Stupid, yes. Calibrated, yes.

President Obama said, “The Cambridge police acted stupidly in arresting somebody when there was already proof that they were in their own home.” By all accounts, Professor Gates was not in his own home when arrested (as the President implied), but was outside haranguing Sgt. Crowley and disparaging Crowley’s mother. Neighbors who had gathered, along with a multi-cultural array of police, were treated to Gates’ hysterical spectacle about endemic racism directed at prominent Harvard professors, “You don’t know who you’re messing with,” Gates said.

The President acknowledged he did not know the facts, and repeatedly demonstrated it. Later, surprised to be called out for his subtlety deficit, he regretted the “distraction.” He said, “I could have calibrated those words differently.”

This is undeniable. For example, he could also have said Gates acted stupidly by leaving his house to shout racist epithets at a police officer in front of his (Gates’) neighbors. That would have required both knowing and caring about the facts, however.

President Obama might have recognized that the profiling, racial and class, happened in Skip Gates’ head. He could have waited a day to acquire knowledge of Sgt. Crowley’s career and to read a transcript of Gates being interviewed by his daughter before passing judgment. But carelessly, he chose to assume that the encounter happened according to his own prejudice, according to his own stereotype of the police.

Saying his words could have been better “calibrated” implies a thoughtlessness at odds with his mythos as a cerebral thinker and, in this specific case, as a pre-eminent healer of racial tension. The 1.5 second pause (following several other “thoughtful” pauses) before he utters the word “stupidly,” and simultaneously exemplifies it, is what passes these days for Presidential cerebration. He took some care in selecting that specific word. Serious calibration had occurred. We heard how he really thinks.

His defense is that his initial comments were insufficiently calibrated? That they were “just words?”

As Paladin says, “As for Obama. He cannot help himself. With each passing week he inadvertently reveals more of his true character.” Indeed, pathological narcissism cannot be indefinitely suppressed.

Some other comment you may wish to check out:
Mark Steyn: Obama knows ‘stupidly’ when he doesn’t see it