Obama’s Misleading and Disrespectful Stump Speech

The president campaings on half-truths and distortions

Really understanding President Obama’s governing philosophy and agenda doesn’t require a whole fleet of investigative reporters or opposition researchers. All you have to do is take a reasonably careful look at his campaign stump speech, a collection of half-truths, misrepresentations, and distortions that are ultimately disrespectful of the American people. 

“This is my last political campaign…I’m term limited,” he said Saturday at Centreville High School in Clifton, Virginia in remarks that were similar to others he’s delivered in recent weeks. It could be. But nothing prevents Obama from trying to return to the Senate after his presidency, or from trying to run for the office again if he loses this time.

“My grandfather fought in World War II…when my grandfather came back, he was able to go to college because of the GI Bill and they were able to afford their first home through an FHA loan.” There’s no mention by Obama in the stump speech of his other grandfather, Hussein Onyango Obama, a Kenyan cook who had five wives and converted to Islam. Also, Obama seems unable to imagine that his American grandfather might have found some way to afford a home without the help of the FHA, as many Americans somehow miraculously did before the FHA was created in 1934.

“At the center of our stories is this basic American idea, this core American Dream… It means maybe you can take a vacation once in a while … And it means that you can retire with some dignity and some respect. It's that basic bargain that makes this country great.” President Obama has turned the American Dream of freedom and opportunity and hard work into a dream of vacation and retirement.

“How do we build an economy where hard work pays off—whether you’re starting a business or punching a clock, you know that if you put in the effort, you’ll get ahead?” President Obama would be better off taking the advice of Thomas Friedman and Michael Mandelbaum in their book That Used To Be Us: “American young people have got to understand from an early age that the world pays off on results, not on effort.” A world in which effort alone always pays off for everyone just isn’t a possible or even desirable reality. If it were, every Little Leaguer would be a professional baseball player.

“My opponent and his congressional allies, they believe in what I call top-down economics. Their basic view is that if we cut taxes trillions of dollars, mostly for those at the very top — even if it means cutting education funding, even if it means cutting basic research, even if it means underfunding our infrastructure, and even if it means making Medicare a voucher system — that somehow that’s going to be good for everybody. So that’s one big part of their idea, is you cut taxes for folks at the top.” This mischaracterizes Mitt Romney’s tax plan. In fact, on capital gains, dividends, and interest income taxes, Romney takes the rate down to zero for single filers below $100,000 annual income and joint filers with income below $200,000. If you earn more than that, you don’t get the zero rate, a point for which Romney was attacked by his Republican opponents and by conservative commentators during the primary campaign. As for “cutting education funding,” when Romney was governor of Massachusetts, state education spending grew to $6,297,000,000 in 2007 from $5,250,000,000 in 2004, according to the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center. And as President Obama himself has more or less admitted  in the past, a lot of the increased federal education spending just allows colleges and universities to increase their tuitions by the amount of the increased federal aid.

“Their second big idea is if you eliminate regulations on oil companies or insurance companies or credit card companies or polluters, that somehow that will free up the engine of growth. …Now, there’s nothing wrong with having an idea, a theory, and testing it out. Here’s the thing: We tested it out for almost a decade. We’ve tried this before. And guess what, Virginia, it did not work.” Obama’s idea that the George W. Bush years were a vast failed experiment in deregulation is just laughably false, as anyone familiar with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 can assure you.

“When the auto industry was on the brink of collapse, my opponent said, let’s let Detroit go bankrupt. I said, let’s bet on American workers and American ingenuity. And you know what, GM is number one again.  Chrysler is selling cars again. Ford is on the move. The U.S. auto industry has come roaring back.… We’ve invested in advanced manufacturing because we want to beat out countries like Germany and China.” Obama doesn’t mention that the Chrysler and GM bankruptcies took place on his watch and at his urging. Toyota and Honda and Volkswagen and BMW manufacture plenty of cars in America. If you are an auto worker at a Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga or a Toyota plant in Kentucky, or if you are an American who owns a KIA or Mercedes dealership, why should you cheer President Obama taking your tax dollars to bail out your failed competitors? President Obama also doesn’t mention that his “bet” on “American ingenuity” when it came to Chrysler involved giving control of it to Fiat, which is an Italian company.

“I think we should have comprehensive immigration reform because we’re a nation of immigrants and a nation of laws.” But President Obama doesn’t mention that he made immigration reform such a low priority that he didn’t get it done even when his party controlled both houses of Congress. And, on immigration, Obama’s definition of “nation of laws” also apparently includes choosing not to enforce some of them.

“If you’ve got health insurance the only thing that happens for you is that you’ve got more security because insurance companies can’t jerk you around and use fine print to somehow restrict your care.” Not so. Some insurers have raised rates or gotten out of the health insurance business. Some employers will stop offering insurance.

Politicians are entitled to a certain amount of shading of the truth as a kind of professional privilege. The voters discount for it. But challenges from the press corps or from the Romney campaign would help the electorate better understand how Obama’s stump speech is full of stretchers, even by the expansive standards of American politics.

Ira Stoll is editor of FutureOfCapitalism.com and author of Samuel Adams: A Life.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • wareagle||

    article makes it sound as though an Obama stump speech has ever been anything but half-truth, distortion, and outright lie. This is who he is. Worse is the percentage of the population too stupid or apathetic to notice or care.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Reagan is remembered as The Great Communicator. Obama will be remembered as The Great Dissimulator.

