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Direckshun
09-23-2008, 08:06 PM
Everything I've read and heard about today suggests that the McCain campaign is getting ready to launch a Bill Ayers attack on Obama a week or two after the debates. Since this has been brought up so much on Fox News and conservative radio, and because so many of the posters here parrot this information, we really should have a proper discussion on this factoid that creeps into all sorts of the conversations we have here.

Hey, we went through this in the Democratic primary. We knew stuff like this massive, yet featherlight WSJ article (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122212856075765367.html) was coming. The best way, as Campaign 101 tells us, is to address it. Let's air this dirty laundry and expose it for whatever it is: totally legit, or total shit.

I think it's pretty bunk, and I have an entire thread to explain why. Let's keep it clean, children.

Here's some helpful FAQ for somebody who's just running across this issue for the first time:

Who is Bill Ayers?

Who Bill Ayers (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_ayers) is doesn't matter as much as who Bill Ayers was. Back in the 60s and 70s, Ayers was a leading member of a radical anti-war group called the Weathermen. This group was committed to creating disorder, and as part of that group, Ayers contributed to several acts of domestic terrorism, including bombing several public locations, targeting police forces and the FBI. Ayers has since discussed his actions in a book, and in a couple interviews as recent as 2001 said that he didn't regret any of his past actions.

Bill Ayers is currently a professor at the University of Illinois in Chicago, teaching "social justice, urban educational reform, narrative and interpretive research, children in trouble with the law, and related issues."

Obama himself, I should add, was a child when these acts of terrorism occurred. Obama has spoken out against them as "outrageous acts."

What is his relationship to Barack Obama?

Obama has multiple ties (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Obama%E2%80%93Ayers_controversy) to Ayers. Whether these connections are important depends on who you ask.

But let me try to do everything I can to enumerate Obama's connections to Ayers. I'm sure some Republicans and McCain supporters will jump into highlight even more.

Obama served on the Chicago Annenberg Challenge (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicago_Annenberg_Challenge) board that Ayers personally lead. Obama and Ayers have held speeches together. They live in the same neighborhood. Obama has held a campaign event at Ayers' house in 1996. The event was not a fundraiser, but it was nonetheless a campaign event. Ayers has not donated to Obama's Presidential campaign. He did donate $200 to Obama's run for the state senate in the 1990s. Obama and Ayers served together for three years on the board of the Woods Fund of Chicago, an anti-poverty foundation established in 1941. Obama and Ayers are colleagues, but exactly how close they are personally is subject to debate. From what I've read, their personal relationship is nominal, and is strictly limited to professional dealings, but other people obviously see it differently.
So the question to kickstart all of this is "how far does guilt by association extend?"

Should Obama be condemned for Ayers' heinous acts by simply maintaining a professional relationship with him?

To what extant are we to damn Obama for this relationship?

No more sweeping it under the rug. Let's tackle this beast once and for all.

Bootlegged
09-23-2008, 08:13 PM
Seriously - the nominee is

1.) Named Barack Hussein Obama. Come on
2.) A Socialist
3.) A guy that worked for ACORN. Seriously.
4.) Someone his running mate said wasn't ready to be President.
5.) who has his terrorist ties called into question by Hillary Clinton
6.) Possibly not a citizen of this country?
7.) Is corrupt as pointed out by Hillary Clinton
8.) Has no experience as pointed out by Hillary Clinton
9.) Is a chain smoker
10.) Is a coke head
11.) Was a coke dealer


Congratulations - You've nominated this guy - but much worse. But you are SOOOOO PROGESSIVE! YEAH!

http://msnbcmedia1.msn.com/j/msnbc/Components/Photos/070223/070223_alinsky_bcol_2p.standard.jpg

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 08:15 PM
I missed this, and will add it into the OP:

Obama and Ayers served together for three years on the board of the Woods Fund of Chicago, an anti-poverty foundation established in 1941. Obama had joined the nine-member board in 1993, and had attended a dozen of the quarterly meetings together with Ayers in the three years up to 2002, when Obama left his position on the board,[1] which Ayers chaired for two years.[11] Laura S. Washington, chairwoman of the Woods Fund, said the small board had a collegial "friendly but businesslike" atmosphere, and met four times a year for a half-day, mostly to approve grants.[2] The two also appeared together on academic panel discussions, including a 1997 University of Chicago discussion on juvenile justice. They again appeared in 2002 at an academic panel co-sponsored by the Chicago Public Library.[1] One panel discussion in which they both appeared was organized by Obama's wife, Michelle.[12] Ayers donated $200 to Obama's 2001 state senate campaign.[13]

Bootlegged
09-23-2008, 08:18 PM
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Direckshun
09-23-2008, 08:18 PM
Seriously - the nominee is

1.) Named Barack Hussein Obama. Come on
2.) A Socialist
3.) A guy that worked for ACORN. Seriously.
4.) Someone his running mate said wasn't ready to be President.
5.) who has his terrorist ties called into question by Hillary Clinton
6.) Possibly not a citizen of this country?
7.) Is corrupt as pointed out by Hillary Clinton
8.) Has no experience as pointed out by Hillary Clinton
9.) Is a chain smoker
10.) Is a coke head
11.) Was a coke dealer

Congratulations - You've nominated this guy - but much worse. But you are SOOOOO PROGESSIVE! YEAH!

http://msnbcmedia1.msn.com/j/msnbc/Components/Photos/070223/070223_alinsky_bcol_2p.standard.jpg
This post has nothing to do, I do mean nothing to do with Ayers.

