February Portraits

Athena, as of February 1, 2006.

More photos from today here.

State of the Union

At the risk of getting myself kicked out of the “Dubya Hata Playa” club — you know what? I would have booted Cindy Sheehan from the State of the Union too. You know why? Because wearing a t-shirt to the State of the Union is tacky. Yes, yes, she was wanting to make a political statement. Don’t care. You’re at the State of the Union. Dress appropriately. A nice pant suit with a big button that says “2,245 and how many more?” would have worked just fine, and if she got kicked out the news stories would still report what it said. Just because you’re protesting doesn’t mean you need to look like you just stepped out of a Berkeley organic food mart. (Update: Apparently Sheehan wasn’t the only one booted from the gallery last night for wearing a message-laden t-shirt, and this other t-shirt was worn by the wife of a Republican representative. Hopefully she was wearing pearls with the t-shirt.)

As for the State of the Union itself: Eh. I stopped watching the speeches because I can’t stand hearing the man attempt formal speakitude, and the transcript of the speech doesn’t move me much. There are parts to which I disagree, which is not surprising, but also parts to which I agree — which may surprise people — but for which I have zero confidence that this administration is equal to the task of moving on them. I’m always heartened to see an American president declare we’ve got to kick foreign oil, as an example, but I’m terrified that in the hands of the Bush folks the implementation of a plan encourage alternative power sources will end up causing the lot of us to have power only during sunlight hours, and none on alternate Tuesdays. Beware the incompetent armed with a good idea.

In point of fact Bush State of the Union addresses depress me, particularly because there are significant chunks of what he lays out in them that I can get behind. I want my president to do good things — even as I naturally oppose the things I see him do which I think are unjust or unwise — and I’m very sad that based on previous performance I work from the position that any good idea this administration has is doomed in the details. I’m not a fan of Bush, but as I’ve said before, this doesn’t require me to take satisfaction in the idea his administration’s lack of ability. I really wouldn’t mind Bush and his people doing the right things right. I’m just not holding my breath.

Update, 6:53pm: Capitol police admit they were wrong to boot Sheehan and Young for their t-shirts. Their only crimes were crimes of fashion.