    Sure, they all lie. But this guy is so bad at it.

  • wareagle||

    he makes Clinton look like Washington.

  • Pro Libertate||

    The Great Consummator.

  • ThatSkepticGuy||

    The Great What-Me-Worry?er.

  • triclops||

    it is hard to be a good liar when you don't need to be.
    your skills atrophy.
    when your base is foolish and your press wants the same things you want, what point is there in staying sharp with your lies?

  • Alan Vanneman||

    I hate to be disrepectful, Ira, but you are, like, totally lame. Running Obama's speech and then saying it sucks is not the same as writing a column. I hope Reason is paying you bupkus, because that's what you're worth.

  • Father Jack||

    Feck off, punk. Go back and masturbate to your pictures of Barry and leave the rest of us alone.

  • Tulpa the White||

    How much Reason is paying him is your business...how?

    And aren't you doing the same thing you accurse Ira of?

  • Paul.||

    I'm on Vanneman's side on this one.

    Obama's speech was lame on its face, it didn't require a story telling us it was lame.

    Sun rises in east, Obama's speech is lame, film at eleven.

  • Registration At Last!||

    " In fact, on capital gains, dividends, and interest income taxes, Romney takes the rate down to zero for single filers below $100,000 annual income and joint filers with income below $200,000. If you earn more than that, you don’t get the zero rate, a point for which Romney was attacked by his Republican opponents and by conservative commentators during the primary campaign."

    ************************

    Okay. What about earned income? What is Romney going to do to the progressivity of taxation of earned income?

    Oh that's right: he's gonna crush it with a five-ton steamroller. Talk about "shading" and "half-truths," Ira.

  • triclops||

    that is neither true nor relevant. weak

  • Registration At Last!||

    "that is neither true nor relevant."

    (Translation: it's both.)

  • Sevo||

    Registration At Last!|7.16.12 @ 6:11PM|#
    "that is neither true nor relevant."
    (Translation: it's both.)"

    The second opinion is that you're shitty as a translator, too.

  • triclops||

    slight decrease in progressivity is not steamrolling.

    it is not relevant unless you think the point of every discussion is to point out flaws in Romney when someone disparages your BF.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Daily Kos is over thatawy, RAL.

  • Juice||

    If he cut the rate to zero for incomes below $100,000 would you be happy with that?

  • Registration At Last!||

    Including or excluding payroll taxes?

  • BigT||

    "Progressive" tax rates are discriminatory and certainly not justifiable under 'equal protection under the law'. Only a flat tax is truly fair and just. Progressive tax rates give us freeloaders and moochers.

    A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship, then a monarchy.

    It's not as far away as you think.

  • jacob the barbarian||

    The only question is how bad will the new dictatorship suck. There is zero chance that we will see a new Republic rise from the ashes. The cops are in the toilet for the Dems. The military is not going to support the side that is looking for individual freedom either.

    Team Blue will be looking to kill off the economic liberties, and your right to a big gulp. Team Red is going to pretty much the same except they wont care about the big gulp, it will be the abortion angle that will get them in a tizzy. With choices like these, we are fucked.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Obama is misleading for NOT mentioning his African grandfather?

    There’s no mention by Obama in the stump speech of his other grandfather, Hussein Onyango Obama, a Kenyan cook who had five wives and converted to Islam.

    Ira Stoll = Donald Trump. Smearing him for something he didn't say.

  • Sudden||

    Yeah, even I'll agree with Shrike that that particular passage was completely unnecessary in the article and wreaks of a level of desperation and nativism that only serves to detract from an otherwise decent piece of writing.

  • The Derider||

    Obama is being dishonest if he doesnt remind Ira Stoll that his grandfather came from darkest Africa at every opportunity.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    It's simpler to just say "Obama is dishonest".

    Only a fool would vote for him or Romney.

  • Tybus||

    Arguing or pointing out inconsistancies in what He says is blasphemus. You should be stoned to death or sent to the wilderness to be ravaged by wild beasts.

  • James Ard||

    It's clear Obama knows he's toast. This speech appeals to twenty percent of Americans and that's it. He's now trying to avoid the embarrassment of being the President with the lowest reelection vote in history.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    No one can really be this stupid? Obama is a 3-2 favorite in the futures market and is leading all the major (non-Ras) polls.

    Go plunk down your savings short Obama then. $450 wins $1000.

  • Tulpa the White||

    The election futures markets don't mean shit this far out.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    They indicate a solid favorite.

    If you meant "futures can abruptly change anytime" then I would have to agree fully.

  • wareagle||

    Carter was a solid favorite, too, all the way into mid-October according to polls of the time.

  • Sudden||

    They don't. They indicate only what side of the wager the money is going on.

    These things work like Vegas odds, they're not there to forecast actual events but rather to generate equal money on both sides of the transaction. Teams like the Cowboys, Giants, Patriots etc are routinely poor bets because they have large fanbases that bet with blinders on and therefore skew the odds in directions not favorable to placing bets on those teams.

    Vegas wants to structure their odds and their spreads in such a way to get equal wagers on both sides of the ledger and then pocket the vig. Same principle applies to betting futures markets.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Not really. Casinos do move the lines to influence betting and spread risk as you say.

