Even the media and the occasional democrat are beginning to notice that the President of the United States doesn’t exactly demonstrate a uniquely American work ethic. In fact, it’s a virtual certainty that America has never had a less attentive, lazier, less engaged president. Remember, gentle readers, this is the president that has almost no idea what’s happening in his own administration; he finds out about everything–particularly scandals–in the news.
Lavish dining, command performances for the monarch in the White House and elsewhere by high-dollar entertainers, flying everywhere and anywhere on Air Force One–just under $200,000 per hour to operate, not counting multiple fighter jet escorts and radar surveillance, etc.–to campaign, or merely to stroke high-dollar donors and bundlers, posh multi million dollar vacations, and of course, golf, golf and more golf, and not just at any local municipal golf course, no, at the most exclusive and toney courses the world has to offer.
Obama aides/enablers exclaim: “Presidents need a little down time from their stressful job. Americans don’t begrudge the President a little relaxation.” Oh yeah? I do. Unlike previous presidents that came into the White House with some degree of wealth, having made it the old fashioned way–they earned it–by hard work and demonstrated business acumen, Barack Obama is a man that has never demonstrated any business acumen, or hard work.
Mr. Obama’s only business/executive experience was running the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, a scam arranged for him by the man he barely knew, just a guy who lived in his Chicago neighborhood, unrepentant domestic terrorist Bill Ayers. From Barack Obama: The Phantom Executive:
And what did Mr. Obama [and Chicago’s children] have to show for his efforts?
The evidence dug up by researchers reveal that Obama and Ayers wasted over $150 million dollars in Annenberg Foundation funds by supporting unproven education practices and funneling money to wacky groups whose goal was to politicize the education process. The archives of the Annenberg Challenge show that its approach to education reform was to steer school children away from core academics and immerse them in issues such as ‘inequity, war, and violence.’
Indeed, a 2003 a report by the Chicago Annenberg Research Project, a group entrusted with analyzing the results of the Annenberg Challenge, found that ‘there were no statistically significant difference in student achievement between Annenberg Schools and demographically similar non-Annenberg schools. This indicates that there was no Annenberg effect on achievement.’ And that was just in academics.
Even in the touchy-feely areas of ‘student’s sense of self-efficacy and social competence’ the report found “there were no statistically significant differences in these outcomes between Annenberg [funded] schools and non-Annenberg schools. It gets worse, the report revealed that in some areas such as ‘student peer support for academic learning, inclusive school leadership, and teacher commitment,’ these ‘failed to improve and some weakened.’
Even the auditors of the Chicago Annenberg Research Project could not help but to report that Mr. Obama wasted more than 150 million dollars—some accounts add an additional ten million to that figure—and not only failed to help the academic achievement of Chicago kids—many of whom were certainly disadvantaged blacks–but actually made their lives, and those of their teachers, worse.
It has since come to light that the man Barack Obama barely knew [Ayers] visited the White House twice between January and October, 2009. Odd for a casual acquaintance.
Even in his early 30′s, Barack Obama was practicing for his term in office as President by wasting enormous amounts of other people’s money on Marxist schemes any rational person would have known to be scams, or alternatively, money black holes. And then as now, Mr. Obama’s radical philosophy resulted in disaster for others, others he pretended to care about and supposedly wanted to help.
At The Washington Free Beacon, Matthew Continetti documents the more recent exploits of America’s globe-trotting wastrel-in-chief, in 1,461 Days of Summer:
The headline was brutal. ‘Bam’s Golf War: Prez tees off as Foley’s parents grieve,’ read the cover of Thursday’s New York Daily News. Obama’s gaffe was this: He had denounced the beheading of James Foley from a vacation spot in Martha’s Vineyard, then went to the golf course. Seems like he had a great time. Such a great time that he returned to the Farm Neck Golf Club—sorry, membership is full—the next day.
Ah, but Golf is only a part of living like a deranged French Monarch:
Uncomfortable with all of the golf on Martha’s Vineyard? It is but a fraction of Obama’s habit. Since 2009, the president has played more than 185 rounds, typically with Wall Street cronies such as Robert Wolf and sports celebrities such as Alonzo Mourning, Tony Kornheiser, and Michael Wilbon. So devoted to golf is Obama that he wears Game Golf, which tracks how well a golfer shoots. Game Golf is not something you wear as a lark. You use it to study and hone your game. The hours on the course are just the start; there are also the hours spent analyzing results at home. Obama is not golfing like an amateur. He’s golfing like a man who wants to join the PGA tour.
