Obama Groomed for 30 years by Ford Foundation 'phony left', and the CIA CFR, the Trilateral Commission to become President Obama family connections in Indonesia, Pakistan Summary & Wikipedia Jesse Ventura / CNN / Examiner
|Bush / Clinton / Reagan crime family graphic source: Progressive Review file|
||Bush / Clinton
Crime Families, back
Wikipedia CIA 'Family Jewels' documents USAID as CIA front.
|Bush / Clinton / Reagan Crime families top|
|Obama, Birth Certificate top|
|Obama, Passportgate and other dirty tricks 08 top|
|Obama Re-election Chicago 2012 top|
|Obama, groomed for 30 years by Ford Foundation - Trilateral Commission, Bilderberg, CFR to become president, family has long history with CIA....bisexual, Blackmail, top go to WMR report||
CIA, Trilateral Commission, Ford Foundation groomed Obama for 30 years to become President.
June 1-2, 2010 -- Obama's and Emanuel's Upper Chi-Town activities noted by fed law enforcement
Since WMR's report on the membership of President Obama and his chief of staff Rahm Emanuel in a Chicago uptown gay bath house called "Man's Country," WMR has received a number of confirmations from federal law enforcement and U.S. intelligence sources. ... In fact, WMR has been informed by reliable U.S. law enforcement sources that President Obama's staff is in "damage control" following WMR's report on "Man's Country," that the President and his staff hastily arranged for a Memorial Day weekend stay in Chicago for the First Family -- their first since February 2009 -- and that there may have been inappropriate and possibly illegal communications between Obama's staff and the US Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois Patrick Fitzgerald. ... WMR has learned that a White House group of "leak pluggers" has been dispatched to Chicago to ensure that nothing embarrassing about Obama or Emanuel are revealed during the Blagojevich trial. In addition, the team is scouring the Chicago area to ensure that proof of Obama's and Emanuel's homosexual activities is suppressed. ... The Obama team is concerned that the trial of ex-Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, schedules to begin this Thursday, might reveal details of the alternate life styles of Obama and Emanuel, particularly if certain wiretapped phone call transcripts are released. ... Blagojevich knows that the wiretap transcripts contain information damaging to Obama and Emanuel and intends to bring out these details at his trial, according to our well-placed sources in Chicago. Obama's staff, concerned about "surprises" at the trial of Blagojevich, has contacted Fitzgerald directly in what could represent an illegal attempt by the president to influence a federal trial. ... In addition, a retired US Secret Service source has confirmed that the agency knew about Obama's activities in Chicago "Boy's Town" gay bars and clubs and believed that the information would have been revealed by the media during the 2008 presidential campaign. However, the major media generally avoided digging too deep into Obama's past in Illinois. ... WMR has also learned that GOP opposition research professionals have recently been tasked with uncovering details of the past gay club activities of Obama and Emanuel. for complete report go to WMR
24, 2010 -- SPECIAL REPORT. Obama and Emanuel: members of same gay bath house club in Chicago
WayneMadsenReport President Obama and his chief of staff Rahm Emanuel are lifetime members of the same gay bath house in uptown Chicago, according to informed sources in Chicago's gay community, as well as veteran political sources in the city. ... The bath house, Man's Country, caters to older white men and it has been in business for some 30 years and is known as one of uptown Chicago's "grand old bathhouses." WMR was told by sources who are familiar with the bath house that it provides lifetime memberships to paying customers and that the club's computerized files and pre-computer paper files, include membership information for both Obama and Emanuel. However, sources close to "Man's Country" believe the U.S. Secret Service has purged the computer and filing cabinet files of the membership data on Obama and Emanuel. ... Members of Man's Country are also issued club identification cards. WMR learned that Obama and Emanuel possessed the ID cards, which were required for entry. ... Obama began frequenting Man's Country in the mid-1990s, during the time he transitioned from a lecturer at the University of Chicago Law School to his election as an Illinois State Senator in 1996. Emanuel, reportedly joined Man's Country after he left the Clinton White Hosue and moved back to Chicago in 1998, joining the investment firm of Wasserstein Perella and maintaining his membership during his 2002 campaign for the U.S. 5th District House seat vacated by Rod Blagojevich, who was elected governor. ... Man's Country appears to be a "one stop shopping" center for gay men. The club's website advertises steam rooms, "fantasy rooms," bed rooms, male strippers, adult movies, and lockers. ... However, Man's Country was not the only location for Obama's predatory gay sex activities. The Chicago gay community is aware that Obama often made contacts with younger men at his famous "pick-up basketball" games. It was at these "pick up" matches where Obama first met Emanuel and a young Democratic campaign worker and senior bank vice president named Alexi Giannoulias. Currently running for Obama's old U.S. Senate seat now occupied by Roland Burris, Giannoulias successfully ran for Illinois Treasurer in 2006 after being drafted for the run by .... more at WMR
The Blagojevich trial: "Sex, Lies, and Audio tapes" -- Fitzgerald's US Attorney's Office part of White House cover-up of gay sex in the Second City
Giannoulias was a vice president and senior loan officer for his father's bank, Broadway Bank, from 2002 to 2006. Broadway Bank made real estate loans to Antoin "Tony" Rezko, the chief of Rezmar Corporation. On May 13, 2008, Rezko was found gulty, after being indicted by a grand jury at the behest of the U.S. Attorney for Northern Illinois Patrick J. Fitzgerald, of six counts of wire fraud, six counts of mail fraud, two counts of corrupt solicitation, and two counts of money laundering. Rezko has been in solitary confinement at the Metropolitan Detention Center at Van Buren and Clark in Chicago since June 2008. However, Rezko has not yet been officially sentenced to a federal prison. A Syrian-American, Rezko is considered to be a flight risk, even though his one-time fortune of $50 million has been reduced to zero. ... One Republican politician in Chicago told WMR that Rezko will be a prime witness for Blagojevich's defense. "Figure it this way, Rezko's been in solitary confinement in the city jail since June 0f 2008 . . . if he is released to appear at Blagojevich's trial as the primary witness, everyone expects him to squeal like a pig," said the Republican politico. ... In 2005, Rezko reportedly engaged in a complicated real estate "flip" through which his wife Rita and Obama agreed to split an empty lot adjoining a home that Obama bought in Chicago's Kenwood district. The deal saw Obama buy the home for $1.65 million, which was $300,00 below market value. Obama then bought a strip of the adjoining property from Mrs. Rezko, a speculative deal that stood to make Obama a handsome profit. Since Rezko's conviction, the property has has reportedly gone into bankruptcy. Giannoulias's Broadway Bank was seized by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation on April 23, 2010, reportedly as Secretary of Treasury Tim Geithner was on his way to Chicago to present the bank with a bailout check. Geithner quickly changed his plans. ... Giannoulias, Broadway's then-senior loan officer, has denied being involved in the decision to loan money to Rezko.
Last month, Blagojevich's trial judge, U.S. District Court judge James Zagel, a crony of former Illinois Republican Governor Jim Thompson, ruled that all 500 hours of phone calls intercepted and taped by Fitzgerald could not be played during Blagojevich's trial as demanded by Blagojevich and his defense lawyers. Blagojevich demanded that Fitzgerald "show up in court and explain to everybody . . . why you don’t want those tapes that you made...." more at WMR
WMR has learned that the tapes may contain salty references Obama's and Emanuel's private lives. ... WMR attempted to interview Blagojevich's senior defense lawyer Sam Adam to no avail but other informed sources told us that the tapes, if played, would highlight the corruption of not only Obama, Emanuel, and other member of Obama's Chicago "brain trust" but also Fitzgerald himself. WMR was told that Fitzgerald's tactics have included providing sex and drugs to imprisoned felons to get them to provide perjured testimony at federal trials. ... It is exactly the type of federal prosecutorial misconduct by Fitzgerald that former Republican Governor said was used by state prosecutors when he commuted the death sentences of Illinois's death row population. Ryan was indicted by Fitzgerald for fraud and he is currently serving out a federal prison sentence. ... Blagojevich's trial is scheduled to begin on June 3 and Fitzgerald's main interest is to keep the trial focused on Blagojevich, especially after he managed to "flip" Blagojevich's former chief of staff John Harris to testify against the impeached and ousted governor. WMR learned from informed sources that one lawyer on Harris's defense team is involved in a gay partner scandal that was discovered by the attorney's wife. ... Some of the wiretaps may reveal that it was not Valerie Jarrett, Obama's longtime friend and current White House policy adviser who was Obama's top candidate to fill his U.S. Senate seat, but the young 32-year old "pick up basketball" friend of Obama, Giannoulias, then serving his second year as state Treasurer. However, Obama has avoided campaigning for Giannoulias in Illinois and there are indications that the president has "thrown Giannoulias under the bus," according to some Democratic political circles in Chicago. ... Mutiple Chicago sources report that Republicans who see Giannoulias's Obama connections as providing an edge in his Senate race this year should not celebrate prematurely. Giannoulias's GOP opponent, U.S. Representative Mark Kirk, a Naval Reserve intelligence officer, has also been identified as a closeted gay man. Kirk divorced his wife last year after an eight-year marriage. They had no children. ... In addition, U.S. Representative Aaron Shock, who took over the House seat vacated by Obama's Republican Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, is, according to Chicago Boy's Town sources, a habitué of Minibar, a noted gay bar in Chicago's gay district. For an extremely young first term member of the House, observers were surprised when GOP Minority Whip Eric Cantor of Virginia named Shock as a Deputy Minority Whip. more at WMR
Man's Country, one of Chicago's "grand old bathhouses" and located at 5015 North Clark Street in Chicago's "Boystown," was a frequent hangout for State Senator Obama and Rahm Emanuel
Sources in Chicago's gay community report that Obama was attracted to Man's Country's older white clientele because he generally enjoys being fellated by older white men. Obama would regularly be seen at Man's Country on Wednesdays. ... Obama reportedly has never engaged in reciprocal activity. The sources also confirm the allegations made during the 2008 campaign by Larry Sinclair, a male escort who revealed that in 1999 he engaged in such oral sex activity and crack cocaine use with then-State senator Obama on two occasions, once in the back of a Chicago limousine operated by Five Star Limousine Service, and the other at a Chicago area motel, the Comfort Suites in Gurnee, Illinois. ... After revealing details of the encounter at a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington, Sinclair was arrested by Washington Metropolitan Police on a fugitive warrant issued by Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden, the son of Obama's vice presidential running mate, Senator Joe Biden. Sinclair was charged with a misdemeanor count of theft of money orders, however, the state of Delaware declined prosecution. Beau Biden later declined to run for his father's old Senate seat because of his duties to prosecute a major pedophilia case involving Lewes, Delaware pediatrician Dr. Earl Bradley. There are reports that Biden's office helped to cover up Bradley's activities, including failing to authorize search warants for Bradley's office and computer. ...