    Intrade does not.

  • Sudden||

    Intrade doesn't move them at all. In Vegas, they come out with the opening line and the adjust it based on the action of the early (smart) money in order to balance the ledger. Intrade is continually updating. It's essentially nothing but a market. But as a market, it's not a track of ACTUAL probabilities, but rather a track of PERCEIVED probabilities. Now, you can make the case that those perceptions mirror reality more or less, but to suggest that it has any bearing on ACTUAL probability is hogwash.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    I agree. Intrade sometimes indicates wrong.

    The perceived probability you note is more expert than a random poll due to the cost of bettors.

    However a poll with a 5 million sample would be superior to Intrade.

    As it is the 3-4 point lead in polls by Obama translates to a 15 point lead in Intrade due to pile-on.

  • Tulpa the White||

    They indicate a solid favorite.

    Which likewise doesn't mean shit for a one-time, faraway event.

    Markets are excellent allocators of resources, but very iffy predictors of events. Otherwise stocks would not be expected to rise and fall.

  • Tulpa the White||

    I mean, if you looked at silver in April 2011, the price was close to $50/oz...does that mean that the price was likely to stay there forever?

  • The Derider||

    LOL, have you ever heard of a futures market?

    The price of silver today is different from the price of silver delivered 3 months from now.

    Stock prices rise and fall because new information affects the market, not because time passes.

  • ThatSkepticGuy||

    They rise and fall based on supply and demand, the latter being something that can and is affected by the passage of time.

  • Tulpa the White||

    Stock prices rise and fall because new information affects the market, not because time passes.

    Bingo. Which is why expecting a one time event's predictions five months beforehand to be accurate is ridiculous.

  • Bill||

    It does if you bet now.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug|7.16.12 @ 5:40PM|#
    "No one can really be this stupid? Obama is a 3-2 favorite in the futures market and is leading all the major (non-Ras) polls."

    "Dewey Beats Truman!"

  • JoshSN||

    Who dreams of hard work?

    "Oh, if only I could serve up another 1000 healthy, fast-food burritos!"

    "If only I could go back to the mines and work!"

    Have I been sold a bill of goods? Is everyone else dreaming about working, while I would like to collect rents, sunning myself?

    Come on, Ira.

  • ||

    "Who dreams of hard work?"
    Builders, makers, doers. People for whom accomplishment is an end in itself. People who pride themselves on being worth their keep and making the world a better place for the people they love.

    "...I would like to collect rents, sunning myself?"
    Evidence that you have no concept of what I was talking about in answering your first question. People like you hate work, and hate those who dont hate work. I am guessing you believe 'rich' people worship money and think that having money is an end in itself.

  • Alex the wolf||

    I like going to work, can you believe it? As for rents, how does anyone earn the capital to make rents? Rent is the product of capital, and capital is stored work.
    Typicall leftist, hates work, loves free things, feels entitled to what others have just for being born

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Rent is the product of capital, and capital is stored work.

    Not if the rents result from political capital.

  • Father Jack||

    Feck this petty liar and the horse he rode in on. Drink! Arse! Girls!

  • Coach Panto||

    The communitarian rant he had in Roanoke on Saturday was the mother of all insults to a free meritocracy.

    "If you have a business, you didn't build that!" was the worst line, but there were MANY more communitarian wet shits like that one flying out of his blowhole.

    Notice his spokespunk walked it back about 98% today. If that was misspeak, there were more Freudian slips than at a frickin Tourette's Syndrome convention.

    THE KING IS A FINK.

  • ThatSkepticGuy||

    "The communitarian rant he had in Roanoke on Saturday was the mother of all insults to a free meritocracy.

    "If you have a business, you didn't build that!" was the worst line"

    Yeah, he's straight-up pulling passages right out of Elizabeth Warren's "You Are Propety of the State" campaign strategy.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    "If you have a business, you didn't build that!"

    I call a bullshit lie on your part.

  • wareagle||

    what are you calling bullshit on? No, that was not the exact quote. "If you are successful, you did not do it on your own." That IS part of the speech. And?

    Who the hell has ever claimed to have achieved with no help from anyone whatsoever? And cute how POTUS discounts the taxes paid by the evil filthy successful along the way, the jobs their ideas created that also contributed to the treasury, etc etc.

    A more honest statement would be to thank private business for generating the wealth that gave govt the means to build roads, schools, hire cops, and on and on.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Look, even Newton said he "stood on the shoulders of giants" for his great accomplishments.

    The USA system rewards great thinkers for being great. If you hate that you hate America.

  • The Hammer||

    Newton credited other people for laying the groundwork for ideas on which he expanded, therefore the government has the right to take everything you earn?

  • Registration At Last!||

    If you build that straw man any higher, we're gonna have to burn a virgin English police officer inside of it.

  • The Hammer||

    Did you mean to reply to shrike?

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    "everything you earn"?

    Get real next time.

  • Alex the wolf||

    You know half of the people in america dont pay income tax.
    Progressives always want to raise taxes just a little more, there is always someone entitled to something more

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug|7.16.12 @ 7:34PM|#
    "everything you earn"?
    Get real next time"

    Get a brain cell next time.

  • The Hammer||

    "If you have a business, you didn't build that!"

    What else could this mean, you duplicitous cunt?

  • ||

    Its funny that an anal shitstick is feverishly polishing a turd.