While on vacation, the Obamas dined at Atria, where the cioppino costs $42 and sides include olive oil whipped potatoes and truffle-parmesan fries. But fine dining is not something the Obamas limit to the beach. They are foodies, patronizing the best restaurants in Chicago, D.C., Old Town, New York, Key Largo, and Los Angeles. I have been to some of these restaurants; the president has great taste. Recently, as part of his “bear is loose” shtick, he has visited sandwich places, bars, and coffee shops. He meets the public, he becomes associated with a fashionable locale, and he spends a few dollars on small businesses. It’s a good thing. Here, at last, is an Obama initiative that does not harm the economy.
Good food is not a luxury for Obama. It is a staple. Before the president departed for Martha’s Vineyard, he shared a limo ride with the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey. The general explained to the president the situation in Iraq. He warned of horrible consequences for the Yazidis, for Iraq, and for the United States if the jihadists conquered Mt. Sinjar and took Erbil. Obama decided to meet with his national security team. The presidential limo was diverted. Guess where it had been going. ‘The Italian dinner in Georgetown with Michelle Obama would have to wait,’ Politico reported.
And then there are the celebrities with their, uh, balloons…:
Think two weeks in Martha’s Vineyard sends the wrong message? On July 31, Katy Perry performed at the White House. She was there to celebrate the Special Olympics—a worthy cause. But the same standard applies. If cutting loose in Martha’s Vineyard while ISIL is rampaging abroad is “bad optics,” so is hosting a teenage dream while, in the words of Chuck Hagel, the “Middle East is blowing up.” Propriety is not a word one associates with Katy Perry. The refrain of her latest hit: “So let me get you in your birthday suit / It’s time to bring out the big balloons.” She’s not talking about party favors.
OK, but this is so unfair! Doesn’t Mr. Obama actually deserve a little R & R? After all, he has the most important job in the world! OK. Let’s return, briefly, to an article I wrote back in 2012 and review Mr. Obama’s crushing daily workload. The article was titled:
For some time I’ve been informally keeping track of the serially vacationing Barack Obama. I knew he and his family were frequently taking lavish vacations on the public dime, often in multiple jets—sometimes even providing a separate jet for Bo, the Presidential doggie–on the rare occasions when Mr. Obama was not golfing. I knew Mr. Obama was legendary for a light workload at the White House (usually starting work no earlier than 0930 and quitting for the day no later than 1600) and for never being on time—a trait he shares with Bill Clinton (perhaps it’s something in Democrat genes?). But until I decided to get serious about researching these things, I had no idea how little the American people are getting for their money in their chief executive.
Actually, I shouldn’t have been surprised. After all, Mr. Obama has apparently never held an 8-5 job, a job where he was expected to be on time and produce actual work on a daily basis. Often touting his time as a “community organizer,” Mr. Obama admitted in his two (?!) “memoirs” that he could not tell friends what he actually did as a community organizer.
Here’s a listing of Mr. Obama’s official schedule from the first week of January, 2012. Keep in mind that this was the beginning of Mr. Obama’s third year in office; his working patterns were already well established.
Monday, January 2, 2012
No official Schedule
Tuesday, January 3, 2012
7:15 am The First Family arrives at Andrews Air Force Base
7:30 am The First Family arrives at the White House
11:30 am The President and the Vice President receive the Presidential Daily Briefing
12:00 pm The President meets with senior advisors
12:30 pm The President and the Vice President meet for lunch [a four hour lunch; they must have been famished]
4:30 pm The President and the Vice President meet with Secretary of Defense Panetta
8:15 pm The President participates in a video teleconference with Iowa Caucus attendees
Wednesday, January 4, 2012
9:30 am The President and the Vice President receive the Presidential Daily Briefing
10:05 am The President departs the White House en route Joint Base Andrews
10:20 am The President departs Joint Base Andrews en route Cleveland, OH
11:35 am The President arrives Cleveland, OH
12:05 pm The President participates in a discussion with a family at a private residence
1:15 pm The President delivers remarks on the economy
2:35 pm The President departs Cleveland, OH en route Joint Base Andrews
3:50 pm The President arrives Joint Base Andrews
4:05 pm The President arrives the White House
Thursday, January 5, 2012
10:00 am The President receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
10:50 am The President delivers remarks on the Defense Strategic Review [apparently another long lunch]
3:30 pm The President and the Vice President meet with Secretary Geithner
Friday, January 6, 2012
9:50 am The President and the Vice President receive the Presidential Daily Briefing
11:40 am The President visits staff and delivers brief remarks at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
12:15 pm The President has lunch with winners of a campaign contest
Notice that on the four days of that week when he apparently did some small amount of work—as in actually having something to do from time to time on his official schedule–nothing began earlier than 0930. Notice too that he appears to knock off for the day at around 1600, and on Friday, apparently right after lunch [one can only hope he can work while chewing; he doesn’t appear to do it at any other time].
