January 20, 2009

The sun rises on the Obama presidency... in Washington... here, from my outpost in Madison, Wisconsin, I'm live-blogging.

1:01: This ends the live-blogging of the inauguration. Thanks for hanging out with me this morning. Thanks for experiencing this Great Moment in History here on the blog.

1:00: I listened again to the oath. In fact, Roberts puts "faithfully" after "President of the United States" the first time as well as the second. And I've set up a separate post to discuss the great Oath Botch of 2009.

12:53: The Obamas walk the Bushes to the helicopter. There are warm gestures and embraces. I wish the address itself had shown similar respect to Mr. Bush.

12:37: The Chief Justice in fact screwed up the oath. The Constitution requires:
"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."
Roberts left out the word "faithfully." (He also said "President to the United States.") Obama saw the mistake and stopped himself to give Roberts a chance to fix it. Roberts redid the line, remembering to throw in "faithfully," but putting it in the wrong place — after "President of the United States" — and, this time, Obama went along with the wording. Close enough, I guess he figured. I wonder what Barack Obama was thinking. Maybe: Some textualist you turned out to be!

12:28: "Someone is stitching up a hem"... someone is inflicting poetry on us.

12:26: To my ear, the address wasn't particularly interesting or inspiring. It listed problems, promised solutions, and then went on about an icy stormy journey to freedom. Eh. Anyway, my big question is: Who screwed up the oath, Roberts or Obama? Did Roberts get the words wrong, then compound the error by trying to correct Obama when Obama had it right?

12:25: Here's a new post to talk about the address — which had a lot of storm imagery.

12:18: To the world he says: "We are ready to lead once more." That's an unbecoming attack on George Bush.

12:14: "We will harness the sun" = first comically grandiose statement of the new Prez.

12:11: The inaugural address begins on a strikingly sour note. We have so many problems. In the election we chose hope over "fear" — rather harsh toward John McCain. And now it's time to "put aside childish things." That is a Biblical reference, but in context, he seems to be calling the previous administration childish. Or is he referring to the partisan squabbles, in which case it's most properly a swipe at his own party?

12:05: "I, Barack Hussein Obama, do solemnly swear..." Obama inverts some words, and there's some incongruous flubbing of the oath around the placement of the word "faithfully."

12:03: Sasha is fidgeting. Me too. CNN does a closeup on a black man's face in the crowd. He almost has a tear in his eye. You know they were trying their best to get a black face with a nice photogenic tear.

12:02: Wolf Blitzer whispers over the music: "Barack Obama is now the President of the United States."

12:01: Ahem!

11:59: In fulfillment of the Constitution, the new President must be sworn in at noon. But first, Itzhak Perlman and Yo-Yo Ma must saw out some notes written by John Williams. Get on with it guys. I want the oath in the right minute.

11:57: Justice John Paul Stevens administers the oath of office to Joe Biden.

11:55: Aretha Franklin, in a historically fabulous gray hat with a giant, jeweled bow, belts out "My Country 'Tis of Thee." Bells chime.

11:49: Rick Warren is called to give the invocation. I hear a boo from the crowd. Warren's prayer tells us that God is One and that Martin Luther King Jr. "shouting in Heaven" because an African-American has been elected President. Warren asks for forgiveness and guidance. He asks that all join together for a more just nation and a peaceful world. He commits Obama and his family to God's care. And now, as "Jesus taught us to pray": the Lord's Prayer. (So I was wrong at 7:29.)

11:47: Dianne Feinstein: "the renewed call to greatness."

11:43: "Barack H. Obama" is announced to the crowd. A chant breaks out: "O-ba-ma O-ba-ma..."

11:39: Barack Obama, looking a bit as though he's in a trance, with a blissful smile on his face. The weight of the world is about to be laid on his shoulders. Who can imagine how that feels?

11:36: "Hail to the Chief" plays for President George Bush — for the last time.

11:33: George Bush looks happy.

11:26: On CNN, there's a lot of talk about the way Jill Biden told Oprah that Joe Biden was given his choice of Vice President or Secretary of State. So, Mr. Gaffe is married to his soul mate!

11:24: It's Malia and Sasha! Malia has a beautiful, very adult-looking royal blue coat with a black scarf. Sasha is wearing a hot pink coat with a bright orange scarf and an orange layer underneath. I love the way the 2 girls have completely different styles — Malia, ladylike, and Sasha, girlish. I picture a million little girls gravitating toward one style or the other. How many little girls who love pink will be adding bright orange accents now? How many will move on to the sophistication of dark blue and black?

11:19: The official announcer mispronounces "Rosalyn" — in a loud booming voice. George H.W. Bush says "It's cold out here."

11:14: The former Presidents arrive. George H.W. Bush walks haltingly. Jimmy and Rosalyn look pretty sprightly. Bill and Hillary! Hillary's got a royal blue coat — similar to her 1993 inaugural outfit — sans the conspicuous hat.

11:06: They really need some fashion commentators. There are all these fabulous clothes, and the journalists are fumbling, asking the women journalists to say something — as if ovaries pump information about fabrics and designers. Duh... it's yellow. On one channel, someone was saying he'd consulted "the makeup ladies" and they said Michelle's dress was "brocade" so they were going with that. Embarrassing, inane, and sexist. Get an expert.

11:02: The Supreme Court Justices file out onto the stands. Chief Justice John Roberts is squinting in the sunlight. There's a hot mike somewhere, and we hear Justice Scalia comment: "I never saw so many people." Breyer's wearing wraparound earmuffs. Sandra Day O'Connor is there too. Clarence Thomas looks happy. Think he voted for Obama?

10:51: Motorcade!

10:48: Oh! Dick Cheney is in a wheelchair. I'm sure he'll walk again. It'll look like this:



10:42: Ted Kennedy! He looks good — in a big black fedora and a baby blue scarf. He's one of various people we've seen gradually filling up the VIP section of the stands.

10:08: "A lot of white people. A lot of Asians. This is really a diverse crowd." The wisdom of Wolf Blitzer. But, hey, cool — isn't it? — that "a lot of white people" ends up as a comment on diversity. Still, silly to think that anyone could imagine that Obama's fan base is mainly black people. Hello? There aren't enough black people to make it to the presidency on your popularity with black people.

9:54: A choir is singing. A red carpet is laid down. Barack Obama and Michelle Obama emerge from The Beast. They encounter the Bushes. Michelle has a ribboned box. Has she brought a cake? I hope she brought an assortment!

9:50: Barack and Michelle emerge from the church. The blessings of God are upon them — as they crawl back into The Beast. The next stop is the White House, for coffee with George and Laura. David Gergen intones that — in their manner of handing off the White House — the Bushes have been "classy." The Beast pulls up to the portico.

9:31: CNN news flash: Barack Obama is a human being and the laws of nature have not been repealed. Don't count on 100% magic.

9:15: On Wisconsin Public Radio just now, they were getting some man-on-the-street opinion in Madison. One woman enthused that it was the greatest day in her life, and some guy said today is the "epitome" of his whole life. Then, they told us, not everyone is caught up in all this bubbly good feeling and interviewed a young man who groused that he wasn't convinced we are really going to get change. Yes, this is Madison, Wisconsin, where the people who are pissy about the inauguration are the big lefties. Welcome to my world!

8:48: It's Barack Obama! The camera has been aimed at a green canvas enclosure for so long and then suddenly: It's him! And Michelle, in a glittery sunshine yellow coated dress. They're on their way to church. Episcopal Church. They get into a car that we're told is called "The Beast."

8:38: What would all this feel like if it were the inauguration of John McCain? Of course, some people would be happy, but it would look somber, if not profoundly depressing, on television.

