Thursday, May 14, 2015

Does Obama Even Believe Himself?

On Tuesday, during a panel discussion on poverty at Georgetown University, President Obama criticized people who send their children to private schools as ignoring the less fortunate.

“Part of what’s happened is, is that elites in a very mobile, globalized world are able to live together, away from folks who are not as wealthy, and so they feel less of a commitment to making those investments,” the President said.

"We don’t dispute that the free market is the greatest producer of wealth in history -- it has lifted billions of people out of poverty. We believe in property rights, rule of law, so forth. But there has always been trends in the market in which concentrations of wealth can lead to some being left behind. And what’s happened in our economy is that those who are doing better and better -- more skilled, more educated, luckier, having greater advantages -- are withdrawing from sort of the commons -- kids start going to private schools; kids start working out at private clubs instead of the public parks. An anti-government ideology then disinvests from those common goods and those things that draw us together. And that, in part, contributes to the fact that there’s less opportunity for our kids, all of our kids."

Let me get this straight... a man who went to the best private schools as a child, then went to the best Ivy League universities as an adult student, who is now President of the United States and who only plays golf at exclusive, private golf courses, who married a woman who also attended private schools as a child and who also attended Ivy League schools, and whose two daughters have always attended private schools and have probably never set foot in a public school in their lives, is criticizing others who send their kids to private schools for separating themselves from others who are not as wealthy and contributes to "less opportunity for our kids, all of our kids."

All of our kids. Except yours, huh, Mr. President?

In other news, liberal Democrats across the country are calling for more spending for Amtrak following a horrific derailment and crash of one of their trains in Philadelphia yesterday. Even though the investigation is still underway, various Democrats indicate that a lack of federal funding for Amtrak and infrastructure was at least partially to blame for the tragic accident. 

Amtrak, the only federally owned passenger train line, has been losing money for years. Republican lawmakers are reluctant to increase funding to an agency that is consistently losing money. Arguments by Democrats that lack of funding caused the accident are weak, at best. From Amtrak's public website: "Seventy-two percent of the miles traveled by Amtrak trains are on tracks owned by other railroads. Known as "host railroads," they range from large publicly traded companies based in the U.S. or Canada, to state and local government agencies and small businesses."

Amtrak only owns 28% of the track on which it runs. If they don't own the particular track in Philadelphia where the train derailed that means any federal funds going to Amtrak wouldn't be used for repairs in that section anyway. It would be up to the owning corporation to maintain it. 

The investigation so far has shown the train was traveling at 106 mph in a zone where the track curves and the posted speed limit was 50 mph. (According to all reports, the engineer isn't talking to investigators and has hired an attorney.) Apparently the lack of federal funding for Amtrak caused the engineer to be careless and/or to ignore the 50 mph signs. Perhaps he wasn't getting enough money in his federal paycheck to maintain the posted speed limit. 

Finally, in news completely unrelated to the federal government, two Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services (MDPSCS) officers have been suspended without pay and are facing felony and misdemeanor charges of burglary and theft. The two women, who both were working at the downtown facility of the Baltimore Division of Corrections, were seen on surveillance video allegedly looting a 7-11 store during the rioting in Baltimore last month. 

It seems, in this case, that sometimes it's true - you can't trust law enforcement officers. I hope what they acquired from the store was worth what they're facing now. On the bright side - at least if they go to prison for their (alleged) crimes they'll have a pretty good idea what to expect. They should adjust well to the routine.

No comments:

Post a Comment