Posts Tagged ‘Bain Capital’

A Challenge to Gingrich, Perry, Romney

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

Attacking or Governing Like Libs

A number of Republican candidates have begun to assail Mitt Romney on the basis of his time with Bain Capital, notably Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry, but the criticisms they level miss the mark in most respects, and worse, play upon the very worst arguments of leftists who say capitalism is inherently evil because it seeks profit and will occasionally lead to short-term job losses.  I have no problem criticizing Mitt Romney when it’s deserved, as these pages witness, but I have definite problems with this approach to attacking Romney.  It’s not that he’s immune to attack, and as I have covered, not everything ever done under the banner of Bain is beyond reproach, but this idea that buying companies, and subsequently liquidating them to turn a profit is a bad thing is quite obviously not one of them.

I have some pointed advice for former Speaker Newt Gingrich, and my own Governor, Rick Perry of Texas:  If you want to criticize Mitt Romney, stick to those parts of his record where he actually did something wrong.  Don’t berate him with the same things Obama will use to appeal to  his base, but instead concentrate on those things that appeal to the conservative base.  In short, focus on how Mitt Romney governed.

It’s amazing when even Ron Paul defends Romney on this point, while Gingrich and Perry attack.  None but the ignorant who live in a capitalist nation should have a problem with the aspects of capitalism that seek profit, sometimes by liquidating assets.  That’s not altogether unlike you having a garage sale and getting rid of things you aren’t using, or that are not up to snuff any longer, trying to recover some of their value before they become effectively worthless.  The money you re-capture by such a sale certainly helps you to pay other bills, or buy new items that more fully suit one’s purposes.  You can take the cash and invest it in a completely new venture.  This is an important function in any market, including in business, and to besmirch it as somehow wrong is a terrible disservice to the entire notion of capitalism.

I can name a number of things that Mitt Romney has done while governor of Massachusetts that deserve more than a little derision.  The problem is that neither Gingrich nor Perry are apt to say much about them, since they’ve advocated or  implemented similar.   Gingrich formerly favored healthcare mandates, and while he’s reversed his position on that, it’s hard for him to take pot-shots at Romney on this basis without somebody pulling out the label “hypocrite.”  Perry pushed for his Gardasil vaccine, and that too is a mandate, though of a different character and scale, but both speak to the same basic problem Romney has, and it’s worthwhile to note that where Gingrich and Romney differ on the healthcare insurance mandate is this:  Only Mitt ever actually imposed one.

I have addressed Romney’s imposition of health-care mandates and the various other programs of a socialist nature he imposed while governor of Massachusetts, and it’s true that in terms of what he has actually enacted, he is certainly the most socialistic big-government-inclined politician of the bunch.  He is definitely the candidate the media will attack most vigorously for both his vices and his virtues, but it is disappointing to see Gingrich and Perry attack on this basis.  If they’re smart, they’ll stop it, but part of the problem is that they’re falling into a well-laid trap set by the mainstream media:  The media is left-biased in the extreme, so what Gingrich and Perry are doing is to pick up the criticisms that will travel farthest in the media.  The media loves these attacks, and will revisit them many times over if Romney gets the nomination, but the attacks conservative Republicans should be aiming at Mitt Romney are not things the overwhelmingly liberal media wants to attack.

Falling for this is a terrible mistake, because it will not be the liberal media that chooses the Republicans’ nominee.  Gingrich is right to point out that Romney’s Massachusetts healthcare plan is a terrible leftist disaster, and that Obamacare had been largely modeled after it.  Perry would be right to raise Mitt’s “Welfare Wheels” program, or any of the other big government ideas that advanced while Romney was governor there.  Either would make perfect sense explaining how Romney was a friend of Teddy Kennedy’s legislative agenda, or how Romney was the beneficiary of crony capitalism on a few occasions.  Nobody on the conservative side would be offended by that.  The problem is that both of them are vulnerable on similar issues, and while perhaps to lesser degrees, they still have some explaining to do.  The problem is that it’s all the easier to simply attack Romney from a point of view more appealing to leftists in part because the media will transmit that message more willingly, but also in part because they believe they will get away with it.

