2005/02/03

State of the Union address: My 2 cents

Regarding the Environment:

The president talked about new energy sources, fuel cells, and other initiatives helpful environment. He said next to nothing about what he proposes to actually do to to further any of these things. My favorite: Nuclear power. Just my opinion, but I don't think "Safe and Clean" nuclear power exists. I have worked for our Hydro Company here in Ontario as a sysadmin providing nuclear support. I live spitting distance from a nuke plant. This is just my two cents from an insider perspective.

While I'm on the environment, I am just wondering how many of those "non-producing programs" Bush’s plan to reduce deficit/debt have something to do with the environment by what yard stick they judge what produces and what doesn't. The administration has slashed funding to the EPA This administration has had a horrible environmental record. Kyoto? Who needs it? Bad for business!

Regarding Social Security:

I can tell you what I support what we did here in Canada. It became quite obvious some years ago that our old age pension (we don’t call it Social Security here, we call it the Canadian Pension Plan) was unsustainable. We did two things to fix it:

1. As is the Canadian way we increased taxes on it about three-fold. This was done to save the program against the rising tide of soon to be retired Baby Boomers.

2. We have an alternative as well: What’s called RSP's or retirement savings plans. There is very little government control on this here and it provides remarkable leeway in how you can invest it and what you can do with it. You can invest in stocks, bonds, trusts, securities you name it. In fact, you can self-direct the entire thing. You can borrow against it for many reasons with very lenient payback options, mortgage down payments, education, just about anything and it is still totally tax sheltered. This is one of my personal primary focuses of retirement planning.

What I heard from Bush was:

I don't want to increase taxes at all and in order to "save" Social Security I will slash these benefits (post spin on the democrat side says up to 40%), which makes sense that He is going to slash, otherwise why placate the 55+ crowds that their benefits will not touched? Not once did I hear that he would cut any benefits. All I heard from the president was the usual fear tactic, spiraling costs, etc. Well, no matter what He slashes and burns Social Security in America to the cost of it is still going to go up, as everything does. His analysis is quite obviously based on never increasing the amount taxed.

I will then institute a form of RSP with all kinds of controls on it. Can't take much out, must be doled out over time, somehow he plans to control “Wall street” fees. Just curious as to how he plans to do that? For a President that is ostensibly so against “big government controls” and so pro free market enterprise there seems to be an odd irony here. On a personal note, I find it even more interesting that I live in such an oft defamed “Socialist” nation as compared to the much vaunted “Capitalist” U.S. Still, this one step in itself is better than nothing, which is what most American’s had before.

Bush seems to be looking for a cure all to the issue. As per usual He wants to slash and burn while offering the appearance to the populace that he is protecting Social Security without actually spending any more money or increasing taxes. While I do not have the actual minutes he spent substantially more time espousing the grand tradition of Social Security then what the cuts that would mean less money for people, excepting the above mentioned placating statement that he would not change benefits to those 55+. In fact, He made it sound like Social Security was totally out of control and he was going to rescue it. Never did Bush even implicitly state that these benefits would affect the bottom line of the old folks collecting.

As an aside, the language on this issue was fascinating: Not once did I hear the word “cuts” the entire time. As compared to when he talks about tax cuts when it’s every third word. IMHO, it seems to me that the perception of the content is far more valued to this president than the actual content of the message. Of course, this is pretty much true of all those involved in the political game in my experience. Doublespeak is in prime action right here. If average Joe didn’t know better listening to this I am willing to bet he would think that his benefits were not going to be affected at all after paying into this all his life on minimum wage at a Wall mart type job. I guess intellectual dishonesty is just par for the course.

Regarding further warfare:

The President specifically mentioned Syria and Iran to stop harboring terrorists. He put some very forceful language on Iran to stop “all enrichment of plutonium”. Nothing particularly surprising here excepting that I am never quite sure who is next on the hit list. Sometimes it seems to be North Korea (mentioned only in passing tonight), sometimes its Iran, sometimes and it’s Syria. For a President that markets himself with statements like “people always know where I stand” well, I don’t.

What I do know is that while Bush made mention of a withdrawal of troops from Iraq I highly doubt anyone’s going home soon. One of these places is bound to be invaded or usurped next.

