Reverend Wright Stuff Exposes What Romney Is Really Worried About

Rich guy Joe Ricketts, founder of TD Ameritrade and whose family owns most of the North Siders, also known as the Chicago Cubs, funds a right-wing Super PAC (what self-respecting rich bloke doesn’t these days? I mean, America is for sale and, all in all, it’s going fairly cheaply).

His Super PAC was considering a proposal to do what John McCain wouldn’t do in 2008: dramatically stir up more white angst than was already a part of that campaign season.

The title of the proposal was “The Defeat of Barack Hussein Obama: The Ricketts Plan to End His Spending for Good.”  The appeal:

Our plan is to do exactly what John McCain would not let us do: Show the world how Barack Obama’s opinions of America and the world were formed. And why the influence of that misguided mentor and our president’s formative years among left-wing intellectuals has brought our country to its knees.”

Romney, who didn’t exactly “repudiate” any of his friendly Super PACS that were making mincemeat of his primary opponents, did “repudiate” this latest effort to rehash the Jeremiah Wright stuff.

Of course, that is because it is obvious these attacks will only help Obama with independent voters, who knew all about Wright and his sermons last time and were not moved by them.

But beyond that, Mittens used the opportunity today to do two things. First, he is trying to force the Obama campaign to pivot away from attacking his Bain days, saying during a short news conference this afternoon that doing so amounted to Obama attacking him personally, as suggesting he is “not a good person or not a good guy“:

My own view is that we can talk about a lot of things but the center piece of his campaign is quite clearly character assassination. And the center piece of my campaign is gonna be my vision to get America working again and provide a brighter future for our kids…it’s about jobs and kids.

Yes, jobs and kids. That’s what it’s about. Except in February, when Mittens was under the dark influence of Sean Hannity, it was about something else:

I think again that the president takes his philosophical leanings in this regard, not from those who are ardent believers in various faiths but instead from those who would like America to be more secular. And I’m not sure which is worse, him listening to Reverend Wright or him saying that we must be a less than Christian nation.

I suppose one could twist that statement into it being about “jobs and kids,” but it would take an Etch-A-Romney effort to do so.

Finally, Romney is trying to get his story straight about Bain. Throughout the primary, when he was being relentlessly attacked by Gingrich and Perry for being a vulture capitalist, Mittens couldn’t quite figure out how to respond effectively, except to attack them for attacking a fellow Republican capitalist.

Now, though, we see his general campaign defense for pre-political life shaping up:

My effort at Bain Capital, as you know, was in every case designed to try and make the enterprises we invested in more successful, to grow them. There’s this  fiction that somehow you can be highly successful by stripping assets from enterprise and walking away with lots of money and killing the enterprise. There may be some people who know how to do that, I sure don’t. Our approach was to always make try and make the enterprise more successful.

The statements Romney made today suggest that the exposing Romney’s Bain past has been effective, or is expected to be effective, and Mittens wants to shut it down.

The response from Democrats should be: double down and keep talking about it.

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  1. ansonburlingame

     /  May 17, 2012

    A business is failing, along with the jobs of those employeed in that business. If it is a publicly traded business, stockholders also lose money.

    Then an honest man that plays by the rules comes in to restructure and return the business to profitability. He collects money from investors that trust him and then goes about his tasks, a single minded task, to resotre the business to profitability.

    And that by Democrat Party standards is WRONG. And the attack ads will at least insinuate dishonest, immoral or even illegal attempts to return a business to profitability.

    In my view Romney is not dishonest, immoral or as far as I can tell has never done anything illegal in business or politics.

    When a business fails or is in the process of failing, should people be fired for failing to run a business correctly, meaning profitably? Of course they should be fired, simply for not doing their jobs, whether in the “front” office of on the assembly line. NO business is created to provide jobs. It is created to produce a profit.

    Go in with the idea to “clean house” and you may well remove some good people. Firing people is NOT the intent. It is returning the business to profitability, a dirty word to those on the left.

