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The Brits are Bored with Barack

Brown and Obama meet the press

Brown and Obama meet the press

First thing this morning, commenter Fif, posted a link to a hilarious blog entry by Iain Martin at the Telegraph UK,
“Barack Obama really does go on a bit.”

Isn’t it time for him to go home yet? It is good, in theory, that the new President of the United States is taking so much time to tour Europe. He arrived in London last Tuesday, has been to Strasbourg, Prague yesterday and now he’s off to Turkey. It shows, I suppose, that he cares about the outside world and that is ‘A Good Thing’. But his long stay means that we are hearing rather a lot from him, way too much in fact.

His speeches have long under-delivered, usually leaving a faintly empty sensation in this listener even though I welcomed, moderately, his victory last year as offering the possibility of a fresh start and a boost to confidence.

Yet, we are told that he is a great orator and in one way he certainly is. He does have a preternatural calm in the spotlight and a mastery of the cadences we associate with the notable speakers in US history – such as JFK and MLK. But beyond that, am I alone in finding him increasingly to be something of a bore?

It looks like the Brits–at least the Conservative ones–are beginning to discover the real Barack Obama. His hopey changey act gets old very quickly unless you’re an adolescent with no basis for comparison except George W. Bush speeches or you have suffered acute brain damage from overdosing on Kool-aid.

Martin writes of Obama’s speech in Prague:

Today, we were treated to another set-piece Obama speech, and my didn’t he go on a bit? The crowd in Prague was huge, and initially wildly enthusiastic, but what he served up was not any more impressive than his damp squib in Berlin last year. Is there a computer which churns this stuff out for him?

Martin has also noticed Obama’s embarrassing, over-the-top narcissism.

“When I was born,” (Everything usually leads back to him, you’ll notice)… “the world was divided, and our nations were faced with very different circumstances. Few people would have predicted that someone like me would one day become an American President.” (Him again)…

“Few people would have predicted that an American President would one day be permitted to speak to an audience like this in Prague. And few would have imagined that the Czech Republic would become a free nation, a member of NATO, and a leader of a united Europe. Those ideas would have been dismissed as dreams”.

{Sigh} Can we really stand four years of this guy? It’s the same way in all his speeches. He always comes back to himself and the wonder of it all: his specialness, his amazing achievements, his judgement, his ability to bring people together, etc., etc. By the way, don’t miss the comments on the Martin post.

In the Daily Mail, another British blogger, Quentin Letts rips Gordon Brown up, down, and sideways for his fawning treatment of the U.S. President at their joint press conference last week. Of Obama, Letts writes:

Allegedly the most charismatic politician in the world, Mr Obama was a disappointment. It sounded as though he had a blocked nose and so his lack of energy may have been a symptom of a cold. Jet lag, too. He probably wished he could have stayed in bed….

He spoke slowly, in a meandering manner. Some might say that he was thoughtful and professorial. Others might call his manner circuitous, even yarny. Am I saying that he was a bore? Oh dear. I find that I possibly am.

Ouch!

Letts on Obama’s responses to questions from the press:

Those replies were, as I say, on the chewy side and came out at the speed of an action replay on Match of the Day.

So slow, in fact, that at one point a man from the Guardian dropped his tape recorder on the floor. Mr Obama’s best moment was when he was charming about the Queen.

Our old donkey Gordon, by comparison to this American visitor, was for once Mr Eloquent, Mr Quick-Off-The-Mark.

Mr Obama had managed to make Mr Brown look good. Another amazing achievement.

Oh my, those British bloggers really know how to cut to the quick. But Obama really wowed every one during the campaign. He’s the second coming of Martin Luther King and John F. Kennedy! At least that’s what we heard again and again from the Obot media and bloggers. Just check out this doozy of a stump speech.


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