Mr. President: When will ’somebody else’ build my business?

There was a lot of buzz over the weekend, stretching into today, about these remarks President Obama made during a campaign stop Friday in Roanoke, Va.:

There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me — because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t — look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something — there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there.

Well, that’s not so controversial, is it? I’ve had some success in my career in journalism, and I am in the habit of referring to the great teachers I had (in college and before), the great upbringing I got from my parents, and some favorable timing/circumstances along the way. Certainly, there are a lot of successful people who want to “give something back” and do so — to churches, their alma maters, to civic organizations …

Wait, what’s that? Obama wants to steer the conversation toward government? Well, I’m not exactly surprised.

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 that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges.

OK, I mentioned teachers, too — although Obama does not differentiate between those in public schools or, like his own daughters’ teachers and his own college professors, those in private schools. (I’m a public-schools product myself.) And it has become routine for Obama to harp on the roads and bridges as if that’s necessarily something the federal government must or should be involved in.

But that wasn’t enough for Obama. As the saying goes, he went there:

If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet.

Now, if you’re expecting me to slam Obama for that comment — and the idea that government’s role in the creation of the Internet means every online entrepreneur should get down on his knees and thank government, or gladly hand over whatever amount of her profits government thinks she owes it — you’re going to be disappointed today.

Nope, my question is: Where’s mine?

If “somebody else” is going around building these businesses for people, when do “they” make it to me? I’d love for “somebody else” come “make that happen” for me. I mean, a business doesn’t “get [started] on its own!”

So … when should I expect “somebody” to call and make the appointment for handing off this new business, Mr. President?

– By Kyle Wingfield

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383 comments Add your comment

Rafe Hollister, suffering through Oblamer's ineptocracy

July 17th, 2012
1:51 pm

The only thing Gov ever built was debt. Everything else was built by citizens. Just because you can confiscate and bundle money and let bids to your campaign contributors, doesn’t mean you built anything. Some people are incapable of understanding that Gov exists to serve the citizens, the citizens do not exist to serve government.

MarkV

July 17th, 2012
1:51 pm

Dusty @1:43 pm

You are so right, Dusty. And it is so irrelevant to the discussion.

Lil' Barry Bailout - Vote American

July 17th, 2012
1:53 pm

Face it, receptacles, your Klown stepped in it badly, and real Americans have a better idea now as to why he’s failed so miserably to put policies in place that would foster real economic growth.

MarkV

July 17th, 2012
1:55 pm

Rafe Hollister@1:51 pm

“The only thing Gov ever built was debt. Everything else was built by citizens.”

Red Alert! Our government people are aliens (according to Rafe).

md

July 17th, 2012
1:57 pm

“Government didn’t build the roads. Taxpayers built the roads.”

And to be precise, those that started businesses built those roads……as those businesses generated the capital from whence those taxes came……….

md

July 17th, 2012
1:59 pm

“the citizens do not exist to serve government.”

Now, now….let’s be honest. I know quite a few that certainly do……some seem to be on these boards…..

md

July 17th, 2012
2:00 pm

“Our government people are aliens (according to Rafe).”

ALL “gov’t people” derive their income from those businesses as well…………..

MarkV

July 17th, 2012
2:06 pm

“Our government people are aliens (according to Rafe).”

“ALL “gov’t people” derive their income from those businesses as well…………..” (md @2:00 pm)

Is md trying to amuse us by a non sequitur?

md

July 17th, 2012
2:09 pm

Actually Mark, I misread your response……my bad on that one. But, they do get their income from those businesses, so it kinda fits the discussion………….

Rafe Hollister, suffering through Oblamer's ineptocracy

July 17th, 2012
2:09 pm

MarkV

We know who the alien is, alien to the truth.

I am waiting on the Carney barker to tell everyone that misinterpreted (your opinion) this statement, how wrong we all are. It has been out there for almost two days now and they haven’t corrected our interpretation yet.

JDW

July 17th, 2012
2:11 pm

@Tiberius…”My medals and ribbons places your statement in the “I don’t know jack —-” column, JDW.”

Good Conduct and Retirement ribbons aren’t really value…jack

Jefferson

July 17th, 2012
2:12 pm

Maybe you can get him to get you some new sheets.

