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The Children’s Hour: ‘You Didn’t Build That!’

26 July 2012 @ 10:05

While not giving in to Smitty’s tempting suggestion of a daily thrashing of that statement, made by The Smartest Person In The Universe And Beyond!!!, I will, finally, venture to post about the statements made by Comrade Obamnin recently in Roanoke Virginia. I will, per usual, be assisted by some of the brightest lights on the Right, including some of my Friends In The Ether…

-First, here is the full transcript of the speech. It’s over five thousand words [aka: it's 'Clintonesque', perhaps 'Castroesque']. Smitty has posted the key part [of some five hundred-plus words] here that places the remarks in all their ‘glorious’ context.

-By far the best reply to Comrade Obamnin’s remarks that I’ve seen has come from JeffS in a comment over in a post by Smitty. Responding to a troll named ‘JenniferInChrist’, Jeff starts out by quoting her and then proceeds to demolish Obama’s fun-house mirror logic [this is worth quoting in full]:

[JenniferInChrist:] Its a basic fact about economics that businesses benefit from government infrastructure such as roads and bridge. Businessmen did not build these. Nor did they build the internet, utilities, educational systems, and other government services which are helpful to their business.

As an engineer involved with infrastructure, I have some specific points to make:

1. As Adobe Walls, noted, the INTERNET is exclusively a private corporation. There is government regulation of it, but not ownership. There’s a difference.

2. Most of the transportation infrastructure was built through contracts funded by taxes. Taxes come from people and businesses. No businesses, no tax payers, no roads, bridges, etc. A government is not needed to build these — take note that the railroad system is privately owned. It’s just that the government is viewed as having deeper pockets, and tools to get the real estate needed. The work is funded by tax dollars, and largely carried out by contractors, save some routine maintenance….maybe.

Ergo, any government is, AT BEST, a manager of transportation infrastructure. Government is not self-funding, as it’s generally a not-for-profit operation. It’s a long stretch to say that "the government built it". Even here in Washington State, projects funded through WADOT say "This [project] brought to you by your tax dollars."

3. Utilities: Jennifer, that is so wrong. Communities tend to run their own water and sewage systems, but that’s not always the case. There are private water utilities. BUT…..virtually all of the other utilities (power, telephone, cable) are privately owned and operated by corporations. There are some exceptions to this (e.g., hydropower and power distribution systems operated by Federal or state chartered corporations [Bonneville Power Administration, Tennessee Valley
Authority]), but not many.

4. Public schools are the norm, but mostly through high school, and not always then (charter schools, for example). It’s just that many states view the education system as a government monopoly, an attitude encouraged by the NEA. Further, many of the universities and colleges are privately operated. So, nope, not accurate.

5. Government services: Which ones? Most "services" are either regulatory, tax collection, or welfare. How do those help businesses? Police, fire, medical might count, depending on the jurisdiction. How so? Ever work with volunteer fire departments? Rural fire departments? Did you know that the majority of firefighters in this country are volunteer? Hmmmmm! Who pays THAT bill? EMS, a lot of volunteers there as well. And not all jurisdictions have law enforcement at hand.

Sorry, Jennifer, but that statement is about as clueless as they come. Government is, by and large, overhead. The problem is that the overhead is bloated, and needs to be trimmed. Including Obama.

Romney may only slow down the rush towards the cliff, but that’s better than romping on the accelerator like "Thelma and Louise".

Oh, indeed [as I stated yesterday: 'The election of Willard Mitt Romney would just be a holding action' allowing us room to breathe as we continue our campaign in the War Of American Dependence].

-As to the claim by the Left that the Internet was a government creation, Gordon Crovitz demolishes that lie in an enlightening article in The Wall Street Journal. Thank you, Xerox.

-Charles Murray is dead solid perfect [tip of the fedora to Mark Steyn]:

“You didn’t build that” is another example of the president’s tone-deafness when it comes to the music of the American culture. The phrase is not taken out of context. It didn’t come after a celebration of the inventiveness and risk taking of individual Americans that has made this country great. The president gave the mildest of acknowledgements to the role of the individual, followed by a paragraph of examples that cast American history as a series of collective accomplishments.

There’s a standard way for Americans to celebrate accomplishment. First, we call an individual onto the stage and say what great things that person has done. Then that person gives a thank-you speech that begins “I couldn’t have done this without…” and a list of people who helped along the way. That’s the way we’ve always done it. Everyone knows we all get help in life (and sometimes just get lucky). But we have always started with the individual and then worked out. It is not part of the American mindset to begin with the collective and admonish individuals for thinking too highly of their contribution.

That brings me back to the creepiness of it all. It is as if a Dutch politician—an intelligent, well-meaning Dutch politician—were somehow running for the American presidency, but bringing with him the Rawlsian, social-democratic ethos that, in the Netherlands, is the natural way to talk about a properly run society. We would listen to him and say to ourselves, “He doesn’t get this country.” That’s the thing about Obama. Time and again, he does things and says things that are un-American. Not evil. Not anti-American. Just un-American.

One Quibble: I hope Mr. Murray doesn’t mean to imply that Obama is any way ‘well-meaning’ because, as we have seen with each passing day of his occupation of the Executive Branch of our government and as we learn more [finally] about his upbringing, Obama’s aims are malevolent, his methods malicious — he and his comrades have a strong Will To Power. He hates and despises everything America and The West stand for. He espouses ideas that are completely un-American and are the exact opposite of Western — ironically, such a guiding philosophy was and could only be developed in The West by it’s Nihilistic misfits [aka: the creators of The Culture Of Death]. Obama and his comrades seek nothing less than the complete and total destruction of Judeo-Christian Morality and Anglo-Saxon institutions and customs.

