September 18, 2011

How smart is Obama, anyway?

From my new VDARE column:
How did we wind up with another lightweight in the Oval Office? ... 
Obama's chief economic advisor Larry Summers complained repeatedly to a rival Administration economist, Peter Orszag: 
“’You know, Peter, we're really home alone.' Over the past few months, Summers had said this, in a stage whisper, to Orszag and others as they left the morning economic briefings in the Oval Office. ... 'I mean it,' Summers stressed. 'We're home alone. There's no adult in charge. Clinton would never have made these mistakes.’” 
Of course, Summers, like Timothy Geithner, was one of those insiders who helped get the country into the financial mess that it’s in. But how was Obama—a man of so little financial acumen that he didn’t start putting his own retirement savings into a tax-sheltered SEP account until 2007, the head of a family that had kept going deeper into debt despite a $200,000+ income—supposed to out-argue the famous economist?

Read the whole thing there.

In the kingdom of the obtuse, the butterknife is the sharpest tool in the drawer.


Anonymous said...

There are a lot of factors, but I think the laws banning large contributions, to obscure candidates of course who otherwise can not fight the political machines, are responsible. Obama was selected and groomed for the position, as were all the other losers, and he merely did the least worst.

Whiskey said...

Somewhat OT, Steve, knowing your interest in the Anthrax case, the WSJ has a review of two new books on the subject here. Takeaways, the FBI is incompetent at anything but CYA, after decades of clown shows with Hoover, the press Jihads, the Attorneys General, etc. And secondly, that the National Academy of Science contradicts the FBI assertion that the anthrax could only have come from Ivins and could have come from Dugway any time after 1979 is chilling. Given that the attack looks like a intelligence service test-run.

Apologies, if this posted in the other thread. I think it didn't though.

Whiskey said...

Steve, great article except that Obama being depressive has its downsides when he needs to "answer the phone" and respond to outside crisis, and not be either manic nor depressive. A bailout of Europe (done by Geithner running his own policy), "leading from behind" in Libya, doing nothing to head off a Turkey-Egypt vs. Israel/Cyprus war (over gas fields in the Med), 1.5 trillion in new taxes, that's disaster. As is the tendency to self-medicate through drugs/booze/whatever.

And Obama is immeasurably worse than Bush. He's upped AA even further, thrown the borders completely open, spent trillions on Democrat wish lists and corrupt deals (Solyndra) including ones where's a personal investor (LightSquared) along with ObamaCare (a Federal takeover of health care and allowing the Feds to do basically anything to you, including monitor your meals and so on).

If you want an Angry Black Woman screaming at you to eat your broccoli the rest of your life, while she gobbles down fries and lobster, well Obama's got you covered.

Bush was bad, Obama immeasurably worse. We're double-dipping and we don't have the money he blew on Spendulus I. We are weak and encouraging war all over. The border is wide open while the Feds attempt to regulate every other aspect of daily life with Michelle Obama as national scold.

Anonymous said...

SS is actually too easy on him. He accepts too much of Obama BS at face value. I thought he was dismissive of Cashill, who after all saw far more deeply into the first O book than Sailer did. I also thought he accepted the new LF birth certificate without demonstrating any rigor or labor and clearly hasn't kept up with very interesting recent discoveries in that area. He also doesn't seem to quite get the reason O is so hostile to women, as has begun to leak out recently. I think he's sort of jealous that other books have gotten more attention than his own "Half-blood Prince" project and in this very long piece is trying to reclaim the franchise.

Whiskey said...

Let me add, what Machiavelli says in the Prince, is that a ruler is judged (when he is new, or by ambassadors) by the quality of advisors. Those that act on their own (Geithner, Summers) are indicative of weakness, as is advice unasked for. But so too are yes men, flatterers, and those weak in ability and character.

By these standards Bush far outweighs Obama. Cheney was not a joke, but a respected "moderate" before becoming VP (often liked in the 1980's as a "sensible" Republican). Rumsfeld had been Defense Secretary before, and was a respected CEO before joining Bush. Powell had been JCS, and so on.

Every Administration will have its jokes, human nature and the requirement to have a lot of appointees guarantees that result. But Obama has tons: Van Jones, Steven Chu, Tim Geithner, Eric "My People" Holder, Joe Biden (rumored to have an aneurysm and reduced mental capacity), Samantha Power, Susan Rice, and of course Michelle Obama and Valerie Jarrett. What scares me the most is that Obama listens the most to two Angry Black Women filled with hatred/resentment towards White guys and America (the two are basically synonymous).

Both women seem to play variations of "the Mommy I never had" only the safe, Black version. Obama will never get rid of Jarrett, who makes Hilda Solis look like a genius.

Simon in London said...

Obama seems fairly bright, smarter than Joe Biden I think, but with a vastly inflated sense of his own genius. He seems smarter than post-coke, post-crash GW Bush, much less intelligent than either Clinton. This doesn't necessarily make him a terrible President overall - my impression is that he may just about be bottom-quartile (despite killing Osama, for which he's entitled to feel very pleased with himself), but after GW Bush he still shines bright in the comparison; and that may be a problem for Republicans in 2012 if they remain associated with the Bush legacy.

Jonathan said...

I think the whole world is having a hangover from Obamamania. If some of you understand French, watch this hilarious montage of what the French media and political class were saying after Obama's election.

Anonymous said...

Obama ain't that bright, but he's still a hell of a lot brighter than all the alternatives from 2008 and 2012, with the possible exception of Romney....

eh said...

How did we wind up with another lightweight in the Oval Office?

Obama wasn't elected due to his financial acumen. Well, maybe sort of.

Anonymous said...

I think you're a little too generous with him. For example, I suspect the essay questions on his exams could easily be cribbed, at least in outline.

For me the single most puzzling thing about his intellect is his performance at HLS. Up until that point in his career you can say he was--not exactly bright, or even capable considering the environment he was in, but perhaps not completely out of his depth. Then suddenly for three years he gets very good grades in an intensely competitive elite school while being an intellectual non-entity at HLR. And then goes back to missing in action at the University of Chicago.

