Reading The Pictures is dedicated to the analysis of news photos and media images.
November 20, 2012

Obama Was Just Smarter. (There, I Said It.)

Reed Harper 3 with Obama

Reed Harper 2

Reed Harper 1

Take that, ORCA!

I understand that discussion of intellect in the current political era is to invite charges of East Coast elitism. Clearly though, the president didn’t just win reelection by being right on the issues and being more culturally inclusive. Team Obama — with its canvassing, marketing, field organizing and polling acumen — also won the election because it was smarter. (There, I said it.)


The photo above, and the shots of Obama’s geek-culture CTO, Harper Reed (far left), from his Instagram feed, illustrate an extended feature in The Atlantic profiling the exploits of Reed and the Obama killer geeks. It’s a lot of fun.

As for the group image specifically, the shot of the team is nothing short of a contemporary nerd-chic version of JFK’s “best and brightest.” Which makes me think that another thing on its way out, perhaps, in the paradigmatic shift otherwise know as Campaign 12, is all that Tea Party-infused anti-intellectualism.

(photos 1-3: Instagram/harperreed/ photo 4: Daniel X. O’Neil via The Atlantic caption: Three members of Obama’s tech team, from left to right: Harper Reed, Dylan Richard, and Mark Trammell.)

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