Barack Obama for Student Body President

Every time I finish a blog post about Dave Eggers' 90 Days, 90 Reasons, I tell myself: "No more. Just leave it alone." What worked for my pimples in high school, I tell myself, probably applies to skin-deep politics: 90 Days, 90 Reasons will go away on its own; meanwhile, the less I pick at it, the less people will notice.

But then I remember the mission statement Dave Eggers wrote (to provide Democrats "daily reasons—concrete, factual, plain—to re-elect Barack Obama...[and] likely outcomes of a Romney presidency"), and just like those pimples of yore, I can't help but pick. Reason 62, titled "He Has the Power of Three Eagles" and written by musician and comedian Reggie Watts, has once again made the experience worth it:

He’s not an asshole. He’s handsome. He’s eloquent, well-spoken. He’s mixed-race, like me. He’s a hard worker. He enjoys enjoyment. He’s skinny, which I wish I was. He seems to make some good decisions… most of the time. He has the power of three eagles. He is not really weird and inhuman like the other candidate. He’s not creepy, like the other candidate. He’s a known quantity. He seems to enjoy a peaceful, educated world. He’s not Romney. He plays basketball. Romney sucks at basketball. He doesn’t believe in wearing magical underwear, like Romney does. He’s not a robot, like Romney is. He’s tall. He enjoys cats. He’s very friendly and has good teeth. One bad thing about him is that he needs to start saying “to” instead of “tuh.” But he’s halfway in the middle of the things he wants to accomplish; let’s give him a chance to finish it out. Also he’s not Romney. And he’s not a racist. If people vote for Obama, it will be a world filled with people going, “Wow, Americans are pretty smart.” If we vote for Romney, the rest of the world will say, “I don’t know what’s going on, but I don’t think it’s going to be a good time for the next four years.” Vote for Obama if you want to party and be enlightened.

Critics of Team Blue have compared Democratic support for Obama, particularly in the face of his authoritarianism, to support for a cult leader. But belonging to a cult means studying your leader's teachings and practicing effective proselytization. Watts, and the other celebrities who have written for 90 Days, 90 Reasons, do neither. With the exception of "free" health care, they can't seem to name (much less explain) anything Obama has done, or anything he plans to do. Hell, they don't even quote him. Instead, they describe how he looks and what his hobbies are, and how awesome it is that he has time to pay attention to them. Obama is a popular kid, and people like Watts are voting for him as if he were running for student body president.

Can you blame him?

Obama seldom opens himself up to interrogation by critical media, and left-of-center outlets have spent the last three-and-some years either attacking the people standing in Obama's way, or painting him as giving this whole president thing his best shot. ("What's the world's hardest job like on a day-to-day basis?" is what Rolling Stone asked Obama in April.) The result is that people who don't get paid to follow politics get their news from people who are too embarrassed to criticize the guy they reported into office (and likely voted for).

That process gets you things like 90 Days, 90 Reasons: an independent Get Out the Vote project compiled by people who consider themselves "high information voters," but aren't. A more worrisome example of this occurred in August, when The Awl, a generally left-of-center site I've written for and dearly love, hosted a conversation titled, "How Do You Like Barack Obama Now?" The occasion for this meeting of the minds was the paperback release of Jodi Kantor's The Obamas: A Mission, a Marriage. It featured one of the more disheartening and eye opening public exchanges I've seen this political cycle, between critic Nicole Cliffe and novelist Sarah Miller: 

RIP, liberal counterculture.

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  • Hugh Akston||

    If people vote for Obama, it will be a world filled with people going, “Wow, Americans are pretty smart.”

    If people vote for Obama, it will be a world filled with people shouting INCOMING! in whatever language they speak.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I can't believe you would insult America's engineers like that.

  • Tulpa Doom||

    Plus Pedro was a Mexican Mormon, just like Mitt's dad.

    If Chris Christie does a dance routine to Jamiroqui at the final debate, Obama doesn't have a chance, that's for sure.

