Obama & The Chicago Way
September 15, 2009
Obama: The Nationalization of The Chicago Way
If you want to understand the political agenda of Barack Obama, start thinking of Barack Obama as a guy who received some of his political baptism from the Chicago machine and and the University of Chicago Hyde Park ultra-liberals. Chicago politics is not necessarily about ideology. It is about who gets what, when, and how.
The end result of Chicago politics is power, getting it and keeping it. Everything else is incidental. Even corruption is a byproduct of power and is functional only if it enables you to stay in power. Once you have power, you can make money, be adored, control and transform, etc…But power is the key. Alinsky or Obama – it’s still all about appeasing the base to gain power.
The Chicago Way is legendary arm twisting, intimidation, scare tactics, shakedowns, badgering, graft, nepotism, lobbying, bullying, guilt-tripping, voter fraud and overall general thugery which implies business as usual. Under machine-style rule, those in power would hand out contracts, jobs, and social services in exchange for political and campaign support.
The Chicago way is common place for accusations of ballot box stuffing and voter intimidation. “Vote early – Vote often” is the trademark phrase emulating from Chicago elections. To the elected official who has spent years accumulating power, they have a good gig and they don’t want to lose it.
The Chicago Way is a mind-numbing laundry list of greed and power politics.
The major difference between brass-knuckle Chicago politics and the street-level agitation of a community organizer is the size of the fist and the hardness of the brass. In both cases, it’s fundamentally about intimidation. When used against those who are easily intimidated, either because of their lack of power or lack of courage, it works.
After all, it worked on the leadership of General Motors and on the Chrysler bondholders. It worked on several large banks. It worked on the large pharmaceutical companies that have become acquiescent to Obamacare, the AMA, AARP and others. It’s being tried now on the CEO’s of health insurance companies. It’s being executed with the American people who disagree with Obama’s policies.
Team Obama is hoping such strong-arm tactics works with ObamaCare like it did with the stimulus bill. Recently, Obama reached a not-so-secret, albeit a behind-the-scenes deal, to not push down pharmaceutical prices. In exchange, big Pharma would spend up to $150 Million in ads to push ObamaCare. In addition, it has been reported by numerous blogs that George Soros is spending $5 million to buy additional Astroturfers to disrupt and intimidate.
Intimidation works on the weak; Weak people. Weak organizations. Weak nations.
The Chicago Sun-Times reports that in the last three decades, at least 79 local elected officials have been convicted of a crime, including three governors, one mayor, and a whopping 27 aldermen from the Windy City. Between 1995 and 2004, 469 politicians from the federal district of Northern Illinois were found guilty of corruption.
Much is made of Obama as the socialist sympathizer, rightfully so, but not enough on his dirty Chicago politics. Obama is charming and will say anything to anyone to get his wants. And what does he want? Power. Chicago politics has now taken over our nation. But, once you realize where he is coming from, he will be easier to defeat.
“We were approached “pay to play.” That, you know, he’d raise me 500 grand. An emissary came. Then the other guy would raise a million, if I made him [Senate Candidate 5] a senator.”
Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich (discussing the Chicago Way on FBI wiretaps)
Pay-to-play politics is nothing new. Bribes paid to DJ’s to play certain songs – is as old as radio. Payola is essentially bribery. It’s when stations are paid by record companies or their representatives to play certain songs, and it’s plagued radio for as long as there’s been radio.
In radio in the late ’70s, payola came in different forms. It could come from a little bag of weed to $50 to a dinner at the Chinese restaurant to a plane ticket. And over the years, it’s really turned into big money. When Sony BMG Music Entertainment, the nation’s second-largest record company, settled with New York Atty. Gen. Eliot Spitzer and agreed to pay $10 million for engaging in “pay-for-play” practices, Spitzer said such corruption reached “the very top of the industry.”
Politicians and Legislators who raise money rise to the top. Those who can’t, fall behind. Money is the yardstick for success in getting and staying elected in government. Performance is irrelevant. Incredible as it may seem, liberals don’t consider such corruption incidental to their governing efforts. They see it as crucial. They look at ‘unions’ and ‘community development’ influence peddling as a norm. Only someone with “skin in the game” is supposed to be motivated to work for the public—by working, of course, for their own self-interest.
Deliberately and with malice aforethought, liberals are dismantling the checks, balances and transparency that made our country great. From illegal campaign contributions to illegal junkets, patronage, voter intimidation, favoritism, government now serves the select few who stand to benefit, not the American people as a whole.
