NY Times Oddly Unimpressed With Republicans “You Did Build That” Message

by William Teach | August 29, 2012 8:33 am

In yesterday’s Fish Wrap Of Record there were a total of 3 opinion pieces whining about Republicans taking Obama’s “you didn’t build that!” comment out of context with the RNC motto of “You Did Build That!” Here’s the Times’ uber-far left Editorial Board[1]

It was appropriate that “We built it,” the needling slogan of the evening, was painted on the side of the convention hall. Speaker after speaker alluded to the phrase in an entire day based on the thinnest of reeds – a poorly phrased remark by the president, deliberately taken out of context. President Obama was making the obvious point that all businesses rely to some extent on the work and services of government. But Mr. Romney has twisted it to suggest that Mr. Obama believes all businesses are creatures of the government, and so the convention had to parrot the line.

Actually, that’s exactly what Obama was alluding to. I bet Henry Jarvis Raymond, who founded the NY Times, would disagree with the Editorial Board and say “damned right I built this paper!”

Here’s Nicholas Kristoff[2], who mentions that one of the speakers had taken government sponsored loans, goes on to say

In short, the Republicans are inadvertently underscoring the point that President Obama was expressing in his “you didn’t build that[3]” comment in July. Obama noted then that “if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own.” He pointed to public investments in roads and bridges that enable businesses to flourish, and then he inelegantly added, “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that.” (big snip)

Who built this country? Entrepreneurs, yes. But so did schoolteachers and railway construction workers. Doctors and truckers. Scientists and soldiers. You didn’t build it, Mitt Romney – we all built it.

More on this in a bit, let’s get to Bill Keller[4]

“We did build that,” has already been established as one of the more dishonest political memes in a campaign season undisturbed by shame. The Republicans took a clumsy phrase from an Obama speech in July, in which the president pointed out that most American business successes have been assisted by infrastructure, education or incentives underwritten by the government. The Republican spin-masters whipped this into a preposterous claim that Obama denied American entrepreneurs any credit for their creations. The fact that this slogan has been thoroughly debunked has not kept it from being the defining theme in Tampa.

Bill, like many others, decides to highlight the entire Obama comment, which is worse than just the first line. While it’s certainly true that Obama mentions many public works and the notion that we do need others to make our businesses successful, his world view seems to revolve around the notion that only with Government can a business get off the ground and get going.

Who is government? Why, the taxpayers. The citizens. Consider[5] Obama’s line right after the “you didn’t build that”

Somebody else made that happen.

During this horrible speech, Obama mentions roads, bridges, and teachers, among others. He goes on to say “Government research created the Internet…” He does eventually pay homage to “individual initiative”, but what he is espousing is a monumentally different world view in which Big Government is super mega-awesome and nothing can be done without it, that “somebody else made that happen.”

Yes, you the person with that business did need others to make that business successful. You probably needed roads and bridges, the Internet and teachers. Who built that? Well, you did, with your tax dollars. Interestingly, it is typically private companies contracted out who build/maintain those bridges and roads. You need energy. A private company built that. Private companies expand the Internet. Teachers paid by your tax money teach people who make money to buy your product. Commerce is interconnected.

But, who did build your business, who put their ass on the line? You did. You took the chance. You may have gotten a loan from a bank, or a financial institution like…..Bain Capital….., but your butt is on the line to make the business work. Without your creativity, your leap of faith, your hard work, it doesn’t get off the ground. It starts with you. Not government. Reading the entire comment by Obama in context, it’s quite obvious that a successful business starts with Government in his world. That is the fundamental difference.

Conservatives/Republicans believe you are at the top of the pyramid of success: Obama thinks Government is. Perhaps that’s why the economy under Obama is so horrible.

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove[6]. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach[7].

  1. uber-far left Editorial Board: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/29/opinion/how-the-republicans-built-it.html
  2. Nicholas Kristoff: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/29/opinion/kristof-the-secret-weapon-all-of-us.html
  3. you didn’t build that: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=192oEC5TX_Q
  4. Bill Keller: http://keller.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/08/28/lies-damn-lies-and-gop-video/
  5. Consider: http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2012/jul/18/context-obamas-you-didnt-build-comment/
  6. Pirate’s Cove: http://www.thepiratescove.us/
  7. @WilliamTeach: http://twitter.com/WilliamTeach

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