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SOTU 2011 - ENHANCED! Watch and Engage!

[I'm making this the SOTU open thread because it's better than my post was. Have at it! --lambert]

The SOTU now has a warm-up stand-up comedian?! That's what was playing when I checked out the SOTU webpage, although what's playing right now is stuff about the White House organic garden, which is cool.

Also, right after the Prez's speech, you can ask questions of his policy experts, via Twitter, Facebook, or

Later, on Wednesday and Thursday, Robert Gibbs will take questions, the White House Office of Public Engagement will hold a conference call, and The Prez himself will answer your questions.

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madamab's picture
Submitted by madamab on

My hubby made an unintentional SOTU funny tonight, which he said I could share.

We’re talking on the phone during his dinner break (he works 4pm – midnight). I tell him we’re liveblogging the SOTU, and say that Paul Ryan will be giving the Repub response and Michele Bachmann will be giving the Tea Party response. In all seriousness, he asks, “Who’s going to give the Democratic point of view?”

madamab's picture
Submitted by madamab on

Hubby is not a blogger type, but he does read "Funny Times." There are a lot of cartoonists there who don't think Obama is a Democrat either.

Submitted by hipparchia on

oh wait... wrong thread. :)

your husband's question would be funny if it weren't so true.

Submitted by hipparchia on

out-innovate, out-educate, out-build the rest of the world!!!!!

take responsibility for our deficit, reform our govt to win the future!!!!

Submitted by libbyliberal on

Now I hear in the name of kabuki civility they are intermixing Dems and Repubs. Won't they get confused as to lock-step group-think team clap?

Obama post-Tucson speech success, same saccharine patronizing tone.

LOOK AT THE FUTURE!!!! Don't notice that you are up to your lower lip drowning!

All those Gucci-wearing betrayers with their lifetime prime health care programs for them and their families and huge paychecks and conflict of interests investments and lobby-perks and lobby-paid secure futures. Disgusting.

You are challenging us tonight, Barack? You have doomed us since day 1!

Submitted by libbyliberal on

race to the top indeed!!!!

more of his "puddles in heaven" kinda talk without reality once again.

break teaching unions is the walk they are walking. steal benefits. punish teachers at high risk schools.

The Bush way, praise the thing in your speech you are covertly destroying and intend to really wipe out even further tomorrow.

Valley Girl's picture
Submitted by Valley Girl on

But, someone posted a doggie photo, and I gotta come back with a kitty one.

Pretty much how I feel about the SOTU.

Tootsie is nutty for twist ties

Oh, hey, Hipp!

Valley Girl's picture
Submitted by Valley Girl on

Thx for great response.

Jeez, it really hard to listen to his bullshit.

I need to go hug the kitty.

Submitted by Fran on

Green Party LIVESTREAM: Greens discuss the speech during tonight's broadcast, 9 pm ET / 6 pm PT

"Greens on solving the deficit: end the wars, cut the military budget, tax the rich. Greens on solving the health care crisis: enact Medicare For All. Greens on jobs: a 'Green New Deal' with massive public investment in green jobs and clean energy.

WASHINGTON, DC -- The Green Party leaders offered comments on President Obama's 2011 State of the Union speech to Congress and the nation, scheduled for Tuesday, January 25. The Green response covers major issues the President will discuss in his speech, as well as topics he won't address.

The Green Party will air an online livestream with party members discussing the State of the Union, beginning at 9 pm ET, 6 pm PT, and running concurrently with the speech. Viewers can watch and participate on the Green Party Livestream channel, Call-in comments will be accepted on Skype after the speech ends.

"There’s a lot of talk about Democrats and Republicans 'reaching across the aisle' during the State of the Union. What about the gap between Washington and the rest of the country, much wider than the aisle between the two Titanic parties?" said Carl Romanelli, 2006 Green candidate for the U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania. "

Submitted by lambert on

That's refreshing.

Oh, now we're at corporate tax cuts.

Submitted by libbyliberal on

charter schools. dual system.

Wow, he is really hitting this "competitive" thing, isn't he?


How about bottom line survival?

Oh boy. Immigration. Obama's gift for both sides of mouth talk.

Submitted by Fran on

I can hardly begin to form a sentence! It is so sad what is happening to Education in this country. Not everyone can be at the top. There should be room for people at every level to have a decent life.

Health care, Education, Jobs.... It is all so misguided.

Submitted by libbyliberal on


oh dear God, now he is talking about military success and reduction of violence!!!!


THE OBAMA FOG-MACHINE CRANKING IT UP. Once you are out of the fog, it is so shock and awing to hear the lying.

Totally agree, Fran.

We do need puppy and kitten antidotes for this evil.

madamab's picture
Submitted by madamab on

Freezing domestic spending + tax cuts = deficit reduction?

