In his speech last night at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, President Obama emphasized “the basic bargain at the heart of America’s story: the promise that hard work will pay off; that responsibility will be rewarded; that everyone gets a fair shot, and everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same rules…” All that rhetoric sounds good, but Obama’s words are misleading.
Consider the following example. Duke Energy CEO, Jim Rogers, from Charlotte, has donated about $30,000to the Obama campaign and even more (around $55,000) to the Democratic National Committee over the past few years. His company extended a $10 million line of credit for the vastly underfunded and poorly attended Charlotte convention. He even appeared on CNN touting the President’s energy policies. And what has he gotten in return? Taxpayer money to the tune of $230.4 million and hundreds of thousands more in grant money to fund various projects including the development of the unsuccessful Chevrolet Volt.
Even today, the News and Observer announced that Duke Energy has graciously donated two new charging stations for electric cars in the town of Cary. According to the columnist, these stations are “free.” In reality, people who cannot afford expensive electric vehicles are being forced to subsidize power for those who can.
So according to Obama, the definition of fairness is playing favorites, and according to the media, a company is charitable when it receives taxpayer dollars and gives it back to them in the form of public services that are only needed by wealthier people.
The kind of cronyism that Obama and the DNC have perpetuated means that rich businessmen in our own state are being helped at the expense of the rest of us. Obama at the same time credits himself with creating an economic climate where “everyone gets a fair shot” and implements policies that directly contradict that principle. So despite all of last night’s flowing rhetoric, actions still speak louder than words.