Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Listen to ALL of the words

We all did this at one time in our teenaged years - a parent said, "You can go to the movies if you make your bed, clean up your room and cut the grass," and all we hear is, "You can go to the movies."

I don't want to belabor the point, but on July 13, the president of the United States was speaking on the topic of how cooperation is vital in all enterprises, and how any and all business concerns in the nation get a boost from government-sponsored education, infrastructure and research, and here is what he said:

There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me — because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t — look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something — there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there. (Applause.)
If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet.
The point is, is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together. There are some things, just like fighting fires, we don’t do on our own. I mean, imagine if everybody had their own fire service. That would be a hard way to organize fighting fires.
So we say to ourselves, ever since the founding of this country, you know what, there are some things we do better together. That’s how we funded the GI Bill. That’s how we created the middle class. That’s how we built the Golden Gate Bridge or the Hoover Dam. That’s how we invented the Internet. That’s how we sent a man to the moon. We rise or fall together as one nation and as one people, and that’s the reason I’m running for President — because I still believe in that idea. You’re not on your own, we’re in this together.

And if you listen to FOX News, and other misguided interpretations, you think that all he said was,"You didn't build that."

I know a lot of this is deliberate obtuseness.  It's easier to deny what the man says, if you happen to support his opponent. And even Mr Obama said he might have improved his syntax in stating his point, that we are all in this together, and there is not one person with a business who is not part of a group that helped.

But I'll sit right here and wait for someone to show me a business that exists without government - that couldn't count on the police to come if there was a crime, or the Fire Dept to respond to fire or EMS emergency, or any of hundreds of government services, or a business that survives in a total vacuum.

People like to point to Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, people to whom we are in great debt for their technological wizardry.  These men built their businesses upon advancements made by others.  Which is not to gainsay their amazing ideas and production, but since computers go back to the days of the abacus in using digital technology, you have to say that others were involved.

How about, for those of you hollering, "He said I didn't build this!!!!!," could you just say," I don't like him!!!!" instead, just in the interest of accuracy?

By the way, I didn't build this blog by myself. And someone else taught you how to read it.

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