Tariq Ali: The Obama Syndrome

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Tariq Ali: The Obama Syndrome
Australian Broadcasting Corporation - Perth Writers Festival
In 2008, Obama could do no wrong. To the educated middle class, he was an intelligent and reflective writer who had penned his own insightful memoir. To the conservative elite, he was a Harvard graduate and expert in constitutional law. To the young people who came out in droves to vote for him, he liked the same TV shows, listened to the same music and "got" social networking.

To African Americans, he was the first black man to jangle the keys to the White House and command the empire built on the back of unacknowledged black slave labour. To the downtrodden and disenfranchised, he was a humble former social justice campaigner who had trod the streets of Chicago and drummed up support for local health and education programs.

He was indeed a man for all seasons ... a moderate whose ability to emotionally connect with the dreams and aspirations of disparate audiences had allowed him to saunter a
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