8:32: In the comments, Paul Zrimsek says: "I don't know why no one's been commenting on this, but apparently Obama plans to leave the Office of the President-elect vacant after he's inaugurated! Can democracy survive with a power vacuum at such a high level?"

8:28: In the comments, Palladian is contrasting the media coverage of this inauguration and the last one. Sample comment: "Enjoy the lefties farting red, white and blue flowers while it lasts. As soon as the the correct candidate loses again, the flags will furl and the bile will flow once again in this Dark Empire."

8:21: An experiment with biological/chemical weapon goes gruesomely awry for al Qaeda. Yes, laugh all you want and speculate about whether this will make al Qaeda fans think maybe God's not on their side, but this is a glimpse of what they mean to do to us. George Bush did whatever he did to protect us from those devils, and some people fail to appreciate it when nothing happens. To make this properly part of this inauguration live-blog, do I need to add some message to Obama? I think the message is too obvious to need stating.

8:01: Speaking of change: I've rearranged the entries in this post, in reverse chronological order. Suddenly, after all these years of live-blogging, the scrolling down to get to the new stuff is annoying me. Please enjoy and don't be confused by the new format.

7:57: On CNN, Bow Wow says "It's beautiful" and "We can make the world a better place" and "I'm living in history — something I can tell my kids."

7:41: "Breaking News: Crowds Arrive Early." That just rolled onto the screen with silly urgency. But the silliness factor is high with the "Fox and Friends" people. One of them just said, to incoming White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs: "You've got big high heels to fill" and "You will be the first administration in HD." See? Those 2 things make his job hard. He's replacing a woman — Dana Perino — and the camera is going to show his every pimple and wrinkle. I hadn't focused — not even with low definition — on the new press secretary. It's funny that with all the earnest diversity of the new administration, the man chosen as the President's face to the media looks like the guy central casting would send over if you asked for a typical white man. Is it okay to use the phrase "typical white man"?

7:29: "Warren Invocation: Will he use Jesus' name?" That's the topic of discussion on Fox News. I had the sound off, so I don't know what they were saying, but I'll give my answer. He will not. He will be generous and inclusive and use his own trademark theme: that God has a purpose for us all and that it is for us to discern God's purpose for us and fulfill it. Here are some religion and the inauguration questions from me: Do you think God has a purpose for Barack Obama? If so, is it because you think Obama is a special gift to America and the world or because you — like Rick Warren — think that God has a purpose for each of us? Do you think Barack Obama tries to understand God's purpose for him and to fulfill it? Do you think George Bush did? Do you want the President to think like that? Do you think it violates the Establishment Clause?

7:14: "My hope for him is my hope for the country. If he fails, the country fails. He knows and he says, 'Not me, but you. Not us, but all of us.' " I heard that a few moments ago on NPR's Morning edition. The quote is from Ella Mae Johnson, a 105-years-old black woman who's attending the inauguration. I noticed the kind inclusiveness of all her words. She said: "I have experienced some of the terrible things that happened to groups, to us and to others. There are people who believe because you were different, you were less than."

7:09: I'm doing the time stamps in Washington time, which is not my usual style, as a tribute to our beautiful young President. I'm switching around amongst the cable news channels. They're all doing continuous coverage of the inauguration — with shots of various glowing buildings in the dawn light — required rephrasing: the dawn's early light — and smiling people — waving a flag is the way to get a closeup on CNN.

7:06 Eastern Time: Everything is fresh and new — except the wars, the economic disaster, and so forth — and let's hope — buzzword: hope — it's going to be good.

314 comments:

1 – 200 of 314   Newer›   Newest»
Glen said...

...waving a flag is the way to get a closeup on CNN."

Today only

hdhouse said...

hey glen...why, on a day when we celebrate the fruits of the right to vote does the first post on here have to be a cheap shot.

In case you didn't read about it, the MSM is only what you want to believe it is, and not what you are lead to believe.

Just enjoy the moment. Ann painted it wonderfully.

Glen said...

Celebrating "the fruits of the right to vote" and celebrating CNN are two very different things. The comments stands.

Palladian said...

"hey glen...why, on a day when we celebrate the fruits of the right to vote does the first post on here have to be a cheap shot."

Now the car is passing the designated protesters' section. There's a banner that calls for impeachment and says "guilty of war crimes." A lot of people are holding up signs with a picture of Bush and the words "worst President ever." Someone is holding up a yellow frowny face. There's a lot of fist shaking. There are Bush supporters on the other side of the street, and each group is trying to out-shout the other. It's quite loud. Beyond the designated protesters' area, we see an occasional protester with his back turned on the motorcade. Two guys standing side by side hold cards that say "liar" high above their heads.

Palladian said...

Titter.

AllenS said...

I'm confused. Are we celebrating the right to vote, or an inauguration? The last time Bush was inaugurated, did we celebrate the right to vote?

Palladian said...

About 200 people from Wisconsin traveled by bus through the night Wednesday and early Thursday to participate in the Turn Your Back on Bush protest at the inaugural parade.

Geez, nobody commented on anything at Althouse back then. Were comments turned off?

Palladian said...

"I'm confused. Are we celebrating the right to vote, or an inauguration? The last time Bush was inaugurated, did we celebrate the right to vote?"

The right to vote is only celebrated when the correct candidate wins, AllenS. American flags are only proudly waved when the correct candidate wins. America is only a great nation when the correct candidate wins. Sense a pattern? Enjoy the lefties farting red, white and blue flowers while it lasts. As soon as the the correct candidate loses again, the flags will furl and the bile will flow once again in this Dark Empire.

Bissage said...

(1) Yesterday on CNN, I saw/heard the World's Most Inane Talking Heads Blather EVAR!!1!1!!®

No, really. The best

The head talking head asks a question about the “miracle” of a peaceful transition of power and one of the lesser talking heads starts talking about the way Barack Obama has been “reaching out.”

I am not making this up.

(2) So . . . good luck with that live-blogging thing.

But here’s a little word of advice.

** whispers in ear **

Zantac.

(3) [Our scene opens with the Thanksgiving Day parade being broadcast on TV.]

ANNOUNCER 1: Uh oh, here comes our friend, Bullwinkle J. Moose.

HOMER: [watching TV from home] Heh Heh Heh. Bullwinkle's antler sprung a leak.

ANNOUNCER 1: Uh oh, looks like ol' Bullwinkle's kinda gotten a taste of his own medicine. Ha Ha.

ANNOUNCER 2: He certainly does, Bill.

ANNOUNCER 1: Ha Ha. Wait . . . what did . . . Did what I say make any sense?

ANNOUNCER 2: Well . . . no, not really Bill.

ANNOUNCER 1: Boy, now I know how the Pilgrims felt!

AllenS said...

Thanks, Palladian, it's all so clear to me now.

Palladian said...

Here's my prayer that everything will go off without a hitch today and that everyone will be safe. I think it's all a bit overdone and unseemly given the current state of the economy but people do need to get this out of their system. Today's the day to have your fun. Tomorrow when the parties are over, Obama's going to face some huge responsibilities and some seemingly intractable problems. As I said last night, good luck to him and Godspeed to us all.

Paul Zrimsek said...

I don't know why no one's been commenting on this, but apparently Obama plans to leave the Office of the President-elect vacant after he's inaugurated! Can democracy survive with a power vacuum at such a high level?

bearbee said...

The sun rises on BO's presidency tomorrow morning. Of course BO's actions in the past several weeks would have lead one to believe that the sun had already risen on his presidency.

I think it's all a bit overdone and unseemly given the current state of the economy...

