Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Obama Speech Liveblog

I'll be live-blogging it here. All times central.


9:08 PM: And we're out. Open thread if you want to give your reactions and thoughts.

9:07 PM: "Every American here loves this country and wants it to succeed. That must be the starting point for every debate." A starker contrast from Bush era rhetoric could not be drawn.

9:04 PM: I'm zoning out during story time.

9:01 PM: No torture, no Guantanamo. After 7 years of profound moral evil taken under America's name, and perpetually swept under the rug, the ability to restore the fundamental justness of American behavior may be the most transcendentally important test of the Obama administration.

8:59 PM: Raising pay and increased benefits for veterans. Long, long overdue.

8:58 PM: It is amusing to watch Republicans applaud today what they were calling treason in October, though.

8:57 PM: Did the GOP really stand when Obama promised to publicly account for the cost of the Iraq War? Good on them, if they did.

8:52 PM: That was the shortest consensus on record.

8:51 PM: Obama loves to hit that theme of parental responsibility for education. It's such an easy target for a Democrat -- and it has the added benefit of being an age-old theme in the Black community.

8:50 PM: Dropping out high school is "not just quitting on yourself; it's quitting on your country." A bit hyperbolic, I think, especially when you consider why many people drop out of high school. Is there going to be support for struggling families sufficient so that their older teens don't have to work? Much of the stress around rising college tuition focuses on the middle class, and that's fine, but when you're talking about college dropouts I don't think the issue is going to be resolved by better financial aid programs.

8:48 PM: I'm surprised charter schools didn't get more applause.

8:43 PM: Cure for cancer and they don't cut away to Ginsburg? That was a gimme.

8:41 PM: Cap and trade? Daring to come out with that now. I'm skeptical it will go anywhere, but putting on the agenda is a big step forward on its own.

8:40 PM: Power lines! Yglesias will be thrilled. Infrastructure isn't sexy (and when it is in the form of highways, it's usually pork), but by and large it's important.

8:39 PM: Ah, it's good to have a rival. If nothing else, China on the horizon may motivate America to raise its game.

8:34 PM: On the other hand, that was an impressive bit of tempering to try and tamp down at the rage at the banks and Wall Street, which is teetering close to stifling recovery aid rather than enabling it. "It's not about helping banks; it's about helping people." Good moment.

8:31 PM: I remain a bit unnerved at the populist streak going after the CEOs, but I can't deny that it's wildly popular.

8:30 PM: One of Obama's true gifts as an orator isn't in the soaring rhetoric, it's in the laundry list of policies. He is simply stellar at detailing his proposals in a way that is simultaneously substantive and intelligible.

8:26 PM: Obama just is a more casual person than George W. Bush, and it shows. Few Presidents would dare, in situations like this, to say something like "nobody messes with Joe".

8:21 PM: I actually really like that Obama is laying the fault of our current situation upon our prior irresponsibility. It's a good wake up message. And yes, it's clearly laying blame on the GOP, even though he says it's not. Nobody will be fooled -- but nobody is really going to disagree, either.

8:19 PM: Obama's opening riff makes it sound like were hit by a meteor. I'm not sure how that will play.

8:17 PM: Barack and Michelle = cutest first couple ever? Potentially.

8:14 PM: NBC estimates this speech will go for an hour. I'm not sure I have that attention span, even for Obama.

8:12 PM: I'm watching on NBC, for the record.


Unknown said...

Overall it was a good speech. It was interesting watching Republicans applaud some lines that they just had to hate. I think they didn't want to be seen not agreeing with some of the things you know their constituents agree with Obama on.

I just couldn't make myself listen to Jindal. He's so hyped for someone who just repeats the same Republican talking points we've been hearing for years.

Anonymous said...

Erm, considering Obama still hasn't close Gitmo and the U.S. government's denied that anything's wrong(http://www.tinyrevolution.com/mt/archives/002869.html, I am doubtful.

Unknown said...

Firstly, no one should think that Gitmo can be shut down with a snap of the fingers. Most places in America are so NIMBY that if you want to move the prisoners into the U.S. there's a firestorm wherever you propose. In addition many countries don't want them back. It's not an easy thing to do even though the decision has been made. As far as that report goes, it has nothing to do with the current administration. Exactly when do you think all the work on that was done since it was just released a month after Obama was sworn in? Certainly not in the last month.