Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Reacting to Obama's Speech

I had mixed reactions to Obama's speech. He is an excellent speaker, of course. And he communicates sincerity. I liked what I heard about job creation.

However, his energy proposals began with nuclear, moved to offshore drilling, before concluding with alternative energy. I wonder if that is where we have come to? Is it truly the case that cheap, available oil is basically gone and we are going to engage in a made resource dash, at whatever environmental costs?

If this is truly where we are at--a mad dash for declining resources--then I have little hope for real innovation because a long term orientation is necessary for sustainable change. Mad dashes with environmental costs and military personnel as security do not promise a better, more sustainable future.

On the other hand, I liked the way Obama concluded his speech with a discussion of "politics." However, talking the talk is one thing. Reform in politics cannot occur unless money expenditures are regulated and rendered fully transparent. The Supreme Court has dissolved that avenue for reform.

So, in balance, Obama's speech gave me some hope and raised some concerns. At this point, I suspend final judgment.

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