December 27, 2016

Axelrod got everything he wanted.

From the podcast with Obama:
OBAMA: And you know, part of the reasons that I think I've stayed sane in what has been this remarkable journey, and you've known me a long time and I think you'd confirm that I'm pretty much the same guy as I was when we started this thing.... [Y]ou know, success came late to me, notoriety came late. And it -- it made me realize that to the extent that I had been successful, it wasn't about me.  It was about certain forces out there and -- and me hitching my wagon to a broader spirit and a broader set of trends and a broader set of traditions. And so, when -- when we came up with the phrase Yes, We Can, which again, to give you credit I was a little skeptical of, it felt a little simplistic when we first started. But...

AXELROD: You didn't like the logo either, but that's -- that's a different discussion...

(CROSSTALK)

OBAMA: The logo I thought was a loser, it looked like the Pepsi logo and I thought...

AXELROD: That's what you said, that's...

OBAMA: ... that seems a little...

(CROSSTALK)

AXELROD: That's what you said, it became more iconic than the Apple insignia. So -- I'm glad we straightened this out...

OBAMA: But look, I...

AXELROD: I've gotten everything I wanted...

88 comments:

AlbertAnonymous said...

What a jackass!

David Begley said...

" [Y]ou know, success came late to me, notoriety came late."

Lie.

In that same interview Obama speculated on an unconstitutional third term. What kind of delusional person thinks that?

Obama is finally exposed.

Michael McClain said...

The complete definition of "self-centered".

traditionalguy said...

Axelrod was a realist first and an ideologue third. He ran the campaign , but Obama let him.

I wonder if Axelrod will show up on the Trump Tower Lobby Reality Show?

Left Bank of the Charles said...

"No Coke! Pepsi!"

HoodlumDoodlum said...

OBAMA: And you know, part of the reasons that I think I've stayed sane in what has been this remarkable journey, and you've known me a long time and I think you'd confirm that I'm pretty much the same guy as I was when we started this thing

Everybody's so different/I haven't changed.

EDH said...

Jeez, one of those "(CROSSTALK)" parentheticals should be replaced with "BLOWING EACH OTHER".

MayBee said...

From David Remnick's The Bridge:

Valerie Jarrett: “… I think that he has never really been challenged intellectually. … So what I sensed in him was not just a restless spirit but somebody with such extraordinary talents that they had to be really taxed in order for him to be happy.” Jarrett was quite sure that one of the few things that truly engaged him fully before going to the White House was writing Dreams from My Father. “He’s been bored to death his whole life,” she said.


Axlerod: “Barack hated being a senator.” Washington was a grander stage than Springfield, but the frustrations of being a rookie in a minority party were familiar. Obama could barely conceal his frustration with the torpid pace of the Senate. His aides could sense his frustration and so could his colleagues. “He was so bored being a senator,” one Senate aide said. …

His friend and law colleague Judd Miner said, “The reality was that during his first two years in the U.S. Senate, I think, he was struggling; it wasn’t nearly as stimulating as he expected.” …

---------

Curious George said...

"And it -- it made me realize that to the extent that I had been successful, it wasn't about me."

A lie followed by the truth.

David Begley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MayBee said...

Valerie hired Axelrod at the University of Chicago so he would have money and be kept occupied for Obama's eventual run.
It was Valerie, Michelle, and Axelrod all working there. They all came up with the plan to send poor people out of the emergency room and to local clinics. Then they all made it to the White House.

Kassaar said...

English is not my native language so bear with me, but I get the impression that “notoriety” is a word like “craven”. Notoriety came late? That’s not what he meant to say, is it?

America's Politico said...

I have no use of Axelrod. I lost total respect due to his lie: He said that he never knew about HRC's private email address. But, we know now, he requested it via others in State. He wanted to communicate with HRC but did not know how. So, why did he lie? And, why didn't the friendly-media call his lie?

Axelrod is a man, a white man, and in the club of success WH victories. He can get away with anything. He is Dead to Me (DTM) now.

Instead think of Kellyanne Conway. She came like a closer and beat the shit out of HRC top 1.4 Billion operation.

