January 10, 2016


Obama seeks optimistic tone for his final State of the Union speech (Michael A. Memoli and Christi Parsons, 1/09/16, LA Times)

Instead he will speak in broad terms Tuesday about America's potential and his vision of a nation that builds things, adapts to a changing environment and looks forward with hope, reprising some of the aspirational refrains that first helped him win the White House in 2008.

"America can do anything," Obama said Saturday in a weekly radio address that aides described as a preview of his speech. "Even in times of great challenge and change, our future is entirely up to us."

The upbeat, and to some extent self-congratulatory, tone serves as a marked contrast to the president's vast challenges and apparent frustration only weeks before the Iowa caucuses formally start the electoral race for his successor.

People don't generally like to be told that they are just being petulant, so it's a hard needle to thread.  Above all, you can't be seen to blame them, as Jimmy Carter seemed to in the malaise speech.  The Oval should be studying FDR, Reagan and W to see how to pitch optimism.

Posted by at January 10, 2016 8:32 AM