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#1 Posted by Mushir (2389 posts) -

I'm sure this is old news for the people living in the US, but I just heard about this. If you don't know what the title is referring to then you should watch this video:

Now, apparently a lot of people in the US are not pleased with what Obama said here and it's become quite a big deal. I don't get that. Do people really believe that they got successful just because of their own hard work? I'm totally with Obama here when he says that people who earn more should pay more taxes. It's how the system is here in Norway and this country's economy is doing remarkably well compared to the USA. From the videos I've seen it on YouTube, it seems like people are worried that small businesses will not be able to survive because of the high taxes. But the taxes won't affect them that much since they are small businesses. Meanwhile people who have a lot of money should also give more money to the society cause they are economically capable of doing so. The taxes won't be that high that it will turn the rich to poor. That is just ridiculous thinking.

I'm no Obama fanboy who agrees with everything he says, but I agree with what he says in that video. And I can not believe people who are saying that he is trying to ruin the American dream. What do you guys think? Agree? Disagree? I'd love to hear everyones thoughts.

#2 Posted by Dan_CiTi (3171 posts) -

Title should be "If You Have Wealth, You Didn't Earn It At All".

#3 Edited by Draxyle (1788 posts) -

One of the better things he's said during his term. Not that it doesn't take individual strength of will and ambition to create a business; but it certainly doesn't just happen entirely in a vacuum. Your parents alone have a tremendous effect on how far you can go in the system (inheritance, where you were born, how you were raised, etc).

Even if by some stretch of physics you're able to create a business entirely on your own money and power; it's the people who work under you that also deserve their fair share of credit for your success. You also owe success to the people who buy your products; since you certainly didn't make a business without them involved in the process.

There's absolutely nothing wrong with his statement unless you take it entirely out of context and run crazy hyperbolic theories on it, which of course everyone is going to do.

#4 Posted by Dagbiker (6939 posts) -

I agree with him, People are built up by the people they have around them. Some people are born into wealth. Some people work harder then most men do their whole lives and never own much.

#5 Posted by Animasta (14648 posts) -

Isn't the norwegian economy doing well because it's got hella oil?

#6 Posted by mutha3 (4985 posts) -

I can't believe he actually said that.
 
I mean he's totally right, but I can't see it going over well.

#7 Posted by Rohok (553 posts) -

He's right.

#8 Posted by Morningstar (2137 posts) -

@Animasta said:

Isn't the norwegian economy doing well because it's got hella oil?

That's a big reason we are doing well, yes.

#9 Posted by gamefreak9 (2338 posts) -

Um taxation is done on profit so it doesn't really matter how big you are... it doesn't make any business model obsolete. Though since you have less retained earnings, high taxes could potentially stifle your growth, but chances are your not growing fast enough to need all of those retained earnings. Also Norway is only rich because of their oil, so don't even think about comparing its success to other countries, its successful in the way it redistributes its oil winnings when you compare it to like other oil heavens, but claiming that high taxes help make it more successful is kind of misguided, once your oil runs out Norway will be begging to join the EU.

#10 Posted by Mushir (2389 posts) -

@Animasta said:

Isn't the norwegian economy doing well because it's got hella oil?

Yea well, that too. Well actually, mostly because of that. And fish.

#11 Posted by Dagbiker (6939 posts) -

Dont you guys have mad inflation also?

#12 Posted by Humanity (8800 posts) -

I understand the message but his mouth ran away from him a little. Some successful people did in fact build their own business. They got help along the way, sure, but saying "that successful business you got, you didn't build that" is a little detrimental to the hard work they put into it. Doesn't matter one way or another as everything he says now is just election talk that is meant to rile people up and get behind him.

Online
#13 Posted by JasonR86 (9604 posts) -

The problem was that there was absolutely no reason to say it. The downside of saying it is that people who honestly do believe that they are purely self-made and reached their position on there own will feel disrespected and devalued. The upside is...is...um...nothing? No matter how true he might be these statements do little good and disrespect citizens (who may or may not be delusional but that isn't really the point). I mean what did he think would happen? Those people he is referring to will all the sudden change how they view themselves? And to what end? Who cares if people think they are purely self-made? I guess I just don't see the motivation for saying what he said.

