Fast away the old year passes ...
So Butch Otter will take his oath in secret. Why is this not surprising? It seems like he could at least have the public represented by the media and a few members of the legislature ... say, two Republicans and two Democrats. Or , if the GOP wants to be snippy about it, three Republicans and one Democrat. Whatever.
Fare thee well, Gerry Ford. As the Decider notes, his presidency helped heal a badly divided nation. Fast forward 34 years: Who will do the same when we finally get rid of W?
Michael Medved has an absolutely laughable column in which he predicts that "the universal and appropriate sadness at the passing of President Gerald Ford should reassure President Bush that after his retirement he will inspire fresh affection from the public." Yeah, right. Ford was basically a caretaker president who committed one questionable act in pardoning Richard Nixon. Faced with one of the greatest crises of our history after September 11, George W. Bush abandoned efforts to capture its still-at-large architect and instead started an unfounded, unnecessary war of choice in Iraq. Meanwhile at home, he's built an imperial presidency based on deceptions and power mongering, and a chimeric economy based on artificially high housing prices (now punctured), stagnant wages for workers, and tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans. Yes, there are parallels between Ford's lack of legitimacy and Bush's, and both men are buds with Dick Cheney. But that's where the similarities end.
Speaking of Iraq, Joe Biden hasn't been getting much traction for a second presidential bid - but if he continues to keep the war front and center, that may change. None of the other potential Dem candidates has as much foreign policy experience as the six-term senator and incoming Senate Foreign Relations committee chair. (However, Biden did vote to authorize the war in the first place; he now says he and Congress were misled and lied to.) Whatever happens in the political arena, Biden's efforts to call Bush officials to account are welcome and, of course, years overdue.
The Idaho Statesman names Boise State star running back Ian Johnson the most inspirational Treasure Valley resident of the year. Yeah, I'll go with that. The Broncos' awesome season has our community all fired up, and Johnson seems like a genuinely good guy. At the same time, I want to remember the people from my church who spent spring break mucking out houses in New Orleans six months after Katrina. That's inspiring, too.