During the last election, rumors flew about saying that former radical and education activist Bill Ayers wrote all or part of Barack Obama’s book Dreams from My Father. This rumor morphed into a small cottage industry of analysis trying to prove Ayer’s involvement in the book including a series of articles by WorldNetDaily columnist Jack Cashill.
These allegations have been repeated in a number of right wing web sites such as The American Thinker and The Free Republic. Now WorldNetDaily has a new article, Author confirms Bill Ayers helped Obama write ‘Dreams’.
Of course, the “author” WND talks about is not the author of Obama’s book, but that of a new book, Barack and Michelle: An American Marriage by Christopher Andersen. Andersen should know because he had access to unnamed sources close to Obama. I should say that Cashill claims Andersen supports his view (in fact I have no confirmation of this).
The scenario alleged is in the typical nobama style. If alleges a fact (Obama was facing a deadline) that no one can easily verify but might accept because it it plausibled, it alleges another fact (Ayers lived nearby) that is non-trivial to verify and then it offers another allegation (the neighbors knew…) that no one can easily verify, but might accept because it is plausible and asserted. It is a good example of substitution of speculation for evidence made in the form of an argument. But this claim has no more substance to it than the travel ban to Pakistan argument, the born in Kenya argument and the Indonesian adoption argument: none.
So did Bill Ayers write Dreams from My Father? There is nothing in the WND article that would lead a rationally thinking person to jump to any conclusion.