You wanted it.
You went for it.
And you won.
Congratulations, Mr. President, and welcome to the medicine closet because they don’t make an aspirin strong enough for your forthcoming headaches.
First, get yourself an extra large in-tray for all the paperwork and homework you’ll receive, apprising you of the country’s economic, political and social consternations from policy wonks who are – or are not – in the know.
Then, set aside a super-sized folder and mark it “nuisance, rogue and uncooperative nations.” You’ll be dealing with most of them – from day one.
You’ll have to juggle the perennial roster of domestic issues – among them, health and elder care, education, Social Security, housing, homelessness and, of course, unforeseen calamities – with an ever-burgeoning threat upon our national security from enemies, whose terror trails around the world are muddied with the blood of innocent men, women and children.
Be prepared for that ‘3 a.m.’ call to inform you that Iran is flexing its nuclear muscle; a very real possibility given that the rogue nation, correctly assessed by your predecessor as one of the spokes in an axis of evil, is amassing an unchecked nuclear arsenal under the lame watch of that regent of ineptitude and pork-barrel waste called the United Nations.
Be prepared to acknowledge the scumbags of the earth, and then either battle, or mediate, with them as they plot the Free World’s demise from their cesspits and caves in the world’s far-flung corners.
Then, there’s the religious migraine from green-eyed religious monsters, who have elevated extremism and murder into an art form after centuries of oppression, capped by a weak mind and an unforgiving heart.
You’ll learn – hopefully, not the hard way – that the neediest nations are under the thumbs of control-freak barbarians, whose (at best) complicit and (at worst) tyrannical reigns infect the world’s most picturesque and resource-rich regions with their cancer, and that it falls on you to mitigate their mayhem and murder.
You’ll have to weather the slow suffocation of Africa’s myriad countries, where Mother Nature unleashes her anger as frequently as the frustrated, two-bit thugs, who have falsely re-invented themselves as national saviors.
You’ll discover that elsewhere, outside of this unique United States, complicity, duplicity and nonchalance are the passwords on the trading floor of globalization as the Free World tries to cajole fledgling democracies with sticks, but mostly carrots.
Of course, the future of volatile, emotional Iraq, whose Muslim brethren cannot seem to get its act together, will define your presidency, much as it did your predecessor’s. It will be up to you to broker liveability in an area infected by sorrow and strife long before George W. Bush was in diapers.
Through it all, you will be grilled, broiled and seared by a hungry media and a watching world for every misstep, misspoken word and misapprehension. Your flaws and foibles will become the fodder for comedy and drama, and compel our adversaries to sharpen their angst against your jugular.
Spend the weeks from now until your inauguration cribbing and cramming up on Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Somalia, Sudan, Myanmar, Indonesia, China, Tibet, Nepal, Mexico, Venezuela, Kenya, South Africa, Ivory Coast, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Egypt, Turkey, Bosnia, Europe, etc., etc., etc.
In the meantime, congratulations, Mr. President, and welcome to reality where indigestion and migraines are occupational hazards for a leader of the Free World.
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