I watched the State of the Union tonight. I almost felt bad for Clinton. Having to walk into that room knowing they were all wondering when they'd be able to feed off of your dead political carcass. Now for a quick rundown (to be cleaned up later, when I don't have so much work looming in front of me)- "Let's save Social Security"- Whatever. Let's make sure we have enough money to pay for current obligations and let me the hell out. There are all sorts of exceptions to mandatory SS participation (state employees, for example). Let's give this option to the whole country. I'd still be happy to pay a point or two to "save" the idgits who, in spite of this opportunity, still don't figure it out by 65. I'm just not happy to pay 7 points. "Raise minimum wage" - don't you just love the way an entire half of the room stayed silent on that one? Or are they busy trying to come up with new "dire consequences" like those that never materialized last time? "More education benefits" Excuse me, Mr. President, how can you stand up there and talk about his when you've reduced the net aid available to college students? "100,000 new teachers!" Kinda like 100K more cops but without the guns? Let's concentrate on getting *good* teachers. "End social promotion". Hell yeah. The summer I taught, I had a fifth grader named Edward who couldn't write his own fucking name. I cried that night. "Let's raise cigarette prices to reduce teen smoking" Please. I don't care what kind of taxes you put on cigarettes, just don't pretend like it'll reduce smoking. Let these idgits kill themselves, and refuse medicare/aid payments for the treatment. They knew the risks when they started, and if they honestly didn't, they're probably not going to survive for long anyway. "Vote on the nominations for judges" Thank you. Republicans clamor and complain about a poor and backed up judicial system. Well no shit- if there aren't any judges, no cases get heard. Or do ya'll want to privitize that, too? The solider from Bosnia got the longest applause out of anyone (including the President). That's how it should be. Endorsing the nuclear testing comprehensive ban. Are we *still* waiting on this? "Pay the UN debt" Uh, hello? It's not like the UN could ever force the US to take any action. Why must we antagonize over a few hundred million dollars? (I know, Jesse Helms, but I keep hoping he takes up smoking soon). "Let's fund the next generation of the Internet" Anyone else notice that absolutely no one in the room had any idea about what he was talking about? "Let's pay for the new space station"- While I'm a bit of a realist, I like some wonderment every once in a while. I hope this works out.