The End of Dinesh D’Souza

Dinesh D’Souza (left); Denise Odie Joseph II (right)

I can’t say I’m sorry that anti-Obama propagandist and torture apologist Dinesh D’Souza has been taken out of commission. The direct cause: he’s sleeping with a younger woman — right-wing blogger Denise Odie Joseph II — to whom he claimed to be engaged, while separated but not yet divorced from his wife Dixie. D’Souza says “I had no idea that it is considered wrong in Christian circles to be engaged prior to being divorced.” I think he’s missing that it has something to do with his sleeping with the younger woman in the hotel for an evangelical conference at which he was speaking.

D’Souza has made a quick exit from his job as president of The King’s College, a small operation in New York with a few hundred students, owned by Campus Crusade for Christ (Cru). As the story unfolds, it appears he has suspended his engagement with Joseph and properly filed for divorce from Dixie. News of the affair and the mess at the conference broke in the evangelical magazine WORLD, which is run by Marvin Olasky, who was provost of The King’s College and resigned after D’Souza became president. Whether there was personal animosity involved in breaking the story, however, it appears to be true.

I saw D’Souza a few years back as part of an event for Eric Metaxas’ usually excellent conservative lecture series Socrates in the City. It was to be a debate between D’Souza and Princeton humanist philosopher Peter Singer. Singer is a thoughtful man. One of his thoughts is not valuing human lives any more than animal lives; another is an argument for infanticide. He’s a utilitarian purist. As such, I often find his ethics repugnant, but I was expecting an enlightening discussion. Instead, rather than deal with Singer’s reasoned arguments, D’Souza pursued a strategy of character assassination. It’s the debate strategy of cowards — don’t argue your case, undermine your opponent’s. The event was painful and I was embarrassed for him.

It’s the same thing he’s done with the recent slanderous propaganda film and books against Obama, starting with the absurdly titled (and themed) 2010 book, The Roots of Obama’s Rage. It’s pure character assassination from beginning to end — which asserts that the supposed African anti-colonialist Marxist rage of Obama’s absent father still burns within him. It makes no sense, and is frankly either extremely stupid or cynically propagandist. There is no other explanation. No one who isn’t partisan to the point of turning off critical thinking can take the argument seriously, but nevertheless it made D’Souza even more of a darling on the far Right — whether they believed him or not, they loved that he was being so bold in his attack.

D’Souza’s earlier work, Illiberal Education and The End of Racism, had value in the conversation. He jumped the shark with Obama’s Rage and hasn’t looked back. He is now simply a propagandist. So while I find it frustrating that some conservative evangelical leaders were OK with his deceitful propaganda but are drawing the line at his having sex outside of wedlock, I say good riddance to Dinesh D’Souza.

About Phil Fox Rose

Phil Fox Rose is a writer, editor and content lead based in New York. He is coordinator of Contemplative Outreach of New York, helping promote centering prayer, which has been his contemplative practice for nearly 20 years. Raised atheist by ex-Mormons, Phil has journeyed through Quakerism, deep ecology, Buddhism and Catholicism. Now he's a congregant, worship leader, cook and chair of the leadership team at St. Lydia's, an awesome dinner church in Brooklyn, NY, and spends as much time in nature as possible. Phil has been a political party leader, videographer, tech journalist, punk roadie, software designer, sheepherder, stockbroker and downtempo radio DJ. A common thread is the process of learning about stuff, figuring it out and then sharing that understanding with others. Follow Phil by RSS feed, email, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

  • Frank

    Of course his moral failings, like our own, do not change the truth. His truths about Obama are still true.

    • Sarah Caldwell

      The quality of the speaker doesn’t change the truth, you’re right. Where you’re wrong is the question of “African anti-colonialist Marxist rage.” No one who looks at the mainstream, even originally Republican, actions, such as the Heritage Foundation (not to mention Mitt Romney’s) health plan, can say that Obama is a Marxist. I actually know some Marxists and, if they had any sense of humor, they ‘d be laughing. Instead, they’re outraged.

      • Phil Fox Rose

        Well said Sarah; I too know real Marxists and they are not fans of Obama. I also know libertarians and moderates who’ve abandoned the Republican Party and sided with Obama because his ideas are more centrist and sensible. I imagine you and I could have a thoughtful conversation about these issues but Frank is just looking to pick a fight.

    • Don108

      @Frank, there are none so blind as those who refuse to see. Likewise, there are those who want to see hate and will find it where none exists.

