Serendipity SOUL | Thursday Open Thread | Al Jarreau Week!

TAKE FIVE!

And for this weeks Romney SLAM…

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70 Responses to Serendipity SOUL | Thursday Open Thread | Al Jarreau Week!

  1. rikyrah says:

    I miss SouthernGirl2

  2. rikyrah says:

    Now Larry O has David Corn on with his story about Willard investing in a Chinese company involved in OUTSOURCING. …and there is NO DISPUTE that Willard was in charge of Bain at the time.

  3. rikyrah says:

    Is anyone else watching Larry O?

    this former SEC Commissioner is cracking me up. She’s so soft, and mild mannered, yet, with her words, it’s shiv shiv shiv to Willard.

    BWA HA HA HA HA HA HA

  4. rikyrah says:

    I learned something new today on the Willard story watching Lawrence O’Donnell’s show tonight.

    We need to stop saying that Willard earned $100,000 in those years after he supposedly left. That is not the case. He got AT LEAST $100,000. The actual amount is ….you guessed it….IN THE TAX RETURNS.

  5. rikyrah says:

    found this in the comments at DK:

    What’s really weird about Romney(21+ / 0-)

    is that he’s in a no-win situation here because of his, and his campaign’s, own built-in assumptions.

    1. Romney seems to think that his calling for a correction alone, regardless of what he’s demanding a correction or retraction for not actually being rebutted or refuted at all, should be enough to merit him being issued one. I say you were wrong, you admit it, and take whatever it is back. Because ‘shut up’ that’s why. Seriously. Do it. That’s Sarah Palinesque not Zombie Reagan.

    Earth to Mitt Romney: If you dispute the story you have to specifically point out, detail by detail, where the Globe got the story wrong and cite the relevant information that backs you up and refutes the Globes reporting. Otherwise you have no legs to stand on. “I don’t like what you said” is not grounds for the Globe walking their story back.

    So, that makes him look stupid, clueless, and out of tough.

    2. If the idea is to move beyond Bain, Romney is doing as much as anyone to keep the story alive by demanding, without anything to back his case up or refute the story, a ‘you hurt my fee-fees, and that is the same as lying about me’ tact. Rove Atwater shit requires a certain kind of person to pull it off, and Mittens Romney isn’t that guy. Dick Cheney, a goon of the Right if there ever was one, never painted himself into a corner where his fee-fees being boo-booed was a key part of the narrative. That motherfucker shot somebody in the face, and it was the guy who got shot in the face, by him, who was at fault according to Darth Cheney and his shadow cloud of evil.

    3. If the idea is to make chicken salad out of chicken shit here, by making yourself look like you are taking it to the “liberal media”, you kind of can’t look like a weak and out-of-touch fool who doesn’t know what he is talking about and yet wants his fee-fees respected anyway at the end. You want to look like a thuggish defiant asshole, and proud of it, at the end.

    In the Stupid vs. Evil debate, Romney is a ‘yes’.

  6. rikyrah says:

    utaustinliberal @utaustinliberal

    Getting called a “liar” by @MittRomney is like being called a “thief” by Bernie Madoff.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Lawrence O’Donnell ✔@Lawrence

    Romney drops the L word on Obama. Really? The worst liar in campaign history calls opponent a liar? Ok tonight whole show is Romney’s lies.

  8. rikyrah says:

    Henry Blodget from BusinessInsider sums it up:

    So, enough with walking a fine line rhetorically.

    Here are the questions that the Romney campaign needs to answer:

    Was Mitt Romney “chairman, CEO, and President” of Bain from 1999-2002 (even if he had physically “left” and was spending 100% of his time running the Olympics)? If the answer is “yes,” then Romney is responsible for what Bain did during that period–full stop.

    OR

    Were the filings submitted to the SEC inaccurate?

    The answer to those two questions cannot be “both.” It’s one or the other.

  9. rikyrah says:

    The Bain Of This Campaign, Ctd

    The more I learn the more it seems to me that the Globe story (which was not a scoop as such and relied on TPM and others) could be a turning point in the campaign. And I’m learning from Dish readers as usual. One writes:


    You asked: “But if you are still technically the owner, do you not have responsibility for the decisions of your own company?”

    Short answer: Yes. As CEO and Chairman, you have a fiduciary duty that you owe to the firm. You are, legally, responsible (at least in part) for the decisions of your own company. If anything goes wrong, and the company is sued, or charged with criminal behavior, you’re on the hook, one way or another: either you were ultimately responsible for the decisions made, or you violated your fiduciary duty by ignoring your responsibilities and allowing bad (or illegal) things to happen.

    To look at it another way, what kind of company makes a change at the highest level of corporate governance (and it doesn’t get any higher than CEO and Chairman) and takes over three years to actually appoint replacements? That would be such an astonishing lapse in good corporate governance practices that I’d almost rather believe Romney was just lying when he said he turned over control in 1999 (of course, since he certified that in separate filings, he’d be on the hook for a felony if that’s the case).

    Seriously, this guy’s entire campaign is premised on the idea that he “knows how business works,” and his company doesn’t even bother replacing him as CEO and Chairman for three years after he effectively steps down? That sure isn’t how business is supposed to work. One of the main points of SEC filings is that you’re supposed to be able to glance at them and know who the hell is running the company. Who are its corporate officers? Who is on the board? Apparently, Mr. Romney would have us believe that if you were relying on Bain’s filings for 2000 through 2002, you wouldn’t have been able to glean that information, because he had passed his responsibilities on to “other partners.” (In case you’re wondering, yes, I actually am an attorney.)

    For me, there are two questions: 1. Did Romney mislead the SEC in those documents or is he misleading us now? Either way, he is guilty of either a felony or a whopper. 2. What was he paid $100,000 a year for? So far, no answer to either of these simple questions from Boston. The lack of a salient, immediate response is what strikes me. Maybe it will come. But this is seriously bad news for the GOP.

    http://andrewsullivan.thedailybeast.com/2012/07/the-bain-2.html

  10. rikyrah says:

    found this in the comments at Balloon Juice:

    the Conster Says:

    @Tonal Crow:

    Yup. Romney’s got to choose between stupid and lying or evil and lying. Obama’s people ain’t letting the press off the hook this time for not asking the questions, because they’re asking the questions now, and leaving the media to play the “fact checking” game, now with obvious provable Romney bias. It’s almost like 11 dimensional chess. Popcorn!

  11. rikyrah says:

    From ‘repeal and replace’ to ‘repeal and reverse’
    By Steve Benen
    Thu Jul 12, 2012 4:00 PM EDT.

    Their health care policy is to not have a health care policy.

    Every day for about a year, the line congressional Republicans took on health care was always the same: “repeal and replace.” It’s pretty obvious now that the poll-tested phrase was a sham, and Ed Kilgore’s alternative description is far more accurate: “repeal and reverse.”

    Politico reports today that, despite all the talk from the GOP about an alternative to the Affordable Care Act, Republicans haven’t even tried to come up with a health policy. Perhaps more importantly, the L.A. Times added that the GOP now rejects the very idea that they should come with “replacement legislation” that expands health coverage “as much as the current law.”

    In other words, Republicans intend to kill the entirety of the law, including the popular provisions Americans have come to expect and rely on, and if they get around to replacing it with anything, GOP policymakers won’t worry too much about whether it leaves millions of Americans with nothing.

    The usually mild-mannered Matt Miller is unimpressed (and seems kind of angry).

    The party may not have officially adopted the “let him die” policy of right-wing hecklers at that CNN primary debate, when Ron Paul was asked what should be done when an uninsured man shows up at the hospital. But as a practical matter, Republicans are in pretty unsavory territory. […]

    Fifty million uninsured Americans would be the immediate casualties of the GOP’s “let them eat the emergency room” mentality. But all of us would be at risk. In America — alone among wealthy nations — everyone is a pink slip or job change or new illness away from finding they have lost coverage or are uninsurable.

    This is the shameful reality behind the GOP’s rhetoric on health care. Republicans don’t want to spend a penny to insure the uninsured.

    This is demonstrably true. The House Republican plan in 2009 ignored the uninsured, and right-wing governors are blocking Medicaid expansion this year in order to make sure the uninsured stay that way. For generations, the Republican Party at least paid lip service to bringing access to affordable care to those without, but those days are long gone. As Chait recently put it, the GOP is “the only mainstream political party in the advanced world” to believe it’s acceptable to deny basic medical care to citizens based on their wealth.

