Why our foreign relations are in such bad shape

President Obama at a meeting of world leaders at the UN:

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • SKPeterson

    A. Is that even real?
    B. It’s still funny, even if it isn’t.
    C. It would be even better if he was rabbit-earring the guy in front, while simultaneously blocking the other guy’s face.

  • SKPeterson

    A. Is that even real?
    B. It’s still funny, even if it isn’t.
    C. It would be even better if he was rabbit-earring the guy in front, while simultaneously blocking the other guy’s face.

  • Tom Hering

    Fake. Obama’s upper right arm would have to be really, really long to meet the spot where the angle of the right forearm indicates the elbow would be.

    Why didn’t the faker instead show the President sneaking up behind someone – like, say, Angela Merkel – and giving her shoulders a schoolboy pinch? THAT would be funny! :-D

  • Tom Hering

    Fake. Obama’s upper right arm would have to be really, really long to meet the spot where the angle of the right forearm indicates the elbow would be.

    Why didn’t the faker instead show the President sneaking up behind someone – like, say, Angela Merkel – and giving her shoulders a schoolboy pinch? THAT would be funny! :-D

  • trotk

    I don’t think its fake at all. Look at others in the picture. It is clear that some were prepared for the picture and others weren’t That just means that either the photographer didn’t give a clear signal or there were multiple cameras going off at different times.

    And it is no big deal. Who hasn’t had a picture taken that looked silly or foolish. I just want to know who he was waving to.

  • trotk

    I don’t think its fake at all. Look at others in the picture. It is clear that some were prepared for the picture and others weren’t That just means that either the photographer didn’t give a clear signal or there were multiple cameras going off at different times.

    And it is no big deal. Who hasn’t had a picture taken that looked silly or foolish. I just want to know who he was waving to.

  • Tom Hering

    I was wrong. Here’s video of the group assembled for the photo:

    http://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/brent-baker/2011/09/22/fnc-s-baier-airs-video-obama-s-un-photo-fail

    Notice that the President is saying something as he waves, and it makes everyone in the group laugh. Obviously not a bad moment for the President, or for our foreign relations.

  • Tom Hering

    I was wrong. Here’s video of the group assembled for the photo:

    http://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/brent-baker/2011/09/22/fnc-s-baier-airs-video-obama-s-un-photo-fail

    Notice that the President is saying something as he waves, and it makes everyone in the group laugh. Obviously not a bad moment for the President, or for our foreign relations.

  • Kirk

    @Tom

    I reject your explanation and insist that this is indeed a gaff for the president. It must be. I need it to be.

  • Kirk

    @Tom

    I reject your explanation and insist that this is indeed a gaff for the president. It must be. I need it to be.

  • Cincinnatus

    Kirk@6: Actually, it’s real. Not that I’m bothered by it: don’t photographers tend to take multiple shots at moments like these? Is it a gaffe, for instance, if someone accidentally blinks during one of the shots? The only reason it’s a “gaffe” is because it got out. Yeah, he probably shouldn’t have waved, because, yeah, he kind of looks like a doofus.

  • Cincinnatus

    Kirk@6: Actually, it’s real. Not that I’m bothered by it: don’t photographers tend to take multiple shots at moments like these? Is it a gaffe, for instance, if someone accidentally blinks during one of the shots? The only reason it’s a “gaffe” is because it got out. Yeah, he probably shouldn’t have waved, because, yeah, he kind of looks like a doofus.

  • Cincinnatus

    Meanwhile, that would have been a great moment for a dirty bomb to go off somewhere in NYC. The world would be much better off without it’s “leaders.”

  • Cincinnatus

    Meanwhile, that would have been a great moment for a dirty bomb to go off somewhere in NYC. The world would be much better off without it’s “leaders.”

  • Carl Vehse

    If you don’t think Steve Dunham’s “Alfred E. Neuman handwave” was a gaffe, you can pick another one from this (obviously partial) list of Barry gaffes.

