I've been harping here on maintaining skepticism of reports on what Obama is and isn't going to do, who is and isn't going to be appointed, and what Obama does and doesn't want others to do. For increasingly good reasons. There's the pre-spin by people who have a self- interest. There are trial balloons, floated by similarly self-interested people as well as perhaps by the Obama team. There are the usual misunderstandings, by people overhearing things and reporters interpreting information.
Which has meant for instance that this morning headline gets denied tonight, as in the case of the supposed swap meet Bush and Obama held in the Oval Office yesterday. Or in the interpretation of a signal, which leads to strings of speculation, like on the Obama position on Joe Lieberman's fate in the Senate.
It was widely reported--and still is-- that Obama wants Lieberman's status to remain as it is, within the Dem caucus, and even retaining his committee chairs. But his spokesperson Stephanie Cutter indicated today that Obama's position is that he doesn't hold a grudge, but that Joe the Traitor's fate is up to Harry Reid and the Senate Dems. Well, there's a big difference between saying, Obama is not insisting Joe get thrown out, and Obama wants Joe to stay.
As to what we actually do know, John Podesta held a press conference to talk about the transition--TPM has the best summary I saw. The only thing missing is Podesta's response to a question that wouldn't these ethics rules banning lobbyist influence limit the people who might be appointed or be part of the transition? "So be it," Podesta decreed.
As we simultaneously look forward and evaluate the past campaign, Ambinder has this neat summary of why the Obama campaign was successful, such as Practice what you preach (trust the community organizers), and "Win Bigger/Lose Smaller:" "That was an Obama field mantra. The campaign opened up a field office in Warren Co., Ohio, where George W. Bush won by nearly 50 points in 2004. Well, Obama lost Warren County... but by 37 points. That's a big improvement. Losing by smaller margins in those smaller counties is how Barack Obama won Ohio."
And here for the record is another account of dancing in the street
on election day, this time in NYC. As I've said many times, if it wasn't for vicarious experiences, I wouldn't have many experiences at all.
In the continuing adventures of the three missing Senate seats, here's the latest on Alaska. Sounds like we could know a lot more Wednesday night or Thursday morning. Shannyn Moore reveals that election "irregularities" are not new in Alaska--for instance, 2004.
Beginner's Mind - Finding a very nice hardback copy of Bruce Chatwin's last book in a bargain bin, a kind of miscellany of previously uncollected pieces called What Am I Doi...
5 hours ago