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On the bright side, it was a man who committed a fashion faux pas

That’s unusual. Usually it’s women who have their clothing scrutinized carefully, but this time it’s Obama. Peter King was upset that Obama wore a tan suit.

For him to walk out —I’m not trying to be trivial here— in a light suit, light tan suit, saying that first he wants to talk about what most Americans care about the revision of second quarter numbers on the economy.

I had no idea! Is this like wearing white after labor day, or socks with sandals, or underpants on your head? I’m relieved that all of my suits are boringly dark, but also disappointed, because wow, he actually looks really good in that suit.

Obama Speaks on the Situation in Ukraine

If Peter King can get away with wearing his foot down his throat, I think Obama can wear a tan suit.

Comments

  1. Howard Bannister says

    Good thing that NO other presidents have EVER worn a tan suit, right?

    (George W Bush in a tan suit, Clinton in a tan suit, Reagan in a tan suit… George HW Bush in a tan suit)

    Hmmmph.

  2. anteprepro says

    Peter King just wants to get a show that will air on both Fox News and E !

    They could call it “King of Fashion”.

    He also said this:

    This is a week after Jim Foley was beheaded and he’s trying to act like real Americans care about the economy, not about ISIS and not about terrorism.

    Just remember: the economy is only important when Republicans say it is important.

  3. anteprepro says

    But do you know who ELSE wore a tan suit? HITLER! Probably. Brown shirt is close enough.

  4. says

    Wow. You’d think the Prez was a browncoat or something, and speaking on Unification day.

    King:

    real Americans

    Oh goody, a game of No True American.

  5. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    This is a week after Jim Foley was beheaded and he’s trying to act like real Americans care about the economy, not about ISIS and not about terrorism.

    This quote is just mind blowing. I’d venture that most Americans are far more concerned with the economy than they are with ISIS or terrorism since, ya know, being able to pay the bills and put food on the table is generally a more pressing concern than things happening on the other side of the planet. I guess most Americans aren’t real Americans.

  6. says

    Seven of Mine:

    I guess most Americans aren’t real Americans.

    Real Americans are Americans who have theirs, and can afford to say ‘fuck you’ to the petty concerns of all us not-real Americans.

  7. John Horstman says

    @Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm #7: Real Americans™ worry about threats to their well-beings to a degree that is inversely proportional to the actual degree of threat posed. So they’re VERY concerned about ‘terrorists’ and plane crashes and zombies and Black people, but not so much about heart disease and auto accidents and liver cirrhosis and bee stings and capitalism and domestic violence. I have come to this conclusion after several decades of observing what worries Real Americans™ and comparing this concern to statistics on mortality and morbidity.

  8. gussnarp says

    @Howard Bannister – You know what all those other presidents in tan suits have in common that Obama doesn’t?

  9. gussnarp says

    @Daz: Somewhere I read recently the idea that any time you start a sentence with “I’m not…but, ” it means you absolutely are whatever the ellipses replaced.

  10. xavierninnis4191 says

    Looks fantastic actually (which, come to think of it, is probably the real problem the guy has with it), I only wish the hell I could get away with something other than grey or very dark blue.

  11. Howard Bannister says

    @gussnarp

    Welp, obviously what we’re going to need, then, is a couple of non-white presidents to compare to Obama to see if it’s the skin color that rules out the suit color.

    I figure, maybe the next 50 or so can be various shades of not white, so we can experiment. Besides, white guys had their turn.

    (and we should definitely change up the gender, too–don’t want to get stuck in a rut)

    Then we can tell for absolute sure about the tan suit thing.

    It’s for science.

  12. gussnarp says

    @Howard Bannister – I feel like we’ve got sufficient data to demonstrate that the media will criticize high powered women and African Americans for their clothing choices at a much higher rate than white men, but I think you’re experiment is still worthwhile. Wouldn’t want to jump to conclusions or anything.

  13. says

    Up to now I thought I was a real American. Peter King set me straight.

    I thought both the suit and the tie looked good. But, honestly, I barely noticed because I was listening to the President make several points about ISIS (or ISIL), about media coverage of the airstrikes, about the role of Congress, etc. I do care about the second quarter economic numbers.

    I am obviously not a real American. I’m just faking it.

    Also, I think Peter King cares more about the economic numbers than he is letting on. And that is because the economic recovery is going fairly well despite Republican obstructionism. That must make Peter King hopping mad, and hoping madly that we the unreal Americans don’t notice.