-Mark Steyn is worth quoting at length:

In Obama’s world, businessmen build nothing, whereas government are the hardest hard-hats on the planet. So, in his “you didn’t build that” speech, he invoked, yet again, the Hoover Dam and the Golden Gate Bridge. “When we invested in the Hoover Dam or the Golden Gate Bridge, or the Internet, sending a man to the moon — all those things benefited everybody. And so that’s the vision that I want to carry forward.”

He certainly carries it forward from one dam speech to another. He was doing his Hoover Dam shtick only last month, and I pointed out that there seemed to be a certain inconsistency between his enthusiasm for federal dam-building and the definitive administration pronouncement on the subject, by Deanna Archuleta, his deputy assistant secretary of the Interior, in a speech to Democrat environmentalists in Nevada:

“You will never see another federal dam.”

Ever. So the president can carry forward his “vision,” but it apparently has no more real-world application than the visions he enjoyed as a member of his high-school “choom gang” back in Hawaii. Incidentally, I was interested to learn from David Maraniss’s enlightening new biography that, during car-chooming sessions, young Barry insisted all the windows be rolled up so that no marijuana smoke would escape. If you can seriously envision President Obama opening a 21st-century Hoover Dam, you need to lower the windows on your Chevy Volt.

The Golden Gate Bridge? As Reason’s Matt Welch pointed out, the Golden Gate cost at the time $35 million — or about $530 million today. So, for the cost of Obama’s 2009 stimulus bill alone, we could have had 1,567 Golden Gate Bridges. Where are they? Where are, say, the first dozen? If you laid 1,567 Golden Gate Bridges end to end, you’d have enough for one Golden Choom Bridge stretching from Obama’s Punahou High School in Honolulu over the Pacific all the way to his Occidental College in Los Angeles, so that his car-chooming chums can commute from one to the other without having to worry about TSA patdowns.

A stimulus bill equivalent to 1,567 Golden Gate bridges. A 2011 federal budget equivalent to 6,788 Golden Gate bridges. And yet we don’t have a single one.

Because that’s not what Big Government does: Money-no-object government spends more and more money for less and less objects. For all the American economy has to show for it, President Bob the Builder took just shy of a trillion dollars in stimulus, stuck it in his wheelbarrow, pushed it halfway across the Golden Gate bridge, and tossed it into the Pacific.

Instead of roads and bridges, Obama-sized government funds stasis and sclerosis: The Hoover Dam of regulatory obstruction, the Golden Gateway to dependency. Last month, 80,000 Americans signed on to new jobs, but 85,000 Americans signed on for Social Security disability checks. Most of these people are not “disabled” as that term is generally understood. Rather, it’s the U.S. economy that’s disabled, and thus Obama incentivizes dependency.

If we re-elect Obama, America will be Back On The Choom Gang – permanently. If you think you’ve seen serious stasis and sclerosis these past three-plus years, hold on if he gets the win because you ain’t seen nuthin’ yet.

-Jimmie Bise replied to Obama’s remarks in a well-reasoned mini-essay last week that showed clearly how blatantly Obama lied. A highlight [tip of the fedora to Stacy McCain]:

President Obama is wrong. We have no cause to demand thanks from the successful. We should not demand more from them, not when they give so much, willingly and unwillingly. “The rich” pay far more than their own freight every single year, and they always have. “Millionaires and billionaires”, who in reality are “hundred-thousandaires and five hundred-thousandaires” bear the lion’s share of the cost of our roads, bridges, police, and fire stations even though they use less of all of them than the rest of us. When the President said “somebody” built roads and bridges, he’s talking about the wealthiest among us, even though that’s not who he means.

The President’s speech was an attack on the foundation of rugged individualism that has always supported this country, the foundation on which our greatness was built from the very beginning….

As with every single Leftist, Obama has no clue — and has no desire to ever obtain one, not even by nationalizing clues.

-Paco, too, is dead solid perfect:

Obama is making the mistake of reasoning from the particular to the general. He, himself, is a gaudy butterfly that was nurtured in a cocoon of anti-American radicalism, and who benefited his entire adult life from the assistance of ideological mentors, bent on living out their totalitarian fantasies vicariously, and Democratic Party apparatchiks, who greased the skids for his rapid political advancement. In other words, he is largely the loving creation of his handlers, who smoothed his path and did practically everything but carry him in a sedan chair to his current residence on Pennsylvania Avenue. So, devoid as he is of genuine learning, real-world experience and the habit of critical thinking, Obama assumes that this is the way it works for everybody. He – in spite of his inherent greatness! – might still be ineffectually haranguing small groups of neighborhood malcontents had it not been for the small army of helping hands that shoved him up the career ladder; therefore, you (poor schlep!) must obviously need similar assistance –and, truth to tell, far more, because, let’s face it, he’s special and you’re just, you know, you.

When the full story final comes out about Obama’s rise to power [which will only happen if the Right survives], it will be, I’m sure, a story worthy of being told for ages to come as a cautionary tale of how easily a supposedly smart and free people allowed themselves to be put to sleep by Doctors Of Ideology bent on euthanizing everything that was good in the world.

2 Comments
  1. T Claus permalink
    28 July 2012 @ 12:27 12:27

    Thanks, Bob. Best consolidated wrap-up on Obama’s remarks I’ve read to date. It’s pieces like this one that keep your blog at the top of my Blogs bookmark menu.

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