Noonan of Arcadia
Peggy finally comes out of the closet:
And I believed them, because I am an idiot.
Okay. She was being sarcastic, but her point seems to be that politicians shouldn’t get up in front of cameras and talk about their accomplishments…
Back to the senators. Why did they put on that performance the other day? Yes, it was sheer exuberant egotism; it was the excitement of the TV lights; it was their sly conviction that if they laud themselves they will be appearing to laud the institution; and it was, no doubt, the counsel of their advisers that in the magic medium of television, if you declare you are a “hero” often enough people will come to associate the word “hero” with you. Advisers, you must stop telling them this. Please.
…unless, of course, it’s a prime-time spectacle.
George Bush finally began his second term on Wednesday night with an address that marked the return of the Bush of the stump, the Bush who was re-elected president three months ago and whom the nation knows well. His State of the Union address underscored that he meant what he said when he ran: Efforts to move against junk lawsuits, protect marriage and reform Social Security are all on the table. America continues as a friend of liberty throughout the world. The speech was marked by an air not of insistence but of persuasion.
George Bush made it clear he does not intend to cooperate with the tradition whereby second terms are all anticlimax enlivened by scandal. He will not be at the mercy of history. He means to continue doing big things.
This was the plainspoken Bush of old. The state of our union is “confident and strong.” We must be “good stewards” of the economy, must “renew” and “update” “great institutions,” will try to make the tax code more coherent and just. Refreshingly, he called for “spending discipline”; he said he wants to “cut the deficit in half” by the time he leaves office.
…maybe she wasn’t kidding about the ‘idiot’ part.