Wednesday, January 27th, 2010
126

The State of the Union, As It Goes

DON'T HATE THE GAME10:22 p.m. And it is over. Obama has never chanted "USA, USA, USA" before in his life. And it shows. Apart from that? I give that a pretty high marks for an ending. We don't quit! I don't quit! It was like a really good car commercial, back when we made cars. Still, it was nowhere near as ornate as some of the hyper-engineered Bush speeches? But it was less manipulative and therefore more persuasive. But! Now that that is concluded, we would like to hear from you in the comments, so we can know more fully what we all think of this speech tomorrow.
10:19 p.m. Oh, we found the part that could get me weepy. "The 8-year old boy in Louisiana, who just sent me his allowance and asked if I would give it to the people of Haiti." OOF.
10:16 p.m. Are you ready? Are YOU READY? "The more that TV pundits reduce serious debates into silly arguments, and big issues into sound bites, our citizens turn away." THIS MEDIA ANALYSIS WILL NOT STAND. (Or does it? We will discuss this more fully tomorrow.) For sure, Rachel Maddow is throwing her beer at the TV now.
10:14 p.m. In 2011, gays also get to openly be denied PTSD benefits after killing people for wars started on false pretenses. Related: when did my love for Obama, so strong 45 minutes ago, begin to evaporate?
10:13 p.m. "Eventually we are going to own Haiti and reform it into a resort full of servants." (Too soon? Yes. Way too soon. But you know, check back in ten years.)
10:10 p.m. In just four years, we are going to secure the world's nuclear materials! If we haven't been nuked into oblivion.
10:08 p.m. Hey, so, we are going to support the military when they come home now. Not deny them benefits and force them to sue for the support. (Starting, you know, two whole days ago.)
10:06 p.m. AL QAEDA HAS A SPIDER ARMY NOW? Oh phew. He said "fighters." I don't know why I was thinking about spiders!
10:03 p.m. John Cornyn has already trashed Obama's delivery. Issued at 9:11 p.m. (9:11 p.m.? REALLY?)
10:00 p.m. The windup to the windup: America has always had division, etc. Now someone needs to work on a version of "Every day is Election Day" for this.
9:58 p.m. Annnd he just trashed the Supreme Court, who had to sit there and eat it. The line is: "Last week, the Supreme Court reversed a century of law to open the floodgates for special interests-including foreign corporations-to spend without limit in our elections."
9:57 p.m. It never gets old to hear it acknowledged that tax cuts for wealthy Americans over the last eight years helped destroy America. On this, you and I and the teabaggers and everyone in between can agree!
9:56 p.m. "This freeze will not take effect until next year, when the economy is stronger." One also has to be careful with those whens….
9:54 p.m. Triple ooh, executive order creating the bipartisan Fiscal Commission that got killed by the Senate.
9:52 p.m. Double ooh! Spending freeze gets like ONE SAD GOLF CLAP.
9:51 p.m. Oooh. Record-straightening on the recent history of American finance and the vast ballooning of the deficit. This is also super-sweet.
9:49 p.m. You know what, in all seriousness? It is a good thing he is going hard on health care reform like this. We might get our "vast improvement over the status quo." And now he is taunting the Republicans to bring him some "ideas." This is actually pretty sweet. (And, again? Very English!)
