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Monday, August 04, 2008

Because the last thing we want is a president who seems presidential
Posted by Jill | 7:27 AM
No, here in Amurrica, where we elect presidents based on whether we want to sit at the stinking ocrner bar that smells vaguely of old cooking grease and urine, drinking Budweiser with them, there's something sinister about a presidential candidate who thinks that a certain dignity and poise goes with the office instead of being like this:

or this:

Because everyone knows that being able to find your own ass and being able to utter a coherent English sentence makes you "presumptuous."

Fortunately, the L.A. Times now says, "Enough of this crap already":

I've spent a few days on the campaign trail with Obama and know people who've traveled with him for months. I wouldn't argue that portrayals of the candidate as occasionally aloof, or a little professorial, are imagined.

But it's a long ways from, in the words of Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank, acting like "the presumptuous nominee" whose "biggest challenger may not be Republican John McCain but rather his own hubris."

Milbank, who is often wickedly revealing, last week seemed mostly wicked as he turned benign campaign tableau -- an Obama motorcade, a talk with the Treasury secretary, a "pep rally" with congressional Democrats -- into evidence that Obama thinks he's already the winner.


Then came the stunning revelation that Obama had begun planning for a transition to the White House.

Fox News hostess E.D. Hill -- who dubbed Obama's playful knuckle bump with his wife a "terrorist fist jab" -- reminded viewers recently that the Democrat was "not commander in chief just yet, which is why some find his decision to start planning his transition into the White House a bit presumptuous."

Hill wondered whether Obama was "jumping the gun or just covering all the bases?"

Never mind that McCain advisors have acknowledged that they too were planning for a White House transition or the fact that history has rewarded those who looked ahead. Early transition planner Ronald Reagan hit the ground running in 1980. Bill Clinton initially struggled after dawdling on White House preparations in 1992.

Yeah, but what about that talk of remodeling the Lincoln Bedroom? Surely that proves Obama thinks he's destined for 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

That whopper grew out of an entirely benign moment last month in Fargo, N.D. A woman asked if Obama would consider remodeling the room with African kente cloth.

"No," Obama said with a laugh. He mused that when he had toured the White House in 2005, he thought a copy of the Gettysburg Address would look more appropriate in the historic chamber than the flat-screen TV on the wall.

What about that seal, complete with American eagle, that the Obama faithful trotted out a few weeks back? No question it was a cheesy would-be stature-builder -- but it was far short of counting electoral votes before they're cast.

The candidate's crowning demonstrations of hubris, according to those building a case, came during his extended trip to Iraq, Afghanistan, the Middle East and Europe. Recall the pundits demanding the freshman Illinois senator prove he could be presidential in the foreign arena?

So he appeared at ease with world leaders, talked animatedly with beaming American troops and drew huge civilian crowds. Then the pundits -- who had been taking a round of bashing for supposedly going easy on Obama -- told Obama he needed to beware of appearing too presidential.


"There's an interesting line building on Obama that somehow success and intelligence are a handicap," said Mark Sawyer, a UCLA political scientist. "If he wasn't extraordinary, he wouldn't be there. But then he is extraordinary and it becomes, 'He is just too good, too well spoken, too accomplished.' "

But when you're dealing with a country populated by people who think drilling off the Atlantic coast will bring us back to the days of dollar-a-gallon gasoline and Hummers trying to bully everyone else off the road, this is what you get. And of course you get presidents like George W. Bush.


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Anonymous Anonymous said...
I'm beginning to think that the REAL reason American kids aren't going into science and math is that only "smart kids" take those courses and the kids that might go that route don't want to be teased as "brainy". And we know -- absolutely -- that they will be teased -- "bully bait"!

Do I hear something about "feeling good" and "fitting in"!!

Blogger D. said...
Shorter version:

"That's what a smart, competent, successful black man looks like. Why are those horses carrying on like that?"

Blogger Bob said...
Damn well better have some idea what you're going to do on Jan. 21th, especially when there's a change of political party. A new administration has literally thousands of small decisions to make in addition to the grand schemes.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
presumptuous = uppity = black, black, blackity, black

Typical racist Rovian sewage.