With a mostly predictable slew of endorsements from the Montana Chamber of Commerce (the only surprises being that they didn’t endorse Johnson and Skees. The fact that this was a surprise tells you something about the Chamber), I find my self more and more appreciating Barack Obama’s recent ‘gaffe‘ suggesting that someone who ‘builds’ their business might owe something back to the society for giving them their chance to succeed.
Obama addresses the two greatest fallacies put forward by those who believe it is possible to be entirely self-made: That the rich are either smarter or harder working than the rest of us. Of course that’s nonsense. Mexicans and Portuguese work harder than Americans; Poles and Spaniards have on average higher IQs. But what American small businessperson would have rather tried to start a business in any of those four countries instead of the US?
Obama is probably going to lose votes over this, and he is definitely going to lose money. But, like endorsing gay marriage, he’s changing the tone of the debate, taking positions most politicians are scared to take. He’s doing exactly what liberals have been castigating him for not doing, and whether he pulls it off this election cycle or not, he’s setting a good precedent for the Democratic party stand for something besides just less stupid versions of Republican ideals. If he can talk the way he’s talking and still put up a good fight in Montana, Montana Democrats might be empowered to take firmer stands and fight harder for truly progressive causes in the future (think Max in 2014). That’s enough of a reason to vote for him in my book.