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Jon Stewart discusses Romney and Bain Capital

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    Reference: Jon Stewart Takes On Mitt Romney's Bain Capital Credentials (VIDEO), February 1, 2012

    Sometimes we have to rely on a comedian to explain all this venture capitalist stuff...or how to make money without using your money.

    This is good...
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    I assume that all the wealth that has been accumulated by John Kerry, John Edwards, the Roosevelts, the Kennedys, et al, is OK. That's right, they are and were Democrats. That's compassionate wealth. That's connected wealth. That's alright. Got it. I now understand the ground rules.
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    llagerdog,

    You miss the point entirely. Democrats are not against wealth. We admire people that have succeeded because of their entrepreneurial spirit and hard work. And many wealthy are indeed big philanthropists...it makes for good publicity.

    Furthermore, one must make a distinction between those like Steve Jobs that have created real wealth and others that have engaged in wealth transfer through their lobbyist and special interest groups that have "bought" changes in the tax code by buying their politicians that write the laws.

    There is also a difference between venture capitalism and vulture capitalism. The first recognizes creativity and risk taking...the second has a heavy dose of greed and lack of empathy. Many of the "good wealthy" have said they should and could pay a higher share of taxes to put more money in the pockets of the spenders...the consumers that buy their products. Henry Ford understood that. And so do many ordinary Republicans on Main Street...the majority of which also support higher taxes on the rich. It just makes good economic sense. The income and tax inequality that has gotten progressively worse since Reagan will drive our country over the brink if it is not corrected. The rich cannot survive if they kill off the middle class. Most American people understand that.

    However, our Republican Congressional leaders are not listening to their constituents. They too suffer from Cognitive Dissonance. Simply changing the top marginal rate from 35 percent to 39 percent (the prosperous Clinton years) is not a big deal for wealthy Republicans, many of whom, can easily afford it and many others, like Romney, have a bunch of their wealth stashed away in the Cayman Island and Bermuda hidden accounts to avoid taxes.

    The Republican Party intransigence on the issue has exposed their dogma. For many Republicans, to capitulate is seen as a sign of weakness...and as you have so aptly demonstrated in your posts, Republicans can never admit they are wrong.

    It used to be that under Presidents like Eisenhower, there was indeed a sense of "common good" within the Republican Party such that they could compromise on the issues of the day. Not so with this new breed of Republicans, particularly those in the House that see Obama as an enemy instead of "our President."
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    Schmidt: I enjoyed reading your last post, and I agree with many of the ideas you expressed regarding the need for capitalism with more of a conscience. However, I was surprised that you threw some roses at Henry Ford. Ford was defiantly opposed to unions, FMC was the last major auto manufacturer to capitulate to the UAW, Ford spyed on his employees, and he was believed to be anti-semetic. Beyond his faults and flaws, I do admire Henry Ford. I was just surprised that you used him in an exemplary fashion.
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    Yes Henry Ford was all of those things, but as the capitalist's capitalist he also recognized that his workers were also his customers, and that they needed to be paid a decent enough wage to be able to buy the cars that they built. While middle class worker productivity has increased steadily over the past several decades, those same workers have reaped very little of the rewards for that increased productivity while the CEOs and investors have taken an increasing share.

    I recognize that part of the stagnant US worker wages is a result of globalization, where workers are losing manufacturing jobs to China and other countries, not just because of their lower wages, but also because of lack of environmental and safety regulations, unfavorable tariffs that favor "shipping jobs overseas," government subsidies, tax laws and unfavorable exchange rates. However, if those businesses want to keep using cheap labor overseas and expect the US consumer to keep buying their products, pretty soon the middle class in America cannot afford to buy those products.

    Henry Ford recognized who his customers were. The principle applies today as well on a global scale. If the American middle class (the consumers) is killed off, then the corporations and the super rich cannot survive either.  Manufacturing corporations have been reaping enormous profits as they have emerged from the recession, but those profits are not sustainable if no one cannot afford to buy their goods and services. Ditto for the banks and other financial institutions...the recession hasn't hurt their profits much. They live in a different world of entitlement, but I won't go there now.

       

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    I am doing everything I can to buy American made products.  They are not always easy to find, but when I do I am willing to pay more.  Many people I associate with are doing the same thing.