In 2012, I wrote a post about Obama’s cocaine use at Occidental — it turns out I was right

Obama's cocaine use

I surmised 5 years ago that Obama’s cocaine use continued at Occidental. A biography due out next week proves I was correct and that Obama lied — again.

Almost five years ago, I wrote a post titled “Did Obama have a ‘coke nail’ at Occidental?” The post reflected my conjecture, flowing from a photo of Obama with an unusually long fingernail, that he was using cocaine and that he had grown a coke nail, something rather common in the early 1980s, to facilitate that habit:

We know from David Maraniss’ Choom Gang reports that Obama didn’t just flirt with pot. Instead, he was a serious stoner in high school.  As far as I know, though, no reporter has tied Obama to long-term cocaine use.  Obama’s own statement — “maybe a little blow when you could afford it” — implies that his contacts with cocaine were few and far between.  The distinction between chronic pot and chronic cocaine use matters because, while most adult Americans are fairly sanguine about marijuana, the same cannot be said about cocaine.  The former is viewed as a “soft” drug; the latter is not.

I wonder, though, if Obama was as honest about his cocaine use as he could have been.

My ruminations arose from a 1981 photograph of Obama at Occidental, seated with his friend Hasan Chandoo:

I’d first seen the photo while watching a PBS documentary about Obama, so it showed up on my wide screen HD TV. In that medium, I noticed something interesting:

As I noted in my original post, “Obama’s thumb and pointer finger have unusually long nails, while the other nails on his left hand are cropped close?” That struck me, because the day before, I’d read an article about Carrie Fisher’s cocaine use in the 1970s and 1980s, as well as the fact that her coke nail was very visible in some photos.

As I said, the above post was conjecture. The push-back I got not surprisingly focused on the fact that Obama had denied using cocaine after youth experiments in Hawaii. A comprehensive new biography from Pulitzer Prize winner David J. Garrow, however, establishes that Obama’s professions about no longer using cocaine were lies. (Why am I not surprised that Obama told a lie?)

Indeed, not only was it a lie, but Rising Star: The Making of Barack Obama says that Obama’s cocaine use coincided with his friendship with Chandoo, the man in the picture above — the same picture that led me to my conjecture about Obama’s cocaine use. Here’s what the Daily Mail has to say:

Drug link: Obama would party with three friends including Sohale Siddiqi (pictured) with whom he would do cocaine. Siddiqi, Hasan Chandoo, Imad Hussain took 'lots of cocaine', the new biography of Obama says

Drug link: Obama would party with three friends including Sohale Siddiqi (pictured) with whom he would do cocaine. Siddiqi, Hasan Chandoo, Imad Hussain took ‘lots of cocaine’, the new biography of Obama says


He would spend time with other friends – Hasan Chandoo, Imad Hussain and Sohale Siddiqi, who he had been friends with at Occidental College, in Los Angeles – and Cook said the trio was taking ‘lots of cocaine’.They were far more prolific users than Obama, who she said probably preferred staying home to read than taking the drug. Chandoo – who was later to become a fundraiser for Obama – was the leader, the book claims.

While the above does not prove I correctly identified Obama’s coke nail, it sure proves that I correctly identified Obama’s coke habit. The thing with Obama is that no matter how low you go, you’re probably correct.

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Bookworm came late to conservativism but embraced it with passion. She's been blogging since 2004 at Bookworm Room about anything that captures her fancy -- and that's usually politics. Her blog's motto is "Conservatives deal with facts and reach conclusions; liberals have conclusions and sell them as facts."