The Second Inauguration of President Barack Obama marked the beginning of a brave new American era of bipartisan governance and well-reasoned political discourse. No it didn’t. But it was a hell of a party, a grand and justifiably pompous power-pageant which reached an emotional climax when the stirring voice of the world’s most powerful human being echoed throughout the National Mall. But enough about Beyoncé. Here are some key moments frozen in time from a cold day in Washington: READ FULL STORY
Tag: Barack Obama (31-40 of 192)
'Kennedy Center Honors': Watch the Buddy Guy tribute that stole the show, President Obama rock out for Led Zeppelin -- VIDEO
The 35th Annual Kennedy Center Honors aired last night (read Ken Tucker’s review here), and it was another ceremony filled with memorable moments. Here are a few of the highlights that have already surfaced on YouTube:
Beth Hart’s performance of “I’d Rather Go Blind” with Jeff Beck for honoree Buddy Guy moved the crowd in the theater (including Barack and Michelle Obama, watch them at 2:32 in the clip below) and at home (I know I went to iTunes and purchased that song off of her album with Joe Bonamassa, Don’t Explain). READ FULL STORY
Need more proof that Barack Obama is America’s Cool Dad? Look no further than this photograph, which pictures the Commander-in-Chief getting caught in an imaginary web tossed by a pint-sized Spider-Man — a.k.a. a White House staffer’s son. There’s a lot of good stuff in Time‘s Person of the Year package about Obama, but this photo is probably the piece that will get shared the most — it’s already been liked 13,000 times on Facebook and tweeted nearly 3,000 times. You win again, Spider-Man!
Barack Obama has been named Time Magazine’s “Person of the Year” for a second time, following his initial selection in 2008. In a blog post, Time managing editor Richard Stengel explains that Obama was chosen because he is a cultural figure as well as a political one: “There has been much talk of the coalition of the ascendant — young people, minorities, Hispanics, college-educated women — and in winning re-election, Obama showed that these fast-growing groups are not only the future but also the present,” he writes. “If his win in 2008 was extraordinary, then 2012 is confirmation that demographic change is here to stay.”
The president beat out 15-year-old Pakistani activist Malala Youfsafzai, Apple CEO Tim Cook, Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi, and Italian CERN physicist Fabiola Gianotti for the annual honor. Visit Time‘s site for a long interview with Obama, which covers everything from his love for Lincoln to his dream of “just moving to Hawaii and opening up a t-shirt shack on the North Shore.” (And, of course, a bunch of more serious stuff.)
Get it? It’s a commentary on… something. And an indication that 25 years later, outrage manufacturer Glenn Beck is still feeling salty about Andres Serrano’s “Piss Christ.” Also: he’s very well-hydrated. Update: Beck’s artwork has been removed from eBay, where he was attempting to auction it off for $25,000; the website said in a letter that it does not allow the sale of bodily waste or references to bodily fluids in listings.
Okay, some background: On Tuesday, Beck got wind of a painting hanging in a community college’s art gallery that depicts President Obama crucified on the presidential seal, wearing a suit, a tie, and a crown of thorns. Though artist Michael D’Antuono originally made the image — called “Truth” — years ago, it hasn’t been displayed until now due to “public outrage,” in Fox News’s words.
On his radio program, Beck said that he actually believes D’Antuono has the right to make and exhibit “Truth,” even though he doesn’t see anything Jesus-like in Obama: “I think it’s offensive,” Beck explained, not at all self-righteously. “I don’t think it’s close to reality, but whatever floats your boat… That document [the Constitution's First Amendment] says I can’t stop him, and the spirit of that document is that I shouldn’t try.”
So much has changed since we last heard from “Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations,” a decade ago.
Barack Obama was a state legislator. Sarah Palin was mayor of Wasilla. Steve Jobs had just introduced a portable music player called the iPod.
And digital books were a relic from the dot-com bubble.
The 18th edition of the venerable reference work has just been released, the first for the electronic age and a chance to take in some of the new faces, events and catchphrases of the past 10 years. General editor Geoffrey O’Brien says he has expanded upon the trend set by his predecessor, Justin Kaplan, of incorporating popular culture into an anthology once known for classical citations. Shakespeare and the Bible still reign, but room also has been made for Madonna and Michael Moore, Justin Timberlake and Jon Stewart.
“I also added a great many quotes that originated in other languages. So I would say the new edition has a more international scope,” says O’Brien, an author and critic and editor in chief of the Library of America, which publishes hardcover volumes of canonical American authors. READ FULL STORY
TMZ calls the 1,344-word pro-Romney missive Stacey Dash sent them earlier this week a “rant,” which isn’t totally fair. The letter is coherent, if rambling — and while Dash’s reasoning sometimes seems convoluted, she’s expressing thoughts that might be familiar to anyone who’s ever felt their political views shifting with age.
The actress apparently wrote most of her letter on Tuesday, 10 hours before the election’s results were revealed. She starts out by disclosing that she voted for Barack Obama in 2008:
I hadn’t known anything about him until he earned the Democratic nomination. He’s brilliant, understated, ethical, a great husband and father. President Obama will always be remembered as one of the greatest leaders this United States of America has ever known.
And the moderate Republican is still a fan of the president, praising him for achievements like “repairing the infrastructure of our highways, bridges and train rails” and the Claims Resettlement Act of 2010. The truth is, Dash doesn’t hate Obama — she just likes Romney better. “My vote for Romney isn’t a vote against Obama,” she writes, bolding her words for emphasis. “That’s not how full participants in the democratic process operate. We vote for candidates and we vote for issues.” READ FULL STORY
Is Nate Silver a witch? All signs point to “yes” — though he’s traded bubbling cauldrons and broomsticks for statistical models and pure reason.
After correctly predicting another presidential election with his patented FiveThirtyEight model, Silver is enjoying the sweet, sweet taste of mathematically ensured victory — which is all the richer for coming after high-profile detractors sniffed that Silver couldn’t possibly be as accurate as he was in ’08. On The Daily Show last night, Jon Stewart tried to encourage Silver to gloat, maybe by yelling something along these lines: “I AM NATE SILVER, LORD AND GOD OF THE ALGORITHM!” Since Silver abides by the International Statute of Wizarding Secrecy, he declined — though if you squint, you can tell he’s totally nursing a butterbeer hangover.
See Silver and Stewart discuss magic, arithmetic, and one of The Daily Show‘s favorite subjects (utter bulls—) below.
Obama may have accepted his reelection with dignity and poise, but Key & Peele know what he was really thinking: “I’m gettin’ some booty tonight!”
Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele, the stars of Comedy Central’s Key & Peele, brought their inventive sketch comedy to NYU’s Skirball Center for the Performing Arts last night as part of the New York Comedy Festival, and the first item on their agenda was the President’s victory. Taking the stage to a standing ovation, the comedians opened the night with their popular skit featuring President Obama and his anger translator, Luther. Peele’s Obama impression was flawless, as usual — it’s perhaps the best in the business — and Key spewed righteous bile as Luther, the boorish voice of the commander-in-chief’s id. As the president reflected tactfully on his campaign, Luther’s rhetoric was more to the point: “Thank you, Joe Biden, for not putting your foot in your mouth for two weeks!” and “Black people, we came out to two elections in a row!” And at the first mention of Mitt Romney, Luther literally bounded across the stage, gloating like Terrell Owens in the end zone. Much of the material came from a video released early Wednesday, but hey, it’s still a kick to see a President of the United States doing MC Hammer’s “U Can’t Touch This” dance. READ FULL STORY
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