9:46 p.m. Ha! "'Now, let's clear a few things up.' ORLY TAITZ LEANS FORWARD…"
9:45 p.m. Oh, haayyyy, he actually brought up this stale old topic of "health care reform"? Remember when we used to talk about that all the time? So he is taking it back to root causes. The root cause of health care reform being that health care SUCKS IT HARD in this country.
9:43 p.m. Hmm. A $10,000 tax credit for college-student-having families. And a 10% income cap on student loans. Well… for starters, colleges need their asses kicked. And THEN people need help with the college cost. ONLY AFTER the college asses are all kicked.
9:42 p.m. BTW? Get ready for the part where he talks about a young scientist. It should be v. v. heartwarming.
9:41 p.m. No one likes to hear about our friends in Columbia. No one Republican, at least.
9:39 p.m. More money for farmers! You guys, farming. Start farming. You have it MADE.
9:36p.m. So the other day it was BUDGET FREEZE and now it's basically DRILL BABY DRILL.
9:35 p.m. This has been some engrossing TV. I just totes ate a whole bag of cheddar cheese puffs without even noticing. I feel bad.
9:33 p.m. Um there was some chanting in response to his "NO SECOND PLACE FOR AMERICA" line. Was it "USA, USA?"
9:32 p.m. Oh good. He's addressing the "SLOW DOWN" Republican talking points. Because that was some made-up shit.
9:31 p.m. He wants a jobs bill on his desk without delay. I want a jobs bill without Tom DeLay! HI-O.
9:30 p.m. You know, the noise in the room tonight is very English. Lots of roaring? They sound like drunken English Parliament!
9:29 p.m. TRAINS? High-speed trains in… Tampa? TO WHERE? Panama City? Destin? Okay. Biden finally got something, I guess.
9:27 p.m. Uh oh. Trouble. There's a call now for tens of millions of dollars to be given to banks to lend money? The banks that WON'T LEND MONEY? Even though they HAVE IT?
9:27 p.m. But what about us comfortable people, who no longer have any money, who don't want to install windows and build schools (because we don't have any real skills)?
9:26 p.m. Oh! "New Job Bill Called For."
9:25 p.m. There are single teachers that raise two kids. Also, some businesses "are starting to hire again." It's true! They just get TRAMPLED by job-seekers. Overqualified, PhD-having job-seekers.
9:23 p.m. Gosh, my affections for Obama have returned. Fleetingly. Ana Marie Cox just wrote that "Okay, just consider this the 'Wall Street BAD MAKE OBAMA ANGRY' section." But I think that's a little too jaded maybe?
9:19 p.m. Okay so this is about togetherness, and unity, and the stuff like that. And? WE ALL HATED THE BANK BAILOUT? Whoa. Okay whoa. GAME? CHANGED.
9:17 p.m. I am ALSO TIRED OF THE SHOUTING AND THE PETTINESS. (Mostly my own.) But not of the partisanship. I like that part. I'm pro-difference.
9:15 p.m. For real, dawg. 2009 was the implosion of some systemic shit, and it is nice to hear that acknowledged.
9:13 p.m. J/K. This is kind of moving. And I approve of the tie even.
9:12 p.m. FUCK THIS GUY.
9:11 p.m. Aww, he's cute, with his serious face. Sometimes I get mad at the President, but really he's just a guy, you know?
9:10 p.m. David Cho: "Barack points too much. Barack is pointing just to start a meme. He knows people are going to take pictures."
9:09 p.m. You guys have totally heard this new Sade song right?
9:08 p.m. OMG all the clapping. It is like the sound of a hard rain in the Tibetan hills.
9:07 p.m. Should we do this?

