Thursday, November 26, 2009
For a lot of people, this is going to be a scaled back Thanksgiving, and likely a scaled back holiday season in general. Counting your blessings may be a shorter list than it was a year or two ago. But here's one thing I'm thankful for.
For the first time this century, the clown with the fake turkey who liked to dress up like a soldier is not the President of the United States, and that is a very good thing.
I'm also thankful I'm not Barack Obama. He's got the hardest job in the world even under normal circumstances, and these aren't normal circumstances. He came into office with a major financial crash and two wars that aren't going to be "won" by any traditional definition of that word. People are either whining about what he's doing or whining about what he's not doing, and he doesn't have a cheering section the way George W. Bush had Fox News and the idiot end of the conservative wing of the party.
That said, some of the greatest presidents got dealt the worst hands when they stepped into office. Lincoln's election was the last straw that started the Civil War, but the seeds of it had been growing for decades. F.D.R. came into office with The Great Depression already underway, and he really didn't solve it until World War II began. Truman had the end of the war to deal with, though it was nearly over and we were the only ones with The Bomb, Eisenhower had to fix the mess in Korea. On the minus side, both L.B.J.'s and Nixon's legacies are marred by the eventual bad end to Vietnam, a war that was already underway when they took their respective oaths of office, though L.B.J. gets plenty of the blame for turning it into a major fiasco.
Best wishes to all my friends and family this holiday, and to all my readers out their in blogland. Here's hoping for a great long weekend and better days ahead.