The Best And Worst Of Obama’s SOTU

No, I did not watch the State Of The Union. NJ Devils hockey was on. If it wasn’t, I would have watched Masterchef Canada. And don’t you dare tell me who won! I did not watch all of Bush’s, either. But, no matter what, I had no intention of watching a snippy man lecture the American public, nor sneer and look down his nose, nor tell falsehoods, give use cherry picked facts, nor listen to his strawmen.

The number 1 best? It’s his last one. Breitbart offers up ten lies, which include

2. “Anyone claiming that America’s economy is in decline is peddling fiction.”With that line, Obama took a shot at his would-be Democratic successors, as well as his Republican critics. But the truth is that despite the slow recovery–the slowest since World War II–labor force participation is the lowest it has been in decades. Wages are stagnant, household incomes still have not recovered from the recession, and young people see a bleak future.

Worst. These are the same policies that Hillary or Bernie would continue, and even make worse.

6. “Seven years ago, we made the single biggest investment in clean energy in our history. Here are the results.” It is laughable that Obama would claim his failed clean energy spending–think Solyndra–led to the fracking-fed energy boom we have enjoyed for the past several years, especially when the administration did all it could to stop oil and gas development. He also nixed the Keystone pipeline and started a plan to kill coal plants.

Worst. Obama could have made real investments in alternatives, pushing for research and projects that would work, rather than rewarding campaign donors who had projects of a dubious nature. He could have pushed for next generation nuclear. He could have put the USA on a true path to renewable energy. Sadly, no.

7. “No nation dares to attack us or our allies because they know that’s the path to ruin.” Of all the lies in Obama’s speech, this was undoubtedly the worst, coming hours after Iran seized two U.S. Navy boats and ten sailors. Obama did not even mention those Americans in captivity at any point in his speech, declining the chance to reassure the nation that they would come home safely. It is an omission that will define this address in history.

Worst. Iran released those sailors and the boats at 4am EST, long after Obama’s silly remarks. Perhaps Obama has forgotten about Russia’s territorial gains in Crimea. Of course, not us or our allies, but they thumbed their nose at the world, including Obama. Or how Russia told US forces to get the hell out of the way in Syria.

9. “We are training, arming, and supporting forces who are steadily reclaiming territory in Iraq and Syria [from Islamic State].” The Obama administration’s attempt to train and arm Syrian rebels has been a disaster. Belatedly, the administration has helped Kurdish peshmerga forces, and the Iraqi military has made gains lately, but Obama has not made a serious effort to defeat the Islamic State, and is even giving up on regime change in Syria.

Worst. He’s, at best, made half-hearted attempts to deal with them. Perhaps he can think back to when he attack Libya, then walked away, leaving the eastern half a mess, run by Islamic radicals linked to ISIS. Switching over to a Fox News article

“Let me tell you something, the United States of America is the most powerful nation on Earth. Period,” Obama said, to those who say America is getting weaker.

Best and worst. Best because we are, worst because Obama doesn’t seem to believe that, and he has worked to weaken America. Remember his red lines schtick, among others?

“Masses of fighters on the back of pickup trucks, twisted souls plotting in apartments or garages, they pose an enormous danger to civilians. They have to be stopped. But they do not threaten our national existence,” Obama said. “That is the story ISIL wants to tell; that’s the kind of propaganda they use to recruit.”

Best. He’s sorta right on that, in that they do not threaten our national existence. At this time. They do need to be stopped. Who thought little Germany would be such a threat in 1935? In ISIS, one must consider that if just 1% of Muslims are the hardcore violent ones, that’s 16 million worldwide. If 10%-25% of Muslims believe in the hardcore tenets of Islam, the regressive version based on the life and teachings of Mohammad, that’s an upward number of 400 million.

He also dug in on what effectively is an administration policy of not referring to the terror threat as radical Islam. He urged against “echoing the lie that ISIL is somehow representative of one of the world’s largest religions,” and said: “We just need to call them what they are – killers and fanatics who have to be rooted out, hunted down, and destroyed.”

Worst. To defeat something, you must name that something in order to understand. They are Islamic. They represent Islam.

He also began, and closed, his address with a call for bipartisan cooperation on key issues, saying Washington “might surprise the cynics.” On issues ranging from criminal justice reform to prescription drug abuse, Obama suggested both parties can find common ground.

Best and worst. Best because we do need cooperation on some issues. Worst, because, for one thing, Obama is the largest enabler of strife in Washington. For another, Democrats have shown that, on big issues, they refuse to cooperate.

He also yammered on about Guantanamo Bay detention facility, and issue he’s been mostly impotent on, despite him signing a statement to close it down as his first act in office. Yammered about gun control, while having armed security protecting him in the Congressional chamber. Raising the minimum wage. Free college. Climate change. There was a strawman about immigrants, where he blamed stagnant wages on “boardrooms”. A brief mention of refugees (I expected more, but, perhaps he didn’t want to put this issue back in the minds of Americans). Obamacare.

All in all, a silly speech from a silly man. The question now is, how much more will he check out from his job?

Crossed at Right Wing News.

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Comment by John
2016-01-13 10:39:32

Free college ? For everyone ?
Shouldn’t college only be for rich kids?
Gee Teach did you also miss Nikki Haley speaking up for the immigrants that Trump and Rafael Cruz hate so much ?