Bruno

July 17th, 2012
2:14 pm

Cheesy Grits: Every successful person in America has had a ton of help on the way. In the obnoxious Republican mind though they made it all by themselves. And everyone else is a freeloader who just wants to mooch off them.

md: Pure hogwash…….those “fruits of gov’t” are also available to any and all, yet any and all don’t go out and risk their savings on creating their own business………

In reading through the comments, the same two polar opposite points of view keep being repeated. Those on the Left emphasize the fact that without a strong society, no one can be succesful, such that individual effort is only a minor factor in the overall picture. Those on the Right point out that we all have access to the same opportunities in the US, such that individual effort is what is most important in determining a peson’s level of success.

Of course, the truth is somewhere in between. It takes both opportunity AND individual effort to make it.

Per Obama’s comments, obviously he has taken one side over the other. Therefore, we have more reason to vote for him or against him. For me, the reasons to vote against him are now stronger.

wallbanger

July 17th, 2012
2:16 pm

This one really ripped it for me. When I was the first and only student in my high school’s history to go to a private college, when I worked day and night for the first 3 years of school, when I worked hard and supported my two kids growing up, and bought my own home, and supported myself, where was all this help and support? I give it to a few mentors and teachers who advised me, but give me a break!! I was one of 25 in my high school class. If what Obama is saying were true, then all of them would have been successful lawyers. It took a lot more than just “being there”.

MarkV

July 17th, 2012
2:22 pm

Rafe Hollister @2:09 pm

There is no need for any “interpretation.” The words are quite clear, if only you would care to listen.

BADA BING

July 17th, 2012
2:27 pm

I wonder who helped all the successful thugs and murderers who are terrorizing Chicago right now?

Tiberius - pulling the tail of the left AND right when needed

July 17th, 2012
2:27 pm

“Good Conduct and Retirement ribbons aren’t really value…jack”

But commendations are. . . leech.

kelly

July 17th, 2012
2:29 pm

Seems Kyle is playing to his short attention span, anti-Obama base more and more. It’s a little embarrassing to see these same kind of remarks on all the RW blogs. Does Kyle have an independent thought on the subject? Or is it all bad Obama, all the time.

You never can tell

July 17th, 2012
2:33 pm

“But commendations are. . . leech”

Tiberius – pulling the tail of the left AND right when needed

July 17th, 2012
12:29 pm

snoqualmiefalls, I suggest you re-read Kyle’s new rules before posting in the manner in which you just did.

Not that I’d hate to see you banned . . . ;)

Rules 1 and 2 (especially 2) apply to you and your last post to me.

1. Anyone who comes onto the blog with personal attacks and little to nothing of substance to say will be banned permanently.

2. Anyone who refers to another commenter by anything other than the handle the latter uses will receive a ban of at least one week.

Lil' Barry Bailout - Vote American

July 17th, 2012
2:37 pm

Looks to me like Tib violated neither rule.

Next.

Dusty

July 17th, 2012
2:38 pm

Bruno

Most sensible post. You said “it takes both opportunity and individual effort to make it. ”

Seems to me, the question arising here is whether the government should provide the opportunity or whether the individual realizes an opportunity and uses it. Not one the government provides.

Should government provide opportunities for establishing a business? NO. We have already seen the federal government waste money (Solyndra. GM). States are using taxpayer money for the “good of the people’ aka business (Caterpiller,etc)and there seems no end to it.

I can’t help but wonder if the idea of small business is being pushed out of the picture. That makes government control more and more of American life. It is hard to be “neutral” at such a prospect..

You never can tell

July 17th, 2012
2:46 pm

“Should government provide opportunities for establishing a business?”

Hasn’t the SBA assisted in starting many successful business? Maybe you were just meant subsidized in some form or fashion.

Tiberius - pulling the tail of the left AND right when needed

July 17th, 2012
2:55 pm

“Or is it all bad Obama, all the time.”

Well, if it wasn’t actually all bad Obama all the time, we wouldn’t have much to write about, now would we, kelly?

Maybe if he’d just do SOMETHING good, we could comment on anything else.

@@

July 17th, 2012
3:07 pm

Had this recent “gaffe” been a stand alone “gaffe”, it wouldn’t have received much attention. It wasn’t. Add it to all his other actions/comments touting the “NEED” for government intervention, the outrage is appropriate.

So he’s going off the teleprompter to stir passions?

It’s likely he won’t get the kinda passion he’s hoping for.

Shades of Joe Biden!

