What is Barak Obama?


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The political and religious “identity” of Barak Obama is a contentious and much debated topic these days.  Claims of, “He’s a Muslim,” and “ he’s a socialist,” abound.   The left, as well as the MSM are able to field these claims, and contradict them, at least partially.  They are able to do this because he’s neither of these things.

Religion: While Obama may have a soft spot for Islam, he sat in Jeremiah Wright’s church for over 20 years.  While Wright’s teachings are radical, they are clearly not Islamic.  Like the rest of us, the radical wing of Islam would cut his head off, unless he converted.

It is well documented that he attended an Islamic school while he lived in Indonesia.  That, in and of itself, does not mean that he is a Muslim, but unlike other Presidents, he has a depth of knowledge into Islam that unparalleled.  That might bias him, and blind him to the potential dangers that we face.  Either way, he does not appear to be Muslim, or, for that matter, Christian (or at least any Christianity with which we would be familiar).

Politics: You can call Obama a socialist.  It seems to fit his model of wealth redistribution rather nicely.  You might also call him a fascist, as his tampering in the banking, auto, and health care industries closely matches the actions of Mussolini and Hitler, for example, “Corporatism.”  You can also call him a “progressive,” as they believed that the state, run by an “intellectual” elite, can/should wield power to shape society into something more equitable and structured.  The common threads between all three are statism and elitism.  The idea that the state has primacy over all human activity seems a common thread though all of Obama’s policies.   And, of course, the idea of elitism; that a small group of “really smart people that know way better than you,” have the right and obligation to instruct everyone on how to live is central to any totalitarian view.

Some will say that the political theories and backgrounds conflict.  They do… and they don’t.  While that might come off as a contradictory statement, there is a case for stating it.  To draw the comparisons and contrasts, a brief look at history is required.

During the mid to late 19th century, new political ideologies were emerging.  Communism and socialism were taking root in Europe, and to a lesser degree, her in the US as well.  Also, the progressive movement was emerging in the US.  The leading minds of these movements were aware of each other, and followed each other’s writings and actions closely.  It is safe to assume that they influenced each other.

When it became apparent that Europe was going to explode into war (WWI), there was much excitement among the socialists/communists.  They had been predicting that if war came, the proletariat would rise, and there would be a vast, international communist revolution.  They thought that under the stress, death, and deprivation that would come with a war, that the people would grow weary with their governments and economic systems, and “throw off their oppressors.”

It didn’t happen.  With the exception of Russia, there were no successful communist revolutions.  Communists certainly did make a nuisance of themselves, but the established order in the West held.  More surprising was the fact that many socialists were patriotic and supported their nations in the war.

This is a crucial point in history for the socialist movement, as schisms were created by their differing reactions and ideas about the failure of the international revolution.   The hard-core communists decided to use the USSR as a “base” from which to spread communism throughout the world.  A smaller group of communists in Germany decided to examine what caused the failure of the international.  Working from the “Frankfort School,” they tagged Western Culture as the culprit.  Since Western Culture promoted patriotism, individualism, religious faith, capitalism, and self-reliance, they argued, communism couldn’t take root.  Their mission, therefore, was to find ways to negate Western Culture, and allow communism to take over.  We’ll get back to the Cultural Marxists in a bit.

However, it doesn’t end there.  There was yet another wing.  Some socialists, particularly Mussolini, decided that rather than reject national pride and western culture, that they would embrace it and use it to justify their socialism.  The terms, “National Socialism and totalitarianism,” were, if memory serves, coined by Mussolini.  Since the international revolution failed, he postulated that they could be done in single nations instead-hence, National Socialism.  He proved that assumption in his takeover of Italy.  Franco (of Spain) and Hitler followed suit.

The fascists, you see, were socialists.  They used socialist rhetoric and policies.  While they didn’t take over the means of production, they controlled it completely via regulation.  They did redistribute wealth.  They did tax heavily.  They did institute massive levels of government intervention; like heavy regulation of industry, gun control, socialized medicine, and so on.  They simply used the individual cultures and histories of their nations as a “wrapper” for their policies, corrupting the culture to serve their ends.  Even Hitler himself suggested that the Nazis and the Bolsheviks had more in common than what separated them.  He simply saw them as a competing ideology, NOT an antithetical one.  From the opposite perspective, Lenin was said to lament the “loss” of Mussolini, as early in his career, Mussolini was a powerful and well thought of advocate of socialism.

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At this point, it is also important to note that there was no “pure” versions of either communism or fascism.  In each nation or movement, there were wide variations in doctrine and application.  For example, fascist Italy did not rely on antisemitism to forward it’s goals.  While Mussolini wanted to restore an “Roman Empire,” Hitler espoused the superiority of the “Aryan Race.”  All had variations, just as Leninism was different from Stalinism.

