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Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Snark of the Union

Random comments on the speech:

"We should start where most new jobs do — in small businesses, companies that begin when an entrepreneur takes a chance on a dream or a worker decides it's time she became her own boss."

I continue to call b.s. on this assertion.

"The only way to move to full employment is to lay a new foundation for long-term economic growth..."

Socialism? It's socialism, right?

"It's time to get serious about fixing the problems that are hampering our growth."

Capitalism? It's capitalism, right?

"We have to seek new markets aggressively, just as our competitors are. If America sits on the sidelines while other nations sign trade deals, we will lose the chance to create jobs on our shores."

...So we're going to drop the blockade of Cuba? Uh....no.

"This year, we have broken through the stalemate between left and right by launching a national competition to improve our schools."

Why is it every time the "stalemate between left and right" is broken, the result is always exactly what the right wanted?

"Starting in 2011, we are prepared to freeze government spending for three years. Spending related to our national security, Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security will not be affected. But all other discretionary government programs will."

Mark this one down; it's the one promise in the entire speech that will be fulfilled.

"Let's reject the false choice between protecting our people and upholding our values."

Forget "values"; I'd be happy if he'd just uphold the Constitution.

"In Afghanistan...we will reward good governance."

Does that include stolen elections? "Presidents" who can't even get their legislature to approve their Cabinet choices, twice? If we "reward" good governance, what exactly is our reaction to bad governance? Aside from sending more troops, that is.

"As Iran’s leaders continue to ignore their obligations, there should be no doubt: they, too, will face growing consequences."

Iran is in full compliance with the NPT; it is the United States which is not. Just for the record.

"This year, I will work with Congress and our military to finally repeal the law that denies gay Americans the right to serve the country they love because of who they are."

"This year," sometime off in the future, he'll "work with Congress" to repeal the law he can't even name - "Don't Ask, Don't Tell". He doesn't "call on the Congress to repeal it" in his speech, just he'll "work with" Congress. Just so you know it won't be his fault when it doesn't happen, notwithstanding the fact that he could implement precisely the same result today (by announcing that as Commander in Chief he forbids those under his command from taking any action to enforce the law) if he really wanted to while waiting for Congress to repeal the law itself.

And finally,

"And it lives on in all the Americans who’ve dropped everything to go some place they’ve never been and pull people they’ve never known from rubble, prompting chants of “U.S.A.! U.S.A.! U.S.A!” when another life was saved."

Really? I've watched a lot of coverage, and I haven't once heard this kind of chant. I have heard a lot of people complaining about how rescue workers were prevented from arriving in Haiti while the U.S. military tied up the airport to land more soldiers.

Update: Almost forgot:

"Well I do not accept second-place for the United States of America."

Really? How about 37th place (in health care)? 38th (in life expectancy)? How about 13th (in "human development")? #1 in military spending, though! Damn straight!

Update 2: I forgot my one opportunity to praise Obama:

"And it is precisely to relieve the burden on middle-class families that we still need health insurance reform."

Thank you, President Obama! I am so tired about people talking about "HCR" - Health Care Reform. Obama agrees with me - this has nothing to do with health care (which is what we really need). It's about insurance. Period.

Update 3: How could I forget:

"But to create more of these clean energy jobs, we need...a new generation of safe, clean nuclear power plants in this country...and clean coal."

Nuclear power plants do have the possibility to be "clean." It's the waste products of those plants that pose a huge, and as far as we can tell, insurmountable problem to society. And "clean coal"? An oxymoron.

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