If you’re a fan of Twitter, you might have found yourself wondering about the provenance of a sudden blizzard of “Obama eats dogs” jokes. The fun began when the Obama 2012 campaign, which seems to be staggering through a garden full of rakes these days, decided to attack Mitt Romney through his dog.
The Romneys, you see, had an Irish setter named Seamus. They used to drive on vacations with Seamus strapped to the roof of the car in a dog carrier.
I know you’re waiting for more, but that’s it. That’s what led ABC News to describe the rooftop adventures of Seamus as “a regular barb in Romney’s side” which is “routinely used by his critics to paint him as uncaring.” Diane Sawyer did her best to help this dopey meme off the ground by hammering the Romneys about it during an interview.
Never mind Obama’s titanic deficits, grinding unemployment, collapsing economy, abuses of power, corruption scandals, or shipment of guns to Mexican drug lords! The man who blew gas prices into orbit just gave a Rose Garden speech blaming oil speculators for his failure, and even members of his own Administration were forced to admit it’s a windy distraction with no demonstrable basis in reality. But none of that matters, because Mitt Romney’s dog got sick once in 1983! (Ann Romney explained to Sawyer that it happened because he ate turkey off the counter, and got diarrhea.)
As if this desperate distraction wasn’t already pathetic enough, top Obama advisor David Axelrod sent out a photo of President Obama riding around in his limousine with his dog Bo, entitled “How loving owners transport their dogs.” I don’t know why he didn’t use a photo of the time Obama sent his dog on a separate jet to hook up with the Royal Family on one of their luxury vacations.
So Obama’s hatchet men started the Dog Wars, but by God, Jim Treacher of the Daily Caller finished them. He dug up a little quote from Obama’s best-selling autobiography, Dreams From My Father:
“With Lolo, I learned how to eat small green chill peppers raw with dinner (plenty of rice), and, away from the dinner table, I was introduced to dog meat (tough), snake meat (tougher), and roasted grasshopper (crunchy). Like many Indonesians, Lolo followed a brand of Islam that could make room for the remnants of more ancient animist and Hindu faiths. He explained that a man took on the powers of whatever he ate: One day soon, he promised, he would bring home a piece of tiger meat for us to share.”
And that’s how David Axelrod helped to create the “Obama Eats Dogs” sensation, reducing his President to a laughing stock in one of the funniest memes ever to rock the Internet. Treacher got the ball rolling:
I know the Secret Service has a lot to deal with right now, but are they protecting Bo? From Obama, I mean.
Obama would never put a dog on top of a car. Dries out the meat.
Q: What does Obama do when his dog gets stuck? A: Grabs a toothpick.
I tried my hand at a little meme fusion, since the other big Obama distraction of the day involved going after rocker and legendary bow-hunter Ted Nugent for some colorful comments he made at an NRA convention:
So, to sum up today’s canine news: Romney rides with a dog on the roof of his car, Ted Nugent hunts with one, Obama eats them.
But it was too much fun to stop with just one Tweet:
Luckily for Team Obama, the Romneys didn’t have a female dog who stayed home to raise her puppies.
Romney: dog atop car. Obama: dog under glass.
Romney: pooch on the car. Obama: pooch ala carte.
Zoinks, Velma, I haven’t seen Scooby since we took that tour of the White House and… OH GOD NO
Eric Fehrnstrom – the Romney campaign aide who launched the unfortunate, but equally funny, “Etch-a-Sketch” meme, chipped in by re-posting Axelrod’s picture of Obama and Bo in the limousine, and remarking: “In hindsight, a chilling photo.”
There’s plenty more at Twitchy.com. Twitter now has a lively hash tag for #ObamaDogRecipes.
Adding to the fun is the constipated reaction of liberal blogs and the Obama campaign team. An Obama campaign drone responded to Ferhnstrom’s merry Tweet by sobbing, “What’s the next attack Eric Ferhnstrom and the RNC will surface on a 6-10 year old?” It took a while for readers to figure out he was whining about Obama’s age when he consumed dog meat, not the age of the dog Obama ate.
And Talking Points Memo editor Josh Marshall, after pretending he somehow failed to notice the tide of mockery sweeping over the White House for hours, said via Twitter: “Had only just noticed the new rightwing Obama is weirdo Muslim dog eater meme.” The only person obsessing over Muslim weirdness at the moment is Josh Marshall. He’s probably trying to signal some kind of defensive formation for the Left, but there probably won’t be many takers, since it amounts to insisting that accurate quotes from Obama’s autobiography constitute bigotry.
There’s a real, and devastating, point to be made in all this mockery: Team Obama really did think they could hurt Romney by going after his dog. This wasn’t a one-off comment made in a single interview by an obscure operative. It was a real, orchestrated effort, and quite a few people in Obama’s campaign staff were very serious about pushing it. According to Byron York at the Washington Examiner, they were excited by focus group polling that showed it “tanks Mitt Romney’s approval rating.”
And they would have gotten away with it, too, if the biased mainstream media were left alone to cook the narrative Team Obama was feeding them. That same media suddenly finds itself compelled to whimper that talking about candidate’s dogs is a “distraction from the real issues”… and another Obama campaign strategy blows up in his face.
Update: The “Morning Joe” crew on MSNBC laughs their way through a fine Irish wake (Irish setter wake?) for Team Obama’s latest failed re-election strategy: