January 3, 2010

"Damn, Obama looks like James Bond in this picture."

Says a commenter at the White House Flickr site. Is that what you see? Keep in mind that this is a picture the WH selected and had to have thought flattered the President and furthered his interests:



People who like Obama are blinded to the way other people see him. This picture strongly says cool to people who love him, but it doesn't read that way to others... including the many, many people who don't even want a cool President.

Photo via Instapundit, who has a closeup of the facial expression. The main thing I see when I look at that face is: He's tired.

Wouldn't it be funny, Barack, if, after all of this, you wake up one morning, and you think: I hate my job?

What's he thinking now? Oh, my God, I'm only one-quarter through this thing. And they're going to expect me to campaign again too? Bleh!

Prediction (longshot): Obama will not run for reelection. How can he do it? He can be all...
... I should not permit the Presidency to become involved in the partisan divisions that are developing... With America's sons in the fields far away, with America's future under challenge right here at home, with our hopes and the world's hopes for peace in the balance every day, I do not believe that I should devote an hour or a day of my time to any personal partisan causes or to any duties other than the awesome duties of this office — the Presidency of your country. Accordingly, I shall not seek, and I will not accept, the nomination of my party for another term as your President.
It can happen. It's happened. The man is tired and it's a way to get above it all. And that's the other thing I see in that face: He's tired and he's floating above it all.

235 comments:

1 – 200 of 235   Newer›   Newest»
AllenS said...

That's facial expression that any common man would have, when talking to Joe Biden.

ricpic said...

The closed eyes indicate that he is barely tolerating Biden, IMO.

The Crack Emcee said...

I see a man putting on an act that's only convincing if you're determined.

technogypsy said...

Actually I see arrogance in its pure form. Reminds me of talking to CEOs and Brits.

bearbee said...

His standard king-of-the-world- disapproving-pursed-lips stance.

Thought balloon: I'm so tired... Joe can I use your stomach for a pillow?

Is that the Dog's Playing Poker pic on the wall?

Lindsey said...

James Bond would never sport a crooked bowtie.

AJ Lynch said...

Peter principle squared.

former law student said...

These are called les yeux en coulisse, the epitome of coolness, typically seen on Robert Mitchum's face. But the good professor can see only tiredness. I fear she has never met a really charming man.

Further, I wonder how she thinks the elderly assassination attempt victim had the strength to run for a second term in 1984 -- a total replacement of his blood, perhaps? Did he spend his off-camera time in a hyperbaric chamber?

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Obama will run again. Campaigning is the only thing he likes about the job. Campaigning is so much more fun than actually having to lead.

Ricardo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
lucid said...

I see the tiredness, but I also see disdain and contempt, with barely an attempt to conceal the feelings, like he thinks Biden won't notice what he's feeling.

Feelings of arrogance and contempt have always been problems for Obama.

I think that disdain and contempt are emotions that Obama often feels toward those who are simultaneously different form him and below him. Remember the blue-collar voters who "cling to guns and religion"?

If you are not different from him, but are below him, then you are safe from his disdain. If you are different from him, but not below him, then you are safe from his disdain.

But if you are both different and below him (think his attitude toward Hillary or McCain or Republican congressmen and senators), then his disdain and arrogance assert themselves in their full repugnant state.

This is one of the reasons he is so divisive. He feels comtempt for those who disagree with him.

Roger J. said...

He wont run again? Of course he will. LBJ had a clue--not BHO--although in fairness you did say longshot

That sad thing will be that if this presidency fails it will set race relations back in the US 50 years--

At this point Al Sharpton might have been a better choice for our first (half) black president.

Ricardo said...

I think the theme today is "inappropriate". Laughing is an inappropriate response to someone getting their balls stuck (smirking, maybe). SoCo is an inappropriate way to refer to South Austin, which, as anyone knows, begins at Town Lake (which is the appropriate way to refer to the inappropriate Lady Bird Lake) and moves South. Beer commercials are just generally inappropriate because they're designed to encourage drinking in those who might otherwise not do it (or as much), and constantly mocking the President, regardless of what he says or does, is just a way of taking inappropriate cheap shots, just because you can, although I agree that his stance and facial expression are also inappropriate. And, by the way, run-on sentences are also inappropriate.

Opus One Media said...

I think he looks like Jack Benny.

edutcher said...

Bambi is saying, "I'm so cool and wonderful, those peasants should just give in to my natural superiority and fall down in worship. Don't you think so, Joe?"

Biden, "Whatever, Barry. All I know is, whenever it is I go back to Wilmington, I get just as many goodies as you, and nobody blames me for anything. And you're stuck with Michelle."

SMGalbraith said...

It's not really the face - we know that bad light, et cetera can distort it - it's the crossed arms and leg that jumps out to me.

"What now, Joe?" is all over the photo. Complete lack of respect for Biden.

bbudd said...

Jack Benny? Louis Farrakhan. Sorry, but that guy ruined bow ties for African Americans.

danielle said...

Ann, i watched your clip on what you might ask Obama just before inauguration, late at night and over wine ..... the answer you suggest about 'having gotten there but not really wanting to do the job' reminded me of no one else but Sarah Palin. With Ms. Palin, we even have an example of her quitting her job and then going on a book tour.

I hope you are as critical of Ms. Palin if she does indeed run again.

Obama does look he could be bit tired in this picture. But did the shot catch him with his eyes closed ? Who knows what his schedule was that day -- maybe he was in fact tired.

But are you suggesting that he is chronically tired ? Are you combing over all the pics of him ... maybe starting with the ones not on the flickr stream since you are suspicious of the ones released by his office? Or are you just choosing pics that support your theory and excluding other pictures ?

former law student said...

Exactly like Jack Benny: exhausted, arrogant, disdainful, contemptuous of every American. Once again the Althouse commentariat demonstrate their perspicacity:

http://www.tvcrazy.net/tvclassics/wallpaper/oldshows/jack-benny/tv-guide.jpg

Beta Conservative said...

He looks like he ate too much "For the first time in my adult life I'm proud of my country fried steak", sure to be featured on tonight's Iron Chef.

Carbs and fat = yummy, but also sleepy.

MayBee said...

James Bond would never sport a crooked bowtie.

My thought exactly.
He's against the wall, but he's leaning as far back from Biden as possible. Arms crossed. Legs crossed. Head tilted so he looks down on Biden.

I don't think Obama much likes governing, but I think he loves being President. Loves the life of it. He's living larger in the office than any other President I recall.

Almost Ali said...

Joe: "So, who's this Langston Hughes character Michelle's always yakking about?"

traditionalguy said...

He does look like a British snob ruling in her Majesty's crown colony of Kenya. How will you keep them down in American Tradition of a free republic once the ruling class has seen how it was done from The Empire's Capital in London?

Ron said...

Hillary is Moneypenny! That explains a lot...

Plus, even at the end, Desmond Llewelyn looked younger than Biden in this picture.

EDH said...

I still think that is what is meant by the idiom "looking down your nose," in this case at Biden.

surennap said...

I vote for the won't run idea. Two reasons: 1. Cash. The president can become very rich, very quickly once he leaves office, plus he won't have to work as hard at a job that he hates.
2. The fact that he could run again, someday, would give him much more standing than other former presidents.-He can always come back and run again.

This is actually dbp but am using my daughter's notebook at the moment and didn't want to bother signing out and then back in.

wind.rider said...

Looks like a cross between disdain and a manifestation of pain at having to actually interact with SloJo.

Maybe he does look tired - being daPrez is haaaaard!

Wonder if the line of thought on selecting the photo for dissemination is something along the lines of making him appear 'serious' or 'grown up', only with slicker, PC-PR appropriate terminology.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

The facial expressions read "boredom, arrogance, condenscention"

The body language is "closed and tired".

What I see is a person who doesn't want to be where he is, resentful, bored and thinks he is above the whole thing.

Of course, I could be wrong and reading my own biases into the photo since

1. I would probably feel some of those things, especially the tiredness and boredom of having to talk to Biden

and

2. I can't stand Obama as a person or any of his policies.

From Althouse's keyboard to God's flat screen terminal.....Don't let Obama run again.

bagoh20 said...

Ann's points are that: 1) different persuasions see the same Obama differently, and 2)He's tired and not enjoying it.

Both are pretty obviously true, but apparently anything is arguable.

I think he will have to run again, but he will not want to. Who would? What is there to do now? He did all he can; he got elected. What does a narcissist do after being elected President of the U.S.? The love don't get no bigger and that's all he ever wanted.

Jason said...

Obama has a nasty habit of turning up his nose at people and looking down at them. I see it in pictures all the time. Hell, his own people seem to love that look. They make posters out of those shots! It's a dissmissive gesture, and it's the body language one would expect from an arrogant asshole.

The fact the White House staff keeps picking these pictures surprises me. Unless he's like that ALL THE TIME, in which case, these are the only photos they have available.

Funny how he does bow down like a boot-licking-servile lackey to foreign despots, but Joe Biden gets the 'kiss-my-ring' treatment.

