January 29, 2008 6:01 AM

If you have to consider the answer for more than a nanosecond, you should probably just forfeit your voter registration card

‚Äö√Ñ√≤Is the country better off now than seven years ago?’

John Cole noted this morning, “I honestly cannot recall a State of the Union address which has received less hype.” Neither can I. Usually, even for lame-duck presidents, the SOTU is a pretty significant moment of political theater. I remember the last addresses for Reagan and Clinton drew quite a bit of attention, but going into tonight’s speech, no one, on either side, seems to care at all. I frequently get the sense the country is asking Bush, almost in unison, “You’re still here?” Of course, the SOTU invariably leads to some reflection and introspection. Today, for example, a reporter asked White House Press Secretary Dana Perino a very good question: “Is the country better off now than seven years ago?”

Honestly, I can’t believe that the answer to this question is even up for debate. By just about any conceivable non-partisan measuring stick, this country is in no way better off than it was seven years ago. In fact, by most measures we’re not even close to being better off. Our national debt has increase from $5.7 trillion on 1.20.01 to $9.2 trillion today. The median household income has dropped from $49,162 to $48,023. The price of gasoline has increased from a national average of $1.39/gallon to $3.07. The trade deficit has ballooned frrom $380 billion to $759 billion. I could go on, but I think you get the point…and it ain’t pretty.

Every President rides into office on a wave of good feeling, hopes, and aspirations. Every President wants to make his mark, to leave a legacy that will be remembered for leaving this country better for his time in the Oval Office. I have little doubt that Our Glorious and Benevolent Leader © felt the same optimism when he took the oath of office from Chief Justice William Rehnquist on 1.20.01. History has a way of sorting of statesmen and leaders from pretenders, though, and sadly for all of us, this sorry excuse for a human being President has been the biggest pretender since Richard Nixon.

Though I’ve never by any stretch of the imagination come close to supporting The Worst President EVER © , I was at least willing to give him the benefit of the doubt initially. After all, no one who cares about their homeland wants to see a President fail- especially as utterly and completely as this one has. Nonetheless, 9.11, while it may have been the best thing that could possibly have happened to BushWorld, it exposed this Administration for the cabal of thugs, criminals, and despots they truly are. We’re seven years into the Reign of Error © and only now are the American sheeple beginning to rouse from their slumber long enough to survey the damage.

The next President, who most likely will be a Democrat, will be hamstrung from the start. They’ll spend the bulk of their first term working to undo the damage done by eight years or corruption, ineptitude, and venality. One of the biggest and most enduring problems will continue to be the large numbers of Dominionist theocrats who have been installed in all layers of government. These people can, and may well, stifle a Democratic President with a legitimate mandate to change the way business is transacted in Washington. We may well be suffering the legacy of the Bush years for years to come.

So, is America better off than it was seven years ago? You tell me. The evidence is overwhelming, and as far as I’m concerned that evidence can lead to only one conclusion.


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This page contains a single entry by Jack Cluth published on January 29, 2008 6:01 AM.

My hero.... was the previous entry in this blog.

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