Senator Barack Obama's (D-Ill) platform is his politics of "understanding." Obama has been careful not to define the issues upon which he runs; rather, he explains that it is time to "move forward," to discard "ideology," to reach a new "common ground" built on an "understanding" of broad-based values. Of course, this is pure Grade A pap, since Obama fails to define those values, except in broad generalities. Yes, he's for the flag (but not against burning it -- he voted against the flag-protection amendment), motherhood (as long as taxpayers foot the bill for daycare and abortion on demand remains legal) and apple pie (he has not had to vote on apple pie). But where does he stand?
Obama is a liberal, and a rather radical liberal at that. According to Obama's new best seller, "The Audacity of Hope," Obama hates Ronald Reagan: He was "disturbed by Ronald Reagan's election in 1980 unconvinced by his John Wayne, "Father Knows Best" pose, his policy by anecdote, and his gratuitous assaults on the poor." (31)
He loves Jimmy Carter: "a Democrat who -- with his emphasis on human rights -- seemed prepared to once again align moral concerns with a strong defense." (288)
Despite his protestations to the contrary, he dislikes President Bush: "The President's eyes became fixed; his voice took on the agitated, rapid tone of someone neither accustomed to nor welcoming interruption; his easy affability was replaced by an almost messianic certainty." (45) He repeats "war for oil" slander: "Is cheap oil worth the costs -- in blood and treasure -- of war?" (310)
He slimes Rush Limbaugh: "if Rush Limbaugh's listeners enjoy hearing him call me 'Osama Obama,' my attitude is, let them have their fun." (122) As Limbaugh has explained repeatedly, it was Senator Ted Kennedy (D-MA) who first mislabeled Obama "Osama." Limbaugh is making fun of Kennedy, not Obama, when he references the misnomer.
Obama insults evangelicals: "Their fervor has gone mainstream. There are various explanations for this success, from the skill of evangelicals in marketing religion to the charisma of their leaders." (202)
He suggests that the Bible tolerates homosexuality: "For many practicing Christians, the same inability to compromise may apply to gay marriage. I find such a position troublesome, particularly in a society in which Christian men and women have been known to engage in adultery or other violations of their faith without civil penalty. I [am not] willing to accept a reading of the Bible that considers an obscure line in Romans to be more defining of Christianity than the Sermon on the Mount." (222)
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