And a whole lot of other paperwork too, even though Doug Mataconis insists that we don't.
My response to this question is another question, why do we need to see the transcripts? Of what possible relevance are the grades that Barack Obama got at Occidental, Columbia, or Harvard Law School to judging his time in office and whether he deserves to be re-elected? What would it reveal about his Presidency that we don’t know? To ask the same question about Romney, what possible relevance to evaluating whether he’d be a good President his grades at Brigham Young University and Harvard (where Romney simultaneously obtained a J.D. and an M.B.A.) could possibly be. It’s been 37 years since Mitt Romney finished his college education, and 20 years since Obama finished his, as James Joyner asked back in 2008, isn’t there a statute of limitations on the use of college achievements as evidence of achievement? If there’s not, there should be.
To be fair, Mataconis stipulates that Obama's college transcripts might have been more revelatory back in 2008 than they would be today. Good point and its one I'll concede. Obama's record as President is plenty damaging all on it's own. How he did in Western Civ I is not as important as his current position on entitlement reform.
However, here's a question: Do businesses and organizations use college transcripts as a way of judging prospective hires? Do companies demand college records as part of the application process? Are college transcripts used as a way of comparing and contrasting several candidates who are going for the same job?
Let me get this straight: Getting the assistant regional manager position at Staples means showing college scrips, but scoring the US President gig doesn't require any presentation of higher education records.
Makes perfect sense.
Especially in modern America, where getting college credit isn't necessary for hardly any jobs.
But Mataconis isn't done.
...the demands for transcripts is often linked to the equally erroneous belief that he wasn’t properly vetted in 2008. As I noted earlier this month, that’s a ridiculous idea:
Barack Obama has been President of the United States for nearly four years now, and he’s been on the national scene as either a candidate for President or as President since 2007. The idea that we have no idea who the man is, or that he hasn’t been “vetted” is simply an absurd fantasy that partisans are using in what looks for all the world like a desperate effort to find something, anything that they can use against him in the upcoming election.
Yes, because the press didn't have to be dragged kicking and screaming to report that Obama ate dogs.
Mataconis seems to be arguing that conservatives should focus on 'important' issues rather than on demanding the media do a better job vetting the President. Now that's a noble sentiment. But why did the Right have such a good time hammering the Exotic Food Connoisseur In Chief about chowing down on Fido-burgers? It wasn't simply to playfully zing Barack Obama for a few days. There was a political motivation in answering back as well.
In 1983, Romney took his family on vacation and, faced with a packed station wagon, put his Irish setter Seamus in a travel kennel strapped to the roof of the car. Romney constructed a special windshield in an effort to make the dog more comfortable, but Seamus ended up relieving himself on the roof, which reportedly caused much consternation among the Romney boys. Ever since the story got out -- it was reported by the Boston Globe in 2007, during Romney's first run for president -- Romney opponents have used it in semiserious and sometimes fully serious ways to portray him as insensitive.
In late January, for example, top Obama campaign aide David Axelrod sent out a tweet that included a photo of Obama with his Portuguese water dog Bo in the back seat of the presidential limousine. "How loving owners transport their dogs," Axelrod wrote.
It wasn't a random comment. "They're obsessed with the dog thing," liberal journalist Chris Hayes said on his MSNBC program Sunday morning, referring to the Obama campaign. "And the reason is that, I have heard, in focus groups, the dog story totally tanks Mitt Romney's approval rating."
Under Mataconis' rubric, Team Barry is engaging in yucky politics when bringing up Mitt's supposedly poor treatment of his dog.
When this or any other charge of allegedly dirty pool is brought up against the Obama campaign, Axelrod and Co. inevitably answers with a hearty "So what?" A fair fight is the other guys problem. That means they really don't give a shit what Doug Mataconis or anybody else thinks should be discussed. When they brought up the Seamus story, it was because they knew it damaged Mitt Romney's chances of beating Barack Obama in November.
Mataconis thinks that elections are about winning arguments. They're not. They're ultimately about winning votes. Which is what Obama was trying to do by beating Romney over the head with the Seamus story. But when the Right engages the issue to turn it back against Obama--again, in the hopes that their preferred candidate would get more votes than his opponents--guys like Mataconis wring their hands over distractions.
Worse than that, Mataconis doesn't see the larger issue, which is the utter stinking corruption of the mainstream media. Think about the most recent example. Barack Obama stops fighting his feelings and embraces gay marriage. Naturally this causes everyone in the media to simultaneously proggasm over the President's new-found enlightenment. The next day, the Washington Post runs a story about a school age Mitt Romney possibly bullying a classmate who may or may not have been gay.
Forget that Robert Stacy McCain has spotted the flaws, baseless insinuations,White House/media coordination and outright lies in the WaPo story. The fact is the Washington Post blatantly tag-teamed with Camp Obambi to damage Mitt Romney on a political issue. Not MSNBC, the Daily Kos or The Nation. Instead, it was the completely nonpartisan, totally unbiased, nope-no-sir-no-dog-in-this-fight Washington Post that was Obama's press enabler here.
Whether it's the MSM making Barack Obama's college years terra non grata or coordinating an attack on the Republican nominee for president, the result is the same. The American media is a major component of the President's re-election campaign. They are actively participating in the fight to marginalize St. Barry's opponent.
Mataconis wants us to ignore all that. He'd have the Republicans and conservatives fighting by the Marquess of Queensbury rules while the Democrats and the MSM bring a shotgun into the ring. That's the smart move here.
Because Obama's college transcripts are not 'relevant'.
They're only irrelevant if you don't want to see how badly the media is gaming the system.
Ultimately, getting the President's college transcripts is not really about vetting the President. It's part of vetting the mainstream media. The MSM, which hates anything to the right of Noam Chomsky and desperately wants Obama to win in November.
The President needs to be investigated. But the left-wing press corps and the Gulfstream Jacobins in the entertainment industry need to be vetted as well. After all, they're playing for the same team. Only a person who has deliberately blinded himself to reality would fail to see why the goverment-media complex needs to get taken down.