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Obama, Europe and expectations
Posted by: McQ on Wednesday, July 16, 2008

With Barack Obama, Europe quickly succumb to "hopey changitude". To Europeans it meant a new and different America which, hand-in-hand, would skip through the flowered fields with them and all would be fuzzy bunnies and cute puppies. America would be their friend again.

No more war, no more breast-beating 'cowboy' diplomacy. America would again adopt the European model and ease into appeasement as a first choice and endless, toothless resolutions at the UN.

But with Obama's rightward "pivot" after winning the primary, they're not so sure that what they've projected on an Obama candidacy is exactly what they had fantasized it to be (a condition the left in this country is suddenly suffering as well).

For instance, Mark Steel of the UK's Independent wonders how we can have peace and love when this crew is among Obama's advisors:
But there's an unease amongst many of his supporters, especially now that his foreign policy team includes Madeline Albright and Warren Christopher, who were the most militaristic members of Bill Clinton's government. And Obama's adviser Richard Danzig has proposed employing Robert Gates, Bush's senior supervisor for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Steel doesn't seem concerned that Albright and Christopher were both inept and ineffective - they're militaristic, for heaven sake. That's much worse. And besides, this isn't the Obama they bought into.

Irwin Stelzer of the Telegraph remarks:
Obama remembers that in 2004 John Kerry turned off many Americans by boasting of his popularity among the French, so he wants to send home a message that he will not curry favour with foreigners, but would always represent American interests. So, Obama will tell his hosts that when we have differences with them, he will not defer to them, or to the UN, when America's vital interests are at stake.
*Gasp*

"America first?"

"With us or against us?"

Oh no ... not again. That definitely isn't the hopey changitude Obama promised. Or so they thought.

It was to be a new world where America finally learned its place (uh, that would be taking its direction from Europeans, of course) and everyone lives happily every after. Putting America first is so American for heaven sake.

But not to worry says Seltzer - Obama will come home a "chastened man", essentially told to get with the dream or else. Given Obama's propensity toward "change" (sometimes from news conference to news conference) there's no telling how he'll react. But if I had to guess, he'll fall in line. He'll just send one of his surrogates, as he did with Canada when he was beating up NAFTA, to tell Europe this is all election rhetoric and he didn't mean it.

If Mr. Obama does manage to find his way into the White House, there is absolutely no way of telling what he'll do or how he'll govern - that is, if you take him at his word (of the moment).

It may end up being a lesson we all learn the hard way.
 
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Comments
Yeah, there is absolutely no way of telling what he’ll do or how he’ll govern, but at least someone will be happy.

By the way, I first read "breast-beating ’cowboy’ diplomacy" as "breast-feeding ’cowboy’ diplomacy".
 
Written By: hanmeng
URL: http://
Obama is popular in Europe because he has a worldly perspective - not because people support his stands on the issues, per se.

After 8 years of a self-professed ignoramus in the White House, people are happy to see America possibly choosing someone with a brain and can speak with some eloquence.

MP3 interview: Hungarians speak out for Obama (6mins)
 
Written By: redjade
URL: http://LMV.hu/redjade
When Hungarians can vote in our elections I’ll care what they think (that will make them Americans, and then they may have a whole new angle on the US)

Till then, not so much.

Hey though, don’t give up hope! I suggest they do what our geographic neighbors do, sneak themselves in across our border, hide in our cities, take up jobs Americans won’t do, and maybe the Dems will push to allow them to vote too by stomping down voter identification requirements.

Again, till then, pretty indifferent about who they want us to elect.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Obama makes more self-professed "inartful" statements than Bush does...

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
Obama is popular in Europe because he has a worldly perspective - not because people support his stands on the issues, per se.
Isn’t Carter popular in Europe too?
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Obama makes more self-professed "inartful" statements than Bush does...
What is a "self-professed "inartful" statement"?

As far as regular "inartful" statements... Come on, shark... Bush wins hands down.

If there is one thing about GWB that I’ll miss, is that he will no longer provide fodder for late night comedians like this.
Although, he still might provide Great Moments in Ex-Presidential History.

