November 27, 2020
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A Lesson From Potus

A Lesson From Potus
outlookindia.com
1970-01-01T05:30:00+0530

The man whom many already proclaim as the Future Prime Minister of India refuses to take any questions.

The man who once famously said that he could be prime minister at 25 is also refusing to take questions — at least anymore.

But the man who is the President of the United States (POTUS) seems to be more than willing to take all sorts of questions.

And subject himself to even a fake talk show on internet ('cringe-comedy', as they call it) to make a pitch for young people to sign up for Obamacare.

While it has now become routine for American presidents and presidential candidtates to goof off at White House Correspondents’ Dinner, and not consider it infra dig to appear on MTV, ESPN or late night shows such as Saturday Night Live, The Tonight Show, The Daily Show, Late Show et al, Barack Obama's appearance on comedian Zach Galifianakis' Between Two Ferns—perhaps best known for an interview that ended with singer Justin Bieber getting spanked— is certainly a lesson for our elusive politicos.

After a shutdown last year, and facing a gridlock now, unable to get major legislation through a divided Congress, Obama seems to have decided to use any available platform to sell his policy measures, and this appearance seems to have been aimed at encouraging young people to sign up for health insurance under his healthcare reform law. "I think it's fair to say that I wouldn't be with you here today if I didn't have something to plug."

Dan Pfeiffer, Obama's senior adviser, was quoted as saying that the appearance is part of the president's constantly evolving communications strategy: “We have to find ways to break through. This is essentially an extension of the code we have been trying to crack for seven years now.”

The interview of course had its moments of typical Galifianakis goofiness, and he managed to sneak in a dig at the NSA spying controversy as well, saying that he stays off the grid because “I don’t want anybody looking at my texts.

Obama too managed to get a jibe or two in between. Running for president a third time, he said, would be like making a third Hangover movie -- which Galifianakis did in 2013. "Didn't really work out very well, did it?" Obama said. Obama also brought in Galifianakis's handsome Hangover co-star Bradley Cooper to rub it in: “He kind of carried that movie, didn’t he?”

On being asked, “What’s it like to be the last black president,” Obama was quick on the feet and responded with a mock-sharp, “Seriously? What’s it like for this to be that last time you ever talk to a president?”

The short interview covered a wide range of questions such as: Would Obama build his Presidential library in Hawaii "or your home country of Kenya”?  “I read somewhere you would be sending Hulk Hogan to Syria – or is that more of a job for Tonya Harding?”  Had former NBA great Dennis Rodman had been dispatched to "North Ikea"? Is it going to be hard in two years when you're no longer president and people stop letting you win at basketball?

Perhaps our viewers too can wait for a day when they could witness easy banter such as:

"You said if you had a son you would not let him play football. What makes you think he would want to play football? What if he was nerd like you?

"Do you think a woman like Michelle would marry a nerd? Why don't you ask her if she thinks I'm a nerd."

"Could I?"

"No. I'm not going to let her near you."

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