Please keep it on Ayers. If you want to start a thread about how Obama was a cocaine dealer, I'll be there the second you post it.

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 08:21 PM
<object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/hIJIyMyqAwQ&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/hIJIyMyqAwQ&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>

So Bootlegged, tell me personally, do you think Obama should be flatly condemned for whatever relationship you think he has with this guy?

To what extent, and why?

NewChief
09-23-2008, 08:21 PM
This post has nothing to do, I do mean nothing to do with Ayers.

Please keep it on Ayers. If you want to start a thread about how Obama was a cocaine dealer, I'll be there the second you post it.

Leave him alone. Monkeys excite easily... and once they get excited you know what they do.

Pitt Gorilla
09-23-2008, 08:27 PM
Seriously - the nominee is

1.) Named Barack Hussein Obama. Come on
2.) A Socialist
3.) A guy that worked for ACORN. Seriously.
4.) Someone his running mate said wasn't ready to be President.
5.) who has his terrorist ties called into question by Hillary Clinton
6.) Possibly not a citizen of this country?
7.) Is corrupt as pointed out by Hillary Clinton
8.) Has no experience as pointed out by Hillary Clinton
9.) Is a chain smoker
10.) Is a coke head
11.) Was a coke dealer


Congratulations - You've nominated this guy - but much worse. But you are SOOOOO PROGESSIVE! YEAH!

http://msnbcmedia1.msn.com/j/msnbc/Components/Photos/070223/070223_alinsky_bcol_2p.standard.jpg
12. mixed Death Magnetic.

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 08:43 PM
Okay...

I'm not getting any takers just yet, so let me respond to the WSJ's bloated, featherlight ex-poe-say on the Obama/Ayers connection (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122212856075765367.html). It's a massive document, reading well over 1,100 words when I paste it to Microsoft Word.

Here's the depth of the article as far as I could tell (maybe somebody could enlighten me further on the subject): nothing new. There is absolutely nothing new in this article, it's just a bloated restatement of everything we already know (and I've already posted in this thread) about the connection between the two.

Written by Howard Kurtz, a conservative commentator, it's factual enough to avoid the "hitjob" moniker, but it goes on & on & on & on & on about Obama and Ayers' connection through the CAC. But an actual connection isn't really highlighted -- just the mere fact that both men worked for the CAC. Not much more than that.

And in addition to that, the title ("Obama and Ayers Pushed Radicalism on Schools") is completely wrong, as there is next to zero explanation as to where and when Obama and Ayers actually pushed "radicalism" -- a term that remains undefined in the article -- in or on schools.

Reaper16
09-23-2008, 08:47 PM
12. mixed Death Magnetic.
LMAO

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 08:58 PM
I'm reading over reactions to this extensive, yet shallow WSJ article about Ayers.

The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder seems just as baffled (http://marcambinder.theatlantic.com/archives/2008/09/obama_and_ayres.php) as me by the article's title:

What "radical" ideas did Obama and Bill Ayres come up with to foist on the Chicago school system?

What specific projects -- "radical" projects -- did Obama work on with Ayres? Is there evidence that they collaborated and schemed to ... do anything "radical" together? Ever?

Or just that they served on a board of a fairly well-respected liberal charity at the same time? And that left-leaning charities tend to give money to left-leaning organizations, a la ACORN?

Is the real story here that Obama once served on the board of a liberal education charity?
I remember when the Palin phenomenom got rolling in this forum, I started a comprehensive thread (http://www.chiefsplanet.com/BB/showthread.php?p=5000522#post5000522) designed to get to the bottom of Palin's legitimacy, and fervently kept the light on Palin. Her supporters in that thread were largely bankrupt for ideas other than attacking Obama.

I don't know where this thread is heading, but it's really telling if this thread causes the Ayers attack to wilt the second serious attention is paid to it...

bango
09-23-2008, 09:09 PM
This post has nothing to do, I do mean nothing to do with Ayers.

Please keep it on Ayers. If you want to start a thread about how Obama was a cocaine dealer, I'll be there the second you post it.

Can someone tell me where the Obama was a cocaine dealer thread is? I am in the wrong one.

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 09:10 PM
Can someone tell me where the Obama was a cocaine dealer thread is? I am in the wrong one.

I think we're all sitting on pins and needles for that thread...

patteeu
09-23-2008, 09:10 PM
And in addition to that, the title ("Obama and Ayers Pushed Radicalism on Schools") is completely wrong, as there is next to zero explanation as to where and when Obama and Ayers actually pushed "radicalism" -- a term that remains undefined in the article -- in or on schools.

