Neil Boortz Shakes Up The Aggies

Tom Sweetnam savamutt at
Sat Aug 2 21:13:05 PDT 2003

Nationally syndicated conservative radio host, Neil Boortz, just gave the 
commencement address at Texas A&M University, his alma mater. I post his 
speech here in its entirety.

After you’ve read it, you might understand why I’d give $200 for a videotape 
of  the expressions on the university faculty’s faces (all of whom were 
sitting atop the stage and to the rear of the podium) as Boortz instructed 
the assembled mass of graduates on how to avoid becoming a pathetic bunch of 
losers like the Borg mediocrities sitting behind him.

I knew Neal when I lived in Atlanta in the mid-80’s. My ex-wife and I owned 
a commercial mortgage brokerage there, and Boortz was one of the closing 
attorneys with whom we did business.

Boortz made his fortune through sheer serendipity. In the early 80’s, he’d 
agreed to do some pro bono legal work for a young black man in Atlanta 
facing a jail term for nonpayment of back child support, an Atlanta boxer 
just breaking into the pros who at that point in his career wasn’t even 
ranked by the WBA. Boortz was very impressed with the young man, who in no 
way was trying to avoid supporting his kids. He loved them. He just didn’t 
have any money.

His demeanor was very uncharacteristic for a boxer as well, more like a lay 
missionary than a loud mouthed gangsta. Boortz kept him out of jail, made 
good on the back child support, and further agreed to provide the boxer with 
seed money he desperately needed to kick-start his flagging boxing career.

So Neal Boortz bought 25% of Evander Holyfield’s future gross earnings with 
an investment of  $38,000. Holyfield went on to whip Mike Tyson twice, the 
only boxer to do so up till that point in history, becoming the undisputed 
WBA world heavyweight champion in 1996, accumulating along the way some $100 
million in gross earnings. Of course a tidy chunk of that was Neal’s.

Neal Boortz Commencement Address:

I am honored by the invitation to address you on this august occasion.
It's about time. Be warned, however, that I am not here to impress you;
you'll have enough smoke blown your way today. And you can bet your
tassels I'm not here to impress the faculty and administration.

You may not like much of what I have to say, and that's fine. You will
remember it though. Especially after about 10 years out there in the real
world. This, it goes without saying, does not apply to those of you who
will seek your careers and your fortunes as government employees.

This gowned gaggle behind me is your faculty. You've heard the old saying
that those who can -- do. Those who can't -- teach. That sounds
deliciously insensitive. But there is often raw truth in insensitivity,
just as you often find feel-good falsehoods and lies in compassion. Say
good-bye to your faculty because now you are getting ready to go out
there and do. These folks behind me are going to stay right here and

By the way, just because you are leaving this place with a diploma
doesn't mean the learning is over. When an FAA flight examiner handed me
my private pilot's license many years ago, he said, 'Here, this is your
ticket to learn.' The same can be said for your diploma. Believe me, the
learning has just begun.

Now, I realize that most of you consider yourselves Liberals. In fact,
you are probably very proud of your liberal views. You care so much. You
feel so much. You want to help so much. After all, you're a compassionate
and caring person, aren't you now? Well, isn't that just so
extraordinarily special. Now, at this age, is as good a time as any to be
a Liberal; as good a time as any to know absolutely everything. You have
plenty of time, starting tomorrow, for the truth to set in. Over the next
few years, as you begin to feel the cold breath of reality down your
neck, things are going to start changing pretty fast .. including your
own assessment of just how much you really know.

So here are the first assignments for your initial class in reality: Pay
attention to the news, read newspapers, and listen to the words and
phrases that proud Liberals use to promote their causes. Then compare the
words of the left to the words and phrases you hear from those evil,
heartless, greedy conservatives. >From the Left you will hear "I feel."
>From the Right you will hear "I think." >From the Liberals you will hear
references to groups --The Blacks, The Poor, The Rich, The Disadvantaged,
The Less Fortunate."  From the Right you will hear references to
individuals. On the Left you hear talk of group rights; on the Right,
individual rights.

That about sums it up, really: Liberals feel. Liberals care. They are
pack animals whose identity is tied up in group dynamics. Conservatives
and Libertarians think -- and, setting aside the theocracy crowd, their
identity is centered on the individual.

