Reid Not Backing Down

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has gotten a lot of criticism for his claim that an unnamed Bain investor told him that Mitt didn’t pay taxes for ten years.

But Reid’s not backing down.  Today he told reporters in Nevada, “I am not basing this on some figment of my imagination.  I have had a number of people tell me that.”

Does Mitt Have Aspergers Syndrome?

I looked at a picture of Mitt with Ed Miliband, the leader of Britain’s opposition Labour Party, and suddenly a little light bulb went on.  I’d seen that fake, forced smile a thousand times, but, all of a sudden, it occurred to me that Mitt may have Aspergers, which is part of the autism spectrum.

People with Aspergers lack empathy and have difficulty with social situations.  Basically, they find it very hard to relate to other people, to put themselves in their shoes.

If Mitt has Aspergers, it would explain a lot.

I posted right after Aurora urging everyone to watch Mitt’s comments about the tragedy, and his weird, insincere, robotic affect.  Aspergers would explain why he was so “off” when he made his statement.

It would explain stuff like “Corporations are people too” and “I enjoy firing people.”

It would explain his ruthlessness in the way Bain closed businesses and fired people without severance, health care, pensions, job training.  As Mitt’s opponent in his run for governor, Shannon O’Brien, asked about one such closing, “Couldn’t Bain have made $80 million on that deal instead of $100 million and helped the displaced workers?”  But if Mitt has Aspergers, he has a complete inability to imagine what getting fired was like for those people.

It would explain his citing the time he put his dog Seamus on the roof of the car as an example of his ability to solve problems, and having no clue why other people were horrified by that story.

I really think there’s more going on with Mitt than just being a spoiled, sheltered rich person.  A lot of rich people have genuine smiles.  If I had $250 million, I’d be grinning all the time.

Sean Hannity has been using the tag line “Can you afford four more?” about President Obama.  I wonder if we can afford a president with Aspergers, a president with no empathy at a time when so many Americans are suffering.

 

 

Mitt Puts Rafalca Up on the Roof

Although Mitt will be at the opening ceremonies of the Olympics, he is quick to distance himself from the rich guy taint of his dressage horse, in effect banishing poor Rafalca to the roof of the car, metaphorically speaking:

“This is Ann’s sport.  I’m not even sure which day the sport goes on.  She will get the chance to see it, I will not be watching the event.  I hope her horse does well.”

Notice he says “sport,” not “dressage.”  Notice it is “her horse,” even though the horse was paid for with his Bain money.

 

 

The Great Mitt-dini Escapes Agains (or Tries to)

OK, so Mitt isn’t responsible for the bad stuff that happened at Bain between 1999 and 2002 because he was off being in charge of the Olympics and then he “retroactively retired.”

So then I’m sure he’ll be happy to answer our questions about all the records from those Olympics.

Um, wait, no, he can’t answer those questions because he wasn’t there!  WTF?  According to his campaign, he left to run for governor of Massachusetts before they made the final decisions about the Olympic records.

Seriously, this is what his campaign is saying.  Can’t take the heat about Bain because he was at the Olympics, can’t take the heat about the Olympics because he was back in Massachusetts.

But those Olympic records were in good hands when Mitt left.  He had a Bain guy, Fraser Bullock, deal with them.

What happened to the records?  Many of them were destroyed.  The rest are at the J. Willard Marriott library at the University of Utah.  But before you head over to the campus, let me warn you that — yeah, you guessed it — you can’t see those records.  J. Willard has them sealed up nice and tight for Willard M.

This guy is just one giant red flag, practically screaming out, “Don’t trust me, don’t vote for me.”

If You Give Me $1.3 Billion, I Could Run the Olympics

Mitt is heading to London for the Olympics, hoping to remind us of his days running the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City.  That’s pretty much all he has left.

In 2008, he ran on Bain, the Olympics, and Massachusetts governor.

Now, Obamacare has made it impossible for him to run on his record as governor, since Romneycare was his big achievement.  He was trying to run on his experience at Bain, but that just opened a whole can of worms which are wriggling all over his campaign strategy.

So he’s lost two legs of his three-legged stool, and now the last leg is about to get sawed off.

The Dems have just released a great video* showing that Mitt got $1.3 billion from the federal government for his Olympics.  That compares to $609 million for the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and $75 million for the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics.  There is devastating footage of John McCain decrying the $1.3 billion as “outrageous,” “a national disgrace,” “an incredible pork-barrel project,” and “a rip off of the taxpayer.”

