Remarks by President Obama at a Campaign Event (Jan. 2012)
“The crisis that struck in the months before I took office put more Americans out of work than at any time since the Great Depression. But it was also a culmination of a decade of neglect, a decade where the middle class fell further behind and more good jobs in manufacturing left our shores. And suddenly, our prosperity was built on risky financial deals and homes that we couldn’t afford. And we racked up greater debt. And even as incomes fell, wages flatlined, the cost of everything from college and health care kept on going through the roof.
America is not going to win if we give in to those who think that we can only respond to our challenges with the same tired, old tune — just hand out more tax cuts to folks who don’t need them and weren’t even asking for them, let companies do whatever they want, hope that prosperity somehow trickles down on everybody else’s head. It doesn’t work. It didn’t work when it was tried in the decade before the Great Depression. It’s not what led to the incredible post-war boom in the ‘50s and the ‘60s. It didn’t work when we tried it under the previous President, and it’s not going to work now.”