Did I Take the President’s Words Out of Context?

Earlier this week, I took offense when President Obama said,

“If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”

So, I asked small business owners to send in photos of what they built with their intelligence and elbow grease… without any help from the government.  You guys responded with amazing photos, which were made into this awesome video.

Some of the comments suggested I’d taken his words out of context.  Here’s a helpful video of Charles Krauthammer explaining why this isn’t so:


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  • conanobrian

    Hey, Bristol, Congratulations! You made the front page of the Huffington Post. We think that Tripp used a different F word, but it’s OK. He is so cute when he gets angry and swears.

  • janel

    once more… A village in Kenya is missing its idiot! He has no idea how to run a country but that is still obvious four years later… He will still probably blame Bush at election time lol.

    • Jellybean

      And a village in contard birther land usa still has their’s.

      • Hailey

        Jelly bean,
        Number 1, NO ONE can take you seriously with a name like that. I eat eat jelly beans.

        • GrizzlyMom

          But jelly beans are Ronald Reagans favorite. And Ronald Reagan is god right? So jelly beans should be like the greatest name EVER! And if you’ve read any of JellyBeans posts you would find her/him to be very astute and clever and generally loads of fun :) I LOVE JELLYBEANS!

  • Pingback: Bristol Palin Creates ‘I Built This’ Video : Daria DiGiovanni()

  • Jellybean

    Bristol, where did your son learn the word faggot? Had to be heard often for him to repeat it.

    • Really??

      “Had to be heard often for him to repeat it.”

      Ahhh…an absolute by a child expert. Very untrue in my experience as a mother, aunt, and grandmother.

      • Jeff

        You think he heard it once and knew how to use it in context? I seriously doubt it. Who uses that language in front of their child, anyway?

    • troy

      Hey this is a Christian girl. Bristol would not be teaching her 4 year old son to hate!!!! Or would she?

    • Jenni

      He didn’t use the word faggot! He said the f word as in F&*#.

    • NOBAMA2012

      Actually, if you have ever raised a child before, you would know that there are many different places children learn things from. There are neighbors, older sibblings, friends of sibblings, extended family, daycares, church groups, classmates, etc. Whether it’s a good or bad thing they learn, you can’t always blame the parents. On a different note, I am not sure what this post has to do with this anyways. Some people always have to find ways to put in their two cents. LOL WTG Jellybean!!

  • GrizzlyMom

    These words were also in that speech: “we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together.” Clearly the President acknowledged that SOME individuals succeed on their own and SOME because of help from others. He also DOESN’T say that government help is solely needed to succeed as many on here are suggesting.
    Here’s another quote from the President this year when Steve Jobs passed away : “By building one of the planet’s most successful companies from his garage, he exemplified the spirit of American ingenuity. By making computers personal and putting the Internet in our pockets, he made the information revolution not only accessible, but intuitive and fun.”

    • Kensfreedom

      The Steve Jobs, speech and his speech in this discussion are clear examples of how this president changes what he says to match what he thinks the particular audience he is speaking to wants to hear. Obama has done this time and again. Rather than staying on point he changes his message according to what he thinks people want to hear. Then is actions are opposite of his words.

  • Kaitie Smith

    I believe you’ve missed the point of Obama’s statement. He’s pointing out that no one becomes successful based solely on their own merit. And when he references gov’t officials (i.e. teachers, etc.), he’s correct. Would YOU be where you are today without teachers? We all play a part in each others lives and success, however indirectly. I’m disappointed that you fail to recognize that. I think it’s impossible to become successful without outside help-there will always be people beside us, helping us to achieve our dreams and our success.

  • Tim


    President Barack Obama may believe “you didn’t build that,” but 72 percent of Americans disagree, according to a newly-released poll by Rasmussen. According to the poll, 72% “believe small business owners [are] primarily responsible for success of their business,” while only 13% disagree.

    In addition:

    “77% believe that small business owners work harder than a typical worker. Just 2% think they don’t work as hard”
    “57% believe that entrepreneurs do more to create jobs and economic growth than big businesses or government programs”
    “61% believe that small businesses provide more valuable services to a community than big business or government”

    It is difficult to imagine an issue on which Barack Obama and the American people are more at odds than on the fundamental principles of our free economy, which prizes individual responsibility and success.