126 Comments / Post A Comment

mathnet (#27)

Welcome back to your website!

riggssm (#760)

Oh thank christ you started this, cause I think I already outed myself on twitter once already (re: tax cuts I haven't seen cause I'm an unmarried homo out of college not owning a small business), and people reading my twitter feed didn't necessarily know that yet!

Oops!

riggssm (#760)

21:48 Is Bruce Vilanch writing the jokes tonight? (i.e. the "health care" section just started.)

cherrispryte (#444)

Wait I can't follow you and rapid-fire comment on Jezebel …. stop making me pick a favorite!!!!

rj77 (#210)

I heard you can get paid *not* to farm. Shit. I'm not farming right now. Where's the cash, Hopey?

HiredGoons (#603)

More importantly, when can I get paid to farm Weed?

jolie (#16)

FAAAAARMING!

Abe Sauer (#148)

Fuck yeah!

mathnet (#27)

". . .and who has a smokin' new 'do!"

cherrispryte (#444)

Horse-trading? Is Obama promising Ponies!?!??!!

Abe Sauer (#148)

"I didn't take on health-care because it was good politics."

You lie

David Cho (#3)

America will need the support of Art Vandelay with all of the exporting they plan on doing.

riggssm (#760)

How long will Democrats fall for the "Free trade creates better, higher-paying jobs (we hope!)" line?

Abe Sauer (#148)

Jesus, no shit huh. Let's export… unemployment!

cherrispryte (#444)

Hey, Grandpa McCain's awake!

mathnet (#27)

(I'm not sure what other discretionary expenditures there are.)

cherrispryte (#444)

MY JOB.

mathnet (#27)

Sorry. Take solace in HIGH-SPEED RAIL!

cherrispryte (#444)

Could I become a high-speed hobo? that could be fun.

I'm assuming you mean a hobo on a fast-train and not an ultra-efficient hobo?

mathnet (#27)

BANG-ZAP BINDLE

petejayhawk (#1,249)

A hobo high on speed?

mathnet (#27)

Lots of yellow in the crowd?

mathnet (#27)

BURN.

David Cho (#3)

THAT'S HOW BUDGETING WORKS.

mathnet (#27)

THE PROBLEM IS, THAT'S WHAT WE DID FOR EIGHT YEARS.

David Cho (#3)

(CHUCKLING AND APPLAUSE)

mathnet (#27)

Mumble, mumble, hmmmmmmm!

La Cieca (#1,110)

Supreme Court BURN!

Alex Balk (#4)

Did that overhead shot of the chamber about five minutes ago give anyone else vertigo? I just FINISHED throwing up.

mathnet (#27)

(Because of all the yellow!)

Abe Sauer (#148)

bwahahha! Earmark website request for all congressmen = one term Obama. Obama needs to be in that Dr. Pepper commercial featuring "fictional things."

cherrispryte (#444)

Dude its after 10pm and we haven't hit international policy AT ALL. Oh shit here we are.

mathnet (#27)

I know I can't wait!

riggssm (#760)

ZING, oh no he just din't call out the 'publican minori-jority for requiring 60 (61?) votes in the Senate to vote on the turkey sandwich or the chicken sandwich for lunch.

mathnet (#27)

Before they indict a ham sandwich.

Alex Balk (#4)

For a second I misheard "al-Qaeda fighters" as "al-Qaeda spiders" and thought, "Oh, man, we really are FUCKED."

David Cho (#3)

Oh, FIGHTERS.

Alex Balk (#4)

Hahahaha, okay, I will let Choire finish this up.

mathnet (#27)

Choire did too!

Alex Balk (#4)

We are all vaguely deaf in the same way. Because Cat yells at us super-loud during business meetings.

mathnet (#27)

http://www.best-home-remedies.com/ear_problems/hearing_loss.htm

(So y'all can stock up before the big boycott this weekend.)

mathnet (#27)

(boycott/overdose)

gumplr (#66)

Can't believe he's preempting Leno now.

riggssm (#760)

20:13 Did he just call out Iran as the Islamic Republic of Iran? Which, most stupid fucking stupid shit fucking dumb cow American's won't even realize is Iran's official name? Doesn't this essentially encourage the "CHRISTIAN=GOOD! Islam=Evil" bullshit propaganda from the last administration?

cherrispryte (#444)

No. It differentiates between the Iranian government, and the Iranian people. Or, at least, I'm betting that was his intent.

riggssm (#760)

Hrm. The road to hell is paved with good intentions (as in, a drunken intent to use plural not possessive), but all I heard was Islamic + Iran = Bad.

America, FUCK YA.

cherrispryte (#444)

Yeah. Which is problematic. The general population of Iran is way more liberal and progressive than the government is, which would've been nice for him to take a second and point out. It would be nice if more people knew that.

riggssm (#760)

I agree that it would be nice if more people knew that. I just seriously doubt that 1) they do 2) they'd look it up if they were confused 3) they'd understand the nuance even if they did.

