Day 20 – Inauguration Day

As nearly everyone knows, President Obama was sworn in today at noon eastern time by Chief Justice Roberts on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol. I was in English class with Dr. Jackson during the whole process, so I missed it, but I watched the speeches online later in the day. I admit that the new President is a wonderful speaker, but be wary of this. As Alan Caruba wrote over at The Progress of Liberty, “[I]f words alone could lift this nation out of its current financial crisis, its wars, and other problems, President Barack Obama could make that happen.” Unfortunately for America and its new President, good intentions do not guarantee desirable outcomes.

 

I just want to comment on a small part of what the President said. A little over half-way through, he said:

Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill. Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched, but this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control – and that a nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous. The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our Gross Domestic Product, but on the reach of our prosperity; on our ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart – not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.

Download the full-text transcript of President Obama’s address.

 

He has absolutely correct when he said that the market’s power to generate wealth and freedom is unmatched. No system even comes close to rivaling the free market in its power to generate wealth. Where he went wrong was in what followed. What this crisis has actually reminded us is that with government intervention into the market, artificially created inflation, fiat money, government bailouts, high tax rates, and deficit spending make the market no longer free – in fact, it drives it into a brick wall. “The success of our economy” depends on the government backing out of the market entirely and stopping its nonsense. Only a market entirely free of government intervention and a people free from government coercion can “extend opportunity to every willing heart”. The government cannot do these things, and to a great extent, a market infected by the government cannot either.

 

The President closed with this: 

Let it be said by our children’s children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God’s grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.

I will close for the day with this: If the government and America stay on the current course they are both on, freedom will soon be a thing of the past. Our children will know nothing but the statist quo (yes, I spelled that correctly…it is a play on words). Future generations, instead of rejoicing in freedom, will live under the coercive hand of government and know only of tyranny. As the new President said, we must act now. Just be sure not to follow his advice if and when you get around to acting.

 

By the way, I am willing to answer questions and clarify anything I wrote here. If you disagree with me, that is fine, I just ask that you be nice about it if you leave a comment.

12 thoughts on “Day 20 – Inauguration Day

  1. 1.9 million crowded in and around the national mall in DC. today to get a glimpse of the new president. Our 44th. I stopped what I was doing and watched the swearing in with a nice lady I just met (a customer) on her new 42″ hi def plasma tv. I noticed many folks in the crowd had tears of joy in their eyes and big smiles. The tears tell me they actually believe the world is about to change and all will good TOMORROW! Mere sheep. A large herd waiting for the sheep dog to move them to the barn to get fed. Very sad.
    Tomorrow the new president will close GITMO and cancel out all open business that Bush had on the docket. Then after breakfast he will start printing checks for the SSI recipients. Hey why not! Those folks don’t work, pay taxes, pay for their rent or their fuel. Just collect their checks and work on raising the population. These folks actually belive Obama is the chosen one.
    As the government moves closer to owning the banks as they tried in 1929, ruining the health care system and takeing away our freedom, I will stand by your side, bitching and fighting for what we believe in. We may not see eye to eye on every issue, but I think we are looking into the same reflection. I had to embarass a friend in front of his co-workers yesterday, defending my beliefs. It was not pretty, but I could not keep my mouth shut. I am proud that my son has my passion. I think he has more passion than I, a good thing I suppose.
    Obama’s economic plan will no doubt empty our future piggy banks. As I posted before, It is not our job to finish this work, but we do not have the privilege to stop trying.

    Keep up the good work! / dad

  2. i thought that i would be nice for a change, so after finals i sat down and watched the entire inaugural ceremony. it was only a short amount of time before i started yelling back at the speakers on TV (slightly pathetic, i am aware). i cannot understand how anyone can say such things and a) be completely serious or b) get away with it!! (i am not addressing free-speech, but the intelligent population of people who should know better and call the looters out for what they are)

    the points that you addressed were certainly troubling to me, but there were quite a few others (some that did not pertain to the economy) that were equally vexing. if you haven’t watched B. Houssein Obama’s entire speech, or the other speeches that were made i highly suggest that you do so.

  3. I did watch the entire thing, as well as the other speeches. I just focused on this for my blog tonight. The other things do not bother me as much as the economic issues. As long as property rights are respected and the government is out of the economy, things will be much better and the other issues will follow, I think.

    By the way, no need to resort to ad hominem attacks here, haha.

  4. I understand the source of many people’s anger concerning Obama’s speech and his election in general. Obviously it is quite naive and close-minded to believe that Barack can change anything immediately, or in the near future. His speech was also quite contradictory, preaching individual freedom and the benifit of the collective at the same time. The fact is, as much as we may despise peoples’ blind following of Obama’s promises, we cannot change what people believe or how they think and respond to what Obama says.
    I do commend Obama for his ability to bring such emotion and hope to his supporters, though.

