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Forum Post: Sure glad I didn't watch the State of the Union speech!

Posted 2 years ago on Jan. 25, 2012, 2:51 a.m. EST by Nordic (390)
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Because I probably would have thrown a brick through my TV set. David Swanson watched it for me and wrote about it.

How can ANYONE of conscience vote for this lying sack of crap in 2012:

Killing Iraqis Makes Us Safer -- And Other Lies

By David Swanson - Posted on 25 January 2012

In the news around the world and even in the United States on Tuesday was the anger among Iraqis at the failure of the United States to hold anyone seriously accountable for the 2005 massacre in Haditha. The story was a useful reminder of how the operations of the U.S. military over the past decade have fueled hostility toward our nation.

President Obama began his State of the Union speech Tuesday night by absurdly claiming the exact opposite, asserting that the war on Iraq has made us safer and -- I kid you not -- "more respected around the world." He later equated the war on Iraq to World War II, a surefire way to put anything beyond criticism in the United States, provided you can get people to fall for it.

Remember, this is the guy who won the Democratic Primary in 2008 by the simple fact of having not yet been in the Senate in 2003 and thus having avoided voting for the war that he funded to the hilt as a senator beginning in 2005. He had called it a dumb war. Now he says it made us safer. If it was dumb, was he dumber? What is he trying to say?

In the next breath, Obama says "some troops in Afghanistan have begun to come home." Never mind that there are three times as many U.S. troops in Afghanistan now as when Obama moved into the White House. The myth is that he's ending wars. Never mind that he was compelled to end the Iraq War, in so far as it has ended, by the treaty that Bush and Maliki created, and which Obama sought every possible way to violate. Never mind that Iraqi hostility toward U.S. criminals being granted immunity from prosecution was the primary reason that the Iraqi government insisted on the Bush-Maliki withdrawal date. A myth is a myth, and who will question it and still keep their job on U.S. television?

Because the United States dumps record funding into its military -- over half of federal discretionary spending -- the United States is falling behind other nations in education, energy, infrastructure, health, life expectancy, infant mortality, poverty, retirement security, and happiness. Obama's next breath serves to simply assert the opposite. We're number one. Who will dare to question that? To fudge the claim, Obama actually says that being number one is right within our grasp if only we would all act more like the military. (Late in the speech he mentions cutting a half a trillion dollars from the military, without mentioning that he means "over 10 years" or $50 billion per year from a budget of over a trillion per year.)

And what a glowing future he describes! Gee, if only we'd had someone who thought that way serving as, say, president, the past few years. Now he wants to "fight obstruction with action." Just forget about that initial two-year-long pretense that the Senate couldn't get around any filibuster attempts. That would be looking backward.

Obama said Tuesday night that he wants an economy where "everyone plays by the same set of rules." Really? Where's my bailout? Where's my get-out-of-jail-free card? Will we now see prosecutions of financial fraud, busting of trusts, taxation of corporations and billionaires? What brought about this reversal? People are crediting the Occupy movement, of course, but the Occupy movement has demanded -- yes, demanded -- actions, not words.

Obama says the United States lost jobs because technology made them obsolete. That's his whole explanation of the decline of the past 40 years and of the financial collapse of 2008. Nothing about union busting. Not a word about military spending. No mention of regressive taxation. Barely a nod to the shredding of financial regulation. Not even room for a bit of blame directed toward a culture of greed. Nope. Technology. That's what it was. Nobody to blame. Just a bit of bad luck we've had, and if we all act more like the military we'll clear it right up.

Or not quite. There's also the problem of irresponsible home owners: "Mortgages had been sold to people who couldn't afford or understand them." Only after that slanderous dig (which he repeats later as well) did our President mention a deficiency in regulation.

Obama then claims employment is on the rise and, in the same breath, and exactly as if it mattered to us in the same way as employment: "Together, we've agreed to cut the deficit by more than $2 trillion." Of course, that's more than the entire discretionary budget and what Obama would have said, if he hadn't been so rushed in slapping together this speech without any help whatsoever, was that such cuts would be spread over many years, amounting to much less in each year, but still enough to do a great deal of damage.

Then Obama claimed to have put in place rules that will prevent any new crisis on Wall Street. I've never seen anyone take that claim seriously.