    And for the first time anywhere, this has become a point of pride for 21st century Republicans. If the uninsured were political engaged and voted, the GOP would have a lot to worry about.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/07/12/12706855-from-repeal-and-replace-to-repeal-and-reverse?lite

  12. Ametia says:

    Globe will not issue correction to Romney

    By DYLAN BYERS |
    7/12/12 5:31 PM EDT

    • Ametia says:

      <b.GLOBE WILL NOT ISSUE CORRECTION TO ROMNEY

      Boston Globe editor Martin Baron emails Mitt Romney communications director Gail Gitcho:

      Dear Ms. Gitcho:

      We received your request late this afternoon for a correction regarding this morning’s Globe story. Having carefully reviewed that request, we see no basis for publishing a correction. The Globe story was entirely accurate.

      The Globe story was based on government documents filed by Bain Capital itself. Those described Governor Romney as remaining at the helm of Bain Capital as its “sole stockholder, chairman of the board, chief executive officer, and president” until 2002. The story also cited state financial disclosure forms filed by Romney that showed he earned income as a Bain “executive” in 2001 and 2002, separate from investment earnings.

      The Globe story accurately described the contents of those documents.

      The Globe story also gave a full account of the Romney campaign’s position that, notwithstanding several years of regulatory filings, Mitt Romney “retired from Bain Capital in 1999 … (and) has had no involvement in the management or investment activities of Bain Capital, or with any of its portfolio companies, since that time.” In your correction request, you reiterate points that are fully detailed in the Globe story.

      Sincerely,

      Martin Baron
      Editor, The Boston Globe

      SHORT: “NO”

      http://www.politico.com/blogs/media/

  13. Ametia says:


    D.C. officer investigated after comments about Michelle Obama alleged
    Source: Washigton Post

    By Clarence Williams and Mary Pat Flaherty, Updated: Thursday, July 12, 4:21 PM

    A D.C. police officer who worked as a motorcycle escort for White House officials and other dignitaries was moved to administrative duty Wednesday after he allegedly was overheard making threatening comments toward Michelle Obama, according to several police officials.

    The police department’s Internal Affairs Division is investigating the alleged comments and notified the U.S. Secret Service Wednesday, said the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to give details of the investigation.

    The motorman allegedly made the comments Wednesday morning as several officers from the Special Operations Division discussed threats against President Obama. It was not immediately clear where the alleged conversation took place or exactly how many officers took part in the conversation.

    During that conversation, the officials said, the officer allegedly said he would shoot the First Lady and then used his phone to retrieve a picture of the firearm he said he would use. It was not immediately clear what type of firearm was allegedly shown.

    snip

    Read more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/crime/dc-officer-investigated-after-comments-about-michelle-obama-alleged/2012/07/12/gJQAByh6fW_story.html?hpid=z3

    • Ametia says:

      Folks who do NOT have jobs, health insurance, a roof over their heads, or food in the bellies, could give a RAT’s AZZ about the federal deficit, particularly when under GWB’s admin who racked up the FEDERAL DEFICIT with 2 WARS, and TAX CUTS for HIS RICH BUDDIES.

  14. rikyrah says:

    Political Animal

    Blog

    July 12, 2012 8:44 AM
    The Payoff

    By Ed Kilgore

    I don’t know exactly who it was—perhaps someone in the comment threads—but the best line I heard yesterday is that the real payoff from Mitt Romney’s appearance at the NAACP convention yesterday would occur when Rush Limbaugh talked about it.

    Well, if that was the idea, it worked:
    This group wants to hear about tax increases and bigger government to take care of people. They don’t want to hear about self-reliance; they don’t want to hear about free enterprise. Free enterprise means you’ve gotta do it yourself. Free enterprise means it’s up to you. Free enterprise means you’re on your own. This group doesn’t want to hear that. I don’t think Romney got a single vote in here today….

    [Obama was] confident they’ll boo Romney, simply ‘cause Romney’s white.

    There’s a lot more, about the crowd ignorantly thinking ObamaCare was “free health care,” and about Eric Holder probably showing up with a New Black Panther Party escort to check media IDs, and about Romney being booed because he didn’t put on a phony black accent and instead sounded like “Snow White with testicles” (Rush was so pleased with himself for that phrase that he said it several times). The general message was that ol’ Mitt was brave enough to go tell the unpleasant facts of life to those people, and emerged unscathed and head high. He might be a little wooden, but he’s not afraid of being himself with those people.

    So Mitt Romney’s appearance at the NAACP worked out just fine. Maybe some swing voters saw him show up at the event and thought, “he’s not a bigot like some of his supporters.” Rush’s listeners got to hear that he survived the most hellish audience imaginable and stood up for their values. The actual members of the NAACP didn’t seem to much enjoy his speech, but then they were just props.

    http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal-a/2012_07/the_payoff038537.php

  15. rikyrah says:

    Projecting Mendacity

    By Ed Kilgore

    The theory that the animating spirit of the Romney campaign is the Rovian tactic of projecting one’s weaknesses onto the opponent just got a big boost, as Team Mitt put out an ad and a press release accusing the president of lying about the GOP candidate’s involvement in outsourcing while at Bain Capital, and of executing policies that encouraged outsourcing of jobs.

    There’s not actually much dispute that Bain was in fact an “outsourcing pioneer;” but the key issue is whether Romney can be held responsible for Bain deviltry that occurred after he “left” in 1999 to run the Salt Lake Winter Olympics. I put “left” in quotes because today’s news also includes a report from the Boston Globe on an SEC filing that shows Romney remained as CEO and sole stockholder in Bain until 2002, a little detail that Mitt has failed to mention publicly so far.

    Aside from confirming that the Bain/outsourcing attacks on Romney have been having an impact (as Obama campaign sources have been claiming lately), the new gambit from his campaign is probably also designed to (a) chip into Obama’s continuing advantage in personal favorability, while (b) reinforcing among GOP “base” voters the meme that the whole Obama enterprise is a vast Potemkin Village disguising his radicalism and unsavory association with America-haters and Christ-haters.

    If you read through all the back-and-forth between the two campaigns, which heavily features quotes from various WaPo stories, the saga also demonstrates that while few people read newspapers these days, they do provide great fodder for campaign ads.

    It will be interesting to see if the massively fact-challenged Republican presidential candidate keeps up the Liar! Liar! attack line. It’s not as though he comes to this particular argument with clean hands.

    http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal-a/2012_07/projecting_mendacity038542.php

  16. rikyrah says:

    Political Animal

    Blog

    July 12, 2012 2:38 PM
    Romney’s Quiet Courtship of the Christian Right

    By Ed Kilgore

    I think we’ve all figured that beneath the economic monomania of the Romney campaign’s message, there have been serious and ongoing efforts to communicate a broader agenda to the majority of conservative activists who actually care less about the performance of the economy than a hundred other things, from outlawing abortion to privatizing education to “entitlement reform” to the “Islamic Threat,” and on and on.

    But you sure don’t read much about these communications. So this report from Christian Right journalist David Brody of CBN is very interesting:

    The Brody File has learned that Mitt Romney’s campaign has begun a serious push to engage evangelical leaders behind the scenes, including weekly meetings, personal phone calls from Romney, discussions about appearing at more faith-based events, and serious dialogue about convening a gathering this fall with national evangelical leaders.

    In just the last few weeks, Mitt Romney has spoken on the phone a couple times with popular evangelical pastor Rick Warren, and there have been efforts to try and schedule a face-to-face meeting between Romney and Dr. James Dobson, one of the most respected evangelical leaders in the country.

    Peter Flaherty, a senior advisor for the Romney campaign, has been the main liaison when it comes to outreach within the conservative Christian community. He has spoken and met with numerous influential conservative Christian leaders, including regular meetings with Jim Daly, Tim Goeglin and Tom Minnery from Focus on the Family, Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council, President Ralph Reed with the Faith and Freedom Coalition, Dr. Richard Land with The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, Rev. Sammy Rodriguez with the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, Gary Bauer with American Values, Bob Reccord with the Council for National Policy, and Mark Rodgers, a former senior advisor to Rick Santorum

    Man, what a rogue’s gallery that last list involves! According to Brody, though, the courtship has been going on for years. I love this anecdote:

    http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal-a/2012_07/romneys_quiet_courtship_of_the038549.php#

  17. Ametia says:

    NEW YORK (The Borowitz Report) – Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney today released this doctor’s note from his longtime physician, Dr. Hamilton Tennace.

