It is a nice tradition to participate in the dissemination of US intent for the year. Obamas talk was focused on the issues of the presidential election and he covered the majority of Republican concerns and tried to sound as a Republican. He still talks heartedly about joining across the aisle. He quoted Lincoln, the GOP president, that government should only do what the citizens can’t do by themselves, thus seemingly taking initiative from the Republicans. Since the military is very popular, he used the military as an example of nonpartisan work.
He did not speak about balancing the budget though and aggressively lowering the debt as the Republicans. He paraphrased Romney and Santorum on bringing the jobs back, however. It was clear from the response of the audience that this is a very important issue. Globalization is dead and fragmentation is here, as I argued earlier. There was clear fighting spirit from the audience on this issue. “With a level playing field, nobody beats the US”. He said that the coming boom in shale gas was due to government research. This is a major issue too but he raised a caveat for disclosure of the chemicals used for environmental safety.
The talk and the response from the audience gave a clear impression of a unified US on the move again. In the Financial Times today there is an article describing that the Davos conference has been placed during the celebration of the Chinese New Year which makes China not sending high level people. Obama almost sounded like Romney in claiming following the rules for trade he also said he had passed less regulatory law than George W Bush. He almost sounded Republican for the sense of unity.