I’d issue this challenge to Governor Perry and Speaker Gingrich:  Tell us the things about Mitt Romney’s record that condemn him as a big-government statist, and those things that mitigate the timber in your own eyes on these issues, and we’ll get along famously.  I’d issue a further challenged to Governor Romney:  Be prepared to explain in some sensible terms why tyranny imposed at the Federal level is bad, but at the state level, it’s no problem at all.  His pathetic “federalism” excuse for  Romney-care doesn’t cut it, and never has.   Governor Romney can impress the hell out of me by explaining to the American people why capitalism is good, but then he’s going to need to explain why he undertook so many programs and laws as the governor of Massachusetts that did nothing but undermine it.

This has been the sick irony of this insufficient field. It’s why 58% of Republicans don’t really like any of these candidates.  Gingrich and Perry had better drop the politically expedient attacks that are merely anti-capitalist rants, and instead hammer on Romney for those things that were egregiously offensive to liberty, and they’d better prepare when questions are raised about their own big-government reflexes.  Otherwise, voters just might get wise to this whole sad game, and walk away from the party this fall. After all, what is worse?  A nominee like Romney who would effectively govern like Obama, or a nominee who relies upon Obama’s tired class-warfare and anti-capitalist rhetoric?  Neither do I want a nominee who subverts capitalism in governing, nor do I want one who assails it in the press.  We need a president who will undertake to restore capitalism, and I don’t see much evidence that any of these three will do so.

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Romney, Bain Capital, Bail-Outs and an Un-Aired Kennedy Ad

Thursday, December 29th, 2011

Teddy Still Kicking Mitt Around

Back in 1994, when Mitt Romney was running for the US Senate in what would become a failed bid to unseat Senator Edward M. “Teddy” Kennedy, the Kennedy campaign put together one ad they didn’t air, and you probably haven’t seen. It covers the period of time when Mitt Romney was at Bain Capital, allegedly “saving the company” but what it reveals is something you might have guessed:  Bain Capital was the beneficiary of $10million in forgiveness from the FDIC.  In short, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation bailed out Bain Capital, and while you’ve been told what a swell businessman Willard “Mitt” Romney is, this un-aired ad from 1994 may tell us a bit of the truth:

Knowing this, it’s hardly any wonder that Mitt didn’t oppose TARP.  It’s hardly difficult to understand why he’s not against government bail-outs.  How could he dare be against them, having been the beneficiary of them?

I realize there are those who will argue that since this ad was put together by Teddy Kennedy’s campaign, it ought to have no bearing on the current race, because after all, Kennedy was a “big government liberal” in Romney parlance, but it seems back in the dark days when Romney took over the reins at Bain Capital, he wasn’t opposed to a little socialism either.

Say what you want about Mitt Romney, but if he’s the nominee, have fun with another four years of Obama, because while you may not wish to air Teddy Kennedy’s ad, you can bet Barack Obama’s outfit already has it updated and ready to go.  I can see it now, can’t you?

Dark, scary pictures, gloom and doom, and a narrator:

“Mitt Romney says he opposes most government bailouts of businesses, but did you know that in 1993, his company, Bain Capital was the recipient of $10 million in debt forgiveness from the FDIC?  At the same time, he profited from the deal.  Is this the kind of crony capitalism you want in the White House?  Tell Mitt Romney to keep his hands off your wallets, and tell the Republicans ‘No special deals.’ Help President Obama preserve change!”

Of course, since they’re liars, it will probably be embellished a good bit.

Nevertheless, if you nominate Mitt Romney, between this and Romneycare and a number of glaring scars on his record, there’s no chance he’ll beat Obama, but at least you’ll have had the privilege of the GOP’s “inevitable nominee.”

Good luck with that.

(Note: Video from a very left-leaning YouTube Member)