As I alluded to below, the theme of the Democratic convention was, the American Dream is dying and can be revived only by the grace of government.  

The Dems repeatedly invoked their own stories of achieving the American Dream – growing up without silver spoons in their mouths, of overcoming adversity through hard work and perseverance, and of resulting success. So far, so good.

But then the Dems explained that this success is not possible for the rest of us, who are too stupid, lazy, and helpless to achieve the American Dream on our own.

Joe Biden, for example, brags (correctly, I think) about the lessons his parents taught him about realizing success, and about the path Barack Obama took to get where he is:

Barack Obama and I took very different journeys to this destination, but we share a common story. Mine began in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and then Wilmington, Delaware. With a dad who fell on hard economic times, but who always told me: “Champ, when you get knocked down, get up. Get up.”

My mother’s creed is the American creed: No one is better than you. You are everyone’s equal, and everyone is equal to you.

My parents taught us to live our faith, and treasure our family. We learned the dignity of work, and we were told that anyone can make it if they try.

That was America’s promise. For those of us who grew up in middle-class neighborhoods like Scranton and Wilmington, that was the American dream and we knew it.

And he [Barack Obama] made their lives [South-Side Chicagoans] the work of his life. That’s what you do when you’ve been raised by a single mom, who worked, went to school and raised two kids on her own. That’s how you come to believe, to the very core of your being, that work is more than a paycheck. It’s dignity. It’s respect. It’s about whether you can look your children in the eye and say: we’re going to be ok.

  

Again, so far, so good. But then Biden says the American Dream is dead – not because people aren’t working – but because the government is not working for them:

But today that American dream feels as if it’s slowly slipping away. I don’t need to tell you that. You feel it every single day in your own lives.

I’ve never seen a time when Washington has watched so many people get knocked down without doing anything to help them get back up. Almost every night, I take the train home to Wilmington, sometimes very late. As I look out the window at the homes we pass, I can almost hear what they’re talking about at the kitchen table after they put the kids to bed.

Like millions of Americans, they’re asking questions as profound as they are ordinary. Questions they never thought they would have to ask:

    * Should mom move in with us now that dad is gone?
    * Fifty, sixty, seventy dollars to fill up the car?
    * Winter’s coming. How we gonna pay the heating bills?
    * Another year and no raise?
    * Did you hear the company may be cutting our health care?
    * Now, we owe more on the house than it’s worth. How are we going to send the kids to college?
    * How are we gonna be able to retire?

 

Why shouldn’t people have to ask whether mom will move in now that dad is gone? Since when were families not supposed to take care of each other? Why is it automatically someone else’s – specifically the government’s – problem?

Obviously, there are economic concerns, and people rightly worry about heating bills and stagnant wages. But instead of seeing this as an opportunity to demonstrate just how tough we Americans are, the Democrats whine – on our behalf – that the government is not taking care of everyone. Embarrassing.

Barack Obama was a little better, actually admitting that personal responsibility is something that government cannot replace. But it was about the only thing Obama thought the government couldn’t do.

Four years ago, I stood before you and told you my story – of the brief union between a young man from Kenya and a young woman from Kansas who weren’t well-off or well-known, but shared a belief that in America, their son could achieve whatever he put his mind to.

It is that promise that has always set this country apart – that through hard work and sacrifice, each of us can pursue our individual dreams but still come together as one American family, to ensure that the next generation can pursue their dreams as well.

 

Again, though, the ultimate cause of just about every problem was the failure of government to do something. Obama listed problems Americans face: unemployment, foreclosures, “cars you can’t afford to drive, credit card bills you can’t afford to pay, and tuition that’s beyond your reach[]” and put most of the blame for these problems…on the government! (“These challenges are not all of government’s making.”) Really? The government made homebuyers to agree to mortgages they couldn’t afford and to put more and more charges onto their credit cards?

How should we proud, hard-working Americans respond?

Apparently, by waiting for a new administration so that government can take care of us: “the failure to respond is a direct result of a broken politics in Washington and the failed policies of George W. Bush.”