Liberals feel that their favored groups, have enforceable rights to the
property and services of productive individuals. Conservatives (and
Libertarians, myself among them I might add) think that individuals have
the right to protect their lives and their property from the plunder of
the masses.

In college you developed a group mentality, but if you look closely at
your diplomas you will see that they have your individual names on them.
Not the name of your school mascot, or of your fraternity or sorority,
but your name. Your group identity is going away. Your recognition and
appreciation of your individual identity starts now.

If, by the time you reach the age of 30, you do not consider yourself to
be a libertarian or a conservative, rush right back here as quickly as
you can and apply for a faculty position. These people will welcome you
with open arms. They will welcome you, that is, so long as you haven't
developed an individual identity. Once again you will have to be willing
to sign on to the group mentality you embraced during the past four

Something is going to happen soon that is going to really open your eyes.
You're going to actually get a full time job! You're also going to get a
lifelong work partner. This partner isn't going to help you do your job.
This partner is just going to sit back and wait for payday. This partner
doesn't want to share in your effort, just your earnings.

Your new lifelong partner is actually an agent. An agent representing a
strange and diverse group of people. An agent for every teenager with an
illegitimate child. An agent for a research scientist who wanted to make
some cash answering the age-old question of why monkeys grind their
teeth.  An agent for some poor demented hippie who considers herself to
be a meaningful and talented artist ... but who just can't manage to sell
any of her artwork on the open market.

Your new partner is an agent for every person with limited, if any, job
skills. But who wanted a job at City Hall. An agent for tinhorn dictators
in fancy military uniforms grasping for American foreign aid. An agent
for multi-million-dollar companies who want someone else to pay for their
overseas advertising. An agent for everybody who wants to use the
unimaginable power of this agent's for his or her personal enrichment and

That agent is our wonderful, caring, compassionate, oppressive
government. Believe me, you will be awed by the unimaginable power this
agent has. Power that you do not have. A power that no individual has, or
will have. This agent has the legal power to use force, deadly force, to
accomplish its goals.

You have no choice here. Your new friend is just going to walk up to you,
introduce itself rather gruffly, hand you a few forms to fill out, and
move right on in. Say hello to your own personal one-ton gorilla. It will
sleep anywhere it wants to.

Now, let me tell you, this agent is not cheap. As you become successful
it will seize about 40% of everything you earn. And no, I'm sorry, there
just isn't any way you can fire this agent of plunder, and you can't
decrease it's share of your income. That power rests with him, not you.

So, here I am saying negative things to you about government. Well, be
clear on this: It is not wrong to distrust government. It is not wrong to
fear government. In certain cases it is not even wrong to despise
government, for government is inherently evil. Yes,-- a necessary evil,
but dangerous nonetheless--somewhat like a drug. Just as a drug that in
the proper dosage can save your life, an overdose of government can be

Now let's address a few things that have been crammed into your minds at
this university. There are some ideas you need to expunge as soon as
possible. These ideas may work well in academic environment, but they
fail miserably out there in the real world.

First, that favorite buzz word of the media, government and academia:

You have been taught that the real value of any group of people - be it a
social group, an employee group, a management group, whatever--is based
on diversity. This is a favored liberal ideal because diversity is based
not on an individual's abilities or character, but on a person's identity
and status as a member of a group. Ye, it's that liberal group identity
thing again.

Within the great diversity movement group identification--be it racial,
gender-based, or some other minority status--means more than the
individual's integrity, character or other qualifications.

Brace yourself. You are about to move from this academic atmosphere where
diversity rules, to a workplace and a culture where individual
achievement and excellence actually count. No matter what your professors
have taught you over the last four years, you are about to learn that
diversity is absolutely no replacement for excellence, ability, and
individual hard work. From this day on every single time you hear the
word "diversity" you can rest assured that there is someone close by who
is determined to rob you of every vestige of individuality you possess.

We also need to address this thing you seem to have about "rights." We
have witnessed an obscene explosion of so-called "rights" in the last few
decades, usually emanating from college campuses.

You know the mantra: You have the right to a job. The right to a place to
live. The right to a living wage. The right to health care. The right to
an education. You probably even have your own pet right - the right to a
Beemer, for instance, or the right to have someone else provide for that
child you plan on downloading in a year or so.

