Wayne Root on Obama’s State of Union: “Cash for Flunkers”

Posted by Wayne Allyn Root on Libertarian Party blog:

What Obama’s State of Union Speech Has in Common with Taco Bell

By Wayne Allyn Root, Former Libertarian Vice Presidential Nominee and Best-Selling Author

I agree with the liberal blogosphere- Obama’s State of the Union was “Reaganesque.” Well written and well delivered. Awe-inspiring. Except that it was all distortions, false promises, and bait and switch. Don’t believe a word. It was pure sales and marketing, with zero substance. It was the same old “Cash for Flunkers.” Failed programs renamed “investments” in order to sell the con.

Obama’s State of the Union reminds me of the Taco Bell lawsuit in the news this same week. California consumers are suing Taco Bell for calling an item on their menu a “beef taco.” The class-action lawsuit claims that the “beef taco” barely has any beef in it — less than 35% to be exact. Instead, the lawsuit claims it contains isolated oat product, binders and extenders.

Well, that beef taco would make Obama proud. There’s no meat in Obama’s product either. Obama knows his audience likes meat, so he mixes in a spoonful of meat, along with isolated oat product, binders, extenders and other assorted artificial rubbish that tastes a little like meat. He wins your support with the bait and switch. But there is no substance. Where’s the beef? When Obama is done with the Presidency, he has the perfect skills to serve as CEO of Taco Bell.

Obama’s real State of the Union is just more campaign payola. Can you imagine if we played a game of “What does he really mean?” Just substitute “wasted government spending and debt for the same old failed programs” every time Obama used the word “investment” in the State of the Union speech. That’s the unvarnished truth — without the sales and marketing, without the bait and switch.

Why call it “Cash for Flunkers?” Because spending billions of extra dollars on education is not an “investment.” It’s just more money down the drain for the same programs and ideas that have already led to the disastrous catastrophic failure of the U.S. education system. We already spend the most in the world for the worst results. Why would we reward failure with extra billions of dollars? If spending money works, why do New York, California and Washington D.C. spend the most per-pupil in the country, with miserable failing results? The Dept of Education budget doubled under President Bush. Anyone think education is twice as good after spending twice the money? Actually it got worse. If spending money works, why did we spend an EXTRA $100 billion in stimulus money last year on education and get no improvement? If spending money works, why are public school teachers paid far more than private or religious school teachers, yet produce far worse results?

The answer is that the only “investment” Obama cares about is bribery. Payback. Payola. Obama wants to “invest” billions more of your money in teachers unions to reward them for their Democratic campaign contributions. The same teachers unions that have failed our kids for decades. It’s just “Cash for Flunkers.”

Obama also wants to “invest” in Green Energy. Another failed idea. His idea of an “investment” is to give away billions of dollars of your money to his biggest campaign contributors — led by GE. This is about Jeffrey Imelt, the CEO of GE who has bet the ranch on Green Energy. GE survives nowadays on government “investments.” Bailouts, stimulus, tax credits. But these “investments” have no return. Government “invests” with taxpayer money, Democratic contributors get rich, and nothing ever comes back. The bonus is we add billions to the deficit and debt of our children and grandchildren. Great deal for GE. For the rest of us — not so great.

If the Green Energy business worked, the private sector would be investing billions without any help from government. But Green Energy doesn’t work. It loses billions. It’s a never-ending money pit. No smart CEO in the private sector would invest a dime in Green Energy without obscene incentives from government, so government gives out billion dollar gifts like it’s Christmas. The truth is that the “green economy” is a wonderful liberal fairy-tale. A recycled failure (excuse the pun). Green Energy is as real as Global Warming. Ask Spain. Spain has the greenest economy in all of Europe. They built their entire economy around the idea of Global Warming and “green jobs.” Like Obama they chose to call it an “investment.” They have 20% unemployment. Is that Obama’s goal for America? Keep “investing” in Obama’s ideas. Trust me, 20% unemployment is within reach.

