Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Our President Thinks He's George Lucas
You know what this does? It embarrasses us on the world stage.
We got bold, we got exciting, we got a Hollywood script. That's what we got. As a comedy, it will be a blockbuster in China. At home, it will be a tragedy.
Obama missed another chance Tuesday night to embrace the tough medicine proposed by the commission for bringing down the deficit. For example, the president said he wanted to "strengthen Social Security for future generations" -- but ruled out slashing benefits or partially privatizing the program, and made no reference to raising the retirement age. That left listeners to guess how he plans to do anything to salvage the popular retirement program whose trust funds are expected to run out of money in 2037 without changes.They didn't even call him on the jaw-droppingly inane proposal to get 80% of our electricity from "clean" sources by 2035.
All in all, this is the most ridiculous SOTU speech I ever inflicted on myself. Next year I won't even bother.
Washington Post editorial on the speech:
PRESIDENT OBAMA entered office promising to be a different kind of politician - one who would speak honestly with the American people about the hard choices they face and would help make those hard calls. Tuesday night's State of the Union Address would have been the moment to make good on that promise. He disappointed.Read the whole thing. I saw a comment in some conservative writeup that remarked that the speech seemed like a retread of Bush's 2006 speech.
So what happens now? Maybe some members of Congress will display the courage the president has lacked.
Chief CMS actuary testifies that the health care claims were bogus as well. This is not the first time CMS has pointed out that it won't work, but this is testimony to Congress.
A nation is going "huh?" The speech was just embarrassing, and it was aimed at stupid people who don't know what is going on. Ezra Klein, for example. But the average American isn't this stupid, and it appears that the speech was so stupid that it offended the press.
As for Congress and the Fed, the less said the better.
It has been a grand display of incompetence, if not outright mendacity, all round.
Will digital actors replace humans in Hollywood?
"If and when the technology arrives to create persuasively realistic human actors, Hollywood will embrace it."
Stagflationary Mark: They will be cheaper and like the Disney Characters never age a can't miss trend but then we need digital TV anchors and associated roles to interview these new faces!
Utopia here we come!
Yeah, well the electorate's been letting them get away with it.
We've had bipartisan groups (like the Concord Coalition) and politicians on both sides of the aisle who have desperately tried to tell the truth, but the electorate has overall allowed the meretricious politicos to prevail.
So collectively, we all bear a lot of responsibility for this. It will be the most vulnerable who will bear the brunt of the inevitable crash.
After sleeping on it and shoveling snow for three hours, I have decided that Obama wasn't honest in that speech. I'm not sure if he is foolish enough to believe his "clean energy" BS, but he does certainly know that what he said about Social Security was horribly askew from reality.
He has punted reality in favor of reelection. With any luck, the electorate will punt him. I'm not sure that we will get anyone better, but unless the voters stop rejecting the lies, the future will be very dark.
I've often vacillated between blaming the voters (we get the politicians we deserve) and blaming the politicians (immature, self-involved crooks not one bit different from those on Wall St. -- "meretricious" works as well).
Going into, and especially now coming out of, the last election I'm of the opinion the Critters have so rigged the system among Gerrymandering, campaign finance rules, and term non-limits that it isn't one half the public's fault.
A sizable majority is against deficit spending, against TARP and TBTF, against the Fed's QE, against open borders, you name it. But Congress has their sinecures. Out of 535 seats in the House and Senate, only about 1/3 are contestable. It's also the 1/3 with no real power (almost by definition -- they'll be gone in the next election or two). So short of the other 2/3rds feeling personal responsibility to a body politic graced with the 2nd Amendment, I don't see fundamental changes short of pressure instigated from overseas.
Last time we had that, it was used merely as an excuse to do more of what they already wanted to do in the first place.
only about 1/3 are contestable. It's also the 1/3 with no real power
That's why Christine O'Donnell and the other kamikaze kandidates from the Tea Party were so important. The politicians holding the secure 2/3 of the seats just HATE having to spend their own money on a primary (and they do view their campaign funds as personal property, because once they retire they get to keep it). They're on notice now that the wrong vote on certain topics is likely to trigger just that. Even if it means losing the seat to the other party.
The left has been doing this for decades (Ralph Nader, anyone?), which is one of the reasons that secure-seat Democrats tend to vote with their party's wingers more than secure-seat Republicans do.
That SHOULD mean something.
Or you could look at CFNAI, which looks like it is on its second upward move.
CFNAI usually corresponds more to what the average person perceives about the economy. Structurally, when it starts taking the second jump you are probably shortly going to see more job gains.
Admittedly, the situation is not glorious and I am afraid incomes plus costs are going to make it heavy going for many during the first half of 2011.
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