Obama’s manifesto

Robert J. Guenther Editor, BiasBreakdown.com
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“If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”

— President Barack Obama, July 13, 2012

As a show of solidarity, well-meaning Americans often declare themselves honorary members of the latest victim group, with or without permission. The formulation is familiar by now.

“We are all Egyptians.”

“We are all Trayvon Martin.”

In Roanoke, Virginia this past Friday, President Obama utilized a bizarre inversion of this phenomenon. Obama invited us to join him through the looking glass of his solipsistic narcissism, equaled only by the cloying arrogance with which the president delivered his speech.

For you see, we are all Barack Obama.

The president stated: “And when I think about that first campaign, what strikes me is no matter where I went, no matter who I was talking to, I could see my own life in the life of the people whose vote I was asking for.”

Obama’s narcissism is infamous (what other president has undergone regular tallies on how many times he uses “me,” “myself” and “I” in his speeches?), and he has now expanded the definition of himself to be all government, which in his worldview is the sole source of good. This formulation allows him to use the first person “we” when saying that government “created the Internet,” “created 23 million new jobs” and “created a lot of millionaires.” We, the government, even “created the middle class.”

Obama decries Republican “top-down economics,” instead proposing “middle out” economics in its place. What he really means is “government out” economics, and it is the only path to the American dream, as dictated by Obama.

According to this speech, the American dream is achieved as follows:

Increase home values, by dictating to banks how to run their businesses. Lower tuition rates, by dictating to colleges how much they can charge their students. Increase wireless access, by dictating to the telecom industry where and how to expand coverage. Expand health insurance, by dictating to the states and the entire health care industry when, where and how those that have health insurance will get actual health care.

All of the above is subject to the terms and limitations of Obama’s beneficence. Obama will dictate the parameters of a fundamentally transformed America so that you may “take a little vacation with your family once in a while — nothing fancy, but just time to spend with those you love.” And then you shall retire “with some dignity and some respect, and be part of a community and give something back.”

Moving forward in Obama’s America will include the following caveat:

“If somebody doesn’t want to be helped, government can’t always help them.”

And there’s the kicker, the only explanation for why disastrous and repetitive doses of Keynesian economics in a command economy, dictated by President Obama, have failed. It’s why communities he organized never turned out for the better. We didn’t want to succeed. This statement is Obama’s Great Explanation for any failure, real or perceived, throughout the course of his blessed life.

To reinforce this notion of Obama the great benefactor, the president latches on to the Occupy Wall Street philosophy of Elizabeth Warren and denigrates the hard work of tens of millions of Americans over the last 200 years. This was not a gaffe. This was part of a speech that was written, vetted and teleprompted:

“If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”

And who is that someone else?

It is not you who spent the endless hours and incurred the startup costs to get permits and licenses to comply with local and state ordinances. It is not you who paid the administrative costs for ongoing state and federal regulatory compliance. It is not you who paid for the cost increases in your employees’ health plan due to Obamacare. It is not you who paid for accountants and lawyers to navigate the Byzantine state and federal tax codes and potential legal liabilities.

According to Obama, that someone else is government. It is Obama and people like Obama who assume credit for all that is good in the government-centered society.

With this denigration of successful business owners, Obama extends his personal narrative to all humanity. The president has skated through life in the subjective worlds of community organizing, academia and politics, thanks to the American system as he sees it. Does he truly believe all successful people have gotten there by gaming the system rather than through their own hard work?

“[E]verything has to do with how do we help … them succeed? How do we make sure that their hard work pays off? That’s what I’ve been thinking about the entire time I’ve been president.”

In summary, you didn’t build your business on your own, and Obama’s been trying to figure out how to help you, but he can’t if you won’t let him. And this is where we come full circle to the solipsistic narrative of Obama as he extends it to all others. He hasn’t just been sitting around the last four years trying to figure this out. He’s spent his entire life trying to figure it out. And to this day, he still doesn’t get it. And his excuse is always the same, as he recently reiterated to Charlie Rose on CBS: “The mistake … was thinking that this job was just about getting the policy right. … But the nature of this office is also to tell a story.”

You and I are a part of that story, the personal narrative and self-exploration of this insatiable ego. All reality falls under the purview of Barack Obama, and hence the government. We are part of his self-reflection and internal struggle. We can be saved if only we acknowledge our inherent helplessness and allow him to help us.

Newt Gingrich famously left himself a Post-it note calling himself: “Advocate of civilization. Definer of civilization. Teacher of the rules of civilization.”

Obama’s Post-it note will be more succinct: “I am civilization.”

Robert J. Guenther is a political commentator and Editor-in-Chief of BiasBreakdown. He can be followed on Twitter @biasbreakdown.