There are a lot of places you can hear about the inauguration. It is of course a front page, above the fold, story almost everywhere in the world. In the Gaza Strip, they are treating their wounded, and finding and burying their dead. And they wonder if he will be any different from past American Presidents. A friend from Croatia emailed me to have a happy Obama day, and they are showing the inauguration live there. The same is true to one extent or another over most of the world.
The feelings about Obama are mixed of course. You have people like Rush Limbaugh that say they want him to fail. (No, I am not linking to it. I refuse to give him more publicity than just mentioning his name.) Other conservatives don’t care for most of his policies, but realize that if he fails, another Great Depression is probably the least of what we have to look forward to.
There are liberals and progressives that are not happy about some of the choices he has already made, and will be angry at him in the years to come, for other things he will do. Keith Olbermann did a special comment that raises one issue of contention. But they all realize he is a much better choice than McCain would have been.
From here in Ohio, it looks like the constant in the Obama era will be change. Right after he took the oath, the website at Whitehouse.gov changed. Anyone that visited the Obama campaign website will recognize the design. And the philosophy behind the site has also changed. Instead of just a site of information, it is a site for participation. They are asking for the grassroots that helped elect Obama to help him run the country. I have to admit, that sounds very good to me.
Basically, the greatest feeling I personally have about today is relief. Bush and Cheney are gone, Obama and Biden became the leaders of the country safely, and it feels like there is something to hope for again. And I know I am not the only person that feels like this. The Colonel And Company does a good job of expressing it.
There is a down note. CNN has reported that Senator Ted Kennedy had a seizure at the Congressional luncheon after the inauguration. Other reports say that Senator Byrd also had health problems there, but that has not been confirmed and has been disputed by police.