Friday, February 04, 2005

Although I couldn't stomach watching GW give his SOTU address (which is seemingly 80% gratuitous applause anyway), I did of course take time to read the transcript. What follows are his choice words followed by my comments (in italics):

"To keep our economy growing, we also need reliable supplies of affordable, environmentally responsible energy. Nearly four years ago, I submitted a comprehensive energy strategy that encourages conservation...." (ah yes, he must throw in the "environmentally" phrase,a laugh, and then follows it with a lie about encouraging that virue of all virtues, conservation)

"My Clear Skies legislation will cut power plant pollution" (a lie, or at min. a HUGE distortion)

"In today's world, people are living longer and therefore drawing benefits longer" (hey, how bout that, some truth!)

"Some have suggested limiting (Social Security) benefits for wealthy retirees." (yeah, try Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, and other "morons")

"During the 1990s, my predecessor, President Clinton, spoke of increasing the retirement age." (I knew my #1 cure for SS was on the side of great minds)

"I will listen to anyone who has a good idea to offer." (I would call this the biggest lie in the speech, but I'll wait to see if he delivers)

"Our second great responsibility to our children and grandchildren...." (how about clean air & water?)

"Because marriage is a sacred institution and the foundation of society, it should not be redefined by activist judges. For the good of families, children and society, I support a constitutional amendment to protect the institution of marriage." (a big clue here as he follows warning against "activist judges" with ban on gay marriage -- red meat thrown to the religious right; throughout the speech, you have to parse and read between lines for the true message(s))

"Medical research can help us reach that goal, by developing treatments and cures that save lives and help people overcome disabilities, and I thank Congress for doubling the funding of the National Institutes of Health." (no mention of stem cell research -- which holds tremendous promise for specifically those with disabilities -- here an omission for the religious right)

"I will work with Congress to ensure that human embryos are not created for experimentation or grown for body parts, and that human life is never bought and sold as a commodity. America will continue to lead the world in medical research that is ambitious, aggressive, and always ethical." (oops, wrote too soon, but does this mean stem cell researchers around the world are unethical?)

"The Constitution also gives the Senate a responsibility: Every judicial nominee deserves an up or down vote." (sneaky sentence: with Clinton, they simply blocked his nominees so they would never get to be voted on, period -- a big difference from what GW, or Sen. Hatch, says)

"Taking on gang life will be one part of a broader outreach to at-risk youth, which involves parents and pastors, coaches and community leaders...." (gang members will find Christ!)

"In America we must make doubly sure no person is held to account for a crime he or she did not commit, so we are dramatically expanding the use of DNA evidence to prevent wrongful conviction. Soon I will send to Congress a proposal to fund special training for defense counsel in capital cases, because people on trial for their lives must have competent lawyers by their side." (this is actually terrific -- see, I'm not partisan blind! though let's see if he actually provides the funding)

"Our third responsibility to future generations...." (how about clean air & water? nope, apparently not)

"In the three-and-a-half years since September 11th, 2001, we have taken unprecedented actions to protect Americans. We have created a new department of government to defend our homeland, focused the FBI on preventing terrorism, begun to reform our intelligence agencies, broken up terror cells across the country, expanded research on defenses against biological and chemical attack, improved border security, and trained more than a half million first responders." (he originally opposed creating the DHS, he opposed real intel reform, and he hasn't funded internal-U.S. security measures like beefing up border patrol or securing chemical & nuclear plants, etc.)

"The al-Qaeda terror network that attacked our country still has leaders but many of its top commanders have been removed." (notice he has conspicuously dropped the "75%" figure (replaced with "many") they were flinging around months ago -- until Dr. Rice made a fool of herself on TV re it)

"Our country is still the target of terrorists who want to kill many and intimidate us all...." (maintain the fear!!)

"I thank the Congress for providing our servicemen and women with the resources they have needed. During this time of war, we must continue to support our military and give them the tools for victory." (huh? what about the lack of armor? or for that matter, the lack of resources in the form of more troops? safety in numbers esp. holds true here!)

"In Iraq, 28 countries have troops on the ground...." (hasn't this number shrunk? it was always dubious given the list of "representative" countries, but with many having pulled out, what nations remain exactly? notice he states not a one)

"We are working closely with governments in Asia to convince North Korea to abandon its nuclear ambitions." (but he doesn't ever mention what is likely our #1 threat going forward: loose nukes)

"The United States has no right, no desire and no intention to impose our form of government on anyone else. That is one of the main differences between us and our enemies. They seek to impose and expand an empire of oppression, in which a tiny group of brutal, self-appointed rulers control every aspect of every life. Our aim is to build and preserve a community of free and independent nations...." (get a load of this, he states "no intention to impose" but then two sentences later states "our aim is to build" -- nation building anyone?!)

"To promote this democracy, I will ask Congress for $350 million to support Palestinian political, economic and security reforms." (compare this figure to the $9 billion that is missing in Iraq)

"Today, Iran remains the world's primary state sponsor of terror, pursuing nuclear weapons while depriving its people of the freedom they seek and deserve. We are working with European allies to make clear to the Iranian regime that it must give up its uranium enrichment program and any plutonium reprocessing, and end its support for terror. And to the Iranian people, I say tonight: As you stand for your own liberty, America stands with you." (wow, a doozy.... Iran HAS to be upset with this direct and forceful mention on primetime, global TV.... esp. with GW's last sentence where he takes a page from his father and seemingly pledges U.S. support to those Iranians who want to rise up in protest)

"Our men and women in uniform are fighting terrorists in Iraq, so we do not have to face them here at home." (insurgents do not equate to "terrorists" at least not in how we Americans view the word; he's once again trying to blur 9-11 with the insurgents and Iraq in general)

"A young woman in Baghdad told of waking to the sound of mortar fire on election day, and wondering if it might be too dangerous to vote." (it's truly a sad statement that Iraq had a 60% voter turnout -- identical to our country's Nov. election; did we face bombs / death?)

"The terrorists and insurgents are violently opposed to democracy...." (there he goes again, blending & blurring "terrorists" with "insurgents")

"We will not set an artificial timetable for leaving Iraq, because that would embolden the terrorists and make them believe they can wait us out. We are in Iraq to achieve a result: a country that is democratic, representative of all its people, at peace with its neighbors, and able to defend itself." (I thought we were there to find WMD? Nope, we're there first and foremost for the black gold, oil, and as long as that precious commodity needs to be protected, we'll be there)

"Some of our servicemen and women have survived terrible injuries, and this grateful country will do everything we can to help them recover. And we have said farewell to some very good men and women, who died for our freedom, and whose memory this nation will honor forever." (and yet we've never seen GW attend one funeral)

"As Franklin Roosevelt once reminded Americans...." (FDR is rolling in his grave!)

A technically well-written speech, but as for the content itself, I would have expected nothing less from this guy.

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