Rocco Landesman, head honcho at the National Endowment for the Arts, seems closer to the reality of the situation. In his keynote address to the 2009 “Grantmakers in the Arts” conference, Landesman hailed Obama as “the most powerful writer since Julius Caesar”. He didn’t mean a “powerful writer” as in a compelling voice, gripping narrative, vivid characterization, command of language, etc. He meant a “powerful writer” as in Caesar was king of the world, and now Obama is. He came, he saw, he stimulated: “If you accept the premise, and I do, that the United States is the most powerful country in the world, then Barack Obama is the most powerful writer since Julius Caesar. That has to be good for American artists.”
I suppose so. He could invade somewhere and force the natives to accept degrading roles in NEA-funded performance art. He could take out the Iranian nuclear program by carpet-bombing it with unreadable literary novels. That is, if you “accept the premise” that the United States is the most powerful country in the world. Rocco Landesman may, but it’s not clear, from his actions (or inactions) in Eastern Europe, Iran, Afghanistan and elsewhere, that the president does. But, even so, it seems an odd pitch to “American artists.” Rocco Landesman, Speaking Goof to Power, isn’t the first Obama groupie to enjoy the kinky frisson of groveling obsequiousness, but he’s set an impressive new standard in public revelation thereof….
Steyn’s main point is that Obama is still blaming everything on George W. Bush. (The review of obsequious Landesman is merely a side note to that main theme.) At some point, that shtick isn’t going to play in Peoria, so to speak. Actually, Obama’s falling poll numbers indicate that it already isn’t playing well.
The economy is – despite the singing of the Obama munchkins – not looking healthy. Nearly one in ten Americans of working age are out of work. Yest, I know the Obama administration today claimed that their “stimulus” package invented or imagined “created or saved” 750 quadrillion jobs in just the last 15 minutes.
Yet more than 500,000 people filed first-time unemployment claims last week.
In other words, someone is not telling the truth here.
Here’s a thought. Let’s stop letting Obama invent or imagine a recovering economy and let him prove it by getting more than six million unemployed Americans back to work. Maybe then he can stop trying to blame Bush.
And be believable.