WV: shist. Present participle, third-person conjugal form of "shat"

nate255 said...

He looks like a French waiter who just brought over the wine and Biden is telling him he didn't bring it fast enough and he forgot the ice.

nate255 said...

He looks like a French waiter that just brought over the wine. Biden is telling him he didn't bring it fast enough and he forgot the ice.

Paul said...

If he becomes unpopular enough he won't even finish the first four years.

The only thing that holds any value for such an extreme narcissist is his self image, which is entirely predicated on acceptance or rejection of the onlooker.

I've said it before, his eyes are dead. He has no inner life. No interests except the insatiable need to be worshiped.

I can't think of another instance of such a cult of personality where the object of said cult has no personality.

Sarah Palin's eyes by comparison are brimming with life, feeling, and energy. That comes from being engaged with and stimulated by the outside world.

Obama is tired from the Sisyphean task of ceaselessly trying to pawn himself off as a great man while in his core he knows he is an empty shell.

It would merely be pathetic if he wasn't the President of the most powerful nation in history at a time when the next few years will most likely determine the fate of America, and thus, civilization.

Donald Douglas said...

American Power tracked-back with, 'From the White House Flickr Page...'.

Irene said...

The first thing I see is indifference.

The publication of this photo is another illustration of the administration's mismanagement of the messsage.

Jason (the commenter) said...

The one problem with the speech Althouse has picked out for Obama is that it doesn't make any reference to George Bush.

Beth said...

Obama shouldn't run again because we're at war, but Althouse's rationale for voting for Bush in 2004 was that we were at war.

Jesus.

Beth said...

Of course, I could be wrong and reading my own biases into the photo

This thread is a projection of the desires of its commenters, and only DBQ has admitted it.

lohwoman said...

Biden is staring at that tie.

WV: eysophop

Stan said...

Disdain, arrogance, contempt ... whatever it is, it ain't pretty

William said...

Joe is bragging about his regularity and telling Obama that the secret is large doses of metumucil. This is not the first time that Joe has confided this secret to Obama, and it will not be the last. Is it any wonder Obama looks tired, aloof, and faintly amused? Can any here who are so quick to judge claim that they would behave better?

Moose said...

Ann is right it the fact that he looks tired. That tiredness - "this isn't fun anymore" is breaking down his public image of the man who listens to all viewpoints and takes all view into consideration. Given that that image was manufactured in the first place, what is starting to emerge is what is probably his true personality - that of a ego driven intellectual. One that is fairly intolerant of dissenting opinons. This will probably start giving way to semi-fits of public pique when the populace and press fail to see how *hard* the job is, and how *hard* he is working at it.

It'll be good for Drudge...

former law student said...

This thread is a projection of the desires of its commenters

Beth clearly does not realize disdain and contempt when she sees it, as in the Jack Benny pic. Decades of pretending to be a nice, sweet man led to inevitable cracks in his facade.

The red eyes of kids in a lot of the family pics we have prove they are possessed by Satan, by the way.

Bruce Hayden said...

Ricardo

SoCo is an inappropriate way to refer to South Austin, which, as anyone knows, begins at Town Lake (which is the appropriate way to refer to the inappropriate Lady Bird Lake) and moves South.

Spent 5 years there, but only knew it as "bubba land" and don't remember SoCo. Is that new? Or just something that we missed being transplants? Brother lived there for 20, right across the Hays county line, finally moving to NY state this year.

Worked at One Texas Center, which had been built on top of what was the Armadillo World Headquarters, located just south of the lake west of Congress (pretty close to that park). The city ended up buying the building, evicting us, and our group of IP attorneys moved to a large facility our company had built up north right after I had left. I lived a couple of miles south of the lake, and was happy I didn't have to drive across it every day on the way to work.

Brings back some memories. Austin is a great place to live - if you don't mind the humidity and that it is (kinda) in Texas.

rhhardin said...

Imus did a bumper of LBJ's speech combined with Dylan's Baby Blue, at 22:06-23:16 of this real audio collection.

(A collection of existing compressed .wav Imus cuts into a single real audio file in May 1998, when the compressed format was going obsolete. Sorted by increasing length of cut.)

A nice Goldwater cut at 26:30.

Big Mike said...

I see the tiredness that others do, but the main thing that comes across to me is contempt for the person speaking to him -- Joe Biden.

Anybody can get tired, I wouldn't hold that against any President. What strikes me most forcibly is that this picture got posted on the White House Flickr site. Barack Obama needs some staff who can put themselves into the position of a normal American, and if they did so they'd realize that this is a really bad picture to post, for the following reasons:

It projects contempt towards Biden. The White House story line was that Biden is part of the team, that he brings gravitas and foreign policy experience to the executive team. Now we see that what Obama really feels towards Biden is contempt. So much for the team.

It projects tiredness. A president can get tired -- is bound to get tired. But you don't expose that to the world, and least of all to the American people.

His bow tie is crooked. They should have photoshopped it to make it straight.

Julius Ray Hoffman said...

I've been thinking the same thing, Ann-- about Obama not running for a second term. There seems to be a good possibility that he'll depart the stage and crown Hillary his successor. You might want to watch Hillary in the future for clues. You can always count on a Clinton to smell political opportunity and move to take advantage of it while everyone else is still clueless.

Paul Zrimsek said...

Nothing peculiar to Obama; that job wears everybody out.

J said...

Joe, don't ever ask me about my business.

Harry Mellon said...

"Damn, Obama looks like Benson in this picture."

newscaper said...

Regarding....

"That sad thing will be that if this presidency fails it will set race relations back in the US 50 years--

At this point Al Sharpton might have been a better choice for our first (half) black president."

I think the odds are actually quite good that, if Obama really implodes, we'll see the resurrection of the "He's not really 'black' like us" complaint of the early campaign form the Sharptons, Jacksons et.

Funny/sad thing is that its actually literally true: Obama is neither descended from former slaves nor had the life experience of growing up 'black' in the US.

His appeal to the african-american 'community' is literally skin deep, as a half-distant african cousin who is essentially some hybrid white liberal steeped in the 3rd world.

It would be fully understandable, in human terms, for blacks to have voted en masse for a pres candidate with a life story similar to, say, Clarence Thomas's -- hometown boy does good is a powerful thing.

In this case Obama parachuted in, and with a little protective coloration from Rev. Wright, snookered 'em all.

Peano said...

Woman: "I sense great vulnerability."

Man: "I see a parasite, a sexually depraved miscreant."

Woman: "His struggle is man's struggle."

Man: "He is a loathsome, offensive brute -- yet I can't look away."

Woman: "He transcends time and space."

Man: "He sickens me."

Woman: "I love it!"

Man: "I love it, too!"

Der Hahn said...

He'll run again.

I think the evidence is pretty strong that he likes campaigning (organizing). He does it as often as he can even now. The prospect will re-energize him.

He's already got the 'first black elected president' line on his CV, but when he gets to 2011 he's going to not going to want to leave 'first black president re-elected' out there for someone else to grab.

Plus it's likely that GOP control of Congress is gonna save his skinny ass politically, and make it a lot harder for the GOP nominee in 2012.

vw - studders .. are for holding up wallers.

Der Hahn said...

he's not going to want to leave 'first black president re-elected'

Scott M said...

After reading Ann's comments regarding Obama's not seeking a second term, all I could think about was Shannon Faulkner. Remember the young woman that sued to be admitted as the first female cadet at the Citadel, only to quit almost as soon as she got there?

I know a great many of the black people I know are severely disappointed in Obama for a variety of reasons. I do think, however, that they would find it hard to forgive him for not running for a second term.

Personally, I want to see him run and get trounced. Something along the lines of a Reagan vs. Carter margin would be nice.

Ricardo said...

Bruce

I agree with you. Austin is a delightful place, although it's growing by leaps and bounds, and some would say that it's growing too much. It's no longer the sleepy little college town mentioned in the New Yorker article on the other thread. What is surprising, to me and many others, is that Austin is able to retain its Austin-ness (some would say "weirdness) even as it climbs past a metro population of one million, toward the two million mark. It truly is a unique city, with phenomenal amenities. And it's one of my favorite cities.

Of course, Dillon, on the other hand, is one of my favorite small places. I've spent a lot of time there, and in Frisco, walking along the shores of the reservoir, or looking up at the mountains.

Oh, and I don't know anyone who calls it SoCo. Occasionally, South Congress. More usually, just South Austin.

Scott M said...

The red eyes of kids in a lot of the family pics we have prove they are possessed by Satan, by the way.

This certainly applies to the two-year-old. We refer to her as "the opposition".

Der Hahn said...

Big Mike - that's what caught my eye about this photo when I saw it on Instapundit, along with the similar photos Ann has posted for comment.

These aren't coming from Drudge or some GOP site.

Somebody actually thinks these photos make Obama look good.

newscaper said...

Julius R H:
"There seems to be a good possibility that he'll depart the stage and crown Hillary his successor. You might want to watch Hillary in the future for clues."


