PRESIDENTIAL ‘OPTICS’? Liberalese and Smart Readers

Written by Steve Bowers on September 16, 2014

I had a nice chat with two chemical engineer buddies at lunch on Sunday. Sometimes it seems so useless to keep kicking against the mess our leadership has gotten our country into. Writing about the problems and drawing cartoons are a pleasure in their own right, but if I start wondering if it does any good it can get depressing. But my buddy’s lunch conversation greatly encouraged me. To illustrate my erstwhile depression… please read on.

In case you missed the softball interview by some little pansy-lookin’ guy from the media a few days ago, I’ll try to recall it for you. Obama was subjected to questioning so forgettable I can only remember his answers. (Maybe it was the questioner’s answers…since he was helping Obama formulate said answers.) Obama admitted his mistakes, as he often does…in order to implicate others, thereby deflecting culpability from himself.

His answers addressed how his mistakes were twofold regarding taking off for a round of golf immediately after his tepid televised response to the recent beheading of the (first) journalist (it’s hard to remember names at this point since that beheading was followed quickly by another journalist’s beheading). To wit: 1) “Well, it’s part of the [fake] President’s job to be aware that part of this job is ‘theater.’” …and… 2) “I should have been more aware of the ‘optics’ of the situation.’” The main problem with these remarks is that even if the presidential role includes some small bit of theater, the rest of the world operates in real time and does not involve any actors. He’s the only real actor. 
But, everything else is not theater! And while I understand how prancing about in the limelight amidst such grisly props (which look far more real than those silly computer generated images in movies) may be unnerving and distracting for a wanna-be thug from Chicago, I keep hoping for at least a tear or two.

Of course, Jay Carney’s reiteration blamed GW Bush for the fact that Obama “inherited” the terrorists. Actually, as is often pointed out, the terrorist problem was inherited from T. Jefferson and if Obama has needed six years to accomplish nothing more than surrendering everything accomplished by his predecessor and the thousands of American heroes who have served and died since 9/11, how long may we expect the WAR ON TERROR to continue? To be fair, however, it may only take another twenty-five and a half months…give or take a few extra weeks.

And what is this rubbish about “optics.” Is that another word to replace the word “appearances?” Is that like saying I should have “calibrated my words more carefully?” Is this “liberalese?” John Harvard did not garner his reputation from teaching young students to obfuscate their language by substituting words that are several times removed from the primary definition in the thesaurus? This is not plain speaking. This is not candor. This is not presidential. This is plain intellectual cowardice.

But enough of the usual crap about Washington Weaklings.

Sometimes I take hope in hearing from people who like my stuff. I sometimes hear them say they prefer the writing to the cartoons. This, I know to be a lie, but what the heck. Some of the readers are real writers…some of whom appear in my two favorite websites, and Some are bank vice presidents, scholars, doctors (from Harvard, even…you know who you are …and your secret is safe with me), lawyers (I know, I know…who cares), Judges, accountants, one veteran whose job was loading and maintaining nuclear missile silos (hopefully, he won’t find it necessary to kill me for talking about him…like my brother is always saying he would have to kill me if he told me what he does/did…he couldn’t do it when we were kids fighting over a girlfriend or a bicycle…so I still ain’t scared), chemical engineers and …housewives. And since I think you might find it interesting to learn about the folks who like my cartoons, I’ll tell you about one of those housewives now.

The name of this housewife (which is altered here as she may feel the need to kill me, too….), is …uh…Mabel…just like Mom, which name Mom hated. Housewives are, of course, supposed to be sort of dumb. At least that is what liberal/socialist/murderers are always saying about housewives. Actually, the only people I’ve ever heard denigrate housewives were liberals. And if those inveterate cowards had ever accused my Mom of being dumb (code word; “Cookie-baker”) …there would be less liberals alive today. Mom was tough.

But back…to Mabel. She went to college, but I don’t remember whether she finished (we were so busy laughing about my cartoons and making fun of dumb liberals, I’ve forgotten), but I think she was in a graduate program (from which pinnacle she tutored her future hubby, a crony of mine, who became one of those aforementioned chemical engineers) when the following happened: She had been assigned to solve some thorny math theorem or weird super quadratic equation that no one had solved before, including her professor. She worked on it for a couple days and finally solved it…in her dreams. I’m not kidding. She did it in her sleep.

Her professor couldn’t believe she had solved it. He was more incredulous when she solved it a day or two earlier than she had been allowed. He tore his hair, lost his mind and rent his elbow-patched tweed jacket when he learned she had solved it in her sleep. Dreaming about it.

Put that in your bubble pipes and smoke it, you limp-wristed, pseudo-intellectuals. I just bet none of you have any readers who like your silly, cliché-riddled rants against common sense and also solve nettlesome math equations …literally …in their dreams. Yeah…I think all those “swirlies” you got from the Varsity guys in your gym class did brain damage, which causes you to believe you are much smarter than you are. You bunch of de facto dummies.


Steve Bowers
Steve Bowers grew up on a farm in Indiana, attended Indiana University and went into the construction business. While working on a construction project at a law school he was appalled at how lawyers could screw stuff up on a simple building project. Thinking he could do better, Steve went to law school. He’s pretty naive.