Don't wonder if the president inadvertently told us how he feels with:
If you’ve got a business -- you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.
He knew just what he was saying. He knew it was insulting. But how many people have started a business? Not that many. Obama goes for the numbers.
I think his calculations fail to carry the 1 though: True, people who have started their own business are in the minority, but most people are sympathetic to the idea. Joe the Plumber hasn't (yet!) started his own business but I bet he still contemplates the dream.
Wouldn't you like to take a bat to the fax machine, wedgie the boss, and strike out on your own? Maybe sell artisan muffins out of a kiosk at the airport? Wash dogs? Whatever your daydream was, or is, chances are you can identify with the business starter.
It's tempting to run the numbers. That businessman couldn't have his business without a police force, could he? He needs an orderly society to sell his widgets in right? And a fire department to put out his widgets should combustion happen, right? And roads? Water and sewer right?
Well yes. But it's the same thing as school funding. On the surface it appears that people without children are being shortchanged. They pay the same taxes as the guy with a dozen children, but they don't get the same benefit, or so it seems.
But stand back and look at the whole thing in one go: What you pay in is one lifetime of school taxes, everyone does. And what you get out of it in one person's education, your own. Everyone pays the same, everyone gets the same thing. Roughly.
Sure the widget factory uses the roads more than you. But what you get out of it is a world with widgets, a job, (possibly) and widget factory taxes to build the next road or sewage treatment plant.
You should want the print shop down the road. You should want the drugstore.
Can you imagine opposing a supermarket because the produce trucks will be using the roads more than you? Obama thinks you might.
Personally, I don't mind the $ 0.03 of my taxes that the produce truck consumes in order to transport my years worth of tomatoes. Wait, you don't mind either? And you? And wait, doesn't every tomato consumer feel the same? Don't we all grant that road wear in order to live in a world with tomatoes? Sure we do.
Go back to square one Mr Obama. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.