Unseemly, overdone and proloooooonged

LoafingOaf said...

Bush had already been prez for one term by 2005, and it was a highly controversial first term. Obama hasn't been prez for one day yet. What exactly would protesters have to protest at today's event?

But the bitter right-wingers of Althouse's comments want their excuse to piss on the parade.

That's okay. A majority of Americans are feeling happy, relieved, and optimistic today.

God bless America and good luck President Obama. :)

HelenParr said...

I am grateful for our country's history of the peaceful transfer of power. We live in the greatest country on earth.

Hoosier Daddy said...

hey glen...why, on a day when we celebrate the fruits of the right to vote does the first post on here have to be a cheap shot.

That's really rich coming from you.

HelenParr said...

Is it okay to use the phrase "typical white man"?

I was a little shocked that that typical white man was asked about what Obama might've been thinking looking at his new residence from Blair House. And that typical white man said something to the effect of "I'll bet he's glad he doesn't have to mow that lawn."

When in the course of human events has Barack Obama ever had to do lawn work? Holy smokes that struck me as a bad/stupid/inappropriate thing to say.

carlosxn said...

Answers to Warren questions: yes, latter, don't know/hope so, yes, yes, no.

Palladian said...

"What exactly would protesters have to protest at today's event?"

They always think of something, don't they?

"But the bitter right-wingers of Althouse's comments want their excuse to piss on the parade."

Is Sarah Palin's Pussy going to be accompanying you to the "parade" today, StinkingLoaf?

Palladian said...

"That's okay. A majority of Americans are feeling happy, relieved, and optimistic today."

Kind of like one feels after they take a particularly satisfying dump.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I am grateful for our country's history of the peaceful transfer of power. We live in the greatest country on earth.

Indeed we do but for the 'wingnut' crowd, such sentiment is old news. Obama's election and inauguration must be a realy epiphany for the moonbat left who for the last eight years have been screaming that Bush/Cheney have shredded the Constitution and turned the US into a police state.

I for one hope Obama does well because if he fails, we all fail.

AllenS said...

I'm not sure what a typical white man is, but a typical white person is a grandmother.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Kind of like one feels after they take a particularly satisfying dump.

Palladian, are you channelling Titus?

You're scaring me ;-)

HelenParr said...

Recalibrate your time stamps, please.

Hoosier Daddy said...

When in the course of human events has Barack Obama ever had to do lawn work?

Indeed. That's what the undocumented American community is for.

rhhardin said...

Another incomprehensible ceremony. TV is responsible.

Obama thinks the country consists of morons, to judge from what he says, his postures, his for-TV schtick.

He may or not turn out okay but all the signs are: vote for anybody else.

TV is just hitching on. Revenue is revenue.

But who the hell buys all this crap? A mystery.

It must be like remembering birthdays.

Palladian said...

"What exactly would protesters have to protest at today's event?"

Wait, didn't you so proudly tell us that you were planning to spend Investiture Day at some sort of protest? What gives? Sarah Palin's Pussy out on your porch and you're afraid to go outside?

Palladian said...

"Obama thinks the country consists of morons, to judge from what he says, his postures, his for-TV schtick."

Well, he was elected, after all.

rhhardin said...

Imus reports email to his two black comedians last night, asking if they wanted the day off.

Tony Powell emails back he'd like Wednesday off, because he'll be tired from looting.

Ambiguously a slam at who? One at a stereotype; two at an actual black community that ought to shape up.

Black celebration seems a different sort; finally we get ours. They're about 40 years behind.

The world has been waiting on them.

Ann Althouse said...

@Palladian -- After a short experiment with comments in 2004 -- which ended when I concluded they were a disaster -- the comments were off until April 8, 2008 -- when I turned them on again, for reasons explained here.

LoafingOaf said...

The protest over the murder of Sean Levert by Cuyahoga County jail, and the racism in the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor's Office documented by the Cleveland Plain Dealer, was yesterday, MLK Day. Some people only care about the abuses at Gitmo, far away, while abuses are rampant in their jails right at home. But, with all the hope and change going on, perhaps things will change. God bless America, and good luck President Obama. :)

AllenS said...

I looked at you comments from the link that you provided. Not one of the commenters at the link comments here today.

Simon said...

LoafingOaf said...
"What exactly would protesters have to protest at today's event?"

Your people would have protested had our gal won, so shut your pie hole, you sanctimonious shithead.

Palladian said...

"I looked at you comments from the link that you provided. Not one of the commenters at the link comments here today."

How can you be sure?

dun...dun...DUNNNN!!

LoafingOaf said...

Now, Palladian, drop the shit about Palin (we didn't want lipstick on a pig) and get back to your groaning over how expensive and overdone the celebration is. That's always the talking point of the most pathetically tiring partisans over stuff like this, and somehow I knew that would be one of your first talking points of the morning.

AllenS said...

Correction:

I looked at your comments from the link that you provided. Not one of the commenters at the link uses the same name today.

hdhouse said...

simon, get up on the other side of the bed for a change...not the side that you hit your head on wall each time.

If the comments here are any indication of the viper poison the uberalles right wing here has in store for the country then we are indeed in Rush Limbaugh fantasy land.

What is up with you people? Do you wake up hating? Is stupidity and weenie-cheap-shots your coin of the realm?

so is it his race that bothers you so much? perhaps that he indeed is smart (for a change)? or he speaks English that is over your heads? What gives?

Ann is doing a service and an this event is indeed the fruits of the right to vote...there are darn few countries that have it to our degree and that it survives such as the likes of the attitude of the hatred on this board proves forever and a day that our system can survive anything...even your holy mr. b.

Ann Althouse said...

@HelenParr -- Am I missing something?

AllenS said..."I looked at you comments from the link that you provided. Not one of the commenters at the link comments here today."

Like the population as a whole, it's a fluid group with an appearance of stability. New people enter, old people leave, and at some point, maybe everyone is gone.

Michael H said...

It's my birthday today, so don't let it overshadow that other event in DC. Thanks.

I see where Russ Feingold wants Obama to immediately cede some powers of the presidency back to Congress.

Because Congress is so wise and all.

What a dumb idea. Typical Feingold nonsense.

LoafingOaf said...

Your people would have protested had our gal won, so shut your pie hole, you sanctimonious shithead.

Oh, no! Is Simon as drunk this morning as he was on election night? Remember how you started going on about how you can't even look at someone who voted for Obama, and have dumped friends over it? LOL!!

I don't dislike John McCain nearly as much as those creepy Christianists in the Religious Right you're always sucking up to do. In fact, some of them just wanted McCain to win on the hope that, given his age, he'd kick the bucket and Palin would take over.

If Palin were about to become VP, I'd be praying every day that nothing happened to McCain. But, then, I'm praying nothing happens to Obama to make Biden prez, too.

Simon said...

hdhouse said...
"What is up with you people? Do you wake up hating?"

Is that self-parody?

"so is it his race that bothers you so much?"

At least you're honest about it: under the hood of most Obama supporters seems to be someone desperate to cry racism at anyone who disagrees with them. It is, after all, so effective a way to shut down debate. At least, it used to be.

Simon said...

Hoosier Daddy said...
"I for one hope Obama does well because if he fails, we all fail."

I've heard that bandied around, but it seems like an unexamined assumption; it depends, of course, on what is meant by failure and success. If failure means failing to protect the country from another attack, who could disagree; but if failure means failing to implement his agenda, I must disagree that his failing means our failure. Quite the contrary, to my mind.

Hoosier Daddy said...

What is up with you people? Do you wake up hating? Is stupidity and weenie-cheap-shots your coin of the realm?

