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What the President should have said tonight (without strikethrough)

Yesterday, the President gave a pretty good speech. If he honestly believed what he said, and if those beliefs were manifested through his actions as President, it’s doubtful he’d be facing the precipitous decline in his poll numbers.

Oh yeah…and he certainly wouldn’t be promoting yet another government entitlement program.

Tonight he stood before Congress and read from his teleprompters once again. If he really wanted to save his presidency, he could have taken the same speech he gave yesterday and adapted it to an adult audience. Something along the lines of the following. (I’ve replaced some of the President’s words from yesterday’s speech and the words I’ve added are in bold.)

Click here to see this article with the President’s words I’ve replaced struck through.

The President: Hello everyone – how’s everybody doing today? I’m here with Congress in Washington, DC. And we’ve got people tuning in from all across America, rich and poor, old and young. I’m glad you all could join us today.

I know that for many of you,  the high unemployment rate and our weak economy have you a little nervous.

I know some of you are still adjusting to looking for work instead of working, having less money to spend on necessities and luxuries. But I’m here today because I have something important to discuss with you. I’m here because I want to talk with you about what’s expected of all of you as we work our way out of this recession.

Now I’ve given a lot of speeches about education this economic crisis. But I haven’t talked a lot about personal responsibility.

I’ve talked about  government helping you, but I haven’t talked to you about helping yourselves.

I’ve talked a lot about your government’s responsibility for. taking care of you, making sure nobody should be held responsible for their irresponsible actions.

But at the end of the day, we can have  the most supportive government, and the best intentions in the world – and none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities. Unless you stop viewing yourself as a victim; start asking yourself “what can I do to improve my life?”; and put in the hard work it takes to succeed.

And that’s what I want to focus on today: the responsibility each of you has for your  station in life. I want to start with the responsibility you have to yourself.

Every single one of you has something you’re good at. Every single one of you has something to offer. And you have a responsibility to yourself to discover what that is. That’s the opportunity that can make you successful.

Maybe you’ll have to start at the bottom, not at the top of the pay scale. Maybe you’ll have to give up your bass boat, your all-terrain vehicle, your brand new pickup truck, or even your 52″ TV. But over time, you can work yourself up the ladder and into a position to once again have those luxuries.

And no matter what you do with your life – I guarantee that you’ll  be proud of yourself if you work for it, if you earn it through your own efforts instead of taking it from the mouths of others who earned it. You want to be a doctor, or a teacher, or a police officer? You want to be a nurse or an architect, a lawyer or a member of our military?  You’ve got to work for it and train for it and learn for it.

And this isn’t just important for your own life and your own future. What you make of your education will decide nothing less than the future of this country.  How you deal with your situation today will determine whether we as a nation can meet our greatest challenges in the future.

You’ll need that American spirit that lives somewhere within every one of us, that’s passed down from our founding fathers who came here for a better life and out of the wilderness created the greatest country in the world.

We need every single one of you to develop your talents, skills and intellect so you can help solve our most difficult problems. If you don’t do that  you’re letting down your country.

Now I know it’s not always easy to to step up and take responsibility for your own peace and security. I know a lot of you have challenges in your lives right now that can make it hard to take the risk, to step into the unknown when it seems more comfortable to stay put and let others foot the bill.

I get it. I know what that’s like. My father left my family when I was two years old, and I was raised by a single mother who struggled at times to pay the bills and wasn’t always able to give us things the other kids had. There were times when I missed having a father in my life. There were times when I was lonely and felt like I didn’t fit in.

So I wasn’t always as focused as I should have been. I did some things I’m not proud of, and got in more trouble than I should have. And my life could have easily taken a turn for the worse.

But I was fortunate. I realized what I’m asking you to realize and I did what it took to go to college, and law school, and follow my dreams. My wife, our First Lady Michelle Obama, has a similar story. Neither of her parents had gone to college, and they didn’t have much. But they worked hard, and she worked hard, so that she could go to the best schools in this country.

Some of you might not have some of those advantages. Maybe you don’t have family in your life who give you the support that you’d like. Maybe someone in your family has lost their job, and there’s not enough money to go around. Maybe you live in a neighborhood where you don’t feel safe, or have friends who are pressuring you to do things you know aren’t right.

But at the end of the day, the circumstances of your life – what you look like, where you come from, how much money you have, what you’ve got going on at home – that’s no excuse for turning to crime, giving up looking for work, or having a bad attitude.  That’s no excuse for not trying.

