Daniel W. Drezner

Bubble 1, Obama staffers 0

During the transition, Barack Obama voiced numerous concerns about being trapped in the Presidential "bubble," cut off from the rest of the real world. Oddly enough, this is also a concern of 30 Rock.  If this New York Times story by Clifford J. Levy and Ellen Barry is any indication, the bubble seems to have completely ...

During the transition, Barack Obama voiced numerous concerns about being trapped in the Presidential "bubble," cut off from the rest of the real world. Oddly enough, this is also a concern of 30 Rock

If this New York Times story by Clifford J. Levy and Ellen Barry is any indication, the bubble seems to have completely enveloped Obama’s White House staff

Crowds did not clamor for a glimpse of him. Headlines offered only glancing or flippant notice of his activities. Television programming was uninterrupted; devotees of the Russian Judge Judy had nothing to fear. Even many students and alumni of the Western-oriented business school where Mr. Obama gave the graduation address on Tuesday seemed merely respectful, but hardly enthralled….

Some Obama aides said they were struck by the low-key reception here, especially when compared with the outpouring on some of his other foreign trips. Even Michelle Obama, who typically enjoys admiring coverage in the local news media when she travels, has not had her every move chronicled here.

Seriously?  Seriously?!  The President of the United States visits a staunchly nationalist country that has significant conflicts with Washington, and the charm offensive didn’t take?  Well, blow me down!! 

When/if Obama visits China and India, his staffers might have some more rude awakenings in their future.  

 

During the transition, Barack Obama voiced numerous concerns about being trapped in the Presidential "bubble," cut off from the rest of the real world. Oddly enough, this is also a concern of 30 Rock

If this New York Times story by Clifford J. Levy and Ellen Barry is any indication, the bubble seems to have completely enveloped Obama’s White House staff

Crowds did not clamor for a glimpse of him. Headlines offered only glancing or flippant notice of his activities. Television programming was uninterrupted; devotees of the Russian Judge Judy had nothing to fear. Even many students and alumni of the Western-oriented business school where Mr. Obama gave the graduation address on Tuesday seemed merely respectful, but hardly enthralled….

Some Obama aides said they were struck by the low-key reception here, especially when compared with the outpouring on some of his other foreign trips. Even Michelle Obama, who typically enjoys admiring coverage in the local news media when she travels, has not had her every move chronicled here.

Seriously?  Seriously?!  The President of the United States visits a staunchly nationalist country that has significant conflicts with Washington, and the charm offensive didn’t take?  Well, blow me down!! 

When/if Obama visits China and India, his staffers might have some more rude awakenings in their future.  

 

Daniel W. Drezner is a professor of international politics at Tufts University’s Fletcher School. He blogged regularly for Foreign Policy from 2009 to 2014. Twitter: @dandrezner

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