Where can he start? There’s so much that needs to be done. It’s one of the biggest challenges in history, but a very difficult task! George W. Bush has probably done what he thought would be the best for the country (I truly believe that), but under his leadership, so many lies have reached the surface. It seems impossible to repair all of this, and it’s up to Obama to restore the integrity of America.

On a personal note, I love the U.S. and the U.S. people, but the treatment (without any respect) at the border is what many people have to deal with and it’s something I really dislike! I visit your country once in a while (sometimes while on tour and other times to visit my girlfriend who is living in the States), but I don’t want to leave personal fingerprints under the cloak of a war on terror. What’s next, a chip in our body? It’s shattering to hear words like “stay in your own country” when I visit the U.S. twice in three months. I feel like they don’t even believe me when I say that I come to visit my girlfriend. I can’t help that she lives there. When she got back from her trip to Europe, the guy at the desk told my girlfriend that her passport picture was the sexiest he has ever seen. Border agents think they can say anything they want since nobody dares to give them any resistance, so it would be great if Barack could do something about this. There are signs saying that everybody should be treated with respect, so give us visitors some respect please.

—Mark Jansen, Epica

In today’s America, the common folks consider living paycheck to paycheck as a blessing, where the wealthy few were bleeding the once-mighty working class for every last nickel, in the name of the share holder. Jobs are shipped overseas, and corporations relocate to countries like Dubai in order to avoid taxes, while they cash in on no-bid contracts. Fascism has been alive and well, and celebrated over the last eight years under the Bush Administration.

Well, as Newton Taught us: “Every action has an equal and opposite reaction.” We have new elected officials, who will be tested, like they have been throughout our relatively young nation’s elected officials have in the past. But words like “”Hope” and “Change” were tossed around like peanuts from a vendor to a fan at a mid summer ball game.

Hope And Change… Hope And Change.

Well, I hope things change. Obama has brought hope to the entire world. Even being compared to JFK. I hope for our sake he can live up to the hype, and doesn’t become another bubble gum pop star.

Financially, this country is in shambles. If it were up to me, I would legalize hemp for industrial use boosting the basic structure of the American economy. From farming to manufacturing, fuel to leisure. It’s time to recognize the shear ignorance, lies, deceit, and lobbying that was used to pass laws against it.

Second: Infrastructure. Our roads, highways and bridges have been neglected for years. Not only will it create good family wage jobs, but it will also ease congestion and make roads safer. A lasting investment is always a good idea.

Third: Close the damn border. I’m not a xenophobe, but c’mon. Enough is enough.

Internationally: I believe the days of Cowboy Diplomacy are over (Thank God). Obama is already seen as a step in the right direction globally. Huge leg up!! I mean c‘mon, Bush destroyed our image. Barack Obama, our President-Elect has the world on his shoulders. Agree or disagree with the man, at least show him the respect he has earned and give him a chance. Hell, we gave Dubya two chances.

—Ken Olson, Fall From Grace

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