Townhall.com: Analysis: Obama’s Worst Speech Yet
A long time ago, I had the time to take President Barack Obama’s major speeches and provide a point-by-point analysis and debunking of each. I think the last time I did that was immediately after the 2010 State of the Union Address. I miss being able to do that; as far as I’m concerned, it’s the best way possible to pick apart the partisanship and the demagoguery inherent in each of this president’s speeches.
Today, while the president gave what many are calling one of his most dishonest and vitriolic speeches ever, I was at my office, working on a 20-page Memorandum of Law on the standard in South Carolina for a substantial change in circumstances justifying a modification of a prior custodial agreement. Forget writing a point-by-point rebuttal — I wanted to even be able to listen to the thing.
No such luck.
Thankfully, Townhall’s Guy Benson did the hard work for me. Below, please find an excerpt or two — and keep in mind that, because I cannot block-quote twice, I have labeled Obama’s words and Benson’s analysis:
OBAMA: They keep telling us that if we convert more of our investment in education, research and health care into tax cuts, especially for the wealthy, our economy will grow stronger. They keep telling us if we strip away more regulations and let businesses pollute more and treat workers and consumers with impunity, somehow we will all be better off. We are told that when the wealthy become even wealthier and corporations are allowed to maximize profits by whatever means necessary, it’s good for America and their success will translate into more jobs and prosperity for everyone else. That is the theory. The problem for advocates of this theory is that we have tried their approach on a massive scale. The results of their experiments are there for all to see. At the beginning of the last decade, the wealthiest americans received a huge tax cut in 2001 and another huge tax cut in 2003. We were promised that these tax cuts would lead to faster job growth. They did not. The wealthy got wealthier, we would expect that. the income of the top 1% has grown by more than 275% over the last few decades to an average of $1.3 million a year. But prosperity sure did not trickle down. Instead, during the last decade, we had theslowest job growth in half a century.
BENSON: Here, our “post-partisan,” self-stylized messiah accuses Republicans of supporting pollution and worker abuse. How insulting. I’ll address this point when he revisits it with a vengeance later on. His unserious caricature of free market capitalism is hardly worth responding to. It’s the equivalent of a petulant Republican president standing up and saying the Democrat vision for the country is to transform it into a North Korea-style police state. This brand of rhetoric is below the presidency, but has never been below this president. The 2001 and 2003 tax cuts helped pull America out of the recession that President Bush inherited. It led to more than 50 consecutive months of job growth and declining deficits (prior to the 2008 crisis) — even as we spent heavily on two wars. President Obama is asking Americans to turn their backs on the “bad old days” of 5.3 percent unemployment (Bush’s average) and annual deficits that look like foothills compared to today’s Obama-institutionalized Himalayas of red ink. And does this president really want to gripe about previous “slow job growth“?
OBAMA: Then there is Medicare. Because health care costs keep rising and the baby boom generation is retiring, Medicare, we all know, is one of the biggest drivers of our long term deficit. That is a challenge we have to meet by bringing down the cost of health care overall for seniors and taxpayers who share in the stakes. But here’s the solution proposed by Republicans in Washington and embraced by most of their candidates for president. Instead of being enrolled in Medicare when they turn 65, seniors to retire a decade from now would get a voucher that equals the cost of the second cheapest health care plan in their area. If Medicare is more expensive than at private plan, they will have to pay more if they want to enroll in traditional Medicare. If health care costs rise faster than the amount of the voucher, as, by the way, they have been doing for decades, that’s too bad. Seniors bear the risk. If the voucher is not enough to buy private plan with bit specific doctors and carry need, that’s too bad…The net result is our country will end up spending more on health care and the only reason the government will save any money is is because we have shifted it to seniors. They will bear more of the costs themselves. It is a bad idea. It will ultimately end Medicare as we know it.
BENSON: After airily trashing his own bogus “Obamacare will bend the cost curve down” fantasy, the president hammers Paul Ryan’s vicious, uncaring, partisan Medicare reform package. As I’ve written over and over again, Ryan’s new plan is borrowed from the legislation he co-authored with liberal Democrat Sen. Ron Wyden. Under this bipartisan framework, needier and sicker future seniors will receive much more generous government assistance than wealthier and healthier ones. Yes, some well-to-do future seniors will have to pay more out-of-pocket for certain Medicare programs they may choose. And yes, that “ends Medicare as we know it.” But Medicare as we know it will be insolvent in twelve years, according to its own trustees. Medicare as it exists today is a phantom for future seniors; it will be gone — period. The question is what to do about it. President Obama’s plan is….nothing. Aside from forking more power to an unelected, unaccountable rationing board (he only dislikes those types of panels when they’re gathered at the Supreme Court), our president suggests absolutely nothing in the way of meaningful entitlement reform. He’s content to sit back at viciously attack the only responsible plan in town, while offering no viable alternative of his own. His Treasury Secretary has admitted as much in February:
Please read the rest of the piece. Like when I used to tackle Obama’s State of the Union Addresses and major addresses on healthcare and immigration, Benson’s analysis is lengthy. However, it’s worth it as a complete deconstruction of much of the rhetoric, partisanship and scare-mongering that we’re going to see repeated again and again and again over the next seven months.