Did you read the whole article?

Mr. Ayers is the founder of the "small schools" movement (heavily funded by CAC), in which individual schools built around specific political themes push students to "confront issues of inequity, war, and violence." He believes teacher education programs should serve as "sites of resistance" to an oppressive system. (His teacher-training programs were also CAC funded.) The point, says Mr. Ayers in his "Teaching Toward Freedom," is to "teach against oppression," against America's history of evil and racism, thereby forcing social transformation.

Sounds pretty radical to me.

This one's not going away and neither is the Obama/Wright scandal of a relationship.

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 09:17 PM
This one's not going away and neither is the Obama/Wright scandal of a relationship.

I'm not trying to push it away. You should applaud me for embracing it. I want to understand the depth of this material so that when the McCain campaign brings it up two weeks out from election day, we know what the truth is. You should embrace this quest for truth as well, instead of brushing me and the issue aside.

What's the truth, patteeu? And should Obama be condemned for it?

Why, or why not?

patteeu
09-23-2008, 10:19 PM
I'm not trying to push it away. You should applaud me for embracing it. I want to understand the depth of this material so that when the McCain campaign brings it up two weeks out from election day, we know what the truth is. You should embrace this quest for truth as well, instead of brushing me and the issue aside.

What's the truth, patteeu? And should Obama be condemned for it?

Why, or why not?

If the WSJ article you linked is the truth it sounds pretty damning to me especially when it's overlayed on the other shady associations Obama has kept (until inconvenient of course).

BTW, I do applaud you for a series of good threads and I'm all for studying the truth.

I don't have any time tonight, but I'll try to revisit this thread tomorrow and see if I can find anything to add.

SBK
09-23-2008, 11:22 PM
This is the guy that said we should kill our parents. Personally I think that hanging around a guy with a past like Ayers, specifically a guy that hasn't come out and said what he did was wrong, is not a wise decision.

Perhaps if it was just one guy, in a casual "neighbor of mine" relationship, but it seems to have been more than that.

No matter what they've done together Ayers is going to hurt Obama politically.

RINGLEADER
09-23-2008, 11:32 PM
Rather than explain the issue away why not just accept the fact that Ayers bankrolled some of Obama's early efforts and acknowledge that they were friends? Obama usually does a pretty good job of addressing the associations when he doesn't try to politick his way out of the situation (see the Rev Wright ordeal).

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 11:32 PM
This is the guy that said we should kill our parents. Personally I think that hanging around a guy with a past like Ayers, specifically a guy that hasn't come out and said what he did was wrong, is not a wise decision.

Perhaps if it was just one guy, in a casual "neighbor of mine" relationship, but it seems to have been more than that.

No matter what they've done together Ayers is going to hurt Obama politically.

Of course Ayers is going to hurt Obama politically. But that's not what this thread is about -- unless you're ready to admit that every accusation that causes a dip in a candidate's poll performance means that accusation is true.

I haven't seen too much that suggests Obama in any way endorses Ayers' past behavior. There has been, in no way, an endorsement or even the slightest bit of support for anything Ayers did when he was a member of the Weatherman.

In fact, on more than one occasion Obama has used harsh words to condemn Ayers' outrageous acts in the 1960s, when Obama was hardly older than a toddler.

The only support Obama has ever shown Ayers concerns his work in the past decade or two as a professional proponent of liberal charities and education. And I mean, that's it.

I believe in a certain degree of guilt-by-association, but I think it's being stretched too far in the Obama-Ayers situation.

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 11:35 PM
Rather than explain the issue away why not just accept the fact that Ayers bankrolled some of Obama's early efforts and acknowledge that they were friends? Obama usually does a pretty good job of addressing the associations when he doesn't try to politick his way out of the situation (see the Rev Wright ordeal).

I don't even know what "explaining the issue away" means.

SBK
09-23-2008, 11:37 PM
Of course Ayers is going to hurt Obama politically. But that's not what this thread is about -- unless you're ready to admit that every accusation that causes a dip in a candidate's poll performance means that accusation is true.

I haven't seen too much that suggests Obama in any way endorses Ayers' past behavior. There has been, in no way, an endorsement or even the slightest bit of support for anything Ayers did when he was a member of the Weatherman.

In fact, on more than one occasion Obama has used harsh words to condemn Ayers' outrageous acts in the 1960s, when Obama was hardly older than a toddler.

The only support Obama has ever shown Ayers concerns his work in the past decade or two as a professional proponent of liberal charities and education. And I mean, that's it.

I believe in a certain degree of guilt-by-association, but I think it's being stretched too far in the Obama-Ayers situation.

I don't know about you, but personally I would not associate myself, or my career, with someone that has a past like Ayers and is ok with what they did. I think most people feel that way.

Choosing to align yourself with someone that has a past like that is very foolish.