  • Loki||

    FWIW I don't think Pedro was Mormon. John Heder, who played Napolean is Mormom, but I don't think they ever stated what their religions were in the movie. It's probable that Pedro Catholic based on his reference to "Holy Santos" in his speech at the end.

  • 16hnny||

    my classmate's half-sister makes $64/hour on the computer. She has been without work for seven months but last month her pay check was $16549 just working on the computer for a few hours. Go to this web site and read more website===⇛⇛⇛⇛► Silver16.comWOULD

  • ||

    My friend's roomate's cousin is a bot.

  • ||

    Dark Helmet: I am your father's brother's nephew's cousin's former roommate.

    Lone Starr: What's that make us?

    Dark Helmet: Absolutely nothing! Which is what you are about to become.

  • Specail Sauce||

    My best friend's sister's boyfriend's brother's girlfriend heard from this guy who knows this kid who's going with the girl who saw Ferris pass out at 31 Flavors last night. I guess it's pretty serious.

  • Copernicus||

    Ben Stein: thank you, Simone
    Simone: no problem whatsoever.

  • LTC(ret) John||

    No thanks, none of us would do internet pr0n or, as you call it "just working on the computer for a few hours".

    Well, maybe a couple of folks here would. But mostly not.

  • Lord Humungus||

    Well, Warty might. But the general blindness will cause the viewers to sue.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Warty is working on a platform for delivering internet pr0n that you can't turn off without physically smashing your computer.

  • ||

    This is especially funny considering that I spent my weekend wrestling with big fat hairy mens. It was gloriously gay.

  • LTC(ret) John||

    Must. Not. Ask.

  • R C Dean||

    OT:

    Don't recall seeing this update on a cop-shoots-dog story:

    http://www.fredericknewspost.c.....FuRfxi6Zdh

    $600,000 damages award upheld. Cops illegally entered house after owners took the dog (which survived) to the vet. No mention of disciplinary action against the cops who capped the dog and then celebrated with a little B E.

  • RPR2||

    He’s eloquent, well-spoken.

    the never ending amazement that a half black man raised in a white family doesn't speak jive.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    I disagree, the Dude-In-Chief cannot put a sentence together. I speak with less "uhs" than he does. Eloquent he is not.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I don't watch a ton of his speeches because I can't stand hearing bullshit, lies, and meaningless platitudes. However, the few that I have watched all seem to indicate his "great speaking ability" means "ability to yell".

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    Those were scripted performance pieces. His unscripted moments suck ass. The debate was a prime example of this.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I'm aware they were scripted. But I still don't understand why ability to yell into the microphone that is 2 feet away makes you "able to speak well".

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    Because white liberals secretly lust for the southern black Baptist experience as an antidote to their boring little lives.

  • Ayn Random Variation||

    He can be the next John Shaft.

    Coming to theatres near you in 2013:

    Barack Obama in Shaft: Make No Mistake

  • The Hammer||

    Liberal tolerance means lowering the bar for "those people."

  • ant1sthenes||

    When they say eloquent, they mean he doesn't have a black dialect, which, like a redneck dialect, causes certain people to think the speaker is an idiot, although, unlike the redneck dialect, those people will not admit this assumption.

  • AlmightyJB||

    I would definately link to that "Airplane" scene if I wasn't at work. Unfortunately Utube is blocked.

  • ||

    I speak jive. At about 0:57

  • BelowTheRim||

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omHUsRTYFAU

    Pretty

    Good

    Speaker

    Especially in a Pinch.

  • ||

    I cannot understand how these people can write and spew this shit. It's utterly embarrassing. They're pathetic. You're right, Riggs, it's not cult behavior, it's utter mass self-delusion. It would be hilarious if it wasn't so creepy and weird and appalling.

  • The Craig||

    Sorry, Romney is creepy. Choose a different word.

  • ||

    Creeptastic?

