Monday, January 26, 2009



We just thought we'd give y'all a little present on this fine Chinese New Year Monday, before we get to Max. If there's one thing y'all might have missed from last week's inaugural coverage it might have been Diane Sawyer on Good Morning American who appeared slightly "intoxicated" after all the celebrating Tuesday night. High-larious? Yes. Why? Because, been there, done that and this time it's not us!

Our own in house Republican, Max Newport shares his inaugural thoughts from last week in a piece we'd like to call (in yet one more nod to miss Aretha's hat), "Change, Change, Change, A Change From Fools", but Max calls it;

Max Newport

Tuesday afternoon. A one of those “where were you” moments. I know where I was. In my car, on the way back to my office. The radio signaled the oath of office and I made it back to watch most of the inaugural speech, but I was thinking of the Grover Cleveland trivial pursuit moment while riding in the elevator, thanks to my eighth grade civics teacher, Miss Gonyers.

Maybe I missed the best part of the speech while riding the Otis, but I was expecting something a lot better. Maybe Obama’s 27 year old speechwriter was having an off day but later I heard that the new president actually wrote the speech himself. There was a lot I was hoping to hear but not much was said, but when you have great expectations there can be a likelihood of great disappointment.

Through the magic of constant replays and commentary, I was able to see Sister Aretha and the hat. Helluva hat and she sang “America” as good as it has been sung. Max is more of cap kind of guy but if some of the ladies want to emulate the Queen of Soul’s stunning headgear, this is where she got it.

Later I found out the original John Williams inaugural music was prerecorded and that Obama had taken the oath of office again later in the day (does this make him the 45th president now?). The press was upset that they weren’t allowed to videotape the second swearing in and I was upset that I wasn’t in my car and able to listen to it. President Obama, as a constitutional scholar, knew the first oath, although muffed by the chief justice, covered the legal grounds and was sufficient. The press is starting to lose their idolatry of Obama but the real question is whether or not Chris Matthews’s leg is still tingling. Which leg was it anyway? The words “left” and “right” have so much significance in this country, the identification of the tingling leg could be an important omen of things to come.

I did not appreciate the pure bad manners displayed at the introduction of the two former presidents Bush and their families. When George W. Bush took the platform, he was the president. To boo and jeer a sitting president in the last moment of his term is simply low class. Is this the kind of “change” we can look forward to? When Nancy Pelosi said that Bush leaving “felt like a ten pound anvil was being lifted off my head”, my first thought was that anvil was probably the only thing keeping her vacuous head from floating into the hemisphere.

Like many Republicans, I woke up Tuesday morning thinking “Thank God it’s not Hillary”. Now Hillary is Secretary of State and may have to curb some of her husband’s financial dealings with rogue nations to avoid any appearance of impropriety. Since when has this been a concern to the Clinton’s? The mere appearance of propriety for that crew is a novel concept. Bill Richardson had to withdraw his nomination as Secretary of Commerce due to a grand jury probe into possible corruption regarding political glad handing to his financial supporters. The proposed Secretary of the Treasury is a tax cheat. The only qualification Leon Panetta has as C.I.A. director is that he looks like Inspector Clouseau.

Rewind to Sunday afternoon. We watched the concert at the mall on HBO. The music was great, except for Herbie Hancock, who appeared to be playing a different song on the keyboard than Sheryl Crow and were singing. Maybe they should have pre-recorded that little number. Why was Jack Black there? He should have been singing with his “Tenacious D” buddy. Pete Seeger was trying a sing-along that was just plain embarrassing, but I guess it looked good on paper. It was great to hear Stevie Wonder. Garth Brooks did a good job of belting out “American Pie”, which I never thought of as a patriotic song since Don McLean wrote it as a tribute to Buddy Holly. Where was Bob Dylan? He wrote the civil rights anthem “Blowin’ In The Wind” and made it clear he was a supporter of our new president.

Within 48 hours of the inauguration, President Obama announced the closing of Gitmo, a symbol of everything evil associated with Bush and the ongoing war on terrorism. By announcing the closing of the prison in a year, Obama gave the impression of doing something, when in effect he was doing nothing. If this prison is such a travesty, close it now damn it! At least make it one of those first 100 day projects. The folks in our county jail would trade those facilities in a heart beat (take a tour of our local jail and you will agree). Does Obama want to be the president that actually brings known terrorists into the United States? How about that nutjob John Murtha suggesting that he would be comfortable putting the Gitmo prisoners in a prison in his district?

Would we be applauding our local congressman for suggesting that we relocate 245 known terrorists to our local prison? Not bloody likely.

