Don’t know what to think of the president’s speech; we need a third option…

It’s been a day or so since the King’s Speech, I mean the president’s speech, the State of the Union speech — not trying to be sarcastic, just could not pass up the literary allusion — and I don’t know what to think of it. I listened to almost all of it — my work sometimes gets in the way — but I just don’t know what to think.

Okay, there was some contradiction: He lauded the job of the military in Iraq and noted that after a decade of armed conflict, there are no American soldiers there now, but I would say we have to remember the reason for that is that the government we helped to set up kicked us out. Also, he praised the military for its job in defending freedom, or whatever. That seems strange since he had always called the Iraq war an unnecessary one. But politics makes people contradict themselves.

But most of the speech was the quite typical (and still not being sarcastic or snide) Democratic Party line of playing by the rules and allowing everyone a fair shake (the New Deal, the Fair Deal) and taxing the rich.

Actually, in broad generalities I tend to agree with the president’s tone. The Republicans would have you believe that if the free market was just allowed to do its thing unfettered by burdensome regulation (regulations designed for both equitable treatment in the markets and safety) and that government only did things to enhance business everything would right itself and we all would prosper.

I don’t think so. We have a lot of history to show how the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. And we have recent history to show that we have a shrinking middle class.

Oh, and the president called for the revitalizing of industry in this nation with jobs that bring people into the middle class and that would provide the flow of capital back to us that we so desperately need.

Sounds good. But just what have we been doing lo these past three and a half years?

The dilemma faced by voters who are not strictly partisan is that they (we) know that the Republican way of doing things (the free reign of anything-goes capitalism) is what got us into this mess. But the truth is we as a nation are in deep doo doo economically and just making new laws and creating new programs and government agencies will only add to our deficit and not produce revenue for the government.

If ever we needed something beyond standard Republican/Democrat ideology and methodology, it is now. We need a third way.

Lord please deliver us!

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