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Jan 14, 201609:29 AMBlaska's Bring It!

with David Blaska

Obama’s State of the Union speech introduced his successors: Ryan and Haley

(page 1 of 2)

Once again, Your Humble Squire goes off-message.

I thought the president’s State of the Union Tuesday night was strong. He promised a short speech (it wasn’t) so the audience could hop the overnight to Iowa. That was genuinely funny, not “pause for laugh here” funny.

Barack Obama is correct to say that democracy “does not work if we think our political opponents are unpatriotic.” Too many of my Tea Party friends are guilty of that. Too many Lefties conjure elaborate Koch Bros. conspiracy theories instead of countering with arguments of their own.

Obama took some of the blame for not bringing Americans together and, in a passive aggressive way, regretted that he was not an Abraham Lincoln — while suggesting that only Lincoln could have brought the two sides together. Wrong. Lincoln was America’s most divisive president. The nation did, after all, split in two. Not that divisiveness is always pernicious. Our national political divide is not a-historical.

The man did reach out to Paul Ryan for harnessing conservative principles to combat poverty. I continue to think Ryan’s message of optimism will launch him into the presidency.

Both Obama and Nikki Haley struck out against Donald Trump and Ted Cruz. Trump is a demagogue, as is Bernie Sanders. But at least he breaks through the over-scripted candidate speak, as did Ronald Reagan. People are hungry for candidates who will level with them.

In “Notes on a Phenomenon,” Mark Steyn, our modern day Ambrose Bierce, bemoans “… the stilted robotic artificiality of the eternally on-message candidate — which is one of the things that normal people hate about politics.”

What is “authenticity” in contemporary politics? Is it a man who parlayed a routine Congressional career into a lucrative gig at Lehman Brothers presenting himself as the son of a mailman? [That would be John Kasich.] Or is it a billionaire with a supermodel wife dropping the pretense that he’s no different from you stump-toothed losers in the rusting double-wides?

Did JFK pretend to be Everyman? Why does Hillary? Paul Ryan actually IS.


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Comments, page 1 of 2 1 2 Next »
Jan 14, 2016 09:41 am
 Posted by  Anonymous


and your an expert, how?

Jan 14, 2016 11:07 am
 Posted by  madisonexpat

"My biggest regret is the rancor in our political conversation. I blame the Republicans."

The only thing I'll miss about President Obama is this kind of inadvertent comedy.

60% of the country say the USA is on the wrong track and rightfully see our emperor is naked. Some 20 % say, "Lovely suit, your worship."

Jan 14, 2016 12:06 pm
 Posted by  Anonymous

Your Tea Party friends, but not you? Kudos for not referring to the president as the "current occupant" this time.

Jan 14, 2016 12:08 pm
 Posted by  Anonymous

By comparing Trump to your beloved Ronald Reagan, you're inching closer by the minute to a full-throated endorsement. Good luck with that one.

Jan 14, 2016 12:37 pm
 Posted by  Anonymous

A few days after the mass sexual assaults in Cologne and other German cities, a Syrian refugee was interviewed on CNN. He claimed that many of the young men he knew who took advantage of Europe's open door policy on immigration had the attitude that since European women were notoriously "loose," it would be easy to get a "white, preferably blonde girlfriend." When that didn't happen, they took matters into their own hands during New Year's Eve celebrations, confident that their refugee status would shield them from legal retaliation. Now there's a real concern that Merkel's party will be defeated in the next round of elections as well as a well as an anti-immigrant backlash in Germany, Denmark, Sweden, and Finland, where citizens are finally recognizing the suicidal folly of opening their borders to people whose attitudes and values are antithetical to those of Western democracies.

Not so long ago, immigrants to the US were eager to assimilate--and absolutely determined that their children do so. But those immigrants at least shared some common ground with their new country. Immigrants from Muslim countries share NO common ground with American democracy and in many cases are hostile to it. They're here strictly for economic reasons (or like the hoards of young men from Syria, to avoid military service). It's time to recognize this unpleasant truth--yes, I'm looking at you, liberals. Your Sesame Street view of the world would be amusing if it weren't so dangerous. How is welcoming Middle Eastern refugees with open arms any less radical than Trump's call to ban them altogether?

Jan 14, 2016 02:22 pm
 Posted by  David Blaska

Hey kids! Tune your crystal sets to Wisconsin Public Radio Friday, Jan. 15, from 8 to 9 a.m. (A date that will live ... in INFAMY!) That's when Your Humble Squire takes on Bill Lueders of The Progressive Magazine. Let the bodies hit the floor!

Jan 14, 2016 02:36 pm
 Posted by  Anonymous

The longer Trump leads the polls the better chance we have of electing another Clinton. If that is the choice presented I'll hold my nose and vote D.

Jan 14, 2016 03:24 pm
 Posted by  Anonymous

This comes from a guy who had Walker in first place as the next President. LOL. Sorry bro... you have no cred!

Hey Dave - Care to comments on that? Didn't think so. That would take integrity and honesty. Oh wait.....I am sure you have some really great explanation cough cough, I mean excuse.

Jan 14, 2016 03:26 pm
 Posted by  Anonymous

You seem to find the worst in everything. Unfortunate.

Jan 14, 2016 03:50 pm
 Posted by  Anonymous

Delusional as ever, Blaska. The unfortunate truth is Republicans and the GoP will never allow themselves to admit this country is 1000 times better off after President Obama's two terms then it was after President Bush II's two terms. This administration has done us all a great service.

On a side note, Paul Ryan is the pinnacle of what is wrong with the Republican party. Keep on believing he will be your savior.

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About This Blog

Raised on a farm near Sun Prairie, David Blaska is a recovering liberal who spent 18 years in daily newspapers, including 12 at The Capital Times in Madison as a reporter and editor. He served Gov. Tommy Thompson as acting press secretary in 1998 and is a veteran and survivor of 19 years in state government. He served 12 years on the Dane County Board of Supervisors. From December 2007 to November 2011 he wrote the consistently popular "Blaska's Blog" for Isthmus online's "The Daily Page" until, he says, the intolerant liberals ran him off. He blogs from Madison.

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