Friday, December 17, 2004

Watching and Listening

I was in my car last night and turned to C-SPAN radio, which I rarely do anymore, but nonetheless, happened upon the audio coverage of the Social Security conference and the President's speech on the same. I have to say I was mildly impressed. If nothing else, he spoke as someone who had some knowledge of the issues--however distorted--and as if he really believed in what he was pushing. If I was a non-biased person, who didn't follow the issues or know anything about Social Security, I'm tempted to say I might have found his presentation almost compelling in a simple kinda way.

Then I caught his act on televised C-SPAN. Yeah. This was the President Bush from the first debate bad. He looked like he was reading from the 1999 playbook, tossing out blithe one liners in an uncomfortable, verbal cut and paste kinda style. At this point the subjects for discussion were tort "reform" and the need for making permanent his tax plans. I imagine he believes in this stuff, too, but he didn't seem into it. When referring to the need to forever end the estate "death" tax for millionaires, of which the first $5 million or so at least is already exempted or was before he rode into town, he even trotted out that most pathetic of tried and true victimologies, The Family Farm. "If we don't end the estate tax, all our Family Farms will disappear", and all like that, forgetting for a moment our vast unfreemarketlike agribusiness welfare subsidy system, which has pretty much put the kabosh to the 16 or so family farms still left in the USA, but that's for another time, and for another conference, when the subject is something other than the economy, and Social Security, and how we just need more of that good old fashion Republican gospel of tax cuts, less government, and individual responsibility and everything will be alright drivel.

When calling for changing the malpractice system (or at least that's what I think he was talking about), he acknowledged a drug store owner or something in the audience from Mississippi of all places who had apparently become a part of some class action lawsuit that caused her and hers problems. Now, there wasn't any mention of what the case was about, or what the responsibility of the business owner in question may have had. Nothing. Just a bunch of pap about small town bidnesses, located in good ole southern town squares, serving the people, that shouldn't have to deal with this stuff. The audience seemed to like it, though.

Anyway, I'm thinking of writing more about the President's style, how he's handled, in the sense of what Democrats can learn. An odd angle for someone like me to be taking, I know, but there are probably points to poinder about how Democrats can make use of certain strategies and such, but I don't feel like it right now. Will think it over and get back to you.

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