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  • From a Galaxy Far Away

    Posted by David Foster on May 30th, 2010 (All posts by )

    Some have suggested that President Barack Obama may not really be an American citizen. I’ve never paid much attention to these arguments; however, I’m now increasingly convinced that Mr Obama’s true origins may lie in a place much further away than Kenya or Indonesia.

    Consider the presidential following statement, made at a recent press conference:

    My job right now is just to make sure that everybody in the Gulf understands this is what I wake up to in the morning and this is what I go to bed at night thinking about: the spill.

    This statements suggests to me that Obama is probably not a citizen of the planet Earth, but rather a citizen of the planet Grqx, an interesting world located about 75,000 light-years away. The laws of nature are different on Grqx…indeed, the laws of nature are suspended there, because of the powerful force field of magic that exists on that planet. On Grqx, thinking or talking about something is equivalent to doing something about it…indeed, the magic works better if you don’t think or talk directly about the problem you’re trying to fix, but rather about your own feelings about that problem…even better, your feelings about your feelings.

    Another interesting point about Grqxians is that they are incapable of truly understanding the emotional reactions of earth people…while they can simulate such understanding for short periods of time, they are incapable of sustaining it.

    Interstellar anthropologists should be excited about this discovery: While small amounts of Grqxian heritage have been found among many lawyers, writers, advertising people, and certain kinds of professors, full-blooded Grqxians are believed to be very rare.

    Ann Althouse suggests that some of the reactions to the statement quoted above are unfair, and argues that Obama was referring merely to his job in the press conference itself…and yes, when he says “my job right now,” he probably does mean “my job at this press conference.” Still, even with this context the Obamian statement is noteworthy for its narcissism and general weirdness.

    Can anyone imagine FDR, shortly after Pearl Harbor, saying “My job right now is to make sure everyone understands that I wake up thinking about how to repel Japanese aggression and go to bed thinking about the same thing?”

    Can anyone imagine JFK, in the midst of the Cuban Missile Crisis, saying “My job right now is to make sure everyone understands how concerned I am about the danger of nuclear war, and that I think about that danger a lot?”

    The way an executive shows that he care about an issue is by action and by action-oriented speech, not by endless emoting.

    Some years ago, I needed to send a communication to customers, and asked a woman in my customer service operation to draft it for my signature. The letter was fine, except for the saluation: “Dear valued customer.” I explained to her that the customers would know whether they were valued or not according to how we treated them, not according to business jargon, and that the salutation needed to change to a simple “Dear customer.” Someone needs to make the same point to Obama.

    Although his Grqxian background would probably make such a point very difficult for him to understand.

     

    8 Responses to “From a Galaxy Far Away”

    1. MassJim Says:

      I am going to work in Tuesday morning and tell my Boss that my job is to make sure that he understands that what I wake up to and go to bed at night thinking about is my job. I will not do anything or accomplish anything, but I will be thinking about it. And, I will assure him that if he needs me I will either be playing golf or shooting a few baskets. I wonder what his reaction would be.
      Sounds like a few good ideas for a Dilbert cartoon.

    2. Robert Schwartz Says:

      He is not a space alien, he is just an @$$#013.

    3. Michael Kennedy Says:

      The ears are kind of a giveaway.

      There is precedent for this, however. Madeline Albright (often known as “halfbright”) said that the Clinton Administration (and her State Department) were very concerned about terrorism. They had meetings on it every week. This statement was made after 9/11.

    4. Andrew_M_Garland Says:

      Democratic politicans look to history for guidance on how to govern. A shining light illuminates Bill Clinton’s winning phrase “I feel your pain”, which won a great public response.

      But, Obama clearly couldn’t use that phrase, so he chose “I go to sleep each night thinking about the spill”.

      Obama is not sure that the American people outside Washington circles, especially in Lousiana backwaters, can understand a phrase when used only once. He wanted double emphasis, but couldn’t say: “I go to sleep each night thinking about the spill. Repeat. I go to sleep each night thinking about the spill.”

      He hit upon the “wake up” and “go to bed” device. Thankfully, he left out “praying just before lunch”.

      Still untrusting of what people in the Gulf would understand, he explains his purpose in making the statement. But, uneasy that this might be overkill, he also throws in a “just” to apologize if his listeners understood what he meant from the start.

      Thus we get:

      My job right now is just to make sure
      [Here is why I am talking to you, and my apologies if this was already clear]

      that everybody in the Gulf understands this
      [this is for you, you people of the Gulf]

      is what I wake up to in the morning and this is what I go to bed at night
      [Twice, I really mean it.]

      thinking about: the spill.
      [I feel your pain.]

    5. T. Greer Says:

      Please. The American people are upset that Obama is doing nothing. This is a ridiculous reason to be upset, as others have pointed out before, but Obama’s words are hardly out of sync with the mass of the American people. They want the federal government to do something. They want to imagine that the administration is concerned. Of course, this is a lie. It would be even more of a lie if he pretended he was actually doing something – for unlike FDR at Pearl Harbor, there is nothing here the government can do that private actors are not already doing.

      Fault not the President for playing the game we have forced upon him.

    6. Michael Kennedy Says:

      He could be approving Louisiana’s attempt to protect its marshes with sand berms but, of course, Jindal might be running against him in 2012 so that can’t be permitted.

    7. Moneyrunner Says:

      This wouldn’t be happening if Obama was President. Impeach Sarah Palin!

      If only Barack Obama had been elected and old John McCain hadn’t died, we wouldn’t have a clueless radical demagogue in the White House whose only talent is giving a speech to fire up the rubes.

      If only we had listened to the media.

      Oh wait ….

    8. bgates Says:

      Fault not the President for playing the game we have forced upon him.

      We’re faulting him for playing the game he and his party devised to force their opponents out of office. Poor Democrats! It’s not fair to hold them to standards they designed specifically for other people than themselves!