Friday, February 17, 2012

President Obama: How could you let Rahm talk you into this?

Posted By on 02.17.12 at 10:00 AM

An oldie but a goodie
  • An oldie but a goodie
Having spent the better part of the last several weeks obsessing over almost every detail of Mayor Emanuel's incredibly bad idea to bring the G8/NATO summits to town, my main remaining question is this: President Obama, what were you thinking?

I mean, in all due respect, Mr President—WTF—why would you do this to your hometown, much less your reelection campaign?

Before I attempt to answer that question, allow me to summarize the article I wrote with Mick Dumke, for readers too distracted to read anything longer than a tweet....

The City Council gave Mayor Emanuel a blank check to spend on who he wants for how much he wants to pay for a three-day spectacle of no benefit to ordinary Chicagoans.

I hope that's not more than 140 characters, Twitter heads.

Here's a link to the article. Read it. Send it to your friends, especially the out-of-towners—just to let them know that you truly live in a land of lunatics.

Back to the president....

The summit promises to be one embarrassing boondoggle after another. Cronies lining up to feed from the trough. No-bid contracts, inside deals, etc and so forth.

In short, fodder for whichever Republican—speaking of lunatics—emerges as the GOP's presidential candidate.

And that's before we get to the summit itself, a potential clusterfuck of massive proportions with anarchists and nihilists turning the streets of Chicago into something resembling the bowling alley parking lot in The Big Lebowski.

Not that there's anything wrong with anarchists or nihilists, or The Big Lebowski.

Which reminds me: "Nihilists! Fuck me. I mean, say what you like about the tenets of National Socialism, Dude, at least it's an ethos."

Sorry. That was apropos to nothing, but I just love quoting The Big Lebowski.

So why would President Obama risk his reelection campaign by bringing the summits to his hometown?

Great question. To find an answer, Mick and I dutifully contacted the White House press staff. They responded with a canned quote that boils down to—Chicago's a wonderful city with a wonderful mayor in a wonderful country that we love very much.

Thanks for nothing, guys.

To dig deeper, I called my secret source in the Obama inner circle.

Bet you didn't know I had a secret source in the Obama inner circle.

Well, I do. His/her name is—whoops! Can't tell you his/her name cause then he/she wouldn't be a secret.

Hey, I didn't even go to journalism school and I know this stuff.

So let's just call him/her Pickles, as a tribute to Morey Amsterdam's wife in the Dick Van Dyke Show, which, I think we'll all agree, is one of the funniest sitcoms of all time.

I asked Pickles why President Obama would do something so risky as bring the summit to his hometown in an election year.

And Pickles said—probably 'cause he thinks Rahm's the only one he can trust to get the job done.

To which I said—OK, if you say so.

As I recall, President Obama wasn't too happy with Emanuel's performance as White House chief of staff—just about kicked him back to Chicago.

In fact, my favorite theory is that bringing the summits to Chicago—along with basically endorsing Rahm for mayor—was part of the package President Obama put together to convince Emanuel to get out of the White House.

Well, it's a theory anyway—offered up by one of my favorite alderman.

At the risk of sounding hopelessly naive, I suspect it wasn't that insidious of a plot. No, my hunch is that the summits are coming here 'cause Mayor Emanuel hounded President Obama day and night—please, Mr. President, please, let me host the summits. Until the president finally said—OK, Mayor Noodge, anything to shut you up.

Whatever the reason, President Obama’s stuck with this decision—just like you, me, and everybody else on the homefront.

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