Friday, October 26, 2012

Noonan: Obama a Petulant Child or Manchurian Candidate?

Peggy Noonan makes the point in her WSJ OpEd that the Denver debate October 3rd was a turning point in the POTUS campaign----perhaps THE TURNING POINT---because the nation saw Obama in a different guise:
We all say Ohio, Ohio, Ohio. But it's all still Denver, Denver, and the mystery that maybe isn't a mystery at all. If Cincinnati and Lake County go for Mitt Romney on Nov. 6 it will be because of what happened in Denver on Oct. 3. If Barack Obama barely scrapes through, if there's a bloody and prolonged recount, it too will be because of Denver. Nothing echoes out like that debate. It was the moment that allowed Mr. Romney to break through, that allowed dismay with the incumbent to coalesce, that allowed voters to consider the alternative. What the debate did to the president is what the Yankees' 0-4 series against the Tigers did at least momentarily, to the team's relationship with their city. "Dear Yankees, We don't date losers. Signed, New Yorkers" read the Post's headline. America doesn't date losers either. Why was the first debate so toxic for the president? Because the one thing he couldn't do if he was going to win the election is let all the pent-up resentment toward him erupt. Americans had gotten used to him as The President. Whatever his policy choices, whatever general direction he seemed to put in place he was The President, a man who had gotten there through natural gifts and what all politicians need, good fortune. What he couldn't do was present himself, when everyone was looking, as smaller than you thought. Petulant, put upon, above it all, full of himself. He couldn't afford to make himself look less impressive than the challenger in terms of command, grasp of facts, size. But that's what he did. And in some utterly new way the president was revealed, exposed. All the people whose job it is to surround and explain him, to act as his buffers and protectors—they weren't there. It was him on the stage, alone with a competitor. He didn't have a teleprompter, and so his failure seemed to underscore the cliché that the prompter is a kind of umbilical cord for him, something that provides nourishment, the thing he needs to sound good. He is not by any means a stupid man but he has become a boring one; he drones, he is predictable, it's never new. The teleprompter adds substance, or at least safety.
Everyone in the country with a brain larger than a peanut knew that the POTUS was great at using his 'community organizer' skills at talking to folks one-on-one or extemporaneously to a small group of less than a dozen people. And the same GOP observers saw that as far as policy and Haute Politique were concerned, Obama was lost without a teleprompter.
A great and assumed question, the one that's still floating out there, is what exactly happened when Mr. Obama did himself in? What led to it? Was it the catastrophic execution of an arguably sound strategy? Perhaps the idea was to show the president was so unimpressed by his challenger that he could coolly keep him at bay by not engaging. Maybe Mr. Obama's handlers advised: "The American people aren't impressed by this flip-flopping, outsourcing plutocrat, and you will deepen your bond with the American people, Mr. President, by expressing in your bearing, through your manner and language, how unimpressed you are, too." So he sat back and let Mr. Romney come forward. Mr. But Romney was poised, knowledgable, presidential. It was a mistake to let that come forward!
We all saw Romney simply outclass Obama in every way, shape or form. Except Obama and the numbnut arrogant creeps on the far left, and even Kos & some of them had to admit Barry had flunked his orals.
Was it the catastrophic execution of a truly bad strategy? Maybe they assumed the election was already pretty much in the bag, don't sweat it, just be your glitteringly brilliant self and let Duncan the Wonder Horse go out there and turn people off. But nothing was in the bag. The sheer number of people who watched—a historic 70 million—suggests a lot of voters were still making up their minds. Maybe the president himself didn't think he could possibly be beaten because he's so beloved. Presidents are always given good news, to keep their spirits up. The poll numbers he'd been seeing, the get-out-the-vote reports, the extraordinary Internet effort to connect with every lonely person in America, which is a lot of persons—maybe everything he was hearing left him thinking his position was impregnable. But maybe these questions are all off. Maybe what happened isn't a mystery at all. That, anyway, is the view expressed this week by a member of the U.S. Senate who served there with Mr Obama and has met with him in the White House. People back home, he said, sometimes wonder what happened with the president in the debate. The senator said, I paraphrase: I sort of have to tell them that it wasn't a miscalculation or a weird moment. I tell them: I know him, and that was him. That guy on the stage, that's the real Obama.
Obama is the ultimate man behind the curtain. And so clueless that he reportedly came away from the Denver debate believing, before the reviews came in, that he had done a bang-up job and was terrific. Self-awareness & the resultant political acumen seems to be utterly absent in this clown.
Which gets us to Bob Woodward's "The Price of Politics," published last month. The portrait it contains of Mr. Obama—of a president who is at once over his head, out of his depth and wholly unaware of the fact—hasn't received the attention it deserves. Throughout the book, which is a journalistic history of the president's key economic negotiations with Capitol Hill, Mr. Obama is portrayed as having the appearance and presentation of an academic or intellectual while being strangely clueless in his reading of political situations and dynamics. He is bad at negotiating—in fact doesn't know how. His confidence is consistently greater than his acumen, his arrogance greater than his grasp.
Although he meant it to be a hagiography, David Maraniss' book hints at this again and again. The essential dishonesty of Obama is exposed in his first book, absurdly called Dreams of My Father, which is riddled with inaccuracies and outright prevarications. It turns out that, behind the facade of the bright young cafe-au-lait gentleman purporting to the the Black Messiah, is somewhat of a cross between a street hustler and a carny barker. No transcripts of his GPA or copies of his senior thesis, all sorts of misrepresentations [Editor of the Harvard Law Review instead of President, a faineant position of Chairman Emeritus of a busy board; not one example of his writings in the HLR; the bogus claim that he was a 'professor' at UChicago Law School when his qualifications were laughed out of contention by the hard-headed Chicago Law Profs on the Board and only outside pressure from the Board of Regents got him a classroom as a 'Visiting Lecturer.']
