Wednesday, on the first episode of “The Michelle Obama Podcast” on Spotify, the former first lady took an apparent swipe at President Donald Trump by praising her husband, former President Barack Obama “as a former president who reads and knows history.”
Partial transcript as follows:
BARACK OBAMA: Young people are idealistic as they have ever been. I think they are more idealistic now than they were when I was growing up. The difference though is that idealism that they feel as if they can channel it outside of governmental structures and outside of politics.
The problem is, again we’re getting a pretty good lesson in this right now, there’s some things we just can’t do by ourselves or even groups of us can do by ourselves. As general proposition: we can’t build infrastructure by ourselves, we can’t deal with a pandemic by ourselves.
MICHELLE OBAMA: We can’t effectively educate the public by ourselves, through individual schools…
BARACK OBAMA: There just certain things that you have to do collectively cause they’re too big, they’re too expensive. At the end of the day, I think that people are going to be…
MICHELLE OBAMA: You think that they are going to do the right thing?
BARACK OBAMA: I think folks are going to do the right thing.
MICHELLE OBAMA: You think they’re gonna vote? [Laughs]
BARACK OBAMA: You… You know me… I’m just…
MICHELLE OBAMA: You are the eternal optimist. You’re the ‘Yes, We Can!’ man!
BARACK OBAMA: [Laughs] I’m the ‘Yes, We Can!’ man. I am the ‘audacity of hope’ guy. You know…
MICHELLE OBAMA: Yeah. What’s the alternative? That’s the thing…
BARACK OBAMA: And that’s the point.
MICHELLE OBAMA: Cynical as I can be in this… in the end I… I agree. We don’t have an alternative.
BARACK OBAMA: I think where we disagree is usually you just think things just have to get super, super bad before folks figure stuff out.
MICHELLE OBAMA: Well, I hope we’re at that point.
BARACK OBAMA: I’m always thinking… You know what maybe we can learn a little bit…
MICHELLE OBAMA: No… we’ll figure it out before we crash into the Sun.
BARACK OBAMA- [Laugh] Before…
MICHELLE OBAMA: We’re getting close, Will Robinson, pull out! And it’s like, “Nah, it’s not hot enough…”
BARACK OBAMA: [Laughs] Will Robinson… See that’s a reference that anybody under fifty will not recognize.
MICHELLE OBAMA: Our older viewers will know Lost in Space. That’s okay. But I tend to agree. When in doubt, rely on hope.
BARACK OBAMA: Might as well.
MICHELLE OBAMA: Because, well as you pointed out as a former president who reads and knows history. Let’s just take moment to pause and think about that.
But as that person, you understand the arc of progress. We are moving toward more inclusivity, more openness, more we-ness. It’s not an easy trajectory.
Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN