President Obama's Revealing Gaffe: 'Americans Have Gotten Lazy'

Erika Johnsen

11/16/2011 12:51:00 PM - Erika Johnsen

President Obama is currently in the middle of his nine-day tour of the Asia Pacific region, and already, he committed at least one gaffe that makes me squirm to think that he is our exceptional nation's representative and ambassador.

As I've written before, I'm generally annoyed when the media makes a big brouhaha out of politicians' minor slips of the tongue. We all misspeak, and none of us are one hundred percent on our mental game, one hundred percent of the time. However, I will say that it is particularly irksome when the media targets and plays up the gaffes of politicians like Michele Bachmann, using her slip-ups as ammunition in their quest to portray her as a deranged Tea Party idiot, while Barack Obama usually gets a free pass and is hailed as a genius of unparalleled mental capacities. He has plenty of embarrassing mistakes, too. Exhibit A:

Heh. Hawaii isn't in Asia. Woops. But hey, Obama was speaking about economic cooperation in the Pacific region to a group of Asian leaders--totally understandable, it could happen to anyone.

But, there are gaffes, and then there are gaffes. And the "here in Asia" slip was not the squirm-worthy gaffe to which I was referring. Obama's prepared teleprompter speeches are grating enough, but it is his unrehearsed remarks in his less guarded moments that too often should give all Americans reason to pause. I do not take these types of comments lightly, as they would never even occur to someone who understands economics and believes in free enterprise:

HONOLULU - President Obama said that the United States has gotten a "little bit lazy" when it comes to bringing in new businesses in to the states. He made the comments at a CEO summit as part of the APEC conference Saturday, when asked by Boeing CEO James McNerney about looking at the world from a Chinese perspective and what they might consider as impediments to investing. ...

"But we've been a little bit lazy, I think, over the last couple of decades. We've kind of taken for granted -- well, people will want to come here and we aren't out there hungry, selling America and trying to attract new business into America, Obama said.

No. When it comes to job creation, expanding businesses, and attracting investors, people do not collectively get lazy. They respond and behave according to the conditions of their environment. When people perceive an increased risk in the likelihood of return on an investment, they are less likely to make said investment, since their time, money, and effort have value. That is all.

Jazz Shaw wrote an enlightening post at HotAir that, I think, perfectly captures the chilling nature of this truly discomfitting Obama gaffe. It's positively Orwellian:

When a leader sees the available resources drying up, with less and less to be distributed, he needs workers who exemplify one role model. That would be Boxer, the horse from George Orwell’s seminal classic, Animal Farm.

I will work harder” and “Napoleon [the pig] is always right.”

Clearly the president is in touch with these core values and understands that most of you are going to need a gentle nudge in the right direction. You people are just lazy. If you’d work a bit harder, expand businesses and hire people, (even without any idea of said hiring would be financially sustainable) things would turn around and we’d get that windmill built, gosh darn it!