State of the Union and 'haters'

By Reade Brower | Feb 20, 2014

“This country has come to feel the same when Congress is in session as when the baby gets hold of a hammer.” — Will Rogers, humorist and writer (1879-1935)

"Don’t let the facts stand in the way," is all I could think as I read what the Obama “haters” had to say the day after his State of the Union address.

My loathing of politics is highest when it gets in the way of common sense and human decency.

I like our two-party system, with the fringes also being heard and counted. What I don’t like is that people stand in the way of progress for their own selfish gain. When defeated, they can’t move on and work with the results.

Personally, politics aside, I have always thought that our president is an incredible orator. He speaks from the heart, with passion, and with clarity of mission. In his presidency, he has not had all the answers, but he has tried to move our country forward, and he has compassion for the lower and middle class.

Even as Republicans block most of this administration’s initiatives, the fight seems to be paying off. The fact that we are bringing down the deficit without creating inflation seems to fall on the deaf ears of his detractors. The unemployment rate is continuing to decline with continuing modest gains to our GNP. The stock market rose from 6,700 points in 2009 to 15,700 on the day I am writing this. That is an increase of somewhere close to 150 percent. The unemployment rate has fallen to 6.7 percent from a high of nearly 10 percent, a drop of 30 percent.

The growth of our economy is slow, but I think slowing the pendulum and creating sustainable growth is the best method. Slow growth and steady progress meets my common sense strategy agenda.

I may be part of the media, but I am not always a fan. What they report is sometimes less about the facts than the spin. For instance, after President Obama’s speech I wondered if he would get positive marks from the people of America. I Googled “Obama speech reaction poll” and four headlines jumped out at me.

The first was, “State of the Union poll gives Obama high marks." Another cited a CNN instant polling that found 76 percent of Americans viewed the speech somewhat or very positive. A CBS headline read, “83 percent of speech watchers approve."

On the other side, another headline read, “Obama’s speech fails to enthuse the majority of Americans,” even though in the body of the article it cited that 44 percent enthusiastically endorsed the speech and acknowledged that 32 percent were somewhat positive about it. Even with similar facts, the headline and the way the material was presented helped skew the perception of the same event. What a shame.

I am trying to understand the “haters,” those who stand in the way of everything just for the sake of politics. I tend to believe that most of the push back to Obama it is not racial, but rather a self-indulgent, “we know what’s best." This is the same attitude that ruins many a church message for me, which is “believe in my God, or you will not go to heaven."

I first watched when Hillary Clinton came on the scene as First Lady and followed her efforts to create a health care program for America. It seemed to me, even back then, that she was thwarted on principle, not on merit. It is reminiscent of what is happening with the Affordable Health Care Act now; if it is bad, fix it, rather than fight it for the sake of politics.

It is surprising that our president, with all the haters and detractors, has made any progress with health care, our economy, or anything for that matter.

Wouldn’t it be something if, instead of constant interference and push back, he had some blocking and some help in the backfield? Just think what our country could accomplish if everyone were rowing in the same direction and protecting the quarterback.

This is not a Republican or a Democrat problem; both parties participate in the nonsense and create logjams that inhibit us and hold us back.

Stop the nonsense.


Turn the Page. Peace out, Reade

Reade Brower can be reached at:

Comments (4)
Posted by: Richard McKusic, Sr. | Feb 23, 2014 07:20

Thanks again, Reade, for an excellent, encouraging article that tackles the root of the problem. Reminds me of the old Pogo cartoon line: "We have seen the enemy and it is US!" :)

Posted by: Susan P Reitman | Feb 22, 2014 20:46

OBAMA CARE "If you like your insurance you can keep it." "If you like your doctor you can keep him."  The only problem with the "Incredible Orator" is everything that comes out of his mouth is a lie!!!!!

Posted by: Richard McKusic, Sr. | Feb 22, 2014 10:16

There are some things happening here in mid-coast Maine that, I believe, will change some of that hate to HOPE. It all begins with each of us with the ripple effect. Am learning myself that if it doesn't build up, shut up.

On Monday evenings there are nine different denominations participating in "Faith and Fun with Friends" at Woodlands Long Term Care facility. Many have never worked together with any other church before yet we have FUN celebrating our commonality and ignoring the differences with mutual respect and acceptance.   

Posted by: Francis Mazzeo, Jr. | Feb 22, 2014 09:36

I remember a time when after the presidential election the winner was accepted and respected as our leader. We saluted the flag, said the Lord's pray and respected our elders. All I can think of is the General Electric slogan "progress is our most important product". The last G E refrigerator I purchased the door sagged unrepairably after six months. It was replaced once but the second one did the same. Reminds me of how society has progressed. Makes me think back to how carefree my childhood was, thanks to my parents, and how different it is for today's youth.

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