Presidential Bloviation Is Contagious

President Barack Obama is succumbing to the same malady that infected his predecessor, George W. Bush — falling in love with the sound of his own voice. 

Bush would begin his news conferences with a rambling discussion of something or other, and then as the media representatives asked questions, he would get really revved up, and his answers would get longer and longer and more and more rambling.  Even Mr. Bush’s very last news conference before he left office on January 20th, was excruciating to watch and listen to; as the soon-to-be ex-President rambled on and on about the accomplishments of his soon-to-be ex-presidency, and obviously enjoying what he apparently perceived as eloquent and insightful bloviating.  Of course, the former President’s answers to media questions were, like his more formal speeches, anything but eloquent.

President Obama, who is by any objective measure, a gifted speaker and clearly more knowledgeable about sentence structure and word useage than his predecessor, does not help himself or the policies he seeks to implement by his increasing tendency to pontificate.  The still-novice President appears to find it increasingly difficult to do what at least some of his predecessors (not including George W. Bush) were able to do — answer questions clearly and make the points they wished to make concisely, and then move on.

Instead, Obama more and more is starting to repeat himself, restate positions unnecessarily, and return to topics best left alone. Perhaps Mr. Obama actually believes it beneficial to deepen the hole in which one finds oneself, by returning to a prior mistake.  Or maybe he really does just like to listen to himself talk.  What is clear is the President is talking too much but saying too little.  Two examples — health care “reform” and the “Professor Gates” case.

Regarding health care “reform,” the President just a few days ago consumed an hour of prime time television discussing once again his proposal.  Apparently unaware of the adage that the person who keeps repeating the same thing either has something to hide or doesn’t himself believe what he’s selling, Mr. Obama offered up the very same simplistic answers and “explanations” as he had done for the previous several weeks.  His comments are woefully short on facts. 

The problem Obama faces is that such sound-bite ruminations will carry you only so far, and sooner or later people will see through such rose-tinted rhetoric.  The President’s crack aides might remind their boss that one of his historic mentors, Abraham Lincoln, was right when he noted that even a president can only “fool some of the people all the time, and all of the people only some of the time”; but that no one can “fool all of the people all of the time.”  Recent polls suggest the public has reached the saturation point for empty administration rhetoric on health care “reform.”

Mr. Obama over the past week or so, has enmeshed himself in another issue that should not have occupied the public attention of the President — the controversy between Harvard Professor Henry Gates and Cambridge Police Sgt. Crowley.  He voluntarily stepped into that briar patch before arming himself with the facts, and then kept returning to that same thorn bush.  At one point in one of his several public pronouncements on the Gates-Crowley controversy, Obama urged his listeners (press and public alike) to “step back” and defuse the situation; even as he kept stepping into the melee and igniting the very fuse he lectured others to snuff out.

Unfortunately, in this last situation, the result of all this presidential attention has been to create and focus on a racial scenario that obscures the real problems the Cambridge incident brought to light – questions involving the sanctity of one’s own home; the proper basis for a police search and arrest; the burden of proving one is who one says they are in their own home.  But these are topics for perhaps a next Blog. 

For now, let’s hope this President quickly educates himself so he understands and accepts the value of short, clear, accurate, fact-based answers to questions.  Ahhh, wouldn’t that be refreshing?

95 comments Add your comment

Alex Clarke

July 29th, 2009
6:36 am

Nice use of ‘bloviation’. Surprised you didn’t try to get ‘rodomontade’ in there too.

Rob

July 29th, 2009
6:43 am

You liberals are in trouble…

Howard Beale

July 29th, 2009
6:50 am

This president is clearly over-educated, particularly in the teachings of former Chicago rabble-rouser Saul Alinsky. His use of the Oval Office as a podium from which he is attempting to orchestrate the most heinous power-grab and blatant disregard for the U. S. Constitution is truly astounding and insidious.

It is not going to make a difference if this man were to learn how to answer questions with short, clear, accurate, fact-based answers to questions. He won’t provide those answers, for if he did, it would expose his policies for the naked Marxism, and fascist Corporatism they stand for.

Bob Dobolina

July 29th, 2009
7:01 am

He’s spending too much time hanging around with Biden.

Bob Dobolina

July 29th, 2009
7:06 am

“Over-educated”. Gotta love that. We’re living in an Orwellian world where the GOP has convinced its idiot base that education is a bad thing and stupidity is somehow equivalent to being “real”. Wonderful. I suspect, if the Republicans have their way, we’ll soon become part of the Third World, selling charcoal from wheelbarrows and raising goats on our front lawns. Could we please try to remember that education–not deer hunting–is what made America a world superpower? Elitism is thinking that you’re smarter than someone who’s been to college.

