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When Americans saw the real Obama
#1
Nice column by Peggy Noonan. The Emperor has no clothes, and the first debate, more than anything else, made people see that.

When Americans Saw the Real Obama
Why the Denver debate changed everything.

By PEGGY NOONAN
The Wall Street Journal October 26, 2012

We all say Ohio, Ohio, Ohio. But it's all still Denver, Denver, and the mystery that maybe isn't a mystery at all.

If Cincinnati and Lake County go for Mitt Romney on Nov. 6 it will be because of what happened in Denver on Oct. 3. If Barack Obama barely scrapes through, if there's a bloody and prolonged recount, it too will be because of Denver.

[Image: OB-VC679_noonan_D_20121025192823.jpg]

Nothing echoes out like that debate. It was the moment that allowed Mr. Romney to break through, that allowed dismay with the incumbent to coalesce, that allowed voters to consider the alternative. What the debate did to the president is what the Yankees' 0-4 series against the Tigers did at least momentarily, to the team's relationship with their city. "Dear Yankees, We don't date losers. Signed, New Yorkers" read the Post's headline.

America doesn't date losers either.

Why was the first debate so toxic for the president? Because the one thing he couldn't do if he was going to win the election is let all the pent-up resentment toward him erupt.

Americans had gotten used to him as The President. Whatever his policy choices, whatever general direction he seemed to put in place he was The President, a man who had gotten there through natural gifts and what all politicians need, good fortune.

What he couldn't do was present himself, when everyone was looking, as smaller than you thought. Petulant, put upon, above it all, full of himself. He couldn't afford to make himself look less impressive than the challenger in terms of command, grasp of facts, size.

But that's what he did.

And in some utterly new way the president was revealed, exposed. All the people whose job it is to surround and explain him, to act as his buffers and protectors—they weren't there. It was him on the stage, alone with a competitor. He didn't have a teleprompter, and so his failure seemed to underscore the cliché that the prompter is a kind of umbilical cord for him, something that provides nourishment, the thing he needs to sound good. He is not by any means a stupid man but he has become a boring one; he drones, he is predictable, it's never new. The teleprompter adds substance, or at least safety.

***

A great and assumed question, the one that's still floating out there, is what exactly happened when Mr. Obama did himself in? What led to it?

Was it the catastrophic execution of an arguably sound strategy? Perhaps the idea was to show the president was so unimpressed by his challenger that he could coolly keep him at bay by not engaging.

Maybe Mr. Obama's handlers advised: "The American people aren't impressed by this flip-flopping, outsourcing plutocrat, and you will deepen your bond with the American people, Mr. President, by expressing in your bearing, through your manner and language, how unimpressed you are, too." So he sat back and let Mr. Romney come forward. But Mr. Romney was poised, knowledgeable, presidential. It was a mistake to let that come forward!
Peggy Noonan's Blog

Daily declarations from the Wall Street Journal columnist.

Was it the catastrophic execution of a truly bad strategy? Maybe they assumed the election was already pretty much in the bag, don't sweat it, just be your glitteringly brilliant self and let Duncan the Wonder Horse go out there and turn people off. But nothing was in the bag. The sheer number of people who watched—a historic 70 million—suggests a lot of voters were still making up their minds.

Maybe the president himself didn't think he could possibly be beaten because he's so beloved. Presidents are always given good news, to keep their spirits up. The poll numbers he'd been seeing, the get-out-the-vote reports, the extraordinary Internet effort to connect with every lonely person in America, which is a lot of persons—maybe everything he was hearing left him thinking his position was impregnable.

But maybe these questions are all off. Maybe what happened isn't a mystery at all.

That, anyway, is the view expressed this week by a member of the U.S. Senate who served there with Mr Obama and has met with him in the White House. People back home, he said, sometimes wonder what happened with the president in the debate. The senator said, I paraphrase: I sort of have to tell them that it wasn't a miscalculation or a weird moment. I tell them: I know him, and that was him. That guy on the stage, that's the real Obama.

***
***
***

People saw for the first time an Obama they may have heard about on radio or in a newspaper but had never seen.

They didn't see some odd version of the president. They saw the president.

And they didn't like what they saw, and that would linger.


Entire column at http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424...09700.html
scruff, proud to be a member of pa2a.org since Sep 2012.
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#2
If only the die hard liberals could see it
The law? The law is a human institution...
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