Andrew Breitbart's Barack Obama video: Talk radio v. mainstream media

Categories: Media, Videos

young barack obama.jpg
Video below.
Shortly before his death at age 43, provocateur Andrew Breitbart hyped what was supposed to be a bombshell video of young Barack Obama -- one that would supposedly unmask his radical racialist agenda.

Well, the video's out -- see it below -- and the mainstream media is reacting with a collective yawn. But not so Denver talk radio.

As noted in the New York Post piece linked above, the video shows Obama circa 1991, when he was the president of the Harvard Law Review, speaking at a rally organized by Professor Derrick Bell about Harvard's reticence to grant tenure to black faculty members. Obama doesn't say anything particularly shocking, but he does encourage attendees to "open your hearts and open your minds to the words of professor Derrick Bell," who Breitbart.com editor Joel Pollak described as the "Jeremiah Wright of academia" -- a reference to a controversial preacher whose church Obama attended in Chicago -- during an appearance on Fox News.

Here's how Breitbart.com's Ben Shapiro describes Bell:

This is a man who posited that the civil rights movement was too moderate because it accepted the status quo, and believed that the entire legal and constitutional system had to be transformed in radical fashion. This is a man so extreme that, as we've reported, he wrote a story in 1993 in which he posited that white Americans would sell black Americans into slavery to aliens to relieve the national debt, and that Jews would go along with it.

Charles Ogletree, a Harvard prof the Post calls an Obama ally, admits that he did his best to keep the video under wraps during the 2008 campaign, although he says it doesn't matter much now -- and the reaction, or lack thereof, by most major media organs bears out this opinion. The story has hardly caused a sensation, with even Juan Williams, Fox News' designated moderate, casting it as something considerably less than a blockbuster.

At KHOW, however, there's considerably more interest. Host Peter Boyles spent much of his first hour this morning discussing Bell, with a special focus on the short story Shapiro cites: "Space Traders," which was turned into a satirical segment of Cosmic Slop, a 1994 TV project hosted by George Clinton, of Parliament-Funkadelic fame. The premise, as described by IMDB.com: "A conservative African American politician must choose between his people's survival and appeasing his white colleagues when space aliens propose to share their profound knowledge in exchange for all black people on earth." Featured actors include Robert Guillaume, whom TV viewers of a certain age will know better as Benson.

The tone of the piece is good-natured and goofy -- not exactly the sort of thing likely to foment violent revolution. Nonetheless, Boyles posted the clips on his web page along with the Obama video. And the page for afternoon drive-timers Craig Silverman and Dan Caplis is currently topped by a giant photo of young Obama that links to the video -- no surprise given that in 2008, Caplis assembled "The Obama Tapes," a collection of audio draw mainly from the audio version of his book Dreams From My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance that was more partisan innuendo than revelation.

In the end, that description can be applied to Breitbart's last "scoop." Those who hate Obama will see it as more proof of his evil ways. Those who don't will likely shrug it off and then waste another hour or so playing Angry Birds.

Here's the Obama clip, followed by the "Space Traders" material from Cosmic Slop.

Follow and like the Michael Roberts/Westword Facebook page.

More from our Media archive: "Dan Caplis and His Jihad Against Barack Obama."

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Me
Me

The point being missed here is that even the knuckle-dragging morons who take the hot-button pabulum KHOW spews seriously have money in their pockets, and a dollar out of a moron's pocket is worth just as much to Clear Channel as is a dollar out of the pocket of an educated person who sees race-baiting as the distraction it is. Clear Channel cares nothing about whether its disinformation poisons society. Its only interest is providing a return to its shareholders -- and if whipping up racial hatred can earn enough of a dedicated audience of rubes that advertisers such as gun shops and birther used-car dealers will buy spots, that's all that matters. The more we point out the idiocy of Boyles, Caplis and their listeners, the more they win -- merely because we're mentioning their names. Michael Roberts could list and document 10,000 facts Peter Boyles gets wrong, but Boyles would celebrate because Roberts spelled his name correctly.

