Sunday, October 11, 2009

Backlash: The Nobel Jokes Begin

Actually, the jokes about Mr. Obama’s accomplishments began even before anyone guessed he’d be the awkward recipient of a prize far above his pay grade. The New York Times describes the video below:

A conspicuous (if not “defining”) episode occurred Oct. 3 on Saturday Night Live in a skit set in the Oval Office. The president (played by Fred Armisen) was defending his record against critics who had accused him of turning the United States “into something that resembles the Soviet Union or Nazi Germany.” Not so, protested the faux-Bama.

Notice the guy playing the President is white. In the old days, he’d have put on some tanning lotion at least, but in these torturous politically correct times, such things cannot be done. Heck, these days you can’t even eat watermelon at Yale Divinity School without being rebuked.

Obviously SNL doesn’t have a black comedian on the staff. Or do they? I have no idea (no TV at chez Bodissey, folks) but even if they did, could they use him to portray Obama or would that be racist?

For our European friends, “jack” and “squat” are colloquial words that mean “nothing at all”. Other words you’ll hear in the coming months are “zip” and “nada”. I’m sure our American readers can supply other American idioms used to describe a lack. In this case, a lack of action.

The Times continues:
- - - - - - - - -
It’s likely he hasn’t noticed or doesn’t care. He is, after all, in the midst of his oft-invoked “full plate” of supposedly “defining moments” in his presidency - a “defining” decision on Afghanistan, “defining” legislative battle on health care, among other “defining” things.

But there is perhaps another more subtle set of “defining” episodes playing out for Mr. Obama in the televised comedy salons that had previously, by and large, been relatively gentle spaces for him. The bits about him are getting harsher. They are no longer just gentle gibes about Bo the dog, big ears, bad bowling and beer summits.

Part of the issue is that most of the comedians are leftists themselves. So they have to tread gingerly in lampooning someone they voted for and whose platform is to their liking. It’s also hard to spoof someone who is so cool and ironic himself:

Mr. Obama has of course been a puzzle to comedians for some time. They agonized during the campaign about how his low-key and confident manner did not lend itself to edgy caricature. The challenge was made greater by the sensitivities inherent to lampooning a black candidate.

But recent indicators could be proving ominous. There has been a proliferation of jokes that feed on - or are fed by - a resuscitated old narrative against the president that goes back to last year’s campaign when both John McCain and Hillary Clinton tried to portray Mr. Obama as an All Talk/No Walk showboat

Saturday Night Live (SNL), is not the only one to take on the President. There is Jon Stewart’s growing impatience:

Last Tuesday, Jon Stewart advanced the Saturday Night Live “do nothing” theme on “The Daily Show.” It began as a standard Stewart video-clip juxtaposition of Mr. Obama (and surrogates) promising to end the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. It continued with clips from the ensuing months of Defense Secretary Robert Gates and National Security Adviser Jim Jones saying they had not yet gotten around to reversing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” citing Mr. Obama’s “full plate” of business. (“The president needs a metaphor czar,” Mr. Stewart said.)

What followed was Mr. Stewart, exasperated with a man he had supported, throwing his hands up and essentially imploring the president to, you know, do something.

“All that stuff you’ve been putting on your plate?” Mr. Stewart said. “It’s [expletive] chow time, brother. That’s how you get things off your plate.”

After a roar of laughter and applause from the audience, Mr. Stewart reminded Mr. Obama that “You are president of the United States.” It sounded like something between a liberal call to action or cry for help. As Mr. Stewart grew more animated and the crowd grew louder, the routine took on the feel of a televised catharsis.

This is an interesting trend because it started well before the astounding “Nobel-for-Nothing” (and the chicks are free?) news. Now that Mr. Obama has humbly accepted his prize, the games are really beginning.

This does not bode well for the President. For all his posturing as detached and self-deprecating, I perceive him to be thin-skinned and unlikely to absorb the slings and arrows that are part and parcel of his job description. It was always open season on George Bush, as it usually is on Republicans. Whether or not the ferocious assaults done in the name of wit ever hit their mark, Bush appeared to remain imperturbable. This may not be the case for Obama, if only because he knows deep down that he has been given a free ride for most of his life. If, at any level he suspects he indeed may be an affirmative action President, then it follows that anyone pointing this out will be seen as the enemy.

