NEW YORK ( Minyanville) -- By now, coverage of last night's State of the Union is saturating every orifice of the next-generation media landscape. From Twitter feeds to real-time blogs to traditional outlets and back, everyone has an opinion and it's high time they share it! We, at Minyanville, sympathize with the information deflation -- trying to consume what's out there is akin to sipping water from a fire hose -- and it's our job to provide a slightly different take on events that in one way or another shape financial markets and those involved in them (not necessarily in that order).
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- One of the President's campaign promises was the specter of diplomacy and working with the global community. Last night, he stressed the need to "out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build the rest of the world."
- I get the need for competitiveness within a global community but that statement seemed to encapsulate the "globalization vs. protectionism" dynamic that we've long mused was an unintended consequence of policy that injects drugs that mask the symptoms rather than medicine that cures the disease.
- Sidebar: Ben Bernanke received a 66% approval rating from global investors. Ya think? I mean, seriously -- why wouldn't he? My question is two-fold. First, when did a grand experiment become a popularity contest? Second, I'm a size seller of 66% when our children take the same poll (much like Alan Greenspan's legacy failed to withstand the test of time).
- Is it me or was there a think bubble with a lamb chop in it sitting above John Boehner's head as he watched the President from behind?
- I actually thought the President was speaking to me when he said, "There are some corners that suggest we're changing the rules in the middle of the game." He owned it -- he said, "the rules have changed' -- and veered the conversation in the direction of the global competitiveness via the Internet.
- What he missed on that front, in my humble opinion, is that the Internet was the most deflationary invention of all time! You see that pen in front of you? You can buy that pen in 17,000 places in a few clicks of your mouse, which is awesome -- if you want to buy a pen. If you manufacture and sell pens however, it, in a word, sucks.
- Deficit reduction and tax cuts are not peas and carrots, Forrest.
- Full disclosure -- I voted for Obama because I believed the enormity of the economic condition rendered it a "push" between the candidates (I'm not defending that rationalization, I'm simply being honest in sharing it).
- The swing factor, for me, was the specter of diplomacy vs. the potential for a "harder line," which in my view would have fast-tracked our tricky trifecta of societal acrimony, social unrest and geopolitical strife.
- I'm all for "being part of the solution rather than being part of the problem" -- that's how we roll in the 'Ville -- but the first step in solving a problem is admitting that you have one. As I watched the crowd last night, I couldn't help feel that it was a performance, and until we can get away from popularity contests for public policy and move the needle towards tough love, my fear is that the boom and bust cycle will continue with increasingly rapid succession, with excess breeding excess, until something truly unfortunate occurs. That's not a proclamation on timing, it's an inevitable consequence that looms large, albeit currently invisible.