In the end, the word “investment” is unconstitutional. It never appears in the U.S. Constitution for a reason. Because government isn’t allowed to “invest.” Our Founding Fathers understood that government isn’t capable of choosing winners versus losers. They knew that government is inherently corrupt and incompetent. They knew that if government was allowed to “invest”, it would always choose to payback campaign contributors. It would always choose to “invest” with the same suspects — banks, Wall Street firms, AIG, GE, Green Energy companies — that gave millions in campaign donations to the politicians. They knew government would choose to invest in failures — “Cash for Flunkers.” That’s why President Obama gets an “F” as President. He’s a good talker, but there is no beef in his taco.

Wayne Allyn Root is a former Libertarian Vice Presidential nominee. He now serves as Chairman of the Libertarian National Congressional Committee. He is the best-selling author of “The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold & Tax Cuts.” His web site: www.ROOTforAmerica.com

22 thoughts on “Wayne Root on Obama’s State of Union: “Cash for Flunkers”

  1. paulie Post author

    I agree with the liberal blogosphere- Obama’s State of the Union was “Reaganesque.” Well written and well delivered. Awe-inspiring. Except that it was all distortions, false promises, and bait and switch. Don’t believe a word. It was pure sales and marketing, with zero substance.

    Reaganesque indeed.

  2. John Jay Myers

    Definitely the best Wayne article in a while, it still suffers from what appears to be Waynes inability to cast aspursions on the right.

    But considering the topic, (SOTU) I will give him a pass, overall it was good.

    I just wish Wayne could start substituting “left” and “Obama” with “Our Government”. After all they are all pretty much the same, I can keep dreaming can’t I?

  3. paulie Post author

    There’s a lot I agree with in this article.

    I do think green energy/ green jobs actually can work in a real free market, though. So why isn’t it working?

    1) When government hands out “green energy” subsidies, the money is often wasted, giving big companies a big advantage over would be competitors.

    2) All the licenses and taxes and regulations, etc, put small businesses – especially startups, as there is a huge learning curve – at a big disadvantage against big corporations with their lawyers, accountants and lobbyists.

    Startups are crucial to testing out new ideas, new ways and methods of bringing energy to market.

    3) Big corporations also enjoy lots of subsidies, direct and indirect, for old fashioned dirty energy – coal, oil, etc. They also get a lot of immunity from risks, such as the Price-Anderson limit of liability for nuclear plants.

    And there is at least an argument to be made that a big chunk of the military budget is being used as an indirect subsidy for pertroleum, giving it an advantage over potential competitors.

    4) Government actually bans at least one major potential source of alternative energy, cannabis hemp, which can be made into biofuel and is more efficient for this purpose than other plants. Even though industrial hemp is not psychoactive, it is banned because it is the same species as marijuana plants.

    Let’s get rid of these barriers and see whether green energy can really work without subsidies.

  4. paulie Post author

    Definitely the best Wayne article in a while, it still suffers from what appears to be Waynes inability to cast aspursions on the right.

    He’s slamming big government connected corporations a lot lately. I like that.

  5. Be Rational

    Great job Wayne!

    @3 Agreed. We can get clean and green development and economic growth if we get the government completely out of transportation, energy, and infrastructure and end all subsidies and taxes in these areas. Especially damaging are free roads and highways and property taxes, along with RFD and Rural Electrification programs (etc) that cause huge market distortions, completely wrongheaded design of urban and suburban areas for housing, business, shopping, schools etc, urban sprawl, over-reliance on the automobile instead of numerous much better alternatives. The US has wasted decades and trillions of dollars on malinvestment due to government programs, subsidies, taxes and infrastructure development. All infrastructure must be privatized and all property taxes abolished.

  6. Thomas L. Knapp

    Nicely done piece.

    As others have mentioned, though, Wayne’s missing out on potential print publication by not keeping it shorter.

    This piece is 881 words long.

    The outside max for newspaper op-eds is 800 words. A few papers may go longer, but not many, and 650-750 is the “sweet spot.”

    I suspect this piece could make it into multiple newspapers if cut to correct length (and the cutting would improve the writing, giving it more punch).

    I don’t intend this as snark, but as sincere advice — and professional advice, too. Last week I was responsible for securing print publication of 12 op-eds in papers on four continents and with a total circulation in excess of 2.2 million.

  7. Gains

    Nice article.

    TK @9:

    WAR may or may not appreciate that tidbit for getting op-eds published, but I sure did.

