The State of the Union Address I Want the President of Give
By Fritz Maffry
President Obama will deliver the first State of the Union address of his second term on February 12, 2013. Here is what contributor and solar entrepreneur Fritz Maffry wants to hear.
A totally fictitious, but hopeful State of the Union address by President Barack Obama on February 12, 2013
This is a great nation, we are the beacon of Freedom to the world, we are not a perfect nation, but we are a very great nation. We have overcome a variety of challenges in the last four years, we had two raging wars in the Middle East. We had an economy that was in melt down mode, we are moving past both of those.
The US has always been a country that did great things, we built the liberty ships that helped win the second world war, we took man to the moon first with Apollo, we rebuilt Europe with the Marshall Plan, the Manhattan project is another example, testimony to the United States doing great, big, powerful things.
We find ourselves in a period of great technological change, but as the old adage goes, one door shuts, another one opens. We know the Middle East, the strategic instability of the region from Syria, to Iran, Algeria, Mali, Libya, Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Egypt, Pakistan. Again we know the dynamics of that region well. Traditionally we have not had great alternatives, that is where the great resources of affordable oil were located, that dependence had it's own economic reality to it.
Now, with breakthrough technologies across the board, from smart phones and pads with the intelligence of supercomputers, to advanced batteries on the path to a 5x improvement in price/performance and energy density, to smart computer systems like IBM's Watson, to Google's self navigating vehicles, to Intel's chips with billions of transistors, to breakthrough technologies across the board. This technological advancement is coming along fantastically to help us address with the best of American know how some of the great problems and challenges we face.
Elon Musk just keeps coming out with vehicles that shatter our expectations, drive a Tesla for an hour and get a quick charge at a fast charge solar station and your views about the progress of the electric ecosystem, which embraces electric vehicles, solar chargers, and smart cloud applications will simply be altered forever.
When Steve Jobs first saw the Xerox Star, he knew that possibilities were changed, he recognized a force that would profoundly change everything. We pay homage to Steve Jobs and his spirit of American innovation with our remarkable ability to now change energy, global energy security, national security, the environment, and economic dependence all in one fell swoop. Like the Xerox Star, that then progressed into the Lisa computer, and then eventually Windows and the Macintosh, the tech industry has an ability to transform possibilities, as greater capabilities come together for less cost in a virtuous cycle of advancement.
Through strategic investment in all manner of energy advancement, led by Secretary Chu, we have moved along the learning curve, we have the Argonne National Battery Initiative for changing completely energy storage and making practical all manner of new disruptive capabilities, that make us energy secure and show other countries how they to can be. That may have bigger consequence to our progress now than any other government program. We now have a very good understandings of the road maps of solar energy, energy storage, and electric vehicles.
Today I am announcing that we have put together a team of unique talents to drive a new national initiative around energy and clean transportation. We are combining efforts from the Department of Energy, the Department of Transportation, and getting leadership drivers from the business world to lead a complete, rapid, transformational approach to energy. On this team we have brought together former governor Granholm (she did a great job in Michigan), Elon Musk (he knows the technical topic deeply and keeps driving state of the art and transforming our possibilities, in that most American of ways). We have also asked former Governor Huntsman and Colin Powell to serve our country supporting this profound national purpose, as special Envoys of the President on this initiative, and as you would expect from Americans of great service, they have humbly accepted to help drive this to success and rapid results.
The mechanisms that make clean energy work well in many parts of the world have been routinely opposed and delayed by certain segments of the status quo machinery, well that is going to change. We are a great country and we are going to rapidly advance the full costing of environmental and security considerations into our energy policy starting now. That will move us past the delays on feed in tariffs, gas taxes, equitable net metering relationships, cap and trade provisions, etc.
Today we are implementing powerful, actionable policies to drive cleaner air and water and more sustainable, cleaner energy, This clean energy has reduced in cost remarkably over the last three years, but we are intending to speed that up and make clear the path, reasonable scale and of purposeful refinement at first, and then much more powerfully and massively when the great progress of our technological investments comes in.
This is the nation that gave the world the the transistor, lasers, fiber optics, computers, the list goes on ad infinitum but these did not spontaneously generate, they were cultivated breakthroughs of profound national advancement, well we are doing it again. That is what you expect from the United States, those advances were lead by government action teamed with the best of a can do private sector comprised of the world's most innovative companies, and we can and will do that again.
