Finishing What He Started

Obama + Bush = Obamush

A common discussion today about the state of United States of America is how messed up the economy. This can be commonly attributed to previous president George W. Bush. He can be deemed credible wasting “trillions of dollars” during the Iraq and Afghanistan war, weakening the national economy, as well as also weakening worker regulations. Interestingly enough, both of these, as well as other acts of Bush were things Obama talked about focussing on during his 2014 State of the Union Address. So slick this: I’m going to compare the two presidents’ SOTUs.

President Bush’s SOTU speech in 2002 was shortly after the horrendous event of 9/11, so he focussed a lot on terrorism. He proclaimed “Our progress is a tribute to the spirit of the Afghan people, to the resolve of our coalition, and to the might of the United States military. When I called our troops into action, I did so with complete confidence in their courage and skill… Even 7,000 miles away, across oceans and continents, on mountaintops and in caves — you will not escape the justice of this nation”, showing how crucial he feels preventing future terrorist acts are. Even though his acts were valid, he went to extreme measures.. In his address in 2002, he exclaimed “My budget includes the largest increase in defense spending in two decades — because while the price of freedom and security is high, it is never too high. Whatever it costs to defend our country, we will pay.”, which is pretty extreme. He speaks of the country’s budget as if he’s saving up himself, and that he can personally afford to protect one of his most prized possessions.

Basically, he was doing too much. Though working for a brighter future with Iraq was intended to have positive results, the plan backfired. According to Fox News, America has wasted $60 million in tax dollars supporting reconstruction in the presumed terrorist bearing nations. This is an injustice to the American people, and what may be considered to be even sadder is that the nations we’ve spent not only so much money, but many priceless in, are still going through corruption and reconstruction.

In Obama’s most recent SOTU, he clearly stated that he wants to “stop large scale deployments that weaken our strengths” (clearly referencing Bush), since that’s what the terrorists want so they can attack the weakened eagle spirit of America. He has also released 60,000 men from Afghanistan home, and is working towards releasing more. Our current president realizes how crucial it is to capitalize on our past flaws. President Obama has also brought up that we need to close Guantanamo Bay, the facility that Bush sent terrorists to, in order to sustain positive American ideals and stay true to our nation.

“America’s Weakened Eagle Spirit”

I found it interesting that both presidents had something to say about the job and energy crisis. President Bush stated “Good jobs also depend on reliable and affordable energy. This Congress must act to encourage conservation, promote technology, build infrastructure, and it must act to increase energy production at home so America is less dependent on foreign oil.Good jobs depend on expanded trade. Selling into new markets creates new jobs, so I ask Congress to finally approve trade promotion authority. On these two key issues, trade and energy, the House of Representatives has acted to create jobs, and I urge the Senate to pass this legislation.”. Obama similarly stated that job reform is necessary, along with the promotion of technology, and at home production. I found it interesting that Bush decided to rely on Congress, whereas Obama constantly stated that he was acting within his own abilities to get things done, and that to make them even more effective, he would need the support of Congress. Obama also stated that we are now closer to energy independence than ever before, and will work towards usage of natural gas as a replacement to fossil fuels like oil. It seems like Mr. Obama took Bush’s idea and allowed it to evolve.

“Idea Evolution”

I noticed that both speeches had a little audience emotional appeal that were military related. Bush stated “Last month, at the grave of her husband, Micheal, a CIA officer and marine who died in Mazar-e-Sharif, Shannon Spann said these words of farewell, “Semper Fi, my love.” Shannon is with us tonight. Shannon, I assure you and all who have lost a loved one that our cause is just, and our country will never forget the debt we owe Micheal and all who gave their lives for freedom.”, and Obama gave his heart touching story about Cory Remberg, a man injured in Afghanistan during his TENTH DEPLOYMENT.

At first I’m like aww man this is sad, but why is the Prez doing this to me? But analyzing the similar tactics of Bush, I have come to this conclusion: this appeal is to be used to give a little extra to their claim. Bush wanted more military actions and had almost an Uncle Sam approach towards his speech, so he mentioned a man who died in war and his wife along with that “our country will never forget the debt we owe..”, evoking positive emotions of listeners to the works of America’s fighters. Barack Obama brought up Cory because he wanted to express how harmful the fighting in Afghanistan has been, causing the listeners to want to continue to send troops home. And can I just say this again; TENTH DEPLOYMENT.

Studying our nation’s leaders is interesting. You see improvements, but recently I’ve began to notice a lot of repeated flaws, especially leaving messes for future presidents to clean up. Even though Bush left a massive sum of mess for America’s future, I feel it is inevitable that Barack Obama will do the same, but hopefully in a lot smaller scale.


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