Mon. Apr 22nd, 2024

Prof. ST Hsieh

Director, US-China Energy Industry Forum


[email protected]

March 10, 2024

We all know well that the State of the Union (SOTU) speech in the US is a well staged public affair and a well-rehearsed campaign speech. Normally, it is also a triumph event for a sitting President running for re-election, however for Biden, his STOU speech on April 7th, it is almost a do-or-die event because his public opinion polls consistently have been lower than his challenger and controversary predecessor. The general election is less than eight months away, there are many voices open suggest that Biden should get out of the way and let younger generation take over.

These suggestions are not necessary prejudice against Biden as a person. After all he is already 81 years old and now, he is the eldest presidential candidate in US history. Signs of his age also show in public. To Biden’s credit, he came out swinging and did not lose a beat at the SOTU show.

Of course, he defended his record as the President of the US vigorously. But no one is sure that he has successfully convinced most voters to re-elect him. During the speech, Biden claimed all the credit and blamed almost everyone else including his predecessor, Putin, Iran, China, and of course GOP.

The following is an excerpt of his speech with comments.

  1. The best line: If I were smart, I would go home now.
  2. The Real State of Union: Not since President Lincoln and the Civil War have freedom and democracy been under assault at home as they are today. Yet, Biden has been defending the freedom and democracy around the world in the past four years. He is also asking the voters to give him four more years to continue his pledge!
  3. The proxy war in Ukraine is three years old, Ukraine can stop Putin? How much we have already sent to Ukraine already? How much more will be needed? What is the exit strategy?
  4. The Israel-Hamas conflict is a true tragedy, genocide broadcast to the world, where is the US global leadership under Biden?
  5. The safety/integrity of the US southern border?
  6. Competing with China: our G.T.P is up?

God Bless America!

Good evening. Good evening. If I were smart, I would go home now.

Tonight, I come to the same chamber to address the nation. Now, it’s we who face unprecedented moment in the history of the union. And yes, my purpose tonight is to wake up the Congress and alert the American people that this is no ordinary moment either. Not since President Lincoln and the Civil War have freedom and democracy been under assault at home as they are today.

What makes our moment rare is that freedom and democracy are under attack both at home and overseas at the very same time. Overseas, Putin of Russia is on the march, invading Ukraine and sowing chaos throughout Europe and beyond. If anybody in this room thinks Putin will stop at Ukraine, I assure you, he will not.

But Ukraine, Ukraine can stop Putin. Ukraine can stop Putin, if we stand with Ukraine and provide the weapons they need to defend itself. That is all — that is all Ukraine is asking. They’re not asking for American soldiers.

But now, assistance to Ukraine is being blocked by those who want to walk away from our world leadership.

I say this to Congress: We have to stand up to Putin. Send me a bipartisan national security bill. History is literally watching. History is watching. If the United States walks away, it will put Ukraine at risk. Europe is at risk.

My message to President Putin, who I have known for a long time, is simple: We will not walk away. We will not bow down. I will not bow down.

In a literal sense, history is watching. History is watching. Just like history watched three years ago on Jan. 6, when insurrectionists stormed this very Capitol and placed a dagger to the throat of American democracy.

But they failed. America stood. America stood strong and democracy prevailed.

We must be honest. The threat to democracy must be defended. My predecessor and some of you here seek to bury the truth about Jan. 6.

This is a moment to speak the truth and to bury the lies. Here’s the simple truth: You can’t love your country only when you win.

Many of you in this chamber and my predecessor are promising to pass a national ban on reproductive freedom. My God, what freedom else would you take away?

Folks, America cannot go back. I am here tonight to show what I believe the way forward. Because I know how far we’ve come. Four years ago next week, before I came to office, the country was hit by the worst pandemic and the worst economic crisis in a century.

Turning setback into comeback — that’s what America does. That’s what America does.

Folks, I inherited an economy that was on the brink. Now our economy is literally the envy of the world. Fifteen million new jobs in just three years — a record, a record. Unemployment at 50-year lows. A record 16 million Americans are starting small businesses, and each one is a literal act of hope.

With historic job growth and small business growth for Black, Hispanic and Asian Americans, 800,000 new manufacturing jobs in America and counting.

Where is it written that we can’t be the manufacturing capital of the world? We are. We will.

