Obamateurism of the Day

posted at 8:01 am on September 11, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

One would think that presidential candidates would know better than to try to attempt to use, or even comment on, new technology while out on the campaign trail.  George H. W. Bush just tried to pay polite attention at a grocery store while a clerk explained a bar-code scanner system [see update], and the media played it into a look-how-out-of-touch-the-rich-guy-is story.  Of course, most people wouldn’t consider an iPhone new technology, either:

But when White House trip director Marvin Nicholson handed the president his personal iPhone, Mr. Obama couldn’t get it to work. A reporter who witnessed the scene said the president looked “befuddled.”

“It’s not clear he knows how to dial on an iPhone,” the reporter wrote in a pool report.

Finally, Mr. Obama said, “Oh, I got to dial it in. Hold on, hold on. I can do this. See, I still have a BlackBerry.”

The president then “had a little more trouble dialing,” the pool report said.

And whose fault was that?

The president then has more trouble dialing. When the call didn’t go through, he blamed Mr. Nicholson for having an insufficient cell phone plan.

Well, anyone’s but Obama’s own, of course.

Update: Reader Arthur H offers rather comprehensive correction on my GHWB recollection:

You have made a few mistakes in that sentence:
1. It was at a grocery convention
2. It was not a grocery clerk. It was an NCR representative
3. It was the latest scanner technology
4. Only one member of the media was there and the story did not come from him, so we do not know if President Bush was amazed at the basic function of a scanner or the new technology of a scanner that was not on the market at that time.

Noted!

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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I noted yesterday that it’ss even funnier because it’s named after his favorite subjective personal pronoun

CitizenEgg on September 11, 2012 at 8:03 AM

D’oh it’s and

/BISHOP

CitizenEgg on September 11, 2012 at 8:05 AM

A reporter who witnessed the scene said the president looked “befuddled.”

“It’s not clear he knows how to dial on an iPhone,” the reporter wrote in a pool report.

The reporter’s wife has been informed by police that she must wait 24 hours before filing a missing person(s) report.

AubieJon on September 11, 2012 at 8:05 AM

How do you “dial it in”? Really, the man’s speech patterns just aren’t right for someone whose first language is supposedly American English.

I have a blackberry (I do prefer a physical to a touch keyboard), and I think I’d be able to figure out how to make a call on iphone.

LibraryGryffon on September 11, 2012 at 8:06 AM

I can’t wait to see the last of this little man.

Night Owl on September 11, 2012 at 8:07 AM

We all need smart phones to make up for stupid politicians.

Wino on September 11, 2012 at 8:09 AM

1-800-EMPTYCHAIR

Yoop on September 11, 2012 at 8:09 AM

A little too Apple-y.

TimBuk3 on September 11, 2012 at 8:11 AM

or better yet, and more accurate: 1-800-MTCHAIR

Yoop on September 11, 2012 at 8:12 AM

He’s phoning it in again, oh, never mind. He can’t even do that.

22044 on September 11, 2012 at 8:12 AM

SHOCK!!

I heard yesterday this was NOT reported by the DearLeaderMedia……so……..

…..**She just looked great at the Convention didn’t she? That dress, her nails, the whole package. She reminds me of a Black Jackie O!!! And her arms, did you see how toned her arms are??

I’m so glad she is trying to get better food in schools and helping people eat better.

**Low Information Yahoo News scanner in Ohio responds to the report about Obama and the iPhone.

PappyD61 on September 11, 2012 at 8:14 AM

The president then has more trouble dialing. When the call didn’t go through, he blamed Mr. Nicholson for having an insufficient cell phone plan.

Nope. Dollars to donuts you can blame government for bad coverage. usually local government NIMBYism, but the state and feds do their part to make it very difficult to provide coverage in many areas.

Here’s one from – Port St Lucie Florida.

forest on September 11, 2012 at 8:15 AM

At the beginning of a sentence, is iPhone capitalized? lol

I still want to see Preezy’s contact list and call record for that Crackberry.

Fallon on September 11, 2012 at 8:21 AM

………….the number you have dialed, is no longer in service. Please hang up and try again.

After re-dialing several times, Obama realizes he’s been calling himself—the epitome of a disconnected president.

Rovin on September 11, 2012 at 8:23 AM

I noted yesterday that it’ss even funnier because it’s named after his favorite subjective personal pronoun

CitizenEgg on September 11, 2012 at 8:03 AM

True enough but somehow I think he would be happier if they were known as O-Phones.

