Matt Welch on the Eternal State of the Union Address


What will President Barack Obama's State of the Union Address look like tonight? We can be pretty sure Obama will talk about improving the economy, creating jobs for the 21st century, achieving energy independence, improving our schools, confronting America's enemies, championing the global cause of freedom, tackling long-term entitlements, and building bipartisan coalitions to rise above political bickering and do the people's work, at this hinge point in history.

That's because every State of the Union has contained all or most of these nostrums stretching back a half-century. In fact, starting with John F. Kennedy's address to a joint session of Congress in 1961, you could take one sentence from each SOTU since and cobble together a speech that will likely resemble much of what you'll hear tonight. So that's precisely what Editor in Chief Matt Welch has done.