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