September 29, 2008

Here's how ABC ends a blogpost about Obama standing in the pouring rain to give a speech.

On an ominous note:
Astute students of history have noted, weather is not something politicians should take lightly. The presidency of William Henry Harrison, indeed Harrison's life lasted a mere month after after he caught a cold at his inauguration, which was held outside on a chilly Washington morning.

Yikes.

Drudge has a cool photo:



Then there's this:
As the rain began to pour harder, Obama noticed his running mate’s stool close to the edge of the slippery stage.

"I'm gonna ask Joe to move that stool up because I don't want to have to choose another vice-president," Obama joked. "I don't want him slipping over, toppling over there."

That's not what I heard.

82 comments:

Salamandyr said...

That's a good photo.

Of course the really interesting thing is that you now have a thread tag for William Henry Harrison. It makes me wonder if you will ever again have the opportunity to use it.

PatCA said...

They're all cool photos of Obama. Have we seen one unflattering one?

Simon said...

Of course, medicine was somewhat less advanced in those days.

According to Wikipedia, by the way, the conventional wisdom that Harrison's inauguration speech precipitated his death, reiterated by ABC, is false. Harrison showed no signs of ill health for three weeks after that speech, and the proximate cause appears to have been being caught in a rain shower that pushed a cold into pneumonia.

Peter V. Bella said...

"Sometimes the skies look cloudy and it's dark. And you think the rains will never pass," Obama preached, "The young people understand that the clouds -– these too will pass, that a brighter day will come."

He preached. The messaih has spoken. Can he part a sea or a river or something?

He did find Joe Biden. That was miraculous.

Henry said...

That was a warm rain this weekend. I risked my life gardening.

Concerned Citizen said...

He looks like an evangelist or a college football coach....or something out of that scene in "Any Given Sunday"... in the rain during the night game scenes.

It's Cap MCain vs. Steamin' Obama.

erniecu73 said...

Should there be any doubts about Biden's age, health and fitness for the vice-presidency? Of course not...

/ sarcasm

Freeman Hunt said...

You left out the best quote of unbridled reporter love:

The rain pouring down, his jacket off, his white dress-shirt clinging to his body,

Matthews and Olbermann read that and got the vapors.

reader_iam said...

Lemme see: We've had eight presidents die in office, four due to assassination (though two hung on a while), one due to heart attack, one due to cerebral hemmorrhage, one due to gastroenteritis (various speculations as to cause) and one due to pneumonia/pleurisy.

Gee, I wonder if worrying about getting caught in the rain ought to be at the top of the list of things not to take lightly. Only sayin'.

Cedarford said...

That is a great photo.

------------------

An interesting post from a Canadian, Diane Francis, who sees the financial crisis as just a symptom of a greater problem of America in decline mired in an 18th Century system it can't modernize and remain competitive anymore with.

http://www.nationalpost.com/opinion/columnists/story.html?id=596577c6-b006-4e71-a7c7-c099a7a591b8


The U. S. system is not only corruptible but inefficient. The Presidential race has lasted more than 18 months while the Congressional races, frankly, never end. The House of Representative seats are up for grabs every two years as is one-third of the Senate.

This guarantees that politics, not policy, are pre-eminent; that compromise, not principle, is first and foremost and that influence peddling never, ever ends.

Some may say this has always been the case and the United States has become a rich and free nation. But markets, and terrorists, and voters, never wait and operate in real time.

The economic crisis will pass, but America's biggest crisis is the fact that Washington is an 18th Century American political system operating in the 21st. century.

And this is now blatantly obvious.

In a Parliamentary system, a crisis is dealt with by caucus, cabinet and experts. In the corporate world, CEOs and boards make rapid-fire decisions to changes in market or political conditions. If the U. S. was a company, it would be bust already because it couldn't react immediately.

Meanwhile, Rome burns, and in the corridors of power in Washington and on the stump, there is only politics, showbiz, and brinkmanship.

dfrancis@nationalpost.com

Henry said...