And now he's subtly pushing the Catfood Commission crap. Cutting Medicare and Medicaid. He is an *ssh0le.

letsgetitdone's picture
Submitted by letsgetitdone on

That shiver was running down Chris's leg again.

Submitted by libbyliberal on

... do people really buy this?

Now he is climbing on the backs of the soldiers he has doomed to die or be maimed psychologically and/or physically to show his faux-magnanimity.

Nice round of applause, guys!!!! Disgusting. You guys who let the same guys do five deployments til they are dead or profoundly harmed mentally or physically. And yet you act like their best loyal friends, instead you are their worst enemies. Five deployments??????? What about the suicides???

The lying hour.

Submitted by libbyliberal on

Stop trying to steal the heroism of others!!!! What does this have to do with YOUR RESPONSIBILITY to the people of the country?

Exercise some courage and responsibility yourself. He is Oprah-fying the SOTU. She can do that, that is what her show is for.





Submitted by hipparchia on

Stop trying to steal the heroism of others!!!! What does this have to do with YOUR RESPONSIBILITY to the people of the country?

this is a nce parallel to the theme that's been running through my mind on obama for the past few days. thanks for putting it into words.

Submitted by lambert on

What a steaming load of crap this is. He's got this little trick of faux sincerity now.

Of course, some countries don’t have this problem. If the central government wants a railroad, they get a railroad – no matter how many homes are bulldozed. If they don’t want a bad story in the newspaper, it doesn’t get written.

Like that would ever happen here!

And yet, as contentious and frustrating and messy as our democracy can sometimes be, I know there isn’t a person here who would trade places with any other nation on Earth.

Notice the non sequitur.

I know I should be doing kind of serious analytical work on this, but the bullshit is so thick -- and really more compelling than Bush's -- I don't want to go anywhere near it.

I like Plan B. What is it?

Submitted by hipparchia on

that's when my computer froze up and i had to reboot it.

Submitted by Hugh on

I admire all of you listening to the SOTU. I got hit by so much BS in the reporting leading up to it that I decided I would pass. Obama will lie because that's what kleptocrats do. If he prevents or delays reaction to the ongoing looting, it will be Mission Accomplished as far as he is concerned.

Submitted by lambert on

10:28PM ... and the nice guy doing the thing hasn't been able to get a Skype connection going with his call-in interviewee. "Skype made some changes," "I tested it before,"... I'd like to cut them some slack but this is just ridiculous. "A technical faux pas." JEEBUS. So not ready for the national stage, and heck, maybe that's a good thing. This is the best they can do?!

10:32PM "It may be on your end."

10:38PM Finally, they get a caller up. Now to work on the echo.

Submitted by lambert on

I was so ready for that to be good. Granted, it wasn't evil. But it was clueless and ineffectual. And insular.

Submitted by libbyliberal on

The Green Party could hold all the sane and humane stances as the spines of the umbrella: healthcare, environment, anti-war, civil and human rights, women rights, anti-gun, etc., etc. Could be the organizing force we need to let us be global and local and EFFECTIVE and kick the amoral pragmatists in the asses.

Sadly, in terms of its being THE BIG umbrella, it is still unopened. Maybe umbrellas locally are opened or opening, but not the big umbrella and can this happen cuz we desperately need it?

An unopened big "potential" umbrella does us no good in these storms of incredibly obscene slings and arrows. It really needs proactive people to be proactive to the max, newbies and oldies to get it opened i.e., organized.

I have hope and again it is opening some places more than others. I want it to be a big umbrella. I want it to be strong enough to challenge Obama in 2012 but time is a-ticking. That means so many of us disaffected must rally and channel, channel, channel.

Right now I feel my Green activity is working to help open the umbrella but i am called away to other spines of issues and there is still the disconnect, rather than working with the same people for the big picture and also the focused issue. How can we get it to be the networking organizer for so many of us????

We need people with heart and passion and commitment to keep on joining forces with the Greens.

Green Party must throw off its fringe identity and flex as a moral and strong player. I don't know if Green Party gets, the non-cyber ones, the POTENTIAL HERE!!!

There is a window here that if the Green Party is savvy enough and welcoming enough and strong enough and READY enough it could and should embrace millions in search of a moral representative and guide.

I don't know if it can do it. The hardening of soft fascism has come a long way, Obama has escalated it rather than challenge it from the Bush years. So many fronts!!!!

The Green Party has to simply welcome and give room and structure to the disaffected. A HOME for the disaffected. An umbrella that doesn't melt in the rain the way the legacy parties do for their constituents. Can it meet the moral and at the same time bottom-line organizing and pr challenges for all our sakes?

I don't know. I will do my newbie part. The window is here. The BIG GREEN UMBRELLA NEEDS TO BE OPENED. WE NEED IT BADLY!