  • Carl Vehse

    If you don’t think Steve Dunham’s “Alfred E. Neuman handwave” was a gaffe, you can pick another one from this (obviously partial) list of Barry gaffes.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Wait, our foreign relations are in such bad shape because … “conservatives”, while ostensibly repudiating the petty mockery that liberals lobbed at Bush, have largely decided to recapitulate that behavior vis-a-vis Obama? With the help of the media they also ostensibly loathe?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Wait, our foreign relations are in such bad shape because … “conservatives”, while ostensibly repudiating the petty mockery that liberals lobbed at Bush, have largely decided to recapitulate that behavior vis-a-vis Obama? With the help of the media they also ostensibly loathe?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD
  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD
  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Cincinnatus, speaking of those who ostensibly repudiate behavior, yet seem inclined to recapitulate it in some form, um … Comment #7, meet commenter #8.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Cincinnatus, speaking of those who ostensibly repudiate behavior, yet seem inclined to recapitulate it in some form, um … Comment #7, meet commenter #8.

  • Cincinnatus

    tODD: I was only 75% serious!

    Cosmopolitanism is the enemy.

  • Cincinnatus

    tODD: I was only 75% serious!

    Cosmopolitanism is the enemy.

  • trotk

    But tODD, we would have already been out of Iraq and Afghanistan if it weren’t for the self-destructive behaviors of this previous president:

    http://www.dvorak.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/poar01_clinton0807.jpg

  • trotk

    But tODD, we would have already been out of Iraq and Afghanistan if it weren’t for the self-destructive behaviors of this previous president:

    http://www.dvorak.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/poar01_clinton0807.jpg

  • Cincinnatus
  • Cincinnatus
  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Well, then. I now understand why world ecumenical efforts are in such a shambles.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Well, then. I now understand why world ecumenical efforts are in such a shambles.

  • trotk

    And we wonder why he didn’t win a second term…

    http://hillbuzz.org/2009/06/18/israel-news-round-up/carter-useful-idiot/

  • trotk

    And we wonder why he didn’t win a second term…

    http://hillbuzz.org/2009/06/18/israel-news-round-up/carter-useful-idiot/

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    Tom Hering: “Obviously not a bad moment for the President, or for our foreign relations.”

    A stopped clock is right twice a day.

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    Tom Hering: “Obviously not a bad moment for the President, or for our foreign relations.”

    A stopped clock is right twice a day.

  • Tom Hering

    J. Dean, since that moment in the photo shoot had nothing to do with the President being right or wrong about anything, I’m not sure how the aphorism applies. Unless, like the conservative echosphere, you’re desperately trying to turn a non-gaffe into a gaffe. (The appearance of a gaffe is entirely the result of still photography in this case, whereas the video makes it clear that no gaffe occurred.)

  • Tom Hering

    J. Dean, since that moment in the photo shoot had nothing to do with the President being right or wrong about anything, I’m not sure how the aphorism applies. Unless, like the conservative echosphere, you’re desperately trying to turn a non-gaffe into a gaffe. (The appearance of a gaffe is entirely the result of still photography in this case, whereas the video makes it clear that no gaffe occurred.)

  • Purple koolaid

    If this had been George w, it would be on every network.

  • Purple koolaid

    If this had been George w, it would be on every network.

  • Cincinnatus

    Purple Koolaid: I’m not really sure that excuse works any more. It did during the 2008 election, of course, but the media, if there is such a thing, doesn’t view Obama through rose-colored glasses any longer.

    Fact: This isn’t a gaffe.

    Fact: It already is being reported as if it were. It’s all over DrudgeReport. What more do you want?

  • Cincinnatus

    Purple Koolaid: I’m not really sure that excuse works any more. It did during the 2008 election, of course, but the media, if there is such a thing, doesn’t view Obama through rose-colored glasses any longer.

    Fact: This isn’t a gaffe.

    Fact: It already is being reported as if it were. It’s all over DrudgeReport. What more do you want?

  • Carl Vehse

    Plenty of gaffes to go around:
    “We’re the country that built the Intercontinental Railroad” (presumably covering all “57 states”)
    “Nitaly Lions”
    Signing the guest book in England with the wrong year (even after being told the right date)
    “Corpsemen”
    “Canadian President”
    “Speaking ‘Austrian’”
    “My muslim faith” (possibly not a gaffe)

  • Carl Vehse

    Plenty of gaffes to go around:
    “We’re the country that built the Intercontinental Railroad” (presumably covering all “57 states”)
    “Nitaly Lions”
    Signing the guest book in England with the wrong year (even after being told the right date)
    “Corpsemen”
    “Canadian President”
    “Speaking ‘Austrian’”
    “My muslim faith” (possibly not a gaffe)

  • Cincinnatus

    Carl, is this your way of requesting that we provide an extensive list–and it would be quite extensive–of Republican gaffes? Your choice: Palin, Bachmann, or Bush?

