May 17 2013
President Obama must be thinking that when it rains, it pours.
The commander in chief of the American armed forces today forced a violation of Marine Corps regulations, so he wouldn’t get wet.
According to Marine Corps regulation MCO P1020.34F of the Marine Corps Uniform Regulations chapter 3, a male Marine is not allowed to carry an umbrella while in uniform. There is no provision in the Marine Corps uniform regulation guidelines that allows a male Marine to carry an umbrella.
Nevertheless, during a press conference under a light drizzle with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan this morning, President Obama allowed the First Head to be protected from the elements by an umbrella held by a male Marine corporal.
The president can be excused for not knowing Marine protocol. But the umbrella faux pas was unfortunate for him. In Washington speak, the incident feeds into a developing narrative about him as a president who is arrogant and unconnected to those around him.
He has gone from “almost a god” to a mere mortal and a very flawed one at that. Quoting the president’s remarks at a glitzy New York fund raiser, John Podhoretz writes:
“My thinking was when we beat them in 2012, that might break the fever, and it’s not quite broken yet,” Obama told a group of celebrity donors in New York Monday night. “I genuinely believe there are Republicans out there who would like to work with us, but they’re fearful of their base, and they’re concerned about what Rush Limbaugh might say about them. And as a consequence, we get the kind of gridlock that makes people cynical about government.”
There you have his worldview in a nutshell. His presidency is at a crossroads, and he thinks it’s Rush Limbaugh’s fault and the other side has a “fever.” If only he had more power, people wouldn’t be cynical about government. Talk about scary visions.
Not incidentally, the IRS agents putting the screws on conservative groups shared his disdain for them….
Michael Goodwin writes of yesterday’s rainy press avail:
His performance was tired and trite, ordinary to the point of dull. His veneer of passion was so transparent that you could see him trying to summon his old-time magic by pushing the buttons and pulling the levers that got him out of tight spots before. “Folks” and “I” and “me” and “my” — stop!
The magic is gone, his act thin enough to say, as he recently did about Benghazi, that “there’s no there there.”
Standing under an umbrella held by a Marine, Obama looked simultaneously imperious and small, no match for the rising tide of scandals swamping his presidency. At a moment that demanded genuine resolve, his answers were evasive, especially about whether he knew the IRS was politically profiling conservative groups. His response, that “I can assure you that I certainly did not know anything about the [inspector general] report,” wasn’t even an artful dodge.
Serious trouble could be ahead if the president can’t give a straight answer to “What did you know and when did you know it?”
His self-grandiosity doesn’t permit the normal give-and-take of governing. He’s trapped, crippled really, by the view that politics is a zero-sum game.
If you want to know why Washington has become so toxic for the last four plus years, you need look no further than the president’s disdain for us. For President Obama, there appears to be no such thing as a loyal opposition. You oppose him, and you're a bum.
Oh, and the president has a solution to Bengazi—he wants more money:
President Barack Obama, seeking to regain his footing amid controversies hammering the White House, named a temporary chief for the scandal-marred Internal Revenue Service Thursday and pressed Congress to approve new security money to prevent another Benghazi-style terrorist attack.
How depressingly typical. Send more money is his answer to everything.