The whole State of the Union has grown way too “cult of personality” for me. Like the General Secretary’s Annual Address to the Supreme Soviet, you see “spontaneous” 10-minute standing ovations after Comrade President introduces the next Five Year Plan (only in our case, it’s “here’s platitudes about stuff I want to do this year.”) This isn’t a Bush issue, it’s been going on since I can remember; but still, it makes me uncomfortable. It’s just another blatant sign of our inexorable slide into authoritarianism.
Thomas Jefferson wouldn’t deliver the State of the Union in person; he thought it too monarchical, so he mailed in his address instead.
Now I understand why. The 20th (and now 21st) century Presidential Address looks like the Imperial Senate in Rome. The founding fathers would be appalled by this.
Also they’d be appalled by Bush’s proposals tonight:
- shattering the Fourth Amendment with warrantless wiretapping and retroactive immunity for illegal wiretappers
- calls for further federal control over local schools
- demanding we impose indefinite imperial rule over far-flung localities
- saber-rattling against Persia and dictating they submit to our terms, when Iranians are unable to threaten U.S. soil.