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Obama taught Vattel at The University of Chicago

President Obama, when an adjunct professor at the University of Chicago Law School, taught a course  on Constitutional Law and one titled “Current Issues in Racism and the Law.” The New York Times published the syllabus for the latter back in July of 2008 in an article called “Teaching Law, Testing Ideas, Obama Stood Slightly Apart.”

There are some interesting items in the reading list Obama gave his students. On the issue of the removal of Indians, he cited Vattel’s The Law of Nations. We don’t have the over 500-page reading packet itself, so we don’t know what the particular reading from Vattel was1. It is nevertheless instructive that then professor Obama picked such a source, which in modern times is rather obscure. Obama also included a reading about the Dred Scott case and the Slaughterhouse Cases (both having been cited in the Presidential eligibility debate). Of course no discussion of citizenships is complete without the Fourteenth Amendment and the Civil Rights Act of 1866, both of which appear in the Obama syllabus.

While the Obama reading list is extensive, still it is remarkable that there is as much overlap between it and what we talk about on this site, and I do not think that this is a coincidence, because a discussion about racism is one of the practice of discrimination and exclusion and eligibility criteria are about the same thing.

1I suggest that the text might have been from The Law of Nations, Book 2:

§ 97 The savages of North America had no right to appropriate all that vast continent to themselves; and since they were unable to inhabit the whole of those regions, other nations might, without injustice, settle in some parts of them, provided they left the natives a sufficiency of land. If the pastoral Arabs would carefully cultivate the soil, a less space might be sufficient for them. Nevertheless, no other nation has a right to narrow their boundaries, unless she be under an absolute want of land. For, in short, they possess their country; they make use of it after their manner; they reap from it an advantage suitable to their manner of life, respecting which they have no laws to receive from any one. In a case of pressing necessity, I think people might, without injustice, settle in a part of that country, on leading the Arabs the means of rendering it, by the cultivation of the earth, sufficient for their own wants, and those of the new inhabitants.

Vattel, of course, had no notion of the vast size of the native population of the Americas before it was decimated by diseases from the European explorers.

Is Ma a racist?

Orly Taitz media blasted out this email with the subject:

Obama-Nazis, brown shirts in the media attack me by calling ma a racist and a clansman. Please, contact all the media outlets, particularly in DC, show them all the evidence and help me fight back.

Are you a racist? Test your biases here at Harvard’s “Project Implicit.” I took this Implicit Association Test, and it told me: “Your data suggest a strong automatic preference for White People compared to Black People.” That may be true given how I was raised, but I think the test is a crock. They bias the results by the order that they present the categories.

More racist comments at ORYR

I’ve been spending a little more time over at the Obama Release Your Records site as a result of the article there about the box labels on INS records at the National Archives. What struck me is the detachment from reality that I saw in comments on that article. Folks there say all sorts of things, declaring them facts, without any sources whatever. It’s almost like they were taking some hallucinogenic drug that made them see things that aren’t there. Further, they accept such things uncritically from others. site banner

One must wonder how and why these fantasies are so easily spun from straw into gold and how they believe that anybody and everybody is a participant in the conspiracy that  stretches from this blog to the highest positions in the US Government. One commenter (“Natural-born citizen”) made up this story about us:

Knowing you bow before Obama and pray nightly to him precludes you from being non-bias (sic). Every story you have is in favor of Barry. Not one thing Barry is accused of and proven, do you agree with. It’s almost as if you are being paid to spew.

You claim to know so much… problem is, none of what you preach to the drones is correct.

No specifics because there are simply so many… Knowing that if Barry were to descend before you and admit he was the foreigner that he is… you would call him a liar too.

YOUR AGENDA PRECLUDES YOU FROM BEING ABLE TO RECOGNIZE OR DISSEMINATE THE TRUTH. It is simply against what you want to believe and that the Conservatives are evil, Liberals are gods. Story after story after story…’those conservatives are wrong’ That is why you are simply another Jim Jones. Your followers are the low information voters formally called MORONS. You may have them fooled but anyone with an education can see you motives.

Don’t you have somewhere else to be where they believe the shit you shovel?

That remark, it appears to me, reflects a political prejudice against liberals in general. There’s also that phrase “low information voters” that could be a code word for something unstated (since black voters overwhelmingly voted for Obama). Of course, at least among the commenters here, I find high information folks (not all voters). Rather than being a site where people are “fed” a line of information, commenters here in the main are contributors and equal participants.

We need not invoke code words, however, to interpret this further comment (turn off irony meters) from “not easily fooled” at ORYR. It is plain unvarnished racism:

Lets look at this from God’s perspective. Well-meaning whites have been trying to lift up their brown brothers from the middle of the 19th century until now, pretending that the average brown man is capable of the same achievement as the average white man.

This has all been BLASTED TO SMITHEREENS – THE EMPEROR TRULY HAS NO CLOTHES! Sorry, facts and events from the past few years have proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that they are not our equals, and can only bring us down if we continue to pretend that they are our equals.

Facts: Widespread cheating on academic tests at minority-dominated schools. The "No Child Left Behind Act" sought to identify and punish supposedly underperforming schools and teachers who were holding back black and brown achievement. The only thing that NCLB proved was that the black and brown children were holding back their well-meaning teachers! If their teachers were teaching at white schools they wouldn’t be suspect. The unlucky teachers assigned to minority schools were blamed for black and brown under-achievement. The teachers knew this and engaged in widespread cheating to hide under-achievement!

Now we have the spectacle of whites being unable to bring themselves to admit that the president is a fraud from top to bottom. Revealing his records etc (sic) would show the whole affirmative action enterprise has been a waste of time. It is so bad that whites are asked to look past ignorant efforts at evidence tampering! How stupid do you have to be to think that you can get away with, e.g., whiting out a date, or cutting a date stamp in half, and that it wouldn’t be evident exactly what was done?

