It's an undeniable fact that the President of the United States is at once the most powerful single man in the world and the one with the most ammount of people who wish him dead. Well, maybe we can argue that second part, but slip in "American" and we're back to undeniable.
Becase of this threat and power, the President lives in a more or less constant state of security. No one comes near him without being searched, or being restrained by a bodyguard. No one can easily stand and take a picture of him, because secuirty gets in the way.
A side effect of this, of course, is that the President can fairly easily only see and hear the people he wants to see and hear. He doesn't sit at home wondering "Gee, I've got an hour, let's flip through the channels." He doesn't walk down the street and wait in a crowd, or go to a bar and chat it up with the common man.
Especialy this President, whose political mastermind is infamously censored who could and could not come to his "town hall" style political rallys.
Doing my own hour of mindless searching, I came across an article on Snoops, in which a reporter told the President he was doing a bad job and the President replied "Who cares what you think?"
Now, this exchange is what it is--a reporter being unusually honest and a President returning the favor--and I have no problem at all with that. But what irks me is Snoopes interpretation of the event. To wit:
Our opinion? There are plenty of traditional outlets for expressing dissatisfaction with the policies and actions of elected representatives, but walking up to the President at a public function and telling him he's doing a lousy job isn't one of them. Such behavior demonstrates a lack of respect for the office of President of the United States, an honor that should be maintained whether or not one respects the man who currently holds the office -- just as the well-mannered citizen doesn't express his disagreement with the political views of a American-flag-carrying protester by spitting on the flag he bears, because that act displays a contempt for everything Old Glory symbolizes, not merely for the person carrying it. The President isn't above criticism, but freedom of speech isn't an excuse for ignoring the ordinary civilities of choosing an appropriate time, place, and manner for the expression of that criticism.
Because the President is such a powerful figure, who weilds more power today than George Washington ever did, it's critically important that the people who DO see him are under no restraint to say whatever they please. I wouldn't even mind if the President replied in kind--it wouldn't make for good TV, but it would be a refreshing change of pase from the scripted talking point Presidency we've had since, oh, Kennedy beat Nixon.