    • eric

      Frank, This article is so shallow. You hit the nail on its head. What has his sleeping with woman, women or even animals have to do with Truth.

    • CPeterson

      Caution: His truths about Obama are skillfully blended with opinion (his) and conjecture of motive. A successful formula for manipulating emotion. A crafty strategy to blur the truth to push propaganda. A risky approach that will mislead.

    • https://www.facebook.com/pages/Gallery-Shops/209832765748998?fref=ts Erma Smith

      Even if hey are true, they are much less effectual now. He has clay feet. He’s a Pharisee of the highest degree. So far President Obama has not been proven to have had an adulterous affair. He’s a typical so called Christian; much like Newt Gingrich. The real Christians are not nearly as judgmental as the hypocrites.

  • Calvin Broadsheet

    The writing in this article and logic behind it are juvenile. D’Souza was caught with his hand in the nookie jar, but he undoubtedly leaves more brain cells on his Kleenex when he sneezes than the author can boast of. Apparently, the foundation for “Slander” is when someone criticizes your hero. Schadenfreude isn’t much to base a story on.

    • Phil Fox Rose

      Calvin, as I clearly say in my post, my chief complaint about D’Souza is not that he makes an argument I don’t like, rather that he doesn’t criticize or make rational arguments but uses character assassination and slander to try to undermine his opponent’s creditability. Something you also do repeatedly in your comment. This is, as I said in my post, “the debate strategy of cowards.”

      Obviously, you’re not interested in a serious discussion. I will make a few observations though for anyone else reading this:

      1) In assuming I’m a knee-jerk partisan thinker like yourself, you seem to have missed the fact that I was at Eric’s event and praised his conservative lecture series.

      2) The definition of slander is, “the utterance of false charges or misrepresentations which defame and damage another’s reputation.” That is exactly was D’Souza’s work on Obama has been. I reject slander in all cases. It has nothing to do with whether I like Obama or not. And for the record, here are what a few thoughtful conservatives had to say about D’Souza’s absurd book:

      - Daniel Larison, The American Conservative: “Dinesh D’Souza has authored what may possibly be the most ridiculous piece of Obama analysis yet written”

      - Andrew Ferguson, The Weekly Standard: “D’Souza always sees absence of evidence as evidence”

  • Ted Seeber

    Apparently he’s never read the book of Matthew- there’s something wrong with divorce to begin with.

    • Phil Fox Rose

      Ted, I almost mentioned that, especially considering his having been Catholic up until a few years ago, but decided not to pile on.

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/philfoxrose/2012/10/the-end-of-dinesh-dsouza/ jason G

    This man is a hysteria hypester and an embarassment to all who seek to think clearly and act in good conscience. It is the right wing lunatic fringe that masquerades as “Christian” that serves to drive moderates away from the GOP and “conservative” causes. I am not happy that he is doing what he is doing, but I am glad that he got busted. He is a fake and a fraud; happy to see him goooooooooooooooooooooooo…..

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  • David Naas

    My parents and grandparents were FDR Democrats, so, naturally, in high school and college, I rebelled, and became a Goldwater Republican, and twice President of my College Young Republican Club. Back then(the ’60′s), we had a lot of Rockefeller and Romney (George) Republicans in out club. No problem! Then the well-funded crazies began to take over the Party of Lincoln and Rooseveldt (Teddy), and managed in the course of the last 40 years to turn it into just another European parliamentary party — small-souled, limited vision, more concerned for purism and domination than an American party should be. When the execrably unprincipled G. H. W. Bush pretended Consertvatism to become POTUS, I left and registered Independent. The advent of such worthies as the later D’Souza, Beck, Savage, and the truly despicable Coulter has only confirmed my desision. In spite of their alleged Christianity, it seems their politics fuels their religion (by their declamations) and not the other way about. Where, oh where, are the likes of Burke? of Kirk? of Taft? (All of whom took positions that the present-day propagandists would execrete upon for failure to march in lockstep with the minions of the wealthy, the well-born, and the totalitarian-right wannabes.

    • https://www.facebook.com/pages/Gallery-Shops/209832765748998?fref=ts Erma Smith

      David, I’ll tell you what happened to your party. Most, if not all of the narrow minded Southern Democrats fled to the Republican party once President Johnson signed the voting rights act. Once they swept into the Republican party, any civility was lost forever. When we look back at the old Republican party we see a party that was conservative but progressive. We wouldn’t have the kind of freeway system we have now had it not been for President Eisenhower. Some of the Democrats were against that kind of infrastructure. We will never have that kind of Republican again.

