President Obama Finally Says What He Believes

President Obama Finally Says What He Believes

© David Burton 2012

What Pres.Obama Believes

     President Barack Obama has repeatedly demonstrated his skills as an orator. What he has said and what he really believes may, however, not be the same. Now, we may have finally gotten a glimpse into what the President really believes about capitalism, about free enterprise and about the role of government in America. In a recent 2012 campaign speech in Roanoke, Virginia, the President said the following:

If you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. . . . If you were 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 allowed you to thrive. Some body invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business – you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.” -- Barack Obama (Ref. 1)

     Apparently “Steve Jobs didn’t make Apple happen. It was the work of a teacher union member . . . High earners don’t deserve the money they make … it’s the gift of the government. . . . even if higher tax rates produce less revenue for the government, as has been the case with rate increases on capital gains, the government should still take the money as a matter of ‘fairness’ … and, if you’re successful, somebody else made that happen.” (Ref. 2)

     In essence, what President Obama was saying was that he really doesn’t believe in the basic American concept of individuality and entrepreneurship. Instead, he spouted the liberal, socialist and progressive philosophy that all economic and societal benefits are derived from the collective - from the state. According to this philosophy, the individual is nothing and the state is everything. The homage we Americans pay to those whom we believed to be the bedrock or our national success is misplaced. Instead, it has been the state - the government - that has actually been the source of our greatness and prosperity. Consequently, everyone who has “made it” and been a success doesn’t deserve the fame or riches that he has earned. Instead, the Thomas Edisons, the Henry Fords, the Bill Gates, the Warren Buffets and, yes, even the Barack Obamas, owe all their success to the state and must therefore give the state its proper share of the rewards from the achievements of these individuals. Since it was the state that made them the successes they were or are, the state must be the real genius and source of America’s success in the world. This being true, the so-called rich must give back to “the all-powerful, all-knowing, omnipotent state” that which the state claims they unfairly earned. Carrying this philosophy to its natural conclusion then, there should be no individuality – the individual must make himself or herself subservient to the state. The state knows best and will decide what everyone should do and how to spend the money the individual “earns” and transfers to the state. In return, the state will decide what benefits to return to the individual.

     This “Progressive” vision ignores the historical accomplishments of the great men and women in America and replaces these achievements with the unsubstantiated theory that it was the state, “the society” and “the system” that made America the envy of the rest of the world. Never mind that the stateand “the society” and “the system” have all been tried and all have failed to achieve what American individualism, entrepreneurship, and governmental non-interference have. Unfortunately, this Progressive vision is blind to historical facts. It ignores the facts that it was the individuals, the risks they took, and the efforts they expended that have led to America’s accomplishments and a standard of living that is still the envy of the rest of the planet. Yes, in many cases, their success was achieved with the aid of others and even the benefits afforded by a form of government that encouraged and sustained a capitalistic free enterprise system. But, in the end, it was the risk-takers, the entrepreneurs and the mavericks that are at the foundation of America’s greatness.

     There should be no doubt that President Obama has a commitment to the philosophy that he espoused in his speech. Obama is a “progressive ideologue” and a passionate “believer in social justice.” Both phrases are simply code words for one who believes in the philosophy of socialism and the supremacy of the state over the individual. The ultimate result that derives from this philosophy is a Utopia in which all good comes from “the state” and in which the state and its leader(s) are the only ones qualified to decide how much and to whom to bestow its benefits. Here, the individual serves the State and not vice versa. Many among us would vehemently argue that such was not the vision of the founders of this nation, nor the reason that America has achieved what it has. These believers in the “American way” claim that government in America was conceived to be subservient to the people it serves and that America’s rugged individualism and free enterprise system are at the core and foundation of this great nation.

     “For the progressive, freedom {isn’t} the absence of government coercion, it is a pile of gifts from the State.” These gifts from the State are meant to placate any feelings of unease and to condition the recipients into dependency upon the state rather than upon their own individual talents, ambitions, skills, and energies. “Progressives {believe in} the idea of a ‘moral equivalent of war’ as a means of inciting citizens to drop their personal priorities and rally around the state for a government-defined ‘cause larger than themselves.’” (Ref. 1) For the Progressive, individualism, capitalism, free enterprise, and minimal government are all anathema. With his Roanoke statements, President Obama has come out and stated what he fundamentally believes – the individual in America must be subservient to and must ultimately serve the state. He does not believe in individualism and, instead, believes that everything emanates from the state. Where have I heard this before?

