You know how everyone (including us at CMR) mocks Obama a bit for his out sized ego and how he thinks that the solution to every crisis facing America is “a major address?”
Well, I’ve got bad news. It’s all true. This White House actually believes Obama is fighting what used to be called “The War on Terror” with teleprompter aided rhetorical flourishes.
And the White House is actually admitting it. The New York Times Magazine has this very disturbing paragraph in a piece on Obama:
“And so perhaps the biggest change Obama has made is what one former adviser calls the “mood music” — choice of language, outreach to Muslims, rhetorical fidelity to the rule of law and a shift in tone from the all-or-nothing days of the Bush administration. He is committed to taking aggressive actions to disrupt terrorist cells, aides said, but he also considers his speech in Cairo to the Islamic world in June central to his efforts to combat terrorism. “If you asked him what are the most important things he’s done to fight terrorism in his first year, he would put Cairo in the top three,” Rahm Emanuel, his chief of staff told me.”
Mood music? Is he serious? Are there any grownups in the White House at all?
As Jamie Fly at The Weekly Standard points out:
It makes you wonder what other actions round out the top three. Pledging to close Guantanamo Bay? Banning enhanced interrogation procedures? One would hope that sending tens of thousands of additional troops to Afghanistan to fight the Taliban and al Qaeda or increasing the number of drone strikes in Pakistan would make the list, but perhaps they aren’t seen as making us as safe as a good speech. A speech, by the way, which even some of the President’s supporters are beginning to realize was long on rhetoric and short on follow-through.
In short, the caricature of Obama is not a caricature.
So in all those speeches that interrupt your favorite shows where Obama talks about a problem, Obama actually thinks he’s solving it by speaking. Oh no. 2012 never seemed so far away.