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CAC, Obama and the Ayers Connection (update)
Posted by: McQ on Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Stanley Kurtz digs into one of the more interesting and yet mostly unanswered questions of Obama's past:
Despite having authored two autobiographies, Barack Obama has never written about his most important executive experience. From 1995 to 1999, he led an education foundation called the Chicago Annenberg Challenge (CAC), and remained on the board until 2001. The group poured more than $100 million into the hands of community organizers and radical education activists.
It's not just his "most important executive experience", it is his only real executive experience. Yet he doesn't mention it or tout it. Why?

Well perhaps it is because of what the CAC did and aimed to do. His relationship with Bill Ayers aside (which any fair-minded person would conclude was more than casual), what was the CAC Obama chaired?
The CAC's agenda flowed from Mr. Ayers's educational philosophy, which called for infusing students and their parents with a radical political commitment, and which downplayed achievement tests in favor of activism. In the mid-1960s, Mr. Ayers taught at a radical alternative school, and served as a community organizer in Cleveland's ghetto.

In works like "City Kids, City Teachers" and "Teaching the Personal and the Political," Mr. Ayers wrote that teachers should be community organizers dedicated to provoking resistance to American racism and oppression. His preferred alternative? "I'm a radical, Leftist, small 'c' communist," Mr. Ayers said in an interview in Ron Chepesiuk's, "Sixties Radicals," at about the same time Mr. Ayers was forming CAC.

CAC translated Mr. Ayers's radicalism into practice. Instead of funding schools directly, it required schools to affiliate with "external partners," which actually got the money. Proposals from groups focused on math/science achievement were turned down. Instead CAC disbursed money through various far-left community organizers, such as the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (or Acorn).
Over the years in which Obama chaired the organization and sat on its board, it gave 100 million in funds to these activists ostensibly to foster improvements in "education" among the poorer parts of Chicago. Instead it was really aimed at fostering radicalism:
External partners like the South Shore African Village Collaborative and the Dual Language Exchange focused more on political consciousness, Afrocentricity and bilingualism than traditional education. CAC's in-house evaluators comprehensively studied the effects of its grants on the test scores of Chicago public-school students. They found no evidence of educational improvement.

CAC also funded programs designed to promote "leadership" among parents. Ostensibly this was to enable parents to advocate on behalf of their children's education. In practice, it meant funding Mr. Obama's alma mater, the Developing Communities Project, to recruit parents to its overall political agenda. CAC records show that board member Arnold Weber was concerned that parents "organized" by community groups might be viewed by school principals "as a political threat." Mr. Obama arranged meetings with the Collaborative to smooth out Mr. Weber's objections.
Of course none of this is of interest to other MSM outlets.

They certainly seem to have little or no desire to dig into the Ayers relationship. There's too much gold to be dug out of the non-existent Alaskan Independent Party connection with Sarah Palin for them ever to take a serious look at the real extent of the relationship between Bill Ayers and Barack Obama or the real thrust of the CAC and its chairman for 5 years.

Kurtz concludes:
The Obama campaign has cried foul when Bill Ayers comes up, claiming "guilt by association." Yet the issue here isn't guilt by association; it's guilt by participation. As CAC chairman, Mr. Obama was lending moral and financial support to Mr. Ayers and his radical circle. That is a story even if Mr. Ayers had never planted a single bomb 40 years ago.
At the NYT, the chirping of crickets.

UPDATE: Geez, why not prove the point. Marc Ambinder today:
Associations can be fair game, but here's my question about Barack Obama and William Ayres:

What "radical" ideas did Obama and Bill Ayres come up with to foist on the Chicago school system?

What specific projects — "radical" projects — did Obama work on with Ayres? Is there evidence that they collaborated and schemed to ... do anything "radical" together? Ever?

Or just that they served on a board of a fairly well-respected liberal charity at the same time? And that left-leaning charities tend to give money to left-leaning organizations, a la ACORN?

Is the real story here that Obama once served on the board of a liberal education charity?
Well at this point we don't know, Mr. Ambinder - why aren't you out there demanding answers to these questions?
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Previous Comments to this Post 

"Of course none of this is of interest to other MSM outlets."

Of course not. Bill Ayers’s politics is just progressivism-in-fast-forward.

Blowing up policemen (and their dates) and your own girlfriend — it’s dissent man, the highest-form-of-patriotism. Or least that’s something Thomas Jefferson said (or was it Ben Franklin?)
Written By: T
URL: http://
Hey, your betters don’t think you (or anyone else) need to know abou this. Who do you think you are?
Written By: Rich Horton
After reading the snit by Ben Smith of "The Politico" last night, I left reminded that in this political season the 4th estate has done the American public a disservice.

After the Iraq War started, the 4th estate spent months before they finally decided that maybe they were vigilant enough with their reporting running up to the war.

In this election, the 4th estate repeats it’s error by falling into the same trap.

Fool me once, shame on you
Fool me twice, shame on me

In this election, the 4th estate has actually allowed one of the candidates to write his own narrative, based on two auto-biographical books, that is full of holes for large time sequences.

Today, with only 40 some days remaining till the election, a bit of one of those 4 year holes is filled in, but much is still left unknown.

Will the 4th estate be comtemplating the navel for that time or will they begin to ask the questions that will give the American people a complete story ?

Not only does the future of their craft stand in balance, the future of the country demands better.

If they are not up to the challenge .. we will look elsewhere.
Written By: Neo
URL: http://
The CAC/Ayers connection is sufficient to conclude that Obama is not fit to be President. Or Vice President. Or Senator, for that matter.
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Instead it was really aimed at fostering radicalism:
I want to know who got rich off it.
Written By: Arcs
URL: http://
I’m still trying to figure out who put Ayers in the proximity of that much cash for distribution.
Written By: looker
URL: http://
I want to know why Ayers chose Obama. He went on to kick off Obama’s political career in a fundraiser in his home. Essentially, he was a key Obama sponser.


If Obama wins in November, does that mean the Weathermen are getting the President they always wanted?
Written By: Don
URL: http://
ACORN is "left-leaning"?

Well, I suppose, in the way that World War Two was "a territorial dispute".
Written By: Sigivald
URL: http://
Marc Ambinder seems to only be concerned with Obama’s leftist accomplishments; the concern should be wider and consider why Ayers chose Obama for the position.

In the 50s, Stalin’s agents actually infiltrated Hollywood. They achieved little in the way of concrete accomplishments (i.e., they mostly failed at creating pro-Soviet propaganda), but they were still trying to achieve something.

Written By: Don
URL: http://

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