My apologies for being away from my blog for so long with no update. I'll give my own State of the Hogan Household in a moment, but first let me add my $0.02 (free to you) on Obama's First State of the Union address.
First, let me say that I personally expect, and believe, that the State of the Union address is supposed to be a chance for the President to tell We The People of the CURRENT condition of our Union of State. After telling us the CURRENT condition of our Union of States, the President can then lay out his agenda and plan to improve the State of the Union. Perhaps my understanding or exceptions are what is wrong.
So as I listened to President Obama last night, I could not help but think that his State of The Union speech lacked one critical component of the State of the Union speech: an assessment of the CURRENT State of the Union. His speech sounded more like a campaign speech full of wishful thoughts and more promises of things to come rather than a real assessment of the current State of the Union. Ie, "I'm going to repeal don't ask, don't tell". Ok fine, what is the current State of the Union's military? Are we winning wars, losing wars, getting out of wars as promised a year (or two) ago? How did "I'm going to close Gitmo" work out? What is the current State of the Union's Gitmo detention center? "I haven't raised a tax on the middle class". What is the current State of the Union's middle class? Are they not 10+% unemployed and down 20-30-50% on their retirement funds? And unless you call small business owners part of the middle class, then to borrow from Joe Wilson, "You Lie". Maybe I'm just a right wing gun toting lunatic, it is possible but I'd never admit it, but I just didn't hear a State of the Union, all I heard were more promises and campaigning, more asking We The People (and Republicans) to just go
along with him on everything and never question his wisdom or agenda.
So let me give an example... suppose *I* were asked to give the State of the Hogan Household... it might go something like this:
Despite a 10% decrease in revenues for the year ended 12/31/09 compared to the year ended 12/31/08 due to a pay cut early in the year, savings are up 4% for the year, 7% extra was paid towards my mortgage each month... and now I'm like a real Republican and have 'invested' (poorly) in a Mr. Fancy Pants High-End German car.
Additionally, I have accepted an additional 2-4 hours per day work load to make up for a decrease in new production during the other 8 hours of work due to a decrease in staffing at my place of employment. I have spent $X to repair or improve infrastructure throughout my home without borrowing additional money which has raised the assessed value $Y.
Further, I have invested an additional $A on educational opportunities for myself including first aid training, cpr training, firearms safety courses, work-related computer programming training which I believe has raised my value as an employee and makes future work opportunities available to me.
And that really is my current State of The Hogan Household and why I haven't had time to update my blog as frequently as I would like. It is also why I MAY not consider another run for Congress against Mr. Frank Pallone this year but the good news is that several well known and respectable Republicans are considering a run against him and I will do my best to assist any worthy candidate, from any party, to defeat Pallone this year.
Anywho, I just wish President Obama had provided an honest assessment of the current State of the Union. I wish he noted that we're still, and deeper, into two foreign wars despite his old promisses. I wish he noted that despite TARP and auto bailouts and other non-sense bailouts, unemployment is still at 10+% nationwide and GM still went bankrupt. People are still losing their homes to banks who are providing limited loans at high interest rates and giving back .000000001% interest on savings... which is then taxed as income. Obama could have noted that the divide between the rich and the poor has never been greater, that party lines have never been more divided or more black and white. He could have noted that the American people (rightly) gave millions to rebuild Haiti but Detroit still looks like Mogadishu and the American people do nothing to rebuild (because that would be socialism?). Obama could have noted that (if you believe the NRA) firearm sales are high, and crime low. Instead, I just heard heard more promises of things to come, without mention of things that didn't come, despite pledges that they would happen, but again, maybe I'm just a stupid right wing fanatic who won't give Obama credit for the nothing that he's said or done.