President Obama is not one to talk about American exceptionalism too often. At least from the conservative point of view. It is probably one of the things that we detest most. We all remember the line from First Lady Michelle Obama about being really proud of her country for the first time. There are many that took real exception and the memory of that won't dim anytime soon. The president himself once talked about how other countries that they were exceptional too. While I am sure that there are plenty of people in the world that have no desire to live in the U.S. but we have people that will risk life and limb for the chance to come live here to reach their version of the "American Dream".
It's whether we sustain the leadership that has made America not just a place on a map, but a light to the worldThis speech seemed almost Reaganesque. Of course it didn't take long to go off the rails. He then decided to go into the "investments" that we need to make. I don't think anyone can deny that investments is just code for more spending. He himself talked about how education starts at home and much depends on the parents paying attention to the homework and being involved. The government cannot do that for a child. One needs to look no further than Washington DC to see that. The District spends close to $30,000 per student and has some of the worst performing public schools in the country. While their has been some improvement over the past few years, not nearly enough for the kids who are stuck in that system. His solution was yet again to throw more money at the problem, and to make it worse he wants it done with a federal program. The system will not change until they are improved at the local level. A part of that will have to be school choice. The democrats constantly talk about fairness, there is nothing fair about forcing a child to stay in an under-performing school that is in some cases more expensive than giving that family a voucher for a better private or charter school. The democrats have been yapping about fixing the public school systems for forty years, and so far all we have seen is our test scores and graduation rates decrease. Isn't a sign of insanity to do the same thing and expect a different result?
Remember - for all the hits we've taken these last few years, for all the naysayers predicting our decline, America still has the largest, most prosperous economy in the world. No workers are more productive than ours. No country has more successful companies, or grants more patents to inventors and entrepreneurs. We are home to the world's best colleges and universities, where more students come to study than any other place on Earth. What's more, we are the first nation to be founded for the sake of an idea - the idea that each of us deserves the chance to shape our own destiny. That is why centuries of pioneers and immigrants have risked everything to come here. It's why our students don't just memorize equations, but answer questions like "What do you think of that idea? What would you change about the world? What do you want to be when you grow up?" The future is ours to win.
The problem is that we are in danger of losing the American Dream. The spending and the debt is out of control. We cannot stay on this path as it is unsustainable. The American people have woken up to that fact. Most of us have come to terms with the fact that the gravy train is over. We want to deal with the spending and the debt. We understand that cuts are necessary. The vast majority of the people in this country will make the hard choices and will make the necessary sacrifices to give our children a chance to reach their goals and their chance to pursue happiness. We cannot live in denial anymore. We borrow 40% of everything that we are spending.
One of the things that I find so frustrating about the democrats is that they could get the American people to go along with some of their of pet projects if they didn't push so hard. I would venture to say that they could get a deal on a jobs program for hardworking illegals if they really secured the borders. Many people in this country would pay higher taxes to get the debt down if the taxes actually went to pay down the debt instead of being spent on things we don't, such as grants that do research on foreign sex workers. Stop the stupid spending and you will find that the American people will go along in order make things better for our children and grandchildren.
I do hope that President Obama will spend more time talking about the exceptionalism of this country. While I don't think he has an inner Reagan to channel, but he can read a few more biographies. Maybe then he will actually make the hard choices and realize that we can solve these problems if they just stop pushing so hard to change this country into France. We like the shining city on the hill, we believe in the shining city on the hill. Come join us there President Obama, you may just find it isn't so bad.