Here's the thing though. None of this matters. Whoever is elected is screwed because what we're watching go on right now is going to be a millstone around the neck of the next President. Nobody wants to fix anything, they want to slap a bandaid on things and call it a day. :cuss:

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 11:40 PM
If the WSJ article you linked is the truth it sounds pretty damning to me especially when it's overlayed on the other shady associations Obama has kept (until inconvenient of course).

BTW, I do applaud you for a series of good threads and I'm all for studying the truth.

I don't have any time tonight, but I'll try to revisit this thread tomorrow and see if I can find anything to add.

You're going to need to find something to add if you believe this is a potent issue on substance. Otherwise you're peddling drek, as far as I can tell.

This thread, I should mention, is not about Rev. Wright, so lumping him into this topic is simply muddying the waters. We've been through the Wright ordeal on this board a hundred times -- but the Ayers association has largely existed under the radar. Let's keep ourselves honest to the subject and stick to Ayers. Start your own topic on Wright tomorrow and I'll be there.

ROYC75
09-23-2008, 11:40 PM
The Ayers problem is that a young Barrak did not use good judgment in his early years to jump start his political career with people of a shady past. Barrak was only interested in getting his career started, not foreseeing the long term complications.

To Americans, This is a question mark for Obama's judgment and decision making ability as POTUS.... that's all.

FTR, all candidates will have something from their past come back to bite them in the butt, usually a hell of a lot more than just once too.

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 11:44 PM
I don't know about you, but personally I would not associate myself, or my career, with someone that has a past like Ayers and is ok with what they did. I think most people feel that way.

Choosing to align yourself with someone that has a past like that is very foolish.

Sure it's foolish, and that's about how I'd qualify it.

I'm not here to argue that Obama should get a thumbs up for his relationship with Ayers, but I don't think it's a criminal OMGZORZ issue, either, like Hannity has argued.

It's not smart to hang around a guy like Ayers, but like I said, Obama has in no way embraced or supported Ayers' past behavior. The only professional relationship these two have had has been in relation to the education and charity work Ayers has done in the last couple decades.

So again, I'm not applauding Ayers for his work, or Obama for his relationship with Ayers, but I find little to be alarmed over.

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 11:46 PM
The Ayers problem is that a young Barrak did not use good judgment in his early years to jump start his political career with people of a shady past. Barrak was only interested in getting his career started, not foreseeing the long term complications.

To Americans, This is a question mark for Obama's judgment and decision making ability as POTUS.... that's all.

FTR, all candidates will have something from their past come back to bite them in the butt, usually a hell of a lot more than just once too.

I think that's a perfectly reasonable response to this. Again, Obama's decisions to work with Ayers were early in his political career and unaware of future implications.

And to Obama's credit, while he may have had a professional relationship with this man, he has not accepted any money from him nor has he had Ayers fundraise for him at any point.

So again... dumb relationship, but not damning. At least from my vantage point.

RINGLEADER
09-23-2008, 11:49 PM
I don't even know what "explaining the issue away" means.

Saying that Ayers was a guy who lived in his neighborhood is an example...

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 11:51 PM
Saying that Ayers was a guy who lived in his neighborhood is an example...

Don't give me examples, define it.

What does "explaining something away" mean? How else am I to explain something?

RINGLEADER
09-23-2008, 11:53 PM
I think that's a perfectly reasonable response to this. Again, Obama's decisions to work with Ayers were early in his political career and unaware of future implications.

And to Obama's credit, while he may have had a professional relationship with this man, he has not accepted any money from him nor has he had Ayers fundraise for him at any point.

So again... dumb relationship, but not damning. At least from my vantage point.

In its most generous light you could say that anyone who was seeking to run for office in Chicago would bump into characters like Ayers. But Ayers is a liability for Obama.

Direckshun
09-23-2008, 11:55 PM
In its most generous light you could say that anyone who was seeking to run for office in Chicago would bump into characters like Ayers. But Ayers is a liability for Obama.

Well hey, if running into guys like Ayers is an inevitability, shouldn't Obama deserve credit for handling a necessary evil like that in the best possible way, a way that both launched his career and refused to endorse any part of the grime Ayers is involved with?

RINGLEADER
09-23-2008, 11:55 PM
Don't give me examples, define it.

What does "explaining something away" mean? How else am I to explain something?

I'm not referring to you. I'm referring to Obama. When confronted by the Rev Wright issue, for example, he tried to explain it away by saying he never heard the sermons, didn't attend church that often, thought of Wright as a crazy uncle, etc., etc. Sorry if I wasn't clear that the comment was just a political observation on how Obama would be best served dealing with this issue.

I think your contributions to this thread are very even-handed.

Direckshun
09-24-2008, 12:00 AM
I'm not referring to you. I'm referring to Obama. When confronted by the Rev Wright issue, for example, he tried to explain it away by saying he never heard the sermons, didn't attend church that often, thought of Wright as a crazy uncle, etc., etc. Sorry if I wasn't clear that the comment was just a political observation on how Obama would be best served dealing with this issue.

I think your contributions to this thread are very even-handed.

I appreciate that.