Looks like hdhouse took his irony pill this morning.

Michael H said...

Althouse, you need to take the sacred and revered Althouse blogger phazer photon ray gun out of its safe in the sub-basement of stately Althouse manor, climb onto the roof parapet, set the gun for "civil" and "max power", then spray the assembled commenting throng for at least thirty seconds.

HelenParr said...

@AnnAlthouse: I noticed the time stamps were mixed (some EDT, some CDT), but it must've been when you were shuffling your posts. It appears correct now. Thanks.

Simon said...

Michael H, I think Cheney got his number in the quote restated in that article. It's nice that Congress disapproves of all this, but that's not a luxury the grownups enjoy.

MadisonMan said...

I just don't get the need to participate in an historic event, but that's me. Go somewhere to be part of a huge throng? Wait forever to be waited on at a restaurant? Wait in line for a bathroom? Be cold outside? No thanks. I do appreciate the orderly transition of power. That is very inspiring to read about, but go there -- like some of my neighbors -- to be part of it? I have to ask: Why?

I think the day would be more interesting if the storm off the east coast were about 200 miles farther northwest, giving DC a nice big dump of snow. Oh well. Obama 1, Weather 0.

Hoosier Daddy said...

are darn few countries that have it to our degree and that it survives such as the likes of the attitude of the hatred on this board proves forever and a day that our system can survive anything.

Again the irony is delicious. Considering you pretty much viewed the last 8 years as a fascist police state, it's remarkable that it somehow dissapated when your favorite was elected. Oh wait, how could Der Fuhrer Bush allowed such a thing to happen? Is it possible that all the hateful frothing you've spewed was nothing more than the tantrum of a 2 year old?

Certainly looks that way.

I don't hate Obama. I don't like his politics. Period. Evidently that constitutes hatred in your book but I have to remind myself to consider the source.

Hoosier Daddy said...

If failure means failing to protect the country from another attack, who could disagree;

I should have clarified. That is what I meant.

MadisonMan said...

Your people would have protested had our gal won

Did McCain have a sex change?

Long ago, I posted a caution: Beware the VP candidate that outshines the person at the top of the ticket. Did you listen?

knox said...

That's always the talking point of the most pathetically tiring partisans over stuff like this

... like the money (supposedly) spent on Sarah Palin's wardrobe, for example? And that was just the RNC's money, not the taxpayers.

Original George said...

Professor--

I'm surprised that you conclude that al-Qaeda is responsible for biowarfare deaths of its members.

There are surely lots of countries--including Algeria and its generals and Pakistan and its mafioso lords--that might just not share our civilized niceties about the use of biological weapons in the rather remote mountains of Tizi Ouzou province in eastern Algeria where no one from NPR is going to investigate.

It could be that our side is sending a warning to the people we don't like in Afghanistan and Pakistan. After all, you can't bomb remote stone-age mountain villages into submission. Both we and the Russians have tried that. Perhaps the Pakistanis are going to go a different route.

"There were even reports that the British were practicing what we would now term biological warfare, by deliberately spreading the disease [of smallpox] within Boston and by sending infected people out of the city to spread the epidemic in the American lines. Washington was forced to forbid refugees from Boston to come near the American camp." (mountvernon.org)

In war, people end up doing what works, not what's moral.

traditionalguy said...

It's a brave new world adawning on the Potomac. From Mt Vernon down to Yorktown the old slave quarters remind us what "starting at the bottom and working your way up" means. May God bless good men and women from every racial inheritance blessed to be here today in one country under God.

Ron said...

I must admit I haven't farted red, white, and blue flowers since Nixon told me he was The One!

Simon said...

I like Volokh's idea, myself - a novel wherein an "international incident on inauguration day triggers a constitutional crisis revolving around the fact that the Amendment doesn't tell us what time zone will be the reference point [for purposes of the 20th amendment]." Silly, but fun.

Simon said...

knox said...
"like the money (supposedly) spent on Sarah Palin's wardrobe, for example? And that was just the RNC's money, not the taxpayers'."

And wasn't spent by Palin in any event. What did these people think, that they gave her a gold card and she went off shopping? Did the critics really believe that?

Michael H said...

Good grief!

Can't you partisans just shut up for a few hours and enjoy the peaceful transition of power and accompanying pomp and circumstance?

Seriously, just knock off the hatred and vitriol for a bit of time today.

Ann Althouse said...

Hey, why didn't anyone tell me I'd typo'd "Wisonsin" in the post heading?

Glenn Reynolds emailed me about it. Embarrassing!

Ann Althouse said...

@HelenParr. Thanks. Weird. I thought I shuffled them all at the same time.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Can't you partisans just shut up for a few hours and enjoy the peaceful transition of power and accompanying pomp and circumstance?

Yawn. Just woke up at 5:30 and the coffee is ready. I'm thanking my lucky stars that it's Pacific Time here and the Pomp and Cirucimstance will soon be over. Bbefore lunch.....I hope. But I fear that we are not going to be so lucky and it will be Obama all the time all over the place. I'm afraid if I open the fridge for cream for the coffee.....Obama or a slobbering Chris Matthews will pop out.

Yes. It is wonderful that we have elections instead of military coups. It is remarkable that finally a person of ethinicity has been elected President. It is definitely something to be proud of.

However.... suddenly.... the whining left that has been throwing temper tantrums galore for the last 8 years and who have been actively and deliberately trying to bring down an administration and destroy our country......want us to all give peace a chance. They wonder why we all can't just get along and be 'happy shinning people'. They NOW want us to have an ephiphany "Because together we can, together we are, and together we will be the change that we seek.”

'Scuse me if I don't see the light and don't get all tingly.

The Drill SGT said...

HelenParr said...
I am grateful for our country's history of the peaceful transfer of power. We live in the greatest country on earth.


I share the sentiment, but point to Pelosi and Conyers talking about the arrest and trials for Bush officials. That leads to Banana Republic power change overs.

I wish the Obama folks well today, and hope that the Congressional Dems will finally grow up.

Robert said...

FoxTV reported that a woman at the inauguration had a heart attack and it took the ambulance 20 minutes to get there.

Apparently, people are so focused on partying that they don't even notice an AMBULANCE with SIRENS meaning SOMEONE IS IN TROUBLE!

I mean, really -- the event hasn't even start yet -- they're still just standing around waiting, and still they can't make way for an ambulance.

Is this the new health care system in action?

ricpic said...

What does it mean?

It means that the doers, the makers, the achievers will have their wallets lightened.

It means that children will be taught the pernicious myth that the state is central to their lives as opposed to the centrality of his individual identity to each child.

It means that the lie will be enshrined and the truth orphaned.

And maybe, just maybe, it means that the obscene spectacle of mendacity triumphant will once again usher in the passion for liberty.

Darcy said...

Madison Man said...I just don't get the need to participate in an historic event, but that's me.

I really enjoyed President Bush's first inauguration. I went to one of the balls in D.C., along with a couple of other events and it was a fantastic experience.

The people who worked hard to get Obama elected (and I'm not talking about the media...ugh) really deserve this day, and it will be unforgettable for them. Such a great memory - and made even more so by participating in it, I think.

I wish them well.

rhhardin said...

and some guy said today is the "epitome" of his whole life.

Three syllables or four, is the question.

Simon said...

MadisonMan said...
"I just don't get the need to participate in an historic event, but that's me"

It becomes pathological when people start casting the most trivial little things as historic in order that they can live in historic times. Last year, Obama referred to the "fierce urgency of now," and it summed up the myopia of this bipartisan tendency to overestimate the importance of contemporary events.

ricpic said...

Four.

Original Mike said...

...and the laws of nature have not been repealed.

Freder nonwithstanding.

Simon said...

"What would all this feel like if it were the inauguration of John McCain?"

There would be protesters everywhere and people yelling a lot. That's why Michael's comment above rings profoundly hollow.

"some guy said today is the 'epitome' of his whole life.

There's public schools for you.

ElcubanitoKC said...

Let me know when it's over. I am sure I will hear the slogan/catch phrase/divine word that shall be born today for a long time. In the meantime, I have work to do.

Anton said...

"The Sun Rises on the Obama Presidency..."

And sets on our individual liberties and Constitution.

MadisonMan said...

Simon, I do think that the election/inauguration of a black man (well, mixed-race) to be President is historic. The USA has come a long way in my life time -- but that's true of anyone's lifetime, IMO. So I'm not knocking the historic nature of today, just the need by some to participate.

I have a meeting this AM during the inauguration, and one participant is kvetching about the timing and wants to watch the inauguration during the meeting. Ugh.

Original George said...

"The current rally will peter out sometime in the first quarter. It's the Obama hope rally. Obama is dangerous for the market in the sense that expectations that he can change the world are too high. He is a charismatic person, but a charismatic person with no track record. Eventually the market will grow disappointed that he can't change things as quickly and to the degree people hope.

"The market will have a setback after this rally ends, with the next rally starting sometime in the second quarter. It will be more powerful and a bit more sustainable because some of the economic numbers will show positive momentum, and it will start from a new low. But you can't buy and hold equities for the long term. Investors will turn away from equities. They are fed up with negative returns over 10 years. In that period, as I said earlier today, risk was high and perceived risk was low. Now risk will be low, due in part to support from the world's central banks. But investors will perceive risk as high, and price financial assets accordingly.

"In a few years' time there will be some fantastic long-term buying opportunities, but we aren't there yet. The Standard & Poor's 500 easily could fall into the 400 to 600 range over 2010-'11, after a bounce that takes it to 1,050 or so. [Presently at 828.] But the upside is limited because the fundamentals aren't there.

Gabelli: So it's up 10% and down 50%."

Felix Zulauf, founder of Zulauf Asset Management in Switzerland, and Mario Gabelli, CEO of NYC-based investment management company, in this week's Barrons.

Zachary Paul Sire said...

I'm confused...the live blogging goes one way, but the comments go another!

Scroll up, scroll down...so much change!

Paul Zrimsek said...

Never before in human history have people felt such a compulsion to see everything that happens as unprecedented. I feel privileged to live in such a historic time.

hdhouse said...

Simon said...
I like Volokh's idea, myself - a novel wherein an "international incident on inauguration day triggers a constitutional crisis revolving around the fact that the Amendment doesn't tell us what time zone will be the reference point [for purposes of the 20th amendment]." Silly, but fun."

silly yes. your strict constructionist history fails as i guess he takes over when he recites the oath...not sure that time zones have anything to do with it (i.e. the west coast is without a president for 3 hours?..ho ho ho).

but since this the sillyday of all days for some on this board i'll let it pass.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Seriously, just knock off the hatred and vitriol for a bit of time today.

What hate? What vitriol? Have we dumbed down the terms to the point where disagreement or cynicism toward an elected official now constitutes hate and vitriol? I accept the peaceful transition of power because I have enough faith in our system of government that that's the way it is and will always be and I think the cynicism shown is part and parcel of how our political system works.

Sorry Michael_H, but I saw and listened to plenty of hate and vitriol over the last eight years and I know it when I see it.

AllenS said...

This blog and the commenters that go with it are the epitome of unprecedented.

Shanna said...

I just don't get the need to participate in an historic event, but that's me.

I've been to two inaugurations, Clinton's second and Bush's first, and I enjoyed both of them. It's something different and there are lots of parties. However, I don't know if I would go to this one, with people going crazy and camping out and all that stuff.

Still, wish I was in DC. I like the energy in the air during these kinds of events.

Paul Zrimsek said...

8:50: Barack and Michelle emerge from the church.

Any word yet on who worshipped whom?

You seem to have slipped back into CST.

My own tag, by cracky!

Hoosier Daddy said...

Just as a follow up, I think some healthy cynicism is in order too. Throughout the entire campaign season all I heard was Hope and Change and YES WE CAN!

Now that he's been elected I've been hearing a whole lot of No, maybe we can't right now.

So while I congratulate the Democrats on their triumph, I'll reserve the tingling in my legs until I actually see him accomplish something of note.

Simon said...

MadisonMan said...
"Simon, I do think that the election/inauguration of a black man (well, mixed-race) to be President is historic."

I don't think that the election/inauguration of another man to be President is historic.

"I have a meeting this AM during the inauguration, and one participant is kvetching about the timing and wants to watch the inauguration during the meeting. Ugh."

It the meeting is unimportant enough that one can multitask by watching TV, the meeting shouldn't be happening. Otherwise, Tivo or move the meeting!

hdhouse said...
"your strict constructionist history fails"

I am not, never have been, and have never claimed to be a "strict constructionist," that "degraded form of textualism that brings the whole philosophy into disrepute," as Scalia puts it. The reason the novel's premise is silly is because it is clear in the context of the original meaning that the reference point was the seat of government.

Bissage said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
AlphaLiberal said...

I'm filled with love for, and pride in, my country. Not just because we decided to be led by an African American but also because we decided to part ways with the politics of division, greed and defeatism.

Meanwhile, Lush Limbaugh hopes that Obama fails.

Bissage said...

These inaugural festivities are nothing but a wholly frivolous party and self-congratulatory masturbation-fest.

Meanwhile, Jack Bauer and Tony Almeida are about to bury Agent Walker alive.

FOR GOD’S SAKE, WHY WON’T SOMEBODY DO SOMETHING??!?!1?!1???!!!

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Not just because we decided to be led by an African American

We? You have a mouse in your pocket? Completely ignoring that 48% of the people didn't vote for Obama.

but also because we decided to part ways with the politics of division, greed and defeatism.

Does this mean that you have decided to stop what you have been doing for the last 8 years? Thank you.

Salamandyr said...

I know I would feel a lot better if there was a bit more healthy cynicism about our newest President.

I think Obama will do well, though. This is a strong country; it can withstand some bad ideas, and he strikes me as both a pragmatist and someone unwilling to be unpopular. Bush was dangerous (like him or hate him) because he was willing to do the hard thing, if he thought it was the right thing. Obama strikes me as more like Clinton, and Clinton was successful largely because he was more than willing to get out in front of whatever was the prevailing sentiment.

Shanna said...

Meanwhile, Jack Bauer and Tony Almeida are about to bury Agent Walker alive.

About to, they did that last night, weren’t you watching??

Simon said...

AlphaLiberal said...
"I'm filled with love for, and pride in, my country. Not just because we decided to be led by an African American but also because we decided to part ways with the politics of division, greed and defeatism."

Between this and Harry's comment above, I think we're going to be seeing a lot of self-parody from our "first time in their adult lives they're really proud of our country" friends on the left. When the democrats - the party of the culture wars, government handouts, and surrender - are charging that the GOP is the party division, greed and defeatism, satire is verging on the obsolete.

Hoosier Daddy said...

We? You have a mouse in your pocket?

No, I'm just happy to see you.

Robert said...

Perhpas this question is based on too literal a reading of the Constitution, but how is it possible for the President to violate the Establishment Clause? Doesn't it say "Congress shall..."?

jeff said...

"Meanwhile, Lush Limbaugh hopes that Obama fails."

Really? So if I am a conservative and hope that Obama fails in passing the agenda he ran on, I am what, exactly? What if Obama runs to the center and doesn't enact the policies YOU want? You planning on marching in lockstep with him no matter what?

Balfegor said...

Not just because we decided to be led by an African American but also because we decided to part ways with the politics of division, greed and defeatism.

Clearly, when you look at the Democratic party, you're seeing something very different from what I'm seeing.

That said, good luck to Obama! He'll be needing it.

Paul Zrimsek said...

11:59: Old Gabby Johnson climbs the water tower, trains a spyglass on the approaching motorcade, and announces that "the new President is a n[remainder drowned out by church bell]".

Bissage said...

Oh Noooooooooeesss!!11!111

Say it's not true!

Say it's not true!

Her face was uncovered!

I sawz it!!!!1!!

Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

reader_iam said...

Of course this is an historic day (whether or not one think it's great or not) in this country. It's fatuous to say otherwise. Sorry, Simon, but that's how I feel. It's not just another man, in one particular sense, and it's no good to insist on otherwise. I've said this once before, and I'll say it once again, and I hope you'll believe it when I say it's with all due respect: I honestly think that in this one area, you're not being an American native--that is, not having grown up here--blinds you to the reality of how things really were, and--truly!--not so long ago.

I think that to say this is the Greatest! Day! In! American! History! is a shallow and silly pov. But to say it's not historic is as well.

OK. Not here to pick fights, so I'll leave it at that.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Between this and Harry's comment above, I think we're going to be seeing a lot of self-parody from our "first time in their adult lives they're really proud of our country" friends on the left.

Simon, a buddy of mine summed this sentiment up nicely back during the campaign season. To the hyper partisans like Alpha, hdhouse etc., a Dem candidate is like your favorite football team during a game. You always see the other team committing facemasks, holding, offsides, pass interference etc and are willfully blind when your team does it. When they do and get called on it, the ref is an idiot, it's a bullshit call.

To Alpha, Obama winning by a smaller margin than Bush Sr. over Dukakis is evidence of a landslide, a united country.

The defeatism comment is really rich considering it was Democrats like Reid saying just a year 1/2 ago we lost the war in Iraq.

But as Merlin said to Arthur, it's easy to love folly in a child.

Beth said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Beth said...

So the media is unfair. As always. They wouldn't be covering the McCain inauguration like this. The Bush inauguration likewise.

Were the streets of the Capitol filled with this many people for the last inauguration? Would they be for McCain. Because, you know, millions of people in the streets is news. Especially if they're farting red, white and blue flowers. In HD!

Palladian, you're reminding me a lot of Ignatius J. Reilly this week. Don't let your valve get stuck.

Simon said...

Robert said...
"Perhpas this question is based on too literal a reading of the Constitution, but how is it possible for the President to violate the Establishment Clause? Doesn't it say 'Congress shall...'?

It does say that, but the first amendment has been construed more broadly to include not only legislation, but government action, and was incorporated on that basis (although Justice Thomas has argued it shouldn't have been). It's a neat illustration of the dangers of strict construction: strictly construed, the first amendment would mean that only statutes made by Congress can violate the freedom of speech clause, for example. On the other hand, it does seem to me that the textual reference to Congress is about the best argument one could make to rationalize Flast, Valley Forge and Hein if one wanted to impose a principled explanation on them.

Virginia said...

I can't stand the networks coverage, so I'm watching CBN. They're dressed nice. Well, everyone is. And it's not bad, really.

MadisonMan said...

Old Gabby Johnson climbs the water tower, trains a spyglass on the approaching motorcade, and announces that "the new President is a n[remainder drowned out by church bell]".

(laugh). I love that movie.

Beth said...

I think that to say this is the Greatest! Day! In! American! History! is a shallow and silly pov. But to say it's not historic is as well.

Well said, reader.

Simon said...

Beth said...
"So the media is unfair. As always. They wouldn't be covering the McCain inauguration like this."

And by "like this" I take it you have in mind the SNL opening skit the week they came back from the writer's strike.

Hoosier Daddy said...

So the media is unfair. As always. They wouldn't be covering the McCain inauguration like this. The Bush inauguration likewise.

Well I do recall how they thought the $50 million spent on Bush's inauguration was obscene.

Beth said...

Tomorrow when the parties are over, Obama's going to face some huge responsibilities and some seemingly intractable problems. As I said last night, good luck to him and Godspeed to us all.

Okay, I'll sign on with Palladian on this.

Over the weekend, Biden was asked "Are you ready for Tuesday?" and he replied, "It's Wednesday we need to be ready for." Yes, indeedy.

Beth said...

The next time a conservative candidate wins the presidency, there's nothing stopping y'all who would cheer that person from getting in your cars, taking a bus or a plane, and going to Washington to fill the public spaces and celebrate. You can do that. That's what people did this year. There's no liberal media conspiracy hiring a big bunch of extras to fill the Mall, you know. This actually is a historic moment; not the first, nor the last in our country, but a big one.

Beth said...

Simon, I don't watch SNL, sorry. But when did SNL become the news media? And what does an SNL skit have to do with the many, many Americans celebrating in the streets of the Capitol right now?

Eva said...

My office, quite a large facility, is holding an Inauguration viewing party. And then playing the festivities or whatever on the TVs in the cafeteria for the rest of the day. Wow. Pretty sure we didn't do THAT four years ago.

Virginia said...

I read on a transportation blog that it is the most heaily attended even in the US, ever.

Whoa, Cheney's in a wheelchair?! Where have I been?

reader_iam said...

DirecTV has this channel called News Mix, which features thumbnails of a number of stations (I think six, usually, but could be wrong). Today it's renamed "Inaugural Mix" and features eight thumbnails. We're (my son, just over 8-1/2, and I) comparing coverage/commentary. It's an interesting sideline, and it's amazing how sharp and even perspicacious kids can be. I swear, the questions and observations (not mine) are the best part of homeschooling.

Simon said...

Reader, perhaps. And I should acknowledge, as much as it could be that, it could also be personal antipathy for the guy. But whatever the reason, that's how I feel. I look on this and it leaves me as cold as a January morning in Washington.

MadisonMan said...

They said on TV that Cheney pulled a back muscle moving boxes yesterday.

The Drill SGT said...

Eventually the market will grow disappointed that he can't change things as quickly and to the degree people hope.

The problem is of course that Obama promised all things to all people. ANY policy he implements s going to displease a lot of his worshippers.

I'm rooting for a certain level of gvernmental paralysis.

Simon said...

Beth said...
"Simon, I don't watch SNL, sorry. But when did SNL become the news media?"

I can sympathize with having bailed out on SNL - Fey was really the only good thing to it. At any rate, in a rare moment of comprehension, they satirized the fawning news media treatment of Obama.

The Drill SGT said...

My office, quite a large facility, is holding an Inauguration viewing party. And then playing the festivities or whatever on the TVs in the cafeteria for the rest of the day. Wow. Pretty sure we didn't do THAT four years ago.

Likely driven by your HR professional, or if you are large enough , your EEO compliance officer. Socialists all :)

garage mahal said...

They said on TV that Cheney pulled a back muscle moving boxes yesterday.

I didn't think shredded paper was that heavy. Hmmmp.

Beth said...

They said on TV that Cheney pulled a back muscle moving boxes yesterday.


Mary loses her dyke card. What kind of lesbian lets her elderly dad move heavy boxes? For shame!

Hoosier Daddy said...

There's no liberal media conspiracy hiring a big bunch of extras to fill the Mall, you know..

You're obviously missing the point. It's not the crowds, its the never ending fawning that the media has displayed toward Obama since he announced his candidacy.

