Demagogue is not a word that was used to describe Barack Obama in the campaign of 2008. Hope and Change were the mantra of his campaign, and voters who flocked to his side were eager to take up the call. But the Obama of 2012 is a different person, even more cynical, more narcissistic, and without a doubt more desperate for the Oval Office than ever before in his life. So much more desperate in fact that he has adopted a scorched earth policy.
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In his first run for the White House, Obama claimed a link to the black community that he did not share, a link that could only come from a shared history and an equal struggle. Obama’s critics during his 2008 campaign, Al Sharpton chief among them, pointed out that Obama was not an ‘authentic’ black and not representative of the true black experience born out of the struggle to find a place in a post-slavery America. While many people have tried to equivocate and color the formative years of Mr. Obama, it does not negate the underlying question: Did he live a life that in any way compares to the life of an urban youth in the black community during the same period in his life?
The answer is no.
In 2008, voters heard about some of Obama’s youth: his life in Indonesia; his basketball efforts at Punahou School in Honolulu, HI.; and his penchant for eating at a local favorite spot, Rainbow Drive-In. What many did not know is that tuition at Punahou during Obama’s attendance there was more than $5,000.00 per year, hardly urban. In addition, he lived in Manoa Valley, a decidedly non-urban community; and while he may very well have been battling an inner turmoil, trying to develop his ‘black’ side, it makes no difference to the truth of his upbringing. Many people struggle with who they are or where they fit in even when they grow up with everyone around them being the same in skin, history, lifestyle, and convictions. There is nothing unique or edifying about Obama’s particular struggle; he learned what he did and used that insight to move him through life in search of his place in the world. It has taken him to the pinnacle of world power, and he took with him the hopes of community well-versed in turmoil.
The problem is, he does not share the same hopes as that community does…not entirely. The danger that lives in the black community is a militant anger that will not be sated. While not universal within the community, this anger is what links Obama to the black community- not because Obama shares this anger necessarily, but because he uses it to further his purpose.
Obama echoes the words of hope in the black community, but his actions feed the anger that festers within. He claims a kinship that he could not abandon all while using the anger to foment a racial divisiveness that will be unequaled in the history of America. He uses the successful efforts of others and claims them as his own. He calls for cooperation while he usurps authority not granted him by the decorum of his office. Obama called himself a unifier; yet America now finds itself more divided by race, means, and thought than ever before, a divide that will tear the country to shreds if not checked. His current campaign is rife with clichés, pandering, and dissembling. He foments anger at every opportunity by playing to the fears of his supporters with lies and half-truths, misrepresenting his record and those that do not share his vision. He claims success when failure is all the eye can see. He can do this because his only true success in his first term has been to enslave millions more to the teat of mother big government, making them dependant on the government he is running into bankruptcy.
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