It sticks out like a sore thumb, and really makes me wonder what was going on during that time. Was he sleeping with the class brain and cribbing her outlines, or what?

I don't think a bipolar condition really explains it; a three year up cycle, and many years of a down cycle in Chicago afterwards? That seems like a very long cycle time. I think you'd see more obvious evidence of it when he was in prep school as well.

Lugash said...

I am Lugash.

Obama's smart enough, but he's not forceful enough to push any sort of agenda. Even relative lightweights like Boehner and McConnell can shut him down with ease.

Finally, my own belief is that Obama’s ineffectuality has probably made him a better President than if he were on top of his game.

If he had any weight, he might be able to clean up Wall Street. House Republicans would block any amnesty attempts. He might even have charted a bolder course in our existing wars(GTFO)and not have been rolled on Libya.

I am Lugash.

dearieme said...

"far less executive experience than even Kennedy": what do you have in mind? Being the only navy motorboat skipper to get his craft rammed and sunk by a Japanese destroyer?

Anonymous said...

I'm starting to like Obama.

He doesn't take feminism seriously? Good for him.

He is an ethnonationalist? Good for him.

He at least occasionally stands up to the gang of kleptocratic Jews who are plundering our country (Summers, Emmanuel, Geithner etc.)? Good for him. Sort of like an American Putin - not ideal, but much better than his predecessor.

Peter A said...

Seems that, much like George W, intelligence is not the issue. Obama, like Bush, is a man who has had gifts handed to him all his life, he has never faced real adversity, never had to face the true consequences of failure. Obama may have an IQ of 140, but it wouldn't matter - he is a lazy spoiled prince elevated to the highest office. I think we will continue to see candidates like this win office - just like the weak emperors in Rome's later days. There is now a deeply entrenched coterie of Washington and New York insiders, some who call themselves "Republican" and some "Democrat" but who all benefit from weak ineffectual leadership they can control. The only area where I give Obama an edge over Bush - I think Obama realizes he is a fraud, I don't think W ever figured it out.

Anonymous said...

Am I misinterpreting the situation, or is Larry Summers basically laming Obama for doing what he advised him to do?

Anonymous said...

Considering that his Kenyan father was a math major, his mother a WASP PH.D and his Kenyan half brother a physics major, I think he generally has high IQ genes.

His problem is probably laziness.

Black Death said...

Steve, your writings on Obama are the best. Long distance psych diagnosis is always chancy, but it certainly is possible that our beloved leader suffers from bipolar disorder, probably in the range of cyclothymic personality disorder. From Wiki:

Dysthymic phase
Symptoms of the dysthymic phase include difficulty making decisions, problems concentrating, poor memory recall, guilt, self-criticism, low self-esteem, pessimism, self-destructive thinking, continuously feeling sad, apathy, hopelessness, helplessness, irritability, quick temper, poor judgment, lack of motivation, social withdrawal, appetite change, lack of sexual desire, self-neglect, fatigue, and insomnia.[3]
Euphoric phase
Symptoms of the euphoric phase include unusually good mood or cheerfulness (euphoria), extreme optimism, inflated self-esteem, rapid speech, racing thoughts, aggressive or hostile behavior, being inconsiderate of others, agitation, massively increased physical activity, risky behavior, spending sprees, increased drive to perform or achieve goals, increased sexual drive, decreased need for sleep, tendency to be easily distracted, and inability to concentrate.


This would explain the erratic academic performance and the up-and-down episodes in his career. A definite maybe.

The fact that Obama is pretty much a blank slate and the MSM did nothing to vet him is not surprising. The left wing media routinely ignore or cover up medical problems and dysfunctional episodes of liberal Democrats (Clinton - pathological womanizing, maybe serial rape; JFK - pathological womanizing, adrenal insufficiency, prescription drug dependency; FDR - severe hypertension, heart failure, polio).

Chicago said...

Good article summing it all up. The Obama years are ones of continued decay and decline. A black with a little bit of brains and good personal presentation skills can really cash in, as he's obviously done his entire life. Obama talks a great game but is incapable of of doing anything noteworthy. He has the brain of a smart parrot, taking in all he hears and repeating it later in a stylish and impressive manner but lacking the ability to be original or creative.
So, four more years of this?

Anonymous said...

Time will tell, but my guess is that at this point Obama has been less destructive than George W. Bush. By fall 2003, Bush had launched the subprime bubble with his White House Conference on Increasing Minority Homeownership, started a war over nonexistent WMDs, and more or less invited in millions of additional illegal immigrants.

If Rick Perry wins the GOP nomination, I don't know what I'll do.

Can't everyone see that this would be GWB part 2? Haven't we had enough of Texan open-borders, 'compassionate conservative' neocons?

The fact that the two front runners are Dubya-Dubya-II and Mick "don't touch social security" Romney means that we're finished, no matter what happens in 2012.

Anonymous said...

Really didn't exude the typical Sailer panache but was a very insightful article anyway.

Anonymous said...

Wrong on too many things. I don't know where to start.

1. Obama and Ford? Style matters in politics, and they couldn't be more different. Obama knows how to carry the ball. Ford was a fumbler.
Also, it's an insult to Ford. He wasn't much of a president but a modest and decent man. Obama is a megalomaniac. Ford didn't act like a messiah but like a dutiful servant, perhaps too much so. To be sure, Sailer isn't saying they are similar in style but rather that Obama, for all his boundless self-esteem, is no better than Ford. But I would say Ford was better than a whole bunch of presidents.

