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The Community Organizer versus the Bain Capital Manager

By       Message Seymour Patterson       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     Permalink

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Recently on Morning Joe David Frum, lamenting Mitt Romney's presidential bid fiasco, said, "Mitt Romney could have been a really good president . . ." but he was "twisted into pretzels . . . the people that put cement shoes on his feet are now blaming him for sinking."  There are lots of recriminations to go around, and blaming Mitt Romney for the loss in his second-time bid for the presidency is just one. Yet this does not compute. It defies simple logic. They twisted him in pretzels but he "would be a really good president." Ironically, this would-be-really-good president, Mitt Romney, allowed himself to be twisted in pretzels and had cement shoes put on his feet without resistance. Mr. Romney did not push back against this but if he did it's clear he did not succeed.

Romney as president would not have had to do much. On this point Grover Norquist said, "All we have to do is replace Obama.  We are not auditioning for fearless leader. We don't need a president to tell us in what direction to go. We know what direction to go. We just need a president to sign this stuff. Pick a Republican with enough working digits to handle a pen to become president of the United States. His job is to be captain of the team, to sign the legislation that has already been prepared." The would-be-really-good president never shared anything about his time at Bain Capital, his taxes over 10 years, his signature legislative achievement, Romney Care, or his governorship of Massachusetts. This would-be-really-good president/manager's raison d'être for being president is repealing Obama Care and privatizing Social Security and Medicare to funnel more money to rich people like himself as tax breaks, because he has said rich people create jobs and 47 percent of Americans are takers. This would-be-really good president went abroad and insulted the Brits and pissed off the Palestinians. He accused the president of leading from behind, and of bowing down to foreign leaders. Gov. Romney thinks Russia is the greatest threat to the United States. And he seems to have been rattling the sabers against Iran (and maybe China, too).

Mitt Romney lost his run for the presidency despite millionaires and billionaires betting on him. These rich Romney donors could have made a better return in a vulgar savings account at a local bank instead of the trifle one- to three-percent return they got from trying to make Romney president. Or better yet, they could have plunked their money down in the stock market and made a ton of money. Did you hear that the stock market would do better under Romney as if it did poorly under Obama! Flash? The fact is the stock market doubled under Obama. Rich guys like the Koch brothers, casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, among others, gave Mitt Romney billions (through Super Pacs, Karl Rove's American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS, and other campaign donations) and instructed him to go kick Obama's gluteus maximus. And the would-be-really-good president as a flawed campaigner dissembled, flipped flopped, and "etch-a-sketched" his way to defeat. The American voter is insightful and saw through the Bain Capital manager's façade. Americans are insightful in other ways, too: they did not return the rant specialists Rep. Jose Wash (R-Ill.) and Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) to office. And they did not reward Robert Mourdock (Indiana Republican Senate candidate) and Rep. Todd Akin (R-Missouri) for their ideological quirks about women's reproduction issues. Further, this is a capitalist society by and large with a towering market-driven economy. Everyone appreciates that, including President Obama, and there is nothing his opponents can point to that puts that in doubt. An investment is a bet and in this capitalist-market economy a bet is not a sure thing. If losing big campaign donors remember this, they'll feel much better.

The community organizer, the usurper, the anti-Christ, the Marxist, the communist, the socialist, the Fascist, the Muslim, the Trojan Horse, and the anti-Colonialist-to-reduce-U.S.'s-world-influence Dinesh D'Souza's Kenyan ran a better campaign than the rich, would-be-really-good president/manager. If by "really good" great is implied, then please don't conflate rich with great--for example, people often don't use great and rich at the same time when referring to Donald Trump. Oops, but I just did and I'm sorry! Most of us are still waiting for his investigators' report from Hawaii on Obama's birth certificate.

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The community organizer gave the manager a "whuppin." The pundits at Fox like Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, Karl Rove, Michele Malkin, Laura Ingraham, Megyn Kelly, Steve Doocy, Gretchen Carlson, and Brian Kilmeade (as well Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter), are still pulling their hair out. They are still disheveled having been hit by a tsunami campaign result they did not see coming. They thought money, wistful thinking, misrepresentation, and name-calling would soften up Obama for Romney.  The Supreme Court ruling on Citizen United would (did) unleash a torrent of funds for Romney to spend against Obama. Gov. Rick Scott of Florida, Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, and Gov. John Kasich of Ohio all did their part with voter-ID requirements, and other forms of voter-suppression activities to try to help Romney carry the day. The Oscar for the effort to suppress the vote goes to Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted. He attempted to ignore a district court order to restore early voting. When that failed he took it to an appeals court where the court ruled against him. But he is anything but persistent so he went to the U.S. Supreme Court and got rebuffed there as well. However, the Ohioans he tried to disenfranchise, African Americans and Latinos, went to the polls en masse and voted for Barack Obama. Republicans (including Joe Scarborough) said Nate Silver showed Obama ahead. And to their peril, pundits and partisans dismissed with disdain Mr. Nate's statistical analysis showing a 73.6 percent chance (final probability was over 90 percent) of a President Obama win but embraced instead an outlier. That is, they accepted the right-of-center Rasmussen polling numbers showing Romney winning. And instead of rallying around the commander-in-chief when the U.S. Embassy in Benghazi, Libya, was attacked, for political points Romney accused Obama of supporting the terrorists who killed Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens.   In this quaint universe, science is damned! Statistics are damned! Up is down and down is up. And guano is caviar.

The would-be-good president/manager Mitt Romney got lots of help from others, aside from rich contributors to his campaign. Birthers Gov. Bobby Jindal, Gov. Mike Huckabee, Cathy McMorris Rogers (R-WA), Gov. Rick Scott, and Donald Trump weighed in, too, trying to damage the president.  Even Orly Taitz, the mother of all birthers, pitched in sidewise for Romney by continuing to question Obama's legitimacy to be president of the United States.  The November 6th presidential results put all these fatuous efforts to rest. One would hope! But there is a cadre of Americans who will never accept Obama. The evidence is about 400 Ole Miss students rioted in protest over Obama's re-election victory. And UMass Amherst teetered on the brink of a riot, too, but the police intervened and dispersed the students. And who can forget Karl Rove's breakdown on Fox News.

The elections are over! Thank God! 

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From all this what did we learn? We learned "you cannot fool all of the people all of the time." But the greatest lesson is rich men are not always wise men. They, too, make bad investments. And regarding the would-be-really-good president/manager versus the community organizer/president, it's possible the "really good president" is in fact the community organizer.

"All's well that ends well," WS--The Barb.


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Seymour Patterson received a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Oklahoma in 1980. He has taught courses and done research in international economics and economic development. He has been the recipient of two Fulbright awards--the first in (more...)

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