Telegraph.co.uk has a great photostream ... "America will soon have a new president, but before George W Bush leaves office, let's take a look back at some of our favourite moments from his presidency. We'll miss the facial expressions... "
The triumph of Hope over Fear (fear is a great motivator but this proves that fear doesn't always win)
Puts the "United" back in the United States (bringing people together)
Shows that people have the power to make a difference - political power is not reserved for the insiders. The grassroots is where it's at. Obama not only beat McCain he beat the better 'connected' and more Washington-savvy Clinton and Edwards.
Astounding result. Great participation and emotion across America. People are engaged in politics - well at least in this Presidential contest.
President Elect Obama has a great start, a mandate for change but also faces large challenges (2 wars, financial turmoil and a tarnished international reputation) and will have to manage the massive expectations that have been built up.
I'm still not sure I believe this has happened. We need to temper our expectations and accept that as 'politics is the art of the compromise', we need to start resetting our expectations down now. Obama can't deliver miracles (although getting elected seems like one) but he can bring a fresh approach to US Government and an injection of hope, which it seems is essential for Americans to be their best.
While I used to squirm when Americans declared "America is the best country", I am now more comfortable seeing that as an aspiration. America has fallen behind world-best on many fronts (Education, Health, financial market regulation spring to mind). An America that aspires to once again secure the peace* and advance civilisation for the benefit of all the world is something to hope for.
With the move from 'fear' to 'hope', perhaps we can move from the framing of initiatives as 'the war on ...' - move on from the Orwellian state of perpetual war to the more positive frame of 'improving ...'
(Oh I hope that change is coming and that I am not just giddy with the appearance of change)
* secure the peace - think Marshall Plan not Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan or Iraq - not great experiences lately
So, the Army thinks vegetarians are somewhere btwn communists and anarchists? I guess that's technically accurate: http://tinyurl.com/6dyvvr 7:51 PM Oct 26th
Amusing indeed - but really how threatening is a diet/lifestyle choice? It's very threatening when you are talking about the typical Western meat-centric diet, which threatens the health of both individuals and the planet.
The first hundred days of a new administration are the honeymoon, the period in which the president can present a new vision for the nation and begin to advance a new agenda.
Even the most intelligent and most prepared leader will face unprecedented challenges when taking office in 2008. The least we can do is offer our best advice.
We recently called upon the smartest, most interesting people we know to answer the following question:
In 100 words or less, what should the next president do in his first 100 days to address the planet's most pressing problems?
Some fascinating ideas and comments. It is perhaps presumptive to assume the next US President will focus on the planet and not just the people of the United States. Here's hoping whoever wins does think and act for the benefit of all 6 billion humans.