NEW YORK – Bill Ayers has once again suggested he was the author of Barack Obama's celebrated autobiography, even though the admission could be explained away as a mocking irony designed only to goad Ayers's critics by yet another false admission he was the president's ghostwriter. At the conclusion of a speech sponsored by the Students for a Democratic Society at Montclair State University in New Jersey, the former Weather Underground bomber gleefully claimed credit for writing Obama's "Dreams From My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance."
As shown in a video clip on YouTube, Ayers, responding to a question about "Dreams," said, "Did you know that I wrote it, incidentally?"
Here is the transcript of the exchange between Ayers and a member of the audience asking about "Dreams":
Bill Ayers: One more, one more (question)
Question: Thank you sir, thank you, thank you. Time magazine columnist Joe Klein wrote that President Obama's book, "Dreams From My Father," quote: "may be the best written memoir ever produced by an American politician."
Ayers: I agree with that.
Question: What is your opinion of Barack Obama's style as a writer and uh …
Ayers: I think the book is very good, the second book ("The Audacity of Hope") is more of a political hack book, but uh, the first book is quite good.
Question: Also, you just mentioned the Pentagon and Tomahawk …
Ayers: Did you know that I wrote it, incidentally?
Question: What's that?
Ayers: I wrote that book.
Several audience members: Yeah, we know that.
Question: You wrote that?
Ayers: Yeah, yeah. And if you help me prove it, I’ll split the royalties with you. Thank you very much.
Laughter and Applause
A close reading of the transcript from the Montclair State speech on Friday shows that Ayers again volunteered he was the ghost writer of "Dreams," even though he had not been asked that question.
Jack Cashill's literary investigation uncovers revelations galore a...
WND reported Oct. 8, 2009, that Ayers had given a similar taunting answer to a National Journal reporter who posed the question at a national book conference.
Ayers declared to the National Journal reporter, "Yes, I wrote 'Dre...
"Here's what I'm going to say," Ayers said according to a report in Talking Points Memo. "This is my quote. Be sure to write it down: 'Yes, I wrote 'Dreams From My Father.' I ghostwrote the whole thing. I met with the president three or four times, and then I wrote the entire book."
TPM reported that Ayers then released the National Journal reporter's arm, beamed "in Marxist triumph," and said, "And now I would like the royalties."
Then, in a second encounter with conservative blogger Anne Leary at Reagan National Airport who did not even ask the question, Ayers declared, "Yes, I wrote 'Dreams From My Father' ... Michelle [Obama] asked me to."
Describing the encounter, Leary wrote that she was sitting in Reagan National, sipping a coffee by the United counter before going through security, when she saw Bill Ayers.
Leary described her conversation with Ayers as follows:
"Then, unprompted he [Ayers] said – I wrote 'Dreams From My Father.' I said, oh, so you admit it. He said – Michelle asked me to. I looked at him. He seemed eager. He's about my height, short. He went on to say – and if you can prove it, we can split the royalties. So I said, stop pulling my leg. Horrible thought. But he came again – I really wrote it, the wording was similar. I said I believe you probably heavily edited it. He said – I wrote it. I said – why would I believe you, you're a liar.
"He had no answer to that. Just looked at me and walked off, and said again his bit about my proving it and splitting the proceeds."
That Ayers is the author of Obama's autobiography is a major theme of WND columnist Jack Cashill's work and his new bestselling book "Deconstructing Obama: The Life, Loves and Letters of America's Fir...
In an email to WND, Cashill said that Ayers's face looked relaxed at first when he answered the question.
"This time, I think Ayers was making a serious admission," Cashill told WND. "I think it took a split second for him to realize where this was going. Then, as he pulls away, his face assumes a smile rictus. It’s not a full-face smile, but a false smile – only the mouth, not the eyes."
Cashill noted that Ayers was answering a question not about ghostwriting Obama's autobiography, but about the current U.S. military involvement in the war in Libya.
"The subject of the Libyan war came up earlier in Ayers' speech," Cashill noted, "and Ayers said he thought the expenditure of money for Tomahawk missiles would be better spent for education."
Cashill said he believes Ayers is sending a message to the White House.
"Ayers is a very smart guy and he was careful to couch his comments with irony," Cashill noted. "But Ayers was not aiming his irony at critics like me. He was aiming his irony at the White House, letting Obama know that he could blow Obama out of the water, if he gets serious about it."
What damage could Ayers do Obama?
"Ayers is very anti-war and he is upset about our military involvement in Libya," Cashill answered. "All Ayers would have to do is give a press conference in which he demonstrated he was the principle craftsman behind 'Dreams' and the whole myth of Obama's literary genius would come crashing down."
Jack Cashill's literary investigation uncovers revelations galore a...
Christopher Anderson, in his 2009 book "Barack and Michelle: Portrait of an American Marriage," reported that a desperate Obama in the mid-1990s, facing a second canceled book contract, sought the help of Ayers.
"In the end, Ayers contribution to Barack's "Dreams From My Father" would be significant," Anderson wrote on page 165 of "Barack and Michelle," "so much so that the book's language, oddly specific references, literary devices, and themes would bear a jarring similarity to Ayers' own writings."
Anderson credited Ayers with providing the assistance Obama needed to complete his unfinished autobiography.
"Thanks to help from the veteran writer Ayers, Barack Obama would be able to submit a manuscript to his editors at Times Brooks," Anderson continued on page 166. "With some minor cuts and polishing, the book would be on track for publication in the early summer of 1995."
The SDS invitation for the Ayers event at Montclair State described the speech as "Education and the New Activism: How Did Bill Ayers Evolve From Radical Activist to Educator?"
Cashill first raised questions about the possibility of Ayers' ghostwriting for Obama during the 2008 campaign. Sen. John McCain had questioned Obama's relationship with Ayers – a story broken by WND's Aaron Klein – during debates. Obama dismissed his relationship with Ayers as casual, referring to him as "just a guy in the neighborhood." Ayers served as one of the leaders of the Weather Underground terrorist group that sought to overthrow the U.S. government and took responsibility for bombing the U.S. Capitol in 1971. His wife, Bernardine Dohrn, was suspected of planting a bomb in a San Francisco police station that killed one officer. The pair emerged from more than a decade underground in 1980. Dohrn, once on the FBI's most wanted list, was fined $1,500 and served three years probation. Ayers was never convicted of anything.
The Ayers speech at Montclair State was attended by between 125-150 people. Including answering questions, Ayers spoke for approximately two hours.