THE BLOG
01/22/2009 03:00 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Jacket on or off, Obama's no Empty Suit

President Barack Obama hit the ground running just like he promised. He signed an Executive Order to close the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He declared that "interrogations of detainees in armed conflict, by any government agency, follow the Army Field Manual interrogation guidelines," which clearly categorizes waterboarding as torture, thereby agreeing with his choice for Attorney General, Eric Holder. He instituted a salary freeze for all senior staff. And when he ordered a hold on all pending federal regulation, he might even have saved a few gray wolves.

But if you follow the news on the internet, it seems the most breathtaking piece of news was this little piece, reported by CNN under what was definitely an eye-catching headline: "Major Bush Rule Gets Scrapped By Obama."

When I first saw it my mind began to race: which major Bush rule just got tossed on the trash heap? Something to do with the Vice President being part of the Executive Branch? Did it concern spying on private citizens?

President Obama took off his jacket in the Oval Office.

When the president's press office released a photo showing the President talking on the phone sans jacket, the reaction was fast and furious. Over 1,000 comments appeared on Huffington Post. CNN's political ticker went crazy. Reaction from the Right-Wingnuts, who must be feeling pretty rejected watching the world welcome the new president, ranged from mild ("No respect for the office") to disgustingly racist.

But not one of them actually commented on what the President was doing.

President Obama was on the phone. The first phone call made by President Obama to an international world leader was to Mahmoud Abbas, the embattled president of the Palestinian Authority.

While some were busy fussing about to suit or not to suit, the world took notice of the real story. Obama's predecessor did virtually nothing about the Palestinian/Israeli situation, except for a desperate stab at legacy making toward the end of his second term. The new President made it his first international phone call. White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs reiterated Obama's campaign commitment toward "active engagement in pursuit of Arab-Israeli peace," and underscored that commitment by reporting that Obama's next phone calls were to Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and Jordan's King Abdullah, the leaders of the only two countries in the region who recognize Israel.

But if you still want to talk about men's apparel, then let's talk about suits. Specifically, the Empty Suit.

Webster's Dictionary defines the Empty Suit in three words: an ineffectual executive. Answers. com expands that definition; someone who acts as if they know what they're doing but is really an empty suit.

George W. Bush was the epitome of the Empty Suit. After eight years of his ineffectual leadership and utter incompetence he left his country ,and the world, reeling. The irony is overwhelming; W insisted that everyone wear a jacket in the Oval Office out of respect, while his administration showed a disgusting disrespect for the laws of the land he was elected to protect.

I don't care what Obama wears in the Oval Office. I care what he does for the country and the world while he's working in it.

So far so good.