State of the Union, 2010

I expected President Obama’s first State of the Union speech to be dramatic, eloquent and inspirational.

And it was all those things. He’s a fine public speaker, probably the best in the White House since Jack Kennedy. He struck most of the right chords, beginning in a somber tone, acknowledging that the nation is still reeling — and hurting — from the current economic depression. And he took us in turns through all the Americas: America the Proud, America the Compassionate, America the Injured, America the Resilient, America the Determined, America the Tough.

It was a splendid ride, but if I may cut to the chase, it was mainly Another Speech.

I don’t expect miracles, and I know he’s only been in office for a year, and he is following the administration of George W. Bush, who must surely have been the worst president ever, and who really did leave a stinking mess behind. But I have the distinct sensation that nothing good is happening in the federal government, and while I want to be tolerant of a man whom I consider smart and decent, I think I’ll hold my applause until I see some action.

I’m not even going to criticize his stupid idea of a “spending freeze,” because, based on past performance, I don’t really know if he’ll actually do it. (For the record, I hope he doesn’t. It’s wrong for job creation and it’s horribly wrong politically.)

I’m not all negative. This is what I want:

  • Withdrawal of all big combat troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, to be replaced by diplomats, spies, police and the occasional saboteur.
  • Reinstatement of the Glass-Steagall Act or whatever it might take to make the financial sector act like grownups.
  • A hundred billion dollars of infrastructure spending in the next three years (to create jobs, build for the future and fix the Grand Canyon-size potholes on the 405 Freeway).

That will do for now. If I see even one of these ideas pursued intelligently and put into effect, I’ll be a lot more excited about the State of the Union, 2011 Edition.

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3 Replies to “State of the Union, 2010”

  1. IF electable, I would run for office. Nobody knows the trouble I’ve made for myself. At least I sure hope not.

    To your post’s point; as Bob Reich says, “…Carefully targeted — as are the cuts the President is proposing — they can give businesses an extra nudge to hire. But without adequate demand, they’re useless (as job creators).”

    Of course, the point the so called Conservatives purposefully “miss” is that such cuts would assist corporations’ bottom lines and, thus their performance in the Hallowed Stock Market.

    Just for a while, boys. Just for long enough for the cats with the capital to make their profit$ and get themselves gone to greener marks… errr uh… markets, no, um, pastures. Yes. Greener pastures.

    Fingers crossed and donations made to Jennifer Brunners’ campaign to be OH’s new US Senator when Voinovich retires.

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