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November 20, 2012

Obama Was Just Smarter. (There, I Said It.)

Reed Harper 3 with Obama

Reed Harper 2

Reed Harper 1

Take that, ORCA!

I understand that discussion of intellect in the current political era is to invite charges of East Coast elitism. Clearly though, the president didn’t just win reelection by being right on the issues and being more culturally inclusive. Team Obama — with its canvassing, marketing, field organizing and polling acumen — also won the election because it was smarter. (There, I said it.)


The photo above, and the shots of Obama’s geek-culture CTO, Harper Reed (far left), from his Instagram feed, illustrate an extended feature in The Atlantic profiling the exploits of Reed and the Obama killer geeks. It’s a lot of fun.

As for the group image specifically, the shot of the team is nothing short of a contemporary nerd-chic version of JFK’s “best and brightest.” Which makes me think that another thing on its way out, perhaps, in the paradigmatic shift otherwise know as Campaign 12, is all that Tea Party-infused anti-intellectualism.

(photos 1-3: Instagram/harperreed/ photo 4: Daniel X. O’Neil via The Atlantic caption: Three members of Obama’s tech team, from left to right: Harper Reed, Dylan Richard, and Mark Trammell.)

  • black_dog_barking

    The group shot captures a true nerd’s ability to slip into his (it is almost always a *he* and this should change!!) own little world any time, any where. ‘Though they all might be working on the same problem they appear to be simultaneously in the same room and different universes.

  • Thomas

    I have to say, an awful lot of people voted for Obama because of Obama and thank goodness they had no idea goofball glasses and his “Instagram feed” even existed else we really would have been looking at a President Romney.

  • bystander

    I get that there is a certain amount of satisfaction to be had by partisan Democrats in the underperforming ORCA, as compared to the precision and success of Obama’s tech team. And, I get that there is a certain amount of satisfaction in Obama’s campaign being “smarter.” But is this actually good for our country?

    Once upon a time we (this country) have depended on the presence of a “loyal opposition” to keep our keel deep in the water.

    I get that the Republicans seem determined to dial the “crazy gear” past 11, and that keeping many of them away from the levers of power is a “good thing.” But, does that not just allow a different kind of predator the opportunity to wreak its own kind of havoc in the absence of anything to hold it in check?

    I am as deeply concerned about the over performance of Obama’s tech team as I am about the underperformance of the Republican’s. And, I get a deeply queasy feeling when I witness the schadenfreude I think is inherent in There, I said it.

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