions of racial inequality in the United States, Palin slams President Barack Obama, who, she asserts, “seems to believe” that “America — at least America as it currently exists — is a fundamentally unjust and unequal country.”

And then she goes after Michelle Obama:

Certainly his wife expressed this view when she said during the 2008 campaign that she had never felt proud of her country until her husband started winning elections. In retrospect, I guess this shouldn’t surprise us, since both of them spent almost two decades in the pews of the Reverend Jeremiah Wright’s church listening to his rants against America and white people.

The passage — coming on page 26 in a chapter entitled “We, the People” — echoes remarks made by Palin on the eve of the midterm elections, at a rally in San Jose, California, at which point she mocked remarks made by Michelle Obama during the 2008 campaign: “You know, when I hear people say, or had said during the campaign that they’ve never been proud of America,” Palin spat out. “Haven’t they met anybody in uniform yet? I get tears in my eyes when I see that young man, that young woman, walking through the airport in uniform…you too… so proud to be American.”

In fact, Michelle Obama’s remarks were made (in Madison, Wisconsin, during the 2008 campaign) in a context of Americans being “unified around some basic common issues”:

What we have learned over this year is that hope is making a comeback. It is making a comeback. And let me tell you something–for the first time in my adult lifetime, I am really proud of my country. And not just because Barack has done well, but because I think people are hungry for change. And I have been desperate to see our country moving in that direction, and just not feeling so alone in my frustration and disappointment. I’ve seen people who are hungry to be unified around some basic common issues, and it’s made me proud.

Afterwards, the First Lady further clarified her remarks by noting that she was referencing the “record number” of young voters participating in the political process in the 2008 campaign:

For the first time in my lifetime, I am seeing people rolling up their sleeves in way that I haven’t seen and really trying to figure this out, and that’s the source of pride I was talking about.

The passages from Palin’s latest book first appeared at Palingates, where several other pages from American by Heart have also been posted. Palin followed up her comments about Michelle Obama by throwing an elbow at U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, also focusing on racial overtones:

It also makes sense, then, that the man President Obama made his attorney general, Eric Holder, would call us a “nation of cowards” for failing to come to grips with what he described as the persistence of racism.

 

Jeremiah Wright Criticizes Those Who Think Obama Is Muslim

Huffington Post

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The Rev. Jeremiah Wright, President Barack Obama’s controversial former pastor, accused people who wrongly believe Obama is Muslim of catering to political enemies during a fiery speech Sunday in Arkansas.

In his sermon at New Millennium Church in Little Rock, Wright criticized supporters of the Iraq war and defended former state Court of Appeals Judge Wendell Griffen for speaking out against it. Griffen serves as the church’s pastor.

Wright’s only reference to Obama came when he compared Griffen’s opponents to those who incorrectly think Obama is Muslim. The president, whose full name is Barack Hussein Obama, is Christian.

“Go after the military mindset … and the enemy will come after you with everything,” Wright told the packed church.

“He will surround you with sycophants who will criticize you and ostracize you and put you beyond the pale of hope and say ‘you ain’t really a Baptist’ and say ‘the president ain’t really a Christian, he’s a Muslim. There ain’t no American Christian with a name like Barack Hussein,'” he added.

A poll released this month found that nearly one in five people, or 18 percent, said they thought Obama was Muslim, up from the 11 percent in March 2009. The proportion who correctly said he was Christian was 34 percent, down from 48 percent in March of last year. The poll, conducted by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center and its affiliated Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, surveyed 3,003 people.   Continue reading…

Rev. Wright: ‘Obama threw me under the bus’

So, here we go again.  AP acquires a letter sent to a charity organization, from Rev. Jeremiah Wright, who says the same things about Obama in a private letter, that he has said in public.  I’m hard-pressed to see how this is news, but I’m compelled to post it because some folks might be interested to know more:

The Washington Post

NEW YORK (AP) _ The Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Barack Obama‘s controversial former pastor, said in a letter obtained by The Associated Press that he is “toxic” to the Obama administration and that the president “threw me under the bus.”

In his strongest language to date about the administration’s 2-year-old rift with the Chicago pastor, Wright told a group raising money for African relief that his pleas to release frozen funds for use in earthquake-ravaged Haiti would likely be ignored.

“No one in the Obama administration will respond to me, listen to me, talk to me or read anything that I write to them. I am ‘toxic’ in terms of the Obama administration,” Wright wrote the president of Africa 6000 International earlier this year.

“I am ‘radioactive,’ Sir. When Obama threw me under the bus, he threw me under the bus literally!” he wrote. “Any advice that I offer is going to be taken as something to be avoided. Please understand that!”

The White House didn’t respond to requests for comment Monday about Wright’s remarks. Several phone messages left by the AP for Wright at the Trinity United Church of Christ, where he is listed as a pastor emeritus, were not returned. Wright’s spokeswoman, his daughter Jeri Wright, did not immediately comment on the substance of the letter.

Then-Sen. Obama cut ties with Wright when his more incendiary remarks became an Internet sensation in the spring of 2008. At a National Press Club appearance in April 2008, he claimed the U.S. government could plant AIDS in the black community, praised Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan and suggested Obama was putting his pastor at arm’s length for political purposes while privately agreeing with him.

Obama denounced Wright as “divisive and destructive” and later cut ties to the pastor altogether and left Wright’s church.

The letter was sent Feb. 18 to Joseph Prischak, the president of Africa 6000 International in Erie, Pa. Wright subsequently agreed to write a letter to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on the group’s behalf to try to get access to millions of dollars.

Wright’s original letter ranting against Obama’s treatment of him surfaced in an appeal filed by federal inmate Arthur Morrison, boxing great Muhammad Ali’s one-time manager, who was convicted of making phone threats.

Charles Lofton, Wright’s executive assistant, told The Associated Press that he faxed a copy of the letter to Morrison’s attorney as requested. A copy of the faxed letter signed by Wright showed that it was sent from the Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago on March 31 to the fax number for Goodwin’s law office in Tulsa, Okla.

Prischak, of Africa 6000 International, is a business partner of Morrison, who has been imprisoned for nearly 18 years after he was convicted of making phone threats between 1989 to 1992 to hospitals where an ex-girlfriend worked.

Prischak told Wright in a Feb. 11 letter that he was seeking the clergyman’s help in reaching out to the U.S. Treasury Department. He said that Uday Hussein, the son of Saddam Hussein, had entrusted 87 million British pounds in 1990 to Morrison and Ali to buy pharmaceuticals, milk and food for the children of Iraq.

Prischak said the money was never spent because Morrison was imprisoned. He sought Wright’s help in lobbying U.S. authorities to permit 25 million British pounds in interest from the money held in an overseas account to be allowed to be sent to faith-based groups for the children of Haiti.