First Thoughts….

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Obama1I want to pencil in my first thoughts of the State of the Union address last night before I start reading what the pundits say.

    • Overall it was a good address – He covered much of what I deem important to our country. I wish he had mentioned something about work to rein in healthcare costs.  Single payer system like much of the rest of the world has is the  most efficient. But since that is not yet possible here I wished he had targeted something to control our current system. 
    • Education for the 21st Century – I liked what I heard but he could have been more forceful in his words. We definitely need almost a paradigm shift in how we educate our kids. As he said we need to do a better job of preparing them for today’s advanced technology middle class jobs.  I was struck by the fact that Germany and other countries high school degrees are the equivalent of our tech school degrees. We definitely need to catch up in that area.  Every kid need to be able to go to college if they want to  put in the work to be there.
    • Putting us back on top with Technology R&D  –  This is probably the most important thing he can do for our economy. In the past much of technology R&D was done at the university level through government funding. We have let the EU take the lead in many current areas because we have cut public spending in R&D.
    • Immigration – He didn’t push the envelope in this area because  it appears that the Republicans are finally willing to do something  about this.  Make a little progress now and the push for more later.
    • Gun Regulations – I admired his gutsy stands here especially since the GOP seems to be totally entrenched in doing absolutely nothing in this area. It was gut wrenching to see all the families of victims in the galleries with pictures of their loved ones lost to gun violence. I don’t know how anyone Democrat or Republican could not have been emotionally moved by that site! It saddened me to see most of the Republicans sitting on their hands while the gun violence victims were standing above them! Are they really that afraid of the NRA?
    • Infrastructure –  This seems to be a common thing for Democrat Presidents and a common resistance for a GOP congress. It is a well know fact that our infrastructure is crumbling.  I really don’t understand what the Republicans solution in this area is; like many things they just seem to be against so many things but with no solutions of their own.  I do wish that some president would bring the equivalent of the REMC to the rural areas of this country for Internet access.  Many of us are still restricted to very very slow Internet connections and limited cellular capacity. Until high-speed Internet is available to all there will be an ingrained inequality in the country.

I also watched Senator Rubio’s counter-speech and here is what came across to me.

    • He seems like the typical Republican of the day. I was expecting more from him. He seems to be a man of reason but that didn’t show up in his speech. Some of the things he said against President Obama personally were cheap shot to me.  He didn’t need to go down to that level.
    • The same old line –  I am getting tired of the Republican line that if we dared to increase the minimum wage then millions would lose their jobs. That line has been proven wrong again and again over my lifetime.  It is about time they retired that tactic to the trash heap of time.
    • Invoking Fear –  The main thing that hit me about the overall speech is that it was all about invoking fear in all of us about how the country will go down in ashes if the Democrats get their way. That seems to be a very common theme throughout the GOP.  It was downright shameful to me to hear him say if we let them (Democrats) have what they want then our raises, benefits and even our jobs are in imminent danger. I wish Mr. Rubio had answered the question that since corporate taxes have been at all time lows and profits are at all time highs in the last decade or more and while CEO pays has gone through the roof why have the average guys wages actually decreased over that time?

Sorry for the length of the post but this is a weighty topic for us.  That’s it for me. Now I will go on to see what the “experts” say….

2 thoughts on “First Thoughts….

  • I didn’t watch the speeches last night so I am happy you did a quick summary of the highlights. Based on what I had read beforehand, your report seems to echo what everyone was expecting.

    I am a bit surprised at Mr. Rubio’s response, though I guess the whole purpose is to point out differences. It is just unfortunate that the only way Republicans can respond is with fear. It worked in 2004 to get George W. re-elected. It will probably work in the future.

    Isn’t Mr. Rubio the same man who just voted against funding for a violence against women bill in Congress that actually had some bipartisan support? What happens when all the old white men die? Does the GOP really want to pin its hopes on a shrinking, dying, ethnic, sex-based, demographic? Apparently.

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    • Thanks for the remarks Bob. Of course we all know that the GOP is beginning to see the writing on the wall of destiny and are trying to rebrand themselves. If they hope to be successful they will need a new message and I just didn’t hear anything new last night from Mr. Rubio. He like most on the left side of the aisle had a lot of complaints but no solutions. I had hopes that he would be the Moses for the GOP and lead them out of their desert but after his speech he just seems the same old….

      The failure to vote for the violence against women bill is a total atrocity for the GOP. When will they ever learn. I was brought to tears by all the people standing up and showing pictures of their loved ones who lost their lives to guns. To watch so many Republicans showing no emotions was a true revealer to me. We need a two party system in this country so I am hoping that something or some one can either resurrect the GOP or come up with a replacement…….

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