Barack Obama in Crisis: Zzzz

President Bush`s harshest critics
often described his look during moments of crisis as

"deer in the
After two years of

Hope and Change,
America has grown accustomed to
President Obama`s crisis face: eyes glazed over.

At his first press conference in
308 days, Obama fielded questions about the Gulf oil

, the war in

and the mounting outrage over
Pennsylvania Democratic Rep. Joe Sestak`s

job-trading allegations with
a sluggishness
bordering on geriatric. His aplomb was a bomb.

The commander-in-chief`s mumbling,
diffident tone contradicted the

of urgency that drifted across the

screen and rolled languidly off his

"I am angry and
he heaved. Rather unconvincingly. He
was "singularly
he asserted. Rather distractedly. The
president did manage to work up enough energy to condemn
BP and then turned to a moment of obligatory
"I`m confident
that people are going to look back and say that this
administration was on top of what was an unprecedented
by the President on the Gulf Oil Spill,
May 27,

"on top" was
he? Well, not enough to take the time on Thursday
morning before his much-hyped appearance to nail down
the details of how and why his Interior Department Chief
of the Minerals Management Service

Liz Birnbaum was no longer in office.

"You`re assuming
it was a firing,"
Obama told reporters.
"I don`t yet know the circumstances." He explained that he was
preoccupied with other matters and couldn`t get ahold of
Interior Secretary

Ken Salazar.

When pressed to elaborate, he
heaved again: "I
don`t know."

Then, addressing all the ignorant
Americans who have failed to appreciate his rescue
efforts, Obama mustered up a semblance of indignation:
"Those who think
we were either slow in our response or lacked urgency
don`t know the facts. This has been our highest priority
since this crisis occurred."

And this is the Obama definition of
accountability: blaming everyone else for lacking the

Ivy League-honed comprehension skills
to see the
greatness of his fortitude and foresight.

How high of a priority did his
administration really make the post-spill cleanup? After
droning on haltingly about the federal failure to form
Obama admitted with
a shrug: "There
was a lag of several weeks that shouldn`t have

With more self-pity than
compassion, Obama wrapped up the rare press conference
with a disjointed, off-script ramble:

"But look, we`ve gone through a difficult year and a half. This is just
one more bit of difficulty. And this is going to be
hard, not just right now; it`s going to be hard for
months to come. …

"You know, when I woke up this morning, and I`m shaving, and Malia
knocks on my bathroom door, and she peeks in her head,
and she says, `Did you plug the hole yet, Daddy?`—(soft
laughter)—because I think everybody understands that,
you know, when we are

fouling the Earth
like this,

it has concrete implications not just for this
generation but

for future

"And in case anybody wonders—in any of your reporting, in case you`re
wondering who`s responsible, I take responsibility. It
is my job to make sure that everything is done to shut
this down.

"That doesn`t mean it`s going to be easy. It doesn`t mean it`s going to
happen right away or the way I`d like it to happen. It
doesn`t mean that we`re not going to make mistakes. But
there shouldn`t be any confusion here. The federal
government is fully engaged, and I`m fully engaged, all

Not waiting for an answer (or for
any more nettlesome questions), he hurried off for a
quick photo-op pit stop in the Gulf on Friday before
jetting to

to keep a high-priority promise to be back
in his hometown for Memorial Day weekend.

The sterile performance was eerily
reminiscent of his national security announcement last
December from

, when he appeared before the American people
in tie-less informal island wear to read a bloodless,
perfunctory statement about the

Christmas Day bomber
. Eyes down on his notes the
whole time, he described the failed attack with the
weariness of a small-town sheriff`s deputy, rather than
as the leader of the free world. Then it was back to the
beach. This is Obama in crisis: disengaged, put upon and

to get back to Me Time.

Rough men stand ready to keep and
defend our well-being and safety. Someone wake President
Obama when it`s over.



Michelle Malkin

is the author of

Invasion: How America Still Welcomes Terrorists,
Criminals, and Other Foreign Menaces to Our


for Peter Brimelow`s review. Click


for Michelle Malkin`s website. Michelle Malkin
is also author of

Unhinged: Exposing Liberals Gone Wild

and the just-released
Culture of Corruption: Obama and his Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks & Cronies.