When I was young, teachers had the option of giving a grade of "I" - which stood for "improving" -- on our report cards. That just meant that, although it was still too early to raise our grade, we were doing better than we had previously.
That memory struck me during President Trump's Congressional address Tuesday night. After more than a month of him issuing petty Tweets, picking needless fights and going off-script to deliver ego-fueled rants, I was extremely pleased to see him present a new, much more mature persona. He stuck to his message, was actually gracious at times and basically just conducted himself in a presidential fashion. Good for him.
But sometimes back in school, an "I" grade meant "incomplete" -- which also applies to Mr. Trump's performance. Despite his improvement in demeanor, his speech was still long on promises but short on any actual plans to achieve them. We still don't know what his tax reform will entail or how he plans to make some of his more contentious ideas more palatable to Congress, and that's important missing information.
And finally, I give the event itself a grade of "F." The incessant standing and applauding (or NOT standing and applauding) every ten seconds may be an old tradition, but it's one that deserves to be put to rest. It's tedious, embarrassing and uncomfortable, and trivializes what should be a much more serious event.
I'm Bill Lamb and that's my Point of View.
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