Chicago's "DLC" -- not the Democratic Leadership Council but the "Down Low Club" -- a gay matchmaking service
WMR spoke to several well-placed sources in Chicago who reported that Jeremiah Wright, the pastor of Obama's former church of 20 years, Trinity United Church of Christ (TUCC) on Chicago's south side, ran what was essentially a matchmaking service for gay married black professional members of the church, including lawyers and businessmen, particularly those with children. The matchmaking club was called the "Down Low Club" but references to it over the phone and email simply referred to the group with the code phrase "DLC." The ruse, according to our sources, was to make anyone who was eavesdropping on the communications believe that the references were to the Democratic Leadership Council, also known as the DLC. ... The gay DLC's services were intended to keep ensure TUCC's gay members avoided posting solicitations on web services like Craig's List and refrain from cruising gay bars. The strategy was to protect them from getting busted and being "outed."
Among the members of the gay "DLC" were Obama and TUCC's choir director, Donald Young, an openly gay man who reportedly had a sexual relationship with Obama. Two other gay members of the church were Larry Bland and Nate Spencer. Young and Bland were brutally murdered, execution style, in late 2007. Bland was murdered on November 17, 2007 and Young on December 24, 2007. The latter was killed by multiple gunshot wounds. Spencer reportedly died on December 26, 2007, official cause of death: "septicemia, pneumonia, and HIV." ... "DLC" members often went on camping trips arranged by TUCC. Wright reportedly was the head of the "DLC" matchmaking services and ensured that its members protected each other. ... The "DLC's" clientele included Obama and other gay members of TUCC, including, reportedly Young, Bland, and Spencer. Fox 32 Chicago reported that Bland's mother, Josephine Bland, was so upset at her son inviting men into their home as a result of contacting them through gay web sites like "Adam4Adam," she moved out. ... The gay community in Chicago knows to keep away from the TUCC and "DLC" stories because of the "creepiness" of the operation and the suspicious deaths of the three TUCC gay black men. ... Although Obama protected his alternate life style through the secretiveness of the "DLC," he was not so careful when he proclaimed he was a state senator while frolicking at Man's Country in uptown Chicago.
Love: Obama's personal trainer
Reggie Love, a former Duke basketball and football player and unsuccessful National Basketball hopeful, currently serves as Obama's personal trainer and White House "special assistant" -- he has been called Obama's "body man" -- who receives a salary of $104,000 a year. Love is also reportedly one of Obama's regular gay sex partners. Love joined Obama's Senate staff in a senior staff position in 2006. ... Media General's tabloid, the National Enquirer, proffered a story last year about Michelle Obama being furious about the relationship between her husband and his "body man." The Enquirer's sister tabloid, The Globe, later floated a story about Obama having a relationship with a Democratic campaign official named Vera Baker. WMR has been told that this relationship was a clever ruse to throw off speculation about Obama's actual past sex partners. Baker has apparently left the United States for relatively more obscurity in Martinique. Media General's tabloids have scooped the mainstream media on sex scandals involving Bill Clinton and Gennifer Flowers and Monica Lewinsky, Tiger Woods, and John Edwards and Rielle Hunter. ... WMR's Chicago sources believe the Secret Service records of presidential candidate Obama's activities in Chicago would show that Obama regularly arrived at Love's Chicago residence at 9:00 am and departed at 9:15 am. Sources told WMR that while 15 minutes is much too short for a personal training exercise, it is ample time for felatio... go to WMR
Bill Frist, "Brokeback Mountain," and Obama
In 2006, after Obama became the junior senator from Illinois, WMR's sources in the Congressional Black Caucus reported that there were persistent rumors of gay trysts between Obama and then-GOP Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist of Tennessee. The allegations at the time seemed unbelievable. ... However, based on Obama's penchant for receiving fellatio from older white men, a column written by The Washington Post's "Inside the Loop" columnist Al Kamen on April 7, 2006, some four months into Obama's Senate term, may have expanded relevance. Kamen reported he received an invitation to attend Frist's "5th Annual VOLPAC '06 Weekend" in Nashville from April 21st to 23rd and that the invitation card required one to "unbuckle the cowboy's pants and look inside to see what this was all about." Kamen opined that the invitation seemed "a bit too 'Brokeback Mountain.'" ... The invitation advertised that the shindig would feature "one-of-a-kind music and special friends," although Kamen said there was no indication what made the "friends" so "special." Kamen then wrote, "The back of the card shows the cowboy from behind with a red flowered handkerchief sticking out of his right pocket. Wait a minute -- wasn't there something about how this used to be some kind of code in the gay community years ago? A way to signal each other in crowded, noisy bars? So we checked the GayCityUSA.com's Hanky Codes. Sure enough, there it was in the chart explaining what they mean: red hanky in right pocket. Oh, dear."
Rumors about Obama and Frist ran amok in Congressional Black Caucus circles in 2006.
Although Frist ran on the pledge of only serving two terms, he became Senate Majority Leader with all the perks of the office. WMR's sources in Chicago's gay community revealed that Frist's Majority Leader predecessor, Senator Trent Lott of Mississippi, was also known to seek the services of male prostitutes. Frist, who said he planned to run for President in 2006, decided against a run for the White House and also declined a run for Tennessee governor in 2010. ... With the rumor mill running at full speed in 2006, it is obvious why Frist abandoned politics so quickly for the medical business. Frist later endorsed Obama's health care proposals. A year later, when GOP Senator Larry Craig was arrested while soliciting for sex in a men's toilet stall at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, he changed his mind about immediately resigning his Senate seat. Knowing about his colleagues' behavior, he dug in his heels and completed his term in January 2009.
Rahm the "Sugar Daddy"
Obama's chief of staff Emanuel, who won a scholarship to the Joffrey Ballet but turned it down to attend college, is married and, like Obama, has children, in Emanuel's case, a son and two daughters. ... However, Emanuel, who is 50, also travel frequently with a male companion, a wealthy Chicago real estate developer, some five to six years his senior. WMR has learned from Chicago's gay community as well as political sources that Emanuel and his friend have gone together on a trip to India, skiing vacations, and soon plan a vacation in Florida, sans Mrs. Emanuel and the kids. ... In Chicago's gay community, Emanuel is known as "sugar daddy," promising young men with perks and lucrative positions if they sleep with him. On occasion, Emanuel has been with older men, such as his travel companion, but his preference is young, according to WMR's sources. Emanuel also often uses bicycling and basketball venues to make his approaches. Being an Emanuel "basketball buddy" is a key to professional success. ... WMR spoke to one member of the gay community in Chicago who had first hand knowledge of one of Emanuel's bed partners, an older man who runs a non-profit symphony organization. ... Obama's other sex partner.... WMR
WMR has previously reported on Obama's past trysts with Alabama Democratic U.S. Representative Artur Davis, a current primary candidate for governor of Alabama. Although not in the same class, Obama and Davis attended Harvard Law School during an overlap of their attendance at the law school. ... The information on Davis and Obama was gathered by opposition researchers for former Alabama Representative Earl Hilliard, who Davis defeated in the 2002 Democratic primary. Recently, WMR was informed by sources in Alabama that Attorney General Eric Holder traveled three days ago to Alabama to inform Davis that if he loses his primary race, he would be nominated by Obama to fill the job of U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Alabama, a position still held by Bush-appointee Leura Canary, one of the main prosecutors of convicted and jailed former Alabama Democratic Governor Don Siegelman. ... Chicago sources also informed WMR of another past gay partner of Obama, Massachusetts Democratic Governor Deval Patrick.
The Clear and Present Blackmail Threat
Leading secret alternate life styles, Obama and his chief of staff provide classic blackmail threats. Considering Obama's choice for the Supreme Court, Elena Kagan, who is reputedly a semi-open lesbian, the question must be posed how much Obama's and Emanuel's own covert life styles led to the decision to nominate Kagan, someone with no experience on a judicial bench. ... Similarly, the fact that so much is known about Obama's and Emanuel's trysts in Chicago begs another important question. If politicians, gay community activists, and journalists in the Windy City are aware of Obama's and Emanuel's highly blackmailable gay life styles, the same can certainly hold true for the executives of one of Chicago's corporate headquarters -- that of BP America's Production Operations. ... Throw in the intelligence agencies of America's allies, friends, enemies, and the situation becomes a clear and present danger to the national security of the United States.
|Jeremy Bernard, White House Social Secretary back to Obama gay Larry Sinclair page|
|Wikipedia: Jeremy Bernard was appointed White House Social Secretary by President Barack Obama on February 25, 2011. He is the first male, as well as the first openly gay individual, to serve as White House Social Secretary. Contents [hide] 1 Early life 2 Career 3 References 4 External links Early life ... Bernard was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas, where he attended TMI — The Episcopal School of Texas. His father, Herschel Bernard, was a fundraiser for Robert Kennedy and Ted Kennedy. Bernard attended Hunter College in New York City, but did not graduate. Career ... Bernard is a prominent Democratic fundraiser and gay rights advocate who served for eight years on the Democratic National Committee. He worked in the Obama Administration in Washington as the White House liason to the National Endowment for the Humanities and later, in Paris, as senior adviser to the U.S. Ambassador to France. References ... ^ Dunham, Richard S. (February 25, 2011). "Texan makes history as Obama social secretary". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved February 26, 2011. ^ Henderson, Nia-Malika; Bacon, Perry, Jr. (February 25, 2011). "Obama makes history with social secretary pick". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 26, 2011. ^ a b McDonald, Patrick Range (January 30, 2008). "Obama's Gay Gold Mine". LA Weekly. Retrieved February 26, 2011. ^ Bernstein, Jacob (February 26, 2011). "Jeremy Bernard: Washington’s New Power Broker". The Daily Beast. Retrieved February 26, 2011. |
|Titcomb arrested for prostitution, not Solicitation of Prostitution Surfermag forum|
|This is not about Obama being friends with "gay guys" ....unless "gay guys" are all prostitutes. This is about Obama running in gay prostitution circles. ... Yes the article implies that Titcomb was arrested for solicitation by saying "Titcomb was one of four men arrested in a 'reverse sting' targeting prostitution customers." ... The quotation marks around "reverse sting" can be valid as a quotation of someone's words, or as "apologetic quotes" ....."reverse sting" means the following term, "targeting prostitution customers." Since the article did not attribute the "reverse sting" quote, we must assume that it is an apologetic quote, and did not come from anyone at Hawaii Police Department. ... But the slam dunk comes when the article quotes the ACTUAL charge against Titcomb. He was arrested for prostitution, NOT for solicitation. ... You liberals are the ones always telling us that the press doesn't cover for Obama. Now you're trying to hide behind the cover. This writer covered as much as possible for Obama. But in the end, the charges are what they are. more|
|Frank Marshall Davis|
Wikipedia In his memoir Dreams from My Father,
Barack Obama wrote about "Frank", a friend of his
grandfather's. "Frank" told Obama that he and
Stanley (Obama's maternal grandfather) both had
grown up only 50 miles apart, near Wichita, although
they did not meet until Hawaii. He described the way
race relations were back then, including Jim Crow,
and his view that there had been little progress
since then. As Obama remembered, "It made me smile,
thinking back on Frank and his old Black Power,
dashiki self. In some ways he was as incurable as my
mother, as certain in his faith, living in the same
sixties time warp that Hawaii had created."