The rain is not the friend of the stool.

reader_iam said...

How about a "presidential deaths" tag? And if you listed each of the eight presidents who died in office, you could also have Zachary Taylor, James A. Garfield, William McKinley and Warren G. Harding. (I'm assuming--though I have not checked--that you already have tags for Abraham Lincoln, FDR and JFK.)

chuck b. said...

He should have commanded the rain to stop. Duh!

reader_iam said...

That should be "presidential deaths in office," of course.

Zachary Paul Sire said...

Obama noticed his running mate’s stool close to the edge of the slippery stage.

First he's a gaffe machine, now he's defecating in public...what a mess.

Freeman Hunt said...

Are modern people seriously worried about being caught in the rain? Seriously? It would never occur to me to worry about that.

Are we going to start worrying about things like pestilential air now?

Where's Sir Archy?

bearbee said...

I notice he does this shirt sleeve rollup thing to appear as a man of action.

I noticed one campaign event where he was videoed doing the shirtsleeve-rollup-running-up-the-stairs- leading-to-the-platform thing. I'm assuming it's intended to contrast his youth and energy with his aging and arthritic opponent.

erniecu73 said...

Freeman Hunt said...
[...]

Are we going to start worrying about things like pestilential air now?

[...]

12:08 PM


Maybe we should because...

Zachary Paul Sire said...
Obama noticed his running mate’s stool close to the edge of the slippery stage.

First he's a gaffe machine, now he's defecating in public...what a mess.

12:06 PM

Ron said...

What, he thinks he's Thor now? Be careful of what lightening you think you command!

The William Henry Harrison tag can be use for anyone who dies quickly...or maybe we can mutate it for quickie weddings as well!

Doyle said...

Freeman -

I think that could be called "descriptive writing" rather than Obama love. Most people who get soaked by the rain aren't shooting music videos, and tend to be unhappy about it.

Simon said...

Diane Francis' column, linked by Cedarford, is going to be entered into the record as exhibit 'B' - just behind Larry Sabato's book - as to why those who would make it easier to amend the constitution must be resisted. Make it easier to amend, and it will be amended, usually precipitously, and usually with poor results. There is nothing wrong with the underlying system, and a system that resists the wanton tinkering of rationalists who each think themselves able to "improve" the system has advantages.

reader_iam said...

I'm still chuckling over the "astute students of history" bit. By Jove, these clowns are too clever by half!

***

By the way, a big "ugh" to this: "I know some of you got a little damp," Obama told the audience gathered in the school quad. "I’d like to cover everybody’s dry cleaning bill here tonight, but I can’t because I got to use it on the campaign, so consider it one more modest contribution to our efforts to change the country."

Lawgiver said...

It is a cool picture. It makes him look commander-in-chiefish. It will play well in Hufflandia.

Trooper York said...

"Obama noticed his running mate’s stool close to the edge of the slippery stage"

First sighting of a pinched loaf since Titus left.

Trevor Jackson said...

Simon, agreed. This:

"The House of Representative seats are up for grabs every two years as is one-third of the Senate."

Is a major feature, not a bug. It's not the fact that Reps are constantly running, it's the financial costs of doing so that corrupts the system.

I've been thinking about congressional term limits a lot lately.

Bob said...

Thank God Obama was there because Joe's not really an adult. Because even in his 60's, Joe can't be trusted to understand the danger. So the nanny state strikes because, well, Obama knows best. Now just give him the economy and he will guide you to salvation....

Rich B said...

I guess he's feeling comfortable enough to revert to his messianic persona.

For the little people.

Windbag said...

Was the stage slippery before or after Biden's stool made its appearance?

Palladian said...

Seriously, we have to remain vigilant and not allow the Cedarfords of the country to get their claws anywhere near the Constitution. They can smell a wounded animal. That's when they pounce. You think Obama and the lefties are bad for the country? Wait till they team up with the Cedarfords.