  • ||

    The word I normally think of in regards to Romney is "bland".

  • The Craig||

    "Vote for Obama if you want to party and be enlightened."

    Bland works!

  • ant1sthenes||

    Romney's chief debate victory was people saying "Wait, all the progtards told me he was some sort of robotic creepazoid Greg Stilson, but he just seems like an ordinary person politician."

  • Mike M.||

    Romney destroying Obama by 16 points among independent voters.

    Who is going to be completely shocked when Romney beats Obama in four weeks? Only about 95% of the scummy vermin in the so-called "mainstream" media from Boston to the Beltway. Who won't be even the least bit surprised? Me, for one.

  • Tman||

    I keep wondering when the media is going to like, actually do reporting for a change and notice that Obama is without the things that got him elected in 2008.

    Things like-

    He doesn't have a mushy candidate to run against, and the media can't concentrate on Palin not reading the newspaper in order to distract everyone from what a joke Biden is.

    (Also, He still has Joe Biden as his running mate.)

    He doesn't have the same white guilt enthusiasm that pushed many independents to vote for him because it was so "historic" to elect our first black president.

    He doesn't have a clean (or empty) slate of performance history for the media to ignore this time. He has the last four years, which have been an unmitigated disaster.

    These things alone tell me that this race isn't really all that close, and the right turns out as they did in 2010, this could be a massive blowout.

    And like Mike, I won't be surprised, unlike the media.

  • John Thacker||

    It's entirely possible that an unusually large lead for Romney among independent voters (which Republicans always need to win, since committed Democrats always exceed Republicans) is caused by an unusually large number of generally Republican-leaning voters declining to ID themselves as Republicans in polls. This would also explain some of the different in party ID numbers in samples.

  • triclops||

    I would be shocked.

    Prez race really is a popularity contest. The cooler guy has won every time since at least Kennedy. (Ford v Carter is hard to analyze, as it was two of the least cool candidates together)

  • MJGreen||

    Even then, wasn't Carter the nice Joe Everyman from the south? I don't know if he was considered hip, but he was considered the relatable candidate.

  • PapayaSF||

    Carter didn't seem exactly cool at the time, but there was a blip in the culture that made the Southern Everyman somewhat cool: Southern rock, the Dukes of Hazzard, CB radio, etc. Ford was bland and mockable, and hatred of Nixon was still strong.

  • Killazontherun||

    I read the Wikipedia entry of the Symbionese Liberation Army over the weekend, very well done and highly entertaining, btw, and I had to wonder just what the Hearst family had on Jimmy Carter to get him to commute Patty's sentence because that bitch was guilty as Hell.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    Who the hell would describe Nixon, Johnson, Carter, or either of the Bushes as "cool"?

  • KDN||

    Compared to Al Gore and John Kerry, George Bush might as well be Miles Davis.

  • Doctor Whom||

    He doesn’t believe in wearing magical underwear, like Romney does.

    And his supporters don't stoop to religious slurs, as Romney's supporters do.

  • ||

    No, they just blow constant dog whistles. /liberal

  • califernian||

    you have to admit it's hard to feel good about a guy who believes in magic underwear.

  • R C Dean||

    True, but not being a Mormon I can only imagine how good magic underwear feels.

  • A Frayed Knot||

    not as hard is as is to feel good about the guy who believes his magical personality would usher in new era of world peace.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    Is Obama really and different than Romney on that front? Romney seems convinced that Iran, China, Russia, etc. will all suddenly start doing whatever we say the momment he's elected because they are so terrified by his awesomeness.

  • Hugh Akston||

    People have felt good about guys who believe in a magical skyfather for centuries.

  • Killazontherun||

    What does this magical underwear do, by the way? Teleports your piss, poop and farts into the mouths of your enemies? Sounds like the Underwear of Winners.

  • Loki||

    Teleports your piss, poop and farts into the mouths of your enemies?

