For me it isn't what the State of the Union speech tells me about George Bush, but what George Bush, the man as I have come to know him, tells me about the speech.
Frankly I don't like, or believe, or trust the sincerity of either one.
Bush has always been a president who played a double game with the American people, working assiduously for the aggrandizement of his social peers, corporate contributors, and reactionary political "base", while throwing "public diplomacy" sops to the rest of America, his SOTU speech carries on that tradition.
He said, "our job is to make life better for our fellow Americans, and help them to build a future of hope and opportunity-- and this is the business before us tonight".
He also said he would "balance the budget without raising taxes". Doesn't that unavoidably mean he must cut entitlement programs like Social Security, Medicare, and Medicade? How are the lives of Americans going to be made better by doing that?
From his remarks on immigrant labor, to decreasing the nation's dependance on foriegn oil, to the phoney "voluntary" increases in fuel efficiency for vehicles, his plans continue to promote the vital interests, and profit margins of big business at the expense the basic human rights of immigrants, subjecting them to oppressive low wages, while ignoring common sense solutions to damaging emmissions.
On Iraq Bush reminded the Democrats of their complicity in the original decision to attack, and appealed for their support for his "new way forward".
In the Democratic response Sen. Webb said, "the majority of the nation no longer supports this war". That is a simple truth which Bush undoubtedly will ignore, and the Democrats can only ignore at their peril.
I meet and talk to lots of people of various persuasions every day and none of them believe Bush, none of them trust him, none of them want to attack Iran, or Syria, none of them think this administration is honest, all are in despair at the possibility of the use of nuclear weapons on Iran, and all of them think Dick Cheney combines the baleful qualities of incompetence and evil.
Bush's speech changes nothing for people like me. It tells us we can only expect more pressure to lower wages, more erosion of purchasing power, more dificulty in obtaining and paying for quality medical care, more efforts to discourage labor union membership, all talk and no action on the steadily building environmental crisis, and an old age beleagured by poverty and want.
For me his speech changes nothing. I dislike, distrust, and am wary of him for the same reasons now as at the beginning of his administration.
He said, "our job is to make life better for our fellow Americans, and help them build a future of hope and opportunity...", I want the same things. The big difference between me and him is he's lying and I'm not.