Obamateurism of the Day

posted at 8:05 am on April 8, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Usually I get tips on amateurish stumbles by Barack Obama from readers unhappy that they don’t get much coverage in the mainstream media. No one can complain about the coverage of this entry, though, since we’re not just getting it from the Washington Post, but also getting the snark from them, too. Anne Kornblut reports on Obama’s lengthy answer on taxes to employees of a Charlotte battery factor — one that had people needing medical attention after more than seventeen minutes and two, count ‘em, two three-point lists (via JWF):

Even by President Obama’s loquacious standards, an answer he gave here on health care Friday was a doozy.

Toward the end of a question-and-answer session with workers at an advanced battery technology manufacturer, a woman named Doris stood to ask the president whether it was a “wise decision to add more taxes to us with the health care” package.

“We are overtaxed as it is,” Doris said bluntly.

Obama started out feisty. “Well, let’s talk about that, because this is an area where there’s been just a whole lot of misinformation, and I’m going to have to work hard over the next several months to clean up a lot of the misapprehensions that people have,” the president said.

He then spent the next 17 minutes and 12 seconds lulling the crowd into a daze. His discursive answer — more than 2,500 words long — wandered from topic to topic, including commentary on the deficit, pay-as-you-go rules passed by Congress, Congressional Budget Office reports on Medicare waste, COBRA coverage, the Recovery Act and Federal Medical Assistance Percentages (he referred to this last item by its inside-the-Beltway name, “F-Map”). He talked about the notion of eliminating foreign aid (not worth it, he said). He invoked Warren Buffett, earmarks and the payroll tax that funds Medicare (referring to it, in fluent Washington lingo, as “FICA”).

President Energizer Bunny really wowed the audience with this approach:

Halfway through, an audience member on the riser yawned.

But Obama wasn’t finished. He had a “final point,” before starting again with another list — of three points. …

It was not evident that he changed any minds at Friday’s event. The audience sat politely, but people in the back of the room began to wander off.

Some people incorrectly refer to Obama as a former professor of Constitutional law, a formal title which Obama never claimed.  To be accurate, he was a former lecturer on Constitutional law.  And it looks like he’s still quite the lecturer.

Got an Obamateurism of the Day? If you see a foul-up by Barack Obama, e-mail it to me at obamaisms@edmorrissey.com with the quote and the link to the Obamateurism. I’ll post the best Obamateurisms on a daily basis, depending on how many I receive. Include a link to your blog, and I’ll give some link love as well. And unlike Slate, I promise to end the feature when Barack Obama leaves office.

Illustrations by Chris Muir of Day by Day. Be sure to read the adventures of Sam, Zed, Damon, and Jan every day!


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But Obama wasn’t finished. He had a “final point,” before starting again with another list — of three points. …

This sounds familiar. Oh, of course! From Wikipedia:

‘The Möbius strip has several curious properties. A line drawn starting from the seam down the middle will meet back at the seam but at the “other side”. If continued the line will meet the starting point and will be double the length of the original strip.’

apostic on April 8, 2010 at 8:12 AM

so I am misinformed about how much tax I must pay? good news

kelley in virginia on April 8, 2010 at 8:12 AM

“To me, the most beautiful sound in the world, is ME.”

“Enough about me – so what do you think about me?”

bleah. Methinks Barry doth protest too much. Of course taxes are going to skyrocket – even a beginner dolt like Barry knows that!

rockbend on April 8, 2010 at 8:13 AM

In his case lecturer equals bore. And why is cost cuts not a part of his vocabulary?

Cindy Munford on April 8, 2010 at 8:15 AM

Famous producer and promoter Jerry Weintraub has written a biography entitled, You’ll Know I’m Dead When I Stop Talking.

Too bad for Obama the title’s already taken.

TXUS on April 8, 2010 at 8:17 AM

Some people incorrectly refer to Obama as a former professor of Constitutional law, a formal title which Obama never claimed. To be accurate, he was a former lecturer on Constitutional law. And it looks like he’s still quite the lecturer.

Ed, keep repeating this and repeating this, until everybody gets it right. I’m surprised that HA posters accept the MSM elevation of Obama’s status in academia from lecturer to “professor”, and I am always dismayed to see him referred to as a professor in these threads.