  • M.L.

    I agree with your assessment of D’Souza’s theory of Obama’s rage, but you’re very naive to suppose this pseudo scandal isn’t his undoing. He’ll continue to be the minor pundit that he has always been.

    I do think however that Obama is far from the post-racial moderate he was spun as when he first became known to the public. Few recall that the MSM’s original spin on Obama way back before he even decided to run for president was that he was unique among democrats because he was purportedly ‘religious’. If being a committed member of a blatantly racist, ati-semitic, anti-American ‘church’ and subsciber to Louis Farrakhan’s “The Final Call” makes one religious, I guess Obama was accurately described.

    Obama has spent his adult life knee deep in black extremists and was an active organizer of notorious racist Louis Farrakhan’s Million Racist March in 1995, the same guy he now pretends to have contempt for (even though an official Obama White House rep was sent to an NOI conference who posed proudly with Farrakhan, an event completey ignored by all media, including Obamaphobic Fox.

    So yeah, I don’t like Obama. But I’m not a right winger or a religious person and have never liked D’Souza either. He’a always struck me as a pop pundit who says what he says to make money, not out of conviction. In fact, it wouldn’t surprise me if D’Souza, himself a third world immigrant from an area of India formerly colonized by Portugal (hence the curious Portuguese surname), may well be projecting his own publicly repressed ‘anti-colonialist rage’ onto Obama.

    He never should’ve been quasi-famous to begin with, but now that he is, this phony infidelity scandal ought not be the thing that brings him down (and he won’t). He really didn’t so anything wrong. He is long separated from his wife, has already filed for divorce, and was legally and ethically engaged to his hot young trophy wife. Thisnis all much ado about nada. King’s College is a small and insignificant school. His resignation from there is not like stepping down from some prestigious ornsignificant position. I find it telling that many of the same in the media who mocked the insignifinance of being president of King’s College prior to this ‘scandal’ now are acting like it’s a real school. Nothing to see here folks. The only notable thing about this story is his obvious bolderdash statement that he had no idea that being enagaged before you finalized your divorce prior was frowned upon ‘in Christian circles’. Uh, Dinny ole boy, aren’t those the very same circles you have been subsumed in and pandering to for the past several decades? He’s obviously full of maneur.

    But that’s fairly representative of Dinesh’a character in general; he is just another fake, phony, fraud media pundit, and has long been quite obiously so. He’s probably about as sincere a Christian as Obama.

    I wish this were the end of D’Souza, but it isn’t.

    • M.L.

      typo correction: In my post above, tne 2nd sentence should say “very naive to suppose this pseudo scandal IS his undoing”, NOT “very naive to suppose this pseudo scandal isn’t his undoing”.

      Oh, a kingdom for an edit button!

      • M.L.

        Uh, actually, that would be the first sentence. And “tne” should be “the”. It’s not my spelling that sucks, it’s spelling itself that sucks.

    • Frank McManus

      This is a funny comment: I disagree with practically everything in it except M.L.’s contempt for D’Souza. But I think D’Souza is a sincere Christian by his own lights, as is Obama. Everything M.L. says about Obama’s church is laughably false. Where do people come up with this stuff?

      Obama’s a politician and is about as sincere about religion as one can expect any politician to be (i.e., a little, but not very), while D’Souza seems to be a narcissistic whacko, and his religious convictions are part of his craziness.

  • Frank McManus

    Interesting take on D’Souza. I mostly agree and I suggest listening to an interview he did on NPR about a month ago — listen to the unedited version; the broadcast version is severely truncated and doesn’t give a true sense of D’Souza’s bizarre way of answering challenges. I don’t think D’Souza is either merely stupid or evil; I think there’s another explanation, namely that he’s a psycho, by which I mean he’s one of those people who believes nutty things and considers his belief evidence of their truth: it’s true because he believes it’s true. Truthers, birthers and holocaust-deniers are in the same boat, though D’Souza’s superficially more sophisticated that they usually are.

    It only reinforces his convictions that a lot of people D’Souza hates attack him for them, while at least some people he likes admire him for them. And he gets lots of money for saying these nutty things — it all reinforces his own understanding that he believes and advocates the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

    Alas, his being fired won’t silence him: if anything it will make him a martyr in his own eyes and give him more time to promote the truth that he’s a martyr to the truth.

    • M.L.

      Hi Frank McManus.

      I don’t know what to make of your responses to my post. In the first you seem to assess me as a troglodyte and in the second you seem to agree with me.