DawgSpanky!

July 29th, 2009
7:17 am

How many press conferences has OTaxya had thus far? It seems like it’s been around 752 and counting. This smug and narcissistic man clearly loves the sound of his own voice. It’s just a matter of time until he directs his clueless and gutless puppets in congress to enact legislation renaming the USA to the OSA (Obama’s Socialist America).

George

July 29th, 2009
7:25 am

BOB D I hate to tell you but if the other party had their way we well not even have wheelbarrows to transport the charcoal, much less selling it. As far as elitism the best definition I could fine for it was
“The belief that certain persons or members of certain classes or groups deserve favored treatment by virtue of their perceived superiority, as in intellect, social status, or financial resources.” Don’t really see anything in there about college so you might want to
1. try and go to one and help yourself. or
2 stick a sock in it because what Mr. Barr had to say was the truth and you just can’t stand it.
Obama is still trying to sell idiots like you a bill of goods that he can’t float while the rest of us are sitting back smiling and saying WE TOLD YOU SO.

Jim Callihan

July 29th, 2009
7:44 am

The President chose “Joe”, just as the Rockefeller-Federal Reserve-NWO bunch chose him – the best “servant” for their purpose. The bed has been made…now let us lie. Nothing is as it seems without deeper understanding.

maranatha

BRS

July 29th, 2009
7:47 am

Come on. Talk about wind-bagging. Short, clear? Listen to your own advice. The right wing finger-pointing whiners are usually right in the middle of committing the exact same thing that they are whining about. But what can you expect from this article’s professional politician author. At least we are through with 8 years of non-thinking, misreading of teleprompters. I am so tired of hearing so much complaining but never any concrete helpful answers for ‘all’ the people. Not just rantings to get elected.

stan lippmann

July 29th, 2009
7:59 am

bob,
You were doing okay until the end. This is not about police brutality. It’s about political corruption.

Pennsylvanian

July 29th, 2009
8:03 am

BRS @ 7:47
Is Juan Williams at NPR a right wing finger pointer? He made some scathing remarks last night about Obama running his mouth when asked about the Gates affair.

jconservative

July 29th, 2009
8:28 am

“questions involving the sanctity of one’s own home; the proper basis for a police search and arrest; the burden of proving one is who one says they are in their own home. But these are topics for perhaps a next Blog.”

Bob, this (above)is a lot more important than Obama’s love of his own voice. Most politicians fall into that trap – if you will recall you did the same.

As soon as that policeman knew he was talking to a citizen in his own home he should have turned on his heel & got back into his car. Anything else he did was dead wrong. If he does not know that he has no business wearing a police uniform.

Another example of the rape of the 4th Amendment.

The 4th Am is being raped & pillaged and the idiot NRA is hollering about a new Supreme Court Justice whose opinion on the 2nd Am is unknown to anyone on the planet. One might guess, but one does not know. One KNOWS the 4th Am is being raped. And only a few of us seem to care.

Pennsylvanian

July 29th, 2009
8:50 am

How about congressional bloviating? Rep. John Conyers, on the record, saying there is no need to read the health care reform bill because it is so long and complicated it would take “2 days and 2 lawyers” to read. And they want us to trust them?

Chuck

July 29th, 2009
9:19 am

I don’t know, Bob. Did it really require nine paragraphs to talk about the value of “short, clear, accurate, fact-based answers”? Talk about bloviation.

WBK

July 29th, 2009
9:54 am

jconservative:
You give up your 4th ammendment rights and I will give up my 2nd ammendment rights! Ok? Or do you want me to give up my rights and you keep the rights you want. Ummm….sounds awful progressive liberalism to me.

4th ammendment:
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

The officer did not enter the home but did ask to enter and was denied. Where does the 4th apply?

Your guild have taken away my property rights due to political agendas, so called global warming, so called air pollution ect…for instance no one is allowed to burn paper and trash on their premises. Why? I am sure your constitutional minded ways can give me a great answer to that. I have all my rights or I do not. I am a free person. I will live or die that way–no exceptions.