DrStock on April 8, 2010 at 8:17 AM

the Catepillars, the AT&Ts, etc that are hard hit by Obamacare reqmts; the businesses that will likely be forced under by add’l taxes for Obamacare and VAT, & the big investors (or even little investors like the avg person), should start calling their Dem representatives & mention that no more campaign funding will be forthcoming. you know, starve the beast.

yet, yesterday, I saw on the Headlines here that the DNC raised more money than RNC.

what people & businesses really want to go bankrupt? that’s crazy.

kelley in virginia on April 8, 2010 at 8:19 AM

Why would anybody expect to get a straight honest answer from this tool especially any that voted for him? He demonstrated the same ability for rambling rhetoric when he campaigned for the post. Surely his followers understood and accepted the vagueness of ‘hopeychange’.

docdave on April 8, 2010 at 8:19 AM

He meanders more than the Amazon. He thinks he is the smartest person in the room and that people will hang onto his every word. Did he even answer the question?

Beaglemom on April 8, 2010 at 8:21 AM

Part-time lecturer.

Otherwise known as an adjunct in some schools.

Wethal on April 8, 2010 at 8:21 AM

God , what a dumb ass.

5u93rm4n on April 8, 2010 at 8:22 AM

The man took seventeen minutes to not answer a yes or no question? Oy!

jimmy2shoes on April 8, 2010 at 8:23 AM

It’s amazing how this guy falls to pieces with no teleprompter. He’s a fraud.

visions on April 8, 2010 at 8:23 AM

Why would anybody expect to get a straight honest answer from this tool especially any that voted for him?

docdave on April 8, 2010 at 8:19 AM

The naivete of useful idiots is infinite … that’s why they’re so useful.

darwin on April 8, 2010 at 8:24 AM

The longer the answers, the shorter time the President has to spend answering the hard questions.

yoda on April 8, 2010 at 8:26 AM

Maybe he was intentionally trying to put people into a semi-narcoleptic state. He knew he couldn’t answer honestly so he rambled until their brains shut down. When they awoke they figured they missed his point.

darwin on April 8, 2010 at 8:26 AM

kelley in virginia on April 8, 2010 at 8:19 AM

It’s called… Extortion.

TXUS on April 8, 2010 at 8:29 AM

What is ironic is that the MSM beat up on Brett Baier for interrupting our “Boy King” when it was obvious to everyone that Obie was “fillibusting”. Brett even said that was why he had to interrupt him.

Dire Straits on April 8, 2010 at 8:31 AM

Well, he did learn one thing during the coffee break that was his Senate term — he definitely learned how to filibuster.

Mr. D on April 8, 2010 at 8:33 AM

Obama is just like that guy in every office in America –
the blowhard b.s.’er who attempts to dazzle with long-winded, hollow answers and constantly cuts others down to cover up their shortcomings. Thankfully, they are never long-term employees.

sherry on April 8, 2010 at 8:34 AM

To be accurate, he was a former lecturer on Constitutional law. And it looks like he’s still quite the lecturer.

And still doesn’t know what the AnninCA he’s talking about.

AubieJon on April 8, 2010 at 8:35 AM

A case of laryngitis could crater this administration.

Yoop on April 8, 2010 at 8:36 AM

“First of all, I luvs to hear me speak. Second of all, what I say is all golden. Third of all, you luvs to hear what I say. Did I mention my first point, let’s go back there a moment because, as I said before, I luvs to hear me speak”

Skitworthy Comedy Gold right down the crapper…. a criminal waste of laughter….

ted c on April 8, 2010 at 8:37 AM

In one of the funniest scenes in Hamlet, the politician Polonius, who has declared that “Brevity is the soul of wit” … continues to enlarge upon Hamlet’s supposed madness. The impatient Queen dryly demands “More matter with less art,” that is, more substance and less rhetoric.

- Source enotes.com

apostic on April 8, 2010 at 8:37 AM

The length of an answer to a simple question is in inverse proportion to the truth.

pugwriter on April 8, 2010 at 8:42 AM

“If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit.”

Troika37 on April 8, 2010 at 8:45 AM

Reminds me of that old line that’s popular among lawyers: If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bull$shit.

AZCoyote on April 8, 2010 at 8:45 AM

Dear Liar just added another title:

Haranguer-in-chief.

rbj on April 8, 2010 at 8:46 AM

AZ, you owe Troika a Coke.

pugwriter on April 8, 2010 at 8:47 AM

You see, this Bozo never knows when to shut up …… When somebody tells me to shut up, I shut up, I don’t keep talking and talking, just to hear myself talk, I shut up, I don’t know why it’s so hard to just shut up, I mean, really, if someone tells you to shut up, then maybe you should…..

