Thursday, January 22, 2009

Secretary of State

Some have suggested to me that Hillary may not be the best choice for Secretary of State. Some feel that this was a move on my behalf to befriend Hillary, and remove a potential threat of a woman who may attempt to run against me as an incumbent in 2012.

Some have suggested that Condoleezza Rice wasn't a very good choice for Secretary of State either, because foreign leaders from fundamentalist backgrounds may not listen to or respect a woman in negotiations.

I'm not worried about that sort of thing. I don't expect anyone to confuse Hillary with a woman.

Enough, It's Over

I was sworn in a second time. The notion that I wasn't actually President is absurd. And frankly, you need to look at some factors here.

Mr. John G. Roberts Jr. was opposed by Uncle Joe Biden, when Biden was on the Judiciary committee. Then Biden and I vote against confirming the guy. I believe Roberts had it out for me. He went out of his way to mess me up.

Publicly, this whole matter is done, and over with. Just between you and me, I intend to vandalize Robert's Wikipedia page.
"Robert's confirmation was praised as a feel-good story for a man who didn't learn to read until he was 40. It has been years since his last mental relapse and subsequent incarceration. Upon received Bush's nomination, he pledged never again to skinny-dip in National Mall."

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

No Shirt, No Shoes, No Problem

Old Georgie-boy had a little known rule. No one was allowed in the oval office without wearing a suit jacket. I guess he was a stickler for dress codes. As far as I know, there no specific requirements on the type of jacket.

Could you get away with some ugly cowboy jacket with tassels, rhinestones, and longhorn patches? Something like that hideous outfit Doc made Marty dress up in the beginning of Back to the Future 3. You know what I'm talking about.

However, I shouldn't talk bad about the former president. He is gone, that is the past and we're moving forward. Today, this cowboy is here to tell you there is a new sheriff in town. This sheriff takes off his jacket when he feels like it. This sheriff likes being comfortable in the oval office (again, I'm saving the oval office rant for another day). And this sheriff looks damned good in soft light.

That is all, pilgrim.

Thank God It Wasn't My BlackBerry

I just signed my very first executive order. I now made it a federal felony to hack someone's Twitter account. That Tweet under my name where I was supposedly offering free gas money for answering a survey, that clearly wasn't me.

Furthermore, the tweet where I supposedly posted that I would visit your child's birthday at Chuck E Cheese if you provided your credit card number, also wasn't me. That was the hackers again.

However, the tweet where I confessed my unironic and unapologetic love for Al Franken, that was me.

BS Report

I've been quite busy the past few days, and now that I'm at my desk in the oval office (I really need to rant about the oval office, but I'll save that for another day), I've decided to plug in my Zune iPod and catch up on some podcasts.

So I'm listening to Bill Simmons and Chuck Klosterman on Bill's BS Report, and they start talking about me.

You might imagine that a person would get sick of hearing about themselves all the time. Not really. People love to talk about themselves, and hear about themselves. When I praise my grassroots volunteers in my weekly YouTube address, you get excited when someone recognizes the work you've done. So believe me when I say it isn't ego, everyone loves hearing how great they are.

So now I'm listening intently as Bill mentions me in his podcast, and he brings up my statements on a playoff in college football. He debates with Chuck (I hope they don't mind me calling them by first name) whether or not I'm a real sports fan, whether or not I really feel strongly about a playoff in college football, and whether or not I just threw out whatever was a popular topic at the time.

To Bill and Chuck, let me say this. I was born in Hawaii, grew up in Indonesia, and attended college at Columbia and Harvard. It is hard for me to be a fan of college football. I don't exactly have a school to root for. Basketball is my true love. I don't have to know or follow college football to know however that people love playoffs. It doesn't have to be about me or what I want. I want to give the American people hope that someday USC, Florida, Oklahoma and Texas could be in a playoff to determine a true national champion.

So maybe I am pandering to the masses with the college playoff. I could just as easily say that Bill and Chuck talk about pop culture more than they do sports because it is easy, and rehashing pop culture is also pandering to the masses. But I wouldn't go there because I'm a class act, and I like those guys. So Bill, Chuck, I'm guessing you didn't get the memo. As members of the media, whether you consider yourself serious journalists or not, you're not supposed to question Barack Obama.