Bigger governments suggest patronage-style politics and doling out patronage jobs, political appointments, and favors to a broad spectrum of ethnic groups is common place in Chicago. The Daley dynasty, now in its fourth decade, is more durable than that of the Adamses, Roosevelts, Kennedys and Clintons. The Daley way is the Chicago way.
The NYT is reporting that PhRMA will spend $150 million in advertising to support the White House health care plan just in August: The drug industry has already contributed millions of dollars to advertising campaigns for the health care overhaul through the advocacy groups like Healthy Economies Now and Families USA. It has spent about $1 million on similar advertisements under its own name.
All of the commercials closely echo common Democratic themes about medical care for all, consumer protection and “health insurance reform.” Some supporters of the overhaul have hired public affairs and advertising firms with close ties to the White House and Senate Democrats, including GMMB, which worked on the Obama campaign, and AKPD, which previously included David Axelrod, who is now the president’s top political adviser. The only question is how much the Democrats got in exchange for gutting the government’s ability to control health care costs.
In a separate scheme, David Keene and the American Conservative Union offered to take sides in an NLRB dispute between rivals UPS and FedEx based on who would pay to play. FedEx refused to pay the bribe of $2 to $3 million, so ACU supported UPS. FedEx went public, turning over the letter outlining ACU’s extortion request to POLITICO’s Mike Allen.
In the three-page letter asking for money on June 30, the conservative group backed FedEx. After FedEx says it rejected the offer, Keene signed onto a two-page July 15 letter backing UPS. Just two weeks earlier, ACU had offered its endorsement to FedEx, saying in a letter to the company: “We stand with FedEx in opposition to this legislation.” But there was a catch — an expensive one. ACU asked FedEx to pay as much as $3.4 million for e-mail and other services for “an aggressive grass-roots campaign to stop the legislation in the Senate.”
It seems that WaPo has figured out a new business model too. Mike Allen for Politico: For $25,000 to $250,000, The Washington Post was offering lobbyists and association executives off the record, non-confrontational access to “those powerful few” — Obama administration officials, members of Congress, and the paper’s own reporters and editors.Then, once suitably embarrassed by the instant and widespread condemnation they received, WaPo retreated.
The focus of the Richardson investigation had an added twist too: It involved interest rate swaps, a financial transaction that municipalities across the land have used for many years to earn money on temporarily idle money raised through bonds. Obama’s Justice Department found no guilt.
Pay for play was at the heart of the Feds arresting Illinois governor Blagojevich for corruption too. Included in the FBI affidavit are charges that Blagojevich was caught on wiretaps conspiring to sell or trade Mr. Obama’s vacated US Senate seat. On the wiretaps, the affidavit asserts, the governor speculated about trading the Senate appointment for perks such as a large salary for himself, once he leaves office, at an organization affiliated with labor unions; an appointment for his wife on corporate boards, where she might be paid as much as $150,000 a year; promises of campaign funds; and a cabinet post or ambassadorship for himself and trying to sell Obama’s Senate seat.
Obama the Agitator & Community Organizer-in-Chief
Obama is corrupt and an amoral conman. The kind who smiles at you in the restaurant because he wants you to leave a big tip, the kind who’ll tell you how pretty you look in that outfit so he’ll get a commission, etc. It may put a smile on your face or make you feel good for a while – but don’t be fooled that he’s pleasing you for your benefit. This man cares for NO interests but his own. And the only thing he’s interested in is power. And it’s an amoral, greedy, cold-blooded power.
Obama is a community organizer on steroids, mentored via Chicago thug tactics. In any case, all one has to do is observe Obama for who he is, rather than who he pretends to be. It just so happens that the engine which fuels Obama’s power-thrust is derived from his community organizing skills – quick study that he is. If not for the honing of these all important skills he would be incapable of competing in the cesspool of Chicago politics.
Obama has not merely adopted the street tactics of Chicago thug politics…he already had them as family keepsakes in his suitcase when he walked into the Oval Office, and was gleefully savoring the first opportunity/excuse to use them. Obama is not a difficult man to figure out because he never made any attempt to hide who he really is. He is a student of Karl Marx and Frederick Engels, Saul Alinsky and Cloward-Piven. Everything about the man was open and available during the campaign and fortunately some of us saw him behind his thin veil, unfortunately, many didn’t.