I love it. I love it. I so love it. I cannot even not think about it.

But, Kellyanne is a woman, a white woman, a GOP white woman. So, she is Dead to Media (another DTM).

David Begley said...

Axelrod was just looking for an empty vessel to take him to DC. At one time he thought it would be Blogo, the Mayor of Chicago.

EDH said...

"AXELROD: I've gotten everything I wanted..."

That's also what he said when leaving a family court with once-sealed divorce and child custody files of one of Obama's political opponents.

Arthur James said...

Can Obama become a hero during the Trump Presidency? As much as I despise Obama, I trust him as a man.

bagoh20 said...

Boredom is just a lazy person wanting something. It is especially profound when they are too lazy to decide what they want.

David Begley said...

Jarrett, Powers, Axelrod, Earnest, Plouffe, Rice, Rhodes all turned my stomach.

Michael K said...

"As much as I despise Obama, I trust him as a man."

Jesus ! I didn't listen to any of i but I don't know how anyone could trust Obama.

First, he's an empty suit.

Second, the real story of who he is might never be known.

CWJ said...

AlbertAnonymous,

Which one?

MayBee said...

Axelrod is one of the people who gets wealthy on our elections. I have nothing against him in particular, but it is ridiculous how many people get so wealthy off this process. That is one huge reason I am glad Trump won.

AllenS said...

Arthur James said...
As much as I despise Obama, I trust him as a man.

Sure, just ask the Israelis.

bagoh20 said...

" I trust him as a man."

That's what happened to my health insurance, my doctor, my plan, red lines, Guantanamo, Benghazi, transparency, bills on line for 72 hours before signing, post-racial America, having Israel's back, smart diplomacy, and on and on. I trust him too. I trust he will lie.

MayBee said...

David Begeley- how about Jim Messina?

Chuck said...

David Begley said...
...
In that same interview Obama speculated on an unconstitutional third term. What kind of delusional person thinks that?


It is of course delusional to speculate about a third presidential term. Just as it is delusional to speculate about throwing the electoral college vote based on some notion of a "popular vote."

But Obama didn't actually speculate about a third term. He hypothesized about a third term. And he thought he might have won, had he run.

I think Obama is right about that. There is no doubt that Obama would have won Michigan. Based simply on the numbers concerning turnout in Wayne County. Alone! That's how close it was, and how easy it would have been for the black president to have won, with only his usual turnout of voters who voted for him, 98-to-2.

I can't say for sure about Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, which I know less well. But Obama's favorable were WAAAAY out in front of Hillary's.

This is a bet that sadly cannot be settled, of course. I'll be glad to see the Obama Administration go; but I have no personal doubt about the fact that Obama could have won a third term. He is fifteen years younger than Trump.

I expected Hillary to name Cory Booker as her running mate. I am a bit surprised that she didn't. (Although the safe, conservative play with Tim Kaine is textbook Hillary.) I expect that a realistic autopsy on the crippled and incompetent Hillary'16 campaign will highlight that error.* They didn't get a black face, to turn out the black vote. (Although let's remember that Obama campaigned for her, too!) And they lost because they did a middling/poor job of turning out the black vote where they needed it.


*But that autopsy won't be done because no Democrat wants to blame the low-turnout black non-voters.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

In terms of his success I have to think Axelrod's being honest here--what more could he want? He served as Obama's chief political strategist and Obama won, twice. If I recall correctly Axelrod was the one who pushed the "hope & change" message to combat Hillary Clinton's vastly superior experience in the 2008 primary...a strategy that won. He got a President elected, had that President's ear for a number of years, and now sits safely in a cushy job at a university & presumably gets some nice income from Media gigs.
Did he get everything he wanted out of Obama? Well Obama's personal political skills aren't exactly the stuff of legend--he's a nice guy in person and people like him, but I've never read about astounding feats of arm-twisting or negotiation wins, etc, from him. It makes sense, then, that Obama'd let someone like Axelrod prevail (in making decisions)--someone with a lot of experience and deep understanding of the tactics and strategies needed to win. You can't exactly fault Obama for that, since delegating tasks and taking the right advice at the right time is a lot of what good executive management is all about.

