From the other side of the universe

President Barack Obama, President Bill Clinton, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, and Samantha Power, NSC Director of Multilateral Affairs, in a scene from THE FINAL YEAR, a Magnolia Pictures release. Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.



Chris Knight reviews a documentary on the subject of the last year of the Obama regime. It makes entertaining reading. By “entertaining” I do not mean that readers of this blog will like the movie. To the contrary, they will marvel at the capacity of a man to be so deceived. The President who was a friend to every enemy of the United States, and indifferent or hostile to most of its friends, the man who hated and disdained half the electorate – the people who elected Trump, the President who kept the United  States’ economy in stasis, the man who feared global warming but who could never allow himself to utter the words “Islamic terrorism”: you will recall President Obama. And we will not even start on the Clinton Foundation’s pay for play scheme to translate the foreign policy of the United States into donations to the Clinton Foundation.

Gently weep, o readers, at the memory of it all.


“A word of warning; more than any other film this year, The Final Year may make you cry. If you feel an almost daily despair at the prospect of a racist, sexist, inarticulate liar holding the highest office in the world, you will despair even more mightily at the memory of a time when none of that was true.

Greg Barker’s documentary follows U.S. President Barack Obama through his last 12 months in office, mostly through the eyes of some of his closest staff: national security advisors Susan Rice and Ben Rhodes; UN ambassador Samantha Power; and former Secretary of State John Kerry, whose great take-away quote in this film, spoken to Russian officials at the United Nations, is: “Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but you are not entitled to your own facts.”

[Yes I am, especially if yours are wrong – Dalwhinnie]

“The Obama administration was flawed. That’s a given; they all are. But we see these people jetting around the world, doing their damndest to leave the planet in a better state than they found it, whether through climate-change agreements, rapprochement with Iran and Cuba, brokering a Syrian ceasefire, or something as simple and moving as organizing the first visit by a sitting U.S. president to Hiroshima.

Barker conducts a few interviews, but the film is strongest when it just leans in to observe. Power attends a swearing-in ceremony for new citizens, speaking through tears about coming to America from Ireland at the age of nine. Rhodes, on his way to an aircraft, mentions to a colleague in passing: “The last thing that this world needs is more walls.” The film introduces the White House Press Secretary, a guy with the almost adorably antiquarian name of Josh Earnest.

And as the final year dwindles to the final days, a new president prepares to take office. His first year concludes on Jan. 20. The story of those 12 months will no doubt make a fascinating documentary one day. It may even make you cry.”

How is this fellow employed at Canada’s supposedly conservative newspaper?