Déjà Vu All Over Again

Welcome back to triangulation and the 180 degree rhetorical turns required! The President’s State of The Union address was a laudable effort to provide moderate voters with a reason to support him. We have been taken out for a walk by an exceptionally astute political operation attempting to preempt predictable issues in the fall. It’s a double edged sword, the President makes proposals he does not believe in and gets to castigate Congress for not dealing with issues he does not want dealt with. Beautiful!

You are required to suspend disbelief. You must assume that everything you’ve seen over the past three years is meaningless, never happened, the President barely mentioned those three years; temporary Rip Van Winkle syndrome? The Gulf, health care, financial reform, EPA on a rampage; never happened! Crushing bank regulations, nope; look over hear where it all sounds wonderful. Hope and Change is back with a new suit. You are required to believe that the new and improved President Obama will now disregard a lifetime of far left influences from Frank Marshall to Rashid Khalidi in favor of middle of the road rationality?

The President wants power to re-organize the Federal bureaucracy applying his much admired management skills to the process. A Program overseen, no doubt, by Mr. Sunstein whose views of how to apply regulation as the means to the left’s ends are well known. The President also declared that Congress is irrelevant as he repeats his intention to “do what I have to do”. It seems in the President’s view that Congressional relevance is limited to the role of whipping post.

Mandatory school attendance, graduate or stay in till you’re 18; a reprise of Bill Clinton’s school uniform gambit.

Jackie Bray lost a job and was retrained for a new job. Retrained by Siemens, one of those big bad corporations the President has consistently attacked. No government program here, just mutual self interest between Jackie and Siemens.

Tough on China? There has been no evidence of anyone getting tough on China. Filing a WTO complaint that takes years to resolve is reliance on an essentially dysfunctional international institution. It’s the U.N. of trade, nuff said!

More respected than ever before around the world? Saudi Arabia just made a deal with the Chinese. Russia mocks the administration and arms rational folks like Mr. Chavez in Venezuela. Europe is frustrated, although in fairness, Europe is always frustrated. The Canadians have been slapped down. Guns sent to Mexico without their knowledge. Iran continues to poke a finger in Uncle Sam’s eye including being allowed closer to Carrier battle groups than SOP’s call for. Iraq may descend into chaos. The massive U.S. investment in Brazilian off shore drilling will result in that oil going to China. Palestine made the equivalent of an obscene gesture in our direction at the U.N. There was and is a complete misreading of the Arab Spring including Egyptian opposition leaders refusing to agree to meet with Secretary Clinton during the uprising. The opportunity to support the Green Movement in Iran was met with silence, appeasement and Iranian deaths. The President’s approval in Israel is in the single digits. Pressure on Syria proved meaningless. Turkey has exited the Western umbrella, turning to Islamism. Egyptian Islamists won 75% of the seats in Parliamentary second round elections.

75% of offshore sites opened up for energy exploration. Great! The regulatory approval system, however, remains the same and once you’re down two or three regulatory levels the result will be the same. Sounds good; nothing will change.

Same with natural gas; ‘every available source”, again sounds good but the code words follow; “safely developed”.

Manufacturing, bringing jobs back to America. We’re with you on this one Mr. President. Where have you been up till now? While we’re on the jobs issue could you explain, Mr. President, why water was cut off to the California Central Valley with no action from the White House, or why you handled the Gulf in the way you did, or why the pipeline was killed, or why small business was only 3% of the stimulus bill? Perhaps why the EPA has launched a war on coal? Just saying.

We will refinance mortgages to lower interest rates. The banks will pay for it with fees. Great! We all hate the banks. But wait; a reduction of profitability by way of lower interest rates combined with higher costs to fund the reductions? Is it just me or is there a universe of potentially unintended consequences here such as the absence of funds available to write new mortgages and business loans, difficulty in meeting capital requirements a search for more attractive investments other than lending.

500 regulations reformed. Excellent, out of our entire bureaucracy, dozens of departments, tens of thousands of regulations, we’ve managed to find 500 that don’t make sense. This is the man that will reorganize the Federal bureaucracy; really?

The next plan for Green Energy, you ask? The DOD will invest in wind and solar and then the DOD will buy back the energy.

The sound was, as usual, nearly picture perfect, the fury well timed, tactically delivered and yet, signifying nothing.