None of this is meant to mean that there aren’t black and brown men who are equally as apt as smart white men. There just aren’t as many of them, and it seems that the current system only promotes the relatively unqualified to the top.

In fact, it is the birthers who are the low-information voters, and it only takes a minute reading comments at ORYR to pick out rumors and misinformation masquerading as fact. Here’s a good example of that:

I remember a blog last year having info regarding arrivals in the US from Kenya in the last 6 months of 1961 in that there was only one child that entered the US from Kenya between July and December 1961.

Barrack Obama Sr. had 2 sons born in Kenya (his only sons at the time) prior to Kenyan independence in 1963 and then several more born after 1963. His 2nd son was born in 1961 in Kenya. Barry is his 2nd son. This info was gleaned from the Kenyan Archives in London where Barry’s BC was on public display until 2009 when Hillary had the files sealed on her first trip to London as SoS.

The regulars took that as fact and ran with it, even though most of it is untrue. (The INS report showed one person entering the US from Kenya, but it did not say it was a child, nor that it was in August, thereby precluding Obama and his son from both traveling. No US citizens entered in that period, precluding Obama’s mother. The birth certificate claim is a complete fabrication.)

Birthers drop non-racist pretense

One of the premier birther web sites, ObamaReleaseYourRecords, has dropped any pretense of not being racist with its article yesterday, titled: “If Obama Had A British Subject Son He Would Look Like This Sad Excuse For A Man.” What follows is a 16-second video of a black man in England hitting a teenage girl on the head in the street, knocking her senseless. Choice reader comments follow, such as:

hey slut why did obum hit that girl? you support a nigger thug and a fraud and a thief.

I’m speculating that now that the election is lost, the birthers no longer feel the need to feign respectability.


Photo of Civil War dead along split rail fenceI noted previous Orly Taitz titles1 about secessionist movements in Texas and Louisiana in the wake of Obama’s re-election. I didn’t mention the fact that there have been secessionist movements in the South for about as long as there has been a South.

Steven Hanh wrote in an opinion piece in the New York Times Sunday Review yesterday entitled, “Political Racism in the Age of Obama”:

The “birther” challenge, which galvanized so many Republican voters, expresses a deep unease with black claims to political inclusion and leadership that can be traced as far back as the 1860s. Then, white Southerners (and a fair share of white Northerners) questioned the legitimacy of black suffrage, viciously lampooned the behavior of new black officeholders and mobilized to murder and drive off local black leaders.

A related sentiment was expressed by commentator Maureen Dowd:

Mitt Romney is the president of white male America.

Hanh is right that political racism is not dead. I was about to type: “the Southerners of my generation and before who grew up in racially-segregated schools are dying off.” That’s not quite true because there are a large number of  church-run schools in the South these days; I see ads for them on bumper stickers all the time. Articles have appeared discussing such schools and, for example, one study found that private religious schools are more racially segregated than public schools. The Christian Science Monitor reports in, “Are American schools returning to segregation?” that districting policies are re-segregating the public schools as well.

Nevertheless, despite historical revisionism, the South seceded from the Union over slavery, which was both an essential economic issue and an acknowledgment, frankly, that Southerners were scared witless that if the slaves ever got free, former slaveholders would be murdered in their beds. Today the economic interests of the South solidly rely on the United States, and for this reason alone talk of secession is nothing more than hotheads letting off steam. Secession is just white “trash talking”.

Hanh notes:

The anti-Obama riot at Ole Miss, integrated 50 years ago by James H. Meredith, was followed by a larger, interracial “We Are One Mississippi” candlelight march of protest.

1I was going to write “article” but lots of things on the Taitz web site are just titles with no body.

Purpura’s views on the birther question

Nicholas Purpura was one of the plaintiffs in the recently dismissed ballot challenge in New Jersey. Mario Apuzzo was losing counsel. In the case Purpura alleged that US presidents must have US citizen parents, and Apuzzo argued that natural law, as codified by writers such as Emerich de Vattel in his book The Law of Nations (short English title), is the common law of the United States.

In a recent article, “Eligibility and American Common Law, Part 2” published at Conservative News and Views, Purpura reveals his thinking on the topic, and perhaps his underlying motivation. As always, I hope readers will take the time to examine the article that I reference here.

The American financial crisis of 2008-2009 was the worst financial disaster since The Great Depression, nevertheless, American society has proved remarkably resilient and there was not rioting in the streets. We are muddling through. Contrary to that picture of a mature and stable society, Purpura believes otherwise and explains Obama’s continuing in office this way:

My sources in Washington, DC told me flatly why none dare adjudicate this issue. If the Court found Obama ineligible to hold the Office of President, the “blacks” will burn down the inner cities, and we will have chaos. Better to wait for him to leave office.

Purpura goes to portray the Obama administration as anti-white. Finally, in an attempt to invoke xenophobic fears, Purpura spins a scenario of a massive influx of Chinese visiting the United States for the sole purpose of giving birth to American citizens, and polluting the pool of future presidential candidates.

We could clean up providing a pay service complete with certification of live birth that says the child has the right to be President of the US by birth, per jus soli. We could advertise this all over the Internet. Maybe then the people will wake up to what the courts are doing.

Nicholas Purpura, I think, would have been one of the supporters of the Chinese Exclusion Act if he had lived in the 19th century. While he longs for the Supreme Court to fix things, he ignores the fact that the Supreme Court one hundred years ago already fixed things in the case of US v. Wong, and folks like Purpura lost.