Friday, March 20, 2009

Disrespecting the Presidential Office

I think I've gained some street cred (blog cred?) with Dan Riehl on the question of the dignity and stature of the office of the presidency. I noted this morning that Barack Obama's gaffe last night wasn't the least of his infidelities, but also that his media appearances were lowering the bar on the dignity of Oval Office. As I noted, "the President's 'Special Olympics' faux pas is really a bit much, not just for its complete cluelessness, and the very indignity of a comedy appearance amid national crisis ..."

Apparently, a number of right-bloggers haven't appreciated the seriousness in Obama's relaxation of presidential etiquette and morality.
As Dan notes:

I've seen similar commentary to this elsewhere on the Right regarding Obama's Special Olympic's flap. Unfortunately, it pretty much convinces me that a lot of blog commentary on the Right today is relatively useless. And there are two reasons for that in this particular case ....

To start with, it isn't about the humor ... frankly, I don't see much wrong with that, as I'm not easily offended. But what was it Bush tried to do most when taking office post-Clinton? Do you even remember?

He tried to bring a little dignity back to the office, that's what. Because he respected the office. Guess what? Obama doesn't. Just as he doesn't really respect a lot of things that once warranted some respect in this Republic. It just amazes me to see so many allegedly informed Right-siders scream about how the Left wants to undermine American institutions, yet faced with a perfect example of it they can't even understand it's going on.
Well, after blogging about Barack Obama and the Democrats continuously for almost a year, I feel readily able to testify to the utter obliteration of values, rectitude, and order in this administration. I remember very clearly, in 2001, when President George W. Bush took office, the New York Times ran a comparative analysis of the Clinton and Bush White Houses. Bill Clinton was very informal. He worked hard, sure, but his style was loose and unorganized. George W. Bush, by contrast, was at work by 7:00am. He stressed a code of punctuality for all meetings, and he ALWAYS dressed in a suit and tie (and formal dress was required of visitors to the Oval Office). G.W. Bush ran an even tigther ship than his own father's: "Many officials in the Bush White House said they were struck by how there seemed to be far less back-stabbing than there had been even in Mr. Bush's father's White House."

But it's not just about attire and punctuality. It's attitude. It's almost as if President Obama is actually inviting charges that he's disrespecting the office. On his first day, he made it a point to be photographed by Time without a coat and tie. And remember that "larger point" ... the new president wasn't just going casual; he was sending the message that his predecessor was a stuffed shirt and he was going to do it differently.


It seems to me that there's a majesty to the office that goes beyond the individual occupant in power. Barack Obama campaigned for a year as a coolster, someone who was down with the younger generations. President Obama makes it known that he likes the Rolling Stones, and one of his biggest priorities in office is to install a basketball court in the White House (and now he's picking tournament brackets for the NCAA Championship). Sure, he's entitled, but when he makes it a point to go on Jay Leno's show amid a both a national crisis and an executive scandal, and is quick to ridicule - however inadvertently - those of limited physical abilities, it seems as though slapping down some late-night jive is more important than slapping down his own administration's tax-cheats and policy imbeciles.

All of this was on display last year: From the "presidential seal" disaster, to the Berlin speech last summer at Adoph Hitler's favorite monument (the Siegessäule Victory Column), to his waffling reply to Pastor Rick Warren at Saddleback (suggesting that on the right to life would "reduce the number of abortions in America"), there's been little reasurring about this man, his candidacy, and whether this administration will take culture, values, and tradition seriously.

So I want to thank
Dan Riehl for laying it out there as he has. The underlying messages beneath Obama's gaffes are enormously telling in how this presidency will govern the nation in a period not only of disruption, but outright social decay.

9 comments:

shoprat said...

I really don't care about whether or not he wears a tie, as a necktie is second biggest waste of fabric there is (second only to the burka) but his disregard for the Constitution and his obvious disloyalty to other traditions positively sicken me.

Donald Douglas said...

As I said, Shoprat, it's the attitude...

Thanks for commenting.

Ezekiel said...

I agree with every word about Obama's distressing conduct. Going on comedy shows and making Special Olympics jokes is very bad form. It just shows how much he thinks being President is about having the spotlight, and this recent episode suggests he likes all that media attention not just as a means to a particular end. He just made a jackass of himself, and for what? What did that achieve? What did he THINK it would achieve?

I have to dissent on the part about the Victory Column- Hitler liked our early frontiersman too, but that alone is not a reason to get all P.C. and call them "genocidal." I'm not ashamed to say Moltke the Elder is one of my favorite Continental Europeans of all time, and ridding civilization of the Bonapartist beast once and for all (the Little Corporal's nephew was our enemy too, by the way) is something that SHOULD be celebrated.

The Vegas Art Guy said...

If Bush had made those Gaffes it would be front page news for a week or more. But I'm surprised it's even news at all considering how big his PR firm is, er how the MSM treats him.

Donald Douglas said...

Thanks for commenting, Ezekiel...

Donald Douglas said...

Vegas Guy: Obama kids the kid glove treatment...

Reaganite Republican said...

Obama has something seriously wrong with him- what kind of monster mocks the disabled on network television?

I guess we shouldn't be too surprised by this gauche and downright cruel comment re. the Special Olympics- no different than his classless cheap-shot on 90-yr-old Nancy Reagan in his first presser- apparently his preferred targets are old ladies and the handicapped... what a creep.

Narcissists like Obama are often callous- and even ruthless. They tend to lack empathy and/or a conscience. This is evident in his lack of interest in his own half-brother who lives in poverty in Kenya, or his aunt found living in public housing in Boston.

Other indicators include control freakery, grandiose self-importance, feeling "above the law", interpersonally exploitive, inability to handle criticism, lack of empathy, arrogant behavior, surrounds himself with sycophants... sound familiar?

Obama is a mess- and his insecurities, bad childhood, and irresponsible, far-left-wierdo mother are now OUR problem, too-

http://reaganiterepublicanresistance.blogspot.com/

Law and Order Teacher said...

Dr.D,
I agree that BO is all about cool. He is trying to protray himself as the guy who succeed by trashing all those old stuffy guys. Ever see the movie "Old School?" That's BO. Funny in a movie. Not so funny in real life.

Pat said...

I totally agree with this post (and am linking it by the way); I've felt the same thing ever since I saw the coolster in his shirt sleeves in the Oval Office. I mentioned that on my own blog and was attacked for being too critical. Go figure. But all I could think about was Reagan and the dignity he brought to office. We've come a long way....down.