Below is Barbara Kay’s review of David Horowitz’s new book, The Left in Power: Clinton to Obama, which is volume 7 of The Black Book of the American Left, a multi-volume collection of his conservative writings that will, when completed, be the most ambitious effort ever undertaken to define the Left and its agenda. (Order HERE.) We encourage our readers to visit BlackBookOfTheAmericanLeft.com which features Horowitz’s introductions to Volumes 1-7 of this 9-volume series, along with their tables of contents, reviews and interviews with the author.
After the federal election, an African-American child asked at a family dinner if he was now “going to be treated as three-fifths of a human being.” A teacher from a rural black elementary school reported her students were asking her if they would become slaves again. A black student told a guide on an outing to the nation’s capital he was afraid the new president was “going to round up all the black people and kill them.”
Understandable, progressives might say. Considering the racism we saw expressed during the campaign and the people the president-elect has surrounded himself with, who can blame these kids for their fears?
The problem is, these anecdotes did not arise from the 2016 election, but from the 2000 election. No reasonable person can believe George W. Bush is or ever was a racist.
Yet, just as in this election, incredulous that their preferred candidate might lose, there were many irresponsible progressives in 2000 who filled their children’s heads with this damaging nonsense and much other nonsense besides.
In 2004, after his hotly contested narrow loss to Bush, Gore told audiences that Bush had won by stealing a million black votes, even though not a single case of black voter fraud was uncovered by civil rights organizations. The left never really loses an election; elections are stolen from them. Sound familiar in 2016?
I found the anecdotal material above in a column, “How Leftists Play the Race Card,” in the recently-issued seventh volume of David Horowitz’s Black Book of the American Left, The Left in Power: Clinton to Obama.
What Horowitz calls a “climactic place” in his series, this volume was released before the election that against all odds brought Donald Trump to power. Reading it under the assumption Hillary Clinton was going to be the incoming president produces a markedly different response from reading it today.
I know, because I read half before and half after. In my mind it is almost like two different books, as I experienced first despair at all the wrongheadedness and corruption Horowitz’s columns reminded me of that were likely to continue, followed by triumphant elation at the knowledge that the Obama-and-Clinton kakocracies were well and truly behind us.
I see in some of these writings prescience where I might have seen wishful thinking. For example, in his 1997 column, “Conservatives need a heart,” Horowitz addresses the “confusion in conservative ranks.” Conservatives, he writes, have demonstrated three tendencies in their polemics: the “leave us alone” mentality of those advocating for less governmental regulation and intrusion; the emphasis on family values and the re-moralization of society; and the federalists, wanting more power returned to the states. What is missing, Horowitz says, is “a conservatism committed to national greatness.”
It took a while for the American people to internalize the source of their discontent, but that is what has just happened. Volume VII delivers a great deal of satisfaction to right-of-center readers in combing over the glowing ashes of all that has been found wanting in the Clinton-Obama nexus, and why.
“The Left in Power: Clinton to Obama” traces the history of the Democratic Party from center – to hard left. From the muscular anti-communism, civil rights and balanced budgets of JFK, the Dems came to embrace the Marxist agenda of the nanny state, identity politics and retreat from foreign-affairs leadership.
In a word, the party shifted from classic liberalism to progressivism, a benign locution to deodorize the uncomfortably redolent Marxism that greases the wheels of the party’s mission. Under the aegis of Bill and Hillary Clinton (it was never less than a presidential partnership) and Barack Obama, the administration became stacked with far leftists.
Outgoing President Obama (“outgoing”: it dances trippingly off the tongue) marinated his entire pre-presidential life in Islam apologism and the politics of progressivism. Mentored by communists, he came to power with a negative view of America’s history and distrust of the nation-state as a vehicle for human progress. Conversely he held an exaggerated and largely uncritical respect for America’s enemies, like Cuba and Hamas, but Iran especially.
Both Obama and Hillary Clinton took lifelong inspiration from the writings of political guru Saul Alinksy (1909-72), whom students of left-wing radicalism in the U.S. will remember as the American version of Machiavelli. Horowitz devotes a long essay, “Rules for Revolution” in Part III of this book (the original pamphlet form of this essay has been distributed and sold to more than three million people).
Alinsky wrote the book Rules for Radicals, a how-to manual for revolutionaries, which emphasized strategies of deception rather than open confrontation as the best way to advance a Marxist revolution in the U.S. Don’t sell your agenda as socialism, he urged, sell it as “progressivism” and “social justice.”
Alinsky’s strategy was to work within the system while accruing the power to destroy it. Many of the student radicals who went on to influential political careers were well-versed Alinsky acolytes. In fact, in 1969, a certain Wellesley College student named Hillary Rodham wrote an admiring 92-page senior thesis on Alinsky, likening him in cultural stature to Walt Whitman and Martin Luther King Jr. Barack Obama followed Alinsky’s rules with assiduous attention when he worked for ACORN as a community organizer.
In his column, “Candidate of the Left,” Horowitz reminds us of Obama’s lies that were swallowed uncritically by his starry-eyed followers. Who were they? “[E]very anti-Israel, anti-American, pro-Iranian communist in America is supporting Barack Obama; every pro-Palestinian leftist, every Weatherman terrorist…all Sexties leftists and their disciples…every black racist follower of Louis Farrakhan…every ‘antiwar’ activist who wanted us to leave Saddam in power and then lose the war in Iraq; everyone who believes that America is the bad guy and that our enemies are justly aggrieved; every member of ACORN, the most potent survivor of the Sixties left…along with al-Jazeera and Vladimir Putin and the religious fanatics of Hamas and the PLO.”
Examples of Obama’s lies? One was that he really had no idea who Jeremiah Wright, his pastor of 20 years, was, because the optics of friendship with “a racist, Jew-hating, terrorist-loving acolyte of Minister Farrakhan” didn’t look so good. Another was that unrepentant Weatherman Bill Ayers was not just “a guy in the neighborhood” as Obama claimed. Obama launched his campaign for a senate seat in Ayers’s living room, it was Ayers’s father who was responsible for Obama’s job at the Sidley Austin law firm, and it was Ayers who “hired Obama to spend the $50 million Ayers had raised to finance an army of anti-American radicals drawn from ACORN and other nihilistic groups to recruit Chicago school children to their political causes.”
But the lie that will never lose traction as the others did, because it affected so many Americans, was “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.” Obama lied about his healthcare plan, because, as Horowitz has often stated, “[t]he first truth about progressive missionaries is that the issues they fight for are not the issues. What drives all their agendas is the fantasy of a social transformation that will lead to a paradise of social justice.”
And therefore, as MIT professor and Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber explained, “This bill was written in a tortured way…[because] if you make it explicit that healthy people pay in and sick people get money, it would not have passed, okay? Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage.” Lack of transparency has been the hallmark of Obama’s reign and both Clintons’ entire political careers.