And, quite seriously, it all makes me weep for our future.

petejayhawk (#1,249)

I'd be more concerned about the stupid fucking stupid shit fucking dumb cow American's thinking that by calling it a Republic, Obama is somehow approving of their evil Arab [all sics implied] ways and plotting to spread their Islamic Republic here.

liz (#3,108)

Those military guys are frozen in time and space. If there is dance afterwards no one is going to ask them!

Alex Balk (#4)

Ooooh, he gave .08 seconds to DADT!

HiredGoons (#603)

At least he's +.08 seconds now.

Alex Balk (#4)

In the end, the love you take? Equal to the love you make!

Matt (#26)

Is that true?

mathnet (#27)

Is there any chance he just uttered the phrase, "retarded nations?"

riggssm (#760)

One sentence on gays in the military? One sentence on immigration?

Wait, what!?

#SOTU #STFU

ae38 (#1,097)

Curious with all seriousness – how many sentences did you expect DADT to get? Or even immigration? These are major personal issues, but they are barely headline news across most of America. If we didn't have 10+% unemployment and a broken health care system and gas prices back on the creep, I would understand. But is anyone still thinking about immigration? And is it not better that he made the repeal of DADT a talking point as opposed to completely ignoring the issue or, even worse, supporting the bullshit going on in the Cali courts?

riggssm (#760)

Very seriously:

I feel if Mr. Obama can only focus on 2 or 3 issues at a time, and only feels those 2 or 3 issues are worth highlighting in a 70-ish minute speech, well … I strongly object to his ability to STOP FUCKING CAMPAIGNING AND START FUCKING GOVERNING.

Oh, sorry. My vodka bottle got stuck on the caps lock just now.

ae38 (#1,097)

But you're assumption is that the issues he highlighted in a speech is tantamount to all that he is committed to working on through the year. Personally, I have been out of work for over a year so I really could care less about immigration reform right now. I hope he is working on it in the background somewhere, but I would much rather the focus of our government be on job creation. And yes, I care about gay rights and think DADT should be repealed, but I am satisfied that it was mentioned in a major, national, policy speech as opposed to being ignored or swept under the rug (as it has been for the last 16 years).

riggssm (#760)

He had a whole year to deal with jobs, but he was all busy buying some banks and a car company.

The leader of the nation must be able to address more than one issue at a fucking time during a speech of this magnitude. To think that he should publicly comment on only one thing solely is …

Oh wait, you're like fucking with me cause I'm drunk. Well played. Point to ae38.

Fucking whole lot better to give it one sentence than the "Republican response" of "opportunities for all people" or whatever. I actually yelled at my teevee, "Like the opportunity to get married?!"

Pretty sure he didn't hear me, though.

cherrispryte (#444)

DON'T CRY OBAMA WE CAN HUG IT OUT.

mathnet (#27)

THE MUSIC IN MY HEAD IS SWELLING.

mathnet (#27)

Excellent use of "suggested" rather than "promised" (regarding change).

Alex Balk (#4)

Obama saying that democracy can be "noisy, and messy, and complicated" is not dissimilar to a line I used in high school to explain premature ejaculation.

mathnet (#27)

Complicated?

La Cieca (#1,110)

Sex with Democrats is always complicated.

mathnet (#27)

(Also: how do you explain it now?)

Alex Balk (#4)

Now it's more, "Look, I'll go another hour, but I'm still on the clock."

Alex Balk (#4)

Because I am just that virile, etc.

Alex Balk (#4)

You know what? Maybe if the struggling small business owner spent a little more time looking after his business and a little less time writing letters to Obama, his business would be doing better.

ae38 (#1,097)

HA!

ae38 (#1,097)

Also, seriously, there are still people writing letters to the President that aren't in an elementary school civics class?

mathnet (#27)

SILENT 'USA, USA'

cherrispryte (#444)

I feel guilty for not pulling people out of rubble.

riggssm (#760)

20:13, Choire:

"Eventually we are going to own Haiti and reform it into a resort full of servants." (Too soon? Yes. Way too soon. But you know, check back in ten years.)

