MASTER OF DECEIT “They misunderestimated me.” Well, Dubya, I guess we did. Most Americans wanted to hear how you are going to reduce unemployment. We wanted to hear your plans for fixing exploding healthcare costs for families. We wanted to hear your plans to balance that cherry bomb of a budget and how you are going to get our soldiers out of Iraq, now that over 500 have died. You’re not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but at least you could try to be an honest dolt. In the State of the Union address that many hope will be your last, all you could cough up was more fearmongering and rosy predictions with theatrically transparent proposals. Obviously, your stage managers had explained this was a kick-off for re-election, instead of an address to explain the present state of the country and what can be done to make it stronger. You disparaged the average, middle-classer’s ability to see your intent on driving more nails into our coffin. Perhaps you misunderestimate us. Your answer to the job loss dilemma is to blithely proclaim that “America enjoys a growing economy” and “We must respond by helping more Americans gain the skills to find good jobs in our new economy.” Those comments are deceitful, because if the economy is growing and being enjoyed by so many Americans, bankruptcy rates would not be the highest in historic record. If helping Americans gain skills in finding good jobs is your goal, you would not continue to cut funding for programs that would provide such job training. What you didn’t say was that your corporate donors still moving jobs overseas at bullet rate. For example, last week, IBM supposedly added 15,000 jobs to their payroll. Guess how many were in the U.S.? 4,500. Additionally, they moved several thousand offshore, ending up with an actual net loss for American workers. So where is the growth? When your daddy ran for election and stated that healthcare costs were not a problem, he was out of touch yet honest in his callousness. To the contrary, you dishonestly pose as compassionate with average working folks. Your administration’s answer to the problem of spiraling healthcare costs is to establish so-called health savings accounts, which would allow workers to place a woefully inadequate amount of money into medical tax-free savings accounts in the hope that their family members never get ill and they can get their money back tax-free. Gloom, despair and agony on the family that has to go the hospital once a decade with this plan. What two income family, who is living hand to mouth, can put aside money to save for anything, let alone something as expensive as healthcare? How can the middle-class, who struggles to pay mortgages and credit card bills, suddenly find ways to put money into accounts to be used for future doctor visits and medication? Sounds like the “save to own” healthcare reduction plan means “you’re on your own” when it comes to the staggering costs of medical care. The budget deficit is approaching $500 billion, yet such a taboo subject was considered off limits by your speech writers. As usual, however, a public effusion of your personal religious beliefs and the suggestion that they become public policy was no problem. The subject that marriage should be between one man and one woman was raised in a cynical attempt to distract voters from the real problems of war, job losses, and deficits. You failed to mention the proposed $1.5 million program that will give government money to churches so they can attempt to teach interpersonal skills to those who are unhappy in their one man, one woman marriage by forcing taxpayers, who are barely hanging on, to sacrifice hard earned tax dollars for another phony faith-based program. This crock of the union play will require everyone to pay for religious counseling and indoctrination. Last year, in your address, you claimed the United States needed to invade Iraq because Saddam Hussein had assembled the world’s most dangerous weapons and intended to use them very soon. You said Iraq had sought to buy significant quantities of uranium from Africa. Now, the world knows those claims were a pack of lies. In fact, Saddam was in a spider hole and no weapons had been amassed. You and your buddies decided to hang some wallpaper by telling Americans that its soldiers had really been sent to Iraq to capture Saddam and install democratic government. This charade must stop. It is time for our military, who is trained to defend this country in the event of an attack, to stop the invasions and occupations of other countries for the political whims of a misguided and deceitful leadership. We have no defense if our soldiers are constantly consumed with the task of nation building. We are not safer if we are told to live like Chicken Littles consulting color codes to determine our collective level of anxiety. One of the questions posed to voters before this year’s State of the Union address was “Have things changed since the State of the Union address of 2003? Unfortunately, war, the soaking of middle income families, abandonment of the working poor, alienation of the world community and the continued destruction and relocation of American jobs seems to be the never ending Bush legacy. With this presidency, the dark reality is the more things change, the more they stay the same.

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