President Obama calls Steve Jobs' success an example of American wealth

During a speech yesterday, President Obama cited Apple's very own Steve Jobs' success as an example of someone who Americans should expect to be rich. He used Jobs as an example to show others the possibilities of business in our modern times. President Obama answered a reporters question prior to making his comments about Jobs.

What is...a fact is that people in the top 1 percent, people in the top one-tenth of 1 percent, or one-hundredth of 1 percent have a larger share of income and wealth than any time since the 1920s. Those are just facts. That's not a feeling on the part of Democrats. Those are facts.

Those comments then rolled right into the President's comments about the middle class and the American dream, including Steve Jobs and Apple.

And something that's always been the greatest strength of America is a thriving, booming middle class, where everybody has got a shot at the American dream. And that should be our goal. That should be what we're focused on. How are we creating opportunity for everybody? So that we celebrate wealth. We celebrate somebody like a Steve Jobs, who has created two or three different revolutionary products. We expect that person to be rich, and that's a good thing. We want that incentive. That's part of the free market.

We knew President Obama met with Steve Jobs but apparently he has taken quite the liking to Apple's CEO. Would you agree with the President in saying that Jobs' success is an incentive for others? Do you think Steve Jobs lives up to these praises given by the President?

[ CNet ]

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President Obama calls Steve Jobs' success an example of American wealth


I thought we were supposed to hate and despise the "rich"? The Democrats wanted to increase taxes on the "rich" so why is Obama praising a "rich" person?

I do agree that Steve Jobs example is the American dream come to life.
Unfortunately for many of us, the dream has become a nightmare due to irresponsible big business and government.
I gave up on my American dream when my house, my retirement, and my net worth all crashed and burned due to AMERICAN GREED.

What we need is a dynamic system where anybody can CREATE wealth. What we seem to have is a stalled system where OWNING wealth is rewarded. This reduces opportunities and incentives for the rest of us, slows progress, and stagnates our economy. Democrats don't "hate the rich" (many of them ARE rich, after all) -- the idea is to keep our society dynamic and maximize opportunities for becoming rich.

Leaving politics out of it...
I think people, in general, respect people like Steve Jobs because they became wealthy through hard work and innovation. The ones we can't stand are the crooks in the financial sector that become billionaires by pushing paper around.

Pete, even more so, we need a system where the maximum number of people have access to get into the middle class in order to have a comfortable living doing a worthwhile job. We want people to have access to Economic freedom and freedom from chaos and a safety net against drastic events that we don't have total control over which might severely damage their lives. Steve created a great dream by creating cool things that we want that enhance our daily lives, and those of us in the middle class want a piece of that simply by owning the device and using it to it's full potential.

He's just looking for campaign contributions for 2012, always running for that accountability moment you know.

Explain EXACTLY how they are crooks?? Do you even know what they do?? Invesmant bankers do just that: THEY INVEST. Same as the guy wotking at Walmart, just on a much larger scale. They raise money for company's to expand. They take company's public. They buy company's. And, yes, they do make a lot of money. But so does Donald Trump. Ford started as a small company making cars. Apple was in a garage. Because they made it, should the govt step in and take??

+100 scott!
I am sure even the so called "crooks" work very hard. I am always trying to think of a way to get rich without working hard. If I find a way I will sure as hell keep it to myself........... Hmmmm... still thinking.

I think the biggest fallacy here is that Jobs got rich because the government somehow made the opportunity possible. People don't become painfully wealthy because the government cultivates that environment, they get there in spite of the roadblocks massive federal regulation and taxation put in their way. As a matter of fact, many of those in Washington that are sitting on piles of cash got it in public office, not clawing their way through the private sector like the rest of us. I get annoyed at some of the fabulously wealthy talking about how we need bigger government and higher taxes to give little people opportunities like they had, when every time I fight my way to a raise with long hours and hard work I lose most of it to taxes. I'm currently paying a solid 45% of my check to the fed and state, so that people on the government payroll can live better than I do and produce nothing. Goodbye sweet America.

While I don't agree with 100% of what the man does I still respect him as a person.
And yes I'm talking about jobs. But Obama can be included.

Ha the stingy tea party types come out with the same ol' tired gov't is too big, taxes too much, no rules for corporations. Forget the fact that there is only so much wealth in the country and if it is all distributed to the top, there is no way in hell you can change your socio economic class. The reason they advocate less regulation and all the other garbarge because they don't want the rules to be set up so there is a fair distribution of wealth in this country. AND WE ARE NOT LAZY!!!! You can work hard all your life and never get anywhere . . . because the system was designed that way.