John K. said...

William Henry Harrison was our greatest President.

ricpic said...

The rain is not the friend of the stool.

I don't think that I can take it
Cause it took so long to make it
And I'll never have that excrement again...
Oh no, Oh-h no-o.

Palladian said...

Jesus, what would he do if his teleprompters short-circuited in the rain?

erniecu73 said...

Palladian said...
Seriously, we have to remain vigilant and not allow the Cedarfords of the country to get their claws anywhere near the Constitution. They can smell a wounded animal. That's when they pounce. You think Obama and the lefties are bad for the country? Wait till they team up with the Cedarfords.

12:33 PM


You may say this jokingly, but I wholeheartedly agree. They will eventually team up because they have more in common than anyone cares to point out.

Sloanasaurus said...

Obama and Democrats are responsible for this crisis in their resistance to reform fannie mae.

The education of the American voter on this fact will begin the moment this "rescue" legislation passes.

erniecu73 said...


Palladian said...
Jesus, what would he do if his teleprompters short-circuited in the rain?

12:34 PM


Uh...uh...uh...uh...uh...uh...uh...

Palladian said...

"You may say this jokingly, but I wholeheartedly agree. They will eventually team up because they have more in common than anyone cares to point out."

Of course. Space is curved. If you walk far enough to the left you end up on the right.

Windbag said...

William Henry Harrison was our greatest President.

Okay, it's on now. James Knox Polk was the greatest ever.

MadisonMan said...

Rain temperatures in late September are far warmer than in late March. Invoking the ghost of Tippecanoe reveals only meteorological ignorance.

Joe said...

Cedarbamas?

Joe said...

I think Obama is telling the rain storm which direction to go.

LarsPorsena said...

If they could airbrush his teleprompters out of the scene, he has an Old Testament prophet look.

Trevor Jackson said...

McCain would have suspended his campaign to go yell at some clouds.

Palladian said...

"Okay, it's on now. James Knox Polk was the greatest ever."

You want to play that game? James Buchanan was the greatest ever! Why? Well he was the only President from my home state of Pennsylvania, he sort of allowed the Civil War to happen, which eventually led to the end of slavery, he might possibly have been a homosexual and Andrew Jackson called him "Aunt Fancy".

Palladian said...

"he has an Old Testament prophet look."

Um, no he doesn't. Old Testament prophets had beards and wore robes. Even if Obama is an Old Testament prophet, he can't grow a beard and wear a robe because enough people already think he's a Muslim.

Palladian said...

And Old Testament prophets didn't use teleprompters. They got their talking points from burning bushes. And Obama ain't gonna listen to no Bush, burning or otherwise.

Chet said...

September in the Rain

reader_iam said...

Windbag, you asked for it.

rhhardin said...

Thurber has many amusing Polk anecdotes.

The only one you hear of is his wife's remark at the inaugural,

Bystander: Madam, you have a very genteel assemblage tonight.

Mrs. Polk: Sir, I have never seen it otherwise.

Thurber however has supplied

Job Applicant: First they tell me to see Gideon Pillow [Polk's right hand man], and then they tell me to see you. I don't know where to go.

Polk: Ah, shunted from Pillow to Polk.

A few more anecdotes will get Polk up there with Cal Coolidge at a minimum.

``Something about Polk'' in _Let Your Mind Alone! and Other More or Less Inspirational Pieces_, a very nice self-improvement collection.

bjm said...

bearbee:

Some of us have seen this image before; RFK created the iconic rolled up sleeves campaign image. RFK allowed his cufflinks to be caged as he worked the crowds hand-to-hand and then he'd roll up his sleeves.

It worked well to connect Kennedy to young and working class voters in a more formal buttoned-down era.

The media of course knows the image well so it's no surprise they would lap it up.

reader_iam said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
reader_iam said...

