Obama's Middle Finger – UPDATED

As I have said before, The middle finger is the first refuge of the 14 year old. Or the maturity-challenged perpetual adolescents.

When he was caught flipping off Hillary Clinton, Obama’s camp said the idea that he was using his middle finger to do anything but scratch an itch was “absurd and untrue.”

Okay. Once might be absurd and untrue. Twice – under similar circumstances – begins to seem like an immature and passive-aggressive habit.

What a statesman! What a leader! What a uniter! While “congratulating” Clinton on running a tough race, he counterbalances graciousness with an infantile, adolescent gesture. While “congratulating” McCain on running a tough race, he counterbalances graciousness, undercuts it, actually, with an infantile and adolescent gesture. How immature.

And they’ve told us for the last 8 years that President Bush was “the frat boy,” the “child prince.” Unreal.

This second flipping off by a man who wants to rule the world tells us something important about Obama; it tells us that he is uncomfortable with the gracious or generous act.

That’s an important thing to know about someone. We’ve seen Obama’s inability to be generous, before – when McCain introduced his running mate to the nation.

I’m not talking about fiscal or monetary generosity. Some are mocking Obama for returning to his under-the-bus Auntie only as much money as she has ‘donated’ to his campaign, and not a penny more, but that’s not what I’m talking about.

I’m talking about the generosity of spirit which a president needs if he is going to actually work for all the people of his nation, and not simply “some” of them.

It’s the generosity of spirit a president needs if he is going to be dealing with (admittedly only a few) stragglers in the press who do not already bow down in obesience to him and all of his ideas.

It’s the generosity of spirit a president needs to be able to allow his nation the freedom to speak their minds, ask questions, and even to object and to demonstrate.

We’ve been hearing for 8 years that President Bush is a “nazi” who supposedly – in the fantasies of the left – destroyed our personal liberties. But the truth is, for 8 years President Bush has made a point of telling people, even those who are protesting him, “we believe in free speech in the United States of America.”

That takes a generosity of spirit; and it takes love of country, and love of one’s fellow-citizens. To be president one has to be secure enough within oneself, and in what one believes about one’s nation, to be able to deal with negative opinion in a positive way, even with this sort of crap.

A generosity of spirit matters in a president.

Obama has not shown that he is particularly tolerant or generous about dissent. He does not seem to find it “a form of patriotism.” When caught on camera answering a question with honesty – and thus hurting himself – Obama had no problem with people going after that guy (he never condemned the excessive intrusions into Joe the Plumber’s life and background, and silence implies consent.) When newspapers do not endorse him, Obama has their reporters removed from his plane.

The entire power of the press has been down on Bush for 8 years. Has Bush ever responded like that? Has he ever responded in kind to the filth, hate and nastiness he has endured?

I have written before about the middle finger – about the fascination people on the left seem to have with the world F-U-C-K and all of its gestures and expressions. I’ve wondered why their parents wouldn’t let them say “poopyhead” when they were little and thus get it all out of their systems.

Christopher Buckley’s whole rationale for supporting Obama is that he feels the Senator has a “superior temprament.” Except for his habit of flipping of opponents at the moment he’s supposedly being mature, gracious and statesmanlike. So much for that, Mr. Buckley.

Perpetual adolescents. Their 8 year tempter tantrum seems poised to be ended and they’ll finally get their lollypop – perhaps. Or, perhaps not. If McCain wins, tomorrow, we will – among other things – see man-made hurricanes throughout the country as the middle fingers fly fast and furious. Keep them angry enough, we can set up windfarms in the Upper West Side and along both coasts – the perpetual adolescents and their perpetual flip-offs should generate all the energy we need.

Meanwhile, Don Surber shows Obama how a man gives the finger and at least owns it

Update: Althouse’s readers, who are a pretty smart bunch, say yep, he flipped McCain off.

Also, read Betsy Newmark. Voter fraud is sort of like sticking a great big middle finger to the whole United States, isn’t it?

Dirty Harry: Small men make lousy presidents

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  • http://vita-nostra-in-ecclesia.blogspot.com/ Bender B. Rodriguez

    Obama has not shown that he is particularly tolerant about dissent.