Lets put it this way, if the MSM is 1/10th as probing of his administration as they were with Bush, I'll be happy.

AllenS said...

It's not the shredded paper that's heavy, but the silverware. It's a White House custom.

reader_iam said...

Am I a bad person because both Garage's and Beth's comments made me laugh out loud? (I'm still chuckling as I keyboard.)

Beth said...

Simon, the media can always be satirized, deservingly. But today, I'm not as inclined to satirize or otherwise make fun of the people out there on the Mall. They are the story here, more so even than Obama and certainly more so than the media's -- temporary, to be sure -- love affair with Obama. The street level of this celebration came from the people, not from the media, not from Obama's PR people.

Virginia said...

Michelle didn't kiss supertan minority leader. She thought about it, then didn't. Good move.

Simon said...

Ditto HoosierDaddy's 10am.

Eva said...
"Pretty sure we didn't do THAT four years ago."

Wrong candidate won four years ago. ;)

Beth said...
"Over the weekend, Biden was asked 'Are you ready for Tuesday?' and he replied, 'It's Wednesday we need to be ready for.' Yes, indeedy."

I was wrong: this is an historic week after all. Joe Biden said something smart. ;)

Beth said...
"The next time a conservative candidate wins the presidency, there's nothing stopping y'all who would cheer that person from getting in your cars, taking a bus or a plane, and going to Washington to fill the public spaces and celebrate."

To tell the truth, I don't have much fondness for these things, no matter which letter is after the name of the gold medalist. There's something gaudy, ungainly about it all.

Virginia said...

"Am I a bad person because both Garage's and Beth's comments made me laugh out loud? (I'm still chuckling as I keyboard.)"

Are you kidding? No! They were hilarious.

Beth said...

Hoosier Daddy, you'll have to wait till the Obama Administration is actually IN THE WHITE HOUSE for the probing to begin. Meanwhile, today has its own purpose.

reader_iam said...

My husband is at work at usual (downstairs in his office: telecommuter), but he's going to come up for the main event. As we all go the polls together, we shall observe the "result" together. My son insists that we play "Treason in the Castle" (a board game he got at Christmas) while we watch. Don't ask me why. Haven't a clue.

But first ... fresh hot waffles!

Balfegor said...

The next time a conservative candidate wins the presidency, there's nothing stopping y'all who would cheer that person from getting in your cars, taking a bus or a plane, and going to Washington to fill the public spaces and celebrate.

I would hope no conservative wins the Presidency by appealing to the mob like that. There's a certain sort of politician who rises to power through the power of a mass movement, with hero-worship and whizzy euphoria and all that. This is all very well for conservatives in Continental societies -- De Gaulle and his ilk -- but it is antithetical, I would hope, to American conservatism, which should be an altogether more modest thing. Some amount of that stuff is necessary in modern American politics, along with sloganeering and campaign jingles and all the other borrowings from the advertising world, but one would hope conservatives would keep that sort of thing to a minimum. The politicians won't, of course, being creatures twisted by their lust of power, but the voters can.

"The current rally will peter out sometime in the first quarter. It's the Obama hope rally. Obama is dangerous for the market in the sense that expectations that he can change the world are too high. He is a charismatic person, but a charismatic person with no track record. Eventually the market will grow disappointed that he can't change things as quickly and to the degree people hope.

I'm sorry -- the market dropped nearly a thousand points as soon as Obama was nominated. If it's rallying now, it's because people -- including myself -- are heartened by the the people he is apparently turning to to head up his economy team, not because anyone expects anything of Obama himself. And I think peoples' expectations of Geithner and Summers et al. are quite realistic.

Simon said...

Beth said...
"[T]oday, I'm not as inclined to satirize or otherwise make fun of the people out there on the Mall."

Well, I would certainly agree that standing around for hours in the dead of winter in D.C. isn't the very dumbest thing most of those people did in the last 77 days. ;)

Balfegor said...

Sorry, I mean elected, not nominated. No idea what it did when he was nominated.

Simon said...

Perhaps a big banner with that famous, and apt, quotation from H.L. Mencken can be found.

Beth said...

There's something gaudy, ungainly about it all.

But that's part of being American!

mccullough said...

Much like those who fill Wrigley Field during day games on Tuesday afternoon in the summer, I have to ask about all the people at the inauguration:

What kind of job do you have that lets you take off from work on a Tuesday?

Maybe unemployment is worse than we thought.

AlphaLiberal said...

It's funny to read conservatives grousing over "fawning" coverage of this inauguration.

I remember lib's complaining about the same thing 8 years ago. And the press not covering the massive number of protesters 8 years ago.

Virginia said...

Without telling me to google him, anyone know anything about Steven Chu?

reader_iam said...

You know, this is sorta weird:

One of the featured channels on the "Inaugural Mix" satellite channel is TV One, evidentally the African-American network. The coverage there is far more sober, more low key less gush-y, more what has been traditional, than on the others we're following. I mean, it is noticeable and notable. Perhaps I'm missing something because we're either scanning or flipping, but still ... it's standing out to me.

Virginia said...

"What kind of job do you have that lets you take off from work on a Tuesday?

Maybe unemployment is worse than we thought."

Are you KIDDING ME?

Washington is SHUT DOWn. No one is working. We all have the day off.

Even in Va and Md, the burbs that is.

Come on. You know this, right?

Beth said...


I would hope no conservative wins the Presidency by appealing to the mob like that.


So the joyful crowd is a mob? Incredible! Please, someone remind me of this the next time some rightwinger called liberals elitist.

Growse, growse. Buncha outta work bums. What's so special about a Tuesday anyway? Blah blah.

AlphaLiberal said...

Steven Chu was head of Lawrence Berkely labs. He is a scientist, dedicated to confronting climate change. He thinks we need to use renewable energy, nuclear energy and energy efficiency to accomplish this task.

He definitely feels that the scientific community can make rapid advances in energy technologies, with federal support, and that our young scientists have been lining up to do the job, with no support at the federal level. (Heard he compared it to a recruiting office being closed during wartime).

Virginia said...

WOW. The Carters look GREAT!

(Ok, I get the questioner - now - about unemployment...everyone's from somewhere else. Sorry!)

Virginia said...

Bill. Lookin good.

MadisonMan said...

I would certainly agree that standing around for hours in the dead of winter in D.C. isn't the very dumbest thing most of those people did in the last 77 days.

For people there from the upper midwest, it's a warm day. They're the ones with no hats on, I'd reckon.

peter hoh said...

Was it just me, or did Alito look like the least happy of the justices gathered?

Hoosier Daddy said...

Hoosier Daddy, you'll have to wait till the Obama Administration is actually IN THE WHITE HOUSE for the probing to begin.

Of course. I suppose it was too much to expect during the campaign season.

Now that he'll be in office I'm sure they'll go after him with the same gusto they did Bush.

Inquiring minds and all that.

LoafingOaf said...

Predator is on Cinemax right now. This inauguration is getting a bit long.

Virginia said...

Thank you Alpha.

"(Heard he compared it to a recruiting office being closed during wartime)."

Or a hospital - Walter Reed.

Balfegor said...

So the joyful crowd is a mob? Incredible! Please, someone remind me of this the next time some rightwinger called liberals elitist.

I'm a different sort of rightwinger. Throne and Altar, as they say, only we have no throne in the US, and I'm an atheist. But in principle, I am in favour of that sort of thing. Vivat rex!

That said, I don't think I've ever been positive about a large crowd of people on this blog -- I have regularly criticised large assemblages of people for getting together and screaming (usually protesters, who particularly irritate me, no matter what they happen to be protesting, whether it's Bush or China or abortion or whatever).

