U.S. President Barack Obama strikes his admirers as exceedingly intelligent. The rest of us have real doubts. His list of gaffes and blunders is already as long as his record of accomplishment is short. But most people don’t know that, as the media that cover him tend to fall in that admirer camp.
Particularly given the frequency with which the charge of “stupidity” was leveled at former President George W. Bush (one that I categorically reject), there is now more than ample reason to ask whether that trait applies to the current U.S. President.
The specific impetus for this exploration came from Obama’s apparent obsession with imposing “peace” on Israel despite the crystal clear positions of her Hamas and Fatah enemies that they categorically and fundamentally refuse to accept Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state. That, of course, is the most fundamental prerequisite for a resolution of that conflict and achieving actual peace.
Obama’s demand for an absolute halt to any building by Jews in eastern Jerusalem and all other areas beyond the pre-1967 “Green Line” was supposed to induce that peace. Of course, if anything, it has tended to have the opposite effect, with the Palestinian Arabs only hardening their intransigence, waiting for more demands to be put upon Israel. Its only redeeming effect may be to lose a few Jewish votes for Obama and his friends in future elections.
Before he came up with his “settlement”-stopping brainstorm, he proclaimed the idiocy that progress on slowing Iran’s acquisition of nuclear weapons was dependent on Israel pacifying the demands of her Palestinian Arab enemy. Of course, reality was, and remains, more the reverse, with the Palestinian Arabs egged on to intransigence and violence by the emboldened Iran.
To return to the beginning, Obama has no record of accomplishment. Not even an academic record, or at least one that has been released to the public. Quite peculiar it is. While a tabloid-like, yet mysteriously respected Washington newspaper managed to dredge up a 20 year old thesis of Virginia’s current Republican gubernatorial candidate, it was not able to, or had no interest in, obtaining or publishing any of Obama’s academic writings or records. Neither, of course, did any other major media outlet.
How does Obama so impress his fans worldwide? Certainly, he is ideological, a master of double-speak, arrogant, and glib, a combination that seems to be charismatic to many and thus, effective. The glibness is facilitated by his teleprompter, which he uses to a greater degree than anyone before him, and much more extensively than previously thought possible.
During the campaign, his misstatements and errors in judgment were second only to those of now Vice-President Joe Biden. But he was able to endlessly and charismatically spout the meaningless drivel of “hope and change” such that enough of a naïve and gullible public bought into it.
But in evaluating his intellectual acumen, or lack thereof, we should consider the specific things he has said and done. One was that his categorical proclamation that the surge in Iraq would not work, but would actually make things worse. (Are we supposed to feel good that he is now our commander-in-chief?)
Other recent gems of his wisdom:
March, 2008: “I don’t think that my church is actually particularly controversial.” To think that his church led by the ranting Jeremiah Wright would not be controversial to Americans speaks volumes – one would not have to be the brightest bulb in the room to know that it would.
He claimed that Arabic translators deployed in Iraq are needed in Afghanistan, ignorant of the fact that Afghans don’t speak Arabic. In a similar vein, he had also proclaimed “I don’t speak Austrian.”
He said he had traveled to “57 states” during the campaign, a mistake not even Jimmy Carter made. (He might have been thinking of the 57 states of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, but he did not visit them all, either.)
He insisted that Jerusalem remain undivided – for perhaps 24 hours, until he found out that some people don’t like that idea.
The falsification of history of his Cairo speech (was that ignorance or “just” mendacity?).
This sample listing does not consider the vast number of his statements and actions that one might attribute to stupidity, but could conceivably be explained as stemming from a differing policy perspective.
This and other evidence indicates that Obama is an artful, cunning, and hard-nosed politician. Beyond that, he still has little to point to for a record of accomplishment, either in his current job or in his preceding ones. His arrogance evidently detracts from his ability to see reality accurately and to make wise decisions, as exemplified by his reckless Mid East “settlement”-based “peace” adventurism.
That qualifies as stupid to me.