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Romney Ad Takes Liberties With Obama Quote: VIDEO


Have you been following what the New Republic calls "Youdidn'tbuildthatgate"? This is the pseudo-scandal surrounding President Obama's slip of the tongue on July 15th, in Roanoke, during a speech about shared responsibility -- a speech in which the president explained that no successful person is successful entirely without the help of his or her fellow human beings, and in which the president garbled one sentence so that, heard or read in isolation, it seems to belittle the whole idea of entrepreneurship and individual initiative. Right-wing pundits soon set about making sure that sentence was only heard or read in isolation. Mitt Romney is now furthering that mission with a television ad.

In case you haven't seen it already, the actual quote from Barack Obama goes like this:

If you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, “Well, it must be ‘cause I was just so smart.” There are a lot of smart people out there. “It must be because I worked harder than everybody else.” Let me tell you something: There are a whole bunch of hard-working people out there.

If you are successful somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet, so then all the companies could make money off the Internet. The point is, is that, when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together.

Obviously, Obama could and should have interpolated the word "alone" after the phrase "you didn't build that" -- both because it's good politics, and also because, without that word, the offending sentence doesn't support the general thesis of the speech. So we know it's a mistake. Mitt Romney doesn't want us to know that, and so he's carefully edited around all the other, mitigating stuff, to create maybe the most dishonest campaign ad you've seen all year. He's running against a guy who doesn't exist. Watch the ad AFTER THE JUMP, and read along with the relevant parts of the speech above to see just how diabolical editing can be. 


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  1. oh and here you go Lincoln since I seriously doubt you would actually try to look for real facts as vs requrgitating a talking point

    Ben keeslar WAPO fact checker as of Jul 20 , 2012

    " So we are at an impasse. Because of the ambiguity, there is considerable room for interpretation of known facts. Going forward, unless new evidence emerges, on a case-by-case basis we may withhold the awarding of Pinocchios when the claim rests mostly on the question of when Romney stopped managing Bain Capital."

    that in the biz is an appology on Keeslar's part since he now has egg on his face over giving romney a pass on Bain pre the Boston Globe busting out the paperwork which Keeslar admittedly never checked. He simply took Romney campaign claim and that he couldn't believe romney would blatantly lie or possibly commit a felony

    Reality has a liberal bias

    Posted by: say what | Jul 22, 2012 7:09:59 PM

  2. President Obama's inability to speak precisely has caused him problems in the past. Mr. Obama needs to tighten up his oratory and pay attention to what he is saying. Mr. Obama also needs to get rid of the very annoying habit that too many politicians are using these days, which is dropping the "g" on participles and gerunds. It always sounds phony and makes one long for the days when politicians spoke intelligently instead of "dumbing-down" their speeches to the public.

    Posted by: jamal49 | Jul 23, 2012 1:54:47 AM

  3. Just here:
    If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.

    Obama may have missed a few words - but he said and it speaks volumes as to what he truly believes. I don't care if the fault of the speech writer - he, like Romney and any other public speaker, need to read it first. Now it's public and all the backstroking in the world will not change that.

    Posted by: Raul in Miami | Jul 23, 2012 3:25:14 PM

  4. “He didn’t invent iron ore and blast furnaces, did he?”


    “Rearden. He didn’t invent smelting and chemistry and air compression. He couldn’t have invented his Metal but for thousands and thousands of other people. His Metal! Why does he think it’s his? Why does he think it’s his invention? Everybody uses the work of everybody else. Nobody ever invents anything.”

    She said, puzzled, “But the iron ore and all those other things were there all the time. Why didn’t anybody else make that Metal, but Mr. Rearden did?”

    ---- Atlas Shrugged -1957, Ayn Rand

    Posted by: Obamalounge | Jul 23, 2012 9:55:52 PM

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