Obama's presidency, success or failure, is closer to that of Kennedy, Carter, and Reagan in terms of meaning and significance. Kennedy represented the New Frontier and Youth. Carter represented renewal after Watergate and Vietnam. Reagan's presidency signified rebirth of hope, pride, and patriotism. They were very symbolic presidencies. And I suppose we could mention Clinton too, the so-called 'first black president' and first boomer president who changed the style and tone of American politics in 1992, what with the first rock music political convention. If anyone ran as a Fordian, it was George W. Bush, who after Clinton scandals and burst(and foreign entanglements), promised to be humble down-to-earth president. But then 9/11 turned him into a Winston Churchull wanna-be.
Obama might have been and may be still a Reagan(at least in terms of political success)if the economy turns around. Reagan was in serious trouble all the way up to 1983, and faced a huge defeat in 1984... but then the American economy began to create lots of new jobs. So, all that Obama needs is for the economy to really take off. (And it could be that major corporations are sitting on all that cash--over a trillion--just to start hiring in 2004 to give Obama a boost). But times are different today, and Obama may have made bad decisions. Reagan had courage in making hard choices in dealing with the recession, but it let the bad blood--inflation--out of the economy. Obama, in contrast, sought the easy way out by pumping money into a whole bunch of sectors for an artificial boost. He went for the quick fix.
Also, both have that Hollywoodesque thing going for them which appealed to so many people on the basis of 'charisma'.
If the economy doesn't turn around, Obama will end up like Carter, a man who entered the white house with a great deal of euphoria and expectation. He was gonna change everything; he was gonna be a man of character; he was gonna be the anti-watergate president. But he actually turned out to be quite devious and deceitful. Even so, Carter was very much a hands-on guy and intimiately and passionately involved himself in many issues and matters--just like he took up hammer and nails to build housese for the poor.
The lesson Obama learned from Carter is to never get too involved in anything: remain aloof. Carter, in contrast, threw himself headon into many issues and crises; when they blew up, he got all the blame. Obama's style is to get involved halfway and claim half the credit or half the blame; but with the media in love with him, he might be given the full credit even if he didn't do much.

Anyway, let's not insult Ford by comparing Obama to him. I wager US would be a much better place if we had a Ford instead of Clinton or dubya(or Obama). He was a nice guy.

Anonymous said...

2. Feminism. Why would anyone give credence to the likes of Anita Dunn? She comes from a political/ideological environment where bitching and whining is the very meaning of life itself. Even if Obama had packed the entire government with women, feminists would still say, 'so much still has to be done, blah blah'. Modern feminism(largely created by Jewish women), blacks, and Jews are three groups whose very being revolves around resentment, complaining, bitching, hissing, seething, etc. Today, far more females than males go to college, but feminists bitch about unfairness. Feminists ignore sectors where women dominate but throw fits about sectors where men still have an 'unfair advantage'. Anita Dunn, btw, is the Maoist nut.
Notice how blacks like Tavis Smiley and Cornel West(and many others) are complaining that Obama hasn't done enough for blacks. George W. Bush went out of his way to appease blacks(even sending 50 billion to Africa) but blacks said he hated black people. We give Jews everything--and they control most of eveyrthing--, but listen to ADL and the likes of Alan Dershowitz, and one would think Jews are in grave danger all over the world and we need to care about them even more! When Obama gave a mild speech about accommodating Palestinians--no doubt with talking points taken from liberal ZIONISTS--, even Jews who'd voted him bitched that he was being unfair to Jews. Though Gaza is just a sliver of land and West Bank has been occupied by Jewish settlers, with huge areas walled off--and even though Israel has by far the most powerful military in the region as well as a 100 nukes--, Jews would have us believe that they are in grave danger from stone throwing Palestinian children!! Who did more for Jews than George W. Bush? So, how did Jews show him gratitude? The first Bush listened to his Jewish advisers and pushed Hussein out of Kuwait. But because he didn't support Soviet-Jewish-emigre settlement in the West Bank, Jewish community went after him. Even the so-called liberal Jews denounced him though all Bush was trying to do was broker a lasting peace between Jews and the Arab world. Which nation did more for Jews than the US? Yet, your average Jew is closer to Tim Wise and Naomi Klein than Paul Gottfried. Even so-called rightwing Ayn Rand spent all her life hissing about how the world wasn't as it should be(according to her of course). Modern feminism was created by women like Betty Friedan. And American black politics(and South African black politics) was shaped and defined by Jewish radicals and liberals, which may be why American blacks are angrier, nastier, more aggressive, and complainsome than some blacks in Latin America. Mandela picked up pointers from Joe Slovo, MLK channeled the mode of modern Jewish prophets like Karl Marx, and Obama learned his main lessons from his Jewish professors at Harvard.

Anonymous said...

So, why should we expect anything different from feminists whose Bible is the FEMININE MYSTIQUE, a book where an affluent middle class Jewish woman compared her lot as a housewife with Jews in deathcamps in the Holocaust? That nut is considered as a godlike holy figure among feminists. If housewife = holocaust, you know NOTHING is ever gonna appease feminists. Same with blacks. Black athletes and rappers who make tens of million bitch and whine that they are still nothing more than slaves on the plantation.

Obama appointed the hideous Sotomayor and the even more hideous Kagan to the SC. He appointed Hillary Clinton. (What's with sec of state going to all these women? Madeline Albright, Condie Rice, and now Hillary.) He listens to advice from Samantha Powers and some woman named Rice. In fact, whatever private emotions Obama has about his mother, he feels closer to white women than to white men. Though it is true that feminism and black-power-ism are rivals for power, they're also allies against the the GREAT EVIL: the so-called privileged white male. So, Obama knows that the biggest weakness in white power and white unity is white males leaning Republican but white female leaning Democratic. No unity is greater than sexual unity. Black men and women vote Democratic. Jewish men and Jewish women vote Democratic. Hispanic men and Hispanic women vote Democratic. But white males go Republican while white females go Democratic. Why would Obama throw that away? He's done well with and by both feminists and gays, not because he's crazy about them but because(like the Jews), he sees them as part of the divide and conquer strategy against whites.

