Another Class Warfare speech.
Did anyone really expect anything different from this President? The man is nothing if not a predictable train wreck. Having the nerve to give this speech on the heels of a fundraising trip and jetting off to Hawaii next week for 17 days is nothing short of an insult. He manages to fit a slew of backhanded compliments and of course, tells us that we’re no longer a great nation and that, of course, he is the answer. He builds up throughout the speech that it’s not the fault of the people but instead blame goes to the wealthy, banks, big business and regulators – the same ones doling out more regulations he has ordered. Obama did a good job cherry picking what he wanted from Roosevelt, that much is certain after reading the speech. It’s clear he completely ignored the context of when and why the Roosevelt speech was given and focused on what he wanted it to mean; attempting to paint himself as returning to the origins of Progressivism. He failed – it came off sounding exactly like the class warfare/Socialism driven rhetoric we expected and I don’t think I was the only one detecting some Elizabeth Warren channeling either. That is sure to backfire on him like it did on her.
In typical Obama fashion, he scrambles American values with his own special brand of socialist ideals. In a nutshell, this speech was supposed to target the middle class and missed, it is filled from end to end with more ‘shared sacrifice’ rhetoric and it fails to inspire whatsoever – so much for emulating Teddy Roosevelt when you start out saying it’s great to be back in Texas…oops, Kansas. It was a lot of recycled bits of other speeches and really didn’t resemble Roosevelt’s speech at all. Not that it could or should, that speech was written for very different reasons; most definitely not as a desperate attempt to look relevant to a far Left base.
Obama want us to think he’s peddling a modern version of the Square Deal. The Square Deal was built on a trinity of consumer protection, conservation of resources and controls on corporations. Obama’s idea of what these meant and Roosevelt’s are very different. Obama has attempted all three using very literal interpretations. He’s been making us all miserable and reminding us how miserable we are in true Alinksy style. Obama has been placing blame on the Republicans, his predecessor and the Tea party in every speaking engagement he can and, often in the same sentence, tying them to the evil super-rich, greedy corporations and so on…but he’s missed the point of The New Nationalism speech and of the Square Deal – Freedom.
Roosevelt’s speech talks about free men, a free government and the underlying free will of the people. Obama doesn’t mention freedom a single time. It is about earning your own way to wealth and power, not stripping it from those who have it and redistributing it. To Obama, freedom is something for the government to regulate. From the New Nationalism Speech:
“Capital has its rights, which are as worthy of protection as any other rights. . . . Nor should this lead to a war upon the owners of property. Property is the fruit of labor; . . . property is desirable; is a positive good in the world.”
And then comes a thoroughly Lincoln-like sentence:
“Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another, but let him work diligently and build one for himself, thus by example assuring that his own shall be safe from violence when built.”
True freedom and liberty means being able to amass great wealth and power if one wishes, but also being bound to the same laws as the poorest of men. Obama mentions this in the speech but he himself isn’t playing by those rules and I daresay he doesn’t fully grasp the concept. Right now, we have politicians who have amassed great wealth and power and wield it to protect themselves and those they deem friendly or useful to them. There is always a wealthy benefactor hiding in the shadows. It is these politicians, not the wealthy or “1%”, who are the root of the problem. The politicians make the laws and then conveniently make ways out of those laws. When loopholes are not sufficient to shield themselves, the politicians apply one set of laws to themselves and another to the rest of us. These politicians of course have their foot soldiers that do the dirty work for a price.
The hypocrisy, corruption and revolving door action is enough to drive one to drink. Let’s try that – replace politicians with democrats in the above paragraph. Chuck some crony capitalism in a glass. One shot narcissism, one shot of tin ear. Add Unions and the Liberal media, then stir. Voila! Obamatini!
Here are a few key excerpts in chronological order:
We’re not a Great Nation:
“Today, we are still home to the world’s most productive workers and innovative companies. But for most Americans, the basic bargain that made this country great has eroded. Long before the recession hit, hard work stopped paying off for too many people. Fewer and fewer of the folks who contributed to the success of our economy actually benefitted from that success. Those at the very top grew wealthier from their incomes and investments than ever before. But everyone else struggled with costs that were growing and paychecks that weren’t – and too many families found themselves racking up more and more debt just to keep up.”
Republicans/Conservatives are to Blame with an Occupy Tie in:
“Now, in the midst of this debate, there are some who seem to be suffering from a kind of collective amnesia. After all that’s happened, after the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, they want to return to the same practices that got us into this mess. In fact, they want to go back to the same policies that have stacked the deck against middle-class Americans for too many years. Their philosophy is simple: we are better off when everyone is left to fend for themselves and play by their own rules.
Well, I’m here to say they are wrong. I’m here to reaffirm my deep conviction that we are greater together than we are on our own. I believe that this country succeeds when everyone gets a fair shot, when everyone does their fair share, and when everyone plays by the same rules. Those aren’t Democratic or Republican values; 1% values or 99% values. They’re American values, and we have to reclaim them.”
More finger-pointing – he gets one thing right, that is liberty, he just doesn’t like it:
“Now, just as there was in Teddy Roosevelt’s time, there’s been a certain crowd in Washington for the last few decades who respond to this economic challenge with the same old tune. “The market will take care of everything,” they tell us. If only we cut more regulations and cut more taxes – especially for the wealthy – our economy will grow stronger. Sure, there will be winners and losers. But if the winners do really well, jobs and prosperity will eventually trickle down to everyone else. And even if prosperity doesn’t trickle down, they argue, that’s the price of liberty.”
Blame Bush and ignore the job growth facts:
“Remember that in those years, in 2001 and 2003, Congress passed two of the most expensive tax cuts for the wealthy in history, and what did they get us? The slowest job growth in half a century. Massive deficits that have made it much harder to pay for the investments that built this country and provided the basic security that helped millions of Americans reach and stay in the middle class – things like education and infrastructure; science and technology; Medicare and Social Security.”
“Inequality also distorts our democracy. It gives an outsized voice to the few who can afford high-priced lobbyists and unlimited campaign contributions, and runs the risk of selling out our democracy to the highest bidder. And it leaves everyone else rightly suspicious that the system in Washington is rigged against them – that our elected representatives aren’t looking out for the interests of most Americans.”
Yes, it is – but your own policies have dubbed you ‘President Food Stamps’:
“It’s heartbreaking enough that there are millions of working families in this country who are now forced to take their children to food banks for a decent meal.”
“So far, most of the Republicans in Washington have refused, under any circumstances, to ask the wealthiest Americans to go the same tax rates they were paying when Bill Clinton was president.”
He of course goes on to plug for higher education, manufacturing and road building jobs , pushing the payroll tax cut, repeating the Buffet secretary lie, blaming everyone but himself and his usual shovel ready investments in our future – and, of course, paying our fair share. He doesn’t leave out patting himself on the back for leveling the playing field every chance he had. He also throws in a few ‘America is a great nation’ bits when just last month he was saying how lazy we are and we’ve passed the our best years. Nice! His obvious demographic goal was middle-class, white Americans – 18 times he mentions the middle-class. As a member of that demographic, that recycled and spite ridden speech didn’t inspire me to do anything but vote him, and anyone supporting him, out in 2012.
Now, go read it them both for yourself and decide: