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Video Digest: January 25, 2008

Meave Gallagher presents: The Morning News 2008 George W. Bush State of the Union Addresses: A Retrospective.

Fellow citizens, January’s staggering to an end, and you know what that means: it’s time for the State of the Union! This year our 43rd president will deliver his final State of the Union Address, and o how I am looking forward to it. To optimize your enjoyment of this last-ever big important speech from dear leader, I’ve plumbed the depths of YouTube, seeking out the best video edits of annual speeches and responses to them. Not an especially stoic person, this search brought me nearly to tears—of desperation or relief, I can’t say. I undertook this task in order to present to you: The Morning News 2008 George W. Bush State of the Union Addresses: A Retrospective. ABC News compiled video of Bush’s addresses last year; while mediated presentations can be excruciating, I think a nice, bland overview has its place.

Aw, remember Tony Blair? The man they called Bush’s lapdog? He looks properly, Britishly abashed to be suddenly spotlit here. I wonder if he’ll ever be greeted by such rousing applause again.

In 2004, with the end of his first term in site, the president had a lot to say to the country. This speech, in which Bush details some of the torture techniques used by Saddam Hussein’s regime, makes for a grisly remix. Keep small children away, lest all the presidential blinking and twitching induce seizures

Here is footage from the 2005 State of the Union. The president’s sporting another nice blue tie, and the heavies behind him have got their reds on, but you can tell it’s not 2004 because John McCain is wearing a different suit.

The 2006 State of the Union, edited down to its most important 91 seconds.

And what do the pundits think? I’m looking forward to watching this year’s speech on streaming video, so as to avoid the unbearable armchair coaching from talking heads. After half an hour of presidential bombast, you may want to consider a sensory-deprivation session.

The emergence of YouTube during the administration of one of the poorest-spoken presidents in U.S. history has been a beautiful, bountiful marriage, and this video is its most brilliant child.

ThisNation.com hosts the complete texts of every State of the Union Address since George Washington delivered the first in January 1790. The official White House page has the texts too, as well as a video archive. Thank you, and goodnight.

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