Insert Deliberately Out-Of-Context, Badly Edited Anti-Obama Spin Tape Here...

A lot of right-wing neo-nazis (and the more gullible Republicans) are getting very excited about this piece of YouTube footage, which purports to be from a 2001 Obama Chicago Public Radio Interview on WBEZ.FM. Which it is.


Unfortunately, it's a deliberate hatchet job which takes a lot of quotes out of context. (You can tell where it happens; the clips are bookended by music to try to hide the gap, in much the same way that you can get away with murder on film if you cut from one scene to another and back).

Here's Chicago Public Radio's (the people who interviewed Obama back in 2001) response:

In 2001, Chicago Public Radio interviewed then Illinois State Senator Barack Obama about civil rights.  Over the weekend, someone posted excerpts of the interview, edited to misrepresent Obama's statements.  The item is now catching national attention.
Click here for Obama's full interviews.

The clips are taken from an interview that aired in January of 2001. Then State Senator Obama is one of three legal scholars interviewed for a show about civil rights. Over the weekend, someone pulled excerpts of the show and posted them to You Tube—and today, the posting caught fire on political blogs, the Drudge Report, and Fox News.
The 4 minute spliced collection of clips portrays Obama as advocate a redistribution of wealth through the power of the Supreme Court. That folds in with some allegations by the McCain Palin campaign.
The twist here is that, when heard in the context of the whole show, Obama’s position is distinctly misrepresented by the You Tube posting. Taken in context, Obama is evaluating the historical successes and failures of the Civil Rights movement—and, ironically, he says the Supreme Court was a failure in cases that it took on a role of redistributing resources.
The McCain campaign told ABC News it plans to use the material to bolster its criticism of Obama.
I’m Ben Calhoun, Chicago Public Radio.

Go here for the full, in-context audio. (in MP3 and RealAudio formats). And stop believing everything that random asshats on the internet tell you.

Update: DailyKos also has an analysis of what's going on here... including info on exactly what lawyers mean when talking about rights issues when they use the word "redistributive".

About the author

Simon Cooke is an occasional video game developer, ex-freelance journalist, screenwriter, film-maker, musician, and software engineer in Seattle, WA.

The views posted on this blog are his and his alone, and have no relation to anything he's working on, his employer, or anything else and are not an official statement of any kind by them (and barely even one by him most of the time).

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