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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Equilateral triangulation

I’m glad to see that President Obama has taken this blog’s advice, and will use tonight’s State of the Union address to begin walking back his controversial and polarizing arranged-gay-marriage, full-employment, single-payer, DOJ-stacking, Cheney-prosecuting, war-ending, cramdown-enforcing, bank-nationalizing, gun-confiscating agenda.  But I don’t see why liberal bloggers are flipping out about this.

Look, people, the proposed “budget freeze” is not a “freeze.” It’s more of a “chilly wind” or a simple “breeze,” like a “fudget breeze.” It’s not as if Obama gave us all a pony, and then there came a killing frost.  The “fudget breeze” will not affect most of your favorite federal programs, such as defense, Medicare, foreign aid, Homeland Security, weapons development, Medicaid, the Pentagon, fruitbat subsidies, Social Security, stuff having to do with veterans’ services, and the Department of Blowing Shit Up.  Furthermore, there’s no real chance that Obama will be able to clamp down on agribusiness supports, and the White House is saying that education won’t take much of a hit either.  So let’s not worry too much about reallocations within the remaining 2.8 percent of the federal budget, OK?  It may turn out that the only thing affected by the fudget breeze is that infamous $3 million overhead projector, originally earmarked for one of Obama’s cronies on the South Side of Chicago.

Instead, let’s try to come up with some constructive criticism.  To that end, I have three suggestions for tonight’s STFU SOTU that will, I think, (a) enhance Obama’s savvy political appeal to Cokie Roberts, Congressional Republicans, and David Broder, (b) piss off liberals, and (c) not do any real damage anyway, except perhaps insofar as they adopt conservative talking points and further delegitimate the project of social democracy:

School Uniforms.  School uniforms are not only an important device for preserving civility and order in our schools; they also saved Bill Clinton’s presidency and elevated Dick Morris to the ranks of the Most Brilliant Presidential Advisors Ever.  By promoting school uniforms in his very first State of the Union address, President Obama can convey a sense of urgency and gravitas on one of the issues voters care most about; but by secretly promoting school uniforms that are actually tear-aways, he can simultaneously let progressives know that he remains committed to our agenda of letting unruly adolescents do whatever the hell they want.

Enterprise Zones. America’s inner cities are shackled by excessive regulation.  To unleash economic growth and create jobs, President Obama needs to expand tax breaks for businesses and cut back on pesky planning regulations while allowing America’s entrepreneurs to offer new employees a “training wage” that will be exempt from America’s notoriously burdensome “minimum wage” legislation.  On the sly, however, Michelle Obama will continue to serve free food to the urban poor owners of color televisions and cellular telephones, so don’t worry, it’s all good.

Compromise on Abortion.  To win back the critical William Saletan/ Amy Sullivan vote, President Obama needs to assure the American people that he thinks abortion is very, very icky.  Clinton’s famous mantra—that abortion should be “safe, legal, and rare”—remains a winning formula, although Obama may need to find a new way to frame the profound ickiness of abortion, and the even more profound ickiness of women who purchase health insurance that covers abortion, while secretly recommitting himself to the “have one, get one free” policy that has long been the cornerstone of the liberal social agenda.

It will be a delicate balancing act: Obama will need to accept the Beltway verdict on the recent election of Senate Majority Leader Brown and pander to some of conservatives’ social-agenda obsessions while his advisors use cryptic hand gestures to signal to liberals that he’s not really accepting the Beltway verdict on the recent election of Senate Majority Leader Brown and pandering to some of conservatives’ social-agenda obsessions.  Can he pull it off?  This sanguine blog has not yet given up hope:  yes he can.

Posted by Michael on 01/27 at 08:31 AM
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