Is it Crabby Old Lady or has politics become annoying in the three weeks since a new president was elected? For the better part of a year, Crabby’s life went all to hell as she spent too many hours every day reading newspapers and magazines, online and off, and followed political blogs and pundits and polls. Not much else got done.
Now, it should be time to get back to "real life," but it's not easy. The only political item that has jazzed Crabby since 4 November is the 60 Minutes interview with Barack and Michelle Obama. Governor Palin is still irritating as the press rags the topic of her political future like a dog with an old bone. And in the video clip or two Crabby has seen of Senator McCain, he’s revealed himself as the ill-humored churl she always believed him to be.
To further offend Crabby, McCain announced his intention to start campaigning for the 2010 Senate race even before all the ballots have been counted in this year’s Senate contests. Can’t he give it – and us – a rest at least until after the holidays?
You won’t catch Crabby Old Lady feeling sorry for George W. Bush any time soon, but the phony hoo-haw over whether foreign leaders refused to shake his hand or not at the economic summit in Washington was unseemly.
President-elect Obama hadn’t had a chance for a good-night’s sleep and maybe a hug for his daughters on election night before the media started guessing what kind of administration his will be. He mentioned reading Abe Lincoln and for three days all the talk was of a “team of rivals” cabinet pro and con. Since Senator Clinton’s name was leaked as his choice for secretary of state, every pundit in the U.S. has weighed in “for her” or “agin her” and her appointment isn’t even official yet.
In the past couple of days, the concentration has been on Obama’s selection of Washington insiders for top posts. Opinion is divided between brilliant and stupid: “These people know their way around the D.C. pitfalls” versus “Oh, no, too many Clintonites.”
All of which probably accounts for the fact that yesterday's Sunday Issues post was loaded with woolly mammoths, wild horses, a Roomba-riding cat and ruminations on Daylight Saving Time.
The campaign is over, but the pundits have been so consumed with horse race politics for so many years, they appear to be incapable now of discussing governance - an entirely different matter that is more complex and subtle than regurgitating today’s poll. Governing requires a balance of action on the many competing needs of our current crises, but you wouldn't know that from the the people who purport to be experts; each has a single agenda.
One says an economic fix comes first. Colin Powell says, no, children first. Another wants bipartisanship (duh!) while a couple more want health care to be the priority. Still more claim that the environment, infrastructure, innovation, national security or energy must be the focus, and one self-important turkey claims to know already what Obama's legacy will be.
Is it too much to ask that the press report and stop second-guessing Obama until after inauguration day or so? It's not like pundits have any experience themselves at governing. Crabby even read a dissenting opinion on the Obamas’ choice of Sidwell Friends School for their daughters.
Bah, humbug, says Crabby.
[At The Elder Storytelling Place today, Jeanne Waite Follett recalls her father's wry humor in Shared Moments.]