gossip op-ed columnist MoDo, nicknamed “The Cobra” by President Bush because she “lives near towns where mice and rats abound,” has struck at President Obama in a way can only help characterize him as…Carteresque. In “The Ungrateful President” she tries to draw parallels between Obama and Paul Newman, but all I could think was all the complaining from Washington insiders I saw in that PBS Carter documentary I watched a few weeks back. To wit:
“You can make the case,” Weinstein said of Barack Obama, “that he’s the Paul Newman of American presidents.”
I interviewed Paul Newman. I knew Paul Newman. Paul Newman was an acquaintance of mine. Mr. President, except for the eyes, you are sort of like Paul Newman.
The star scorned the hoops he was expected to jump through in his profession and did not like feeling beholden. He said he dealt with fame by developing “selective insensitivities.”
“With film critics and fans, you have to be selectively insensitive to their insensitivities,” he told me. “If people start treating you like a piece of meat or a long-lost friend or feel they can become cuddly for the price of a $5 movie ticket, then you shut them out.”
Stories abound of big donors who stopped giving as much or working as hard because Obama never reached out, either with a Clinton-esque warm bath of attention or Romney-esque weekend love fests and Israeli-style jaunts; of celebrities who gave concerts for his campaigns and never received thank-you notes or even his full attention during the performance; of public servants upset because they knocked themselves out at the president’s request and never got a pat on the back; of V.I.P.’s disappointed to get pictures of themselves with the president with the customary signature withheld; of politicians disaffected by the president’s penchant for not letting members of Congress or local pols stand on stage with him when he’s speaking in their state (they often watch from the audience and sometimes have to lobby just to get a shout-out); of power brokers, local and national, who felt that the president insulted them by never seeking their advice or asking them to come to the White House or ride along in the limo for a schmooze.
Care and feeding has been outsourced to Joe Biden, who loves it, but it doesn’t build the same kind of loyalty as when the president does it.
Delicious, no? Hate the MoDo, love The Cobra, I guess. The whole thing is worth the read, for once, and there’s a lot more “there” there.
This is an open thread.