Wednesday, January 27, 2010

State of the Union: We're all Mississippi Now!

10:32 - PS I find it hilarious that the GOP response has managed to frame a black woman and Asian man in the background. I'm sure that was by chance.

Okay, what do I think... Pretty dull, actually, at least if you've been listening to Obama talk for the past two years. He said the same words he's been saying for a long time. Did that do anything? Not really. Maddow is noting that there was very little to excite the base. True. She also saw feisty-ness. I disagree. Pretty boilerplate.

Does this speech move Olympia Snowe? Nope. Of course, likely nothing does. Matthews is gushing over his "that's how budgets work" line in response to some GOP grumbling, but I don't think that actually did much -- he didn't explain to the audience why he was right and they were wrong, rather he just asserted, as the one with the microphone, that he was right.

No specifics. That executive order budget commission is a joke. He didn't detail any aspect of the 'bank tax' to recoup bailout funds. I mean, leaving out details are fine, but he didn't make the GOP own stopping such a measure. He could have, but he didn't. Mistake, I'd say.

Chris Matthews is quite upset that the GOP is successfully running as the "just say no" party. Obama's failure was not pointing that out enough.

10:20 - I am compelled to turn to MSNBC and listen to Chris Matthews. I hate myself.

10:19 - Stop lecturing Congress and start making it difficult for them to be turds. Sunlight is the best disinfectant, and you've got the biggest spotlight in town.

10:17 - It is so odd to see the look on Alito's face, because he was actually listening and thinking about what was said. Such a contrast to every Congressman's face...

10:16 - I don't believe we can change, and I really doubt you can deliver. Well, that is true, you did say that you would not do it alone. I'm hanging my head in shame for being critical. You haven't told many hard truths tonight, though...

10:15 - No, lost faith in the government? Surely not! Or a Congressman keeps his great health care while ignoring millions of uninsured...

10:13 - Ah, now that is good. Thanks

10:12 - "Human dignity" and didn't mention gay rights.

10:11 - Yes, we will do a lot of things... zzz....

10:08 - Well, at least he didn't say nuc-uler

10:07 - Yes, welcome home troops. We'll let you have frontsies in the unemployment line.

10:06 - What will happen first, combat troops out of Iraq or a health care bill? No, this war is not ending... because you are still fighting terror, and there will always be terror.

10:04 - Now would be a good time to note that Senate procedural holds have left Homeland Security understaffed

10:02 - Nice call out on Dems there, grow some balls and pass the f'ing Senate HC bill (well, that was unsaid)... GOP ain't leading here, I like it. Good call out. Fire me up. Someone go yank on Mitch's jowels.

10:01 - Okay, more Senate bashing please, I like this

10:01 - Group hug time.

10:00 - FAIL in terms of fiscal responsibility. He did not mention a single program that should be cut. Not one.

9:59 - Uh, has the President ever called out the Supreme Court in a SOTU? Not in my lifetime, at least, not that directly... Yeah, I'm sure (D) and (R) will pass a campaign finance reform bill...

9:58 - If only we had a teevee station that showed Congress in action... huge ratings!

9:57 - "Let's try common sense" um, is Sarah Palin writing your speech?

9:56 - Huh, you get laughed at and you... stare a bit

9:55 - I wonder what color ribbon they will give this commission. I'm betting on blue

9:54 - A bipartisan fiscal commission that, interestingly, several GOPers voted for before they voted against it

9:53 - Line by line, page by page, except for the 80% of lines and pages that we won't go through.

9:52 - You ain't gonna veto shit

9:50 - The federal government should tighten its belt. Unless it wants to buy tanks and bombs and planes, those are things we really need, because a tank would have stopped the 9/11 attacks...

9:49 - Will he use Bush's name? I bet no.

9:48 - Call out the idiots, not by name, but at least parry back on some of the crap you've been taking for months. As they often say of my horse at the track: no rally

9:47 - He is stating facts as if such things sway the votes of Senators. He is speaking many words, but is anything meaningful, anything that he hasn't said over and over? What the F does it mean that you won't walk away? What are you going to DO?

9:46 - Olympia Snowe dyes her hair, right? That ain't natural. F U Baucus. Michelle is going to arm wrestle every fat kid in American until they lose weight.

9:45 - "Let's clear a few things up"

9:44 - Okay, health care, here we go...

9:43 - Hi Jane

9:42 - Okay, the problem is that Obama is essentially acting as if the previous year of Congress didn't exist and he didn't learn a damn thing from it.

9:41 - As a soon-to-be-dad, I'm all for community colleges being cheap. Although the offspring is going to be a carpenter or mechanic or something useful.

