Re-state of the Union

This is what the president should have said.

President Barack Obama's State of the Union address Tuesday wasn't what I wanted to hear. This is what the president should have said:

"I cannot imagine what I was thinking when I pushed Obamacare. I now see it is folly to entrust government, which cannot balance its books and routinely loses track of billions of dollars, with even greater power over health care.

"If something as simple as a website is too much for government to get right, imagine what government will do to complicated medical pricing and insurance plans.

"Foolishly, my plan destroyed many sensible insurance plans -- some offering catastrophic-only coverage for a lower price -- exactly the insurance so many people need.

"I see my fellow Democrat, Rep. Jim Moran of Virginia, seated nearby. I take to heart his comments, which he can safely make now that he's retiring from Congress, about how Obamacare is economically doomed, with few young people signing up but sick old people taking money out. The math doesn't add up.

"Now that I think about it, it would be better to end government involvement in health care altogether and let people shop around for the best free-market plans, including catastrophe-only plans, depending on individual needs. Let's try that. In fact, let's see if I can revise other items in my agenda so they work better for consumers ...

"Minimum wage laws, for example. Although a higher minimum is popular with people from both parties, minimums make no sense. The law cannot make an employee who a company values at $5 an hour become worth $10. Minimum wage laws just increase unemployment by eliminating some jobs. They don't do the poor any favors. Let's repeal them.

"And let's get the feds out of the preschool business! Government does a bad job with K-12 education. Why would we think our central planning should expand? My education department funded studies of Head Start, and we were all astounded to learn that they have no effect. It's insane to do more of something that our own research shows does not work. Education should be left to local governments and parents.

"Immigration: It's odd that I'm seen as a friend to immigrants, given that I've deported more of them than the previous president did. But if we don't want people breaking immigration laws, the best thing to do is simplify the law. Conservatives worry that people will come here to mooch off the welfare state or commit crimes. So how about letting people in with quick and simple procedures focused on checking for crime and terrorism, but saying no immigrant is eligible for welfare? That compromise makes sense.

"National Security Agency surveillance: After all the outrage over the Patriot Act, you must have been surprised, America, to discover that the NSA does even more snooping under my presidency. I will not abandon the basic governmental duty to keep citizens safe, but we should limit snooping to people whom we have probable cause to suspect might be terrorists.

"Climate: I think the greenhouse effect is real, but the evidence that humanity's contribution to it will cause dire problems is debatable. Better to reduce Environmental Protection Agency micromanagement and let America get as rich as possible. This will help us cope with environmental side effects and afford the research necessary to find better sources of energy. Global warming is a theoretical problem. We have real problems, like reducing our debt and getting clean water to the world's poor.

"Drugs: I used marijuana and cocaine, and I understand that some people are harmed by drugs. But adults should have the right to decide what to put in their own bodies. If people struggle with addiction -- as I've struggled to give up cigarettes -- putting them in prison isn't a smart way to help. Let's legalize all drugs. End the futile and violent drug war."

After all, you own your own body and mind. If more of our policies respected that fact, our union truly would be strong.

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  • Homple||

    I keep harping on the following quote from Thomas Jefferson's 1801 message, and what we need today is a President who will start talking like this:

    "Among those who are dependent on Executive discretion I have begun the reduction of what was deemed unnecessary. The expenses of diplomatic agency have been considerably diminished. The inspectors of internal revenue who were found to obstruct the accountability of the institution have been discontinued. Several agencies created by Executive authorities, on salaries fixed by that also, have been suppressed, and should suggest the expediency of regulating that power by law, so as to subject its exercises to legislative inspection and sanction."

    Full thing here:

    http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/?pid=29443

  • fish||

    That level of language is not palatable to todays American.

    So you talk like a fag and your shit's all retarded.

  • Tony||

    That was before he acquired 1/3rd of the continent despite cries of unconstitutionality, right?

  • Pavlov's Cat||

    I can tell you aren't married. A wife would have explained to you that when stuff you need is on sale, you buy it!

  • LynchPin1477||

    Before. But we are capable of judging ideas independent of their source and that source's actions.

  • sarcasmic||

    Tony only understands fallacies.

  • Sevo||

    Tony only posts lies.

  • sarcasmic||

    Lies that, sadly, he believes to be true.

    There's two kinds of leftists. There are the manipulators, and there are the manipulated.

