Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Thoughts on Obama inauguration

I think I watched a collective 5 minutes of inauguration coverage yesterday. I hold President Obama in high esteem. I think his presidency is truly historic for all of the reasons repeated in the press ad nauseum. I voted for Obama. I did my usual election coverage smorgasbord until about 1 a.m. I hope his service goes well for him and the country. My wonderful wife had a special perspective watching the inauguration at our State Capitol in Pierre. I was glad to be doing other things.

Why didn't I watch the inauguration festivities?

1. I have lost almost any desire to watch news events in real time. This was the fascination of the '90s and early '00s. CNN and FOX news have made their money on real-time reporting--reporting on events as they happened. I don't have the time or the schedule to live this kind of life. I am perfectly content to read about what happened and the post-game analysis. Podcasts, Hulu, and post-event journalism serve me quite well. I still have a steady diet of media, but caring for my children and household take priority. I do appreciate certain things real-time besides my life: I like sports.

2. The superlatives and fawning of the Baby Boom Generation reporters over Barack Obama and the inauguration set off my gag reflex as I listened to the radio and watched television related to the inauguration (John Stewart did the best job, he made fun of himself and his fawning. A Daily Show interview with Al Jazeera? I liked that). I even had a hard time listening to NPR's coverage. I endured about 3 minutes.

3. I certainly support having a party. Obama endured quite a campaign. I am much more interested in how Obama governs.

I think I'll listen to more new government analysis on my podcasts.

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