He misread his Republican opponents from day one. If he had been large-spirited and conciliatory he would have effectively undercut them, and kept them from uniting. (If he'd been large-spirited with Mr. Romney, he would have undercut him, too.) Instead he was toughly partisan, he shut them out, and positions hardened. In time Republicans came to think he doesn't really listen, doesn't really hear. So did some Democrats. Business leaders and mighty CEOs felt patronized: After inviting them to meet with him, the president read from a teleprompter and included the press. They felt like "window dressing." One spoke of Obama's surface polish and essential remoteness. In negotiation he did not cajole, seduce, muscle or win sympathy. He instructed. He claimed deep understanding of his adversaries and their motives but was often incorrect. He told staffers that John Boehner, one of 11 children of a small-town bar owner, was a "country club Republican." He was often patronizing, which in the old and accomplished is irritating but in the young and inexperienced is infuriating. "Boehner said he hated going down to the White House to listen to what amounted to presidential lectures," Mr. Woodward writes. Mr. Obama's was a White House that had—and showed—no respect for Republicans trying to negotiate with Republicans. Through it all he was confident—"Eric, don't call my bluff"—because he believed, as did his staff, that his talents would save the day. They saved nothing. Washington became immobilized. Mr. Woodward's portrait of the president is not precisely new—it has been drawn in other ways in other accounts, and has been a staple of D.C. gossip for three years now—but it is vivid and believable. And there's probably a direct line between that portrait and the Obama seen in the first debate. Maybe that's what made it so indelible, and such an arc-changer. People saw for the first time an Obama they may have heard about on radio or in a newspaper but had never seen. They didn't see some odd version of the president. They saw the president. And they didn't like what they saw, and that would linger.
Although he has been buoyed by a fawning and uncritical press slinging allegations of 'racism' at any opposition to policies poorly planned and executed, the problem with Obama is that he believes his own positive rave reviews and that's all he looks at. This is classical behavior by bad actors in Hollywood, which uncritically laps up the crumbs from Barry's table. Worse are the professors, seething with hate and disdain and consumed with what Tony Judt calls a "grid of suspicion"...that..."reveal [its] true meaning only when decoded by the initiated." And Obama evidently was the callow receptacle of this dime-store watered-down marxist tripe and twaddle---which he swallowed whole in Columbia, Harvard Law & marinated in racial animosity, as a side fillip to a wholly half-baked dinner of happy horseshit. Here's an example of staple liberal progressive nonsense:
Viewed through the lens of history, Obama represents a new type of 21st-century politician: the Progressive Firewall. Obama, simply put, is the curator-in-chief of the New Deal, the Fair Deal, the New Frontier and the Great Society. When he talks about continued subsidies for Big Bird or contraceptives for Sandra Fluke, he is the inheritor of the Progressive movement's agenda, the last line of defense that prevents America's hard-won social contract from being defunded into oblivion. Ever since Theodore Roosevelt used executive orders to save the Grand Canyon from the zinc-copper lobbies and declared that unsanitary factories were grotesque perversions propagated by Big Money interests, the federal government has aimed to improve the daily lives of average Americans. Woodrow Wilson followed up T.R.'s acts by creating the Federal Reserve and the Federal Trade Commission and re-establishing a federal income tax. Then, before the stock market crash in 1929, the GOP Big Three of Harding-Coolidge-Hoover made "business" the business of America, once more allowing profiteers to flourish at the expense of the vulnerable. Enter Franklin Roosevelt, a polio victim confined to a wheelchair and leg braces. His alphabet soup of New Deal programs – the CCC and TVA and WPA – brought hope to the financially distraught, making them believe that the government was on their side. Determined to end the Great Depression, Roosevelt was a magnificent experimenter. Credit him with Social Security, legislation to protect workers, labor's right to collective bargaining, Wall Street regulation, rural electrification projects, farm-price supports, unemployment compensation and federally guaranteed bank deposits. The America we know and love today sprung directly from the New Deal.
This is the standard narrative that I got back at the U of Michigan while getting an MA in history and which has been regurgitated for decades to getting passing grades---when the progressive school doesn't abandon "grades" as some sort of "grotesque persrsion propagated by Big Money interests" that the wealthy Romney represents....Douglas Brinkley is the narrator of the narrative sequence above and is a publicity whore who lives by projectile vomiting whatever liberal progressive cause is center-stage at the moment. Obama is the apotheosis of this creature---one who lives on disinformation dumped into the top of an empty head during undergrad years, slurped up in grad school like pig swill, and finally reprocessed as fine mouth spew as a politician or "historian." Check the link on Brinkley and judge for yourself whether he is due for a 12 step program or if a stay in a mental institution might supplement the incarceration he may end up serving. Or maybe just cut back on caffeine? This interview is the one which ended with the 'president' telling the interviewers that Romney is a "bullshitter." To the truly inexperienced wet-behind-the-ears Obama, Mitt represents all that Barry was taught to hate and despise in undergrad & Law School and later on the streets of Chicago where he was a young lawyer representing ACORN. Obama seems a tool of his instructors and handlers and monitors, unable to veer much from their guidance. Does he truly believe that Boehner, who graduated from a bar with 11 siblings, is a 'country club Republican' any more than his frequent times on the links make him a country club Democrat? If so, this sad little man is one of the shallowest presidents in our history and doesn't deserve re-election.

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