Obama did concede that “Ours is a promise that says that government cannot solve all our problems, but what it should do is that is that which we cannot do for ourselves.” Who could disagree? The problem is that Obama then lists a number of things that he thinks we cannot do for ourselves and that are within the authority, and expertise, of the federal government: “provide every child a decent education; keep our water clean and our toys safe; invest in new schools and new roads and new science and technology.”

Thus, the ultimate problem with the liberal vision is that in entails the government’s being involved in every aspect of our lives – supposedly for our own good. Biden’s father’s advice to get up when you’re knocked down applies only to the great liberal leaders. It does not apply to the rest of us, on whose behalf Obama and Biden will work to ensure that we never, ever get knocked down.

This is a vision that runs counter to the long, proud history of can-do Americanism and is an insult to hard-working Americans, who should be largely left alone to succeed (or, sometimes, fail) on our own.

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Palin v. Obama

August 30, 2008

Palin: “I’m looking at him [her infant son who has Down Syndrome] right now, and I see perfection. Yeah, he has an extra chromosome. I keep thinking, in our world, what is normal and what is perfect?”

Obama: “As I understand it, this [Born-Infants-Alive Act] puts the burden on the attending physician who has determined, since they were performing the procedure, that, in fact, this is a nonviable fetus; that if that fetus, or child – however way you want to describe it – is now outside the mother’s womb and the doctor continues to thing that it’s nonviable and there’s, let’s say, movement or some indication that, in fact, they’re not just coming out limp and dead, that, in fact, they would then have to call in a second physician to monitor and check off and make sure that this is not a live child that could be saved. …  I suspect and my impression is, is that the Medical Society suspects as well that doctors feel that they would be under that obligation, that they would already be making these determinations and that, essentially adding a – an additional doctor who then has to be called in an emergency situation to come in and make these assessments is really designed simply to burden the original decision of the woman and the physician to induce labor and perform an abortion.”

 

“I yield my time to Senator Biden.”

Uh oh.

August 27, 2008

Another radical tied to Obama?

 

 

from George Weigel.

 

 

 

 

UPDATE: more from Cardinal Egan.

 

Michelle Obama gave her widely anticipated lecture – I mean speech – last night at the Democratic Coronation Ceremony.

Mrs. Obama said, “You see instead of going to Wall Street, Barack had gone to work in neighborhoods devastated when steel plants shut down, and jobs dried up. And he’d been invited back to speak to people from those neighborhoods about how to rebuild their community.”

In all seriousness, how the hell would Obama know? Good grief.

And speaking of not going to Wall Street, Mrs. Obama said later, “And in my own life, in my own small way, I’ve tried to give back to this country that has given me so much. That’s why I left a job at a law firm for a career in public service, working to empower young people to volunteer in their communities. Because I believe that each of us — no matter what our age or background or walk of life — each of us has something to contribute to the life of this nation.”

How do they continue to get away with this nonsense about foregoing and leaving these high-paying jobs? They made over $4 million last year. If that’s what public service pays, where do I sign up?

Finally, Mrs. Obama spoke movingly of her parents, who sacrificed so that she and her brother would have advantages that they didn’t. She spoke similarly of Barack’s upbringing – his being raised “by a single mother who struggled to pay the bills” – and that anything is possible in this great country.

But after praising the opportunity America offers to those who work hard, Mrs. Obama – and all Democrats – encourages us to vote for Barack because…he will lead a government that takes care of us all.

How inspiring.

McCain Democrats

August 26, 2008

There’s been lots of talk that Biden will help Obama attract blue-collar Catholic voters. But these blue-collar Catholics are the classic Reagan Democrats, middle-of-the-road folks who historically voted Democrat but who have been pushed out of the party by its ridiculous stance on issues like abortion. According to the Democrats’ 2008 Platform, “The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to choose a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay, and we oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right.”

 

Biden’s selection, it seems to me, simply highlights the Democratic Party’s extremist position on this issue. Denver’s Archbishop Charles Chaput said that Biden should avoid taking Communionbecause of his stance on abortion. And Biden is not alone. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was corrected by Washington Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl on the Church’s teaching concerning when life begins.

McCain needs to go after these voters.