American Thinker | by Monte Kuligowski | Dec. 17, 2009
Most people involved in public affairs fall into two grand schools: Some believe that America is a unique nation, a nation built upon extraordinary and good moral values, and a country which is a microcosm of what the world should be. These people need not be Americans. Churchill, for example, was an unabashed admirer of America.
Other people believe that America is simply a very arrogant country, a nation inhabited with bumpkins who believe too much in God, and because of its religious faith and confidence, the antithesis of what the world should be. This animus flourishes outside America, but it also has a strong camp following in America.
Barack Obama is decidedly in the second camp. He is an “America Denier.”
We have learned this early during the campaign in 2008. His wife, Michelle, revealed in February that for the first time in her adult life she was really proud of America — because America was beginning to embrace the message of her radical husband. The next month, in March, we learned that his pastor damned America from the pulpit. Then in April Obama spoke about people in rural America clinging to their religion.
The roots of this antipathy toward America runs through the thinkers that influenced Obama like Saul Alinsky. As American Thinker’s own James Lewis explains so well, Alinsky had before him two responses to America. As the child of persecuted Russian Jews, he could view America as Emma Lazarus, another Jewish immigrant, did. Her dedication to the Statute of Liberty is still both clear and strong. Emma leaned toward socialism; she was proud of her Jewish heritage; and she was emphatically American. She understood that America was the beacon, the hope, and the promise of the world.
Alinsky viewed America as the center of mankind’s problems. It did not matter to Alinsky that he would have suffered torments in the Gulag under the Bolsheviks for his agitation but that he lived in liberty in America. It does not seem to matter to Obama or his wife that living in America has blessed them both far beyond their power to ever repay. They have actually benefited, rather than suffered, because they were black. What about these ancestors?
Twelve years ago, Keith Richburg, a black reporter for the Washington Post, wrote Out of America. The book describes his journey from an angry young black man, who reflexively accepted all the theories of exploitation, to a man who visited Africa and studied it closely. After seeing firsthand the horror of his native continent, and grasping that America had nothing to do with the nightmare before his eyes, Richburg writes: “Thank God that I am an American.” This is not a pardon for slavery or Jim Crow. It is rather a mature and moral appreciation that in an imperfect world, America comes much closer to perfection than many of its sullen critics will acknowledge.
Once nearly all Americans understood, whatever their politics, that America was the hope of the world. America, like Israel, is a “homeland of choice.” Even before slavery ended, the American government had gone to great lengths to provide a homeland for freed slaves (Liberia, for example, was founded just for that purpose.) Instead, people who wind up in America, however they came here, have always wanted to stay.
Using the First Amendment, we could wrangle about many different things, but not about the fact that the First Amendment was a creature of America. We could campaign fiercely for our parties, but doubt that the right of the people to choose their leaders grew out of the heritage of America. The idea of fundamentally changing America so that it resembled the rest of the world would have horrified any political leader even fifty years ago.
The elites of the Old World, largely, have wished that America would just vanish or else be absorbed into the oligarchy so familiar to Europe and Asia. Serfs of the world pined to come to America. Elites of the world hissed at the Land of the Free. They wanted differences between those in power and those in thrall. This emphatically included elitists who were socialists.
Those who feign concern about the poor, the socialists and collectivists, are actually the most elitist of the elites. Orwell saw that well in his masterpiece, 1984. A whole section of that book is devoted to “The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism.” The political philosophy of Oceania, the totalitarian nightmare of the novel, is Ingsoc, truncated from English Socialism. These elitists cared only about the power of their group, and America has always offered wealth, acclaim, and influence to the naked individual who rises above the crowd by work and by individual merit.
Anyone who has taken the trouble to study the books of Soviet dissidents knows that the empire of the Tsars was much less stratified, much less hierarchical, and had a much narrower gap between the rich and the poor than the empire of Communism.
This is just what modern America deniers crave most. Creeping official elitism, politically correct science, regimented learning, banishment of the truly religious, ending all the vestiges of what has made America the true Mecca of the world’s unfree – these are the unspoken hopes of America deniers like Obama.
So he scolds “bankers” one day; he apologizes to the world for his country the next day; he tries to drown the economy in money which will soon be as worthless as a ruble in old Soviet-land the following day. His mission is clear. In the old Soviet Union, the place so many of his mentors secretly admired, the United States was almost always called within the oligarchic Communist Party by a highly descriptive term: The Main Enemy. That is how our president views his nation now. We, our liberties, our faith, our spirit of individual enterprise — the very soul of America — this is the foe of our America-denier, the President.
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