I think Obama's response to the Ayers issue has been about as fair as you can get from a candidate in this situation: a fair condemnation of Ayers' past behavior and tepid support for his more recent ventures.

RINGLEADER
09-24-2008, 12:00 AM
Well hey, if running into guys like Ayers is an inevitability, shouldn't Obama deserve credit for handling a necessary evil like that in the best possible way, a way that both launched his career and refused to endorse any part of the grime Ayers is involved with?

Hey, I'm from Chicago and the lib machine in Obama's district is VERY tight-knit. All I'm saying is that I disagree with you that he handled it in the best possible way. But he has the skills to do so. I get the sense that Obama usually navigates the big picture issues better on his own (when his advisors have his ear he doesn't do so good IMO). All I'm saying is he should do what you did -- confront the issue and not run away from it.

On edit -- I give him credit for navigating the big picture POLITICAL issues. He still has problems with his belief in re-distribution of wealth and apparent disdain for the development of new weapons systems (which is sort of a cornerstone to our military).

Direckshun
09-24-2008, 12:04 AM
Let's cut to the core of this issue for a moment --

Is it ever appropriate to engage yourself with a guy who's committed heinous crimes a long, long time ago that he doesn't regret--if the things you're doing with him are harmless and maybe even honorable things?

I think most folks who've posted here can understand why Obama got tangled up with this guy. A combination of necessity (to help launch a political career), naivete (poor choice of associations early in his career), and genuine nobility (support for Ayers' current causes in charity and education).

Now, it's hard to applaud something like that, even for the most arduous Obama supporter like myself. But I don't think it's a killshot for an Obama candidacy.

Direckshun
09-24-2008, 12:05 AM
Hey, I'm from Chicago and the lib machine in Obama's district is VERY tight-knit. All I'm saying is that I disagree with you that he handled it in the best possible way. But he has the skills to do so. I get the sense that Obama usually navigates the big picture issues better on his own (when his advisors have his ear he doesn't do so good IMO). All I'm saying is he should do what you did -- confront the issue and not run away from it.

On edit -- I give him credit for navigating the big picture POLITICAL issues. He still has problems with his belief in re-distribution of wealth and apparent disdain for the development of new weapons systems (which is sort of a cornerstone to our military).

I think that's a fair take.

Silock
09-24-2008, 12:07 AM
Here's why it matters to me:

As President, there's not much you have to really do except surround yourself with good, competent people. I'm not saying he's going to put Ayers in the White House or anything, but the company one keeps shows a lot about one's ability to accurately judge people. Since he's willing to politically cavort with a guy like Ayers to get ahead, it tells me a lot about his character -- specifically that he's not the advocate for change that he claims to be. And this isn't the first time that his shady connections have been brought to light and have been swept under the rug (or at least, someone attempted to dismiss them out of hand).

Logical
09-24-2008, 12:09 AM
I'm reading over reactions to this extensive, yet shallow WSJ article about Ayers.

The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder seems just as baffled (http://marcambinder.theatlantic.com/archives/2008/09/obama_and_ayres.php) as me by the article's title:


I remember when the Palin phenomenom got rolling in this forum, I started a comprehensive thread (http://www.chiefsplanet.com/BB/showthread.php?p=5000522#post5000522) designed to get to the bottom of Palin's legitimacy, and fervently kept the light on Palin. Her supporters in that thread were largely bankrupt for ideas other than attacking Obama.

I don't know where this thread is heading, but it's really telling if this thread causes the Ayers attack to wilt the second serious attention is paid to it...I think you will get a reaction from some of the conservatives, but they post mainly during the day. I feel no need to defend Obama so I choose not to add legitimacy to such a bankrupt guilt by association concept. Sorry.

Direckshun
09-24-2008, 12:12 AM
Here's why it matters to me:

As President, there's not much you have to really do except surround yourself with good, competent people. I'm not saying he's going to put Ayers in the White House or anything, but the company one keeps shows a lot about one's ability to accurately judge people. Since he's willing to politically cavort with a guy like Ayers to get ahead, it tells me a lot about his character -- specifically that he's not the advocate for change that he claims to be.

But he's has in no way embraced Ayers' past radical work. The only way Obama has ever supported Ayers has been with his charity work and education. That's it. That's the professional and personal connection.

In fact, he's harshly criticized that aspect of Ayers' personal history, which he basically didn't have to considering he wasn't even 10 when it happened.

Silock
09-24-2008, 12:20 AM
But he's has in no way embraced Ayers' past radical work. The only way Obama has ever supported Ayers has been with his charity work and education. That's it. That's the professional and personal connection.

In fact, he's harshly criticized that aspect of Ayers' personal history, which he basically didn't have to considering he wasn't even 10 when it happened.

To me, that still doesn't matter. That guy is a ****stick, regardless of what some of his motivations may be. I wouldn't support Osama Bin Laden's homeless shelter, either. It's a question of the guy's total character. I'm a firm believer that everyone has some good in them. I do not, however, believe that good works absolve someone from culpability for their past actions, and as such, I could never professionally or privately associate myself with a guy like Ayers. I would find another way.

