Robert Knight

Have you ever been to a White House event? 

I have. Before they let me anywhere near the place, I had to submit basic info that allowed them to vet me. But that was back when W lived there.

When someone is appointed to a federal executive post, the vetting process is far more elaborate. The Secret Service understandably wants to know who’s within spittin’ distance of the president. The White House staff want to know if there’s anything lurking in the past that will jump out and bite them. The media want to know whether there’s anything they can use to fit those teeth for the bite.  

Which is why the media’s excuse for Obama’s choosing radical Van Jones as “Green Jobs” czar is so absurd.

The official line they’ve all swallowed (or at least use) is that poor Mr. Obama must have been misinformed about Mr. Jones. On Sept. 7, the Washington Post ran this headline exculpating Obama:  “In Adviser’s Resignation, Vetting Bites Obama.”  Yeah, that’s the ticket. The article quotes an anonymous “White House official” who says that “Jones’s past was not studied as intensively as that of other advisers because of his relatively low rank.”

A far more likely explanation is that the Obama team knew full well what Jones was about and saw no problem. As a disciple of radical community organizer Saul Alinsky, why would Barack recoil from a guy who was using Alinsky’s methods to a T? Besides, it’s clear the White House was thrilled with Jones’ past. Fox’s Glenn Beck ran tape of White House Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett boasting that they had been watching Jones’ activities for years and finally “were so delighted to recruit him into the White House.”

From the Washington Post to the Los Angeles Times, to the TV networks and news magazines, they ignored the growing controversy over Jones’ communist background as it built over the past couple of weeks. Beck led the charge, along with Breitbart.com and blogs such as Gateway Pundit, which broke the story about Jones being a 9/11 “truther.” The “truthers” are the guys in tinfoil hats who say the Bush Administration either knew about the attacks beforehand or was complicit. The New York Times did not cover any of this until Jones resigned on Sept. 6.


Robert Knight

Robert Knight is an author, senior fellow for the American Civil Rights Union and a frequent contributor to Townhall.