Hope and Change: Take VI

by Victor Davis Hanson // NRO’s The Corner 

The anemic retread speech was mostly another yearly pep-talk version of the original “summer of recovery”/“millions of new green jobs” boilerplate, “big bank accounts” bad -ich-guy stuff, and “we’re out of Iraq”/close Guantanamo again.” Been there, done that. 

There is always the usual tics of any Obama speech: taking credit for something either he tried to stop (e.g., more natural-gas and oil production by cutting back federal leases and stopping Keystone), or warning us about some bad thing that he has accelerated (drones, unwarranted surveillance, incivility, etc.), and the flat-out untruths (Iran to reduce its enriched-uranium stockpiles, more college graduates to get those great college-only jobs, etc.), and the linguistic gymnastics (Iran is not installing advanced centrifuges; a slight 0.3 percentage point dip from the now serial 7 percent unemployment is putting Americans back to work, as the number of able-bodied Americans not working hits a record 90 million–plus, etc.; inequality and stagnant wages he deplores have soared to record levels under his programs).

Other than a half-hearted effort to praise Obamacare by navigating around its disasters, and claiming that setbacks abroad were victories, that was about it — an Obama hope-and-change campaign stump speech aimed at the failures of the Obama presidency.

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