January 19th, 2015

Obama the youth candidate

[NOTE: Every now and then I’ve been republishing old posts that shed light on some interesting aspect of Obama that was evident way back when he was first running for president. These problems were apparent very early in the game; it’s stunning that more people did not notice and pay attention to what were huge red flags. The following piece first appeared on this blog in April of 2008. At the time I first wrote it, I had not yet come to appreciate the full destructiveness of Obama’s intentions towards the US, although that became clear not too long after. But I already had come close to understanding the extent of the narcissism and arrogance of his character. As I’ve said many times before, that does not show any special brilliance on my part; it was all there right on the surface for anyone who cared to actually look at Obama’s words.

I am republishing the post in its entirety.]

I’m beginning to see that one of the sources of Obama’s appeal, especially to the young, is that he speaks their language. Although the man is forty-six, he comes across as much younger, with a certain “like, you know” improvisational attitude towards the Presidency, especially when speaking off the cuff.

Some no doubt find it refreshing. I do not. It’s reached its peak (so far) in a recent speech in San Francisco when Obama, asked what qualifications he might be looking for in a potential running mate, had this to say (emphasis mine on Obama’s youth-bonding language):

I would like somebody who knows about a bunch of stuff that I’m not as expert on. I think a lot of people assume that might be some sort of military thing to make me look more Commander-in-Chief-like. Ironically, this is an area—foreign policy is the area where I am probably most confident that I know more and understand the world better than Senator Clinton or Senator McCain.

It’s ironic because this is supposedly the place where experience is most needed to be Commander-in-Chief. Experience in Washington is not knowledge of the world. This I know. When Senator Clinton brags ‘I’ve met leaders from eighty countries’–I know what those trips are like! I’ve been on them. You go from the airport to the embassy. There’s a group of children who do native dance. You meet with the CIA station chief and the embassy and they give you a briefing. You go take a tour of a plant that [with] the assistance of USAID has started something. And then–you go.”

“You do that in eighty countries—you don’t know those eighty countries. So when I speak about having lived in Indonesia for four years, having family that is impoverished in small villages in Africa–knowing the leaders is not important–what I know is the people. . . .”

“I traveled to Pakistan when I was in college–I knew what Sunni and Shia was [sic] before I joined the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. . . .”

If there’s a better example of the arrogance of youth, I can’t think of it offhand. The glorification of “self-confidence” as an improvement on knowledge and experience. The description of the trips to foreign countries as meaningless, including those tedious briefings (sort of like a visit to a boring relative—can’t we go out and play now?) The idea that hazy memories of a few years spent in a country—in this case, Indonesia—about forty years ago as a child of six to ten years old would have any relevance to understanding what’s going on in terms of power or politics or economics in that country or any other part of the world today.

Likewise the college trip to Pakistan. Give me a break.

If Obama really were in his teens or early twenties, these sorts of statements might be understandable. And his “foreign policy” experience of living for a while in these countries would at least have the advantage of being relatively recent.

But Obama is now forty-six years old, and will be forty-seven at the time of the election. Not such a child after all. And although youthful exuberance and innocence can be charming even in an adult, youthful arrogance and ignorance never is.

Is Obama really this unaware, or is he faking it to appeal to the youthful demographic? I haven’t a clue, but I fear it’s the former—although, as George Burns once said:

“The secret of acting is sincerity. If you can fake that, you’ve got it made.

And so it’s also possible Obama is a pretty good actor.

20 Responses to “Obama the youth candidate”

  1. jaed Says:

    Something I said at some point in 2009:

    “The President is a bright college sophomore. If he were twenty years old, this would be fine. He’s pushing fifty, and it’s not fine.”

  2. Yancey Ward Says:

    No, the authentic Obama said all of those things. He had and has the intellectual depth of a coat of paint.

  3. Steve57 Says:

    I never thought Obama was unaware of how immature he sounded. And I didn’t think he was talking this way to capture the youth demographic. Let’s be honest; all he had to be was young-ish and black and let them know he’s into rap and social media, etc. to do that. He didn’t need to talk like a slacker. I thought he was doing it to insult us. One thing he actually brought up during the 2008 campaign in addition to what’s in this post, when asked about his foreign policy experience, was that he had majored in international relations at Columbia.