Some people may not find it to be a big deal, but I do.

Direckshun
09-24-2008, 12:25 AM
To me, that still doesn't matter. That guy is a ****stick, regardless of what some of his motivations may be. I wouldn't support Osama Bin Laden's homeless shelter, either. It's a question of the guy's total character. I'm a firm believer that everyone has some good in them. I do not, however, believe that good works absolve someone from culpability for their past actions, and as such, I could never professionally or privately associate myself with a guy like Ayers. I would find another way.

Some people may not find it to be a big deal, but I do.

So if I could try to get you on record yet again:

You think it's criminal to utilize a former criminal's considerable resources on legitimate causes that you support?

Logical
09-24-2008, 12:28 AM
To me, that still doesn't matter. That guy is a ****stick, regardless of what some of his motivations may be. I wouldn't support Osama Bin Laden's homeless shelter, either. It's a question of the guy's total character. I'm a firm believer that everyone has some good in them. I do not, however, believe that good works absolve someone from culpability for their past actions, and as such, I could never professionally or privately associate myself with a guy like Ayers. I would find another way.

Some people may not find it to be a big deal, but I do.So you believe that people with a history cannot make a positive contribution to society. That in addition they can never be reintegrated into society. If that is the way you feel, why the need to contribute to society in a negative way, the people you disagree with, cannot change, right?

Silock
09-24-2008, 12:46 AM
So if I could try to get you on record yet again:

You think it's criminal to utilize a former criminal's considerable resources on legitimate causes that you support?

I don't think it's criminal, no. As a public servant, I would find another way.

Silock
09-24-2008, 12:51 AM
So you believe that people with a history cannot make a positive contribution to society. That in addition they can never be reintegrated into society. If that is the way you feel, why the need to contribute to society in a negative way, the people you disagree with, cannot change, right?

I think there's a distinct difference between associating with people who have made bad choices and realized the error of their ways and worked to redeem themselves and associating with a guy like Ayers, who is absolutely unrepentant for his crimes.

The man is a DOMESTIC TERRORIST. He used nail bombs to kill people. He targeted innocent civilians, police officers, and countless other people. And he is not sorry.

**** him. **** Bill Ayers.

Direckshun
09-24-2008, 12:52 AM
I don't think it's criminal, no. As a public servant, I would find another way.

Sounds like you're basically where I am -- that this was a foolish, immature decision by Obama at the earliest stages of his political career, but nothing to scream about. Would that be an accurate summation?

Silock
09-24-2008, 12:57 AM
Sounds like you're basically where I am -- that this was a foolish, immature decision by Obama at the earliest stages of his political career, but nothing to scream about. Would that be an accurate summation?

I wouldn't scream about it, no. But I maintain that it makes me question Obama's ability to judge people. I mean, that's basically what the president does, and if he feels okay associating with a guy like Ayers, then who knows what kind of person he could put in charge of something in our government. That makes me more than a little bit uncomfortable, but it certainly wouldn't be THE defining reason of why I didn't vote for the guy.

Maybe I'm coming down too harshly on him, but I'm currently studying to be a public administrator at the number one program for that in the country (Yeah, that's KU, baby :) ), and they make sure you are VERY aware of the kinds of ethical implications that decisions like this pose for public officials. And not many of those scenarios turn out very well for the administrator, the associate or the public, regardless of how well-intentioned someone was at the start of the whole association.

patteeu
09-24-2008, 05:39 AM
I think that's a perfectly reasonable response to this. Again, Obama's decisions to work with Ayers were early in his political career and unaware of future implications.

And to Obama's credit, while he may have had a professional relationship with this man, he has not accepted any money from him nor has he had Ayers fundraise for him at any point.

So again... dumb relationship, but not damning. At least from my vantage point.

Where do you get that from?

Direckshun
09-24-2008, 10:24 AM
Where do you get that from?

My understanding is that Ayers (http://hotair.com/archives/2008/04/21/why-the-obama-ayers-connection-matters/) has held (http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2008/04/18/how_obama_and_the_radical_became_news/) a "campaign event (http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/05/06/obama-camp-criticizes-ayers-after-flag-stomping-photo/)" for Obama (http://archive.redstate.com/stories/elections/2008/obama_ayers_and_wright), but it was not a fundraiser. A handful of right wing blogs have indicated that it was a fundraiser (even though I've posted two rightwing blogs that refuse to call it that), and at least one MSM outlet (http://abcnews.go.com/print?id=5667094) has irresponsibly and baselessly repeated that accusation.

