This article originally appeared on Jan. 29, 2014, on RealMoney.com. To read more content like this plus see inside Jim Cramer's multimillion-dollar portfolio for FREE... Click Here NOW.
I know it's hard to imagine, but there was a time when you used to hang on every word of a State of the Union address. You could figure out where the money was going, where the federal government was going to put your dollars and how they would be allocated to help industry.
I remember listening to Ronald Reagan in some of his earlier addresses, when he was talking about building up the Navy to 600 ships. Reagan had the ability to get it done, and there were enough naval-contracting stocks to allow you to invest in the companies and watch multiyear moves.
Under President Clinton were technology initiatives that could be played, credits given that would turn into earnings. It worked.
I can't recall spending a lot of time sussing out President Bush's State of the Union speeches, which were muddled affairs hamstrung by wars after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
Even when Obama first came in there were investments that could be made. That was particularly so when it came to medical-records names and companies that were perceived as able to take advantage of universal healthcare. In fact, the Obama Administration's emphasis on universal health has been incredible for a particular set of healthcare-industry stocks: those names that are meant to manage costs and benefits in the healthcare system, mainly Cerner (CERN), McKesson (MCK), Cardinal Health (CAH) and AmerisourceBergen (ABC).