    To Whom It May Concern:

    I have been Willard Mitt Romney’s personal physician for the past thirty-two years. In that capacity, I believe I am uniquely qualified to address the issue of whether Mr. Romney left his post at Bain Capital in 1999, as he has said he did, or in 2002, as actual facts seem to suggest.

    I treated Mr. Romney throughout his tenure at Bain. During those years, I found him to be healthy, fit, and tan, but not dangerously so. From a health standpoint, those years were uneventful for Mr. Romney, with one notable exception.

    In 1999 I received an urgent call from Bain headquarters indicating that Mr. Romney had suffered a serious accident. Once I arrived on the scene, I learned that Mr. Romney had participated in a “going away party” to celebrate the end of his tenure at Bain and that he had been hit in the forehead with an exploding champagne cork. After he spent several days in the hospital for observation, it became clear to me that Mr. Romney was suffering from symptoms consistent with head trauma, including severe memory loss. For example, he could not remember several key episodes from his youth, including the time he pinned a gay student to the ground and cut off his hair.

    After I advised his partners at Bain that Mr. Romney’s recovery from this head trauma could be difficult and prolonged, they decided to keep him on as chief executive at Bain so that he could benefit from the company’s health coverage. It was decided that he would take a leave of absence from his duties at Bain to do something less demanding, and so he signed on to run the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics.

    When his duties at the Olympics were complete, Mr. Romney submitted to a full physical at the request of his partners to Bain to see if he was finally ready to make his much-delayed exit from the firm. He passed most of the cognitive tests with flying colors; he could remember the name of his wife and all of his sons, which in his case was an impressive feat. Only one question made him stumble. When I asked him what year it was, instead of 2002 he replied, “1999.”

    To be candid, I did not think much of his error at the time, although I now see it as a symptom of the chronic memory loss that persisted once he became Governor of Massachusetts. For example, after examining Gov. Romney just after his greatest legislative achievement, Massachusetts’ healthcare law, he had no memory of having any role in it. In subsequent appointments, Mr. Romney has been unable to remember other facts one might deem important, such as where he put all his money and what file drawer contains his tax returns.

    In closing, it is my medical opinion that Mr. Romney’s forgetfulness about when he departed Bain, as well as his vagueness on any number of other subjects, stem from that original head injury he suffered in 1999. Having said that, I do not believe that Mr. Romney’s bouts of amnesia should in any way prevent him from having a full, active public life. In running for the Presidency, they may even be an advantage.

    Sincerely,

    Dr. Hamilton Tennace, M.D.

    ****HOLERING****

  18. rikyrah says:

    found this in the comments at Balloon Juice about Willard:

    Bobby Thomson Says:

    As toxic as it is for him to argue that
    (1) he got paid six figures every year to do absolutely nothing, and
    (2) that his job as CEO was so inconsequential that he didn’t even need to hire an interim while he was away (suggesting that even when he was “at” Bain, he did jack shit), and
    (3) that he’s such a lightweight that he couldn’t even perform those meaningless tasks (that required no replacement) while also working on the Olympics,

    his people obviously have decided that the alternative is even worse.

    Just think about that for a minute.

    • Ametia says:

      Spot on Bobby Thompson! and might I add while Willard wasn’t doing JACKSHIT to earn his $$$$, Black folks and the rest of our DIVERSE country were doing the back-breaking, sweat til you drop labor, going to college, their sons and daughers volunteered to serve in the ARMED FORCES.

  19. rikyrah says:

    Iceland Has Hired An Ex-Cop To Hunt Down The Bankers That Wrecked Its Economy

    If you were involved in Icelandic high finance in the runup to the recession, you might want to start watching your back.

    That’s because the government has appointed a white collar crime bounty hunter who wants to haul your behind in (alive, to be sure).

    LeMonde reporter Charlotte Chabas has a profile of Ólafur Þór Hauksson, a former local police lieutenant whom the Iceland government appointed to track down individuals likely to have helped sink the country’s banking sector during the credit crunch.

    Hauksson’s job description, according to PressEurop’s translation of the piece:

    “On one hand, we have to investigate all suspicion of fraud and offences committed before 2009, on the other hand, we bring the lawsuits against the suspects to court ourselves,” Hauksson explains. This is a ‘totally new’ method which allows the investigators to “follow the case” and the judicial system to “know the cases like the back of their hand”. This is indispensable in order “to compete with the well-prepared defence attorneys”.

    Hauksson oversees a posse of 100 researchers to help track down outlaws. He’s netted some major convictions since starting in 2009, including the former chief of staff of the country’s finance minister on insider trading charges. Many others await their day in court, Chabas writes

    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/iceland-has-hired-an-ex-cop-bounty-hunter-to-go-after-the-bankers-that-wrecked-its-economy-2012-7#ixzz20R60S900

  20. rikyrah says:

    they are SO NOT PLAYING WITH WILLARD:

    Stef Cutter of Obama campaign (via politico)

    Deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter laid out the issue as the Obama team sees it: “Either Mitt Romney, through his own words and his own signature, was misrepresenting his position at Bain to the SEC, which is a felony. Or he was misrepresenting his position at Bain to the American people to avoid responsibility for some of the consequences of his investments” including layoffs and the outsourcing of jobs.

    If the latter is true, she said, it’s a “real character and trust issue” that voters should be aware of as they decide who to vote for in the presidential election. If Romney was still at Bain through 2002, he’s also “politically responsible for the consequences” of deals that the firm made through then

  21. rikyrah says:

    I just wanted to thank everyone for their prayers. My sister has had two different procedures, and knock on wood, they seem to have done her a great deal of good.

    She’s getting back to herself, and I’m relieved.

    thank you once again for all your prayers, and just keep her in your thoughts until we can get her back home.

  22. rikyrah says:

    Posted at 12:25 PM ET, 07/12/2012
    New Bain revelations put Romney in tough spot

    By Greg Sargent

    The Romney campaign has now responded to the big Boston Globe story pointing out that Romney is identified as a CEO of Bain Capital in SEC documents for several years after 1999, when he claimed he left the company. The story could be a big deal, because it could make it harder for Romney to avoid association with Bain’s more controversial deals — which are central to the Obama campaign’s attacks on Romney.

    Dylan Byers has statements from Romney campaign advisers. One reiterates that Romney left in 1999 and “had no input on investments or management of companies after that point.” A second says: “He was on the SEC filings becasue he was still technically the owner, but hadn’t transferred ownership to other partners.”

    In fairness to the Romney camp, one of the story’s key revelations is a bit thin. The lede claims that in the time period in question, Romney created “five new investment partnerships.” But later in the story, that assertion gets more vague.

    Post fact checker Glenn Kessler, who recently wrote that the Obama campaign was falsely blaming Romney for Bain deals that happened after he left, again dismisses the significance of the new allegations. “Just because you are listed as an owner of shares does not mean you have a managerial role,” Kessler wrote, though he said he might take another look at the issue.

    But here’s my question. Even if you accept that there’s no evidence Romney had direct involvement in Bain’s investment decisions, is this really the type of argument that’s going to fly with voters? My guess is that the distinction the Romney campaign is making here will be lost on them. They are unlikely to buy the argument that Romney bears no responsibility for the activites of a company during a period in which he is listed as the “chairman of the board, chief executive officer, and president” of the company.

    The Romney camp’s preferred framing of this story is that we should focus only on whether he had direct managerial control over the investments in question. On a conference call with reporters just now, however, Obama campaign counsel Bob Bauer strongly hinted that evidence of more direct involvement would soon emerge. “I would stay very much tuned on that,” he said

    Whether or not more evidence emerges, though, at the present moment the best possible argument here for Romney is that he should not be associated with the activities of a company at which he was listed as the CEO and chairman. Is this type of association really not fair game in politics? That’s an open question, and one that campaigns answer in varying ways, depending on whether they are the target or the accuser. But one thing is clear: It’s a very tough argument to make convincingly. My guess is that even some of Romney supporters are going to start expressing discomfort over this.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line

  23. rikyrah says:

    Romney Says He’ll Release 2011 Tax Return When It’s Ready

    By Richard Rubin – Jul 11, 2012 11:01 PM CT

    Presumed Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, responding to criticism from Democrats over his refusal to release tax returns from before 2010, said he will publicize his 2011 return when it’s completed.

    “The Democrats are always going to be critics,” he said in an interview yesterday on Fox Business Network. “Tax information is there, other financial disclosure is there.”

    Romney filed for an extension on his 2011 federal income taxes before the usual April deadline and has until Oct. 15 to complete the return — less than a month before the Nov. 6 election. Extensions are typical for taxpayers such as Romney with complicated finances.