    The thugocracy is upon us. Those who are unwilling to slit their own throats, by voting and voicing their support for him, must be diminished, squashed, aborted.

    Is it really that far a stretch to finally comprehend that, if they will zealously destroy the most innocent of us, that they would one day seek to destroy us all?

  • Maura

    Anchoress, excellent post! No one could have said it better, and I for one am thankful you are publicly calling BHO on his infantile and scurrilous speach and behaviour.

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  • http://deedledee.wordpress.com/ deedledee

    And to do that gesture just after he says that “John McCain has served this country honorably” is beyond the pale. That other youtube video where he brushes off his shoulders (from the “dirt” that Hillary threw at him) made me realize how thin-skinned he was. Think of the long ago the “lipstick on a pig” and “old fish” reference; I came to believe he knew what he was saying…come to think of it, he was really rattled in his speeches after Sarah did so well in her nomination; to think that someone else could steal his enthusiasm spotlight, of all the nerve. For all his various family situations going here and there, he almost reminds me of these “trophy kids” I’ve read about who are used to winning and always being praised. Wonder how he will act when he becomes President…probably will do a Clinton and sign the so-called Freedom of Choice Act on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade…thin-skinned people tend to be vindictive people.

  • Gina

    I’m reminded of when McCain took out a very classy TV ad congratulating Obama on his nomination and saying what a good thing it was for our country. The next day Palin’s nomination was announced and all hell broke loose on the left. I still cannot believe the level of absolute, infantile rage and hatred directored towards her. Then Obama tried to upstage McCain on his acceptance speech night by going on The O’Reilly Factor and insisting it had to be that night.

  • http://www.davelafferty.com Dante Explorer

    Maybe Barry can use that technique as a negotiating ploy when he sits down with Ahmadinejad.

  • Bridey

    McCain’s graciousness has, alas, been part of the problem in this election. He even went so far as to say there was no need to be afraid of a President Obama. Wrong move there, Senator. Grace and generosity don’t win elections anymore, if they ever did. It’s all name-calling and envy and fear, and promises and pandering most of all.

    Not that I’d have McCain be more like Obama. He likely won’t win tomorrow — at least, as far as we’ll ever know — but Senator McCain has done nothing that he, or the Republican party, need be ashamed of during this election. That means something, even to the harder-right types like me, who were so disappointed when he was nominated.

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  • W.G.

    He flips the bird at Mrs. Clinton, then again at an American hero who may have hurt his campaign by trying to run it as honorably as possible, despite the urging of many to fight fire with fire.

    Get used to the gesture, folks. He’ll give it to you again when it’s your wealth he takes to spread around to those who didn’t earn it – I suppose he’ll just be flipping off all of us “selfish” people.

    Along with the MSM, he’ll flip off anyone who has an interest in seeing and hearing a wide range of views in the media, with that “Fairness Doctrine” (hmmm…..suppression of dissent = Fairness. 1984, anyone?).

    He flipped off Joe the Plumber for having the “audacity” to ask a reasonable question.

    He sure as hell will flip off our fighting men and women.

    I could go on…..but we all know what’s up.

    Maybe our dear Anchoress is right. An eye on the big picture…the “audacity to hope” that all will be well, and all will be well, and all manner of things will be well, and that powers way beyond our ability to comprehend will make the outcome be the best thing for ALL of us, not just the donkeys or just the elephants.

    RA

  • rcareaga

    I dunno, Anchoress…I think it’s an “eye of the beholder” thing. To construe the gesture as you do is consistent with the mental picture you and the others leaving comments here have formed of the candidate, and the meaning of the footage is accordingly self-evident. Having been photographed once in a like pose back in the pre-digital day, I know that it’s not necessarily deliberate (or even unconsciously passive-aggressive), and in any event my own impressions of the O-Man dispose me to regard your impression as inconsistent. We are once again perched on contending narratives.