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    Actually, Newton wasn't as gracious as Darwin.

  • T o n y||

    You don't think praise of private enterprise is effusive enough from politicians?

    How would private enterprise work in the absence of cops, education, and roads? Assuming no roving gang slit your throat and took your stuff, you'd at maximum be trading your sister for your neighbor's goat.

    This elementary lesson on the point of taxes is only necessary because the Republicans are being stupid and dishonest about it.

  • Tulpa the White||

    If you agree to limit government to cops, firefighters, sewers, and roads, I'm with you on private enterprise needing govt.

    The bloated monstrosity we have now is manifestly not needed by private enterprise.

  • Coach Panto||

    Issue is not lack of praise, nor value of public protection and infrastructure, my friend T o n y with rodent-like issue evasiveness.

    Issue is a Marxist punk making a govt claim of ownership of private property on the grounds that there really is NO Private Property. It is also the radical demonization of individualism and property rights, on his ostensible belief in communitarianism (everybody owns everything).

    He doesn't really believe communitarian society would work, he just knows he can achieve tyranny by persuading enough dolts that he can provide it.

    It's sad to be so narcissistic that you embarrass yourself pandering to the absolute dumbest egalitarian retards in the population, thinking that the moderates might buy it just because you say it. This guy needs therapy. He's going batshit holed up in the Oval Crib with his yes-man homies.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Too ignorant to reply to.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug|7.16.12 @ 8:23PM|#
    "Too ignorant to reply to."

    Too stupid to understand the post.

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    I own a business. My problem with Obama and Warren making outrageous claims like they do is that, if you follow it down to its logical end, everyone owns a piece of my business. They may not overtly say it but it's a claim to private property.

    Of course, legally no one can take my business but intellectually, a person can come to me and say "you didn't do this on your own! I helped you do it!" Even if they had nothing to do with it.

    Basically, Tony can come and squat on my land because he feels I wouldn't suucceed if he hadn't existed.

    To me, the line draws here. Obama and Warren deserve the hardest push back. They're treading a fine line.

    Yes. FU. I DID do it on my own. Unless any of you douches lay down capital and deal with the risks and debt, stay away. I will NEVER accept this "in this together" garbage.

    Is Obama there at night when I worry if I'll make payroll?

  • The Hammer||

    My problem with the statement is that the people who taught you in school GOT PAID FOR IT. The people who built the roads that your business uses GOT PAID FOR BUILDING THE ROADS. Every one of the ephemeral "other people" that Obama is referring to has been compensated for their services, and the business owner has paid taxes on all of his earnings, in addition to payroll taxes, property taxes, sales taxes, etc. When is it enough?

  • hotsy totsy||

    How would private enterprise work in the absence of cops, education and roads? Probably they'd build private roads, private schools and have private security forces that they would charge for.

    So how would government function without private enterprise? Where would the get the money to fund school and ROADZzz? Print it?

  • The Derider||

    Private roads would not get built at an efficient rate because of transaction costs.

    Private education would be under-funded due to uncontained positive externailities.

    Private security forces would not have monopolies on violence. Remember that monopolies REDUCE supply compared to a competitive market.

  • Concerned Citizen||

    WTF? I've always been told that public education is underfunded. How can private education also be underfunded?

  • hotsy totsy||

    I seem to remember something from school about a whole railroad being built like across the continent or something. By Robber Barons.

    I do think private enterprise functions better with a decent government. But government cannot function AT ALL without private enterprise.

  • ThatSkepticGuy||

    "How would private enterprise work in the absence of cops, education, and roads?"

    And vice versa.

  • lightning||

    Same way they did before we had this overly large parasitic government. Business men carried pistols, formed agreements with other business men to police crime. They also got together in communities to school their children without the Feds or even the state (used to be a local affair). As hard as it is to imagine, the wild west was not that long ago, and the government did not always wipe your a**s.

  • lightning||

    You are correct in saying, "...that no one ever claimed to have acheived with no help from anyone", but you are being completely disengenuous in ignoring the context of the entire speech. It doesn't take a genuis to see that Obama is discrediting the importance of "individualism". The problem with his concept/point is the unsuccessful. Especially the unsucessful who contribute no taxes, no labor, and teach their offspring the best way to milk the system. The only good news is that we are very quickly running out of "successful" taxpayers who actually want to keep living here. Wonder what happens when the queen leaves, only drones are left, and there is no honey left for the parasites.

  • ||

    Straight from the transcript:

    http://www.theblaze.com/storie.....at-happen/

    Keep on sucking that Team Blue cock shriek.

  • ||

    That was a good for a laugh right there. Not like he has any intellectual honesty to begin with, but it's always amusing to see direct quotes from the great orator perceived as "bullshit lies" by a most ardent supporter.

  • Tulpa the White||

    It's going to be even funnier when shrike switches gears and defends the 'bullshit lies'.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Look, as a rationalist I admit that entrepreneurs do build things in fact.

    Do they build alone? Without customers and investors?

    Bill Gates says he did not act alone. He was fortunate to be alive and precocious in the 1970s.

    Did Obama mean "alone"? I suspect he did.

    If not he is wrong.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug|7.16.12 @ 7:16PM|#
    "Look, as a rationalist"

    Ha, ha.

  • Tulpa the White||

    I suspect he did.

