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Episode Two: ‘Obamavision TV’

February 25, 2009 9:19 AM

President Barack Obama took to the nation’s airwaves last night, addressing a joint session of the House and Senate.

Barack Obama Addresses Congress

The morning after, critics are praising his speech, noting how telegenic he is, but in the end concluding that the president didn’t provide any real detail on how he was going to kick-start the economy. Instead, he provided a wide panorama with few in-depth plans.

Just yesterday the market soared when Fed head Ben Bernanke told a finance oversight committee that the administration has no intention of nationalizing the banks. The market closed up 236 points because investors heard what they wanted to hear,.

Today, after Obama’a Monday evening speech, the market is currently in the red, largely because Obama didn’t say yay or nay about nationalizing the banks.

And how could he, with the results not yet known as the nation’s banks begin to undergo the so-called new stress tests?

Obama was smart not to make promises he could not keep, even though he knew Wall Street wouldn’t like not getting clarity.

On a scale of 1 through 5, I’d rate Obamavision Episode Two a 4. Although his line “The nation that created the auto industry cannot walk away from it” was memorable, in was factually wrong.

Actually kudos there go to Germany’s Mercedes-Benz. Who knew? Thank you, CNN.

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Comments (10)

joe:

I would agree with a 4. It was a good speech, but it was exactly what I thought it was going to be. Let's also talk about the Republican response by the Louisiana gov. It was clearly written before Obama's speech.
Besides that, I'm not sure saying people from his state don't have much faith in the fed. gov due to Katrina means anything. All he did there was criticize a president from his own party. Then to say that people should trust them now, when they have gone away from their republican roots over the last 8 years? Isn't that what trust is? Call me crazy......

Marianne Paskowski:

Joe,
It's easy for us to play Monday Morning Quarterback the morning after, but I think Obama blew an opportunity right in the rafters.

In attendance last night was "Sully," who was in DC testifying how his pay has been cut 40 percent in recent years and had no pension.

Sully, who successfully landed the US Airlines doomed jet in the Hudson River told a house committee that he didn't know of a single pilot, including himself, who would like to see their offspring become pilots.

With the cuts pilots have eaten, Sully says he and his pals "see negative consequences to the flying public."

But hey, Obama didn't ask me to write his speech...m

Scott Gilbert:

I also give high ratings for the speech last night, and noticed the misstatement. The automobile was not invented in the US. HOWEVER, the innovation of the assembly line that made cars affordable for the public is definitely an American invention, and I think THAT'S what the President meant.

Marianne Paskowski:

Thanks for the clarity there, Scott, God knows I've made bigger gaffes than he did last night. Obama has a lot on his plate, and it's all inter-twined, banks, homeowners, jobs, health care, alternative energy, to jump start the economy.

I give him a lot of credit...m

Jeff Mulligan:

Marianne,

Investors, unfortunately for them, are poor commentators on the political scene. They want certainty even when prudence argues against snap decisions or easy, predictable responses. You're right that Obama is avoiding over-promising, and should.

Investors like easy answers. But how loudly would they squeal should Obama say today "yes," then next week say, "on second thought ..."

Jeff

Marianne Paskowski:

Jeff

The truth is computers(with human input)have been driving the market for quite awhile, as they seek the proverbial bottom. The average investor is sitting on the sidelines.

So thanks to Bush, we have no faith in Wall Street and now Main Street. Last night Obama spoke to Main Street.

He needs to get a grip on Wall Street, he has not said a word that inspires me to believe that he knows that turf.
m

Cruiser:

Yo, Blondie --

The nation that did or didn't invent the automobile certainly did bring us the Mugwump and the Know Nothing parties, along with their spiritual inheritors, the post-Bush Republicans. These jokers--excepting Senators Snow, Collins, and Specter--unconsciously revel in political hari-kari.

What really matters to the markets is that investors are not looking to the Republicans for solutions. They are too oriented to real-solutions, even if they can't yet get their minds around Obama's visionary leadership.

Investors don't care about Bobby Jindall's crackpot non-solutions for the people of Louisiana, nor do investors care about McCain who discredited himself by accepting Sarah Palin as an RNC-dictated running mate. Investors are really frustrated because they know Obama is the only guy in town with a gun, and he refuses to use it irresponsibly as would the average pol.

As for the GOP (Gone Off the Planet), half of those congressional office holders are clueless and clinging to ideology the way a terminally ill person goes to Lourdes. The other half hopes the threadbare Rovian deceptive rhetoric game will stick to the wall with at least some of the public.

All irrelevant. Investors should have at least as much faith in Obama as they put into Bernie Madoff. This time, the deal is real.

Cruisin not bruisin

Marianne Paskowski:

Hi Cruiser,
How odd life is. Bush never said squat during his two terms. Obama talks too much and says little, so far.

Like why did he feel he had to to take the mike to talk about his meeting with Tim Geithner, five minutes before the closing belling and move the market into the red?

Again, no details.
m

Andy S.:

"Let's also talk about the Republican response by the Louisiana gov. It was clearly written before Obama's speech."

The text of the speech was published and distributed before Obama actually delivered it,as is customary. If you were watching on TV, you no doubt noticed that everyone in the chamber had a copy of it, and many were referring to their copies and annotating them during the speech.

I agree that as oration the speech, arguments about its substance aside, was well executed by the lead actor. As an overall television event, however, I gave it a 2, because of the unseemly performance of the supporting cast. The gladhanding and self-congratulatory posturing of our failing leaders, Pelosi in particular, was grotesque to behold. They seem unduly satisfied with themselves in spite of the fact that they've done nothing other than consolidate their own power. Even the most casual viewer could clearly see the total disconnect between this governing elite and the people who are counting on them for something resembling leadership.

And does anybody really buy the "Nobody messes with Joe" concept?

Marianne Paskowski:

Andy,
Agree episode two had some annoying moments. Pelosi was like watching a Jack-in-the-boxx, rising so often trying to stir the crowd.

The Republicans weren't buying any of this and remained seated. And why does Michele Obama always wear sleaveless dresses in the dead of winter?

As for Joe, he's just a puppet and I thought he would fall asleep.

Next episode, "The State of the Onion," with no new layers to peal, think we've seen all of the problems with few realistic solutions.

m

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