by Jon Sanders
Director of the Center for Food, Power, and Life, Research Editor | John Locke Foundation
It is not much of a prediction, I think. The Washington Post reports that
the White House has promised a “non-traditional” speech that, in the president’s words, will cut through the “day-to-day noise of Washington” and celebrate the country’s capacity “to come together as one American family.” Instead of a to-do list of policy proposals that have little chance of passing Congress, he has said he plans to deliver a speech that will describe “who we are” as a nation — or perhaps more accurately, whom Obama, in the last year of his presidency, would like us to be.
So I fully expect more of what the president’s “big speeches” have tended toward: appealing to America’s founding liberties, then making a pernicious pivot to collectivism. The president likes that formula of pretending America’s founding freedoms find their truest form in the heavy fist of statism.
As I wrote in 2008, Obama’s approach is
referencing the ideals of the Founders, then after having imitated the soaring rhetoric of past American luminaries, changing the focus to make it sound as if the next step for American liberty is to become a socialized nanny state.
A “legacy speech” is going to be heavy on this syrup, I warrant.