Submitted by lambert on

On the green broadcast, once it got going:

Most of the "analysis" is sloppy and stale and far less crisply stated and far less analytically powerful than anything our end of the blogosphere was doing in 2008. Disheartening on the one hand, and opportunity on the other. On the other hand, give credit, they're out on the ground. And on another hand, several times I've asked in the last few months, "Where are the Greens on this?" Now I know.

BDBlue's picture
Submitted by BDBlue on

They have an excellent platform and, in some parts of the country, excellent local organizations. At a national level they're weak. The website is fugly and hard to navigate (it and the local websites are often out of date). While there are some interesting "Green Party" videos on You Tube, they're for the Green Party of England and Wales. They don't have good blogs or other ways of communicating a Green message beyond each isolated community. Hell, I went to buy a t-shirt and the only ones that looked decent came in one size (XL, IIRC).

I get the whole local organization, no hierarchy model. I do. But we're facing some incredibly savvy marketing from the corporate state. We need to get an alternative message out and a national identity actually helps local organizing. It seems a lot less futile if it's connected to a larger effort.

I really want to love the Greens and in some ways I do (or at least I love a lot of their ideas and many of the people who support them), but they remind me of a every bad women's group meeting I've ever attended where nobody ever DECIDES anything or LEADS because it might hurt someone's feelings. I don't want an authoritarian party where we all bow down to its leaders and do as they say, but some sort of national organization that can help push a coherent message out to the country as a whole would be nice. Or, more accurately, required if we want to make any real headway.

Submitted by libbyliberal on

Yes, you have a group of people who are burned out by the power and control addicts often over-compensating by stressing participatory democracy. Honest open discourse is messy. Obama talks about democracy is messy, well his fascist answer is to just not look left or back or at any of us struggling for help, and create a lying bubble he can float on the teebee. Create a safe gated community for the oligarchs he sold out America to get access to himself. Anyway, re Greens, people who don't suffer fools, but perfectionism and purity can slow down process and it is made up of people, after all. We love mankind, it is people who really piss us all off. I was stunned in NYC to see that lots of people vote Green comparatively speaking, but very few register or WORK Green and I thank the valiant ones who are. Is this it, I thought, when I began attending meetings???? There are millions of us hungry for a viable party to knock Obama and his obscene hypocrisy back on their heels (as in feet and as in bottom feeder enablers).

I am praying for a paradigm shift in America and I think its best chance is Green Party, but they say it is hell in the hallway. As long as we all keep moving and not get paralyzed by our perfectionism. Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good, which phrase was misused re trojan pony public option when there was no good, only BIG FAT LIES.

Submitted by lambert on

JEEBUS! I'm so not demanding perfection!

I mean, this is like a guy showing up on the first date after forgetting to put his pants on.

NOTE I love Roseanne Barr, in a totally chaste and biblically appropriate way. If she ran, I'd totally vote for her. Well, I would if she had the right policies and didn't fuck up the local efforts, neither of which is given.

Submitted by libbyliberal on

... but lambert, that is true to form. We don't always agree, do we?

I met a great Green tonight and he is interested in contacting you and will. Had a political adventure he would like to blog about and I was talking up corrente.

Submitted by Fran on

It is active in the Phila. area.

Here are 2 links from Op-ed.
The first expresses the level of frustration that Lambert has expressed.

Open Letter to a Broken Green Party

The second, from our own Ross L., shows the energy, enthusiasm and dedication of the young people.

Keepin busy with the Philly Greens - a march, a dinner, a meeting, and a concert

(Ross has written 31 articles for Op-ed. A link to them is at the bottom at the end of this article.

Submitted by libbyliberal on

I read an article about him a while back and he sounds wonderful at really telling the Dems where to get off in terms of union betrayal. He got almost 1 out of 4 votes, did he not, running Green for the House in Philly if I got it right?

I just came from a Greens meeting tonight and it was wonderful and we had a speaker talk about the money system. when I get some sleep want to decipher my notes. A good turn out despite a VERY heavy snow in the City. I hear the cars struggling outside as I type this.

I mentioned the tech problems during the Obama speech and people kind of shrugged and said it was too bad but stuff happens.

Tomorrow, today really, I am going to a Green protest against school closings (a Green teacher friend teaches special ed and special ed kids don't seem to be seriously in Bloomberg's or Cathie Black's vision of school enhancement). Grrrrrr. Bloomberg is clueless my Green friend said.

Submitted by lambert on

... plus he's run for office and got non-trivial votes!

But the "shrug" just galls me. It frosts me when there's a typo in a headline, and if I blew a live blog, I'd be mortified for days, and this is a tiny blog that everybody hates and nobody reads. So why in the name of sweet suffering Jeebus is a shrug acceptable?

