Wednesday, February 01, 2006

No Surprises, there

The State of the Union speech was pretty much exactly what I expected. GW said the same stuff he always says. The Republicans bounced to their feet, applauding, so often that they looked like a gallery full of jack-in-the-boxes.

The new Associate Justice, Sam Alito, doesn't look like Voldemort--actually, he looks good-humored and kind. I fervently hope he is. There's no question about his intelligence; only about his loyalty to the Executive branch, versus the Constitution and the people.

The Democrats didn't look quite like the pack of whipped pups that they often do. That's encouraging. Digby thinks the pendulum is beginning to slow, before its inevitable swing back the other way.

Cindy Sheehan got arrested for wearing an anti-war tee-shirt to the State of the Union address.

Does anyone else feel increasingly disconnected from all of this? Does it seem more and more like grand theater, designed to keep us occupied arguing with one another--while we drug our kids into submission, work our two (or three) jobs, hold our breath and clench our teeth while pay for this week's gas and groceries, and worry about whether or not we'll still have to work in our 70s else how will we live?

In point of fact, I believe we want the same things, most of us. We want the freedom to pray, when and where we choose, if we so choose. We want secure jobs, affordable health care, safe streets and schools. We want to hold our heads up and know that, as individuals and as a nation, we are behaving honorably. We are willing to work our butts off to achieve and keep those things.

Chop wood and carry water.


Anonymous said...

Cindy Sheehan should have known better. Please, decorum, manners, State of the Union. A place and a time. That wasn't it, Mac.

As for Alito, I believe he's an honorable man and will interpret the law. I think the Senate committee owes him and his family an apology. Politics cannot interpret the law and have no business in asking a nominee how he will vote on future cases! Excuse me! The law is just that-it is to be upheld, not politized. They did not treat Ginsberg that way-hmm.

While we're at it, can we discuss term limits for senators? I wrote a paper on Orin Hatch in 7th grade! And that was a long time ago. As for Kennedy, if it weren't for the senate, where else would he find a job? As a diving instructor?

And, yes, I sometimes do feel disconnected, even though the word "constituents" gets thrown around on a regular basis. My phone doesn't ring to ask how I feel about relevant events. K, I'm done.

Stacia said...

As for Kennedy, if it weren't for the senate, where else would he find a job? As a diving instructor?


Mac, you said we both want the same things. This, I think, is what separates the true conservative and the true liberal from the right-and-left-wingers.

The true lib & con know we all want the same things. We just disagree on how to acheive them.

The r-and-l-wingers think they're the only ones who want those things, and the other side are evil or stupid. Only in it for money, or to fulfill some insane agenda.

As for Alito and the State of the Union...I missed it, and haven't seen much on Alito. I just hope he's a good judge. I think it's kind of a crapshoot anyway, frankly, so all we can do with any of them is hope.

.:J.r.A.:. said...

I agree about it not being exactly the right time and place, to an extent.

I also believe that the first amendment is the first amendment. When people start getting arrested for wearing shirts stating the U.S. death toll in Iraq, you really have to start considering the state of our government.

My two cents :)


Mac said...

Saw a news item tonight that a Republican congressman's wife was also removed during the speech, for wearing a "Support the Troops" shirt.

The Capital police were apparently enforcing what they thought was a hard-n-fast no-slogans-on-your-tee-shirts rule.

Charges against Cindy Sheehan have been dropped, there were no charges filed against the other woman removed.

At least they were even-handed and non-partisan in their enforcement.

Frank said...

I believe we don't need protests in the gallery during a State of the Union. Such protests demean what should be the seriousness of the speech.

Ray Wong said...

I agree that Sheehan should have known better. There's a time and place for everything. But maybe she knew that she was going to be arrested, and that she would be making a statement.

As for Alito, a friend of mine said that this is a very intelligent, ambitious man. He probably knew he needed to play the rules to climb the ladder, and he did. He knows the rule book. Now that he's in, he doesn't have to answer to anyone anymore, and he might actually soften. Who knows? He might really be a nice guy. We thought O'Connor was going to be hardcore as well, but she turned out to be a moderate.

And yes, we all want the same thing -- peace, opportunities, happiness, justice, etc. It's just that some people simply do not understand the concept of "live and let live." They live in fear, and they think that because things don't go the WAY they want, their lives are going to be affected. And they'd go all the way to ensure that they own way of life is preserved, even at the expense of others. These are very misguided people. Unfortunately, the world is full of them.