    The measure of success of any business is the ability of that business to return a profit. My father was a small town insurance agency and his profit put food at my table and clothes on my back. Anything wrong with that? Sometimes Dad took money out of his profits to help a hard hit farmer that the big companies would not pay. No profit, no “help” from my Dad.

    In Dad’s case it was maybe $100 here or there, to help out. Today some businesses spend $1 Million in that same way as do some venture capitalists but we never read about those stories of self sacrifice on the part of individuals or companies.

    Nope we only read about vulture capitalists, right?

    I wonder how major success stories like Bill Gates and Microsoft or Steve Jobs and Apple would turn out without such capital infusion into their early businesses? Do you realize that if YOU had invested about $1000 in MIcrosoft about 40 years ago and let the dividends be reinested over those years, that with NO EFFORT on your part whatsoever, you would today be a multimillionaire?

    Same with Apple or Coca-Cola or other great and longstanding businesses that got their start with investors willing to take a risk and the men those investors hired, like Romney, to blaze the trails into new adventures.

    And that is WRONG, immoral or dishonest? Are you kidding me. It is the story of America, at least up until now.



    • Sedate Me

       /  May 18, 2012

      Complete, turd-polishing, claptrap that UTTERLY misses the point of the topic and especially the criticism of Vulture Capitalists.

      Bill Gates and Steve Jobs were talented individuals (blessed with more access to capital than most) that produced actual products (at the perfect moment in time). Coke & Pepsi sold products with permanent and steady appeal. These groups barely have any relation to each other, but neither has any relation whatsoever to what Vulture Capitalists do. None.

      Vulture Capitalists make no product or service there is a public demand for. They prey upon struggling/dying businesses and attempt to make the corpse look like it has re-animated. Then they pawn it off to whatever suckers are foolish enough to risk buying it. Sometimes it works and the corpse walks again, if only for a couple of years. Most of the time, what they do ranges from grave robbing to putting lipstick on a pig. At their most useful, they’re the folks who clean up murder sites. To deny that what they do isn’t at least distasteful, bottom feeding, behaviour is Pollyanna-ic at best.

      Yet you are trying to hide this activity under the more noble banner of Free Market capitalism (and even the American flag). It isn’t and should never be considered such. The Free Market is about engaging in an exchange of goods & services with customers. The reward comes from offering products at a price people are willing to pay. Fail to do that and your business will die a natural death….well unless you get a big bailout. Your corpse will be buried and perhaps somebody else will step into the void you left in the market and do a better job. THAT’S how it’s supposed to work.

      Vulture Capitalism is a Dr Frankenstein Joint. It distorts the supposedly natural flow of business. It’s like a hostile bailout and they people who do it are like the servants that stole and sold Scrooge’s stuff after he died….only a hell of a lot richer. Yet this wealth results from minimal, if any, utility to the economy.

      While everybody knows it’s immoral, Vulture Capitalism may not be technically “immoral” because it’s far too recent an activity to be specifically covered by any religion. But morality is highly relative anyway. As for illegal, the idea that Congress would make illegal anything the financial industry wants to do is laughable. Perhaps a more applicable word here is AMORAL. It is an activity that has a complete absence of, indifference towards, or disregard for moral beliefs. Vulture Capitalism is an AMORAL activity done with one intention, taking something that belonged to somebody else and doing whatever it takes, even using slight of hand, to gain profit. They don’t even stick around to live with the consequences of their actions. They chop up the corpse and run off leaving somebody else holding the bag.

      Vulture Capitalism is PROFITEERING OFF THE FAILURE OF OTHERS without even as much as the “nobility” of being a more successful competitor or even the courage to/responsibility of having to live with your decisions. Pretend as much as you like, but THERE IS NO DIGNITY IN IT. Any positive result in what they do is completely accidental.


  2. ansonburlingame

     /  May 17, 2012

    Sorry, I forgot to add, that the theme of this blog was GOP thoughts of briging back the Rev. Wright comments into this current campaign.

    No one will ever PROVE that Rev Wright had any effect on President Obama’s current ideas, politically. BUT if you sit in front of a man preaching black liberation theology for 20 years and inject a few hyperboles such as “God Damn America” it does raise questions, does it not.

