The State of the Union is Strong

The State of the Union is Strong. Bush finished his speech tonite with one of the best I've heard out of him so far. Ending on the high note that makes me proud to say I'm American. For a transcript of the speech:,2933,246158,00.html

For those of you who missed it, for whatever reason it may be, Bush was his usual strong, assertive, bold, and aggressive self he's always been. He laid out in no uncertain terms where we are domestically, and where we stand in the world today. For all his faults, he delivered his speech with dignity and pride. Never once taking any pot shots at the other side. Even very gracious with Nancy Pelosi. But then Bush has always been a very nice guy.

Our economy is booming. Of this I've never had any doubt. But to hear it boiled down into such nice, neat numbers, who can argue with 7.2 million new jobs in the last 4 years? Who can argue with unemployment at all time lows? Who can argue with inflation and interest rates the lowest they've been in 30 years? Who can argue with wages and benefits on the rise and tax breaks breathing new life into the system? And all this despite being viciously attacked by terrorists and inheriting a recession from the Clinton administration. It could have been worse. Much much worse.

His proposed energy policy is a start. And I suppose we have to start somewhere, but I was waiting to hear that we were going to do so by punching some nice big bore holes into the Alaskan wilderness and the seas off the coast of California and Texas. Yes, ultimately our goal needs to be to develop and use alternative fuel sources which will ween us off of oil entirely. However any such plan needs to have a sensible short to mid-term plan for reducing our dependence on what we buy from the Arabs now. That can only mean drilling. Our infrastructure just isn't ready for wide scale deployment of ethanol and hydrogen. At least not yet.

The health care stuff I can largely do without, but I see in his new proposal the possible beginnings of getting people off of government dependence and on to something of their own choosing. Assuming they choose to do so. The cold hard stares from the democrats told the tale. The plan has merit. I'm skeptical as to weather he can get their cooperation to make it a reality though.

True to his word, we have managed to cut the federal deficit by more than 60% despite the drunken spending even by Republicans. Once more asking for a balanced budget is a great thing, and shows he's still determined to see it happen before the promised deadline in 2009 when he leaves office. But I'm not hopeful that he's going to get democrats to go along with this since historically they've never been capable of accomplishing such a thing. Unlike when Clinton asked for it, and the Republicans actually delivered on it in the 90s.

I was sad to hear him repeat his usual mantra of open borders and amnesty for illegals. Call it whatever you want Bush, but it is what it is. We already have a functional guest worker program. It would also probably work if our border were properly secured and we actually enforced the laws we have now. We don't need to reform the system. We just need to use the one we have, the way it was intended to be used. This means build the fence. Put the Guard on the border. Enhance them with civilian border patrol. Send employers who hire illegals to jail. Deport the ones who don't leave on their own when all of this goes into effect. If he would just do this, a lot of our other existing problems would vanish within a few months. Instead he drones on about comprehensive reform, all the while sending the long arm of the law out to arrest, try, convict, and sentence the very people who protect us from the problem. All at an astonishingly fast pace. And of course, no mention of pardoning them.

Once more Bush shined on foreign policy. He laid down the plan for stabilizing Baghdad. 20,000 more troops there, and another 4,000 for the Anbar province. Al the Iraqis need is the boost we're about to give them to get the job done once and for all. Thankfully Al-Maliki is finally beginning to see this and is allowing us to take the gloves off little by little. As long as we here at home have the resolve to see this through, we'll come out of this ok. But let the defeatist democrats get control of the issue and we'll never be able to face the world again. If you had been watching the TV coverage, you'd know what I'm talking about. Not only did they never applaud ( except Lieberman ) but some of them were actually making faces and casting dirty looks at the president as he spoke on the issue. It's really very simple. The one somewhat reassuring moment came when they did applaud and stand up when Bush laid out that we can't allow Iran to get nukes. Remains to be seen if they'll support the inevitable.

Score one for the PR department as well with the cool stories of ordinary people going on to do extraordinary things as citizens of this great nation. All four people selected were great examples of what you can achieve if you put your mind to it, work hard, better yourself, and take responsibility. I think it would have been an excellent opportunity to grant pardons to the aforementioned border patrol agents, but alas, it did not happen.

Bush has a really tough two years left to go. And if the fidgety Pelosi was any indication, she could barely stand to be near the man. Let alone tolerate hearing his ideas. The whole time I watched, I couldn't believe the disrespect she was projecting. She probably didn't realize she was even doing it. Face making, tongue biting, squirming, the whole bit. Mixed in with the occasional "I need to clap and/or stand or I'll look like an ass to the people" moments she had. She seemed throughly disgusted with the entire affair. Which is fine. I find her thoroughly disgusting.

All in all, I think Bush came out alright. On balance, more good than bad, more things to like than hate. But only time will tell if he's going to get the cooperation from Congress his grand plans require.
"It is pointless to resist, my son." -- Darth Vader
"Resistance is futile." -- The Borg
"Mother's coming for me in the dragon ships. I don't like these itchy clothes, but I have to wear them or it frightens the fish." -- Thurindil

Well. I guess that's that then.

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Posted on Jan 23, 2007 9:57 pm by Samson in: | 0 comment(s) [Closed]
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