Tuesday December 1, 2020

Can Obama seize the moment and move his country forward?

The incoming president has the benefit of a fresh start and a clean slate, but the public’s huge expectations are a potential danger, writes Robert Schmuhl

17th January, 2009

Inauguration Day for a new American president combines pomp, circumstance and possibility, creating a moment (to paraphrase Seamus Heaney) between hope and history. On Tuesday, Barack Obama begins occupancy of the White House as the beneficiary of two attitudes.

He enjoys genuine goodwill from a nation and world eager for programmatic change, and he also profits from a nearly global sense of relief that the Bush/Cheney years are now over.

Obama’s in-tray of problems...

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