Desperate Obama campaign bets on the end of capitalism

Diane Keaton had enough of a hit with the 1987 romantic comedy “Baby Boom” to generate a short-lived TV spinoff. A high-powered New York management consultant, Keaton’s character inherits a legacy from a distant British cousin — but it’s not money, it’s a baby girl.

After some amusing attempts to fit a baby into her chic yuppie lifestyle — arriving at a business luncheon, she attempts at one point to check the infant at the coat-check stand — Keaton buys a ramshackle Vermont farmhouse, sight unseen, and retires to the country.

Vermont is a disaster. The only thing the run-down property has going for it are some apple trees. So Keaton’s character invents some cute packaging for the “Country Baby” brand applesauce she cooks up to feed her niece, starts selling it to tourists from a roadside stand, and soon has wholesale orders pouring in. Her old bosses offer to buy her out for millions. Instead, she opts to keep the house, the baby, the business, and the hunky veterinarian next door (Sam Shepard.)

It’s corny, but the movie succeeded by reviving and reinforcing a familiar Yankee stereotype: Give the American entrepreneur a pile of lemons, and darn it, she just can’t help herself — through hard work and creativity, she’ll soon turn herself into a lemonade millionaire.

Is that still the American dream? Are a majority of Americans, whatever their race or ethnicity, still proud of the entrepreneurship of their parents and grandparents? Do they still dream of being their own boss, of working hard to create a successful small business of their own?

Without much of a record of economic recovery to run on — and with no free-market background of his own — President Barack Obama is taking a startling gamble, this summer. He’s apparently gambling that the answer is “No,” that the majority of Americans now share no such entrepreneurial dreams, that they instead seek a stifling European-style redistributive welfare state to take care of them “from cradle to grave,” whether they choose to work hard or not.

The Obama re-election campaign now gambles that a functional electoral majority will cheer the president’s promises to loot the rich, to “spread the wealth around,” to punish the capitalists (including his Republican challenger) whom he denigrates as merely lucky at best, but more probably greedy thieves out to “ship jobs offshore,” destroying lives and communities just to make a buck.

“If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help,” Mr. Obama told cheering supporters in Roanoke, Virginia Monday. “There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”

As National Review columnist Rich Lowry pointed out the next day, this is like saying that since Steve Jobs couldn’t have gotten to work without using streets paved with taxpayer money, “The San Jose, Calif., DMV practically built Apple.”

If this is Mr. Obama’s narrative, maybe we really should get a look at those college admission applications, transcripts, medical records, his senior thesis and other academic papers. Was he more than merely an Affirmative Action Baby, a self-declared high-school “stoner” promoted from hand to hand because he appeared to be bright, articulate, and promisingly Marxist? Could it be, as he says in the bizarre rant above, that “Somebody else made that happen”? Will the college papers turn out to be in someone else’s handwriting, just as he seems to be using someone else’s Social Security number — one which according to court testimony in the recent Georgia challenge to his qualification for the ballot will not pass E-Verify, one beginning “042” to indicate an origin in Connecticut, a state in which Mr. Obama has never lived? (The non sequitur response of Mr. Obama’s attorney in the Georgia case? “There is no requirement to participate in the Social Security system.”)

Mr. Obama keeps repeating that we don’t know whether successful businessman Mitt Romney’s “plan will create jobs.” The statement reveals the problem — helping explain how one centrally planned “stimulus” plan after another has collapsed in a cloud of dust, over the past three-and-a-half years. (“Cash for Clunkers?”)

In fact, no central government “plan” is necessary, desirable, or likely to work. The genius of the American free market is that the only “plan” necessary is to provide a level playing field with courts to punish theft or fraud, reduce government meddling to a minimum, and allow the American entrepreneur to soar.

It’s a common construction to call every presidential election “the most important of the era.” Albeit Mitt Romney is no small-government libertarian — while Libertarian Gary Johnson is — at least this time the choice between the two major contenders is pretty clear. Do we continue leading the world in freedom, opportunity, and prosperity — or do we line up down at the post office for our identical, rationed subsistence checks, now that it’s Twilight in America?

One Comment to “Desperate Obama campaign bets on the end of capitalism”

  1. Leo Fassbinder Says:

    In your final paragraph, are you advocating a vote for Romney over Johnson?