     As part of the Progressive agenda, it's fashionable “to attack success and belittle the achievements of business men and business women. Until now, free enterprise and individual initiative have always been qualities that we as a country have celebrated. What has made America the greatest country in the history of the world is the ingenuity, creativity and the hard work of the American people, especially those who take enormous risk to start a business.” (Ref. 3)

     “’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’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.” (Ref. 4)

     “To detract from the achievement of any successful person — whether a student graduating from college or a Thomas Alva Edison, Steve Jobs, or Bill Gates — is to attack the very essence of what makes America great.
. . .
“The president wants Americans to be ‘ashamed of success.’ {and it’s} extraordinary that a philosophy of that nature would be spoken by the president of the United States.” (Ref. 5)

     The President and like-minded ivy-league academics believe that all business owners owe a never-ending debt to the government. When he talks about “the rich”, the President is talking about small-business owners as well. So, when he talks about “the rich” paying “their fair share”, these are liberal code words for his beliefs – the achievers need to support those that can’t or won’t earn their way.

     “Picking your neighbors’ pockets is not a necessity of survival. Before America’s entitlement state, free individuals planned for and coped with tough times, taking responsibility for their own lives.” (Ref. 6)

     Another indication of what President Obama truly believes comes from his 2011 State of the Union address to Congress. In his speech, “We were told that we must have equality of outcome – yet that is not America. Somehow equality of outcome has been confused with equality under the law, equality of opportunity.

“We were told that the American people need a level playing field. The confusion starts when government attempts to define the meaning of the word level. America has a level playing field – it is called freedom.

“We were told that everyone is entitled to success. It is as if there can be no failure. Perhaps American values are being confused with some other nation, but in America, one of the greatest rights is the right to fail … and then be able to try again.

“We were told that everyone needs to pay their fair share. Once again, confusion reigns supreme. Why not ask the question, what is the fair share that Americans should be allowed to keep when they look at their paycheck?” (Ref. 7)

     Perhaps the most enlightening – and frightening – insight into Barack Obama’s core beliefs are evident in the president’s social media propaganda release, entitled “The life of Julia”. In this fable, “Julia is a pathetic figment of the progressive imagination. She simply cannot function without the lifelong intervention of federal patriarchs.” Julia enrolls in the “federal Head Start program", supposedly benefits from the “Race to the Top federal program”, uses the “federal opportunity tax credit” and “federal Pell Grants” to pay for college, gets federally mandated health care till she’s 26 under “Obamacare”, is eligible for federal government-paid abortions under “Obamacare” if she or her partner don’t care to use birth control, and starts a business with a “federal Small Business Administration” loan. In reality, “the vast majority of entrepreneurs . . . want only one thing: for Obama and his wealth-confiscators to leave them the heck alone.” The life of Julia helps to expose “the real Barack Obama: a chauvinistic control freak who would tether every last woman and child to his ever-expanding budget-busting Nanny State.” (Ref. 8)

     While the true beliefs of the President are finally coming to the surface, the basic question remains – Do the political beliefs of the president hold water in the light of historical fact? For example, with respect to his solution to the issue of income inequality, i.e., raise taxes and increase government spending to fight income equality, “the facts don‘t support that approach. Among the states where income inequality is worst, . . . {there} are four that rank in the top 10 for their overall tax burden. . . . If higher taxes are the answer to income inequality high tax states would be concentrated at the bottom of their rankings, not the top.” (Ref. 9)

     The central conviction that seems to be at the core of president Obama’s beliefs is the belief that “government will provide the answers to the nation’s problems, big or small. But there’s no evidence that he’s devoted any profound thought to how an Administration that took charge of everything would be able to function.” Rather than trying to solve all the problems of America, the “Government’s job {should be} to make it possible for the economy to run itself, in the interest of all its components and to the benefit of the American people, whether they be producers, suppliers, or consumers.” (Ref. 10) Instead, we have an administration that believes that it can run the economy better than the free market and that it can best determine who are the most deserving of any benefits resulting therefrom.