Knowing this, nothing surprises me about what he does. He is a secular Jeremiah Wright. The country elevated and elected an out of the closet Marxist that practices Chicago thugery. For that, Obama is brilliant, because he got away with it. The man is a contrarian in that the failure of the U.S. will mean success for him. Machiavelli would be proud. Yet, the worst is yet to come because the man is on a mission. What we see as destruction, Obama sees as re-building or re-creating.
Obama has surrounded himself with people from three basic areas; America haters, socialists / communists and corrupt Chicago type politicians and operatives. Obama is quite shrewd in the devious sense, but he is no political genius. He needs lots of help from the leftist media to prop him up, without which he’d be nothing. Obama relies on image mostly though, and the media have created his image for him. Daily, he is willing to use Alinskyite coercive intimidation tactics or infer racial accusations in a drop of a hat. You are witnessing this now. There will be much more to come. It’s the Chicago way.
Obama’s troubling associations are more than isolated friendships or instances of bad judgment. He has surrounds himself with political operatives who share an affinity for agitation tactics. His chief political strategist, David Axelrod, recently called Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel, a “pile driver.” Representative Darrell Issa (R.-CA) described Emanuel as “a brass-knuckle Chicago politician.”
Rahm Emanuel himself, who took over Blagojevich’s congressional seat, demonstrated how he planned to punish political enemies after Clinton’s victory by plunging his steak knife into the table and screaming, “Dead!” as he named each target. Emanuel too, in a tactic that Al Capone might have applauded, once sent a political opponent a rotting fish. Rahm Emanuel is our stealth President.
David Axelrod, a Chicago insider going back 25 years to his days as a key adviser for Mayor Harold Washington, and as corrupt as any Chicago politician, advised campaigns for a host of politicians, including Chicago’s Mayor Richard Daley and Duvall Patrick. In fact, he considers himself an expert in “urban politics” – which translated means big city Democratic machine politics.
Jesse Jackson Jr., son of civil rights icon Jesse Jackson, Valerie Jarrett, former deputy chief of staff for Mayor Richard Daly, Barack Obama and all his other Chicago cronies, it’s “pay to play,” it’s payola, it’s business as usual. And, let’s not forget Michelle. To the movers and shakers in incestuous Chicago, people like Emmanuel, Axelrod, Jarrett along with John Podesta, the CEO of the Center for American Progress – another stealth player savvy in gloves-off politics – consists of the shadow President. In fact, Podesta is the most influential unofficial official.
The Political Machine
In Chicago, the whole is clearly the sum of its parts, and the lubricants for the parts are political spoils. The Chicago machine relies on a tight organizational structure of ward bosses and precinct captains to maintain discipline, as well as patronage and graft to reward supporters. Chicago politics is always about hierarchy and centralization.
Chicago politics is also parochial. In the City of Neighborhoods, ethnic consciousness is strong. An Irish machine, for years, ran a Polish city by making sure that the Poles got a big piece of the pie. To go against the grain of those precinct captains and wards brings admonishment and intimidation.
Chicago’s large immigrant population made it easier for political machines to grow in power. Poor ethnic communities could be played off against one another and manipulated with petty gifts. In exchange for political support, ethnicities would be given virtual fiefdoms within city government; the Irish, for example, were given police work, and the Italians jobs at the transit authority.
Here’s how it worked:
A scheme was devised to “provide financial benefits, in the form of city jobs and promotions, in exchange for campaign work.” As part of this scheme, city officials “corrupted the city’s personnel process” by awarding “jobs and promotions” to pre-selected candidates “through sham and rigged interviews.” Chicago’s patronage system, in which hiring or payback is influenced by political loyalty runs rampant.
Obama maintains close relations with important parts of the establishment, from the Chicago Democratic machine to the city’s leading black politicians. Ironically, Obama didn’t rely on the Mayor Daley machine for his success. When he ran for the state senate, Congress and the U.S. Senate, he was opposed by the party organization. But once there, he worked closely with state Illinois Senate President Emil Jones, an old-school organization Democrat.
Yet, over time, Obama prospered under the Daley machine’s guidance. Soon, Obama endorsed the boss of the Chicago machine, Mayor Richard Daley, hobnobbed with Daley’s friends and drinking buddies, became acquainted with white guys with mob connections, and received $100 million in city affirmative action contracts, a crime that sent one close associate to federal prison.
Obama doesn’t want power to make this country great (like Reagan did) or to help people (like Lyndon Johnson did), or to inspire others (like JFK’s Peace Corps, etc.) – there is nothing and no one in Obama’s world except himself, his fellow Chicago operatives and his power hungry puppets. Significantly, he uses Chicago political tactics to implement his socialized agenda.
