Friday, January 31, 2014

A State of Disillusion

I know that it's been several days since the SOTU, but I like to digest it a bit before I write about it.

I LOVE to watch the State of the Union (SOTU)!  I always read the transcript the next day because my husband and I are far too busy making jokes at the expense of Congress members to completely listen to the actual speech.  It’s just too much fun!

Watching the President making his entrance alone is hilarious!  The schmoozing, the kissing of the ladies, the slaps on the backs……reminds you of a scene from “The Godfather”.  The only thing missing are the envelopes.  Plus, watching the warring tribes pretend to be friendly (and some not even lending a pretense to being friendly) is like being an ant at a family reunion.  You get to watch to your heart’s delight, unobserved while all the action takes place.  It’s utterly amusing to see the farce.  Watching Eric Cantor, who always looks like he is smelling cat shit, walking BEHIND the President (and you can see on his face that it’s not his favorite position), so much fun!  And watching The Boehner, flushed from the Merlot he had at dinner, sitting behind the President during his speech is hilarious!  And Joe Biden, with his Joker smile flashing, while Boehner looks morose… have to pay big bucks for this type of entertainment, normally!  I spend more time posting captions on Facebook, than listening to the speech, which I would rather READ, so I can think further on it.

Oh, I also like to pick out the big names in the audience.  Ted Cruz, looking like an oily salesman and not very happy.  Paul Ryan, who had his dumb puppy look on, just sat there.  Watching the behaviors of the various Congress members is like walking onto the campus of my daughter’s high school.  Cliques reign high in Congress and I think the students on my daughter’s campus are far more mature.  Look at Steve Stockman (R-Texas) storming out in the middle of the speech.  Can we say, “Drama Queen”.  And look at some of the Republican membersTWEETING during the President’s speech?  Are you kidding?  Dissing the speech IN TWEETS during the actual speech?  We don’t allow our high school students to do this but we allow Congress to be this disrespectful?  Or is it “staffers” Tweeting for them.  Regardless, it’s childish and rude.  People, act your age.  You are suppose to set an example for the country. 

There was some bi-partisan applauses.  His bit of sucking up to Boehner with his, “Son of a bar keep” was met with mutual clapping from a room full of mostly well-born folk.   They also applauded themselves when the President talked about the “accomplishments” in regards to the housing market (which is mostly a bubble created by “investors” paying cash forforeclosures, edging out average people who have to qualify for now tougher to get conventional loans), the oil industry (thanks to fracking and other less than safe measures, not to mention oil spills),  the lower unemployment rate (the jobs that ARE available are hardly the quality jobs that left…..mostly low-paying service jobs) and the deficit cut in half (on the backs of the middle class and the poor by cutting services and anyother programs, while there has been nothing asked by multi-national corporations or the one percent)…….I guess the President had to throw the Do Nothing Congress a bone because I seriously don’t consider anything they have done “accomplishments”.

But things got very cool, very quickly.  When the President got to the part about how multi-national corporations have made record profits, while the average American is working harder and harder just to make ends meet or not at all, due to jobs being “outsourced”.  When the President talked about reforming the tax laws that not only do not penalize AMERICAN companies for outsourcing but REWARD THEM with tax breaks, you could see the Republicans get indignant and see many Democrats squirm. 

And when he talked about going around Congress when he could (using Executive Order), that brought out the downright ugly.  The President vowed to raise the minimum wage on CONTRACTORS who get Federal contracts.  That brought out the Linda Blair in many Republican Congresscritters.   Michelle Obama, who has been the object of ridicule (again) for her “Get Moving” program teaming up with Subway, causing quite the hissy fits among the Right-Wing-Freaks (OMG!  What a BITCH!!!  She wants to encourage kids to EAT SUBWAY!!!) was commended by the President for the program, as was FLOTUS’ and VP-FLOTUS’, DR. Jill Biden, for their Joining Forces Alliance project, that helps find jobs for our vets and their spouses.  That earned polite claps from Republicans but with frowny faces.  The same with the President’s plan for College Opportunity (which the President of my city’s beloved,  Whittier College, met with the President to discuss!) and his mentions of homelessness and marriage equality the Republicans just had the frowny faces, as both are icky subjects for Republicans.

Getting to energy, that is NEVER a fun topic.  Anything with the word “reform” in it generally brings frown lines (or the closest thing to it on many a Botoxed face) to Congresscritters.  Patent reform, as are the words “solar” and “wind” are simply dirty words in Congress.  And the fact that we are having an oil boom has not made Republicans happy, as it has happened under OBAMA!  More frowny faces when he mentioned (bragged about) it.   And even MORE frowny faces when the President talked about the dreaded “CLIMATE CHANGE”.   A word that many a Republican say is a hoax.  I swear, I am sure that all the plastic surgeons in DC were completely booked after SOTU for the next month.

Then came the unpleasant topic of education and wages.  Some of it was benign and nothing new, like Race to the Top (blech), corporate funded education (blech), Common Core (feh), getting the communications companies to hand over “free Internet access” to some of our schools (wow, how generous of them, considering they couldn't make money without government help) and pre-K.  Education is where the President and I part ways.  He’s on the side of corporate education.  I am not.  But at least he mentioned that he is finally dumping standardized testing. 

When the President gets to the minimum wage, that also brings the ugly out of Republicans.  The President telling Congress that no one should live in poverty while working full time seemed like a foreign concept to many of the Congresscritters.  Especially single mothers.  And it was downright insulting to Americans when the Republicans did nothing but look pissy when the President said, “Let’s give America a raise!” when talking about raising the minimum wage.  Not a good move, Republicans.  You dissed the American people by doing that.   And when he talked about the ACA (Obamacare) and how the whole forty votes to repeal was stupid, you would have thought someone let off a hellacious fart on the Republican side of the chamber.  The ACA is still a very raw spot with Republicans.

Yes, I do find it entertaining, but, we shouldn't.  It’s far from funny.  Here we are, people are suffering and these people are playing games.  They can’t even pretend to behave in front of the cameras.  They have basically told us, the American people, “Fuck you!”  They have told us that our business just doesn't matter to them.  We should be more than offended.  Yet, what do the American people do?  We are still squabbling among ourselves, pointing our fingers at each other, blaming people who have less than us for our lot in life and NOT VOTING!  How stupid are we?  Congress doesn't even have make a pretense anymore.  We ACCEPT their bad behavior!  Yet, we don’t do a thing about it.  I am seriously tired of the blaming of the poor, of the President (he can only do so much) and the fighting among ourselves.  We have allowed a handful of boorish people to take over our government and do as they wish and pretty much flip the American people off while doing it.  The President said many times in his speech that it was up to CONGRESS.  And Congress has told your what they think of Americans.  And the worst example was when so many Republican Congressmen were flocking around the guy from "Duck Dynasty" and not the soldier who did TEN TOURS of war and was severely injured.  Talk about a "fuck you" to the military.

So, what are YOU going to do? 

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