In his speech, the president ticked off a lot of new initiatives that have to be digested.
For example, the pre-school initiative was curious to me, and I couldn’t quite determine where he was coming from on that issue (except to, perhaps placate and expand the NEA?). I did laud his trade school-high school initiatives, however. Germany has been doing this for decades and it has paid off. Too many kids are striving for college who aren’t suited to an academic career, though would be successful if they began with practical life experience through a technical high school. There are not enough of these in the U.S. and it would allow trades to flourish again and the manufacturing sector to expand.
He closed with a very compelling case for better gun legislation. Background checks do not stop 2nd Amendment rights and that seems like a sensible thing to enforce and strengthen.
I was glad to hear about the down-regulating of the war machine in far off places. I think most of the country wants the focus on our domestic agenda. Infrastructure repairs, coupled with innovative manufacturing centers, combined with an emphasis on technical training programs, would bring many jobs for now and in the future.
What still surprises me about this president is the quantity and quality of his creativity. His ideas seemed boundless. He still is focused. He is still hopeful. He uplifts and encourages with his vision of a better America. I hope he can convince the ‘party of no’ to stop being so recalcitrant and put more of their energies into helping the economy grow instead of putting so much energy into wanting to see this president fail. When his ideas fail, many of us also fail. When these ideas move us forward, we all move forward.
I think the country is ready to embrace a more positive attitude as was outlined by these noble, and I daresay, lofty ideas. The budget is important, yes – but, if you don’t have a vision of what the priorities are in the budget, then, the numbers are always going to be askew.
Much less compelling was Marc Rubio’s response. As the most interesting national GOP on the radar, his speech was disappointingly banal. It sounded as if it had been prepared weeks in advance of the State of the Union and just ticked-off a lot of GOP hyperbole—i.e., big government, more taxes, etc., without addressing any specific items in detail. (Where were these budget hawks when Bush spent over a trillion dollars on a war against a country under false pretenses?) Furthermore, they seem to be best at complaining, but lack creative initiatives of their own. I read the text of Rand Paul’s tea party response and it pretty much echoed what Rubio said.
On a fashion note, the first lady looked as if she’d just come from one of the inauguration parties. Her bare arms looked cold being unadorned. A tailored jacketed dress would seem more fitting. But who am I to judge?