Barack Obama is Not a Hippie

Which is probably why he won't go for this "White House organic farm" idea.

Barack Obama is a liberal Democrat but not a hippie. He prefers jet planes to busses, cuts his hair about as short as a politician can, dresses immaculately but simply, and speaks admiringly of traditions such as faith, hard work, and scholarship. Although some of his ideas appeal to the left, part of the secret of his success, sez me, is his willingness to be neat, sleek, and respectful to old-fashioned America. That's why a lot of Republicans like him, I think, because he's actually a square.

So two idealists who went into debt to buy a "symbolic" bus called Topsy-Turvy from ice-cream millionaire hippie Ben Cohen and set out across the country in an effort to convince Obama to replace the White House lawn with a garden will not succeed. It's a shame. It's an excellent idea, even if an upside-down bus is a strange vehicle with which to carry the message. But perhaps that's what a person needs to do to attract attention in our busy world.

As this story in the food section of the Washington Post explains, the idea has been floated before, by California food mavens Michael Pollan and Alice Waters. Two veterans of the Peace Corps, Dan Simon and Casey Gustorarow, decided to make a crusade of it, and have been gardening on top of the bus, blogging, and solicting signatures for a petition for a White House farm as they drive across the country to D.C. You have to admire their idealism. And, as the story points out, Eleanor Roosevelt did plant a victory garden at the White House, so the "WHOfarm" is not beyond the bounds of possibility.

But Barack is not a hippie…and, methinks, is not going to associate himself with anything like this bus.


Published by Kit Stolz

I'm a freelance reporter and writer based in Ventura County.

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