Saturday, October 17, 2015

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3342: Barack Obama regarding whether or not Joe Biden will Run for President (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

Yesterday, during a press conference with South Korean President Park Geun-hye, President Obama was asked about the recent Democratic Debate and whether Joe Biden was going to run.

Note that Mr. Obama joked about switching back and forth between baseball games and the debate prior to not answering this question. This is a camouflage. It's a bit like a 16 year old who buys a can of soda, a pack of gum, a bag of chips and some condoms - he's hoping you won't notice. President Obama very often makes humorous comments when he's asked a question on which he knows he will hedge. This allows him to smile at his own initial joke - when a moment later - he's also not be able to suppress his smile when he's telling a lie or not disclosing his full knowledge. And this is exactly what the President's doing here.

During his much of his response discussing Joe Biden, he is suppressing a smile. While the Vice President has been through a deep personal tragedy - right now he's leaning heavily toward running for President. Mr. Obama knows this - and he's having difficulty suppressing his secret.

As he says "... Joe ..." during 0:13

This smile suppression is subtle - and it is betrayed somewhat by his slightly exaggerated lip movements. Please view the video as it allows a much superior appreciation of the dynamics of this expression suppression vs. still images.

0:16 as the President says, "... think ..."

These are just two examples of suppressed smiles in the midst of deception/non-disclosure. In body language parlance this phenomenon is a form of "duping delight" (Ekman).

There are several other nonverbal tells indicating Mr. Obama is keeping a secret - did you spot them?

See also:

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3341: Selena Gomez, Ghosts and Jimmy Fallon

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3247: Barack Obama's Response to Question regarding Revoking Bill Cosby's Presidential Medal of Freedom

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3263: Barack Obama on Jon Stewart's "The Daily Show" - The Sarcastic Bobble  

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3318: Barack Obama and Pope Francis

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2342:  Barack Obama at Jerusalem Convention Center in Israel  What the President's Body Language Says to a Heckler 

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2844: Vladimir Tells a Lie To Obama at Normandy - Body Language Tells 

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2620: President Obama Tells a Couple Fibs - "Norming" Barack's Body Language