      Let me first try to elucidate my admittedly complex (or perhaps convoluted) political philosophy.

      I really loathe ideologically driven politics. I think that real life is far too complex for any truly rational person to pre-commit to a ‘left’ or ‘right’ position. I think we should try to evaluate EVERYTHING as a scientist would, with rigorous critical thinking and when possible, formulate our political positions as ‘hypotheses’ that may be objectively tested and subsequently sustained or rejected.

      OK.

      Based on this, I tend to find myself more often than not supporting left liberal politicians, including Obama, who I intend to hold my nose and vote for primarily because the alternative is unfathomable. I would sooner suffer the agony of the Brazen Bull than vote for a candidate of a party overflowing with people who deny basic scientific facts, such as evolution and climate change.

      You seem to be disturbed by my description of Obama as “knee deep in black extremists”. I’m sorry, but I think that is a reasonable, fact based description of Barry. Reverand Writght is without question a racist, as is Farrakhan, and Obama has supported both for decades. The only possible defense I can imagine for Barry’s association with these turds is that he really doesn’t like them but felt compelled to pretend he did for decades, in which case he is a moral coward.

      Yeah, I know Faux News likes to hype up O’s associations with the likes of Wright and Callipso Louie, which is divisive, but the fact is even a broken clock is correct two times each day.

      I think Obama is ultimately the lesser of two evils, and will vote for him (again), but I do so fully aware that in so doing I am choosing evil (of two lessers).

      Thanks for taking the time to respond; I appreciate your thoughtful responses and hope you don’t think me TOO crazy.

      Later. ;)

  • http://facebook.com/jcmmanuel jcmmanuel

    I always find it ridiculously cowardish to talk about ‘”the end of” someone and play the morality card to make that look even better. This is some sort of Pharisaism, but in a modern frame. Don’t get me wrong, D’Sousa is a fundamentalist as far as I’m concerned, I have little sympathy for his point of view on religion – but an article like this isn’t helpful in the battle against conservatism as far as I can see. No one is free from this sort of thing.

    • Ben Katz

      The battle against conservatism? You’re just as bad as the author himself. Talk about a silly way to frame an issue. Ick.

    • Phil Fox Rose

      jcmmanuel, you entirely missed my joke. The title was not a serious declaration. One of D’Souza’s earlier and more interesting books was titled “The End of Racism” and my title was a play on that. “Ridiculously cowardish”? “Parasaism”? Wow.

  • Gruffle

    It should be noted that the World story, which this piece uses for this story, has been discredited. D’nish was not sharing a room nor sleeping with Ms. Joseph at the conference. I’m sure a libel suit will be coming soon, as Marvin Olasky, editor of World, cannot substantiate his claim.

    You can read D’nish’s own explanation as to how AND why the story has unfolded the way it did.

  • Ben Katz

    This article made me laugh. The author clearly dislikes Dsouza a lot. Why? Because he’s a character assassin, he says. Then he writes a full article that is nothing but a character assassination of DSouza, complete with gossip someone passed off as fact. Ironic.

    • Phil Fox Rose

      I don’t dislike D’Souza. I don’t know D’Souza. I dislike, I hate, what he does. I don’t see my piece as the same thing at all. I’m not trying to discredit D’Souza’s political arguments by discrediting him. I’m making two separate observations. #1 – this thing has happened, which is all over the news, and he HAS resigned from his position. #2 – On several occasions in the last few years, I’ve encountered his work and considered it mean-spirited, intellectually disappointing, destructive, and rather absurd. I concluded by saying, “I find it frustrating that some conservative evangelical leaders were OK with his deceitful propaganda but are drawing the line at his having sex outside of wedlock” but nevertheless I can’t say I’m sorry his influence has been diminished. How is any of that character assassination?

      • M.L.

        This really isn’t much of a scandal. It’s not like he was caught cheating on his wife. He’s been legally separated from his wife for two years and had already filed for divorce. He was engaged to his hot young trophy girlfriend. You’d have to be a real prude to think there is something particularly scandalous here.

        It’s not like he was strolling around this apologetics conference in a pimp outfit, complete with a golden tooth grill, flowing robes, diamond studded cane and hat, saying “Wassup, y’all Bible thumping mofos! My name is D’Nesh D’Souza, but y’all can call me OG Denny D, and this fiiiinnnneee piece of ass here is Miss J-Thang, the latest addition to my stable. And y’all KNOW I’m a tap some of this tonight, ya feel me?”