    Duane and the left I am sure are searching hard for the most radical Mormen cults and statements from within those cults to hurl into Romeny’s face, are they not. So what is the difference if the GOP does the same thing which a “church” in which Obama worshiped for a long time?

    Was a future President Romney raised in the “fires” of radical Mormen faith? No is my reply. Was Obama raised in the “fires” of Rev Wright or his Kenyan farther’s political ideas? No is my reply to that as well.

    Is one “left” and the other “right” in their political views? Sure they are unless you listen to Duane claiming that Obama is a centrist. That to me is ridiculous but if Obama is truly a centrist, by whatever standards you care to make, then so is Romney. A community organizer versus a venture capitalist, both being traditional America ideas to improve America.



    • Sedate Me

       /  May 18, 2012

      If “centrist” means being in step with the majority of people, neither is a centrist. Most people have given up on politics and don’t even so much as vote. Both Obama and Romney expect Americans to vote for them. The “winner” will be lucky if 25% of America agrees with him enough to vote for him. The whole political process is out of step with America, so it’s a faulty debate premise right from the start. But there is some validity in your theory that both are centrist in nature.

      Obama is such a spineless pussy, I can’t fathom him being anything but a centrist for longer than 10 minutes. (See: health care) As for Romney, he is whatever he needs to be to sell that used car.

      Both will essentially wind up wherever they get pushed and I think we all know who can push the hardest and the most consistently.


  3. ansonburlingame

     /  May 18, 2012


    You write Vulture Capitalist as if it was a real term generally used in business. The term commonly used is venture capitalists. Are you suggesting that all venture capitalists are “vultures, “? If so you are suggesting that NO venture capital be available for investment in any markets, I suppose.

    Some people start an idea in a garage and believe it has great potential. But they cannot prove such potential while working our of a garage. Banks, traditional banks will not take the risks to make the loans for the business to really get started.

    But venture capitalists do that all the time. Those firms take huge risks and when they get it correct the business turns into a “micosoft” , etc.

    Now are some of those venture capitalists “vultures” that simply choose to pick a failing business clean as a whistle and move on with only the bleached bones in their wake. Maybe some do so. But for sure not ALL of them or even most of them.

    Even the government tries to act like a venture capitalist. Just look at Solyndra as an example, a $500 million bet that failed, miserably. The Texas Teachers Pension fund tried to “invest” $100 million into a Vegas firm and wound up lossing $99 Million when the firm went bankrupt, just as Solyndra went bankrupt.

    NO venture capital fund or organization makes those kind of mistakes very often. If they did so, no one would invest in such firms. Nope, they look very carefully at the business (in a garage or in a real factory), make decisions as to the assets in that business and whether or not the assets can be sold for a profit or the business actually restructured to return to profitability.

    In the case of a brand new “garage” business, they bet on the “idea” being generated in the garage. In an existing business, a factory, they make calculations based on the assets and chances of the business surviving under new leadership.

    A venture capital fund, BAIN, had lots of money to invest in failing or potentially new businesses that needed “help”. They hired Romney to make WISE decisions how to invest that money. Had he squandered the money (lost money for Bain), we have never heard from Romney again.

    But he obviously made remarkably good decisions to invest Bain capital. Some businesses got “picked clean” and others went on to survive and prosper under Romney’s leadership.

    He then did the same thing in the Olympic situation, a “failing business” that he returned to prosperity and a great Olympic event.

    Then he did similar things in MA as governor, leading a very left wing State to soe level of prosperity.

    To me that is LEADERSHIP in its finest form, doing tough jobs, providing good results and raising the level of a business, a sports event or a State to more pros[erity.

    Look at the businesses, sporiing event or State government that he “took over” and tell me all or even a small majority of them are today failures.

    Romney to me at least shows a long history of leadership in tough situations and bringing “people” to a better level as a result of his leadership. Now compare that to Obama, over a lifetime.

    Now is that “turd polishing”?



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