Wednesday, January 24, 2007

My Thoughts...

...On The President's Address:
I think the President did a fine job, from his opening remarks, "Congress has changed, but not our responsibilities," to his closing, "The state of our union is strong. Our cause in the world is right. And tonight that cause goes on."

He stated the facts without boasting about things that some might not consider boastworthy.

He alluded to his plans for the deficit, earmarks, entitlements, healthcare, and military growth.

He talked about immigration, energy, and Senate confirmation of Judicial nominees -- which makes me wonder if he anticipates another Supreme Court vacancy during his term.

The President stayed firm on the war on terror and, more specifically the war in Iraq, without grandstanding about successes or bemoaning failures. He simply and boldly remimded the 533 legislators in attendance (two were absent for medical reasons): "We went into this largely united.... And whatever you voted for, you did not vote for failure...."

He reminded us all of what makes America the greatest country on Earth: "It would not be like us to leave our promises unkept, our friends abandoned, and our own security at risk."

The President called for the establishment of a Civilian Reserve Corps that would allow for citizens to volunteer to serve this great country out of uniform.

He promised no amnesty to illegal immigrants and no nuclear weapons in Iraq and the Korean peninsula.

The President spoke decisively and firmly on the direction he believes this country should go without using the kind of language that would easily offend his detractors.
...On the Democrats' response:
First and foremost, I wondered why the Democrats chose freshman Senator Jim Webb to deliver their response. It later occurred to me: he is a (undisputed) veteran who can speak out against the war in Iraq intelligently and with a been-there-done-that attitude. He also is not running for election to the White House in 2008, and therefore doesn't have to worry about the repercussions of his statements. Obama, Clinton, Kerry, et al, could not have spoken so freely and would have buried themselves in confusing double talk.

The Senator spoke of mainly two things: economy and foreign policy.

He referred to the difference in wages paid now compared to several decades ago as if President Bush was personally responsible for the inequity of wages from the top executive to the lowly part timer.

He promised approval by the Senate of an increase in the minimum wage without offering reason why it is or isn't a wise move.

He accused the President of reckless leadership and called for a policy that takes our soldiers off the streets of Iraq.

He closed his brief remarks by calling on the President to take action to end the war and promising, "If he does, we will join him. If he doesn't, we will show him the way."

The Senator said virtually nothing of healthcare, immigration, education, the deficit, job growth, earmarks, the judiciary, or any of the other issues that concern many patriotic Americans today. If it wasn't about the money we earn or the war in Iraq, it was quietly swept under the rug.
This was not the President's most grandiose State of the Union Address. In fact, it may be most memorable for the things he did not say. But I do believe it was another opportunity seized by the Democrats to remind us why they can't be allowed to take the reins of leadership in America. Not that they would really do much harm. It's more what they wouldn't do at all that concerns me. At the end of the session, I was left with the impression that Republicans are the party of the patriot while Democrats are the party of the protester.


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