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Obama’s Little Blue Book and the Egg of Power

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By Michelle Malkin  •  January 26, 2009 10:19 PM

Tons of people have e-mailed about the Little Blue Book of Obama sayings that a firm called the History Company is hawking on its website. Yes, they really are selling them in 10-packs for $49.50 — and yes, the resemblance to Mao’s Little Red Book is striking. Weirdly, “Pocket Obama” has a plain blank cover and smacks of a gag — especially the last line:

Printed in a size that easily fits into pocket or purse, this book is an anthology of quotations borrowed from Barack Obama’s speeches and writings. POCKET OBAMA serves as a reminder of the amazing power of oratory and the remarkable ability of this man to move people with his words. His superb and captivating oratory style has earned comparisons to John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King, and this historic collection presents words that catapulted his remarkable rise to the American Presidency. It is an unofficial requirement for every citizen to own, to read, and to carry this book at all times.

If it’s a joke, it’s a darned good one. And so is another Obama-related item the History Company is selling: “The Egg of Power.” This schlocky thing goes for $100:

The wooden sculpture that Barack Obama has brought into the Oval Office combines African tribal tradition with a poignant message. Obtained on a 2006 visit to his ancestral Kenya, the “Egg of Power” symbolizes the fragility of chiefly power: According to an ancient proverb, power is like an egg; if it’s held too tightly, it breaks, and if it’s held too loosely, it will slip from grasp.

Art has always been an integral part of African life, and wood carvings are expressions of power and ritual in the life of the tribe. Wood is the most popular material used in native sculpture, since it can be found in abundance. Skilled carvers use simple hand tools to create these stunning works of art — gouges, chisels, mallets, and pointed instruments. Although no two pieces are ever identical, as carvers meticulously hewn each piece according to the grain and texture of the tree, each is rich in symbolism, conveying a guiding principle of leadership, one that has been embraced by the President.

Offered is an authentic artisan work of art, true to the exquisite wooden sculpture in the President’s office. The “hand” is carved from the hardwood of the Monkey Pod tree, with interlocked, wavy grain and colors that range from medium tan to dark brown; the “egg” is lathe-turned from the hardwood of the Coffea Arabica tree, a species that produces the majority of coffee consumed in the world. This remarkable work of art stands 10-inches high and weighs 1 1/2-pounds.

Commenter The Ugly American: “If they were savvy, they’d offer engraving on The Egg of Power. For example: ‘I won.'”

Posted in: Barack Obama

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Categories: Barack Obama, Health care, New York Times, Paul Krugman