225px-official_portrait_of_barack_obamaWashington is electric this morning. It is morning in America as literally billions around the world celebrate the Inauguration of our 44th President.

Last night, I made it through the crowds to discuss the torture issue with Rachel Maddow on the mall. For the clip, click here. It was an amazing scene with people braving the cold to take in the historic moment. Let’s pray that principle prevails over politics in the prosecution of war crimes.

The day before we took the kids to the mall for the concert. We were listening to U2 and Bono when they were ushered off stage. My three-year-old Madie said a little peeved about the guy who kicked Bono off stage. I explained it was a guy named Obama but she was not pleased. Not a good start. Rule Number One for a successful presidency: never bump Bono.

Of course the great moment was when we took the kids into the forest near our house to pick up trash as part of the day of service called for by Obama. It was quite moving until I asked Aidan where the trash bad was. He explained that he left it in the forest and we had to discuss the point of the exercise and find the bag. Well, this is a work in progress.

We are having our own Inauguration party (with about 30 kids) with Chicago food today. My 82 year old mother drove on her own through the night from Chicago on an impulse. Have a wonderful Inauguration Day everyone.

70 thoughts on “OUR 44TH PRESIDENT”

  1. “We either deal with total partisans, or persons who view the political scene like rooting for their favorite football team. ”

    There’s a difference between the two?”

    The way I parse it out the partisans actually get something tangible, either in party positions, influence and/or the belief that the “bushies” help them financially/religiously, etc.

    The “football” followers get nothing but screwed personally (if someone’s NFL team gets to the playoffs they raise the ticket and/or concession prices) both financially, sociologically and “governmentally”. They “root” through identification in a way that makes them feel better about themselves and hate the “others.” To me they’re the more to be pitied.

    Now I myself of course root for the Jets, Mets, Knicks and Islanders so my particular masochistic tendencies are as obvious as is my inability to pick a decent team.

  2. Mike S.,

    I truly believe the trolls are content related. They try to direct the blog away from discussion of anything that makes cheneybush nervous. It’s been a consistent pattern. Yesterday, they went crazy after a poster named Jim asked about the possibilty of secret pardons by cheneybush of themselves and BFFs for war crimes. Mostly I believe they are just programs set to flurry post. Sometimes we get people who do at least seem to believe what they are saying.

    I saved Mike A.’s post also, as I have many of yours!

  3. Mike,

    “We either deal with total partisans, or persons who view the political scene like rooting for their favorite football team. ”

    There’s a difference between the two?

  4. Mike A.,
    Your comment was worth saving for the clarity and insight of your thoughts.

    To All,
    Do you notice these trolls proliferate, as do their names, when the commentary gets to the crimes committed and the need for punishing those crimes? We either deal with total partisans, or persons who view the political scene like rooting for their favorite football team. In either event the reality that they gave their wholehearted support to the worst, most corrupt and unpatriotic administration in our history is a truth too hard to bear.

  5. Mike A.

    Thank you your informative synopsis that we all—well, most readers— can comprehend and that we all must follow to ensure a stable democracy comprised of all 3-branches of government.

  6. MIke Appleton:

    You correctly summarize Naomi Wolf’s observation in “The End of America,” where much of the same is set forth. Don’t expect too much from these neo-cons though–they just cut & paste, reading is out of the question.

  7. My thoughts are particularly addressed to beener, kathy m., blaster and winperk. The first step toward tyranny is not the criminalization of political decisions. To the contrary, tyranny takes root when politicians determine that their decisions constitute the law, that is, when the executive branch, for example, assumes unto itself the roles of the legislature and the courts as well. The so-called unitary executive is simply an academic euphemism for the doctrine that all authority (and the power that goes with it) resides in the president. This was Nixon’s thesis in reality, and Dick Cheney learned it well. The second step toward tyranny is stealth government. Nixon’s mistake was in leaving a trail; Cheney acted in secret. No tape recordings, no emails. The third step is to convince a people that the executive’s actions are necessary to protect us from horrors which cannot be described for reasons of national security. This is accomplished by spreading fear and engendering a distrust of anyone who asks questions. The final step is to secure the complete submission of the legislative and judicial branches. The first part is easy; pass these laws to protect our nation or you are not a patriot. The judicial branch is a much tougher nut to crack because its independence and occasional courage can be counted on sometimes (but not always)to put the brakes on an out-of-control executive. I have observed the progress of tyranny in this country for eight years. The partial success of George Bush and Dick Cheney is demonstrated by the fact that they have, with the willing and almost fawning assistance of lawyers, I am ashamed to say, created such a muddled view of the laws of war and our treaty obligations that people like you folks now feel free to criticize a oommitment to the rule of law as the “criminalization of political decisions.” While your ignorance of what has transpired is perhaps understandable, it is not defensible. We have but two choices before us. We can either reassert the primacy of the rule of law by enforcement, or we can ratify lawlessness as a people. To my mind, at least, the correct choice is not even debatable.

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