Stay cool, and perhaps I'll invite you over to my place to watch the NBA All-Star Game. We've got a pretty nice setup here, and a fridge full of Smithwick's, but we'll have to step outside to smoke.

What's in a name?

I really should get to work. I've got Leon Panetta here, and apparently he locked himself out of his computer, or doesn't know his password or some nonsense. He called the IT department over at CIA headquarters, and they won't tell him his password. Apparently it's secret.

However, I did want to touch on a very important subject before I go. I heard some pundits suggest that I shouldn't have used my full name when taking the oath of office. They were worried that people might react negatively to my middle name.

Really? We just had non-stop election coverage for the past two years. I've been all over the news and the internet. I've never hid my name. You can go find it on Wikipedia. Are there people who still don't know my middle name is Hussein?

I'm not ashamed of my name. When I was younger, I used to go by Barry. True story. But by the time I reached college, I was my own man and I decided I shouldn't be ashamed of my given name. This is the name my father and mother chose for me.

Jesus Loves DickI will not hide from the associations other people have given this name. I will establish new associations for how people view my name.

Do you know who should be ashamed of their name?

Dick Cheney.

Seriously. Can you imagine being called Dick all the time? Here is your coffee, Dick. Goodnight, Dick. Please don't point that rifle at me, Dick. With a name like Dick, you're bound to be made fun of.

Couldn't Sleep

I was so excited last night, I couldn't sleep. Partially it was the first night in a new house. Partially it was that Michelle is really turned on by her man leading the free world. But another part of me was simply trying to grasp perspective on my place in history.

Just a few decades ago my father would be refused service in restaurants in this country. Today I sit, the first Black President, sleeping in the same house as Abraham Lincoln, who famously passed the Emancipation Proclamation. The men who have lived in this house have shaped the course of American history.

Sadly, while thinking of all the great presidents to live in this house, my thoughts also led me to the frightening realization that just a few nights ago, George Bush was sleeping in this very bed.

Bill and Hillary slept in this very bed. They probably slept together in this bed. Those are some disturbing thoughts that will keep a man awake. Then again, it will be hard to keep a straight face the next time I see my Secretary of State.

That being said, I didn't want to write about the Clinton's sex life. I'm eager to start work as the 44th President. Yesterday I used a sobering quote.

"Let it be told to the future world ... that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive... that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it]." -- George Washington

It is a sobering quote for a sobering time. We celebrated as a nation yesterday, but today we roll up our sleeves and prepare to face the future. The problems facing this nation are very real. But today I offer another quote, a more positive variation of the first.

"In the depths of winter I finally learned there was in me an invincible summer" -- Albert Camus.

Let's get rolling.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Beautiful Day

Truly a beautiful day

Truly a beautiful day

Is there a more perfect song for today than U2's Beautiful Day?

There are critics and pedants who want to criticize me. They blast me for small flubs. They insist that only 43 Americans have taken the presidential oath before me. So I said 44. Maybe the 44th president before me was a secret president from one of the other 57 states.

How often do you trip over a figure of speech? I have a microphone in my face 14 hours a day and have the compounded pressure of knowing that my flubs will be blown up for everyone to see, and even worse, the slightest verbal misstep can be taken as policy. Its pedantic and silly. Excuse me, it's pedantic and silly.

Today I stood before a record inauguration crowd today of Americans, united, chanting my name.

Consider for just a moment my shoes. Place yourself in them. Is this an experience that you can easily relate to? How many people in the world get to have a live audience of that size chanting your name?

There is a tangible vibe when people gather together in a common cause, for whatever reason. You can feel everything that they feel. You feed off that emotion and in turn drive the crowd even more crazy. The excitement is easily far more than the sum of its parts. (Pedants, take note I do understand the correct usage of its and it's).

For eight years, it wasn't simply that the country had to endure an unpopular president. The county has been divided into red and blue camps. Today I felt unity. Today I felt American.

How about you?

It's a beautiful day.
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