I dunno about the Hillary part. I think she is damaged goods now -- clearly she's been castrated as Secretary of State, and has just as clearly revealed herself to *not* be 'the world's smartest woman' she was built up to be when she's actually had something to do.
So much for that 3am call.

She would have been better positioned at this point as the 2012 rescuer if she had stayed out of the administration, and stayed in the Senate and tried to exploit the post-ted Kennedy vacuum.

OTOH she may have calculated that she had to put some skin in the game.

Long ago when before the conventions when other repubs were too caught up in their Hillary loathing to take a hard look at Obama, i'd felt that if we had to have a Dem I'd prefer Hillary to O. Despite her resume not being quite what it was cracked up to be, she did at least have some genuine toughness, and although her temperament is left of Bill's, she's still a triangulating Clinton we could probably make some deals with. plus there was the added bonus we knew where she was coming from (unlike all the Obama obfuscation) and could be openly opposed without accusation of racism, which is exactly what we have seen. Of course pointing out that likelihood in itself got me called a racist :)

When others were going on abotu Obama being an emoty suit, i was more concerned that he was a leftist true believer and being deceptive.

I think I batted a thousand.

Michael said...

Of course he's tired. He has a real job for the first time in his life.

edutcher said...

Julius Ray Hoffman said...

I've been thinking the same thing, Ann-- about Obama not running for a second term. There seems to be a good possibility that he'll depart the stage and crown Hillary his successor. You might want to watch Hillary in the future for clues. You can always count on a Clinton to smell political opportunity and move to take advantage of it while everyone else is still clueless.


Julius, you have an evil mind - I like that in someone.

Your scenario depends a lot on how much he dislikes Hillary or, more to the point, wants to get back at Willie for showing his racism during the primaries. In both cases, I'd say a lot.

There's also how much he feels like doing the Adolf thing (I was too good for them, they don't deserve to survive) to the Democrat Party for letting him down and not passing immediately all his cool initiatives. Handing the Hildabeast the baton in '12 after the shellacking the Demos will take for the Pelosi-Harry Congress may hand the Republicans a permanent majority for 50 years.

fls, dtl, Montagne, victoria exploding in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1...

Jim said...

I think Obama's thinking: "Hey 'Plugs'! Take off them Air Force gloves."

traditionalguy said...

This photo reminds me that the rivalry between the British Empire and a King of Kenya goes on, with Obama openly despising the British government. The USA is only a colonial experiment gone wild in this game that has become useful to King Obama until he takes over the World Governance from the EU elites. That is Obama's purpose in life. He thinks that Biden is a clown, but a useful one for a comparison of Biden the Clown with Obama the true aristocrat.

Charlie said...

I think most commenters on the Obama mien in this pic are forgetting the essential narcissism of the man (that is an "I have found you so lacking and yet here you remain" look).

I'd love to hear a psychologist comment on what happens when narcissism on this scale obtains the status desired and then receives a steady stream of dissonant feedback. I'm guessing it'll be worse than not running for a second term; it'll be a meltdown during the first.

kathleen said...

he thinks we think he's so enlightened and so zen he's not even capable of feeling the snottiness and contempt that would be indicated by that expression on a normal plebe's face.

Sara (Pal2Pal) said...

I see an arrogant, defiant teenager getting dressed down by his patient Ozzie Nelson-type Dad. Dad is saying, "Now son, these are our friends and my valued business colleagues at the club dance tonight, don't embarrass your mother and me. Remember your manners. Now come here so I can straighten your tie."

PatCA said...

The presidency is definitely not his arena. All those pesky millions of voters passing judgment on him! The nerve.

He would be much more comfortable at the UN or some cash-rich NGO.

OSweet said...

Tired, yes, and sick of this guy's shit.
Because this guy recently implied, in his low-down sneaky way (like saying he was just offering constructive criticism or some shit), that he's somehow smarter, or better, than me.

Albert said...

Obama won't run because he won't win the Democrat nomination.

Once Obama's positives head into the 30s, Hillary will resign and fire up her campaign.

mrkwong said...

It's astounding that Obama's bunch would post this picture. They're not known for their 'warts and all' approach.

He's tired and Biden's probably fourteen minutes into a thirty-second conversation. "Not now, Joe, I need to concentrate on holding this wall up."

This shot could hardly be less flattering if he had his index finger buried up his left nostril to the second knuckle.

bagoh20 said...

Obama's watch says 8:42pm.

cf said...

I agree with you, Ann, that there is every possibility Obama will choose not to run again. I said so to my astonished husband a couple of weeks ago, and we laughed and agreed that if true, he heard it from me first!

He will couch it in righteous oratory, but really it will be about "Been There, Done That". It will free Obama to pursue the title "King of the World", followed a few years later by "Emporer of the Cosmos".

former law student said...

He will couch it in righteous oratory, but really it will be about "Been There, Done That". It will free Obama to pursue the title "King of the World", followed a few years later by "Emporer of the Cosmos".

Ah, "Obama is like Palin."

Fred4Pres said...

James Bond? Sure, I guess. But he is not pulling it off is he?

Of course Charles Johnson is basically calling Glenn Reynolds a racist apologist for not condemning this demeaning photoshop as racist.

Is it really racist, or just insulting? Are we allowed to mock Obama without being called racists, because blacks were limited to subservient roles in the past? It is not terribly funny, but does anyone really think Obama is going to be shining Sarah Palin's shoes anytime soon?

OhioAnne said...

When I look at the picture, I see Obama thinking ... "Everybody was right. Picking Biden for VP was a dumbass idea on my part. Can you get rid of the VP before the end of the first term?"

From the "what if" department:

Imagine if Hillary had stayed in the Senate and pretty much followed the path she had been on there up to the 2008 election.

Would she have challenged THIS sitting president in 2012?

jr565 said...

I don't think of Bond so much as Bonds drink. He's shaken, but not stirred.
Aloof, cold. Plus he has that contemptuous looking down his nose look I see so often. If I didn't know better I'd think he was directing his gaze at Joe Biden and registering his contempt for him.
But then again, that's how he looks at most people, so while he may still have contempt for Joe (and who wouldn't) I think it's more that he just looks down his nose at people like the elitist he is.

naturalfake said...

What that picture tells me is:


Agent Double Naught Zero: Obama Responds To Terrorism With Make-Believe


http://naturalfake.wordpress.com/2010/01/03/agent-double-naught-zero-obama-responds-to-terrorism-with-make-believe/

Johanna Lapp said...

He looks like New York mayor David Dinkins running for re-election. Bored contempt and entitlement. It took until mid-October for reality to come crashing down.

DADvocate said...

I'm with DBQ on this one, especially the condenscention.

The facial expressions read "boredom, arrogance, condenscention"

The body language is "closed and tired".


Correct on all counts.

judith said...

I hear that a lot, but I dont think Obama's term in office will set race relations back at all. I do believe people in this country ARE post-racial and will vote for a black conservative who has demonstrated good judgment and has experience governing.

A conservative, because then we would know he wouldnt race-bait or push affirmative action or identity politics. Then we would trust him to govern for all the people.

If he was a politician with that experience, people would vote for Shelby Steele in a hot minute.

Beth said...

He should go ahead and resign now, since if he's not going to run again, he's a lame duck and what's the point of sticking to a job you're not going to keep anyway and where people are mean to you and you could be doing a book tour or something more fun?

Beth said...

Obama is like Rorschach.

judith said...

James Bond was arrogant too, so no inconsistency there. But Bond never got tired or wore a crooked necktie.

SukieTawdry said...

Tired or not, I see the trademark supercilious disdain so often on display when Obama is forced to interact with lesser beings.

Xanthippas said...

The only thing more idiotic than this completely uninformed and nonsensical speculation, is the even more uninformed and nonsensical explanations in comments that this post inspires.

Bill Peschel said...

He won't run again.

I've seen his face over and over on the AP photo feed, and I'm discovering the same pattern I found with Bush.

In Bush's case, it was difficult to find a pose that was flattering. Except when he's serious, he has a face that's naturally goofy. It's not a judgment on his character, it's just the way his face is.

With Obama, it's hard to find a pose that is not tired, disdainful or bored. Whether or not that's what he's feeling, I don't know, but it's going to affect our perception of the man.

As for this photo, it screams disdain and boredom. He's erected barriers against Biden in his crossed leg and folded arms. His narrowed eyes and lack of emotion on his face indicates no engagement with what he is hearing. It's the face of a man waiting for his moment to escape.

And speaking of which, why not? At the end of his term, he'll have more money than he'll know what to do with, a lifetime to spend in Hawaii, and endless rounds of speeches and ghost-written books.

It worked for Carter. Why not Obama?

Julius Ray Hoffman said...

B.O.: Dude, it's almost nine. You bring it?

J.B.: I couldn't... uhhh...

B.O.: Nuh...???

