I thought Bush's speech was surprisingly lackluster, compared to the bold new visions of the next four years we were promised. In fact, the only idea we haven't heard before (i.e. idea that actually had a policy direction attached to it) was the "let small firms buy health coverage at the discount of large firms"--a proposal so piddling and ineffective I have no doubt it will never see daylight again. But it kinda sounded real, didn't it?

They seemed unwilling to really commit to the 'ownership society' thing, maybe becuase they already scrapped it once and are bummed they couldn't come up with anything new, or maybe becuase they never resigned themselves to the fact they couldn't use the "compassionate conservative" formulation again. I see them getting frustrated like so: "I mean, we made people forget about the WMDs rationale for the war, why can't we make them believe we never used compassionate conservative before? That was sooo good!" Although in their defense, I will admit that the ownership society thing is a lot harder to explain, and would involve a lot more effort and math to pretend to implement it. Perhaps they tire of keeping up the appearances of potemkin domestic agendas?


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