Anna Wintour to be a U.S. Ambassador? ‘Ludicrous’!

News broke today that President Obama is considering offering the position of the next U.S. Ambassadorship to Great Britain to Anna Wintour, the editor of fashion magazine Vogue. This caused at least one Brit to call the whole idea “ludicrous.”

Indeed, the offer seems incomprehensible. To offer the ambassadorship to one of our most important allies to a prickly, sullen, misanthrope like Wintour defies logic. Aside from her arrogant, self-important attitude, it doesn’t even appear that she has any qualifications, temperament or otherwise, to take such an important role.

As Nile Gardiner of the British newspaper The Telegraph notes, Wintour doesn’t measure up in stature and intellect to some of our past ambassadors. Noting that John Adams, James Monroe, John Q. Adams, Martin Van Buren, James Buchanan, Andrew Mellon, and W. Averell Harriman were some of our past ambassadors to the Court of St. James’s, Gardiner finds the whole idea of Wintour joining those illustrious Americans a “ludicrous” idea.

Gardiner goes on to point out that Wintour was a huge donor and fundraiser for Obama’s recent re-election contest — she raised some 40 million bucks — but rightly said that raising money should not be the sole qualification for a post that is “hugely important to U.S. interests.” The ambassadorship to Great Britain “should not be seen as a sinecure for donors to presidential campaigns,” Gardiner said.

Another writer for The Telegraph also criticized the President for this trial balloon. Calling Wintour’s appointment “a comic idea,” Thomas Pascoe went on to blast the possible appointment as a horrible idea.

While Wintour for Britain would have been a comic suggestion under any other president, it may well be that the leader of the free world believes he can find his most effective emissaries in the boardroom of Vogue. If he does, the connection between two of the most image-led, substance-light leaderships on earth will be a woman whose life has been spent attempting to give meaning and depth to the facile world of fashion.

You may remember Wintour during the late presidential campaign for her brilliant fundraising idea of holding a drawing for two lucky Obama fans to win a dinner with Wintour, the Obamas and actress Sarah Jessica Parker of the sex-romp cable TV series Sex in the City. The two lucky commoners were to hobnob with the rich and famous in Parker’s New York City home.

But that dinner was not to occur before Wintour gave Parker’s home decor a total makeover. The fashionable New York Apartment was just “too shabby” for Wintour’s tastes. So, she totally redecorated the actress’ home.

Wintour is also well known for being the model of the fictional martinet character in the 2006 movie The Devil Wears Prada. In the film, the shrew-like character based on Wintour was played by Oscar winning actress Meryl Streep.

Wintour has a great reputation for being, shall we say, “regal”? The Vogue editor is famous for her refusal to speak to people she feels are lower than she, for refusing to have anything to do with others in the fashion industry media corps, and for being a horribly demanding and unyielding boss.

She is also as hatefully partisan in her politics as she is arrogant in personal relations. In October of this year, before the election, New Yorkers were buzzing about how Wintour began a campaign of intimidating designers demanding that they refuse to deal with Republicans.

Wintour has been involved in other snubbings, too. In 2010 it was said that Vogue refused to allow the plus-sized actress Gabourey Sidibe appear on its cover because she was just too fat for Anna Wintour’s tastes.

But Wintour’s worst misstep was her commission of a slobbering puff piece of the wife of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad. The absurd piece was headlined “The Rose of the Desert,” and was so bad that the magazine eventually scrubbed the whole thing from its website, sending the loving portrayal of a brutal dictator down the Internet memory hole.

Wintour’s famed fashion magazine explained its decision to include Mrs. Assad in Vogue saying she was “extremely thin and very well-dressed, and therefore qualified” to appear in the magazine. I guess even with the Assad’s massacres, murders, imprisonments, oppressions, and torturing of their own people it didn’t occur to Wintour that such things could be a possible disqualifyer for a glowing feature in the world’s leading fashion magazine.

No wonder Obama thought she was so well qualified to be our next ambassador to Britain. She’s shown such a wonderful history of decision-making, hasn’t she?

In the end, though, Wintour may not even be interested in dropping her role as America’s top fashion editor. In March of this year when she first began to get heavily involved in the Obama campaign, she was asked about taking a role in Washington should Barack win re-election. She shot the idea down saying, “With all the new media outlets out there, with all the noise, a voice of authority and calm like Vogue becomes more important than ever. The more eyes on fashion, the more opinions about fashion, the more exploration of fashion around the world, the better it is for Vogue. Vogue is like Nike or Coca-Cola — this huge global brand. I want to enhance it, I want to protect it, and I want it to be part of the conversation.”

Should she eschew the offer of an ambassadorship to stay at the head of Vogue, the Fashion industry’s gain would be our gain, as well.

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  • Appoint her as Ambassador to North Korea.

    God knows, that whole country could stand a makeover.

    • warnertoddhuston

      Send her to Benghazi. Some don’t seem to return from there.

      • Nah, they’ve got enough problems…

  • cirby

    I understand there’s an Ambassador position open in Libya.

    Sounds like a good fit, although you’ll hear a lot of complaints.

