Barack Obama is an odd bird in American presidential politics. Not because he's black, but because he is so far out of the norm that he doesn't instinctively follow all the standard moves. American politicians have a certain standard set of rituals, just as American baseball players do. A Russian shot-putter who switched to baseball would just look different.
The examples of Obama's subtle oddities are many. The biggest ones are his deep, public bows to foreign potentates, an act that alienates him from more than two centuries of American public behavior. Those showy bows were not accidental.
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