Patterico's Pontifications

3/30/2011

In Which I Admit that Obama Was Pretty Cool About Something…

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 11:18 am

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

I remember well over a year ago when it was announced that Obama won a Nobel Prize, and my immediate thought was “for what?”  Obama was barely president, and I was still in the “I hope he won’t be as I think he will be” stage (as opposed to now where I am in the “I hate being right” stage).  And even a year later, when the next Nobel Peace Prize was awarded, I wrote:

Last year, the Nobel Peace Prize was given to an empty suit, harming the prestige of the award.  This year represents a bit of a redemption, as they awarded it to an empty chair.

(The empty chair was symbolic of the man who was still in captivity in China, as was any relatives who might have been able to pick it up in his stead.)

So I was pretty hard on Obama and especially the Nobel Committee, for this award.

But I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised to hear the President apparently mocking it, too:

It comes around the 50 second mark, when he praises his Energy Secretary, Steven Chu, saying: “Chu’s the right guy to do this, he’s got a Nobel Prize in physics — he actually deserved his Nobel Prize.”  I think that there can be little doubt that he was mocking himself, especially if you watch the video.  And I have to admit that was really surprisingly cool of him to do that.

Of course if he was really humble and self-aware, he would resign or at least decide not to run for re-election.  But hey, baby steps…

H/T: The Blaze.

P.S.: Does it benefit Politico when I embed their video? I am genuinely wondering.

[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]

34 Responses to “In Which I Admit that Obama Was Pretty Cool About Something…”

  1. He’s not “cool” and these aren’t “baby steps” on the road to reality. He didn’t have any trouble accepting the prize and hasn’t been self-deprecating about it before now. So, gosh, why now? Could it be because Mr. Peace Prize has gone to war and realizes that even his most devoted borghive followers will see the irony in that? Yes, that’s it!

    AMartel (88c646)

  2. OK, Obama got a chuckle out of me.

    If he took himself less seriously, he would have 10 more points in the polls and possibly be open to the criticism he badly needs for his on the job leadership training to take hold.

    Whoever wrote his speech deserves a cookie, but Obama probably had him fired.

    Dustin (c16eca)

  3. amartel

    well it is true that obama handled the prize about as well as he could have, short of actually refusing it (which is what i would have done). I seriously would have said, if i was in his shoes, “i have not done enough, by a long shot, to deserve the same award that MLK received, but i look forward to being considered in the future.”

    And I say that as a big time war monger. sometimes war creates peace. who was more considered a “peacemaker”? Chamberlain or Churchill? Chamberlain. But if they had listened to Churchill from the start, maybe there wouldn’t have been a second world war, or maybe it wouldn’t have been as big a deal. and then surely history would remember churchill as a bully who picked on puny little hitler. heh.

    Aaron Worthing (e7d72e)

  4. dustin

    that looked spontaneous to me. imho. i am not sure anyone who works for him has the guts to suggest he says something that humble.

    Aaron Worthing (e7d72e)

  5. i am not sure anyone who works for him has the guts to suggest he says something that humble.

    Hard to say. Bush kept a slightly more diverse cabinet, though I give Obama a little credit for keeping Gates (who was arguably sub-par in the prior admin, but is hugely needed in this one).

    the peons writing his speech probably are intimidated as you suggest, but you’d hope eventually Obama would realize he’s not getting a fully honest appraisal as his administration continues to fumble. I don’t say this as a partisan… they really have a huge self awareness problem.

    Obama is a gifted orator. I know a lot of people criticize his reliance on teleprompters and pretend Obama is stupid, but I think he’s one of the most naturally gifted politicians we’ve ever seen, and that’s how his station was able to so drastically exceed his actual leadership skills.

    So he could make a planned joke seem spontaneous if he wanted. The normal droning style of his seems like some kind of deliberate audience manipulation to me, rather than a lack of speaking ability.

    Anyway, whoever came up with it had a nice moment of clarity and deserves one cookie.

    Dustin (c16eca)

  6. I got a Nobel Prize in a box of Lucky Charms. Apparently, it’s the new marshmellow.

    EC (dda60e)

  7. Barack Obama is still an jackwagon.

    DohBiden (984d23)

  8. I refuse to give President A-hole credit for this. He was only reading a line someone else wrote.

    Arizona Bob (f57a20)

  9. Empty suit, empty chair, Al Gore, Yassir Arafat, Jimmy Carter. WTF kind of prize is that, anyway?

    kansas (7b4374)

  10. kansas, you left off Obama.

    I disagree, Dustin. He has a jerky way of speaking, even when he is reading the teleprompter. And he is even worse when he attempts off-the-cuff comments. But, as you have said before, that’s just my opinion.

    PatAZ (43542d)

  11. Oh, and I don’t know if it’s just me, but it says the video is currently unavailable.

    PatAZ (43542d)

  12. When I think about trivial stories like this, I remember how left wing nutcases reacted to Bush’s more trivial stories.

