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The Smears Keeping On Rolling ... From the Left
Posted by: MichaelW on Friday, July 18, 2008

Still wondering about where those awful rumors about Barack Obama are coming from? Once again, it's the inestimable and completely credible No Quarter, run by Hillary supporter Larry Johnson. This smear is from co-blogger, Kirk Tofte:
It is being reported today that Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times has in his possession a tape recording of an interview he once had with Barack Obama that may be very damaging to the latter’s campaign for the presidency.

[...]

What may be damning about the interview, the transcript of it and—especially—the original tape recording is that Obama allegedly provided Kristof with a recitation from memory of the Muslim call to prayer in Arabic. One of Obama’s cousins in Africa has stated in the recent past that Obama was, indeed, once a Muslim. Kristof’s interview records may prove this more definitively.
Now, even if we were to take this on face value (Really? Another tape?), how does Obama's ability to recite the Muslim call to prayer determine anything about whether or not he was a Muslim prior to becoming a Christian? The man lived in the most populous Muslim country in the world, never made any bones about being surrounded by that culture, and obviously heard the call to prayer a time or two. in short, this is a nothing story.

But it does serve to underscore where the smears against Obama are generally coming from.
 
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Previous Comments to this Post 

Comments
Good job, McQ. One example leads to a general conclusion.

The idea that Obama is getting assaulted generally from the left is one of the most ridiculous things you have asserted, McQ. And that’s saying something.

Do you seriously believe that Obama is getting it more from the left than the right? Seriously? What is your methodology for reaching this conclusion? Is MSNBC going after Obama more than Fox? Is The Nation more than National Review? Does Atrios smear Obama more than Hugh Hewitt? Kos more than Malkin?

The answer is of course no.

Geez.

 
Written By: mkultra
URL: http://
I imagine your run-of-the-mill Jehovah’s Witness could recite the Pledge of Allegience from memory as well.

MK - You’re confusing "smears" with legitimate criticism that is policy and ideologically-based. Doesn’t suprise me, as you seem to confuse reasoned debate with getting your panties in a knot.
 
Written By: Ronnie Gipper
URL: http://
Good job, MK. You have once again provided absolutely no evidence for your conclusions.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
The problem is that you seem to be confusing the words smear and criticize.

wow... I’m way to slow
 
Written By: Ryan Frank
URL: http://
Are you guys that slow...McQ isn’t posting this as a "smear" of Obama, but of those ON THE LEFT who ae smearing Obama...

Yuo Lefties ARE dense, you thoght the New Yorker COver was a smear...of Obama, when it was satire. It looks to me like you guys are so interested in protecting Mr Anderson/Neo/The One that you can’t tell why someone is writing, if it’s not an elegiac to the Messiah.

Bottom-line: McQ is pointing out that it s NOT the Right smearing Obama but his own side of the ideologic spectrum, kinda of putting paid to the claimit is the RIght that smears folks.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
It’s a post by Michael, by the way.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
It’s a post by Michael, by the way.
Leave t to MK to miss that small fact.
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
I suppose he’s getting the idea from the PUMAs and No Quarterians who are demonstrably resorting to smears. Also, the mainstream hits from the Right have been about flip flopping and tax raising and what not (agree to disagree; I’m one of the pinko liberals). That said, if you want to insist that No Quarter is Left Wing, then I get to call the Ron Paul Forums "Right Wing." Deal?
 
Written By: janine
URL: http://
if you want to insist that No Quarter is Left Wing
He was a Hillary shill...

Do I have to draw a map for where people are on the "left/right" timeline?
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
But it does serve to underscore where the smears against Obama are generally coming from.
The Daily Show makes a pretty good case about where most of these rumors obtained traction. An obscure blogger, or the MSM?

Watch the whole thing. It’s worth it, trust me.

Cheers.
 
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
That was MK’s driveby for today....stay tuned when tomorrow MK drives by again and proves why he’s not at the top of his game these days.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Pogue - how did it become a headline for the MSM? Almost every story mentions "offended" parties.
That’s what made it news.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Pogue - how did it become a headline for the MSM?
It seemed to have all originated from a piece from a blog run by the Washington Times, hardly a left wing outfit.

Insight Magazine claims the accusation is from the Clinton camp although the claims are baseless and without reference as to whom the Clinton supporter was. There’s just not enough reliable evidence given by Insight Magazine to make a firm judgment

Maybe the InsightMag.com piece is accurate, maybe it’s not.

Truth is, no one knows for certain where these stories originated from. Not you, not I, not Michael or anyone else can raise hard evidence as to where those rumors come from.

Michael, you, and others, may think that there is a preponderance of evidence that points to the Clinton camp. I disagree.
There is more than enough reasonable doubt.