You CAN fault people who didn't listen when Obama opponents said "this guy is a total 0, he doesn't have strong core beliefs, he doesn't have the kind of experience or record one could use to evaluate him or his decision making/political skill; he's a pretty face & a nice story and that's all, so he'll get rolled by the more experienced & savvy political insiders around him." It was always gonna work out that way--empty slogan, empty words, but a nice figurehead and a reliance on "hope."

What was Obama's reply to Axelrod's last line in the clip?

CWJ said...

"[Y]ou know, success came late to me..."

Oh brother (rolls eyes).

OTOH, if you separate "success" into promotion and substance components, then yes, you could say that he's still looking to achieve the latter.

ken in tx said...

Kassaar, you are probably thinking of the word 'notorious'. Notoriety is more-or-less neutral.

M Jordan said...

Obama is a perpetual teenager. When he says "It isn't about me" while checking out his reflection in a mirror, a window, a spoon for God's sake, we should try not to despise him. He's just a teenager, after all. But I do anyway.

Arthur James said...

Obama was always over his head. A college student who woke and found himself president. Let him recover and become wise.

madAsHell said...

Axelrod has always looked like the creepy guy at the adult book store.

CWJ said...

MayBee @ 8:47,

Now golf! on the other hand...

If it's not self-evident from your life and work. If third parties have to keep telling us how smart Obama is, then I suggest he's not.

Quayle said...

Ann, you've nailed it on this one.

I've said it here before: Obama was the face of a group - just as much the brand as the pepsi logo - he wasn't the driving force or its real leader.

He didn't make them. They made him.

(Perhaps one day Obama will reflect on why it was that success came "late" and on a record devoid of increasing accomplishment.)

narciso said...

Yes hislast success was buhari the general who seems to have had some success in routing out book, perhaps because red queen had been withholding support. Re chegoury and other oligarchs

narciso said...

I dubbed him alinsky's sorcerers apprentice.

Humperdink said...

"[Y]ou know, success came late to me, notoriety came late."

A laugh out loud comment from the greatest ONE ever. The smartest president ever, uses the word "notoriety" as an attribute. John Dillinger was notorious.

no·to·ri·e·ty
ˌnōdəˈrīədē/
noun
the state of being famous or well known for some bad quality or deed.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Chuck said...I expected Hillary to name Cory Booker as her running mate. I am a bit surprised that she didn't. (Although the safe, conservative play with Tim Kaine is textbook Hillary.) I expect that a realistic autopsy on the crippled and incompetent Hillary'16 campaign will highlight that error.* They didn't get a black face, to turn out the black vote. (Although let's remember that Obama campaigned for her, too!)

Yeah, I have to think a few high profile campaign stops by Mrs. Obama in Michigan and Wisconsin might have done some good...but why didn't the Clinton campaign arrange that? I know the Obamas held events in NC and PA--I'm not sure where else they went nor why Mrs. Obama wasn't sent out more (people love her).

David Begley said...

Chuck

And Nebraska would have beaten Creighton if Andrew White didn't transfer and UNL would have shot a decent field goal percentage. Foolishness to even think about "what if."

MayBee

Messina too and that motormouth from Georgetown whose name I can't recall. Dan something, I think. Creeps, all of them.

AlbertAnonymous said...

CWJ

Exactly!

M Jordan,

He's not a teenager, he's a toddler. Petulant, whiny, its all about me, ME, ME!!!

bagoh20 said...

I expect that Obama will soon be losing more at golf than ever before. We thought he could shoot basketball too until we saw him actually try it. Success in the range of 2 out of 22 is what we should call "pulling an Obama".

"Dude, you are totally pulling an Obama out here tonight. Just go home and watch porn."

narciso said...

Pfeiffer, there was also plouffe, Gibbs was perhaps the smart one.

David Begley said...

Yeah, Pfeiffer. Maybe the most offensive.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Well, ok; but let's think deeply about this (and try to put aside any intense dislike you might have for Obama and his inner circle) - did Karl Rove "get everything he wanted" from GWBush? Would Karl Rove freely admit that, even if true? What might your answer to those questions say about Bush v. Obama and/or the current state of our political elite (w/r/t the State power they can control/influence)?

