August 24, 2011

"He’s not Jimmy Carter. He’s Tiger Woods — a natural who’s lost his swing."

"He has so many different swing thoughts in his head, so many people whispering in his ear about what the polls say and how he needs to position himself to get re-elected, that he has lost all his natural instincts for the game."

Racist or just fatuous?

Racist or fatuous?
Racist.
Fatuous.
Both.
Neither.
  
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63 comments:

Original Mike said...

A natural what?

Joe Schmoe said...

Campaigner. Nothing more.

E.M. Davis said...

Don't click the link — there may be something in Friedman's hand.

AllenS said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
bagoh20 said...

Tiger actually practiced his job for years, developed skill, won and lost, and learned. He didn't flap his jaw and write about himself instead, and assume he knew what to do, he proved he did. In short, he became great through actions, not marketing.

bagoh20 said...

The thing to remember is that Obama is much, better and more experienced today than when you voted for him. By 2012 he will be qualified for President. Add that to your excuses this time.

Quayle said...

And like Tiger, he's screwing anyone and everything in his field of vision.

Kirk Parker said...

Wow, just when you think Friedman has exhausted the possibilities for preposterous analogies, he comes back and shows he's still at the top of his game.

Alas.

Quayle said...

Or, borrowing from Woody Allen, Obama is doing to this country what Tiger did to all those women.

NYTNewYorker said...

"By 2012 he will be qualified for President. Add that to your excuses this time."

It's already in there, top three for sure.

Paul said...

Actually Obama is both Carter and Tiger Woods.

Why?

Cause he was over his head before he became president and now he has lost what fake 'mojo' he had.

Everybody sees the king has no cloths, and actually never did.

At least Tiger DID have tallent to walk the walk as well as talk the talk.

All Obama could to was talk the talk.

bagoh20 said...

No matter how many stupid people can be fooled into believing you are a great golfer, they won't give you the trophy unless you prove it. Sorry Mr. Nobel Peace Prize winner.

Tim said...

I see Friedman has put his knee-pads and wash-cloth to good use again.

Obama was never a "natural" anything, except a natural poseur who sold himself better than any box of soap has ever been sold.

But when the market's full of idiots, it proves frightfully easy.

lgv said...

Tiger began practicing at age 2. When did Obama begin practicing for POTUS?

It is such a poor analogy on its face. Tiger is not a natural. He has always tinkered with the mechanics of his swing, first with Butch Harmon, then Hank Haney, now Sean Foley. Tiger has only had one person whispering in his ear at one time, at least about gold that is.

Actually, Obama has only a few people whispering in his ear.

Tom is half right, which is often the case. Obama is no Jimmy Carter. We can only wish he were.

votermom said...

A natural shmoozer. Obama is what used to be known as a professional courtier. One of those over-perfumed dandies who would hang around Versailles or Buckingham in the old days, and flatter royalty into giving them favors. Now imagine if the King were gullible enough to declare a favored courtier their heir, and his Privy Council were dumb enough to go along with it. That’s what happened in 2007 when King Teddy anointed Barry and the DNC clinked glasses.

EDH said...

I'm sure Obama supporters think of themselves as Elin while viewing the center-right as the bimbos.

Curious George said...

"Obama is smart, decent and tough"

Obama is none of these things. Smart? Watch him off the teleprompter. Watch him off script.

Decent? This guy is a thug and a liar. Name another POTUS that dressed down the SCOTUS during a SOTU with a lie. "Bitter clingers"?

Tough? That's a mirage. He is a small and brittle man. Can't take criticism, can't take responsibility.

Original Mike said...

The more I watch Obama, the more mystified I am at the adoration.

Dan in Philly said...

He never had any instincts which were natural other than those of his advisors who were really good at managing his image, often in spite of him. I could go on and over his gaffes which presaged his current ineptitude, but you already know them. In this case, those gaffes were the real (quite small and predictbale) him peeking behind teh curtain.

Henry said...

Picking up on what bagoh20 wrote, Tiger Woods famously reconstructed his swing in 2004. Tiger may be many things but wishy-washy isn't one of them.

edutcher said...

A natural doesn't need a teleprompter. You have to have had a swing before you can lose it.

Hence, the new acronym, SCFOAMF.

This guy is Herbert Hoover.

But that doesn't make Pinch and the gang feel good.

Cedarford said...

Quayle said...
Or, borrowing from Woody Allen, Obama is doing to this country what Tiger did to all those women.

==============
Obama is only doing half the country unwillingly. The other half spread their legs for him willingly or because the alternative was an intemperate slobbering old man with his own history of treachery and adultery.

