28JAN10 Rant: Why I ignored the State of the Union Address (again)

I didn't listen to the State of the Union Address this year. Last one I actually listened to or cared about was the one George W. Bush gave following 9/11/01. Since then, I have a tradition of just following up on the following day to get the gist of the speech. While I respect this valuable tradition of the office of the President of the United States, ever since that one that I did care about I can only withstand the political theater so far. I was driving home from work (my one day of work this week! I'm a part timer after all) and I turned on the radio and heard President Obama talking. At that point I tuned him out by putting in a cassette tape (yup, I drive a car that old, and it gets 30 miles to the gallon...) and rocked out to the band Extol instead. I really needed that.

I just got over actual hatred of the President of the United States a few months back. Instead I now view him as he is, not as an object worthy of any form of sinful hate and wrath. Why did I hate this man until recently? Well, I'd just gotten back from Iraq when he made the statement about “air raiding villages and and killing innocent civilians”. For over a year after that comment I actually had blood shoot out of my eyes and my head felt like exploding. As I type about that, I must take a deep breath and just let go... Better! Why am I so passionate about that stupid comment from a then Senator now President? Well In my two tours in Iraq, well over a year of my life 6 months each time (179 days according to the orders, however travel vouchers reveal otherwise) from SEP05-FEB06 and NOV06-MAY07, I can count the days live ordnance from fixed wing Close Air Support (CAS) assets were used on one hand without all my fingers being used, and 2/3rds of that was Predator UAV's using Hellfire missiles, and I'm not counting the one time Army Apaches were utilized. This wasn't the result of not sending requests, which at least once a week happened! No, we would get denials three hours later based on the expert analysis of lawyers who were sitting in Qatar; this was under President Bush and during the time President Obama stated we were “air raiding villages and killing innocent civilians”. I was over there, 'air raids' were my business, and they certainly didn't happen until the 'Army of Heaven' decided to hole up in an orchard in FEB07 and start a fight with the Iraqi Army being trained by some Green Berets who had their USAF JTAC (whom was a CCT for that mission, but was relieved by a Stryker BDE TACP JTAC a few hours into the battle, talking on the radio for hours on end takes its toll in the desert!). That one incident resulted in 300 enemies destroyed, but you never heard about it on the news now did you?

So there in lies my reason for ignoring the POTUS at this juncture. I don't need the anger welling up again. I've ceased hating him because that is not conducive to my faith. I ceased listening to him because its the same old stuff re-hashed on a different day. All his problems were created by George W. Bush, only government under his guidance can fix the problem, I'm smarter than you because I got handed a Nobel Peace Prize, and America is sorry for causing all the worlds problems. I'm tired of it. When I start seeing something constructive from him, I might start taking him seriously. In the mean time, I'm going to ignore him and pick up the highlights from the news articles. I can't waste my time listening to his empty jaws flap and regurgitate whats on the teleprompter that his speech writer put up.

-Michael “Sudsy” Sutherland
North Pole AK 28JAN10

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