Obama also remembered Frank later in life when he
took a job in South Chicago as a community organizer
and took some time one day to visit the areas where
Frank had lived and wrote in his book, "I imagined
Frank in a baggy suit and wide lapels, standing in
front of the old Regal Theatre, waiting to see Duke
or Ella emerge from a gig."  In the opinion of
Gerald Horne, a contributing editor to the CPUSA
publication Political Affairs, Davis was "a decisive
influence in helping Obama to find his present
identity" as an African-American. Claims that
Davis was a political influence on Obama were made
by Jerome Corsi in his anti-Obama book The Obama
Nation. A rebuttal released by Obama's
presidential campaign, titled Unfit for Publication,
confirmed that "Frank" was Frank Marshall Davis, but
disputes those claims about the nature of their
and Sex Rebel Sex Rebel: (Amazon.com) and ScribD Black (Memoirs of a Gash Gourmet), (written under pseudonym "Bob Greene"); Greenleaf Publishing Company (Evanston, IL), 1968. Obama poems New York Times, Tarpley
|AP Photo Of Barack Obama's School Registration In Indonesia As Barry Soetero And As Indonesian Citizen ....Indonesia does not allow dual citizenship.|
I'm not making any charges or implying any judgement here, just putting up this AP Photo by Tatan Syuflana, along with the commentary from a post at Free Republic:
This registration document, made available on Jan. 24, 2007, by the Fransiskus Assisi school in Jakarta, Indonesia, shows the registration of Barack Obama under the name Barry Soetoro into the Catholic school made by his step-father, Lolo Soetoro. The document lists Barry Soetoro as a Indonesian citizen, born on August 4, 1961 in Honolulu, and shows his Muslim step-father listed the boy's religion as Islam.(AP Photo/ Tatan Syuflana) Let's just call this "food for thought." and of "possible interest."
Might I also add that I make no claim or assertion as to its validity; we just don't know yet if this thing is genuine.
Update: Pamela Geller at Atlas Shrugs writes that Hillary's folks are absolutely dizzy over this piece over at TexasDarlin: *Breaking* Photo Documents Barry Soetoro: Indonesian Citizen, Muslim Religion. This AP photo is compelling evidence of the following assertions, which have been set forth on this blog (TexasDarlin): 1. Barack Obama had Indonesian citizenship
2. Barack Obama had the legal name Barry Soetoro
3. Barack Obama was a Muslim, despite his "fight the smears" claim that he never has been. (see new story that we just posted on this topic).
In addition, it means that Barack Obama apparently lied to the Illinois Supreme Court when asked to provide former names, according to this Attorney's Registration Record:
(Click image to enlarge) Pamela says this isn't really news, that she ran this back in January 2007:
Barack Hussein Obama was registered under the name "Barry Soetoro" serial number 203 and entered the Franciscan Asisi Primary School on 1 January 1968 and sat in class 1B School documents listed Barry Soetoro as an Indonesian citizen born in Honolulu, Hawaii on 4 August 1961. Barry's religion was listed as Islam. School documents further record Barry's father as "L Soetoro Ma" who worked as an official of the Director General's office in the TNI Topography division of the Indonesian Army.
Barry attended the Franciscan Asisi Primary School for three years until class 3 afterwards his family moved house from H Ramir Street to Dempo Street where he attended Besuki Primary School for one year before departing to Hawaii.
Classmate Rony Amir describes a young Barry Soetoro as enjoying playing football and marbles and of being a very devout Muslim.
"Barry was previously quite religious in Islam. His birth father, Barack Hussein Obama was a Muslim economist from Kenya. Before marrying Ann Dunham, Hussein Obama was married to a woman from Kenya who had seven children. All the relatives of Barry's father were very devout Muslims"
"We previously often asked him to the prayer room close to the house." If he was wearing a sarong he looked funny , said Rony Amir, Barry's classmate when he lived on H Ramli street in Menteng, Jakarta."
Is their more to come of all this? Pamela's piece notes that the Indonesian media have been flooded with accounts of Obama's childhood Islamic studies, some describing him as a religious Muslim. Has the anointed one been lying to even his own party? I'm still not willing to totally buy-in to this COLB thingy, but one does have to admit that it begs to be looked at further. If only the National Enquirer could spend more time on this than outing that creepy scum Edwards ......
|WMR Indonesian Subud cult may have had a major follower (other than Obama's mother)|
August 9-10, 2012 --
While some media has focused on Mitt Romney's connections to the Mormon sect and its cult-like history, little attention is being paid to the Indonesian religious sect known as Subud. The mystical Javanese religious sect, founded by Indonesian Muhammad Subuh Sumohadiwidjojo, also known as "Bapak," attracted the interest of President Obama's mother, Ann Dunham Soetoro. Furthermore, Subud had a number of members at the East-West Center at the University of Hawaii, where Obama's mother met Barack Obama's father and step-father. There has been speculation that Obama's mother's close relationship with a number of Subud cultists in Indonesia and her Subud-style memorial service in Hawaii are indications that she, also, was an adherent of the Subud sect. Ann Soetoro also hired for her World Bank projects a number of Subud sect members from the International Subud Center in Cilandak on the outskirts of Jakarta
Bapak was a key player in the 1965 CIA-engineered coup against President Sukarno in Indonesia. Subud has also been accused of being yet another CIA mind-control religious operation. The Communist Party of Indonesia (PKI) and Sukarno's Foreign Minister, Dr. Subandrio, as well as Ceylon's assassinated Prime Minister, Solomon Bandaranaike, accused Subud of being a CIA front. The sect continues to maintain a religious compound in Front Royal, Virginia, about an hour's drive from CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia.
WMR has obtained a declassified CIA memorandum prepared by the CIA's Asia Division of the Office of East Asia Analysis, dated February 15, 1985 and titled "Indoensia's Suharto: Losing the Magic?" that states that none other than Indonesia's CIA-installed dictator, General Suharto, was an adherent of the Javanese mystical cult, also known as "Javanism." Ann Soetoro's work for the World Bank, Ford Foundation, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), Development Alterbative, Inc. -- a suspected CIA front -- and Indonesian banks, helped to prop up the Suharto dictatorship. Ms. Soetoro spoke fluent Indonesian, as well as Javanese.
The CIA memo states that Java's traditional mysticism was rife, not only among peasants, but "also educated businessmen, academics, military officers, and high level government officials -- including cabinet members." In addition, the memo states that "mysticism also plays an integral role in the perceptions and decision making among Indonesia's predominantly nominal Muslims." The CIA relied on Subud cultists, as well as Muslims, to gain popular support for its coup against Sukarno, a leftist nationalist, and the officially atheistic PKI.
The CIA summarized the importance of Subud and affiliated Javanist sects: "Belief in traditional mysticism, spiritualism, and parapsychology [emphasis added] exert a strong influence among the Indonesian populace."
The CIA memo also states that mysticism is "regarded as an important component of the eclectic religious style of most Javanese -- Muslim and Christian alike."
It is easy to understand how the CIA used Subud and Javanese mysticism to its advantage in the 1965 coup. The memo states: "Cultural traditions that maintain that society faces recurrent patterns of severe tests or 'transformations,' accompanied by domestic disorder -- one such pattern being a 20-year cycle. The last such major upheaval followed the attempted Communist coup in 1965, which set the stage for Soeharto's coming to power and contributed to his self-perception as a national savior."
In fact, there was no "attempted Communist coup in 1965." The murder of six Indonesian generals, blamed by the Indonesian army under Suharto's command, was actually a "false flag" conducted by the Indonesian army, with the CIA's support, to build up popular support for the bloody purge of the Communists and Sukarno's government. In keeping with its propaganda that Communists and Indonesian nationalists were part of a 20-year cycle of disruption, Javanese-style, a footnote in the CIA memo states: "Prior to 1965, similar upheavals occurred in 1926 when the Communist Party attempted to instigate an uprising, and in 1945 when Indonesians launched their war of independence against the Dutch, thus strengthening the notion among believers of a 20-year cycle of major upheavals."
As further evidence that the CIA used Javanese mysticism to its advantage, the memo states that the man installed by the CIA as Indonesian dictator, Suharto, was, himself, a Javanese mysticism cultist: . . . Soeharto, although a nominal Muslim, reportedly spent his late adolescence as apprentice to a prominent local mystic (dukun), learning techniques of soothsaying and prophecy . . . We do know that Soeharto routinely consults with several dukuns, including his longtime spiritual adviser and mystic, Sujono Humardhani, according to the US Embassy and other observers."
Sujono, according to Richard Lloyd Parry's book, In the Time of Madness: Indonesia on the Edge of Chaos, once snuck some sand from a holy site in Java and managed to sprinkle it on the White House carpet to guarantee that the United States would support Suharto and his "New Order" regime. Sujono later claimed the magic sand worked. Javanim's holiest deity is a fat, farting dwarf called Semar who is a sort of court jester for more worldy knights and nobles.
The CIA memo states, "Typical of Soeharto's use of mystical symbols was his choice of 11 March 1966 for the transfer of power from Sukarno to himself and the use of the Indonesian acronym (Supersemar) for the date. In a clear reference to Javanese mythology, Soeharto sought to draw a parallel between the victory of the bumbling dwarf, Semar, over his more worldly superiors and Soeharto's own victory over the more flamboyant Sukarno."
Suharto was surrounded with mystical ceremonial daggers, called "kris," as well as powders, potions, and elixirs, including aphrodisiacs.