#14 Posted by Chemin (632 posts) -

Obama is right. Obviously.

#15 Posted by MariachiMacabre (7047 posts) -

He's right and it's a good way of pointing out a big use of government.

#16 Posted by DonutFever (3549 posts) -
#17 Posted by Franstone (1091 posts) -

He's absolutely right, but people are too full of themselves to admit it.

At some point I'd say 99.99% of the people he's talking about got some sort of help along the way.

Either being born into something, help from family, friends, social circles/networking, the people that work with/for you or even a loan for school or to start said business.

I say it's hilarious that one could think they are so great that they got where they were with help from absolutely no one.

#18 Posted by Jimbo (9772 posts) -

In context, the 'that' in the title is referring to roads and bridges. Which is true. I assume his point is that rich people should pay more tax because the system those taxes pay for is partly responsible for that wealth being generated in the first place. Which is also true. Rich people do benefit from the structures and protections of society more than poor people do.

#19 Posted by ShadowConqueror (3050 posts) -

Make more, pay more. Period.

#20 Posted by SathingtonWaltz (2053 posts) -

I think he worded what he was trying to say really, really badly. I agree somewhat, but I also feel that he is devaluing the hard work of individuals. Yes it's impossible to go from being born in the wilds to being a successful business tycoon with no help from anyone anywhere, but to outright state that "You didn't build that" is taking the point too far.

#21 Posted by phrali (646 posts) -

this is why politicians are liars. People dont want to hear the truth.

#22 Posted by DonutFever (3549 posts) -
@SathingtonWaltz said:

I think he worded what he was trying to say really, really badly. I agree somewhat, but I also feel that he is devaluing the hard work of individuals. Yes it's impossible to go from being born in the wilds to being a successful business tycoon with no help from anyone anywhere, but to outright state that "You didn't build that" is taking the point too far.

He's talking about the roads and bridges.
#23 Posted by BraveToaster (12590 posts) -

He's right. The only way businesses will continue to grow and prosper is if taxes cover the upkeep charges of maintaining roads, and funding education.

#24 Posted by Loafsmooch (299 posts) -

I don't understand how some people think..

Taxes should always be a % of your income. It's fair. Easy as pie.

#25 Posted by SathingtonWaltz (2053 posts) -

@DonutFever said:

@SathingtonWaltz said:

I think he worded what he was trying to say really, really badly. I agree somewhat, but I also feel that he is devaluing the hard work of individuals. Yes it's impossible to go from being born in the wilds to being a successful business tycoon with no help from anyone anywhere, but to outright state that "You didn't build that" is taking the point too far.

He's talking about the roads and bridges.

Oh okay I see. Had to watch the clip again, it honestly wasn't 100% clear that he was referring to infrastructure. Sucks to be him, this is a no-context gold mine for his opponents.

#26 Edited by htr10 (330 posts) -

He made a very salient point, but as per an alarming trend for him, he decided to take a very arrogant approach to how he delivered the message. It also doesn't help that he has people yelling out from the crowd that he's right. He's the president, not a TV evangelist.

#27 Posted by erichr (58 posts) -

@Animasta said:

Isn't the norwegian economy doing well because it's got hella oil?

Same with the Canadian economy. Yay for having hella oil!

#28 Posted by DonutFever (3549 posts) -
@SathingtonWaltz said:

@DonutFever said:

@SathingtonWaltz said:

I think he worded what he was trying to say really, really badly. I agree somewhat, but I also feel that he is devaluing the hard work of individuals. Yes it's impossible to go from being born in the wilds to being a successful business tycoon with no help from anyone anywhere, but to outright state that "You didn't build that" is taking the point too far.

He's talking about the roads and bridges.

Oh okay I see. Had to watch the clip again, it honestly wasn't 100% clear that he was referring to infrastructure. Sucks to be him, this is a no-context gold mine for his opponents.

Yeah, he worded poorly and people are already taking advantage of that. Which is a shame, because he makes a great point.  
#29 Posted by FiestaUnicorn (1577 posts) -

The fact that people are bothered that he said when people work together really shows that they have no idea why they hate him. The right wing screams he's a socialist while using their ideas and practically begging them to work with him. They in turn want to vote for someone who got rich outsourcing jobs and shutting down American factories and destroying the pension funds of people who had dreamed of retiring.

