by Teh Nutroots | Aw, hell. I can't let this one go. Amy Chozick---as Damozel comments, it's kind of hard to believe it is with a straight face---asks, at The Wall Street Journal, is Barack Obama offensively physically fit to the fat American electorate? Will middle-aged fat gits like Mister Teh Nutroots refuse to vote for someone so distastefully thin from eating elitist [healthy] food like arugula lettuce [which unlike all-American iceberg lettuce supposedly contains some food value] and working out on a regular basis?
To begin with, stop calling me fat. Every guy can't be 'ripped.' In the words of the former Mrs. Teh Nutroots, I am 'sumptuous.' The muscles are under there somewhere. I will challege both Obama and McCain to arm wrestle me and I will beat them both. [In general, it's the Republicans who are wusses, checking under their beds for terrorists and sleeping with their guns. They're scared of everything.]
And stop insulting my intelligence Here's Kevin Drum, quoting from the piece:
In a nation in which 66% of the voting-age population is overweight and 32% is obese, could Sen. Obama's skinniness be a liability? Despite his visits to waffle houses, ice-cream parlors and greasy-spoon diners around the country, his slim physique just might have some Americans wondering whether he is truly like them.
The entire story continues in this vein for 1,400 words. Seriously.
I might be an over-40 couch potato, but my brain is as muscular as an Olympic shot-putter after the outrage it's had to digest for the last seven and a half years..
Right now it's springing up and down in protest of anything so outrageously stupid as this whole fake 'topic.'
Is the message that fat people should vote Republican because---like W Senior and Reagan---their snacks of choice are bacon rinds and jelly beans? What about W's mountain biking [h/t Digby]. And Bill Bradley at Pajamas Media reminds us that some Republicans don't look like anyone on the planet, let alone like you or me: 'Well, [Obama] can’t bench or dead lift enough to be Mr. Universer a la Arnold. But he is in good shape. And the troops love his jump shot.'
I tend to agree that the real message is in code and is the
one identified by World O' Crap (scroll for link and a big bite of
refreshing-but-filling reality) and that 'Is he really like the rest of
us?' is code for 'IN CASE YOU HAVEN'T NOTICED....'
The article was 'extensively' 'researched.' The Sadly, No! guys have discussed the methodology used.' Other bloggers have also provided a fascinating insider's glimpse at one high paid journalist's techniques.
DaveNoon at Lawyers, Guns, and Money notes:
Steve M. has a nice catch on the cavernously stupid notion that Barack Obama might not have enough body fat -- acquired from gobbling seals and rummaging the ice pack for carrion -- to survive those long, fasting Presidential winters. Aside from the fact that Amy Chozick actually launched the Yahoo discussion thread from which the entire project sprouted, but she also cribbed talking points from the McCain campaign. (More)
See Steve M's post ('The Rove Street Journal') for the full background. To which he adds:
Argh. And it's only August. (More)
Dday (takin' it hard) says:
This is in a newspaper. Someone got paid to write this....Google cached copy of this here. Somehow, us bloggers are the ones accused of poor research skills and not understanding the fundamentals of reporting.
I want to choke myself with my own hands.
But... is the WSJ piece an incredibly subtle piece of satire? Could it be? Are we getting owned by taking it seriously? Will the Right be all 'BAHAHAHAHAHA! Libtards have no sense of humor!' tomorrow?
Memeorandum has a hell of a good round-up, so let's take a look.
At The Weekly Standard, Dean Barnett points his prop pipe at me and hmmm-haw-haws:
The Journal speculates that Obama’s physical fitness may make him unfit for office, or at least unfit to win the election....Personally, as a fellow 40-something fitness nut, I admire Obama’s discipline and commitment in this area. It’s a sign of how poorly He’s wearing that even His strengths are becoming liabilities.
Satire? If so, The Weekly Standard fell for it. But this is one thing I do know: the article is way funnier if you assume it's serious.
Time to point and laugh at this ridiculous travesty of a fake issue that probably---unfortunately---really does reflect the way in which a certain sort of American (who wouldn't vote for Obama anyway, if you know what I'm sayin) selects its presidents.
Eric Martin at Obsidian Wings said:
If we can confirm that Obama is also exceedingly intelligent, displays good judgment and is competent, this guy's gonna be downright unelectable.
