|From the video: |
"We, the people, chose to do these things together, because we know this country cannot accomplish great things if we pursue nothing greater than our own individual ambitions."
"This country" means the government. In other words, the government cannot accomplish great things if we pursue nothing greater than our own individual ambitions. Hence, we must sacrifice those ambitions so the government can accomplish "great things." Question: whose ambitions does Obama pursue if not his own? And "great things" according to whose value judgments? Our own or those of President Obama? And who exactly are "we, the people"? Evidently, that term doesn't include me, because I don't consider Obama's ambitions greater or more important to me than my own.
By the way, who said: "It is thus necessary that the individual should finally come to realize that his own ego is of no importance in comparison with the existence of his nation. . . . and that the higher interests involved in the life of the whole must here set limits and lay down the duties of the interests of the individual."? It wasn't another stump speech by Obama. It was Adolph Hitler on October 1, 1933 (from Speeches 1933-1938, Terramare Office, Berlin, 1938 (pp. 61f)
"Unfortunately, you've grown up hearing voices that incessantly warn of government as nothing more than some separate, sinister entity that's at the root of all our problems. Some of these same voices also do their best to gum up the works. (You mean, by opposing your policies?) They'll warn that tyranny is always lurking just around the corner. You should reject these voices, because what they suggest is that our brave and creative and unique experiment in self-rule (i.e., in government control) is somehow just a sham with which we can't be trusted."
Does he really think that people have a good reason to trust the government?! He calls what we have now "self-rule." Self-rule, which is the right to pursue our own individual ambitions consistent with the right of others to pursue theirs, is precisely what the government does not allow. What Obama means by the term "self-rule" is rule of, by and for the majority (and its elected representatives).
"We have never been a people who place all our faith in government to solve all of our problems. We shouldn't want to. But we don't think that the government is the source of all our problems either (but it could sure help by getting out of the way and letting people run their own lives), because we understand that this democracy is ours, and as citizens we understand that it's not about what America can do for us; it's about what can be done by us together through the hard and frustrating but absolutely necessary work of self-government, and class of 2013 you have to be involved in that process."
Subtext: You, the class of 2013, have to be involved in the process of serving the government rather than in pursuing your own individual interests and ambitions.
Obama talks about working "together." Well, any true cooperation requires the voluntary consent of every participant. Each person has the right to make his own decision, but none has the right to force his decision on others either individually or through the hand of government. If the term "self-government" means anything, it means a system in which each individual's rights are respected and in which the government is dedicated to preserving and protecting those rights. That is not the system that we have today.
The original intent of the Constitution was to prohibit to the government anything that is not expressly permitted, and to permit to the citizens anything that is not expressly forbidden. We are fast approaching an inversion of that principle, in which the government is free to do anything it pleases while the citizens may act only by permission.
As long as Obama's in power, I don't think he'd call the government "tyrannical" no matter how intrusive it became. He'd simply say that it was enforcing the will of "the people."