In many respects, Alinsky and the Chicago machine are just byproducts themselves. He’s merely using them like he’s using the voters, the media, the liberal White Guilt, the leftists, etc. simply to get the one thing and the only thing he’s ever been interested in – Power. Power breeds control. Obama wants to control you.
Socialism is the basic ideology he uses to level the playing field, i.e., he wants to cut America down to size, get rid of capitalism and large successful companies and the upper class wealth he will never be a part of. It is troubling to see the Obama Administration threatening the viability of our federalist system. Obama shows that he and his supporters are hypocrites too. “Do as I say and not as I do” and Team Obama is ready to play the race card, either subtly or not. It’s the Chicago way.
With Obama in the Oval Office, the patronage system for political loyalty runs unbridled now at the national level. Obama’s path has intersected with ACORN, the infamous network of 100-plus left-wing activist groups and Project Vote on several occasions. The organization is top-heavy with corrupt Democratic Party zealots who will do anything to pad Democratic voter rolls and keep the Democratic powerful in power. Obama is ACORN.
With Obama ensconced in the White House, the roll-out Chicago goodies for loyal supporters in left-of-center political advocacy groups, such as ACORN, has been delved out as part of the economic recovery stimulus pie – up to $8.5 billion in taxpayer funds. ACORN has received at least $53 million in federal money since 1994. A downloadable spreadsheet of the $53 million is posted on washingtonexaminer.com.
Taxpayers have funded questionable get-out-the-vote and voter registration fraud. For excellent background on Obama and ACORN, see Stanley Kurtz’s National Review piece here, plus City Journal pieces here and here and here and here. To learn more about the ACORN Obama knows visit Michelle Malkin’s piece here.
In last years last national election; we learned that Obama’s left-wing group ACORN encouraged voter fraud in Philly. Last October, three elections hoaxers who worked for ACORN pleaded guilty in Seattle for their role in the biggest election fraud scheme in Washington state history. It’s the same ACORN tied to massive voter fraud in Missouri. And Ohio. And 12 other states. To learn more about Obama, Community Organizing and ACORN click here and here. An additional $1 billion in Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) are included in the stimulus bill. ACORN and other non-profit advocacy groups could also receive additional funds through federally funded housing programs administered by state and local governments.
And only recently, with the help of two young journalists, Hannah Giles and James O’Keefe has ACORN only possibly been exposed. The result: on September 14, The Senate voted to cut off funding for ACORN and on Sept 15th, the House is expected to do the same. To learn more about the ACORN Baltimore prostitution investigation click here. Then a scandal surrounding the left-wing activist organization ACORN spread to New York, with employees at its Brooklyn office caught on video. To learn more, click here. This Alinsky-aligned organization is enough to bar any government funding. Go to BigGovernment.com to see all the videos and stories surrounding the undercover investigative work of ACORN.
But how much longer can ACORN continue with this disgusting attempt to make ACORN sound like the victim? Acorn is not just about de-funding. It is about criminalization. It makes you wonder about ACORN’s voter registration drives. If only one-sixth (17 percent) of the voters they register are fake Democratic voters, that’s a crime, too — a crime that could guarantee even an unpopular Democrat’s election.
Obama will make every effort to oppose laws which require an identification in order to vote or register to vote. To do so, he will direct unscrupulous advocacy groups to buy voter impersonators with cash and get them to cast illegal votes. But with Obama in the White House, and his people in place, does anyone think his justice department and his czars are going to enforce the Constitution? No, they have been put in place to enforce Obama’s agenda using Obama’s community agitator tactics on a national scale. Maybe next time the New Black Panthers will be armed with guns in addition to nightsticks?
Unions, ACORN, La Raza, AFL-CIO, the ‘elite media’ all benefit from Obama’s pay-to-play schemes. The list is actually, quite long. Obama has deliberately set things up this way; corrupt infrastructure that reflects a shadow government. It is typical of his entire career; destroy anyone standing in his way and smile along the way; intimidate the opposition; patronage.
Obama has never been overly secretive about his methods or his intentions; it is public apathy and white guilt that have allowed it to get this far. Has anyone heard Obama ever comment that his followers are crossing the line? No, he urges them to bring guns to knife fights and punch back twice as hard. Holder drops charges against the Black panthers and Bill Richardson and instead pursues the CIA.
