Shakespeare got nothin’.  The Apostle Paul can’t cut it.  Poe, Melville, Steinbeck, Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, Jane Austen, Isaac Asimov, Dr. Seuss – they all don’t rank.

Powerful writers in history jump from Julius Caesar to our Dear Leader.  At least, that’s the take of the head of the National Endowment for the Arts.

This is the first president that actually writes his own books since Teddy Roosevelt and arguably the first to write them really well since Lincoln. If you accept the premise, and I do, that the United States is the most powerful country in the world, then Barack Obama is the most powerful writer since Julius Caesar.

From here, linked from here with a shout-out from Drudge.

I take exception to the assumption that O writes his own books.  Not saying he doesn’t, but I’m more than willing to say that it’s not proven.  In American Thinker, Thomas Lifson writes

The evidence is overwhelming that Bill Ayers ghost-wrote Dreams from my Father, the book which established Obama’s pose as a brilliant writer (and therefore a fine mind, in the estimation of many).

But ignoring that inconvenient possibility, it’s a massive syllogistic stretch to change “the writer with the most power” to “the most powerful writer”.  The first phrase focuses on the person, the second on the writing.  The NEA head is mixing words around for better effect, ignoring how the truth gets messed along the way.

Or maybe not ignoring it.  Maybe the NEA guy is intentionally trying to put Obama on a pedestal next to Caesar.  Obama has been trying to use the NEA to promote his agenda – a conference call got leaked:

One of their main goals on the call, it seems, was to encourage artists to produce works that would reinforce the President’s call for service; specifically through the Serve.Gov web-portal.

So maybe this is a quid pro quo thing, to bring it all back to its Latin roots.

Robert Heinlein, in Time Enough for Love, has his Lazarus Long character say

Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards

Sometimes I feel like washing my hands of this whole mess.