Shut up shuttin’ up

Jerome Horwitz on April 8, 2010 at 8:50 AM

He’s losing it.
AND he should not be allowed without TOTUS. Isn’t that in Obamacare?

ORconservative on April 8, 2010 at 8:52 AM

The longer the answers, the shorter time the President has to spend answering the hard questions.

yoda on April 8, 2010

Yes, and the less likely it is that you can pin him down on his lies as his rambling, stumbling discourse probably bumps, accidentally, into a truth here and there. He is a foul stench in need of the harshest of cleansers. 2012 can’t come soon enough.

Extrafishy on April 8, 2010 at 8:53 AM

President Energizer Bunny. Hilarious.

Who’s buying his batteries?

Crux Australis on April 8, 2010 at 8:56 AM

Troika37 on April 8, 2010 at 8:45 AM

about sums up his entire presidency…

cmsinaz on April 8, 2010 at 9:00 AM

“Brevity is the soul of wit”.

Longwinded, boring harangs spilling over into irrelevant tangents is for addled dullards, like our own beloved Carny-in-Chief.

NoDonkey on April 8, 2010 at 9:00 AM

Talking out of both sides of his mouth for 17 minutes is a rare talent indeed. Mr. President should join the circus!

scalleywag on April 8, 2010 at 9:02 AM

It’s amazing how this guy falls to pieces with no teleprompter. He’s a fraud.

visions on April 8, 2010 at 8:23 AM

Obama is just like that guy in every office in America –
the blowhard b.s.’er who attempts to dazzle with long-winded, hollow answers and constantly cuts others down to cover up their shortcomings. Thankfully, they are never long-term employees.

sherry on April 8, 2010 at 8:34 AM

Did anyone see his non-response response to the first question at this morning’s press conference? Be afraid… be very afraid.

singer on April 8, 2010 at 9:03 AM

Obama does this routinely even on the trivial. Think about the recent, silly question asking him who his favorite Chicago White Sox player was. This lifetime “fan” couldn’t name one and he completely meandered from the topic without giving an answer. He talked about the Oakland A’s… and still never named a player. From any team.

Obama is a bull**** artist and gives long-winded answers not because he has expert grasp of a topic but to pad his answer with extraneous stuff to bluff his lack of knowledge. He buys time and eats up the clock so that a) you’ll forget what the question was and b) not have time for a follow up or further questions.

His ego just won’t allow himself to say “I don’t know” because he’s bluffed his way as an academic; so, he just strings words, themes, or anecdotes together in hopes that your misunderstanding him is some shortcoming of your own rather than the reality that the shortcoming is Obama’s.

AnonymousDrivel on April 8, 2010 at 9:06 AM

Great news everyone. You don’t have to listen to all 17 minutes. It’s been edited down to 3 and 1/2 of the most important minutes without missing a single bit of the context.

The first commentor wrote brilliant and who am I to deny that praise. It’s on You Tube:

Obama’s Infamous 17 minute Tape Skillfully Edited by Experts to 3 and 1/2 Minutes Long

No Niks on April 8, 2010 at 9:06 AM

Talking out of both sides of his mouth for 17 minutes is a rare talent indeed. Mr. President should join the circus!

scalleywag on April 8, 2010 at 9:02 AM

You failed to notice him talking out of both sides of his mouth while simultaneously talking out his a$$. He is the world’s premier one-man-three-ring-circus.

Yoop on April 8, 2010 at 9:09 AM

He’s training us for Castro-like three hour rants.

I think it’s funny that self-appointed “intellectuals” have suppress their natural instincts and pretend they think this guy is smart.

And they attack us for the expressing the beliefs they are afraid to admit into consciousness.

Sad.

jeff_from_mpls on April 8, 2010 at 9:09 AM

Are the teleprompters insured?

Shy Guy on April 8, 2010 at 9:18 AM

BS will now be known as BOS.

redridinghood on April 8, 2010 at 9:24 AM

The longer the answers, the shorter time the President has to spend answering the hard questions.

yoda on April 8, 2010

The idea is that you blather on for so long that people forget what the question was, so they don’t realize you haven’t answered it.

ProfessorMiao on April 8, 2010 at 9:26 AM

Hell, it only took Billy Mays 30 seconds to convince me, I could save money by spending.

franksalterego on April 8, 2010 at 9:52 AM

President Energizer Bunny. Hilarious.

Who’s buying his batteries?