Submitted by libbyliberal on

this is a tiny blog that everybody hates and nobody reads

lambert, you don't really feel this way????? or you assume that many others feel this way? being on the vanguard has its detractors, granted. Your Gandhi quote says it all. Reality checking on the Obama et al. shenanigans is so important to helping people get through their stages of grief and giving support to those of us who are. What a slow trip that has been and still is for way too many. Corrente keeps that lantern of reality burning in this darkness.

It's a classy, courageous, sophisticated, passionate and cutting edge blog and community that inspires pride in me to participate in. I am sending the Greens and others on other sites to it as well as recruiting here for Greens!

The "shrug" came from maybe those who were not surprised it happened since it has happened before and/or who did not witness the speech and the Green webcast, who were understandably hyped up on the immediate organization involving the school issues in Manhattan -- some Greens are teachers with schools and jobs at stake, too. Someone mentioned the Greens perpetual need for money which is a factor for sure!

I got a lot out of the comment stream here from the speech and didn't feel I missed out. Watching Obama has become as difficult as watching Bush for me.

Submitted by lambert on

I forget where "the blog that everybody hates" came from -- I think somebody like mithras. I added on "nobody reads!"

I'm actually very proud of Corrente and everyone on it, but one cannot deny that 2500 readers a day is not a very large number, though we do punch far above our weight in terms of "influencers...."

Submitted by Fran on

to the young organizers, who are VERY dedicated! I have noticed, having a young adult son, that the young people really like to organize by using social gatherings to bring people in. This seems to go on a lot in the city.

I picked up some of this from a local peace/community group I am associated with. Our 'leader' of that group has kind of left it to work full time with the Green Party. (There is a lot of overlap.)

The technical difficulties definitely merited at least a wince from me. I don't think it did too much damage because I doubt it had widespread 'viewing'. It is a wake-up call, I think. The Greens do need to burnish their image. Unfortunately that is the reality of politics. I think that the young people really, will be the way for that to happen. Maybe paid positions would help. Again money. But, these young people are trying to work and organize, or go to school and organize or both.

Submitted by libbyliberal on

some young blood. Any more feedback on this would love to hear from you in future, too. I am hoping we can do some more flyering at colleges in the City. Maybe work with college newspapers. It would be a great vehicle for social and political for kids.

I wonder if we can get Hugh G. to come and speak at a Manhattan Greens meeting. We are starting to do a general/social meeting the end of each month.

Submitted by libbyliberal on

... More and more are catching on, but the "establishment" clings on, style not substance. Rachel Maddow makes me ill I was such an early fan of hers and did all I could to promote her when she was on radio and little funny podcasts.

Submitted by lambert on

"Obama told us tonight with work and sacrifice, we can have the richest criminal banks in the world."

Submitted by lefttown on

"Platitudinous Hogwash!" I'm going to be using that expression every time Obama opens his mouth. It ought to be mandatory that every critique of Obama's speeches includes those two words.
Robert Scheer's column is here

Submitted by libbyliberal on

Thanks for the link, lefttown.

Rachel was busily cherry-picking hope out of BO's speech, putting that white hat on Obama and black hat on Republican. What she is paid for. Soul-selling is painful to watch.

From the angry Scheer:

Just the warning that Obama has ignored by continually appointing the very people who engineered this crisis, mostly Clinton alums, to reverse its ongoing dire consequences. As the Times reports: “The decision in 2000 to shield the exotic financial instruments known as over-the-counter derivatives from regulation, made during the last year of President Bill Clinton’s term, is called ‘a key turning point in the march toward the financial crisis.’ ”

Obama appointed as his top economic adviser Lawrence Summers, who as Clinton’s treasury secretary was the key architect of that “turning point,” and Summers protégé Timothy Geithner as his own treasury secretary. The unanimous finding of the 10 Democrats on the commission is that Geithner, who had been president of the New York Fed before Obama appointed him, “could have clamped down” on excesses by Citigroup, the subprime mortgage leader that Geithner and the Fed bailed out along with other unworthy banking supplicants.

Profligate behavior that has hobbled the economy while running up an enormous debt that Obama now uses as an excuse for a five-year freeze on discretionary domestic spending cuts that small part of the budget that might actually help ordinary people. Speaking of our legacy of deficit spending, Obama stated, “… in the wake of the financial crisis, some of that was necessary to keep credit flowing, save jobs, and put money in people’s pockets. But now that the worst of the recession is over, we have to confront the fact that our government spends more than it takes in.”

Why now? It is an absurd demarcation to freeze spending when so many remain unemployed just because corporate profits, and therefore stock market valuations, seem firm. Ours is a union divided between those who agree with Obama that “the worst of the recession is over” and the far larger number in deep pain that this president is bent on ignoring.

Eureka Springs's picture
Submitted by Eureka Springs on

I tried watching it twice... and twice I fell asleep.

Loving all the poll results claiming overwhelming American approval.. when just like after each election day the fact the majority of Americans didn't view or didn't vote is omitted.