It ain’t me, babe

Last night 60 Minutes aired an interview with President Obama conducted by Steve Kroft. The interview ran over two segments. Videos and transcript are posted here.

In the first half of the interview Kroft asked about foreign policy. The questions were critical and the atmosphere was tense. Obama was not pleased. Obama yammered in his accustomed style. Kroft interrupted to note that he felt like he was being filibustered. Again, Obama was not pleased. Kroft called the failure of Obama’s ambivalent program to equip a force of Syrian moderates to fight ISIS “an embarrassment.” He even asked why Obama approved the program if he didn’t support it. Not pleased.

Obama drew on the the theme of the great Bob Dylan song as he wended his way through the first half of the interview: “It ain’t me, babe.” Not to be too concerned, however. “The community of nations” is on the case and all will be well in time. Not any time soon, and not necessarily in time to mitigate the ongoing catastrophe, but some time.

Obama will be leaving his successor several deep, deep holes to dig us out of. Kroft should have tried to nail down the timetable Obama has in mind, but there are limits to Krofts’s curiosity (as his questions about Hillary Clinton’s private email server in the second segment demonstrated).

In addition to drawing attention to the interview, I want to add the following exchange to our Annals of Inanity. This is an instant classic. Kroft observed that Vladimir Putin is challenging Obama for leadership in the Middle East and Obama responded:

Steve Kroft: He’s challenging your leadership, Mr. President. He’s challenging your leadership–

President Barack Obama: Well Steve, I got to tell you, if you think that running your economy into the ground and having to send troops in in order to prop up your only ally is leadership, then we’ve got a different definition of leadership. My definition of leadership would be leading on climate change, an international accord that potentially we’ll get in Paris. My definition of leadership is mobilizing the entire world community to make sure that Iran doesn’t get a nuclear weapon. And with respect to the Middle East, we’ve got a 60-country coalition that isn’t suddenly lining up around Russia’s strategy. To the contrary, they are arguing that, in fact, that strategy will not work.

Obama’s first claim to the mantle of leadership refers to the phenomenon formerly known as global warming. “The Eastern world, it is exploding,” in the words of the old P.F. Sloan song. But Obama has things in hand. He’s got “climate change” covered. And that’s not all! The rest of the items on his list are at the same time, and equally, imaginary and, if you can keep from crying, laughable.

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