Saturday, October 31, 2009

SOMEBODY HERE KNOWS HOW TO PLAY THIS GAME. As you may have heard, the presentation of White House visitor logs for January-July led to some humorous gun-jumping by the usual gang of idiots.

The White House release is incomplete at this time, which I can't approve. (More names are expected later this year.) But I'm heartened that its content suggests the Administration knows how to drive its opposition nuts on purpose.

The White House went out of its way to alert readers that some names recorded in the logs were not those of the people you might think they are -- the visitors Jeremiah Wright and William Ayers, for example, were not the famous preacher and radical, respectively.

Some nonetheless scream the news about Ayers and Wright without the explanation, Atlas Shrugs and Don Surber ("A vote for Obama was a vote for Ayers") prominent among them.

"Michael Moore should be waterboarded," roars Right Wing Fanatic. "Bill Ayers should hang from some basketball net." He is also exercised that "General Petreus" was not included on the incomplete list. (One wants to suggest he try a different spelling, just to make him madder. Oh, wait, he got it from TownHall. Never a good idea, RWF!) "Even Good ole Rev. Jeremiah 'God DAMN America' Wright got a visit," says Flopping Aces. "If you ever wondered why Obama appointed so many raving radicals to important positions in the White House, this list makes it clear..."

"What else is there to do when you aren't selling access that comes with influence," says Riehl World View, "entertaining Bill Ayers or doing the SEIU's business but shoot basketball with Mikey [Jordan, another imaginary celebrity visitor]!" RWV later discovers his mistake, and knows where to place the blame: "White House Plays Games, Sets Trap With Web Site." He says the disclaimer "was nowhere to be seen when I clicked in before I did my post," which left him the choice of checking his information or immediately posting an outraged screed; surely he cannot be blamed for taking the more patriotic course.

Meredith Jessup of Town Hall gets the Bad Bill Award for assuming -- despite the White House caveat, to which she does not refer and may or may not have bothered to read -- that the Malik Shabazz listed is the famous Black Panther, and details his crimes over 1,100+ words. "Stay tuned for the next installment of 'Barack Obama's Guest List,'" she concludes, "where I'll delve into the history of another one of Obama's questionable connections." Maybe it'll be Hitler!

A few at this writing have updated, to similarly hilarious effect. Melissa Clouthier adds, more in anger than sorrow, "David Petraus is notably absent." Petraeus ought to change his name to Smith or something else more American and easy to spell. "I previously posted pictures of Chicago Boss Bill Daley with the president on the White House lawn (but not a word about it in the press at the time)," complains American Power. Holy shit -- the Mayor of Chicago (under a previously unknown nickname*) visited Obama? Draw up the articles of impeachment! "The press is totally in the tank, so the truth is relative to power and access," he adds. "Never believe what these people say." Well, that's one way of getting out of it.

Others actually suggest that the White House accurately reported the names but lied about them not being the betes noires they wanted to think they were. "So, there’s more than one Malik Shabazz?" queries Global Observatory. A look at some of GO's other work may explain their confusion. The confusion of Macsmind ("how many William A. Ayers are there anyway?") is harder to figure.

By now the big boys have given them the new talking points: ACORN! Also, the list is incomplete, which is Nixonian. With the latter they are on surer ground, and the Administration's attempt to insulate itself from some of the non-fantasy names may remind even sympathetic readers of the spin practices of previous Presidents.

I'm not saying Axelrod is lying, nor that any of the names so far revealed are really a big deal -- only that the Obama people, who are constantly portrayed as inept handlers of the press, seem to know more than their opponents have been willing to recognize.

* UPDATE. Donald Douglas has corrected Daley's name at American Power, notifies me of such via comments. The rest of the post he apparently stands by.

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