Alex Massie

Obama’s Jobs Rhetoric

Obama's Jobs Rhetoric
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Since we're on the subject of Barack Obama's economic nationalism, here's a radio ad airing in Wisconsin in which he suggests John McCain has a treasonous desire to ship American jobs off to nasty, grasping foreigners. You can listen to it here. (Text of the ad is also after the jump).It's all part of some "Buy American" strategy to be pursued in Pennsylvania and the midwest. Great. 

2008-08-15_buy_american_obama

Now, sure, some of this is just campaign rhetoric. But when Obama stokes protectionist fires, when he characterises trading partners as the enemy, when he suggests that there's something wrong or illegitimate with foreign companies owning properties in the United States he not only makes it harder for US companies seeking to expand overseas, he goes some way towards making a mockery of his desire for a fresh and better relationship with the rest of the world.

In this he seems every bit as myopic as the Bush administration which seemed to expect the rest of the world not to notice, say, the administration's illegal steel tariffs. What you say on the campaign trail matters. You can't just turn round and say, heck I was just playing those suckers. Or if you do, you can expect the suckers to be irritated. At some point all this amounts to writing cheques that you may not want to see cashed. Whatever it is, it's not "change we can believe in" is it?

Written byAlex Massie

Alex Massie is Scotland Editor of The Spectator. He also writes a column for The Times and is a regular contributor to the Scottish Daily Mail, The Scotsman and other publications.

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