Friday, April 10, 2009

Barack Obama is Teleprompter-dependent. Jon Stewart is dependent on his writers.

teleprompter, president obama, dependent, manchurian
Barack Obama and the Teleprompter
A popular meme against President Obama is that he is heavily reliant on the Teleprompter.

Read a selection of Teleprompter jibes from Newsbusters, Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh below:
1) Glenn Beck on Obama as the "Manchurian candidate"
Beck: Obama Is A ‘Manchurian Candidate’ Because He Uses A Teleprompter — But I Use One Too
So I mean, it really bothers me, this teleprompter. … It bothers me that this man doesn’t — this man is always on prompter. You want to talk about a Manchurian candidate — that’s it! Who’s writing every word for this man? […] Is it bothering anyone else but me? We have a fraud in office, at least that’s the way it feels to me.
2) Newsbusters' frustrated by media's whitewashing of Obama's Teleprompter dependency
Obama's 12-Teleprompter Entourage Is Not Newsworthy, or Humor-worthy
...the UK's Evening Standard... matter-of-factly noted the following in the final sentence of its report about President Obama's upcoming European trip:
Accompanying the party will be a total of 500 officials including kitchen staff, 35 vehicles in all, four speech writers and 12 teleprompters.
This more than vindicates yours truly's "President 'Prompter" appellation
3) Rush Limbaugh on Obama's value without a teleprompter or speechwriter
Off Prompter, Obama Can't Speak
RUSH LIMBAUGH: Nobody was saying a word. There was no cheering; there was no fainting. There was just disbelief. I have warned you people several times, you get this guy away from the teleprompter and the David Axelrod-written speeches. This guy doesn't even write his own speeches. Mario Cuomo and Malcolm X write these, but the bottom line is, you get this guy away from them, and I don't care, he blames it on lack of sleep.
You might be mistaken for thinking the meme was created to jujitsu against Obama's masterful stagecraft and memorable speech delivery; undercutting these strengths by creating the impression that Obama is empty, lacking any personal conviction or wisdom. An odd charge considering Obama partially built his reputation by penning Autobiographies which calculatingly demonstrated just that - not that it immunizes him.
Sorry, Dad, I'm Voting for Obama
I’ve read Obama’s books, and they are first-rate. He is that rara avis, the politician who writes his own books. Imagine.
But perhaps the Teleprompter meme is not so much an attempt to discredit Obama's ability to stage rousing set pieces but an ideological difference in how Conservatives value "from the gut" thinking. As conservative talker Andrew Wilkow points out in his critique of Jon Stewart, referencing Stewart's glowing profile in the New York Times:
Andrew Wilkow on Jon Stewart and his reliance on writers
ANDREW WILKOW: Well that's funny. It takes an entire staff of snarky, angry liberals to come up with this program [The Daily Show] then they rehearse it.
You know what it takes to come up with this program? Me!
You know who hosts it? Me!
You know how many times I rehearse it? None! It's live.

That's why I have absolutely no respect for the Daily Show. You get a bunch of snarky North Eastern liberals. You put them in a room, you hook them up with a couple of computers and that becomes the show. Well if Jon Stewart was so smart, he wouldn't need this huge staff of people to write his material. He wouldn't need people to create his thoughts. He wouldn't need to rehearse them, they would be natural because he's so smart.
Listen and Download audio of Andrew Wilkow diminishing Jon Stewart

Remember Rush Limbaugh's "First Televised Address to the Nation" was proudly spoken off the cuff:
Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) Speech
RUSH LIMBAUGH: We don't have to make notes about what we believe. We don't have to write down, oh do I believe it do I believe that we can tell people what we believe off the top of our heads and we can do it with passion and we can do it with clarity, and we can do it persuasively
Despite Andrew Wilkow's assertions, it's also worth noting that Jon Stewart and stablemate Stephen Colbert have both attempted their shows without the aid of writers during the protracted Writer's strike in 2008. A rare feat for such television programming.

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