    Why? His point is totally incoherent if that's what he meant.

    He meant "without government".

  • Coach Panto||

    Uh, you need investors to build, yes, and guess what, they're also entrepreneurs! Isn't learning fun!

  • ThatSkepticGuy||

    And also to, y'know, purchase your goods and/or services.

    If we allow ourselves, for a moment, to dumb ourselves down to your level and accept that he meant it the way you claim he did("alone" vs "without the gov"), then all that means is he gave a speech in which he overstated the painfully obvious and passed it off as some proclamatory revelation.

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    Wtf? Admit that entrepreneurs build things? There's nothing to admit. It never was up for discussion until the arrival of Obama and his gang of "closet socialists" hit the WH. All of a sudden all these moronic takes on "no one does it alone" communitarian-hippie nonsensical gibberish has hit our narrative.

  • Drake||

    Did one of Romney's aides hack the teleprompter, or are Obama's speech writers as incompetent as their boss?

  • ZundoRann||

    lol, gotta jsut love them bought and paid for politicians.

    www.Get-Private.tk

  • Anonymous Coward||

    I don't have the time or patience to parse each of Barry's lies, so I'll just bust up the one nearest and dearest to my black, rotten, empty heart:

    “When the auto industry was on the brink of collapse, my opponent said, let’s let Detroit go bankrupt.

    And the problem with that would be...what?

    I said, let’s bet on American workers and American ingenuity.

    With the advice of the EVIL BAIN CAPITAL!

    And you know what, GM is number one again.

    Horseshit. Only if you count vehicles that GM did not build (SAIC Motor Corp. and Wuling Motors) and discount vehicles that VW did build (Audi, Bentley, MAN, Scania).

    GM and Barack owe China a thank you.

    Chrysler is selling cars again.

    Up 20% from last year. A weaselly figure if there ever was one. If Chrysler sold 120,394 in June of 2011, then a 20% increase means they sold 144,472. Nothing to write home about as Ford sold 200,215 units.

    Ford is on the move.


    No thanks to Barry.

    The U.S. auto industry has come roaring back. We’ve invested in advanced manufacturing because we want to beat out countries like Germany and China.

    Hope! Change! Yes we can! America Uber Alles!

    That's about how the jingoism goes, right? And Dr. Paul is supposed to be the isolationist in this race?

  • The Derider||

    If the auto industry went bankrupt, unemployment would be higher.

    Since the unemployment rate is apparently the only economic metric we're using this election, I guess loan guarantees to the auto industry were a good thing.

  • ant1sthenes||

    Not necessarily, since the annihilation of the unions may have tempted foreign auto firms to Detroit.

    More importantly, the president wouldn't have upended bankruptcy procedures for blatant cronyism. Since that sort of openly political corruption scares the shit out of anyone who just wants to do business rather than playing politics, it's not exactly a shock he's scared them all.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    If the auto industry went bankrupt, unemployment would be higher.

    There's a difference between Chapter 7 and Chapter 11, guy. Learn it.

  • The Derider||

    Yes, if you want to be extremely pedantic, I should have written that the government loans allowed GM to enter chapter 11 bankruptcy, maintaining their production line and corporate structure and facilitating cheaper union contracts, instead of entering Chapter 7 bankruptcy, which would have liquidated the company's assets, and laid off hundreds of thousands of workers.

  • Sevo||

    IOWs, The Derider, you've got all sorts of excuses and hypotheticals.
    You're an idiot.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Yes, if you want to be extremely pedantic, I should have written that the government loans allowed GM to enter chapter 11 bankruptcy

    And if you wanted to be accurate (not a problem you seem to suffer from), that's $40 billion that GM is in no hurry to get back to the taxpayers.

    maintaining their production line and corporate structure and facilitating cheaper union contracts

    Yay! Volts and corporate bloat! Same old shit! Same old shit! Same old shit!

    facilitating cheaper union contracts

    A seat on the GM Board, 17.5% of the company, the $20 billion pension remains untouched, but wages are frozen. Let me find my tiny violin.

    instead of entering Chapter 7 bankruptcy, which would have liquidated the company's assets

    A more merciful end, seeing as how Toyota and VW will kill off GM unless Barry, in his infinite wisdom (cough), turns GM into the American Wuling.

    and laid off hundreds of thousands of workers.

    Seeing as how GM had 91,000 employees prior to Chapter 11, your hyperbole falls somewhat flat.

  • Concerned Citizen||

    Over 1,600 car companies have come and gone in America. It can't be 1950 forever, libs.

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    THE AUTO INDUSTRY* DID GO BANKRUPT, YOU FUCKING MORON!

    *GM and Xler were the only ones in play, and they DID in fact go through bankruptcy, you stupid, economically -illiterate fuckstain.

  • The Derider||

    I am confident I know a lot more about economics and financial markets than you. And 90% of Reason's contributing staff, actually.

  • ThatSkepticGuy||

    Sure, and Hamilton thought he was a better shot than Burr.

  • J Freeman||

    Too soon.

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    I worked 10 years in financial services. Judging from little I read about Derider, I'd say no you don't "know more" about financial markets.

  • ||

    The Derider knows about economics in the same sense that the alchemists understood chemistry.

