There's been a lot of cynicism over Obama's promise of change. Why should anyone be cynical about that?
George w. Bush has made change about the easiest part of Obama's mandate. Much of what he has to do is to reinstate protections and regulations stripped away by the Bush maladministration. Find out what Bush did, decide if it's not beneficial and then, if warranted, cancel it.
Drilling in the Alaska National Wildlife Reserve? Cancel it. A ban on funding for stem cell research? Scrap it. The bellicose Bush Doctrine. Gone. Unilateralism - no more, make way for multilateralism.
Barack Obama will be stepping into stables that simply haven't been dunged out for some time. There'll be some shovelling to be done, a lot of crap to be chucked out. Fortunately much of the current regime's mischief was accomplished by presidential decree, almost by fiat, and much of it can be undone quickly and easily.
The hard stuff - restoring confidence and vitality to the American economy, devising a meaningful climate change policy, introduction of universal health care, restoring balance to America's tax codes - that will take longer but it takes time and effort to come up with the right answers.
Bush and Cheney surrounded themselves with second-rate ideologues and sycophants. If you weren't one you were damn well the other. Corporatism prevailed with the inevitable consequence of wrecking just about everything. Obama, by contrast, is picking the best and the brightest. He's not governed by neoconservative Republican ideological incest.
Bush and Cheney and all their minions set the bar so astonishingly low that Obama will have a pretty easy time distinguishing his administration as vastly superior. That is going to help him build the trust and bond with the American people he's going to need to gain their support for the tough, sometimes unpleasant challenges that lie ahead.