In addition to that, Ayers has not donated to Obama's campaign -- that's public information and anybody can look it up. I did just now googled Ayers' contributions to Obama's entire political career, and it seems Ayers did donate to Obama's state senate campaign. $200 worth, in the 90s. I've edited that into the OP.

patteeu
09-24-2008, 11:14 AM
My understanding is that Ayers (http://hotair.com/archives/2008/04/21/why-the-obama-ayers-connection-matters/) has held (http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2008/04/18/how_obama_and_the_radical_became_news/) a "campaign event (http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/05/06/obama-camp-criticizes-ayers-after-flag-stomping-photo/)" for Obama (http://archive.redstate.com/stories/elections/2008/obama_ayers_and_wright), but it was not a fundraiser. A handful of right wing blogs have indicated that it was a fundraiser (even though I've posted two rightwing blogs that refuse to call it that), and at least one MSM outlet (http://abcnews.go.com/print?id=5667094) has irresponsibly and baselessly repeated that accusation.

In addition to that, Ayers has not donated to Obama's campaign -- that's public information and anybody can look it up. I did just now googled Ayers' contributions to Obama's entire political career, and it seems Ayers did donate to Obama's state senate campaign. $200 worth, in the 90s. I've edited that into the OP.

OK, thanks. I knew I'd read about a donation but I didn't remember where.

So since it wasn't a fundraiser, do you think the visit that Obama made to Ayer's home during his first campaign was more of a "kiss-the-ring" type visit to a local liberal political icon? If so, how is that any better?

jettio
09-24-2008, 11:17 AM
I hope McCain tries to blame Obama for sh*t that other people did when Obama was 8 years old.

All of this sh*t has already been publicized.

McCain has a VP candidate who sucks and screws and gives hand jobs and bears the children of an Alaska Secessionist.

McCain ain't that stupid.

Direckshun
09-24-2008, 11:21 AM
So since it wasn't a fundraiser, do you think the visit that Obama made to Ayer's home during his first campaign was more of a "kiss-the-ring" type visit to a local liberal political icon? If so, how is that any better?

I think that's a fair assumption, but it's not mine. They've clearly run across one another professionally, and developed a respect for one another's work in the community. At the time, Obama's career was as a liberal community organizer, and it's likely that Ayers' considerable work in the community earned Obama's respect, even knowing the guy he was.

My guess is that since Ayers knows the name of every influential liberal in the Chicago area, Obama saw the benefit of having Ayers host a party and bringing everybody over to spread his name out.

Money is always a big issue, because money buys favors. The fact that none seems to have been raised means that Obama does not have financial strings attached to this guy and that's crucial. But using Ayers to raise his local profile is, again, a foolish and naive move. But does it sink Obama's candidacy? Not that I can decipher.

tiptap
09-24-2008, 11:32 AM
So Obama used Ayers like a tool and threw him to the curb once he had standing on his own.

bkkcoh
09-24-2008, 11:34 AM
So Obama used Ayers like a tool and threw him to the curb once he had standing on his own.

Sounds like some other senator from the state of NY.

Direckshun
09-24-2008, 11:38 AM
So Obama used Ayers like a tool and threw him to the curb once he had standing on his own.

That's a brash way of saying it, especially since Obama and Ayers had a collegial relationship and actively fought for the same causes in Chicago. No doubt, however, that Ayers' history was not only disgusting to Obama, but politically harmful.

So as Obama's consituency became larger and larger, Ayers' presense in Obama's life got smaller and smaller. But I have never read anything where Obama has condemned Ayers the person.

VAChief
09-24-2008, 11:47 AM
Here's why it matters to me:

As President, there's not much you have to really do except surround yourself with good, competent people. I'm not saying he's going to put Ayers in the White House or anything, but the company one keeps shows a lot about one's ability to accurately judge people. Since he's willing to politically cavort with a guy like Ayers to get ahead, it tells me a lot about his character -- specifically that he's not the advocate for change that he claims to be. And this isn't the first time that his shady connections have been brought to light and have been swept under the rug (or at least, someone attempted to dismiss them out of hand).

It would seem a little risky for the McCain campaign to go too deep here with this association considering the Dems have pretty much left the Keating Scandal alone for the most part. That was real involvement with a guy that scammed a bunch of old people out of their life savings. McCain was basically reprimanded for poor judgment by his colleagues, but there is no refuting he was personal friends of Keating and took over a hundred thousand dollars in contributions from him back in the 80's. I would think he would want to leave that alone.

tiptap
09-24-2008, 11:50 AM
How likely is Ayers Weatherman escapades to be known generally around the area. If I moved to Chicago from Hawaii or such would I know this part of Ayers life compared to his present work? What timeline do I put on obtaining enough information to start distancing myself. How do I know he hasn't reformed even if he can't come to grips with his violent past and has to defend it in order to hold that quilt at bay?

patteeu
09-24-2008, 12:02 PM
I think that's a fair assumption, but it's not mine. They've clearly run across one another professionally, and developed a respect for one another's work in the community. At the time, Obama's career was as a liberal community organizer, and it's likely that Ayers' considerable work in the community earned Obama's respect, even knowing the guy he was.

My guess is that since Ayers knows the name of every influential liberal in the Chicago area, Obama saw the benefit of having Ayers host a party and bringing everybody over to spread his name out.