The CIA memo appears to have had the interest of top level officials of the State Department, Treasury, and Pentagon. On the distribution list were Paul Wolfowitz, the Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian Affairs, who was named ambassador to Indonesia in 1986; Morton Abramowitz, the director of the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR); Lt. Gen. John T. Chain, Jr., the director of State's Politco-Military Affairs Bureau and later commander of the Strategic Air Command; Special Assistant to the United States Secretary of the Treasury for National Security and later INR chief Douglas P. Mulholland; National Security Council senior Asia adviser Wolfowitz's replacement as Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian Affairs Gaston Sigur; and Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy and later Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage. Sigur and Armitage were also later implicated in the Iran-contra scandal.
|ThinkProgress Swift Boat Obama|
|New Group With GOP Ties Tries To Swift Boat Obama A group of former Special Forces operatives is launching a media attack on President Obama over the killing of Osama bin Laden, Reuters reports. In the spirit of the infamous 2004 Swift Boat ads, which turned the military service of Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) against him, a new video by the Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund Inc accuses Obama of taking too much credit for the killing of Osama bin Laden. OPSEC claims to be a nonpartisan social welfare group. In “Dishonorable Disclosures,” its debut 22-minute video, the group accuses the Obama administration of deliberately leaking details of the Osama raid to “Hollywood producers” in order to take credit for the hard work of intelligence operatives and the Navy SEAL Team. Watch it: A voiceover wonders, “What is the cost of trading national secrets for political capital?” This is a question worth asking Fred Rustmann, a former CIA undercover case officer and OPSEC spokesman who appears in the video. Rustmann, who was once a supervisor for covert operative Valerie Plame, was dispatched by the Bush administration to defend the leak that jeopardized her undercover identity. Rustmann claimed the leak had no effect on covert operations: RUSTMANN: There are no major repercussions to the cover mechanism, no. To her — the question again gets down to whether somebody did this with malice or forethought. Then it’s a crime, and that person goes to jail. COLMES: But isn’t the question whether any damage was done because of the revelation? Whether lives were harmed, whether anyone was harmed, or security was harmed? RUSTMANN: Yes, I don’t think so. I think, if she were out there in that capacity, in that non-official capacity, and if she was handling agents — she was handling agents in another alias — we have different layers of cover that work. ... In spite of OPSEC’s claims of nonpartisanship, Rustmann is just one of their members with prominent GOP ties. OPSEC President Scott Taylor is fresh from his failed 2010 bid to be the Republican nominee in a congressional seat in Virginia. Spokesman Chad Kolton, who argued the group simply wants to protect intelligence agents, started his career in House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-OH) office before moving on to the Bush administration and, currently, working at a Republican-leaning PR firm. Conservative groups have tried this Swift Boat attack on Obama before. But officers who were actually involved in the operation have publicly affirmed Obama’s important role in the death of Osama bin Laden. Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates praised the president’s decision as “a very courageous call”. Admiral Bill McRaven, commander of the raid, agreed, “It was the president of the United States that shouldered the burden for this operation, that made the hard decisions, that was instrumental in the planning process, because I pitched every plan to him.”|
|Israel Science and Technology .... asserting the long-form birth certificate released by the White House is a forged document. page deleted Sept 12, 2012|
|Examiner The Obama You Don't Know (right-leaning article)|
|Few if any of his predecessors took the oath of office with
higher public hopes for his success than President Obama on Jan. 20,
Millions of Americans hailed his election as an end to partisanship, a renewal of the spirit of compromise and a reinvigoration of the nation's highest ideals at home and abroad. Above all, as America's first black chief executive, Obama symbolized the healing of long-festering wounds that were the terrible national legacy of slavery, the Reconstruction Era and Jim Crow. We would be, finally, one nation. But after nearly four years in office, Obama has become a sharply polarizing figure.
His admirers believe he deserves a special place alongside Wilson, the Roosevelts and LBJ as one of the architects of benevolent government.
His critics believe he is trying to remake America in the image of Europe's social democracies, replacing America's ethos of independence and individual enterprise with a welfare state inflamed by class divisions.
In an effort to get a clearer picture of Obama -- his shaping influences, his core beliefs, his political ambitions and his accomplishments -- The Washington Examiner conducted a four-month inquiry, interviewing dozens of his supporters and detractors in Chicago and elsewhere, and studying countless court transcripts, government reports and other official documents.
Over the years and in two autobiographies, Obama has presented himself to the world as many things, including radical community organizer, idealistic civil rights lawyer, dynamic reformer in the Illinois and U.S. senates, and, finally, the cool presidential voice of postpartisan hope and change.
With his air of reasonableness and moderation, he has projected a remarkably likable persona. Even in the midst of a historically dirty campaign for re-election, his likability numbers remain impressive, as seen in a recent AP-GFK Poll that found 53 percent of adults have a favorable view of him.
But beyond the spin and the polls, a starkly different picture emerges. It is a portrait of a man quite unlike his image, not a visionary reformer but rather a classic Chicago machine pol who thrives on rewarding himself and his friends with the spoils of public office, and who uses his position to punish his enemies.
Peter Schweizer captures this other Obama with a bracing statistic in his book "Throw Them All Out," published last year. In the Obama economic stimulus program's Department of Energy loans, companies owned and run by Obama contributors and friends, like Solyndra's George Kaiser, received $16.4 billion. Those not linked to the president got only $4.1 billion. The Energy Department is far from the only federal program in which favoritism has heavily influenced federal grants.
To paraphrase Tammany Hall's George Washington Plunkitt, Obama has seen his opportunities and taken them, over and over.
First lady Michelle Obama told the Democratic National Convention that "Barack and I were both raised by families who didn't have much in the way of money or material possessions."
It is a claim the president has repeated in his books, on the speech-making circuit and in countless media interviews. By his account, he grew up in a broken home with a single mom, struggled for years as a child in an impoverished Third World country and then was raised by his grandparents in difficult circumstances.
The facts aren't nearly so clear-cut.
Ann Dunham was just 18 years old when she gave birth to Obama. She was a freshman at the University of Hawaii. His Kenyan father, Barack Hussein Obama Sr., was a few years older than Ann. They were married against family wishes.
Obama Sr. does not appear to have been welcoming or compassionate toward his new wife or son. It later turned out that he was secretly married to a Kenyan woman back home at the same time he fathered the young Obama.
He abandoned Obama Jr.'s mother when the boy was 1. In 1964, Dunham filed for a divorce that was not contested. Her parents helped to raise the young Obama.
Obama's mother met her second husband, an Indonesian named Lolo Soetoro, while working at the East-West Center in Hawaii. They married, and in 1967, the young Obama, then known as Barry Soetoro, traveled to Indonesia with his mother when the Indonesian government recalled his stepfather.
In Indonesia, the family's circumstances improved dramatically. According to Obama in his autobiography "Dreams from My Father," Lolo's brother-in-law was "making millions as a high official in the national oil company." It was through this brother-in-law that Obama's stepfather got a coveted job as a government relations officer with the Union Oil Co.
The family then moved to Menteng, then and now the most exclusive neighborhood of Jakarta, where bureaucrats, diplomats and economic elites reside.
A popular Indonesia travel site describes Menteng: "Designed by the Dutch Colonial Government in 1920s, Menteng still retains its graceful existence with its beautiful parks, cozy street cafes and luxurious housing complexes."
In 1971, his mother sent young Obama back to Hawaii, where his grandmother, Madelyn, known as Toots, would become one of the first female vice presidents of a Honolulu bank. His grandfather was in sales.
Obama's grandparents moved the same year into Punahou Circle Apartments, a sleek new 10-story apartment building just five blocks from the private Punahou School, which Obama would attend from 1971 to 1979.
Obama explains in "Dreams from My Father" that his admission to Punahou began "the start of something grand, an elevation in the family status that they took great pains to let everyone know."
To his credit, Obama did not downplay Punahou's upscale status, noting in his autobiography that it "had grown into a prestigious prep school, an incubator for island elites. Its reputation had helped sway my mother in her decision to send me back to the States."
Obama also admitted in the book that his grandfather pulled strings to get him into the school. "There was a long waiting list, and I was considered only because of the intervention of Gramps's boss, who was an alumnus."
The school still features a lush hillside campus overlooking the Waikiki skyline and the Pacific Ocean. It was one of the most expensive schools on the island, and both Obama and his half sister Maya Soetoro-Ng received scholarships.
While the Dunhams were not among the wealthiest families on the island, he nevertheless studied and socialized with the children of the social and financial elite. Obama has said he didn't fit in at the school. But that's not how other Hawaiians remember it.
Associated Press writer Sudhin Thanawala reported from Honolulu in 2008 that "classmates and teachers say Obama blended in well. He served on the editorial board of the school's literary magazine, played varsity basketball and sang in the choir. He went on the occasional date."
In his recent book "Barack Obama: The Story," Washington Post reporter David Maraniss said the future chief executive often smoked marijuana with prep school friends, rolling up the car windows to seek "total absorption," or "TA." They called themselves the "Choom Gang."
Edward Shanahan, a retired newspaper journalist who now edits downstreet.net and makes no effort to conceal his admiration for Obama, retraced his Hawaii years shortly after the president was elected.
Shanahan wrote that Obama lived in a "well-off neighborhood near the University of Hawaii where Barry, as he was known, resided in a comfortable home with his mother and her parents before she took him to Indonesia."
Sanahan said "our tour ended up on the lush, exquisitely maintained and altogether inviting campus of Punahou School, which we can imagine was a place of great comfort for Obama."
Tellingly, Obama has never lived in a black neighborhood. Maraniss reported in his book that when leftist activist Jerry Kellman interviewed Obama for a community organizing job in Chicago, he asked Obama how he felt about living and working in the black community for the first time in his life.
Obama accepted the job but chose not to live among those he would be organizing. Instead, he commuted 90 minutes each way daily from his apartment in Chicago's famous Hyde Park to the Altgeld Gardens housing project where he worked.
It was an early instance of Obama presenting himself one way while acting in quite a different wa
Time magazine gushed in 2008 about Barack Obama's 12-year tenure as a law lecturer at the University of Chicago Law School, saying, "Within a few years, he had become a rock-star professor with hordes of devoted students."
That may have been true during his first two years, when he ranked first among the law school's 40 instructors, with students giving him a rating of 9.7 out of a possible 10.
But law student evaluations made available to The Washington Examiner by the university showed that his popularity then fell steadily.
In 1999, only 23 percent of the students said they would repeat Obama's racism class. He was the third-lowest-ranked lecturer at the law school that year. And in 2003, only a third of the student evaluators recommended his classes.
His classes were small. A spring 1994 class attracted 14 out of a student body of 600; a spring 1996 class drew 13. In 1997, he had the largest class of his tenure with 49 students. But by then, his student rating had fallen to 7.75. Twenty-two of 40 faculty members ranked higher than Obama.
Some former faculty colleagues today describe Obama as disengaged, doing only what was minimally required and almost never participating in faculty activities.
And, unlike others on the Chicago Law School faculty who published numerous articles in legal journals, Obama's byline did not appear in a single legal journal while he taught there.
By comparison, more prominent legal scholars on the Chicago faculty wrote frequently. Federal Judge Richard Posner published 132 legal articles from 1993 to 2004, and federal Judge Frank Easterbrook published 32 legal articles from 1992 to 2004.
