Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Liveblogging the State of the Union Address

Love that the night is ending with media simply reading twitter to audience. Social media saves these news corporations money, while also bringing down the quality of their product. It's an amazing and cynical capitulation. It also creates a weird superiority of social media over traditional media, one that the major networks is going to regret in the long run.

Who am I kidding? News networks won't regret slashing quality along with their budgets. They've done it for years. I didn't hear a single piece of interesting analysis on substance tonight from MSNBC. At least they weren't having anchors drone on over the speech like ABC. Someone is fired behind that debacle.

10:56 Romney's messaging is incredibly inconsistent. On the one hand, claiming that "These people want help. They want someone who knows how to help them," yet he attacks the idea that we should help middle class Americans if it means he would pay his fair share.

10:56 Romney appearing tonight guarantees that he'll be asked about his Swiss bank account.
10:55 Romney is seriously being questioned by Brian Williams twice in two nights. Is he politically suicidal?

10:41 Romney wants to weigh in on NBC tonight. You'd think that he would be smart enough to duck direct comparisons between himself and the President at this moment.
10:41 Mitch Daniels didn't hurt himself with that message. He would have if any media members bothered to go beyond the rhetoric, but those are the breaks, kid. Also, did he even touch on foreign policy?

10:40 You can pronounce "mature" like that, but it makes you sound like an effete fool.
10:38 Mitch Daniels will say we're friends, but he'll still work tooth and nail against any compromises or policies that might actually help struggling Americans if it means the rich have to pay their fair share.
10:36 Sadly for Mitch Daniels' rhetorical device, the President never actually placed the blame for obstructionism where it belongs. Of course, Mitch Daniels did: Congressional Republicans.
10:34 I'm concerned that Republicans never learned the meaning of "save." A sentence after pandering to seniors, Daniels is promising to fasten "a new safety net." Not much being saved there.
10:34 "Pro-growth" approach, in this case, means pro-tumors, I suppose. That's what happens when you let oil and chemicals seep into drinking water.
10:33 The problem with Republicans saying Steve Jobs is an American job creator is that he created all of those jobs in China. Has Daniels never heard of Foxconn?
10:32 For someone who has spent his life doing math really poorly, Mitch Daniel's head is shaped like a surprisingly perfect egg.
10:31 The real entitlement complex comes from Republicans assuring us that our futures will certainly be brighter than our parents' generation, regardless of us actually having to do the hard work that they did.
10:31 Tim Pawlenty?
10:30 Mitch Daniels knows something about an exploding deficit. He's the one who designed the Bush Tax Cuts that got into this hole.
10:29 Praising the Obamas' marriage is going to cause some problems for Daniels among Newt Gingrich's base.
10:29 Mitch Daniels wants to remind you that there's a football game coming up in his state.
10:21 Can we please bring back partisan seating so it's easier to discern when applause is sarcastic?
10:16 Brian Williams.

