- GOP hopes taking shutdown off the table with budget deal will pay dividends
- Chinese Death Star: The moon cited as the perfect launch pad for ballistic missiles
- Help wanted: Homeland Security plagued by vacancies at the top
- We are not amused: Queen’s protection officers warned to keep ‘sticky fingers’ off the royal cashews
- Unleash the crossbows: Gov. Scott Walker creates new hunting season
- Bubonic plague kills 20 in Madagascar
- G-20 diplomats fell for hacker attack promising nude photos of former French first lady Carla Bruni
- Minnesota guardsman charged with stealing private soldier data for fake IDs
- Florida appeals court rules universities can’t regulate guns
- Vladimir Putin defends Russian conservative values
Inside the Beltway: The celebrity president
The leader of the Free World was once just that – a canny stalwart with gravitas intact, ready to take on evil empires, stock market crashes, terrorists, Communism. Yes, once. Celebrity appears to have taken over the office, however, a phenomenon that likely got its start when Bill Clinton broke ranks with the adult population in 1992, donned cool shades and played “Heartbreak Hotel” on his tenor saxophone on late-night TV when he was pursuing the White House.
“The pop culture stuff – the cameos on ‘Saturday Night Live’ and 'The Daily Show,' the celebrity guests at rallies, the appearances on non-news programs – used to be the frosting on the cake of a campaign. Now it’s the cake,” says National Review contributor Jim Geraghty, who points out that the “post-Cold War celebrity president” is now a very real entity.
President Obama and his campaign team “have either adapted to changing expectations of the president, or accelerated the change in those expectations, by reinventing the role of president as a permanent pop cultural icon,” Mr. Geraghty observes.
“A certain number of Americans who do not watch the news but watch ‘The View’ see the president on that show, joking about himself as ‘eye candy’ and like him. They see him on 'Entertainment Tonight,' and Jimmy Fallon, and doing his NCAA bracket picks on SportsCenter, and grilling with Bobby Flay, and so on, and like him because he’s there with the apolitical folks who they like for their comedy, sports coverage, cooking shows.”
THE GLAMOUR PRESIDENT
The aforementioned Mr. Geraghty has attracted the notice of Glamour magazine, which is publicizing its “President Obama’s Glamour Interview” that showcases a sharp focus on women’s rights and abortion. It is not the first time Mr. Obama has taken time to sit down with editor-in-chief Cindi Leive. And it is not the first time that Mr. Geraghty has tracked the evolving glitz of the White House right to the publication.
“The last time I’d met with President Obama, in 2008 as the country was just getting to know him, we’d talked at length about his family, but this time our conversation had a more serious, sober tenor,” Ms. Leive proclaimed in an earnest personal blog.
“All of which made it ridiculous to me that when word of our interview spread a few weeks later, some pundits pounced on the fact that the president had sat down with Glamour as evidence of a fluffy media strategy: ‘Can’t wait to see what he thinks of the new fall collection,’ scoffed Mr. Geraghty,” the editor pointed out.
Yeah, well. The magazine is on newsstands Oct. 9,; the interview is online for the curious: glmr.me/obama-interview
THE HISTORIC CAMPAIGN
“Politicians employ speech writers as ventriloquists.”
Oh, the opportunities. Vice President Joseph R. Biden’s “buried” remark just keeps resonating.
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
- Inside the Beltway: A brief tale from Beverly Hills
- Inside the Beltway: Congress bottoms out in Gallup job approval poll
- Inside the Beltway: The handshake heard 'round the world at Mandela service
- Inside the Beltway: Tea party brews straw poll
- Inside the Beltway: Pricey health care doesn't guarantee a long life
Latest Blog Entries
- The Gipper 24/7: Get the official - and free - Ronald Reagan App
- No kumbaya: Fiscal conservatives snarl at Patty and Paul's budget deal
- Tea party brews up a 2016 presidential straw poll - and Cruz is in the lead
- Americans just say yes: members of Congress should be subject to random drug testing
- 70 percent of Americans say U.S. has lost world respect; 80 percent of GOP, 56 percent of Democrats agree
By Mangosuthu Buthelezi
Memories of a long brotherhood tempered in common struggle
- NAPOLITANO: A conspiracy so vast
- Obama's Afghanistan experts stumped on U.S. death toll, war costs during hearing
- House votes for bargain to end budget drama
- Comma on!: Twitter erupts over Obama-Castro 'marriage'
- Spike in battlefield deaths linked to restrictive rules of engagement
- Jane Fonda Foundation fails to make single contribution in 5 years: report
- Atheists smug as Hindus join Satanists to demand display at Oklahoma Statehouse
- U.S. debt jumps a record $328 billion tops $17 trillion for first time
- Biden guarantees victory on immigration reform
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Covering the world of soccer, including the World Cup, Major League Soccer, D.C. United and the English Premier League and other interesting sporting events.
Born in 1930 in rural Missouri, Charles Vandegriffe, Sr., brings his time and place to the Communities.
Columns from Voices around the World talking about the events, people, politics and social issues that concern us wherever, and whoever, we are.
Extraordinary day at Redskins Park
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow