Like Father(s), Like Son?
Over the weekend I had the opportunity to see Dinesh D’Souza’s movie 2016: Obama’s America for the second time. I must say I like this film. It is based on 2 books authored by D’Souza in which he makes the case that Barack Obama’s world view and approach to governing is grounded in anti-Colonialism. In effect, the President wants to see a reduced role for Western civilization (specifically the United States) in world affairs while, simultaneously, strip wealthy countries of their prosperity and redistribute it to third-world nations who have been exploited by their former occupiers.
Dinesh D’Souza draws on a variety of sources to make his case. He interviews members of Obama’s family, friends of his father and demonstrates the kind of people who mentored Barack Obama in his college days. His mother, Ann Dunham, was the one who emphasized the goodness of Barack, Sr. and demonstrated her far-left sympathies by divorcing an Indonesian man named Lolo Seotoro who decided he would leave his job as a government relations officer for Union Oil Company and an enlist in his country’s military to fight Communist rebels. Barack’s father, D’Souza claims, is the most influential figure in his life thanks to the way the mother built him up and can be seen as such in Barack Obama’s own book Dreams from My Father. Barack, Sr. was a non-practicing Muslim-turned-atheist who became educated overseas. Initially, the President’s father did have classical liberal sympathies but somehow changed as indicated by some of his friends that were interviewed. During his travels, Barack, Sr. irresponsibly married a number of women and fathered numerous children (including Barack, Jr.). Barack, Sr.’s recklessness not only included womanizing but also abusing alcohol and, consequently, Barack Obama’s father met his untimely demise in a car accident in Nairobi, Kenya in 1982.
The people who played a large role in shaping the President’s world view (i.e. Barack Obama’s Founding Fathers) were hardcore leftists and anti-Semites such as Frank Marshall-Davis, William Ayres, Jeremiah Wright, and Edward Said. Each of the men who influenced Obama’s life condemned the United States and the prospertiy we enjoy and it should be no surprise that Barack Obama is implementing the policies he has. D’Souza makes a very thoughtful critique of Barack Obama effectvely attempting to present an intellectual profile of him in order to make sense of what the President thinks and why.
2016, however, should not be taken entirely as Gospel. In my review of some of the things brought up, I did discover some issues raised that were incorrect. For example, D’Souza alleges that Obama returned the bust of Winston Churchill to England since Churchil was the person who put down the Mau-Mau uprising in Kenya and represented British colonialism. In fact, the Churchill bust was on loan from England and was to be returned to Great Britain before the President took office. A White House spokesperson states another bust of Churchil is in Obama’s private residence.
In another segment, D’Souza accuses President Obama of wanting to return control of the Falkland Islands to Argentinia from Great Britian. However, back in April the U.S. nixed the idea by refusing to approve a resolution at a Summit of the Americas conference declaring the Falkland Islands Argentinian territory. The movie further alleges that Obama has done nothing significant to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear arms. While the President does oppose an interm military strike against the country, the U.S. spearheaded a U.N. resolution imposing strong sanctions against Iran, and U.S. Naval forces were recently increased in the Persian Gulf. Also, three computer viruses were directed at Iran in which all three actions are geared at disrupting their nuclear ambitions or being a buffer against the Islamist regime’s influence. Obama’s low opinion of Western civilization (including Jews) is further evidenced by his conduct toward Israel along with his courting Islamist regimes such as Saudi Arabia, Hamas, and Egypt’s newly elected President who is a member of the Nazi-sympathizing Muslim Brotherhood.
Despite the movie’s flaws, I think D’Souza makes a very strong case as to why Obama is conducting himself the way he is. By understanding what influences Barack Obama’s world view it is small wonder that the U.S. economy is in such a downward spiral. Not only have the Fed’s recent and past constant credit expansions along with new economic laws passed by Congress resulted in the near stagnation we experience, but Obama has (directly or indirectly) redistributed American wealth from the United States to developing third world nations. He not only authorizes the payout of money to Islamist organziations and regimes, he also has spearheaded spending billions of dollars to fund companies (like Solyndra) geared toward renewable energy that eventually went bankrupt. The new offshore oil drilling rules he pushed for has made the process to obtain drilling permits very cumbersome. As a result of this and his moratorium(s), U.S. oil companies are looking to drill offshore in places other than the Gulf of Mexico. His quasi-nationalization of the healthcare and automobile sectors of the U.S. economy is an extension of his low opinion of capitalism too.
