My thoughts on “2016”- Obama’s America

Recently, I watched “2016”- the conservative documentary which explores Barack Obama’s past. In it,Dinesh D’Souza, a conservative political commentator and Christian apologist, argues throughout the film that President Obama’s worldview is steeped in a variety of anti-colonialism which he got through the teachings of his father and mother. D’Souza offers this as a hypothesis to explain the political policies that President Obama has enacted and continues to pursue.

“2016” traces the roots of Obama’s worldview back to those of his father, an entrenched anti-colonialist. Basically, anti-colonialism is the view that certain powers–the UK, the United States, and the like (largely European)–have utilized their powerful history in order to exploit those who are less powerful, and these wrongs must be righted. Thus, anti-colonialists would largely favor policies in which the wealth is ‘spread around’ and the wealthy are directly attacked simply for the fact that their wealth is intrinsically immoral. Why? Well, simply because whatever wealth they have, according to principles of anti-colonialism, has been taken wrongfully from those who no longer have it. They take the raw materials, manufacture goods, and then sell it back to the places from which they take the raw materials at exorbitant prices.

Whether or not one follows the tenets of anti-colonialism, it seems that D’Souza may have hit upon a great resource for explaining many of Obama’s policies. Consider the fact that Obama has cut off funding for oil pipelines and drilling for the United States–which would have created thousands of jobs and reduced the price of oil and our reliance upon foreign oil–while simultaneously giving money to several South American countries to proceed with their own drilling projects. Initially, his opposition to drilling in the U.S. would seem to stem from environmental concerns, but that would not explain why he supports giving money to other countries to do just that. Once D’Souza’s hypothesis is put into play–that Obama is influenced by and continues to utilize various anti-colonialist ideals–the move makes a lot more sense. The United States can be seen as giving its wealth back to the countries from which it wrongfully took it to begin with, and thereby increases the infrastructure and global power of those countries at the expense of the U.S.

D’Souza traces similar paths in many other foreign policies, such as the reduction of the U.S. nuclear arsenal. Strangely, President Obama has favored reducing our own military power and our deterrent nuclear arsenal while also refusing to interfere with other countries developing their own nuclear arsenals. If one views Obama as someone working towards global peace by eliminating the threat of nuclear war (as those who gave him the Nobel Prize apparently thought), then this doesn’t make sense. However, once one points to anti-colonialism, the motivation seems much more clear. Those countries which have not achieved the global deterrent of nuclear power are encouraged (or at least not discouraged) to increase or begin their arsenal, while the U.S.’s ability to do the same is actively decreased. Such a move, of course, is radically against the doctrine of peace through strength.

Furthermore, D’Souza traces the President’s chosen path of education and the friends with which he surrounds himself, pointing out the radically liberal and often anti-colonial tendencies of many of those who are his closest advisers, friends, and his pastor. The links that are forged throughout “2016” begin to add up into an extremely strong wealth of evidence that supports D’Souza’s hypothesis: Obama is an anti-colonialist who has been using his power as the President to undermine the United States’ global influence.

Thus, throughout the film one can see a pattern of how D’Souza’s hypothesis that President Obama is an anti-colonialist is supported by his education and upbringing, and that it is the hypothesis which best explains the seemingly contradictory policies the President has been pushing while in office.

The film does have some negative points, however. First, there is a bit of unnecessary hints that President Obama is influenced by Islam. I think that this may be quite possible, after all those who influenced Obama largely were influenced by Islam themselves. It would be hard to separate these influences. However, I know of no concrete proof or data in this regard, nor does the film present any. Instead, there are just lingering images over the name “Hussein” as part of the President’s name as well as that of his father. Second, the film generalizes a lot on the nature of anti-colonialism and its implementation. However, this latter difficulty is understandable, given the fact that it is the nature of film making that there is a limited time in which to present the topics at hand, so ideas must be simplified in order to convey them in the time available.