BRS

July 29th, 2009
9:56 am

To Pennsylvanian: Just what I’m talking about. How about everyone just get to talking about how they can do things better. Not how someone rambles, or comments, or judges. Lets get down to business. Not slanderous vote searching. If we used all this effort to just come up with better ideas. The right can only put down any ideas, but just as they proved, they didn’t have any good ones, except for making their own pockets bigger. That’s why they lost the last elections so bad. And all they can do is come up with Palin. PLEASE *#&@$(%@!!! Another front whining figurehead, all talk and fingerpointing and no ideas. Or commitment to where she was elected to serve. Only political ladder climbing by her. Say what they want to hear to get elected. And then cut the line, do what you want. Wow, what a maverick, ha. So transparent and pathetic. Like Barr, party hopping, finger pointing, log in my eye. Guess what, God hates divorce more than all other sexual sins. (i.e., Newt)

WBK

July 29th, 2009
9:58 am

Pennsylvanian:
I totally agree with you…John Conyers is a joke. They call us idiots and his constituents keep voting him back into office. I guess I have the wrong definition of idiot.

CJ

July 29th, 2009
10:02 am

Bob, you should know about loving the sound of your own voice. With a black man holding the highest office in the land, perhaps now you can come out of the closet and admit that you are black, than you can find out what it is like to be racially profiled. Embrace your heritage man, you have been in denial way to long. The truth will set you free.

Elephant Whip

July 29th, 2009
10:02 am

Beale:

1) Describe the blatant disregard for the US Constitution exhibited by the Obama administration thus far.

2) Explain how someone is a naked Marxist and corporate fascist at the same time.

Elephant Whip

July 29th, 2009
10:06 am

WBK:

4th Amendment: protects against search AND SEIZURE. Protection against SEIZURE includes seizure of the person, not just entry into the house. That’s what it means when it says it is “the right of the people to be secure in their persons”

Chris Salzmann

July 29th, 2009
10:08 am

Chuck July 29th, 2009 9:19 am SAID: I don’t know, Bob. Did it really require nine paragraphs to talk about the value of “short, clear, accurate, fact-based answers”? Talk about bloviation.

CHRIS SAYS: Chuck, I couldn’t put my finger on it but then you hit the nail on the head!!! ROFLMAO

WBK

July 29th, 2009
10:21 am

Elephant Whip:
He did not SEIZE Gates in his home did he? Now where does the 4th apply?

Pennsylvanian

July 29th, 2009
10:22 am

BRS – Did someone pee in your cheerios? Palin? Divorce? LMAO.

Mrs. Norris

July 29th, 2009
10:22 am

President Obama’s mother should have told him, “least said, soonest mended.”

As far as Professor Gates, he should move to my neighbhorhood. The police would never respond to a burglary in progress. Please.

Paul A

July 29th, 2009
10:24 am

“Let me be clear”…. everything is George Bush’s fault.

We inherited this deficit and we’ve quadrupled it.
This is clearly Dick Cheney’s fault.

I acted stupidly when I jumped into Gates Gate…

“Well…. At least my wife is finally proud to be an American.”

Road Scholar

July 29th, 2009
10:28 am

Is this the same issue that Sarah Palin is guilty of? Supposedly/alledgedly knowing something about national and international politics? At least he can speak in clear, coherent thoughts and sentences…you know with a noun and verb! And with the end of a sentence in sight!

Chris Salzmann

July 29th, 2009
10:28 am

stan lippmann July 29th, 2009 7:59 am SAID: bob, You were doing okay until the end. This is not about police brutality. It’s about political corruption.

CHRIS SAYS: Wrong. Under MA law, you can only be arrested for disorderly conduct if you are preventing members of the public from going about their lawful business. It would be pretty difficult to achieve that in the privacy of one’s own home since the public had not been inconvenienced in any way. No, Obama was right about the police acting stupid.

Here’s another example of police acting stupid. Did you all read that story about the mentally disabled and deaf man who was pepper sprayed, tasered and arrested in Mobile, Alabama? The police tried to charge him with (1) Resisting arrest (2) Failure to obey a police officer and (3) Disorderly conduct. This episode came to an end when the magistrate on duty (the only intelligent officer of the law in this episode) at the jail refused to accept any of those charges. BTW, the police tried to bring those charges AFTER finding out that the man was mentally disabled and deaf. Oh, and the victim in this case, was also Black.

The link to this story is here:
http://www.al.com/news/press-register/metro.ssf?/base/news/124877253351170.xml&coll=3

WBK

July 29th, 2009
10:29 am

I personally think Professor Gates is a racist. And POTUS backed him up. Was Professor Gates behavior conducive to a Harvard Professor’s professionalism. As they say” Education doesnt cure stupid”!

