(…a valedictorian oration to the faithful)

President Obama chose to make his farewell speech from Chicago, his home town, rather than following recent precedents of making it at a joint session of Congress.

Which was his privilege, of course, but it is indicative of the divide which seems to have taken hold of our body politic and with the country as a whole as well; which is a sad thing to contemplate, because if ever we as a nation needed a unifying shot in the butt…we really need one at this time in our history.

As such parting speeches go we have to admit the President was quite eloquent about that need for unity. But it had the tone of a somewhat jaundiced university Chancellor making a valedictorian oration to the faithful, in the hopes they would go forth and do better and achieve more than what they had…while on campus.

Granted he inherited a financial crisis not of his making, while left with the task of closing out the books on two wars slowly eroding both our resources and our capacities to conduct them to a proper conclusion, but the biggest obstacle he faced for getting anything done was an absolutely obdurate Congress determined not to allow him to do so…for purely partisan reasons (a combination of subliminal racial bias and tit-for-tat revenge for the actions of a previous Congress dominated by an opposing party).

Well, this President must be given credit for having managed to still achieve some accomplishments despite such conditions. More importantly he did give the country a firm role model for strength of character and integrity while in the Oval Office, for which all of us should be grateful. All in all he at least did a minimum of harm while there.