Comment by John
2016-01-13 10:53:23

Drowning puppies is never shy about showing his lack of knowledge
Neither the Joint Chiefs or the Supremes customarily clap at any time during the speech
Both groups do this to show their political impartiality
Try using Google before you embarrass yourself DP

Comment by gitarcarver
2016-01-13 11:19:51

Free college ?

I agree john,. Professors, TA’s advisers, maintenance workers, cooks / chefs, food servers, etc should all work for free at colleges. Companies shouldn’t charge to build new buildings. Authors shouldn’t charge for text books. Yep. Gotta get people “free college.”

What part “there is no such thing as a free lunch” don’t you understand?

Neither the Joint Chiefs or the Supremes customarily clap at any time during the speech

So you are saying that the Joint Chiefs do applaud just not all the time?

Fair enough.

But it is telling that they generally applaud when a president addresses issues they deal with specifically and or with the handling of those issues. For example, in 2010, the Joint Chiefs applauded Obama’s remarks on securing nuclear material around the world and yet sat passively when he talked about ending the “don’t ask, don’t tell” law.

Perhaps you should take your own advice and google these things before you embarrass yourself.

Oh, and btw….

Both groups do this to show their political impartiality

Just so you know, the JCS serve at the pleasure of the President.

Comment by drowningpuppies
2016-01-13 11:20:45

How are things at the nervous hospital?

Thomas, Alito and Scalia also didn’t attend the shit show.

Rep. Steve King (R-IA) walked out on Barack Obama’s final State of the Union Address on Tuesday night.

“I can’t abide being lectured to one last time. This is my last chance to step out of there. And I’m going to go to the member’s chapel and pray for the restoration of the Constitution.”

Comment by drowningpuppies
2016-01-13 11:29:54

BTW, didn’t Moochie look delicious dressed as a banana fudgesicle?

Comment by William Teach
2016-01-13 11:51:48

I agree john,. Professors, TA’s advisers, maintenance workers, cooks / chefs, food servers, etc should all work for free at colleges. Companies shouldn’t charge to build new buildings. Authors shouldn’t charge for text books. Yep. Gotta get people “free college.”

John is furiously checking Media Matters for a rebuttal.

Comment by Jeffery
2016-01-13 15:01:56

Actually, if it happens, “free” college will be paid for by other, wealthier taxpayers, not by forcing college employees to work as slaves. So college presidents and other college execs, and football and hoops coaches, many making 7 figures, taxes will go up a bit. Mine too. Trump’s. Obama’s. etc. It will be a good investment in America, though.

Why are college expenses skyrocketing? States are pulling back on funding for state schools. Why? Because conservative legislatures keep cutting taxes on the wealthy. Just more of the conservative war on the poor.

Of course redistribution of wealth “downward” is anathema to conservatives regardless of the social value. Conservatives only approve of upward redistribution. Even traditional Republicans are concerned about wealth inequality (of course, they blame it on Obama, rather than conservative policies, but it’s a start).

Comment by Hank_M
2016-01-13 15:53:06

Wrong again Jeffery. But your consistency is impressive in that respect.

College costs are rising for a number or reasons, one being the administrative growth that far outpaces the increase in student attendance. As for the idiocy about states pulling back on funding…The NY Times states that “far from being caused by funding cuts, the astonishing rise in college tuition correlates closely with a huge increase in public subsidies for higher education.

Comment by Jeffery
2016-01-13 18:48:44


“Wrong again”, assumes I was wrong before. Never!

Anyway, does it make sense that more subsidies increase tuition? Of course not, that would be real idiocy! But much of what conservatives hold as gospel is untrue.

You didn’t identify the NYTimes article, letter or advertisement from which you lifted the text but it’s likely the one that Slate dismantles here:

Depending on who’s calculating, states are giving schools somewhere around 25 to 30 percent fewer dollars per student than they were 15 years ago.

And from another NYTimes article ( we read this:

Revenues to operate budgets for public universities consist largely of state appropriations and student tuition. In difficult fiscal times, dramatic reductions in the levels of state government subsidies directly to higher education institutions have precipitated unprecedented tuition increases. In the last two years, the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education has experienced an 8 percent reduction in its base appropriation despite enrolling thousands of new students. Nationally, two decades of accumulated reductions in appropriations followed by two years of dramatic cuts in state funding have forced tuition increases of 8 percent and 13 percent respectively.

This is not to say that cuts in government subsidies are the only reason tuitions are increasing. Indeed, universities have increased the amount of “fat” in their administrations, even while cutting the number of full time professors, preferring to hire adjunct faculty paid on a per class basis and avoiding paying benefits.

Comment by jl
2016-01-13 19:03:04

And you can’t beat the laws of economics. The more citizens with college degrees, the less valuable those degrees would be. If most job applicants have one, it’d be no big deal to an employer.

Comment by Jeffery
2016-01-13 23:11:48


It’s not too late to get your GED and take a few college classes!

Thank goodness no conservative ever attended a state college, community college or public school! Otherwise they’d be hypocrites for criticizing subsidies for education after they had already received 10s of thousands of dollars of subsidies for their education!

Good thing Eastern Carolina U is private.


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