Family lured Jerrianne and her husband to South Milwaukee in 2002 from Southern California where she worked as, first, a journalist, then, as a court information officer. She now stays busy with media-relations consulting, playing with her three grandchildren (part of the lure), writing, discovering her new environs, and hoping her garden will produce before the first fall frost.
It's obviously not Inauguration Eve. It was when I started writing this, but I got sidetracked by preparations for an Inauguration brunch for a few South Milwaukee friends. The brunch and celebrating with like-minded neighbors was fun. But then I came down with a cold and felt too lousy to do much of anything.
What I was writing last Monday was that here on the eve of the most momentous presidential inauguration in history (at least in my opinion), I'm listening to the many reports of inclusiveness such as Barack Obama inviting Saddleback Church pastor Rick Warren to give the inaugural innvocation, Obama meeting with the Republican leadership, having dinner with conservative media columnists -- on their turf, and holding an Inauguration Eve dinner in John McCain's honor. I can't remember an incoming president ever doing such a thing.
Former Republican Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich said on National Public Radio on Inauguration Eve morning that Barack Obama has done more as president-elect than any other president in history. Gingrich went on to say that he thought that was significant because it was important that Obama hit the ground running and be well positioned to tackle the multitudinous and difficult hurdles he's inheriting that are becoming his to resolve.
I decided this evening that while watching TV, I would try to finish this posting while it was still timely. Serendipidously, David Sanger, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Inheritance: The World Obama Confronts and the Challenges to American Power is being interviewed on the C-SPAN2 Book TV program, "After Words" -- yes, we watch C-SPAN. Despite the title, the book is more about Bush and his adminstration and how they managed to make such a mess of things, primarily in foreign relations (that includes Iraq and Afghanistan). I guess the economic mess is for another book.
From this interview, I'm gathering that the global mess is worse than most folks realized. Sanger says that during the presidential campaign, Obama was being given binders of intelligence briefings that was giving him a view of reality while he was giving stump speeches trying to get elected. "This book," Sanger says of The Inheritance, "is the intelligence briefing for the rest of us."
It should be interesting.