    Who when they’re pushing 50 does that during what is essentially a job interview? If it were anybody else we’d know that’s lighting up a neon sign advertising the fact that we haven’t had any accomplishments since then to add to our resumes. I’m sure Obama knew that too. But he also knew he was going to get the job. He just wanted to let the electorate know he had zero respect for us whatsoever.

    Sort of like he’d flip people the bird while pretending he was just absent mindedly scratching his head with his middle finger or what not.

    It didn’t matter. His team would eliminate any Democratic opposition and after Bush the GOP wasn’t a worry. He was going to be President of the US, he has nothing but contempt for us, and he’s so arrogant he couldn’t help but let that show just a little bit.

    Oh, I saw your response on the Leslie Gelb comment thread so I’ll take a stab at what he must be thinking. That he’s beginning to understand he’s an old fool for getting taken in by this guy. As a liberal Democrat the idea of Barack Obama represented in many ways the culmination of his life’s work. Obama understood that and he knew how to play Gelb like a fish. The reality of Barack Obama is starting to seep in and, yes, that Obama is the culmination of his life’s work too. Facing that reality means he’s wasted his life, and he just can’t quite face that reality yet. It seemed to me Gelb wasn’t so much being diplomatic, as other commenters said, but still in the bargaining stage of his grief.

  4. KLSmith Says:

    When I wonder how this guy was elected/re-elected, I remind myself that we drastically overestimate how much news our fellow voters are exposed to. It would be scary to find out how many people’s idea of the news is glancing at the tabloid headlines at the grocery store. That’s how they didn’t know anything about Obama. How many O voters would have cared if they even knew?
    Kudos to Neo for figuring him out early and being brave enough to say it.

  5. chanticleer Says:

    I note that this speech from Obama includes he himself mentioning his college trip to Pakistan as “proof” of his vast
    knowledge of international relations.

    I can’t tell you how many liberals I have heard claim that Obama never took a college trip to Pakistan, that it’s a complete fabrication propagated by Fox News. To claim that this trip was an utter lie means that even Obama’s supporters knew that college trips to Pakistan didn’t have great optics.

  6. G Joubert Says:

    Obama is the superficial president. Everything is superficial, and everything we know about him is superficial. Thanks MSM.

  7. mf Says:

    He’s like a con man. He wants us to think he’s ignorant. All the better to play us. And yes, he hates Americans and he believes we deserve what he is giving to us or else we’re just acceptble damage on the way to remaking the world.

    This is just the activist progessive way of looking at the world.

  8. Mr. Frank Says:

    It has often been said that no one likes a smart ass. Apparently, that does not apply to Obama supporters.

  9. Francesca Says:

    He is so passive/aggressive. The middle finger thing is but one example.

  10. neo-neocon Says:


    But Obama didn’t go to Pakistan.

    He went to Pockeestahn.

  11. M J R Says:


    The pretentiousness of that is stunning.

    I was listening to His babblings once (back when I was silly enough to actually listen to Him), and He mentioned Afghanistan in some context or other.

    I turned to my wife and blurted out in mock surprise, you mean “Ahf-Gaa’-Nee-Stahn”?

    The pretentious ninny used the normal anglo pronunciation for Afghanistan, but when it came to Pakistan, it was forever “Pockeestahn”.

    What a consummate jackass.

    (End of rant.)

  12. Blacque Jacques Shellacque Says:

    …it’s stunning that more people did not notice and pay attention to what were huge red flags.

    Electing the first black president was more important to a lot of those people than giving any careful thought as to who and what the guy was, and what he really stood for.

    If this were an ideal world, the consequences of putting such a cretin into the presidency would have fallen only on those who were stupid enough to vote for him.

  13. Steve57 Says:

    M J R said:

    “The pretentious ninny used the normal anglo pronunciation for Afghanistan…”

    Too bad the pretentious ninny couldn’t descend from Mt. Olympus and ask one of one of the lesser life forms familiar with the Navy about the normal anglo pronunciation for “Corpse-man” before making a speech about a corpsman.