    In January, he released his 2010 return and an estimated return for 2011. For 2010, Romney paid a 13.9 percent effective tax rate on more than $21 million in income, largely because he receives most of his income from capital gains and dividends taxed at preferential rates capped at 15 percent.

    Democrats have been calling on Romney to release prior years’ returns, citing the decision by his father, George Romney, to release 12 years of returns during his failed bid for the 1968 Republican presidential nomination.

    “Mitt Romney talks about this great family that he comes from, and I acknowledge it is,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat, said July 10. “But why doesn’t he follow the example set by his father and release his tax returns?”

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-07-11/romney-says-he-ll-release-2011-tax-return-when-it-s-ready.html

  24. rikyrah says:

    Team Romney Has Nothing

    by BooMan
    Thu Jul 12th, 2012 at 12:20:08 PM EST

    It looks to me like the Romney campaign doesn’t know how to respond to the story about their candidate’s “shadow years” as faux-CEO of Bain Capital. His spokesman came out and just flatly denied that the story was true without offering any explanation for how that could possibly be the case. He was listed as the CEO with the SEC. That fact is not in dispute. He testified before the Massachusetts Ballot Law Commission that he was merely on a leave of absence. Now David Axelrod is tweeting that Romney filed false statements with the SEC, which is something Romney’s lawyers must be taking a look at.
    It’s never easy to admit you’ve been telling gigantic lies, but it’s better than committing financial fraud. But even if Romney is essentially telling the truth about not having anything to do with Bain’s day-to-day operations, he doesn’t want to have to explain why he received a $100,000 salary for doing nothing. This is particularly true because last night he accused the entire NAACP membership of just wanting free handouts from the government. How about no-work jobs? I thought only the mafia created those. Is that really what Romney wants to argue? That he got paid to do nothing? Wasn’t he trying to act like a big man at the time by ostentatiously refusing payment for his work on the Olympics? That’s easy to do when when Bain is paying you $100,000/yr. Of course, his salary was just pocket change compared to his financial interest in the company itself.

    So, the Romney campaign is going to have to come out and say that this is all normal. It’s totally unremarkable for a man to be paid a six-figure salary for doing no work and to make representations to the government and to investors that they are the CEO of a company that they no longer work for. They can do this for years and it only looks weird because SEC compliance forms are complicated.

    They’ve had weeks to prepare for this story, and they have nothing.

    http://www.boomantribune.com/story/2012/7/12/12208/7310#9

  25. rikyrah says:

    Mitt is so Desperate, he brought in Slave-Catchers at the NAACP Convention
    12 Jul 2012
    Author: The Christian Progressive Liberal

    I don’t know about you, but eight years ago, I thought George W. Bush was dumber than a bag of rocks and that there was no way in hell he would win the Presidency.

    ‘Course, I didn’t count on Al Gore running a piss-poor campaign, either, but I digress. From what I’m hearing, it appears Mitt Romney (R-Money) is poised to take Shrub’s title from him if he keeps on pulling stunts like he did at the NAACP convention.

    First off, there are rumors that Mitt planned the speech to elicit the booing he got from the audience, so he would have a news clip that would say he tried to be nice to the Black people; look at how they treated him.

    Now, NAACP Director Hilary Shelton goes on the Ed Show and gives the real skinny; Mitt had some VIP Slave-Catchers in the audience to cheer him on (H/T, Heather at Crooks and Liars):

    http://www.jackandjillpolitics.com/2012/07/mitt-is-so-desperate-he-brought-in-slave-catchers-at-the-naacp-convention/

  26. rikyrah says:

    Obama Sinks to Historic Lows Among Blue-Collar Men

    By Ronald Brownstein

    July 11, 2012 | 6:00 p.m.

    The new Quinnipiac University and ABC/Washington Post national surveys out this week converge on one key conclusion: as the election nears, President Obama is sinking to historic lows among the group most consistently hostile to him.

    Throughout his career on the national stage, Obama has struggled among white men without a college education. But in these latest surveys, he has fallen to a level of support among them lower than any Democratic nominee has attracted in any election since 1980, according to an upcoming National Journal analysis of exit polls from presidential elections.

    Though pollsters at each organization caution that the margins of error are substantial when looking at subgroups such as this, each poll shows erosion within that margin of error for Obama with these working-class white men. The new Quinnipiac poll shows Obama attracting just 29 percent of non-college white men, down from 32 percent in their most recent national survey in April, according to figures provided by Douglas Schwartz, April Radocchio and Ralph Hansen of Quinnipiac. The ABC/Washington Post survey found Obama drawing just 28 percent of non-college white men, down from 34 percent in their May survey, according to figures provided by ABC Pollster Gary Langer. Romney drew 56 percent of the non-college white men in Quinnipiac and 65 percent in the ABC/Washington Post survey.

    No one expects Obama to win these blue-collar men, who are now among the most reliably Republican segments of the electorate. But even so, these numbers, if sustained through Election Day, would represent a modern nadir for Democrats. Since 1980, the worst performance for any Democratic nominee among these working-class white men was the 31 percent Walter Mondale managed against Ronald Reagan in 1984; the meager 39 percent Obama drew in 2008 was actually the party’s best showing over that period. These new surveys show Obama that these non-college white men represent Obama’s largest source of decline in the white electorate since 2008.

    http://decoded.nationaljournal.com/2012/07/from-bad-to-worse-with-bluecol.php

    • Ametia says:

      FACT: President Barack Hussein Obama does NOT have a Problem with Blue collar workers AKA WHITE MEN. They have a PROBLEM with President Barack Hussein Obama. THE.END.

  27. rikyrah says:

    Capitalism As A Religion

    Bloomberg’s Businessweek has a fascinating story on how the LDS Church runs various large for-profit businesses – a shopping mall was one of its recent spiritual landmarks. What it helps reveal is something that has continually struck me as I have read more and discovered more about Mormonism: it really is a religion of business for businessmen. Unlike mainstream Christianity, Mormonism sees no conflict between God and Mammon, between the spiritual and the temporal. Making pots of money is part of God’s plan. Joseph Smith, a grifter businessman himself, proclaimed conveeeniently that “Verily I say unto you, that all things unto me are spiritual, and not at any time have I given unto you a law which was temporal.” By which he meant that there was spiritual glory in capitalism itself – a heresy clearly at odds with almost everything Jesus himself said and taught.

    The business starts with mandatory 10 percent tithing if you want access to Temples. All that money – estimated at an annual $8 billion – goes directly to Salt Lake City to a group of powerful businessmen who are the people who run the Church. There is no transparency. Mormons are sometimes charged to go make money for the church in various enterprises (my favorite is a Hawaiian theme-park that pays no taxes because it is related to church activities and yet brings in $60 million a year). Some are even recruited to volunteer services for for-profit enterprises. And the notion of charity is a very Mormon one:

    A study co-written by Cragun and recently published in Free Inquiry estimates that the Mormon Church donates only about 0.7 percent of its annual income to charity; the United Methodist Church gives about 29 percent

    If you want someone to dismantle the welfare state, Romney’s your man. But many Mormons are troubled by the lack of transparency and the priorities of their businesslike leadership:

    Bain Capital under Romney was part of this commercial web:

    Mitt Romney and others at Bain Capital, the private equity firm he co-founded in 1984, gave the Mormon Church millions’ worth of stock holdings obtained through Bain deals, according to Reuters. Between 1997 and 2009, these included $2 million in Burger King (BKW) and $1 million in Domino’s Pizza (DPZ) shares. Under U.S. law, churches can legally turn around and sell donated stock without paying capital-gains taxes, a clear advantage for both donor and receiver.

    If you were to construct a religion as a business, it would be hard to beat the LDS Church. From its mandatory tithing for access to sacred Temples to its spiritual blessing on business and wealth accumulation and its tax-friendly admixture of for-profit and not-for-profit enterprises, it is the Prosperity Gospel with better accountants. And that makes it the quintessential religion for America – giving the New World a place in the Gospels, bringing the Garden of Eden to Missouri, and providing a divine blessing for American free enterprise. All it needs is a president of the United States to broaden its appeal in a fusion of faith and country. It’s been trying since Joseph Smith ran for the highest office in the land – not a typical path for a “spiritual” leader. Now, as the unofficial religion of American capitalism in its least regulated and most rapacious form, it has its chance.