And he also points out:
...."Obama is skinny" is the new "Michael Moore/Al Gore is fat." Sure is hard for liberals to find the proper body weight, huh. (More)
I don't even know what to say, aside from mentioning the brain-breaking irony that Bill Clinton and Al Gore were, of course, regularly implied to be disgusting lard-buckets...
Oh, and in case you foolishly thought that this wasn't another opportunity to suggest that Clinton supporters: A) won't support Obama; and B) are fat old bitter slags, boy, were you wrong!...For whatever it's worth, this fat bitch has never, even in passing, considered Obama's thinness a reason to not vote for him.
Bob Sackamento at My DD has assembled a little list:
[T]he media is establishing a curious list of qualifications for our next president. According to the growing narrative, the next president must:
- Not think before he speaks
- Never use more than two-syllable words
- Always underachieve
- Hate academics
- Drink cheep American beer
- Bowl well
- Be hated overseas
- Take lots of vacations
- Look like "us"
And, critical to our nation's security,
10. Be fat!
Steve M. praises Chozick's thoroughness in informing us how much more John McCain is like the rest of us than svelte Obama:
Oh, and of course John McCain is a guy who "cannot lift weights due to injuries he suffered as a prisoner of war in Vietnam" (though he "hikes whenever he can find the time"), and -- admirably -- "is said to have a weakness for Butterfinger candy bars, jelly beans, and coffee and doughnuts from Dunkin' Donuts."
But---on an ominous note---at Donklephant, Justin Gardner says:
I will say that a friend of mine commented a couple months ago that the weight Obama has gained on the campaign trail really solidified that he could be acceptable to him as a viable candidate.... So is this what we’re facing? A country that’s so insecure with how they look that they need to make sure anybody who runs that country shares their same bad habits? Do they fear that Obama will ask them to cut out the soda and chips so we can drive health care costs down?
Jeff Fecke at Alas, a Blog doesn't think Gardner's friend speaks for the majority:
[N]o, Wall Street Journal, Obama’s skinniness is not a deal-breaker. Indeed, as anyone who has engaged in American society can tell you, it’s an asset. There’s a reason Mike Huckabee wasn’t considered a presidential contender until he
had bariatric surgerylost a lot of weight through “willpower.” This nation is far from embracing the idea that one’s body type does not correlate with one’s worth as a human being — and that includes a number of fat-hating fat people, who will be happy to tell you at length why Obama’s skinniness is a strength.
Free market lover Megan McArdle---She Is A Vegan,You Know--- responded with distaste to the article and to McCain's attacks on Obama in general:
[H]ere in DC, McCain is now running anti-Obama ads with a voice over in the same tones that the ninth grade bully-princess used to inform everyone that her newest enemy had, like, totally slept with a tenth grader behind the bleachers. This does not make me more likely to vote for Senator from Arizona.
At HuffPost, John McQuaid blames it on Maureen Dowd, and I am down with that:
A literal example of Dowdism in action appears in today's Wall Street Journal. Dowd has been obsessing for months about Barack Obama's slender frame and apparent desire to maintain a healthy diet as somehow prissy and elitist, rather than what it is, which is: healthy, i.e., an objectively good quality in a person and a president. The WSJ takes the Dowd meme out of the realm of pure opinion and turns it into classic, pseudo-objective newspaper claptrap:
Whiskey Fire sums up the ethos of Republican attacks on Obama:
See, the point is, they will always go there; they will always not merely cross the line, but poop on it. It's what they do.
As is well known. But, you know, riddle me this: how do they make Obama the heavy-lifting mega-butch Negro who wants to fuck your sister, AND the effete latte-sipping elitist... at exactly the same time?
But I think World O' Crap probably nailed it, so WoC gets the last word:
At the Wall Street Journal, the strain is becoming unbearable. Neck muscles corded, eyes popping, skin glazed with sweat, the WSJ.com writhes in its bed like Linda Blair in The Exorcist, fighting the urge to bolt upright and scream, “Can’t you see that man is a NIG’‘–!” But the only relief they’re offered is a cool washcloth, and a few spoonfuls of Campbell’s Chunky Chicken and Euphemism soup. [emphasis added]