OBAMAONLENO: Post game

Here it is:

Obama did very well, got repeated cheers for his policy related statements, told interesting stories about life in the White House (and Life in the Bubble).

He did make one goof that the conservative blogosphere is getting all juicy about. He made the link between his bowling abilities and the Special Olympics. He is being accused of “mocking the Special Olympics.” Of course, he was actually mocking himself. At the expense of the Special Olympics.

(If you watch the video, I think at about -3:40 or so, you will see this moment, and you’ll see how professional Leno and Obama are. There’s just a tiny bit of Ooops in their faces and body language, and then they move on to the next phrase without a moment’s hesitation.)

So, everyone … and I mean everyone …. who has ever added the suffix “tard” to the end of something in a derogatory way, shut up. Just. Shut. Up. The rest of you may or may not have a right to an opinion on this.

Comments

  1. #1 Duncan
    March 20, 2009

    Don’t care. Not even a little bit.
    About osama and lamo.

    He’s trying to figure out the NCAA March Madness when he should be worrying about more important things like, oh, i dono, the economic crisis?
    Or the WAR thats going on?

  2. #2 Jason Thibeault
    March 20, 2009

    Duncan, how long did it take you to fill out your NCAA brackets exactly? The man can walk and chew bubble gum at the same time. And frankly, the gears are turning for the first time in years and years on ameliorating both situations.

  3. #3 Spiv
    March 20, 2009

    duncan: This is one of the most absurdly stupid things I hear over and over again. Half the time they’re complaining that he’s doing something for playtime, and the other half they’re saying he’s out of the gates at a sprinter’s speed, and needs to pace himself.

    It’s blatent proof that you can’t please everyone. See name link for example.

  4. #4 KittysBitch
    March 20, 2009

    Whenever someone refers to our president as Osama, I know that whatever else they say will have a depth and insight that could possibly alter my world view.

    Wait…no, that means they’re retarded.
    (okay, that was tasteless and rude, but it was on topic)

    Duncan, my hand is forming a “c” shape and moving back and forth, slightly below waist level, in your general direction.

  5. #5 Jackal
    March 20, 2009

    I’ve been trying to figure this one out. Mental retardation is still seen as a negative trait, right? But people with mental retardation don’t want to be tarred with the obnoxious, foolish, incompetent, etc, actions of others. I can see how that is unfair and harmful. It’s different than the “gay” thing because, while most people know there’s nothing wrong with homosexuality, a significant portion of society still considers it “an abomination befor Gawd.” Just as white cow-pokes in MT might still say they’d “never vote for a nigger,”* I imagine gayness insults will persist in pockets of fundamental Xianity. I think perceptions of disabilities are different, and with some sensitivity training, society can stop using terms like “retarded,” or it’s legal precurser: “idiot.” I wonder, is “what are you, blind?” going to be the next big faux pas?

    *Overheard last summer.

  6. #6 Curtis
    March 20, 2009

    Faux pas and political contention aside, it’s at least great to see a President confident enough and sufficiently human to go on late night television and speak to the viewing public in an engaging, humorous, and businesslike way. Obama doesn’t have to wax patriotic about the “enemies of freedom” to get applause, and he can solicit laughter by virtue of wit and an easy demeanor–not just chuckles of disbelief at the sad, dignity-sapping hilarity of miscommunicationistic blunderisms in presidential verbaciousness.

    He’s not Superman, and he’s just a politician. But in many respects, he represents a refreshing change.

  7. #7 Greg Laden
    March 20, 2009

    Duncan is not accustom to the idea that we have a President who can do more than one thing at a time.

    But people with mental retardation don’t want to be tarred

    Jackel? Srsly?

    In fact, it is totally appropriate for the president to refer to the special Olympics here. As far as I understand it, the special Olympics mostly do not involve competitive knuckleheads for whom winning is everything (as the other Olympics does) but rather, people who may not be even close to the best in the world but enjoy the activity and enjoy sharing this experience with other people, family, etc.

    That would probably escribe Obama bowling pretty well.

  8. #8 Greg Laden
    March 20, 2009

    Curtis: Well said. It will be very hard for Letterman to have an Obama base “great moments” series!

  9. #9 Jackal
    March 20, 2009

    I wasn’t commenting on Obama’s reference. I haven’t watched the show. I’m just addressing use of “retarted” as a slur – an issue I hadn’t thought at all about before the big stink about the Black Eyed Peas song a few years ago. If you’re accusing me of bad punmanship, that was not my intent.