    Don’t look now, but the economy is back. After a dismal winter that saw gross domestic product shift into reverse, the latest government data released Thursday shows the economy bounced back sharply in the spring. The Commerce Department said that GDP expanded at a 4.2 percent annual rate in the second quarter instead of the previously reported 4 percent pace. But the improvement is more than a one-time rebound. Across a broad range of data, the economy continues gradually to gain strength. There are signs the deep slide has finally given way to what economists call a “virtuous cycle”— where improvement in one part of the economy feeds into the others, creating a self-sustaining expansion. Link.

    As for the suit, Peter King also said, “There’s no way any of us can excuse what the president did yesterday, […]” And then we have this: “White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters at the start of today’s briefing that the president ‘feels pretty good’ about his fashion choice, adding, ‘The president stands squarely behind his decision he made yesterday to wear his summer suit.'” Way to stand up for what’s right, Mr. President.

  14. Nentuaby says

    I’m a just skate past all the substantive issues for a moment and focus purely on fashion, where…

    God forbid a man who is constrained to wear the same damn thing every day of his life push at the envelope of the ONE parameter of it he’s allowed to alter, namely the (blandly colored) fabric it’s made of. I mean SHIT, what’s next, a subtle paisly texture on the tie? What a fashion *hooligan*.

    Men’s formalwear is such a wasteland.

  15. Nentuaby says

    Gussnarp & Daz:

    That’s a pretty common observation.

    Some Twitterites of my acquaintance recently coined the term “nottabut” for the act of contradicting oneself within a single breath.

  16. Holms says

    “He should go back to mum jeans so that we can continue insulting him anyway!” – Conservative media.

  17. colnago80 says

    Way back in the dark ages, there was a bit of a brouhaha when Ronnie the rat showed up wearing a brown suit. Brown, how gauche. Actually, considering his slender build, Obama would probably look good in any kind of suit.

  18. knowknot says

    To Ferguson and wherever else: “You’re so black we don’t care about you, thus our efforts to marginalize you.”
    To Obama, Beyoncé, whoever else: “You’re so white we don’t care about you, thus our efforts to marginalize you (unless you do something “black,” which will justify our efforts to marginalize you as per the above).”
     
    Peter King and Louie Gohmert really should be encouraged to do a nationwide speaking tour, if only as an experiment to see how setting a massive intellectual vacuum in motion might affect the weather.

  19. richcon says

    I haven’t watched the video yet, but that tan suit does make him seem more approachable. It’s less formal and stuffy.

  20. richcon says

    I remember back when he was first sworn in there were actually TV news commentators talking about how he wasn’t wearing a jacket in those first Oval Office photos, and in some the cuffs were even (gasp) rolled up.

  21. says

    I don’t understand why it merited any sort of mention at all. Who cares? It’s not like the Prez came out like this or anything.

  22. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    As long as it doesn’t have have an (R) next to his name, he will get my vote.

  23. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    The Poopyhead is blogging blogs on FTB-dot-com.
    Ophelia’s raging feministly, BlackSkeptics drop the bomb
    Inaji comments sagely on a post by our PZ
    Me I do the only thing that still makes sense to me:

    I’d do the vote, myself.
    I’d do the vote vote vote [It’s stimulating! Stimulating!]

  24. U Frood says

    Well, I’ll say that I don’t think the tan suit looks good. But that’s my opinion, and I can’t really back it up with any rational reason. Surely not going to pretend outrage about it.

  25. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Somebody read the and its successors, where dark colors to show “gravity” were de rigueur for politicians.

  26. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Sorry, the link was left out of #41. My oops.
    Somebody read the book and its successors, where dark colors to show “gravity” were de rigueur for politicians.

  27. Esteleth is Groot says

    So…he’s wearing a suit?

    I will say that the coat appears to be cut slightly too large for him, but whatever. It’s August, and it’s probably hot.

  28. howardhershey says

    It’s the contrast that makes Obama’s unfortunate skin condition more obvious.

  29. Esteleth is Groot says

    “Unfortunate skin condition”?

    You mean the fact that he has melanin in his skin?

  30. says

    howardhershey:

    It’s the contrast that makes Obama’s unfortunate skin condition more obvious.

