Just a generic geek, with a tendency for taking things apart

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This blog is in the process of moving to Markw.us, just take note.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005
The (Sad) State of the Union Address
Unlike during the debates I didn't note take, I just watched (and drank ~40oz of soda in accordance with the State of the Union Address Drinking Game - I quit after about 30 minutes due to lack of more soda)

And the verdict (like anyone cares about my opinion):

It was probably Bush's best speech to date (please restart your heart at this point)

Yes I know Mark the "Oh shit we're stuck with that (long string of explicitives goes here) for four more wars years" guy is conceeding that it was one of the best Bush speeches ever *1.

I still disagree with him.

Amending the constitution to ban gay marriages is a just plain bad idea. The country has passed these faith based amendments in the past (Amendment 18) and were nullified just as fast (Amendment 21) While we can drink there are still a lot of cravats left in the laws that has a nasty aftertaste to it. Not that it matters considering people are having a bad enough time with the first amendment. I think banning gay marriage also sets up some bad precedents covered in the next issue

Abortion. Live and let live. First off I'm all for the mother's rights on this one. I'm not in a position to be affected by this per say but it starts giving the government power to regulate my body as well. I'm extremely against that. If I want to eat an Extra Large Deep Dish Chicago Pizza (not the commercialize junk - pizzas where the thickness is measured in inches) I don't want the government telling me not to eat it - My body my rules. As for when a baby takes ownership of his or her own body thats for the doctors to decide. Politicians can argue real well, they can also sweet talk you so much you'll need insulin, but they are not (for the most part) medical doctors.

I think its specifically ridiculous that Bush was toting a right to live line while he is well recorded as handing out the fewest pardon of nearly every other president, his state had the most criminal executions in the nation while he was governor and is in the process of wiping out terror cells and military forces in the middle east. Lot of death over there, and a lot of the blood spilt is on American hands.

This gets me into the stem cell stuff. Science is good. Say it with me Science is good. While I think there is lots of positive reform to be had in scientific funding (ie Double Blind NGO funding - go read Crichton's State of Fear, if you can remember anything about basic science you'll see what I mean as everything in the novel comes together in the last few chapters) rallying against potentially valuable research now is going to screw us over later. In case you failed to notice Cuba's biotech is surprisingly well developed and other prosperous nations like Brazil and some Asian countries are ever further along in the med tech fields. Now there's a synthetic bone to chew on.

Iraq - the things you're taking pride in now, such as the elections and Iraqis taking pride in running their own nation are the fleeting remnants of your justification for a continued occupation of Iraq. Either pull of on the double (as Bush said they're eager to take control) or stop making half-assed attempts to do what you say you're doing like troop training. Show them and show them how to teach. Let them take over all aspects of the military. Teach them how to do everything from the training down then start pulling out. Shouldn't be that hard.

And now for the big ticket item. Social Security. Holy shit is this a major fuck up waiting to happen. The High School student survey I've linked to shows that 50% of Young Americans can't get their heads around the 1st amendment and thats written in plain english. (The rest of the population doesn't fare much better) How the hell are they going to figure out how to navigate their finances enough to protect their social security funds? The government protection bush said would be in place is crock. Its a kludge, and the only way it could happen would be social security for social security. Even before mucking with the current system look at the reasons for its existence. People couldn't protect their money (fluid or long term retirement) in the 1920s, 80 years later Average Joe isn't faring much better

People are going to piss away retirement finances if you let them control the money, they will loose it and come back for more. Sure you might keep a few people off the system but you'll still have leaches from failed privatization. There needs to be a better plan for this, because simply privatizing parts of SS isn't going to work.

On the note of idiots - please stop screwing with schools. Test scores are "up" because the standards the national government is setting are "low". Public schools are state funded baby sitting centers. take away tests and let teachers teach. That what the title is supposed to imply. Also keep your filthy hands off community colleges. Going to one in North Carolina I know how messed up centralized control really is - and thats only going to the state building. Federal control over community colleges will do nothing more than make the baby sitting extend past the 12th grade. If you can't leave K12 alone at least leave the CCs to their own devices. It is college, and if you look you'll see that there are lots of smart people working at that level.

Anyways, sorry for the long post. The state of the union is poor, and with our bi-polar-political-system in control there's little hope anything will improve in the next 24 to 48 months

1. Not that he's given that many speeches

HOLYYYY CRAP!!!!! Mark said something positive about the current pres. I think that hell froze overe and that I hear cries for the apocalypse to begin!
Just kidding!
I don't agree with some stuff but I do think SS needs reform. I know I won't suffer if they give me my retirement. Who cares about the stupid people, they deserve what they get. I think the government needs less control over my life anyhow but thats another post.

I'm glad you saw something good out of W though.:)
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