9:40 - The teacher in the room just told me that "Race to the Top" sucks, because it "corners you into being evaluated based on student scores"

9:39 - Play by the rules. Except the Geneva Conventions. Those aren't the droids you're looking for...

9:38 - How are farmers going to export corn they were paid not to grow?

9:37 - Can we export dumb-assery?

9:36 - Oh, we just need to pass a climate bill! D'oh, why didn't I think of that! Okay, give the naysayers a little lecture right now about how stupid they are for ignoring science! Show a little fight for what you believe in.

9:35 - I, actually, am quite fine with nuclear power.

9:34 - Cancer, normal, healthy! If only he had used the phrase "synthetic lethal"...

9:33 - Dude, you are not even remotely addressing the actual issue, namely, that nothing can get out of the Senate

9:32 - I WISH we were second place in math and science knowledge, clean energy, infant mortality, health spending, and many many many other things. We ain't even close.

9:31 - Hey ass, yes, the system does suck, and it doesn't help that you sat on the sidelines and did nothing to give a sense of urgency. YOU are Washington now, and you seemed content to wait. Although the 'competition' aspect of it is a good spin.

9:30 - No, the Senate won't

9:29 - When in doubt, dig up a line from Kerry '04: end tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas.

9:28 - New trains are good. Although why Boston/NYC/Philly/DC hasn't seen that...

9:27 - Eliminate capital gains taxes on small business... how do you define small? Um, seems rife for a boondoggle.

9:25 - Twenty minutes in and I'm a bit underwhelmed. Not a lot of red (blue?) meat here. Nothing in terms of ideas yet. Ooh here's one, community banks. Okay, fine enough.

9:24 - A new Jobs Bill -- iPads for everyone!

9:23 - Personally, I would play up the piratical pronunciation of ARRA much more

9:23 - Chuck Grassley is not stimulated by much these days, including the Stimulus Bill

9:22 - Will he ratchet up the GOP attacks as the speech goes on?

9:19 - Fire up the torches, sharpen the pitchforks, we's going to Wall Street! Interesting, GOP doesn't clap at that...

9:18 - We do not quit. Unless we only hold 59% of Senate seats. Then we quit.

9:17 - He is hopeful, let's all clap

9:16 - That is a lie -- Americans are not terribly resilient; most are whiners.

9:15 - This might be setting a record for no applause. Again, I like it. Wall St./Main St. contrast, do a shot. Blaming Washington.

9:13 - I agree with not starting off with any big applause lines. I think a somber tone is appropriate.

9:12 - Bull Run, Omaha Beach, Black Tuesday, Bloody Sunday. How about the times that try men's souls?

9:09 - Think Obama can filibuster the State of the Union by reading from a phone book?

9:07 - What requires more effort, an aisle seat at SOTU, or a picnic table at Saratoga on a Saturday? Actually, that's a no-brainer.

9:05 - Shouldn't the seagant-at-arms have a gun? And wouldn't it be funnier if Waldorf and whats-his-name, the two angry old Muppets, introduced the president?

9:02 - Brian Williams is now talking about political capital, which doesn't exist. Stop talking about it like it exists. It doesn't. It is the laziest form of journalism. If you want to relate approval ratings as reflective of an ability to get recalcitrant Senators to vote your way, fine. But just call it that.

9:00 - Yes, Brian Williams, the voters are angry. But they are also, by and large, not too bright. Hard to square the circle of people wanting lower taxes and deficit reduction.

8:58 - Late breaking news: Evan Bayh will not challenge Obama in 2012. Phew!

8:56 - I really wonder, does ANY of this really matter? It certainly doesn't when it comes to Gallup polls, the history of that is clear, at least from a short-term perspective.

8:55 - According to Olberman via Couric, Obama did not eat his pie today.

8:15 - While this is certainly not confined to the Obama administration, what possible purpose is there to releasing the text of a speech before you give it? If it is some little piddly thing, then fine, give the reporters the text of what you're going to say so they can get their stories filed in time, etc. But before a major speech, why would you give time for detractors to sharpen their knives before you've even given it? Why not give yourself the buffer (especially if you're an excellent public speaker, like Obama) of basking in the immediate post-speech glow?

7:26 - I thought about live-blogging the SOTU, but I think I really want to pay attention. Plus it is hard to criticize someone whom you really really want to do well. So I'm still undecided on such things, but might. Right now, though, I'm wondering if we'll have a Joe Wilson redux. I mean, what was the lesson from his "you lie" comment almost a year ago -- that you can increase your name recognition and rake in campaign donations by abandoning all sense of decorum and tradition? Guh. (Oh, but the tradition of the Senate filibustering every single thing in sight -- that we need to keep) Where are we going, and why am I in a handbasket?