    Think of running Bain Capital as spiritual enlightenment, and you begin to get the idea.

    http://andrewsullivan.thedailybeast.com/2012/07/capitalism-as-a-religion.html

  28. rikyrah says:

    Only a rich, entitled White man LIKE WILLARD could think that he should be elected President of a country:

    1. he refused to serve when asked to (military)
    2. that he doesn’t want to pay taxes to
    3. that isn’t good enough for him to invest his money in.

    • Ametia says:

      4. who doesn’t think he should answer to his shady dealings at bain 5. who thinks his rich WHITE CRONIES will buy him the presidency.

      there! finished it for you

  29. Ametia says:

    Obama’s Fantastic Boring Idea
    By NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF
    KALANGERA, Malawi

    The farm fields here are cemeteries of cornstalks: a severe drought has left them brown, withered and dead. Normally, a failed crop like that signifies starvation.

    Then television cameras arrive and transmit images of famished children into American and European living rooms. Emergency food shipments are rushed in at huge expense.

    Yet there is a better way, and it’s unfolding here in rural Malawi, in southern Africa. Instead of shipping food after the fact, the United States aid agency, U.S.A.I.D., has been working with local farmers to promote new crops and methods so that farmers don’t have to worry about starving in the first place.

    Jonas Kabudula is a local farmer whose corn crop completely failed, and he said that normally he and his family would now be starving. But, with the help of a U.S.A.I.D. program, he and other farmers also planted chilies, a nontraditional crop that doesn’t need much rain.

    “Other crops wither, and the chilies survive,” Kabudula told me. What’s more, each bag of chilies is worth about five bags of corn, so he and other villagers have been able to sell the chilies and buy all the food they need.

    “If it weren’t for the chilies,” said another farmer, Staford Phereni, “we would have no food.”

    President Obama has made agriculture a focus of his foreign aid programs with mixed results. On the plus side, these initiatives are smart, cost-effective and potentially transformative. On the negative side, they’re boring. At a time when there’s a vigorous political debate in America about foreign aid, outreach to African farmers doesn’t wow Congress or the American people.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/12/opinion/kristof-obamas-fantastic-boring-idea.html?_r=1&ref=politics&pagewanted=print

  30. Ametia says:

    Robert Reich

    THE REAL BATTLE IN 2012 AND BEYOND

    NationofChange / Video Report

    Published: Thursday 12 July 2012

    “The upcoming election is critical but it’s not the end of this contest. It will go on for years. It will require that you understand what’s at stake.”

  31. Ametia says:

    The Lie of Voter Fraud Hits Minnesota

    By Joanne Boyer, cross-posted at Wisdom Voices)

    Other than the Supreme Court’s Citizen’s United ruling, there are few issues that tear at the basic fabric of democracy as much as the current assault by Republican-controlled state houses to enact voter photo ID laws. These laws, which have been written by the national American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and then “cut and pasted” into different state legislation are aimed solely at restricting and suppressing eligible citizens from casting their vote.

    Recent news about estimates of more than 758,000 eligible voters in Pennsylvania being unable to cast a ballot this November has shed a spotlight on what this law is all about – restricting access to the polls for eligible voters who tend to vote Democratic.

    Does anyone remember what caused former President George W. Bush’s Attorney General Alberto Gonzales to finally resign? It was for the scandal surrounding the firing of eight U.S. Attorneys for their refusal to prosecute non-existent voter fraud. The Republican Party tried desperately to make “voter fraud” an issue from 2005-2010 and it simply could not be found – anywhere. Not in any state in the nation.

    Then in 2010 the Republicans took control of multiple state houses and POOF, like magic, back came voter fraud. The Republicans couldn’t make it happen through the courts and the U.S. attorneys, so they found a much easier way. Get Republican controlled legislatures to pass ALEC legislation. Since 2010, 10 Republican-controlled states passed voter ID laws (Alabama, Kansas, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wisconsin).

    The reality is voter fraud is a rarity in the United States, and voter impersonation at the polls, the only incident that could be prevented by these restrictive voter ID laws, is virtually nonexistent. Most instances of improper voting involve registration and eligibility issues, none of which would be prevented by a state photo ID restriction. One academic study found photo ID restrictions would prevent less than one fraudulent vote for every 1,000 legitimate voters who would be excluded from voting by the requirement.

    snip:

    Minnesota – who continually leads the nation in voter turnout – now faces the possibility of limiting voter rights and forcing estimates of more than 500,000 eligible voters from casting their vote if this initiative is allowed to stand as written.

    http://www.winningprogressive.org/the-lie-of-voter-fraud-hits-minnesota

  32. Ametia says:

    Wells Fargo to pay $175M in subprime mortgage settlement
    Chicago Tribune

    The Justice Department announced a fair-lending settlement with Wells Fargo & Co., Thursday morning that will compensate tens of thousands of the bank’s African-American and Hispanic borrowers who were steered into high-cost, subprime mortgages.

    A $175 million price tag is attached to one part of the national settlement, compensating more than 34,000 Wells’ customers nationally whose loans were originated by non-bank mortgage brokers.

    Another undetermined sum, expected to be many more millions of dollars, will be used to compensate victims who received bad mortgages directly from Wells Fargo employees. The bank still has to review its records to identify those customers.

    In Illinois, the known part of the settlement includes $8 million in cash payments that will be made to 3,300 customers. It will be divided into average cash payments of $15,000 each to borrowers who were wrongly steered into subprime loans by mortgage brokers between 2004 and 2009, and an average of $1,500 to $2,000 each to minority borrowers who were wrongly charged higher fees on their mortgages.

    Read more: http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/breaking/chi-wells-fargo-to-pay-175m-in-subprime-mortgage-settlement-20120712,0,964689.story

  33. rikyrah says:

    Posted at 10:49 AM ET, 07/12/2012
    Mitt Romney’s cynical response to NAACP booing

    By Jamelle Bouie

    Yesterday, I noted the tremendous distrust between Republicans and the African American community, exemplified by the “boos” Mitt Romney received for promising to repeal Obamacare at the NAACP national conference. Given the last three years of racially-tinged attacks on President Obama, there wasn’t much Romney could do to repair the damage. Indeed, at The Prospect, I wrote that the speech was actually aimed at white moderates, and not African Americans. But that doesn’t preclude good faith, and I assumed a certain amount of sincerity in Romney’s appearance.

    If his comments last night were any indication, that was a mistake.

    As Greg noted this morning, Romney’s speech to the NAACP was followed by a fundraiser in Montana, where he responded to audience boos with this remarkable statement:

    [I] want people to know what I stand for and if I don’t stand for what they want, go vote for someone else, that’s just fine. But I hope people understand this, your friends who like Obamacare, you remind them of this, if they want more stuff from government tell them to go vote for the other guy — more free stuff.

    Buzzfeed’s Andrew Kaczinski points out that this is a standard part of Romney’s stump speech. Even still, it was specifically deployed to criticize the audience at the NAACP conference. And in the context of stereotypes about African Americans — that are “dependent” on government benefits and actively seek more — it’s more than a little objectionable. Romney followed this with an appearance on Neil Cavuto’s Fox News show, where he said he “expected” the negative response from the audience.

    Earlier this year, when he was still running for president, Newt Gingrich declared that he would go to the NAACP and tell “the African-American community should demand paychecks and not be satisfied with food stamps.” In much the same way, Romney went to the NAACP to make a statement for his right-wing supporters. For people who see Obamacare as a vehicle for reparations, Romney’s speech was a statement of courage — he essentially told a (middle-class, professional) audience of blacks that they’ll have to work for their benefits if he’s president. Rush Limbaugh certainly got the message:

    This group wants to hear about tax increases and bigger government to take care of people. They don’t want to hear about self-reliance; they don’t want to hear about free enterprise. Free enterprise means you’ve gotta do it yourself. Free enterprise means it’s up to you. Free enterprise means you’re on your own. This group doesn’t want to hear that. I don’t think Romney got a single vote in here today.

    [Obama was] confident they’ll boo Romney, simply ‘cause Romney’s white.

    Far from a good faith effort to appeal to fellow citizens, it was a cynical exercise in pandering. And the message was received by the right people.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line

  34. rikyrah says:

    The Bain Of This Campaign, Ctd

    So when exactly did Mitt Romney resign from Bain Capital? He has long said 1999 – which gets him off responsibility for some bad p.r. for Bain in the subsequent three years, especially on outsourcing and off-shoring. But the Boston Globe has several legal documents showing that Romney remained

    chief executive and chairman of the firm three years beyond the date he said he ceded control, even creating five new investment partnerships during that time.

