Jay Leno had a Very Special Guest last night, someone that many people perhaps hadn’t had the option to see in this type of environment before. And that Guest did not squander the opportunity, no doubt winning some converts along the way. Maybe myself included.
But before Garth Brooks, Leno spent several segments talking to President Barack Obama.
It’s rare that a sitting U. S. President makes a prime time television appearance (States of the Union and other addresses notwithstanding), and it marked the first time the President had appeared on the Tonight Show. The New York Times referred to it as “a fireside chat for the flat screen age,” a very apt description.
I thought it was a great way for the President to show confidence and an ability to laugh at oneself amidst an incredible crisis. He was smart and engaged, self-mocking at times (“Oh, that was a campaign promise” he joked when asked when the puppy was going to arrive at the White House) and at the same time showed a brave and capable face to the people. It’s easy to do that when you’re vying for the office, but two months into that job and in the red from the get-go?
This kind of thing will go a long way toward making the American people feel better that the recession, while crippling the nation and continuing to lay waste to everything in its path, will be quelled soon. Perhaps not soon enough, but before things turn really sour.
But no huge ship on a wrong course can be righted quickly; no system as complicated as the world- or national- economic system can be corrected immediately with drastic, reactive steps. It takes time for smaller changes to ripple through the system without throwing it further askew and imperiling the troubled system more. Now, I’m no financial wizard by any stretch — it’s just that in any complicated system (economic, weather, etc) minor alterations can effect major change down the line, and not always with any immediacy or real predictability. In chaos theory this concept is known as sensitive dependence on initial conditions, or colloquially as the butterfly effect.
In the meantime, just keep reading TLOS and check out some new Fünf releases…