He says the auto bailout involved workers and bosses "settling their differences." Have any workers described it that way?

"Right now, companies get tax breaks for moving jobs and profits overseas. Meanwhile, companies that choose to stay in America get hit with one of the highest tax rates in the world. It makes no sense, and everyone knows it."

That has got to be the slimiest argument for yet more corporate tax cuts I've ever seen dressed up as patriotic common sense.

Next Obama bragged about corporate trade agreements with Panama, Colombia, and Korea, just the kind of agreements he campaigned against last time.

Then Obama proposed that, instead of developing a great educational system, we just have corporations fund their training for specific jobs. The President then spoke of the importance of a real educational system and admitted that,

"At a time when other countries are doubling down on education, tight budgets have forced states to lay off thousands of teachers."

The solution to this is stunningly brilliant, or something. Wait for it:

"So tonight, I call on every state to require that all students stay in high school until they graduate or turn eighteen."

That ought to do it.

Obama then proposed that Congress not double the interest rates on student loans, and extend the tuition tax credit. And he added this innovative strategy that, again, is simply brilliant, or something:

"So let me put colleges and universities on notice: If you can't stop tuition from going up, the funding you get from taxpayers will go down."

Ha! Affordable education, here we come!

Obama then asked for a bill that would allow immigrants "to earn their citizenship." A hint at how they might do that is found in his list of noble things such immigrants might want to participate in, one of which is "defend this country." I assume you don't need me to translate.

Moving on, Obama is proud to say, "Over the last three years, we've opened up millions of new acres for oil and gas exploration, and tonight, I'm directing my Administration to open more than 75 percent of our potential offshore oil and gas resources." Drill, baby, drill! Obama also wants a major expansion in drilling for natural gas and promises to require that companies disclose the chemicals they use in doing so. Because chemicals can't kill you if you're told about them. Transparent fracking! It's the new Clean coal!

Wind energy is a little footnote, and solar and other clean energies don't get a mention in the State of the Union, except a request for "clean energy tax credits." Or so it seems, until the military comes to the rescue again:

"I'm directing my Administration to allow the development of clean energy on enough public land to power three million homes. And I'm proud [watch where the pride comes in] to announce that the Department of [So-Called] Defense, the world's largest consumer of energy, will make one of the largest commitments to clean energy in history -- with the Navy purchasing enough capacity to power a quarter of a million homes a year."

The United States military is not just the biggest consumer of energy. It is the biggest spreader of depleted uranium, white phosphorous, and cluster bombs. The United States military has rendered entire landscapes uninhabitable for our species, unless we last as long as the dinosaurs, and this kind of speech doesn't give me the impression we'll be around anything like that long.

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[-] 2 points by Nordic (390) 2 years ago

Continued:

The best bit of rhetoric comes deep in the speech: "Take the money we're no longer spending at war, use half of it to pay down our debt, and use the rest to do some nation-building right here at home." That would be a terrific proposal if we had stopped spending money on wars or, even better, if we were to stop spending vastly greater amounts on the military's permanent existence apart from its wars. Obama doesn't mention any numbers or proposals, because he's talking utter nonsense.

Obama moves on to claiming he'll handle oil spills, this the same week that we received documentation of the pressure he exerted to deceive the public about the last big one. He announces a new "Financial Crimes Unit," not that he hasn't announced the same thing before, but this time it's while he works toward an immunity-granting "settlement" with the big banks guilty of mortgage fraud.

Obama wants the payroll tax cut, no matter what it does to Social Security. In fact, he's "prepared to make more reforms that rein in the long term costs of Medicare and Medicaid, and strengthen Social Security, so long as those programs remain a guarantee of security for seniors." Of course, "strengthen" here is code for "cut." Obama makes these "concessions" on condition that tax cuts for millionaires are allowed to expire. Of course, he put the same condition on earlier concessions and then abandoned it, but we really must stop looking backward. Obama proposes following the "Buffet rule" but does not specify how he would have that done.

"We don't begrudge financial success in this country," he lies. "We admire it." Increasingly, this is just not so. We admire truly worthy accomplishments, whether or not financially successful, and we condemn the stratification of our society into one in which few travel far up or down the income distribution. We resent the expenses imposed on the poor and the unfair advantages bestowed upon the already excessively wealthy. We condemn the hoarding of billions of dollars while others go hungry and homeless. The president is not unaware of this, but he is not speaking to us, is not one of us, and could not possibly care less.