3. A long article and no mention of Jews? Sailer says political correctness prevents MSM from stating the obvious, but this is true of his failure to discuss Jewish power. Though white suckers voted for Obama en masse, Obama wouldn't have been much in the first place if not for Jews. Also, even as his popularity climbed, he could have been destroyed overnight if the Jewish-owned media had gone after him on the Jeremiah Wright issue and his shady connections in Chicago. But except for Fox News, there was either a media blackout or very dry(as opposed to judgmental)coverage of those issues. MSM enthusiastically gave rah-rah coverage for Obama's positives and very subdued coverage--or none at all--for his negatives.
People vote for candidates, but only a small number of powerful people pick and choose candidates
who shall be voted upon.
The biggest rule in American politics is one has to pass the Jewish test. Jews didn't like George W. Bush, but he did pass the Jewish test by being close to neocons. Also, Clinton had messed up royally with Israel, and Jews were willing to give Bush a chance--not by voting for him but by not opposing him too much. Jews may have preferred Gore, but Bush was tolerable cuz he was pro-Wall Street and pro-Zionist(even more so than Gore).
Obama didn't just pass the Jewish test but was launched as a Jewish-engineered rocket. He was supposed to the starchild, at least for all the suckers out there. Jews who created Obama were indeed cynical about what they were doing, but they figured dumb Americans might indeed go for the Obamessiah and American politics would change forever. And indeed Obama has changed politics forever for the simple fact of being the first black president(born of interracial sex to boot)and appointing Sotomayor and Kagan to serve for decades to come.

All said and done, Obama is really small potatoes. The real forces holding the strings over him and over us are the Jewish elite. Without mentioning them, none of what Sailer says about Obama really amounts to much. Obama was less self-made than made by others... or he masterfully allowed the most powerful people in the US, the Jews, to choose him, hype him, groom him, and sell him.

4. There are other issues, but I'll just stop there.

Harvard Law Caveman said...

Fantastic article. Two quibbles/clarifications based on my impressions of Harvard Law admissions and grading practices:

(1) Given that Obama apparently was a B student in prep school (mentioned in a biography of him; don't recall which one) and didn't graduate with any honors in college (apparently he was not focused on his studies, though from his books it seems he did a lot of outside reading, so that's not to say he was lazy), I tend to agree with you that he must have done relatively well on the LSAT, compared to other blacks. However, such an LSAT score wouldn't necessarily indicate he's brilliant compared with the average Harvard Law student. A 90th percentile LSAT would be well above the black average, and make just about anybody feel confident, yet well below the non-black average for Harvard Law. I'm poking around for books or articles or websites that might pinpoint this better, and may end up blogging about it.

(2) Unless and until Obama releases his Harvard Law transcript, I don't think we can conclude in his particular case that having graduated magna cum laude is evidence of brilliance For one thing, standards are tighter now -- now only 1/10, not 1/6, can graduate magna. When he attended one could graduate magna with less than a A- average! And after the first year, classes are elective. It seems possible that Obama got mostly Bs in his blind-graded first-year classes and then ended up magna by taking after that mostly small classes from friendly professors, in which grades are often based on non-blind papers and class participation. Professors at Harvard Law aren't required to follow a curve, and some professors are notorious (or praised, depending if you're in the class) for giving As to all students in their small classes, for which they're often allowed to hand-pick the students taking them -- in other words, they get to hand-pick the students they know they'll give As to. So friendly grading by friendly professors might have been enough to allow Obama to recover from poor first-year grades enough to end up with a magna distinction, especially under the loose standards then prevailing.

None of this is to disparage Obama, but given that he didn't graduate with honors in high school or college, and that a popular student can "game" the honors system at Harvard Law through course selection in the final two years, absent a transcript from Obama showing he did very well on blind-graded courses, I don't assume his graduating magna gives us any firm ground on which to conclude that he's intellectually brilliant.

Anonymous said...

Of course, Obama felt bored in the Senate. He saw himself as a NFL level quarterback, but he felt himself to be stuck in a highschool or college level game.
But then he was chosen to be the quarterback of the dominant NFL team, but then he found out it was a whole new ball game and he had to listen to his kosher coaches at every turn... and the fans turned out to be rather fickle.

But you reap what you sow. He put himself out there as the greatest quarterback that would win a whole bunch of superbowls, but he may be the Donovon McNabb of politics.

Kylie said...

From the linked blurb: "'But as he stood on the stage in Grant Park, a shudder went through Barack Obama. He would now have to command Washington, tame New York, and rescue the economy in the first real management job of his life.'"

I honestly believe Obama never thought any such thing. Instead, his response was probably more along the lines of "I'm in charge now."

You've remarked here and elsewhere that Obama is an intellectual lightweight. I think that applies not only to the meagre number of things he's known actually to have written and his grasp of policy but also to his sense of who he is. I think he truly believes being elected to or hired for a position proves his worthiness in occupying that position. Like many blacks, he conflates outward show with actual competence. His being a better campaigner than he is a President fits in with that. Campaigning is really just convincing people you will be able to do what they want you to do, governing is actually doing it.

This article in VFR explains the empty black suit concept in detail, something I often observed while living in a college town.

The empty black suit

Baloo said...

Steve, this piece is a rather wonderful summary of the whole business, and it's just the right length. I'm distributing the URL everywhere. Also, it's linked and discussed at Ex-Army HERE.

Anonymous said...

I didn't read the whole thing link--so which Clinton did Summers mean?

Anonymous said...

Went back and read it.

This sentence is spot-on:

"Without their distinctive dads to attract attention to them, Bush could have made a pretty darn good sales executive, while a white Obama might have wound up one of the best lecturers at some community college."

Jacob Roberson said...

Sorry, I can't hate Obama. He's a moderate Republican unlike the fool we had last time. Not out-of-control, not brainless, not lazy as hell. Not going to start a war with Syria or Iran (or Israel...).

OTOH the white Democrats wanted to vote for a(ny) Magic Negro. Sad and stupid. Can't be surprised at his executive incompetence, like you said Obama's got NO farking EXPERIENCE... And any Dem politician will be weak and implode it's how they are.

Shrug. This is the American Presidency today.

Anonymous said...

I don't see evidence of BO being bi-polar. Jarrett's remark, "He's been bored his whole life" is not indicative of someone with bi-polar I or II.

I just think BO is not a particularly ambitious person. He is (was) perceived as being good at speaking, and he was mightily aware of that--so when the powers that be came and sought him out, told him they could make him into a successful Presidential candidate, he bit. Why not? He does think highly of himself.

I think he knows he is not good at much and I think he's not particularly interested in working hard at anything except his hoops and golf game.

