If it wasn't for Obama's empty rhetoric about "hope" and "change" and its sway over sycophants in Europe (as in the U.S.), or his seeming embrace of all things Muslim, America would already be the world's laughingstock. So far, only our nation's rivals are laughing. But the line is forming up behind them as we speak.
Maybe you're reading this and thinking that I'm too partisan and being too rough on this guy. Well, don't take it from me. Take it from Camille Paglia posting at Salon.com. She suggests that Obama has "what appears to be a total vacuum where a chief of protocol should be. There has been one needless gaffe after another -- from the president's tacky appearance on a late-night comedy show to the kitsch gifts given to the British prime minister, followed by a sweater-clad first lady's over-familiarity with the queen and culminating with the jaw-dropping spectacle of a president of the United States bowing to the king of Saudi Arabia."
America elected a dope. A guy who has no idea how to conduct himself in office and, worse yet, hasn't thought to hire someone to help him through this stuff.
Either that's true or Obama is intentionally trying to undermine America's position in the world. I prefer to give him the benefit of the doubt and believe that he's just that ignorant.
A side note from Paglia. She wonders "why was protest about the latter indignity [bowing to King Abdullah] confined to conservatives?" Surely, that's rhetorical. "The silence of the major media was a disgrace." On that point Camille, we're agreed. But I, for one, am not surprised.
4/8/09 Update: For another similar viewpoint, check out Ralph Peters' piece at the New York Post.