Last week in Roanoke, Va., President Barack Obama gave a speech eerily similar to one given by Democratic Massachusetts senatorial candidate Elizabeth Warren, which suggested many successful people didn’t get to where they are on their own, but with society’s help, specifically government.
But now that the president of the United States has parroted the claim, it has caused a visceral reaction from many of Obama’s political opponents, including presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney. But on his Tuesday podcast, comedian Adam Carolla had a less political and more philosophical reaction to it, explaining that, yes, he was playing the numbers, but there was a lot wrong with it.
“I believe Barack Obama is a smart guy and I believe he is a skillful politician and I think he wants to get re-elected,” Carolla said. “And it’s pretty simple where you do these kinds of things where you go, ‘Look, are there more rich people in this world or in this union or more poor people?”
Carolla explained there was a difference between being the hardest worker versus being smart and working hard and that Obama was wrong for not making that distinction.
“First off, I understand what working hard is because I used to dig ditches for a living, but that’s donkey work,” he said. “Yes, you’re out in the sun. You’re busting your ass. I never worked — I worked harder when I cleaned carpets and worked harder when I dug ditches making $7 a hour hard, but he said the hardest work. The hardest working is different than a lot of hard-working people out there and no, I’m going to disagree with the president and say that if you are in fact smart and you are in fact the hardest worker, you’ll do fine.”
Later, the comedian called the philosophy Obama espoused “anti-American” for not recognizing that distinction.
“It is an anti-American — and again I don’t mean that in a terrorist sort kind of way, but this country is sort of built on pull yourself up, start your shit, stake your claim, do your thing, innovation,” he said. “The folks that made it, so-called made, and again I don’t know why we’re obsessed with success, but the folks that have made it had help along the way — not necessarily true in many instances. Yes, you can count being delivered at a hospital that running water, electricity and you can count roads that worked.”
Ultimately, Carolla said, the president is simply attempting to pit the haves against the have-nots, and that’s “ridiculous.”
“This notion of taking people that have something — it doesn’t matter what it is and then taking the larger majority of people that don’t have what that is and that is a Rolls-Royce, or it could be a house on the hill or it could be whatever, an entourage, whatever — a successful small business and then trying to enlist those people and somehow feeling that that person that did what they did to get where they are is a bad person or a lucky person, or we should all be in their places instead is a ridiculous message to send and it’s the exact opposite message of this country.”