Here’s some thoughts, more abbreviated than I had hoped, on the three speeches this week.
State of the City: Savvy self-promotion. Menino mentioned a lot of ways that the city got out in front of the economic crisis, working to reduce foreclosures and strengthen neighborhoods. He also announced that for the first time in decades Boston’s population is over…600,000! We have got to be the smallest big city in the world. There’s a real blessing in that, because the city government can focus on changing things block by block, school by school. They don’t have as big a big picture. It’s nice to live in a city where a major speech focuses on helping those who are struggling, rather than punishing them.
State of the State: If reviewing a Menino address must by definition focus on content, Patrick’s speeches allow us to savor his style. Every time I hear him speak I get goosebumps. The speech was short because Bush’s was coming up, but was hopeful and had a handful of decent reform points. It takes a brave man to give a shout out to CORI reform.
Bush’s farewell address: Self-aggrandizing, which was to be expected. His bit about good and evil in the world gave me goosebumps too, but not in a good way, in a scary way. What about the line between good and evil running through every human heart? Clearly not. He really thinks that American force was wholly in the right. Just because the actions against us on 9/11 were evil do not make our actions good. I also think the ideology of the Bush Doctrine is complete and total hogwash, which is why I have had trouble listening to any administration speeches on foreign policy.
In other news, I have had stomach trouble all week. I came up with a few guesses why this might be occuring:
1. I have stomach cancer
2. My pharmacist is poisoning my reflux meds
3. I have esophageal cancer
4. I have an ulcer
5. I have colon cancer
6. I am getting up in the night and eating sharp things in my sleep.
7. I have brain cancer that is making me THINK my stomach hurts.