Faithfully

January 22nd, 2009

Wow. Some are actually saying that Obama should re-take the oath of office because he partially followed Robert’s flub and put “faithfully” at the end of the oath instead of near the beginning. As if it made the least bit of difference in actual meaning.

Adverbs can come before the verb or at the end of the sentence, which is why Robert’s flub came out the way it did–in a natural speech pattern.

To suggest that this somehow meant that Obama did not actually take the oath of office is, to be as generous as possible, completely ludicrous.

Welcome to the extreme wingnut’s view of reality, which we’ll be seeing inordinate amounts of over the next four to eight years.

Fascinating that the election of 2000, with the Supreme Court electing a president, with illegal election fraud perpetrated by state officials stealing an election away from the rightful winner is somehow authentic, but because an adverb is moved from one legitimate position to another, somehow that is enough to nullify a presidency.

Simply astonishing.

Update: Just to be sure, Obama re-took the oath. Overdoing it, if you ask me, but if it clears up one more messy detail that the wingnuts would use to generate disorder, maybe it’s worth the effort.

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  1. Tim Kane
    January 22nd, 2009 at 01:39 | #1

    Well, if we want to join in the fun of ‘ludicrousosity’ why don’t we point out that Roberts is a hard core right wing appointee of hard core right wing George W. Bush, and that Roberts flubbed the oath of office on purpose.

    Actually there is a bit of irony here.

    When Roberts was being appointed I recall reading how he was an uber-stickler for grammar, and that often aids and underlings received memo’s they stent to him back marked up in red ink correcting their mistakes. So here you have a stickler for detail, infront of an audience of billions of people, screwing up perhaps the easiest, most basic of things – reciting a short, very basic oath.

    That’s irony.

    From a legal stand point this kind of mind frame is both encouraging (for a lawyer) and discouraging (for a supreme court judge). Law, the legal profession and most especially legal education emphasizes inductive logic over deductive logic (the former is the breaking down of an idea the latter the constructing of ideas). Because of the nature of law, the former is important to do the every day of the job. But because of that, lots of people become lawyers who are very poor at deduction. Since most people are good at deduction, this creates a wedge between the public and the profession. But more importantly, deduction is what you need to understand the meaning and significance of things in a larger context. As a result, the general public finds that the legal profession is often lacking in the area of morality. Given Roberts aptitude towards induction is so strong that he habitually corrects other people’s grammer, and given his job as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, I find this quite disturbing because he seems easily the type of person who ends up committing a great immorality out of the stead fast pursuit of pursuing the prohibition of a minor immorality. In a larger context, one can hypothesize that this is a character trait common in Republicans, whom stick with the logic of a ideology long past the point where it has manifested gross immorality. In short: Inductive Reasoning does not equal wisdom.

    A deductive person would see this mistake and understand that it was a warning on ones limitations. I’m not sure what Roberts takes from it. I suspect he’s really kicking himself for flubbing up something so simple. And he can’t get a second chance to do it again. But I’m quite sure that many of his former aids are quietly enjoying some schadenfreude over his mistake.

  2. etoipi
    January 22nd, 2009 at 03:30 | #2

    Apparently this has happened before. Taft, as Chief Justice, flubbed the oath for Hoover… (“preserve, maintain and defend” – instead of: “preserve, protect and defend”) and, as far as I know, nothing came of it.

    I note that at the end Chief Justice Roberts says “Congratulations Mr. President”… so it was good enough for him… and, as we all know, Supreme Court justices are the final word in naming presidents. /snark

  3. K. Engels
    January 22nd, 2009 at 04:10 | #3

    I guess we can just pull a ‘blame Clinton’ and say that anything bad that happens during Obama’s term is really Bush’s fault because ‘Obama isn’t really president’.

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