The collective American psyche was never more simple than during George W. Bush's final years in office. Through his various follies and misdeeds, he became the face of everything that was going wrong.
George W. Bush was everywhere. He was in more places than fast food, Schrodinger's cat, and even god... because he was in the toilet. While American citizens claimed to hate him, they really loved to hate him. Comedians, Political "thinkers", former supporters, and Joe Pint-bottle-of-mad-dog-20-20 alike didn't miss a beat; whenever they could tear him apart they did.
Not that there's anything wrong with that.
What's wrong is thinking that the next president could, and would want to, end everything that was started in the last 8 years just by snapping his fingers and saying "shit just got Obama'd!". In a spectacular display of optimism, or rather; magical thinking, many Americans forgot or ignored how little power the president actually has, forgot or ignored Obama's actual positions, and exaggerated the importance of "being able to read good" with savior-like status.
Instead of a symbol of everything that's wrong, like Bush; Obama was used as a symbol of everything that's right.
But now that the economy is still in the shitter, there may be even more troops sent to "win" the "war", and Guantanamo bay is still operational after it was "being closed" as a first order of business on January 21st, Americans are starting to realize neither Icon is correct.
The cows already came home and they're infected with H1N1. We can't wait for a fool president to leave or a golden president to arrive, we have to get results ourselves. Shit just got real.