As some OOTD fans know, it sometimes gets impossible to keep up with the President on gaffes and missteps. I wanted to add the new Orwellian term for “war” at the White House, kinetic military action, to the pantheon of Obamateurisms today. Before I had a chance to do so, Barack Obama had already changed the nomenclature again, less than 48 hours later, to time-limited, scope-limited military action, which apparently sounds less, er, kinetic or something. Jay Carney even had the cojones to follow that one up with a demurral, “I’m not going to get into the terminology,” when it seems this administration spent all week doing nothing but get into terminology — as a means to distance themselves from the fact that the US attacked Libya and launched a war.
Jake Tapper at ABC had some fun with his blog post title, “Make Love, Not Time-Limited, Scope-Limited Military Actions,” but it was Rush Limbaugh who might have diagnosed the latest switch, emphasis mine:
I swear, this is surreal. KMA, kinetic military activity has replaced WTF, (laughing) which is winning the future. I’m sure you thought it was something else. (laughing) Kick my — has replaced what the — Okay, so I guess we’re to assume it’s not a protest anymore. It’s a kinetic assembling action. It’s not a riot. It’s kinetic thuggery action. It’s not a vacation. It’s kinetic leisure action. It’s not golf. It’s kinetic ball striking action. It’s not dancing. It’s kinetic foot action. It’s not sex. It’s kinetic Lewinsky. (laughing) I’m not drunk. I’ve been engaging in kinetic adult beverage action. It’s not an election. It’s kinetic voting action. It’s not radio. It’s kinetic Limbaugh action. Whatever. Kinetic means motion. Military means armed forces. Action means motion. Kinetic action, moving motion. And these are the smartest people in the world. Well, the reason they can’t say it is because they don’t want to say what it really is. We all know what it is, but they don’t want to say it. They don’t want to go on record as saying what this really is, because they’re actually trying to pretend it isn’t anything.
Yes, I’d say an acronym that matches up with “kick my a**” for a military action (of any length and scope) is clearly counterproductive, although one could argue it means “kiss my a**,” which is basically what Obama told Congress by neglecting to consult and gain their approval for his adventure. It is of a piece with WTF as a domestic policy slogan, which is to say a time-unlimited, scope-unlimited track record of amateurish gaffes.
Got an Obamateurism of the Day? If you see a foul-up by Barack Obama, e-mail it to me at email@example.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!