Evidence that Obama wrote Dreams from My Father
Regarding a discussion at VFR about Obama’s intelligence, academic achievements, and writing career, Paul Nachman asked Steve Sailer if he thought that Obama’s autobiography Dreams from My Father had been ghost written. Sailer replied that he didn’t think so, since, as he put it, a professional ghostwriter would have made the book more interesting.
Sailer’s shrewd observation is analogous to the fascinating proof by the great 19th century Muhammad biographer William Muir that Muhammad had to have been the author of the Koran, and that, contrary to the suggestions of some, the Koran could not have been edited or written by Muhammad’s followers after his death. Muir’s reasoning was based on the fact that the Koran is so terribly disorganized. If it had been assembled and edited and re-shaped (or even written) over a period of time following Muhammad’s death, it would have had some kind of coherent order. The fact that it’s a mess, with many contradictions, and with the text within each sura often lacking any logical sequence, strongly suggests that Muhammad’s followers after his death simply assembled the various suras (or rather bits of text in what became suras) in the condition that they were then in, lying around written on a variety of writing media, and published them in that haphazard form, with the only ordering principle being that the suras are arranged from the longest to the shortest.
Just as, according to Muir, the disorganized condition of the Koran strongly suggests that Muhammad himself was the author, in the same way, according to Sailer, the boring quality of Dreams from My Father strongly suggests that Obama is the author.
Note (October 10, 2008): There is another possibility, which is that Obama had a ghostwriter (very likely William Ayers, according to Jack Cashill, as discussed at VFR here) who filled out parts of the book, giving it a literary flair and a deeper sensibility, but who did not write and shape the entire book. This theory would reconcile the participation of a ghostwriter with the fact that the book is (according to Sailer, I haven’t read it) overlong and boring.
Here are two discussions related to Muir’s Life of Mahomet (highly recommended though a demanding read) :
William Muir’s theory of Muhammad