Obama will get to keep his Blackberry after all. Good for him. But in the midst of this feel good story, I learned something new – that while I have had an e-mail address since I was in eighth goddamn grade, the leader of the free world has gotten along fine without one for the past sixteen years, thank you very much. From the BBC article:

Neither George W Bush nor Bill Clinton used e-mail during their presidencies.

Maybe this is my slip showing, and by “slip” in this case I mean “staggering ignorance of White House policy”, but WOW! Really?

I would find it impossible – repeat that, capitalize it, I-M-P-O-S-S-I-B-L-E – to make ends meet freelancing, much less stay in touch with anybody, without fairly constant access to my e-mail account. But leading the free world, communicating with members of the legislature and foreign dignitaries, and being the Commander in Chief of the armed forces during a time of war – these things do not require one to have email access? I find that hard to believe, but yes, Barack Obama can add to his list of firsts that he will be the first president to use e-mail. Of course, this may be in large part attributable to the fact that the White House is, apparently, an absolute technological shit-show of the highest caliber.

Of course, if I was leaving behind the legacy that G.W. is, I don’t suppose I’d be eager for people to be reading the records about the CIA leaks, the anemic response to Hurricane Katrina, or the war based on manipulated intelligence findings either.