Never too soon.

Also, 20:23, "We don't quit." lollarskatez … No one told Ms. Palin, did they?

Alex Balk (#4)

The NBC sideline reporter is now noting that she "never heard a boo uttered." Also: "People weren't Twittering." WHAT A WORLD.

mathnet (#27)

(Do not explain that to me. I GET IT.)

David Cho (#3)

DID SOMEONE JUST SAY "JERSEY SHORE"???

Alex Balk (#4)

Yes. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ). He's in negotiations for the next season.

cherrispryte (#444)

Heh. I can hear the motorcade sirens.

Moff (#28)

Was anyone else surprised that the Republicans didn't stand up and clap for supporting American small businesses and not outsourcing labor?

I mean, I know why they didn't, but still, bold.

mathnet (#27)

"It's not easy to follow the President of the United States. He's really, really smart."

riggssm (#760)

I really liked the drum circle the teabaggers had at the start of their response! Very avant-garde.

HiredGoons (#603)

can we brush them off as 'fucking beatniks' yet?

sigerson (#179)

I'm exhausted and frustrated by politics and avoided watching this until the last 20 minutes. I watched this past weekend's episode of Big Love instead (and OMG how great was Sissy Spacek?).

But you know what? I was in tears by the end. I forgot how intellectually honest and forthright Obama can be in a big speech. When he looked directly in the camera and talked to "you" I feel him staring into my soul.

Man o man, I thank the Good Lord that this man is our President. Whew.

Flashman (#418)

Thank you. I totally agree. This speech reminded me why we* all got so excited about him in the first place, and I hope it did for others too. No, this past year has not even come close to matching my hopes, but he's still something pretty special and you guys should be proud to have him as your president.

*I watched the election, staying up all night, from South Africa. One of my dad's cows finally gave birth to its calf just as Obama was giving his acceptance speech. He named it Sasha (better name for a cow than Malia, we thought).

mathnet (#27)

Oh, you didn't want to hear from us until 10:22 PM?

hman (#53)

Not all the SC Justices sat there and ate it! Alito had to be a dick and shake his head, mouthing "no."
Oh, now I don't know which one of the four I dislike most :(

Bittersweet (#765)

Radio consensus this morning was that he mouthed "no, that's not true." Not quite a "YOU LIE," but…

mathnet (#27)

How is that passage really supposed to go, so that it makes actual sense? ('To whom much is given, much is expected.')

La Cieca (#1,110)

In context it has little to do with charity and is more about readily taking on responsibility. Jesus is saying, "As we all know, slaves who knowingly shirk their jobs should expect to get beaten more severely than slaves who are just plain stupid, now, if you'll just let me extrapolate from that obvious truism…" and then it veers off into the apocalyptic stuff.

However, the most famous relatively recent use of the quotation was John F. Kennedy, who said "For of those to whom much is given, much is required." He was speaking specifically of the responsibility of elected officials to use the power with which they have been entrusted with courage, integrity and so forth.

McDonnell sort of watered down the idea to something like "since we're all super-rich, we really ought to help out those poor starving folks down in Haiti."

mathnet (#27)

Thank you! 'To whom much is given, much is expected' is how everybody seems to say it, but that doesn't work in terms of, like, grammar or logic. Could everybody who needs to say it please say it like Kennedy? Because then I'll know you know what you mean, and I'll know what you mean too, and it will be a good thing that you're meaning.

mathnet (#27)

Oooooooh Leno BURN. It's The Office now!

cherrispryte (#444)

And I'm out. Rachel Maddow is gorgeous. And thanks for liveblogging, Choire.

La Cieca (#1,110)

Discussion question: who's a bigger priss, Bobby Jindal or Bob McDonnell?