The president then has more trouble dialing. When the call didn’t go through, he blamed Mr. Nicholson for having an insufficient cell phone plan.

This is telling of the character of the rat-eared bastard. Even when he is befuddled he immediately places blame elsewhere. Lack of self-confidence has never been a problem for Obama. But…. Can you imagine what a miserable experience it must be to play golf with such an egomaniac? Any slice has to be the courses fault or the wind or something other than lack of ability. The more these stories emerge, the closer the verge on the stories out of North Korea where Kim Jung Il made a hole-in-one the very first time he ever played golf.

Happy Nomad on September 11, 2012 at 8:23 AM

He’s a more or less solitary figure who has extraordinary communicative capacities. He’s incredibly intelligent, but he’s not a guy who’s ever had a Bill Clinton-like network around him. He’s not the guy up late at night working the speed dial calling mayors, calling governors, calling CEOs…because he can’t figure out how to dial the phone.”

Fixed it for ya, John Heilman.

Naturally Curly on September 11, 2012 at 8:25 AM

Like he is going to ever abandon his Blackberry….

hillsoftx on September 11, 2012 at 8:31 AM

He’s always the smartest man in the room. But he can’t figure out how to dial on a smart phone.

The Rogue Tomato on September 11, 2012 at 8:33 AM

and the media played it into a look-how-out-of-touch-the-rich-guy-is story.

No, Andrew Rosenthal of the New York Times just out and out made up the story, ala Jayson Blair.

http://www.snopes.com/history/american/bushscan.asp

MNHawk on September 11, 2012 at 8:34 AM

That day was like today.
.
The weather was cool, crisp, clear. There was optimism in the air and not a hint of any danger. That day was one of those unforgettable late summer, pre-autumn days that makes one think of football and The World Series.
.
Carnage was not a concept I could identify in reality until that day.
.
That day will never come again.

ExpressoBold on September 11, 2012 at 8:35 AM

Which reminds me, has AT&T sued Apple yet for copying the design of the keypad, as well as the nifty concept of putting letters and numbers on the same key?

MNHawk on September 11, 2012 at 8:36 AM

Didn’t all of his hipper-than-thou staffers want to replace all the PC based computers in the White House with Macs back in ’09? So much for the hip ‘n cool preezy. Our benevolent god-king is nothing but a dweeb who can’t figure out that the phone icon means “phone.” And then blames the phone’s owner for his own shortcomings.

Perfect encapsulation of the empty chair presidency.

crazy_legs on September 11, 2012 at 8:36 AM

“The Great Communicator”????

This and the photo of him holding a receiver to his ear, and the receiver is upside-down go hand in hand.

AubieJon on September 11, 2012 at 8:45 AM

he blamed Mr. Nicholson

WTH? He should have defaulted to blaming BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSH. He sabotaged that phone deliberately as part of his ongoing racist activity.

CorporatePiggy on September 11, 2012 at 8:48 AM

So many ways to go with this, so little time:

- One needs live human hands to use the iPhone touchscreen.
- Obama’s Government Bell phone (“We can hear you now”) IS almost 4 years old.
- Speaking of plans, the free-to-the-moochers Government Bell plan has only 250 minutes per month, far less than even the bare-minimum 450 minutes a month that are now legacy plans at the unlimited-talk Verizon and AT&T.

Steve Eggleston on September 11, 2012 at 8:57 AM

maybe if he had a iBlackPhone…..

/identity

ted c on September 11, 2012 at 9:00 AM

…I’m a technology dunce…but I discovered ATM machines long before Bahhrock did…and I haven’t needed help using my credit card as JugEars has on occassion…while the MSM stood by smiling…

KOOLAID2 on September 11, 2012 at 9:00 AM

What kind of huckleberry uses a Blackberry? he asks

BigAlSouth on September 11, 2012 at 9:00 AM

Wow, blame the phone plan. SCOAMF strikes again blame everyone but yourself.

Schwalbe Me-262 on September 11, 2012 at 9:01 AM

Like he is going to ever abandon his Blackberry….

hillsoftx on September 11, 2012 at 8:31 AM

Well, he abandoned Barry for Barack.
:)

itsnotaboutme on September 11, 2012 at 9:11 AM

suprised he didnt blame dubya

rico101 on September 11, 2012 at 9:41 AM

“It’s not clear he knows how to dial on an iPhone,” the reporter wrote in a pool report.

And the reporter slowly walked away weeping.

The president then “had a little more trouble dialing,” the pool report said.

Why, he’s been phoning it in for like all of his life.

