Everyone’s scolding our president for passing up a golden opportunity to participate in his one-millionth photo-op since 2008. But it’s not his fault. No one made him a serious offer. Had Republicans been less obstructionist they would have asked a certain blonde Danish prime minister to intervene. “Mr. President,” she would have purred, “do please join me for a selfie along the Rio Grande.” It’s not enough that they’ll always have Johannesburg. Before you know it, we’d have seen them splashing and frolicking in the river’s borderline waters, pursuing full immersion in the immigration crisis. Michelle, we assume, would have come along as chaperone and lifeguard. Afterward, the president would have appeared before the press, still dressed in dripping trunks and life vest. Summer is supposed to be about fun.
Our upbeat president found other outlets. On his way to Texas he stopped off in Denver to sample its choom gang culture, all of it now lawlessly legal. Who needs border towns if Colorado works just as well? And for once, our leader could enjoy real macho company. Photographed in Dallas with his host, Gov. Perry, he was seen smiling blissfully, as if all the pressures of the presidency had been lifted from his shoulders. Which apparently they had. In the same photo Gov. Perry came across as none too pleased. That’s because his guest had transferred all his powers to him. “Obama Presses Perry to Rally Support for Border Funds,” the New York Times headlined. Who but a president can lobby Congress to come up with billions for his projects? Perry could do so only if serving as acting president, more than two years before his likely election as President of the United States. As good as his word, our official president is more interested in solving problems than in playing politics. In so doing, he’s ended the 2016 race early. Maybe he’s hoping President Rick Perry will owe him big time, teach him how to walk in cowboy boots.
Texas continues to dominate cultural news. Dan Rather, as true-blue Texan as a rattlesnake missing its head, skin, and rattles, is to be the subject of a major motion picture. He will be depicted as CBS anchor by the great Robert Redford, an outdoorsman no less dashing than Gunga Dan. We expect RR to reprise his recent roll in which he garrulously restricted himself to a single word over its 106 minutes. It was an obscenity. The movie was called All Is Lost, not to be confused with the current state of America’s presidency or Edward Julius Gibbon’s upcoming history of the decline and fall of the American Empire. The film featured a cast of thousands — oops, make that a cast of one. Our Man he was called. Nobody knew his name. He was at sea, not in Havana.
As our president shrinks in public esteem, he’s finding solace in not caring a fig. Last night he seemed to urge his own impeachment. Sorry, pal. We knew Bill Clinton, and you’re not even Hillary Clinton. You’re not Andrew Johnson either. And you’re definitely not Richard Nixon, though he was honorable enough to resign. Hint, hint.
It’ll be hard for him to do the right thing. Especially if Dana Milbank, his most seasoned press secretary, continues to inject delusion into his political calculations. For instance, Milbank writes in a recent column that losing the Senate could be “freeing” for Mr. Obama. More than one can play that game. Say he’s also evicted from the White House. Or pulls the plug on his Russia sanctions. Or gives Iran and ISIS carte blanche in Iraq. Or gives up golf for pool. He’s a young man, with lots of untapped promise. Enemy Central wishes him well in his future endeavors. But do we grant him amnesty?
Only if he stops whining, and fat chance we’ll see that. “If I sponsored a bill declaring apple pie American, it might fall victim to partisan politics,” he complained the other day. Who else would want to federalize a pie that’s already 100 percent American? The normal American response would be to add a scoop of vanilla ice cream to said pie. Leave it to him to want throw it in somebody’s face.
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