My theory about people who put down other people is that they’re deeply insecure. They think they can build themselves up by putting other people down. As I was saying to a friend in another context, when I walk into a room, I’m reasonably sure I’m one of the smartest people in the room. It’s sounds arrogant, but I don’t mean it to. We all have our gifts. I don’t walk into the room thinking I’m the most beautiful, or the best athlete, or the business maven extraordinaire. People like Obama, however, have a completely different attitude when they walk into a room. Rather than believing, as I do, that they’re one of the smartest ones, they have the terrible fear that they’re not one of the smartest ones. They compensate with arrogant, disdainful, insulting behavior.
Exhibit A: President Obama meeting a new House representative. (The following is a post I originally wrote for Mr. Conservative):
President Obama was sure that his complete lack of real world executive experience didn’t mean he was unprepared to become leader of the free world. He wasn’t going to cut any slack, though, for a new House representative who wanted the president’s input on creating jobs in the Congressman’s district. How else can one explain that, in response to the Congressman’s question, the President didn’t give a straight answer but, instead, implied that the Congressman didn’t know what he was talking about?
It all started at a closed-door meeting between President Obama and House Democrats. One of those Democrats was Rep. Dan Kildee (D. Mich.), who was sworn in for the first time in January. When Kildee introduced himself to the President, the President started off with a compliment: “Wow, you’re really classing up the place then.”
Things went downhill from there. Kildee asked the president a somewhat complicated question about the need to create job’s in Kildee’s economically battered district, which has been hit hard by the endless recession. Rather than answering the question, Obama put Kildee in his place by jokingly implying that Kildee, unlike the President, didn’t know what he was talking about:
I can tell you’re a freshman because you didn’t pay much attention to the State of the Union. I talked about that.
If you call platitudes, blame, and wishes “talking about” serious economic issues, the President is right – he did talk about that stuff at the State of the Union. At some point during the State of the Union, the President mentioned his “plan” to spend $1 billion dollars to create 15 manufacturing “innovation centers.” The President didn’t talk about any details, though, because there were none.
What the President didn’t know when he talked down to Kildee is that, just the day before, Kildee had met with the White House legislative affairs team that is actually responsible for trying to come up with a workable plan to support Obama’s wish. Moreover, if Obama had listened to Kildee’s question, rather than responding instantly with a defensive insult, he would have realized that Kildee wasn’t just asking about dream projects. Instead, he wanted specifics about reforms to broken cities, such as Flint, Michigan, which is in Kildee’s district.
Of course, the best advice the President could have given to Kildee about broken cities and states would have been that those cities and states, almost all of which have been under Democrat one-party rule for decades, should try electing some conservatives for a change. Thinking about that, it probably make sense that the president used insults, not facts, to respond to Kildee’s question.