WBK

July 29th, 2009
10:31 am

Chris Salzmann:

I am sure if I search the archives long enought I will find a white guy who was treated the same way. But that does not make the news–does it.

Chris Salzmann

July 29th, 2009
10:32 am

Paul A July 29th, 2009 10:24 am SAID:
“Well…. At least my wife is finally proud to be an American.”

CHRIS SAYS: During most of the 8 years under Bush, I certainly wasn’t proud of being an American and when traveling internationally, told people that I was Canadian. So, sue me!

Normal

July 29th, 2009
10:33 am

BRS: You said: God hates divorce more than all other sexual sins.

Not true my friend, God doesn’t hate a thing, God gave you the right of free choice. God keeps score is all, when your life is done, God adds up the score. If you win, then well and good, but if you lose…well, soooo sorry.

This is why you can’t legislate Gods Word. If you do, you take away the choice factor. I think that would be a point against you…just sayin’

Chris Salzmann

July 29th, 2009
10:39 am

WBK July 29th, 2009 10:31 am SAID: Chris Salzmann:

I am sure if I search the archives long enought I will find a white guy who was treated the same way. But that does not make the news–does it.

CHRIS SAYS: You’re wrong because it does. I only brought this up to provide an example of police stupidity. So, instead of people being scandalized that any one (let alone a black man/woman) should dare to question the behavior of the police, they should look at the facts, the history and understand that the police reflects society with all its inherent bias. So yes, ALL people should inquire questionable police behavior and hold them ACCOUNTABLE for it. That is the RIGHT thing to do.

Chris Salzmann

July 29th, 2009
10:41 am

WBK July 29th, 2009 10:29 am SAID I personally think Professor Gates is a racist. And POTUS backed him up. Was Professor Gates behavior conducive to a Harvard Professor’s professionalism. As they say” Education doesnt cure stupid”!

CHRIS SAYS: Yes, that saying was made up by rednecks who obviously haven’t seen the inside of a university. Personally, the only racist I see is you, but its a free country.

Chris Salzmann

July 29th, 2009
10:46 am

WBK July 29th, 2009 10:21 am SAID: Elephant Whip: He did not SEIZE Gates in his home did he? Now where does the 4th apply?

CHRIS SAYS: This comment pretty much sums it up. Professor Gates was standing on his PROPERTY. Inside/outside does not matter. So, I guess Stupid needs an education. Hey, education does cure ignorance.

Davo

July 29th, 2009
10:47 am

Can we all come together and collectively extend our middle finger towards Gates in his fight against racism?

You don’t need to be a Harvard professor to know that cops are thugs; but I guess you do need to be one to make a stink about it.

pat

July 29th, 2009
10:51 am

“Well that depends on what your definition of “is” is.”

Paul A

July 29th, 2009
10:56 am

Dear Chris Salzmann —

And I’m proud to be an American where at least I know I’m free……….. La, la , la.

Too bad you didn’t remain overseas.

Justify anything. Silence all dissent. Intimidate any opposition. Democrats.

See you in 18 months….. Da nah nah nah – Hey, hey, hey – Goodbye.

Chris Salzmann

July 29th, 2009
10:59 am

WBK July 29th, 2009 10:29 am SAID: I personally think Professor Gates is a racist. And POTUS backed him up.

CHRIS SAYS: Yes, Professor Gates is such a racist that he married a white woman and had two mixed race daughters with her. Ah yes, for you WBK, ignorance is indeed bliss.

Aloha Gator

July 29th, 2009
11:03 am

Hypocrisy alert!

A heretofore “unknown” 2004 interview with Barack Obama by leftwing radio host Randi Rhodes has just emerged. And basically Obama is saying do as I say, not as I do. In this case he was referring to quickly forcing legislation through congress. As you can hear in an interview, uncovered by Naked Emporer News, the hypocrisy seems so massive that it is destined to go viral on the Web. It features Randi Rhodes back during her Air America days interviewing then senator-elect Barack Obama on November 22, 2004. And despite the fact that Randi is currently pretty well hidden from public view, you can be sure she will soon be talked about again because of her inadvertent exposure of incredible hypocrisy on the part of Obama. And what was the hypocrisy? His complaint that the Bush administration was rushing legislation through congress without giving the legislators time to read the bills or allowing for much debate.

Chris Salzmann

July 29th, 2009
11:05 am

Paul A July 29th, 2009 10:56 am SAID: Dear Chris Salzmann —

And I’m proud to be an American where at least I know I’m free……….. La, la , la.
CHRIS SAYS: Oh, so this is the only country on earth that’s free??? So, you’ve visited every other country to form that EDUCATED opinion? ROFLMAO. Wow, ignorance is such bliss.