    The Libyans will get over it, though.

  • jim_m

    That news broke yesterday.

    Ambassadorships to major allies are typically figurehead positions and have historically been given to celebrities or party gadflies. Since obama hates the UK it would be perfectly in line for him to foist off on them a hateful windbag like Wintour.

  • 914

    “Aside from her arrogant, self-important attitude, it doesn’t even appear that she has any qualifications, temperament or otherwise, to take such an important role.”

    Just like Obama

  • Commander_Chico

    As usual, even when Warner has a point, he goes too far; into dementia.

    Gabourey Sidhibe should be on the cover of Vogue? Might as well put Warner himself on the cover. I didn’t know there was a right to be on the cover of Vogue.

    I feel sorry for the career foreign service officers who might have to serve under Wintour. Then again, all I know about her is from The Devil Wears Prada. Chick who wrote the book may have been a lazy disgruntled employee.

    Earlier this year, some of my co-workers and friends and I were talking about raising some money and having a lottery to choose who would be the “bundler.” The idea was that if we raised a million or so, we might be able to get an ambassador post in a small Caribbean or Pacific island nation for the winner of the lottery. The rest of us would party with the ambassador. The problem was that the election appeared too close to call, so there was the chance of betting on the loser. So all I spent was $500 on Gary Johnson.

  • lasveraneras

    Gee, we may possibly have an incompetent ambassador! That would be a first. NOT! Let’s take former ambassador to Luxembourg for Obama, Cynthia Stroum, as one example of many. Here’s how the State Department Inspector General report described her “confrontational management style, chronic gaps in senior and other staffing caused by curtailments, and the absence of a sense of direction
    [which]… brought major elements of Embassy Luxembourg to a state of
    dysfunction…” before her resignation. Her “qualifications” for the job? She came from a wealthy Seattle family and dabbled in “angel” investing and entertainment. But mostly she “bundled” $500,000 for Obama’s 2008 campaign. Don’t get the wrong idea. Obama is far from the first president to “reward” non-qualified campaign contributors with choice ambassador posts. Wintour would only be one more in that long line.

    • Commander_Chico

      Aha, now I know you are a bitter former FSO.

  • 914

    Barry is still working out the details..

    Remember nobody read the bill so things like this may pop up.. But when all the details of Barrycare are in action, the whole healthcare system will operate as smooth as a Benghazi consulate under attack.

  • retired.military

    It is amatuer hour at the WH still. I mean Obama is consulting Maddow, Sharpton and MSNBC regarding tax cuts. Economic geniuses there. That is why they are MSNBC hosts because of their economic acumen.

    • Yeah, I saw that…

      First thought – why the hell is he consulting Sharpton on financial stuff?

      Second thought – “Oh, hell – he doesn’t have anyone left that’ll tell him what he wants to hear…”

    • Hour? This has been going on for almost 4 damn years.

  • GarandFan

    Get used to it. Barry likes to reward his friends. Especially those with MONEY.

  • Brucehenry

    Another edition of the Huston Report: “News That Most Likely Will Never Happen.”

  • ackwired

    LOL…it doesn’t sound like this trial balloon got too far off the ground.

    • jim_m

      This was just to distract from the fact that Harry Reid refused to let obama’s fiscal cliff solution to come up for a vote, which means that he probably couldn’t even get all the dems to vote for it.

      Proof that obama’s position is not one of negotiating in good faith.

      • “Proof that Obama’s position is not one of negotiating in good faith.”

        Actually, it is. He’s got a great deal of faith in his “I won” – and that should be all the negotiating leverage anyone needs to get anything done they want… at least, in his little politically incestuous bubble.

        I really think he doesn’t have a clue about the economic realities facing this country – and he doesn’t think there’s any real problem because HE doesn’t see a problem.

        So if there’s no real problem in the first place, why worry? Everything will turn out all right (and by ‘all right’, I mean HE will still have his paycheck and perqs and adoring fan base) no matter what he does.

        • Brucehenry

          So this job offer that is RUMORED to have been made to Wintour is PROOF of Obama’s bad faith? Do you know what the word “proof” means?

          Pontificate some more, Lawson. You’re doing great.

          • I was referring to the fiscal problems, which Obama doesn’t seem to understand. Not Wintour.

            Are you taking reading incomprehension lessons from Carl or something? Or are you just short on coffee? Certainly understandable, considering when you posted… 😉

  • sabbahillel

    Should she eschew the offer of an ambassadorship to stay at the head of Vogue, the Fashion industry’s gain would be our gain

    Actually, this is a mistake. It should read

    Should she eschew the offer of an ambassadorship to stay at the head of Vogue, the Fashion industry’s loss would be our gain

  • Brian_R_Allen

    …. a post that is “hugely important to America’s interests ….

    What Absolute horsesh*t!

    Every so-called “diplomat” (a person able to convincingly repeat “Nice doggy” until an actual American arrived with the Right-Sized Stick) and/or Foreign-er Service-ing savant above the grades of clerk-typist and bicycle messenger have been redundant ever since the Telex was perfected.