  8. Maybe Not


    I can certainly understand if you don’t want to take the time to do it, but if you do, I would be interested to see what your version of this would be if you were to cut it down to 650-750 words, without changing any of the substance.

  9. DK

    I don’t understand why WAR feels the need to dump on one of America’s tastiest corporations, which provides a wide selection of delicious and sometimes healthy faux-Mexican food for tens of millions at very reasonable prices. Taco Bell has vehemently denied the accusation, and I’m more inclined to believe them than the ambulance chasers who have filed the suit (unless anyone has some evidence to support the charges – I ate Taco Bell last night, and it sure tasted like beef and not soy!)

  10. Thomas L. Knapp

    Maybe Not,

    It’s not a matter of my time. I’d be happy to do it just for the heck of it … but I wouldn’t dream of editing Wayne’s material and then hanging the edit out in public without his express permission.

    To me, that’s a matter of simple professional courtesy. The danger is that it could a) be mistaken for his original and b) not represent his viewpoint the way he wants it represented.

    For the most part, this is a piece that, were I editing it, would just get a “tightening up” to make it say what it says in fewer words. The only material change I might make would be to make it more clear that he’s not slamming Reagan in that first paragraph, since I doubt he intended to.

  11. Tom Blanton

    This is about Jeffrey Imelt, the CEO of GE who has bet the ranch on Green Energy.

    True, this is about Imelt (sounds like a virtual Taco Bell food product). As soon as Imelt was appointed, the conservatives jumped on the cronyism thing referring to the whole green energy/economy thing. I wonder if they realize that GE is also one of the largest defense contractors that supplies their beloved heroes with the weapons necessary to engage in endless war?

    The conservatives also suddenly got upset about GE being deemed a bank by the current evil Marxist regime in order for it to get some TARP money. Again, the problem being that GE is involved with green energy.

    Of course, the conservatives have never been really concerned enough about subsidizing green energy to do anything about the boondoggle and bogus green ethanol subsidies.

    Of course, I realize that Root is the greatest thing to ever happen to the libertarian movement and he is serious libertarian thinker, so I know he isn’t really one of those conservatives – even if his talking points seem to sound just like something from a right-wing radio show.

    Anyway, I notice that with each Root article posted, people post that each article was better than the last. Just think, at this rate of improvement, in a few months, Root will be the most fantastic libertarian writer that ever lived.

    Root could become the Michele Bachmann of the LP if he keeps it up.

  12. Country Steamer

    Tom Blanton,

    Root MUST be getting better. For a Wayne Root article to get this few comments at IPR, with so many of them being positive or mostly positive from the people that usually slam him, and so many of the other people that slam him being silent instead, is unheard of.

    Even you don’t have much in the way of specific criticisms of what he said. Just throwaway lines about Michelle Bachman. Well, if he becomes as well known and read/listened to as Michelle Bachman while slamming the unholy trinity of big government, big business and big unions all tied at the hip, I’d be happier than a pig in slop.

    Whereas, I get the feeling that nothing he could ever say or do would make you accept him as a libertarian.

  13. Tom Blanton

    Whereas, I get the feeling that nothing he could ever say or do would make you accept him as a libertarian.

    I’ll accept Root as a libertarian once he becomes one and after he quits parroting right-wing talk radio talking points.

    Of course, I’ll still consider him to be an obnoxious opportunistic charlatan. I suspect that in time many folks in the LP will regret whatever support they have given Root.

  14. A realistic observation

    Sounds like Blanton is the “voice” of all of us. We need to march lock-step with him to the promised land.

  15. Tom Blanton

    Sounds like Blanton is the “voice” of all of us. We need to march lock-step with him to the promised land.

    Actually, why don’t you go find your own path?

    Libertarians, of all people, should learn to quit living like lemmings and what it means to be an independent individual capable of some degree of self-governance without following self-appointed leaders in lock-step – you know, people like Wayne Root.

    If you’re looking for freedom, you sure as hell won’t find it by following a leader. The mere fact that so many libertarians enjoy playing follow the leader is disturbing because it shows they have no basic instinct to be free – they want someone to lead them.

    You’ll also find that I do not purport to speak for anyone other than myself. If you need a “voice” to speak for you, it is probably because you don’t have much to say.

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