OpinionMeister

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Inaugural Speech

I watched the speech, and I thought it was quite good. It was very long on "the vision thing." It's good that the acorn has fallen far from the tree. It was about the most philosophical speech I have heard any president give.

As far as I could tell, nothing new was said, but it is possible to put together many things that you have said before and have them reinforce each other and make your points more powerfully than you had in the past. The entire speech was about liberty, most of it about spreading liberty abroad and some of it about increasing personal liberty at home. The President was very optimistic about the eventual victory of liberty all around the world, but he was not unrealistic about how hard and how long it would be. Without being too specific, he outlined several ways in which his administration would encourage authoritarian regimes to reform.

When it came to domestic affairs, he managed to link his "ownership society" to the spread of liberty. Without exactly saying it, he let us know that his programs to increase individual control over retirement, health care and education would reduce the control of the government over us. That's a pretty good definition of increased liberty.

If you did not see the speech, you can read it here.

Another positive of the inauguration was seeing Chief Justice Rehnquist. After the reports I have been reading in the press, I was delighted to see that he did not look nearly as close to death's door as I had been led to believe. I wish him a speedy recovery.


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