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Opening Arguments

Sorry, sorry, sorry

President Obama has smothered the economy, wreaked havoc on the health care delivery system, all but destroyed American foreigh policy, used the IRS to harass his political enemies,  and acted in general lawlessly and without regard for the Constitution. And this is what he apologizes for?

We all knew what President Obama was saying when he unintentionally (or intentionally) dissed art history majors during a speech at General Electric plant in Illinois last month, but that doesn't mean he should have said it -- or said it that way. He apologized for those remarks via a response letter to Ann Collins Johns, an art history professor at the University of Texas at Austin who sent an email to the White House the day after his speech, the Washington Post reported.

"Let me apologize for my off-the-cuff remarks. I was making a point about the jobs market, not the value of art history," the president wrote. "As it so happens, art history was one of my favorite subjects in high school, and it has helped me take in a great deal of joy in my life that I might otherwise have missed."

[. . .]

The speech. Needing an example to show that manufacturing jobs not requiring a formal college education could be equally if not more profitable than the career path of someone holding a bachelor's degree, Obama chose an easy target, art history majors.  

"[A] lot of young people no longer see the trades and skilled manufacturing as a viable career," Obama said during the speech. "But I promise you, folks can make a lot more, potentially, with skilled manufacturing or the trades than they might with an art history degree."

The thing is, he actually had a point. College students today build up such a crushing debt on the way to their degrees that it would be just insane not to use those four years learning something a little more marketable than art history.