Cheers.
 
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
Still....Stewart is funny...good call.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Heh. Absolutely!

Didn’t you like this?
Stewart:
The Obama camp initially agreed that the cartoon was “tasteless and offense”.
Really!?
You know what your response should’ve been? Is this, it’s very easy, let me put the statement out for you:
Barack Obama is in no way upset about the cartoon that depicts him as a Muslim extremist, because you know who gets upset about cartoons? … Muslim extremists.
Funny stuff.

Cheers.

 
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
Need yet another reason to not vote Obama?

Actually, I didn’t.

 
Written By: rob
URL: http://
Screenshot everything, save every cache, archive, save save save

Because come the next few months, all those slurs and smears will be from the right and the right only, just like magic.

And the evidence will be gone the way of Obama’s Iraq page on his website
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
My bad. It was Michael.

But since there is not a degree of difference, so what?


 
Written By: mkultra
URL: http://
MK - You’re confusing "smears" with legitimate criticism that is policy and ideologically-based. Doesn’t suprise me, as you seem to confuse reasoned debate with getting your panties in a knot.
Actually, you are doing it. Michael used the term, not me.

More to point: What I view as a smear, you view as legit. And vice versa. And you are hysterical, while I am reasoned. But I don;t have to explain why, especially on the policy point. Why? Because you disagree with me. And if I mention "panties," that just shows I’m right.

Sad.

The "You seem crazy because you don’t agree with me" line of BS - standing alone, however stated - is just that, BS. Common tactic here, but still meaningless.

When someone disagrees with the dominant thought on this site, they point out the logical or policy reason for their position. When there is a response, it is typically non-responsive. Most likely you get a response like the one above - namely, you are crazy in light of my reasoned position. You wear panties. And I am the only one to engage in reasoned debate, while you wear panties.
 
Written By: mkultra
URL: http://
From Pogue’s CNN link claiming to have debunked the myth that Obama attended a madrassa:
Insight Magazine, which is owned by the same company as The Washington Times, reported on its Web site last week that associates of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-New York, had unearthed information the Illinois Democrat and likely presidential candidate attended a Muslim religious school known for teaching the most fundamentalist form of Islam.

[...]

Obama has noted in his two books, "Dreams From My Father" and "The Audacity of Hope," that he spent two years in a Muslim school and another two years in a Catholic school while living in Indonesia from age 6 to 10.
Two things of note here: (1) Larry Johnson is widely credited as the "associate" of Hillary Clinton who started this rumor, and (2) Obama did in fact, by his own admission, attend a Muslim school, which is now just a general public school.

With respect to (1) above, there is no proof that Larry Johnson was the ultimate source of the madrassa rumor, but there are a lot indicators pointing directly at him. Coupled with the fact that he and his website (as evidenced by the catalyst for this post) have routinely spread other rumors about Obama, Johnson doesn’t deserve the benefit of the doubt. Are there righties out there spreading this stuff around? Sure. But the ultimate source tends to lead back to Johnson more times than not.

Regarding (2), Obama did attend a Muslim school (and a Catholic one as well), but that’s not the same thing as a madrassa (or, at least, not what most Americans think of one). And although he may not have practiced (and there’s no evidence that he ever did), he was a Muslim when he was younger (not by his own choice):

Almighty Allãh has made our souls such that we are able to distinguish between what is good and what is evil. But for human soul to function on its fitra, there is a condition—it must be kept pure, it must be immunized against spiritual corruption. The soul is like a bulb which can give light provided it itself is not surrounded with a thick cover or dust; every human being has that light in his soul; however, those who keep it pure can enlighten their path with it while those who allow the `spiritual dirt’ to gather upon it cannot see the path towards Allãh. (Incidentally, kufr (infidelity) literally means a cover, and so it implies that kufr prevents the inner light from showing the right path.) The Prophet of Islam emphasized the same point when he said, "Every child is born with the believing nature (al-fitra), it is his parents who make him into a Jew or a Christian."

[...]

Even the terms used by the shari`ah for apostates give the idea of treason to this whole phenomenon. "Murtad" means apostate. Murtad can be of two types: fitri and milli.
(1) "Murtad Fitri" means a person who is born of a Muslim parent and then he rejects Islam. "Fitrah" means creation. The term "murtad fitri" implies that the person has apostated from the faith in which he was born.
(2) "Murtad Milli" means a person who converted to Islam and then later on he rejects Islam. Milli is from millat which means religion. The term "murtad milli" implies that the person has apostated from his religion and the Muslim community.
In the first case, the apostasy is like the treason against God; whereas in the second case, the apostasy is like the treason against the Muslim community. Probably, that is why the Sh`iah jurisprudence deals with these two kinds of murtads differently:
• A former kãfir who became a Muslim and then apostates (murtad milli), he is given a second chance: if he repents, then he is not to be killed; but if he does not repent, then he is to be killed.
But one who is born as a Muslim and then apostates (murtad fitri), he is to be killed even if he repents. It is important to understand that in case a murtad fitri repents, Allãh may accept his repentance and he may be forgiven in the hereafter, but he still has to go through the punishment prescribed for his treason in this world.
The bottom line is that if Obama was more honest about it he would have fewer rumors to deal with. And regarding the post, these rumors he has to deal with seem to always lead back to Hillary surrogate Larry Johnson.
 
