“Listen, when I was in [high] school, I had a friend. We played basketball together. And one time we got into a fight and he called me a c**n.”
After some bogus elaboration, Obama got to the punch line: “I remember I popped him in the face and broke his nose,” to which Springsteen replied, “Well done.”
To date, this is the most fraudulent moment in a fraudulent partnership. Obama, observes friendly biographer David Remnick, “darkens the canvas” when he writes or speaks to make his life seem tougher and blacker than it has been.
For instance, in his newest memoir, “A Promised Land,” Obama talks of “unmerited traffic stops,” of being followed by store security and of hearing “the sound of car locks clicking as I walked across a street, dressed in a suit and tie, in the middle of the day.”
I’ll buy the unmerited stops. Just about every time the police have pulled me over it was unmerited. At least I thought so. As to the clicking car locks, with that claim Obama imagined a Chicago very nearly as fantastic as Jussie Smollett’s.
In his first memoir, “Dreams from My Father,” Obama shares with the reader “his ledger of slights.” Among them is the “c**n” incident, which he sets in the seventh grade, not high school.
There is no basketball game, no broken nose, no elaborate ritual of explanation and redemption.
Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer David Garrow writes that “Dreams” was “not a memoir or an autobiography; it was instead, in multitudinous ways, without any question a work of historical fiction.”
By darkening his canvas, Obama is trying to gain the acceptance of those authentic African Americans whose traditions were forged in slavery and whose ancestors actually did suffer.
In a May 2011 interview, activist professor Cornel West nailed Obama on this anxiety. “All he has known culturally is white,” said West.” He is just as human as I am, but that is his cultural formation. When he meets an independent black brother, it is frightening.”
In Springsteen, Obama has found the perfect partner, someone whose life is as inauthentic as his own. Obama claims that he and Springsteen have “a shared sensibility about work, about family and about America.”
The shared sensibility about work is that neither has ever had a real job. According to Time, Springsteen labored for a few weeks at age 18 as a gardener. And that was it.
By the early ’70s, he had left his leafy suburban “death trap” behind and was busily reinventing himself as a Dylanesque folk singer/songwriter in Greenwich Village.
Although the Village is only five Holland Tunnel minutes away from Jersey City, it might as well be five light years away. This radical enclave has held its collective nose up at New Jersey’s “bridge and tunnel trash” for a century.
The only kind of politics a Jersey boy could absorb here are the kind that have informed Springsteen’s lyrics ever since – elitist, leftist and out of touch. He sure as hell didn’t learn about things like “economic justice” at my exit on the Garden State Parkway.
As to “Born in the USA,” I will leave that discussion to others, but “Renegades” they are not. Both have been marinating in the same progressive bouillabaisse all their adult lives. As far as I can tell, neither has ever had an original thought.
Among the more phony and predictable of those thoughts is the theme, explored in the initial podcast, of how America can “find our way back to a more unifying story.”
Springsteen’s Super Bowl Jeep ad, pulled after it was revealed that the singer had concealed a DUI in November, had a similar theme, namely “meeting in the middle.”
What flaming phoniness on both their parts! Just a week before the 2020 election, Springsteen was saying, “It is time for an exorcism in our nation’s capital.”
Lest anyone miss his point, he titled his broadcast, “Farewell to the Thief.” Said Springsteen, “In just a few days, we’ll be throwing the bums out. I thought it was a f–-ing nightmare, but it was so true.”
Not to be out-smeared, Obama laced his new memoir with unifying gems like “For millions of Americans spooked by a Black man in the White House, [Trump] promised an elixir for their racial anxiety.”
What the two grifters do have in common are multiple houses, including massive shore homes: Springsteen a 378-acre horse farm in Colts Neck, New Jersey, and Obama, a $12 million waterfront estate on Martha’s Vineyard.
Maybe they can do one of their unifying podcasts on the effect global warming will have on the resale value of beachfront property. I am sure the rest of us yahoos will identify.
Jack Cashill’s latest book, “Barack Obama’s Promised Land: Deplorables Need Not Apply,” is now on pre-sale. His recent book, “Unmasking Obama: The Fight to Tell the True Story of a Failed Presidency,” is widely available. See www.cashill.com for more information.
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