Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
What's in a Name?
Democrats, who almost never call themselves liberal anymore (preferring to be known as progressives), have apparently decided that the terms "bailout" and even "stimulus" won't do either. Such efforts will now be called economy "recovery" programs.
The New York Times reports Democrats worried that "bailout" conjured up images of suspects sprung from jails and "stimulus" combined a "bureaucratic wonkiness with the concept of shock therapy."
However, "economic recovery" sounds optimistic and, to them, reminiscent of New Deal initiatives. Incoming Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel says, "'Stimulus' is Washington talk, and 'economic recovery' is how the American people think of it."
Some bloggers and columnists on the left are less than thrilled with some of President-elect Obama's choices for high positions in his administration.
Robert Borosage writes on the Huffington Post, "Obama seems perilously close to following the same course as Bush in the banking bailout. For a man who won the presidency understanding that it was time to turn the page, this would be a good place to do just that."
Chris Bowers laments on OpenLeft.com, "Why isn't there a single member of Obama's Cabinet who will be advising him from the left? ... We are being entirely left out of Obama's major appointments so far."
And Robert Scheer writes in The Nation that, "It is time for the many of us who responded to his e-mails during the campaign to now challenge our e-mail buddy as to why he suddenly acts as if the interests of Wall Street and Main Street are one and the same."
It might become even harder for Mr. Obama to receive those e-mails from the left once he takes office in January. It appears he will be forced to hand over his BlackBerry before settling into the Oval Office. The small wireless device could often be seen holstered to the candidate's belt throughout the campaign.
But Mr. Obama tells Barbara Walters, "This is a problem... I'm in the process of negotiating with the Secret Service, with lawyers, with White House staff."
The President-elect says he is worried about losing touch with the outside world, but authorities fear hackers could break into his inbox and harvest data relevant to matters of national security. There is also the issue of the Presidential Records Act that requires correspondence of any kind be officially on the record.
Fit for Duty
The president-elect isn't shy about his penchant for exercise. He begins most mornings with a visit to a gym and frequently discusses his love for sports. Associated Press reporter Deanna Bellandi describes the incoming first couple as "fabulously fit." Back in June, Men's Fitness magazine ranked Obama the candidate as one of the 25 fittest guys in America.
So if this virtue of exercise is praised, how, you ask, have reporters referred to President Bush's workout routine? They have used words such as "obsession," "indulgence" and even "creepy" to describe the President's exercise habit.
— FOX News Channel's Zachary Kenworthy contributed to this report.