Too bad you didn’t remain overseas.
CHRIS SAYS: Yeah, too bad for you.

Justify anything. Silence all dissent. Intimidate any opposition. Democrats.
CHRIS SAYS: This coming from the same people who called people UNPATRIOTIC for daring to question Bush’s stupidity??? LOL LOL LOL

See you in 18 months….. Da nah nah nah – Hey, hey, hey – Goodbye.
CHRIS SAYS: So how old are you? 10? Maybe its time for you to climb out of the sandbox and grow up.

Chris Salzmann

July 29th, 2009
11:10 am

Aloha Gator July 29th, 2009 11:03 am SAID: Hypocrisy alert!
And what was the hypocrisy? His complaint that the Bush administration was rushing legislation through congress without giving the legislators time to read the bills or allowing for much debate.

CHRIS SAYS: This legislation has been argued and is still being argued and haggled over over several months. I read the bill in question over 4-5 days. So, how much time do legislators need to read it? 4 years?

Aloha Gator

July 29th, 2009
11:13 am

I think this Chris Salzmann guy is a wacko !

His postings remind me of some kind of Clockwork Orange scene.

Obama is the Pied Piper of narcissists.

He really does love the sound of his own voice as long as the telepromter is working.

Aloha Gator

July 29th, 2009
11:20 am

During his speech at a National Press Club luncheon, House Judiciary Chairman John Conyers (D-Mich.), questioned the point of lawmakers reading the health care bill.

“I love these members, they get up and say, ‘Read the bill,’” said Conyers.

“What good is reading the bill if it’s a thousand pages and you don’t have two days and two lawyers to find out what it means after you read the bill?”

The Gator Says: Ask Chris Salzmann – He’s an expert. LOL, LOL, LOL

Elephant Whip

July 29th, 2009
11:23 am

WBK:

The 4th Amendment applies to property and the person. Law enforcement can’t search the property of a person or sieze anything they find there without a warrant or exigent circumstances, and law enforcement can’t seize a person, regardless of where that person is located, without a warrant or probable cause.

Paul A

July 29th, 2009
11:26 am

As I understand things, there was a black officer on the scene and a hispanic officer there also. They claim the arrest was 100% valid.

Why hasn’t anybody addressed their comments or slandered them?

Hmmmmmm.

Chris Salzmann

July 29th, 2009
11:28 am

Aloha Gator July 29th, 2009 11:13 am SAID: I think this Chris Salzmann guy is a wacko !
CHRIS SAYS: uhuh. Another informed opinion coming from the uninformed. Oooooh, you got me scared now. LOL

Aloha Gator July 29th, 2009 11:13 am SAID: Obama is the Pied Piper of narcissists.
CHRIS SAYS: Okay, so I guess that makes the majority of the country narcissists.

Matilda

July 29th, 2009
11:32 am

Wow, Mr. Barr. You managed to cram your concise recommendation for brevity into just nine paragraphs!

Chris Salzmann

July 29th, 2009
11:33 am

Paul A July 29th, 2009 11:26 am SAID: As I understand things, there was a black officer on the scene and a hispanic officer there also. They claim the arrest was 100% valid. Why hasn’t anybody addressed their comments or slandered them? Hmmmmmm.

CHRIS SAYS: Yes, they might claim that when most legal experts regarding the MA statute on Disorderly Conduct question the charge. Ever heard of the “Thin Blue Line”? You expect those officers to voice dissent and then expect to backed up when they’re under fire? Yeah, right.

Pedro

July 29th, 2009
11:43 am

I’m with Aloha Gator. Chris S, I too travel the world on business and never apologized for being an American. It never cost me any business and, indeed, added to my credibility. I read and tried to understand the bill. If you had 4 days to read the bill and all its nebulous references to section X and paragraph C and article Q, then you have way too much time on your hands. You either need a job or you’re already a liberal lawyer. Gotta run, I have a job colonizing the 3rd world…and terrorizing idiots.

Paul A

July 29th, 2009
11:53 am

excuses, excuses, excuses

Just like your leader, Oblama.
Blame somebody else. “It’s not my fault”. “It wasn’t me”. “This isn’t fair”.

You’ll believe or justify anything as long as it suits your cause won’t you Chris?
Besides, a cop can never be trusted to tell the truth. Especially three cops all from different races.

OBAMA SAYS: Don’t read it. Just pass it…. We’ll figure out who to steal the money from later.