Yeah, That’ll Go Over Well

From The Politico:

[F]rom Obama’s remarks at a San Francisco fundraiser Sunday, and they include an attempt to explain the resentment in small-town Pennsylvania that won’t be appreciated by some of the people whose votes Obama’s seeking:

You go into these small towns in Pennsylvania and, like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them…And they fell through the Clinton Administration, and the Bush Administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not.

And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.

At a fund-raiser in San Francisco, no less. You really can’t make this stuff up.

Not meaning to quote John Mellencougar, but I grew up in a small town, and I’ll tell you something else those folks don’t like, senator. They don’t like being told that they’re rubes by a city slicker, they don’t like being told that they’re racists because they think unlimited illegal immigration might not be the greatest idea, and they really don’t like being condescended to. They particularly won’t like being condescended to by a guy who hasn’t accomplished much more than graduating from law school and winning a few elections in which he effectively ran unopposed.

If there are any functioning adults among the Obamunists, they’re going to have to sit Senator and Mrs. Savior down real soon and tell them to knock this kind of elitist stuff off, or they’ll manage to whittle themselves down to the hard-core Democratic base vote and not too much else.

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27 Responses to “Yeah, That’ll Go Over Well”

  1. Below The Beltway » Blog Archive » Obama: Not Helping Himself In Small Town Pennsylvania Says:

    […] what it is about Obama’s statement that rubbed me the wrong way when I first read it, but Will Collier pretty much captures the essence of my thoughts: Not meaning to quote John Mellencougar, but I grew up in a small town, and I’ll tell you […]

  2. jon Says:

    I don’t hear all that much condescension in the statement itself: he says these people have been hearing “prosperity is just around the corner” for so long they might have heard if from its originator back in 1930 or so. He also says that that same prosperity or lack thereof is explained away or distracted from them with other issues. I have some issues with some of the issues he presents as examples of what distracts these voters, but I do note (with no enthusiasm whatsoever) that he uses this opportunity to engage in anti-conservative boilerplate rather than specific policy suggestions.

    His opponents use anti-liberal boilerplate rather than specific policy suggestions, too.

    Meanwhile, the Industrial North still rusts. Pennsylvania is a key Electoral College battleground, so they can expect pandering remarks like these to affect them until November. They’ll get angry, feel used, get sick of both parties, be used, and have a miserable year. And things still won’t get any better.

    The Rust Belt isn’t going to be saved by tax breaks, investment zones, big government, small government, lower healthcare costs, warmer weather, low-cost labor, immigration crackdowns, unions, no unions, or anything else other than a return to a willingness on the part of the
    American people to spend more money to buy things made in this country by well-paid people.

  3. FreedomSight » Blog Archive » Clinging to Our Guns Says:

    […] Redacted Obama, quoted by WIll Collier at VodkaPundit: You go into these small towns in Pennsylvania and, like a lot of small towns in the […]

  4. Billll Says:

    Anti-trade? Didn’t both Obama and Hillery just come out 4-square against both NAFTA and the Columbia treaty?
    Of course in Hills case, she’s remembering the Columbian dope smugglers who used Mena airport in Arkansas as a base, and no doubt made generous campaign contributions to the Clintons to keep it going, so she owes the FARC narcotrafficantes a favor.

  5. Doug Mataconis Says:

    Will,

    I’m with you on this.

    As I said in the post that I linked yours to, I have family in small town Pennsylvania.

    They’re not gun nuts, or religious fanatics, or xenophobes.

    They’re just decent people who do their thing and don’t need to drive to work looking at the Sears Tower every day.

  6. Barack the Magic Negroid sticks his foot in his mouth in PA « The Christian Nationalist Says:

    […] on this: Hot Air, Below The Beltway, Vodkapundit, American Spectator, Slog, Maggie’s Farm and The News Buckit (via […]

  7. Larry J Says:

    The Rust Belt isn’t going to be saved by tax breaks, investment zones, big government, small government, lower healthcare costs, warmer weather, low-cost labor, immigration crackdowns, unions, no unions, or anything else other than a return to a willingness on the part of the
    American people to spend more money to buy things made in this country by well-paid people.

    What the Rust Belt has to realize is that the not so good old days are over. They have to realize that feather-bedded union jobs paying top dollar for shoddy work is a failed model of how to attract and keep industry. Decades ago, industry began fleeing the Rust Belt because the cost of labor was too high. They moved to states with right to work laws and a general distrust of unions. Lately, some of these same industries kept on moving right out of the country. When businessmen get demonized and taxed half to death, they can and do pick up and take their business elsewhere.

    To any politician who demonizes corporations, I say, “Love me, love my boss.” If you demonize my company out of business and I lose my job, don’t expect me to look to with with glad tidings in my heart. More likely, I’ll be looking for a rope.