Forget it. Forget those rights! I'll tell you what your rights are! You
have a right to live free, and to the results of your labor. I'll also
tell you have no right to any portion of the life or labor of another.

You may, for instance, think that you have a right to health care. After
all, Hillary said so, didn't she? But you cannot receive health care
unless some doctor or health practitioner surrenders some of his
time--his life--to you. He may be willing to do this for compensation,
but that's his choice. You have no "right" to his time or property. You
have no right to his or any other person's life or to any portion

You may also think you have some "right" to a job, a job with a living
wage, whatever that is. Do you mean to tell me that you have a right to
force your services on another person, and then the right to demand that
this person compensate you with their money? Sorry, forget it. I am sure
you would scream if some urban outdoorsmen (that would be "homeless
person" for those of you who don't want to give these less fortunate
people a romantic and adventurous title) came to you and demanded his job
and your money.

The people who have been telling you about all the rights you have are
simply exercising one of theirs--the right to be imbeciles. Their being
imbeciles didn't cost anyone else either property or time. It's their
right, and they exercise it brilliantly.

By the way, did you catch my use of the phrase "less fortunate" a bit ago
when I was talking about the urban outdoorsmen? That phrase is a favorite
of the Left. Think about it, and you'll understand why.

To imply that one person is homeless, destitute, dirty, drunk, spaced out
on drugs, unemployable, and generally miserable because he is "less
fortunate" is to imply that a successful person--one with a job, a home
and a future--is in that position because he or she was "fortunate." The
dictionary says that fortunate means "having derived good from an
unexpected place." There is nothing unexpected about deriving good from
hard work. There is also nothing unexpected about deriving misery from
choosing drugs, alcohol, and the street.

If the Left can create the common perception that success and failure are
simple matters of "fortune" or "luck," then it is easy to promote and
justify their various income redistribution schemes. After all, we are
just evening out the odds a little bit.

This "success equals luck" idea the liberals like to push is seen
everywhere. Democratic presidential candidate Richard Gephardt refers to
high-achievers as "people who have won life's lottery." He wants you to
believe they are making the big bucks because they are lucky.

It's not luck, my friends. It's choice. One of the greatest lessons I
ever learned was in a book by Og Mandino, entitled "The Greatest Secret
in the World." The lesson? Very simple: "Use wisely your power of

That bum sitting on a heating grate, smelling like a wharf rat? He's
there by choice. He is there because of the sum total of the choices he
has made in his life. This truism is absolutely the hardest thing for
some people to accept, especially those who consider themselves to be
victims of something or other - victims of discrimination, bad luck, the
system, capitalism, whatever. After all, nobody really wants to accept
the blame for his or her position in life. Not when it is so much easier
to point and say, "Look! He did this to me!" than it is to look into a
mirror and say, "You S.O.B.! You did this to me!"

The key to accepting responsibility for your life is to accept the fact
that your choices, every one of them, are leading you inexorably to
either success or failure, however you define those terms.

Some of the choices are obvious: Whether or not to stay in school.
Whether or not to get pregnant. Whether or not to hit the bottle. Whether
or not to keep this job you hate until you get another better-paying job.
Whether or not to save some of your money, or saddle yourself with huge
payments for that new car.

Some of the choices are seemingly insignificant: Whom to go to the movies
with. Whose car to ride home in. Whether to watch the tube tonight, or
read a book on investing. But, and you can be sure of this, each choice
counts. Each choice is a building block - some large, some small. But
each one is a part of the structure of your life. If you make the right
choices, or if you make more right choices than wrong ones, something
absolutely terrible may happen to you. Something unthinkable. You, my
friend, could become one of the hated, the evil, the ugly, the feared,
the filthy, the successful, the rich.

Quite a few people have made that mistake.

The rich basically serve two purposes in this country. First, they
provide the investments, the investment capital, and the brains for the
formation of new businesses. Businesses that hire people. Businesses that
send millions of paychecks home each week to the un-rich.

Second, the rich are a wonderful object of ridicule, distrust, and
hatred. Few things are more valuable to a politician than the envy most
Americans feel for the evil rich.

