Monday, March 09, 2009

Embarrassing and Rude

I watched Glenn Beck today as he discussed the enormous gaffes and insults the Obama's made toward our greatest ally, Great Britain, in how they treated the Prime Minister and his wife while they were here.

I had read the stories from London, but I heard Beck had said that our media was pretty much ignoring it, so I came home and googled it in the news and found, astonishingly, that he was right. Imagine if this had been a Republican? Oh dear Lord, it would have been all we would have heard about.

The New York Post managed to sum it up:

London newspapers are howling over a string of alleged snubs by Obama to British Prime Minister Gordon Brown during his visit to Washington last week — including a squabble over presidential gift-giving.

"President Obama has been rudeness personified towards Britain," sniffed The Daily Telegraph Friday. "His handling of the visit of the Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, to Washington was appalling."

The list of complaints is longer than the Magna Carta: Obama canceled a planned, podium-to-podium news conference with Brown (actually, none was ever scheduled) Excuse me, but isn't that even MORE insulting???

The London paper declared that the gifts to the Brown family were "about as exciting as a pair of socks."

After Brown presented Obama with a pen holder crafted from the timbers of the 19th century British warship HMS President (whose sister ship, HMS Resolute, provided the wood for the Oval Office's desk), Obama offered up ... 25 DVDs of American movie classics.

"Oh, give me strength," wrote one appalled Daily Telegraph staffer. "We do have television and DVD stores on this side of the Atlantic."

Oh, did I mention that our DVD's don't play in their players? Different configuration of some kind. The White House have people in charge of making sure things like this don't happen. Where were they? Helping out at the Treasury Dept where they are woefully shorthanded?


Equally insulting, decided the Times of London, was Michelle Obama's "solipsistic" and "inherently dismissive" gifts to the Browns' two little boys, Fraser and John.
The offending souvenirs? Toy models of
Marine One, the President's helicopter — gifts no doubt plucked from the White House gift shop at the last minute, The Times decided.
Brown's wife, Sarah, by contrast arrived with dresses for Sasha and Malia from the UK's trendy Top Shop (with matching necklaces) and a selection of books by British authors.
"A bit of thought had clearly gone into choosing them," crowed The Daily Mail. "Lovely."

Beck also reported that Obama gave back to England a bust of Winston Churchill that we received on 9-11 as a show of unity.

Good grief.

I may disagree with Obama on a great many things, but I never thought him as classless. Until now.