    Romney has said he left Bain in 1999 to lead the winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, ending his role in the company. But public Securities and Exchange Commission documents filed later by Bain Capital state he remained the firm’s “sole stockholder, chairman of the board, chief executive officer, and president.”

    Also, a Massachusetts financial disclosure form Romney filed in 2003 states that he still owned 100 percent of Bain Capital in 2002. And Romney’s state financial disclosure forms indicate he earned at least $100,000 as a Bain “executive” in 2001 and 2002, separate from investment earnings.

    Maybe this is a technical snafu caused by elaborate federal and state legal technicalities. But who gets paid $100,000 a year for two years for work as an executive in a company he has already quit?

    A former SEC commissioner told the Globe that the SEC documents listing Romney as Bain’s chief executive between 1999 and 2002 cannot be dismissed so easily. “You can’t say statements filed with the SEC are meaningless. This is a fact in an SEC filing,” said Roberta S. Karmel, now a professor at Brooklyn Law School.

    “It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to say he was technically in charge on paper but he had nothing to do with Bain’s operations,” Karmel continued. “Was he getting paid? He’s the sole stockholder. Are you telling me he owned the company but had no say in its investments?”

    The Romney campaign surely needs to provide evidence for its side of the argument as strong as the Globe’s. Or else it will have been caught in a fishy piece of misdirection. It doesn’t help that it is currently calling the president a liar for pinning outsourcing in the years in question at Bain on Romney, claiming that Romney wasn’t in charge of Bain at the time. If he was, that matters. Geraghty’s spin – the best I’ve seen from the right so far – is just a partisan debating point; it doesn’t address the substantive issue.

    But here’s why this is lose-lose for Romney. It’s another day when the focus is on his vast wealth, rather than on Obama’s economic record; and even the best case in defense of Romney must argue that he got paid at least $100,000 a year for doing nothing. A lot of Americans may wonder how that can happen, how the rules they live by simply don’t apply to people with Romney’s massive wealth.

    http://andrewsullivan.thedailybeast.com/2012/07/the-bain-o.html

  35. rikyrah says:

    One More Big Lie for Romney

    by BooMan
    Thu Jul 12th, 2012 at 10:28:34 AM EST

    As I understood it, Mitt Romney left his job at Bain Capital in February 1999 in order to take over the planning and management of the 2002 Winter Olympics that were to take place in Utah. He made a big deal about not accepting any salary for his efforts. And he used the success of the Winter Olympics as a springboard to launch his political career in Massachusetts, winning the governorship that same fall. It’s a nice story, but it isn’t entirely true.
    While the truth isn’t entirely clear, Romney didn’t actually resign from Bain Capital. He remained the “sole stockholder, chairman of the board, chief executive officer, and president” until 2002. The Boston Globe has unearthed numerous documents that prove this. In addition, they discovered that Mitt Romney testified before the Massachusetts Ballot Law Commission in 2002 that he had merely taken a leave of absence from Bain Capital.

    During the four years in question, Romney received a salary of $100,000 in addition to all his investment income from Bain.

    Why does any of this matter? Because Romney has been defending himself against layoffs Bain Capital made in the 1999-2002 period by saying that he had left the company and had no responsibility for those decisions. He made that argument in the governor’s race in 2002, in his presidential bid in 2008, and during the current contest in 2011-12. But, at best, he was taking a paid leave of absence.

    Moreover, throughout that entire period of time, Bain Capital was making representations that Romney was still their CEO, which could constitute fraud if investors were misled into thinking that Romney would be handling their money.

    So, on the one hand, maybe Romney has been lying about having no control of Bain’s decisions in 1999-2002. On the other hand, maybe he and Bain were defrauding investors during that time period. Which is it?

    Even if we believe Romney, it must be nice to get paid a hundred grand a year to do nothing. But who would believe that Romney would exercise no control over a company for four years while remaining the sole stockholder?

    Anyone?

    http://www.boomantribune.com/story/2012/7/12/102834/409

  36. rikyrah says:

    A Bain Capital ‘game changer’
    By Steve Benen
    Thu Jul 12, 2012 11:09 AM EDT.

    The Romney campaign has truly awful timing. After weeks of the Obama campaign undermining Mitt Romney’s standing with ads attacking the Republican’s controversial private-sector background, Romney punched back hard this morning with a new ad that effectively (and ironically) accuses the president of being a big liar.

    The strategy was simple: the whole day was supposed to be about Romney’s claim that the president is the lyingest liar who’s ever lied. Instead, the ad was released the same day as a new Boston Globe bombshell that catches Romney lying about his Bain background.

    As we discussed yesterday, reporting from Mother Jones and TPM got this ball rolling, but it’s the Globe piece that’s being billed as “a potential game changer.”

    Government documents filed by Mitt Romney and Bain Capital say Romney remained chief executive and chairman of the firm three years beyond the date he said he ceded control, even creating five new investment partnerships during that time.

    Romney has said he left Bain in 1999 to lead the winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, ending his role in the company. But public Securities and Exchange Commission documents filed later by Bain Capital state he remained the firm’s “sole stockholder, chairman of the board, chief executive officer, and president.”

    Also, a Massachusetts financial disclosure form Romney filed in 2003 states that he still owned 100 percent of Bain Capital in 2002. And Romney’s state financial disclosure forms indicate he earned at least $100,000 as a Bain “executive” in 2001 and 2002, separate from investment earnings.

    Perhaps the most brutal element of the article comes towards the end: an unnamed Romney campaign official acknowledged that Romney’s claims “do not square with common sense” given the SEC filings. Ouch.

    To put it mildly, this has the potential to do some very serious damage to Romney’s candidacy.

    ——————————————————————————–

    For one thing, there’s the question of which of Romney’s contradictory answers is the truth. When the editors of FactCheck.org initially took Romney’s claims at face value to reject Democratic criticisms, they said the candidate must be telling the truth about his Bain departure date, because if he didn’t really leave until 2002, then “Romney would be guilty of a federal felony by certifying on federal financial disclosure forms that he left active management of Bain Capital in February 1999.”

    FactCheck.org meant that to be proof that Romney’s claims were true. Now that there’s ample evidence to the contrary, it’s worth considering that whole “guilty of a federal felony” question again.

    But even if we put that aside, the underlying point is why Romney wants people to believe he left Bain earlier than the apparent, documented date. On this, there’s no great mystery: Romney doesn’t want to be on the hook for a series of controversial Bain investments, layoffs, and bankruptcies that Bain oversaw after February 1999.

    In other words, Romney isn’t just accused of lying about a superficial clerical matter; he’s accused of lying to avoid responsibility for his business’ actions on his watch.

    The Romney defense is that he was technically Bain’s chief after February 1999, but he wasn’t really involved with the company anymore. He was, as the New York Times described it the other day, “an absentee owner” who “left day-to-day management” to others.

    But all of the new details make this defense hard to believe. This week’s reporting suggests Romney was actively involved with running Bain Capital and overseeing its operations well after the point at which he claims to have departed from the firm.

    What’s more, we’re looking at a larger story that’s starting to snowball. Romney is now burdened by unexplained offshore finances, hidden tax returns, dubious disclosures, controversial investments, unanswered questions about his individual retirement account that somehow ended up with more than $100 million, and claims about his business that contradict SEC filings.

    At some point, the Republican presidential candidate is probably going to have to come clean, answer questions from someone other than Fox, and set the record straight. If Romney’s smart, he’ll do this sooner, rather than later.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/07/12/12703193-a-bain-capital-game-changer?lite

  37. rikyrah says:

    Mitt Romney Finally Went There. The Racist Southern Strategy.
    Categories: MItt Romney, Original Opinion
    July 12,2012

    By Bob Cesca: Somehow, the team of CG animators who work on the Mitt Romney uncanny valley animations that substitute for an actual Republican candidate continue to let this jittery, awkward proto-human speak without a carefully scripted speeches uploaded to his neural network.

    Off the top of my head there’s Romney’s spastic “amber waves of grain” joke in which he mused out loud whether Iowa corn can be considered an “amber wave of grain.” There’s his Brick Tamland “I love cars” and “I love trees” series of nonsensically literal observations. Most recently, there’s the Phil-Hartman-as-Frankenstein (and accidentally hilarious) description of a glass of lemonade: “Lemon. Wet. Good.” I’m not making that up. Romney really described lemonade as, “Lemon. Wet. Good.”

    But yesterday, in the wake of being booed during an address to the NAACP, Romney popped off with yet another weird diatribe. This time, however, it seemed a little more calculated to those of us who aware of the reoccurring use of the Southern Strategy.

