Sat, Jul 26th - 2:04PM
Obama forgets the microphone is on, but says some smart things anyway.
As the Democratic candidate for president chatted with British
opposition leader David Cameron at the Houses of Parliament in London
on Saturday, a boom microphone used by reporters caught their
discussion. It was unclear whether Obama and Cameron knew how much of
their conversation others could hear.
Obama and Cameron talked casually about the demands of high office, according to a transcript.
CAMERON: You should be on the beach. You need a break. Well, you need to be able to keep your head together.
OBAMA: You've got to refresh yourself.
CAMERON: Do you have a break at all?
OBAMA: I have not. I am going to take a week in August. But I agree
with you that somebody, somebody who had worked in the White House who
– not Clinton himself, but somebody who had been close to the process –
said that, should we be successful, that actually the most important
thing you need to do is to have big chunks of time during the day when
all you're doing is thinking. And the biggest mistake that a lot of
these folks make is just feeling as if you have to be ...
CAMERON: These guys just chalk your diary up.
OBAMA: Right. In 15 minute increments
CAMERON: We call it the dentist's waiting room. You have to scrap that because you've got to have time.
OBAMA: And, well, and you start making mistakes or you lose the big
picture. Or you lose a sense of, I think you lose a feel ...
CAMERON: Your feeling. And that is exactly what politics is all about. The judgment you bring to make decisions.
OBAMA: That's exactly right. And the truth is that we've got a bunch of
smart people, I think, who know 10 times more than we do about the
specifics of the topics. And so if what you're trying to do is
micromanage and solve everything then you end up being a dilettante,
but you have to have enough knowledge to make good judgments about the
choices that are presented to you.