In his State of the Union address, Obama may speak of manufacturing and jobs growth, but when it comes to the Pentagon and defense contracting, many are getting the pink slip. (AEI)

Was the State of the Union a January surprise? (AEI)

Cato’s Michael Tanner on the State of the Union: “The president’s address — more campaign speech than policy platform — was long on calls for ‘fairness’ and ‘opportunity,’ but it really boiled down to the president’s vision of a society where government does everything for everyone — financed, of course, by higher taxes on the rich,’ who need to pay ‘their fair share.’” (National Review)

Politico’s Arena asks: Is Obama’s populism persuasive? Center for Economic and Policy Research’s Dean Baker responds. So does Woodrow Wilson Center’s Aaron David Miller.

“As a new member of Congress in the Reagan years — and I was an assistant secretary of state — Mr. Gingrich voted with the president regularly, but equally often spewed insulting rhetoric at Reagan, his top aides, and his policies to defeat Communism. Gingrich was voluble and certain in predicting that Reagan’s policies would fail, and in all of this he was dead wrong,” writes CFR’s Elliott Abrams. (National Review)

Hoover’s Victor Davis Hanson on Obama’s foreign policy: “The mystery remaining about the Obama administration’s foreign policy is not whether it has worked, but whether its failures will matter all that much. That is no rhetorical question, given that it is hard to permanently damage, in just three years, the position abroad of the United States, given its vast military power and enormous economy.” (National Review)

“The fate of one man can sometimes clarify the deepest flaws of a government and of the society it rules. Today in Egypt, on the anniversary of its uprising against Hosni Mubarak, that man is Maikel Nabil Sanad,” writes The Century Foundation’s Michael Wahid Hanna. (New York Times)

Room for Debate asks: Should parents control what children learn at school? (New York Times)

Oklahoma lawmaker wants to outlaw the use of human fetuses in the production of food. (ThinkProgress)