No, such praise is not sarcasm from a birther, Teapartier, or other such anti-intellectual dregs--it comes from the Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, Rocco Landesman. (See my earlier post on Mr. Broadway Bombast.) Scott at Powerline quotes his boast:
This is the first president that actually writes his own books since Teddy Roosevelt and arguably the first to write them really well since Lincoln. If you accept the premise, and I do, that the United States is the most powerful country in the world, then Barack Obama is the most powerful writer since Julius Caesar. That has to be good for American artists.
Scott deftly dispatches this error-plagued nonsense. I would add: In praising Bacon, Locke, and Newton as his greatest heroes, Thomas Jefferson claimed that his rival Alexander Hamilton had named Julius Caesar as his. This attribution was intended to underline Hamilton's reputation as a "monocrat"--no friend of the principles of 1776. Praises of Caesar and of Mao, obeisance to dictators, despots, and Nobel committees, assaults on an aggressive press-- what more does this Administration need to do to separate itself from the principles of 1776?