    When Romney noted that he would repeal the Affordable Care Act, the NAACP audience understandably booed the remark. I’m reasonably certain that the “repeal Obamacare” line would be booed by nearly everyone who wasn’t a die hard Romney supporter (yes, there are a few die hard Romney drones) since most Americans agree with nearly all of the provisions in the law, including Republicans and independents, and, as a whole, support for the law is evenly split.

    So here’s what Romney said after the speech in response to the booing:

    “Remind them of this, if they want more free stuff from the government tell them to go vote for the other guy — more free stuff. But don’t forget nothing is really free.”

    Yes, he really said that.

    Southern Strategy. Stupid. Bad.

    It was only a matter of time before Romney engaged in this kind of racist dogwhistle politics that’s intended to fire up the resentful white Republican base. Every election season, the party just can’t help itself: demonize minorities, pump up the angry whites and win. Honestly, I thought Romney would wait until perhaps after the conventions to play this card, but there it is. Blacks want handouts.

    Whether or not this was prepared ahead of time doesn’t really matter — although it seemed spontaneous. Romney totally dunked his bulbous noggin into the repulsive “welfare queens” meme by deciding that the best way to respond to being booed by African Americans is to suggest they’re only interested in voting for the candidate who will give them free stuff. It’s the most insidious brand of Republican politics — the assumption that blacks are lazy and shiftless, sucking off the government teat instead of working hard and earning a living without the immoral use of food stamps, welfare and, clearly, Obamacare.

    All of this coming from a candidate who exploits massive tax loopholes and off shore accounts to enhance his income. Romney’s friends in corporate America are actually far more guilty of receiving free stuff. The following numbers are a few years old, but just as telling:

    http://thedailybanter.com/2012/07/mitt-romney-finally-went-there-the-racist-southern-strategy/

    • Ametia says:

      THIS: All of this coming from a candidate who exploits massive tax loopholes and off shore accounts to enhance his income. Romneys friends in corporate America are actually far more guilty of receiving free stuff. The following numbers are a few years old, but just as telling:

  38. rikyrah says:

    Romney: NAACP members want ‘free stuff’
    By Steve Benen
    Thu Jul 12, 2012 8:00 AM EDT.

    On Wednesday morning, Mitt Romney thought it’d be a good idea to tell the NAACP he intends to kill a health care reform law that brings coverage to 7 million uninsured African Americans. On Wednesday night, Romney attended a fundraiser in Montana, and reflected on the audience that booed him.

    For those who missed Rachel’s reporting last night, Romney told his donors of the NAACP convention attendees, “Remind them of this: if they want more stuff from government, tell them to go vote for the other guy — more free stuff. But don’t forget, nothing is really free.”

    Hmm. So, the far-right presidential candidate deliberately antagonized the nation’s most celebrated civil rights organization in the morning, then complained to his donors in Montana about the black voters who want “more free stuff” from the government in the evening.

    I speculated yesterday that Romney may have provoked the booing on purpose. Soon after, he told Fox’s Neil Cavuto he “expected” the negative reaction, and soon after that, Romney was using the incident to deliver a cheap line at an exclusive fundraiser.

    Remember, for nearly a year, one of Romney’s standard lines has been that President Obama is trying to divide Americans, pitting people against one another. Yeah, tell us another one, Mitt.

    One of the standard lines I heard after Romney’s NAACP appearance is that he showed “courage” by going to the conference and presenting his vision. But there was nothing courageous about the candidate’s remarks at the fundraiser. As Adam Serwer noted, “[I]f you’re going to accuse people of wanting ‘free stuff’ from the government, you might want to do it to their faces.”

    As someone who’s read the transcript of nearly every Romney speech for a year, I should note in fairness that he’s used the “free stuff” line before. But in this case, this realization isn’t especially helpful to his defense.

    ——————————————————————————–

    A few months ago, for example, the GOP presidential hopeful responded to questions about contraception access by saying, “If you’re looking for free stuff you don’t have to pay for, vote for the other guy.” Soon after, Romney complained that Obama is trying to buy students’ political support by offering them “free stuff.”

    There is a pattern to this. If you’re a woman who wants access to preventive care you might not otherwise be able to afford, Romney sees you as wanting “free stuff.” If you’re a young student who can’t afford higher-ed tuition, Romney assumes you expect “free stuff.”

    And if you’re an African American supporter of the NAACP who wants your family to have access to affordable health care, Romney suspects you’re just looking for “free stuff.”

    You see, Mr. Car Elevator already has vast wealth, thanks to his rich family and vulture-capital firm that reaped benefits by laying off American workers. And now that he has riches, Romney seems annoyed by the little people who keep asking public institutions to provide basic government benefits as part of a sound safety net and/or access to economic opportunities.

    It seems insane to me that a presidential candidate would adopt such an elitist attitude during difficult economic times, but Mitt Romney is a special kind of candidate.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/07/12/12700434-romney-naacp-members-want-free-stuff?lite

    • Ametia says:

      Let’s be CLEAR here; Americans of ALL STRIPES deserve LIFE, LIBERTY, & THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS, just like white, entitled, and privileged Mittens Romney.

  39. rikyrah says:

    Turning the tax debate upside down
    By Steve Benen
    Thu Jul 12, 2012 10:00 AM EDT.

    For years, Democrats were seen as the major party more likely to raise taxes, and as a result, were in a constant state of fear and defensiveness over the issue. If there was a candidate running an attack ad over taxes shortly before an election, it was a pretty safe bet that the candidate was a Republican.

    But as the fight over tax policy heats up inside the Beltway, it’s interesting to realize it’s Democrats who are on the offensive. President Obama’s re-election campaign launched this new television ad yesterday.

    For those who can’t watch clips online, the ad tells viewers that Mitt Romney supports tax breaks for millionaires, but actually raises taxes on millions of working families, while Obama wants the wealthy to “pay a little more so the middle class pays less.” The tagline: “Two plans; your choice.”

    Republicans continue to work from the assumption that voters will always side with them on taxes, opposing any tax increase by any amount on any one at any time for any reason. But Obama seems awfully confident he’s playing the better hand — the ad wouldn’t talk up asking the rich to “pay a little more” unless it was an idea with broad public support.

    The tagline was also of interest because it seeks to frame the campaign in a specific way. For months, the conventional wisdom has said the 2012 race would be “a referendum, not a choice.” In other words, the Republican candidate and his agenda is almost irrelevant — the election will come down to Obama supporters vs. Obama opponents.

    But that’s exactly why the president’s campaign is pushing the “two plans; your choice” frame.

    ——————————————————————————–

    If the race is a referendum on Obama, and the mainstream is unsatisfied with the direction of the country, the president has a far more daunting challenge. But if voters are inclined to see the election has a choice between two competing visions, Romney is the one in trouble because the Republican agenda is wildly unpopular.

    That’s even true on taxes, where Obama is challenging the GOP on its bedrock issue.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/07/12/12702300-turning-the-tax-debate-upside-down?lite

  40. rikyrah says:

    found these tweets:

    Marc Ambinder @marcambinder 12 Jul 12 Why isn’t there someone at Bain who will step up and say, “Mitt didn’t make those decisions. I did.” If Romney wasn’t boss, who was? 99-02

    emptywheel @emptywheel

    @marcambinder The first rule of Bain is, you do not talk about Bain.