J.B.: Look man, it's not that easy... I can't just call up the usual contacts-- I'm well-known, man... Every fucker knows me... You on the other hand... You'd have no trouble blending into the D.C. crowd if you were to sneak out...

B.O. (exasperated): I'm the fucking President of the United States! You fucking idiot! What good are you? I shouldda...

J.B.: Oh, come on, man... don't go there... Don't mention her...

B.O.: Yeah. Well, she may be a bitch, but at least she wouldn't have a problem scoring it. Her husband's got a fucking shitload of blow in his office safe. Why do you think all those foreign heads of states donated to his fucking charity? No fucker in their right mind would do that without taking a line first...

J.B.: Ow, man, this hurts.

B.O.: Fuck you. I'm tired. I got fucking problems, you know! I don't wanna see your fat old face again until you can do your fucking job!

RebeccaH said...

Photos can lie, so I hesitate to comment on this particular one, except that Obama does look extremely tired. Also, privately, I've been wondering if he would run again in 2012, because being President obviously isn't what he thought it would be, and maybe a little part of himself realizes that he's not up to the job.

Deborah said...

The close up gives a different perspective. He doesn't look disdainful as much as he does look, as it's been said, very tired.

Claude Hopper said...

I see what I want to see in this photo. Since I don't like him and didn't vote for him, I see and pompous and obnoxious bore.

XWL said...

Because it's such a rich vein of potential comedy, I can no longer resist mining the White House photostream at Flickr.

So, I've repurposed some of those photos for a new daily feature, LOL Obama.

Purple Avenger said...

Complete lack of respect for Biden.

Well, at least THAT is sensible.

Chet said...

This is a stupid post.

"Peter principle squared."

This is an incredibly stupid comment, made possible only by someone who doesn't know what the Peter Principle actually is, unless what you meant to say was that Obama was really great as vice-president - an office he never held - but being president is just slightly beyond his capabilities.

Will said...

He does not remind me of James Bond as much as "Barry" Bonds. Here you have a guy who just a few short years ago was in the Minor Leagues of the Illinois House. Then he made the Big Leagues (US Senate) via a set of coincidences (all the favored candidates like Blair Hull imploded leaving him the last standing).

But he had a discontinuous bend in his career curve. And now that people are questioning his stats just a little bit, like Barry Bonds, wondering how a good but not great player suddenly started hitting them out of the park, he is very defensive. He has a giant giant chip on his shoulder about all his past history and what kind of performance-enhancing tradeoffs he made.

He's won a few awards he knows he does not deserve. He fears he is going to have an asterisk by his name. He is hiding parts of his past history.

Now that he's about to "break the record", we are all supposed to just shut up and worship him. But he can't completely control the media circus or the whispers and it really pisses him off. After all "I won". So forget that Acorn was injecting him in the rear.

This picture shows that chip on the shoulder but also the fear of the asterisk.

Definitely "Barry" Bonds not James Bond

caseym54 said...

Or, to paraphrase The Doctor, "Doesn't he look tired?"

John said...

Well of course he looks tired. He's exhausted thanks to republicans who are dedicated to making his job as hard as possible. Have you seen how presidents look before and after their terms? Bill Clinton had black hair in '92 and GWB looked way younger in 2000. It is an exhausting job! So by your logic, no president in the history of the united states would ever run for a second term.

M. Simon said...

Maybe This is why the job is no fun any more.

WV: tumene

master cylinder said...

I see a kick ass dude.
I love this president.

M. Simon said...

Well of course he looks tired. He's exhausted thanks to republicans who are dedicated to making his job as hard as possible.

Hmmmm. As I recall he nominally has 60 Senators and for sure a majority in the House. He doesn't need Republicans.

It is Democrats who are obstructing his vision.

WV: caniall

Matt Eckert said...

The washroom attendant should be handing him the towels not just leaning against the wall.

George said...

I wonder how she thinks the elderly assassination attempt victim had the strength to run for a second term in 1984 -- a total replacement of his blood, perhaps? Did he spend his off-camera time in a hyperbaric chamber?

Thanks for reminding us. Reagan had a pretty health lifestyle, working on his ranch so often. He was such a great president.

Did you see the article about how FDR arrogantly stayed in office as he approached death's door?


Dr. Steven Lomazow, a veteran neurologist, and I reached this conclusion -- and others about Roosevelt's health -- after a five-year investigation, the findings of which are in our new book, "FDR's Deadly Secret." How can we be certain? After all, Roosevelt's doctors always denied he had cancer, no autopsy was performed and, save for a few lab slips, FDR's medical file disappeared after his death.

Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/national/fdr_kept_deadly_disease_hidden_for_5EQDNU3uhriRo1HQRdmTrN#ixzz0ba71oUQG


He was nearly ineffective at Yalta, so Stalin took great advantage.

M. Simon said...

This is an incredibly stupid comment, made possible only by someone who doesn't know what the Peter Principle actually is, unless what you meant to say was that Obama was really great as vice-president - an office he never held - but being president is just slightly beyond his capabilities.

Are you saying that going from the Senate to President was a demotion or a lateral move?

Obama has Petered out. Just look at his approval rating: Minus fifteen. That is Below ∅.

Matt Eckert said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Matt Eckert said...

I thought the "peter" principle is when you are so stupid you make a bomb to burn your dick off?

Synova said...

He'll run again. Carter did.

I think Obama here is definitely a Rorschach test. I see the sort of "down your nose" arrogance that others see, but I can imagine that someone who likes Obama would see James Bond sophistication. If I look for "tired" I can see "tired" but I have to look.

I wonder what someone would see who didn't know who he was?

Maybe someone could ask the "Lie to Me" TV show. What does tilting the chin up like Obama does signify? We say "look down your nose at" or "look down on" and that's what a tilted up chin gets you. He's a tall guy, is it just a normal posture being photographed by shorter people all the time?

I really don't think that James Bond does that. I think he'd be more likely to tilt his forehead forward, which is a dominant posture too.

Moneyrunner said...

The White House picture that they don't want to show.

http://moneyrunner.blogspot.com/2010/01/obama-picture-that-white-house-flickr.html

somefeller said...

I see a human being who is in pretty much every conceivable way superior to most his critics. And they see that, too, which drives them up the wall. See some of the comments here.

Cedarford said...

"surennap said...
I vote for the won't run idea. Two reasons: 1. Cash. The president can become very rich, very quickly once he leaves office, plus he won't have to work as hard at a job that he hates."
----------------------

My theory us that The One will pounce if there is a path to a Supreme Court seat if Ginsberg, Stevens, or Scalia is gone. Unlimited prestige, no accountability, light hours with whole months carved out for vacations to Hawaii or anywhere else he wants on some eager NGO's tab.

He is already "rich enough", has the "cash in" power exercised by every President from Ford to Clinton. Even if he sees his Party have a bloodbath in 2010, there still will be enough of a Dem majority and enough Black Messiah worshippers left to grease the skids.

Law professor, "black", ex-President, "black", Nobel, Peace Prize winner, an inspiring minority pick, his claim to fame 1st black Editor of Harvard Law Review so good he never deigned to publish...Young enough he could be there for 30+ years...leading the nation as he wished to all along, by fiat..Since he is so above the unwashed masses except those with stamped Victimhood credentials - who he will champion..

He would be as reliable a vote for liberal Dems as Ruth Bader Ginsberg.

Opus One Media said...

former law student said...
Exactly like Jack Benny: exhausted, arrogant, disdainful, contemptuous of every American...."

not quite, former law student...not every. just the fools and liars that parade forth slinging nothing but bullroar...and who have no regard for facts....

wonder who i am talking about ya'betcha.

Synova said...

Yes, but somefeller... superior to YOU too.

And that doesn't bother you?

I have thought (and said) that "liberals" or whomever were really looking for someone *better* than they were, smarter, superior to them, someone fit to *rule* them.

I think that's creepy.

Now, in general terms I've always enjoyed the company of brilliant people who didn't feel the need to pretend they weren't as smart as they were. Other people seem to find them annoying while I find the lack of pretend humility refreshing. But I also almost never find that these people I enjoy have a sense of superiority over other people. Those who do are usually not particularly brilliant but have certificates or degrees or some other badge of accomplishment that they use to appeal to authority. Those who don't generally see their advanced degrees as useful but essentially meaningless in relation to their actual ability or the ability of anyone else.

In other words, I suppose, they don't CARE about how superior they are. They don't value superiority. They'd be unsurprised to find brilliance in an uneducated man or housewife because they'd likely not even notice those extraneous things.

People who care about superiority notice those extraneous things and will appeal to authority in the guise of education or social status.

So yeah, it grates. It's annoying.

And as I said... those who *want* it and *want* to be ruled by it are bizarre to me, because it's creepy to want that.

MamaM said...

Old Fart talking to Mr. 2Cool4U.


WV: spork...Let it be known the President prefers the use of a ten foot pole to a spork, when poking to test for "doneness".

Opus One Media said...