    Those guys were crazy, and wouldn’t permit even the most minor grace for him. They were sure they were right politically to the point where it was absurd to even try to talk about Bush without a stream of instant anger.

    It was stupid. I don’t want the right to become that. Ordinarily, I don’t think the right wants to. There was a hardcore that couldn’t give Clinton a little credit (I think we see now that we could do a lot worse), but with Obama that seems much worse. I think Obama is especially gifted at driving otherwise reasonable people to a high point of agitation, where they avoid compelling arguments against him because they are too busy acting like the BDS crowd did.

    I don’t know if Obama’s just lucky this way, or skilled, but I do know this helps him. That’s my reaction to trivial crap where Obama shows he’s a human being after all. Do we really want to pretend Obama is the devil? He’s a terrible president despite not being pure evil. He’s worse than evil.

    Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber barons cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. (Lewis)

    If we pretend Obama is beyond any human credit, we are missing the lesson of his failure.

    Dustin (c16eca)

  13. Video sent down the memory hole?

    Apparently, any criticism of Obama cannot be allowed to survive to be seen.

    malclave (1db6c5)

  14. Dustin

    > Do we really want to pretend Obama is the devil?

    well, i don’t THINK he’s the devil, but i admit this is pretty creepy:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bcbloBA2Lek

    of course i have verified none of that video’s factual allegations.

    And um, seriously, my sister literally thinks he is the anti-christ.

    personally i think he is the anti-Reagan, which is bad enough.

    Aaron Worthing (e7d72e)

  15. And um, seriously, my sister literally thinks he is the anti-christ.

    One of my sisters is particularly prone to that kind of thing. But she reads this blog, so I don’t want to be too unkind about it.

    But to be more to the point, the devil probably thinks we should be thanking him. At least under the concept of the devil as an entity that thinks we should be Hedonistic for the utilitarian benefit of it.

    Obama sincerely believes that Americans should be thanking him. He thinks his actions can make the world a much better place. By this point, he surely realizes it isn’t working, but he still is motivated to help us. His conscience is in approval of Obamacare or Cloward Piven or radical liberalism.

    He’s just the most naive man we ever elected to high office, and also one of the least penetrable by reality. The lesson is not that we should avoid electing evil men to the oval office (that is true, but it’s freaking obvious). The lesson we need to communicate to the swing voters is to avoid narcissists who want to save us from ourselves… we have to fix our own problems.

    Dustin (c16eca)

  16. Oh, and I left a comment on that antichrist video. That jackass is willing to condemn the President of the United States as the embodiment of Satan, but he won’t allow criticism of his points without his personal approval.

    I have to wonder what people like that guy would do for me own good. That video is yet another example of what I mean about people whose conscience approves of special rules that benefit their ideas over others. He misses the lesson of Obama’s miserable failures.

    Dustin (c16eca)

  17. “Last year, the Nobel Peace Prize was given to an empty suit, harming the prestige of the award. This year represents a bit of a redemption, as they awarded it to an empty chair…”

    And, if Obambi wins it again next year, they’ll be giving it to an empty head, thus keeping the streak alive.

    Dave Surls (8d673a)

  18. Dustin

    > He’s just the most naive man we ever elected to high office, and also one of the least penetrable by reality.

    well part of it comes down to that old question… is he really this bad at it, or is he doing this on purpose?

    and i think at one point you came down on the latter side. could be wrong on that, though.

    Aaron Worthing (e7d72e)

  19. and i think at one point you came down on the latter side. could be wrong on that, though.

    I still think Obama loves machinations he hides behind a veneer of civility BS or other lies.

    I’m saying he does that because his conscience approves. In his heart, he thinks Alinky agitation will improve society, even though it’s obvious devious. In his heart, he thinks lying about constitutional powers (such as signing statements, transparency, or Bush not being allowed to use the military without congressional approval) is ultimately for the better good. He thinks being a political soldier against Republicans is so helpful to society that he’s willing to break a few eggs of integrity to get to the omelet of social democracy utopia.

    All politicians have some degree of selfishness and dishonesty or they fail. Obama has that in spades, and like most politicians, he really buys into the idea his actions were justified by his intentions.

    I’m not really trying to save Obama’s legacy here. I just think it’s a shame for some of his most passionate opponents to fail to get the point. We’re being taught a brutally hard lesson about short sighted nanny states, so we might as well learn it.

    Dustin (c16eca)

  20. I’ll readily admit that I don’t like Obama, but he HAS done at least one thing right (or if it’s wrong, I need that explained to me) he signed a bill to put an end to liable tourists getting judgements in censorious foreign (British, mostly) courts and then having those judgements collected against American citizens.

    I don’t think he back the bill in any special way, but he did sign it, and it was overdue.

    We now return you to your regularly scheduled “The twit couldn’t find his way down stairs with the help of an over-ripe banana.”

