Obama Delivers State of the Union 2010: Scolds, Blames, Offers Worn Out Platitudes

Publication Date: Jan 27, 2010

by Diane W. Collins


President Obama delivered his State of the Union address to the American people tonight on national television, his tone and perspective unchanged. Country watching, the President scolded the Senate as well as the Supreme Court while praising the House for initiatives passed and went on to offer the same worn out platitudes of earlier speeches. Can it be Obama is so isolated that he actually believes the Barack ObamaAmerican people have not lost trust... in him, not just government and corporations? Or is he just unable to admit it?


What we were listening for, we did not hear. The President pledged to continue on his same course vowing he would not give up the fight for healthcare reform, and cap & trade legislation. The events of the past several weeks do not seem to have provided the President with the much needed wake up call of "We, the People." Obama seems blinded by past popularity, in that he will continue with the far-left ideology he and his ivory tower advisors espouse.


If there is to be any change at all it appears the President will place the emphasis on jobs and the economy. He has called for a jobs bill on his desk without delay and has created through executive order a commission to do just that. In essence, the President was overriding the Senate's voting down such a bill last week. Many had referred to the jobs bill as the "second stimulus."


Then the president began to ramble... a lot. Perhaps this was the fault of speech writers working on changes up until 7pm. However, the President went on... and on. He gave undue praise to the Recovery Act citing numbers for jobs created... numbers that seem unverifiable.

The President attacked the banks. He wants a fiscal reform bill "not to punish banks, but to guard against recklessness that brought down our economy." He praised the House for passing such a bill and stated the lobbyists were trying to kill it. He invoked the "small business" mantra, a great talking point but an industry sector for which he still has not delivered. Obama mentioned infrastructure, fastest trains, new factories to manufacture clean energy products, rebates for more efficient homes, slashing tax benefits for those who ship our jobs overseas. He praised the House for passing a bill that included some of these. Urged the Senate to do the same.


Regarding energy, the President said, "We must invest in energy." This seemed a bright spot for a moment with his mention of more nuclear power plants in this country and new offshore areas for oil and gas development, biofuels and clean coal. Then came the words "passing a comprehensive clean energy bill that will make it profitable." He praised the House for passing cap and trade last year. Again, scolded the Senate for not acting stating, "This year we need a bipartisan effort in the Senate." He dismissed the questions of those who believe we can't afford cap and trade and those who disagree with what he called "overwhelming scientific evidence on global warming." "The nation that leads the clean energy economy will be the nation that leads the global economy... and America must be that nation." Obviously, nothing's changed.


Again, rambling the President spoke of our need to export more of our goods... that this would "create more jobs in America." His new goal... double exports over the next five years. This would create two million jobs in America, according to the President. Obama said he is launching national export initiatives for farmers and small businesses. Initiatives that conform to national security. He said he would enforce trade agreements so our trading partners play by the rules.


Obama introduced his middle class initiatives in conjunction with remarks on education. Opening with a statement on "investing in the skills and education of our people," he emphasized math and science. "Rural to inner city... the 21st century's best anti-poverty program is a world class education." Potential not where children live is to be the focus. Again, he scolded the Senate calling on them to pass a bill to revitalize community colleges like that passed by the House.. To make college affordable Obama stated he will give families a ten thousand dollar tax credit for four years. Students would pay a maximum of 10 percent on student loans. To pay for this Obama stated he would take away the incentive given to banks to encourage loans to students. (This doesn't seem to make any sense.) He rambled about retirement accounts being made automatic, shoring up the value of American homes, stepping up refinancing so homeowners can move into more affordable loans...


Then Obama hit on healthcare. "We still need health insurance reform. Lets clear a few things up. I didn’t choose to tackle this issue to score some type of victory or because it was good politics." He went on to say it was the stories of others that moved him as reason to bringing healthcare reform to Americans. He spoke again of protecting small businesses and preventative care. He reemphasized the CBO report that (based on the figures given to them) the bill would save 1 trillion over the next two decades. Obama is sticking to his agenda despite the outcry against his healthcare reform. It's unbelievable. Obama said healthcare reform was a complex issue... that he didn’t explain it more completely to the people. "I won’t walk away from these Americans and neither should the people in this chamber. Take another look at the plan we proposed. But if anyone from either party has a better plan let me know. Don’t walk away from reform." (Like they ever let the Republicans participate in the first place.)