I think Obama's analysts have informed him that many of his supporters might also be fans of Apple Inc. and it's technologies, so naturally he is going to try and reach out to his supporters as much as possible.

Sound like people want a entitlement program here
What other country is where everybody is middle class or rich
U people make no sense and please get off of the democrats &:$;'s
Now let me try my hardest to get arrested for growing my own veggie garden

What Obama actually means by creating opportunities for the middle class, is by taxing the crap out of people like Steve Jobs and giving it to someone else that didn't work for it... Even though without Steve, how many people would not have a job, or a shiny new ipod etc. Hmmm guess we need smart rich people after all.

I think Steve Jobs needs no praises. The question is, does Jobs praise the President? Someone who praises themselves as much as Obama does needs that reassurance more than a humble man who happens to be highly successful and self made.

Yes, the American Dream is alive and well. The problem with this statement by the President though is that despite creating the opportunity to become wealthy, the good fortune is taken away by the government oversight. There is nothing more praisworthy (aside from maintaining a happy and healthy home) than the self-made Man or Woman. That is the American Dream: to have the opportunity to rise above the odds and be considered Self Made. I recognize there are a lot of opinions on that statement, but idealy it rings true. It disincentivizes me to see how striving to become a top tier'd earner would only lead to ridicule and higher oversight with the increasing potential for it to be taken away.

Guys, the biggest crooks are not found on Wall Street. They are found in the US House and Senate. Politicians use Wall Street and other "Big Businesses" as a smokescreen to mask the one's who are doing the actual fleecing of America. You people who blame Wall Street are playing right into Washington's hands. Wake up!

@Barney Frank nice politician screen name. Politicians are only a small part of the problem. Wall Street and the corporations are the bigger problem. Politicians only get into office because the corporation or Wall Street allows them there as a consequence of the money involved. Talking about corrupt politicians is a convenient "smokescreen" to cover the real people deciding the agenda in this country . . . corporations and the wealthy elites. The more people realize that the real threat is corporate control of government and not government itself, the better off this country will be.

"We expect that person to be rich, and that’s a good thing."
I wonder how difficult it was for him to say that without calling him a "rich fat-cat" that has "shipped tens of thousands of jobs overseas". So far, so good on that image makeover to move toward the middle of the political spectrum following his beat-down in the elections.

@ Scott - I'll explain for him.. when he says 'crooks' I tend to believe he is referring to people at firms like Enron that take advantage of a financial situation for their own gain, run it til its dry, then are nowhere to be found when it crashes in on itself. Much like the banks a few years ago.

So Jobs is a "good rich guy" because Obama likes his tech? C'mon, Apple offers no better job security or treatment of its employees than any other big business -- some might say even less. Let's stop letting personal feelings influence our statements.

Jobs had an idea, brought it to life, fought for it, and continued to make it better. If you want to be rich...get innovative, if you're gonna work for a top tech company (like Apple), yeah if you're not on top of your game you're gonna get the cane, wouldn't you want to make sure everything you make is top notch and keep you name respected by your customers? Or do you just want to be a nice guy with a crap company?

For all you, who feel like the "American Dream" is a joke and that our government does not cultivate an enviorment for people to change their socio-economic class, leave the country for a while. Visit a developing country, like Turkey, Afghanistan, or even Pakistan. 1 month and you'll be "begging" to come back to the states. Oh and if you're working "long hours and not getting anywhere" maybe should change your approach. It's all about perspective.

"Oh and if you’re working “long hours and not getting anywhere” maybe should change your approach. It’s all about perspective."
how about you gain some perspective yourself.
maybe not everyone is "jimmy" and can take the massive risk of changing a career path while supporting a family and paying off debt.
it isn't "whiny" or "weak" or "un-american" to expect to advance in life, at least a little, through hard work alone. sliding back or treading water is unjust when you're working your tail off and people who have inherited capital amassed capital over generations can pretty much blindly throw their money at the market and expect to come out ahead.
this isn't some Marxist claptrap. of course people who innovate, take risks, can lead and work hard should be compensated for their drive and skill well above the average worker. that's Capitalism and it works.
but if those people and those people with inherited wealth are the only people advancing, and people "merely" doing hard work are expected to slide backward as if that's how it always has been? that's Oligarchy and is morally bankrupt, not to mention economically and politically unsustainable.

The more you earn the more big business and the government takes from you. Average person like me have given up on the American dream because it does not exist anymore because of people like Bill Gates, Steve jobs and others who hoard the wealth. Big Business needs to taxed and regulated more. There should be little difference between people.