THE IRON PEN by Daniel Hite

January 21, 2015

Nix the SOTU Address

Filed under: Uncategorized — danielhite @ 12:07 pm

He shall from time to time give to Congress information of the State of the Union and recommend to their Consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.
— Article II, Section 3, Clause 1, of the U.S. Constitution

FYI, there was no State of the Union Address for over half of our country’s history. For the entire 19th Century and the first 13 years of the 20th Century, there was no address, but perhaps an occasional letter to Congress. You read it right. From Thomas Jefferson until the “reign” of Woodrow Wilson, there was no State of the Union Address. A letter certainly fulfills the constitutional requirement.

Why do I bring this up? The current Address is a 20th Century phenomena and tradition, and worse than that, has morphed into a long (and longer) commercial media event. It has become a partisan, political commercial, complete with the demand for equal time from the opposition party. It is pure political rhetoric and spin replete with media applause meters and counters. In fact, news media tabulates how many times the President lies. That’s right…that’s what “fact checking” is all about. I do not think any of this is what our Constitutional Framers had in mind…no, not in their wildest imaginations.

Another thing, this politically staged drama costs money, and plenty of it. I wonder if the OMB has figures on it? Just how much does this “political rally” cost the American taxpayers, all aspects being considered? I haven’t been able to locate that figure anywhere.

To replace the address, maybe the Executive Branch can send out a memo, or better yet, an email to all the attendees. Or, if necessary, they could send a DVD or YouTube. There’s GOT to be a better way. This is getting ridiculous.

Besides that, I missed NCIS: Los Angeles. (Just kidding.)


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