Barack Obama

Obama’s Cretan paradox

Featured image The semi-mythical Cretan philosopher Epimenides famously propounded the paradoxical assertion that all Cretans are liars. Campaigning for Barack Obama in 2012, the cretin former president Bill Clinton propounded his own version of the paradox in his capacity as Barack Obama’s foremost campaign surrogate. Clinton regaled a Philadelphia crowd with his critique of the Romney campaign. Clinton asked: “You’re laughing, but who wants a president who will knowingly, repeatedly tell you »

What Trump and Obama have in common

Featured image Donald Trump and Barack Obama don’t have a great deal in common, but they share this trait: both love to talk about themselves when campaigning for others (and not just then). Obama was in Nevada on Monday, campaigning for Democratic candidates including Rep. Jacky Rosen who is trying to unseat Sen. Dean Heller in a race Democrats probably need to win if they are to gain control of the Senate. »

What happened in Vegas

Featured image The Las Vegas Review-Journal was impressed by the crowd President Obama drew to Cox Pavilion at UNLV as he stumped for Democratic senatorial candidate Jacky Rosen yesterday, putting it at 2,000. On Twitter, Rosie Memos was not so impressed. Drawing on photos from around the room, RM explains the sound of silence. Below is one of the pieces of evidence compiled by RM, who also cruelly contrasts Obama’s Las Vegas »

An Obama postscript

Featured image In a book to be published this week, Jeanne Marie Laskas tells the story of the ten thousand letters a day Americans wrote to President Obama. “Every evening for eight years,” the publisher recalls, “at his request, President Obama was given ten handpicked letters written by ordinary American citizens—the unfiltered voice of a nation—from his Office of Presidential Correspondence.” And Laskas reports that President Obama responded in his fashion. The »

Return of the Hypocrite

Featured image After staying mostly quiet for the last year and a half, Barack Obama has emerged to campaign for the Democrats in the midterm elections. The king of hypocrisy wasted no time denouncing President Trump for being divisive and failing to respect the Constitution. He also tried to claim credit for the economy’s taking off as soon as his policies were reversed. Did I mention chutzpah? A number of observers have »

McCain’s funeral turns into resistance meeting

Featured image Susan Glasser of the New Yorker calls John McCain’s funeral “the biggest resistance meeting yet.” I think Glasser is right, but is this a good thing? Glasser certainly thinks so. She seems ecstatic about it. McCain probably would have thought so too. He was a world class grudge holder. McCain was also capable of forgiveness, but that capacity ran in only one direction — left. It’s rich, though, that Meghan »

Obama not going away

Featured image Our relative freedom from the sound of Obama’s voice should not mislead us into thinking he has retreated into postpresidential respectability. We know that’s not his way. In the New York Post column “The myth of Obama’s disappearance,” Paul Sperry documents in excruciating detail that he is still out there seeking fundamental transformation. He’s not going anywhere. He hasn’t changed his stripes. He means to put us back on the »

To and from Russia, with emails

Featured image An overwhelming wealth of story lines emerge from the IG report on the Clinton email “investigation,” as I call it, released this past Thursday. I posted it via Scrbid here. As Andrew McCarthy pointed out before the election in 2016 and repeatedly since (perhaps most recently here), the fix was in from the beginning. The fix was in because Obama was in on the wrongdoing and he was the head »

Obama caught lying…again

Featured image Glenn Reynolds could have trademarked his expression of exasperation “I don’t want to hear another goddamn word about my carbon footprint.” I have a similar feeling about of exasperation complaints of President Trump’s challenges to veracity. Reading Marc Thiessen’s great column today about newly revealed disgraces committed by Team Obama in furtherance of the Iran deal, I don’t want to hear another goddamn word about Trump’s lying. Here is the »

When the arc of history refuses to bend

Featured image Ben Rhodes couldn’t. . .I mean. . .process. . .I mean. . .just couldn’t. . .process Donald Trump’s victory over Hillary Clinton. Fortunately, Barack Obama was available to process it for him. When you have the arc of history down cold, processing setbacks, even really bad ones, isn’t that hard. Matthew Continetti writes a devastating piece on Barack Obama’s processing, as described in Rhodes’ new book. To assist Rhodes, Obama »

The Final Year, Thank God (3)

Featured image In my notes on the HBO documentary The Final Year — here (part 1) and here (part 2) — I lacked film clips of either of the films two highlights. The reaction of Obama fabulist Ben Rhodes accounts for one highlight. Video of the clip is in the tweet below. David Burge (Iowahawk) comments that “it takes a heart of stone not to laugh your ass off.” This video of »

The Obamas move upstream

Featured image Barack Obama wasn’t much of a president. His signature accomplishment may turn out to be paving the way for Donald Trump. Obama isn’t the genius his boosters (with his encouragement) made him out to be, either. I don’t consider him a first rate or deep thinker. If you disagree, identify one of his deep thoughts. Claiming to be on “the right side of history” doesn’t count. Neither does “let’s funnel »

Two 2013 letters

Featured image Omri Ceren’s tweet below is at the same time a valuable piece of media criticism and history. The letter to Khameni cited by Omri is described well in the Wall Street Journal story by Jay Solomon and Carol Lee. We are living in strange, strange times, and the press is a virtually insuperable obstacle to understanding them. Omri’s tweet is a valuable reminder on that score as well. In 2013 »

Once upon a time in America, Part Two

Featured image The Washington Post takes up the same theme raised by Charles Lane on Fox News — President Trump’s tendency to compare himself favorably to Barack Obama. Post reporters Philip Rucker and Ashley Parker cite the same statement Lane did — Trump’s claim that “I have been much tougher on Russia than Obama, just look at the facts.” Like Lane, Rucker and Parker choose their words carefully when they contend that »

Once upon a time in America

Featured image Yesterday on Bret Baier’s Special Report, his panel was discussing President Trump’s latest tweets about Russia. Charles Lane suggested that we reflect on how Trump has attacked Barack Obama over Russia and asserted his superior toughness towards Putin. “There was a time,” Lane said, when the very fact of such attacks and assertions by a president regarding his predecessor would widely have been considered outrageous. Lane may be right. But »

A dog-whistle for the hysterical and unlettered

Featured image CNN reports that during his speech today to the National Sheriff’s Association, Attorney General Sessions said this: I want to thank every sheriff in America. Since our founding, the independently elected sheriff has been the people’s protector, who keeps law enforcement close to and accountable to people through the elected process. The office of sheriff is a critical part of the Anglo-American heritage of law enforcement. Outrage followed. Not from »

A green thought in a green shade

Featured image I await Roger Kimball’s commentary on the official portraits of President and Mrs. Obama unveiled today for display in the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery. Speaking as a layman, I can say that I find Obama’s portrait unflattering and unaesthetic, so perhaps it fits in some sense. I can also say that it put me in mind of Andrew Marvell’s great metaphysical poem “The Garden,” which I have not thought about »