There Are American Values - and There Are "Obama Values"

Austin Hill

8/31/2008 12:01:00 AM - Austin Hill

You gotta love Senator Biden.

In his speech, wherein he accepted the Democratic Party’s nomination for Vice President, he sure sounded like an everyday American - -a “regular Joe,” if you will.

But is Barack Obama an “everyday American?” And where does he stand, on the principles and ideals that make America unique? Is Barack okay with those things, or is all about “change” - - even when it comes to things that Americans consider sacred?

Biden, along with nearly every other speaker of note at the Democratic National Convention, repeatedly tied the words “American values” to Barack Obama’s name. Virginia Governor Timothy Kaine went the extra distance to bundle up the words “Obama” and “American values” with the story of his (Kaine’s) Catholic missionary work, and the “Parable of the Mustard Seed” from the teachings of Jesus Christ (when he got to the part about the “faith that can move mountains,” he even attempted to get the crowd chanting “Move, Mountain!”).

But what does it mean when an entire political convention has to repeatedly remind the audience that, “we’re okay with Jesus,” and, more importantly, “our nominee really does embrace American values?”

In comparing himself to his running mate, Biden stated “Barack Obama and I took very different journeys to this destination, but we share a common story. Mine began in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and then Wilmington, Delaware. With a dad who fell on hard economic times, but who always told me: ‘Champ, when you get knocked down, get up. Get up.’”

That’s a great story from Biden about his Dad, and in many ways it is a uniquely American story. It is part of the American Spirit for one to overcome obstacles, to achieve, and to choose to be self-reliant.

But what little we know about Obama’s Dad would seem to have nothing in common with Biden‘s “journey.” Barack Hussein Obama Sr., a Communist bureaucrat in the government of Kenya, did not share in this uniquely American “value” of achievement and self-reliance. Indeed, as most Communists do, Mr. Obama seemed to assume that when one individual achieves, another necessarily suffers. He embodied the Communist view of economics being a “zero-sum game,” and, thus, sought to limit the level of achievement for any one individual, by advocating higher taxes and income redistribution.

And isn’t this just like the Democratic presidential nominee? Throughout his campaign, Senator Obama has made a cottage industry of trashing the successes of American businesses, lamenting companies that are "too profitable," and pledging that when he becomes President, he will levy higher taxes on corporations and will lower the salaries of corporate executives.

So much for those “American Values” of overcoming, and achieving.

And how do those “American Values” stack-up, when Obama himself compares them with the “values” of other countries? We got a glimpse two weeks ago, when Obama compared the U.S. with China.

On a recent campaign trip to Virginia, Obama stated off-handedly, “ “everybody's watching what's going on in Beijing right now and the Olympics. Think about the amount of money that China has spent on infrastructure. Their ports, their train systems, their airports are all vastly superior to us now, which means if you're a corporation deciding where to do business, you're starting to think, Beijing looks like a pretty good option.”

Objectively, I don’t know if Beijing’s infrastructure is superior to America’s. I’ve never seen any qualitative research on this matter, and I’ve never been to Beijing to observe the infrastructure firsthand (and given Obama’s propensity to lecture on things that are “above his pay grade,” he likely has not been to Beijing either).

But Obama doesn’t seem to marvel at the reality that, despite China’s population being roughly three times the size of ours, America still produces a higher GDP, still provides a higher standard of living for a greater percentage of it’s citizens, and still feeds more people around the planet, than does China. These are attributes that uniquely belong to America, and are tied to our unique American Values, and Obama has virtually nothing to say about these things, preferring instead to praise the “good works” of the Communist Chinese government.

Despite the repeated utterance of “American Values” at the Democratic National Convention, Obama has repeatedly seized opportunities to belittle the values of Americans, and advocate his own, more exotic, more multicultural views.

In the face of growing concern over America losing its common language, Obama dismissed the concern altogether, insisting that the “real problem” is that not enough Americans speak Spanish and French (he speaks neither of these languages).

When speaking in Berlin about the very real threat of Islamic-driven terrorism, he avoided criticism of terrorists and suicide bombers, stating instead that both Europeans and Americans need to embrace the peace of “the vast majority of Muslims” around the world.

Harnessing the themes of “Hope” and “Change” have carried Obama quite far. But precisely what kind of “change” does he intend, going forward?