Saturday, February 16, 2013

2013 State of the Union Address Updated Enhanced Transcript

English: Seal of the President of the United S...
English: Seal of the President of the United States Español: Escudo del Presidente de los Estados Unidos Македонски: Печат на Претседателот на Соединетите Американски Држави. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

*** Enhanced updated transcript as Obama actually delivered it and video.

From Denny:  President Obama's recent State of the Union address proved to be a surprise on many levels.  The most unexpected tone was one of greater informality - and most welcome to all - for its plain spoken approach.

Granted this speech was not the usual lofty literary masterpiece of SOTUs past.  It was a beauty in its clean simplicity, where even the most uneducated could understand every word without running to a dictionary...

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What was also unexpected was to include a plea to the public to put pressure on their representatives for the new gun control legislation.  While the gun rights camp uses paranoid fear of a tyrannical government storming into their homes to destroy the lives of private citizens, the President used the emotion of the far too many mass shootings that have occurred just in the past year to appeal for new measures on gun control.

President Obama spent most of this speech drawing examples of how both political camps can agree on many issues and problems before the country.  It was a nuts and bolts speech of which the country has been missing for many years.  It's great to be an inspirational leader but what good is it if nothing moves forward to get the projects completed?

The President did his best to call the Republicans back into the fold of the country.  Whether they will choose to place the well being of their country ahead of their own political careers and their fat wallets remains to be seen.  If that tactic fails for the President he is perhaps hoping the American public will put  pressure upon the Republicans to get busy and do the work of the American people - instead of stonewalling every idea and project that makes good common sense for the country.

The most controversial piece of this SOTU was the call to increase the minimum wage.  For thirty years the minimum wage has not kept pace with inflation.  The $10 an hour suggested new level drew howls from the Republicans after the speech.  Yet many successful small businessmen know only too well employee pay is a small part of their entire business, with other areas far more volatile in cost fluctuations.  Those same small businessmen have found that when you pay above the minimum wage people are more motivated and do superior jobs so it's a win-win all around.

You would think the Republicans would support the infrastructure improvements proposed by President Obama.  It was their Republican President Dwight Eisenhower that built the nation's entire highway system so badly in need of repair more than 50 years later.  Besides, businesses benefit from a strong infrastructure because it's how they move their goods across the country.

Why have the Republicans continued for decades to block funds to repair the now 70,000 bridges across the country so desperately in need of serious repairs or rebuilding?  That level of rebuilding the infrastructure would create decades of a healthy boost to the economy.  Are the Republicans really that petty, afraid to make President Obama look good?  Or can a few of them wake up to realize they can tout their own Republican hero and promote former WWII General President Eisenhower to see their way forward to repair the infrastructure he created?

Read the transcript below and find out what else the President proposed.  Do you think he will get any traction out of Congress or the public for his proposals?

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                                                              12 February 2013

Open for Questions: 2013 State of the Union

February 12, 2013 | 1:12:38 
A panel of White House senior advisors answers questions about the President's address submitted by citizens via Twitter, Google+ and Facebook, as well as from the live in-person audience.

 - same as above from YouTube in case that video quits working any time.

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