The truth will come out in the most inappropriate way.

fair and balanced

July 17th, 2012
3:47 pm

Ao how many of you Obama haters have jobs with companies that provide you health insurance and retirement benefits? Does federal tax deductions and credits have anything to do with your employer’s decision to offer those benefits. Would you have worked there without the benefits???
could it be that this was done to assist employers in attracting workers?
So what role do the feds have in your employment?
Do small businesses get depreciation allowances for buying equipment. Whose providing that incentive to buy equipment and offset taxes on small business income? the tax fairy?

JDW

July 17th, 2012
4:28 pm

@LBB…”Looks to me like Tib violated neither rule.”

Of course not you and Tiberius are bastions of civil discourse. :roll:

Lil' Barry Bailout (Unexpectedly Revised Downward--Again)

July 17th, 2012
5:08 pm

It’s because I’ve actually READ the rules and don’t have your apparent reading comprehension problem.

Kelser

July 17th, 2012
8:28 pm

to the silly one who saying “cheesy grits” – guess what…you’re wrong. not all americans who are successful had a “ton” of help along the way. In fact, my family had zero help from government, and built our business the old fashioned way. You on the other hand are so simple minded, you wouldn’t know how to start or build a business – because you are a DEPENDENT person. Get out from under the rock and meet some of the ‘greatest generation’ business creators…many of them, including my parents and grand parents had zero help from anyone and became successful. I think you have smoked the same bad weed that Obama did…and suggest you get your money back.

Obambarrassment

July 17th, 2012
8:43 pm

With Obama’s reasoning, I announce my share of the collective claim to the Nobel Peace Prize given to our good, clean, articulate President (it’s an amazing story). By Obama’s own admission he didn’t do anything to win it.

We elected him; so we did.

Barack, I’d like it at my house for a week in late December for Christmastime so I can show it off. You don’t celebrate that holiday anyway, do you?

Obambarrassment

July 17th, 2012
8:49 pm

fair and balanced @ 3:47

No, the health benefits were added enticements companies came up with as a result of federal policies six decades ago that prevented companies from paying market wages called “wage and price controls”.

It was a free-market solution to a government problem, which the mission-creeping federal government has itself taken over recently.

This original problem came from FDR, the first President to put his boot on the neck of the US economy.

Honestly, if government would stop legislating so many solutions, (that they pass before they read) we wouldn’t have so many of these problems blowing up in our faces.

independent thinker

July 17th, 2012
8:54 pm

Maybe one of you Romney fans can explain why the Government is giving tax seductions to businesses like Bail for exporting jobs a s alegitimate job expense? I am sure that is not an example of government assistance to help a business’ bottom line ist ???
Also explain why you are still backing this clown when Michael Steele joined the chorus of Repubs wh said if Romney does not release his tax returns he may not get nominated???????

mark urbo

July 19th, 2012
7:45 pm

Obama’s “Elizabeth Warren” like comment in Roanoke on how government is the creator/purveyor of all will go down in history as the most left leaning socialist comment ever made by an American president. It was a disgusting display of liberalism’s misguided view of reality courtesy of a Harvard education no less…
America was created by individuals. Individuals ALLOW the government to collect taxes to be used for infrastructure building that they WILLINGLY approve – such that future individuals can continue to create wealth for themselves and growth opportunities in America.

Without individuals and their success in the private sector – there would be no government and resultant public sector opportunities. These comments by Obama and Warren are proof positive that government needs to be reset in size and jurisdiction, and sweep clean of socialists.

Think back to Edison, Bell, Wrights, Ford and many others – some self educated – who brought their ideas to life without big government, roads, electricity, or infrastructure. They did not get block grants and loans from a central socialist government or approvals from some government agency to create lights, phones, phonographs, flying machines, affordable cars, etc.

This very software [ Disqus ] used to comment here was a dream in an individual’s head, before it was an idea that became a reality. America became great due to individuals and their self initiative, not big central government directives. To think otherwise is to fall victim to the greatest con in human history, which is that socialism/collectivism leads to a utopia where everyone is treated the same and all outcomes are equal and fair. As history shows – on your way to this socialist utopia or about the time you pull into the station – the economy will meltdown and all will be lost because socialism is NOT sustainable. Your socialist utopia is a smile on an OWS dog.

jon

July 20th, 2012
4:54 pm

You all know that the “that” in “you didn’t build that” refers to rads and bridges – right?