Live-blogging the State of the Union address

(photo source: whitehouse.gov)

Hello, everyone!  This evening is something more pleasant, or at least easier to take than the endless GOP clown fests — the annual address to Congress by the President regarding the state of the union.

Fun fact: You know that whole process wherein the guy says “Mr Speaker, the President of the United States,” and then the President makes his way to the podium, shaking hands along the way?  Apparently there’s a formal protocol to that process.  Very interesting!

It’s been a busy year for the President, if not for Congress, since he’s actually interested in doing his job.  It should be an interesting speech, since it will double as his first campaign speech of the 2012 election season.

If you’re wondering what President Obama has accomplished during his presidency, here’s a handy dandy list (it might be a bit dated).

If you’d like to tune in to the speech online, you can watch it on whitehouse.gov.  They’ll be providing chart, stats, and data that helped the President make policy decisions over the last year.  That could be distracting, but we’ll see.

Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels will be giving the GOP response this evening.  That’s always good for a laugh.  John Boehner has already declared the speech “pathetic,” and that’s a topic with which the Speaker is quite familiar.  I don’t know about you, but I anticipate misbehavior by the GOP members of Congress.

Join us in the comments section to do your own live-blogging, or simply enjoy the efforts of the other commenters, either way — HAVE FUN!!

The Watering Hole, Wednesday January 19, 2011: State of the Union Address – advance copy leaked!

The Zoo has obtained an advance copy of President Obama’s upcoming 2011 State of the Union Speech from an anonymous source. After vetting the copy using the same thorough vetting processes employed by renowned Fox News, we found it to be an authentic original draft of Obama’s intended remarks penned by his own hand on cocktail napkins from The Founding Father’s Bar and Grill.

STATE OF THE UNION, JANUARY 25, 2011

My Fellow Americans, Members of Congress, Members of the Press Corps and The Supremes Supreme Court Justices,

It is my obligation and duty under the Constitution of the United States to tell you all the State of the Union. And, as I stand here today, I can honestly tell you, the Union is fucked. We’re broke. We can’t pay our bills. And the only tax package Congress will pass is one that puts us further in the shithole.

Ten years ago, our country was in the black. We not only had a balanced budget, but we were actually paying down the National Debt. Now, I’m not usually one to talk smack about anybody, but President Bush blew it big-time. The first thing he did was to cut taxes for his wealthy buddies and put this country in the red. Then he attacked two countries, and paid for those wars with money he borrowed from Red China. Red China!

So, here we are, the Greatest Free Country in the World, and we owe our asses to the biggest Communist Country in the World. Like I said, we’re fucked.

And don’t get me started about education. Ten years of No Child Left Behind has cranked out the stupidest voting population ever. I mean, how else can you explain putting Republicans in charge of the Nation’s purse strings when it was the Republican Party who bankrupted this country in the first place? Now they want to take Jefferson out of American History and put a Calvinist Preacher in. They want to replace our science curriculum with a faith-based science education, so that when our kids ask ‘what makes this work’ or ‘what causes that’, the answer will always be “God.” Well God isn’t going to save our asses when we run out of oil and don’t have the technology in place for alternative energy sources. God isn’t going to clean up the pollution we create that’s slowly cooking our asses. We have to. But we don’t have the will to. We’re fucked.

And finally, I have to talk about the rise in violent rhetoric these past couple of years. You can’t put gun-sights on the districts of your opponents and not expect that some deranged nutbag isn’t going to act on your suggestion. You can’t talk about “Second Amendment Solutions,” about resorting to the Bullet Box instead of the Ballot Box, without knowing that there are crazy people out there, crazy people with access to assault rifles and 30-round clips of ammo, crazy people who, if they don’t get their way, would just as soon shoot everyone in sight. But you-all voted to end the ban on assault rifles, end the ban on these mega clips of ammo, then you go and talk this crazy-assed shit about targeting your opponents. Then you get all defensive and fake-horrified if someone actually does what you instigated. We’re fucked because we’ve got no system in place to keep crazy people from getting their hands on killer assault rifles. Now let me tell you something. I can give a good speech and talk about toning it down, and about coming together and have a Kum Bye Ya moment. But sooner or later some nutbag is going to seek revenge, and it’ll be YOUR house with the “Surveyor’s Marks” on it. Maybe then you’ll realize: you’re fucked.

But that brings me to another point. We’ve just seen the first politically motivated killings in quite some time. A nine-year old girl got shot in the back, because she happened to be at the wrong place. No parent should have to go through what her parents are going through. A federal judge, gunned down. A member of the House of Representatives critically wounded with a bullet through her brain. Six people dead and over a dozen wounded by someone who thought that government was the enemy. And he’s not the only one who thinks that way. That’s been the message from one side of the aisle since Reagan.

I talked to my kids about it. And Joe talked to his kids about it. And we came to the only reasonable conclusion we could: We’re not going to take a bullet for this country. We’re not going to see our kids take a bullet, either. And we’re not going to ask the good men and women in the Secret Service to take a bullet for us either. This country is just too damned fucked for it to be worth it.

Now I’ve spoken with the incoming Republican Majority in the House and they’ve assured me that unless they get their way, they’re going to shut this country down. And they can do it. They’re in charge of passing the budget, and the only budget they’re going to pass will gut the federal government, gut your social security and destroy the economy of the nation so that their rich cronies can take trillions of dollars out of this country and put it into their off-shore trust accounts. And they can do it. Absolutely, without a doubt, they will destroy this country in order to get their way. We’re fucked, and there’s nothing we can do about it.

But there is something Joe and I can do. We can quit. In fact, that’s the only way to keep the Republicans from shutting down this whole country in the next few weeks. So, effective immediately, both Joe and I submit our resignations. By operation of law, John Boehner, the Speaker of the House is now your President. Now you’re really fucked!

This is our Open Thread. Feel free to write on this or any other topic that comes to mind.