Obama has often cited his days at the law school as an important part of his preparation for the presidency. At a March 30, 2007, fundraiser, for example, he said, "I was a constitutional law professor, which means, unlike the current president, I actually respect the Constitution."
From 1992 until 2004, Obama taught three courses: "Current Issues in Racism and the Law," "Voting Rights and the Democratic Process," and "Equal Protection and Substantive Due Process."
Obama wasn't a professor; he was a lecturer, a position that the Chicago Law School said in 2008 "signifies adjunct status." He was elevated to a "senior lecturer" in 1996, the year he was first elected to the Illinois Senate in Springfield.
The new faculty status put him on par with Posner, Easterbrook and a third federal judge, Diane Wood. As the Chicago Law School explained, senior lecturers "have high-demand careers in politics or public service which prevent full time teaching."
Senior lecturers were, however, still expected to participate in university activities. University of Chicago Law School Senior Lecturer Richard Epstein told The Washington Examiner that Obama did not do so.
Obama, Epstein said, "did the minimal amount of work to get through. No one remembers him. He was not a participant in luncheons or workshops. He was here and gone."
Robert Alt, a former Obama student, echoes Epstein, telling the Examiner that "I think it's fair to say he wasn't engaged in the intellectual life of Chicago outside of the classroom."
Alt is director of the conservative Heritage Foundation's Rule of Law Programs and a senior legal fellow.
Alt said, "When you have faculty giving faculty lectures, you'd literally have packed rooms in which it's not unusual to have just all the big names of the university. It wasn't unusual to see Easterbrook and Posner, and it wasn't unusual to see the Nobel laureates attending as well."
Even so, Alt said, "I never remember ever seeing Obama in the audience."
Obama was also a no-show for the faculty workshops, nonclassroom lectures and moot court cases judged by sitting members of the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals of the U.S. Current Chicago Law School professor Lisa Bernstein said faculty lecturers are still encouraged to participate in as many such events as possible.
The pattern of minimal performance at the Chicago campus was not an exception to the rule for Obama. In the state Senate during the same years he was lecturing, Obama voted "present" nearly 130 times, the most of any legislator in the chamber.
When then-Sen. Hillary Clinton made Obama's state Senate voting record an issue in their Democratic presidential primary contest in 2007, the New York Times said it found at least 36 instances when Obama was the lone "present" vote or was one of six or fewer lawmakers casting that vote.
And during his lone term as a U.S. senator, according to Gov Track.us: "From Jan 2005 to Oct 2008, Obama missed 314 of 1300 recorded or roll call votes, which is 24.0%. This is worse than the median of 2.4
Few doubt that Barack Obama's stirring oration before the 2004 Democratic National Convention vaulted him into the national limelight.
But another, less-heralded Obama address -- delivered on Valentine's Day 1997 at First Chicago Bank -- was equally essential to his later successes. Without it, it is doubtful that he would have ever been in position to assume so prominent a role in 2004.
Obama was a newly elected Illinois state senator in 1997 when he addressed an audience that included many of Chicago's most powerful political insiders and activists, nonprofit executives, business movers and shakers, and philanthropic funders.
The occasion was a meeting of the Futures Committee, an elite Chicago civic leadership group created by the Local Initiatives Support Corp., or LISC, a liberal, nonprofit, low-income-housing activist group.
No authenticated text of Obama's speech -- which was billed beforehand by LISC in a promotional flier obtained by The Washington Examiner as "a local perspective on effective communities" -- is now known to exist.
But people interviewed by the Examiner who heard him speak say Obama laid out a powerful vision for a political strategy that ultimately reshaped housing activism on the Left, first in Chicago and then nationwide, even as it paved the way for an accommodation between the corrupt political machine of Mayor Richard M. Daley and its long-standing nemesis, the city's coalition of white liberal reformers and black community organizers.
Obama described a practical strategy for building on the federal Low Income Housing Tax Credit, or LIHTC, contained in the 1986 Tax Reform Act, plus federal, state and local funds and programs, to create new public-private development partnerships.
The LIHTC encouraged the partnerships needed to unite government officials and progressive nonprofit activists behind the cause of building thousands of new affordable-housing units, first on Chicago's poor South Side and then, as the movement spread, to similar neighborhoods across the nation.
Obama spoke at a time of great ferment on the Left in which federal housing policies became a central focus for political activism.
He was drawing from the same well that had produced the Community Reinvestment Act, relaxed federal standards for mortgage qualifications, and creative financial packaging of subprime loans, but doing so in a manner uniquely matched to conditions on the political ground of Chicago.
Public-private partnerships for affordable-housing projects were not a new idea to some of Obama's listeners, since philanthropic groups like the Ford Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation had been promoting the concept for several years.
Not coincidentally, it was a MacArthur vice president, Rebecca Riley, who arranged for Obama to speak at the Valentine's Day gathering.
Obama's innovation was to expand the concept beyond simply building affordable apartments and high-rises. It encompassed a cradle-to-grave vision of providing for the material needs of the low-income families residing in the new housing, including their schools, child care, job training, medical coverage, clothing and food.
In turn, the residents would campaign and vote for the officials advocating the partnerships, adding significantly to their political power.
Left unstated was the underlying reality that politically connected developers who built the housing would profit handsomely and could be expected to gratefully give millions of dollars in campaign contributions to politicians like Obama who made it all possible.
Chicago thus became the proving ground for Obama's vision, which, according to LISC spokesman Joel Bookman, "really changed the direction of community development in Chicago and ultimately nationally."
It was an irresistible combination of money, politics and idealism that also offered endless opportunities for greed and tragic abuse of the poor.
That made it an ideal tool for uniting the Daley machine with the reform coalition that had elected Harold Washington as the city's first African-American mayor in 1983. (Richard M. Daley, who reinvigorated the machine and became mayor in 1989, was the son of the machine's founder, Richard J. Daley, who died in 1976.)
The key to Obama's vision in Chicago, according to Marilyn Katz, was the city's most famous radical: "Remember, this is the community of Saul Alinsky. And most of the first housing groups were the Alinsky groups who were still banging at the door."
Katz, an influential Chicago public relations executive and longtime Obama friend and political operative, has visited the White House more than two dozen times since 2009.
Like so many in the liberal power base that served as a springboard for Obama, Katz had activist roots stretching back to her days as a Students for a Democratic Society operative in Chicago.
A Futures Committee handout for the Valentine's Day meeting titled, "Barack Obama's principles of community development," said the proposed program had "to organize around production, not just consumption."
Such words were a clarion call to activists raised on a thousand variations of the Marxist labor theory of value and capitalist alienation.
"He really questioned the kind of surrogate capitalist strategy that most of the nonprofit community-based organizations had been pursuing," Katz told the Examiner.
"And he suggested that a real estate strategy for redevelopment of communities was not enough and that you had to really go into the quality-of-life issues, education, wealth building, amenities that were the hallmarks of any community needs," she said.
Obama's vision "changed the direction and the nature of the 123 groups that were working in the various communities in the city. It was a very influential speech," she said.
The LISC vision speech was a critical turning point for Obama because his position with the Chicago law firm of Davis, Miner, Barnhill & Galland put him at ground zero with what Katz called "the tangential and interlocking circles between the Left-liberal political community, the urban redevelopment community, the legal community and politicos" who controlled Chicago, then and to this day.
It was from that point that Obama cultivated the personal, professional and political relationships that would serve him well all the way to the White House.
Writing in his 1995 autobiography, "Dreams from My Father," Obama said he became "a civil rights lawyer" because "to lend meaning to a community's suffering and take part in its healing -- that required something more."
There was indeed "something more" to Obama's legal career, but it wasn't civil rights litigation at the Chicago law firm of Davis, Miner, Barnhill & Galland, where he was employed for a decade.
"He spent about half his time working with Bill Miceli and my former partner, Allison Davis, and that team," senior partner Judson Miner told The Washington Examiner. Most of the entries on Obama's client list for the firm from that period were in real estate, construction and finance.
Miceli and Davis were the partners in charge of the firm's housing and real estate practices. Davis would later leave the firm to join Obama mentor Tony Rezko in the real estate development business.
In March 1994, a year before "Dreams" was published, Obama was the lead defense attorney on an obscure case in Cook County Court that has heretofore escaped examination by the national media.
In this case, Obama defended a Chicago slumlord and powerful political ally who was charged with a long list of offenses against poor residents. The defendant was the Woodlawn Preservation & Investment Corp., controlled by Bishop Arthur Brazier, a South Side Chicago preacher and political operator.
Brazier's burgeoning real estate empire included a low-income housing project at 6223 South University. Today, MapQuest describes the Woodlawn neighborhood as "quaint and sedate." But in the winter of 1994, it was a frigid hell.
Brazier was closely allied with Obama and his firm, not least because Davis was on WPIC's Board of Directors. Davis was also the corporation's registered agent, and he received the court summons when the city filed suit on the South University apartments.
Brazier's WPIC had failed for nearly a month to supply heat and running water for the complex's 15 crumbling apartments. On Jan. 18, 1994, the day the heat went off, Chicago's official high temperature was 11 below zero, the day after it was 19 below.
Even worse, the residents were then ordered to leave the WPIC complex in the winter chill without the due process they would have been afforded by an eviction procedure.
In court documents reviewed by The Washington Examiner, Daniel W. Weil, commissioner of Chicago's Buildings Department, slammed WPIC for multiple municipal code violations, including "failure to maintain adequate heat," failure "to provide every family unit with approved heating facilities," and "failure to provide adequate" supplies of either hot or cold running water.
Things were so bad that the city's outraged corporation counsel declared that "the levying of a fine is not an adequate remedy" and asked the court for a permanent injunction against WPIC, appointment of a receiver and imposition of a lien on WPIC to pay for repairs, attorneys' fees and court costs.
But Obama did his work so well that in the end, on March 3, 1994, the court simply fined WPIC $50. Only then did Obama tell the court of the forcible removal of tenants in the bitter cold.
An experienced Chicago housing attorney who reviewed the case at the Examiner's request said $50 fines against politically powerful slumlords were not uncommon at that time. The lawyer, who currently works for the city, asked to remain anonymous for fear of reprisal.
The attorney termed the forcible removal of the residents in the frigid Chicago winter "outrageous," and said it looked like "a way to avoid a lengthy eviction process by law. And if the tenants had leases, they should have been bought out with a cash payment in return for leaving the premises early."
The South University apartments eventually became part of a real estate syndication deal that Obama helped negotiate. Brazier remained as the controlling general partner, while the syndicated investors became limited partners.
The merging of Brazier's insider contacts and influence with the limited partners' financial resources enabled them to benefit collectively from bigger, more profitable deals than they would have each been able to do individually.
