You’d think that with all the ranting I did about the Bush Administration over the past eight years that I’d be ecstatic that the nightmare is over and a historic new Presidency is about to begin. Rather than jumping for joy I am actually feeling rather apprehensive. I felt the same way during Bush’s first inauguration. It’s not that I don’t think Obama is a move in the right direction or that he won’t be any better than Bush was, but when it comes to politicians of any kind my cynical side tends to kick in more so than my optimistic side.
Bush’s failure as a leader is as much the fault of the people he surrounded himself with as it is his own. On that score I think Obama has put together a better team than Bush did, but it’s not perfect. The challenges facing this new administration are huge, much more so than what Bush faced when he took office, and there’s only so many hours in the day. On top of all of that there’s the simple fact that Obama is still a human being and not some idealized white knight on a shining horse who can do no wrong.
I have developed over the years a tendency to avoid pinning my hopes on something turning out to be a great thing until I have sufficient evidence to declare it is, in fact, a great thing. I apply this tendency to everything from summer blockbuster movies to meals at new restaurants to Presidents. If you ask me how great the Obama years will be I’ll tell you that I don’t know, but I’m hoping they’ll be at least somewhat decent which shouldn’t be too difficult considering how low the previous President has set the bar. Ask me again in a year and I’ll have the start of an answer. Ask me again in four and I’ll have something more solid to say.