JAORE said...

I think that he has never really been challenged intellectually. …

There has been danged scant evidence of the challenge or the success.

Quayle said...

Himperdink, those who have listened closely have from the beginning seen through the veneer of Obama's vaunted intelligence.

And one can potentially read all the statements about him being bored as flattery of the court to keep the gravy train moving.

One of the things which Richard Epstein said about Obama was that Obama never really participated in the rigorous inter-faculty intellectual discussions during the time he lectured as an adjunct at Chicago Law - he stayed clear of them - and even in the small conversations Obama would have, he was very careful to never reveal any clear opinion or assertion of his own.

Seen in that light, Obama is really a tragic figure of epic proportions.

Chuck said...

David Begley:

It is pure magical thinking on the part of Trump and his klan, if they think he won some sort of landslide/mandate.

He squeaked this victory, against all odds, and through the narrowest of pathways. That, is a mathematical fact. It was not the closest election in American history. But it was one of the top 10 closest; maybe top-5 closest.

Republicans, on the other hand, have precisely the sort of mandate that their numbers reflect. And careful management of that majority for the next congressional term could get us close to 60 votes in the Senate. After that, careful management of the economy should get us to another big majority across about 2/3 or 3/4 of the states, so that we can dominate 2020 redistricting just like the 2010 redistricting.

We need to use Trump at this point; and not let him screw up that scenario.

Mary Beth said...

notoriety

He makes this kind of error fairly regularly. Not this specific word, but the wrong word or poor grammar (most frequently the wrong pronoun - myself instead of I, for example.) I think this happens with people who are trying to sound smart.

Michael K said...

"I expected Hillary to name Cory Booker as her running mate. I am a bit surprised that she didn't."

I did too and consider her failure to do so, as bad as they would have been as a team, to be a major cause of her defeat.

"he was very careful to never reveal any clear opinion or assertion of his own.

Seen in that light, Obama is really a tragic figure of epic proportions."

No, he is an empty suit with a script but a white man with his intellect and story would have gotten nowhere.

Obama is the ultimate example of affirmative action and we will be lucky to survive it.

Bob Boyd said...

Axelrod is rightfully proud. There are plenty of lawyers who could get a ham sandwich indicted, but how many could get one elected President of the United States?

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Chuck said...Trump and his klan

Klan? That's gratuitous at best, Chuck.

rehajm said...

There are plenty of lawyers who could get a ham sandwich indicted, but how many could get one elected President of the United States?

Two so far.

rehajm said...

Axelrod is rightfully proud.

He's at the top of the pyramid for the ice cubes to Eskimos crowd..

Amadeus 48 said...

For all the Obama lovers and haters out there:

The really great thing is that he is never going to leave. He'll be there--full of himself as he says "It's not about me"...kibitzing from the sidelines within two weeks of January 20...shooting bricks on the playgrounds of America...hiding that awful golf swing...showing up at every Hollywood/DC/Dem/Afro/UN love-fest with that elegant figure and those well-creased trousers...spreading hope everywhere his administration killed it. This is what we have to look forward/face up to for the rest of our lives: he'll always be there, he'll never know much, and he'll never learn anything.

A happy new year to all.

Once written, twice... said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Once written, twice... said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Once written, twice... said...

Within a year we will be having nostalgia for President Obama's even keel steady hand leadership. And Ann you will be embarrassed that you never did a post that was critical of Trump.

Bay Area Guy said...

Watch out for Cory Booker. He's the next up in the thin Democratic pipeline.

He seems like a good fellow, in a vacuum. But as potential head of the Democrat Party, he will be corrupted by their Leftis (if he hasn't been already).

Dennis said...

The puppeteer interviews his puppet.

tcrosse said...

Within a year we will be having nostalgia for President Obama's even keel steady hand leadership. And Ann you will be embarrassed that you never did a post that was critical of Trump.
An even keel and a steady hand on the helm; that describes the captain of the Titanic.



