Obamateurism of the Day

How do you say “D’oh!” en Français?  When Barack Obama tried wowing the French at his town hall meeting, he wound up needed a prompt from the audience when his Teleprompter apparently froze:

PRESIDENT OBAMA: … First, because, for all our differences, there are certain values that bind us together and reveal our common humanity: the universal longing to live a life free from fear and free from want, a life marked by dignity and respect and simple justice. Our two republics were founded in service of these ideals. In America it is written into our founding documents as life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. In France, liberté …[freezes]


PRESIDENT OBAMA: Absolutely — (laughter, cheers, applause) — egalité, fraternité.

What makes this so classic is the pose Obama strikes while waiting for the Teleprompter to move.  And how difficult is it to remember Liberté, egalité, fraternité — especially when it’s the theme of the “we’re really all the same” speech Obama was giving?

Zut alors! Or, perhaps, merde.

Got an Obamateurism of the Day? If you see a foul-up by Barack Obama, e-mail it to me at [email protected] 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!