The Less 'Hoping & Dreaming', More 'Believing' State Of The Union Post-Mortem
President Obama unveiled 12 key executive actions in his 6,778 word tome this evening at a reading level that was lower than the average of George W. Bush's SOTUs and the same as Clinton's (Flesch-Kincaid 9.8). From 'raising the minimum wage' to 'myRA' savings plans ("a guaranteed return with no risk"?) and from redesigned high schools to teach real-world skills (like EBT-card-usage?) to increasing college opportunities (blowing that bubble even bigger), it was a corporate-bashing, hopeful-job-creating manifesto that had less "hopes" and "dreams" than MLK's speech, but more "believing."
Joe Biden loved it...
The speech summarized...in words...
for a quick comparison -
- MLK's "I have a dream" speech had 3 "believes", 4 "hopes", and 11 "dreams"...
- Tonight's SOTU had 10 "believes", only 1 "hope", and a disappointing 9 "dreams"
- Priorities for the Fed - Jobs 39 - 2 Stocks
- So much for inequality - Rich 1 - 1 Poor
and in headlines...
- *OBAMA URGES CONGRESS TO RAISE NATIONAL MINIMUM WAGE TO $10.10
- *OBAMA SEEKS TO LIMIT RETIREMENT TAX BREAKS FOR WEALTHIEST
- *OBAMA TO START 4 NEW MANUFACTURING INSTITUTES IN 2014
- *OBAMA TO MEET CEOS THIS WEEK ON HIRING LONG-TERM UNEMPLOYED
- *OBAMA REITERATES CALL TO END FANNIE, FREDDIE `AS WE KNOW THEM'
- *OBAMA ANNOUNCES 12 EXECUTIVE ACTIONS IN STATE OF UNION SPEECH
- *OBAMA TO RAISE FEDERAL CONTRACTOR MINIMUM WAGE TO $10.10/HR
- *OBAMA PROPOSES NEW INCENTIVES FOR ALTERNATIVE-FUEL TRUCKS
- *OBAMA SEEKS TO REVIVE EXPIRED TAX CREDIT FOR BIOFUELS
- *OBAMA SAYS IN STATE OF UNION `GIVE AMERICA A RAISE'
- *OBAMA PLANS INFRASTRUCTURE TAX CREDIT FOR ALTERNATIVE FUELS
- *OBAMA SEEKS TO CREATE BUSINESS ZONES AROUND FRACKING
- *OBAMA SAYS 2014 CAN BE `BREAKTHROUGH YEAR' FOR U.S.
- *OBAMA REITERATES VETO THREAT ON POSSIBLE NEW IRAN SANCTIONS
The 12 Key Executive actions...
The President’s top priority remains ensuring middle class Americans feel secure in their jobs, homes and budgets. To build real, lasting economic security the President will work with Congress and act on his own to expand opportunity for all so that every American can get ahead and have a shot at creating a better life for their kids.
Middle Class Security & Opportunity at Work
Raising the Minimum Wage through Executive Order to $10.10 for Federal Contract Workers. The President will also continue to urge Congress to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 across the nation because no one who works full-time should have to raise their family in poverty.
Creating “myRA” – A New Starter Savings Account to Help Millions Save for Retirement. The President will take executive action to create a simple, safe and affordable “starter” retirement savings account available through employers to help millions of Americans save for retirement. This savings account would be offered through a familiar Roth IRA account and, like savings bonds, would be backed by the U.S. government.
Building a 21st Century Workplace for America’s Working Families. The President will host a summit on Working Families to highlight the policies that will ensure America’s global economic competitiveness by supporting working families; showcase companies doing exemplary work in this space; and highlight model laws and policies from cities and states across the country in areas such as discrimination, flexibility and paid leave.
Jobs & Economic Opportunity
Launching Four New Manufacturing Institutes in 2014. American manufacturers are adding jobs for the first time in over a decade. To build on this progress, the President will launch four new institutes through executive action this year. These institutes will build on the four the President has already announced.
Government-wide Review of Federal Training Programs to Help Americans Get Skills in Demand for Good Jobs. The President is directing the Vice President to conduct a full review of our federal job-training system to make sure programs are higher performing and driven by the needs of employers which are hiring so that they lead to well-paying jobs. In the coming months, we will help community colleges build partnerships with businesses so that as industries’ skills needs change community colleges can quickly adapt.
Partnering With Many of America’s Leading CEOs to Help the Long-Term Unemployed. Later this week, as part of an ongoing effort that the Administration began several months ago, the President will convene a group of CEOs and other leaders around supporting best practices for hiring the long-term unemployed.
Expanding Apprenticeships by Mobilizing Business, Community Colleges and Labor. This year the President will mobilize business leaders, community colleges, Mayors and Governors, and labor leaders to increase the number of innovative apprenticeships in America.
Increasing Fuel Efficiency for Trucks. The President will propose new incentives for medium- and heavy-duty trucks that run on alternative fuels like natural gas and the infrastructure needed to deploy them, and the Administration will set new fuel efficiency standards for heavy duty vehicles.
Partnering with States, Cities and Tribes to Move to Energy Efficiency and Cleaner Power. The President has directed his Administration to work to cut carbon pollution through clean energy and energy efficiency.
Schools & Education Opportunity
Connecting 20 Million Students in 15,000 Schools to the Best Technology to Enrich K-12 Education. The FCC is making a major down-payment on the President’s ConnectED goal of connecting 99% of students to next-generation broadband and wireless technology within five years. In the coming weeks the President will announce new philanthropic partnerships – including by companies like Apple, Microsoft, Sprint and Verizon.
Redesigning High Schools to Teach the Real-World Skills That Kids Need. This year, the Administration will announce the winners of a $100 million competition supporting redesigned high schools that give high school students access to real-world education and skills.
Increasing College Opportunity and Graduation. Building on the success of the President and First Lady’s College Opportunity Summit, in the coming months the President is asking colleges and universities, nonprofits and businesses to work with him on ways to improve students’ access to and completion of higher education.
And a key paragraph for all (even Tom Perkins?)...
Today, after four years of economic growth, corporate profits and stock prices have rarely been higher, and those at the top have never done better. But average wages have barely budged. Inequality has deepened. Upward mobility has stalled. The cold, hard fact is that even in the midst of recovery, too many Americans are working more than ever just to get by – let alone get ahead. And too many still aren’t working at all.
Our job is to reverse these tides. It won’t happen right away, and we won’t agree on everything. But what I offer tonight is a set of concrete, practical proposals to speed up growth, strengthen the middle class, and build new ladders of opportunity into the middle class. Some require Congressional action, and I’m eager to work with all of you. But America does not stand still – and neither will I. So wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunity for more American families, that’s what I’m going to do.
Ron Paul sums it up...
Well, I certainly didn't learn anything new from this sp
Full speech below:
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