Off the Record

Greta: Too many people are beginning to think President Obama's a joke - and that's no laughing matter

'Off the Record', 3/20/14: When Jimmy Fallon takes shots over ObamaCare and the handling of Putin and the Ukraine crisis, you know the president's stature is diminishing


By Greta Van Susteren

Let's go "Off the Record" for just a minute. Jimmy Fallon's skit puts the spotlight on a much bigger problem, the diminishing respect for the president.

Respect, of course, is critical to leadership. Sure a few jokes here and a few jokes there can be really funny and late night TV makes fun of all presidents. But it's not just late night TV. A "Washington Post" editorial recently said the president's foreign policy is based on fantasy. Now, "fantasy" could not be a worse description or more demeaning. And, liberal magazine "The New Yorker" published a satirical piece poorly timed for the president with the headline, "U.S. Freezes Putin's Netflix account."

In other words, they're saying President Obama's sanctions are a joke. And overseas, a top Russian official laughed off President Obama's sanctions, calling him a prankster, and I'm sure you know prankster is not the Russian word for respect. So, now, let's go back to Jimmy Fallon's spoof.


UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR PORTRAYING PRESIDENT OBAMA: Don't you see what you're doing though? You are forcing people to accept something that the majority of them don't even want.

JIMMY FALLON (PORTRAYING PUTIN): Yeah, in Russia we have word for this. ObamaCare. (LAUGHTER)


So, President Obama's signature program is being joked about, equating it with the forced seizure of a country by the former head of the KGB. Yeah I know, it draws a laugh, but big picture: There comes a time when there are just too many jokes and respect is draining. And that matters. That's my "Off the Record" comment tonight.