I was shocked at the things that were coming out of Bush's mouth last night. He was talking about continuing to reform education, to increase the access of health care and reduce fraudulent lawsuits. He said he would veto any bills that include pork-barrel spending that were not debated and voted in Congress and wanted both parties to reduce the number of such projects (to which the Democrats have already cut in half in the past year).
Bush also said that he would, "send you a budget that terminates or substantially reduces 151 wasteful or bloated programs, totaling more than $18 billion. The budget that I'll submit will keep America on track for a surplus in 2012." That's great, but considering how the war in Iraq costs us $275 million/day Nat'l Priorities Project, which means $100 billion/year, we could instead not cut funding to perhaps essential programs.
He also took an unexpected turn to focus on the environment, saying that the US should invest in clean energy programs. However, he only talked about increasing the use of nuclear power (what nuclear waste?) and increased coal usage. He also wanted an international agreement to "slow, stop, and eventually reverse the growth of greenhouse gases. This agreement will be effective only if it includes commitments by every major economy and gives none a free ride." Now is he really going to go after the environment when he has rejected the Kyoto Protocol, opened up oil drilling in Alaska, and signed a weak energy bill a month or two ago? He also wanted to expand "funding for this type of ethical medical research...and we must also ensure that all life treated with the dignity it deserves." Judging from his past vetoes to not use embryonic stem cell research as well as use religion as the overruling authority on science, things still do not look too good for scientific research.
But then he spent the last half of the speech going back again to the war on terror and how we have to increase spending for Iraq and Afghanistan. He really got my hopes up before this; perhaps he was going to pursue programs and plans that would really help the country and go somewhat against his party in his last year as president. But I guess those hopes are all gone...until next year.
P.S. He was also kissed by Connecticut Congressmen Christopher Shays when he walked down the aisle.