    Hard experience has taught me to doubt my powers of political prognostication (I’m the guy who said, that distant summer of 1976 when the former governor of California failed to wrest the nomination from a sitting president, “Well thank god we’ve seen the last of that clown”), and I’m also growing a little superstitious in middle age, so I’ll make no explicit expression of my guarded optimism. I will say that tomorrow morning before work I’ll walk over the hill to my usual polling place at the “Westlake Christian Terrace” here in Oakland and vote for Barack Obama with more heartfelt enthusiasm than I’ve felt since my first presidential vote in 1972 and with greater pride than I’ve ever voted, period. The campaign has at last engaged my emotions as well as my judgment, and I’m a bit surprised at the intensity of the anticipated happiness battering at the gates. Several tens of millions of your fellow citizens feel and will vote as I do: will you regard us thereafter, win or lose, as evil or deluded or as having wished the Republic ill? I noticed that this comment a few days ago did not draw an administrative rebuke:

    “If the 0Bummer should win I plan on being just like the Liberals over the last 8 years. I will spread every nasty rumor and lie about the supposed POTUS. I will call him animal based names and deride his every utterance. I will work to do anything under my limited power to undermine his regime in any way I can. Why? Because I am a real patriot. Not one of these fair weather frauds.”

    I don’t know where your correspondent plans to begin. Not here, I hope: I like to think that the soil for that sort of thing, though times past it has sprouted links to suggestions that Obama was involved as an undergraduate in domestic bombings, is nutrient-thin for “nasty rumors and lies.” Much depends, of course, on which seedlings the gardener chooses to cultivate.

    Anyway, it’s election eve, a celebration of the rule of the people. In the words of that other Palin, “This is supposed to be a ‘appy occasion! Let’s not bicker and argue over ‘oo killed ‘oo!” In which spirit I venture to hope that none of us find ourselves utterly bereft and despairing of a Wednesday morn. There will be other elections, other fights (not that you lot will have much fight in you once you’ve emerged from our re-education camps — kidding! kidding!)

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  • http://theanchoressonline.com TheAnchoress

    Rand – I’d be more inclined to give O the benefit of a doubt about the flipping-off if he had not done precisely the same thing to Hillary under precisely the same circumstances; “let’s congratulate Hillary/McCain, middle finger” It might be a subconscious hostility, but it’s clearly there. As to prognostications I don’t dare – I have no idea what’s going to happen tomorrow in terms of victor/vanquished. I only know what the press will do, because they’ve rendered themselves predictable. As to the comment you highlight, you may or may not know that I’ve been really sick lately, and have been more or less just approving everything that comes down the pike that doesn’t look like spam. I don’t agree with that poster’s sentiments, but I must say I understand them, a little, and since Obama is not YET president, he does not YET fall under my rules about using nicknames for presidents. When and if he’s elected and becomes president-elect Obama, my rule will be in force. Let me just say that it is astonishing to me that – after seeing how I run this place for all these years, you find one example that slips through and need to point it out as though it indicts me. I’m still not well, I’m still coughing up ugly stuff and running lowgrade fevers, so I’d appreciate a kind pass if you can manage it.

  • rcareaga

    Dear A, you always have a pass from me. The cited comment was in no wise intended as indictment or reproach. Best wishes for vanquishing the bug.

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  • newton

    I told my husband about this last night. He replied, “Really? And it’s on tape, too? All right!” He thinks that enough people will see the pettiness of this man guy.

    I still told him that he might still pull a win despite it. People don’t seem to care about common decency anymore. They just care about the goodies they might get. It’s all about how much you can fill your goodie bag with nowadays.

    You know, it makes me mad. I see one man, who suffered and almost died for his country, and served it for many years, only to be rejected by his own countrymen in favor of a petty thug-ocrat who only thinks of his own gain. Unfortunately, we have seen things like this before.

    But I take comfort in one thing. As we say in most Latin American countries, “Dios no se queda con nada.” (“God doesn’t keep any debt unpaid, or any evil confronted.”) I believe, with all of my heart, that should Obama become President, he, his aides, his enablers, and all his willing supporters will eventually pay dearly for what they are doing, have done, and are about to do to this nation. I am sure of it, just as the sun rises in the morning and sets at dusk.

    Again. Dios no se queda con nada.

    “Bread of deceit is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.” – Proverbs 20:17

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