A Chicago housing expert with direct knowledge of WPIC's real estate dealings told the Examiner that the syndication deal involving the apartments likely was being negotiated when the building lost heat.
"The property was one of five or six that was bundled together into a partnership and syndicated with tax credits," he said. It was a "prelude to being put into the partnership, which it ultimately was for purposes of the refinancing and syndication."
The WPIC case illustrates how Obama functioned at the center of a historic accommodation then developing between the Daley machine and its traditional opponents among the city's liberal reformers.
Lubricating the deal was a flood of public and nonprofit federal and state tax credits and funding for low-income-housing projects that would enrich developers and empower ambitious politicians like Obama, at the expense of taxpayers and, especially, the poor.
Brazier was not merely an Obama legal client. A disciple of Chicago's famous radical activist Saul Alinsky, Brazier was also a close political ally of Daley's and one of the key movers and shakers among the city's progressive political elite who in the years ahead would advance Obama at every turn.
Obama also did legal work involved in the establishment of four Brazier-Rezko limited partnerships: Woodlawn Partners Ltd., Central Woodlawn Partnership, KRMB Limited Partnership and Woodlawn Drexel Ltd. Partnership. Rezko is now serving a 10-year federal prison sentence for fraud and attempted bribery on state government contracts.
The former Obama firm still represents WPIC, as well as Brazier's church, the Apostolic Church of God, and his Fund for Community Redevelopment and Revitalization. Brazier's son now oversees the properties.
As Brazier clung to life in 2010 in a Chicago hospital, Obama called him from the White House for what relatives described as an extremely tearful farewell.
Shortly after Brazier died, Obama issued a statement saying of the man he had once helped put 15 poor families on the street in the dead of winter:
"There is no way that we can replace the gentle heart and boundless determination that Bishop Brazier brought to some of the most pressing challenges facing Chicago and our nation.
Barack Obama's carefully constructed image as a civil rights lawyer who wanted to heal the black community was greeted with skepticism by some Chicago activists.
"I never drank the Kool-Aid about Barack Obama," veteran Chicago black activist Eddie Read told The Washington Examiner. Read is president of the Black Independent Political Organization, one of Chicago's largest black community groups.
Read -- who describes himself as a "black nationalist" -- said Chicago streets are filled with genuine "street gangsters" and phonies known as "studio gangsters." The latter are impersonators who make money acting in studio-produced rap videos.
The same dichotomy is found among Chicago's street activists, Read said. "So what you get from me is I'm still up in the air on whether or not my brother Obama was a real activist or a studio activist."
Robert Stark, director of the liberal Harold Washington Institute for Research and Policy Studies, told the Examiner that the demolition effort required to clear the way for the new affordable-housing projects advocated by Obama was disastrous for low-income blacks on Chicago's South Side.
"Obviously, when you're talking about the demolition of housing, there has been a great deal of controversy because poor people were not given an opportunity to come back to the housing that replaced the demolished housing," said Stark, whose institute is based at Northeastern Illinois University.
Wardell Lavender is a tenant activist who has lived in the Woodlawn section of Chicago since 1951. "We don't know what happened to those people," Lavender told the Examiner. "What we didn't do was keep track of them because a lot of them ended up homeless."
Obama's toughest critic on the Left, however, was the late Robert Fitch. Fitch, a radical leftist and freelance journalist who specialized in urban politics and economics, said Obama surrounded himself with people who got rich on Chicago's $1.6 billion neighborhood demolition program known officially as the Plan for Transformation.
At least 25,000 low-income apartments in Chicago were destroyed under the program, which forced thousands of black families -- many of whom lived in Obama's state Senate district -- to move out of the city. Obama's political allies directed the effort.
"What we see is that the Chicago core of the Obama coalition is made up of blacks who've moved up by moving poor blacks out of the community," Fitch charged in a 2008 speech before the Harlem Tenants Association. Fitch died in 2011.
Fitch claimed in that speech that Obama sold out to a corrupt Chicago establishment. "Obama's political base comes primarily from Chicago FIRE -- the finance, insurance and real estate industry," he said.
"It's also true that key black members of the Obama inner circle are Daley administration alumni, but they've moved up -- now they're part of Chicago FIRE," he said.
Fitch singled out Obama's most trusted aide, Valerie Jarrett, as one who stood out among those who made fortunes as real estate operators. Jarrett once worked for Mayor Daley, then later became CEO of the Habitat Co., one of the city's largest real estate development firms.
Fitch also criticized Martin Nesbitt, Daley's former head of the Chicago Housing Authority and vice president of Pritzker Realty. Like Jarrett, Nesbitt is among Obama's closest personal friends.
Also in Fitch's cross hairs was Allison Davis, Obama's law firm boss who built a real estate empire by dealing in low-income housing with business partner Tony Rezko, Obama's mentor who is now serving a federal prison sentence.
In that 2008 speech in Harlem, N.Y., Fitch also blasted Chicago church leaders who he said profited on the poor. Chief among these "real estate reverends," as Fitch called them, was Bishop Arthur Brazier.
Brazier, a close Obama confidant and law client, ran the crumbling Grove Parc project alongside his Apostolic Church of God. Jarrett, Davis and Rezko were all involved with Grove Parc. Grove Parc is still owned by WPIC but has more recently been managed by the Project on Affordable Housing, a Boston-based nonprofit organization that obtains large, multifamily properties and refinances them for long-term affordability.
Three weeks after Obama won the 2008 election, Fitch warned his Harlem audience about "hope and change," saying, "we have to make some distinctions between the change they believe in and the change we believe in; between our interests and theirs."
Michael Hudson, a real estate economist at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, was Fitch's editor at the Village Voice. He said Fitch despised Chicago political insiders like Obama, who, he argued, became wealthy while cloaking themselves as reformers.
"Bob Fitch's basic premise," Hudson told the Examiner, "was to show that the reform Democrats always have been the pro-financial real estate interests to do insider dealings. They are people who wear halos when in fact they are predators."
Hudson said Fitch thought the Plan for Transformation was a con game. "The essence of a con game is to pose as you're doing a public service. That's the cover story for getting the public money both to redevelop buildings or to get rid of all the tenants."
Obama's political endorsements also worried liberal reformers concerned about good government. Cynthia Canary, former head of the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform, recalled Obama's endorsement of corrupt officials like the imprisoned Gov. Rod Blagojevich and Chicago City Council members.
"The thing that startled me," she said, "was when Obama made endorsements of certain City Council members and people who we already knew were in trouble," she told the Examiner
Four years after Barack Obama's historic election as president, little seems to have changed for the African-American communities on Chicago's South Side.
The lack of change -- or the sense that these neighborhoods are getting worse -- is eroding the president's standing among African-Americans in his hometown.
In 2011, Chicago suffered the third-highest black jobless rate among the nation's major metropolitan areas, at 19 percent, according to the liberal Economic Policy Institute.
Chicago still lacks enough affordable housing. Not only did the city demolish 25,000 public housing units in the previous decade, it also experienced more than 80,000 foreclosures, mainly in low-income neighborhoods.
Chicago "black nationalist" Eddie Read contends Obama has never fought for the black community. "I would not honestly tag Obama as a fighter for black people, black agenda or black issues," Read told The Washington Examiner.
After Obama's election, Read said, "I hoped that it would change."
But four years later, as he looks around Chicago's neighborhoods, he said things haven't improved under Obama.
"I don't see where the quality of life or the quality has changed," he said, "except that it's worse."
Dr. Conrad Worrill is an African-American educator, activist and former radio talk show host on Chicago's African-American-oriented station WVON. He told the Examiner that Obama was an inspirational speaker who moved people. But in the end, he became just another Chicago politician.
"His rise in politics, his trajectory in politics has led him to make adjustments in his political decision-making. And that's the case with many politicians. So he's no different from many others in that regard. He's a politician," Worrill said.
Cheryl Johnson and her mother, Hazel, lived in the economically deprived Altgeld Gardens housing project when young Obama was a community organizer there. Her late mother also was an organizer at the housing complex and often welcomed Obama into her kitchen.
"He's everybody's president," Cheryl Johnson told the Examiner, saying she is proud she knows him. But has he made a difference? "We, as poor people, don't feel it and don't see it," she said. Read believes Obama's problem is that he does not understand the unique needs of Chicago blacks.
"Obama came through Chicago through Saul Alinsky organizing," he said. "The Alinsky piece seemed to have had an agenda about what it thought was in the best interest of black folks, from the white liberal perspective."
Obama instead allied himself with Chicago's MacArthur Foundation, local housing nonprofits and real estate developers. Valerie Jarrett and Allison Davis, Martin Nesbitt and Tony Rezko -- all Obama friends -- were at the epicenter of that powerful coalition.
Obama's low-income-housing campaign still resonates among Chicago's poor today. Deborah Taylor, a public housing tenant in the Kenwood section of Chicago, also told the Examiner things are as bad as ever for poor tenants.
"The residents at the end of the day still suffer here," she said. "A lot of times a lot of people start out idealistically thinking they are helping," Taylor said.
"I don't think any of them are in favor of the tenants," she said. "Everybody's in it for the money. It's all about profit now. So the residents lose, lose, lose."
D'Anna Carter, a neighborhood activist in Chicago's Woodlawn section, singled out the Habitat Co., which was run by Jarrett, now Obama's closest White House adviser.
"They were never interested in poor people," she told the Examiner. "They would sell poor people a bill of goods," she said bitterly in an interview.
Wardell Lavender has been a Woodlawn resident since 1951. His was the first black family to move into the neighborhood. He also blames Habitat.
"Habitat was bad landlords at the time. They didn't care too much about the blacks," he told the Examiner.
According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the enticement to the poor to buy condos they could not afford caused widespread losses in Chicago.
Foreclosures fell hard on Chicago's poor residents. The Urban Institute reported in May 2009 that most were displaced or homeless, credit ratings were damaged and violence increased as empty units remained vacant.
Worrill said he still supports Obama but adds that the lack of progress in Chicago's black community is palpable.
"He has been supported, but the position he's in now, he's in a heck of a predicament.
Shortly after Barack Obama won the 2008 presidential election, Prairie State Blue, a liberal blog, attributed his victory to the fact that Illinois' deeply entrenched government corruption had forced "political reformers" in the state legislature like Obama "to network outside the traditional political circles."
The claim illustrated Obama's success throughout his career at presenting himself as an outsider and reformer even as he became a skillful operator inside one of the nation's most corrupt political systems.
Earlier this year, a study by the Illinois Institute of Government and Public Affairs pointed to the convictions in recent years of four governors, two congressmen, a state treasurer, an attorney general and 11 state legislators.
