I am not a huge fan of President Barack Obama. He is a flawed man with a flawed presidency and there are several ways in which he could be performing more effectively. Conservative strategists should focus on the real decisions and policies the president is responsible for as they prepare the final stages of Mitt Romney’s campaign, educating and energizing voters as Election Day draws nigh. Unfortunately, instead of an educated conservative base, I keep running into people who want to talk about the latest propaganda piece masquerad- ing as a documentary, titled “2016: Obama’s America.”
Conservative Dinesh D’Souza, whose book “The Roots of Obama’s Rage” served as a template for this film, guides viewers through a hysterical and speculative tour of Obama’s alleged psyche.
Obama has worn many labels throughout the last few years. He’s been painted as a socialist, Marxist, radical, Kenyan-born and a Mus- lim-in-sheep’s clothing by frantic right-wingers who claim to know who the president really is. Much speculation has been made regard- ing the true identity of the president. This film blatantly aims to capital- ize on speculation into Obama’s true identity. The tagline for the film is, “Love him, hate him. You don’t know him.” Fortunately for us,D’Souza knows the Barack Obama and he’s chosen to share his insight. We know D’Souza has intimate knowledge of Obama’s character be- cause of the amount of time he has spent with the president, by which I mean absolutely none. He’s never spoken to him.
D’Souza alludes to possession of a deep understanding of Obama because they share some character- istics. They are nearly the same age. They are both members of minority communities. They both attended Ivy League schools. These are seri- ous comparisons made in the movie. D’Souza’s expertise relies heavily on Obama’s book, “Dreams From My Father.” D’Souza heavy-hand- edly points out said dreams aren’t “of” Obama’s father, but “from” his father. This meaningless semantic distinction is supposed to convince the audience Obama’s dreams are synonymous with his father’s ideol- ogies, which requires a nearly super- human leap to conclusions. As Bill Maher asserted during an interview with D’Souza last Saturday, if we are to assume political leaders share the ideological leanings of their an- cestors, it’s safe to assume Romney only wants to be president so he can have polygamous relationships the way his grandfather did.
This type of assertion is ridiculous and making claims of this nature takes away from constructive political dialogue. It would be analogous to claim Obama is sympathetic to Muslim extremists and jihadists because he has Muslim relatives, which is portrayed in this film.
Without delving into D’Souza’s truly insane conjectures, it is worth touching on one point of the film. The word “anti-colonialism” is repeatedly used in D’Souza’s narrative without much explanation.
It is clearly used in a negative way and the ideology of anti-colonialism is alleged to be something Obama inherited from his father, a socialist, economist and activist in Africa.
What is anti-colonialism, any- way? If the president is anti-colo- nialist, should he be demonized for this ideology? According to D’Souza, colonialism is “a system of piracy in which the wealth of the colonized countries is systematically stolen by the colonizers.” To be anti-colonialist, one would have to oppose a system wherein the wealth of colonies is being taken away by colonizers.
Dear reader, I am thinking of a specific document condemning colo- nialism. It was a radical document, responsible for great controversy and violence. It’s called the Declaration of Independence and it’s phe-nomenal. It’s really anti-colonial. Is anti-colonialism supposed to be a negative thing? Even if Obama was some kind of hard-core anti-colonialist, who cares? Where are the colonies he’s trying to liberate? Does D’Souza think the conservative base is so dense and lazy they won’t look this stuff up? All it takes is the slightest amount of critical thinking for all of the ridiculous propaganda to become transparent to the point where one wonders if it could all secretly be a brilliant satire. Unfortunately, many people planning to see this movie are dense enough and lazy enough to swallow D’Souza’s infuriatingly misleading pill of a film. Fortunately, it doesn’t matter.
Remember when Michael Moore released a documentary the summer before the 2004 election called “Fahrenheit 9/11?” It made George W. Bush look like the embodiment of evil, but it did nothing to shape the outcome of the election. “2016: Obama’s America” is performing well at the box office, but the vast majority of people who are going to see it are doing so in hopes of reinforcing their presuppositions about the evil Kenyan Muslim who’s trying to destroy America through the clever and diabolical implemen- tation of health care. These are the same people who view Fox News as a reputable news source. The wheels of bias just keep on spinning and the electorate gets seemingly more apathetic and ignorant with every election cycle.