The President acknowledges public disgust with elected officials who are bought and paid for. "Let's take some steps to fix that," he says. And then he gets cute. No end to corporate personhood, no end to money as speech, no ban or limitation on election spending, no public financing, no free air time for candidates, not even the usual call for "disclosure" of who is bribing whom. Nope. President Obama wants a bill to ban insider trading by congress members. That certainly couldn't hurt, if they would do it, but the idea that it centrally addresses the problem of money in politics is absurd.

Yet, in the context of this speech, to qualify as a truly absurd proposal takes more than most rhetorical nonsense can offer. Obama closes, in fact, with a real doozie. He claims that wars are ending and threatens war on Iran. You can't make this stuff up. The Project for the New American Century can. You can't:

"As the tide of war recedes. . . . America is determined to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, and I will take no options off the table to achieve that goal. But a peaceful resolution of this issue is still possible . . . if Iran changes course."

Got that? Unless Iran, which the Secretary of Defense says is not developing a nuclear weapon, ceases developing a nuclear weapon, we're going to war. But we regret it very much and it will hurt us more than it hurts you.

"America remains the one indispensible nation in world affairs." That makes the rest of the world -- you guessed it -- dispensable.

Killing Osama bin Laden is President Obama's proudest claim, and he uses it in the final words of the State of the Union to bash "politics." Some of the killers may have been Republicans and others Democrats, he tells us, but they were united in murder. Yet, if the money were cleaned out of politics, if we had a decent communications system, if good candidates could get on ballots and into debates, if votes were publicly counted on paper at each polling place, if -- in other words -- politics were what we imagine it aspiring to be, then why would we elect people who bash it? And if we wanted someone who intended to unite with Republicans, why wouldn't we elect a Republican? And if we weren't paralyzed by fear and lies, why wouldn't we want alleged criminals brought to our country and put on trial? After all, we've got a lot of courts and we aren't using them for our own leading criminals.

[-] 1 points by Nordic (390) 2 years ago

Here's another great take on it. Thank god there are a few people not getting sucked back in time to 2008.

http://warisacrime.org/content/obamas-failed-state-union

It was typical Obama, taking credit for what should be condemned. He's a fraud, a crime boss, a war criminal multiple times over, a moral coward, and serial liar.

His State of the Union address was beginning-to-end doublespeak, duplicity, coverup, and denial of failed policies complicit with Wall Street crooks, war profiteers, and other corporate favorites while popular needs go begging.

Not according to fawning New York Times writers, however. Suppressing truth and full disclosure, Helene Cooper headlined, Obama Speech Makes Pitch for Economic Fairness," saying:

Obama "pledged on Tuesday night to use government power to balance the scale between America's rich and the rest of the public....toward an economy 'built to last' and what he called irresponsible policies of the past that caused economic collapse."

Fact check

Throughout his tenure, Obama transferred trillions of dollars to Wall Street, other corporate favorites, and America's rich already with too much. In the process, he deepened a Main Street Depression. As a result, half of US households are impoverished or bordering on it. Hunger and homelessness grow. Nothing's done to help. Unaddressed human need is incalculable.

Over 25 million remain unemployed. Job creation is nil except for low wage/no benefit temp or part-time ones. Inequality in America is unprecedented. Obama supports austerity when massive stimulus is needed. Rich elites never had it so good at the expense of ordinary people left out.

Obama's Failed State isn’t fit to live in for growing millions.

Nonetheless, an accompanying Times editorial headlined, "The State of the Union in 2012," saying:

"A year ago....we applauded" Obama's plan to "put millions of struggling people to work (and his support for) wrestl(ing) down the deficit (by requiring) the wealthy (to pay) a fairer share of taxes."

Applause continued, ignoring Obama's duplicitous Tuesday address and agenda.

Fact check

It includes imperial wars, tax cuts for the rich, corporate handouts, and austerity for ordinary people losing out.

His America perpetuates permanent wars, disproportionate wealth extremes, spiraling debt, and unaddressed human need.

He ignores growing millions unemployed and impoverished. He cut Medicare for seniors and America's disabled as well as Medicaid for poor and disadvantaged recipients. He left growing millions of students debt entrapped, many for life.

