By Victoria Horsford
In a way, last week was the best and worst of times for President Barack Obama. After his strange debate performance with the flip-flop, mendacious Governor Mitt Romney last Thursday, POTUS has been under scrutiny by his supporters, journalists, the GOP and Romney surrogates alike. Most Americans and mainstream media, were disappointed with the absence of any Obama debate muscle and vigor and his reticence in articulating his numerous domestic and international accomplishments and with his inability to attack Romney with facts at his disposal. Obama’s week ended with salutary news about unemployment heading south below 8%.
The current New Yorker Magazine cover shows a Romney image at the debate and an empty chair where President Obama’s image should have been. NY Times writer Maureen Dowd’s made the cover of the Sunday Review section with her essay “Two Presidents, Smoking and Scheming” about an imaginary post- debate dialogue between President Obama and Jed Bartlet, the personable, handsome, fiercely intelligent fictional character who played the US president in the TV series “West Wing.” Bartlet’s advice, to President Obama for future debates with Romney, is to punctuate most of your remarks with “You’re lying, Governor.” In another part of the dialogue Bartlet asks Obama if his staff told him that the debate was on TV. Dowd references Obama’s proclivity towards condescension, which I remember when he debated Hillary. I wonder if this condescension is what his handlers perceive as a part of his angry Black men poster, which they fear. And $1 million Obama donor, HBO star Bill Maher, attributed prexy’s debate lethargy to some pre-debate anniversary sex.
John Sununu, Romney attack dog, arguably this season’s corollary to Palin’s 2008 pit bull, said after the debate that President’s performance showed that he is “lazy and detached.” His comments also referenced the president as a pizza delivery boy. Nice talk for a man with Palestinian roots. GOP is back to race coding words. On Friday, 10/5 the new US Department of Labor jobs report for September 2012 is published , showing unemployment down to 7.8%, which is good news for the US president under siege after his first debate. . How does the GOP react.? Well, octogenarian or is it nonagenarian Jack Welch, retired General Electric Chairman/CEO tweeted the Obama cooked the books. This is a weird comment for a businessman best remembered as much for his acumen as for his exceptional book cooking skills at GE, which confounded his successors today, 11 years after his departure.
Back to the President and his debate performance for a moment. He does have a day job which is taxing and challenging, which does not allow him much time to prep for a debate. The current New Yorker also publishes a sympathetic piece, Obama’s Old Friends React to the Debate” by David Remnick.. There could have been other mitigating factors like the video that the GOP leaked to news organizations about Obama “talking black.” The video shows an animated US Senator Obama addressing Black Baptist church congregants talking about Katrina devastation and the ineffective government response. I liked the Obama talking black persona, fiery and emphatic.
The presidential debate calendar: October 16, which will focus on domestic and foreign policy, moderated by CNN’s Candy Crowley and on October 22 which will focus on foreign policy moderated by Bob Schieffer, CBS-TV. The Vice Presidents Debate is on tonight, October 11.
OCTOBER 15: Entertainment impresarios Voza Rivers and Jamal Joseph will host the 15th Anniversary concert celebration for their IMPACT REPERTORY THEATRE, at First Corinthian Baptist Church, located Seventh Avenue at 116 Street, Harlem. Founded by Rivers and Joseph, the Impact Repertory Group provides a “safe space for creative self expression for Harlem youngsters. Ticket price points are $50 to $1500. Triple threat music phenom, Nile Rodgers will be honored. RSVP at 212.926.2550.
OCTOBER 19: A Ruth Clark birthday roast with dinner at dancing at Melba’s 125 bistro, located at the Adam Clayton Powell State Office Building at 163 West 125 Street, Harlem. A New York business icon, Ruth Clark, founded CUP, Clark Unlimited Personnel, and the Support Network, a nonprofit women’s group, best known for the swells who attended and who were honored at its benefit fundraisers at he Puck Building on New Year’s Eve and its summer Yacht Parties. The Roast Dinner Dance is $50. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org
OCTOBER 20: The Harlem Arts Salon hosts its second autumn event, a book party for Ishmael Reed’s GOING TOO FAR and an Ishmael Reed /Jill Nelson talk, at Margaret and Quincy Troupe’s apartment at 1925 Seventh Avenue, 7L, Harlem from 7-9 pm. Admission is $30 for the book, food and wine. For reservations, call 212.749.7771.
OCTOBER 29: The Studio Museum in Harlem and its Board of Directors will host in annual fundraiser GALA 2012, celebrating Agnes Gund and presenting the Joyce Alexander Wein Artist Prize. The black tie Dinner Dance gala will be held at the Museum of American Finance, located at 48 Wall Street and at the Cipriani Wall Street located at 55 Wall Street, Manhattan. Gala Co-Chairs are Attorney Kathryn Chenault, Joyce Haupt and Carol Sutton Lewis. Gala Vice-Chairs are Jacqueline Bradley, Dr. Amelia Ogulesi, and Teri Trotter. Individual tickets are $1000- $ 2,500. Tables, donor, supporter, patron and benefactor are priced from $10,00 to $50,000. Call SMH at 212.864.4500 for reservations. Founded in 1968, the SMH is the national jewel in the crown of fine arts by African Americans and people of African descent.
A management consultant, Victoria Horsford is also a journalist and pop culture historian who is reachable at email@example.com