Author Christopher Andersen said on a radio program today he had two sources of information for his new book confirming former domestic terrorist Bill Ayers played a large part in the writing of Barack Obama’s “Dreams from My Father.”
Obama’s 1995 book won the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album
and drew praise from Time magazine, which called it “the best-written
memoir ever produced by an American politician.”
But since July 2008, Cashill has unveiled in nearly two dozen columns, summarized here, his compelling evidence that the unrepentant co-founder of the radical Weather Underground group – dismissed by Obama during the campaign as just “a guy who lives in my neighborhood” – shaped and refined the book with his exceptional writing skill and radical ideas.
Today, radio host Mancow Muller arranged for Cashill to question Andersen about the book.
Andersen described how Obama was “hopelessly blocked” in writing his book then turned to Ayers for help.
When Cashill inquired about the sources for the book, Andersen said he had two separate sources “within Hyde Park” but would not elaborate. Andersen insisted he made no claim Ayers wrote “Dreams,” but he did not deny Ayers’ deep involvement.
He said “Dreams” is significantly different – and better – than Obama’s other book, “Audacity of Hope,” from 2006.
Andersen wrote how for four years Obama failed to finish “Dreams,” then “sought advice from his friend and Hyde Park neighbor Bill Ayers.”
Andersen said Obama had taped interviews of many of his relatives, then, “These oral histories, along with his partial manuscript and a truckload of notes, were given to Ayers.”
“Thanks to help from veteran writer Ayers, Barack would be able to submit a manuscript to his editors at Times Books,” Andersen wrote.
Such “help,” Cashill argues, undermines Obama’s role as a writer as well as his oft-repeated statements that he barely knew Ayers.
In a video, Obama himself has talked of his writings:
Andersen, in “Barack and Michelle: Portrait of a Marriage,” writes that Obama was faced with a deadline with the Times Books division of Random House to submit his manuscript after already having canceled a contract with Simon & Schuster. Confronted with the threat of a second failure, his wife, Michelle, suggested he seek the help of Ayers.
Andersen quotes a neighbor in the Hyde Park area of Chicago where Obama and Ayers lived, who says of the two, “Everyone knew they were friends and that they worked on various projects together.”
“It was no secret. Why would it be? People liked them both,” the neighbor said, according to Andersen.
Andersen wrote: “In the end, Ayers’ contribution to Barack’s “Dreams from My Father” would be significant – so much so that the book’s language, oddly specific references, literary devices, and themes would bear a jarring similarity to Ayers’ own writing.”
Andersen concludes, “Thanks to help from the veteran writer Ayers, Barack would be able to submit a manuscript to his editors at Times Books.”
Last fall, Cashill commissioned an independent scientific comparative analysis of writings by Obama and Ayers to determine whether Ayers had a significant role in the writing of “Dreams.”
His experts included university professors from the U.S. and England in the statistical analysis of authorship, systems engineers, writers and Ph.D. literary analysts. Most, particularly professors at public universities, asked that their names not be revealed.
One analyst said it was possible Ayers served as a “book doctor,” drastically rewriting work Obama already had done.
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