    C. S. P. Schofield (8b1968)

  21. Bush actually deserved the presidency

    happyfeet (ab5779)

  22. Busch actually deserved the title commander in chief

    happyfeet (ab5779)

  23. oops Bush I mean I get confuzzled

    happyfeet (ab5779)

  24. Can Freudian slips be alcoholic?

    Dustin (c16eca)

  25. @24

    Sometimes a shot of whiskey is just a shot of whiskey.

    malclave (1db6c5)

  26. Obama is a gifted orator. I know a lot of people criticize his reliance on teleprompters and pretend Obama is stupid, but I think he’s one of the most naturally gifted politicians we’ve ever seen, and that’s how his station was able to so drastically exceed his actual leadership skills.

    I am not sure if it is possible for me to disagree more. He is not even a good TelePrompTer reader, much less orator. I al so do not agree with the naturally gifted BS. Absent a MFM that deep throats him routinely, he would be nothing more than a back-bencher.

    JD (0b7af0)

  27. This made me chuckle but then I thought it would have been bad form to not be self-deprecating because he knows that we all *know* he did nothing to deserve it. Thus it was a relief to see a modicum of humility.

    Of course the true evidence of the Nobel Prize’s descent into absurdity came before Obama: Al Gore winning instead of fellow-nominee, the courageous Irena Sendler

    What did Al Gore do? He told us the earth had a fever.

    What did Ms. Sendler do? She saved hundreds of Jewish children in the Warsaw Ghetto from being sent to the death camps, she helped create 3,000 false documents to help Jewish families escape Poland, and she was arrested, tortured, and sentenced to death by the Gestapo because of her fearless commitment to saving as many Jews as she could during the war.

    The Nobel Prizes are worthless.

    Dana (9f3823)

  28. Dana

    she was nomintated the same year as gore?

    And yeah, i mean its not even clear that global warming would harm peace anyway. i mean what if that means we can grow more food because more of the earth is temperate?

    Aaron Worthing (73a7ea)

  29. In 2007, considerable publicity[13] accompanied Sendler’s nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize.[14] While failed nominations for the award have not been officially announced by the Nobel organization for 50 years, the International Peace Research Institute, Oslo, reported in 2007 that Irena Sendler’s nominator had made the nomination public.[15] Regardless of its legitimacy, talk of the nomination focused a spotlight on Sendler and her wartime achievements. The 2007 Nobel Peace Prize was, however, eventually awarded to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and former Vice President of the United States Al Gore.[16]

    Had Al Gore a modicum of humility and self-awareness, he would have refused to accept the award and instead presented it to her. (Assuming he found out later about her nomination, he could have still made a public, symbolic offering.)

    Dana (9f3823)

  30. “confuzzled”

    Cool word.

    “Obama is a gifted orator.”

    Yeah…if you’re trying to get some sleep. He’ll put you out in a matter of seconds.

    Dave Surls (a05694)

  31. “Had Al Gore a modicum of humility and self-awareness, he would have refused to accept the award…”

    Yup, and he’d also be working in a car wash…pro bono.

    Dave Surls (a05694)

  32. 32. At least algore is aware of his chakra needs. Does he still have that energy-guzzling house boat and the little homestead in Tennessee that uses twenty or so times as much energy as the average home? Of course as W Bush in Texas really does have an energy-efficient ranch.

    Was Obama even in oval office before being considered for peace prize? Those Nobel clowns essentially award people whose politics they admire. I’m sure Yassir Arafish’s inner man loved peace. Wondering of idiotarian Charles Johnson of LGF/Dan Rather fame has changed his tune about Arafat or Rather/Mapes.

    Calypso Louie Farrakhan (f84281)

  33. Obama showed a relaxed likeable human side that has virtually disappeared
    ever since he clinched the Demo nomination in 2008.
    Finally, a tiny shred of humility and deprecation from the most
    self-absorped, self-important President since forever.

    If Obama starts to bring more of this personality and less Angry Urkel,
    his standing will improve among voters.
    Duh.

    Thats why I doubt we will see much of it.

    mike d (83078c)

  34. well, i don’t THINK he’s the devil, but i admit this is pretty creepy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bcbloBA2Lek

    The guy’s Hebrew leaves much to be desired. At best, “lightning from a high place” might be baraq mibama, not “Obama”. Baraq o bama might mean “a bolt of lightning or a high place”, which makes no sense.

    In any case, “heavens”, which is what the text he’s attempting to translate actually says, is nothing like bama, it’s shamayim. “Lightning from the heavens” is baraq mishamayim. A bama is a high place, not the sky; though in Isaiah 14:14 the clouds are imagined as a sort of high platform.

    Also, this is all Hebrew; in Aramaic “lightning from heaven” would be barqa min shmaya. “Lightning from a high place” might be barqa min bamatha.

    More importantly, the President’s name is not Baraq, but Barack, which is a completely different word, from a root meaning “blessing”, not “lightning”. Its Hebrew congnate is Baruch, and in Arabic it’s Mubarak.

    Milhouse (ea66e3)


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