This is fascinating:
[Irish Prime Minister Brian] Cowen was 20 seconds into his second address when it dawned on him that he was giving word for word the speech that Obama had just read from the same teleprompter.
Cowen stopped and looked back at the president to say, “That’s your speech.”
Obama laughed and returned to the podium to offer what might have been Cowen’s remarks. In doing so, President Obama thanked President Obama for inviting everyone over.
Think about this: Cowen’s gaffe made perfectly clear that the teleprompter was on the fritz. Obama nonetheless read through a speech thanking himself in the third person. Clearly, when the President is in front of the teleprompter he basically shuts off his brain and goes on automatic pilot.
I suppose this makes some sense, given that Obama is such a practiced speaker and uses the teleprompter so much. But it does make one wonder how seriously we should take his words if, like a computer regurgitating its programmers’ input, he’s not even aware of what he’s saying.
By the way, did you know that Obama’s teleprompter has a blog?
UPDATE 3/25: It didn’t actually happen like that.
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