Democracy Now! reports that Obama is already picking some super questionable people to head his “transition team:” a guy (John Brennan) who undoubtedly should be on trial for war crimes because he supported warrantless wiretapping and torture (in the form of extraordinary rendition), and a woman (Jami Miscik) who “was involved with the politicized intelligence alleging weapons of mass destruction in the lead-up to the war on Iraq.”
Meanwhile, the reliably amazing and spot-on Naomi Klein has a terrifying report on what you and I already felt in our bones: the stupid economic bailout is reverse Robin Hooding on a staggeringly giant scale.
And, of course, Hillary.
My West-Wing-while-cooking spree continues, and it sounds stupid to say, but I do feel it’s making me smarter about how mainstream politics works at the highest levels. I’m involved in local, grassroots, super not-mainstreamy politics, and I’m enjoying seeing how the other half does it. Several former White House staffers and Washington gadflies were involved with the research for the show, and it seems the writers really did their homework, so I’m treating it as a crash Poli Sci course: if I have to go into the walk-in when Josh is explaining a complicated bit of lawmaking to Donna, I make myself rewind so I can understand what he’s talking about (ask me about the 25th amendment!). It is teaching me a lesson we all need to remember right now: presidental power is severely limited, and even the best president (ahem, Bartlet) can’t change the world.
With that in mind, I’m being rational and not expecting the country to change overnight in January. But wtf Obama? It seems that he’s already making compromises even when he doesn’t have to. Obviously Supreme Court justices and other appointments are by definition compromises, but am I missing something here, or isn’t the Cabinet where you get to pick whoever the hell you want?
It’s been two weeks, and I still tear up thinking about how awesome it was that Obama won. However, unlike seemingly everyone else in this country, saying the right things isn’t good enough for me. It’s an improvement over the sack of shit heading the country currently, but my cat Noodle would also be an improvement (and, it must be stated, she is not the sharpest cat in the house. Cleo would whip this country into shape in two seconds. Oh my gosh, I have been alone too much lately. I’m sitting here in bed after a tiring workweek—no mistakes!—with the pet-deprived cats purring all around me, blogging in order to hide from the 100+ emails that always arrive while I’m in my cooking hurricane every week. I’ve got too much to do to sleep and am too tired to do any of it, so I’ve settled into this netherworld called blogging.)
Anyway, hey, did you know about book cart drill teams? If not, I have made your day, as the phenomenon of librarians competing in synchronized book cart competitions is a truly awe-inspiring sight.
Moving along: did everyone but me know that Wanda Sykes was a lesbian? Wow. I’ve had a crush on her for ages, ever since…oh, this:
As I am not actually a lesbian, I’m not sure why knowing that Wanda is makes me so happy and my crush on her so much deeper. I guess I still have a childish view that lesbians are just naturally cooler people. When I was a kid growing up in the southwest, gay people were always super cool because it was harder to be out (not that it’s not hard now, of course) and the only ones who were out were fearless and amazing. SUV-driving Starbucks-drinking lesbian couples pushing strollers irk me in this way that you’re probably going to think is slightly misogynist and homophobic, but oh well. Whenever I see such a sight I always think “but you’re supposed to be cooler than us!” I know I know: it’s a sign of progress that even dumb gay people can be comfortably out these days.
But I want my president to be more than talk, and I want everyone in my life, gay and straight and everything else, to be fascinating and wild and wonderful. Is that so much to ask?