Money is always a big issue, because money buys favors. The fact that none seems to have been raised means that Obama does not have financial strings attached to this guy and that's crucial. But using Ayers to raise his local profile is, again, a foolish and naive move. But does it sink Obama's candidacy? Not that I can decipher.

I don't know if there is anything that will sink Obama or not even though there are many things I think ought to sink him.

I agree that money can be one kind of danger sign, but it's equally concerning to me when a potential POTUS has a background littered with associations with far left personalities and mentors. From the nonrepentant, anti-US terrorist (Ayers) to the black liberation theology preacher (Wright) to the community agitation groups (like ACORN) to his childhood exposures to radicalism (e.g. Ann Dunham and Frank Marshall Davis). There's not a knockout punch among them in isolation, but together they demand notice.

If Obama and Ayers were really just guys who lived in the same neighborhood who barely know each other, like Obama tried to tell us initially, it wouldn't really be much of an issue. But the Kurtz article you posted describes a considerably closer relationship than that. I think the case for guilt by association is pretty strong here. Not guilt for the terrorist attacks of Ayers early life, but guilt for the current political views that Ayers has and that Obama found it comfortable to coexist with repeatedly. And remember that Ayers is a guy who currently dislikes America so much that he still doesn't regret taking up arms against it and regrets not having done enough.

Edit: I suspect you're already familiar with most of these people, but in case you're not, one common thread that runs through them is that they preach the idea that the US is an oppressor which is pretty much the foundation of radical left politics. I don't want a guy who has wallowed in this sentiment for the majority of his life taking the driver's seat in my country.

patteeu
09-24-2008, 12:04 PM
So Obama used Ayers like a tool and threw him to the curb once he had standing on his own.

I've questioned Obama's sincerity on several occasions so I can see that as a possibility, but why take the risk?

Silock
09-24-2008, 01:25 PM
It would seem a little risky for the McCain campaign to go too deep here with this association considering the Dems have pretty much left the Keating Scandal alone for the most part. That was real involvement with a guy that scammed a bunch of old people out of their life savings. McCain was basically reprimanded for poor judgment by his colleagues, but there is no refuting he was personal friends of Keating and took over a hundred thousand dollars in contributions from him back in the 80's. I would think he would want to leave that alone.

I'm not voting for McCain, either, and I agree with you.

RaiderH8r
09-24-2008, 02:10 PM
This is the guy that said we should kill our parents. Personally I think that hanging around a guy with a past like Ayers, specifically a guy that hasn't come out and said what he did was wrong, is not a wise decision.

Perhaps if it was just one guy, in a casual "neighbor of mine" relationship, but it seems to have been more than that.

No matter what they've done together Ayers is going to hurt Obama politically.

The only difference between Ayers' and McVeigh is that McVeigh actually accomplished his sick goal. Barry may think Ayers deserves a pass for whatever reason but I certainly don't. And if Barry ain't condemning him he's embracing him. Yeah, I know. Barry's said Ayers' actions were reprehensible. Well way to middle it Barry, way to avoid taking a stand. Why is Barry so afraid to condemn this man? Would Barry embrace McVeigh had he simply not killed anyone in his bombing attempt?

RaiderH8r
09-24-2008, 02:15 PM
I think that's a fair assumption, but it's not mine. They've clearly run across one another professionally, and developed a respect for one another's work in the community. At the time, Obama's career was as a liberal community organizer, and it's likely that Ayers' considerable work in the community earned Obama's respect, even knowing the guy he was.

My guess is that since Ayers knows the name of every influential liberal in the Chicago area, Obama saw the benefit of having Ayers host a party and bringing everybody over to spread his name out.

Money is always a big issue, because money buys favors. The fact that none seems to have been raised means that Obama does not have financial strings attached to this guy and that's crucial. But using Ayers to raise his local profile is, again, a foolish and naive move. But does it sink Obama's candidacy? Not that I can decipher.

If Barry didn't know he's too stupid and if he did know he's selling out principles for advancement. Neither of which comport with his "image".

On the other hand Alaska's political landscape is littered with the careers of the old boys club who stood in the way of Palin's rise to Governor. So on the one hand Barry's embracing a known terrorist for political advancement on the other Palin's going head to head with her party's establishment and pissing in the boots of everyone who gets in her way and she gets the nod. Tell me again who's campaigning on change?

While Barry went begging to Chicago's political machine for support McCain was getting blackballed by his own party for pissing in their boots. Which action better comports with your perception of leadership?

Mr. Kotter
09-24-2008, 02:33 PM
You seem surprised that this was coming? :shrug:

tiptap
09-24-2008, 03:49 PM
I've questioned Obama's sincerity on several occasions so I can see that as a possibility, but why take the risk?

It was to limit risk once the whole of the understanding of what Ayers stood for as compared to Obama's views.

patteeu
09-24-2008, 05:34 PM
It was to limit risk once the whole of the understanding of what Ayers stood for as compared to Obama's views.

I was asking why those of us who don't want a radical leftist (who's comfortable with the view that the US is an oppressor) in the WH should take the risk. It's rhetorical.