In her book Philosophy: Who Needs It, Ayn Rand outlines the power of philosophy by showing its influence in uncommon places. Ms. Rand points out in her essay Egalitarianism and Inflation:
There is only one institution that can arrogate to itself the power legally to trade by means of rubber checks: the government. And it is the only institution that can mortgage your future without your knowledge or consent: government securities (and paper money) are promissory notes on future tax receipts, i.e., on your future production.
She pointed out many times in her speeches and writings that if one wants to understand the actions of someone, you need look no further than the philosophy they subscribe to. In the case of Barack Obama, it is a disdain for American prosperity and the ability to flourish. The left looks to drag down America and other Westernized countries and pragmatically allies themselves with like-minded people (such as Islamists) who will help them achieve their goal naively thinking they will be the remnant to restore society to their liking. It does not matter that the ones who helped them will also clamor for power up to and including going to war against their leftist friends which will lead to total and complete civil unrest.
In a recent commentary, Dinesh D’Souza discusses how he ended up becoming the brother of Barack Obama’s half-brother George who was also interviewed in 2016. George believes that it is Kenya (and not the West’s fault) that the country is poor. George’s son was in need of an expensive medical treatment due to a serious illness he contracted and asked D’Souza for money to pay for it. Upon confirming George’s story was true, D’Souza wired George a thousand dollars. When asked as to why George didn’t call Barack, essentially, George stated Barack doesn’t talk to him anymore.
In his book, Barack Obama also talks about a lunch he had in China with his half-brother Mark who is a successful physicist and works abroad. The two had, according to Mark, an intense and overwhelming meeting. As it turns out, Mark authored a book based on his experiences growing up with Barack, Sr. whose story revoled around a Jewish mother and an abusive father. Mark has disclosed in interviews that Barack, Sr. was an abusive man and I am sure the discussion the two men had in China centered around just that. Barack did not like the fact that Mark openly told the truth about their father and he would not return to Kenya. Barack Obama continuously demonstrates an altruistic morality and chooses to live in a fantasy land where his father is one he has chosen to emulate and will cut off relations with anyone who does not share his world view or reveals the truth about his ideal man.
The philosophical lines are clearly drawn this election with Mitt Romney representing the former private sector executive who worked extremely hard to become the accomplished man that he is. Obama, on the other hand, represents the Harvard and Columbia-educated college law professor who not only never worked a day in his life and also subscribes to a quasi-Marxist philosophy seeking to damn the very civilization that enabled his mobility in order to reward his supporters who leach off the productive. D’Souza points out in his film the learning institutions where Obama let his subconscious (paraphrasing from Ms. Rand) accumulate a junk heap of unwarranted conclusions, false generalizations, undefined contradictions, undigested slogans, unidentified wishes, doubts and fears, thrown together by chance, and integrated by his subconscious into a kind of mongrel philosophy and fused into a single, solid weight: self-doubt, like a ball and chain in the place where his mind’s wings should have grown.
Despite 2016‘s flaws, Dinesh D’Souza has certainly hit the nail on the head in terms of Obama’s base philosophy and is a testament to the wisdom of Ayn Rand demonstrating the importance of philosophy and how it can affect or influence one’s activities. While it is not my intent to slander the President, however, I urge you to see the other side of the coin and am not specifically refering to voting for the Republican Party. Restoring America to the greatest country on Earth is a priority and all Americans have an obligation to open their eyes by understanding the threat and impact that President Obama’s beliefs and actions are having which are the result of the men who planted the intellectual seeds in the President’s mind. That’s what D’Souza’s movie does a very good job of pointing out.