By the way, speaking of history even if off-topic, has anyone else been watching the value of their pension plans and investments take a plunge during the House vote and on its speculated result? I'd toss out a figure just on one stock alone (one having NOTHING to do with the relevant sectors, I hasten to say), but it's heart-stopping enough without putting it in writing.

OUCH!

Palladian said...

"A few more anecdotes will get Polk up there with Cal Coolidge at a minimum."

Calvin Coolidge was the first President to appear in a film with sound. Cal wouldn't stand a chance with the soap opera demographic.

Palladian said...

"has anyone else been watching the value of their pension plans and investments take a plunge during the House vote and on its speculated result?"

SIGH. Yes. I've lost 30,000 dollars in value in the last week.

bjm said...

Chet: Great quip!

btw-which is your favorite; the classic styling of Diana Washington or Dakota Stanton or the recent Nora Jones version?

erniecu73 said...

Who did have the shortest presidency of all?

Concerned Citizen said...

Generalized Panic Mode

Remain calm.

Trooper York said...

James Madison had the shorest Presidency of all as he only stood 4 feet 8 inches tall in his black shoes with the shiny square buckles on them.

HBO is planning a minnie series with Vern Troyer playing Madison and Katy Segal playing Dolly.

Palladian said...

William Henry Harrison, if you mean length of term, at 32 days. James Madison, if you mean height, at 5'4". If you mean short in another way, that can only be speculation, but I'd nominate James Buchanan for that honor if I had to choose. Aunt Fancy indeed.

Concerned Citizen said...

Heather Locklear was arrested but has been released on bail.

Remain calm. We will weather this storm.

Breaking news.

erniecu73 said...

Palladian said...
William Henry Harrison, if you mean length of term, at 32 days. 1:16 PM


He's the greatest then.

Palladian said...
James Madison, if you mean height, at 5'4". If you mean short in another way, that can only be speculation, but I'd nominate James Buchanan for that honor if I had to choose. Aunt Fancy indeed.

1:16 PM


Oui, ma tante ;)

Theo Boehm said...

Yes, reader, but so far it's not as bad as the last crash, when I lost $79,000 in the value of my 401K. I've gotten about half of it back since.

I'm told I'll do fine, though, over the long run. Give it 20 years, and I will have made 7 to 9%..

I shall, of course, be dead, to be replaced by the next suck...er...investor.

The amount of money I've lost on my 401K in the past 15 years is about equal to the house's take in blackjack. At least playing blackjack, I'd have a CHANCE to make something back.

My wife and I are buying a new mattress soon. I wonder if I can get one with a pocket.

AllenS said...

Obama is pointing to the sky to get the clouds to part just like Moses did with the Red Sea. Then a bolt of lightening cracked across the sky and Joe Biden hid under his stool.

Trooper York said...

As I told a reporter for the New York Daily News last week there is a place to put you money that is much better than mutual funds, real estate or under the mattress. That is in high end woman's clothing that is avialable at Lee Lee's Valise. We have our Anna Scholz fall collection in the stoe and it would be a great move for the canny investor. Invest in a great garment for your wife or mother and she will be a lot happier than any shares of WaMu or AIG you might have laying around.

AllenS said...

Theo--

Buy a big bra from Trooper and keep your money in it.

Larry said...

Which is the important one--the blue one on the left (probably--makes sense -- blue -- left -- or the other one?

And who is the guy in the middle without tghe sense to come in out of the rain?

ricpic said...

James Madison was a giant in the brains department.

Trooper York said...

Madison also reportedly had the largest penis of all the Presidents. It was the result of an unfortunate curse put upon him when he was the envoy to the Barbary Pirates. A withered old crone said that his penis would grow every time someone sucked on it but for every inch he gained in his penis he would lose an inch of height. So he had to pick his spots.

Although he had withered to 4 four feet 2 inches at his death his penis was reportedly 98 inches long.

