Maybe we need to call President Obama The Ice Man. He has no emotion, he doesn’t show any emotion. Look how he reacts to unemployment. He’s utterly unaffected! It’s like it doesn’t bother him at all. I want to share with you some excerpts of this piece by Toby Harnden in the UK Telegraph. ‘Barack Obama’s reaction to bad news is to play it so cool that Americans yearn for a bit more drama — and some even for his predecessor, writes Toby Harnden in Washington.
‘During the election campaign, Barack Obama’s cool detachment was a winning quality, the ‘No Drama Obama’ a welcome contrast with the ‘Mr. Angry’ John McCain, never mind the hot-headed ‘I’m the Decider’ President George W Bush,’ which, by the way, is a characterization I never understood. I never understood Bush being thought of as a hothead. Bush said, ‘You’re either with us or against us.’ That’s no different than Reagan saying, ‘We win, they lose.’ You know, Bush was just direct. Bush violated political correctness, at times. That’s, I guess, what people consider to be hotheaded. We wanted hotheaded, by the way, after 9/11! We wanted hotheadedness. That’s the whole point of Toby’s piece here.
‘A year into his presidency, however, Mr. Obama seems a curiously bloodless president. If he experiences passion, he seldom shows it. It is often anyone’s guess as to whether an event or issue truly moves him.’ No passion. Perfect word for Obama: The Ice Man. ‘He has spent more than two months considering a troop increase but do we know how he really feels about the Afghan war?’ Yeah, we do. He doesn’t like victory. He’s ‘not comfortable,’ Toby, with the concept of victory. Yeah, we know how he feels about it. ‘In a sign that the Obama honeymoon truly is over, I began to hear this week the first stirrings of a wistfulness about Mr. Bush. ‘I never thought I’d hear myself say it,’ one Democrat told me. ‘But Obama makes you feel that at least with Bush you knew where he was on something.’
‘When Mr. Bush’s Republicans were defeated in the 2006 mid-term elections, it was the President himself who stepped up and declared that his party had received ‘a thumpin”. The Democratic defeats on Tuesday were not on anything like the same scale but Mr. Obama acted as if nothing at all had happened. … It took Senator Mark Warner of Virginia to admit that his party ‘got walloped’. For three days, Mr. Obama maintained a studied silence about the results while his aides blamed them on local factors that had nothing to do with the President. And to think that it was Mr. Bush who was always accused of being ‘in denial’. More serious perhaps was Mr. Obama’s strange disconnectedness over the Fort Hood massacre of 13 soldiers by an Army major and devout Muslim who opposed the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan,’ and was still in our military, somehow, ‘had praised suicide bombing and shouted ‘Allahu Akbar’ as he opened fire,’ and the president says we don’t have any idea why this happened! The president says these kinds of things are ‘inexplicable.’
‘Maybe Mr. Obama had been reading the American press, much of which somehow contrived to present the atrocity as a result of combat stress due to soldiers going on repeated war deployments (though Major Nadal Hasan had not been on any) and therefore, no doubt, Mr. Bush’s fault,’ and, in fact, I do believe, ladies and gentlemen… I thought I had a sound bite where it’s Bush’s fault. Maybe, yes, I do. Let me check the roster. I’ve got over 34 sound bites today. Let’s see… Nah, can’t find one. So I’ll stick with the Toby Harnden piece. ‘When the television networks cut to the President, viewers listened to him spend more than two surreal minutes talking to a gathering of Native Americans about their ‘extraordinary’ and ‘extremely productive’ conference, pausing to give a cheery ‘shout out’ to a man named Dr. Joe Medicine Crow.
‘Only then did he briefly and mechanically address what had happened in Texas. On Friday, when most of the basic facts were available, Mr. Obama tried again. It was scarcely any better. He began by offering ‘an update on the tragedy that took place’ — as if it was an earthquake and not a terrorist attack from an enemy within… Completely missing was the eloquence that Mr. Obama employs when talking about himself. Absent too was any sense that the President empathized with the families and comrades of those murdered. It was a reminder that for the past 16 years Americans have had two Presidents who would often extemporize and express emotion. President Bill Clinton could certainly ‘feel your pain’ while Mr. Bush sometimes struggled to hold back tears. Mr. Obama is more like President George Bush Sr., who famously communicated his concern for people by blurting out: ‘Message — I care.’ …
‘With unemployment now above 10 percent, Mr. Obama needs to show Americans that he can relate to what they’re going through, and take responsibility. It could do him good to show he has a bit of fire in his belly. Perhaps he might make a decision or two based on gut instinct …’ Toby, I’ll tell you why this isn’t going to happen. Barack Obama once said to Harry Reid, ‘Harry, I’ve got a gift.’ Obama thinks it’s his speeches! Obama… Folks, you do not understand the ego of this man, the narcissistic ego of this man. The hardest thing for him to do every day is to turn away from the mirror after he gets dressed. And he thinks that his speeches soar and lift people’s souls and inspire them to great actions and deeds — his Berlin speech, his Cairo speech, the fake columns acceptance speech in Denver at Invesco Field at Mile High. They’re all about the speech.
This speech yesterday, I’m sure he thinks that it was one of the greatest ever. But speeches, folks? Speeches are words. Speeches are not going to convince the Iranians to un-nuke! Speeches and words are not going to persuade the pot-bellied little dictator in North Korea to give up his nukes. Speeches are not going to change anything happening in Venezuela or other dictatorial outposts all over the world. So he’s not going to stop making these empty speeches. In fact, I’ve gotta find this out during the break. There’s a story I missed from over the weekend in the New York Times by Peter Baker in which this whole point was made: Mr. President, these speeches are starting to sound tired and the same and… Yeah, yeah. Here it is. I just happened to find it.
‘The President Whose Words Once Soared,’ November 8th, Peter Baker. ‘As the most gifted orator of his generation…’ He’s not an ‘orator,’ he’s a teleprompter reader! ‘As the most gifted orator of his generation, President Obama finds speechmaking perhaps his most potent political tool. It propelled him to national prominence in 2004 and to the White House in 2008. And whenever he needs to calm economic fears or revive stalled health care legislation, he takes to the lectern.’ He isn’t calming anybody. This is the point! ‘But the limits of rhetoric were on display last week when the president could not rescue two foundering candidates in governor’s races in New Jersey and Virginia. Has Mr. Obama lost his oratorical touch? Is the magic finally beginning to fade?
‘Does the White House rely too heavily on his skills on the stump to advance his priorities? It may be too soon to reach such conclusions. The Democrats who lost last week, after all, had fatal flaws all their own. But the results do suggest that Mr. Obama’s addresses these days may not resonate quite the way they did. Speeches that once set pulses racing now feel more familiar,’ ’cause they are the same thing! They are the same thing regurgitated over and over again. ‘We live in an era of divisiveness! We live in an age of cynicism! We live in an age of selfishness. My country sucks, but now that I’m here, it’s going to get better, and we’re going to work hard, and we’re going to find jobs, we’re going to…’ These speeches do not inspire anymore. This is the New York Times on Sunday questioning Obama’s one true gift. Here’s the dirty little secret: People are sick of speeches. People want jobs!
RUSH: If you read this whole New York Times piece from Sunday, ‘The President Whose Words Once Soared,’ what you learn is that the New York Times is really, really worried. They know this is the only gift the guy’s really got; that’s how he gets people mesmerized to vote for him, and he’s losing it. ‘The risk for any president is that at some point the public begins to tune out.’