Tuesday, January 31, 2006

State of the Union

National politics is not usually what this blog is about, but hey, it's the State of the Union for God's sake. And since we've been talking party politics recently, I'd like to start a new open thread and/or continue the old one and get some thoughts on the speech.

As a teaser, my impression (I'll admit that I only saw the last half or so) is that Bush said a lot of things that sound nice, but which he either has no intention to really do (make health insurance affordable), is in no position to talk credibly talk about (govt. ethics), or has no specific plan to do (energy reform). Then again, without those three things, what would politicians talk about?

Ok, Gov. Kaine is starting, so I'll be back.


ned said...

I hate to cut and paste from another forum, but let's play the guess which line was from the 2006 speech!

"America is addicted to oil, which is often imported from unstable parts of the world. The best way to break this addiction is through technology."

“This Congress must act to encourage conservation, promote technology, build infrastructure, and it must act to increase energy production at home so America is less dependent on foreign oil.”

“Our third goal is to promote energy independence for our country, while dramatically improving the environment. … [We should be] much less dependent on foreign sources of energy.”

“I urge you to pass legislation to modernize our electricity system, promote conservation, and make America less dependent on foreign sources of energy.”

“I urge Congress to pass legislation that makes America more secure and less dependent on foreign energy.”

These go all the way back to 2002 folks.

Also, Tim Kaine was terrible. The limbo may be fun on cruises, but when the bar gets set this low during the SOTU and you decide to try and go under it when it comes ideas you don't really deserve to win. Put Obama up there. Someone with charisma.

Publius said...

I agree that Kaine was less than convincing, but I can also see the wisdom of not putting Obama up there. He's a very good public face of the party, and I hope he doesn't get overexposed.

That being said, Obama did very well on NBC after the SOTI and Kaine.

DoubleDawgDareYa said...

Newt on FOX said right after Kaine that it was the best response speech he'd ever seen by either party. Now, when Newt starts praising a Democrat, my red flag goes up, but I actually don't entirely disagree with him. Kaine was kind of blah, admittedly, but the substance of his speech was actually right on, IMHO. Of course, who actually listens to the substance of speeches besides dorks like me.

Dawg Corleone said...

Tim Kaine: the Incredible Floating Eyebrow.

I thought he was OK; not ready for prime time.

I give W a 7.5: 9 on the national security stuff, a 6 on the domestic side.

Best line: "...there is a difference between responsible criticism that aims for success, and defeatism that refuses to acknowledge anything but failure. Hindsight alone is not wisdom. And second-guessing is not a strategy."

RandomThoughts said...

I watched the entire thing. I believe he should give his speech writer a raise. It was so incredibly better than his usual speeches. His arragance was reserved for places like troop support. It was a speech designed to piss off no one. It sounded nice if you didn't pay too much attention to the substance. A good departure from his more dictatorial style.

Kaine I thought was good too. He presented with an equally calm, determined attitude. None of the angry, belligerant rhetoric that Kennedy is so well known for (and I LOVE Kennedy). No a speech designed to piss off no one was answered by a response designed to piss off no one - almost. There were a few barbs in there and they were well placed and well articulated. I think he was a success and perhaps begins an era of less bombasticity. Maybe that will appeal to more people.

gap said...

Is it just me or did anyone else hear Kaine take Bush to task for:

-Irresponsible spending and a huge national debt.

-An irrational immigration policy and the inability to protect our borders.

-Responding to No Child Left Behind by letting states "try innovative alternatives". School Choice?

I know this guy is supposed to be a centrist but those points seem to be making an effort to lure in conservatives, possibly unhappy with the white house.

monticello_pres said...

Random loves Kennedy? Teddy Walkaway? The fact that this guy can win election after election shows the irresponsibility of the Mass voting base. The fact that he serves on a Judiciary Committee is potentially the biggest irony in DC.

RandomThoughts said...

Yes, Random loves Kennedy. Some of us move on in our lives. I think Kennedy has been a good representative of the Democratic Party for years and years. I do think, however, that maybe the pendulum is swinging in the opposite direction and people are ready for a more soft-spoken, less bombastic voice. Dean certainly isn't that but Kaine could be the beginning of a change in public perspective for Democrats.

I'm a Realist said...

Some of us move on in our lives.......especially when it's politically expedient to sweep all of the misdeeds of your past under the nearest rug.

RandomThoughts said...

It doesn't have anything to do with politics. I was angry for many, many years. But eventually they either lead their lives in a good or bad way and you move on. I feel he has done well in his later life. On his own accord, not in the shadow of others.

monticello_pres said...

We'll have to agree to disagree. Realist hits the nail on the head. It's very easy to move on when you're not 6 feet under. And especially when your lavish lifestyle depends on moving on quickly and quietly.

Teddy Walkaway has lived a wonderful life while snubbing his nose at society and not paying the price for his crime. The amazing thing is that he has done it with the blessing of so many constituants and a free pass from the media. The whole time with a smug smile and no hint of sorrow.

Add in that his wonderful salary is paid by my tax dollars, and yours, is just amazing.