Barack Obama — The Twerp Factor
That's the title of this article. Shallow pointless questions like this shouldn't matter, but unfortunately, in America they do.
Here's a link to the P.J. O'Rourke article that they're referring to.
I used to love P.J. O’Rourke’s articles in Rolling Stone; and before that he wrote for Lampoon Magazine. He’s entertaining even if he’s a rightwinger.
Like it or not, shit like this is important to American voters; whether it’s conscious or subliminal. Americans want their president to be tall, well built, firm and decisive — Dirty Harry in a suit. It’s OK to be smart, as long as you don’t talk like some sort of intellectual elitist who thinks too much.
The 2004 presidential election might be the only time in our history where the shorter candidate won. The 1988 election was a choice between two ectomorphs. We elected the taller ectomorph.
Somebody once wrote that when Michael Dukakis was in high school, he probably raised his hand to remind the teacher that she forgot to give a homework assignment over Christmas vacation.
O’Rourke obviously isn’t trying to give helpful hints to Obama; but everyone can learn from negative feedback. After allowing the health care debate to rage on and on and on for a year — and here’s hoping his upcoming speeches will be more effective — maybe Obama could learn from O’Rourke’s description:
“The secret to the Obama annoyance is snotty lecturing. His tone of voice sends us back to the worst place in college…At the lectern is a twerp of a grad student—the prototypical A student—insecure, overbearing, full of himself and contempt for his students.”
I’m not saying I agree with this, but this is how a lot of people perceive Obama. I don’t want him to pretend his IQ suddenly plummeted to room temperature and start talking like Jim DeMint or Sarah Palin. But I do wish he’d start being more direct, more firm, more “of the people” in his speeches.
He’s personable and very articulate, but he sounds too much like a college professor at a faculty meeting. And this does NOT resonate with the public. He’s nowhere near as bland as, say, Bill Bradley — whom Molly Ivins described as “all substance and no Elvis.” But he should come out swinging sometimes; put more oomph into his speaking style.
There’s a lot at stake in the next few months: Wall Street reform and other raging issues, the Congressional election campaigns coming up. We already have millions of Americans who think Obama is a Communist Muslim terrorist who was born in Kenya. We don’t need a few million more Americans thinking he’s a twerp.