"The two worst crime zones in Illinois are the governor's mansion in Springfield and the City Council Chambers in Chicago," said study author Dick Simpson.
It was into such an environment that Obama stepped when he was first elected in 1996 as an Illinois state senator.
Former Illinois Sen. Peter Fitzgerald, a maverick Republican and reformer, told The Washington Examiner that Obama never fought corruption, even when it was being done by Republicans.
"I've never seen him fight corruption. He never wanted to upset the apple cart with the Chicago machine," Fitzgerald said.
After serving with Obama for two years in the Illinois Senate, Fitzgerald defeated Sen. Carol Moseley Braun in 1998 and served one term in the U.S. Senate. His family has been in Illinois banking for several generations.
In Springfield, Fitzgerald was a leader of a reform-minded state legislative caucus known as the "Fab Five." The group's members were Republicans who had been elected in 1992. They fought the establishments in both major parties while seeking to increase openness and transparency in government.
Fab Fiver Steve Rauschenberger told the Examiner that he and his reformist colleagues were taken aback when Obama rejected the group's informal invitations to join them.
"When Barack first arrived, there was a lot of hope that maybe he was the intellectual bridge, the pragmatic Democrat from Chicago who was not part of the machine that we could perhaps talk to about broad-based consensus policies to change public policy that wasn't working," he said.
"He appeared to be interested for a good 90 days," Rauschenberger said. "In March or April of that year, though, he had made it pretty clear he wasn't interested in risk-taking or challenging institutions or challenging the Chicago machine's lock on a lot of the mechanics of government in Cook County in Chicago."
An Examiner review of Fab Five initiatives from 1995 to 2000 identified 22 proposals, including sweeping government procurement reforms like requiring open, competitive bidding for state contracts. Obama missed votes on several of the proposals, and those he supported were approved unanimously.
"He was nowhere to be found on reform," Fab Fiver Chris Lauzen told the Examiner. "I reached out to Barack. My wife and I took Barack and Michelle to dinner."
Lauzen said Obama "was not on the playing field. In my opinion, Barack Obama was a product and beneficiary of how politics are practiced in Illinois. It would be impossible to call him a reformer."
State Sen. Dave Syverson, another Fab Fiver, said, "I don't recall any cases when he was overtly standing up to the machine at all."
Some of Obama's reluctance about the Fab Five may have stemmed from his occasional golf outings and lunches with the state's top gambling lobbyist, Alfred G. Ronan.
Ronan was well-known in Illinois political circles for passing out cash contributions to supporters off the floor of the legislative chambers. Obama himself took $10,500 from Ronan and changed his position on a gambling bill afterward, according to the Los Angeles Times. Ronan told the Times that Obama always paid his own way on the outings.
There was also the regular Wednesday night poker game organized by Democratic state Sen. Terry Link. Obama and three other state Senate Democrats in Springfield were regular attendees, along with several lobbyists, Link said.
"It started out with five of us, then it escalated where there were a couple of lobbyists that were friends of us that we brought in," Link told the Examiner.
"Barack was not of the machine, but he was adjacent to it," said Cynthia Canary, former director of the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform, the largest statewide reform organization.
Paul Green, director of the Institute for Politics at Chicago's Roosevelt University and a popular WGN radio host, noted David Axelrod, Obama's campaign strategist, originated from Mayor Richard M. Daley's camp.
"You see his main adviser, David Axelrod, who also was Daley's chief adviser and ran his campaigns. So it was very much that Obama's people were in the Daley camp."
A month after Daley's patronage chief was indicted for rigging city jobs and promotions, Axelrod defended patronage in a 2005 Chicago Tribune op-ed. He argued that to satisfy constituent needs, politicians are often forced to "use the influence they have to meet those needs, including sometimes the exchange of favors -- consideration for jobs being just one."
Fitzgerald said Obama never confronted Daley. "He never took on Mayor Daley, even when clearly city hall was out of bounds. He never fought corruption in Cook County government."
Canary said Obama's endorsement of Rod Blagojevich and other Daley allies worried her.
"Obama has made a number of endorsements, not just the Blagojevich one -- he gave a number for the Chicago City Council that were complete whack jobs. I have never understood it or why he felt he needed to it," she said.
Some have noted that Obama helped write a 1997 legislative gift ban. The bipartisan effort included 23 exemptions.
Green pointed out that the gift ban didn't stop corruption. "In 1998, George Ryan was governor; now he's in prison. After him, Rod Blagojevich went to prison, so clearly it didn't have any impact.
State Sen. Barack Obama and members of an Illinois lobbying group representing politically connected minority-owned businesses launched a campaign in 2000 to pressure state pension funds to help their friends and donors.
Obama and his cohorts targeted state officials in charge of pension funds for teachers, police and firemen, and regular government employees.
Much as the Rev. Jesse Jackson had been doing for years to Fortune 500 corporations, Obama and the Alliance of Business Leaders & Entrepreneurs, or ABLE, demanded that the officials set aside at least 15 percent of pension assets for management by minority-owned investment companies.
If their plan succeeded, the favored investment companies would add lucrative assets to their portfolios, which in turn would help push even more business their way.
John Rogers, Ariel Capital Management's CEO, and James Reynolds, founder of Loop Capital, were ABLE leaders and longtime Obama supporters. Louis A. Holland, chairman of Holland Capital Management, was also an ABLE leader and Obama donor.
Rogers was especially close, having played basketball with Michelle Obama's brother at Princeton and shot hoops with Barack Obama. Reynolds and Obama played basketball at Chicago's chic East Bank Club and golfed at the South Shore course.
Rogers recalled the state pension scheme in a 2007 interview in which he prudently cast it as an effort "to force other industries to have their 'Jackie Robinson' moment," just as Jackson had done with many Fortune 500 companies.
Obama not only met regularly with the ABLE leaders to plot strategy, he enlisted powerful Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan to accompany him in meetings with officials of the targeted pension funds.
Just as important, Senate President Emil Jones, the cagey Springfield veteran who was Obama's legislative mentor, gave him additional leverage by assigning him to a committee that oversaw public pension funds, according to the New York Times.
William Atwood, executive director of the giant Illinois State Board of Investment, or ISBI, told The Washington Examiner that Obama was relentless in applying pressure.
"Anytime I saw him, he brought the issue up. I would see him in Springfield or I would see him at a function and invariably he raised the issue," Atwood said.
The campaign succeeded in early 2001 when more than $500 million from the pension funds was transferred to Ariel and Holland, and Loop was retained as a brokerage firm, according to pension fund documents obtained by the Examiner. The State Universities Retirement System of Illinois, or SURS, awarded Ariel $49 million, while Holland got $26 million. Loop handled the trading of 2.3 million shares, according to SURS documents obtained by the Examiner.
The ISBI awarded $178 million to Ariel. The Teachers' Retirement System of the State of Illinois, or TRS, handed over $210 million to Ariel and $75 million to Holland Capital Management.
Ariel's assets increased dramatically following the infusion from the pension funds, rising from $2.8 billion to $15 billion between 1999 and 2002, according to the firm's Securities and Exchange Commission filings.
Even so, things did not go well a few years later. Ariel and Holland were terminated by ISBI and SURS for what pension board officials described as "underperformance."
Rogers also wasn't helped when U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald revealed in federal court proceedings that Rogers had given $22,500 to bundler Tony Rezko, who was later convicted of influence peddling.
Rogers' money was destined for the campaign of Gov. Rod Blagojevich, who, like Rezko, is now serving a federal prison sentence for public corruption. No charges were ever filed against Rogers in connection with the $22,500.
Rogers remains an Obama confidant. He has visited the White House at least 37 times since Obama's 2009 inauguration for both business and social meetings with the president, senior aides in the White House and the first lady.
Ariel's president, Mellody Hobson, received a presidential appointment in 2009 to serve on an SEC investment advisory committee.
During the 2008 presidential campaign, ABC News reported that employees of the three firms had donated $765,000 to Obama, who was also said to have used private jets owned by two of the firms.
Rogers now ranks as the third-biggest bundler for Obama, raking in $1.5 million for the president's re-election effort. He also is a $50,000 donor to pro-Obama super-PAC Priorities USA.
Holland and CEO Monica L. Walker have given $57,000 to Obama and the Democratic National Committee since 2000, according to federal campaign finance records.
Obama boasted about his success in the pension campaign during a 2007 address before the National Urban League conference.
Referring to ABLE, he declared, "some of the financial service leaders there, they came to me and said, 'You know, we are not getting any business from our own state pensions.' "
Obama was proud of his accomplishment. "In about six months, they got about a half-billion dollars' worth of business," Obama declared.
The campaign was aggressive. A toughly worded statement by the minority firms was distributed to a Jan. 19, 2001 board meeting of the ISBI, according to minutes of the event obtained by the Examiner.
The firms demanded that the fund "immediately require that all current ISBI money managers do 15 percent of their brokerage business with African-American owned broker/dealers." They also insisted that 15 percent of the fund assets be allocated to "African-American owned investment management firms."
What was left unstated was that Rogers' Ariel fund already had a small presence at ISBI, but that it was underperforming.
In 1999, for example, the ISBI said Ariel was in the lowest 87th percentile among midcap companies on the Russell Index, according to minutes of a special Nov. 17, 2006, ISBI meeting obtained by the Examiner. Still, the ISBI awarded $178 million to Ariel.
Ariel's underperformance continued until its termination in 2006 after Marquette Associates and Iron Capital Advisors reported to ISBI that Ariel had "failed to meet ISBI expectations regarding performance going back a number of years." It fell to the 96th percentile in 2006.
In criticizing Ariel, the ISBI reported that in 2006 the firm grew only 8.35 percent, compared with an average of 17.41 percent for its peer group.
In May 2006, the TRS also cancelled Ariel's $210 million account and terminated Holland's $75 million in funds
President Obama's controversial relationships with radical figures like Columbia University professor Rashid Khalidi have been well-publicized in recent years.
Prior to his academic career in the United States, Khalidi worked for Yasser Arafat's Palestine Liberation Organization when it was classified by the State Department as a terrorist group.
Less well-known is a cluster of Chicago businessmen who formed an Arab-American network at the heart of Obama's political apparatus. Ray Hanania, a Chicago-based Arab-American journalist and activist, described the network in a 2007 interview with Chicago magazine as "a small cluster of activists" in the business community who were politically involved.
Chief among them was Obama mentor Tony Rezko. Born in Aleppo, Syria, home of strongman Bashar al-Assad, Rezko migrated to the U.S. in the late 1970s and built a political and financial empire in Chicago and Springfield, the Illinois capital.
Rezko is now serving a 10-year federal prison sentence following his convictions on federal fraud and bribery charges related to disgraced Gov. Rod Blagojevich and state contracting.