President Obama also made a symbolic nod to abolish torture by reverting to the “Army Field Manual” which has enough “interrogation” loopholes to accommodate almost any situation. These symbolic gestures give his base the appearance that he is making “change”, when in essence, he is doing nothing.
Based upon the editors of the National Review; “So to summarize (Obama’s position): We’d love to close Guantanamo, but we can’t right now; we’d love to transfer detainees out of Guantanamo, but other countries don’t want them; we’d love to give every detainee a civilian trial, but we don’t have enough evidence; we’d love to release the detainees we can’t charge with crimes, but our intelligence tells us they’re dangerous, so doing so would be irresponsible; and we’d love to stick to the highly civilized, detainee-friendly interrogation practices approved by the Army Field Manual, but every now and then there may be an emergency when something more severe is warranted.”

Once again, the appearance of change to placate the easily impressed but in reality no change at all. I am glad that he is taking this approach since the easily fooled are in fact, easily fooled. If Obama thinks he can play patty-cake with the likes of those terrorists who beheaded Daniel Pearl, he is simply wrong, but I hopefully believe that he knows that. (I was going to link the Daniel Pearl murder link here but it is just too disturbing. You can do a Google search if you really want to see how terrorists treat our citizens).

As an American, I have high hopes for the Obama presidency. I want him to succeed because I want our nation to succeed. Soon he will present an agenda that is more than mere symbolic hyperbole shown during the first few days. It is then that we will see what he is made of.

Until then my prayers are with you, Mr. President, and the people of this great nation of ours.



BlessUrHeart said...

Ah, Max, of course you wish Obama well, just like Bill Crystal and Rush Limbaugh do. You like him by nitpicking and making fun of every move he makes. ;-)

I realize how hard it is to put up with policies with which you don't agree, been doing that for years now myself. But to complain about the very small amount of displeasure from the huge crowd, when there was so very little from a very, very unhappy couple of million people [quite frankly, I didn't even hear it], is a little, oh, whine-y. C'mon my friend, it's a crowd.

Sorry he hasn't cured all the ills in 3 days, but those of us who know how hard this is going to be have hope again. The world has hope, too, instead of pure revulsion for all things American.

Anonymous said...

While I know how to email Miss Vero, I cannot figure out how to email Max Newport. Max, how about an email address. Thanks.

Max Newport said...

Hi BlessUrHeart

Bear with me, I am only having a little fun. (I would say "bare with me" but your picture kind of scares me in that regard.) You know that I love you guys and the last thing I want is my cynical sense of sarcasm to offend. You are a gem and I expect that we will have some fun over the next few years here at the Beach House.


Miss Vero is the most trustworthy soul I have met in my little town. She has seen me at my best and at my worst and I trust her without reservation with my "secret identity". She will forward any message to my real email address. Since Max does not exist, you can reach him at

Anonymous said...

I am so very tired of your glib, and tired rhetoric. I would wish that before you go that route, you wait long enough for evidence, and then tackle the issues on a more thoughtful vein. Your observations, could be interesting,if it were not for the Republican penchant for being unable to think out of the box, and your easy, lazy dismissal of both personalities and issues. This is exactly the behavior that allowed the last eight years to happen.

Anonymous said...

Gosh Anonymous your comment to Max sounds like "glib, and tired rhetoric".

Luke Justice said...


You may be anonymous but I recognize the dog!!!!

For a first time reader, l thoroughly enjoyed your humor. I also enjoyed the rejoinder about " 3 days"

When I read enjoyable commentary I disagree with as I did with much of yours, I remember neither my opinion nor yours counts for much in these very trying times. In other words, I try not to take myself too seriously. I've proven way too fallible in the past to act otherwise.

But then again, I never take a former Oldsmobile owner serious!!

Keep up the wonderful opinion provoking stuff!!

BlessUrHeart said...

Is it Krystol? Crystal? Cynic? Comedian? Anyway, the one who DIDN'T have sex in the deli with Meg Ryan.

Glad you like the photo, Max.

Sorry I didn't connect to the sense of sarcasm, it read as straight up to me. My bad. I've found that problem in writing, and in the past have used a sarcasm indicator, like one would use quotation marks. >>nice job!<< there should be an emoticon that works here. ;-) Like that.

but somehow, just an inkling, I'm pretty sure you really do hate Hillary. >>Because she's so much different than John McCain.<< ;-) [see the double sarcasm??]

There are probably bunches of people who are ready to eschew bashing EITHER Bush or Obama, ready to get on with policy issues, and leave the intoxicated news reporters to their own work, whether it's Diane Sawyer or Bret Hume.

Timing. Many of us are still in the glow of enjoying a man who can give a speech that is appropriate to the moment and hopeful. I say nothing to discredit the former office-holder here. Your column was 99 percent snarky, a little too soon, methinks.

luv ya, Max.