    If it did that I would totally convert to Mormonism. Creepy and weird beliefs about golden plates be damned.

  • CharlotteHaze||

    Newsflash--all religions are insane. The magic-underwear thing is seemingly more insane only because it's less familiar to most of us.

    No more insane than the absurd rules involved in keeping kosher, or the notion of "holy water".

  • Auric Demonocles||

    What the hell is this magic underwear thing? I saw a Candadian liberal mention it and I thought he was just being a retarded atheist asshole, but apparently there is some basis for it?

  • PapayaSF||

  • Stormy Dragon||

    Mormons apparently are required to wear ceremonial undergarments:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temple_garment

  • Auric Demonocles||

    So basically they're picking on Jews for wearing yarmulkes?

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    My father bunked with a Mormon in the Air Force back in the 50's. They were stationed in the Azores. Dad used to talk about he and his buddies would flick their crabs (that they picked up at the local whorehouse) at his underwear drawer just to fuck with him. Apparently, the Mormon had to give up and deserted after a few weeks.

  • ||

    Of course Muslims and Jews eat magical meat and Catholics are magical cannibals.

    Pretty one sided criticism of Mormons if you ask me.

  • Killazontherun||

    Pretty much.

  • ||

    Should also point out secular groups also eat magical "organic" food.

    Apparently such food is sinless and untouched by the dirty technology of man.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    Was Dreams of My Father a preparatory text for The Audacity of Hope, The Audacity of Hope another testament to Dreams of My Father, or are they meant to be taken on equal footing with the intertextual contradictions just sorta supposed to be brushed over?

    This cult is difficult to follow.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    Of all the voter deficiencies I don't understand, general deference has got to be the most infuriating. It just shows that they don't bother to understand the issues and how their politicians vote but they'll give them credit anyway.

    "We don't know what he has to deal with." "It's a tough job."

    And here I thought we had a generation of high self-esteem kids. Instead, they're spineless clones that cannot or will not think for themselves.

  • ||

    And on top of that, they will proudly announce to the world that they are spineless clones, without an iota of embarrassment. "I will blindly follow someone without using an ounce of critical thought. See how cool that is?"

    My contempt for these people is at the point where I can't contain it in polite company any more.

  • triclops||

    It seems an unfortunate, inseparable side effect of our social, cooperative nature as humans.

    People like to get along, and are quite willing to assume the person in charge is not worthless and full of shit.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    I avoid polite company, it helps.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Are you calling us rude company, you dick?

  • ||

    Yes, asshole.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    You're a fucking liar. We're as polite as a priest in a whorehouse.

  • ||

    You shut your dirty whore mouth!

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Then where would your slut of a mother stick her tongue?

  • ||

    Probably in Warty's asscrack like normal.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    With God as my witness I cannot tell a lie. HNR is a den of indelicate louts the likes of which the world has never seen.

  • R C Dean||

    "We don't know what he has to deal with." "It's a tough job."

    If you didn't say that about Bush, you don't get to say it about Obama.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    I will say this. Barry does have to go home to the Wookiee. That right there is enough reason to pity him, just like we all did Bill.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I'm not sure why he didn't try to stretch out the debate longer to avoid going home.

  • The Hammer||

    I still don't get this whole thing. Michelle is not particularly beautiful, but for being close to(?) 50, she's not bad looking. She may be obnoxious and overbearing, but I don't get the hatred toward her when her execrable husband is right there doing so so much to deserve all the hatred that can be dished out.

  • PapayaSF||

    I don't think it's hatred, just a reaction to a woman who is obviously filled with anger and other negative emotions.

  • T||

    Anybody with an ass as wide as hers doesn't get to tell me or anyone else what to eat.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    She may be obnoxious and overbearing, but I don't get the hatred toward her when her execrable husband is right there doing so so much to deserve all the hatred that can be dished out.

    It's not that she's unattractive, it's that the press is determined to make her the Black Jackie O.