Tiger, on the other hand, just boffed eager sluts drawn to his money and celebrity. Including his Swede Euroslut wife, a not so-educated blonde model - who was out boffing scions of wealthy Asian, Euro-industrial families. As well as 2nd tier Euro golfers and race car drivers before landing her prize mealticket - The Tiger Whale.

That said, Tiger is not a sympathetic figure..
Just don't have any illusions about his gold-digging victims.

The money Tiger got he mostly earned himself with his skills.

That Woods was a horndog??
Color me about as shocked as I was learning that Jackie Kennedy fucked around.

X said...

I'd say he's more like Bagger Vance, a magical character with no basis in reality. It'd be cool if he just vanished in the mist too.

Henry said...

Curious George captures a perfect example of Friedman's thinking:

Obama is smart, decent and tough, with exactly the right instincts about where the country needs to go. He has accomplished a lot more than he’s gotten credit for — with an opposition dedicated to making him fail.

In Friedman's world the conventional thinking about Obama outside of the New York Times offices -- that he is misdirected, shallow, and weak -- is completely wrong. But the conventional thinking about Republicans inside the New York Times offices is so true Friedman can present it as axiom. Fatuous indeed.

damikesc said...

Sweet God, how can people mistake Friedman for a thinker?

Lucius said...

There's never been any evidence he's a 'natural' politician.

Jimmy Carter, despite his flaws, really did claw his way from obscurity to claim his party's nom, win the White House, and even defend his flank against Ted Kennedy who, despite some, er, flaws of his own, really was the poll-tested dream candidate of Dems just four years prior.

So, ludicrous as it may sound, I feel Carter has to be given credit as a 'natural politician.'

Obama may have overcome the most obvious heir-apparent to a nom in recent memory, but there was so much sociocultural baggage poking on the scales, it barely registered then or now, to me, as a personal accomplishment for him.

He can't sell his 'oratory' now, people are bored and fed up with his excuses, he can count on solid loyalty now only from those voters who have 'no place left to go.'

He has always been a poor politician.

hawkeyedjb said...

"This guy is Herbert Hoover."

No way. Mr. Hoover was a highly accomplished man, both before and after his presidency. He was not up to meeting the enormous challenge of leading the country during the Depression.

If you refer only to the four years in the White House, then yes, I guess you could say Mr. Obama is like him. (Although I don't think Mr. Hoover blamed his lot on his predecessor)

Lucius said...

Of course Tom Friedman's 'instinct' for where the USA should go is towards the one-party authoritarian dictatorship of mainland China . . .

But hey, Beijing is full of technocrats!

Maguro said...

If Obama is Tiger Woods, that means he's probably going to miss the cut at the Iowa Caucuses.

Joe Schmoe said...

"Hey Thomas, it's Barry, I need you to do me a huge favor. Can you please take your name off your phone? My wife went through my phone and may be calling you. So if you can, please take your name off that. Just have it as a number on the voicemail. You got to do this for me. Huge. Quickly. Bye."

Jay said...

Obama is smart, decent and tough

*DOUBLE GIGGLE*

Yes, he's so "smart" that the agencies he presides over issue hundreds of regulations each month and he furrows his brow at the "bad luck" of unemployment.

Yes, he's so "decent" that he knew the Cambridge police acted stupidly, even without the facts.

Yes, he's so "tough" that any criticism of his policies is immediately attributed to rascism. He also has taken to the airwaves to whine about his critics on a multitude of occasions.

Joe Schmoe said...

It is such a poor analogy on its face.

And that, folks, is the essence of Tom Friedman, the unthinking man's Malcolm Gladwell.

The mofo does rake in the speaking fees, though. And he must view all his speaking engagements as charitable events, since he's making money he doesn't need and should be paying to the government in taxes.

edutcher said...

hawkeyedjb said...

"This guy is Herbert Hoover."

No way. Mr. Hoover was a highly accomplished man, both before and after his presidency.


A fair point.

I'm thinking of him as being to the Democrats what Hoover was to the republicans.

Tank said...

The really amazing thing about that column is the level of vitriol, half-truths, distortions, name calling and lies.

The left is coming unhinged.

Just when they got their [almost said boy] candidate in office, we ran out of money [as all big gov't/socialists do].

Very disappointing for them.

Mick said...

Original Mike said...
"A natural what?"


Well not a natural born Citizen, that's for sure!!! (although the "law prof" voted for him)--(Imagine that)> Obama was admittedly born British, of a British subject father, so he does not fit the Minor v. Happersett precedent definition of natural born Citizen, i.e one born in the US of 2 US Citizen parents-- owing no allegiance to any other foreign power.

hawkeyedjb said...

