Dreams From My Father explains that, while he was a teenager living in Hawaii, Barack Obama was deeply influenced by a black poet named Frank. This “Frank” is mentioned 22 times in the book by his first name, but oddly, Obama never divulges his last name. Even more mysteriously, the book’s passages mentioning “Frank” were completely removed from the 2005 audio version of Dreams From My Father.Müller repeats this accusation again.
As a Harvard Law student, however, Mr. Obama was less shy about Frank’s full identity. In a televised reading of his autobiography, which aired on Cambridge Municipal Television in September 1995, Obama admitted it was none other than Frank Marshall Davis—a black journalist, poet and pornographer who joined the Communist Party USA (CPUSA) to become member #47544. (Andrew Müller, Unriddling the Radical Worldview of President Obama, January 2016, p. 2.)
In Dreams From My Father, Mr. Obama identified Marty Kaufman as a key influence. According to Obama, Kaufman was responsible for hiring him to work as a community organizer in the Developing Communities Project in Chicago. While he definitely did work as a community organizer in Chicago for a number of years, Maureen Dowd of the New York Times has identified his boss during these years as Jerry Kellman. So, in similar fashion to how he referred to Frank Marshall Davis simply as Frank, Obama referred to Kellman as Kaufman to obscure his identity. (Andrew Müller, Unriddling the Radical Worldview of President Obama, January 2016, p. 4.)What is even more odd than all this is that somehow Müller fails to mention that Obama plainly stated at the start of that book he had altered details of what he wrote about. The reader is informed at the start of the book that details have been changed.
For the sake of compression, some of the characters that appear are composites of people I've known, and some events appear out of precise chronology. With the exception of my family and a handful of public figures, the names of most characters have been changed for the sake of their privacy. (Barack Obama, Dreams From My Father, Introduction, p. xvii.)This fact is never admitted by Müller in the article.
It is reasonable to assume that many readers of this magazine will not have read Dreams From My Father and will thus be unaware of Obama's honest statement at the start of the book that details within the book had been altered.
I encourage readers to take a look at Dreams From My Father for yourself. Obama is honest that details have been changed.
(For more on this topic see PCG's Andrew Müller: McCarthyite Imitator.)