    • Timothy

      Oh. So each small business owner built and maintains the roads to and from their business? They individually maintain the sewers? They individuality taught every employee from K-12 and in some cases State University studies? They individuality built and maintain the US Post Office to deliver and receive business mailings? They individuality provide fire protection? They individually provide police protection? They individuality insure banks and other financial industries to protect their wealth? They individuality help their employees save for their retirement through Social Security? WOW! Small business does so much!

      • Joe Durnavich

        Timothy, the whole point of that part of the President’s speech was to shake down businesses for more money, right? Well, why does he want more money from them? How does one get from “Government built the roads” to “Give me more money”?

    • heavencent


  • Michael

    We all wonder, why do you have to twist the truth Bristol :(
    That could have been such a strong clip, showcasing how the GOP supports small businesses.
    Instead, despite your weak attempy of deflection, its message is drowned by everyone with half a brain knowing that it’s based on an untruth.

    Is that how you were raised? And do you really think people voting for your mother are that stupid?

  • Garfield Gordon

    Teachers are paid, silly, so I do not owe them anything per se, they do a job that they have aleeady been remunerated for. And the successful people that Obama mentioned paid their taxes and more, so the govt is there to serve them, not the other way round, they do not owe anyting to the government, This is a typically socialist view, that people owe theri existence and their success to the government, And hey, maybe you do, if you are among those who get money back from the ferderal government, or who don’t pay any federal taxes, like 50% of the population of this country, or if you take benefits from the government, without ever paying anything back in the form of taxes, or otherwise, then indeed you owe the govt. But this is not who he was talking about, he was talking precisely about he successful people who already paid more tann their fair share in taxes because they created successful businesses. That quote shows clearly that what he was trying to do was basically minimize their individual effort and creativity and hard work and ascribe it to an abstract entity called govt. amd this, in a nutshell is his philosophy, this is what thinks deep down but consciously hid from the public, that was just a Freudian slip, and I’m glad he dropped it. So, stop spinning, you know he is a socialist at heart, what I d on’t get is why trying so hard to hide it. If this is your philosophy, fair enough, get out there and defend it in front of the country and your opponent, have a cebate over the merits of big government (personally I think there is no merit to it), have the courage of your own convictions, go and try to convince the country that your socialist way is the right way…but no, he chooses, cowardly, to deliver low blows by demonizing business people and hard working people, pit the rich against the poor, subtly and subliminally foment class warfare, while at the same time pretending he raises above the fray just to get the votes from the independents ….well, no more, his cognitive dissonance played a trick on him, case in that point that infamous quote ‘if you have a business, you didn’t build that’..and we are glad it happened that way…

    • heavencent

      “aleeady,theri,ferderal,he successful,tann,cebate,amd,etc,etc,etc……. HOW’S THAT “HOME-SCHOOLING” WORKING OUT FOR YOU?

  • GrizzlyMom

    Mitt Romney’s opening speech at the 2002 Winter Olympics:

    “You Olympians, however, know you didn’t get here solely on your own power. For most of you, loving parents, sisters or brothers, encouraged your hopes, coaches guided, communities built venues in order to organize competitions. All Olympians stand on the shoulders of those who lifted them. We’ve already cheered the Olympians, let’s also cheer the parents, coaches, and communities.”

    • Joe Durnavich

      This would be a cogent point if the President’s intentions were simply to acknowledge our public workers. But instead we get: “There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me — because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t — look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own.”

      Mitt Romney wasn’t chastising the Olympians for not paying their fair share. Obama is chastising businesses, though, purely as an excuse and a prelude to confiscating more money from them.

    • Lindsay

      Yes, Mitt is aknowledging the coaches, family and those others who’ve helped to push an athlete to the ultimate competition. However, you should note that the USA is one of the only countries in the world to send our Olympians to compete without ANY government help. I think you should draw the line in comparisons to Mitt & Obama support-debate right there. Obama is pushing the government on you and US athletes are showing that you DON’T need government’s help to be the best and be successful. Because our American Olympians are the eptiome of hard work and success that can be achieved without governmental intervention. Unless you want to count the roads that had to run on to get in shape….(sarcasm).