Perhaps I’m just jealous. After all I’m up no later than 6:30 every day, at school no later than 7:20, and I’m lucky if I make it home before 5:30. And let’s not so much as think about the 20-30 hours each week I spend grading papers and preparing lessons. Heck, what’s that in comparison with Mr. Obama’s grueling schedule? Let’s be fair and give his supporters another chance:
But this is only one example from one source—OK, the source is actually the White House, but still—so perhaps I’m not being fair.
After all in April, 2012, Mr. Obama said:
When we travel, we’ve got to travel through Secret Service and Air Force One, that’s not my choice,’ the president added. ‘I think most folks understand how hard I work and how hard this administration is working on behalf of the American people.’
Obviously, Mr. Obama thinks he’s working hard, and he thinks most folks think he’s working hard on their behalf (or he’s just lying and doesn’t care what we think). Just to be fair, let’s examine another source: Citizen 5408.
According to the White House, the President doesn’t work all that much. During the month of May, which included 21 working days, President Obama claims he worked about 92 hours (91.95 to be exact). That’s according to the White House schedule, posted on the whitehouse.gov Website. That equates to an exhausting 4.4 hours per day. Excluding his grueling G8 summit travels during the week of May 23 (when he was forced to endure eight hour work days!), Mr. Obama worked an average of 3.25 hours per day when at the White House in May.
Indeed, the President’s schedule is so thin, the White House Communications team sees it necessary to include the Vice President’s meetings, when he subs for the President for padding. For example, on May 3rd and May 17th, Vice President Biden held working breakfast meetings at 7:45 am with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner in the President’s stead…
So desperate are they for something to count, the Communications team also list Press Secretary Jay Carney’s daily briefings as if they were among the President’s activities.
If you take the link to the quoted article, you’ll see that, once again, I’ve taken the word of an unreliable, highly partisan source for Mr. Obama’s schedule: The White House.
Let’s return to Continetti’s exposition:
What does interest Obama is celebrity: His own, and that of others. He enjoys opportunities to expound on the world, as though he were an essayist for the New Yorker, which he surely will be soon after leaving office. He wants to be recognized in public, during his choreographed stops outside the White House, and during “major speeches” that lead to applause but no discernible change in affairs, and during appearances on talk shows, the more mindless the better. He likes intimate gatherings of rich and famous people, people who enjoy notoriety—though not nearly as much as he—people of means, people of uniform opinion on the state of the world, the economy, and, most importantly, the state of Barack Obama. He is interested in good food, in good company. He likes golf.
I’ll let Continetti have the next-to-the-last word:
This is the life: international travel, motorcades, sycophants and courtiers, tables at the best restaurants, round after round of golf, parties in a cool house, watching the best television shows, meeting all these renowned figures—and having them kiss up to you—ruminating over your legacy, over the causes of polarization, over the geopolitical situation, understanding other peoples’ motivations better than they do. Kramer has nothing on Obama. Politics, terrorists, Iran, Putin, Congress are all distractions. Best to enjoy the experience to the utmost. You are only president once.
In the 1990s, America had a holiday from history. Today, it has a president on holiday. The boundary separating vacation from vocation has disappeared. The party won’t end for years. And the hangover will be severe.
The problem isn’t an occasional vacation, or even an occasional round of golf. The problem is a president acting like the most arrogant, dismissive and imperious European royalty of the 16th century, and daring us to do anything about it. We expect a certain minimal work ethic out of our presidents. Never has a president so lived down to our expectations.