  • Cincinnatus

    Carl, is this your way of requesting that we provide an extensive list–and it would be quite extensive–of Republican gaffes? Your choice: Palin, Bachmann, or Bush?

  • Tom Hering

    “‘My muslim faith’ (possibly not a gaffe)”

    Yeah, and the Humane Society is out to destroy the family farm.

  • Tom Hering

    “‘My muslim faith’ (possibly not a gaffe)”

    Yeah, and the Humane Society is out to destroy the family farm.

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    Good grief, you guys. Do you have to take everything so seriously? Don’t you think it is a funny photo? As for “why our foreign relations are in such bad shape,” that too is mostly a joke. But it does suggest that our president may be a little self-absorbed–waving at the camera as if the photo were all about him, forgetting that other people are in the picture–something our critics have said about our foreign policy.

  • http://www.geneveith.com Gene Veith

    Good grief, you guys. Do you have to take everything so seriously? Don’t you think it is a funny photo? As for “why our foreign relations are in such bad shape,” that too is mostly a joke. But it does suggest that our president may be a little self-absorbed–waving at the camera as if the photo were all about him, forgetting that other people are in the picture–something our critics have said about our foreign policy.

  • Tom Hering

    Uh, Dr. Veith, you’ve just made it clear you think the photo reveals a character flaw in the President. Which is the serious point I thought you were making, in the first place, by posting the photo.

    (P.S. Watch the video @ 4. Obama wasn’t “waving” to the photographers. He was raising his hand to ask the photographers a question, along the lines of “Are you guys done yet – can we go?” The other leaders, equally tired of the photo shoot, thought it was funny.)

  • Tom Hering

    Uh, Dr. Veith, you’ve just made it clear you think the photo reveals a character flaw in the President. Which is the serious point I thought you were making, in the first place, by posting the photo.

    (P.S. Watch the video @ 4. Obama wasn’t “waving” to the photographers. He was raising his hand to ask the photographers a question, along the lines of “Are you guys done yet – can we go?” The other leaders, equally tired of the photo shoot, thought it was funny.)

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Who’s taking it seriously again, Dr. Veith (@24)?

    I think it’s a funny photo. Sure. But you’re the one arguing it’s more than that:

    But it does suggest that our president may be a little self-absorbed–waving at the camera as if the photo were all about him, forgetting that other people are in the picture–something our critics have said about our foreign policy.

    So, again, who’s the one reading too much into this, and in the process not sounding all that humorous? Pretty sure it’s not me.

    Do you have to take everything so seriously, Dr. Veith?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Who’s taking it seriously again, Dr. Veith (@24)?

    I think it’s a funny photo. Sure. But you’re the one arguing it’s more than that:

    But it does suggest that our president may be a little self-absorbed–waving at the camera as if the photo were all about him, forgetting that other people are in the picture–something our critics have said about our foreign policy.

    So, again, who’s the one reading too much into this, and in the process not sounding all that humorous? Pretty sure it’s not me.

    Do you have to take everything so seriously, Dr. Veith?

  • WebMonk

    Dr. Veith, did you ever watch the video Tom #4 posted, showing what actually happened?

    How are you able to extract that ridiculous nonsense about it showing self-absorption and being a commentary on his foreign policy???

  • WebMonk

    Dr. Veith, did you ever watch the video Tom #4 posted, showing what actually happened?

    How are you able to extract that ridiculous nonsense about it showing self-absorption and being a commentary on his foreign policy???

  • Jonathan

    @25 -”He was raising his hand to ask the photographers a question, along the lines of ‘Are you guys done yet – can we go?’ The other leaders, equally tired of the photo shoot, thought it was funny.)”

    Yup. It’s all about him. Self-absorbed indeed.

  • Jonathan

    @25 -”He was raising his hand to ask the photographers a question, along the lines of ‘Are you guys done yet – can we go?’ The other leaders, equally tired of the photo shoot, thought it was funny.)”

    Yup. It’s all about him. Self-absorbed indeed.

  • Carl Vehse

    The gaffes just keep flowing out of the Steve Dunham White House. But hey, as CNN notes, some of those 57 states all look alike anyway.

  • Carl Vehse

    The gaffes just keep flowing out of the Steve Dunham White House. But hey, as CNN notes, some of those 57 states all look alike anyway.


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