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November 16th, 2010 5:27 pm
Obama: Air Guitarist in Chief
Posted by Print

Every so often, someone captures the proverbial lightning in a bottle.  Today, it was Wall Street Journal columnist Bret Stephens and his commentary entitled “Obama’s Air Guitar.” Stephens’s weekly commentaries are always a must-read, but today’s perfectly portrays the growing sense among the American electorate, more sober observers and now world leaders that Barack Obama is simply in over his head:

His administration has now been chastised or belittled by everyone from the Supreme Leader of Iran to the finance minister of Germany to the president of France to the dictator of Syria.  What does it mean for global order when the world figures out that the U.S. president is someone who’s willing to take no for an answer?  The answer is that the United States becomes Europe.  Except on a handful of topics, like trade and foreign aid, the foreign policy of the European Union, and that of most of its constituent states, amounts to a kind of diplomatic air guitar: furious motion, considerable imagination, but neither sound nor effect.  When a European leader issues a stern demarche toward, say, Burma or Russia, nobody notices. And nobody cares.”

Since he first began flirting with a White House campaign, Obama has long created the impression that he considers the presidency a video game, or a pickup game of hoops with himself at point guard taking a three-pointer on every possession.  But now we have a description that perhaps captures the Age of Obama better than any other to date:  Obama as air guitarist.

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