Meanwhile, the progressives continued to grow in strength in the US as well.  While they never seemed to gain a doctrinal type of theory or organization, they did press foreword with all sorts of governmental controls, such as eugenics (forced sterilization), increased government control over banking, labor, industry, and so on.  Many prominent progressives were also were great admirers of both Mussolini and Hitler (until Hitler’s anti-Semitism became too inconvenient to ignore).  In turn, the Nazis took some pages out of the progressive’s playbook in terms of media manipulation and eugenics.

So, we see that the Socialists and fascists are not antithetical, but “brothers.”  They were separated by their differing opinions on how to spread socialism.  Progressivism was a cousin, or at least a fellow traveler of Socialism and fascism.  They all knew about each other, often spoke kindly of each other, and seem to have “cross pollinated” each other’s ideas.

But what happened to the Cultural Marxists?  They were booted from Germany when Hitler came to power, and they migrated to here, eventually settling at Columbia University, where they continued their work.  They proposed a “long march through the institutions” in order to destroy western culture.  They made good on that idea, and now, education, media, law, and even theology have all been “infected” with cultural Marxism.  Here is an excerpt from an article that I quoted in a previous post on Cultural Marxism.

The Frankfurt School again departed from orthodox Marxism, which argued that all of history was determined by who owned the means of production. Instead, they said history was determined by which groups, defined as men, women, races, religions, etc., had power or “dominance” over other groups. Certain groups, especially white males, were labeled “oppressors,” while other groups were defined as “victims.” Victims were automatically good, oppressors bad, just by what group they came from, regardless of individual behavior.

Does that sound familiar?  Or what about this?

Marcuse also widened the Frankfurt School’s intellectual work. In the early 1930s, Horkheimer had left open the question of who would replace the working class as the agent of Marxist revolution. In the 1950s, Marcuse answered the question, saying it would be a coalition of students, blacks, feminist women and homosexuals – the core of the student rebellion of the 1960s, and the sacred “victims groups” of political correctness today. Marcuse further took one of political correctness’s favorite words, “tolerance,” and gave it a new meaning. He defined “liberating tolerance” as tolerance for all ideas and movements coming from the left, and intolerance for all ideas and movements coming from the right. When you hear the cultural Marxists today call for “tolerance,” they mean Marcuse’s “liberating tolerance” (just as when they call for “diversity,” they mean uniformity of belief in their ideology).

The student rebellion of the 1960s, driven largely by opposition to the draft for the Vietnam War, gave Marcuse a historic opportunity. As perhaps its most famous “guru,” he injected the Frankfurt School’s cultural Marxism into the baby boom generation. Of course, they did not understand what it really was. As was true from the Institute’s beginning, Marcuse and the few other people “in the know” did not advertise that political correctness and multi-culturalism were a form of Marxism. But the effect was devastating: a whole generation of Americans, especially the university-educated elite, absorbed cultural Marxism as their own, accepting a poisonous ideology that sought to destroy America’s traditional culture and Christian faith. That generation, which runs every elite institution in America, now wages a ceaseless war on all traditional beliefs and institutions. They have largely won that war. Most of America’s traditional culture lies in ruins.

I would say that this is a correct assessment.

Needless to say, Cultural Marxism has infected all of our institutions.  When Obama said he associated with the “radical professors,” he was being steeped in Cultural Marxism.  The idea that it is somehow “unfair” that the US is so powerful and prosperous is part of that equation.  Think about many of Obama’s policies and actions, and you will see Cultural Marxism.

So, as a “progressive,” Obama stands on an intellectual base that has as its foundation, elements of fascism and Marxism.  Then, it’s finished off with a thick coat of Cultural Marxism.  It is safe to say that he is a fascist, socialist, and a “progressive.”  While none are exclusive, all are part of the foundation of his beliefs; and therefore, his actions.

Disclaimer: As usual, I could have wrote a book on this.  Kindly consider this post an outline.  However, Jonah Goldberg covered much of it in his fantastic book Liberal Fascism.


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  • Wow, you have certainly done your homework, Matt. I know your post is more about Obama, but it should also help us all realize that America has arrived in the place she is in right now over a period of time and not over night. It has happened little by little, year after year, at a slow but very steady pace. So gradually has it taken place that we hardly recognize that it has happened or is still taking place.

    Concerning President Obama himself, where I have a major problem with him is how he seems to willingly buy into the theory that the United States of America is evil and needs to atone for “all of the harm it has done”. Yes, our country and it’s leaders have made mistakes in the past, some of them not so long ago, but we are not an evil entity. I think the President and all those who subscribe that theory need to look back at our history and realize all of the good America has done throughout her history.