    Too bad for him. I got a laugh out of it. As I did when he was at a meeting of the Organization of American States and for some reason the Falklands were in the news. Since he was in S. America, and being none too keen on those imperialistic Brits anyway, he decided to wow everyone with his multilingual superpowers and use the Spanish name for the islands.

    And proceeded to talk about a dispute between Argentina and the UK over the Maldives on the other side of the world.

    The only thing I like about the guy is all the unintentional comedy he provides. He thinks he’s such a sophisticate, when he really does come off as a doofus a lot. A lot more then I’d expect from a man his PR people tell me is the smartest man to live in the White House since Jefferson.

  14. Cornhead Says:

    1. Yeah. He had that foreign policy stuff down cold.

    2. The WSJ ran a photo spread showing how similar Michelle O dressed like Jackie O when she was in the White House.

    I am convinced that they were sold as the black Kennedys and Denzel Washington schooled Barack on how to ACT presidential and improve his Q scores. Or at least the campaign studied Denzel closely and coached Barry. Denzel has one of the highest Q scores in all of media.

  15. wade in Says:

    Just so!

    Well, that’s what people do.
    Speak as they will and grow.

    I know, I know, I know.

    Each canoe from each tribe
    fellow citizens suscribed

    to the New York Times.

  16. miklos000rosza Says:

    Two things aboout Obama bothered me hugely in 2008, yet failed to stir any of my friends (who were perhaps understandably unexcited by John McCain and yes, definitely overly thrilled by the concept of our first black president — that was a thought they couldn’t get out of their heads).

    I was unhappy, more than unhappy, with the close connection to Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn, destructive rich kids who’d torn apart SDS (because, for one thing, they believed the vanguard of the Revolution had to be black. This wasn’t helped when in front of everyone, at the big SDS conference, a Black Panther onstage was asked “What should be the position of women in the Revolution?” and he replied “On their backs.” When he was boo’d, this caused Dohrn and others to walk out, deeming any criticism of a Black Panther to be racist. Thus was formed Weatherman.) Ayers and Dohrn participated in or were accessories to several bank robberies but got, thanks to their rich parents’ hired gun legal talent — a situation that Ayers characterized as: “Guilty as hell. Free as a bird.”

    The closer one looks at the association between Ayers/Dohrn and Obama, the worse it looks.

    A second item is the fact that no one can see Obama’s grades or SATs. This wasn’t that long after G.W. Bush’s grades at Yale had been talked about a great deal. (When compared to John Kerry’s, they were roughly the same or a little better.) So the absolute incuriosity of my friends on the Left and in the press was disillusioning. But they had signed on and become advocates by this point.

  17. Cornhead Says:

    Barry played that historic first black president like a pro as that was his only “qualification” to be president and win.

    His life experience wasn’t authentically black with the prep school in HI, radical Mom and grandparents and the Ivy League education. And even while he has sold Blacks down the river with his immigration stunts, he still has something like 90% approval. Obama has been worse than OJ on the issue of race relations due to his comments and actions on things like Trayvon and Ferguson.

    Obama is a classic con man. The marks don’t even know they have been taken.

  18. Sarah Rolph Says:

    It’s amazing to read that again with the realization that people bought this. The listened to this man say these things and they decided to vote for him. Does not compute.

    When Bush was President, I got so sick of the derisive terms of the leftists that I promised myself not to speak that way about a president I disrespected.

    For the most part, I do refer to the madman in the White House as President Obama. But when I lose my resolve, the thing I am most likely to refer to him as is “our child president.”

  19. M J R Says:

    Sarah Rolph, 9:48 am — “For the most part, I do refer to the madman in the White House as President Obama. But when I lose my resolve, the thing I am most likely to refer to him as is ‘our child president.'”

    I was in a similar position. I could barely pronounce his name or even look at him after a point. (I still have difficulties, believe me.) I cast about for a suitable way to refer to him, used “incumbent-in-chief” for a while, and finally settled upon “President Hopenchange”, with which I am reasonably content — the appellation, not the occupant of the office.

    It’s difficult. Bush 43, whatever his shortcomings (many), at least respected the office and loved his country. And was on our side. This incumbent guy, . . . . . . . . . . . .

  20. Ymarsakar Says:

    He’s Hussein Obola. That’s not going to change no matter what people like to say.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

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