MayBee said...

What do you think the people way back on the mall can hear or see?
Do they feel more a part of this than the people at home, or less?

Virginia said...

These men grew up in a time when men wore hats. Why aren't they doing so now! It's FOOLISH I tell you!

Beth said...

Vivat rex!

I have just the thing for you - Mardi Gras! Except, sadly, there are crowds. But there are also Kings and Queens, riding majestically above crowd. One's even called Rex.

Johnny B. D. said...

Palladian and bile in the same sentence. How appropriate!

I will certainly grant that Palladian has a lifetime of experience and expertise in bile.

AJ Lynch said...

I wonder how soon before the attorney general in Chicago, Fitzgerald (he is investigating Blago), will be fired?

Original Mike said...

Come on. You know this, right?

How would people in the real world know this?

Hazy Dave said...

The stock market is down in early trading. C'mon, you optimists, BUY, BUY BUY!

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Sorry, I mean elected, not nominated. No idea what it did when he was nominated.

The DJIA remained somewhat level (despite the drop from it's high in November 07) shortly after the nomination in August, declined a bit in September and began to drop precipitously in October before the election when it became apparent that Obama would be likely elected.

The drop was mostly due to people, and institutional traders especially, scrambling to take cap gains at the current low rate and before Obama could jack up the tax rates. They also were taking advantage of the end of the year wash sale rule. The traders and investors basically had an "Oh Shit!" moment when they could read the handwriting on the wall.

Obama is going to be an economic killer if he continues with the give away programs and socialist agenda. Even worse than Bush with the misguided bail out plan. Obama's "community organizer mindset socialism" policies will take generations, if ever, to recover from.

reader_iam said...

Al Sharpton sounds almost as if he's glad Gore lost in 2000 as he points out that Barack probably wouldn't be here had it been otherwise. (He's one of the anchors/commentators on TV One.)

Original Mike said...

...as if ovaries pump information about fabrics and designers.

I'm thinkin' they do. It would explain a lot.

Jon said...

Re: turnout, I see the estimate is 1-2 million. Wasn't it forecast a month or two ago that it would reach 4-5 million?

And when making comparisons to turnout in previous inaugurations, to be fair one has to take into account DC's partisan and racial demographics. Obama being inaugurated in DC is like Romney being inaugurated in Salt Lake City.

GOP presidents are never going to draw the kind of crowds in DC that Dems are, and that's particularly true this time.

Original George said...

The anarchic hand syndrome or alien hand syndrome.

The Strangelove thing.

Sufferers of alien hand will often personify the rogue limb, for example believing it to be "possessed" by some intelligent or alien spirit or an entity that they may name or identify.

Virginia said...

"to be fair one has to take into account DC's partisan and racial demographics."

But in this case, the visitors far outnumber the locals, many of whom, ahem, are staying home to watch.

MadisonMan said...

Dust Bunny Queen, that's an interesting viewpoint on the DJIA history in the 4th Quarter. I'm pretty sure it's incomplete; Do you also recall the collapse of several notable companies and a credit crisis that lingers despite the Republican President's treasury secy throwing money at banks like confetti at a Convention?

Virginia said...

Smirking to the last moment.

jeff said...

"Smirking to the last moment."

Yes, take the high road in your moment of victory. An inspiration to us all.

Virginia said...

Dr Doom arrives.

peter hoh said...

Hey, here comes the banker from "It's a Wonderful Life."

Virginia said...

"Yes, take the high road in your moment of victory. An inspiration to us all."

Dad?!

ricpic said...

It's sexist not to be au courant on womens' fashion terminology?

reader_iam said...

Current TV (another option in the Inaugural Mix) is crawling Twitter comments from all over.

jeff said...

"11:33: George Bush looks happy."

No no. He's SMIRKING! No doubt about to implement that coup.

Simon said...

Virginia said...
"Dr Doom arrives."

As Althouse noted at 11:02, Captain America has already stepped up.

Kelly said...

Brett Hume on FOX commented that Bill Clinton always looks as if he is trying to find the right facial expression to fit the occasion.

Virginia said...

O looks super calm. Too calm?

Original George said...

Important news...

Starting today free $25 worth of beauty products at major department stores as part of class action settlement. Chanel, Estee Lauder, etc.

While supplies last, on a first come, first served basis, beginning on January 20, 2009. No rainchecks will be issued. No receipts necessary.

Azizian, et al. v. Federated Department Stores, Inc., et al.,

reader_iam said...

Current TV (another option in the Inaugural Mix) is crawling Twitter comments from all over.

... and in different languages.

Simon said...

jeff said...
"No no. He's SMIRKING! No doubt about to implement that coup."

Hey, there's the silver lining. At least now, all those idiots who claimed Bush would never leave office, or that there'd be a coup, or that the draft was imminent under Bush, will be revealed for the morons they were.

Simon said...

Beth said...
"[There's something gaudy, ungainly about it all.] But that's part of being American!"

Not convinced.

Simon said...

*sigh* My country, right or wrong...

reader_iam said...

Original George: Cool! Estee Lauder products was one of the casualties in our cutbacks a few months back.

Got both a Younkers and a Dillards nearby. I think I'll swing by both later.

jeff said...

"At least now, all those idiots who claimed Bush would never leave office, or that there'd be a coup, or that the draft was imminent under Bush, will be revealed for the morons they were."

Again.

jeff said...

How classy. A political speech.

Virginia said...

Masterful job Senator.

Smilin' Jack said...

I'm getting nervous--Cheney is really cutting it close on initiating Operation Valkyrie II....

Michael said...

Shame on Feinstein for switching into campaign speech mode. America, now with extra Hope! Yeah, because it didn't get nuked in the last 7 years, lady.

Rick Warren is a bad actor of Shatnerian proportions.

MayBee said...

I wonder how long the chants of "O-ba-ma!" will follow this president.
How long is it appropriate?

jeff said...

Wow. That Warren sure was a monster. No wonder all those liberals hated the idea of him appearing. Very divisive. No idea how President Obama will explain him to Anne Hathaway.

Simon said...

jeff said...
"How classy. [Feinstein gives a] political speech."

I guess she didn't hear you, Michael H.

LoafingOaf said...

Chimp out of the way. Buffoon Rick Warren out of the way. Aretha singing her heart out. Now we're getting into the nitty-gritty. :)

Kelly said...

Did Aretha mangle that song, or was it just me?

sonicfrog said...

IMHO, Warren's invocation went off with a thud. There was no feel, no passion to it. I could have gone to church to hear that.

LoafingOaf said...

What a crowd! Historic!

Marcia said...

"jeweled bow, belts out "My Country 'Tis of Thee." Bells chime."

At first glance, I saw the words "cow bell" in there.

Virginia said...

One down; one to go!

jeff said...

Well you got to be nuts not to love Aretha. No matter what her politics may or may not be. Woman is a national treasure.

peter hoh said...

Biden needs a haircut

KLDAVIS said...

"I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same;"

Did Biden just swear allegiance to all our enemies, foreign and domestic?

David said...

Yo Yo Ma and Perlman togther--fabulous!

LoafingOaf said...

Why was Rick Warren pronouncing names like "Sasha" so weirdly? What a douchebag, marring the whole thing.

jeff said...

"Chimp out of the way. Buffoon Rick Warren out of the way."

Whoohooo. Free reign to make fun of Obama's ears. Wait, not in third grade. Never mind. Disregard.

David said...

Amazing music--making me cry!

Original Mike said...

In fulfillment of the Constitution, the new President must be sworn in at noon.

If they're late it doesn't count? A glimmer of hope!

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