Taking Dinesh D'Souza Seriously

Applying analytical criticism to Dinesh D'Souza's theories about Obama's "anti-colonial" "socialism" is a bit like dressing up in chainmail armor to fight a pinata. But I just want to make a short point.

Barack Obama, the elder, was a socialist. He wanted to state to seize private property, raise taxes "with no upper limit," and dismantle the structures of a capitalist society. Barack Obama, the president, rejected advice to nationalize the banks, expanded our current health care system without dismantling much of anything (to the chagrin of reformists), and now wants to extend 80 percent of a tax cut law that originally got support from only a handful of Democrats currently serving. D'Souza knows that there are non-Kenyan non-socialist children who supported these decidedly center/center-left measures, too, right?

This article is part of a strange, but not surprising, effort to make the Obama agenda seem exotic and ulterior, wrapped in occult Kenyan ideology. But why read Obama's Dreams From My Father (not "Dreams Of My Father," D'Souza excitedly points out, in a moment of stupendously dumb exegesis) to glean policy lessons? Read The Audacity of Hope. Read his campaign speeches, his presidential addresses, his press conferences. The White House's domestic policy agenda is wide-ranging and sometimes flawed, but it's not exactly mysterious.