He's destroying Middle America. His latest proposal involves looting pension funds to enrich mortgage lenders. Yet he's packaging fraud as a boon to ordinary people. It's typical Obama - say one thing, do another.

Nonetheless, major media scoundrels applaud. As a result, they're part of the problem, not the solution.

The editorial highlighted Obama's "achievements" and plans. It ignored his destructive agenda. It was typical Times, backing rogue politics.

Obama's address wreaked of failed state duplicity, coverup and denial. Throughout his tenure, rhetoric and gimmickry substituted for constructive policies. Tuesday was no different.

He left festering social and economic distress unaddressed, as well as the American dream in shambles. Expect continued business as usual to assure harder than ever times ahead.

He lied saying "The state of our union is getting stronger....In the last 22 months, businesses have created more than three million jobs."

Progressive Radio News Hour regular, economist Jack Rasmus said Obama's "stimulus" programs consisted largely of corporate and personal super-rich tax cuts. As a result, they failed.

Corporations hoarded cuts and other subsidies. Job creation investments weren't made. Business benefitted. Ordinary people lost out. Economic recovery failed. Ongoing policies assure continued failure packaged as success.

According to Rasmus, Obama's agenda "failed because (it) relied on the private market sector to generate a sustained recovery, instead of on the government directly taking the lead to create jobs, rescue homeowners and resurrect housing, and stabilize state-local government finances long run."

He "bailed out banks that (don't) lend, rescued corporations that (don't) create jobs, and (inadequately) subsidized state and local governments for a brief period and then cut them loose to fend fiscally for themselves."

His agenda was and remains devastating for ordinary Americans. At the same time, corporations and rich ones flourish. His "built to last" economy favors them alone. He lied saying he wants to assure "everyone gets a fair shot." His notion of "American values" rewards the rich at the expense of everyone else.

He took credit for letting auto giants destroy jobs, slash worker pay and benefits, ban strike actions, and let corrupt union bosses serve as corporate enforcers. He said what Detroit did "can happen in other industries."

In fact, Detroit's "success" is bankruptcy and ruin. Motown became ghost town. In death throes, it symbolizes America's decline. In disrepair and decline, it's dying with shocking unemployment, poverty and unaddressed human need levels.

What Obama did to Detroit, he offers other cities packaged as populism. He took direct aim at destroying decades of painful labor struggles. They included taking to the streets, going on strike, holding boycotts, battling rogue bosses, police and National Guard forces, as well as paying with their blood and lives before real gains were won.

Now they're lost, including a living wage, decent benefits, and the right to bargain collectively on equal terms with management. Obama deplores the idea and fights it.

What grassroots struggles achieved, he and other rogue leaders destroyed. All this in a nation claiming to be government of, by and for the people, most of whom are working class ones struggling to get by. What Reagan era politics began, Obama raised to new levels.

Praising "America's Armed Forces," he also assured permanent war. They "exceed all expectations," he said. "Imagine what we could accomplish if we followed their example." Perhaps he has destroying humanity in mind to assure unchallenged US hegemony.

Ron Paul Responds to Obama's Address

Obama "once again showed that he does not represent the fundamental change this country needs. Instead of offering solutions to the problems our country faces, (he) deliver(ed) a campaign speech....typical (of) Washington political gamesmanship that (got) us exactly nowhere close to improving the lives of the American people."

His policies assure "continue economic stagnation" and decline. He "claims to want an economy where everyone gets a fair shot, everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same set of rules."

"Yet he remains committed to the same old system of debt, deficits, bailouts and cronyism that created our economic troubles."

"Of course, (he) refuses to even mention the role the Federal Reserve plays in creating an economic system where some are denied a fair shot or even to support my efforts at bringing transparency" to an opaque, secretive process.

"In the area of foreign policy and civil liberties, (Obama's) rhetoric" belies his agenda. It's "hardly 'change we can believe in.' " No wonder more and more Americans, especially young people, (reject his) phony alternatives (and those of) establishment Republicans.."

A Final Comment

Throughout his tenure, Obama waged multiple imperial wars, plans others, looted the nation's wealth, wrecked the economy, consigned growing millions to impoverishment without jobs, and institutionalized tyranny to target dissenters challenging political corruption, corporate crooks, or abuse of power lawlessness.

