State of the Union

Let the spin game begin now that President George W. Bush has completed his fifth State of the Union speech tonight. I only caught the later half of the speech which focused on domestic issues. Here’s what I thought:

  • At first, I was a bit taken aback by what sounded like a lot of centrist rhetoric of trying to “reach out across the aisle” stuff. But for every concession to the democrats came a slip in of a conservative way of doing things. Take energy reform: Bush says to find new sources of energy (yay!) but also says coal (read: dirty even if it is “clean burning”) is a new source. He does mention solar (California has got that one covered with a load of money signed in by Arnold himself) and wind but slides in nuclear energy (read: dangerous like Three Mile Island…) too.
  • There indeed exists a “false comfort of isolationism” but I thought he ripped a page out of popular pundit book The World is Flat when it came to education, the cure-all to the globalized world. More math and science is great but let’s face it, we’re pretty darn far behind on that already. I’d go as far as to say we’re too late. We have to innovate with other countries in technology and innovate beyond them in other categories.
  • Social Security: let’s study it…again. Let me guess, they’ll tell us that there’s not enough money.
  • Bush tied stem-cell research in with human cloning. Very different things. Let San Francisco biotech do some breakthrough research.
  • Bush’s speaking style tonight wasn’t bad. He took less pauses in his speech and looked fairly collected. On the other hand, the democrats put up Tim Kaine who looked rather stilted and contrived. God, I hope he’s not planning on running for president. Speaking of running, the camera focused on Hilary Clinton every chance it could. Hilary just was in San Francisco earlier this week.
  • Alito and Roberts were in attendance. That is a conservative court, if I ever saw one. Oh, honorable Sandra Day, what have you done? Hmm…two more white guys with lifetime appointments.
  • Tim Kaine comes off like it is an SNL sketch. It’s too bad. He did a lot of praising “the creator” and repeating the line, “there’s a better way.” Am I getting the two parties mixed up?

All in all…I liked previous state of the unions better when Bush’s speechwriters used those bold images of eagle rising from the ashes of 9/11 or even the scary “axis of evil,” etc. Too bad tonight was kinda dull.