Osawatomie Speech – When Were We "On Our Own?" and "Preserve the Middle Class?"

By | December 14, 2011




On Tuesday, December 6, 2011, President Barach H. Obama gave an amazing speech while in Osawatomie, Kansas. He said in his speech, “This isn’t about class warfare.” But as fellow Democrat Dale Bumpers testified at the Clinton impeachment trial, “When you hear somebody say, ‘This is not about sex,’ it’s about sex.” Among other things, he said that while a limited government that preserves free markets “speaks to our rugged individualism” as Americans, such a system “doesn’t work” and “has never worked” and that Americans must look to a more activist government that taxes more, spends more and regulates more if they want to preserve the middle class. That sounds to me as if he is calling for more government, more taxes, more regulation, and more spending (of money we don’t have). He blamed the bad economy on “this brand of ‘you’re on your own’ economics.” “We simply cannot return to this brand of ‘you’re on your own’ economics if we’re serious about rebuilding the middle class in this country,” said Obama. Oh, really? Let’s look further, to see when we were ever “on our own” or what he has done for the “middle class.”

  • Housing: First we got the Dodd-Frank fiasco, now we have Obama Loan Modification, or the Making Home Affordable Program. The benefits of Obamas home affordable refinance plan can be accessed through the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP), that shifts the financial liability for refinanced loans to the American taxpayer. On our own, huh? Helping the middle class, huh?
  • Education: In 2009, Obama, through the Department of Education, went far beyond the role of the federal government in education policy and showed a disregard for the guidance of parents in their children’s political formation, by releasing lesson plans for teachers in grades pre-K-12. In October, 2011, Obama’s Department of Education is engaged in a campaign of intimidation designed to implement Obama’s odd take on what constitutes discrimination on American campuses. The Office of Civil Rights of the Department of Education has refused to afford Jewish students the same protections against harassment and intimidation as it grants to every African-American, Latino, and Arab student. This means that the Jews can fend for themselves. Is this what Obama means by “on our own?”
  • Healthcare: To say that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (better known as ObamaCare) is unpopular would be an understatement. And look at the chicanery Democrats went through to (try to) get it passed. Former House speaker Nancy Pelosi was instrumental in securing ObamaCare’s passage, but 20% of the waivers went to her constituients.
  • EPA Regulations: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), under Obama, is destroying jobs and is trying to destroy the fossil fuel industry and gain control over the entire American economy. On our own? Helping the middle class?
  • Student Loans: On October 25, 2011, Obama announced a new program to increase college affordability by making it easier to manage student loan debt. He said he was making this move because we can’t wait for Congressional Republicans to act. On our own, huh? And who does he propose pay for this? “And we can do it at no cost to the taxpayer,” said Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. Where have we heard this before? Helping the middle class, huh?
  • Fairness: In his speech, Obama defined “fairness” in terms of emotions and failed to define his version of “fairness” in a way that the high school students, which comprised most of his audience, would be able to understand. If he wanted those high school students to understand “fairness,” he should have used their school grades as an analogy for wealth, as grades are the main “fruits of their labor” at this point in their lives. Students all have an equal opportunity to work hard to earn grades, and their wealth is the knowledge that they gain in the process. What the education system does NOT guarantee is that there will be an equality of outcome. Under Obama’s definition of “fairness” it is unfair that those who have achieved the highest marks get to keep all of their grades. Just like wealth, Obama says it’s unfair to keep grades earned, and that it would be more fair if grades (wealth) could be “spread around.” On our own, huh?
  • Tax Cuts: In his speech, Obama said, “…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.”  [emphasis mine]  Was he implying that the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts benefited only the wealthy? The 2001 tax cuts were marginal rate cuts, which extended to all taxpayers, including the middle class. The 2003 tax cuts included a reduction in taxes on dividends and capital gains. His claim of “slowest job growth” includes the loss of jobs under his administration. Help the middle class, huh?

  • Central Planning: In the “too big to fail” department, the Obama administratrion took over General Motors (GM). China’s $19,000 subsidy to produce the Chevy Volt in China is a slap at market capitalism, and is envied by Obama, who hands his own $7,500 electric-car subsidy to America’s upper class and wastes national resources to buy expensive electrics for his government. Helping the middle class, huh? On our own, huh?

Above are just eight examples of “government help” but I had to stop somewhere. I am sure that you can think of others. It would be truer, I think, to say that the present situation reflects the total failure of “you’re not on your own” economics. And how much more “help” can the middle class stand from Obama?

Ronald Reagan was correct when he said, “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help.'”

But that’s just my opinion.

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