EDITORIAL: Bush address replete with impossible goals

Heather Edmunds

America is a fine country—very capable and resilient. President Bush was absolutely right about that in his State of the Union Address. Is it, however, so capable that it would be able concurrently to win the war against terrorism, drastically increase military spending, double spending on homeland security, pay for an economic stimulus plan, increase unemployment benefits, improve healthcare services, decrease prescription drug costs for our elderly, reform our educational system, create affordable energy, decrease dependency on foreign oil, make the tax cut permanent, improve the environment, keep Social Security viable, crack down on Corporate America, provide a viable farm policy, increase funding for U.S. volunteer corps, and change American culture…all while “restraining spending” and being “fiscally responsible”? I do not think I am a being skeptical in saying that G.W.’s goals area a bit lofty. All Americans hope for and dream of the America that President Bush presented. Of course Americans want to succeed in eliminating terrorist threats while sacrificing none of our energy or money to do so. A true war effort cannot be made unless the people of America make a contribution. Cutting taxes does not seem like a viable way to pay for a war. Telling people that the way to save the country is by going to the mall and spending money is not reasonable. That is precisely why his speech was a political success. For the most part, the nation is behind G.W. in the War Against Terrorism and he knows that both parties need to support him if they want to succeed as well. If the Democrats attack his unrealistic goals directly, they will commit political suicide. Plus, he seems to be supporting typically Democratic issues: Social Security, limits on corporate America, healthcare, the environment, the list goes on. President Bush has an 83 percent approval rating and he is successfully using it to get the country to support his agenda. There is only one problem—it is impossible.

President Bush’s speech contained some very imperative commentary on the importance of our war efforts, yet he never told us how his foreign and domestic goals could be accomplished simultaneously. Considering the state of our economy, it seems unlikely that Congress will be able to afford all of the proposals he made. G.W. never gave any figures or hard data to prove that his objectives can be met. He simply used rhetoric to show that he cares about every interest in America. At first glance it is easy to agree with President Bush because he supports everything that Americans want. I only hope that Americans realize that creating a fair budget will not be as simple as President Bush’s State of the Union Address.