President Obama is David Duval, who won the British Open and never won anything after that.

Original Mike said...

I hope the check's in the mail, Mick.

damikesc said...

@Joe: Any speaking fees received by Freeman ARE charity...just not in the way Tommy Boy thinks they are.

denmotherblog said...

The problem isn't that he's lost his natural instincts for the game. The problem is that actually doing the job isn't a game, but he's still trying to play.

Michael K said...

Tiger is an example of young men whose fathers pushed them very hard into sports. Another example is a young fellow named Todd Marinovich whose father had him throwing footballs at only a few years older than Tiger's father had him hitting golf balls. My son went to USC with Todd and he was called "Marijuanavich" by the other students. He flopped in college and the NFL. Tiger had the gumption to keep going but had lots of destructive personal traits that eventually caught up with him.

Now, who was pushing Obama ? Photos of him in college don't show a hard riving achiever. Somebody got him into Harvard Law and made him editor of the Law Review without writing a single article.

We know it was Emil Jones in the Illinois Legislature who made him a Senator. He did this by putting Obama's name on everyone else's bills that term.

Somebody was pushing Obama and now he is on his own. And the results should have been predictable. I certainly knew he would fail. I don't think I anticipated how destructive his administration would be because I never thought a government could lose its mind.

Phil 3:14 said...

Uhh, Tiger Woods had some pretty major accomplishments before his "recession". Even if I concede Obama's Health Care Reform, that's like saying he won the US Open once by 10 strokes.

So no, this piece fails.

And it has Friedman's slobber spots all over it.

SunnyJ said...

Obama is a chameleon, plain and simple. He has a lizard brain and changes his colors to match whoever and wherever to accomplish one thing, and one thing only: his survival and agenda at the time.

He has no loyalty, except to what works for him in the moment. There are no core beliefs, only those that suit his purposes...now. His allegiance is to him and nothing more.

When this stops working, as it is becoming ever more close to being exposed...he'll change his spots so fast and so competely...and just put out a new statement and keep going. Just like he does now, when they do one thing and say something else...the dissonance does not deter him at all.

He is seriously narcisstic with disassociative disorder.

phx said...

I think most people are really reading Obama wrong. They underestimate him. They want to believe about him what is convenient for them to believe. Around here they often want to believe and say things about Obama what they think will bring aggrandizement to themselves. Even if Obama was the evil moron (!) so many here think he is, they couldn't lift a finger to stop him or save the rest of us. How impotent. How phony. How self-serving.

Charlie said...

Tom Friedman is an idiot.

Charlie said...

Smart and tough. That's what Dems always say about other Dems. Mike Dukakis? He was smart and tough.

JohnJ said...

I don't perceive any racism.

What I do see is a continuation of the relentless effort by the left to characterize Obama as an exceptional talent. The implication, of course, is that we should appreciate him more, which is the public face of our simply being unworthy.

I think we'll see even more of this as things continue to unravel.

Lonetown said...

To me he's more like Frank Sinatra Jr.. A guy who had an immediate leg up but less than the super start talent that was hoped for.

America's Politico said...

MARK MY WORDS:

THIS IS A SET-UP. POTUS IS OBAMA: OMABA IS POTUS. HE WILL DEFEAT THE GOP MASSIVELY. YOU ALL WILL BE EATING GROW. DO YOU HAVE AN IDEA BEHIND THE SUPER, REALLY SUPER, K-STREET CONSULTANTS WANTING HIM TO WIN. CONTRAST THAT TO 0% THAT WANT GOP. NO, GOP IS FINISHED.

Clyde said...

Tiger at least accomplished some good things before his fall from grace. He was a winner, multiple times.

Obama was a flim-flam man from Day One. To paraphrase Reggie Jackson's "straw-that-stirs-the-drink" comment, Obama can only stir it bad.

Kyle-Anne Shiver at PajamasMedia nails him in this article:

The Five Most Catastrophic Hidden Costs of the Obama Presidency

traditionalguy said...

So the whole article was a straight line for birthers?

That's nuanced.

What we have here is Two clean looking half or less African-Americans that could not live up to the fan worship they got rich off of for the beginning of their careers.

But both men helped racial relations get straightened out. Thanks to them for that. We owe them something for that

But they need to go away gracefully.

trumpetdaddy said...

Both.

Tiger Woods is the furthest thing from a "natural" athlete. Most successful people are not "naturals" at what they do. Certainly, God grants people varying degrees of talent for certain activities, but the top professionals at anything work day-in and day-out to maximize their God-given gifts.

