Obama Brings Back 'Virtue of Selfishness' -- But in Different Context

CLEVELAND, Ohop -- Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., brought back the Ayn Rand-ian "virtue of selfishness" clause he's used in the past to describe the way the McCain-Palin ticket has tried to appeal to those who are reluctant to pay higher taxes.  But tonight he used it in a different, less controversial way.

"The change we need won’t come from government alone," Obama said to a crowd of an estimated 80,000. "It will come from each of us doing our part in our own lives, in our own communities. It will come from each of us looking after ourselves and our families but also looking after each other. You know I – it’s been awhile now – we’ve made a virtue out of selfishness, there’s no virtue in that. We made a virtue of irresponsibility and we need to usher in a new spirit of service and sacrifice and responsibly."

And on the same day Republicans have begun attacking him for a January interview he gave in which he discussed ways to incentivize coal plants converting to new technology -- and to penalize those that plan on using old technology -- Obama brought up his support for clean coal technology in his public, on the stump, remarks for the first time since Sept. 29. (At least as far as we can tell.)

"We can invest $15 billion a year in renewable sources so energy,  building wind turbines and solar panels, a new electricity grid, the next generation of biofuels, invest in clean coal technology –- find ways –- we can create 5 million new jobs, new energy jobs all across this country," Obama said.

-- Jake Tapper and Sunlen Miller

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