  41. rikyrah says:

    found this at another site:

    Mediaite commenter on Romney’s “free stuff” bullshit:

    The racist slander against African Americans as lazy opponents of the dilligent white citizen harkens back to Reconstruction and a simple minded resentment generated by black folk receiving only a tiny fraction of the support afforded whites. The right has employed this fetid distortion from the very moment that African Americans first earned citizenship and Romney himself continues the distortion… A personal recipient of far greater federal and state benefit than entire institutions serving black communities in need. Romney declares that black folks should move on down the road if they want “free” stuff. Meanwhile, his accountants innovate UBIT avoidance for pension monies raided and replaced by the common citizen of every stripe. Romney is a shame imposed upon the Republic by an ackward collection of broken clans clinging to a disgusting past. I feel the impulse to curse but will avoid it. The Romney position unchanged from this rotten example…

  42. Ametia says:

    Freeh: Most powerful men at Penn State failed to protect children

    Louis Freeh, who headed the Penn State investigation, has released a copy of the remarks he plans to give at a press conference at 10 a.m. today. You can read the full release online, but here are some highlights:

    – “The most powerful men at Penn State failed to take any steps for 14 years to protect the children who Sandusky victimized. Messrs. Spanier, Schultz, Paterno and Curley never demonstrated, through actions or words, any concern for the safety and well-being of
    Sandusky’s victims until after Sandusky’s arrest.”

    http://liveblog.washingtonpost.com/2012/07/12/freeh-report-released-on-penn-states-handling-of-jerry-sanduskys-child-sex-abuse/?wpisrc=al_national

    LIVE NEWS CONFERENCE NOW: http://www.washingtonpost.com/live/video-2

  43. Ametia says:

    Posted at 05:45 PM ET, 07/11/2012
    Thinking about elections and a very rich candidate
    By Jonathan Bernstein

    Is Mitt Romney likely to suffer as a presidential candidate because he’s so, so wealthy and because his policies (at least as the Democrats tell it) are targeted to helping other rich folk? That’s what a bunch of people have been arguing this week. Scott McConnell put it bluntly:

    [T]here really is no precedent for a fabulously wealthy Wall Street operator running on a distribute-wealth-from-the-middle-to-the-rich platform being a plausible contender for the American presidency.

    See also Josh Marshall here and Scott Galupo here.

    I’m going to tell you it probably doesn’t matter … but it’s complicated, and instead of focusing on Romney, I’ll focus more on why it’s so complicated, and what that tells us about the limits of what we know and can know about presidential elections.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-partisan/post/thinking-about-elections-and-a-very-rich-candidate/2012/07/11/gJQA090ndW_blog.html?wpisrc=nl_opinions

  44. rikyrah says:

    EXCLUSIVE: Romney Invested Millions in Chinese Firm That Profited on US Outsourcing

    The GOP candidate decries China poaching US jobs. But at Bain he held a large stake in a Chinese company that did just that.

    —By David Corn

    | Wed Jul. 11, 2012 8:10 PM PDT

    Last month, Mitt Romney’s campaign got into a dustup with the Washington Post after the newspaper reported that Bain Capital, the private equity firm the GOP presidential candidate founded, invested in several US companies that outsourced jobs to China and India. The campaign indignantly demanded a retraction, claiming that these businesses did not send jobs overseas while Romney was running Bain, and the Post stood by its investigation. Yet there is another aspect to the Romney-as-outsourcer controversy. According to government documents reviewed by Mother Jones, Romney, when he was in charge of Bain, invested heavily in a Chinese manufacturing company that depended on US outsourcing for its profits—and that explicitly stated that such outsourcing was crucial to its success.

    This previously unreported deal runs counter to Romney’s tough talk on the campaign trail regarding China. “We will not let China continue to steal jobs from the United States of America,” Romney declared in February. But with this investment, Romney sought to make money off a foreign company that banked on American firms outsourcing manufacturing overseas.

    On April 17, 1998, Brookside Capital Partners Fund, a Bain Capital affiliate, filed a report with the Securities and Exchange Commission noting that it had acquired 6.13 percent of Hong Kong-based Global-Tech Appliances, which manufactured household appliances in a production facility in the industrial city of Dongguan, China. That August, according to another SEC filing, Brookside upped its interest in Global-Tech to 10.3 percent. Both SEC filings identified Romney as the person in control of this investment: “Mr. W. Mitt Romney is the sole shareholder, sole director, President and Chief Executive Officer of Brookside Inc. and thus is the controlling person of Brookside Inc.” Each of these documents was signed by Domenic Ferrante, a managing director of Brookside and Bain.
    .

    Advertise on MotherJones.com

    The SEC filings do not reveal how much Romney initially invested in Global-Tech (which is now known as Global-Tech Advanced Innovations). But Brookside first acquired 748,000 shares at a time when Global-Tech was mounting an IPO at $19 a share. If that was the purchase price Brookside paid, then Romney’s firm originally invested $14.2 million in the company.

    At the time Romney was acquiring shares in Global-Tech, the firm publicly acknowledged that its strategy was to profit from prominent US companies outsourcing production abroad. On September 4, 1998, Global-Tech issued a press release announcing it was postponing completion of a $30 million expansion of its Dongguan facility because Sunbeam, a prominent American consumer products company and a major client of Global-Tech, was cutting back on outsourcing as part of an overall consolidation. But John C.K. Sham, Global-Tech’s president and CEO, said, “Although it appears that customers such as Sunbeam are not outsourcing their manufacturing as quickly as we had anticipated, we still believe that the long-term trend toward outsourcing will continue.” Global-Tech, which in mid-1998 announced fiscal year sales of $118.3 million (an increase of 89 percent over the previous year), also manufactured household appliances for Hamilton Beach, Mr. Coffee, Proctor-Silex, Revlon, and Vidal Sassoon, and its chief exec was hoping for more outsourcing from these and other American firms.

    http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/07/bain-capital-mitt-romney-outsourcing-china-global-tech

  45. Ametia says:

    Richard B. Cheney opens Wyoming home for major Mitt Romney fundraiser
    By Philip Rucker, Published: July 11

    When Mitt Romney arrives Thursday at the gates of Teton Pines, a majestic Wyoming country club where captains of industry flock each summer to golf on an Arnold Palmer-designed course, his purpose will be greater than spending another evening separating rich people from their money.

    The presidential candidate will be taking a big step toward becoming the official head of the Republican Party, as he is feted at the club and then at a $30,000-a-couple dinner at the nearby home of Richard B. Cheney, the living thread connecting the past five GOP presidencies.

    By hosting the fundraiser, the former vice president — who in his retirement remains a powerful leader of foreign policy neoconservatives yet a deeply polarizing figure outside of the Republican base — will make his grandest gesture to pass a torch to Romney.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/dick-cheney-opens-wyoming-home-for-major-mitt-romney-fundraiser/2012/07/11/gJQAYREDdW_story.html?wpisrc=nl_politics

  46. rikyrah says:

    The Road to More Jobs

    Published: July 11, 2012

    How different would conditions be today economically and politically if unemployment were 7 percent instead of its current 8.2 percent? For one thing, some two million unemployed workers would have jobs, and the rate of economic growth would be comfortably above 2 percent, instead of below that pace. This scenario could have been possible if federal aid to states had been bolstered, saving hundreds of thousands of public-sector jobs.

    Mr. Obama can make a convincing case that his policies — especially the stimulus and auto industry rescue — helped cushioned the effects of the recession he inherited, which pushed the jobless rate from an already elevated 7.8 percent in January 2009 to 10 percent by October 2009. It has come down, more or less, steadily since then. But it is still higher than when he took office — a point that Mitt Romney and Congressional Republicans have seized upon as evidence of failed policies.

    Actually, it was the Republicans’ relentless opposition to constructive policies that has kept unemployment high, from their resistance to the 2009 stimulus to their blockage of Mr. Obama’s proposed $450 billion jobs bill in late 2011. Federal aid to states was a mainstay of both of those efforts. As the stimulus ended and further aid was delayed and denied, the effect on state budgets — and on jobs — has been catastrophic.

    A recent analysis by the Economic Policy Institute shows that the loss of public-sector jobs, largely because of state budget cuts, has been the biggest hit to job growth over the past three years.

    The direct jobs lost — 627,000 since June 2009 — understates the drag because population growth alone suggests that the public sector should have added nearly 500,000 jobs over that time simply to restore government employment to its norm of the last 20 years. In all, the public sector is coming up short by 1.1 million jobs, including positions for teachers, social workers, public health officials and other professions that would have been filled by many of today’s unemployed college graduates.

    Worse, the public-sector gap of 1.1 million jobs has translated into some 750,000 lost jobs in the private sector, the result of contractors losing government business and less spending by laid-off government workers. In addition, another 400,000 or so jobs have been lost because of cutbacks in state aid to the poor and unemployed, which reduce consumer spending.

    The effects from an ailing public sector are profound because state and local spending on employees, contractors and beneficiaries reverberates swiftly through the economy. When that spending is depressed, the entire economy suffers.

    The bottom line of the institute’s report is that if it weren’t for state and local budget austerity, the economy would have 2.3 million more jobs today, and the unemployment rate would be around 7 percent, not 8 percent. The lesson is that the best and easiest way to reverse job losses would be for Congress to provide fiscal aid to states. Thwarting such aid, as Republicans have done, is a way to keep unemployment elevated and their hopes to win the White House alive. Jobless Americans, struggling businesses and hard-pressed communities are hostages in the fray.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/12/opinion/the-road-to-more-jobs.html?_r=2&hp

  47. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone :)

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