Everyone was waiting for Jon Stewart to come back, and come back he did with a vengeance. Last night he destroyed Mitt Romney’s “retroactive retirement” parsing in just a few words, showing that Romney has painted himself into a corner with his I was there I wasn’t there Bain routine.
Stewart broke Mitt’s argument down, “I was just the guy with the smoke-screenish yet still legal title of CEO managing director who was paid at least 100,000 a year to do what was according to me, Mitt Romney, was nothing – and that’s the kind of common sense business experience I hope to bring to the White House.”
Stewart mocked Romney’s latest excuse for why he can’t be held responsible for the outsourcing at Bain during 1999-2002 even though his name is on the SEC documents as sole shareholder, President, CEO and Chairman of the Board, “See, in 2012 I realize the company I was legally CEO of in 1999 did things that would hurt my presidential run in the present, so I retroactively wasn’t there.”
Stewart declared “retroactive retirement” to be “the worst use of a time machine I have ever seen.”
Mitt Romney may have been on retroactive retirement, and maybe he runs his businesses with such decisiveness that it takes three years to shift responsibility legally to other entities, but in the end, Romney made money off of the outsourcing – this can’t be denied. Even if he wasn’t managing the companies (though he was on the boards of several of the entities Bain took over), he profited from the choice to outsource.
As Stewart put it in layman’s terms, “I was just the guy with the smoke-screenish yet still legal title of CEO managing director who was paid at least 100,000 a year to do what was according to me, Mitt Romney, was nothing – and that’s the kind of common sense business experience I hope to bring to the White House.”
The question remains, can Mitt Romney fix this economy with his policies and what does his history as a businessman tell us about his ability to do so?
The answers to those questions involve examining why the economy isn’t “fixed” yet — and that takes us back to the Republican controlled House and their refusal to propose even one jobs bill. Then we trek on through the Republican obstruction to Obama’s jobs bills, refusing to pass it and even when he broke it down into bits and pieces, only after much pressure did they finally pass one – the Veterans Jobs section. So we are to assume that Republicans would not obstruct Mitt Romney, but obstruct him from what?
Republicans haven’t put forth a jobs bill.
Mitt Romney’s jobs plan centers on his tax policy, which in turn is based on trickle down economic theory that has been proven a bust for 98% of the country.
Retroactive retirement is a super lame way to deny responsibility for how Romney made his money. More to the point, the “Bain way” is to take over a company, take out loans in order to pay large dividends to the Bain shareholders and CEOs, and then after managing the company in such a way as to not reinvest profits into the business but squeeze it dry, declare bankruptcy if it appeared dead. But only after the Bain people got their money. If jobs got shipped overseas or lost here in America in order to cut costs, well, those were the breaks.
Sometimes Bain was able to save a company, like Staples, where they created such “middle class jobs” as pay what Romney described as a “good middle class wage” of $19,000 a year. So even when the jobs stayed here and Bain was “successful” with the business and not just the books, things were not so great for the workers. But the CEOs always made out. Either way.
That’s the model they used many times, and no matter how Romney tries to run away from it, I can’t see how that model applies to successfully running America. Sure, he can pull a Bush, borrow money from China while cutting taxes on the rich and starting two wars that he isn’t putting on the budget, but this is not business success- it’s a financial shell game. Yes, many companies are very successful due to knowing how to play those shell games, but that doesn’t make them ethical, nor does it render them solid businesses.
In other words, the business of finance games is not the business of manufacturing jobs here in America. Being good at playing finance games is not the same thing as being good at building goods and services businesses that actually create jobs here in America. If Bain’s track record is anything to go on, the odds aren’t with the middle class should Romney make it to the White House.
Is America a struggling company that should be leveraged on debt? Oh, wait, we already did and that’s how we got here, courtesy of the party of “fiscal conservatives”.
No matter how you feel about those approaches, in the end, it’s hard to see how being good at shell games is the best qualification for running America. And politically speaking, when your lame excuses for why you aren’t accountable are being mocked on late night television, you have a problem.
The Republican Party picked the person who most represents what they have become behind the Tea Party rhetoric; Mitt Romney is the beneficiary of years of trickle down policies and deregulations. He is no Tea Party clown; he’s the real deal.
Romney can’t stop whining about being called to account for how Bain made its money, and yet he is running on how much money he made as proof of how successful he is — never mind that he was born to the manor and seems clueless as to how it would have been more remarkable for him to have become poverty stricken than for him to have used all of his good fortune and privilege to end up even more wealthy than he started off.