Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Hubris thy name is Obama

Barack Obama is on a roll these days with Bush being not just a duck but a lameduck as well. The media circus around transition is in full throttle. Being the new-age internet messiah we now have his campaign web site changed to, well what else, www.change.gov which is under the purview of the "office of the President elect" complete with US Presidential seal. Here is the inconvenient truth only government agencies can have websites with a ".gov" suffix, Barack and his team are not yet part of any government and the bigger rub is that there is no such thing as "Office of the President-elect". "President-elect" is only a symbolic title to differentiate one who is elected to be president from the sitting president. There is no "office of the President-elect".

On campign trail he once boasted thus, "I want to solve health care, lets get everybody around the table. Of course I will have the biggest chair as I will be President". During his acceptance speech at Democratic convention the hubris reached a new low point. The press exults in the self-characterisation by the Obama campaign that Obama is "no drama obama". Ofcourse the dig was at the fractious campaigns of McCain and Hillary which were supposed to have dramatic clashes. Mr No-Drama-Obama decided that he needs to be coronated in the backdrop of a Greek Colosseum replete with Grecian columns, then in the speech he delivered a new low-blow admiring his Michelle, "does she not look like a swell first lady". If McCain had delivered the same line the press would be chortling. Then again on his night of victory he swelled with pride telling his daughters "Sasha and Malia, you will get that puppy when we go to the White House". No Presidential candidate in history stooped so low in self-congratulatory tones.

Well this is the guy who during campaign had the arrogance to alter the US Seal of the President and put it in a banner on his table during an event. Many, including his own supporters laughed at the ridiculousness and his campaign blushed that that was meant for just one event and not to be used after.

When he picked Hillary as Secretary of State a reporter asked him to explain his evolution of thought from ridiculing Hillary's foreign policy experience as "having tea with ambassadors". Obama grinned and told the reporters that they are having fun quoting lines from a heated campaign. No further explanations just a disdainful brush. Campbell Brown of CNN pulled him up for that saying he has to "answer" questions not brush them aside. Ah! well if he can get this far without much answering why would he bother now.

Let us all strap on we are in for a ride.

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