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‘Thanks for emojis, Japan!’ – President Obama

‘Thanks for emojis, Japan!’ – President Obama

Let’s play, “Imagine if George W. Bush said this”

Through the course of my daily interneting, I read that President Obama thanked the Japanese for karate, karaoke, and emojis. Yes, the little happy faces you send in text messages. I chuckled to myself, figured it was parody, and went on my merry way.

This afternoon I was horrified to learn it was not parody I encountered, oh no. President Obama in his infinite foreign policy wisdom (I’m assuming his narcissism believes as much), actually thanked Japan for emojis and karate (pronounced the same way he says Pakistan — terribly). But then he also gave Queen Elizabeth II an iPod, so the bar is set pretty low here.

“Today is a chance for Americans, especially our young people, to say thank you for all the things we love from Japan.” said President Obama, who according to Politico, was speaking at an arrival ceremony with with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. And then things took a turn for the excruciatingly embarrassing, “like karate, karaoke, manga, and anime, and of course emojis,” Obama continued.

Of everything Japan has contributed to the cultural space, President Obama finds these most relevant…


dean karaoke






do you use emojis


anime jello

While Obama was busy praising karaoke, he neglected to give thanks for Godzilla (though that would’ve required homage to actual foreign policy, given the giant lizard’s nuclear origins) … who didn’t take the news so well…


Emojis, karaoke, anime, and karate — America’s diplomatic relations in a nutshell. Next time America flirts with electing a pop culture president, may we all remember the embarrassing result. You were lovely while you lasted, Republic.

[Featured image a screen grab from this awesome Karate Kid highlight reel]

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That should be, “You rara, wercrome, Gigen-san…”.

Sammy Finkelman | April 28, 2015 at 4:46 pm

Emojis were invented in Japan.

The first emoji was created in 1998 or 1999 by Shigetaka Kurita, who was part of the team working on NTT DoCoMo’s i-mode mobile Internet platform.

What’s wrong with that?

The floppy disk was also a Japanese invention. (or at least it is supposed to have been. That claim may not be true. IBM says it did it on its own)

If a George Bush had thanked Japan for “things like karate, karaoke, manga, and anime, and of course emojis…”, he would have been beaten up by the media for being an unsophisticated, condescending racist statesman who belittled a 3,000 year old civilization.

    It’s not my area of expertise, but I think everything before around 250 AD is considered “prehistory” for Japan, i.e. not what you’d call a proper civilization yet. It’s not China. It has, however, done quite a lot with what it has had, and there’s quite a lot to appreciate in a less ah, silly manner.

    Though silly has its place… just ah, at an official event with the Prime Minister of Japan, maybe not. Probably not.

      Ragspierre in reply to JBourque. | April 28, 2015 at 5:58 pm

      Yeah, and that gets into all that unfortunate “Korean migration” ethnic history of Japan, which is REALLY not the politic thing to mention to Japanese.

        I think I’d be much more careful what I say about Japan around Koreans, to be honest.

        The Japanese invasion of Korea under Hideyoshi, several centuries ago, resulted in a lot of cultural influx into Japan, just like the Crusades did for Western Europe. Stuff happens. I just wanted to say I don’t think the Japanese claim they have a 3000 year old civilization, per se. What they can kinda-sorta figure out about their paleolithic period does get taught in school, though.

    Sammy Finkelman in reply to Aucturian. | April 28, 2015 at 10:22 pm

    President Obama was trying to thank Japan for what they had done lately – in the last thirty years or less.

    If it wasn’t also competing, or possibly competing, with American businesses.

    And all these things are things that are not exported from Japan, but rather, imitated in the United States. (Manga and anime to be useful in the United States must be translated into English.)

Apparently 0 is speaking to and for his base.

    He has never stopped speaking to and for his base.

    Every speech is a stump speech. Every word a byword. Every sound a sound byte.

    It’s been a non-stop active campaign since 2007.

O really hasn’t seen much of the Manga and Anime that’s been imported.

inspectorudy | April 28, 2015 at 6:44 pm

It really doesn’t matter what this boob says. The msm never calls him out for his stupidity or dumb comments like they would and will for any Republican or conservative. There should be a book compiled of all of obama’s goofs, misstatements and plain old lies. It would be at least 1000 pages.

As per usual with Obozo, the facade of artifice and the projections conjured up by his fawning supporters trump reality. They envision Obozo as a sophisticated, worldly sage as a result of his time spent living abroad, yet, the man doesn’t even speak a foreign language. His intellect is allegedly peerless, yet, the imbecile clings to thoroughly discredited socioeconomic ideologies, engages in ceaseless demagoguery to advance his political agenda, and has made too many petulant, arrogant, infantile and idiotic comments to even keep track of. He is a glib hustler, nothing more.

After greeting Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, they dined on ramen noodles.

I speak Japanese. The President pronounced “karate” much as a Japanese person would, with a bit too much emphasis on the last syllable. A good effort, certainly better than the “karotty” that most Americans say.

As for the word “Pakistan”, most English-speaking Pakistanis say “PakeeSTAHN” as the President does (and most educated people, generally), rather than the grating “PAK-kiss-tan” that a lot of Americans say.

Another pet peeve of mine is the way some people say “Eye-rack” and “Eye-ran” for Iraq and Iran. Do you say “Eye-talian”? Archie Bunker used to.

    Obama tends to use BBC pronunciation for places like Pakistan. Which would be fine, except that he lives in the USA. To Americans, of which he is allegedly one, that makes him sound twee and affected.

    As for your snide “most educated people” jibe, kindly remember that this is a man who doesn’t even know how to pronounce Corpsman.

    scooterjay in reply to jasperjava. | April 29, 2015 at 8:34 am

    well, good for you! Remember, too, that this amateur named Obama also thinks we have 57 states and that America offers no hope for poor, black youths (don’t mention to him that he is President, that Oprah made a fortune as queen of media, or the hundreds if not thousands of rich black guys that rose up out of poverty because of games).

    riverlife_callie in reply to jasperjava. | April 29, 2015 at 11:20 am

    What a self-righteous, condescending ass you are.

    Now, this requires very little thinking to explain. Obama spent a substantial amount of his early youth in Indonesia. I’m more annoyed by Hillary trying to emulate southern accents that have nothing to do with her youth.

      I give Hillary a bit of a pass for her southern accent hijinks unless she is being really obnoxious about it, because she actually did live in the south for an extended period of time.

      Obama, otoh, gets no pass from me when he pulls his fake accent out.

Henry Hawkins | April 29, 2015 at 9:25 am

Intended or not, Obama insulted Japan with faint praise if that’s all he could think of to thank them for. It’s like ‘thanking’ Canada for maple syrup, implying they’ve made no greater contribution to the world.