    In all honesty, she hasn't done anything that's different from the other First Hoochies, but the press is determined to make everything about her crying-ass husband "unprecedented!!!!"

  • SugarFree||

    You misunderstand the self-esteem movement. It doesn't matter that they are spineless as long as they don't feel bad about it.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    SF sees right to the core of the problem, once again. And yet, somehow I don't feel better.

  • SugarFree||

    Maybe you should take the time for a long swim in Lake You.

  • pmains||

    I had this same experience with a Mitt Romney supporter a few months ago. He considers himself well informed. He listens to Michael Medved, Dennis Prager and others and spends a lot of time on politico.com.

    I tried to engage him on several economic questions and point out that the bailouts, TARP, etc. are likely to create another lost decade for the country. I pointed to Romney's China bashing as an example of sophisticated-sounding nonsense that was likely to economically harm the US.

    He squirmed a little bit before saying, "well, I trust Mitt Romney on the economy more than I trust you. He was successful in business."

    So this little turd is unwilling to actually think about the issues, but he keeps up with the horse-race infotainment. He had no idea how the political process worked and, much like Tulpa, thought that people electing actual representatives rather than cheer leaders to the RNC was some kind of dirty trick. But people who did care about issues and ideology -- Ron Paul supporters in particular -- were all "psychos."

  • Tulpa Doom||

    I LOOM LARGE

    People voting in the primaries thought they were voting for the candidate they voted for. Not the byzantine delegate selection process that follows the primary.

    You were trying to take advantage of that confusion, and you succeeded, for a time. I shed no tears for you when your plan failed in the end.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Yeah man. Fuck rules. And fuck energetic people who are possibly interested in being on our side. We have to have a meaningless unanimous vote.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Obama has a great singing voice. He genuinely enjoys Modern Family. He butters his toast from the left, and always always covers the butter when he's done. He buys thoughtful little gifts for his Secret Service detail. Or at least he tells his assistant to do that. He has the high score on the Addams Family pinball machine in the White House game room. He uses a washcloth in the shower instead of one of those fruity body scrubs. He preferred Doonebury to Bloom County back when people still read newspapers. He still reads newspapers. He tweeted to me once so you know he's a genuine guy. Romney probably has the underage boy he keeps naked in his basement tweet for him. He smells like Irish Spring. Or maybe Irish Spring smells like him. He won Best in Show at the Westminster Dog Show before he ever got a dog. He throws right but bats left, that's what bipartisanship is all about. He bakes a mean pecan sandie. Mitt Romney can't bake for shit.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    He preferred Doonebury to Bloom County back when people still read newspapers.

    And that right there is why I won't vote for him. He probably didn't like Calvin and Hobbes either.

  • ||

    Greatest crime imaginable.

  • Auric Demonocles||

    I was once published in my state's newspaper for a letter I wrote decrying the ending of Calvin and Hobbes. I was 7 and I had better morals than this guy.

  • Not an Economist||

    That is pretty early to peak isn't it?

  • Auric Demonocles||

    Yeah, but now I know how to distinguish between "brake" and "break".

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    In fairness to Bill Watterson, he got sick of dealing with the syndicates and the newspaper editors. He's a real old-school type who (a bit pretentiously) considers comic strips to be just as much of an art form as any other medium, and absolutely deplores their commercialization. He quit more out of frustration with this aspect of the business than anything else, and I think he's working as a simple painter these days.

  • Loki||

    He is Barack Obama, the most corrept politician in the world.

    "I don't always order drone strikes, but when I do, I prefer them to be brown people."

    I think I just had an idea for a series of viral videos...

  • BelowTheRim||

    +1

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Was that an ironic write-up?

  • Bee Tagger||

    It kinda seems that way, at times.

  • MJGreen||

    It's Reggie Watts, and given some of what it says, it's at least partly ironic. Wholly ironic, as in mocking the poor arguments in favor of Obama? I'm guessing not.