  • Alex the wolf||

    Your comment is so elementary that even a baby can see you are wrong. Auto bailout=more spending
    More spending=more taxes
    more taxes=less investment
    less investment=less employment
    But hey, you can let the union that contributed to your campaign down right?

  • The Derider||

    Everything's elementary when your only answer is "government caused the problem", that's the seductive part of libertarianism.

  • Sevo||

    The Derider|7.16.12 @ 10:41PM|#
    "Everything's elementary when your only answer is "government caused the problem", that's the seductive part of libertarianism."

    And the idiot AKA The Derider has no response. Thanks, idiot.

  • The Derider||

    Well, to start with, more spending doesn't necessarily lead to more taxes, as long as the economy grows in the long run.

  • Killazontherun||

    You are not going to turn this occasion into a learning experience at all are you? Anonymous Coward did such a wonderful job of explaining the fallacies that you have trouble shaking, you should pay him some kind of compensation for his time. But, you wont learn.

  • Alex the wolf||

    "more spending doesn't necessarily lead to more taxes"
    Please explain
    (do you have some kind of magical powers, like turning stones into gold by touching them?)

  • ThatSkepticGuy||

    Not when government really *DID* cause the problem.

  • Coach Panto||

    My most hated BamBam quote on the auto bailouts was last week:

    "Romney’s experience has been in owning companies that outsource jobs, while my experience has been in saving the American automobile industry."

    This guy's ego is like Godzilla on bathsalts. Yeah he saved the auto industry like Hitler saved the Jews by relocating them to Auschwitz.

    His Final Solution if he wins re-election is to force a depression as a pretext to "save" by executive order all American industries, before he turns them into forced labor gulags under martial law as his homies will own the streets in the inner cities, on call to bust up a factory that doesn't comply to Dear Leader's oligarch rules.

    Tin foil hat talk? You hope.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    You're a fucking idiot.

    GM needed $40 billion in DIP financing to survive in 2009. No one could pony that up but the Feds.

    Good or bad, Obama saved the domestic auto industry.

    Fuck you assholes - lots of factory workers like that.

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    Tou're a fucking idiot. GM and Chrysler went bankrupt, which is what many of us thought should happen anyway.

    Barry O's only "involvement" was to screw Delphi salaried retirees and protect the UAW.

    So why wouldn't a "regular" bankruptcy have worked? It would have.

    Fuck your stupid hurts. Pleas shut the fuck up - for teh childrenz.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    GM went through a regular Ch 11 bankruptcy reorg in 2009.

    Ch 11 requires DIP.

    Case closed.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    If GM is doing so wonderfully, why has Dear Leader exempted them from paying their fair share?

    We're all about fairness here, right?

  • The Derider||

    So now we're moving the goalposts from "not being liquidated" to "doing wonderfully"?

    We're all about fairness here, right?

  • Sevo||

    The Derider|7.16.12 @ 10:50PM|#
    "So now we're moving the goalposts from "not being liquidated" to "doing wonderfully"?

    We're all about fairness here, right?"

    Care to put that in English, idiot?

  • Anonymous Coward||

    So now we're moving the goalposts from "not being liquidated" to "doing wonderfully"?

    I'm not the one who claimed GM was going to be liquidated. That was all you.

  • The Derider||

    Right, nobody claimed "GM is doing wonderfully", only that they avoided liquidation. Suggesting I said the former is called "moving the goalposts".

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Nobody did. Except Dear Leader Barry.

    And you know what, GM is number one again.

    RTFA. Unless...you dare disagree with his Hopeiness?!

  • ||

    God damn you are a fucking idiot. LEARN TO FUCKING READ BEFORE YOU START POSTING YOUR BULLSHIT.

    (Here's a free hint: There was an if before that "doing wonderfully" because the sentence was a question to shrike who thinks Obama saved the auto industry. If the industry was saved that means the people that think that think it's doing okay now. See, that wasn't that hard now was it?)

  • The Derider||

    The government loans allowed them to avoid liquidation.

  • Sevo||

    The Derider|7.16.12 @ 10:49PM|#
    "The government loans allowed them to avoid liquidation."

    And I'll bet someone as idiotic as you thinks that's a positive value! Am I right, idiot?

  • The Derider||

    Again, if you don't want higher unemployment, then yes.

  • hotsy totsy||

    Avoid liquidation? I guess, because the actual stockholders received NOTHING.

    And the auto industry in the non-union South seems to be doingjust fine.

  • The Derider||

    Stockholders wouldn't have gotten a penny in a liquidation, either.

    Those proceeds would go towards paying the company's debt.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    You're a fucking idiot.

    Are you typing while looking into the mirror again, shriek?

    GM needed $40 billion in DIP financing to survive in 2009. No one could pony that up but the Feds.

    One, why should the government "pony up" the taxpayers' money on behalf of the UAW? Second, Rich Uncle Warren Buffett is worth 44 billion. If the great "Sage of Omaha" doesn't want a piece of GM, maybe something is amiss there. If the government's shares of GM were sold today, the American taxpayers would take a $15 billion bath on the loss.

    Good or bad, Obama saved the domestic auto industry.

    Bad, and he didn't. Once Toyota returns to full capacity (what with the earthquakes and meltdowns and all) GM will be clawing and scratching for a distant 3rd. Even now, Toyota and VW are snatching up that market share like a fat kid snatches up candy.

    Fuck you assholes - lots of factory workers like that.

