Tuesday, January 31, 2006

State of the Union recrap

I don't know people who can tolerate watching George W. Bush. Myself, I think of it as having the world's worst surgeon -- if he's going to eff up my transplant operation by replacing my liver with a chicken nugget, I want to know. What else am I going to watch, Big Trouble in Little China? Maybe, but not all the way through, and not tonight.

I interrupted a game of NCAA 2006 to view this. My Texas A&M team is up over Kansas, 63-7, and I have a freshman linebacker who is a frickin' prodigy -- three sacks, two interceptions in spy formations, just unbelievable.

But enough substance. Early prediction: there will be an unpleasant and exploitative mention of the late Coretta Scott King.

A few prelims:
  • Cindy Sheehan gets arrested by Capitol Hill police before the talk even begins. Estes Kefauver is nowhere in sight.
  • Justice Alito is sitting with Justices Breyer, Thomas, and Roberts. Way to throw dirt in everybody's face.
  • What's scarier than House of 1,000 Corpses? Don Rumsfeld, Alberto Gonzalez, Gail Norton and Condoleeza Rice in a single camera shot.
  • The CBS pregame analysis is killer. They're talking about an anticipated call for renewed civility from the president. Uh ... wha? Be civil after he breaks the law, effs everything up, and sees his approval ratings tank, but it's all fun and games when his hobgoblins degrade a senator's military service and tell racists about John McCain's "black baby."
  • Remember, "CrimeNotes," be civil. Take deep breaths.
At this point, I'm going to give you a behind-the-scenes story of this post. Attempting to take the speech seriously, I broke it down into themes and quotes. Didn't work out so well. There was no real theme or structure.

I guess this is when I exercise writer's prerogative. You're not getting any analysis, cuz it ain't worth my time or yours. Here's a book report instead:
  • Gracious! He doesn't even wait to exploit Coretta Scott King. Poor Mrs. King. First words out of the gate, and the punk defaces her. I would have enjoyed hearing what she might have said to him in a one-on-one meeting.
  • Discourse should be civil. Day late and dollar short, sheriff.
  • Freedom!
  • Bush's critics are defeatist. Republicans break into chant of, "De-fense! De-fense!" Cheney gives the bird to the Democratic side of the chamber. Joe Lieberman and Maria Cantwell cry.
  • Oddball non-sequiters about Iran and Hamas, respectively.
  • Global development?
  • Patriot Act and illegal wiretaps are good.
  • Tax cuts.
  • Let's form a commission about Social Security. Sounds as efficacious as me issuing a white paper on Medicaid transaction costs.
  • Some bullshit about border security.
  • Tort reform is the answer to health care problems.
  • He wants to increase Energy Department research into clean energy sources. Sounds good. Good. Good! I like it!
  • "American Competitiveness Initiative." Rolls off the tongue, sweet as Tupelo honey. It's something about math and science, including more AP classes. He's the best student government president ever.
  • Crime and, oddly, abortion. Somebody's been reading Freakonomics.
  • Parents don't like Congressional corruption, activist courts, or those displaced by Hurricane Katrina, and ... WTF? There was a speechwriting problem here.
  • He's going to keep naming judges like Alito and Roberts. I think I just had a small stroke. If you don't hear from me in the next 24 hours, call 911.
  • Wants to ban human cloning and, apparently, all other forms of medical research.
  • Oh, fuck it, now he's just throwing out a random ideation ever other sentence. Now we're back to Congressional corruption. He quickly jumps to something about helping kids. He says the federal government is helping New Orleans. Also, AIDS is bad.
Pseudorhetorical summary grace notes: History is, like, determined by human action, or something. When Bush tries to sound deep, it's like seeing a poodle dressed in white tie, both cute and disturbing. He claims to be an optimist. If by optimist, he means, bomb all brown people, break laws, and screw your political enemies, he may have a point.

Look, I tried. I tried to take this seriously. If I could be a dick and snark about stuff, I would, but the speech was so pathetic and boring and unstructured, I've got nothing.

Democratic Response: Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine: If Bush is the second-string JV quarterback running for class president, Tim Kaine is the math club nerd running for class secretary. It's a stiff, blathery performance, notable only for the speaker's forehead crinkles and raised eyebrows. Delivery-wise, the dude is a Mannequin extra. Key point: he says nothing of value. Somehow, at the end of Kaine's speech, I find myself on the phone ordering placemats from the QVC number at the bottom of the screen. Way to go, Democrats.

Final score: Texas A&M 70, Kansas 7.


winston said...

i couldn't watch, of which i'm somewhat ashamed. i'm just so riddled with anxiety, depair, and disgust (especially given alito's confirmation yesterday), that i didn't think i could stomach it. watching dick smirk over gw's shoulder would have sent me right over the edge. thank you for providing bullet points and confirming that my time was, indeed, better spent watching "ocean's 12" on hbo.

tommy o said...

Hee hee.

I watched Groundhog Day instead. Thanks for the recrap.

Crunk Raconteur said...

Look, Crimenotes, either you're with the president, or you're objectively pro-human-animal hybrid!

evil girl said...

correction: "notable only for the speaker's forehead crinkles and raised eyebrows."

the newly-elected and thoroughly boring gov had only one eyebrow raised throughout the speech. both charming and creepy.