It requires a stratospheric level of self-regard to suggest, as the campaign did with its "Obama Event Registry," that in lieu of accepting gifts for themselves, Obama supporters should suggest that well-wishers send donations to the Obama campaign instead. "Let your friends know how important this election is to you," exhorts the site, "register with Obama 2012, and ask for a donation in lieu of a gift."
Unabashed, the campaign also taped a solicitation featuring the first couple's blow-by-blow reminiscence about their first date. Offering small details about your life is one thing, but this is like dragooning the entire country into watching your home movies.
"It was a cool date," the first lady recalls for the ad. Barack apparently showed her "all different aspects of his character." He took her to the Art Institute of Chicago, where they had lunch by the fountain in the courtyard. Obama winks at the camera. "Guys out there: Art impresses people." Then they went to see Spike Lee's movie "Do the Right Thing." Michelle summarizes: "He was hip, cutting edge, cultural, sensitive." Barack smiles complacently and again addresses the camera: "Take tips gentlemen."
While unavailable to discuss the entitlement time bomb, Iran's march toward nuclear weapons (accompanied by new threats to wipe Israel off the map), our crushing national debt or the record-high joblessness among college graduates, President Obama made himself available to the "Morning Mayhem" show on KOB-FM in New Mexico. For six minutes and 40 seconds, the president discussed a range of issues, from whether Colorado or New Mexico had the best chili to where to get a good hot dog in Chicago to what kind of music he likes to work out to to what kind of superpowers he'd like to have if he were an "Avenger."
He said he'd like to fly. Had enough yet?
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