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by stephen simpson

Documentaries, by their nature, tend to be a bit staid and stale … long on information and short on inspiration.  “2016: Obama’s America” is not one of those kinds of documentaries.  While it is bursting with well-researched, well-documented factual information, it is also a heart-pounding narrative that paints a disturbing picture of the worldview and aims of the current American President, and will inspire significant thought and dialogue among everyone who sees it.Based upon author Dinesh D’Souza’s best-selling book, “The Roots of Obama’s Rage”, the film seeks to discover who Barack Hussein Obama really is; to vet him in ways that the dominant Leftist elite media failed to do in 2007 and 2008.  However, the tone of the film is not radical or angry.  D’Souza, who has become one of the most important writers and thinkers to emerge within the past 30 years, is no “bomb-thrower” or shrill activist, but is instead a quiet, thoughtful, and even somewhat endearingly nerdy presence in the film, interviewing the President’s friends, brother, teachers, colleagues, and even a noted psychologist.What emerges is a portrait of a President whose perspective on America was shaped by third-world anti-colonialism.  In contrast to the American anti-colonialism against England in 1776, this more recent anti-colonialism has been animated by actual racism against Europeans, anti-Christianity, and anti-capitalism. Have these notions had an impact on the President, and if so, how?  The most effective witness in the film is President Obama himself, heard reading from one of his autobiograpies, Dreams from My Father.

Far from being hostile to the President personally or the President’s background, D’Souza instead identifies personally with the President in many ways, having himself been born in India in the same year as the President, coming to America as a college student at an Ivy League University and graduating the same year as the President.  Examining the President’s mentors … their relationship with the President, their teaching and worldview, and how that has affected the Obama record … D’Souza paints a picture of what America would look like in 2016 if Obama is re-elected.  Whether it’s his failure to follow through on his soaring rhetoric, his ability to manipulate voter emotion and guilt, his antipathy toward America’s historical allies, his sympathy for America’s historical enemies, his embrace of the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamist extremists, his brand of crony capitalism, his corrupt and socialistic advisors, or other issues, this film reveals some startling and uncomfortable truths about where the President comes from and where he is taking this nation.

I would recommend this film for anyone willing to take an honest look at this President, now that we have elected him and experienced four years of his leadership…to look in ways many were unwilling to look back in 2007 and 2008.  Many honest and principled Democrats and Independents voted for Obama with the most noble of intentions, only to be disappointed and disillusioned by his actual behavior in office.  See the film for yourself, and consider reading the book upon which it is based, as well as other excellent books by D’Souza.

My one criticism of the film is a technical one:  at times, the sound editing or mix allows the music soundtrack (which is very good) to overwhelm the narrative.  D’Souza is a soft-spoken gentleman, and his voice needs to be louder in the mix.  Overall, it’s one of the most effective documentaries I’ve ever seen.  I’ve made it a point to see many, including three by Michael Moore.  My heart was literally pounding by the end of the film, and without spoiling anything, there is a scene near the end that is terrifying in its portrayal of the manipulation of innocence.  Go see it, and decide for yourself.

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