10:16 "No one built this nation alone." Take that, fictional Ayn Rand characters.
10:15 "That mission only succeded because every member of that unit..." didn't tell the Pakistani intelligence service.
10:14 DADT repeal and Bin Laden in adjacent sentences. That's about right.
10:13 We're training Afghan an Iraqi police forces with our Military, and now our Military will be encouraged to become police here. I'm not sure I like that.
10:09 Sharp: "Anyone who tells you that America is in decline..." i.e. Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich ... "Doesn't know what they're talking about."
10:09 Maybe I'm being paranoid, but all of the close-ups during the President's speech has been on Jews. And that's coming from a Jew.
10:08 Cameraman: President Obama will send Joseph Lieberman to Iran. That's a heavy threat.
10:07 Mr. President, the Republicans can't even stand for decency towards you. What makes you think they'll extend an open hand to democratically elected leaders in other countries?
10:06 That's regime change we can believe in.
10:05 Bookending with defeating al Qaeda. What did Congress have to do with that? Oh, right, absolutely nothing.
10:05 Good cut to Mitt "Our biggest priority is to make sure that Barack Obama is a one-term President" McConnell.
10:05 Definitely feeling the wrap coming here.
10:03 The largest applause line of the night is for Obama taking up the mantle of Lincoln. Of course, that's where most of the resistance will be starting tomorrow.
10:02 The President is moving into process, but he got here with strength: by making sure people listening knows that process is why Americans aren't getting results from Washington.
10:00 The President is taking steps to allude to a lot of things that network anchors are going to have to unpack for the audience. Keeps it from looking like he's throwing punches. However, the pundits are simply going to say that he was on the attack, instead of actually discussing the merits. Telegraphing the attacks isn't enough anymore because the media is too lazy to actually engage the substance of these speeches.
10:00 "The biggest threat to our economy" came from House Republicans.
9:59 Different views? A third of these people have a whole different set of facts!
9:59 It does seem like only Congressional Republicans don't know that's not right. It's too bad they're not persuaded by 'what the American people think.'
9:57 Boehner: 'That old, tired idea of having billionaires to pay their fair share?'
9:57 My mistake- the hiccup was the NBC live video feed.
9:56 Speaker Boehner just hiccuped when the President mentioned his name. Water or vodka in front of him?
9:53 So far, the President has launched three special investigative units: Trade in China, Financial Crimes, and one for better joke writers.
9:53 Back on the hunt for a watchable feed. Any suggestions?
9:52 Switched to ABCNews feed. Big mistake; an anchor just sniffled in my ear, then talked over the speech. Big Mistake, ABC News.
9:49 There's one really terrible joke from each of President Obama's State of the Union. Last year, it was Salmon, this year, milk.
9:48 Breaking news: "Never Forget" used for the first time since 2001 without pandering about the War on Terror.
9:47 Housing market doesn't have to follow the velocity of Alcoholics Anonymous.
9:45 Just read that New York Magazine article about how the President had given up on creating the ambitious projects that would ensure America's competitive advantage into the future. Guess he just gave up on this Congress doing the work.
9:44 Apparently energy costs money. Never thought about it like that. More efficient energy means a more efficient economy. It's as if you can measure efficiency across different disciplines.
9:43 Centuries of subsidies versus 40 years of social safety net programs. Which do you think has bred more dependence on Government? Hey, where are all of the conservatives going?
9:41 Good news/bad news on fracking. Good news is that you'll know what your drinking water is being polluted with, but the bad news is that there's a lot more of it coming.
9:40 We also have a supply of natural gas that could, if burned, create massive climate instability. Wait, it's the same supply? Damn.
9:39 Tepidest applause of the night: expanded oil drilling.
9:38 "Oil, just like mom used to make!"
9:38 Help us build invincible Robocops.
9:37 Not a lot of men standing up for equal pay for equal work. Who elected these congressmen? Looking at you, gerrymandered backwards districts.
9:35 The Republican solution to having our schools training kids who are going to leave the country? Keep the schools from teaching anything anyway.
9:34 President calling for state action. It's an interesting moment; doesn't happen often in the State of the Union. Can anyone think of a similar cajoling?
9:33 Lost the feed from the White House. Switching to Youtube in Google+ stream. Not doing much better. Anyone have any suggestions about streaming sites that would work?
9:30 "It is time to turn our unemployment system into a reemployment system that puts people back to work." Speechwriters not concerned about saying the U-word.
9:30 I would also support hiring people to a job that leads directly to skills.
9:29 First personal story, but given that it's been about openings and Siemens, I'm not sure I like where this is going.
9:27 "New markets like Russia." I mean, Russia's been around for a while. It's newly captured by oligarchs.
9:27 Law and Order: Special Workers Unit.
9:26 We're working the WTO refs.
9:25 "Send me these tax reforms, and I will sign them right away." Kind of naive thinking that Congress can or will do anything. Does anyone else think the President should just focus on what the Executive branch has been able to accomplish by itself in the last year?
9:22 "Companies get tax breaks for moving jobs and profits overseas. Meanwhile companies that stay in America get hit with one of the highest tax rates in the world. That makes no sense, so let's change it." Boehner's response: 'that's the same tired idea that we've been fighting tooth and nail for the last three years!"
9:21 "We bet on American workers. We bet on American ingenuity."
9:18 That's a lot of job growth that Obama has presided over in the private sector. Let's recap Obama's policies for the last three years: stimulus spending, responsible regulation, and shrinking government waste.
9:17 House of cards metaphor for the housing collapse. Too close to home?
9:16 Anyone think "Fairness" is going to be the theme of the President's reelection campaign?
9:16 "My grandmother who worked on a bomber assembly line turned out some of the best products on earth." Yeah, but try sneaking a WWII bomber under the Chrismas tree.
9:14 Newt's not going to be happy that someone else is talking about history.
9:13 "Too many of our institutions ahve let us down..." I wonder which ones he's talking about, Congress. #Suckerpunch.
9:12 Obama playing to tire the opposition by putting the applause for soldiers up front. Will really take the volume out of the intemperate GOP screaming later.
9:11 A little late on the into..
9:10 Really enjoyed the manila folder hand-off. It's a nice, cartoony touch.

9:08 White House stream seems to be having some difficulties. Overwhelmed by the clapping, perhaps.

I'm watching the Standard Broadcast- is anyone watching the augmented speech?

9:06 Behind the podium, Biden warming up his clapping muscles, Boehner warming up his distant frown.

9:04 Squirming down the aisle between government officials is as close as many of these congresspeople have gotten to "real people" in months.

9:02 Going to try something new here. Not much of a live-blogger, but things change.

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