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Friday, September 7, 2012

David Brooks, "Character, Not Audacity": Have You Ever Asked for a Loan?

Have you ever gone to a bank for a loan to build your business, to make home improvements or to buy a car? I have. And inevitably I have been asked how I intend to pay the money back. For me to be deemed creditworthy, the banks have always demanded a plan.

Now listen again to Obama's Democratic National Convention speech. Do you hear even the outlines of a recovery program?

In his latest New York Times op-ed entitled "Character, Not Audacity" (, David Brooks decries the lack of substance in Obama's Charlotte speech:

"But what I was mostly looking for were big proposals, big as health care was four years ago. I had spent the three previous days watching more than 80 convention speeches without hearing a single major policy proposal in any of them. I asked governors, mayors and legislators to name a significant law that they’d like to see President Obama pass in a second term. Not one could. At its base, this is a party with a protective agenda, not a change agenda — dedicated to defending government in all its forms.

The Obama speech offered some important if familiar hints of big policy ideas. There was a vague hint of a major tax reform. There was a vague promise to accept an agreement based on the principle of the Simpson-Bowles committee on deficit reduction. But it’s hard to be enthusiastic about President Obama truly championing initiatives that get no more than a sentence or a clause."

Brooks asks toward the end of his opinion piece, "What was there in this speech that will make us think the next few years will be any different?"

Answer: Nothing. If Obama were to turn to any bank to finance his visions without a detailed plan to return the funds, he would be shown the door. Then again, notwithstanding a $16 trillion national debt, Obama might still be able to borrow additional funds from China, whose economy, driven by slave labor, is slowing. Or, if need be, the US federal government can always print more money, which will swiftly lose its value.

Sadly, there is no hope for change, given that the dream has indeed gone awry.


  1. "David Brooks decries the lack of substance in Obama's Charlotte speech"

    Obama and substance don't go together. Again, he's a charlatan.

  2. Well, well, well, speaking of charlatans. Several days ago, I clicked on some button by "Newsmax" and voted for Romney.
    Now, I checked the email I gave (not my usual one) and guess what - the box is full of messages from Obama expressing gratitude for voting, calling me "friend" (Michelle writes to me as a "friend," Barack writes to me as "friend") the messages are signed by "Obama for America" I tried to unsubscribe, but was unable. The link ("here") leads nowhere.
    Can someone check what's going on?