    Fuck you earhole and I'm sure the UAW likes their $56 per hour, how ever unreasonable it might be.

  • Coach Panto||

    Yeah, what he said, plus

    Is an industry really "saved" when it's turned into an abomination that will need gigantic bailouts every 10 years because it makes retarded frickin pieces of shit like Chevy volts and pays people 2X what theyd get on the open market, let's them smoke pot on lunch breaks, ie allows such low productivity that Toytota or ford could work frickin circles around em?

    Yeah, they were saved like giving a really confident blind guy a firesuit and letting him drive a schoolbus, then giving him a new one every time he crashes it and kills 10 kids. Good plan. Obama wouldn't know a car part from one of Michelle's sex toys.

  • The Derider||

    Being worth 44 billion dollars is totally different than being able to provide a 40 billion dollar loan on short notice.

    There's a difference between liquid assets and net worth. Learn it.

  • Sevo||

    The Derider|7.16.12 @ 10:56PM|#
    "Being worth 44 billion dollars is totally different than being able to provide a 40 billion dollar loan on short notice."
    Yes, and?

    "There's a difference between liquid assets and net worth. Learn it."
    Yes, and?

  • The Derider||

    So Warren Buffet, worth 44 billion, would be incapable of providing a 40 billion dollar bridge loan, even if he wanted to, due to the fact that 44 billion in net worth is not the same as 40 billion dollars in liquid funds.

    Indeed, no one other than the US federal government was willing and able to provide the loan at the time, due to the size of the loan, the dissaray in the financial market, and the short time frame.

  • Flyboy||

    "Indeed, no one other than the US federal government was willing and able to provide the loan at the time, due to the size of the loan, the dissaray in the financial market, and the short time frame."
    That's what's ordinarily called a "clue," sparky.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Being worth 44 billion dollars is totally different than being able to provide a 40 billion dollar loan on short notice.

    There's a difference between liquid assets and net worth. Learn it.

    Making a rhetorical point for shrieky. If GM is such a sure bet as President Choom Gang claims, why wouldn't vultures like Buffett be circling to scoop it up and make money off of it? With $44 billion in personal assets, not to mention the 400 billion Berkshire Hathaway holds, Warren, or hell, someone of comparable wealth could have put together a deal to "rescue" GM and save dey jerbs.

    Assuming it was a worthwhile deal, which it wasn't.

  • The Derider||

    It's really worth noting that the UAW took big pay, benefit and pension cuts as a result of Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

  • Sevo||

    The Derider|7.16.12 @ 11:01PM|#
    "It's really worth noting that the UAW took big pay, benefit and pension cuts as a result of Chapter 11 bankruptcy."
    Obviously not nearly enough, idiot.

  • The Derider||

    I get it-- you want them all to lose their jobs.

    Just stop criticizing Obama for a higher than average unemployment rate when you actually want it to be higher.

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    Put it this way. If I was an investor or broker would I invest in GM? No way.

  • Alex the wolf||

    "GM needed $40 billion"
    hey, so did I
    Can you get me one of those?
    I don´t have a union with political connections though

  • The Derider||

    You also provide zero jobs, services, or percentage of the GNP.

  • Sevo||

    The Derider|7.16.12 @ 10:51PM|#
    "You also provide zero jobs, services, or percentage of the GNP."

    Yeah, with money stolen from the taxpayers.
    You should learn about broken windows, idiot.

  • The Derider||

    If they're called "taxpayers", then how can taxing them be stealing?

    Work on your diction, slaver.

  • ThatSkepticGuy||

    "If they're called "taxpayers", then how can taxing them be stealing?

    Work on your diction, slaver."

    Ah, yes. The belief that people working to earn money that they will never see is Right and Fair vis-a-vis the belief that working for pay and then keeping it for yourself is "wage slavery".

    Only on the fucking Left.

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    Only a liberal would call for the government to take more of their money in the name of "equality" for issues they will never see a damn value in in any meaningful way.

    That's why you need liberals in life. Somebody has to scam the most naive out of their money.

  • Killazontherun||

    You are one laughable fool, derision. They are no longer a source of product in the aggregate because that value is offset by the dole they accepted and not paid back. The differential being what that money wasn't spent on if GM and the loser company that comes back every generation with its hand out, Chrysler, were not in dire straights. You can't avoid the opportunity cost involved and at the same time make a salient argument. You start from there, sound economic reasoning, everything you have said in this thread falls apart because it equal parts uninformed and irrational.

  • Alex the wolf||

    If you give me $40 billion I promise I will hire thousands of people and start a company called "Thank you Barry"

  • J Freeman||

    Only if you promise to go belly up and require further "stimulus". We all will know the reason it didn't work the first time is because you were underfunded.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "Good or bad, Obama saved the domestic auto industry."

    He didn't save diddly squat. He merely stole the bondholders share of the GM Chrysler and gave it to the UAW.

    And GM Chryler don't equal the "domestic auto industry".

    He didn't do a damn thing for Ford or any of the US manufacturing operations of Toyota, Nissan, Volkswagon, Mercedes, etc.

    Every last one of those plant counts as part of the "domestic auto industry".

  • Almanian's Evil Twin||

    Yes, all modern (and most all of the old-time) Presidents are scum and liars. The current President is more than matters-of-degree worse than anyone I've witnessed in my lifetime (earliest remembrance is of LBJ). BHO is in his own league of lying, dissembling and shape shifting.