Amadeus 48 said...

Cory Booker and Mark Zuckerburg applied revolutionary thinking and $100 million to Newark's public schools, flunked politics 101, and had the parents AND the teachers baying for their blood. It is a classic study in treating human beings as lab rats and then wondering why good intentions are not enough.

Booker escaped to the Senate. He may well become the next Obama, so we have that going for us...which is nice.

Amadeus 48 said...

Chuck--
"klan"? Glad to know what your spellcheck says. Mine says "clan". You might want to get that repaired before you get into trouble at work.

CWJ said...

"The puppeteer interviews his puppet."

Good one! Yep, like every ventriloquist act that's ever been.

walter said...

"success came late to me,"
Yeah..with that extensive resume and (sealed) academic records, what the hell took so long? He deserved that Nobel when he was a Senator voting "present".

walter said...

"I have no personal doubt about the fact that Obama could have won a third term. He is fifteen years younger than Trump."

Yeah..that's it. Uh huh.. Like how Marty O'Malley took off.

walter said...

Valerie Jarrett:one of the few things that truly engaged him fully before going to the White House was writing Dreams from My Father."

Compositing is fun!

David Baker said...

Could Obama have been a simple case of mass jungle fever, and totally bereft of high-minded intellectual complexities? And thus imbued with erroneous abilities, that Obama himself gladly adopted.

I recall reading, for example, that he never experienced racism until it was pointed out to him at Columbia. Where, between puffs and snorts, it eventually blossomed into a hazy but nonetheless winning political strategy.

walter said...

A racial composite who is articulate and clean...when on prompter.

walter said...

AXELROD: Just a couple more things. Are you worried about the Corbynization (ph) of the Democratic Party? Saw the Labor Party just sort of disintegrated in the face of their defeat and move so far left that it's, you know, in a very -- in a very frail state. And there is an impulse to respond to -- to the power of Trump by, you know, being as edgy...
OBAMA: On the left.
AXELROD: ... on the left.
OBAMA: I don't worry about that, partly because I think that the Democratic Party has stayed pretty grounded in fact and reality. Trump emerged out of a decade, maybe two, in which the Republican Party, because it had to say no for tactical reasons, moved further and further and further away from what we would consider to be a -- a basic consensus around things like climate change or how the economy works.
And it started filling up with all kinds of conspiracy theorizing that became kind of common wisdom or conventional wisdom within the Republican Party base. That hasn't happened in the Democratic Party. I think people like the passion that Bernie brought, but Bernie Sanders is a pretty centrist politician relative to...
AXELROD: Corbyn.
OBAMA: Relative to Corbyn or relative to some of the Republicans.
AXELROD: Oh I see what you're saying...

Hunter said...

@walter

Great exchange. It's like people on the deck of a ferry, observing how the shore is getting farther and farther away from the solid platform they're standing on.

Mike said...

Blogger Once written, twice: Within a year we will be having nostalgia for President Obama's even keel steady hand leadership

This is the funniest piece of satire written recently, certainly more subtle and witty than any SNL skit of the last few years.

"Leading from behind" with a steady red-line-scribing hand Obama set in motion the largest refugee crisis in 60 years, released over 200 of the worst terrorists from Gitmo so they can keep killing Americans, jawboned us legal gun owners and schemed to curtail our rights while pardoning violent drug dealers who actually committed gun crimes, scolded cops for "acting stupidly" while excusing the BLM riots and elevating its leaders to oversee policy, ruled by deception in every area from Obamacare to Iran to the shameful UN vote this week.

His steady hand is of a kind with a Kamikase pilot.

Saint Croix said...

English is not my native language so bear with me, but I get the impression that “notoriety” is a word like “craven”. Notoriety came late? That’s not what he meant to say, is it?

I think (maybe?) he's acknowledging his public failures. "Success came late, notoriety came late." I read that as a self-assessment that late in his life he's felt the love and the hate.

Saint Croix said...

Notorious = Infamous

walter said...

Yes Hunter, mark that one in terms of seeing centrist and Bernie in same sentence. It reminds of being told Debbie Wasserman Schultz (who?) is "cute".