M. Simon said...
"Hmmmm. As I recall he nominally has 60 Senators and for sure a majority in the House. He doesn't need Republicans."

ahhh silly simon. in the senate with the guarantee of a republican obstruction if not all 60 vote as one (hey whatever happened to "up and down voting" you guys were screaming about years ago???) then legislation goes no where, debate doesn't even open...

it is that kind of constant obstructionism that is the problem...and always along party lines...imagine that. mindless republicans voting like sheep.

F said...

I had an interesting experience regarding this post. I read Ann's post and started reading the comments when I was called away for a couple of hours. When I came back I scrolled up the photo and it's impact was visceral, it was so demeaning, patronizing, and disrespectful. Mind you, I had seen the photo previously, the crossed arms, the cocked leg,the bow tie askew, but when I saw it with a fresh eye it was even more disrespectful than on first viewing. Whoever is selecting pix for the White House web site is NOT President Obama's friend -- this is about the third I've seen that almost looks like it was posed to put O in a bad light. Interesting. Fifth columnist in the White House photo office attacking the fifth columnist in the White House? F

Jim S. said...

I think he looks like James Bond from the neck down. From the neck up, as you say, he just looks tired.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

My first thought was Inspector Clouseau.

kylben said...

"He's tired and he's floating above it all."

He goes to his happy place.

Probably has onion domes in it.

Bernard said...

"Joseph, I am warning you one last time: STOP CALLING ME 'TIGER'!"

Perhaps O should 'do a Palin' and resign the Presidency, start a Facebook page, and run against the Democratic incumbent.

Synova said...

"Whoever is selecting pix for the White House web site is NOT President Obama's friend -- this is about the third I've seen that almost looks like it was posed to put O in a bad light. Interesting."

But it's not.

Somefeller *likes* Obama looking superior. So do lots of his supporters.

I had a similar reaction when Pelosi first became speaker of the house and, oh, Elenor Clift?, was *gushing* over how Pelosi was playing the power games and threatening junior Democrats who didn't get in line with her program and giving good appointments to those who sucked up to her instead of to Democrats who had seniority.

I thought... wow, is Pelosi a power hungry horror or what? But the report gushing over her was *gushing* as if all this was a *good* thing.

Synova said...

"...it is that kind of constant obstructionism that is the problem...and always along party lines...imagine that. mindless republicans voting like sheep."

Of course, constantly obstructing Bush was the highest principle, even up to and including hoping he... wait for it... failed.

You know why Bush did so much to help Africa and to combat AIDS there on the down low, practically stealth?

Because the Democrats would have reflexively obstructed even that if it ever entered the public consciousness.

Yes, indeed. Imagine that.

Harry Mellon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andrew Shimmin said...

A wristwatch with a tux? Well, I never. . .

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somefeller said...

Yes, but somefeller... superior to YOU too. And that doesn't bother you?

No, because I don't have an inferiority complex or a gutful of class resentments. If I did, I'd be a Sarah Palin fan. And while I have a few things in common with Obama and some mutual friends, I don't expect or want the President of the United States to be just one of the guys.

AlphaLiberal said...

This Althouse post sounds like it was written by a High School sophomore.

Again, Ann Althouse bizarrely claims mind-reading abilities. For all we know he was thinking "and Ann Althouse is a law professor? How can that be?"

In reality, meanwhile, it's an instant captured by a camera. Obama could have been, you know, in movement.

I learned of this idiotic post via Balloon Juice.

AlphaLiberal said...

On second read this is a really weird post.

Have you ever had a photograph occur mid-blink? I have and I've taken a few. It's not flattering for anyone.

I don't think Obama was standing there with his eyes nearly closed. More than likely, he blinked and the camera caught that.

And that's what Ann is chattering on about. His eyes look closed so he looks tired.

Synova said...

"And while I have a few things in common with Obama and some mutual friends, I don't expect or want the President of the United States to be just one of the guys."

What does "one of the guys" mean to you?

My grandmother, bless her, and one of my aunts, bless her, were/are what a person might term "social climbers." They aspired to be a member of a higher class than they were. The difference was they cared about class while most people who were more wealthy or were professionals in whatever realm, really did not care about class at all.

On the other side of the coin, the most utterly down to earth "one of the guys" sorts of my relatives were/are the brilliant, University Chem Chair sorts, the ones comfortably wealthy and professionally at the top of their field nationally, and right there in their old nickers gutting fish at the lake property, "one of the guys."

It doesn't take an inferiority complex to be irritated by people who see class indicators rather than individuals when they look at other people.

And to bring Palin into it... clearly she feels inferior to no one at all.

So what is the difference that makes her acceptable to "Joe Six-pack", while Obama gives off snooty Country Club vibes?

Chris said...

Talk about a Rorschach test. As for running for reelection: please.

Kent said...

If this were a picture snapped by someone just passing by, and posted outside of White House control, about all that could be objectively said is that Obama looks tired and irritated. I can't imagine a job more exhausting than being President, regardless of how well you're doing at it. And it's not hard to imagine a President feeling a little irritation at the latest person to make demands on his attention, even if it were not Joe Biden.

But the picture is not a candid shot by a passerby who can post what he wants. It's a shot put out by Obama's own people, with every intention that we read into it what Obama wants read into it.

I feel perfectly justified in reading into it what I want to read into it instead. What do I see?

A two-bit dictator of a banana republic.

Alex said...

I tell my hipster liberal friends that the POTUS is there to uphold the Constitution and defend the United States from all threats foreign and domestic. It's not his job to be "cool". They roll their eyes and say it's "all about being cool MAN". Somehow I suspect garage and Co. agree with that sentiment.

Alex said...

Beth - you've made it quite clear by now that you're really an Obama-bot. The way you reflexively defend the guy is proof enough.

Harry Mellon said...

Sonny, I went over to that Ballon place and I see where you get it from.

pst314 said...

He's tired.

Does that make him the Lili von Shtupp of the left?

Beej said...

Generally, people who think they can read minute details of character from one candid photo are people with too much time on their hands and an abiding need to validate their own opinions.

Alphonse said...

Not only tired but bored, dyspeptic, fugal, irritated, and clearly harboring dangerous liberal fantasies - it's written all over his face and any right thinking American can see it all plain as day.

Kudos Ann. You're like the kid in the story about the emperor's new clothes.

lojasmo said...

If he is indeed tired, it's because he's up early, and up late, and he doesn't spend a third of his days on vacation, like our former pResident.

He will run again, and he will serve two terms. He has to...we have yet to set up the internment camps to house the republicans.

former law student said...

"one of the guys" sorts of my relatives were/are the brilliant, University Chem Chair sorts, the ones comfortably wealthy and professionally at the top of their field nationally, and right there in their old nickers gutting fish at the lake property, "one of the guys."


Read Class by Paul Fussell. A quote I remember goes something like this: "You have to be awful rich to look this bad."

MamaM said...

"But a whisper moved through the crowd. 'A child over there says that the emperor has nothing on.' 'The emperor has nothing on.'

Soon everyone was murmuring, 'He has nothing on!' At last the emperor himself began to think that they could be right. But then he thought, 'If I stop, it will spoil the procession. And that would never do.' So he stepped on even more proudly than before.

As for the courtiers, they went on carrying a train that was not there at all."

H.C Andersen/translated by N. Lewis

Chet said...

Are you saying that going from the Senate to President was a demotion or a lateral move?

Um, no, I'm saying you're a retarded tool. Like pretty much everybody who thinks there's something incriminating or unsavory about a photograph of a president talking to the vice-president.

6p00e39330d37f8834 said...

Please, someone tell him that black satin bow ties are for pimps and gamblers, busboys, waiters, and maître d'hôtels, grooms, and tying a bow tie practice; he should be wearing grosgrain or faille, black silk, and a wing collar, please!

I'm sure the person who taught him to salute can teach him how to tie a bow tie, too, but that's a different topic.

How do you like my George Raft pose?

surennap said...

Beth said...
Obama shouldn't run again because we're at war, but Althouse's rationale for voting for Bush in 2004 was that we were at war.

Jesus.

Beth, I think that what Althouse is doing is making a long-shot type of prediction rather than a recomendation that Obama not run for re-election. Further, she is pretty clearly saying that Obama could use the war as an excuse to not run.

Rorschach Test, you got that more right than you know.

dbp

Xanthippas said...

I have thought (and said) that "liberals" or whomever were really looking for someone *better* than they were, smarter, superior to them, someone fit to *rule* them.

Actually, we just prefer to elect someone who isn't as stupid as us, as people on the right tend to do.

Richard said...

Obama is incapable of not running again. You, Ann, are normally such a good read of people, I don't know why you can't see it. He's not president because he wants to be, he's president because he has to be.

k*thy said...

"It doesn't take an inferiority complex to be irritated by people who see class indicators rather than individuals when they look at other people."

Actually, it does.  It is funny how we each see what we want with this guy.

What you see of me is only
What you know of yourself - Rumi

Synova said...

"Actually, we just prefer to elect someone who isn't as stupid as us, as people on the right tend to do."