     What are this president’s true beliefs producing for America? According to the Heritage Foundation, about 50% of Americans pay federal income taxes and the other 50% pay nothing. The president and most Liberals think that isn’t fair – they believe the 50% paying taxes should pay more! “Back in the evil days of Ronald Regan, a mere 15% of the population didn’t pay taxes. . . . Back then, we had lower rates and more payers. . . . Today, thanks to the ‘food stamp president’, the number of non-payers is 300 percent bigger, and one in five {Americans} now receives some level of federal government assistance. . . . {Under this president’s} proposed spending plan, federal debt will reach $200,000 per U.S. household by 2020.” (Ref. 11) And you thought paying for a college education was expensive? At least that money went to pay for an education for ourselves or for our own children. But our tax money, yours and mine, is going to benefit someone else – someone who really isn’t paying his fair share.

     The ultimate results of having a president with the beliefs of President Obama are that, “When people pay over 50 percent in payroll, federal, state and local taxes and are still caricatured as ‘not paying their fair share,’ a sort of collective shrug follows and bodes ill for the economy at large. One need not be liked to make money, but the constant presidential harangues finally take their toll in insidious ways.” (Ref. 12)

     It’s time to get back to the real American fundamentals, not the Utopian dreams of the socialistic reformers. Fundamentally, “America is mandated to provide ‘equal opportunity,’ not equal outcomes.

“President Barack Obama doesn’t seem to get that. He often puts forth that the wealthy Americans are not paying their ‘fair share,’ that somehow the fix is in, and the rich folk are gaming the system at the expense of the working people.”

“Capitalism is no beach day. The strong and sometimes the ruthless prosper. The poorly educated and unfocused often fail.” (Ref. 13)

     The truth about Capitalism is: “Some will win big, some will lose big, but most will live comfortable lives in the middle.” (Ref. 13) This is how America was founded, built and prospered. In spite of the unsubstantiated promises of the reformers, the truth is, no other system in the recorded history of the world has achieved what American capitalism has. “The issue is whether we want {American} society to be government-centered {as in the Obama vision of America}, with finances, liberties and decisions controlled in the capital … or do we want … the alternative vision – to explicitly reduce the mission, funding, office space and power of almost every aspect of central government.” (Ref. 14)

     Instead of stigmatizing the rich and the successful, American society and our President need to show an appreciation of their success and for the benefits to American society that have resulted. In America, “We {have been blessed to} have a high-achieving class that happens to be high-earning. This should make us proud. It speaks to the possibility of individual success that must exist for us to move as a nation anywhere worth going. Creative thinking should be prized, and so should the gains that can be made from it.” (Ref. 15)

     “For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.” - II Thessalonians 3:10


  1. Progressive vision blind to individuality, Jonah Goldberg, Boston Herald, Page 19, 23 July 2012.
  2. Success a gov’t benefit in Obama’s world, Michael Barone, Boston Herald, Page 15, 20 July 2012.
  3. Scott Brown for U.S. Senator E-mail, July 2012.
  4. Charles Murray | Sununu’s right: Obama’s views are un-American, Doug Brady, Conservatives 4 Palin;, 23 July 2012.
  5. Obama Slams Business, Belittles Success, Ronald Kessler, Newsmax;, 25 July 2012.
  6. America Before The Entitlement State, Don Watkins and Yaron Brook, Forbes, Page 28, 16 January 2012.
  7. Was the State of the Union Address Confusing?, Tom Weaver, The Valley Patriot, Page 41, February 2011.
  8. ’Julia’ a sad story of gov’t dependency, Michelle Malkin, Boston Herald, Page 23, 7 May 2012.
  9. Liberal inanity breeds income inequality, Cornelius Chapman, Boston Herald, Page 17, 17 January 2012.
  10. The Virtues of Capitalism, Paul Johnson, Forbes, Page 28, 13 February 2012.
  11. Two Americas indeed, Michael Graham, Boston Herald, Page 15, 24 February 2012.
  12. Sapping America’s Economic Vitality, Victor Davis Hanson, The Jewish Press, Page 4, 18 May 2012.
  13. Capitalism allows middle class, Bill O’Reilly, Boston Herald, Page 11, 19 May 2012.
  14. Pushing Back A Government-Centered Society, David Malpass, Forbes, Page 32, 21 May 2012.
  15. The 99% Movement Scorns American Creativity, Maura Pennington, Forbes, Page 30, 4 June 2012.

  09 August 2012 {Article 137; Politics_23}    
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