Even the gifted, eloquent are not immune from putting a foot in their mouth sometimes.
When President Obama said,
“If you’ve got a business – you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen“,
he was trying to ride on the populist point Massachusetts senate candidate Elizabeth Warren made (reasonably well), when she said (paraphrasing), “If you built a company, and made it, good for you, keep most of it, but you didn’t do it all by yourself, so pay your fair share for the next kids who come along.”
Kind of a “Pay It Forward” reminder for the successful – who took a risk, and through hard work and the force of determination in the fertile ground of American free enterprise – are making it and are successful.
But President Obama mangled it into a sometimes-little-things-say-the-most statement of what may be his real feelings about American free enterprise vs. government spending and control.
It’s true that lots of aspects go into it (education, roads, American foundation of free enterprise) but even IN context, “If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen” sounds naive, lacking real-world experience, Washington/government-ese … not to mention anti-small-business and anti-free enterprise.
But, giving him the benefit of the doubt – he just mangled his thoughts and words from a reasonable “government assisted by providing these things” into “you didn’t do this, we did” distortion.
A president so eloquent will no doubt be able to explain this away, at least for the (D) party faithful.
Actually rooting for him. I shudder to think this is his real belief.
– Jerry Guzi