In ye olde Open-mouth-insert-foot department:
BlackBerry buff President Obama declared war on technology yesterday --- singling out Apple's super-popular iPods and iPads for criticism.
Obama, whose election was partially credited to his skillful usage of modern media, from smartphones to Twitter to Facebook to Flickr, told college graduates yesterday that high-tech gizmos and apps are straining the American democracy.
"With iPods, iPads, 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," Obama said at the commencement ceremonies at Virginia's Hampton University.
Lobbing more grenades than the popular Call of Duty videogame at targets such as Apple, Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony, the Commander-in-Chief described their most popular offerings as distractions which have placed unnecessary pressure on the country.
Obama also lamented the spread of social media and blogs through which "some of the craziest claims can quickly claim traction."
"All of this is not only putting new pressures on you," said the President, "it is putting new pressures on our country and on our democracy. Now, we can't stop those changes, but we can adapt to them. And education is what can allow us to do so. It can fortify you, as it did earlier generations, to meet the tests of your own time."
Obama, who, at one point had rap star Chris "Ludacris" Bridges on his own iPod, and who still has his own offficial White House-provided profile on Facebook, warned that the nation and the world now stand at a moment of "breathtaking change." And yet, in a speech before members of a generation that never even knew life without computers, Obama came close to declaring technology --- and the information that it spawns --- the enemy.
"With so many voices clamoring for attention on blogs, cable, talk radio, etc., it can be difficult at times to sift through it all; to know what to believe; to figure out who's telling the truth and who's not," Obama said. "Let's face it: even some of the craziest claims can quickly gain traction. I've had some experience with that myself. Fortunately, you'll be well positioned to navigate this terrain."
Mr. President, at the risk of sticking me neck out at best, and likely getting me Wizardly butt kicked at worst for the mere utterance of these words, I should like to remind you that you have at your disposal some of the most powerful technology in the cosmos, a good majority of it having been made possible in part through the efforts of Microsoft, Sony, Apple, BlackBerry, Nintendo and untold others. Moreover, our country is at war against an enemy who would use these same technologies to bring not just America, but the whole of Western civilization as we know it, to its knees! Frankly, sir, I find your techno-rant to be utterly foolish. Our dear NYPD are doing their best to keep us safe using perhaps the finest technology available to them, and yet you would refer to it as the enemy? I would seriously consider getting me priorities straight, were I you, sir!
The point, kids, is that technology, that which would not save us, as George Lucas said of old, is ironically essential for the overall survival and endurance of future generations. Any attempt to suggest otherwise would simply have the effect of lying through one's teeth. And that's the name of THAT tune.
As ever, America, I wouldst know your thoughts. Ye knowst the means to get to me: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.