  10. #10 KittysBitch
    March 20, 2009

    I think that Duncan is not accustomed to having someone running the country who is smarter than him. Although, it seems the last eight years may have scaled that lofty peak after all.
    Good showing there fella. Osama and Lamo eh?

  11. #11 Jackal
    March 20, 2009

    BTW, the “Osama” insult can be completely lost on dyslexics. (I usually only look at the first and last letters and one-two in the middle. “County,” and “country” continue to mess me up on forms because I’m so used to reading from context.)

  12. #12 Lucas McCarty
    March 20, 2009

    As someone who scored ‘borderline retarded’(ergo, totally qualified to make authoritative comment) in certain intelligence tests, I don’t find the remarks as offensive as the reactions from the Special Olympics Committee or conservatives who don’t otherwise give a flying fuck about disability issues(too ‘left-wing’).

  13. #13 Andrew
    March 20, 2009

    I saw this as a very minor not quite faux pas. Give the man a break.

  14. #14 Rosa
    March 20, 2009

    There are so many clips of news media pundits criticizing the President for going on the show in the midst of a crisis :http://www.newsy.com/. But come on, we elected the mad to run the country I think he is capable of multi-tasking on very basic levels. For example, he was in LA to conduct Townhall meetings about the economy. He also talked about policy initiatives on the show it doesn’t cut into his time anymore than an interview with Barbara Walters would, but b/c it is an entertainment show everyone is up in arms. His statement about the Special Olympics was wrong but he apologized and not because the press told him to like other politicians.

  15. #15 Danny J
    March 20, 2009

    Not everyone is up in arms: Mainly the disaffected and defeated and unimportant.

  16. #16 Ruth
    March 20, 2009

    And frankly, the gears are turning for the first time in years and years on ameliorating both situations.
    I don’t know … the NCAA crisis is still pretty much a quagmire …

  17. #17 Mankel
    March 20, 2009

    Did he apologize? Really? Why should he?

    “My volley-ball skills are not even at a pair with the ones required for a Special Olympics national team of Andorra.”

    “Maybe I could make it into a Special Olympics bowling team.”

    If someone has to apologize for things like that, something is very wrong.

  18. #18 The Science Pundit
    March 20, 2009

    Did he apologize? Really? Why should he?

    Because he’s a politician.

  19. #19 Lou FCD
    March 20, 2009

    Does anybody actually still care what the conservative blogsphere has to say?

    …anybody with a brain, I mean?

    At this point, they’ve surely jumped the shark on pure stoopid, right?

    As long as they’re kept in their straight jackets and away from any sort of power, the whole lot of them are only good for mocking practice to alleviate boredom.

  20. #20 Greg Laden
    March 20, 2009

    Lou: Right. I think when they held a press conference to complain that Obama was going to California that snuffed out the barely detectable ember of credibility that may have been burning in the bottom of some overfilled ashtray in some smelly back room.

    But their strategy is a little (but not much) smarter than it looks. The smear-brats (consulting experts for the Reps) are simply trying to add a modicum of cost to Obama’s public appearances. They have noticed that his popularity ranking goes up every time he appears in public and opens his mouth, even if he makes an occasional goof (which is actually very very rare and always very minor).

    It was not just Leno yesterday. He totally kicked ass in his town hall meeting earlier (the day before or that morning, can’t remember).

  21. #21 Wayne Conrad
    March 21, 2009

    Greg, You nailed this one. It’s much ado about nothing.

  22. #22 Jordan
    March 21, 2009

    He has hurt many families in America. He needs to say he is sorry in the public, not to an organization.

    In addition, someone who claims to have experienced prejudice and stereotypes throughout life, and has written about them in great detail, should be more sensitive and refined from life’s lessons.

    Furthermore, Obama claimed he was going to have the world think ‘highly’ of America again. Will this joke help?

    For someone who spoke of equality as a creed. Does this joke match that philosophy?

    For someone that said he would stand for all people. Does this stand up for those that participate in the special Olympics?

    The fact is Obama claimed a higher standard. To much is given, much is required.

    Obama has just showed us that ‘yes we can’ destroy what a campaign stands for with a single joke.

    During the campaign for the White House in 2008, the media criticized Palin for being ‘common,’ ‘not-polished,’ ‘not-compassionate’ and ‘not presidential.’ However, compare Sarah Palins attitude in this video created three weeks ago for the Special Olympics in Boise, Idaho.

    You decide the more ‘presidential’ among them. Watch: http://tinyurl.com/ccz6nj

  23. #23 Sevesteen
    March 21, 2009

    I’m pretty much the opposite of an Obama fan, but being upset about this is just looking for things to be upset over. I’ll save my ire for policies.