I don't think I'm stupid.

Do you think you're stupid? Really?

Or do you just think everyone else is stupid?

How is it, I wonder, that conservatives tend to think that people are capable, but are portrayed as some sort of elitists, while "for the people" liberals seem to think of people as stupid? You want to elect someone who isn't as stupid as you? How do you sleep at night knowing that stupid people get to vote at all?

Stupid people, hillbillies, rednecks, urban gangsters, church ladies... they all vote.

How can someone who is so convinced that common people are so incapable square with democracy at all? You want someone who isn't as stupid as you are. And you trust yourself to make that choice? You trust anyone *else* to make that choice?

That's amazing.

Not surprising, just amazing. After all, the only reason that Kerry didn't release his full military records during the 2004 campaign was that his IQ scores were lower than Bush's and he was being sold, and sold *effectively*, to liberals as "smarter than Bush."

Synova said...

Oh, and good catch on the fact that this was not a "in the middle of a blink" photo oopsie. Obama may have been blinking, but someone who works for him thought this was a great picture, half-lidded eyes and all.

Kobe Kid said...

what a bunch of clueless amateurs... I want to know what Bill Frist thinks.

ken in sc said...

He does look like Jack Benny. However, you must remember--if you can remember Jack Benny--he was trying to look like an a--hole. Consider how Benny treated his black driver, Birmingham. It is a look of disdain and superiority, mixed with affection.

John Stodder said...

Tired, yes, but also disappointed.

Above all, Obama himself was taken in by the Obama myth. It must be pretty heady for someone who starts out with a narcissistic bent to go through a two- or three-year period during which the outside world completely validates one's self-regard. When the buzz stops -- and, boy has it stopped -- it must feel like the world caving in. That's why he needs that wall to support him, that's why his facial expression seems so abstracted. He's reeling.

And Beth, I am not projecting. There is not a serious political observer out there, left or right, who hasn't noted in one way or another that Obama is failing to live up to hopes (Dems), fears (Reeps) or expectations (everyone else who believed the media hype.)

Events are always unkind to presidents, but this president has made so many, many mistakes to compound his problems. It must be torture to think about how thrilling it all seemed, 12 short months ago.

Chet said...

How is it, I wonder, that conservatives tend to think that people are capable

Right, one thing that immediately stands out in threads about Obama and his qualifications is how capable conservatives are convinced he, and any other prominent minority, must be. Why, I can't remember who it is that keeps calling a man with more than a decade of successful experience in political office the "affirmative action candidate", but it must not be conservatives, since they would never assume that a person was anything but "capable" just on the basis of their political beliefs (or, god forbid, race.)

After all, the only reason that Kerry didn't release his full military records during the 2004 campaign was that his IQ scores were lower than Bush's and he was being sold, and sold *effectively*, to liberals as "smarter than Bush."

Quite factually false, since neither Kerry nor Bush took IQ tests in the service. (They did, on the other hand, take officer placement tests; Kerry's scores on his Naval exams were significantly higher than Bush's. Of all the conservative attempts to rehabilitate the Bush legacy, their hilarious attempts to rehabilitate the intelligence of our dumbest president is the most absurd.)

Patm said...

I don't see tired. I see disdain. But it's not disdain simply for Biden. It's disdain for everything, including the job and Obama's own circumstances, and yes, he thinks he's above it all. He's not floating, he's dissociating.

Chet said...

He's reeling.

Yes, doubtless that's exactly what the most powerful man in the world experiencing in the lounge area of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, before presentation of the Kennedy Center Honors, where Mel Brooks, Robert DeNiro, and Bruce Springsteen performed and were honored, while talking to the Vice President - a crushing sense of disappointment, loss of fame, and insignificance.

Doesn't make a lick of f*ckin' sense to me. I must be some kind of Obama-bot!

Above all, Obama himself was taken in by the Obama myth.

Right. The man who reminded us again and again that we - not he - were the ones we were waiting for was "taken in by the Obama myth." Uh-huh.

All I can say is - thank god there were no visible women in the picture, what with their boobs and all. That would have been a real disaster!

Chet said...

He's not floating, he's dissociating.

Are you sure he's not astral projecting? I heard Muslims can do that. It goes along with their heat vision.

lumiere said...

Congratulations Ann. You have now been attacked by Charles Johnson of littlegreenfootballs, the self-appointed arbiter of permissible criticism of Obama and of all things racist, as being a "wingnut".

Patm said...

"...what Obama wanted was to be the King, not the President. The King’s role is largely ceremonial. In time of national tragedy the King goes before the camera and says, “this is very sad.” If he can assign blame on a perceived enemy he does so, and then he steps aside and retires to his amusements while those actually in charge clean up the mess and determine how to prevent future messes. Everyone loves the King, defers to the King, rushes to do for the King, but the King -who tends to get bored and distracted by the dry business of actually governing- is responsible for very little, and most are just as glad of it."

http://www.firstthings.com/blogs/theanchoress/2009/12/29/obama-and-doing-vs-being/

Patm said...

"somefeller"'s comments about Obama being "pretty much superior to everyone else" is the most worrisome comment of this thread. Anyone who is that convinced that the "dude" is a "superior human being" is a scary, mind-benumbed zealot.

Patm said...

Alpha Liberal: "On second read this is a really weird post.

Have you ever had a photograph occur mid-blink? I have and I've taken a few. It's not flattering for anyone.

I don't think Obama was standing there with his eyes nearly closed. More than likely, he blinked and the camera caught that."

So, you're admitting that this is not a good pic, saying the WH deliberately chose a poor photograph in which the president was blinking as the pic was taking?

phosphorious said...

I find it odd that not a single Althousiac is embarrassed that this photo was unanimously thought to be worth 150 comments.

At this point anything is proof that Obama is the worst president ever, isn;t it?

Very odd indeed.

Patm said...

oh, please. I've seen the lefty sites do 150 comments on the crease of Bush's pants. Live with it.

Chet said...

oh, please. I've seen the lefty sites do 150 comments on the crease of Bush's pants.

I think you mean the bulge in his jumpsuit, which only became a topic of conversation once our so-called "liberal media" decided that it was a masterful way to show off his quote-unquote "manly attribute", thereby demonstrating how our national media operates essentially as fluffers for Republicans.

danielle said...

i cant wait to hear what all the Obama-haters that vent here have to say about this:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/04/us/04webtsa.html?hp

Howie said...

Well if Joe Biden is supposed to be Q, we're screwed.

Reason-Based Initiative said...

When you say that Obama's supporters don't see what you see you're absolutely right. But that says a whole lot more about you than it does Obama or those who have neglected to board the right-wing crazy train.

Althouse is defendable because she thinks this picture merely says that Obama is tired. It's still a pretty dumb thing to say considering this is one shot, perhaps taken in between facial expressions or during a blink.

phosphorious said...

"oh, please. I've seen the lefty sites do 150 comments on the crease of Bush's pants."

Ahhh. . . got it.

Payback for Bush.
Understood. Carry on.

Synova said...

And again, if this picture is *unfortunate*... it was chosen by someone who presumably thinks it is a positive picture, mid-blink or not. This picture was put out there by Obama's own people. This is a picture that the White House selected because it said what the White House wanted to say.

I've seen some obviously candid and hysterical pictures of Bush making the oddest faces. Those are fun. That picture of Palin with her mouth turned down in such a scowl was funny too. Yes, unflattering, but funny. And no, her OWN STAFF would never put it on her web site to promote her.

Patm said...

It's only payback if you need it to be to assuage your crybaby complaints.

Otherwise, it's precisely the same thing it was when the left riffed on Bush. A bunch of people sitting around bullshitting.

But you kool-aid drinkers...hey, drink up.

Penny said...

"This is a picture that the White House selected because it said what the White House wanted to say."

Precisely, Synova.

So now you are left with wondering if the White House is clueless, or you are?

Pick your poison.

John Stodder said...

Right. The man who reminded us again and again that we - not he - were the ones we were waiting for was "taken in by the Obama myth." Uh-huh.

Chet, you're kidding, right? Or have you managed to live your life up to this point and never run into the concepts of "false modesty" or "feigned humility?"

"We are the ones we are waiting for" was a campaign slogan, nothing more. Are you normally this credulous? When Ronald Reagan said, "It's morning again in America," did you actually think it had been several years since the sun had come up?

For a more candid revelation of Obama's true opinion of himself and the role he means for himself, go check out the speech to the UN, where he admits that the US has caused a lot of grief to the world over the course of its history, but is now worthy of support because...look who got elected president! ME!

Synova said...

"i cant wait to hear what all the Obama-haters that vent here have to say about this:"

I'm interested to know what Obama-supporters think of profiling or treating all people from particular countries as suspect? I think that I know what Obama-supporters would think if it was Bush. Obama is a whole other deal. MoDo, after all, was calling for full body scans so that TSA officals could tell if she had shaving bumps on her snatch or not, so it's hard to tell what liberals are going to think about privacy.

