Wednesday, January 27, 2010


As the hours and minutes wind down to President Obama's state of the union address to a joint session of the Congress (plus various other dignitaries, including Supreme Court justices, cabinet members, associated guests, etc.) after his first full year in office, the airways are full of discussion re what we are going to see in the address... Pundits opine on what they would like to see, what "the people" are expecting from their President, etc., etc. This blogger will take a different tack and will list some things that he does not wish to see!

It is this blogger's fervent hope that he will not need to feel embarrassed on behalf of the assembled politicians... Hopefully their behavior will be (dare we hope) adult, and not puerile as it often is at this occasion. So, hopefully the following will not occur:
  • Excessive applause by some, with politicians bobbing up and down like so many Jacks-in-the-Box while applauding wildly, and occasionally even hooting and hollering as well.
  • While some engage in over-the-top enthusiasm, a number of others sit on their hand, or, worse, cluck disapprovingly...
  • The set-up and immediate knock-down of multiple straw men! Let's minimize the number of times we have the "Some say that..." formulation...
  • No (apparently obligatory) references to invited guests... Most likely an injured service-person who can be verbally saluted; a person who got some dread disease and had trouble with his/her insurance company; someone who lost their home to a mortgage foreclosure; or even one of each to hit the trifecta. This blogger dislikes the "policy by anecdote" approach that these represent, and wonders what is going through these people's heads. Sure, it must be very cool to be invited to a prestigious occasion by the POTUS, but allowing oneself to be used as a political prop! Ugh!
  • An obligatory toss of red meat to the crowd, say banker bonuses, or some similar easy target!
This blogger could go on, but will stop with this short list. Let us see if there really is "change' and a new era, or if it is more of the usual.

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