Obama’s vision looks like a bloody altar strewn with the carcasses of sheep

Speaking at the University of Maryland in July 2011 President Obama stated:

“So this idea of balance, this idea of shared sacrifice, of a deficit plan that includes tough spending cuts but also includes tax reform that raises more revenue — this isn’t just my position.  This isn’t just the Democratic position.  This isn’t some wild-eyed socialist position.”

This was greeted with laughter, though it was not — as it deserved —derisive laughter.

President at Maryland townhall. (White House photo)

A couple of days earlier at the White House, while talking about the debt ceiling debate, he said:

“The problem we have now is we’re in the 11th hour and we don’t have a lot more time left. …  we’ve got to have some additional revenue so that we have an approach in which there is shared sacrifice and everybody is giving up something.”

In a weekly radio address in the same month, he said:

“If we’re going to ask seniors, or students, or middle-class Americans to sacrifice, then we have to ask corporations and the wealthiest Americans to share in that sacrifice.  We have to ask everyone to play their part.  Because we are all part of the same country.  We are all in this together.”

In April of 2011 at a community college in Virginia, he said:

“We want you to be able to go out there and start a business and create jobs and put other people to work. That’s the American way. But we are going to have to ask everybody to sacrifice. And if we’re asking community colleges to sacrifice, if we’re asking people who are going to see potentially fewer services in their neighborhoods to make a little sacrifice, then we can ask millionaires and billionaires to make a little sacrifice.”

You get the picture. It looks like a bloody altar strewn with the carcasses of sheep.

I was reminded of the president’s repeated harping on this theme while rereading “Atlas Shrugged,” when I got to John Galt’s radio speech.

Here are a couple of excerpts:

“For twelve years, you have been asking: Who is John Galt? This is John Galt speaking. I am the man who loves his life. I am the man who does not sacrifice his love or his values. …

“You have cried that man’s sins are destroying the world and you have cursed human nature for its unwillingness to practice the virtues you demanded. Since virtue, to you, consists of sacrifice, you have demanded more sacrifices at every successive disaster.

Ayn Rand in 1947

“In the name of a return to morality, you have sacrificed all those evils, which you held as the cause of your plight. You have sacrificed justice to mercy. You have sacrificed independence to unity. You have sacrificed reason to faith. You have sacrificed wealth to need. You have sacrificed self-esteem to self-denial. You have sacrificed happiness to duty. …

“While you were dragging to your sacrificial altars the men of justice, of independence, of reason, of wealth, of self-esteem — I beat you to it, I reached them first. I told them the nature of the game you were playing and the nature of that moral code of yours, which they had been too innocently generous to grasp. I showed them the way to live by another morality-mine. It is mine that they chose to follow. …

“For centuries, the battle of morality was fought between those who claimed that your life belongs to God and those who claimed that it belongs to your neighbors — between those who preached that the good is self-sacrifice for the sake of ghosts in heaven and those who preached that the good is self-sacrifice for the sake of incompetents on earth. And no one came to say that your life belongs to you and that the good is to live it. …

“In the name of the best within you, do not sacrifice this world to those who are its worst. In the name of the values that keep you alive, do not let your vision of man be distorted by the ugly, the cowardly, the mindless …”

OK, the Galt speech is mind-numbingly boring, excessively long, self-absorbed and redundant — rather like an Obama speech. But at least it leads in the opposite direction.

22 comments on “Obama’s vision looks like a bloody altar strewn with the carcasses of sheep

  1. Athos says:

    It was a long boring speech. And I’m still one of those that trust those “ghosts in heaven”.

    Trust, but verify (to quote the Man)

  2. Rincon says:

    The idea of sacrificing for your country is old school. There was a time when we were forced to risk our very lives for the sake of our country in the military draft. Even if we were lucky enough to come out alive, our government forcibly took years of our lives, even in times of peace. The idea of giving up our 3rd TV set or the leather seats in our cars seems to be less demanding by comparison, Although the demands of Obama seem Draconian to you, they pale in comparison to those of Lincoln, Wilson, FDR, Truman, or Kennedy.

    As a matter of fact, Obama is much more, reasonable than these other Presidents. If my family gets deep into debt, it is only reasonable to ask all members to sacrifice a few luxuries to help overcome it, but I would never ask my family to risk their lives

  3. So, this country has gone from a can-do attitude and striving for all to prosper to a nation where everyone has to sacrifice and get by with less. That’s sad.

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  4. brucefeher says:

    Not everyone is going to get by with less Tom. Obama ain’t taking no pay cut!

  5. I’d be happy to have just the value of the jet fuel he and Michelle burn.

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  6. brucefeher says:

    I wonder how much it cost the taxpayer so Michelle could give away an Academy Award?

  7. And did they pay those uniformed folks in the backdrop overtime?

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  8. nyp10025 says:

    This so reminds me of something I read in a Paul Krugman column last year:

    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”

  9. I like that, Petey. Saw it coming a mile away, but liked it.

    It certainly makes one unable to deal with this real world.

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  10. nyp10025 says:

    I have been patiently waiting for the right time to use that quote. Thank you for providing me with the opportunity.

  11. Rincon says:

    Money is power. Your second link demonstrates that, Steve..

  12. Steve says:

    Also shows conservatives are finally noticing where they REALLY need to fight back.

  13. Rincon says:

    Why not? They’ve got all the money.

  14. Steve says:

    Don’t make me go the Soros route.

  15. Steve says:

    How about Al Gore?

  16. Steve says:

    Warren Buffet?

  17. Since Ayn Rand is being discussed here, and having gone through my “Ayn Rand Phase” twenty years ago, if any of you have actually read more than just “Shrugged” or “Fountainhead”, I’d like to ask you some questions:

    1. In her “governmental power” philosophy, how do her views of the legitimate size or power of government differ from our Founders or Frederic Bastiat?

    2. Does her view of interpersonal relationships affect her political views?

    3. Do her atheistic views and rejection of altruism preclude her from accepting the Golden Rule?

    I ask these questions, not as any type of “Rand expert” or even devotee, but I found her attempt to supposedly be consistent across all of her philosophical views to be constraining. As someone who agrees and disagrees with her philosophies, I’d like to hear from others that have examined her writings.

  18. Rand is not an originalist.

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  19. Athos says:

    Now THAT’S an understatement!

  20. Journalists don’t do math, Athos.

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