Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A new broom

I'm not going to offer some pseudo-philosophical or -sociological or -psychological advice to Mr. Obama as he takes the oath of office today. That's for other people to do. Nor will I offer greeting card sentiments like Barbara Walters famously did to Jimmy Carter ("Be wise with us. Be good to us") - I actually hope no one will do that.

If you read this blog at all regularly, you have certainly seen that I, despite my support of Obama, have questions that I don't feel have been sufficiently answered; in all probability, because they haven't been asked. I don't see how New Energy will lead to a New Economy, I don't get how so many learned people can disregard the real possibility that the stimulus money will leak overseas, I don't fathom why Obama takes the word of self-interested tech CEOs as to what our visa policies should be, I don't understand what we hope to accomplish in Afghanistan that has any relevance to our problems and our concerns.

And I'll go on asking these questions, and see how events answer them, and evaluate the Obama years on those factors.

But today, there is hope that, even if I feel the new president is wrong on some issues, short-sighted on others, he will at least approach the problems that face us with an open and accommodating intellect. I don't expect instant solutions, in some cases I don't expect any at all, but I feel confident that we have elected someone who is, at essence, an adult, who will appreciate the complexity of the tasks that face him and will try his best to surmount the obstacles.

Today is a day to wish this man well, to hope that change is not just a slogan, that the greatest country in the world can start living up to its ideals again. I fervently hope that Washington can once again be seen as a force for good in the world and the country, and that the experiment that is America will again produce the kind of results we have seen before.

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