Where you are right now doesn’t have to determine where you’ll end up. No one’s written your destiny for you. Here in America, you write your own destiny. You make your own future.

That’s what people like you are doing every day, all across America.

Young people like Jazmin Perez, from Roma, Texas. Jazmin didn’t speak English when she first started school. Hardly anyone in her hometown went to college, and neither of her parents had gone either. But she worked hard, earned good grades, got a scholarship to Brown University, and is now in graduate school, studying public health, on her way to being Dr. Jazmin Perez.

I’m thinking about Andoni Schultz, from Los Altos, California, who’s fought brain cancer since he was three. He’s endured all sorts of treatments and surgeries, one of which affected his memory, so it took him much longer – hundreds of extra hours – to do his schoolwork. But he never fell behind, and he’s headed to college this fall.

And then there’s Shantell Steve, from my hometown of Chicago, Illinois. Even when bouncing from foster home to foster home in the toughest neighborhoods, she managed to get a job at a local health center; start a program to keep young people out of gangs; and she’s on track to graduate high school with honors and go on to college.

Jazmin, Andoni and Shantell aren’t any different from any of you. They faced challenges in their lives just like you do. But they refused to give up. They chose to take responsibility for their lives and set goals for themselves. And I expect all of you to do the same.

That’s why today, I’m calling on each of you to set your own goals for your life – and to do everything you can to meet them. Your goal can be something as simple as speaking to three potential employers today, to finding a job (even if it’s not the job you want) within the next week or month, or even to volunteer somewhere for a few hours a week to make yourself productive. Maybe you’ll decide to help tutor kids at school, volunteer at your local animal shelter, or become a Big Brother or Sister. Maybe you’ll decide to take a job at McDonalds, Wal-Mart, or a local convenience store.

Whatever you resolve to do, I want you to commit to it. I want you to really work at it.

I know that sometimes, you get the sense from TV that you can can’t be rich and successful  — that  the only ticket to success is through rapping or basketball or being a reality TV star, when chances are, you’re not going to be any of those things.

But the truth is, being successful is hard. You won’t love every  job you have. You won’t click with every foreman, supervisor, or boss. Not every  job assignment will seem  enjoyable or desirable right this minute. And you won’t necessarily succeed at everything the first time you try.

That’s OK. Some of the most successful people in the world are the ones who’ve had the most failures. JK Rowling’s first Harry Potter book was rejected twelve times before it was finally published. Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team, and he lost hundreds of games and missed thousands of shots during his career. But he once said, “I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

These people succeeded because they understand that you can’t let your failures define you – you have to let them teach you. You have to let them show you what to do differently next time. If you get in trouble, that doesn’t mean you’re a troublemaker, it means you need to try harder to behave. If you get a bad grade lose your job, that doesn’t mean you’re stupid unemployable, it just means you need to spend more time studying work hard at finding a new job, or even develop new skills to make yourself more marketable.

No one’s born being good at things, you become good at things through hard work. You’re not a varsity athlete the first time you play a new sport. You don’t hit every note the first time you sing a song. You’ve got to practice. It’s the same with your schoolwork. You might have to do a math problem a few times before you get it right, or read something a few times before you understand it, or do a few drafts of a paper before it’s good enough to hand in.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. I do that every day. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of strength. It shows you have the courage to admit when you don’t know something, and to learn something new. So find an adult someone you trust – a friend, a parent, grandparent or teacher; a coach or counselor coworker – and ask them to help you stay on track to meet your goals.

And even when you’re struggling, even when you’re discouraged, and you feel like other people have given up on you – don’t ever give up on yourself. Because when you give up on yourself, you give up on your country.

The story of America isn’t about people who quit when things got tough. It’s about people who kept going, who tried harder, who loved their country too much to do anything less than their best.

It’s the story of  people who sat where you sit 250 years ago, and went on to wage a revolution and found this nation. Students who sat where you sit 75 years ago who overcame a Depression and won a world war; who fought for civil rights and put a man on the moon. People who sat where you sit 20 years ago who founded Google, Twitter and Facebook and changed the way we communicate with each other.

So today, I want to ask you, what’s your contribution going to be? What problems are you going to solve? What discoveries will you make? What will a president who comes here in twenty or fifty or one hundred years say about what all of you did for this country?