To note, billions of dollars in federal stimulus aid went to counties that supported Obama overwhelmingly compared to counties that did not support Obama. As reported in the USA Today, the estimated value per person in the Obama counties was $69 dollars per person versus $34 dollars per person in McCain counties. The Chicago way.
And the Chicago wheels, led by Axlerod and Emmanuel, are now out in full-force, using intimidation, race accusations and smear tactics in a similar attempt to take-out anyone who opposes Obama. The Obama war room has been unleashed accusing protesters at town hall events of being organized astroturfers (a claim sufficiently debunked by Mary Katharine Ham), that we are “too well dressed” to be real protesters, that we are an “unruly mob“, and that we all wear swastikas. A very fishy swastika was also painted on a Congressman’s office as well? The Chicago way.
Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), the longest serving Democratic senator, criticized Obama’s appointment of White House “Czars” to oversee federal policy, saying these executive positions amount to a ‘power grab’ by the executive branch. The Federal Reserve, already arguably the most powerful agency in the U.S. government, will get sweeping new authority to regulate, terror interrogations has moved from civil servants at the CIA to a newly formed group under political control of the White House, and within the last 30 days, we heard of a proposed bill which would grant Obama the authority to shut down public and private networks — including the restriction of internet traffic.
Here comes the power grab i.e., government-control (socialism) in the guise of national cyber-security, common good and economic recovery. Is that how they do it in Chicago? Swear to uphold the Constitution, then turn around and use it as fish wrap? Remember, it’s the Politics of who gets what, when, and how. Remember it’s about power. Remember it’s about pay-to-play. Remember it involves ballot box stuffing, voter fraud, intimidation, patronage, lobbying and race-baiting.
But, corruption and irony always go hand in hand. That’s because corruption by nature means different people are treated totally differently for the same action. For instance, when Dale Rathke, brother of ACORN founder Wade Rathke, embezzled $1 million from ACORN, the higher ups covered up the embezzlement. Meanwhile, when it was discovered that whistle blower Anita Moncrief used a company credit card to charge less than $1000 in personal charges, ACORN sued her and continues that suit in court today. That’s pretty ironic. It’s the hallmark of corruption.
When Chicago politics was contained within Illinois state lines, the rest of the country could guffaw and slap our knee at the ridiculousness of it all. When you have local political opportunists behaving badly it affects very few people directly, yet at the national and international level, it’s a very different story.
Chicago political corruption has metastasized and has spread to Washington, carried by Democrat voters and enabled by spineless, weak-kneed Republicans. Obama was and remains a radical-stealthy, organizationally sophisticated, and — when necessary — tactically ruthless radical. The real Obama – the man beyond the feel-good symbol – is no real mystery. Obama’s heart is, and will remain, with the radical far left.
Most zebras never change their stripes. Obama learned politics in the cesspool of Chicago politics. Intimidation. Corruption. Patronage. Dirty Politics. The Chicago Political Machine, now is in Washington. Obama doesn’t just try to outspend and outfox the opposition, he tries to outbully and outmuscle them. Obama is charming and will say anything to anyone to get his wants. And what does he want? Power. Power allows government-control of the people, the private sector, the military, party members and the weak.
His goal is to initiate the beginning stages of a habitually incremental radicalism. In pursuit of his goals, Obama has shown himself willing to quietly support, and sometimes to openly use, radical Alinskyite tactics to silence and intimidate. Anyone that has been paying attention knew without doubt how he would govern. We’ve already seen how Obama is bringing the Illinois sideshow to America Use the model of his Chicago days and wind forward to Washington DC, it’s as plain as day.
Although media malfeasance is at the heart of our ignorance about these broader patterns, Obama’s absorption strategy of stealthy incrementalism helps hide the truth. Obama is a thug with a coercive totalitarian tinge trying to shake the us down or intimidate us by threatening to put those who oppose him on an enemies list. Indeed, Chicago politics has taken over our nation. But, no amount of Chicago thuggery will save Obama and his minions from the wrath of ‘We the People’. But pay-for-play politics won’t be going away until both parties give up their addiction to money and their contempt for government—and that’s not going to happen any time soon. In the meantime, the Chicago Political Machine is alive and well in Washington, DC.
But, if Obama succeeds, he will be the Cap Capone of the New World. Not bad, for a “secular-theologian” community agitator who rejects middle class’ness. But, Barack Obama can only lead people who adore him. That is the case with all community organizers. And, Americans are waking up.