Danielle Russell
Danielle Russell

Please, please, pretty please with limbaugh on top... give the tea/gop all the rope they want! Tea/Gop top targets are women, women, people of color and poor. Clawing back civil rights fought for and won, decades ago.

Michael Roberts
Michael Roberts

Thanks for the post, EG. We're going to make it an upcoming Comment of the Day. Congrats, and thanks for weighing in.

Eric
Eric

I'm still trying to "drill down to the crux" of this "shattering expose".

So Breitbart spent 4 years screaming "We still have no proof Obama was at Harvard, we only have his word on it. Where aren't people coming forward to swear they saw him there? Because nobody ever saw him there" 

And now, the "smoking gun" that has the then President of the Harvard Law Review "hanging out with radicals like Derrick Bell" to be the current President of the United States?

The guy that Breitbart says can't prove he went to Harvard is, in Breitbart's "expose" and in his capacity as the President of the Harvard Law Review, introducing to a rally, the first tenured black Professor at Harvard?

WTF?

Remember before the'08 election, when caplis was running the short con about how then Senator Obama was simultaneously an American hating Muslim, trained by radicals in Indonesia AND a white hating, Jeremiah Wright led, radical black christian?

This new bullshit story's as ridiculous as the last.

And Caplis was dumb enough to run with it?

Caplis is intellectually dishonest. We know that, and we've known it for a very long time. He appeals to the lesser angels of a very small demographic of disgruntled, frightened, mostly older, mostly white, very poorly informed listeners that go from Limbaugh's vile rants right into his equally distasteful schlock on weekday afternoons.

But Caplis is something else as well.

Creepy.

He's been dispensing bile, hate, and fear for as long as I can remember. He has some very twisted ideas of right and wrong, a frightening position about a woman's place in this world,  some skin crawling obsessions about sex, and his hatred of President Obama is legendary, with that hate rooted in both that the President is only partially white, and that he's a Democrat.

He's also the voice of the local republican party, the conduit by which the republicans get out their positions, run their talking points, attack their opponents, rewrite history, and twist facts.

That the republicans would run the Breitbart nonsense is an indictment on how far they've descended down the rabbit hole into the role of a nonsensical group of lunatics in the electoral process.

Boyles?

That's definitely a "who cares" thing.

JustSayin
JustSayin

Caplis couldn't hack it as a lawyer because he had to deal with too many facts.

LarryQ5
LarryQ5

May he rest in pieces.

lisa
lisa

This is it! No wonder Breitbart dropped dead.  I think his rage at not being the center of attention killed him (freaks and animals aka look at meeeeeee..)  . I love the fact that Rushgate has overshadowed Breitbart's death. How fitting.

JustSayin
JustSayin

Breitbart died of disappointment.

WhyitsnotcalledThinkRadio
WhyitsnotcalledThinkRadio

Yes, the tepid introduction of an African American scholar at Harvard is far more interesting than a Presidential candidate that believes in a self-proclaimed prophet who claimed to converse with angels and used a stone in a hat to translate reformed Egyptian inscribed on golden plates.

Next up for Denver talk radio and conspiracy theorists:  Did the ghost of Derrick Bell swoop into Andrew Breitbart's neighborhood and suck the life out of him?  Of course he did!  He would have to, because only Whites are allowed in Breitbart's neighborhood.  See, it all makes perfect sense!

Buffs1984
Buffs1984

Dan Caplis is gifted race-baiter to his low-knowledge audiaence.  Using a benign video about diversity and equality,  where the first black editor of the Harvard Law Review hugs the first black faculty member of the Harvard Law, to enrage his synchophants tells us much more about Caplis' hatred than Barack Obama's time as a student.  Remember, it was Caplis, during the 2008 election, who hyped the so-called "Whitey video" about Michelle Obama.  Caplis, who routinely brags about how he only deals in the "facts", predicted that indeed this fictional video existed because he could picture Mrs Obama saying such a things.  He is not only a tool but aapparently a mind-reader. 

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