I'm on deadline for a handful of extra-curricular writing assignments, but I can't resist making a few more electoral observations.
Have you noticed how gracious Dubya has been lately? I'm pretty sure he's ready to relieve himself of his Presidential burdens. But I imagine there's more to it than that. In fact, I'm willing to posit that he's genuinely moved by Obama's resounding victory and the history it represents. Of course, this doesn't exonerate him for eight years of terrible domestic and international policy and late-term absenteeism. Still, quotes like this one reflect what may be a genuine humanity:
And that might be the last only positive thing I'll say about 43.
In other news, Obama got his first CIA brief today. He'll receive the same daily updates as Bush from now until he takes the Oath of Office, at which point he'll surely have a few more gray hairs.
Man, the Sarah Palin hits just keep coming. Among other things, she doesn't know Africa is not a country. And what about that little wardrobe spree? Looks like a LOT more than $150,000 was spent. A McCain aide called the Palins “Wasilla hillbillies looting Neiman Marcus from coast to coast.” Oh, and apparently McCain barely spoke to her during their entire run. We knew Palin was a lying fraud; the true shame is that McCain was willing to sacrifice his reputation (and endanger America) in his desperate quest to win the White House. Thankfully, a majority of us weren't stupid enough to fall for it.
Some of Palin's legion of offenses will be served up in the next installment of Newsweek's seven-part, behind-the-scenes look at Campaign '08, "How He Did It." Here's a preview. (If you have some time to spare, you should also check out the first entry, which describes the nascent Obama campaign and reveals some pretty nasty shit about the Hillary Clinton operation.)
Lastly, I don't want to be a downer, but Barry has his work cut out for him. Here's an outline by The Atlantic's Megan McArdle that describes the difficulties President Obama will have in advancing his economic agenda:
"That almost certainly means, at least according
to the crack political team on the panel with me, that we will not get
any sort of cap and trade–an outcome that probably could have been
predicted when gas hit $4. But it makes even potentially popular
things like Obama's health care plan and middle class tax cuts
problematic. The middle class tax cuts are, as far as I can tell,
already stillborn; in today's revenue environment, even reversing the
Bush tax cuts on the wealthy probably wouldn't pay for them. But once
the electorate finds out that the Democrats will not be handing out
free money, not because the Republicans stopped them, but because they
stopped themselves, they're going to find themselves mired in a very
difficult discussion. Interest rates, sovereign debt problems, and the
debt substitution effect do not make good sound bytes."
That said, I'd far rather be a Dem than a Republican at the moment.