Reverse Angle on the Farrakhan Photo

In 2018, as in 2008, words are more important than pictures.

Last week Tucker Carlson of Fox News broke the story of a 2005 picture showing a politician known as Barack Obama happily posing with the Nation of Islam’s Louis Farrakhan. Had this photo been made public, Carlson said, it could have changed the 2008 election. That might be a stretch, but in 2018 the legacy of that election is still coming into focus.

If he had seen the Farrakhan picture back in 2008, Alan Dershowitz explained, he would not have campaigned for his fellow Democrat, the junior Senator from Illinois. “We should have nobody in public office associating with a bigot like Farrakhan,” the Harvard law professor told Fox News. Farrakhan is a “virulent anti-Semite and anti-American,” and a “horrible, horrible human being.”

Actually, long before 2008, the erudite professor, voters and the establishment media had all been tipped off about Farrakhan and his smiling political pal. 

As Stanley Crouch explained in the Village Voice in 1985, in the view of Louis Farrakhan, “the white man was a devil ‘grafted’ from black people in an evil genetic experiment by a mad, pumpkin-headed scientist named Yacub. That experiment took place 6000 years ago. Now the white man was doomed, sentenced to destruction by Allah.”

Farrakhan thus believes that Nikola Tesla, Harper Lee, Albert Einstein, and Meryl Streep are the result of Yacub’s genetic experiment. But not everybody found the man and his racist views disturbing.

In the 1995 Dreams from My Father, for example, the author and his friend Ray meet a tall, gaunt man named Malik, “who mentioned that he was a follower of the Nation of Islam.” The narrative portrays the Nation of Islam uncritically and as a positive force. As one character explains, “If it wasn’t for Islam, man, I’d be dead.”

That helps explain why Louis Farrakhan backed the book’s author for president, hailing him as “the Messiah.”  So the 2005 picture would have been redundant, but hardly the only reason to hold back.

In Rising Star, Pulitzer Prize-winner David Garrow proclaims Dreams from My Father a “work of historical fiction,” which should have been obvious to the most casual reader. The author says the Kenyan Barack H. Obama visited him in Hawaii for a month but claims his memories of the visit are “irretrievably lost.” Perhaps they were lost to the Kenyan as well because his writings from 1958-1964 contain not a single word about any American wife and Hawaiian-born son.

This is the man the Dreams author says “bequeathed” his name to student Barry Soetoro, stepson of the Indonesian Lolo Soetoro, who attended a “predominantly Muslim” school, according to David Axelrod’s 2015 Believer. Many believed the Dreams author, who easily moved on to the U.S. Senate and became the Democrats’ presidential candidate in 2008.

On October 30, 2008, in Columbia, Missouri, the candidate proclaimed “We are five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America.” More than the fictitious book, or any photo with Louis Farrakhan, this was a more serious reason to hold back support.

As the late Barry Rubin noted in Silent Revolution: How the Left Rose to Political Power and Cultural Dominance, there was no question of transforming a laissez-faire capitalist country into a more regulated arrangement. In the 1930s the Democrats’ New Deal had already imposed a kind of statist coup. In the 1960s Democrat Lyndon Johnson launched his “War on Poverty,” expanding the welfare state to a whole new level. So what did the Dreams author mean by “fundamentally transforming the United States of America?”

In the middle of a recession, Congress was not going to let POTSUS 44 grab the commanding heights of the economy. Likewise, POTUS 44 was completely uncritical of Islam but the ongoing transformation would not be religious.

Once in office, POTUS 44 began transforming the USA into a form of one-man authoritarian rule. He deployed the Internal Revenue Service, the most intrusive arm of the federal government, against conservatives.  In classic autocratic style, the president picked his successor and commandeered the most powerful agencies of the state to ensure the succession process.

As former federal prosecutor Joseph DiGenova explains, the FBI and Justice Department threw the case against Hillary in the missing emails affair, deciding from the start not to recommend any charges. This kept Clinton in the race so she could be, as FBI stalwarts Stzok and Page said, “the next president.” As for Trump, “no way he gets elected.” The FBI power couple was apparently unaware that in democracy voters decide who gets elected, and they did.

The corrupted FBI and DOJ then set out to frame the winner, Donald Trump on the ludicrous charge that he collaborated with Russia to steal the election from Hillary Clinton. The old-line establishment media is on board with it 100 percent, and that is no surprise because they accepted the Dreams from My Father fiction as fact. So the Dreams author, who smiled for the camera with Louis Farrakhan, knew the establishment media would go along with the fundamental transformation he wanted.

This drama is now playing out in text and email revelations, intelligence memos, leaks, dossiers, denials and denunciations. It’s riveting stuff, not the sort of the thing one can make up, and the outcome might still be in doubt.