The State of the President’s View of the Union

It has not been a good week for the future of American politics. First, the largest gathering of Republican conservatives voted overwhelmingly to have Donald Trump lead the party into combat in 2024. Then, President Joe Biden used his State of the Union Address to ask congress to pass his Left’s laundry list of items to expand the entitlement state, exacerbate inflation, and divorce America from the global economy to an extent not seen since protectionists seized control of American economic policy a century ago.

Trump is poised for another assault on American democracy, Biden poised to respond with an equally lethal assault on the nation’s economy. The Devil vs. the Dunce, 2024.

Plans to continue discouraging development of America’s oil and gas reserves remain in place. The Keystone XL pipeline that would bring more than enough crude to replace any embargoed Russian oil is not to be re-opened. The government will continue to fight in the courts for regulations that discourage drilling. But fear not.  Biden has ordered about three days’ worth of crude supply released from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, and there are 500,000 electric vehicle charging stations in America’s future, although these are not meant to encourage Tesla, its leading manufacturer of electric vehicles, unfortunately made in its accursed non-union factories.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia, an American ally that watched in horror our shambolic exit from Afghanistan and is watching as America edges closer to deal with Saudi enemy Iran, decided it has nothing to gain from such an uncertain ally by expanding its crude production. In a meeting that lasted only 10 minutes, the Saudi-led OPEC cartel voted not to increase long-held production plans – with the Saudis not even producing its entire quota. In choosing between being feared and loved, the U.S. ended with neither from the Saudis.

As for inflation….

  • Prices charged by pharmaceutical will be forced down, reducing funds available for research by companies that developed vaccines in record time and on which Biden is counting to implement “Cancer Moonshot” that is intended to halve the death rate from that disease.
  • Wages will be forced up by legislation as a part of a program to lower production costs.
  • Consumer purchasing power will be increased by child tax credits and other entitlements although the economy is unable to meet existing demand.
  • Corporate taxes will be raised to encourage increased corporate investment in American manufacturing facilities.

It would be unkind to attribute what our British friends would call this dog’s breakfast of a policy – a confused mess on this side of the Atlantic — to Biden’s age, although his own vice president, seated behind him, could not control herself from mouthing a correction when the President said, “Putin may circle Kyiv with tanks, but he’ll never gain the hearts and souls of the Iranian people.” Coherence has never been a hallmark of his political positions, even in his younger days.

The Washington Post, friendly to Biden without lapsing into the sycophancy of the New York Times, said it well. Biden deserves credit for unifying our allies, but “He did not offer a vision of how NATO could counter the Russian threat in the long run. Instead, he pivoted to a long list of familiar domestic proposals … basically rehashed spending initiatives…”. Pity.