Tim said...

success came late? What an idiot. He never had a job and managed to get someone else to fund his life from the start. Given a state legislature job where he did nothing (after he was given a corp attorney job where he did nothing then Lecturer at U of Chicago,and was rewarded with a US Senate seat? His wife given a no-show job at $300k? Hand delivered a Hyde Park home by the chicago mob? All of his success is due to his color and his use to the Left. We can't see his college grades because they are either terrible or non-existant

AReasonableMan said...

The bitterness is strong with these ones.

Don't worry, in a few years Bush Jr may no longer be viewed as the worst president in modern times.

Chuck said...

If Wu Tang can have a Klan, so can Trump.

A chicken in every pot, a klan in every subconscious.

tcrosse said...

Don't worry, in a few years Bush Jr may no longer be viewed as the worst president in modern times.
No need to wait. We already have a winner.

Amadeus 48 said...

Chuck--everywhere I look it is Wu Tang Clan. The "klan" concept is deep in your head, and it may lead to tears. People who are not racists get tired of being called racists real fast. Some have better impulse control than others.

Gahrie said...

Don't worry, in a few years Bush Jr may no longer be viewed as the worst president in modern times.

Nobody tries to argue that Bush was worse than Carter....not even Democrats with BDS....the issue is will Obama be seen as worse than Carter?

AReasonableMan said...

Gahrie said...
Nobody tries to argue that Bush was worse than Carter


You can't be serious. Bush did lasting damage to the US and world economies and lit a conflagration in the middle east for no good reason.

It's not even close, and Carter wasn't a good president.

walter said...

Ah..so that's why he got 2 terms vs carter's 1. I'm just thankful we had Obama to manage things so well afterwards.

Michael K said...

ReasonableMan said...
Gahrie said...
Nobody tries to argue that Bush was worse than Carter

You can't be serious. Bush did lasting damage to the US and world economies and lit a conflagration in the middle east for no good reason.

It's not even close, and Carter wasn't a good president.


The non-reader of history weighs in. You seem to have no information on anything prior to 2004.

There were good reasons to invade in 2003 even though you may disagree.

AReasonableMan said...

Michael K said...
There were good reasons to invade in 2003


No there weren't. No sane person believes this. I am prepared to concede that you might.

Michael K said...

Blogger AReasonableMan said...
Michael K said...
There were good reasons to invade in 2003

No there weren't. No sane person believes this. I am prepared to concede that you might.


The wicked flee when no man pursueth and the insane are certain that no sane person could disagree.

If you were less doctrinaire, I would be willing to discuss the reasons. However you are that doctrinaire.

You might think about reading Codevilla's essay on Political Correctness in this month's issue of The Claremont Review of Books.

What is to be done with a political system in which no one any longer believes? This is a revolutionary question because America’s ruling class largely destroyed, along with its own credibility, the respect for truth, and the culture of restraint that had made the American people unique stewards of freedom and prosperity. Willful masses alienated from civilization turn all too naturally to revolutions’ natural leaders. Donald Trump only foreshadows the implacable men who, Abraham Lincoln warned, belong to the “family of the lion and the tribe of the eagle.”

In short, the P.C. “changes in law and public norms” (to quote Galston again) that the ruling class imposed on the rest of America, rather than having “gradually brought about changes in private attitudes across partisan and ideological lines” as the ruling class imagined (and as Gramsci would have approved) have set off a revolution—of which we can be sure only that it won’t be pretty.


Good luck.


Sammy Finkelman said...

"Success came late to me"

He was almost 30 when he graduated form law school.

But then it accel;lerated.

AReasonableMan said...

Michael K said...
If you were less doctrinaire


I don't think you are using the word doctrinaire correctly. My position is the majority position, a consensus formed by rational people who have examined the actual results of the war.

Michael K said...

"My position is the majority position, a consensus formed by rational people who have examined the actual results of the war."

Democrats are not a majority. Occasionally a plurality.

AReasonableMan said...

Michael K said...
Democrats are not a majority.


Who said they were? A majority of people think the Iraq war was a mistake, including President-elect Pussy Grabber.