An odd choice, certainly, as an inspirational hero.

Did anybody come away from reading Dreams From My Father with the idea that Obama thought his father was a hero? I sure didn’t.

The veneer of respectability, if you can call it that, that D’Souza and Forbes put on this noxious near-McCarthyite junk is that Obama is an “anticolonialist.” It’s thin gruel. And, hey—I’m an anticolonialist, too. And so were George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and the rest of the gang.

But D’Souza and Forbes go on to smear Obama with his father’s life and work. And this is where you figure out that “anticolonialist” is just a code word for “anti-American.” Let’s remember that Obama met his father one time in his life. D’Souza:

As Obama Sr. put it, “We need to eliminate power structures that have been built through excessive accumulation so that not only a few individuals shall control a vast magnitude of resources as is the case now.” The senior Obama proposed that the state confiscate private land and raise taxes with no upper limit. In fact, he insisted that “theoretically there is nothing that can stop the government from taxing 100% of income so long as the people get benefits from the government commensurate with their income which is taxed.”

Remarkably, President Obama, who knows his father’s history very well, has never mentioned his father’s article. Even more remarkably, there has been virtually no reporting on a document that seems directly relevant to what the junior Obama is doing in the White House.

Obama wants to let the Bush tax cuts expire for the top 2% and return to the 39.6 percent rate from the current 36 percent? Well, that’s because his no-account dad was an African commie! Three point six percentage points.

So Barack Obama, who falls somewhere on the middle or right side of the spectrum of modern American liberalism, is now an outsider motivated by anti-American ideals. The birthers got nothin’ on this guy.

The atrociousness isn’t limited to the smears. This, for instance, has to be one of the stupidest paragraphs ever written in Forbes (emphasis mine):

The President’s actions are so bizarre that they mystify his critics and supporters alike. Consider this headline from the Aug. 18, 2009 issue of the Wall Street Journal: “Obama Underwrites Offshore Drilling.” Did you read that correctly? You did. The Administration supports offshore drilling—but drilling off the shores of Brazil. With Obama’s backing, the U.S. Export-Import Bank offered $2 billion in loans and guarantees to Brazil’s state-owned oil company Petrobras to finance exploration in the Santos Basin near Rio de Janeiro—not so the oil ends up in the U.S. He is funding Brazilian exploration so that the oil can stay in Brazil.

Get that? The oil that Petrobras pumps will only go to Brazil because it’s owned by Brazil. So Hugo Chavez will sell us his Citgo gas, but Lula won’t? And even if it somehow did (it should be noted that Petrobras has an American affiliate), that would mean Brazil would need less oil from elsewhere, which means more for us. Supply and demand, dude. Oil is fungible. Gah.

And here’s the obscene kicker:

Incredibly, the U.S. is being ruled according to the dreams of a Luo tribesman of the 1950s. This philandering, inebriated African socialist, who raged against the world for denying him the realization of his anticolonial ambitions, is now setting the nation’s agenda through the reincarnation of his dreams in his son. The son makes it happen, but he candidly admits he is only living out his father’s dream. The invisible father provides the inspiration, and the son dutifully gets the job done. America today is governed by a ghost.

Forbes has shamed itself with this one.

(UPDATE: See more here. And more on Steve Forbes and Forbes’s comparing Obama to Lenin here.

Further Reading:

Audit Notes: D’Souza and Forbes Edition


Dinesh D’Souza Digs Himself in Deeper
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Ryan Chittum is a former Wall Street Journal reporter, and deputy editor of The Audit, CJR's business section. If you see notable business journalism, give him a heads-up at rc2538@columbia.edu.