    And B.T.W., just because his middle name is ” Houssein,” does not mean that his is automatically a terrorist. Many people have the same middle name. One man just happened to give ” Houssein” a negative connotation.

  5. I also was disturbed by that very phrase you quoted. Your explanation here is great; I heartily agree.

    The only way that the government can “extend opportunity to every willing heart” is to take that opportunity from another heart.

    While he has a watchful eye on the market, we will keep a watchful eye on him.

    (Clarification – I am using him as a personification of our current government. He is not the source of these ideas nor of the problem. He continues the ideas and the problem.)

  6. I agree with Mort…. This started way back even before FDR.

    The Constitution only gives people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself.
    Benjamin Franklin

  7. “As the new President said, we must act now. Just be sure not to follow his advice if and when you get around to acting.”

    AMEN

  8. What always strikes me as odd in this particular chapter of American politics is how many people seem to be arguing what amounts to nearly the same thing. I understand what a tyrannical government can do, but not all hands-on governments are tyrannical or actually all that interfering. (The government where I live, Finland, would be an example of one that regulates a great deal of public life, and this is seen as a benefit, not a drawback. It’s coupled, however, with a very low corruption rate.)

    From where I stand, I imagine that giving policy its freedom (which, in American capitalism, means in the hands of the free market) can be just as disastrous and wing-clipping as a bad, heavy-handed government. The difference being that voting is done with one’s wallet. I trust CEOs and lobbyists far less than I trust government, which is sad but true. I do not believe that an unregulated market will police itself; the US has basically proven this. I don’t go around saying money is the root of all evil, you know, but perhaps endlessly pursuing wealth(or happiness) is not the way to acquire it.

    To say that more government necessarily means less freedom is naive in the extreme and displays a lack of familiarity with different shades of government and policy in effect around the world. Sorry if that’s not “being nice,” but you did pimp your post on my flickr page, so I feel… entitled. 🙂

    Anyway, good luck in the next four years and I hope you get involved.

  9. I am honestly shocked that no-one who posted so far on this post is not biased or extremest in any way. That’s where the sarcasm stops.

    Obviously Obama is not going to fix things overnight, and the majority of his supporters (like myself) are completely aware of this. While those who do believe this to some extent, they should not be considered “sheep.” They simply have faith in something that has a personal connection to them. And just to clarify, when I mention faith, I say that with no connection to religion. God has no place in our government at all. (A big reason why I was not a supporter of the McCain/Palin campaign. Palin was gearing up to fight her holy war for us, and we have enough problems. But that’s besides the point.)

    What Obama needs to do before anything gets solved is unite the country, and this is his goal. Being as divided and intolerant as we are of other races, religions, and lifestyles, nothing will be solved until this is fixed.

    I hope that he is the man to do it.

    Also, I find it a little tacky that someone who is trying to make a connection between Obama and terrorism (which is simply scraping the bottom of the barrel for things to justify why he is “out to get everyone” and a just a bit ignorant if you ask me) spells his middle name wrong. Hussein is the correct way to write it.

  10. Well Chuck, as usual I respect and admire your analysis and what not over this speech and issue. However, I found that the best part of his speech was when he said something (and I’m not quoting, but pretty close) to along the lines of “It shouldn’t be if Government is too big or too small, but if it’s working”, or something. If a completely free market where everyone and anyone could run wild while still keeping most the people..(or even a very small percentage of the people) happy is nearly impossible at this point. How well did it work out with Monopolies? I think where the real irony comes in is at two places:
    1) I think the most important thing above a free market and free economy and all that good stuff is free choice. The majority of people voted or Barack Obama, that is what the majority of this nation wanted… not McCain, not Ron Paul, but Obama. So are you going to argue with people’s opinions and say that for them to be more happy and free, they must go against what they feel in their own hearts is correct? I do not think the Democratic way is correct, nor the Republican way. The Libertarian view (theoretically, although i haven’t seen it in play) seems to be the best fit for government, however most people do not believe this would work in reality. Whether it theoretically would work or not is a toss up, but I don’t think we can logically question and insult people who exercised the most important right in the history of the world, because somehow we know more about what they want and need than they do.

    and

    2) well…. actually I forgot number 2 (or never really had number 2)

    That is all

    Bye Bye

  11. Alex wants us to look at the Monopolies; I interpret that he means the Goodyears, Rasmussens, and the like. I’d love to. They are, as you say, a decent example of what we are talking about. And they get a really bad rap from most people these days. I’d like to present a different view of them. Such families accomplished great good for the country and their workers. Benefits packages were decent. These entrepreneurs funded great large-scale projects like railroads, buildings, and iron foundries. With the wealth they acquired, they established funds to give to the communities. I got about 15.6 million results when I searched Google for Rasmussen. Why? Because they support, with the wealth from those projects long ago, thousands of local to national causes that benefit the people.
    (Disclaimer – I am no expert in history. I freely admit that. But I do have a limited understanding of this period.)

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