    More worrisome to me is the fact that so much of the American public is willing to overlook this, completely ignoring the reality and supporting the "life story" and "intentions".

    Fuck this asshole. If he's reelected in Nov. I will truly cash in all hope for this country. However bad Romney is (and it's plenty bad), Obama is infinitely worse. If 4 years of evidence isn't enough, it's hopeless.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Did her lie us into a $2 trillion war in the Fuckup Middle East based on lies that killed 4600 US Soldiers?

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Did her lie us into a $2 trillion war in the Fuckup Middle East based on lies that killed 4600 US Soldiers?

    Still running against Dubya, huh, shriek? 1412 US military personnel have died in "the good war" (Afghanistan) since Dear Leader Barry took office.

    He's gettin'em killed as fast as he can. Have a little patience, shrieky-boy.

  • Coach Panto||

    In Chicago alone there has been 1629 homicides since BamBam took office.

    2009: 458
    2010: 449
    2011: 440
    2012: 272 thru June30

    Just basic training for when he unleashes them against the 1%.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    I don't care. Arm them all 'Fast and Furious' style.

    I am still the only pro-gun, pro free trade fucker here.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug|7.16.12 @ 9:49PM|#
    "I don't care. Arm them all 'Fast and Furious' style.
    I am still the only pro-gun, pro free trade fucker here."

    No, dipshit, you're one of the most delusional.

  • The Derider||

    This is the funniest conspiracy theory I've seen in a while. It's got that "Obama's black thugs are coming for you" dogwhistle appeal that Michelle Malkin does so well.

    But wait...hmm...when has the murder rate in Chicago been low?

  • Sevo||

    The Derider|7.16.12 @ 10:54PM|#
    "This is the funniest conspiracy theory I've seen in a while. It's got that "Obama's black thugs are coming for you" dogwhistle appeal that Michelle Malkin does so well."

    Hey, that's a hell of a strawman! Do you write day-time TV dramas? Or are you an idiot?

  • The Derider||

    DAMN YOU STRAWMANNNNNNNN!

  • Coach Panto||

    It's called hyperbole. Statist Govt loves race/religion riots, murder, rape, robbery, fraud committed on a wide scale by regular citizens.

    1. It distracts from the war/murder/robbery/fraud they commit on a daily basis.

    2. They can order some of it then pretend to be against it (the secretary will disavow knowledge of your mission)

    3. They can use riots/etc to justify martial law and search/seizure without cause.

    This is why BamBam wants a permanent underclass. It's a pretext for "emergency" or "temporary" oligarchy (nationalizations/bailouts) and tyranny.

  • BarryD||

    If I were Obama, I wouldn't respect the American people much, either. I'd know they'd elected me.

  • The Derider||

    At least you could comfort yourself with the fact they rejected Ron Paul.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    They were fools for doing so, Derider.

    Just as Team Blue are fools for not nominating a pro-market, pro-liberty candidate.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "Politicians are entitled to a certain amount of shading of the truth as a kind of professional privilege. The voters discount for it. But challenges from the press corps ..."

    Don't hold your breath on that one.

    When it comes to Obama, the MSM regards their role as basically being a steno pool to regurgitate whatever shit he happens to be peddling on any given day.

  • ||

    Obama would be better off taking the advice of Thomas Friedman and Michael Mandelbaum in their book That Used To Be Us: “American young people have got to understand from an early age that the world pays off on results, not on http://www.ceinturesfr.com/cei.....-c-18.html effort.” A world in which effort alone always pays off for everyone just isn’t a possible or even desirable reality. If it were, every Little Leaguer would be a professional baseball player.

  • BigT||

    Many progressives think the world pays off on intentions.

  • ||

    Turing machine = 1
    BigT = 0

  • air max chaussures||

    There’s no mention by Obama in the stump speech of his other grandfather, Hussein Onyango Obama, a Kenyan cook who had five wives and converted to Islam. Also, Obama seems unable to imagine that his American grandfather might have found some way to afford a home without the help of the FHA, as many Americans somehow miraculously did before the FHA was created in 1934.

  • jacob the barbarian||

    *Obama [IS] unable to imagine*
    there, FIFY

  • ||

    Turing machine = 2
    BigT jacob = 0

  • ||

    Forgot about the ampersand monster lurking here. There should be one between BigT -and- jacob.

  • tee shirt pas cher||

    “American young people have got to understand from an early age that the world pays off on results, not on effort.” A world in which effort alone always pays off for everyone just isn’t a possible or even desirable reality. If it were, every Little Leaguer would be a professional baseball player.

  • James True||

    Ira really missed the boat here. Pretty sad for an article on "reason". What POTUS is really doing in Virginia is reconstructing the definition of ownership. All of his speechs of late have had this goal. We don't own anything. Our successes, or fortunes, or very lives are the product of leaning on each other. Any sunshine we see is purely the result of standing on the weighted backs of another. Just as his office's failures are not owned by President Obama, so too are the people's successes not owned by those who have worked so hard to create it.

  • Jackand Ace||

    "There’s no mention by Obama in the stump speech of his other grandfather, Hussein Onyango Obama, a Kenyan cook who had five wives and converted to Islam."

    That was it for me...no need to continue reading...the agenda has been stated.

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