  8. jon Says:

    For every union excess, there’s a corporate move (or non-move) of incredible idiocy. Did the car companies see Toyota and Honda as competition? Did those same car companies think a Chevette was as good as a Civic? Are they still building more vehicles that get 16mpg than 20+? Did they make the product shoddy or did they allow shoddy products?

    I could buy a Toyota made in Tennessee, but my Ford was made in Canada. Unions are part of the problem, but to still be placing so much blame on them today is to ignore much of the big picture. Unions may be a good whipping boy still, but they’ve been whipped by management (and foreign management) enough to not make that big a difference now. Plus, the biggest problems US unions and management has is healthcare costs. Why don’t those foreign companies have that problem? Better shove that under the rug and talk about corruption and shoddy workmanship rather than bring up the efficiency of nationalized healthcare in Germany and Japan and S. Korea.

  9. Stephen Green Says:

    You know what, Jon? I’ve had it with that canard. I am sick to death of people wanting to ruin my fucking health care to seek rent for their favored industry.

  10. A Significant Part Of Obama’s Message | Comments from Left Field Says:

    […] McCain is not the right person to bring up elitism), Little Green Footballs, The Democratic Daily, Vodkapundit, Below The Beltway, Redstate, American Spectator, Slog and Maggie’s Farm, protein wisdom and […]

  11. Jay McDonough Says:

    from swimming freestyle:

    “Barack Obama is a remarkably eloquent man and turning into a remarkably capable politician. But if the Senator believes it’s smart to insult voters from a state critical to your success, he’s hit one of the worst false notes yet in his campaign.

    Yeah, I know what his campaign said, and that may have been what he meant. But a sophisticated candidate doesn’t refer to voters in language that can be construed as derogatory or insulting. Obama asserted Pennsylvania voters are bitter and so simple and lacking in maturity and intelligence that they address their frustration by clinging to primitive and reactionary crutches rather than addressing their problems in constructive ways.

    It’s divisive. And not the way to attract the voters you need most.”

    http://swimmingfreestyle.typepad.com

  12. jon Says:

    It may be a canard, but it definitely affects competition. I have my reservations, too, but I really don’t see much truth to the idea that it would “ruin” your healthcare. Would it be expensive? Hell yes. Would it be more expensive than the current system? I’m not certain. Would there be problems? Hell yes. Would there be more problems than there are with the current system? Not so sure.

    I’m not saying healthcare costs are killing the American car industry (or manufacturing in general,) but I do see them as one of the many things nipping at its heels.

  13. Stephen Green Says:

    Honda and Toyota workers in the USA don’t have state health insurance — and yet they produce much more desired cars than their American-owned competitors.

    The difference is management, not government. And Detroit has been mismanaged since (at the very least) 1973.

    So don’t get all lovey-dovey socialist. The only people you’ll help in the end already live in estates in the Detroit suburbs. And, believe me, those bastards have golden parachutes, too.

  14. La Says:

    Electoral College? The DNC wanted to redistrict Denver and use UN monitors with the changes to the electoral college. So, Denver is supposed to be a big dem thing, but they already did big things in Denver.

  15. John fitness trainers Austin Says:

    I just heard Karl Rove say that with these small town comments BHO just lost any chance he had of winning in PA. As one who grew up in small town PA, I think this will not sit well with those “typical small town folks”. It comes off condescending and elitist. I wonder what he says privately.

  16. bgates Says:

    Better shove that under the rug and talk about corruption and shoddy workmanship rather than bring up the efficiency of nationalized healthcare in Germany and Japan and S. Korea.
    If it’s efficiency we’re after, why stop at health care? Nationalize the car companies themselves.

    Between this post and the last one, I’m starting to wonder if Bubba and Barack don’t have a bet going to see who can alienate more people.

  17. James Says:

    I don’t personally live in a small town, but I have a lot of family who do, and I have to say that I find this remark from Obama highly condescending. I don’t understand how it can be rationalized. Frankly, it seems like exactly the kind of thing a “limousine liberal” would say.

    No, Barack, people in rural areas did not start going to church because they lost their jobs. They’ve always been going to church – because their faith is an important part of their lives. They didn’t buy guns because they got laid off – they own them because most are interested in outdoor activities, such as hunting. (Are people in rural areas not allowed to entertain themselves? Is that a privilege reserved for the urban elite?) And no, it’s not just small-town folk who feel that our immigration policies are too lenient – every poll shows that large majorities of the American public (like 70%) wants to see more restrictions.

    The only conclusion I can draw from this speech is that it was Obama, a lifelong urban dweller, trying his best to understand people whose way of life is completely different from his. Not many rural voters are likely to support him, not out of prejudice but because he just can’t relate to them at all. It’s like he’s lived on another planet.

  18. joe Says:

    “And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”

    Sorta sounds like he’s talking about a certain preacher from Chicago who’s been in the news lately.

    @jon
    I was with you until you blamed our woes on the lack of socialized medicine.