  • Bee Tagger||

    Sometimes I feel bad for people who have a similar political outlook as most of their favorite artists because they haven't had much practice separating art from the artist.

    This one wasn't as awful as previous entries, for me. It still reads, at times, like something Reggie Watts would say. And he's usually awesome.

  • ||

    He’s not an asshole. He’s handsome. He’s eloquent, well-spoken.

    Each of these statements is more incorrect than the last. Well done, presumably unfunny mulatto comedian.

  • MJGreen||

    The one impression I take away from any insider account of Obama is, "What an asshole!" I mean, he's a politician - a Chicago politician, at that - so he's presumed to be an asshole. But he really sounds like someone I'd find insufferable in private interactions.

  • Killazontherun||

    Reggie Watts is rib snapping, pants shittingly funny. I'd go so far as to say he's my favorite living comedian.

    You really have to compartmentalize to enjoy almost anything outside of Neal Stephenson* these days.

    *I'm just under a hundred pages in on Reamde, good so far.

  • ||

    The more implausible it gets, the more fun it gets. A complete blast of a book.

  • Trespassers W||

    I got a hundred-ish pages in and decided that the Russians just killed all the main characters and dumped their bodies over the Pacific. The End.

  • SugarFree||

    "The magic of Obama is about how good he makes you feel. It's like all the guilt about slavery is just slipping away... Oh, I supposed to still feel guilty? OK."

  • The Hammer||

    You're supposed to still feel guilty until you vote for him again. Then you get 3 years guilt-free. Then you have to lodge a protest vote for a third Obama term, buy his new book, and pay for tickets to at least 3 of his speaking engagements.

  • The Hammer||

    For a site (partially) called Reasons...

  • Loki||

    He’s not an asshole. He’s handsome. He’s eloquent, well-spoken. He’s mixed-race, like me. He’s a hard worker. He enjoys enjoyment. He’s skinny, which I wish I was. He seems to make some good decisions… most of the time. He has the power of three eagles. He is not really weird and inhuman like the other candidate. He’s not creepy, like the other candidate. He’s a known quantity. He seems to enjoy a peaceful, educated world. He’s not Romney. He plays basketball. Romney sucks at basketball. He doesn’t believe in wearing magical underwear, like Romney does. He’s not a robot, like Romney is. He’s tall. He enjoys cats. He’s very friendly and has good teeth. One bad thing about him is that he needs to start saying “to” instead of “tuh.” But he’s halfway in the middle of the things he wants to accomplish; let’s give him a chance to finish it out. Also he’s not Romney. And he’s not a racist. If people vote for Obama, it will be a world filled with people going, “Wow, Americans are pretty smart.” If we vote for Romney, the rest of the world will say, “I don’t know what’s going on, but I don’t think it’s going to be a good time for the next four years.” Vote for Obama if you want to party and be enlightened.

    *barf*

    Seriously, this is what passes for "concrete, factual, [and] plain"? What the fuck? This is totally a cult of personality.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    The blog sounds more like 90 Days, 90 Masturbation Sessions.

  • Loki||

    90 Obama fluffers, 1 cup?

  • BelowTheRim||

    Best comment yet.

  • ||

    Fifty Shades of Mulatto?

  • Ayn Random Variation||

    Free healthcare, union-friendly and gay marriage are the only 3 reasons I get from Libs about what they like about Obama.

  • PapayaSF||

    Also, unlike Republicans, Obama isn't racist, doesn't hate women, and doesn't salivate at the idea of grinding the poor under his heel.

  • GILMORE||

    He seems to enjoy a peaceful, educated world

    "When not ordering drone-assassinations or reinforcing the stifling power of pubic teachers unions, I try and find time to enjoy films like Ghandi and Dances with Wolves. Hmmm. That's nice. You know, I'm thinking... we don't need nearly as much embassy security as all that. I enjoy a peaceful and educated world, where no one would ever murder American civil servants in countries we arbitrarily bomb..."

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