We have always been a nation where the government delivered for the people, and necessity is the mother of invention, well the father is the American government. We will now bring forward the great companies of the land, to share key contributions of American ingenuity on how we basically transform our energy security and economic and environmental possibilities. These are real demonstrable technologies working now, but they are going to get much better, and we should drive instead of react to the remarkable opportunity they provide us. We now have the top American technology companies showing us breakthroughs of immense impact that with proper policy assistance can give us the economic and energy security, national security, and the environmental security outcomes we are responsible to the American people for.
As your President, I am expected to lead. As President George W. Bush said, I am the decider. As President Lincoln said "The Presidency is clothed in immense power". Well as your president I must take the mantle of leadership, and with the best talents of the country provide for the responsible security of the United States of America.
Over the next few weeks, you will hear more about how the Republican Mayor of Indianapolis simply showed this works now. Elon Musk will show more on the combination of solar with electric vehicles. We will have Google and IBM brief the American people on some of the developments they have working. We the United States are internationalists, and Nissan can show their state of the art with the affordable and very refined Leaf, BMW can show off their i3 which shows great direction on how transportation and smart systems are revolutionizing our possibilities.
Status quo bureaucratic machinery is just not getting it done though in terms of getting policy aligned with optimal progress here, well that is going to change. As your president I will see to it that complete execution capabilities, of efficient and tax dollar respectful excellence, guided and audited in a most responsible way deliver on this. You will see our initiative team deliver again on this profound national purpose at all levels to have the best alignment of state and local government, business, the philanthropic community, coordinated government agencies, and the great higher educational institutions of the land all pulling in one direction in concert. We are thinking globally, acting locally, and acting fully, that is what you expect of your government, and special interests will not gate this. We intend to deliver what the American people deserve, and it will deliver a better world for your children, which is a standard we hold high.
We intend for a well lead initiative that is purpose built to deliver for the American people to drive this with the best execution model that government working with free enterprise can deliver. You have our promise that we will watch dollars, demand results, and deliver great successes, that tangibly benefit all of us.
Back to the state of the Union, we are strong, we are coming out of war, our powerful corporations have had a unusually prosperous four years (check their stock prices and profits). We are going to be a healthier, more secure people with more control over our national destiny, and do what the United States always does at our best, innovate, drive positive progress, advance freedom and justice, and deliver a better future for our people.
We intend to tune policy for success of the American middle, but make no mistake, we want business success everywhere, and we want those with less to earn more. We think we are on track to deliver on growing the economy for the best outcome of all Americans but especially the middle class. The middle class has my utmost attention and economic priority.
It is an exciting time to be an American, we have a great mission ahead of us, we have the capabilities to do all we need to remain the world's best country, and as your president I intend to lead, drive, and deliver the best American progress on energy that is possible, knowing that every day American Universities and Companies expand the wonders that we build our progress upon. I am humbled by the responsibility of ensuring a better world for all Americans, and in fact all the people of the world, we intend to work closely and share the lead with those who will lead with us. But we are going to drive forward, with a profound national purpose, with an exceptional team that is right for the times and challenges ahead of us. to make you proud. As your president I salute you, the Ameican people for innovating the means for me to help create a better country with you, as the old saw goes, we are not going to tell you, we are going to show you. Expect to see us showing soon the remarkable pathway to a better country that leads the world. I am your president and I am here to serve and deliver.
We have advanced a very healthy American auto industry, and the four year design cycles of advanced vehicles are now bearing fruit, great more efficient transportation. We have solar technologies that are eclipsing all expectations on efficiencies and costs. The world is our oyster, we have the world's most unique and robust tech industry, and universities, and now we will harness all of that to provide the security and economic sustainability that we can build our next century on.
America leads the world with electric vehicles, we lead in information technology, we lead in Universities, we lead in so many areas particularly systems thinking in complete solutions, well we are going to just keep on leading, and that will drive us to a new position of economic leadership and the stature globally to get things done. This is not a ten year plan, this is a five year plan, and we look forward to the mission as the world's greatest country the United States shows how we deal with problems and opportunities when we mean it. Team America is about to deliver a big win for our future. Thank you, and I am your president.
Originally published: 11 Feb 2013
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