|Photo Credit: Businessweek.com|
The laptop is fine. While two weeks have passed since I've spent any 'quality time' with my environmentally-friendly HP computer, it woke up quite easily this morning. At least, it awoke more easily than I did.
In case you're wondering, "How can I purchase an 'environmentally-friendly HP Computer'?", it's really quite easy.
You buy it.
You put it on your son's desk.
You plug it in.
Then, you leave it turned off for two weeks.
It's just that easy!
Writing anything about the President's State of the Union Address from earlier this week?
Um, not so easy.
In the spirit of full-disclosure, I watched neither the President's Speech nor Marco Rubio's (water-boarding) rebuttal immediately following the President's Address to the Nation. I didn't need to watch. I've seen enough bad comedy to know that when a guy dressed as a clown is walking along a wide sidewalk with a single banana peel on it, his foot MUST step on this lone, singular peel, and he's going down, typically with bad music playing in the background.
For those familiar with the concept of the literary concept of 'foreshadowing', in this case - WE are the clown, and the PRESIDENT is the banana.
|Sorry, all other images of clowns slipping on bananas were copyrighted.|
And who's got that kind of money? Although, this works too, I think.
This is the King's Speech
(Well, the more factually 'interesting' sections of it at least...)
OBAMA: "After years of grueling recession, our businesses have created over 6 million new jobs."
MoosNote: Obama starts his count not when he took office, but from the point in his first term when job losses were the highest. In doing so, he ignores the 5 million or so jobs that were lost on his watch, up to that point.
Private sector jobs have grown by 6.1 million since February 2010. But since he became president, the gain is a more modest 1.9 million.
Also not included in the above calculation are the 3 MILLION plus workers who have been dropped from the Workforce by the Bureau of Labor Statistics because they are no longer 'looking for work'.
If these workers were included in the current Unemployment Rate calculation, unemployment would surpass 10.4%. Our workforce participation rate is the lowest it's been since 1981, following the failed policies of President James Earl Carter.
OBAMA: “After shedding jobs for more than 10 years, our manufacturers have added about 500,000 jobs over the past three.”
The Washington Post Notes: Obama again is cherry-picking a jobs number. The low point for manufacturing jobs was reached in January 2010, and so there has been a gain of 500,000 jobs since then. But BLS data show that the number of manufacturing jobs is still 600,000 fewer than when Obama took office in the depths of the recession — and 1.8 million fewer than when the recession began in December 2007.
Moreover, growth in manufacturing jobs has essentially stalled since last July.
OBAMA: "We have doubled the distance our cars will go on a gallon of gas."
MoosNote: As discussed in several previous posts by yours truly, newly mandated CAFE standards are poised to double the required mileage of vehicles...
By the year 2025.
Saying that this has already happened is like me saying that I've lost 40 pounds because I'm planning on going on a diet - within the next dozen years.
When I was a kid, we'd call that a lie. As a guy in sales, I'd call it a 'stretch'. As a human being, yeah, I'd probably still call it a lie.
OBAMA: "Study after study shows that the sooner a child begins learning, the better he or she does down the road. ... And for poor kids who need help the most, this lack of access to preschool education can shadow them for the rest of their lives. ...
Every dollar we invest in high-quality early education can save more than $7 later on — by boosting graduation rates, reducing teen pregnancy, even reducing violent crime."
The Associated Press Notes: Dozens of studies have shown Head Start graduates are more likely to complete high school than their at-risk peers who don't participate in the program.
But a study last year by the Department of Health and Human Services that found big vocabulary and social development gains for at-risk students in pre-kindergarten programs also found those effects largely faded by the time pupils reached third grade. The report didn't explain why the kids saw a drop-off in performance or predict how they would fare as they aged.
MoosNote: Yes, we must make sure that we have control of the children's minds by the time that they are four years old.
Hey, haven't I heard this somewhere before?
The education of all children, from the moment that they can get along without a mother's care, shall be in state institutions at state expense. -- Karl Marx, 1843
Oh yes, it appears that I have.
OBAMA: "I urge this Congress to pursue a bipartisan, market-based solution to climate change, like the one John McCain and Joe Lieberman worked on together a few years ago.
But if Congress won't act soon to protect future generations, I will. I will direct my Cabinet to come up with executive actions we can take, now and in the future, to reduce pollution, prepare our communities for the consequences of climate change and speed the transition to more sustainable sources of energy."
MoosNote: President Obama could not get this legislation passed back in 2010 when Democrats controlled both the House and Senate. Why? Because even members of his own party believed that the legislation was, for the lack of a better word, 'stupid'. Yeah, let's just go with 'stupid' for now. Personally, I get nervous whenever I hear that John McCain 'reached across the aisle' to work in a Bi-Partisan manner with anyone, be it Ted (may he rest in peace) Kennedy, Joe Lieberman, or Russ Feingold.
Senator McCain, did you ever stop to wonder why we have President Obama giving the State of the Union instead of you? You've heard of the San Andreas 'Fault' right? Well, this POTUS is John McCain's 'Fault'.
In essence, the President is saying that he will do whatever he wants (or can) without the cooperation of the duly-elected representatives of the People (a.k.a.: Congress). While I'm quoting other folks here, another thought tugs at my mind begging for release.
Ah, here it is now...
The meaning of peace is the absence of opposition to Socialism. -- Karl Marx
Thanks so much for this, Mr. McCain.
I'm moving on...
"Just keep swimming, just keep swimming."
OBAMA: "Real reform means establishing a responsible pathway to earned citizenship — a path that includes passing a background check, paying taxes and a meaningful penalty, learning English and going to the back of the line behind the folks trying to come here legally."
The Associated Press Notes: The seemingly stern admonition that illegal immigrants must go to the back of the line, often heard from the president, doesn't appear to have much practical effect except in the most obvious sense. Everyone who joins a line, whether for a movie, a coffee or citizenship, starts at the back of that particular line. It's not clear he is saying anything more than that illegal immigrants won't get to cut in line for citizenship once they've obtained provisional legal status.
Like those living abroad who have applied to come to the U.S. legally, illegal immigrants who qualify for Obama's proposed path to citizenship will surely face long waits to be processed. But during that time, they are already in the U.S. and will get to stay, work and travel in the country under their new status as provisional immigrants, while those outside the U.S. simply have to wait.
OBAMA: “We buy … less foreign oil than we have in 20 [years].”
The Washington Post Notes: The Energy Department has cited a host of reasons why foreign oil imports have declined, noting the main reason was “a significant contraction in consumption” because of the poor economy and changes in efficiency that began “two years before the 2008 crisis” — in other words, before Obama took office.
In the end:
The President takes credit for everything.
The President takes responsibility for nothing.
Leadership is hard.
Hey President Obama! Why not take a vacation away from the Wife and Kids (they're going skiing!)? We'll pay for it all!!! No problem! You can even learn how to golf (this, after you've played more holes in four years than GW Bush did in eight) - but hey, learn from a PRO this time! Maybe Valerie Jarrett could help hold your club!?!?
The glow of the speech begins to fade, the Nation limps on, and the critically necessary reporting begins...
Marco Rubio takes a drink - film at 11:00.
I love capitalism.
It's the other 'ism's' I have a problem with.
Have a nice day.