Tiger has been working to be a top golfer for the better part of 30 years. It is an insult to his hard work to say that it was the result of him being a "natural."

Obama's problem is that he thinks he's a natural and thus doesn't put in the work necessary to get better at his job. His career trajectory shows an individual who merely progressed in his jobs enough to credibly interview for the next job up the chain. Too bad for him, and for us, he's hit the highest job there is, and now he actually has to do that job.

Obama and Woods couldn't be further apart in the type of professionals each is.

Clyde said...

No, Obama's not Hoover; he's Jake Blues, the Excuse-Maker-in-Chief.

Have you noticed that we just had the biggest earthquake in years hit the east coast, and now we have a hurricane barreling directly toward Martha's Vineyard? It's like God's trying to get someone's attention or something, or perhaps He's just saying, "You want to make excuses, I'll give you something to make excuses for!"

Robert Cook said...

Fatuous, as when is Thomas Friedman not?

michaele said...

Lot more "bad luck" coming our way for Obama to blame a bad economy on.

roesch-voltaire said...

Well Obama is in the "rough" but I do not think his game was ever as good as Tigers, so maybe he has to find a compass to figure a way out of the dark woods of Washington habits.

bgates said...

If McCain had been elected, he would have been Phil Mickelson. (I'm assuming here that Phil is still not as good as Tiger - is that right?)

bgates said...

Obama is smart, decent and tough

Left out "equally".

Obama is equally smart, decent, and tough.

Joe Schmoe said...

@AMERICA POLITICO:

I'M NOT SURE IF YOU'RE SERIOUS OR NOT BUT YOUR POSTS ARE AWESOME. TELL ME NOW NOT LATER: WHERE CAN I GET 'GROW' TO EAT? FROM SUPER, REALLY SUPER K-STREET CONSULTANT?

prairie wind said...

It don't mean a thing
if it ain't got that swing

geokstr said...

Michael K said...
Tiger is an example of young men whose fathers pushed them very hard into sports.

trumpetdaddy said...
Tiger Woods is the furthest thing from a "natural" athlete.


You're both wrong.

I saw Tiger when he was like 3 years old on the Mike Douglas show. He already had a beautiful, full swing and hit the ball long and straight using clubs that were a foot and a half long. I don't think you do that without being a great natural athlete when you're 3. And yes, he worked hard, but between that and being a natural, he was able to dominate the game for many years like no one since Bobby Jones had.

And his father didn't force him into anything. He loved the game and pushed his father to teach him. The only reason his father knew to get him into it was because when he was 6 months old, his dad was practicing his swing in the garage and saw Tiger pick up a stick and start imitating his father.

traditionalguy said...
But both men helped racial relations get straightened out.


Really? Race relations are better now than they were? His followers, his party, the media have all been playing the race card loudly and constantly for him since before he was elected, allowing him to appear to be above it all, but he never calls for "civility" when they get of hand, does he?

I predict he and they will ratchet up the racial hatred and class envy as the election approaches and they get more desperate. The flash mobs and the London rot will spread.

And if he loses, I fear what may happen when all that rage he will have stoked has to go somewhere.

SoCalCMH said...

not quite. believe what you want about tiger woods, but the man has proven himself on the golf coarse time and again, and when he did, was no match for anybody else in the world. in other words, his fall from grace happened after he had proven himself over and over again.

a better comparison of barack obama would to be one lebron james, an equally talented, but disappointing talent who rocketed, prematurely to superstardom and has proven quite illusory when it comes to delivering when it counts the most. barack obama gave good speeches and warmed hearts the way lebron makes highlight reel plays and looks good on the stat sheet, but how many rings has lbj won? none. and he's now 0-2.

someone should remind barack obama, the media and his cultish fan base that getting elected president isn't all that different from being the number 1 pick in the nba draft (lebron in 2003). getting elected, like getting drafted is merely the opportunity, whether or not it materializes in both their cases, remains to be seen. it's getting rather late in the game for both.

Marshal said...

It's embarassing how little thought it takes for Friedman to believe oneself superior. This is really a pathetic article whose only point is to support the opinion thaty the left is entirly right despite the clear evidence that every one of their beliefs has been proven ineffective.

Couple this with the wonderful NYT editorial claiming now is the time to increase government funding of free legal support for civil cases and you start to see why leftists cannot govern. They just don't live in the real world.

Marshal said...

a better comparison of barack obama would to be one Kwame Brown.

Fixed that for you. Kwame was picked not because he could play, but because he looked like he should be able to play. Because the NBA drafts for potential rather than accomplishments they often miss.