Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Obama Press Conference: asides that give the game away

Charles Krauthammer, John Steele Gordon and others have rightly focused on Barack Obama’s statement that “in fact, I’m able to keep hundreds of thousands of dollars in additional income that I don’t need.”  The former notes that this means that income you get to keep resides in government forbearance, while the latter points out the economic illiteracy of this comment, that “income you don’t need” is the source of investment.

But this wasn’t the only revealing statement made by the President.  One seemingly off-hand comment that deserves attention was Obama saying “I'd rather be talking about stuff that everybody welcomes -- like new programs…”  But of course everybody doesn’t welcome new programs.  Some—they’re called conservatives or libertarians—think we have more than enough programs right now, thanks and that as I posted earlier “refuse to hand over the destiny of a society to any set of officials but also consider the whole notion of planning the destiny of a society to be both stupid and immoral.”   On top of which it should be obvious that the reason we are in this terrible bind is because politicians--Obama is a prominent example--have been all too happy to talk about and pass new programs. 

Later in the presser Obama says “that’s what the revenue debate is about.  It’s not because I want to raise revenues for the sake of raising revenues, or I’ve got some grand ambition to create a bigger government.”   A person who believes that we all welcome new programs isn’t very convincing in disavowing an ambition to create a bigger government. 

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