Are you waiting, danielle, to see what "Obama-haters" think of this new measure, to decide what YOU think of this new measure?

Glenn Reynold's commented on it. I don't know if he counts as an Obama-hater. He seemed to think that profiling by any other name was still profiling and not a good thing. But he's a law professor. I figure that a little bit of profiling won't hurt, even if it is silly and rather insulting to "profile" citizens of an entire nation rather than individuals acting strangely, boarding without luggage, or paying for tickets with cash. But I also think that, like a whole lot of what Bush did with the Patriot Act, etc., (and I did say so at the time), it's more about calming the masses than about security at all, and I think that's insidious.

Synova said...

"So now you are left with wondering if the White House is clueless, or you are?"

Hey, I think I'm the first one on this thread to bring up the word "Rorschach".

Also, all my kid's baby pictures are *adorable*!

phosphorious said...

"Otherwise, it's precisely the same thing it was when the left riffed on Bush. A bunch of people sitting around bullshitting."

It must have been very difficult for you to hear Bush rundown so often.

The redoubtable Althouse herself made "respectful attitude towards Bush" one of her criteria for selecting a president (I forget who she voted for).

Well then, let it all out. Take whatever consolation you can in running down the new guy.

And if you ever need a hug. . .

Chet said...

Or have you managed to live your life up to this point and never run into the concepts of "false modesty" or "feigned humility?"

This is, of course, how it works for conservatives. Seeking political office and winning a national election proves that one is a megalomaniac. Any kind of humility or modesty by someone in public office also proves that one is a megalomaniac. And, of course, when that's insufficient, one single photograph, devoid of any and all context, of a man talking to another man, is iron-clad proof that one of them is a megalomaniac.

For a more candid revelation of Obama's true opinion of himself and the role he means for himself, go check out the speech to the UN

Sure, let's look at that speech:
I come before you humbled by the responsibility that the American people have placed upon me, mindful of the enormous challenges of our moment in history, and determined to act boldly and collectively on behalf of justice and prosperity at home and abroad.

I have been in office for just nine months -- though some days it seems a lot longer. I am well aware of the expectations that accompany my presidency around the world. These expectations are not about me. Rather, they are rooted, I believe, in a discontent with a status quo that has allowed us to be increasingly defined by our differences, and outpaced by our problems.


Of course, to a conservative, saying "it's not about me" is the ultimate proof of magalomania. John Stodder, of course, knows that Obama's famous and continual modesty in public address is "false modesty" because... uh, well, just shut up is how.

John Stodder said...

I find it odd that not a single Althousiac is embarrassed that this photo was unanimously thought to be worth 150 comments.

Very strange trollery.

Do you not understand the internet? It's a conversation, and it keeps going as long as people have something to say to each other. Althouse's genius is for picking out items that are open-ended enough to stimulate a conversation. This picture isn't as important as Janet Napolitano saying "the system worked," but it lends itself to a more wide-ranging discussion, involving politics, yes, but also body language, men's fashions, Obama the man (as opposed to the politician), the relationship between Obama and the comic figure Joe Biden, photography, and the choices PR staffs make when selecting images to represent their boss.

Since it's not Obama hagiography, I guess that's a signal to you that this is a right-wing blog. But it's actually virtually the only high-profile blog where actual debate can take place and where opinions in the posts and comments aren't always predictable.

wv: bedoopt = overcome by doo-wop music.

phosphorious said...

"Hey, I think I'm the first one on this thread to bring up the word "Rorschach".

Also, all my kid's baby pictures are *adorable*!
"

And yet, when someone says that it's stupid to read anything into this photo either way, they are accused of "drinking the Kool-aid".

Ahhh. . . the conservative mind. Endlessly complicated. . .

somefeller said...

Synova says: And to bring Palin into it... clearly she feels inferior to no one at all.

Wrong. Feelings of inferiority that are quite deserved are all that sad little proles like Sarah Palin (and her fans) have at all. Her whole persona is based on the "you ain't better than me" concept. Support of Sarah Palin is an admission of failure and cultural inferiority in this society.

Beth said...

Thanks, Lumiere. Until I followed your tip to LGF I didn't realize this picture meme was at Hot Air and Instapundit, too.

What a hacktastic circle jerk!

Arturo Ui said...

I did not see this picture and think, "No way is Obama running for re-election". But that's just me.

somefeller said...

Sorry if the link above doesn't work. Here it is in full. In any case - Palinism = prole drift at its worst, starting from Sarah's little insecurities herself.

http://trueslant.com/juliansanchez/2009/12/16/the-politics-of-ressentiment/

Patm said...

Phospho: "It must have been very difficult for you to hear Bush rundown so often."

You've read a great deal that I didn't say and projected a lot into your comments.

I guess it's because you are having difficulty hearing Obama "run down."

Aw.

newscaper said...

somefeller said:
"Wrong. Feelings of inferiority that are quite deserved are all that sad little proles like Sarah Palin (and her fans) have at all. Her whole persona is based on the "you ain't better than me" concept... "

"You ain't better than me" is actually very quintessentially American.

You sound like the would-be aristocrat.

phosphorious said...

"
Since it's not Obama hagiography, I guess that's a signal to you that this is a right-wing blog. But it's actually virtually the only high-profile blog where actual debate can take place and where opinions in the posts and comments aren't always predictable.
"

Comments here are completely predicatable.

Even your claim that only Obama worshippers think that this is a rightwing blog is repeated here all the time.

Now you'll m,ention how the scintillating Ms. Althouse voted for Obama. . . in three. . . two. . . one. . .

Old Dad said...

Someasshole wrote:

"Feelings of inferiority that are quite deserved are all that sad little proles like Sarah Palin (and her fans) have at all. Her whole persona is based on the "you ain't better than me" concept. Support of Sarah Palin is an admission of failure and cultural inferiority in this society."

My, my, sad little proles. Are they like sad little fags? Or uppity niggers?

No wonder that Taylor Swift and Rush are such abject failures in this culture.

November can't come fast enough.

phosphorious said...

"You've read a great deal that I didn't say and projected a lot into your comments."

So. . . I've read too much into your comments?

Overinterpreted, have I?

Taken scant cues and built up an elaborate theory as to your motivations and character?

Why, only a goddamn idiot would do something like that!

I apologize.

John Stodder said...

Of course, to a conservative, saying "it's not about me" is the ultimate proof of magalomania. John Stodder, of course, knows that Obama's famous and continual modesty in public address is "false modesty" because... uh, well, just shut up is how.

Again, I'm stunned that when public personalities in ego-driven professions like politics claim to be "humbled" and describe themselves as "modest" that you believe them.

Conservative has nothing to do with it. All narcissists of whatever political stripe -- and not just politicians -- will, as a tactic, periodically claim things like "it's not about me." When you've been around for awhile, you start to realize that when they say that, they really mean, "yes, as a matter of fact, is IS about me."

To pretend for a moment that you're actually interested in a serious discussion... in the past 12 months, have you asked yourself whatever happened to Obama's followers? That fabulous network of young activists who held meet-ups and got out the vote, and created their own Obama-love content on YouTube and so on? They were supposed to pour straight from the election campaign into a group called Organizing for America that was going to help him push his issues. Organizing for America has turned out to be a flop. It has been worthless as a vehicle for generating support for any of Obama's initiatives.

If "it's not about me" and "we are the ones we have been waiting for," wouldn't there have been more focus on giving his supporters a genuine way to have their voices heard? The one time the WH sincerely tried it, when they asked supporters to suggest what Obama's priorities should be, when he didn't like the answer (legalizing marijuana), he dismissed the entire effort with a joke. Now, a year later, he's at war with many elements of his electoral coalition, the same "we" that he claimed to be waiting for.

Obama's presidency has been about as top-down as any of the others, and more aggressive than most in enforcing who's the boss.

Julius Ray Hoffman said...

@phosphorious- You know, the scintillating Ms. Althouse did indeed vote for Obama.

Chet said...

All narcissists of whatever political stripe -- and not just politicians -- will, as a tactic, periodically claim things like "it's not about me."

I wonder how someone would genuinely claim humility, in your world, if any expression of humility is to be taken as double-reverse psych-out.

Obama's the president. If he's not an idiot, he knows he's the president, and probably considers himself worthy to hold that office. That's probably considerably more ego than your average person, but then, your average person won't ever be president. And it's hardly indicative of some planet-sized mega-ego.

When someone says "I'm the decider", that's humility to people like John. When someone says "it's not about me", that's a megalomaniac's number-one psych-out head-fake,as proven by one single photograph where Obama talks to Biden with, I dunno, some kind of uppity expression. Makes perfect sense!

phosphorious said...

"@phosphorious- You know, the scintillating Ms. Althouse did indeed vote for Obama."

I know she did. And if I ever forget, it will be mentioned here over and over. . .

She voted for him because, among other reasons, he was respectful towards Bush.

Which is the most important thing in the world.

Apparently.

bagoh20 said...

I agree with Obama; I'm tired of him being President too.

