Remember when the MSM went crazy over [and likely exaggerated] George H.W.'s supposed unfamiliarity with a supermarket scanner? Pres. Obama has now had his supermarket-scanner moment, claiming he doesn't know how to operate an iPod, among other popular electronic devices. Do you think the MSM will pick on this in the same way to paint a portrait of an out-of-touch president?
Addressing the graduating class at Hampton University today, PBO said:
With iPods and iPads and Xboxes and PlayStations, -- none of which I know how to work -- information becomes a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment, rather than a tool of empowerment, rather than the means of emancipation.
Let's cut PBO slack on the iPad: it's only been out a month. As for the Xbox and PlayStation, well, we can't criticize him for not being a gamer. But the iPod? Really? The president doesn't know how to work one? The little gizmo has been around for 10 years, is virtually ubiquitous, and let's face it, is intuitive enough for young kids to operate.
Frankly, I find it hard to believe the president. A hip guy like Obama, who fought to keep his Blackberry at the beginning of his presidency, can't work an iPod? It's not as if he's been in the presidential bubble since the iPod came out. Back in 2001 when the iPod first hit the market, Obama was a cool young state senator back in Chicago. How did he listen to his music while riding that bike back in the precinct?
So why would PBO have professed ignorance of the gadget? And again, will the MSM make mention of his unfamiliarity with this staple of American life?
Note: hat tip to the National Journal not for the story, but for the notion of politicians having a "supermarket-scanner moment."
UPDATE: A number of readers have pointed out that Pres. Obama has spoken of his iPod playlist, and one reader sent along the photo here of PBO sporting an iPod. So how will the White House respond on this? Was PBO misquoted, did he misspeak, was he joking? America wants to know!