British Press Turn Noses Up at President Obama’s DVD Gift Pack

British Press Turn Noses Up at President Obama’s DVD Gift PackUpdate: The British press are having at this like it’s a leg of mutton, and Caleb Howe has a “funny” picture up over at Redstate. Still awaiting comment from the White House. I hope they say something about flipping that whole colonization thing around if they don’t pipe down.

The British press have obiously never heard the adage “It’s the thought that counts.” They’re ungraciously criticizing the President’s gift for British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, and comparing it to Brown’s gifts to the Obamas. From the Daily Mail:

He had put clearly great thought into giving the U.S. President lavish gifts to signify Britain’s ‘special relationship’ with the U.S.

During his historic trip to Washington, Gordon Brown gave Barack Obama an ornamental pen holder made from the timbers of the Victorian anti-slave ship HMS Gannet – once called HMS President.

The unique present delighted Mr Obama because oak from the Gannet’s sister ship, HMS Resolute, was carved to make a desk that already takes place in the Oval Office in the White House, after being presented by Britain to the US in 1880.

Big whoop! A homemade tchotchke made out of driftwood. It doesn’t even say if the thing included pens. What did President Obama give Brown?

For despite being leader of the world’s most bountiful nation, President Obama handed over nothing more thought-provoking than 25 classic American films on DVD.

It was the equivalent of receiving a pair of socks from an unfamiliar aunt at Christmas – and a less-than-glowing affirmation of the UK-US bond.

Well, la-di-da, guess he might as well not have even bothered! The paper goes on to point out that the set probably cost about £250.00. Yeah, but a pound is worth, like, 6 bucks, isn’t it?

Really, when you think about it, Obama’s gift was a lot better. We’ve got loads of pens and holders in America, but what was the last good movie to come out of the UK? 28 Days Later?

In all seriousness, Obama has left himself open for some justified needling here. It rises to the level of “Would you please pass the jelly?” I’m hoping he handed this off to a staffer, who really wanted to use up his “Best Buy Rewards.”

If I was Obama, I would point out that it could have been worse.

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  1. […] So, a President facing 2 wars and an unprecedented economic crisis, 6 weeks or so into his term, is falling apart because he gave the British Prime Minister some good DVDs to watch. […]

  2. […] So, a President facing 2 wars and an unprecedented economic crisis, 6 weeks or so into his term, is falling apart because he gave the British Prime Minister some good DVDs to watch. […]

  3. […] Tommy Christopher 2-Pack Perfect for the PUMA in your life, or even a visiting head of state, check out my appearances in not 1, but 2 anti-Obama […]

  4. It really was a tacky, thoughtless and impersonal gift. Someone really dropped the ball on this, but I’ll not be too hard on Obama, as he has more urgent issues to deal with presently.

  5. Gee, he gave enough thought to send the Winston Churchill bust back to the Queen. Why is he trying to alienate the US from Britain? His behavior is childish and incompetent. And I am being generous with that assessment. So let’s take a tally:
    1. Economics F
    2. Diplomacy D-
    3. Statesmanship D-
    4. Bipartisanship F
    5. Truth in Campaigning F
    6. Popularity?? A+
    go figure

  6. Funny, nobody mentioned the fact that American DVDs can not be played on British DVDs players. They are incompatibly formatted, so the Prime Minister got 25 useless pieces of plastic. Maybe he can use them as coasters?

  7. Well, not all DVD are thusly coded. I did try to find out from the PM’s office if the DVDs were compatible, but got nowhere.

  8. Three things –

    1. Returning the bust of Wnston Churchill was totally inappropriate and I cannot fathom why that was done.

    2. I am confounded as to why whomever is responsible for protocol and gifts did such an abysmally embarassing job.

    3. I am curious why this has not been covered more widely in the media.

    I like Obama, I voted for Obama, but there is no excuse for his head of protocol to make such plainly egregious errors.

  9. natty, my article was somewhat tongue in cheek. I agree, this was handled poorly.

  10. This is a PR nightmare. I ma curious about the bust of WC being returned? What is the story behind that??

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