Truly, he's just a guy who would have been fairly happy spending his days on the course.

Aaron B. said...

Interesting that the mainstream writers willing to talk at all about Obama's problems are latching onto the word 'bored.' That way they can make it sound like he's just too smart for the job of president to hold his attention for long. Compliment disguised as criticism.

Truth said...

LMFAO: You've recycled that title like eight times now.

Anonymous said...

Well one thing's for certain if he's not smart we'll never hear republicans calling him dumb, that would be racist, needless to say bush=chimp parodies wont' appear either, unless you want (literally) a visit from a hate crimes unit).

Anonymous said...

A correction, Obama's half sister Maya Soetero-Ng also has a PhD.

Anonymous said...

Searching for Obie Fisher of men.

Remember that lame movie Searching for Bobby Fischer where some chess genius kid picked up special tricks from a black chess player?
Or the movie Rudy where the kid is inspired to return to the team after hearing a sermon from a black guy?

I'm guessing neither happened in real life(though it worked dramatically in Rudy), but it's the fantasy that Jews peddle and white Americans purchase. Searching for Bobby Fischer the movie was written by Zaillian who I think is Jewish(and later worked on American Gangster, really a guidebook on how blacks can gain power: act less black and act more smart and classy).

Like the black street chess playing genius in Searching for Bobby Fischer, Obama is a postmodern construct, the first defacto virtual or holographic president. He is fantasy come to life.

Even his book reads like a fable. It's so overloaded with Significance!
Ford had a sad family story too with his real biological father, but he didn't turn into something faux-grandiose and pseudo-profound.
But Obama did because (1) he's pompousass (2) Jews saw him as a useful Hollywood fairytale and (3) American go for magic negro myths whether it be MLK, Cosby, or Oprah.

Anonymous said...

for more on presidents and bipolar disorder, see A First-Rate Madness by Nassir Ghaemi. He was recently interviewed on The Colbert Report.

Anonymous said...

Of particular interest would be the President's profile on the preeminent individually administered
IQ test---The Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (many revisions since the 1939 launch ). The subtests on it bifurcate into verbal and non-verbal--e.g, vocabulary, verbal analogies, metaphors; as distinct from rapid assembly of blocks to replicate a pictorial design; rapid assembly of familiar objects cut into puzzle pieces; detecting what's missing in pictures, etc. Every instinct I have is that the President would have a statistically rare divergence in favor of high verbal and low performance. He strikes me as a guy who couldn't get the lug nuts off the wheel rim of a flat tire.
The indications the President lacks good judgment is fully consistent with high wordiness and low performance. That spells BIG TROUBLE for America.

Marco Lalo said...

I appreciate that you are a counter-weight to the MSM's Obama love-fest but you seem to draw a lot of conclusions about a lot of people based on very little or very flimsy evidence.

You write as if you know all about Obama based on just two books and bits and scraps here and there.

Marco Lalo said...

You draw a lot conclusions about Bush, Kerry, Obama based on stupid things like SAT scores. I don't have the same faith in SAT scores as you do.

Flimsy, flimsy, flimsy!

Marco Lalo said...

“… without affirmative action, African American enrollment at the first-tier schools would decline by over four-fifths and at each of the next two tiers by approximately two-thirds.”


Doesn't that still leave 1/5 and 1/3 left of black students who did not need affirmative action?

Is it implausible that Obama would be among this pool?

Marco Lalo said...

Also, Obama was a legacy due to his father picking up a Masters in economics before Harvard kicked him out for practicing polygamy.

So Obama's dad got a Masters in economics before Affirmative Action? Impressive, for a black man right?

Anonymous said...

Re Whiskey and FBI
I find it puzzling that "clown shows" ( I know what you mean ) would have necessary relevance to the anthrax case ( and the Robert Hannsen case, BTW??). Hoover had a massive PR/BS system built up, but even his severest critics (e.g. William W. Turner, a former agent turned leftist author ) affirmed how disciplined and supervised and accountable the old Hoover organization was.

Anonymous said...

Check out this mind-boggling video of George W. Bush from before he became stupid. You wouldn't believe it's the same person.

Steve Sailer said...

""far less executive experience than even Kennedy": what do you have in mind? Being the only navy motorboat skipper to get his craft rammed and sunk by a Japanese destroyer?"

Yeah, that was pretty much what I was thinking about: seems like getting PT109 sliced in two would be more of a learning experience than some asbestos removal.

eh said...

And BTW, I more or less summarized the essence of American politics in this comment: it's all happenstance and marketing. Surely you remember something about marketing, Mr Sailer.

Marc B said...

"If you want an Angry Black Woman screaming at you to eat your broccoli the rest of your life, while she gobbles down fries and lobster, well Obama's got you covered."

You're killing me over here, but that sums it up.

jody said...

i don't buy any of this. the more we see of this guy the more i think he's not even "smart", however you want to define that word, an adjective, with no satisfactory objective definition. he's above average for the normal human range in the US and that's it. certainly no moron, but this guy is plain, straight up, not even bright. his speaking ability must have been tricking people for decades. he's been under the microscope for 3 years now and the game is up.

after this latest public address, it's so obvious the guy is just blathering bullshit. whenever he's forced to come up with an actual nuts and bolts plan involving basic algebra level numbers and maths, he can't! i'm talking BASIC STUFF here!

also, he's almost always late, even to his own events. can't give a speech without his teleprompter either, but no need for me to go into that. a thousand other people have covered that topic extensively.

there's no way on earth he's not the least intelligent, least capable guy to hold the office ever. again, not a moron, but he's probably not even smart. this guy could not run a lemonade stand, as someone famously said.

Anonymous said...

Well since I met the Wan in the flesh in 1983 -- when he visited his Grandmother -- she lived directly above me -- I can tell you she was a complete bitch -- to Barry.

Yes, she called him Barry.

He never said a word.

Passive-aggressive he was: he had obviously deliberately pissed her off -- and she was predictably blowing her stack.

This happened over and over.

Quite a sight to see a short, ugly old hag raging in a flame down upon a very handsome, passive mulatto.

