Obama: Government spending “is not some socialist dream”

posted at 3:31 pm on April 11, 2012 by Tina Korbe

In a speech at a Florida University yesterday, Barack Obama attempted to dispel the idea that government spending is automatically synonymous with the redistribution of wealth. CNSNews.com reports:

“[T]he idea that together we build this safety-net, this base of support – that allows all of us to take risks, and try new things, maybe try – get a new job – because we know that there’s this base that we can rely on,” Obama told the crowd at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton.

“It’s the reason why we contribute to programs like Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security and unemployment insurance,” Obama said.

“So, these investments, in things like Education and research and health care. They haven’t been made as some grand scheme to redistribute wealth from one group to another. This is not some socialist dream.”

Certainly, I understand what Obama is getting at — that the entitlement state is somehow different than the welfare state. A “social safety net,” he’s suggesting, is different than outright handouts. Theoretically, we all contribute to it when we can so that, when we need it, it’s there.

If that’s his argument, he should firmly be in support of the payroll tax and should never argue for a payroll tax cut extension, as we have, at times, seen him do. We all know that the Social Security trust fund isn’t in a lockbox, that it’s frequently raided, but the payroll tax at least ensures that we think of Social Security as a trust fund. Without the payroll tax, Social Security really does become just another redistributive policy.

But the larger problems with the president’s remarks are that they betray his ignorance of two important truths: (1) The government has no money of its own, so, technically, all government programs are redistributive and (2) Our entitlement programs are broken and he has absolutely no plan to reform them. The social safety net is about to rip underneath us because the president refuses to take any steps whatsoever to strengthen it.

Government spending, like all of life, is constrained by reality — and the reality is that we cannot spend money we do not have. We will never have the money to reinforce the social safety net if we do not focus on economic growth. The objection to increased public investment in education, health and other programs is, in many cases, not ideological at all (although in some cases it is, usually from the standpoint that it shouldn’t be the federal government that provides the net), but practical: Such investment is not the best way to grow the economy.

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Øbama is right. It’s not some socialist dream, it’s the socialist dream.

Odysseus on April 11, 2012 at 5:19 PM

How was this missed – Obama calls Reagan a “socialist”.

Schadenfreude on April 11, 2012 at 3:43 PM

Glad I’m not the only one who saw this. I posted on it earlier. Zero is babbling almost incoherently. It’s utter nonsense. He has nothing but failure on the record so now he’s just throwing stuff against the wall to see what sticks.

And he isn’t looking well either.

dogsoldier on April 11, 2012 at 5:24 PM

Barack Obama attempted to dispel the idea that government spending taking your money under the threat of punishment is automatically synonymous with redistribution of wealth theft.


iurockhead on April 11, 2012 at 5:36 PM

Jackhole. He tries to lump paying for defense with wasting money on crony capitalist schemes, and runaway entitlement spending.

Ward Cleaver on April 11, 2012 at 5:38 PM

He’s talking at College Students who would know that what he is incoherent, as this is the usual Professorial Drivel that is spewed at them all day long, and it is called getting an education, at least that is what they are being told by faculty and staff of their respective colleges.

Preachin’ to the Choir… let us hope it rains in November and instead of going out to vote these students decide not to get wet and stay in their dorms.

uhangtight on April 11, 2012 at 5:43 PM

Government spending, like all of life, is constrained by reality — and the reality is that we cannot spend money we do not have.

I can prove this is wrong in about 16 trillion ways.

BobMbx on April 11, 2012 at 5:45 PM

uhangtight on April 11, 2012 at 5:43 PM

Who Wouldn’t Know.. ugh.. my fingers.

uhangtight on April 11, 2012 at 6:04 PM

The Obama Rule

There’s nothing wrong with Capitalism
There’s nothing wrong with free enterprise
Don’t try to make me feel guilty
I’m so tired of hearing you cry

There’s nothing wrong with making some profit
If you ask me I’ll say it’s just fine
There’s nothing wrong with wanting to live nice
I’m so tired of hearing you whine
About the revolution
Bringin’ down the rich
When was the last time you dug a ditch, baby!

If it ain’t one thing
Then it’s the other
Any cause that crosses your path
Your heart bleeds for anyone’s brother
I’ve got to tell you you’re a pain in the ass

You criticize with plenty of vigor
You rationalize everything that you do
With catchy phrases and heavy quotations
And everybody is crazy but you

You’re just a middle class, socialist brat
From a suburban family and you never really had to work
And you tell me that we’ve got to get back
To the struggling masses (whoever they are)
You talk, talk, talk about suffering and pain
Your mouth is bigger than your entire brain
What the hell do you know about suffering and pain . . .

There’s nothing wrong with Capitalism.

Resist We Much on April 11, 2012 at 6:15 PM

His ideology that social safety nets and government rules encourage people to take risks and try new jobs ect is exactly wrong from the get go. Social safety nets, government programs, regulations and licensing have the opposite effect and cause people to not take risks, not try new things and not want to move or leave their jobs. People don’t want to do anything that changes their status according the criteria of government bureaucratization.

Resolute on April 11, 2012 at 6:24 PM

Is second degree murder a hate crime..?

d1carter on April 11, 2012 at 6:15 PM

The two are separate charges. For a hate crime, the prosecution would have to prove that he acted solely because Trayvon was black. That’s not the case here.

Resist We Much on April 11, 2012 at 6:31 PM

Gotta love Baraka speak……..words have meaning, and he’ll let you know what they mean right after a poll has been taken.

antipc on April 11, 2012 at 8:27 PM

we contribute to medicaid and unemployment ‘insurance’? How?

By the logic of the other 2, SS and Medicare, individuals should get their ‘contributions’ (manditory taxes on income mind you) back and it should break even. Here’s a question to ask him that he will stumble on:

Why contribute if you’re going to get that back later? Why not just hold on to it?

socialist wet dream thru central banking of fiat currency that never stabilizes, must always increase, therefore costs always go up…would be a good answer, but only half, the other half is of course to buy the votes of the lower class.

John Kettlewell on April 11, 2012 at 9:05 PM

When was the last time Obama said something that made sense?

Looking for a date and what the comment was.

J.E. Dyer on April 11, 2012 at 9:25 PM

Proof the man is a suit short of a deck.

sadatoni on April 11, 2012 at 9:31 PM