October 02, 2009

Chicago Olympics

President Obama flew to Copenhagen to make a last minute appeal in person on behalf of Chicago's bid for the 2016 Olympics.

Chicago was eliminated on the first ballot. Rio ultimately won it.

Now this might, might ultimately be a good thing. Ultimately the decision about where the Olympics will be held doesn't matter much. But with any luck, this will serve as a "teaching moment" for our President.

Maybe, if we are fortunate, President Obama will discover the limits of his golden voice, and recognize that going out to the world on his knees begging for mercy and forgiveness on behalf of America just doesn't accomplish anything constructive.

Maybe, if we are very fortunate, President Obama will absorb this lesson before he starts negotiating with the Iranians.

UPDATE: This will, however, serve as a teaching moment in other ways. Charles Krauthammer called it, about a month ago:

But what has occurred -- irreversibly -- is this: He's become ordinary. The spell is broken. The charismatic conjurer of 2008 has shed his magic. He's regressed to the mean, tellingly expressed in poll numbers hovering at 50 percent.

For a man who only recently bred a cult, ordinariness is a great burden, and for his acolytes, a crushing disappointment. Obama has become a politician like others. And like other flailing presidents, he will try to salvage a cherished reform -- and his own standing -- with yet another prime-time speech.

But for the first time since election night in Grant Park, he will appear in the most unfamiliar of guises -- mere mortal, a treacherous transformation to which a man of Obama's supreme self-regard may never adapt.

There have been many Americans who were never caught up in Obama's reality distortion field. The number still held by it has been declining. But this fiasco, this utter embarassment, should complete the job of puncturing Obama's balloon and letting out all the air.

From now on, President Obama is now ordinary. Or even worse: he's being revealed as an incompetent bumbler. It's pretty much not going to be possible any longer for any self-respecting journalist to be obsequious.

And maybe, if we're lucky, he himself will realize that he has to change, and will get a grip.

UPDATE: If I could summarize the lesson in a single sentence, it would be this: C-in-C doesn't mean 'Campaigner in Chief'.

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