# Howard Zinn

State of the Union thread (updated)

I won’t be liveblogging President Obama’s State of the Union address tonight, but here’s a thread for the Bleeding Heartland community to chat away. If you’re looking for a liveblog, I recommend Congress Matters or Open Left, where the threads don’t get crowded as quickly as at Daily Kos. The Des Moines Register set up a live chat here with “politics reporter Tom Beaumont and featured bloggers Connor Anderson, John Deeth, Graham Gillette, Steffen Schmidt and Art Smith.”

Alternatively, here’s a State of the Union drinking game (another variant is here).

Political Wire already posted excerpts from Obama’s speech. There are no surprises anymore.

Governor Bob McDonnell of Virginia will give the Republican response, but I think everyone is more interested to see whether there’s an outburst during the speech similar to Joe “You Lie!” Wilson’s last year.

I’ll update this thread later with some reactions to the speech.

Off-topic: Social historian Howard Zinn died today at the age of 87. Here’s a quotable quote from him: “If the gods had intended for people to vote, they would have given us candidates.”

LATE UPDATE: I caught part of the speech. I had the sinking feeling that Congress will act on everything Obama advocates that I oppose (new oil drilling, nuclear power plants, more money for “clean coal”), but won’t do the things I support (ending Don’t Ask Don’t Tell). He wasn’t specific enough about how Congress should move forward on health care reform. I did like his line about how Democrats still have the largest majorities either party has had in decades, and Americans elected them to solve problems, not “run for the hills.”

The full text of Obama’s speech (as prepared) is after the jump.

Steven Pearlstein wrote the speech Obama would give “in a more honest world.”

Reacting to the Republican response delivered by Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell, Steve Singiser pointed out a fundamental contradiction in the GOP stance on health care: on the one hand, they say we shouldn’t let the government take over health care, and on the other hand, they promise not to let the Democrats cut Medicare.

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