Think of Charles Johnson and his one moment of glory: the Dan Rather takedown in the Bush election. Since then, Mr. Johnson has been living on the fumes of fame; his actions betray his existential terror. As other large blogs began to publicly call him on his behavior he lost his cool and began savage defenses of his realm which only increased the rejection and mockery.

Those who cannot take criticism are fragile narcissists. Our president, laden with unearned glory, may prove to be in this group. It’s much larger than you’d think. As in political sphere, so in the blogosphere: even inferred criticism of other bloggers,or some perceived slight can get you delinked and shunned. Narcissistic divas are over-represented in both spheres. Sometimes we can be defined by our hatreds.

Meanwhile, like it or not, open season on Obama has begun. Will he hang onto the rails and enjoy the ride or will he retreat - like Nixon and Charles Johnson - into bitter disbelief? He could cut the Gordian knot by appearing on the talk shows and taking on this meme as his own. However, this is unlikely for two reasons: first, he'd be implicitly ridiculing the Nobel Committee; second, how can he publicly admit that his actual performance in office consists mostly of showing up?

Michelle Malkin has a short post up on this theme. The bumper sticker is pretty funny.

Michelle’s Mirror has a wonderful icon of Obama. I hope it goes viral. This theme of Obama the Messiah is going to be played thoroughly, thanks to the Norwegians. America owes the Olympic Committee Nobel Committee a great debt. It breached the wall and now all those pent-up jokes will be pouring in.

Feel free to leave any jokes you find in the comments. As usual, the rules about civility apply, even in the humor department. Don't forget, rudeness is a sign that you might be a Leftist.


Watchman said...

What I find alarming is how lazy Obama seems to be as a president. Makes you think why the heck he wanted this job in the first place. For status reasons?

He makes a vague speech after speech and a couple of photo-ops in between. There are many issues that need his attention and the tension between Israel and Iran is surely not the least of them. American presidents have only 2 years when they are free of electoral pressures and he has almost used his first. Republicans will most likely win in 1010 and Obama's party is over. Not just that, but it's a known fact that foreign nations have a certain attitude with presidents on their 3rd and 4th year, since they know the man (and party) in the WH might change. Mr. President better start to use all that charisma he's hailed for because time is running out.

kepiblanc said...

It's a fine impersonation, but why doesn't the man constantly look left - right - left - right - left.... ?
No teleprompter?

Félicie said...

I love the "post-accomplishment" quip by Limbaugh. Very funny!

Fjordman said...

This Peace Prize will discredit the Nobel Committee and European Leftists as well as Mr. Obama. I don't see how things can get much better than that.

Anonymous said...

Promising Pre-Med Wins Nobel Prize in Medicine

Nobel in medicine goes to Westchester high school senior

Dr. Quisling acknowledged that the committee was inspired to award prizes prematurely after giving President Barack Obama a Nobel Peace Prize the year before, despite the fact that nominations had been closed only 11 days after he entered office.

"In Barack Obama's case, we figured that if the American people were willing to hand over the U.S. presidency to someone who hasn't accomplished much, why not give him the Nobel Peace Prize before he's done anything, either?" Dr. Quisling said.


Godffrey said...

Jokes, eh? Well let's see. One thing I find funny is that the same people who profess to believe that America is a land of opportunity where anyone can succeed can at the same time profess amazement that a black man can become president. How's that for cognitive dissonance?

Henrik R Clausen said...

The whole thing *is* a sick joke.

When a friend of mine Skyped in the news, I responded Joke alert! and continued whatever I was doing. Only when he insisted and provided links to media reporting it, did I permit myself to be convinced.

The joke is on the system and will - also due to reactions like these - cause 0bama more trouble than benefit.

Laughter is good. It brings down inept politicians like nothing else :)

Dymphna said...


People have asked before if he's lazy. I don't think so. He appears to be restless and without any real inner anchor. I think this narcissism makes him flit here and there. Nothing holds his attention for long.

Add that to the fact that everything has been handed to him...though he doesn't see it that way. I think Michelle does; she's complained about his character in the past (they had to sequester her during the campaign until she could get her anger under control. She complained that the work of the family fell to her. So they put her in cold storage for a while).

