The Phony Campaign

2012-05-15 Update

[phony baloney]

Apologies for the belated "weekly" update to the phony campaign. The past few days have been filled with stuff that crowds out blogging. But phoniness went right on without us:

Query String Hit Count Change Since
"Barack Obama" phony 21,900,000 -7,700,000
"Mitt Romney" phony 1,020,000 -240,000
"Gary Johnson" phony 306,000 +26,000

  • The big phony news was President Obama's shifting position (don't call it a flip-flop) on gay marriage. It impressed the mass media rubes. Everyone else … not so much. We don't quote people associated with The Nation very often, but Richard Kim, executive editor of that magazine's website, espied what was coming up before the actual announcement: "Obama's Phony Position On Gay Marriage".
    There's one thing that has always irked me about Obama's evolutionary narrative on same-sex marriage -- and that's not his position on it per se so much as the insincerity of his homophobia. To take Obama at his word, same-sex marriage is something he "wrestles" with, something he thinks a lot about and might support but for a deep conflict with his Christian faith. I'm not privy to what goes on in the president's head, but frankly, this smells like b- - - - - - t.
    The link is to NPR, which apparently has a problem with that final word. At the magazine's website they spell it out, if you're confused.

  • But wait, there's more: Over at, the current inhabitants are inserting references to President Obama into the official biographies of past presidents. In fact, reports Seth Mandel at Commentary, "it turns out Obama has added bullet points bragging about his own accomplishments to the biographical sketches of every single U.S. president since Calvin Coolidge (except, for some reason, Gerald Ford)."

    My guess is that the ensuing ridicule may force these self-promotional ego-trip modifications to disappear into the memory hole in the near future. But here's what's currently on the Hoover bio:

    President Herbert Hoover signed the bill founding the Department of Veterans Affairs July 21, 1930. President Obama is committed to making sure that the VA, the second-largest cabinet department, serves the needs of all veterans and provides a seamless transition from active duty to civilian life, and has directed his Administration to modernize the way health care is delivered and benefits are administered for our nation's veterans. First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden launched Joining Forces to mobilize all sectors of society to give our service members and their families the opportunities and support they have earned.
    All that's missing: noting that Mitt Romney has promised to steal every vet's wheelchair if elected.

  • And if you're looking for something else to be irked about: Joseph Curl notes that President Obama, who spoke compassionate and understanding words on the drug-related deaths of both Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson, was completely silent on the passing of Adam Nathaniel Yauch, aka MCA of the Beastie Boys. Who also died way too young, but apparently on the natch.

  • In case you missed it: "How The Gutsiest President Ever Single-Handedly Killed OBL".

  • In non-presidential phony news, Elizabeth Warren continues to punch above her weight. As late as yesterday, she was still claiming to be "proud of my Native American heritage". Despite the fact that the proof of that career-boosting heritage has been, at best, ephemeral.

    Victor Davis Hanson notes the obvious:

    I guess some of us are on a different planet, because both Warren and Harvard University seem to have been unethical at best and unlawful at worst -- if she or anyone from the Law School (no less!) signed forms or affidavits attesting to Warren's Native American status in accordance with federal affirmative action/diversity guidelines. Fabricating an entire identity seems to me right up there with plagiarism, and yet neither Harvard nor Warren is the least bit troubled by the fact that at the heart of this scandal is an outright lie, both spoken and written. How many Harvard Law Schools or Elizabeth Warrens are there out there in academia, that have been untruthful in assessing their diversity profiles, and is that the reason for the complete silence on this matter from various professional academic and scholarly associations?
    For higher ed folks, especially those with political ambition, rules are for the little people.

Last Modified 2014-12-01 2:55 PM EST