#30 Posted by Animasta (14648 posts) -

@Loafsmooch said:

I don't understand how some people think..

Taxes should always be a % of your income. It's fair. Easy as pie.

but but rich people deserve to have more money because

#31 Posted by Apathylad (3066 posts) -

Yeah, this was poorly worded. The 'road and bridges' point didn't come across as well as it needed to.

#32 Posted by TheHumanDove (2523 posts) -

Obama hates freedom!

#33 Posted by Tylea002 (2295 posts) -

No man is an Island. For a dude who's done some excellent speeches, this was a tad poorly worded and people will run off the deep end with it, but seriously he's right in his basic concept. No one's done anything just by themselves. We all need to help each other.

#34 Posted by deathstriker666 (1337 posts) -

Maybe "your laborers deserve better than to have their jobs shipped abroad" would of been better to use? There are so many ways he could of said it better without pissing off egotistical small business men in the process.

#35 Posted by rachelepithet (1345 posts) -

The success of nearly all corporations today comes from work practices that were banned in America for being downright amoral, in the vein of murder and pedophilia (little kids working 20 hour shifts with no healthcare or safety regulations, potentially executed by their bosses.... not the white investors of the sweat shop, but the crooked local drug dealer types operating it... for not performing well.)

I mean, if raping a kid is illegal even if you tricked the kid into agreeing to it with candy, "enticing" a kid to work slave-like labor to death for ten cents a day should be similarly criminal. Republicans/libertarians/commies/fascists et al. get off lucky that all we come after them for is taxes and not lto arrest them for what amounts to a really complex way of ordering a hitman to do your bidding... or the financial equivalent of visiting Thailand for yum yum.

#36 Posted by PrivateIronTFU (3874 posts) -

@TheHumanDove said:

Obama hates freedom!

I think that's been the official Republican slogan for the last 4 years.

#37 Posted by Kidavenger (3504 posts) -

That video is so fucking idiotic; small business owners take on huge amounts of risk, any business owner for that matter, you have to be compensated for taking that risk otherwise no one would do it.

The only thing that happens when you increase business taxes is the price of goods goes up and the citizens end up getting screwed anyway.

Online
#38 Posted by raphaa00 (133 posts) -

@Mushir said:

Meanwhile people who have a lot of money should also give more money to the society cause they are economically capable of doing so. The taxes won't be that high that it will turn the rich to poor. That is just ridiculous thinking.

They usually do, creating business and risking most of what they earned through the market.

Now, what keynesian governments, like Obama's and just any other country out there (with a few exceptions), are doing is using force and coercion through the state machine to literally steal from the whole society (and those who suffer more are always the poor and the middle-class) and implement welfare distribution, that actually never distribute wealth and in most of the cases end up ruining the whole economy.

Higher taxes will not turn rich into poor from day to night, but will certainly ruin their capacity of investment and wealth creating, something, againg, that only the market does. Higher taxes will make the poor even poorer, since it end up ruining completely their investment capacity, that is already small.

People who have business build that alone (with the help of their employees, investors, consumers, etc, if it is the case), and even more, with the government against them. The state is always full of good intentions, not knowing that it's paving the way to ruin.

#39 Posted by Xerxes8933A (227 posts) -

He never said you didn't build your own business. He said you didn't build those roads and bridges that lead to your bridges. He should have known better then to word it that way though, too easy to for the republicans to take it out of context in their adverts.

#40 Posted by raphaa00 (133 posts) -

@Animasta said:

Isn't the norwegian economy doing well because it's got hella oil?

Norway, despite of the welfare state, have a relatively free economy: http://www.heritage.org/index/ranking

#41 Posted by Demoskinos (14559 posts) -

I don't buy into this notion some people are saying here that either your born into it or not. In some cases yes the rich are born into the rich but that buisness had to start somewhere. A great example of this is Dave Thomas the founder of Wendy's who was of course an orphan and he built from nothing one of the largest fast food chains in the world. Another great example is Sam Walton who of course founded Wal-mart the biggest retail chain in the world. Before he started up Wal-mart he worked at a JC Penny as a grunt employee. Granted, these are rare examples but none-the-less you CAN build your self a empire out of nothing. Hell even a good recent example is Rovio they struck gold with Angry Birds and now you see Angry Birds licensed everything now days. They built a empire out of a single iPhone game.

