On Monday, The One held a ‘Town Hall’ meeting. In an interesting twist, a number of people got in who aren’t exactly happy with him.
Mr. Obama was confronted by people who said, in short, that they had expected more from him. People from Main Street wanted to know if the American dream still lived for them. People from Wall Street complained that he was treating them like a piñata, “whacking us with the stick,” in the words of a former law school classmate of Mr. Obama’s who now runs a hedge fund.
“I’m exhausted of defending you, defending your administration, defending the mantle of change that I voted for,” said the first questioner, an African-American woman who identified herself as a chief financial officer, a mother and a military veteran. “I’ve been told that I voted for a man who was going to change things in a meaningful way for the middle class, and I’m waiting, sir, I’m waiting. I still don’t feel it yet.”
While that’s interesting, those of us with IQs above room temperature knew it would happen, given He is still a politician first and there was never any substance behind the campaigning. What I think is more telling of the people who support The One is this quote from a recent law school grad.
A 30-year-old law school graduate, Ted Brassfield, told Mr. Obama he had hoped to pursue a career in public service — like the president — but could barely pay the interest on his student loans, let alone think of getting married or starting a family.
“I was really inspired by you and your campaign and the message you brought, and that inspiration is dying away,” Mr. Brassfield said, adding, “What I really want to know is: Is the American dream dead for me?”
What makes this typical? The message Obama brought was not one of self-reliance, it was one of dependence on government. It was a message that said (with an appropriate reverb) “I will take care of you”. Now that hasn’t happened and this fellow thinks the American dream is dead.
The American dream isn’t using force to get other people to pay your student loans or your healthcare bills. It is that you have the freedom to make and follow your own path, to whatever prosperity lies at the end. At least, until recently.
Face it. He’s a politician. He made a bunch of promises he never had a chance to keep and never intended to keep. He and the Congress have stopped any recovery by passing laws that create remarkable uncertainty for business owners and investors, because they think the right role of government is the owner/distributor of all property and labor.
And I think there will be some Change in November.