    That theory also bleeds over to the way he and his group of progressives treat corporations and those who have worked hard and acquired wealth in our country. (Of course, that doesn’t apply to people like Al Gore and other progressives who are wealthy. Their wealth is for a good cause, don’t you see?) Until their attitudes and beliefs change, we can not expect to see a change from their behavior of trying to punish those who have done well in America.

    Well, I didn’t expect to write such a long comment, but you got me to thinking.

    • Long comments are always welcome Larry.

      This was one of those expansive topics that could have been taken in so many directions. You are speaking of incrementalism. Change things bit by bit, piece by piece, and after a few decades, boom! A changed country. Each piece is described as a “small sacrifice,” or a “insignificant effort that won’t hurt a bit.” However, when you put them all together, it becomes something comprehensive and literally crushing to freedom and prosperity.

      I agree with your assessment of liberals vs. people that work and produce. They want to keep their money, as evidenced by their paltry giving to charity when compared to Conservative counterparts. However, they seem to be incredibly generous with our money. But in the end, is it really generous anyway? Or is it simply a way to impoverish us and lead us to the caring hands of the nanny state?

      It is ironic that while Gore supports Cap and Trade, he is also perfectly positioned to become a billionaire if it is passed. I guess it’s OK when the effort leads to greater levels of government control.

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  • Ken Minor

    Call him what you want. I prefer former president BHO. To clarify one point on the teachings of J. Wrights church, they have in fact given the “Lifetime Achievement Award” to Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam. They have serveral common beliefs most significant of which is that their loyaties are to black people everywhere particulary to the “motherland” Africa and to the belief that white men have conspired to hold down the black man.

    Wright’s Trinity church has as it creed that white men have used Christianity to enslave the black man. Farrakhan’s group states that white men are not human but have the capacity to become human.

    So what does that make Obama? Dangerous!

    • He is indeed dangerous Ken. Perhaps I should have covered the religious aspect more in-depth.

  • If I were to equate him with a leader, I would say he is most like Mussolini. I think you could define him as a Neo-Marxist. It’s definably Marxism, but as you said, it is a combination of past systems. The question is, where is this Neo-Marxist movement heading?

    • I’ve thought about the Mussolini comparison as well. Economically, he seems to match that rather closely. I think the “neo-marxists” are going in the same direction/destination as their predecessors. The path and rhetoric are slightly different, but death, poverty, and failure are the final destinations.

  • Wonderful article. I found it so informative. As far as religion: since he sat under the teaching of Jeremiah Wright for so long and his teaching was Black Liberation Theology, then I would assume that is Obama’s true religious stance.

    • It is, Jackie. I was really just trying to dispel the notion that he is a Muslim. Though as both you and Ken pointed out, it might be a good thing to explore the religious aspect a bit further.

  • how unnerving to have America hater socialist terrorist sympathizers running
    our Nation Matt! have an awesome weekend despite it all!!:)

    • You have a great one as well Angel, thanks!

  • Oh, he’s a Marxist, all right. He’s also a @#$!#%&^*!@# $%^&!@# !$@##%^.

    • That he is Snarky!

  • Matt, this was one of your best posts! It was researched and well written. I think that President Obama is an opportunist that is whatever he needs to be for the moment. To be honest, I’m not sure he has many values or principles of his own. They seem borrowed. The one thing he is though is a Marxist disguised as a Democrat.

    • Thank you very much John. A lot of this information was in my head from prior research. Goldberg’s book really pulled it together though. He does a fantastic job of going over the connections between the original progressive movement and socialism/fascism. Our left did a very good job of using the eraser on history. They were able to “delete” their connections to Lenin, Stalin, Mussolini, and Hitler.

  • Brilliant… Matt you’ve done your research and put together a great post.

    Larry – Here is a quote that justifies your comment.

    (Norman Thomas ran for President on the Socialist ticket)

    “The American people will never knowingly adopt Socialism. But under the name of ‘liberalism’ they will adopt every fragment of the Socialist program, until one day America will be a Socialist nation, without knowing how it happened.”
    – Norman Thomas

    John – I think your opportunist thought is interesting and accurate. He changes his spots and his color (no pun intended) to trick and fool people.

    • Thanks USAWatchmen. I think Alinsky actually talked about there being no truths and that community organizers change to fit the situation, with, as always, the objective of winning.

  • Excellent, Matt. Fascism and Socialism are just two sides of the same coin– “statism.”

    • Absolutely Karen! They are variations on the same theme. The presentation and selling points are different.

