Friday, July 22, 2011

Obama town hall: Americans chose a divided government, but they didn’t choose a dysfunctional government

This morning, Obama did a “town hall” at the township of the University of Maryland.

THE STAMP WILL, OF COURSE, BE MADE IN CHINA: “I want Congress to send me a set of trade deals that would allow our businesses to sell more products in countries in Asia and South America that are stamped with the words, ‘Made in America.’”

AMERICANS ARE JUST TOO FAT TO RUN OUT WITHOUT PAYING THE TAB: “Basically, there’s some people out there who argue we’re not going to raise the debt ceiling any more. And the problem is, effectively what that’s saying is we’re not going to pay some of our bills. Well, the United States of America does not run out without paying the tab.”

AMERICANS CHOSE WHAT NOW? “In 2010, Americans chose a divided government, but they didn’t choose a dysfunctional government.” They chose a government run by dysfunctional people – big difference.

Oh, and they didn’t “choose” a divided government.

On using the 14th Amendment to raise the debt ceiling: “I have talked to my lawyers. They do not -- they are not persuaded that that is a winning argument.” Why not? And are these the same lawyers who said you could start a war in Libya or kill people anywhere in the world on your personal authority?

He gave his new favorite example of how “this notion that somehow if you’re responsible and you compromise, that somehow you’re giving up your convictions -- that’s absolutely not true”: the Emancipation Proclamation, in which Lincoln was willing to keep slaves in the North in bondage “because he thought it was necessary in terms of advancing the goals of preserving the Union and winning the war.” Indeed, Obama has the Proclamation hanging in the Oval Office, I guess because it’s such a great example of looking like you’re doing something but not actually doing anything. “So, you know what, if Abraham Lincoln could make some compromises as part of governance, then surely we can make some compromises when it comes to handling our budget.”

So Obama is now coming out firmly in favor of compromising over slavery, because leaving some people in shackles is responsible and definitely not “somehow... giving up your convictions”. You don’t even want to know what the next “Grand Compromise” Obama offers the Republicans is going to be.

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