To reword the question slightly: Do Obama's appointments to his cabinet, at best moderate Democrats and at worst Robert Gates, represent the political direction his administration will take?
Explanation: He totally rooked saps like Alworth, who saw his record of liberalism and soaring rhetoric as the return of FDR (or at least Mario Cuomo) and now we must get used to Clinton II. Hey, at least it's not Bush III, right?
Explanation: In one of the great bait-and-switches in modern political history, Obama plans to use the cover of moderates and right-wingers to push through liberalish (probably not Chomskyish) legislation. Who can scream at Bob Gates for bringing home the troops when Bush appointed him? Etc.
3. Sort of.
Explanation: His plan is to use their cred with moderate Dems and Republicans to take what he can get, but without a real liberal in the White House, we can't expect a whole hell of a lot. Best case, competency and maybe a surprising bit of legislation. Worst case, a muddled Carter II.
On the up side, Obama is wicked smart, and has seen three or four moves further down the road than anyone else, so you never know. On the downside, it is Washington, and he may be overestimating his ability to finesse a very coagulated system. Fingers crossed, but mind steeled for the worst.