Her Grandmother status was obvious -- what I most wondered about was where was Mom and Dad. It was the Xmass holidays. Why wasn't Barry with them, instead?


Steve, the Long Form Birth Cert is a total fraud -- and has been debunked all over.

Kenya's government has never wavered from their assertion that he was born there.

The US State Department has released Stanley's RENEWAL Passport information -- from 1965. Going backwards five years tells us that her original passport was sought when she was pregnant.

Going backwards from Barry's date of birth places the tryst to the election night ( a long one ) of JFK virtually to the hour.

Hence, the biological father is almost certainly Frank Marshall Davis -- working on his own bigamy.

Legally, Barry was and is a bastard. That's going to cause issues.

c.f. King Lear

As for personality profile: the Wan is a raging, maxxed out Gonnabbee of the first water.

Read Wareham's take on Gonnabbees.

It fits like a glove.

I'm no fan of Bush... Clinton, Bush, Obama all merit impeachment -- and ejection from office.

Your dating of the housing bubble to 2003 is entirely absurd.

It all goes back to the crony years of Rubin, Clinton, Gorelick and Reno.

When Clinton was impeached and the trial moved to the Sentate -- CRAPolicy exploded in size. Reno and Gorelick clubbed the bankers to death with threats -- which required Citibank, et. al. to ramp financing into the ghetto at a staggering tempo.

Go back and look at the financials at that time. This despotic tactic bought Democrat votes in the Senate -- plain and simple.

Prices for RE in the ghetto started to move like a rocket. This is also the period when Rubin and Gorelick reconstructed JP Morgan's Money Trust (tm) -- with Rubin jumping ship to Citibank a mere week after closure of the new deal.

His 'job' consisted of accepting an annuity. He had no office, no secretary, no duties, no hours -- yet Citibank cut him a W-2!

Ultimately, Rubin netted out well over $1,000,000 per MONTH -- with a total take over $110,000,000 from his 'employment' alone.

Gorelick grifted $35,000,000 from Freddie Mac.

Bush was not up to his office -- but the melt down in RE was a Democrat/ CBC gambit -- with scandals occurring time and again all through the long con.

The Democrats had created MERS -- and a mechanism for stuffing turds into Freddie and Fannie -- Counterfeiting Credit -- which on Wall Street is the same as Counterfeiting Money.

eh said...

i don't buy any of this. the more we see of this guy the more i think he's not even "smart",...

He's not atomic physics smart.

More than anything he's a dilettante.

Anonymous said...

Something it would be interesting for HBD types to research would be whether different intelligence manifests itself in different ways in different races (aside from different magnitudes).

For example, blacks on the far right of the IQ curve for blacks seem to excel mostly in language, rarely in STEM fields. For Chinese, it is (famously) the opposite. This may be explained simply by the greater g needed for STEM work as opposed to being a language worker (writer, orator, lawyer, salesman, etc.). But maybe not.

jody said...

"He strikes me as a guy who couldn't get the lug nuts off the wheel rim of a flat tire."

oh absolutely. i wouldn't trust this guy to mow my lawn. i think we've all known a few guys like this growing up. and if he was just some random guy i knew growing up, seeing the way he behaves and "performs" for years, i would never hire this slacker smart alec to do any job for me ever.

who would actually hire him to be a lawyer even? if he wasn't getting hired to take an affirmative action slot, who, seriously, would hire this person to do genuine legal work for them? i submit that he actually CAN NOT do the work. that he would be a failed lawyer who would have to change careers, if he did not face a bevy of sweetheart affirmative action law positions for life.

Anonymous said...

Check out this mind-boggling video of George W. Bush from before he became stupid.

Bush never became stupid, as anyone who met him personally during the last decade can attest. You fell for propaganda. I bet you thought Reagan was dumb, too, if you were around then.

Anthony said...

My guess would be that Obama was trying to play the latter game, but lost his nerve when Donald Trump, a celebrity even better at garnering media attention, made an issue of it.

Consider, however, that Obama basically sunk Trump when he released his birth certificate. He managed to beat Hilary and McCain without doing so, but with the economy in the tank, he's much more vulnerable now.

Anonymous said...

Anon #1: Then suddenly for three years he gets very good grades in an intensely competitive elite school while being an intellectual non-entity at HLR... It sticks out like a sore thumb, and really makes me wonder what was going on during that time. Was he sleeping with the class brain and cribbing her outlines, or what?

Anon #2: All said and done, Obama is really small potatoes. The real forces holding the strings over him and over us are the Jewish elite. Without mentioning them, none of what Sailer says about Obama really amounts to much.

The Jewish name which has to be mentioned is "Minow" - Newton Minow at Sidley Austin, Martha Minow at Harvard Law, and Nell Minow in the greater blogosphere.

With a personal den mother like Martha Minow at Harvard, Obama didn't even need to show up for class [which, quite frankly, I imagine he didn't].

BTW, it was the sight of Nell Minow leading the charge against Matt Taibbi which caused me to finally see the Chicago Ouroboros for what it was.

[If I had to do it all over again, the big missing piece which I would add would be the Peter Geithner/Stanley Ann Dunham connection, resulting in little Timothy secretly funneling all those billions of dollars in payback to Goldman Sachs, in December of 2008.

Well, that, and the mystery of how J Edgar Hoover and Josephy McCarthy could have overlooked a flaming Stalinist like Thomas Ayers at Con Edison - that one's a real head scratcher.]

Anon #1 again: And then goes back to missing in action at the University of Chicago.

Worse than missing in action; the published final exams are simply unreadable.

Geoff Matthews said...

I accept that BO is smart, that he's able. But I do think that he has a lack of management experience, that he's been blocked from enacting some of his legislative goals, and that some of the things he wants to do have bad, long-term consequences.
Smart people can believe in things that have disastrous consequences. When other people that you think are smart keep repeating the same things, its easy to take their word for it.
Ultimately, I think that BO's ideology, which is based on a marxist POV, is his biggest problem. Socialism only works until you run out of other people's money, and that time is coming.

Anonymous said...