Moff (#28)

It started slow, and then it got good, and he came back around to health care at the right time. More on don't ask, don't tell would have thrilled me, but I guess I get the politics. All the chiding was good, and honestly, I'd have dug a little more of it. All the shit about not punishing bankers was good, even though I would like to punish some bankers. I was surprised to see so much of the GOP stand when he pushed for nuclear power plants (they get that those are very different from the missiles, right?) and, again, surprised that they didn't stand for some of the small business stuff.

Overall, he promised way too much — way, way, waaaaay too much — but I liked it, because I still believe that he'd like to deliver, and that if he's seemed too hands-offy in the last year, it's because he was busy getting his sea legs and dealing with some monumental crises fairly ably. I'm not gonna pass judgment until 2012, but I remain hopeful.

barnhouse (#1,326)

Agree with this.

mathnet (#27)

Fox News analyst Sarah Palin: Obama was "lecturing" and was "a bit condescending" to Republicans, even on 'common-sense ideas.'

Moff (#28)

Oh God. I'm impressed you can watch that without eating your own eyes.

La Cieca (#1,110)

In her defense, Palin honestly believes "condescending" has something to do with prisoners going down stairs.

brad (#1,678)

i enjoyed this.

atipofthehat (#797)

That was very Super Silvius of you.

Palin: Obama is looking at the issue backwards. Americans should be reminded that they are strong enough and smart enough to make decisions that allow for career and educational opportunities while still giving their families a chance at life. In my own home, my daughter Bristol has also been challenged by groups who don't agree with her decision to have her baby, nor do they like the abstinence message which she articulated as her personal commitment. Obama could gain ground and credibility with everyday Americans, thus allowing their American message to be heard by more than just their ardent supporters, if they made wiser decisions regarding which battles to pick.

brent_cox (#40)

You made that up.

Abe Sauer (#148)

Ha ha ha. CHANGE!

petejayhawk (#1,249)

Hilarious. You sound just like every fucking idiot Midwestern/Plains Republican dickweed I know in Kansas. I guess it doesn't get any better the farther you go up I-29.

WHAR'S MY STIMILUS CHECK, HOPEY??? HMMM?

Abe Sauer (#148)

Oh please. In the current political climate the rhetoric of the SOTU is pointless theater. If you are even moderately tuned into to ongoing politics then why even bother watching if not to mock and laugh at it?

I got a kick out of everyone in the Virginia Capitol giggling after McDonnell mentioned taking health care reform suggestions on FB and Twitter. Even those guys thought that was ridiculous!

HiredGoons (#603)

I'm sort of sad I missed this because I was having martini time, but I managed to catch the Republican response at Dewey's Flatiron after three which made it bearable.

Sounds like you guys had fun.

HiredGoons (#603)

mostly I just couldn't look at Nancy Pelosi that long.

petejayhawk (#1,249)

I didn't watch because I didn't want the evil daggers of RAGE to consume me, but then I read the comments (ostensibly from relatively like-minded people) and it happened anyways (ref. above). Oops.

cherrispryte (#444)

SHE IS FOND OF PASTELS.

Bittersweet (#765)

AND BOTOX.

Scum (#1,847)

fuck rose scented bullshit

KarenUhOh (#19)

This is the guy who made me forget why I hate the process so much. Last night made me remember why I hate the process so much. In spite of the right-minded rhetoric. It sounded like hypercrafted words strung together to handwarm a bone-frozen heart.

Maybe because I'm too old to be bright enough to care otherwise, I'll wait until his '11, or maybe '12, speech, in which he glares across the aisle and says, "I'm sick and tired of you people fucking with what I got elected to do. Who's with me?"

Bittersweet (#765)

Completely agree. The process sucks. And politicians in both parties are corrupt wankers who'd sell their grandmothers for votes and campaign donations. Every time the Democrats stood up and cheered campaign finance reform and critiquing the latest Supreme Court decision, I felt like yelling, "Siddown, ya fuckin' hypocrites!"

Matt (#26)

"10:10 p.m. In just four years, we are going to secure the world's nuclear materials! If we haven't been nuked into oblivion."

Um, Superman did this pretty easily. Just watch out for Nuclear Man.

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