Rave: Presidential Flickr

On this one year anniversary of the election of Barack Obama, I’d like to highlight one of the things I appreciate about this administration. It isn’t Michelle’s focus on fresh, local food or her awesome sense of style, nor is it the President’s commitment to health care reform or repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Instead, it’s decidedly less political: it’s their willingness to have their life and work at the White House documented and shared with the public through The White House Flickr photosteam.

It doesn’t sound exciting, I know. I had pretty low expectations myself. The day-to-day workings of government seem kind of boring, even if you’re the president. Cabinet meetings and speeches don’t seem like they’d make for compelling photos, but this administration doesn’t just show us the official events or meetings with world leaders. Peppered throughout the  Flickr photosteam are pictures like this one that show such a human side to the President.


President Barack Obama bends over so the son of a White House staff member can pat his head during a family visit to the Oval Office May 8, 2009. The youngster wanted to see if the President’s haircut felt like his own. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza).

Of course all U.S. presidents have had a life of their own while they were in office, but for the most part, we the people didn’t get to see much of it and that’s part of what makes The White House Flickr photosteam so interesting. There are the meetings, of course, and then there are the pictures that show the President is just another dad playing with the family dog or watching his kid’s soccer game.

Some of the pictures give the sense of seeing the DVD extras, the outtakes from the Presidency, like Obama joking around in this picture, or the unusual interview, shown below.


If you haven’t seen the pictures yet (or even recently), head on over. I can almost promise that you’ll be charmed.


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