The Man Who Knew Too Little
Imagine if the White House were filled with hidden cameras capturing every single meeting, filming every single conversation, and documenting every email sent and received. Then imagine that the words and images from these hidden cameras were broadcast to the nation via C-Span. What would it reveal about what goes on behind closed doors inside the People’s House? If the statements of Administration officials these past few weeks are to be believed, it would show that virtually no one within the White House ever tells President Barack Obama a single thing that is going on in the country of which he is supposed to be Commander in Chief.
A typical scene from this White House reality show would go something like this:
Attorney General Eric Holder, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, and Presidential Spokesperson Jay Carney are all standing around a water cooler right outside the Oval Office. They are vigorously discussing the various scandals that have engulfed this Administration from Fast and Furious, to Benghazi, to the IRS targeting of Tea Party groups, to the wiretapping of AP reporters.
Suddenly a Secret Service agent runs down the hallway loudly whispering, “Shhhhhhh, Barry’s coming!”
The doors to the Oval Office open wide and out comes President Obama with a golf bag slung over his shoulder.
The four Administration officials chime in unison, “Hi, Mr. President!”
President Obama greets them in return with, “Hi guys! What’s up? What’cha talking about?”
“Oh nothing,” the four respond. And then Hillary adds, “Aren’t you late for tee time?”
“Oh yeah. Carry on!” says the President as he waves goodbye and heads out for another day on the golf course.
Of course, we know a scene like this could never really happen. After all, President Obama would never carry his own golf bag.
But think about it. How can a President that has been so universally lauded by liberals as the smartest man on the face of the planet be so constantly clueless about every little thing that is going on under his very nose? And how can a man so arrogant and notoriously thin-skinned over any seeming slight, bask in his self-proclaimed cluelessness?
President Obama has bragged “I think that I’m a better speechwriter than my speechwriters. I know more about policies on any particular issue than my policy directors. And I’ll tell you right now that I’m gonna think I’m a better political director than my political director.” Yet, he has not hesitated to claim ignorance whenever it has better suited the situation he is facing. And there have been many times that obliviousness has come in handy.
Ignorance seems especially useful when it comes to President Obama’s inconvenient family relations and personal acquaintances. Candidate Obama didn’t know his Aunt Zeituni Onyango was an illegal immigrant living off the American welfare system even though she managed to make it to his Senate and Presidential inaugurations. President Obama also had no clue about his welfare-receiving illegal immigrant uncle Onyango Obama who has had several run-ins with the law over his drunk driving. But perhaps most famously (and conveniently), candidate Obama had no clue his pastor, Reverend Jeremiah Wright , was a racist who spewed anti-American hatred from the pulpit of the church Obama attended for twenty years.
At times, even when President Obama admits his lack of the facts, as in the Henry Louis Gates arrest, it still doesn’t keep him from issuing verdicts such as “the police acted stupidly” .But even when the President makes a grand pronouncement such as the “Red Line” with Syria over chemical weapon use, he may later plead ignorance over the parameters of his own statement when called into question over its ramifications.
When it comes to scandals within his own Administration, Obama seems to believe ignorance is the best policy and answer. For example, he didn’t know a thing about the Fast and Furious gun running scandal till the media covered it. Then, supposedly based on what he learned from the media, he came to feel it was in his best interest to claim executive privilege over releasing further information. It would be a shame if he, and the American people, were to learn any more about the whole incident.
When asked about Benghazi survivors being intimidated from speaking publicly, President Obama stated he was “not familiar” with the claims. Perhaps he should watch Fox News reports rather than just railing against them. He might learn a thing or two about his Administration.
President Obama also didn’t know about the IRS scandal till he read it in the newspapers. But, in the President’s defense, he was also unaware of the existence of the Tea Party while they were rallying outside his windows. Perhaps he should read the Drudge report or any of a number of other Conservative websites.
If ignorance is bliss, then President Obama must be the most euphoric man on earth.