        Of course, there is a certain delicious irony in D’Souza being bitch slapped by the same self righteous, judemental, puritanical moralizers he’s been pandering to for half his life. He’s been bitten by the same monster he’s been feeding for years.

        If he keeps making paranoid right wing movies there’ll still be a place for him on the religious right. To the extent this has been disussed on right wing talk radio – which ain’t much – a lot of the fundies seem to think this is much ado about nothing. He really isn’t all that famous anyway. Most of the fundies know him best as “the guy who made that Obama movie”, and this ‘scandal’ isn’t likely to be the end of his budding right wing movie making career.

        What would be more interesting is if he actually reversed course after this and moderated his publicly stated views. I frankly am skeptical that he was ever a true believer any way. Who knows, maybe he’ll pull an Arianna Huffington and be reborn as a pseudo-liberal. I don’t expect it, but it’d be fun to watch, especially if he wrote a sort of tell all confessional about his years canoodling with the religious right. Or maybe he’ll just say “screw all-o-y’all mofos!” and reinvent himself as a hardcore, pimping, gangsta rapper. We’ll see…

      • JC

        Phil,
        Is there any reason to keep user comments that don’t add value to your original thought? There seems to be many who do not understand basic logical fallacies and many who just want to pick a fight. You can delete this; and I won’t check for your’s or anyone else’s reply.

        Thanks,

  • http://yahoo katchy

    I watched the documentary by dinesh on president barack obana’s anti-colonial polices in line with his fathers dreams and his inate intentions to make america less powerful than it is. This is the joke of the century. Diniesh, you manipulated people’s emotions and made those kenya people comment on what you wanted to hear and for the good of your propaganda. The fact obama is african american with kenya roots ,according to you an absentee father who he visited his grave when he died , does not in any way mean he is trying to live out the barack senior dreams. A man he hardly knew, pleaselisten to your self! You are just looking for loop holes to nail him as you pointed out in your documentary. Your postulates hold no water. No man chooses his heritage and if baracks father like me and the kenyan citizens you manipulated in your interviews are against colonialism.. It does not make his son who is more american that you are, support anti-colonialism!

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  • anonymous

    Anyone shocked that DD was engaged before legally divorced has probably never set foot inside a Christian church’s singles group. Christian singles aren’t celibates. That may be why many churches lack a singles ministry – squeamish smug-married people don’t like the idea of what really goes on in singles groups. I’m not surprised that DD was surprised to find out that engagement before divorce wasn’t accepted here (in the US). It could be his single Christian acquaintances gave him one-sided view of what life is like for Christian singles. Married Christians prefer to be blind, deaf and dumb to the realities of Christian singles’ lives. In addition, he comes from a Catholic background – in India. I’m no expert on Indian culture, but from the Bollywood movies I’ve seen, there appears to be a stereotype of Christians being the morally looser religion. Hindus are always portrayed in these films as very conservative and sexually “pure.” Christians are nearly always portrayed as more western/morally lax. DD’s experiences with Christian singles in the US, combined with his own cultural viewpoint as an Indian, no doubt led to his misunderstanding of evangelical attitudes in the USA. (Or I should clarify: *married* evangelical attitudes; singles are a different culture completely.)

  • Windy

    I am amazed at the hypocrisy of attacking Dinesh D’Sousa and saying it is the end of his political career when Bill “The serial philanderer/accused sex assaulter” Clinton did not loose the presidency nor his political activities afterwards. Now I don’t condone divorcing his wife Dixie for any other reason than marital infidelity. He doesn’t get a biblical divorce if he’s the one doing it. And if a person is married he/she cannot date or sleep with one another. And Phil Fox Rose is showing the same type of tactic that Pres Obama uses from his mentor Saul D. Alinsky.

    • http://www.philfoxrose.com Phil Fox Rose

      Windy, I’m tempted to delete this comment for its silly and tangential pot shot at Obama and I don’t generally engage people who are being intentionally obnoxious. (In real life or the blogosphere.) But I want to point out one thing. It’s completely inappropriate of you to use the word hypocrisy. You have no idea what I thought of Bill Clinton’s behavior. At the time, I happen to have thought his behavior was disgusting and that the way feminist groups cheered him on and ignored that stuff was reprehensible. The fact remains, however, that if you set yourself as a Christian conservative arbiter of good behavior and harsh judge of others — something Clinton never tried to do — then when you fall over your own moral shortcomings, you fall hard. There was no political “tactic” in my writing this post; I was merely writing from my own perspective on the events.

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