"And Obama is immeasurably worse than Bush. He's upped AA even further, thrown the borders completely open, spent trillions on Democrat wish lists and corrupt deals (Solyndra) including ones where's a personal investor (LightSquared) along with ObamaCare (a Federal takeover of health care and allowing the Feds to do basically anything to you, including monitor your meals and so on)."

How has Obama upped AA further and thrown the borders open? You are thinking of Bush. If Solyndra is the only scandal of the Obama administration, then he has a long way to go before coming close to Bush's number of scandals. Finally, ObamaCare is not a Federal takeover of health care, it is a private insurance takeover -- that's why the insurance companies supported it. Go back into your paranoid cave, loser.

josh said...

Steve,weren't you the guy that said,against all(or most)of your readers that Obama was a smart guy who deserved his Harvard bona fides?And you said he wrote his books,when most of us seemed to go with Ayers?Mea culpa? He is an idiot and a disaster. But GWB was worse,as this idiot started the housing crisis and started a worthless war for God only knows what REAL reason. Re "dearieme" and you,re the PT-109:Um,Kennedy was sent on a botched mission along with several other PT boats. He didnt have radar. The Japanese destroyer came upon him suddenly. They had no time to react. Kennedy behaved heroically and saved American lives.(He was modest re the medal as it came,he said,from a Navy fuck up. His extreme skepticism with the military arose to a large degree from his Navy days.Hard to imagine him,as Gore Vidal opined of Johnson,pulling out his dick abd saying "Ho Chi Mihn aint getting THIS!"You and many lesser members here seem to relish bashing JFK simpoly because he was Irish.I wondered,watching Caroline talk about MLK,whom Jackie REALLY did love after all,heh heh heh,what if his name was John F. Kleinfelder. I think he might be better regarded,tho less mourned.Might he have not even been murdered?) Anyway had dearieme been the captain of that ship no doubt he wouldve put things right,forthwith,and none of this nonsense,eh wot???

Anonymous said...

Amazing how often antiracists use the word "stupid."

Is it because their low IQ prevents them from learning any synonyms?

Hunsdon said...

Marco Lalo said . . . a bunch, really, in a bunch of itty bitty bite sized posts.

Hunsdon replies:

Marco, baby. Take some time, write down what you want to say. Your posts here, I swear, they remind me of the rat hitting the button for more coke. You're really not going to convince regular iSteve readers with this style. Go deeper, calm down, have some herbal tea, listen to some bells, compose one witty, pithy and incisive post with the bulk of your arguments elegantly displayed.

We all thank you in advance.

Whiskey said...

Obama has deep-sixed even minimal border enforcement, by forbidding ICE from arresting illegal aliens when caught. Don't you read VDARE? Obama's Illegal Alien re-election strategy by executive order is well covered by Brenda Walker. Illegals can even get work permits, by executive order.

Obama is not very smart. He has no understanding or desire to gain any, of what makes White middle class people tick. Van Jones, Anita Dunn, Power, Rice, are not exactly A-Team material. Neither is Geithner, or the rest of the Goldman-Sachs folks infesting his administration.

He got elected off Bush-McCain cluelessness about the economy, and neglected it to cover illegal aliens under ObamaCare, with the Feds mandating people buy insurance. More Anarcho-Tyranny but that which you can't escape by moving to the suburbs. Obama did pretty much everything he could to alienate the White middle/working classes, operating like being President was like being a bigger Harold Washington.

Whiskey said...

(cont'd) To wit, Obama did not appoint guys particularly on the economic side, that would jump start the economy, increasing employment and particularly wages, while keeping commodity prices down. He did the exact opposite, allowing Bernanke to print money driving up the cost of food, fuel, energy, clothing, while stagnating any new hiring and driving business expansion overseas.

Meanwhile he's been far worse than Bush, in foreign affairs, being weak and unable to threaten anyone. He's leaving 3,000 troops in Iraq as hostages or Blackhawk Down bait, not either withdrawing completely or leaving an effective garrison force. He's been unable to threaten Pakistan to make it behave. He's "leading from behind" in Libya, which has gone from mess of Khadaffi to AQ control. He's tried to Spec Ops/Drone warfare his way out of messes in Yemen, Tribal Pakistan, Somalia(!!!), Libya, the Sudan, along with Iraq and Afghanistan (that's two declared wars, and five undeclared wars for those counting at home). When things go south as they will, he will have failed to explain to the public why they should support it and what the alternatives are.

Obama's governing at home is believing his own BS, as he said, and abroad mouthing it while doing the bare minimum in direct opposite of his BS. That's a recipe for failure.

[FBI? Hoover spent all his time running black bag ops on politicos, and never any time going after the Mob or serious Soviet spies. A clown show.]

Whiskey said...

One final note on Obama's smarts. If he was actually smart, he would have avoided the Clinton scandals over Whitewater, which dragged on and on and on. By taking the road of avoiding anything ugly.

Instead, he seems to have pressured the Pentagon and an Air Force General to change testimony over LightSquared's attempt to offer Wi-Max on frequencies that interfere with GPS, military comms, and satellites. He was an investor with LightSquared, and he might remain so. Solyndra got all sorts of loans (maybe up to a $1 billion or more) and his campaign backer got an extraordinary sweet-heart deal, getting paid first for a $60 million investment ahead of the US government's $1 billion.

Not delivering on the economy (inept) plus corrupt is the kiss of death. Clinton survived because he delivered on the economy (or at least did not screw it up). But still paid a price for Whitewater because Americans don't like sleazy deals with their Presidents. The President is not a Supersized Marion Berry or Harold Washington. There are many ways to grant or with-hold favors that the President can use that do not involve money changing hands.

Obama is so stupid he failed to learn from Clinton's Whitewater, Lincoln Bedroom sleepovers (for sale), Al Gore's Buddhist Temple, and other self-inflicted wounds from the prior Democratic Presidency. It would be like Republicans failing to learn the lessons of the Bush Presidency (don't stay in a nation you overthrow, you broke, they can fix it ... or not).