A businesses success is measured in the end by how much money they make and yes... that takes people deciding to buy things from that business but good businessmen GIVE you that reason to shop there. Things like that is exactly how Valve has completely dominated the PC gaming space now. When you do business with steam you feel good about it. Even though your buying games that for all intents are locked with DRM that ends up being a non-issue for most people because you get treated so well that you feel like coming back.

#42 Posted by SpartanHoplite (384 posts) -

gotta agree there

#43 Posted by SathingtonWaltz (2053 posts) -

@Kidavenger said:

That video is so fucking idiotic; small business owners take on huge amounts of risk, any business owner for that matter, you have to be compensated for taking that risk otherwise no one would do it.

The only thing that happens when you increase business taxes is the price of goods goes up and the citizens end up getting screwed anyway.

Like I said I think he took what he was trying to say to far, albeit unintentionally. I'm not going to vote for him but I'm not completely blind to what he was trying to say.

#44 Posted by SathingtonWaltz (2053 posts) -

@Demoskinos: I think what he means is that at some point somebody used something provided by the government to aid them (roads, public services, etc).

#45 Posted by DonutFever (3549 posts) -
@Demoskinos said:

Hell even a good recent example is Rovio they struck gold with Angry Birds and now you see Angry Birds licensed everything now days. They built a empire out of a single iPhone game.

They used a different companies physics engine. Physics are key to that game. They didn't do it alone. 
 
And, again, he's not saying business owners didn't build their businesses. He's saying they didn't build the roads and the bridges. He's saying yes, for the economy to run you need hardworking people to create businesses, but you also need a community of people working together, and the government for said businesses to thrive. Like when he talks about the government's research making the internet, and then businesses using that. You need entrepreneurs, but you also need to have people working together for a nation to thrive.
#46 Posted by Jams (2959 posts) -

@DonutFever said:

@Demoskinos said:

Hell even a good recent example is Rovio they struck gold with Angry Birds and now you see Angry Birds licensed everything now days. They built a empire out of a single iPhone game.

They used a different companies physics engine. Physics are key to that game. They didn't do it alone. And, again, he's not saying business owners didn't build their businesses. He's saying they didn't build the roads and the bridges. He's saying yes, for the economy to run you need hardworking people to create businesses, but you also need a community of people working together, and the government for said businesses to thrive. Like when he talks about the government's research making the internet, and then businesses using that. You need entrepreneurs, but you also need to have people working together for a nation to thrive.

The roads and bridges were built because of the business owners paying taxes. If anything, it's a symbiotic relationship that seems to teeter on the edge of destruction.

#47 Posted by TaliciaDragonsong (8698 posts) -
@DonutFever said:
Heard about this.  
 
God I hate FOX.
I clicked it away at the middle, the way they (meaning both Fox and the people who create the campaigns for the candidates) ripped the speech out of context just sickens me to my stomach.
The fact that people believe it, the fact that people don't go looking up the full speech and actually get mad over it.
 
Those are the people I think should have no rights at all and be put to hard work, if you can't think for yourself go build a bridge for someone else who can.
#48 Posted by Seppli (10251 posts) -

For the most parts, he is speaking truth. Though it is a jungle out there, and getting ahead of the pack is no easy feat. Animals...

#49 Posted by GreggD (4477 posts) -

I'd believe that if I didn't know one person who built their business from the ground up, virtually on their own to be a great success.

#50 Edited by Geno (6477 posts) -

Politician says something even remotely liberal in the United States and the ultraconservatives jump on it. It's pretty funny, since in most modern Western countries what he said is not only acceptable but pretty much common sense and universally agreed upon. So much infrastructure is needed for a business to succeed, do you see Microsofts and Googles popping up in remote villages with no roads, education or clean drinking water? No.  
 
It's another Fox News contrived controversy and nothing more.