|Photo Credit - Flickr Common|
San Antonio, Texas Mayor Julian Castro delivered a keynote address at the Democrat National Convention with a theme of “America must invest in opportunity.” He proclaimed opportunity today creates prosperity tomorrow.
Many watching immediately made a comparison between San Antonio Mayor Castro and Florida Senator Marco Rubio. Both men are young, attractive, Latino, third generation Americans, and have lovely families. Both are excellent speakers and rising stars in their respective political parties.
Castro invited the comparison taking on Rubio’s line about his father, “He stood behind a bar in the back of the room all those years, so one day I could stand behind a podium in the front of a room.” with his own line, And my mother fought hard for civil rights so that instead of a mop, I could hold this microphone.”
Both spoke about grandparents coming to the United States – Castro’s grandmother from Mexico and Rubio’s grandparents from Cuba. Both spoke about the “American Dream” and generations before them working hard and wanting better for their children.
Castro touted investment in education from pre-K to college. He compared his high school classmates and his college classmates, “They had the same talent, the same brains, the same dreams as the folks we sat with at Stanford and Harvard. I realized the difference wasn’t one of intelligence or drive. The difference was opportunity.”
Castro touched on support for many of the elements of the Democrat party’s platform including passing the Dream Act, same-sex marriage equality, government programs for individuals and some businesses, education spending, blaming Republican opposition, and higher taxes on the rich so they are paying their fair share.
While citing many times respect for the individual and success, he also directly or indirectly embraced big government, more spending, and collectiveness in thought and responsibility. Investment in anything seemed to mean investment by the government, not the private sector except through higher taxes on them to pay for government investment in the collective.
Castro portrayed all of the economic philosophy and policies before President Obama as failures. “First they called it trickle-down. Then supply-side. Now it's Romney-Ryan. Or is it Ryan-Romney? Either way, their theory has been tested. It failed. Our economy failed. The middle class paid the price. Your family paid the price.”
What was troubling was Castro, and perhaps the majority of Democrats, are not willing to acknowledge Obamanomics has failed the economy, the middle class, and your family. It has led to a record number of Americans on food stamps and living in poverty during President Obama’s term.
Obamanomics has led to record deficits that will in fact negatively affect the next generation if not the next two or three.
Castro touted the Democrat talking points regarding President Obama’s job creation numbers, Romney’s Massachusetts record, and the Romney-Ryan plan would raise Medicare cost as well as others.
The National Public Radio online, not exactly a right leaning outlet, ran an immediate fact-checking tally article the next morning “DemocratsUnleashed Some ‘Dubious Or Misleading Claims,’ Fact Checkers Say.”
An economy that does not create job opportunities that even keeps up with the population growth will not lead to those new college graduates having opportunity from their investment. We have already seen this.
Castro supported, “It's a choice between a politician who rewards companies that ship American jobs overseas—or a leader who brings jobs back home.”
No one can hear this statement and not think of the stimulus money, American taxpayer and borrowed money, that went to build opportunity in other countries: Australia, China, Denmark, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, and Vietnam to name a few.
No one can hear this statement about companies that ship American jobs overseas and not thing of General Electric shipping jobs to China and General Motors,yes the bailed-out Democrat touted success story in the 2012 election campaign,shipping jobs to China, Mexico, and South Korea.
We have seen American dollars being invested in oil exploration in Brazil, so we can be their best customer, yet private investment in American oil exploration has been stymied as much as possible by the Obama administration. We have seen thousands of jobs lost and communities collapsed by President Obama going to war with coal companies and towns.
It is very troubling the government investment Democrats like to solicit for and highlight is most often investment without accountability. We have seen this in the many failed “investments” that were made by this administration from housing loan modification programs, to Cash for Clunker, and to Solyndra and other green companies.
We have seen a trillion dollar stimulus that did not effectively create jobs, did not lower unemployment, and did not invest in shovel-ready infrastructure jobs as promised. It enriched several Obama campaign money bundlers, but it did little to ease the pain of the middle class or strengthen it.
The problem in general with the focus on investment by government instead of investment by the private sector is one is with public money and no choice by the public, and one is with private money chosen by the investor.
I wish I could legitimately say one is never with accountability and one is always with accountability, but that would be untrue. As long as government allows crony capitalism in their investments and privatization of profits and socialization of losses in the political process, that will remain untrue.
What should always be true to move America “Forward” is investment is for an appropriate purpose by the appropriate investor and with the appropriate accountability. This may never be true with politicians believing they must be the main investors for creating opportunity.
This must be true for investment to actually create opportunity and for future generations to realize the American Dream.