I love the pomp and circumstance surrounding the State of the Union address (SOTU), and it's great to see our leaders all gathered in one place to hear the President speak. But I have to admit that tonight, I was thoroughly underwhelmed. As I listened to President Obama, I kept thinking that little to nothing of note will get done with the GOP controlling one house of Congress. The "repeal" of health insurance reform in the House, I think, is going to be the broken record of the next two years. The only thing important to the GOP is trying to erase the legislative victories of President Obama, with the exception of tax cuts (and they will not give him credit there either).
I have come to the conclusion that almost everyone in the top echelons of our government, regardless of party, are not concerned about regular people like me. They are not concerned about the actual well being of the broad swath of the American public. Almost everything is tailored toward those at the top of the income scale, and most of the demonization (outside of that directed at the President) is directed to the least among us (the so called, lazy, worthless, freeloading, "my tax dollar" stealing portion of our populace). Few ever look at where the real benefits go (upward), and those who do ignore it.
But I digress. Listening to Rep. Paul Ryan was like listening to a series of tiresome GOP platitudes (lower taxes, limited government) strung together in a melancholy tone that made former President Carter's "malaise speech" seem uplifting. And Rep. Michele Bachmann's presentation...well, there were no surprises there at all. So, it was an underwhelming night. With all honesty, I can say that I haven't the slightest idea of what we can expect in the coming year, but I doubt that real progress for the majority of us, the regular folks, will not be among those expectations.