Written By: MichaelW
URL: http://qando.net
Actually, you are doing it. Michael used the term, not me.
Qua?

Should I unpack this for you, or do I even care?

*sigh* It’s going to fall on deaf ears, but here it goes. You said:
Do you seriously believe that Obama is getting it more from the left than the right? Seriously? What is your methodology for reaching this conclusion? Is MSNBC going after Obama more than Fox? Is The Nation more than National Review? Does Atrios smear Obama more than Hugh Hewitt? Kos more than Malkin?
I can’t vouch for MSNBC vs. Fox or Kos vs. Malkin. I do know that The Nation’s and Hewitt’s criticisms of Obama are policy and ideologically-based. I imagine Malkin’s are, but I don’t really follow her blog. I can say with certainty that QandO is consistent in ragging on Obama’s naivetee, rather than his middle name.
More to point: What I view as a smear, you view as legit. And vice versa.
Is this true? I view attempts to malign the man with fake "whitey" tapes as a smear. Do you view the fake "whitey" tape as legitimate confusion? I’m confused here.

A legitimate criticism would be that Obama claims he’s for change, yet he parlayed his position in Chicago into a cushy real estate deal with the recently convicted Tony Rezco. I’m sorry, how is that a smear?
And you are hysterical, while I am reasoned.
Never said you were hysterical. Just inferred that you were easily agitated, and implied same. You’ve done very little to convince me otherwise.
The "You seem crazy because you don’t agree with me" line of BS - standing alone, however stated - is just that, BS. Common tactic here, but still meaningless.
This is pure straw man. I never said you were crazy. Easily agitated, yes (and QED, BTW) but not crazy. Opining out of ignorance, prejudice or just plain stubbornness is not crazy per se. (Don’t get me wrong, you could be completely nuts for all I know.)
When someone disagrees with the dominant thought on this site, they point out the logical or policy reason for their position
May I assume you are referring to yourself? Tell me, what logical or policy reason did you point out in post number one? You actually ask "What is your methodology for reaching this conclusion?" Did you bother to read the blog entry?

Really, I’ve gone on too long here. Make a point with some backbone, will you?
 
Written By: Ronnie Gipper
URL: http://
Oops - "Do you view the fake "whitey" tape as legitimate criticism?" I’m just that confused by your assertion.
 
Written By: Ronnie Gipper
URL: http://
Re: "how does Obama’s ability to recite the Muslim call to prayer determine anything about whether or not he was a Muslim prior to becoming a Christian? The man lived in the most populous Muslim country in the world, never made any bones about being surrounded by that culture, and obviously heard the call to prayer a time or two."

a. Obama has never been baptized. Swearing allegiance to "The Black Value System" doesn’t make one a Christian.

b. Obama left Indonesia in 1972. The Kristoff interview was in 2007. Kristoff describes Obama’s recitation of the Adhan (Azaan), the Muslim call to prayer, "with a first-class [Arabic] accent."

c. In the interview, Obama said the Muslim call to prayer is "one of the prettiest sounds on Earth."

d. The first 5 lines of the Adhan is the Shahada. According to Islamic scholars, reciting the Shahada, the Muslim declaration of faith, makes one a Muslim. This simple yet profound statement expresses a Muslim’s complete acceptance of, and total commitment to, the message of Islam.

e. If the Adhan is "one of the prettiest sounds on Earth," and Obama can recite the Adhan
after a 35 year absence from Indonesia, doesn’t that suggest the Adhan has gone through his head often since?

f. Indonesians speak Bahasa, not Arabic, so where and how did Obama get "a first-class [Arabic] accent?"

Just a few facts to ponder
 
Written By: Beckwith
URL: http://TheObamaFile.com
When I was a kid, my Dad was a diplomat assigned to Saudi Arabia. There was a mosque across the street from my house. To this day, I can recite at least the first couple lines of the muezzin’s call. It ain’t that hard when it’s amplified through your bedroom window at five in the morning, day after day.

I have no use for Obama, I was a Fred! man myself. But Michael is right, this is just Larry Johnson making with the Stupid again.
 