Wages keep going up. Inflation keeps coming down. Inflation has dropped from 9 percent to 3 percent — the lowest in the world and trending lower. The landing is and will be soft.

And now instead of importing, importing foreign products and exporting American jobs, we’re exporting American products and creating American jobs — right here in America where they belong.

On my watch, federal projects that you fund, like helping build American roads, bridges and highways, will be made with American products and built by American workers — creating good-paying American jobs.

And thanks to our CHIPS and Science Act, the United States is investing more in research and development than ever before.

Well instead of having to import them, private companies are now investing billions of dollars to build new chip factories here in America, creating tens of thousands of jobs, many of those jobs paying $100,000 a year and don’t require a college degree.

In fact, my policies have attracted $650 billion in private-sector investment, in clean energy, advanced manufacturing, creating tens of thousands of jobs here in America.

Modernize our roads and bridges, ports and airports, public transit systems. Removing poisonous lead pipes so every child can drink clean water without risk of brain damage. Providing affordable high-speed internet for every American no matter where you live: urban, suburban or rural communities — in red states and blue states. Record investments in tribal communities.

I know the last five months have been gut-wrenching for so many people, for the Israeli people, for the Palestinian people and so many here in America.

This crisis began on Oct. 7 with a massacre by the terrorist group called Hamas, as you all know.

Twelve hundred innocent people, women and girls, men and boys slaughtered, after enduring sexual violence. The deadliest day for the Jewish people since the Holocaust. And 250 hostages taken.

Here in this chamber tonight are American families whose loved ones are still being held by Hamas. I pledge to all the families that we will not rest until we bring every one of your loved ones home.

Israel has a right to go after Hamas. Hamas ended this conflict by releasing the hostages, laying down arms — could end it — by releasing the hostages, laying down arms and surrendering those responsible for Oct. 7.

But Israel has an added burden because Hamas hides and operates among the civilian population like cowards, under hospitals, day care centers and all the like. Israel also has a fundamental responsibility, though, to protect innocent civilians in Gaza.

This war has taken a greater toll on innocent civilians than all previous wars in Gaza combined. More than 30,000 Palestinians have been killed, most of whom are not Hamas.

Thousands and thousands of innocents, women and children. Girls and boys also orphaned.

Nearly two million more Palestinians under bombardment or displacement. Homes destroyed, neighborhoods in rubble, cities in ruin. Families without food, water, medicine. It’s heartbreaking.

I’ve been working nonstop to establish an immediate cease-fire that would last for six weeks to get all the prisoners released — all the hostages released. It would get the hostages home, and ease the intolerable humanitarian crisis, and build toward an enduring, something more enduring.

The United States has been leading international efforts to get more humanitarian assistance into Gaza. Tonight, I’m directing the U.S. military to lead an emergency mission to establish a temporary pier in the Mediterranean on the coast of Gaza that can receive large shipments carrying food, water, medicine and temporary shelters.

And Israel must do its part. Israel must allow more aid into Gaza and ensure humanitarian workers aren’t caught in the crossfire. They’re announcing they’re going to have a crossing to northern Gaza.

To the leadership of Israel I say this: Humanitarian assistance cannot be a secondary consideration or a bargaining chip. Protecting and saving innocent lives has to be a priority. As we look to the future, the only real solution to the situation is a two-state solution over time.

Creating stability in the Middle East also means containing the threat posed by Iran. That’s why I built a coalition of more than a dozen countries to defend international shipping and freedom of navigation in the Red Sea. I’ve ordered strikes to degrade the Houthi capability and defend U.S. forces in the region. As commander in chief, I will not hesitate to direct further measures to protect our people and our military personnel.

For years, I’ve heard many of my Republican and Democratic friends say that China is on the rise and America is falling behind. They’ve got it backwards. I’ve been saying it for over four years, even when I wasn’t president.

America is rising. We have the best economy in the world. And since I’ve come to office, our G.T.P. is up; our trade deficit with China is down to the lowest point in over a decade.

And we’re standing up against China’s unfair economic practices. We’re standing up for peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits.

I’ve revitalized our partnerships and alliance in the Pacific. India. Australia. Japan. South Korea. Pacific islands. I’ve made sure that the most advanced American technologies can’t be used in China, not allowing to trade them there.

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