    Krugnuts and O'Bummer know that what they says is bullshit. They're manipulators. Tony is just too stupid to evaluate ideas on their own merit. This forces him to judge ideas on their source, which puts him into a position to be manipulated by people like Krugnuts and O'Bummer.

    It sucks to be stupid.

  • Juice||

    If I were president I'd definitely just mail it in and skip the big waste of time.

  • LynchPin1477||

    But the applause may be the only thing the gets any President hard at their age. Certainly hasn't been any of their wives.

  • Smilin' Joe Fission||

    may be the only thing the gets any President hard at their age.

    What's a young intern, chop liver?

  • LynchPin1477||

    I assume Monica was told to clap the whole time.

  • James Anderson Merritt||

    Except for wishing that Stossel had mentioned the shooting wars a little more in his re-State speech, I loved it. (Also, anyone who likes this speech should really see the video clip of Stossel delivering it. Nice job!)

    It occurs to me that, since everyone likes to abbreviate the name of this address to SOTU, perhaps critical rebuttals such as Stossels should be called "STFU addresses."

  • swampfaye||

    Shouldn't we end the war on cigarettes before we end the war on drugs? How will the others fare any better or be taxed any less if we don't take care of that first?

  • James Anderson Merritt||

    "End 'em all and let God sort 'em out!"

  • Libertarian Book Club||

    Does anyone here actually like Stossel?

  • sarcasmic||

    I DVR his show.

  • Smilin' Joe Fission||

    Some guy named Francisco seems to tolerate him.

  • Libertarian Book Club||

    Shhhhhh!

    (whispers) I'm just setting him up....

  • Francisco d Anconia||

    HAVE I MENTIONED I LIKE STOSSEL?

  • James Anderson Merritt||

    Hey LBC, get your own show and let's talk. In the meantime, remember TR's words about the guy in the arena.

  • Libertarian Book Club||

    I've done a few podcasts, does that count? Nothing as worthy as Stossel, obviously.

    Now, can everyone quiet down, please? FDA could be along anytime, and I don't want my efforts at straight-manning to go to waste.

  • Libertarian Book Club||

    *FdA*

    (Curses auto-correct, while knowing deep-down it's his own fault...)

  • oncogenesis||

    Yes.

  • some guy||

    Obama's desire to set the US contractor min. wage at $10.10 is brilliant. The contractors can just pass the costs on to Uncle Sam. More contractors will be able to bid on service contracts now because cost of labor has been taken out of the equation (everyone has to pay $10.10/hr). It'll look like a win-win because only the taxpayer loses, and that is easily hidden. In a year or so, expect studies and reports coming out about how this limited wage hike increased competition and improved federal services without costing jobs, and is totally applicable to the whole labor market.

    Meanwhile the economically literate will die a little on the inside.

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    Very few min wage workers on Federal contracts. Likely way fewer than in the general working population.

  • some guy||

    White House estimated that it would impact about 250,000 employees. But that doesn't matter. What matters is that the plan will "succeed" and the president will be able to use this as an example of why raising the min. wage in general would be oh so good.

  • Jon Lester||

    I saw a few minutes of that as I tuned in to see "The Independents." It really reminded me of the old show, "Hot Seat," with Wally George.

  • Jonathan G||

    That's what he'd say if he were a constitutional libertarian as opposed to being a leftist authoritarian. Who knows maybe we'll have a libertarian constitutionalist in the White House in 2017 in the form of Sen. Rand Paul. Hey I can still dream!

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  • TheRightWord||

    "government, which cannot balance its books"

    With the recession, the subsequent $700 billion banking bailouts and other corporate bailouts with taxpayer government money it has become starkly obvious to all Americans, that private corporations, bankers and their bookkeepers themselves aren't exactly proficient at balancing their books either. In fact with 9 out of 10 businesses failing having private parties balance books is probably the worst idea imaginable. The government cannot fail, if it does then our nation does and it came very close to that during the Bush years and the recession of 07-08.

    The years that the government has been known for not balancing their budgets were those of the $500 hammer and the $6000 toilet. The reason why was because government entities like the military were given excessive amounts of dollars and were ordered to spend the dollars even if they didn't need to. That's where the waste comes from. It's always military spending. So we had five years of spending on things we actually needed for our country to prosper. That's small potatoes compared to the 60 years of excessive and frivolous military spending throughout the cold war, the Reagan years and the Bush years. These dollars were all spent provoking Americans' enemies in the crusade of private interests (like oil). When lawmakers pass that public dollars can not be used to boost private profits that's when government will start to balance its budgets.

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