Cheers.
 
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
Hey Pogue - you don’t think any other president said "ah" or screwed up during a speech?

I’m sure plenty did except there weren’t cameras sticking in his their faces to record every nuance.
Try to grasp the idea that with wall to wall video capability 24X7 these days it’s a whole new game and leads one to think GW is the only one who could ever sound like this.
But bet me - you’ll see more and more of it over time, and it won’t just be GW.

But I have to admit...some of that stuff IS quite funny. At least we won’t have to find him a job in Crawford when he comes back to Texas. I think he can get a job doing standup.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Hey Pogue - you don’t think any other president said "ah" or screwed up during a speech?
You’re right.

But no one, in my opinion, will ever top GWB.
Too many good docs are getting out of the business. Too many OB-GYNs aren’t able to practice their love with women all across this country.
Priceless.

Cheers.
 
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
Too many OB-GYNs aren’t able to practice their love with women all across this country.
Brilliant, really.

You’d think the Euro’s would find this more appealing.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
At least we won’t have to find him a job in Crawford when he comes back to Texas. I think he can get a job doing standup.
There’s a precedent for that. I seem to recall Papa Bush doing a few stints imitating comedians’ imitations of himself.
 
Written By: CR
URL: http://
"Obama remembers that in 2004 John Kerry turned off many Americans by boasting of his popularity among the French,"

So that is why he is making a big thing of speaking at the Brandenburg Gate. I guess he thinks being popular with the Germans will work better.


"Isn’t Carter popular in Europe too?"

And don’t forget Jerry Lewis.

 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
What is a "self-professed "inartful" statement"?
Read. Learn.
Obama’s camp, walking back an earlier statement that the D.C. gun ban was constitutional, said it was "inartful" and didn’t reflect his views.
 
Written By: MichaelW
URL: http://asecondhandconjecture.com
Oh I get it now. Shark means to say that Obama has admitted to making inartful statements. I wasn’t clear what he meant by "self-professed "inartful" statements." That makes sense now.

Thanks for clearing that up, Michael.

Now if you could just get back to me on how Jesse Jackson wanting to castrate Obama for talking down to black people and Nader accusing Obama of not having the “helping the poor, downtrodden black folks beaten by the Man” bona fides, has anything to do with the Left spreading rumors about Obama being a secret Muslim.

That would be kind of you.

Because right now I just don’t see how those two have anything to do with each other but in the most vague, broadest sense that the Left attacks themselves from time to time. And it certainly does nothing to show that Clinton or anyone else were behind those rumors.

That would be great, thanks.
 
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
Now if you could just get back to me on how Jesse Jackson wanting to castrate Obama for talking down to black people and Nader accusing Obama of not having the “helping the poor, downtrodden black folks beaten by the Man” bona fides, has anything to do with the Left spreading rumors about Obama being a secret Muslim.
It doesn’t and I didn’t suggest that it did. "Most of these rumors" that I was referring to were the ones depicted in the New Yorker cartoon, only one of which was that Obama was a secret Muslim (the rumor I had just attributed to right-wing emailers). The examples of Nader and Jackson were just the two latest attacks on Obama, again coming from the left. IIRC, others were also discussed in the Hot Air piece. The point was that the rumors that the New Yorker sought to battle had come mostly from Hillary supporters during the primaries, not from right-wing hacks as has been alleged. If my linkage didn’t make that clear, then I apologize ... but whaddya want, I’m new here.

I greatly suspect that you already knew all of this, but since you’re being so reasonable I can’t help but respond.
 
Written By: MichaelW
URL: http://qando.net
To be fair, I’d have to agree that when it comes to mangling the English language, George W. Bush is the Yogi Berra of contemporary American presidents.

I’ve come to accept this as a feature, not a bug.

However, just as Yogi Berra didn’t say some of his most famous quotes ("It’s deja vu all over again!") neither did Bush say, "The problem with the French is that they don’t have a word for entrepreneur," and I feel the poorer on both accounts.

 
Written By: huxley
URL: http://

 
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