In his massive new biography about Obama's pre-presidential years, Rising Star: The Making of Barack Obama, Pulitzer Prize winner David Garrow chose to cut this literary baby in half. Yes, Obama had help with his 1995 masterpiece, Dreams from My Father – a lot of help – but it sure as hell did not come from local editorial guru Bill Ayers. In the book, Garrow does not even raise the Ayers question. It is seemingly beneath his dignity. The help allegedly came from a law school buddy named Rob Fisher.
As to Obama's presumed genius, Garrow never quite endorses it, but he does not challenge it, either. He makes no comment, for instance, on the literary quality of Obama's first published essay, "Breaking the War Mentality," written during Obama's senior year at Columbia. He should have.
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