John Stodder said...

I wonder how someone would genuinely claim humility, in your world, if any expression of humility is to be taken as double-reverse psych-out.

Through actions, not words. JFK, who was probably quoting someone else, said something to the effect that it's amazing what you can get done if you let other people take the credit.

Obama works in the opposite direction. He lets Congress do all the heavy lifting, takes credit when the result seems to have been successful, and points fingers when things go south.

No one can "genuinely claim humility." It's one of those things that should be left to others to say about you.

When someone says "I'm the decider", that's humility to people like John.

Oh, stop whining. You don't know me, or what I think. I haven't mentioned Bush in this thread, and see no reason to. He was basically a terrible president who did a few things right. I had hopes for Obama to be a big improvement, largely because I believed that there just HAD to be some basis for all the hype about him. We don't really see these people in action, especially a relative neophyte like Obama, but a large portion of the media and Democratic leadership vouched for him, and so he got elected with lots of votes from independents like me. The issue of his narcissism is worth discussing because, in my opinion, it's a key to his failure so far to be an effective president. He has been consistently grandiose in his policy pronouncements, and seemingly disconnected from the many inconvenient facts that stand in the way of his words becoming deeds.

phosphorious said...

"I agree with Obama; I'm tired of him being President too.

Well, you're in luck! I have it on good authority that Obama will NOT be seeking a second term!

Chet said...

Obama works in the opposite direction.

Oh, well, if you say so. I mean, you gave me his UN speech as proof!

We don't really see these people in action, especially a relative neophyte like Obama

Oh, I forget - the guy who had more experience in elected office than Hillary Clinton, George Bush, or even Abraham Lincoln is a "neophyte." Not sure how ten years of legislative activity isn't enough evidence of "how he works", but fine.

he got elected with lots of votes from independents like me.

Oh, right. "Independent." You know you might just as well say that you have absolutely no involvement or understanding of American politics, and are simply too stupid or apathetic to pay attention or formulate an ideology. Oh, but I guess you just did.

The issue of his narcissism is worth discussing because, in my opinion, it's a key to his failure so far to be an effective president.

Sure, Obama's a failure. He's only achieved the most sweeping, comprehensive health care reform of my entire life - regardless of the conference outcome - but, one year in, it's already a Failed Presidency.

You say you're an "Independent." So why is it that when you open your mouth all that comes out is Fox News?

phosphorious said...

"I had hopes for Obama to be a big improvement, largely because I believed that there just HAD to be some basis for all the hype about him. We don't really see these people in action, especially a relative neophyte like Obama, but a large portion of the media and Democratic leadership vouched for him. . .

. . . and less than a year into his presidency he has proven to be the Worst President Ever.

We've heard it all before: you conservatives gave him a chance and he blew it.

I mean. . . Althouse even voted for the guy!

How said for you all, to have your faith so cruelly violated.

Go find Patm. He needs a hug too.

John Stodder said...

Not sure how ten years of legislative activity isn't enough evidence of "how he works", but fine.

You are too funny.

Obama didn't run on his record as a legislator, because he didn't have one. Not in the statehouse in Illinois and not in the Senate. He was a machine pol, at best. He voted "present" on every controversial issue so they wouldn't be a drag on his record.

No, Obama succeeded more on the basis of his eloquence as a writer and speaker than on any concrete achievements. He seemed to have "the vision thing." And, as I said, he also collected lots of influential supporters, who reinforced the image he had cultivated of brilliance and a superior temperament.

Sure, Obama's a failure. He's only achieved the most sweeping, comprehensive health care reform of my entire life - regardless of the conference outcome - but, one year in, it's already a Failed Presidency.

I read Jacob Weisberg's column, too. It's complete horseshit. He hasn't achieved anything yet. "Regardless of the conference outcome" blows past a process that, at this point, is very uncertain because of immense differences between the two bills, both of which are terrible, corrupt stinking piles that the public has rejected. They both build on the existing, unsustainable insurance system and make the evil insurance companies even richer and more powerful. In exchange for exclusions due to pre-existing conditions, we're going to have the lovely outcome of higher premiums and higher taxes to pay for those who can't afford the higher premiums. Not exactly Mt. Rushmore time.

elHombre said...

Chet wrote: Oh, right. "Independent." You know you might just as well say that you have absolutely no involvement or understanding of American politics, and are simply too stupid or apathetic to pay attention or formulate an ideology. Oh, but I guess you just did.

Or he might have said that he has sufficient knowledge and understanding of politics and government to avoid being duped by either party. He might also have said that partisan ideology has become a convenient substitute for critical thinking.

Chip Ahoy said...

Your many japes and jabs trouble me greatly.

I do not see all that you see in this photo. I've learned not to trust what seems apparent from a single snap.

This photo is too dark. It is not possible to increase exposure because of the shine on Biden's skull, but you must admit, those shirts are supposed to be white, no? However, even without the RAW files it is possible to reach into the shadows and pull out detail without increasing the highlights

like so. This is what I see.

The trouble with animated GIFs is you're limited to 256 shades maximum so that forfeits much of the detail gained by the tweaks. But they're a lot more fun.

elHombre said...

@Chips: That was cool! Thanks.

timbonerator said...

That's completely idiotic. If Obama were to decline reelection for the reasons she proposes, it would be REWARDING partisanship and division. The republicans couldn't help but see such a decision as being a result of their constant, kneejerk opposition to anything Obama favored.

Chet said...

You are too funny.

And you're an ignoramus. I'm still waiting for you to explain how you thought it would work when you cited Obama's "it's not about me" speech as evidence of his self-centeredness.

Obama didn't run on his record as a legislator, because he didn't have one.

From his first TV ad post-primary:

" America is a country of strong families and strong values. My life's been blessed by both. I was raised by a single mom and my grandparents. We didn't have much money, but they taught me values straight from the Kansas heartland where they grew up... That's why I passed laws moving people from welfare to work, cut taxes for working families and extended health care for wounded troops who'd been neglected. I approved this message because I'll never forget those values, and if I have the honor of taking the oath of office as president, it will be with a deep and abiding faith in the country I love."

Don't you get tired of being wrong all the time?

He hasn't achieved anything yet.

Right. Like, the multi-billion-dollar stimulus package that almost every economist agrees averted the worst crisis since the Great Depression? Didn't happen. Lily Ledbetter Act? A fever-dream. $19 billion to move the country's heath care infrastructure to electronic record-keeping? A revolutionary achievement according to industry observers - if it had happened. Too bad it didn't, according to Independent John. Our rehabilitated international perception? Must have dreamed that up, too.

Like I said - scratch someone who calls themselves an "independent" and you'll see someone who short-cuts critical analysis by simply splitting the difference between each side of every debate. Or, in your case, parroting the claims of Fox News talking heads.

Synova said...

"I wonder how someone would genuinely claim humility, in your world, if any expression of humility is to be taken as double-reverse psych-out."

Pretty much a person can't.

And it's not a gotcha. Who *claims* to be humble? And if you're claiming to be humble, aren't you claiming great virtue? Which claim is not humble.

A humble person would never claim to be humble. Someone who *was* humble would probably think they weren't terribly humble after all, and would cite as personal failings such things as pride and self-importance. But mostly a humble person wouldn't talk about him or herself. It really wouldn't come up.

Mark Daniels said...

Wow, Ann. That's a lot of unsubstantiated speculation based on one photograph.

I don't think Obama looks like James Bond in this picture, other than the fact that he (as well as Biden) is wearing a tuxedo, which we associate with James Bond. But even I have worn a tux.

I do think that it appears that he may be tired here.

But your longshot prediction is just silly. Maybe wishful thinking on your part?

Or, was this a really slow news day?

John Stodder said...

From his first TV ad post-primary

LOL. You defend Obama's legislative record as worthy of the White House by quoting Obama's own ad????

And your other challenges go downhill from there. You talk about Obama's stimulus package as if it was some kind of magical elixer. The fact is, it's classical Keynsian economics for the federal government to stimulate the economy in the face of a recession. Bush, in fact, tried to do it in 2008 with his tax rebate checks. If McCain had been elected, he'd have done a stimulus package. It was utterly predictable, no great feat of political acumen.

The problem is the content of Obama's stimulus package. It was very weak, slow, and politically corrupted. And, as proof, I offer the current unemployment rate, which is still over 10 percent, and closer to 20 if you include discouraged workers. The stimulus did so much less than expected, many members of congress are calling for another one. And that's the big success you offer.

But the summit of hilarity tonight is that you actually think "it's not about me" is a sincere expression of Obama's humility, not a focus-group approved applause line. Really. I mean, I admit I'm a little jaded, but someone with your interest in politics should know there are a few things below the surface of political speeches.

Chet, I swear, if anyone from the WH calls, I'll tell them you fought the good fight. You spoke truth to power. You drank so much of the Kool-Ade, I could hear you burp. They will surely be proud of you. If something happens to Gibbs, I think you could be a good new mouthpiece for him.

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