The man in the most powerful position on earth, and the possessor of the Presidential bully-pulpit, President Barack Obama, asked people to tweet their disapproval of Congress' vote against raising the minimum wage yesterday with the hashtag "#1010means."
"My message to the American people is this: do not get discouraged by a vote like we saw this morning. Get fired up. Get organized. Make your voices heard. Rest assured I'm going to keep working with you, and later Nancy Pelosi and other members of Congress who are here to raise wages for hard-working Americans. It's the right thing to do," Obama said to applause.
"If your member of Congress doesn't support raising the minimum wage, you have to let them know they're out of step. And if they keep putting politics ahead of hard working Americans, you'll put them out of office," he said. "Tell them it's time to reconsider. Tell them it's time for $10.10. You can tweet at 'em. [Audience laughs] Use hashtag #1010means. Let them know how raising the minimum wage would help you or your family or someone that you know..."
Looking past for a moment the fact that only 16% of U.S. adults use Twitter, there is the glaring disparity between the might of the U.S. President's office, and the command that we tweet our disapproval of Congressional policy.
Really? Is this the best the President can do?
Not to mention that it seems President Obama has learned nothing from the #UnitedforUkraine flap, or the mockery that ensued.
Remember when Samantha Power, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, tweeted on March 13:
I missed the day at law school where self-determination was defined as #Russia-determination. Russia must halt its military action.— Samantha Power (@AmbassadorPower) March 14, 2014
Jen Psaki from the State Department tweeted on March 26:
Columnists mocked #UnitedforUkraine, calling these efforts "hashtag diplomacy" or worse yet, "the hashtag doctrine."
And Russia retaliated with its own tweets under the hashtag #UnitedforUkraine.
On April 24 Jen Psaki from the State Department tweeted:
Twitter erupted, and here's the best response:
It's nice to know our state dept uses the same social media tactics as high school age girls.— Christine Rousselle (@crousselle) April 25, 2014
One does not expect a country as mighty as the United States to respond to problems with - to borrow a phrase - the "same tactics as a teenage girl."