Kissmygrits on September 11, 2012 at 9:52 AM

Finally, Mr. Obama said, “Oh, Hold on, hold on. I can do this.

He seems to be saying that a lot lately.

Isn’t that the same argument he’s using to vote for him again?

lynncgb on September 11, 2012 at 9:55 AM

Did someone whisper in his ear, ‘use the area code first, Mr P.’

Kissmygrits on September 11, 2012 at 9:58 AM

Borderline/Narcissistic personality disorder.

Look it up.

the_souse on September 11, 2012 at 10:01 AM


Finally, Mr. Obama said, “Oh, I got to dial it in. Hold on, hold on. I can do this. See, I still have a BlackBerry.”

“I got to dial it in.” I got to. How annoying. Did he learn English in the 57th state?

Xyz22 on September 11, 2012 at 10:10 AM

When the call didn’t go through, he blamed Mr. Nicholson for having an insufficient cell phone plan.

Naturally. Nothing is EVER Barry’s fault! He’s “The Smartest Man in the World!”

GarandFan on September 11, 2012 at 10:12 AM

The president then has more trouble dialing. When the call didn’t go through, he blamed Mr. Nicholson for having an insufficient cell phone plan.

The area that Obama was in when he tried to “dail it in” and failed has excellent cell phone coverage due to population denisty being concentrated within a few square miles.

Franklyn on September 11, 2012 at 10:26 AM

George H. W. Bush just tried to pay polite attention at a grocery store while a clerk explained a bar-code scanner system, and the media played it into a look-how-out-of-touch-the-rich-guy-is story.

In fact, he was at a grocery convention — a trade show — and was watching a demonstration of the latest scanning equipment at a mocked-up checkout lane.

cheeflo on September 11, 2012 at 11:05 AM

The president then has more trouble dialing. When the call didn’t go through, he blamed Mr. Nicholson for having an insufficient cell phone plan.

He was probably trying to call Kenya or his brother in the shack that doesn’t have a cell phone.

tims472 on September 11, 2012 at 11:07 AM

Borderline/Narcissistic personality disorder.

Look it up.

the_souse on September 11, 2012 at 10:01 AM

No “Borderline/” to it. He’s crossed that border long ago – without papers.

Solaratov on September 11, 2012 at 11:27 AM

Nicholson probably had one of those plans that only allows 6 digits.

exhelodrvr on September 11, 2012 at 11:29 AM

Dope.

Tim_CA on September 11, 2012 at 11:41 AM

How could the Zero not know about iPhones? I mean the iPhone is tailor-made for him!

Nutstuyu on September 11, 2012 at 11:57 AM

Nicholson probably had one of those plans that only allows 6 digits.

exhelodrvr on September 11, 2012 at 11:29 AM

What color was the iPhone case? I bet it was white.

Nutstuyu on September 11, 2012 at 11:58 AM

Finally, Mr. Obama said, “Oh, I got to dial it in. Hold on, hold on. I can do this. See, I still have a BlackBerry.”

“I got to dial it in.” I got to. How annoying. Did he learn English in the 57th state?

Xyz22 on September 11, 2012 at 10:10 AM

And this is why the Chicago teachers (guffaw) are on strike.

Nutstuyu on September 11, 2012 at 11:59 AM

he blamed Mr. Nicholson for having an insufficient cell phone plan.

Dear Leader,
Mr. Nicholson had to downgrade his cell phone plan due to increased costs in healthcare for his employees along with increased regulations for his business.

Shouldn’t everyone be given an unlimited cell phone plan? Isn’t that a right?

Love,
Your blind follower

katablog.com on September 11, 2012 at 12:36 PM

that’s why I’ll never get an iPhone, can’t dial on ‘em. They’re only good for angry birds.

kirkill on September 11, 2012 at 12:44 PM

What color was the iPhone case? I bet it was white.

Nutstuyu on September 11, 2012 at 11:58 AM

Heh.

(alert secret service agents escorted the racist phone from the venue)

Tim_CA on September 11, 2012 at 2:12 PM

When the call didn’t go through, he blamed Mr. Nicholson for having an insufficient cell phone plan.

“Insufficient”?

So do we now have a federal takeover of the cellphone industry, a la Obamacare, to look forward to?

malclave on September 11, 2012 at 7:03 PM

I wonder if Sarah Palin can dial an iPhone. It’s a good thing we didn’t have someone that stupid as Vice President, huh?/

talkingpoints on September 11, 2012 at 7:39 PM