Third, when D’Souza turns to an analysis of what the world will look like in 2016 if Obama is re-elected, it seemed to me there was a bit of fear mongering happening. For example, one of the points was that there would be a United States of Islam. I can’t help but think two things about this: first, that sure is a whole lot for Obama to accomplish in a second term! Some have been trying to unite the Muslim world ever since its separation  and suddenly Obama is supposed to pull it off! That seemed a bit absurd. Second, it seemed to me very much like a case of using a religious affiliation to inspire fear. The United States of Islam would be the religious “other” and as such is to be greatly feared. I have written on the fact that many use the “myth of ‘religion'” to stigmatize that religious other.

Overall, “2016” was a fascinating movie which will force viewers to evaluate the claims therein. Although D’Souza has been scoffed at by many for his rather radical hypothesis, one can see how anti-colonialism may indeed be the factor that best fits the set of data we have about President Obama. By linking Obama’s past influences with his current policy and showing how these are all explained most effectively by the hypothesis of anti-colonialism, D’Souza has presented a powerful working theory that explains how Obama’s policies have been working to undermine the prestige of the United States worldwide. Viewers will be forced to ask themselves: is this what you want for the United States by 2016?

SDG.

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Democratic Party Endorses Taxpayer Funded Abortions, and uses bad reasoning to support it

The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay.

Such is how it is stated on the democratic platform. Note the last phrase: “regardless of ability to pay.” Yes, this signifies an endorsement of taxpayer-funded abortions.

How do they justify this extreme position?

 Abortion is an intensely personal decision between a woman, her family, her doctor, and her clergy; there is no place for politicians or government to get in the way. We also recognize that health care and education help reduce the number of unintended pregnancies and thereby also reduce the need for abortions.

Unfortunately, this is exactly the kind of argument people make for abortion. It’s an intensely personal decision. We shouldn’t get in the way.

But think about it this way. Suppose instead of the unborn, the woman were thinking about killing her toddler. Would we say that is an intensely personal decision the government shouldn’t be involved with? Definitely not. But that shows exactly what is at issue here. The language in the DNC Platform statement assumes the unborn is not a human person. Think how ridiculous it would be if we were talking about infanticide! But because the baby is inside the mother instead of outside, it somehow makes sense to call killing it a decision for the mother.

But again, think about the reasoning: what does “an intensely personal choice” have to do with anything? Pre-meditated murders would, presumably, be an intensely personal choice. Should the government be involved in that?

Again, the assumption is that the woman’s decision affects only herself. The assumption is that the unborn doesn’t count. But the unborn is human and a person. What the DNC platform shows is that the issue at the heart of the abortion debate remains that: what is the unborn?

Check out more writings on abortion issues at my main site.

Don’t let political rhetoric dissuade you from reading on the issues: read this article

Look, I know that amidst all the rhetoric that is happening in U.S. politics it is easiest to have a knee-jerk reaction of rejecting anything anyone on the opposing side says, but I implore you to consider the implications of certain political decisions.

A recent Newsweek article calls for the election of Romney primarily due to fiscal policy through his running mate Paul Ryan. Again, I know, if you see “Romney” or “Paul Ryan” you may think “evil bad guy” and stop reading, but please read on the issues. This article is from Harvard Professor, Niall Ferguson, who specializes (in part) in economic history. Here’s just one choice quote:

“[O]ne thing is clear. Ryan psychs Obama out. This has been apparent ever since the White House went on the offensive against Ryan in the spring of last year. And the reason he psychs him out is that, unlike Obama, Ryan has a plan—as opposed to a narrative—for this country.”

What is this plan? Read the article and find out. Yes it’s 5 pages. No, it isn’t filled with attacking individuals. Yes it focuses instead upon actual fiscal policy and defense decisions. Read it. Let’s have political debate on a higher level than mud-slinging.http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2012/08/19/niall-ferguson-on-why-barack-obama-needs-to-go.html

Should We Change Gun Control Laws in the United States?

I just started reading John Lott, Jr.’s The Bias Against Guns and I was thinking it would be interesting to discuss the topic here once I’m done.  For now, I leave you with a quick quote from the book to chew on. Vote on the poll!

Guns not only make it easier for people to harm others, guns also make it easier for people to protect themselves and prevent criminal acts from happening… [T]here are many tradeoffs [with gun control]… On one side, rules governing gun use can hinder people’s ability to deter or stop criminal attacks. But on the other, these same rules have the potential to prevent the harm that guns cause. Every gun law faces this trade-off (3).