President Bush begins his second term, that is the subject of this evening's "Talking Points Memo." You think John Kerry enjoyed himself today? I don't. But George Bush seemed to be in good humor as he took the oath of office and celebrated the start of four more years.
Mr. Bush has changed some since he was first elected. We'll examine that later in the broadcast. But his persona is essentially the same, resolute, unaffected by criticism seemingly, and convinced his vision is correct.
That vision lies in two areas, which he spelled out in his address today. First, that the USA will be safer if freedom takes root abroad. And second, that Americans should control their lives as much as possible.
Now it's hard to argue against freedom. If you look at the world map, all the nations causing trouble, North Korea, Iran, the Sudan, et cetera, are totalitarian regimes. The question is how do you deal with them?
As far as your life is concerned, I've always felt you should not rely on the government at all. Rely on yourself. You'll be much happier and probably more successful. That's why I agree with President Bush on allowing individuals more control over their health expenditures and pensions.
That being said, Mr. Bush is a controversial president. His poll numbers prove that. Most Americans either love him or hate him. And so today, some of us were happy and some of us were not.
Now we've put together a collage to document the day:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ladies and gentlemen, the president of the United States, George Walker Bush.
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I, George Walker Bush.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do solemnly swear.
BUSH: Do solemnly swear.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That I will faithfully execute.
BUSH: That I will faithfully execute.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The office of the president of the United States.
BUSH: The office of the president of the United States.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Congratulations.
BUSH: I am grateful for the honor of this hour, mindful of the consequential times in which we live, and determined to fulfill the oath that I have sworn and you have witnessed.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
Inauguration Day 2005.
And that's "The Memo."
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
As we've been reporting, Canada has changed from a traditional country to a progressive one. Gay marriage is legal in Canada. You can serve in the military if you're openly gay. And now the two have been combined.
The Canadian military has directed chaplains up there to marry any gay soldiers who want that situation. The military process includes prenuptial counseling and the use of on-base chapels. No word on whether military cooks will bake the cake. That might be ridiculous.