Jedi? Vulcan? Mind Meld? Mind Trick? What Was Obama Thinking? | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio
Filed Under:

Jedi? Vulcan? Mind Meld? Mind Trick? What Was Obama Thinking?

He can't do "a Jedi mind meld" with Republicans and get them to see his way about taxes and spending, President Obama said Friday.

About which CBS News' Mark Knoller immediately tweeted:

"Pres Obama Mixed Metaphor of the Day: The 'mind meld' is not a Jedi tool from Star Wars, but a Vulcan ability from Star Trek."

OK, at the risk of being deluged with messages from Star Wars and Star Trek fans but in the hope we can provide a little saber light, we'll enter this risky territory.

The mind meld, as Trekkies will tell you, is a technique "that allows a Vulcan to merge his or her mind with the essence of another's mind purely by using specialized contact fingertip-points."

Jedi knights, from Star Wars, are of course known for their mind tricks — "a spectrum of Force powers which influenced the thoughts of sentient creatures, most commonly used to coerce into agreement by suggestion through voice manipulation, or to cause one to reveal information," as the Star Wars Wikia says.

There is, according to the Star Wars Wikia, something called a "force meld" or "Jedi meld." It's "a technique where a number of Force users joined their minds together through the Force, drawing strength from each other."

Now, though we can't read the president's mind, we think we know what he was trying to say. Obama noted that some seem to believe he can do "a Jedi mind-meld with these folks and convince them to do what's right." To us, it sounds like he meant Jedi mind trick — as in, influencing the Republicans' thoughts.

But we'd have to be able to meld with his mind to know for sure. If only Spock were here to help.

Update at 3:52 White House Responds:

As expected, the White House has responded to the mixed metaphor by tweeting this graphic:

Notice, that they continue mixing metaphors and this time they are very much doing it on purpose. (Note the different typeface.)

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Vaccine Controversies Are As Social As They Are Medical

In writing her new book On Immunity, Eula Biss found that questions about vaccination touch on attitudes about environmentalism, citizenship and trust in the government.
NPR

European Activists Say They Don't Want Any U.S. 'Chlorine Chicken'

Most U.S. poultry is bathed in a little chlorine on the way to your plate. But that treatment is banned in Europe. Now "chlorinated chickens" are a sticking point in a trans-Atlantic trade deal.
NPR

GOP Candidate In Michigan's U.S. Senate Race Avoids Media

Michigan has an open seat because Democrat Carl Levin is retiring. GOP candidate Terri Lynn Land is running a low-key campaign. Democratic Rep. Gary Peters leads in polls, but the race is close.
NPR

Kids And Screen Time: Cutting Through The Static

One Los Angeles school is working technology into the learning process, while avoiding the traditional screen-time pitfalls.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.