Then appearing more and more like the emperor with no clothes, Obama continued. He wanted to set the government spending record straight.  Obama blamed past administrations (Bush) for unpaid wars, tax cuts, and an expensive prescription drug benefit the Obama administration inherited. He absolved himself by saying "If we had taken office in ordinary times,"... and praised his administration in saying "a second depression could have taken place." Then he outlined the 2011 spending freeze... it will freeze spending for three years on all discretionary spending programs (not including military, medicare or social security)and would be enforced by veto if necessary. Obama said, "We will continue to go through the budget line by line page by page." (Where have we heard this before). "There will be no tax cuts for oil companies, investment fund managers and those earning over 250 thousand dollars per year." But when the President added, "Not till next year… that’s how budgeting works," there were laughs in the Chamber... and not because the statement was funny.


To make matters worse, Obama went on to say, "Let's invest in our people without debt. Let’s try common sense." (More laughs.) In the face of recent history the statement left me totally incredulous. Then more blame. "It's Washington that isn't trusted," he said. He blamed lobbyists as well. He called for an end to lobbyists' influence. "That’s what I came to Washington to do. Lobbyists don’t have posts in the administration or on boards." (Unbelievable) Then the biggest faux pas of all. President Obama scolded the Supreme Court. I thought I was in a third world country when he stated, "The Supreme Court opened the floodgate for lobbyists last week." He admonished them for ruling corporations could contribute without limit to political campaigns. Obama said "the people" will pass a bill to correct the ruling. On a roll, Obama mentioned the need to pass earmark reform and said before any vote earmarks would be published on a special web site so people could sees how money was being spent. Yeah sure. Just like the one where he published bills five days before signing them. And what about the ear mark spending spree called the Recovery Act?


The rambling continued. Obama spanked the Senate for trying to "change the politics." He told Democrats, "We have the majority. Don’t run for the hills. Solve problems." Then directing his comments to Republicans Obama said, "If you're going to require sixty votes to pass anything, then responsibility is yours now, as well. Let’s show the American people we can do it together." He said he would begin monthly meetings with Democrats and Republicans. (There were sighs.)


On national security Obama said he was not interested in re-litigating the past. He called for Americans to put aside questions regarding whose "tough enough" and to do what it takes to defend our nation. (Think Obama was defending Napalitano with regard to the Christmas Bomber.) He praised his administration's renewed focus on terrorists, investments in security for the homeland, prohibiting torture, strengthening foreign partnerships, the "hundreds of Al-Qaeda captured." He said Afghanistan troops were being trained so ours could come home. He vowed we would succeed and be out of Iraq by end of this August. He pledged continued support of the Iraqi government as they hold elections and promote regional peace and prosperity. But stated, "This war is ending. All of our troops are coming home." Obama called for the nation to respect our troops, support them when they come home. He cited last year his administration provided the largest increase in benefits for veterans in decades.


Moving to comments on nuclear war, Obama spoke of a far reaching treaty with Russia to reduce stockpiles and launchers and to secure all vulnerable nuclear materials around the world in four years so they never fall into hands of terrorists. He vowed to be tough with nations that violate nuclear arms agreements mentioning the sanctions against North Korea and the further isolation of Iran." They will face consequences," Obama promised. Common security, he said would be sought through the G20; in muslim communities by promoting science education; developing countries by teaching them to feed themselves and helping to fight against HIV aids; and by responding to bio-terrorism and infectious disease.  "Our destiny is connected to those beyond our shores, but we also do it because it is right," Obama stated. He pointed to America's aid to Haiti in recent weeks.


On civil rights, the President hit on increased prosecution of civil rights violations and hate crimes, repealing the "Don't Ask. Don't Tell" military policy so gay Americans have the right to opening serve in the military, equal pay for women, fixing broken immigration laws and secure borders, enforcement of immigration laws "making sure those who play by our rules can participate in our country." "Ideals, values built America, the President said. "Immigrants built America."

Finally, Obama addressed what he called the country's "lost faith in corporations, media, and government." Each time a CEO rewards himself for failure... or a banker’s greed puts us at risk... or politicians war with each other...or media turns to sensationalism.... this "creates cynicism." He reminded us of his campaign slogan where he promised change we could believe in. "Many don’t believe we can change or I can deliver. I can’t do it alone. Change isn’t easy. It’s messy," Obama said. Then again, the President scolded congress saying "We must do what's best for the next generation." Unbelievably detached. It was this administration that put them in generational debt!


Ending his 2010 State of the Union address with this statement the President said, "The American spirit lives on in you… it’s people. We don’t quit. I don’t quit. Let’s seize this moment to strengthen the nation once more." He could not have made it any clearer. This President has no intention of moving off his agenda.











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