Your children, spouses, and parents are counting on you. But you’ve got to do your part. So I expect you to get serious this year. I expect you to put your best effort into everything you do. I expect great things from each of you. So don’t let us down – don’t let your family or your country or yourself down. Make us all proud. I know you can do it.

Thank you, God bless you, and God bless America.

But that’s not what the President said. Instead he stood before America, read the lies scrolling acros his teleprompter, and once again insisted on the need for another huge government entitlement program. A program that will encourage fraud and abuse, and discourage personal responsibility.

But we didn’t really expect anything more.

September 5, 2009 Posted by | Obama | , , , , | 1 Comment

This is recovery?

The US unemployment rate has now reached a 26-year high of 9.7% under Obamanomics.  According to Bloomberg, “The jobless rate rose to 9.7 percent; the so- called underemployment rate — which includes part-time workers who’d prefer a full-time position and people who want work but have given up looking — reached a record 16.8 percent.”

Last month the libs leaped for joy when the July unemployment rate dropped to 9.4% from the previous month’s 9.5%. They proudly proclaimed the success of Obama’s so-called “stimulus” package and the turning of the tide of recession that had been washing across the land.  The mainstream media (MSM) fell all over themselves proclaiming the success of Obamanomics and the inevitable, impending period of peace, love, and happiness in the US.

Obama, his administration, and even the press seemed to forget that 9.4% was 120% of what he promised would be the peak unemployment rate if his “stimulus” was passed.  And they blocked from their minds that the President had predicted a maximum unemployment rate of 9% if he wasn’t allowed to “rescue” the economy with his $787 billion payoff to left-wing special interest groups.  Suddenly, 9.4% unemployment was deemed a blessing by the pens and keyboards of left-leaning journalists.  Utopia was approaching, or…at least…that’s what they claimed.

Next week, President Obama will place VP Joe Biden before the microphone to propagate his lies.  Biden is set to report on the number of jobs “saved or created” by the “stimulus.”   The “stimulus” bill was intended to “create or save” 3.5 million jobs by the time it was finally passed.  Instead, our economy has shed 3.1 million jobs since the inception of Obamanomics.   Still, the VP will take the stage to lie and claim the administration saved us from inevitable destruction.  The graph above gives evidence the effect of the “stimulus” was a huge waste of money accompanied by a net loss of jobs.

In fact, the only two sectors in which employment has been steadily growing since the “stimulus” was passed have been government and health care.  Of course growth in government does little to actually improve the economy since the money to fund these jobs must first be taken from the economy.  We can liken Obamanomics’ theory on economic growth to trying to fill a swimming pool by dipping bucketfuls of water out of one end, walking around to the other end, and dumping the buckets back in.  According to liberal economic theory, the pool will miraculously become full!

So for now, there’s only one segment of the economy functioning in a healthy manner.  And we all know the plans Obama has for the health care industry.  If the President has his way, the entire industry will be an arm of government.  Libs probably think that will certainly cure it’s disease of remaining healthy while all around it become ill.  The reality is Obama now wants to put the last remaining health economic sector under the knife.  Not an exploratory surgery to discover why it’s still healthy, but a surgery to “fix” it so it functions like all of its sickly siblings.

Luckily, Americans aren’t as stupid as the President thinks.  More and more of those who voted for him are losing faith, standing up, and shouting this isn’t the change we wanted.

September 5, 2009 Posted by | Obama | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Whose Business is Health Care?

by Mark Hillman at

Our ongoing debate about government’s role in health care is proving worthwhile because it forces people to focus on the real tradeoffs in a system mandated – if not directly operated – by government, rather than one selected by individuals or their employers. Today, our system is a dysfunctional hybrid.

To the extent that we cannot choose the health care coverage we want today, those restrictions are almost always the result of previous government interventions – tax incentives that make it easier for employers to buy insurance than for employees to purchase their own or laws requiring us to purchase coverage we may not need or cannot afford.

President Obama says all insurance policies will be required to cover preventive care and early screening for various maladies, as if he can force insurance companies – or doctors – to give us something for nothing.

He can’t do that anymore than he can require restaurants to serve a free lunch every Thursday. Even under Barack Obama, Americans cannot be compelled to do business at a loss; they always have the right to lock the doors and close up shop.


September 5, 2009 Posted by | Health Care | , , , , | Leave a comment