He also destroyed hard won labor rights, wants education commodified as another business profit center, and wages war on whistleblowers, dissenters, Muslims, Latino immigrants, and environmental and animal rights activists called terrorists.

He wrecked America, governs lawlessly, and threatens worse ahead. Imagine the unpalatable options facing voters in November between a lawless/crime boss/militarist/pro-war/anti-populist/morally corrupt president, and a rogue's gallery of alternatives looking more like a police lineup than legitimate candidates.

They assure continued pro-business/pro-war/anti-populist policies. They threaten Middle America's survival and perhaps humanity if they're not stopped.

Imagine a president taking credit for what should be condemned. Imagine an aroused public refusing to let him.

It's happening with legs but needs to grow. What OWS began, millions need to join and support. That's how great struggles are won. This one's the mother of them all.

[-] 1 points by enough (589) 2 years ago

Listen to him say that the banks broke no laws.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dty1ejhvexM

Now, because he is up for re-election, he plays to populist sentiment saying he will go after the banksters. He is totally full of it and anyone who thinks differently has overdosed on Obama's jive-ass Koolaid. Meanwhile, he has solicited and collected more campaign funds from Wall Street than any president in U.S. history. Obama is a punk fraud.

[-] 0 points by Nordic (390) 2 years ago

Some people call it the "abused wife syndrome". The way the American people keep falling for his lies.

"I'm so sorry baby, I won't ever lie to you again, that was so wrong of me, and I LOVE you baby, please forgive me baby, take me back, please."

He's such a douchebag. At least Bush was, bizarrely, more honest by being so transparently evil.

But that's why they spoon-fed us Obama. After 8 years of Bush/Cheney and the rest of those transparently evil neo-cons, the PTB realized America was starting to see the men behind the curtain.

Time to send in Mr. Smoothie. The hypnotist.

[-] 1 points by enough (589) 2 years ago

Agree. The guy is a world-class fraud of the first order, aided and abetted by the mainstream media. Very few journalists bothered to point out the lies and contradictions. The Wall Street bankstas must be rolling on the floor laughing their tails off. They know they own this president. After all, Obama and the bankstas have a strong affinity for defrauding honest Americans. It is amazing that some #OWS supporters actually think Obama is in their corner, when all he wants to do is sucker them into casting another vote for him in November. Wise up.

[-] 1 points by Teamster (102) 2 years ago

So who will you be voting for in november?

[-] 1 points by Nordic (390) 2 years ago

Nobody from the Republicrat party (or is that the Dempublican party?)

We have one party rule now.

I do like Rocky Anderson thus far.

https://www.voterocky.org/home

I will never ever vote for a D or an R ever again. And I've voted straight D since 1980!

[-] 1 points by ronniepaul2012 (214) 2 years ago

Excellent critique! Thx for sharing, though it's really depressing.

[-] 1 points by Nordic (390) 2 years ago

The sooner everybody realizes that Obama's no different from Bush, that the Dempublican Party is the One Party Rule in this country, the better, and the sooner things will change.

One of the biggest scams they've got going is making us think we can change things with these "candidates" they spoon-feed to us.

2008 should have been the last straw for everybody, but an awful lot of people don't want to let go of their emotional attachment, and don't want to admit that they were, basically, conned in 2008 by Obama.

Also, they get sucked into the "OMG we can't let THAT OTHER GUY win! He's even worse!" It really makes no difference whatsoever, and distracts our energies.

We need to focus ALL our energies on replacing the entire current system.

[-] 1 points by ronniepaul2012 (214) 2 years ago

Indeed, the 2 party system has got to go!

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

The issue is the Supreme Court. There ARE still differences between the parties in terms of who would be appointed to replace Ginsburg (who will likely step down). One side appoints Scalia or Alito or Roberts or Thomas, the other Kagan, Sotomajor, Breyer and Ginsburg.

Whoever is in office will determine what the laws of the land will be for another generation, and I'm not takling about legislation that can be changed from one administration to the next, but judges who sit for life.

It is still a choice.

[-] 0 points by trailerParkTim (-13) 2 years ago

If that moron Obama was so hell bent on creating jobs in America, he would not have that useless job czar Jeff Immelt, who is sending all GE jobs to China. Obama is a joke