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Our lesson for today comes from George and Ira Gershwin.

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Who’s Obama sneering at?

Our lesson for today comes from George and Ira Gershwin.

Our lesson for today comes from George and Ira Gershwin:

“They all laughed at Christopher Columbus

When he said the world was round

They all laughed when Edison recorded sound

They all laughed at Wilbur and his brother

When they said that man could fly

They told Marconi wireless was a phony…”

Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers sang it in the film “Shall We Dance?” (1937) Seventy-five years on, the president revived it to tap-dance around his rising gas prices and falling approval numbers. Delivering his big speech on energy at Prince George’s Community College, he insisted the American economy will be going gangbusters again just as soon as we start running it on algae and windmills. He noted that, as with Wilbur and his brother, there were those inclined to titter:

“Let me tell you something. If some of these folks were around when Columbus set sail – [Laughter] – they must have been founding members of the Flat Earth Society [Laughter]. They would not have believed that the world was round [Applause]. We’ve heard these folks in the past. They probably would have agreed with one of the pioneers of the radio who said, ‘Television won’t last. It’s a flash in the pan’ [Laughter]. One of Henry Ford’s advisers was quoted as saying, ‘The horse is here to stay but the automobile is only a fad’ [Laughter].”

The crowd loved it. But President Algy Solyndra wasn’t done:

“There always have been folks who are the naysayers and don’t believe in the future, and don’t believe in trying to do things differently. One of my predecessors, Rutherford B. Hayes, reportedly said about the telephone, ‘It’s a great invention, but who would ever want to use one?’ [Laughter]. That’s why he’s not on Mount Rushmore – [laughter and applause] – because he’s looking backwards. He’s not looking forwards [Applause]. He’s explaining why we can’t do something, instead of why we can do something.”

To continue reading, click here to go to the Orange County Register.

Written By

Mark Steyn is an internationally syndicated columnist and a visiting fellow at Hillsdale College, whose writings on war, politics, the arts, and culture have appeared in almost every major publication around the world from The Wall Street Journal to The Irish Times to The Australian. Steyn is National Review's Happy Warrior and a contributing editor to Canada's bestselling newsweekly, Maclean's. He is also a popular guest host of the Rush Limbaugh Program.

His previous book, America Alone: The End Of The World As We Know It (Regnery Publishing, 2006), is a New York Times bestseller in the United States and a Number One bestseller in Canada, where it was the subject of three separate complaints to the country's many 'human rights' commissions.  He has most recently published After America: Get Ready For Armageddon  (Regnery, 2011).

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