    “Unfortunate skin condition”? I’m going to be charitable here and assume that’s snark, but you ought to make that more clear. Remember that humor is hard to convey in a setting like this.

  31. says

    Tony:

    “Unfortunate skin condition”? I’m going to be charitable here and assume that’s snark, but you ought to make that more clear.

    It was snark, I’m sure. However, it was executed better by gussnarp @ 10, though.

  32. cicely says

    *eyerolling*
    You’d think the man’d have the common courtesty to wear gang colors and his boxer-clad butt a-hangin’ outta his pants-around-his-knees like the thug we all know he is!!! And where’s his grill????
    </heavy snarkiness, extra starch>
    -

  33. octopod says

    Oh man. No fair with the awesome zoot suits. The pinstripe one…augh. New fashion goal set.

    I assume there’s some kind of etiquette regarding what color suit you can wear when talking about the economy? Modern menswear has such tiny distinctions in the first place that things like that actually get inflated into rules…

  34. frankb says

    #43

    I will say that the coat appears to be cut slightly too large for him, but whatever. It’s August, and it’s probably hot.

    Looking at that picture I’d say that the suit coat fits very well in the shoulders and the sleeves are the right length. Can’t do better than that.

  35. chigau (違う) says

    johnmarley
    I believe that anyone can wear a zoot suit.
    And I intend to prove it.

  36. rq says

    The real question is: what shoes and socks combo is he wearing with that? We will never know.

  37. Silentbob says

    @ 28 PZ Myers

    After what he did to Eddie?! How could you? (I know when Eddie said he didn’t like his teddy you knew he was a no good kid, but still!)

  38. Maureen Brian says

    As a bewildered foreigner I have to seek help with this.

    The good folk of Ferguson MO are being told that if they would only wear an expensive tailored suit, plus shirt and tie, all the time, even in bed, they would treated with total respect, then when the President of the United States does wear an expensively tailored suit, in cloth suitable for summer, he outrages public decency. Why?

    I remind passing people called King that FDR frequently wore such suits in summer, linen ones even and nowhere near as well cut! Others should simply have their brains rebooted at the earliest opportunity.

  39. knowknot says

    Um… Zoot Suit Riot, which is a swell hop in itself, is pretty much disqualified by the band’s… um… name.
    Never quite been able to get over that one.
    Now if they’d called themselves “Trigger Warning”There’s a band name to think about.

  40. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    @ Maureen Brian

    Honestly, I think it’s the same respectability politics horseshit, simply tailored (*snerk*) for someone with the social standing of the president.

  41. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Were I an optimist, I might think that by using the same tactics they use to trivialize women on an African-American man they would clue in the great unwashed to their tactics of marginalizing outsiders. I am not an optimist, though, and I suspect that the average American is too stupid to recognize any clue whatsoever.

  42. Howard Bannister says

    The good folk of Ferguson MO are being told that if they would only wear an expensive tailored suit, plus shirt and tie, all the time, even in bed, they would treated with total respect, then when the President of the United States does wear an expensively tailored suit, in cloth suitable for summer, he outrages public decency. Why?

    Some time ago I came to a startling realization about a barely-related topic in feminism.

    Women are socialized to not make waves, not make demands, and not stand out. (generally speaking) So, in business, naturally, they aren’t demanding raises, and therefore do not get them. The tut-tutters come out in force, saying it is women’s fault there is a pay gap.

    Studies have shown that women who ask for raises are penalized for this, because they are ‘loud,’ variants on anti-woman slurs, etc. Because they have broken the rules of being a woman, and so they must be punished.

    The Catch-22 is the point; the no-win scenario is how you silently enforce a male supremacy.

    And the Catch-22 of respectability politics that turn out not to mollify the white supremacists for a second… is the point. The no-win scenario is how you silently enforce a white supremacy.

    (or not so silently, as I think about it)

    This has been your long and protracted episode of ‘Stating the Obvious out loud and at length.’ Join us next week for when we go over basic math in depth!

  43. ledasmom says

    I assume there’s some kind of etiquette regarding what color suit you can wear when talking about the economy?

    When reporting a booming economy, one should wear a suit in dark blue with just a hint of monetary green. For a so-so economy, a medium and boringly cut gray is de rigueur, and for a total clusterfucktastrophe the traditional barrel is obligatory, suspenders in brown or discreet striping.