Like all narcissists, he has a hole in his soul that nothing can fill. Not even sitting in the chair at the Oval Office.

kepi blanc--

I wonder if anyone has mentioned that to SNL? For sure they will make hay out of this for a long time to come, so no doubt the teleprompter(s) will come into play soon. They haven't been able to say much about The One, but now, thanks to the Committee (and previous to that his hubristic appearance in Copenhagen where he didn't even have the courtesy to stay for the voting), it's now Open Season on Presidents again...though they will still be much kinder than they ever are to Republicans. No Obama Derangement Syndrome in the MSM.

Which means: no jokes about his IQ, none about his integrity, no jokes about his children (though his wife may begin to be a target), no remarks about his religion or lack thereof...etc. IOW, still lots of off-limit areas that would be fair game when dealing with conservatives, but these two major incidents have set him up in lots of other ways he couldn't be gotten at before.

Should be interesting to see if MO goes postal about the "attacks" on her husband. She's the only one permitted to beat him up. Just like Hillary and Bill...



The President's staff didn't believe it, either. They thought they were being p0wned by the people who informed them.

Evidently the news came in real early in D.C. Gibbs woke Obama up at 6:00 am to tell him and *that* must've been a shock to his system.

The only reason I had the story up so early is that my sleeping pattern has been disrupted since the Baron is away. I just happened to awaken at 4:30 am and saw the headlines on Memorandum. Memo is a good way to start the day when your eyes won't focus because of dangerously low levels of caffeine. Also, it's a way to catch up on the American blogosphere very quickly. Often, there's nothing there I want to post on:

1. Days and days of Michael Jackson. Yawn...

2.A full week of pederast Polanski. Chunder...

The only way I can describe my reaction is to say that I was stunned awake. And then I started laughing. I think my reaction was a common one as I've seen it repeated over and over again.

And then one moves through the various stages of indignation, cynicism, disgust, and back to laughter. Only the laughter seems to have any lasting value.

Let the games continue...we still have the awards ceremony to get thru.

spackle said...

Yes there is a black cast member. But he is too overweight. Hey, isnt that discriminatory against fat black comedians?


it is impossible for me to believe that professional commedians can not find anything "funny" about obama - i can't look at him without laughting - barack's teleprompter blog has some very funny stuff, and i humbly think that my obama videos, including the small cut sean hannity ran, are, in the words of tony the tiger, Grrrreat.

Andrew X said...

Answering kepiblanc and chiming in from the states....

People are starting to mention something decidedly odd about this... and that is that this is actually not a very fine impersonation at all. Fred Armisen (the comedian here) does very little other than wear the suit and sit in an oval office set, and occasionally sort of do the vocal cadences... occasionally.

The SNL show's riff on the Nobel prize last night was even more tepid, and non-immatative.

Here's the thing - Armisen did do Obama last year, when satirizing the campaign and the debates with Hillary (played quite hilariously by Amy Pohler), and he in fact did a much better job of it then. I am pretty certain they even tinted his skin a bit (though not itself in an insulting way), and he was far more pronounced in immitating Obama's voice and vocal cadences and mannerisms, and overall smug persona.

So he is very much able to do it.... but all of a sudden he is not.


A big hmmmmmmmm. We know for a fact that NBC as a corporation is inherently in the tank for Obama and extremely hostile to any opposition to him. We see this on NBC programming, and the less said about MSNBC "News" the better. We know that GE owns NBC, and stands to make billions from the right laws, regulations and rulings on so-called "green technology". The relationship between GE and this administration is one that makes Halliburton and Bush look like pocket change in comparison.

So we know about all that, and we know comedian Fred Armisen and the SNL show has already mocked Obama in a manner far more effective then he suddenly seems to (choose) to do of late.

So, as I said....


bobby said...

The committee decided to award the 2009 P-Prize to the long-abused, ever-suffering, stoic yet generally ineffective citizenry of Western Europe for its imaginative and seemingly untraceable scheme for throwing the spare change of Europe at Obama's campaign bus by the new small-donation-through-fake-credit-card scam.

Conceived and executed entirely without the assistance of people who generally work with numbers, this new scheme has returned world power to Europe's liberals. Not being able to actually award the prize to "the citizenry" due to space constraints in the "(print name here)" blank on the little statuette, the committee hit upon the idea of the representative award, and gave it to the citizenry's offspring.

Henrik Ræder said...

After some pondering, I've decided that Jew-hating Carter has been more damaging to world peace than Jew-hating Arafat. The consequences of Carter's mistakes have been much more extensive than the terrorist mastermind of PLO.

These prize awardings are subversive for our security :(