What Else Is In Scott's Head?

The blog site for writer Scott C. Smith. Some observations on the world we live in and life in general. And maybe some politics.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

State of the Union 2005

The State of The Union 2005

I feel kinda stupid writing this entry, because I forgot to take notes during tonight's state of the union address. But I'm supposed to provide instant feedback as one of my blogger duties, so I'll give it my best shot. I will, unfortunately, be incredibly inaccurate due to my lack of notes. I know, I could have read the transcript, but at MSNBC, the thing is in several parts! I don't have the attention span to read one part. In fact, I'm not even paying attention while I write this, that's how out of the loop I am.

Okay, I'll start with the good, at least the good I remember:

-- Bush introduces Safia Taleb al-Suhail, an Iraqi woman who voted for the first time yesterday. Good for her, and I'm glad Mr. Bush honored her in his speech. Iraqis literally took their lives in their hands when they voted, what with the threat of insurgents around every corner. Could you head off to your local polling station if you thought someone might be up in a tree with a sniper rifle or ready to blow up the polling station with a car bomb? I don't think I could.

-- Bush honors the memory of Marine Corps Sgt. Byron Norwood and his parents, Janet and Bill Norwood. A very moving moment, especially when Mrs. Norwood gave her son's dog tags to Safia Taleb al-Shuail.

The odd: what point did asbestos lawsuit become a problem? Bush: " Justice is distorted, and our economy is held back, by irresponsible class actions and frivolous asbestos claims — and I urge Congress to pass legal reforms this year. "

If I had the time (or interest) I'd do some research on this whole asbestos issue. Because, frankly, it kind of took me by surprise.

Oh, wait, I just saw something at CBS News. So it looks like the elimination or reduction of frivolous asbestos claims is a really important part of Bush's agenda. Which is disappointing, as I was contemplating filing a number of lawsuits related to frivolous asbestos claims. Actually, I don't even know what asbestos is. Isn't that the stuff Chinese restaurants put on food? I dunno.

Finally...the bad. Democrats booed Bush as he was laying out some sort of plan about something (Social Security?) and there was a lot of booing but, unfortunately, no shoving matches between Democrats and Republicans.

Bush did explain -- a little -- about the priviatization plan for Social Security. And it wasn't free choice, like I thought it was going to be; it sounded, in fact, like the government setting up several types of accounts based on stocks and/or bonds and/or mutual funds and letting the individual choose which plan to put the money into. I had always thought the idea was to let people take a small percentage of the money that would have gone into Social Security and invest it as the individual saw fit. Let me know if I'm wrong on this one, because I was drunk for most of the speech. Just kidding. I was hopped up on paint fumes.

Finally, part two: I didn't even know there was going to be a Democratic response to the speech, so my lack of writing utensils also served to undermine the fact that I wasn't paying attention. It was Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. And they said some stuff. Not sure what. Asbestos, maybe? Sorry, gang, I really dropped the ball on this posting.

And, I'm not 100% sure of this, but didn't Bush sort of say that Syria had WMDs? I thought they only had hamsters. Learn something new every day.


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