9 Comments:

It sounds like he's intent on heading for full-on fascism. The guy's like a dog with rabies and needs to be put out of his misery.  

Posted by WhyNot
2/03/2005 01:44:00 pm  
personally, i didn't watch it. i went into work and picked up a shift so i wouldn't have to. everyone was like "what are you doing here? i thought you'd be at home throwing bricks at the tv!" lol i'm just sick of hearing the same bs over and over again, and people scream and clap louder every time he says it. 

Posted by angiekruger
2/03/2005 01:47:00 pm  
Phillipe,
i have been through every comment on this site an i just cannot find the post you left it on, but oh well.
there was a special on the history channel recently about the french revolution. (it was awesome btw) i noticed that there are several parallels between what went on in france to incite the revolution and what's going on in modern day america, the major difference being that the "commoners" in france realized they were getting screwed.

OFF WITH HIS HEAD!!! lol 

Posted by angiekruger
2/03/2005 02:06:00 pm  
“...i just cannot find the post you left it on....”.

I remember about it, but can't remember the title of the post. It's probably already in the archives (I recently limited the page to display the last 30 posts).

“...the major difference being that the "commoners" in france realized they were getting screwed.”.

The Kings of those days didn't have the propaganda machine Bush has to make the People believe it's all rosy while being screwed. Not only that, but they didn't even care one iota of what the People actually thought and felt no need to even begin to convince it - after all, the People wasn't even made of real human beings. Big mistake... 

Posted by WhyNot
2/03/2005 04:02:00 pm  
“OFF WITH HIS HEAD!!”.

Okay, you hold that basket and I'll pull the slicer's trigger :-) 

Posted by WhyNot
2/03/2005 07:37:00 pm  
Why Not -

I highly doubt American froces are going home anytime soon.  

Posted by deviant1
2/03/2005 07:56:00 pm  
I Was busy dirty talking with someone but still listened to it playing in the back ground.
still dont see why they removed csi for it..
great post deviant 

Posted by APRIL
2/03/2005 08:04:00 pm  
1. As is the Canadian way we increased taxes on it about three-fold. This was done to save the program against the rising tide of soon to be retired Baby Boomers..

I don't actually understand economics or the stock market but, I think Reagan and Greenspan put a plan into action in the 80's to sustain SS i.e. SS is funded by its own tax. Someone who knows more about this can correct me.

If the US wasn't so afraid of Socialist they would pay attention to other countries such as Canada, France and most European countries where their
Socialist) ideas are very much a part of government. Higher taxes are the cost of a working social system that benefits everyone, but the benefits outweigh the cost.

...somehow he plans to control “Wall street” fees. Just curious as to how he plans to do that?.

LOL I'll be looking around to see what the pundits have to say about this.

...perception of the content is far more valued to this president than the actual content of the message..

That goes without saying, deviant. He's has a mandate as he likes to remind everyone and lest we forget a higher power than the American people speaks to him.

People are dumb..dumb..dumb! ech!

 

Posted by Dianne
2/04/2005 09:45:00 am  
“If the US wasn't so afraid of Socialist ...”.

Something I still find intriguing and rather amusing is the way the American little book of insults includes such gems as "you socialist" and "you commie bastard", etc.

Something which is a complete "Huh? Duh?" in western Europe where both socialism and communism theories are respected just as much as any other, and in particular are recognized as humanitarian ones. It would come to anyone's mind, even a right wing person to use such terms as insults - it just wouldn't work, it'd fall flat on its face.

While living in Australia, I used to think it was very insular in its culture, and I still do. But I'm wondering if the US is not much worse. It's like they live in a different planet and have no clue there is indeed life outside the States and it's a very big and different world out there. And that apart from the fact the USA is certainly the expert at economic imperialism and supremacy, most places don't have much to envy to the US.

There seems to be this sentiment in the US that everyone else is aspiring to be just like them, so sure are they they've got it all just right. Whereas I can tell that in every country I've lived in, the sentiment is nearly the opposite, and goes more like "sheesh, thank goodness I live here and not in the US".

Why is that? 

Posted by WhyNot
2/04/2005 10:49:00 am  

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