  44. EvoMonkey says

    Rep. Peter King is now on notice – pack up any tan or light colored suits you may have and donate them to Goodwill, or better yet burn them (you wouldn’t want anyone to know you ever owned one). From now on, It is only black, dark gray, or maybe navy blue (for those few crazy festive occasions) suits for you. Don’t forget your American flag pin and your red striped tie. I know you won’t forget your asshat since it is permanently attached to your head.

    Don’t even think about being comfortable, the success of our foreign policy depends on how conservatively you dress. Because you know, “tan suits = the terrorists have won”. Never mind that men’s business fashion has taken it’s cues from military dress for quite a long time now.

  45. lorn says

    I think this criticism is good, it makes the critics look petty, and pissy. Which they are. It highlights the central fact of Obama’s presidency, the constant that effectively excuses his his inability to follow through on his agenda, that is that the GOP has, from before he was sworn in as president the first time, made ruining his presidency their primary goal. Jobs, the economy, the demands of good order and a nation sliding backward because of twenty years of Republican neglect have all been secondary to making Obama look bad.

    It is pissy, niggling and small minded commentary like this, a critique that has no larger purpose or direction, that most clearly highlight the viciousness of the mindset. Previously this sort of lack of common sense and charity have been limited to Michele Obama. Applying them to president Obama shows just how petty and desperate they are.

  46. says

    I’ve wanted a zoot suit ever since I saw one on the Tom & Jerry “Zoot Cat” cartoon. It’s pretty much the only item of clothing I’ve ever wanted for any reason other than making sure I wasn’t naked or freezing.

    One day…

  47. says

    LykeX:

    One day…

    I am savin’ my pennies. Did you hit that Pachuco link? Oh man, I want the Devil Red, the Two Tone shoes, and the Red Tando.

  48. cicely says

    Maureen Brian:

    The good folk of Ferguson MO are being told that if they would only wear an expensive tailored suit, plus shirt and tie, all the time, even in bed, they would treated with total respect, then when the President of the United States does wear an expensively tailored suit, in cloth suitable for summer, he outrages public decency. Why?

    Because they are not worthy of such fine threads.
    They never can be.
    It’s their nature.
     
    “You can’t win, you can’t break even, and you can’t even quit the game.”
    Except, of course, feet first.
    -

  49. ck says

    I have never seen Republicans talk about how the president dresses prior to this one. It leads me to wonder: Is this effort to criticise his clothes a conscious effort on their behalf, or unconscious? Either way, it seems they’re trying to say, “See? The black man in office doesn’t even know how to dress appropriately!”

  50. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    He was criticized for not wearing a flag pin on his lapel back during his first campaign. I also remember him being criticized for taking a picture with some people when he was at (I think) Nelson Mandela’s funeral. Obviously that’s nothing to do with clothes but it’s still people fixating on trivialities and it’s still respectability politics. It’s still painting him as a tactless oaf.

  51. Moggie says

    Inaji:

    I am savin’ my pennies. Did you hit that Pachuco link? Oh man, I want the Devil Red, the Two Tone shoes, and the Red Tando.

    Does it have to be red? Old Cab could rock a pale zoot too.

  52. ck says

    Hell, prior to this president, criticising the clothes of a powerful man would’ve been considered effeminate by these people. They would’ve been heckled by their own side for this (for all the wrong reasons, of course).

  53. says

    ck:

    It leads me to wonder: Is this effort to criticise his clothes a conscious effort on their behalf, or unconscious? Either way, it seems they’re trying to say, “See? The black man in office doesn’t even know how to dress appropriately!”

    I think its a conscious effort to delegitimatize his presidency. “Look at him, he’s not dressed correctly. He’s not a real president.” All of which is their way of saying what they really want to say- “Get that N****R out of the White House.”

  54. ck says

    Apparently, if you’re under 5′, 5’10” or 5’11”, or over 6’2″, you’re not allowed to wear the zoot suits from El Pachuco.

  55. Menyambal says

    A long time back, I was told that the president set the fashion. Whatever he wore was automatically right, and however he pronounced words was by definition the proper way.

    Of course, that was back when it was always assumed that the president would always be a man, and before one of the men said “nukular”.

  56. ludicrous says

    “all of my suits ”

    I knew it , my tax dollars wasted overpaying the elites. More than one chalk dusted sport coat from the charity shop makes one a fashionista.