  • multisigma

    More frightening than the advances being made by domestic socialists is the growing popularity of global “solutions” to humanity’s various problems. Top of the list currently seems to be creation of an all-encompassing economic plan administered by an as-yet-unspecified agency holding supernational power and funded by a global tax scheme. Since the Climate Change scam seems to have blown up in their faces, those pressing the issue may well have an even more insidious ‘Plan B’ that would create sufficient economic chaos to stampede even the US (especially as headed by a kindred spirit) into participation. With the resulting shift from dollar-denominated assets to a standard defined and controlled by a global socialist elite, one could easily imagine our goose (previously the layer of golden eggs) not just cooked but probably charred. For reference, note that both UK’s Brown and Canada’s Harper are already on record as supporting creation of a global currency at this June’s G-20 summit.
    Under such circumstances, discussion of both historic and ongoing efforts by political groups to persuade American citizens to voluntarily submit to governmental control might become thoroughly moot.
    Please convince me that this scenario is at least unlikely.

    • An international currency has been discussed before. I think the Russians called for one to replace the dollar as the international standard for trade just last year. It would seem impossible now, but if Obama can finish off the economy, who knows.

  • Excellent post Matt. It is important to understand what we are up against.

    I think politically you can draw a straight line from Obama through LBJ, FDR, Woodrow Wilson the Progressive party and back to Teddy Roosevelt in 1901. This is from the 1912 Progressive Party platform:

    To that end we urge the establishment of a strong Federal administrative commission of high standing, which shall maintain permanent active supervision over industrial corporations engaged in inter-State commerce, or such of them as are of public importance, doing for them what the Government now does for the National banks, and what is now done for the railroads by the Inter-State Commerce Commission.

    Such a commission must enforce the complete publicity of those corporation transactions which are of public interest; must attack unfair competition, false capitalization and special privilege, and by continuous trained watchfulness guard and keep open equally all the highways of American commerce.

    Thus the business man will have certain knowledge of the law, and will be able to conduct his business easily in conformity therewith; the investor will find security for his capital; dividends will be rendered more certain, and the savings of the people will be drawn naturally and safely into the channels of trade.

    Under such a system of constructive regulation, legitimate business, freed from confusion, uncertainty and fruitless litigation, will develop normally in response to the energy and enterprise of the American business man.

    Regulations, class warfare and unions.

    • Great find Steve. I had seen your post over at your place and at the Resistance. A lot of the ideas are recycled, but the presentation has been modernized to exploit our current crises.

  • It’s sunny outside and it is fostering a sense of optimism, so I’ll say Obama is “the failed president who spawned a glorious conservative renewal in America!”

    Keep writing like this and you’ll be making your living as a writer, my friend!

    • That is the primary effect of Obama’s socialism. People are waking up. That is most encouraging.

      If someone wants to give me piles of money me for my rants, I will be a very happy man!

  • AG

    Awesome post. Indeed what we have in Obama and the progressives that run him is a form of socialism. The distinction made between fascism and socialism is scary, since the main difference historically, as you point out, was the socialism in one country versus world socialism. What we have today is indeed socialism, a modern sort that learned from past mistakes. I see this socialism in China and starting to take hold in Venezuela (if if hasn’t already done so completely), I have been to the former on business and what I saw there was worrisome. I think we must regard socialism as an evolving ideology, just as representative democracy itself evolved over thousands of years.

    This is why I know that Obama is a socialist; he a modern socialist equipped with all the lessons of the past and the Cultural Marxist playbook you so thoroughly explained. This makes this brand of socialism as dangerous than any in the past and it makes any deniers of the fact that he is socialist either naive or complicit in this great country’s destruction.

    • For Obama, this mix allows him, and the media lapdogs, to deflects the claims about him. Modern “progressivism” is a mix of fascism, socialism, and Cultural Marxism. So he fits no single category perfectly, but the ideals and policies are there.

  • You really know your stuff Matt! VERY well research and put together.
    Whatever O is, I think he is DANGEROUS and VERY VERY BAD for All

    • Thanks Bunni. Obama is dangerous…to us.

  • Ken Minor

    To say what Barack is requires more adjectives than I have facility with. In my estimation I don’t think Barack knows himself what he is. For sure he is slippery. To say that he is not a Muslim is no more or less factual than to say that he is. Nothing in Trinity Church would have made a muslim hide nor could that same church be called mainstream Christianity. If it is anything it is a group of primarily black members with a grudge against white America. Their loyalty is to their race and their motherland: Africa.

    As far as being a socialist he favors social programs and “Equality” for all but himself. Labels are difficult to pin on someone and he is no different. He clearly has elitist, egocentric, arrogant, selfish, and exclusionary behaviors. His voice is cleary the most beautiful sound to his ears and he clearly prefers to only use that voice withing his minions. He surrounds himself with socilist academics and avoids consulting with “free trade”. What he hides shouts so loudly as to drown out what he might be.

    Of themselves words have little meaning other that what we as a society give them; it is the nature of language. Actions on the other hand are far more easy to determine though the words one uses to describe those actions have to be carefully crafted to present a fair picture. With political correctness and the shifting of ideologies in our land I think that the only word I can use for him just now is: UNDESIRABLE!