About that Obama Sand Sculpture

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Sept. 3 2012 11:28 AM

About that Obama Sand Sculpture

CHARLOTTE -- There's very little news to cover here before Democrats start reading out the names of their states and listening to speeches by lieutenant governors. I think that explains why the 25-foot Obama sand sculpture has gotten so much ink. Photos of the sculpture trafficked through the blogosphere all weekend. This lazy (and misleadingly headlined) piece by Stephen Dinan helped define the genre.

The large Mount Rushmore-style sculpture drew comparisons to Mr. Obama's 2008 convention in Denver, when he accepted his party's nomination on a stage that looked like a Greek temple.

Why do I call that lazy? It doesn't say who's drawing the comparisons, and it leaves the impression that this is some official convention sculpture. Not quite. Here's what you see as you approach the scuplture.

photo (16)

That's right -- it's a $30,000 promotional gimmick for Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Why is the city's chamber of commerce advertising in North Carolina? Because the city's a three and a half hour drive from Charlotte, closer to this city than the state's own famous Outer Banks. The sand sculpture isn't proof of Obamaian hubris and ego. There's enough of that proof to go around, and serve seconds. Which makes you wonder why the need to make up yet another story about the guy...

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter.