Wednesday, 08 October 2014

Archie Bunker in the White House?

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Everyone who isn’t like Obama (i.e., uninformed) knows about Obama’s not-too-uncommon malapropisms and mistakes, such as when he pronounced “corpsman” “corpse-man” — three times in one speech. Early this year, the president called Oklahoma’s Choctaw Nation the “Cock-taw” Nation. And more recently, he mispronounced Ebola “Ebolee” during an October 2 speech in Illinois. Yup, don’t wanna catch that there Ebolee. That’d done be the death a’ yous guys.

Some will say here that anyone can make a mistake, that focusing on such gaffes is petty and unfair. But note the standard that has been established: One poorly timed moment of brain freeze scuttled Governor Rick Perry’s 2012 presidential aspirations. Sarah Palin was classified an airhead for, at least partially, something actually said by comedienne Tina Fey on Saturday Night Live. And “potatoe” was enough to do in former vice president Dan Quayle. The last example is especially apropos given that Obama would get (until recently, anyway) tremendous “r-s-p-e-c-t” — his misspelling of the word, mind you — for supposedly possessing intellectual heft.  An example of this was historian Michael Beschloss giddily saying in 2008 that Obama’s “I.Q. is off the charts,” though, in fairness and as writer Noemie Emery pointed out, “he didn’t specify which end of the chart it was off of.”  

As for the president’s verbal misfiring, it’s reminiscent of Norman Lear’s iconic TV curmudgeon Archie Bunker, who would mangle the language by saying things such as “hard-pore cornography” and “hangin’ around her neck like an albacore.” Of course, Obama’s mangling isn’t quite as funny, but only because of status. After all, as one of his quintessential Millennial supporters might rhetorically ask, “I mean, isn’t like, dude, the president supposed to be, like, smart?” For sure, as the little lord-to-be Ceddie said in Frances Hodgson Burnett’s 1886 book Little Lord Fauntleroy, “When a man is very good and knows a great deal, he is elected president.”  Well, yeah, that’s the way it used to be, kid; that’s the way it used to be.

Now we have a guy in office who thought “Austrian” was spoken in Austria, called the transcontinental railroad the “intercontinental railroad” (Amtrak to Bangkok, anyone?), called an “inhaler” a “breathalyzer” and then incorrectly corrected himself and said “inhalator,” and stated about his 2008 campaign travels, “I've now been in 57 states; I think, one left to go.” Wow, two Ivy League degrees just ain’t what they used to be.

About Obama’s tendency to not know certain things you’d expect an American would, American Thinker’s Thomas Lifson amusingly observed, “This is such a downright strange phenomenon, it almost seems as though someone raised in a fantasized USSR training camp for deep cover agents was inserted into the identity of Barack Obama and loosed upon America, a highly trained faux American.... Like those WW II movies where the German spy is caught because he doesn't know who Babe Ruth is. Okay, that’s ridiculous, the stuff of spy novels. Couldn’t possibly happen.”

Some might think it could. The problem with this theory is that while a Soviet plant might have the occasional culture-specific blind spot, he’d actually be educated. You see, a Marxist agent would certainly know Marxist doctrine, but he’d also be drilled meticulously in the cultural elements of the target nation; in many respects he’d know more about Americanism than the average American. In contrast, our leftist educational system inculcates attachment to Marxism and generally breeds ignorance, which is why almost half of young Americans can’t locate New York on a map, a quarter of our citizenry have no idea what country the United States gained its independence from, and almost 30 percent don’t know who the vice president is (for the first time in history, this is perhaps a good thing).

This is why the actual explanation for Barack Bunker is quite a bit more mundane than the stuff of spy novels but just as tragic. As I wrote in “Why Obama is Uneducated”:

Educators will often say today, "We don't just teach kids facts [uttered dripping with derision]; we teach them how to think."

...  [There is a reason] why liberals eschew facts: they refute fiction. And since leftist agendas have no basis in reality, exposure to snippets of it is deadly; for, just as one small pin can pop a balloon, one little fact can shatter a rationalization.

... But liberals are raised on fiction. Fiction about America's nature and Western influence; fiction about the races and sexes (not to mention "genders"), and fiction about sex; fiction about history and culture; fiction about economics; fiction about religion. Heck, with how liberals claim old fairy tales are destructive, they're raised with fiction about fiction. This brings us to another fiction: Barack Obama as educated man.

So the man a toady admiral once called “the smartest guy in the room” (yes, when he’s alone in it) we find out is a fiction president. If only he were fictional.

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