It promises to be the bombshell book of the Obama era — Stanley Kurtz’s Radical-in-Chief: Barack Obama and the Untold Story of American Socialism.
Exploiting two years of research, Kurtz pulls back the onion layers on the personal history of Barack Obama — exposing a man making his way in the belly of the beast of what Kurtz describes as America’s “stealth socialism” community. If you’ve spent any time on a college campus in the last 45 years you’ve likely seen the leaves and branches of this community, with its innumerable collegiate allies and cheerleaders. But in his book Kurtz takes you into institutions and among the personalities that make up the leadership and nuts and bolts of the “stealth socialist” community as an organized and well-funded national movement. And moving through and among these institutions and personalities is our current President, Barack Obama.
Those wishing to identify blunders among Hayek’s prognostications consistently fail to identify one of Hayek’s biggest blunders — his 1956 ascertainment that what Hayek called “hot socialism” was completely dead (in other words, Hayek failed to predict The Great Leap Forward, Cuba, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Venezuela, etc.) , and his failure to perceive that moral yearning for redistributive socialism without Soviet-style central planning could be just as “hot” as Social Democrat or Communist socialism that directly imagined the complete replacement of the private market with a centrally planned and collectively owned production system (in other words, Hayek failed to predict the “Long March” of the left through America’s institutions).
The question of whether still today Barack Obama is a socialist isn’t the thing that makes Kurtz’s book of interest — what makes it of interest is appreciating the reality of size and seriousness of the “stealth socialism” community in America, and how the institutions and people involved in this community have managed to — in effect — give us Barack Obama as our President.