Economist analysis of the Obama innauguration speech

There are many analyses of Obama’s inauguration speech out there. Predictably, I like the one from The Economist. You can read the transcript of the speech here.

On the tone of the speech:

  • The speech was sobering rather than celebratory or inspirational
  • “By choosing to talk of hardships and sacrifice, the new president has begun the work of preparing voters for prolonged economic malaise, among other difficulties”
  • The tone of the speech also made sense politically: “it was shrewd to emphasise just how dreadful a mess he is inheriting from his predecessor”

On the environment and energy:

  • He stated the need to make use of renewable/cleaner energy sources
  • He wants to restore science to its rightful place

On foreign policy:

  • He rejected the false choice between safety and democratic ideals. In other words no more torture and dodgy “Bush” business in the name of national security
  • He reached out to the Muslim world: “we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect.”