Rezko offered Obama a job at his Rezmar Corp. after he finished at Harvard Law School, but the new lawyer instead accepted a position at a Chicago firm with close personal and professional ties to Rezko. Their relationship steadily deepened in the years thereafter.
For example, Obama asked Rezko to assess the $1.6 million Hyde Park/Kenwood home that he and Michelle were considering buying in 2005, a controversial transaction that Rezko's wife assisted by purchasing an adjoining lot for $625,000. (The owner of the home and adjoining lot insisted that they be sold together.)
Rezko and his Arab-American business associates have contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars to Obama's political campaigns. Following Rezko's conviction, though, Obama donated to charity at least $85,000 in Rezko contributions to his 2008 presidential campaign.
The Chicago Sun-Times estimated Obama received at least "$168,308 from Rezko and his circle," while ABC News put the total to be as much as $100,000 higher than the amount claimed by Obama.
While he was in the Illinois Senate, Obama helped key Rezko associates gain appointments to the state board that controlled health facility contracting for building expansions.
Once his associates were appointed, Rezko sought kickbacks from contractors favored by his friends in a process that became the heart of the federal case against him.
When Obama became chairman of the state Senate health committee that oversaw appointments to the medical board, among his first acts was to gain fast-track passage of a bill to reduce the board from 15 to nine members, thus making it somewhat easier to gain the panel's approval for contracts.
Rezko then used his connections with Blagojevich to stack the restructured board with his political cronies. Their appointments were confirmed by Obama's committee, then sent to the Senate floor.
Soon thereafter, contributions from Rezko and his health board allies began pouring into Obama's campaign coffers, according to federal and state campaign finance data.
Rezko associate Dr. Michel Malek, for example, donated $15,000 to Obama after gaining appointment to the health board.
Dr. Imad Almanaseer, another Rezko ally appointed to the health board, initially gave Obama $3,000. Over the next three years, he and members of his family donated nearly $10,000 more to Obama.
Fortunee Massuda, another Rezko associate, donated $2,000 in January 2004 shortly after winning her assignment to the key panel.
Other Rezko allies who were not on the health board also contributed to Obama. Elie Maloof was granted immunity by federal prosecutors after he told U.S. attorneys he funneled two $10,000 contributions to Obama through Rezko. Prosecutors noted Maloof's assertion in their opening arguments at Rezko's trial, but no additional charges were filed.
Rezko business partner Abdelhamid Chaib donated $10,000 to Obama, then was convicted on federal corruption charges in 2010 after trying to pressure a Chicago hospital executive to steer contracts to Rezko companies.
Another Rezko partner, Ali Ata, was a key witness during Rezko's 2008 federal corruption trial. He donated $5,000 to Obama's campaign and claimed to have given an additional $10,000 in "straw donations."
Ata was a former president of the Chicago Chapter of the Arab-American Anti-Discrimination Committee.
Ata also was an investor with Rezko and Nadhmi Auchi, an Iraqi-British businessman and former Iraqi Baathist who was on a terror watch list and thus barred from entering the United States.
Rezko asked federal authorities in 2004 to permit Auchi to join him in Chicago for a business deal, according to the New York Times.
Stuart Levine, Rezko's former partner and the government's star witness in the Rezko trial, testified that Obama met Auchi at a private Rezko reception held at Chicago's Four Seasons hotel.
Auchi wired $3.5 million to Rezko during the 2008 trial. Federal prosecutors asked for Rezko's bail to be revoked when they discovered the Auchi wire transfer.
Another Rezko supporter was Mustafa Abdalla, who donated $1,000 to Obama. Abdalla put up property as collateral for Rezko's bail.
Rezko was a generous financial supporter of Chicago-based Arab-American activist groups, including the Arab American Democratic Club, or AADC, and the Arab American Action Network, or AAAN.
Rezko was involved in the AADC with Khalil Shalabi. Shalabi was fired from a state government job in 2007 after the Illinois inspector general reported he had been fundraising at work for Rezko and Blagojevich.
The Obamas attended several AAAN dinners, including one honoring Khalidi. More recently, Hatem Abudayyeh, AAAN's executive director, attended an April 22, 2010, Obama policy briefing, according to White House visitor logs.
In September 2010, FBI investigators raided Abudayyeh's Chicago home reportedly seeking evidence of AAAN being used as a conduit for funding to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and other Middle Eastern terrorist groups
Chicago has been called the home of "gangster government." How bad is it?
Consider the following facts about the city from which President Obama rose through the ranks of American public life, from community organizer and local lawyer to the Illinois state legislature to the U.S. Senate and finally the Oval Office:
» Chicago's 2.7 million residents make up only about 21 percent of the state of Illinois' population of nearly 13 million. Yet the city and its suburbs have accounted for 84 percent of the state's public corruption convictions in federal courts since 1976, according to a study released earlier this year by the University of Illinois at Chicago.
» Four of the state's previous seven governors went to jail on public corruption charges, as did a third of Chicago aldermen who served during the period.
» New York and California have higher totals for public corruption convictions, but Illinois leads the nation on a per capita basis.
Michael Barone, a Washington Examiner columnist and longtime co-editor of "The Almanac of American Politics," coined the term "gangster government" in May 2009 in reporting how Obama used the General Motors and Chrysler bankruptcies to aid the struggling United Auto Workers union.
Barone defined gangster government as using the powers of public office "to transfer the property of one group of people to another group that is politically favored."
Obama was a little more direct during the 2010 congressional campaign, saying, according to the New York Times, "we're gonna punish our enemies and we're gonna reward our friends who stand with us on issues that are important to us."
The GM and Chrysler bailouts favored the UAW, an unsecured creditor, over secured creditors in the financial community by putting the union ahead of the financiers in the bankruptcy line for reimbursement of losses under the Obama-sanctioned March 2009 bailout.
And, as Barone predicted in 2009, taking care of his friends was Obama's characteristic approach when dealing with domestic issues.
Obama's $787 billion economic stimulus program, for example, included $499 billion in federal spending, most of which was channeled through state and local governments.
Eight of the 10 states getting the most contracts are heavily Democratic, with highly unionized state and local government workforces, according to the latest available stimulus award data at recovery.gov.
California with $35 billion and New York with $17 billion topped the list of award recipients. Illinois was fourth with $12 billion, Pennsylvania sixth with $9.3 billion, Ohio seventh with $8.9 billion, Michigan eighth with $8.6 billion, Washington ninth with $8.2 billion and Massachusetts 10th with $7.7 billion.
Thus, more than a fifth of Obama's direct economic stimulus funds went to eight states to save the jobs of state and local employees, many of whom were members of three public employee unions, the National Education Association, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees and the American Federation of Teachers.
Between them, the trio's political action committees and individuals associated with the unions gave $116,965 directly to Obama's 2008 campaign, according to OpenSecrets.org.
They also did independent expenditures on Obama's behalf totaling nearly $4.8 million, plus $3.9 million against his opponent, Sen. John McCain.
But it has been in Obama's "clean energy" loan program that gangster government has been repeatedly on display, most famously in the $573 million Solyndra bankruptcy debacle.
Solyndra's main investor was Oklahoma billionaire and Obama campaign bundler George Kaiser. Solyndra was the first but no means the most egregious energy loan deal that benefited Obama's friends.
While researching his blockbuster 2011 book "Throw Them All Out," Hoover Institution fellow and Stanford University professor Peter Schweizer and his researchers found 31 Obama bundlers and big donors whose firms received more than $16 billion in clean energy loans and grants.
The list of recipients unearthed by Schweizer includes such luminaries as former Vice President Gore, Silicon Valley venture capital king John Doerr, Sergey Brin, Dan Reicher and Larry Page of Google, Jim Rogers of Duke Energy, Tesla Motors' Elon Musk and CNN founder Ted Turner.
But one of the lesser-known names in the Solyndra scandal perhaps tells the story better than the celebrities. Cathy Zoi was a senior White House environmental adviser during the Clinton administration, then CEO of Gore's Alliance for Climate Protection.
Under Obama, she was appointed assistant secretary of energy for energy efficiency and renewable energy, a position that put her at the center of the approval process for green energy loans and grants.
Following the Solyndra debacle, Zoi left the government to work for George Soros as head of a new clean energy investment fund he started. Soros had gotten on board with Obama in 2004 by contributing more than $60,000 to his U.S. Senate race. Soros was then one of Obama's earliest and most generous financial backers in 2008.
After Obama won the White House, Schweizer notes, Soros "had regular private consultations and meetings with White House senior advisers while he was making investment decisions related to the stimulus program."
It's impossible to determine from compulsory financial disclosure documents how much profit, if any, resulted for Soros, but, as Schweizer points out, "Soros seemed to have a keen ability to anticipate what Washington was going to do and position himself to potentially profit handsomely from it."
It certainly didn't hurt that Soros had political operatives like Zoi in his pocket. As The Washington Examiner's Tim Carney wrote in February 2011, Zoi's tenure at the Energy Department "was rife with conflicts of interest."
Her husband's firm, environmental windowmaker Serious Materials, benefited from presidential and vice presidential visits to its factories and was "the first window company to pocket a stimulus tax credit -- worth $584,000 -- for investing in new equipment."
Soros was born in Hungary and made his first fortune in Europe's money markets, but it appears that he understands the way gangster government works in Washington in the age of Obama
|Big Bird, Sesame Street, Obama birth certificate skit,|
|WND Some might be wondering now that a Big Bird/Barack Obama controversy is once again ruffling feathers in the national news, three years after O’Brien featured Big Bird on “‘The Tonight Show” when O’Brien was still hosting the NBC program. ... Since Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney has said he’s looking to cut funding for PBS, which airs shows including “Sesame Street,” President Obama’s campaign has been saying that Romney is anti-Big Bird, one of the show’s popular characters. ... The producers of “Sesame Street” this week asked Obama’s campaign not to include their character in commercials. ... But this is not the first time the yellow-beaked giant has cried fowl with the Obama administration. ... In 2009, Big Bird had a discussion with first lady Michelle Obama on a “Sesame Street” episode. ... The appearance, though, was redubbed by O’Brien for comedic value on “The Tonight Show.” ... As the scene opened up, Big Bird approached Michelle Obama, saying, “Well, look who’s here to push her husband’s socialist health-care agenda? Or maybe you’re here to finally show us your husband’s United States birth certificate!” “No, Big Bird, I’m not,” said Mrs. Obama. “That’s ’cause you can’t!” countered Big Bird. “Are you absolutely sure he wasn’t born in Kenya?” “I’m sure, Big Bird,” said Mrs. Obama. “That’s not what the Basket Bunch says,” said Big Bird. A group of talking vegetables then chimed in: “Yeah, your husband’s a stinkin’ liar. We’re gonna run him out of office!”|
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