Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Effrontery of "You Did Not Build That"

Here is the President, telling entrepreneurs that they didn't build their business on their own.

The full text, so that we are not taking this out of context.

There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t — if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I am always struck by people who think, “It must be because I was just so smart.” There are a lot of smart people out there. “It must be because I worked harder than everybody else.” Let me tell you something: There are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there. If you are successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business, you did not build that–somebody else made that happen. The Internet did not get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off of the Internet. The point is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together.
Where to start? This is rich, of course, coming from a guy who didn't build a thing, who didn't even get decent grades in college for all we know. But the outrage is really about his tone of arrogance in telling us that unless we support his big fat welfare state, we are being ungrateful to our third grade teacher. Entrepreneurs know who helped them and they already said thanks. And all of us know that some government is necessary. We know that government establishing a rule of law, including contract law, and preventing corruption are key features that allow business to succeed. We wouldn't mind paying for government that was limited, small and worked; a government that stayed within its constitutional boundaries and its means.
  • We wouldn't mind paying taxes if they actually built roads and dams. But as Mark Steyn reports, Obama's Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Interior has promised that "You will never see another federal dam." Ever.
  • We wouldn't mind paying taxes if they weren't squandered on green energy projects that lined the pockets of the President's campaign donors.
  • We wouldn't mind paying taxes if they weren't used to enable Mexican drug lords to gun down U.S. agents.
  • We wouldn't mind paying taxes if they didn't support an increasingly corrupt welfare state.
  • We wouldn't mind paying taxes if the government schools actually educated our kids.
  • We wouldn't mind paying taxes if the President supported the rule of law and didn't pass laws through executive order.
  • We wouldn't mind paying taxes if the military wasn't used as social experiment in diversity and biofuels.
  • We wouldn't mind paying taxes if state workers didn't have better salaries, benefits, pensions and job security than the average taxpayer.
  • We wouldn't mind paying taxes if the President wasn't so arrogant about demanding that we should pay more.


  1. I have a two-part response.

    Part I - Is this horrid speech having any effect on his campaign? The lefty site I troll is oblivious to it and conservative media are all over it, so is the usual polarization resulting in the usual stalemate? Or are small businessmen who voted for the cool Black guy finally getting it? Are Silicon Valley CEOs finally hearing what we conservatives hear?

    Part 2 - the straw men in that supremely insulting speech are outrageous. When did Republicans ever advocate:

    1 - abolishing organized firefighting units
    2 - abolishing education (they have IMPROVED it in Wisconsin)
    3 - not building roads (they famously say the government should build roads and maintain armies)

    And as I look over that tiny list, I think of the repair of the I-5 after the Northridge quake, which was done under federal disaster conditions and overseen by private citizen Peter Ueberroth. Free of government requirements on purchasing materials and hiring labor, the project came in ahead of schedule and under budget.

    Then there's an area of Oakland/Berkeley -- can't remember exactly which freeway interchange -- that was literally under construction for at least 12 years after the Loma Prieta quake. I'm not sure how that stretch escaped classification as a disaster area, but it did, and repair essentially became permanent, a fact of life, a gift that kept on giving.

    I could go on with examples from wildlife management and education, but I don't want to further madden anyone.

    We must dump this evil, stupid, America-hater.

  2. ar,
    Thanks for sharing. Obama vs straw men is the only time I'll give him even money.
    However, I don't think that Obama hates America, so much as he hates our vision of America, where the private sector (businesses, non-profits, faith based organizations, public service associations and individuals) are the primary change agents in making America a better place to live. He believes that these institutions can't be trusted to be fair, only government can. Of course this flies in the face of centuries of experience, in which government is the most unfair, because it is the most corrupt.

  3. B-Daddy, you are right. I think Obama does dig the beauty and power of this country and he gets off on being its "leader." If only it weren't for all us pesky Americans, it would be perfect.