Ideals of Liberalism Expressed in President Obama's Speeches

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In President Obama’s speech at the U.S. and China Strategic and Economic Dialogue, he outlines the “essential steps in advancing a positive, constructive, and comprehensive relationship between the two countries.” In the President’s 2011 State of the Union Address, he provides four critical steps to achieve economic recovery in addition to several pressing domestic and international policies. What both these speeches hold in common, is the logic behind the liberalism tradition of international relations. The foundations of the President’s speeches are set in the ideals of liberalism from which rise three strands of modern liberal thinking: economic, social, and political. “Liberalism is a distinct ideology and set of institutions …show more content…
Both of the President’s speeches are structured around modern ideals of liberalism concerning economic, social, and political issues. The President’s main focuses in his State of the Union Address and Speech to China was economic stability. The President calls upon China for the “cooperation to advance our mutual interest in a lasting economic recovery” through “trade that is free and fair.” The President addresses economic improvement in his State of the Union Address through the promotion of innovation, education, and infrastructure in the United States which will lead increased exports. He promotes expansion of free trade programs with Central American and Asia Pacific. Free trade does not just help the economy, but according Richard Rosencrance in his theory of economic interdependence, trade fosters peace by making trade more profitable than invasion. Mutual economic interest and prosperity will lead to increased relationships between the United States and China.
Joseph Nye’s position regarding the social aspect of liberalism “argues that person-to-person contact reduces conflict by promoting understanding.” The President promotes the interaction of individuals from the United States with their counterparts throughout the World in both his speeches. In his speech to China, the President calls for increased interaction between American and Chinese people through business to find tomorrows solutions for the problems of clean
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