It seems that Kanye West is ready and willing to express aloud whatever he is thinking at any given moment.
Within a recent one-week span, the rap star appeared at an international advertising festival in France, made his way to Tennessee after honeymooning in Mexico, performed at a music event in the Volunteer State, and jetted off for further stops in Miami and New York.
The hip-hop artist, who currently refers to himself as Yeezus, is forever making headlines in the entertainment press and beyond. In fact, he has become quite famous for his spontaneous utterances, and ever since he and reality-show queen Kim Kardashian became husband and wife, his media megaphone has been ratcheting up to a higher and higher volume.
While appearing on a Left Coast radio station, Kanye seemed to take aim at the current occupant of the White House. In an interview on Los Angeles’ Power106 FM, he said of President Barack Obama, “You can’t effect change from inside the White House like that . . . You gotta have the money.”
Reporters interpreted his words as having knocked Obama for his presidential track record, the implication being that in Kanye’s apparent belief, change cannot generally be achieved directly from the Oval Office.
Moments after making the first statement, Kanye shifted gears and focused on a different form of currency that he thought was needed in addition to cash in order to prompt change.
“Good ideas usually aren’t connected to money as much . . . Creativity and extreme genius are extremely cheap,” he said.
He seemed to be suggesting that bona fide change could not be achieved without first having an infusion of cash as well as a cachet of inspired intellect.
Kanye and the president have an interesting sort of history of trading barbs. On one occasion, during an appearance at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs), the rapper jumped onstage and interrupted country music star Taylor Swift as she was giving her acceptance speech for Best Female Video. Following the incident, the president referred to Kanye as a “jackass.”
As if to insure that the nation had indeed heard him correctly, Obama made the derogatory remark a second time.
Kanye later indicated that at the VMAs he was attempting to make a statement about African-American musicians who, in his opinion, had been snubbed at awards shows. He defended himself for interrupting Swift at the VMAs, insisting that, rather than Swift, it was Beyonce who actually deserved the award.
“Everybody thought I was so crazy,” Kanye said. “Am I the only one who’s not crazy?”
During the same radio interview on the L.A. station, Kanye went on to boast of his own “creativity and extreme genius” as he compared himself to Apple founder Steve Jobs. Kanye had been the keynote speaker at the aforementioned gathering for the advertising industry. It was there that he had said, “Steve Jobs, as everyone knows, was my biggest influence. Just seeing the way he fought to make things easier for people. After he passed, I made it my life's mission to do what he did inside of that company.”
The rapper, who appears to suffer no shortage of self-esteem, gave a description of his newfound Jobs-influenced philosophy.
“I dream to help raise the palate and raise the taste level of a generation and also be involved with the production and distribution and advertising of that thing everyone's begging for,” Kanye said.
He also noted during the same radio interview that those who criticize him for comparing himself to Jobs are not really getting the true meaning of his statements.
“Don’t worry about how I’m saying what I’m saying,” Kanye said. “Look at what I’m saying and how I feel and how my intent is.”
While the meaning of the rap star’s words are still not altogether clear, he did issue a warning to anyone who might be inclined to criticize his rhetoric.
“You do not want to go against the power,” Kanye cautioned. “I’m working on one mission, and that’s a mission from God.”
James Hirsen, J.D., M.A., in media psychology, is a New York Times best-selling author, media analyst, and law professor. Visit Newsmax TV Hollywood. Read more reports from James Hirsen — Click Here Now.
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