Friday, May 25, 2012
Does the Left still want to talk about the Grades of Our Presidents?
Lets start by iterating that I often used to say that Bush's grades had little effect on his effectiveness as a president. Be honest, you do know that the president is surrounded by so many experts that all he or she has to do is decide - you know, the great decider. So even though in this post I am going to discuss how well Obama did in school, the premise is not that he is a bad leader if in fact he was a bad student.
President Obama's supporters have often championed him as a "brilliant [man]", in fact one of the smartest to ever hold office. I always found this to be shallow, since I've never seen anything from him that would indicate superior intelligence, at least not compared to some of the smartest people in the world. Bill Clinton is widely known to be very intelligent. Prior to graduation from Georgetown, Clinton won a "Prized Rhodes Scholarship to study at Oxford University in England for two years." It is plain as day that Clinton was a smart man, who was going to do good in life on the strength of his intelligence. President Obama is different in the sense there is nothing from his past that would have allowed people to make that assumption.
Now comes this: Charles C. Johnson of "Breitbart News has established that Obama's grades and Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) scores may have been even lower than those of his supposedly less capable predecessor, George W. Bush."
They have apparently learned that "the transfer class that entered Columbia College in the fall of 1981 with Obama was one of the worst in recent memory, according to Columbia officials at the time."
I am not going to go over all the details, you can go to the link I provided if you feel you need that. What this post is about is what this means for the left, who had spent much of the Bush presidency talking about how stupid the former president was because of the grades he had gotten while in college. If this new information turns out to be true, it will shed some light on the fact that after so long, no one has managed to get a copy of President Obama's grades. I suspect the left does not want to eat their own words on this one, so expect of heavy defense from the blogs.
Johnson noted in his piece that in ", Barack Obama describes himself as an unfocused high school student whose mother scolded him for being a "loafer". And He also "describes his attitude toward his studies at Occidental as 'indifferent' , calling himself a 'bum' who abused drugs and who was notorious for partying all weekend." As I pointed out earlier in this post, there was nothing in Barack Obama's story that would have pointed towards him someday being president, or even a constitutional scholar for that matter.
Johnson points out in his piece that questions have been raised as to why President Obama earned a place at Columbia in 1981, which paved the way for him to move on to Harvard and likely beyond. In Dreams from My Father, Obama wrote "[W]hen I heard about a transfer program that Occidental had arranged with Columbia University, I’d been quick to apply", however, Johnson points out that there is no record of such a transfer program between Occidental and Columbia. The only transfer programs between Occidental and Columbia were "one[s] that fed students into Columbia’s School of Engineering and Applied Science" which neither would have qualified Obama to be transferred. Even Obama's former roommate (Phil Boerner) - who happens to be one of the "few Columbia students to recall" the president even being at the school - has denied that there was a transfer program.
Johnson points out other programs - affirmative action - would likely have qualified Obama, and then points out just four years earlier that Columbia had defended its affirmative action program in a "amicus curie" in front of the Supreme Court (Bakke case (1977). No evidence other than that is presented, so it would be wrong headed to say that is how Obama got into Columbia, and if he did, it would not be a big deal, these kinds of programs would have been needed more back then than they are now.
But the argument Johnson is making adds to a larger premise about what the media has tried to build as the Obama narrative. Obama was such a unknown entity that he became an idea, and the voters were able to paint him into being whatever they wanted him to be. This likely is what happen to much of the media, who had obviously championed his campaign in 2008. Now the media is the vetting that it failed to do in 2008, and the president is starting to get irritated about it.
It is going to be interesting to see how the left handles the idea of Obama unraveling, and watching the actual Obama revealed to the American people. The president is not a bad guy at all, but as a Senator that had only been elected two years before he started to run for president, he was obviously not cut for dealing with the way things work in Washington.
Bill Clinton was able to work with the other side to accomplish things when he had lost the house in the midterm elections. Clinton had executive experience as the governor of Arkansas, and it appears that made a difference. Clinton also was able to gauge that the public was leaning right, so he declared the days of big government over. I wonder how many times the Democrat power players have said they wished they would have backed Hillary over Obama in 2008. I'm pretty sure the Democratic Party would be in a much stronger position if they would
How long before someone starts to make the case that Mitt Romney is stupid, and not capable of being a effective executive. The second part of that argument is already being made, but if I were a member of the left, I may want to wait on the first part.