Our daily look at stories and topics that are lighting up the Internets:
Bye Bye, Bushie
With Bush's farewell address to the country only a day behind us, bloggers followed suit, returning the farewell and continuing their reflection on the legacy Bush leaves. Bush's words reminded one blogger of another farewell address (by Nixon), "who in his own farewell to the nation chose to quote Teddy Roosevelt's description of the 'man in the arena.'" Another blogger was baffled at how comfortable Bush was in his own skin, confident as ever in his role "in the cosmic battle between good and evil." Others on the right want vindication from the liberal moonbats: "The slobbering left," enthralled as it was with accusing Bush of suspending the Constitution, "was sure the evil Bushhitler would never give up power." The fact that Bush is leaving office seems for this blogger to be vindication enough. And in case you didn't believe it even after all the legacy and farewell talk, today marked the last day for Bush staffers, who turned in their gym keys, BlackBerrys, etc. as they exited. And speaking of farewells, Clinton delivers hers to the Senate. Others, however, like the Bush-appointed attorneys, attempt to stay put. Robert Stein, meanwhile, picks up on a great irony between yesterday's heroic landing of Chesley Sullenberger and Bush's perilous steering as decider in chief.
As the war between Israel and Hamas drags into its third week, the bloggers continue debating the conflict. (Rather watch than read about the conflict? See Video Killed the Regular War.) Hamas is about to crack, writes one conservative blogger. Expect Hamas to be on the superdefensive, turning from its fighting the Israelis to targeting Fatah members "to prevent a Fatah resurgence after the shooting stops." William Saletan has a number of suggestions for what Israel can do about the tunnels Hamas built under Gaza. Jamal Dajani comments on the anti-Israel protests that have spread across world capitals, while others have a lot to say about Hamas rejecting Israel's cease-fire demands. And Andrew Sullivan goes meta on the discussions, saying the most controversial arguments shooting their way across the blogosphere have "helped out the deeper debate we need to have. As has the entire Gaza bombardment."
With news of Citigroup's $8.3 billion quarterly loss and Circuit City's liquidation of 567 U.S. stores today, talk about the economy shattered and vaporized the already half-empty glass (though the government did finalize its asset protections for Citigroup today). "It seems likely right now that the Obama administration will be defined by its response to the nation's economic woes," says John Hood. But few would have expected the shift in priorities that defined Bush's presidency. His message: Obama had better get used to multitasking like no president before. Mark Halperin gives this unintuitive advice to his readers: "Watch to see what happens going forward and what the general mood is on the economy." Others turn from talk about the economy to talk about taxes, confused as to why Treasury Secretary-designate Geithner is getting a free pass over not paying his taxes. Says Doug Bandow: "Unless Secretary Geithner intends to extend the practice to the rest of us (as someone who is self-employed, just let me tell how much I hate paying the Social Security and Medicare taxes!), this issue certainly deserves more than a wave and 'oh well' by the Senate."
... Meanwhile ...
Johnny Knoxville is detained at an LAX for grenade possession... John McCain doesn't want Cindy McCain dancing with the stars... The Iraqi shoe thrower is denied access to a lawyer while in Iraqi jail... And Boy George is sentenced to 15 months in prison.