  19. DaMav Says:

    Sorta sounds like he’s talking about a certain preacher from Chicago who’s been in the news lately.

    Or maybe the charming Mrs Obama, who seems to have quite a bitterness problem herself.

  20. Neo Says:

    When I posted about this yesterday, I had found the part ..

    anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.

    .. as just breathe taking in regard to the fact that just the day before Nancy Pelosi had taken the Columbian Free Trade agreement out of contention for an up or down vote.

    But why would Nancy Pelosi be bitter ?

    But alas, here was the leading contender for the Democratic nomination for POTUS basically saying that this was a cynical act, probably a cynical political act which was not in the interest of the nation, but nonetheless standard Democratic fare of the day.

    I’ve noticed today, that many progressive sites seem to leave off the “anti-trade sentiment” portion of the quote, including Reuters.

    Are all Democratic candidates so cynical of the voters that they fell free to distort their own positions publicly while secretly knowing that they would not support it themselves ?

    I will watch and wait for an answer.

  21. jon Says:

    I don’t blame all our woes (at most, probably 15%, on a bad day) on a lack of socialized medicine, but businesses (of all sizes) are getting squeezed by the free-market variety. And it is pissing off the doctors as well, who spend lots of money hiring people just to handle the paperwork of all the different companies. It’s making hospitals inefficient, turning emergency rooms into some people’s first and only option (and not always because they’re here illegally,) and the insurance companies already have Federal license to some levels of legal immunity that would make government workers jealous. Factor in the already huge number of people who work for or have insurance from someone who works for the government at some level, and nationalized healthcare isn’t as far-fetched, or awful, as portrayed. I didn’t, don’t, and won’t promise a medical utopia, nor do I fail to see the problems.

    It won’t solve most of our problems, but when most of the competition has it and it saves them money, it’s at least worth looking into. And yes, I know the foreign car companies moving into the Southern US (VW, Honda, Toyota, whoever, in Tennessee, Alabama, South Carolina, etc.) don’t have socialized medicine. They have huge tax breaks, motivated workers, make desired cars (and minivans, in Honda’s case,) and good management. But you can bet that that good management looked at the price of healthcare and made sure those other incentives weren’t offset by that.

  22. jon Says:

    Neo, the quote itself is pulled from a longer quote. Shaving down quotes from context is something done by the left, the right, Commies, fascists, progressives, conservatives, admen, prosecutors, defense attorneys, truant children, religious scholars, religious dabblers, bloggers, and commenters. Read all of Obama’s San Francisco remarks and there’s something to make you feel like he’s modestly self-effacing, a snob, falsely self-effacing, a bit of a jerk, someone who understands regular people, someone who pretends to understand “regular” people, or what have you. The quotes generally presented (with or without “anti-trade”) are, to my judgment, unfairly taken out of context. Read all the remarks and you’ll still find things to argue about, but you might see where he’s coming from rather than claim to know already.

  23. Dan Spencer Says:

    I was born and raised in flyover country. In my case, it was a rural agricultural community in Northern California. The small town America I know may cling to guns and religion, but it sure as hell isn’t out of bitterness. No, my small town America clings to guns and religion because of tradition. It’s the way we were ‘raised. We are a self-reliant folk. We don’t look to, nor do we expect, the government to coddle us or solve every problem that some Liberal/Progressive elitist politician can identify. Actually, like President Reagan, we tend to think government is more often the problem. The more we can keep the government out of lives, the better off we are.

    I resent Obama’s assertion that us country folk suffer from “antipathy” toward others. I find it personally offensive. I was raised to respect others and was taught that I should strive, like God, to be “no respecter of persons.” I’ve always tried to do that, and so do the small town folk I know.

  24. Mikey NTH Says:

    At a fundraiser at the Getty’s, I believe. If not there, then at another billionaire’s digs.

    See the zombietime photomontage of Sen. Obama’s trip to San Francisco.

  25. tsmonk Says:

    To anyone suggesting that we read the whole speech to avoid taking the questionable remarks out of context, I ask: what else in his speech compensates for inserting religion and gun ownership into a laundry list of bad things like xenophobia?

  26. To Obama with love, small town style | Swanky Conservative Says:

    […] Inspired by one of Stephen’s posts: […]

  27. Mars vs Hollywood Says:

    Nationalized healthcare in the US would have one severe disadvantage vs. nationalized healthcare in other industrialized nations: Namely, there wouldn’t be a US for people to use as a paid fallback when they get put on a 14-month waiting list for care.

    It’s like the “drug re-importation” idea that Kerry was pushing in 2004. Let’s review: drugs sell cheaper in Canada because the Canadian government legislates prices. The drug companies offset this loss (to say nothing of fund future research) by charging Americans more for the drugs made in our own country. So we’re going to buy the same drugs from the Canadians at the government price. Only a Democrat could think this would actually work.

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