Envy is a powerful emotion. Even more powerful than the emotional
minefield that surrounded Bill Clinton when he reviewed his last batch of
White House interns. Politicians use envy to get votes and power. And
they keep that power by promising the envious that the envied will be
punished: "The rich will pay their fair share of taxes if I have anything
to do with it.' The truth is that the top 10% of income earners in this
country pays almost 50% of all income taxes collected. I shudder to think
what these job producers would be paying if our tax system were any more

You have heard, no doubt, that in the rich get richer and the poor get
poorer. Interestingly enough, our government's own numbers show that many
of the poor actually get richer, and that quite a few of the rich
actually get poorer. But for the rich who do actually get richer, and the
poor who remain poor ... there's an explanation -- a reason. The rich,
you see, keep doing the things that make them rich; while the poor keep
doing the things that make them poor.

Speaking of the poor, during your adult life you are going to hear an
endless string of politicians bemoaning the plight of the poor. So, you
need to know that under our government's definition of "poor" you can
have a $5 million net worth, a $300,000 home and a new $90,000 Mercedes,
all completely paid for. You can also have a maid, cook, and valet, and
$1 million in your checking account, and you can still be officially
defined by our government as "living in poverty." Now there's something
you haven't seen on the evening news.

How does the government pull this one off? Very simple, really. To
determine whether or not some poor soul is "living in poverty," the
government measures one thing -- just one thing. Income. It doesn't
matter one bit how much you have, how much you own, how many cars you
drive or how big they are, whether or not your pool is heated, whether
you winter in Aspen and spend the summers in the Bahamas, or how much is
in your savings account. It only matters how much income you claim in
that particular year. This means that if you take a one-year leave of
absence from your high-paying job and decide to live off the money in
your savings and checking accounts while you write the next great
American novel, the government says you are 'living in poverty."

This isn't exactly what you had in mind when you heard these gloomy
statistics, is it?

Do you need more convincing? Try this. The government's own statistics
show that people who are said to be "living in poverty" spend more than
$1.50 for each dollar of income they claim.  Something is a bit fishy
here. Just remember all this the next time Peter Jennings puffs up and
tells you about some hideous new poverty statistics.

Why has the government concocted this phony poverty scam? Because the
government needs an excuse to grow and to expand its social welfare
programs, which translates into an expansion of its power. If the
government can convince you, in all your compassion, that the number of
"poor" is increasing, it will have all the excuse it needs to sway an
electorate suffering from the advanced stages of Obsessive-Compulsive
Compassion Disorder.

I'm about to be stoned by the faculty here. They've already changed their
minds about that honorary degree I was going to get. That's OK, though. I
still have my Ph.D. in Insensitivity from the Neal Boortz Institute for
Insensitivity Training.  I learned that, in short, sensitivity sucks.
It's a trap.  Think about it--the truth knows no sensitivity.  Life can
be insensitive. Wallow too much in sensitivity and you'll be unable to
with life, or the truth. So, get over it.

Now, before the dean has me shackled and hauled off, I have a few random

* You need to register to vote, unless you are on welfare. If you are
living off the efforts of others, please do us the favor of sitting down
and shutting up until you are on your own again.

* When you do vote, your votes for the House and the Senate are more
important than your vote for president. The House controls the purse
strings, so concentrate your awareness there.

* Liars cannot be trusted, even when the liar is the president of the
United States. If someone can't deal honestly with you, send him or her

* Don't bow to the temptation to use the government as an instrument of
plunder. If it is wrong for you to take money from someone else who
earned it -- to take their money by force for your own needs -- then it
is certainly just as wrong for you to demand that the government step
forward and do this dirty work for you.

* Don't look in other people's pockets. You have no business there. What
they earn is theirs. What you earn is yours. Keep it that way. Nobody
owes you anything, except to respect your privacy and your rights, and
leave you the hell alone.

* Speaking of earning, the revered 40-hour workweek is for losers. Forty
hours should be considered the minimum, not the maximum. You don't see
highly successful people clocking out of the office every afternoon at
five. The losers are the ones caught up in that afternoon rush hour. The
winners drive home in the dark.

* Free speech is meant to protect unpopular speech. Popular speech, by
definition, needs no protection.

* Finally (and aren't you glad to hear that word), as Og Mandino wrote,

1. Proclaim your rarity. Each of you is a rare and unique human being.

2. Use wisely your power of choice.

3. Go the extra mile ... drive home in the dark.

Oh, and put off buying a television set as long as you can.

Now, if you have any idea at all what's good for you, you will get the
hell out of here and never come back.

Class dismissed!

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