It was a sad moment for me as I discovered we were culturally moving from a celebration of the late 80s. 1989 seemed to be the perfect year-Christmas Vacation came out, the Berlin Wall fell and Francis Fukuyama’s famous (or infamous) article “The End of History” appeared. But the early 90s weren’t so bad. H.W. Bush was still President, an American aristocrat if there ever was one. Politics was still a good ‘ol boys game. The Cold War was over and we whipped Saddam without a hitch. Frasier began to air. Seinfeld still had a lot of life left in it (its 1989 debut was unremarkable). The Internet was conceived, like the Gulf War and Ross Perot-a sign of the instability to come. But for now, the world was still an American one, where we could live in our illusions. If only those times were back again…
Danish TV Host Mocks Obama for His Rhetoric
Thomas Buch-Andersen, host of the Danish TV show Detektor, mocked President Obama’s political rhetoric in a recent episode. “Obama used a metaphor from boxing to explain Denmark’s role in the world,” says Buch-Andersen, introducing the segment.
He then roles the tape. “That’s fairly typical of the way that Danes have punched above their weight in international affairs,” President Obama says at a press availability in the Oval Office with Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt of Denmark.
“It’s nice to be praised,” Buch-Andersen remarks. “We punch harder than our weight class would suggest. But how much should we read into his words? According to Obama, are we doing any better than, say, the Norwegians?”
The TV host again turns to the tape, this time showing President Obama in the Oval Office with Norwegian prime minister Jens Stoltenberg. “I’ve said this before, but I want to repeat: Norway punches above its weight,” Obama says.
Back to Buch-Andersen. “Hmm. So Norway packs a punch too. But what about the Netherlands? Here, their head of government, Mark Rutte, visits Obama.”
The tape roles yet again. “We have no stronger ally than the Netherlands,” says Obama. “They consistently punch above their weight.”
The TV host continues, pointing to the similar rhetoric Obama used when Ireland’s head of state came to town, and then the Philippines.
Buch-Andersen wonders aloud, “Maybe the copy key got stuck on the presidential speechwriter’s keyboard.”