Obama vows to ‘spark innovation’ in US
WASHINGTON – US President Barack Obama expressed his determination on Saturday to “spark the minds of innovators” in the United States, making the country more competitive by introducing new products and technologies.
“It starts by making sure that every single child can get a good education and every American can afford college or career training,” the president said in his weekly radio address.
“Because that’s what will help light the spark in the minds of innovators — and ensure that our people have the skills to work for innovative companies,” he added.
The remarks came after Obama, in his State of the Union address on Tuesday, tried to lift his nation’s gaze beyond its current economic malaise and toward the challenge posed by rising economic rivals.
While acknowledging the urgent need to bring back jobs and re-ignite growth, Obama cast America’s economic stasis against the breakneck rise of China and India, as he detailed a plan to ensure America “wins the future.”
Forty years after President John F. Kennedy used the presidential pulpit to rally Americans around the goal of beating the Soviets to the moon, Obama called for an Apollo-like effort to rejuvenate US economic preeminence.
He called for stepped up research and infrastructure spending, a green energy revolution, increased exports and a simplified tax code.
The president stressed many of the same themes in his radio address, underscoring the need to improve the country’s infrastructure because he said it helped businesses sell their products and services faster and cheaper.
“We have to reform our government and cut wasteful spending, so that we eliminate what we don’t need to pay for the investments we need to grow, like education and medical research,” the president pointed out.
Obama also outlined the need to promote innovation, especially clean energy, saying that by 2035, 80 percent of electricity produced in the United States should come from it.
“This is going to help spark innovation at businesses across America,” he said. “This is going to spur new products and technologies. This is going to lead to good, new jobs. And that’s how we win the future — by unleashing the talent and ingenuity of American businesses and American workers in every corner of this country.”
This video is from the White House, broadcast Jan. 29, 2011.