Written By: Mars vs Hollywood
URL: http://
let’s listen to what obama is telling us:

my father was a muslim.
my paternal family is muslim.
i was schooled in a madrassa.
i know muslim prayers in arabic.
i refuse to release my birth certificate.
i converted to christianity - at a "black liberation theology" church by its racist preacher.

I CALLED MY OWN GRANDMOTHER - WHO RAISED ME - A TYPICAL WHITE PERSON.

i don’t know how many states are in the union.
i don’t know more than one bomb fell on pearl harbor.
i don’t know the u.s. military command structure.
i never served in uniform - or ran a business, or was ceo of anything.

i was nurtured politically by fundraisers like rezko and the chicago machine.

i opposed the iraq war, voted against funding the troops, and the surge.

[partial listing]

YEAH: HE’S THE PERFECT MAN TO BECOME PRESIDENT OF THE USA AND LEADER OF THE FREE WORLD.
 
Written By: reliapundit
URL: http://astuteblogger.blogspot.com
Larry Johnson is not longer from "the left", and he’s not a Hillary supporter. Hillary is no longer running to be the nominee. How can he be supporting her?
 
Written By: Andrew
URL: http://
Shrillary is not running? Who would have thunk that? They’re hoping for a melt down in Denver and it is very possible if the Hussein DNC crowd don’t use the Islamic/Communist tactics they used on Fl and Mi. Dim’s in those two states must be proud to be ’half’ a person as decreed by the DNC. There is no way on god’s green earth Hussein O is not Islamic. Once in Islam there is no out, other than death, and he was without a doubt in Islam. The biggest con job in American history will be revealed in 2009. Too late, so the left wing fools along with the rest of us will suffer the result.
When the dim’s promised change in 2006 they really meant it. Crashing the economy is change from a booming economy. $4.50 gas is change from $2 gas. The Islamic world must be laughting their a**es off.
 
Written By: Scrapiron
URL: http://
Andrew, the answer to your question is that Larry Johnson and his minions don’t relate to reality, but to the imaginary world they have created for themselves.

Anyways, it’s funny how their post says "it’s being reported today" about this - but where? By whom? Oh, right, by their imagination, as usual.
 
Written By: Seixon
URL: http://
I would not be at all surprised he could do some prayers in Arabic as he was a child in Indonesia with a Muslim stepfather. Its the equivalent of a Mulsim kid who went to catholic school to know some catholic prayers, i.e. a sign of inquisitive mind. I know, this post isn’t about that, but about who’s peddling these stories that supposedly are going to cost him the election.

Also, seriously, I don’t think his school in Indonesia can be called a madrassa. Those are in Pakistan. In Indonesia they are called pesantren. I seriously doubt he attended one of those instead of a normal public school there.
 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
b. Obama left Indonesia in 1972. The Kristoff interview was in 2007. Kristoff describes Obama’s recitation of the Adhan (Azaan), the Muslim call to prayer, "with a first-class [Arabic] accent."

Yeah, how does Kristoff know what a first-class accent sounds like? Seriously.


c. In the interview, Obama said the Muslim call to prayer is "one of the prettiest sounds on Earth."

It is very beautiful indeed. Especially when you know you can just go back to sleep and don’t actually have to get up and pray!


d. The first 5 lines of the Adhan is the Shahada. According to Islamic scholars, reciting the Shahada, the Muslim declaration of faith, makes one a Muslim. This simple yet profound statement expresses a Muslim’s complete acceptance of, and total commitment to, the message of Islam.

e. If the Adhan is "one of the prettiest sounds on Earth," and Obama can recite the Adhan
after a 35 year absence from Indonesia, doesn’t that suggest the Adhan has gone through his head often since?

Actually, I believe he went back to write part of his book. And remember you’re hearing the call to prayers 5 times a day, 365 days a year for how long? People recall TV commercials years after they are gone, too. "Don’t squeeze the Charmin"


f. Indonesians speak Bahasa, not Arabic, so where and how did Obama get "a first-class [Arabic] accent?"

See, I think Kristoff must be talking out of his ass here, but the guys who do the call do practice it a lot, and supposedly they have "good accents" so if he simply mimicked them...

 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
Oh, and I believe the Indonesian public school system has religious streamed schools, but they are not madrassas...in fact, he should have also learned about Pancasila when he was there. I wonder if he can recite that too as they have classes about it.
 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://
Some of you can remember it, that makes sense. Reciting it in a public venue (or for public dissemination, in this case) is the declaration of conversion in Islam. Oh, I guess he didn’t know that part, but I bet the cheering Islamic throngs know it!
 
Written By: John
URL: http://

 
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