The video closes by saying that Mitt didn’t save the 2002 Olympics, the American taxpayer did.

His trip to London is going to remind us that Ann “You People” Romney goes to Europe to shop for dancing horses costing hundreds of thousands of dollars each, and that he wrote off almost $80,000 for one horse on that little peek at his tax returns he gave us.

I’m sure Mitt will get the dressage vote.  I don’t think they’re losing sleep over that in the White House or Chicago.

* “The Olympic Bailout,” DemRapidResponse, YouTube

Mitt Is LBO, Not VC, and Why It Matters

Mitt keeps trying to portray himself as a venture capital guy, but we need to remember that he was a leveraged buyout guy and the difference between them when it comes to job creation.

From “Mitt Romney:  The Man Without a Past,” Michael Hirsh, The Atlantic:

“Mitt Romney has an identity problem.  He is running for president by making promises about America’s future, but as a man who is largely without a past.  Not only has Romney renounced many of his previous positions — on abortion, immigration, gun control, climate change, and the individual mandate he once championed as Massachusetts governor.  He also refuses to divulge many details about what even he has said is his main qualification for the White House in a faltering economy:  his successful career in ‘private equity’ from 1984 to 1999 (or thereabouts).

“What is it about the private equity world that Romney doesn’t appear eager to bring up? … The term ‘private equity’ sounds respectable, but it is a euphemism for the old leveraged buyout deals we remember from the 1980s, the era of corporate raiders like T. Boone Pickens and Henry Kravis.  After junk-bond king Michael Milken, who funded a lot of those takeovers [and whom Mitt worked with], went to jail, the industry decided to rename itself in order to remove the taint.

This is Mitt Romney’s true world.  As the founder of Bain Capital, Romney became a brilliant LBO buccaneer who specialized in buying up firms by taking on a lot of debt, using the target firm as collateral, and then trying to make the firm profitable — often by breaking up or slashing jobs — to the point where Bain and its investors could load up the firm with even more debt, which Bain would then use to pay itself off.  That would ensure a profit for Bain investors whether or not the companies themselves succeeded in the long run. 

But job creation is irrelevant to Bain’s business model, which is all about paying back investors.  Nor does the long-term fate of the companies that private-equity firms buy up matter crucially to Bain’s bottom line (though of course success is better).  The only real risk for Bain is that these companies fail to make enough initial profit in order to permit Bain to pile on more debt and extract a payout, so that it can make back its investment quickly.”  Emphasis added.

If people understand what Mitt did, and they want to vote for him anyway, that’s fine.  I just hate to think of all the people who will vote for him without really getting the Bain business model and the source of Mitt’s extraordinary wealth.

Here We Go Again

Another twisted bastard, 24-year-old James Eagan Holmes, massacred a bunch of people he didn’t know this morning, people enjoying the new Batman movie at a midnight screening in Aurora, Colorado, just 17 miles from where the Columbine shootings happened in 1999, although to me Columbine seems like yesterday.

As of now, there are 12 dead and 59 wounded, some of them children.

I’m assuming this insane guy lived in his own little world and wasn’t paying a whole lot of attention to Obama and Mitt, but I’m also assuming Rush and Glenn Beck and the Micheles (Bachmann and Malkin) and all the whack jobs will somehow concoct a theory tying the Bane character in the movie to Bain and somehow making this senseless shooting all Obama’s fault.

No Love for Mittens

Politico has a story* cataloging the slings and arrows conservatives like Charles Krauthammer, William Kristol, Rich Lowry, Peggy Noonan, and Rupert Murdoch have been flinging at the hapless Mittens.  It shows how loathed Mitt is by his own team.  He’s kind of the A-Rod of the GOP.  From the article:

“But in the past few weeks, the critiques have reached new levels of intensity, as columnists, commentators, operatives and donors fret that Romney is losing control of the 2012 debate amid a Democratic assault on his personal finances and stewardship of Bain Capital.

“Most of the criticism falls into one of several categories:  Romney’s not a reliable conservative.  He’s inarticulate about policy and light on vision.  He’s not tough enough for a presidential campaign.  The aides who surround Romney aren’t up to the job.”

I would add that all this was true when he ran last time, yet there was no serious Stop Mitt movement in the GOP.

I would also add that there may be years when Mitt paid no federal income taxes.  Whether we assume that from his silence or we find it out because he’s eventually pushed into disclosure, that is devastating.

* “Conservative elites club Mitt Romney,” Alexander Burns and Maggie Haberman