"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." -- Theodore Roosevelt

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Sunday, January 25, 2009

Iconography of the Obama Presidency

Real nice, huh? Michelangelo beware.
I found this little bit of hubris at this freerepublic.com link here:

The L.A. Times is really pulling out the stops here. Now I grew up in the L.A. area and I know that the Times can get a little "artsy" in their layouts, but as I recall it was usually for something a little more significant than the election of a president. I remember a layout similar to this for the Challenger disaster. Yes, I know... first African-American president and all... but something this political and immediate (this is a depicting a sitting president) seriously challenges journalistic objectivity (as if that still exists in great abundance).

Then there's my all-time favorite Obama picture (I believe it's from the AP but I wouldn't swear to it):

I just love the American halo. Very chic. And the benevolent expression. Just like Christ on the cross...

Okay. We all know that the media has been heaping religious imagery on this guy. And if that isn't enough, it appears that Obama is pushing for only his "official" photographer to be present at press conferences. Why does Obama feel his image is so important that he must keep such tight control of it?

The press has swooned over his jeans, written about his "glistening" pecs in The Washington Post but that doesn't seem quite enough. Maybe after taking the media for a ride once, he knows that it's only a matter of time before he starts earning some actual scrutiny. Then he'll have plenty of stolid, beaming head shots to feed to the editors. The article about some misspent government funds, tax increases, and falling markets will be accompanied by his benevolent visage, posed and contrived. I can hardly wait.

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