I've been taking a sabbatical lately, a sabbatical from the news. It's been weeks since I visited the New York Times or watched any news shows. I've even gotten into the habit of turning my radio to regular music stations when NPR gets too newsy. And it's been nice.
Last night I was talking with a friend about my sabbatical and we started talking politics. It was politics that inspired the sabbatical and I don't know exactly where he stands, so this discussion wasn't about platforms, or scandals, it was about leadership. He asked if days of great leaders were over. I responded by asking if we have rewritten history and compare our modern leaders with legend instead of fact. I think that the answer lies somewhere in the middle.
Somedays I feel like I might be the only person in this whole country who is satisfied with the president. And yes I did vote for him, and yes I didn't have incredibly high expectations of him to begin with. So, I'm satisfied. He has fulfilled my expectations. And I'm certain that he has faced the challenges at hand with at least as well as our alternative, John McCain. Not that I don't think that McCain could have done a good job, I only doubt that he would have done things much differently. (How's that for cynicism?) I am speaking mostly about the economy. A problem for which no one has presented any magic bullet. Because, while in campaigns it is easy to speak of simple solutions, in life there are no easy answers.
So I've heard rumors of terrible things happening all of the world. Protests and wars and failing economies and abuses of power. And I'm pretty sure that there will be plenty of news to catch up on when I get back to it. But for a little while, I am going to happily ignore it all, think deep thoughts and indulge in a good book or two.