Crux Australis on April 8, 2010 at 8:56 AM

We are.

Who is John Galt on April 8, 2010 at 9:55 AM

HOT AIR HAS BEEN HACKED; COMMENTS BEING RESTRICTED.

Cybergeezer on April 8, 2010 at 10:13 AM

HOT AIR HAS BEEN HACKED; COMMENTS BEING RESTRICTED.

Cybergeezer on April 8, 2010 at 10:13 AM

Say what?

GrannyDee on April 8, 2010 at 10:35 AM

Gee…I can’t imagine why his handlers are avoiding another press conference. Can you?

Grace_is_sufficient on April 8, 2010 at 10:38 AM

See the comment they will not post of mine at Cybergeezer.net.
It’s just so HORRIBLE and unpleasant!!!

Cybergeezer on April 8, 2010 at 11:29 AM

Obama is just like that guy in every office in America – the blowhard b.s.’er who attempts to dazzle with long-winded, hollow answers and constantly cuts others down to cover up their shortcomings. Thankfully, they are never long- term employees sherry on April 8, 2010 at 8:34 AM

President Cliff Claven!

Mallard T. Drake on April 8, 2010 at 11:58 AM

Federal Medical Assistance Percentages (he referred to this last item by its inside-the-Beltway name, “F-Map”).

Oh, I thought F-map was a map of Joe Biden’s travels. Thanks for clearing that up, Mr. President.

Steve Z on April 8, 2010 at 12:05 PM

The Möbius strip has several curious properties. A line drawn starting from the seam down the middle will meet back at the seam but at the “other side”. If continued the line will meet the starting point and will be double the length of the original strip.’

apostic on April 8, 2010 at 8:12 AM

Will the seemingly endless loop of Barack Mobius Obama finally meet a pair of scissors in 2012?

We were better off with Nixon’s 17 minutes of blank tape in 1972!!!

Steve Z on April 8, 2010 at 12:12 PM

yet, yesterday, I saw on the Headlines here that the DNC raised more money than RNC.

what people & businesses really want to go bankrupt? that’s crazy.

kelley in virginia on April 8, 2010 at 8:19 AM

The RNC is not the only way to support true-conservative, “real” Republican candidates.

I support conservative candidates directly, as I don’t trust the RNC with my money, and I’m waiting for them to prove that they are no longer the “Rino Nominating Committee”. I’ll bet there are a lot of other people doing the same thing.

landlines on April 8, 2010 at 12:14 PM

The first commentor wrote brilliant and who am I to deny that praise. It’s on You Tube:

Obama’s Infamous 17 minute Tape Skillfully Edited by Experts to 3 and 1/2 Minutes Long

No Niks on April 8, 2010 at 9:06 AM

In other words, there was 3 1/2 minutes of substance in 17 minutes of verbiage, or about 20% efficiency. Much less than the average gas-guzzling SUV he wants to regulate. Can we pull him off the market yet?

Steve Z on April 8, 2010 at 12:15 PM

And it looks like he’s still quite the lecturer.

Who babbles, and rambles, and never really has a valid point, or any kind of valid answers to valid questions. He tries the ol’ double speak to avoid directly answering a question. I swear, if someone asked him if he was half black, and half white, he’d ramble on with that, without every giving a concrete answer.

capejasmine on April 8, 2010 at 12:32 PM

And it looks like he’s still quite the lecturer.

An incoherent one at that…

Schadenfreude on April 8, 2010 at 12:56 PM

What and overlook one of the Palin children ? What a bunch of buffoons .

borntoraisehogs on April 8, 2010 at 2:08 PM

Our very own little Fidel.

Dhuka on April 8, 2010 at 2:53 PM

He is dangerous. We must take this seriously folks. The entire heart and soul of our country is at stake. This is not a game in his mind. Everything he does is planned and intentionally articulated as it is for the result he wants. I don’t think that we are frightened nearly enough by this scourge.

highninside on April 8, 2010 at 4:18 PM

Obama is just like that guy in every office in America – the blowhard b.s.’er who attempts to dazzle with long-winded, hollow answers and constantly cuts others down to cover up their shortcomings. Thankfully, they are never long- term employees sherry on April 8, 2010 at 8:34 AM

President Cliff Claven!

Mallard T. Drake on April 8, 2010 at 11:58 AM

Cliff may be the wingnut that holds together Western civilization.
Barry is just a nut.

Bubba Redneck on April 9, 2010 at 6:57 AM