Sunday, November 15, 2009

Obama, the world's superbower

Remember Obama bowing to King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia?


At the time, the President's simpering act received some well-deserved criticism, and some absurd attempts at cover-up from the White House.

Well... he's done it again.


If Obama bowing to Japan's Emperor Akihito strikes you as merely polite at best, or odd and irritating at worst, Scott Johnson helps bring out the implications, and highlight the inappropriateness (at best) of the act. Mark Steyn thinks its about time for someone to "speak truth to bower."

In his speech to Japan, Obama again served his seemingly-insatiable ego by bashing his predecessor and again presenting American history as beginning anew with himself. With his expressed desire to visit Hiroshima and Nagasaki, one wonders whether Obama is about to apologize yet again.

And if so, would that finally be the last straw with Americans?

19 comments:

P.D. Nelson said...

I traveled to Japan once for the company I work for before I left I brushed up on formal etiquette as I didn't want to embarrass my employer. When it came to bowing it was pointed out to me that the lower you go the more subordinate you are to the person you are bowing to.

Obama's actions indicate that he is lower in rank and ipso facto so is the country that he represents.

Obama should have inclined no more than did the Emperor and in fact less to show that he is the superior.

SandMan said...

Best quote in the linked article (IMHO), "The President is so arrogant about himself, and so ashamed of his country."

"We" picked him to represent us. I guess I am just not on board with the new vision for America if it involves bowing to the Emperor of Japan or any other king of this world.

Jerry said...

Silly me for thinking that countless thousands of Americans have fought and died to ensure that no American would have to bow and scrape to any earthly potentate.

DJP said...

Well, Jerry, the difference between you and President Obama is that you (A) understand and (B) embrace the best of the dream that was America.

Susan said...

You know, I just read an article on the "bowing" controversy on an Taiwanese online newspaper, and it seems that the Japanese (especially the elderly) may find Obama's mannerisms appealing. I personally think that since both Akihito and Obama are heads of state, Obama should not have "done as a Roman does" because he is representing his country. It might be different, of course, if he were a lower-ranked official, but I only say that because I don't know what the proper international protocol is for that.

Interestingly, Michelle Obama did NOT curtsy to Elizabeth II when she went to England on state visit. I just did some searching online and found an article that said Mrs. Obama's action was supposedly in line with tradition first started by Nancy Reagan back in 1981. Furthermore, I read in another place that Jackie Kennedy only curtsied to the royals when they attended JFK's funeral, but as First Lady she did not curtsy to Queen Elizabeth when they met. It seems even more clearly to me, then, that what Pres. Obama did is inappropriate because he is the head of state.

trogdor said...

In his defense, at least this time the bow was to the figurehead emperor of a staunch democratic ally, rather than to a totalitarian dictator of a passive-aggressive non-friend state. It's a step in the right direction at least.

Fred Butler said...

And if so, would that finally be the last straw with Americans?

Regrettably, the presidents generation and the one which largely voted for him, 30 and younger, see the atomic bomb ending the war in Japan as being oppressive and unnecessary. They are probably under the delusion, as taught to them by current college historians, that the atomic bomb was a bullying tactic only meant to humiliate the Japanese and not to end the war. SO I can certainly see the president offering up an apology for the act.

One need to only watch Ken Burns documentary on WW II to understand the significance of why the two bombs had to be dropped.

Susan said...

I must work on my proofreading skills...found two errors that should have read:

1. "...a Taiwanese online newspaper"; and

2. "...done as the Romans [would have done]" (still sounds weird, but oh well...).

I apologize for my poor grammar! [/bow] ;)

DJP said...

I appreciated someone commenting on Obama's eager readiness to visit H and N, but no corresponding insistence that the emperor visit Pearl Harbor.

MSC said...

I have 2 WWII veterans in my neighborhood who spoke of their war expereinces to our Homeschool co-op (BTW they had our kids captivated the whole time). One served on a patrol ship in the Navy in the Pacific and the other served on Peleliu Isalnd as a Marine. Both have spoken soberly of the tenatious fighting spirit of the Japanese and both said every American soldier fighting knew that perhaps millions would die if we had to invade the homeland. They both believe the bombing of H & N was the most humane and peaceful act of the war.

Paula said...

All I can think of when I see these photos is this, which makes me desperately wish I had video editing skills, cause the video is just begging for it!

DJP said...

LOL, Paula, you are so bad.

It's why we love you.

Seth Benge said...

Here is an interesting article by Jake Tapper about how Obama didn't even get the bow correct in Japanese terms- http://tiny.cc/uzslS

Best line- "the form of a first year English teacher trying to impress with Karate Kid-level knowledge of Japanese customs."

LeeC said...

Of my friends in Japan right now two of them have said that the only way he could have made a more clear action of a sevitor would be to make a seiza. Which is where you kneel and bow with your forehead to the ground.

A little perspective

Paula said...

You have to wonder if the Queen of England and other such dignitaries, who did not receive such genuflecting, are feeling slighted that the Japanese Emperor and Saudi King are being singled out for royal treatment. I mean, what's Queen Lizzy gotta do to get a curtsy from the leader of the free world?

trogdor said...

Why would the Queen of England need anything else? She already got an I-pod loaded with Obama's greatest hits. That truly is the ultimate sign of respect (well, to Obama, anyway).

DJP said...

LOL, Trog.

I have some of the best commenters on the intrawebs.

Sir Aaron said...

If he's going to bow, why doesn't he just do it instead of trying to conceal it with some awkward handshake. That's doubly embarrassing.

Fred:

I know what you mean. I've actually heard people say hat we should have first detonated a bomb offshore to give them a chance to surrender. Ughhh....ignorance combined with stupidity.

Dan: I visited the Philippines last year. Pearl harbor was horrible, but the Japanese were absolutely brutal. Their actions in he Philippines with the death march totally illustrated that. I highly recommend Corregidor island tour.

Susan said...

Well, according to some L.A. Times readers, Obama wasn't really bowing....