Trooper York said...

Although James Madison had the largest penis, it is generally accepted that Richard Nixon was the biggest dick.

Palladian said...

Joey Heatherton made her money in mattresses.

Trooper York said...

Hey no fair. How can I whack it when I am worried about my 401K.

Chip Ahoy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chip Ahoy said...

I saw Eurymthics at Red Rocks. Immediately before they came on it began to rain. The air is so dry, evening showers rarely last long. Now, you'd think Lennox would have had the wit to re-arrange her set to begin with Here Comes the Rain Again, but no, she wasn't that clever and so she missed a chance to have the whole place cheer her good humor.

blake said...

I'd toss out a figure just on one stock alone (one having NOTHING to do with the relevant sectors, I hasten to say), but it's heart-stopping enough without putting it in writing.

So...now's the time to buy?

Simon said...

Trevor Jackson said...
"I've been thinking about congressional term limits a lot lately."

I go back and forth on this. I think that term limits have some problems, but the trade off just about makes it worth it, so long as the model is that you can serve X years contiguously, or you can serve up to Y years out of Z years, rather than an outright prohibition. You want to leave open the possibility that the people can choose to send back someone who is genuinely really good, while defeating the advantages of incumbency. I would apply this to the Senate as well, even though I want to go back to indirect election whereafter the problem is likely to be somewhat less acute.

Of course, the difficulty is, how do you get Congress to go along with it? The 17th Amendment was forced when the Senate was presented by the nightmare scenario of nearly enough states applying to call a convention to push that amendment through, but I don't believe in playing chicken. Don't count on self-interested legislators to flinch.

Brad V said...

Zachary Taylor's death was arguably weather-related, too - too much summer heat. Mixed with a full black suit. And gorging on iced cherries and milk.

Old Rough and Ready. Sounds like a perfect Althousian tag.

Trevor Jackson said...

What if only one of the two senate seats in each state were term-limited? During a primary for the unlimited-term senate seat, the senator who occupied the term-limited seat could also run for the nomination.

Simon said...

Trevor - I think that it's the House that's in more desperate need than the Senate. The problem in the House is that you have the problems of unlimited incumbency amplified with the problem of redistricting. In the Senate, you're stuck with a statewide electorate. If redistricting could be dealt with, term limits would be less important, and redistricting seems institutionally more simple to put into effect.

My position is to favor a return to selection of the Senate by state legislators and to impose a rule that no federal legislator shall serve more than twelve consecutive years in any fourteen.

Michael said...

Trooper York said..."Hey no fair. How can I whack it when I am worried about my 401K."

Relax.

According to Jim you're 401K isn't even affected by the current economic crisis.

jdeeripper said...

Why is it that a white shirt over black pants is appropriate but a black shirt over white pants isn't?

For some reason lighter pants convey about as much authority as short pants on men.

Windbag said...

reader iam, I'll try to respond to that video, but there's something in my eye and I can't see to type very well.

Four goals, he achieved them all, refused to run for a second term, and dropped dead from exhaustion weeks after leaving the office. What a hero.

jeff said...

Nice picture. Clearly he is calling his shot. So did he hit it over the wall? Was little Billy in the hospital granted his promised home run? The article doesn't say.

Speaking of James Buchanan, one of my ancestors was his "Miss Nancy". Speaking of short, William Rufus deVane King (miss nancy) the shortest serving VP who didn't move up to be president. He did our family proud.

I have ridden my bike in the rain while only wearing a t-shirt and a pair of jeans. I await my coronation.

jeff said...

"Now, you'd think Lennox would have had the wit to re-arrange her set to begin with Here Comes the Rain Again, but no, she wasn't that clever and so she missed a chance to have the whole place cheer her good humor."

I saw the Flaming Lips and Ween at red rock. Had it started to rain, I doubt if it could have made it thru the marijuana smoke. However, the audience was already well stocked up in good humor. As was both bands.