Obama is stupid enough to actually believe posing around like some Rockstar will make people love him forever. Instead of delivering patronage and power effectively, and learning from other Dem mistakes.

NOTA said...

Harvard Law Caveman:

I'm always skeptical of this kind of explanation for Obama's HLS performance, but it has one additional thing going for it. Whatever weird, far out in the tails personality traits and interpersonal manipulation skills it takes to become president, Obama presumably has them. If those skills would have been useful in carrying off a strategy to graduate cum laude at HLS, it would explain how he did so much better there than anywhere else in his schooling.

On the other hand, it's not all that uncommon to see someone who screws around through high school and much of college, but eventually gets serious and does pretty well in school, perhaps ending up in law school or graduate school somewhere. AA has a lot wrong with it, but it probably does a pretty good job of getting bright black kids who aren't very focused into top schools. What happens next is up to them, but for the Obamas of the world, at least they're not hopelessly outclassed. I recall a bit in Thomas Sowell's autobiography, where he's at Harvard and basically realizes that his lackadaisical study habits are going to send him home in a semester if he doesn't fix them. I wonder if something like that happened to Obama at HLS.

Anonymous said...

REf. Simon 9/18 11:06
"inflated sense of his own ego"
Anon 9/19 1:37 a.m.
"I think you're too generous with him"
He tends to relate to himself as an object of admiration--a very pronounced narcissism. Women have
a quick and cold eye for this quality in men. It, then, is not
of remote relevance that what is known of BHO's personal biography and especially during the Hawaii years in his teens is devoid of the usual indicators of heterosexual orientation, whether expressed or held in check. There are troubling indications, too, that in close workaday contacts, BHO seems to many women to give off "bad vibes". All this tends to configure into quite something more than an all too typical male
"inflated sense" of this or that. He is much more like someone that is of immediate " long second look" interest to competent psychiatrists but who is seldom detected among the general population (writers and actors and visual artists can be remarkable layperson exceptions to this general rule )
Social judgements from within an upper middle class workplace about how smart someone is are often very good assessments that subsequent valid IQ testing would only make somewhat more precise and somewhat clearer. Yet, there seems to be a poverty of persons that have said anything about him that is publicly accessible and this reaches back to his high school years, as well. The guy seems to have invented himself

NOTA said...


What's the basis for your belief that Obamas ideas are derived heavily from Marxist ideas? His actions in office have been somewhat to the left of Bush, but not remotely Marxist or socialist. I don't see what he's done or attempted that would put him much to the left of Bill Clnton.

I think you are right about the lack of experience. Barrack Obama walked into the white house having never run any organization larger than his election campaign. It's not surprising that he has found himself subject to end-runs around him by guys like Geithner and Summers. It would be much more shocking if that hadn't happened.

I fancy myself a pretty bright guy. And yet, put me in at governor of Illinois or CEO of GE or as the captain of a navy ship, and I will make a godawful hash of it, because intelligence isnt enough to do those jobs--you also need to have the experience of running parts of them, or of running comparable operations, and detailed knowledge of how these very complicated organizations work.

President must be far worse. Everyone who ever talks to you not only has an agenda, they're out on the right end of the intelligence and manipulativeness and people-skills distributions, and you are their main focus. Most of us have been tricked by dishonest people, or felt the unpleasant push of a skilled salesman trying to get us to buy something. Imagine that all the time, except they're world class salesmen, and all your information about what theyre selling and what a reasonable price would be is controlled by equally manipulative salesmen.

Think about a conflict between Obama and Geithner. Obama has few contacts in the financial world, and those are mostly people he's gotten to know only since he was running for office. Geithner has been plugged into that world for his whole professional life. Obama has the authority to fire Geithner, but in many ways, he's much the weaker of the two. And that applies everywhere--Obama might have wanted to close down Guantanamo and investigate the guys who ran our illegal domestic spying and torture programs. But when his advisors tell him that doing so will destroy the NSA and CIA, who does he ask for confirmation. He doesn't have a dozen old friends he's worked with for years on these issues, guys he knows well enough that it would be hard for them to lie or spin him much. He probably had some people like that in Illinois politics, but he had no time to find them in Washingtn--when he arrived, he was already effectively running for president.

This is mostly independent of how bright he is. It mostly doesn't matter.

Anonymous said...

It doesn't really matter how bright Obama is (my view is, he's kinda-sorta bright) if he believes things that are silly and/or untrue. Which he does. Bright people are notorious for believing silly and untrue things, and much mischief is done in the world thereby.

I knew plenty of HLS students back when I was a Harvard undergrad, and having listened to Obama speak off the cuff, he strikes me as perfectly consistent with the quality of discourse and demeanor I found on average: bright, articulate, sincere, mostly unoriginal, often believing very silly things. I judge that his place there was more or less earned and valid, but I'm also not dazzled by such a thing.

These people are mostly in their 20s/early 30s and most of 'em have spent all their significant life experience in school, what would you expect? They think a lot of cool thoughts and have very little idea of what the world is. It's all very pleasant and unsurprising. It's why after I left Harvard I never seriously considered a career in academia ever again.

Anonymous said...

The observations about Obama having
silly notions incongruent with his overall level of intelligence--this is a fact of life that would loom large in the eye of a competent psychiatrist. Then, it looms larger in the context of the unanchored nature of much of the President's verbalizing and stage-presence emotions. Among professional con men there is no one that gets shunned quicker than one of the group who has started to fail in being master of his madness.

Anonymous said...

note too that by defn, presidents only see problems too hard for their advisors to solve--otherwise, they'd have been solved by someone else before they got to the Oval Office. So Obama only sees the financial problems that Bernanke, Geithner, Summers et al can't handle--i.e. the advisors Don't Know what to do, that's why they kick it up to the president.

anon said:

Am I misinterpreting the situation, or is Larry Summers basically laming Obama for doing what he advised him to do?

Summers is. But that's because Summers thought this president understood that presidents really are the deciders in chief. Summers wasn't supposed to be deciding, just advising. he never intended someone to follow through so far as to say "do whatever summers says." summers had no intention of being the action taker, trigger puller.

rubes self identify again.