Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Inauguration Reaction

The university had a live feed of the inauguration in the theater in
the student center, so I stopped by to watch it.

I was impressed by the speech. It was the speech of a rational
centrist, not a liberal activist. It was, at the very least, a
masterful bit of politics.

In the opening, he thanked Bush for a good transition. ( I have read
elsewhere that the Bush administration did a very good job at helping
the incoming people. )

He made the point that "Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching
network of violence and hatred." a comment that will no doubt disturb

The line "it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things
– some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labor,
who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and
freedom." could have been written by Ayn Rand.

He made a point to put Vietnam veterans in the same category as those
of all other wars, making the implicit statement that it was an
equally worthwhile war: "For us, they fought and died, in places like
Concord and Gettysburg; Normandy and Khe Sahn."

I liked the sound of "Where the answer is no, programs will end." when
discussing the size of government.

Of course, the cynical response is that Obama feels free to tailor his
speech to impress moderates, because his base will be impressed no
matter what he does. A lot of people did seem to have fairly
emotional reactions to the speech; I am not sure how much of the
content they processed.

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