Romney blames the 47%, lets Wall Street off the hook

In the wake of the public airing of Mitt Romney's remarks on the "moochers," Romney is arguing that the problem remains too much government, especially for the 47%. Things like Social Security, Medicare and veterans benefits. Romney said to his wealthy friends:

There are 47 percent of the people who [...] are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that's an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. [...] My job is is not to worry about those people.

In response to the firestorm, Romney is now arguing:

“The president’s view is one of a larger government; I disagree,” Mr. Romney said in an interview on Fox News. “I think a society based on a government-centered nation where government plays a larger and larger role, redistributes money, that’s the wrong course for America.”

Time for a flashback it seems to me. Why is the nation in the economic condition it is today? Simply put, government did not do enough to regulate Mitt Romney's Wall Street friends during the Republican Bush Era. Because of the adoption of the Randian laissez faire approach championed by Republicans and, most notably, by Alan Greenspan. Unlike Mitt Romney, Alan Greenspan was forced to concede that his blind faith in the financial markets was misplaced:

[A]lmost three years after stepping down as chairman of the Federal Reserve, a humbled Mr. Greenspan admitted that he had put too much faith in the self-correcting power of free markets and had failed to anticipate the self-destructive power of wanton mortgage lending. “Those of us who have looked to the self-interest of lending institutions to protect shareholders’ equity, myself included, are in a state of shocked disbelief,” he told the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

[...] “You had the authority to prevent irresponsible lending practices that led to the subprime mortgage crisis. You were advised to do so by many others,” said Representative Henry A. Waxman of California, chairman of the committee. “Do you feel that your ideology pushed you to make decisions that you wish you had not made?”

Mr. Greenspan conceded: “Yes, I’ve found a flaw. I don’t know how significant or permanent it is. But I’ve been very distressed by that fact.”

Mitt Romney does not concede the grievous error of the Randian Republican anti-government, anti-regulation ideology that cost millions of Americans their jobs, homes and savings. Indeed, he promises a return to Bush era economic and regulatory policies. Because, after all, the moochers wrongly believe:

they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it.

In Romney's world, the government's response to the call for these basic needs, is "let them eat cake."

The Democratic view is different. As Bill Clinton said:

We Democrats think the country works better with a strong middle class, real opportunities for poor people to work their way into it and a relentless focus on the future, with business and government working together to promote growth and broadly shared prosperity. We think "we're all in this together" is a better philosophy than "you're on your own."

This thinking can be traced right back to our greatest Democratic president, Franklin Delano Roosevelt:

We are determined to make every American citizen the subject of his country’s interest and concern; and we will never regard any faithful law-abiding group within our borders as superfluous. The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.

Because we believe that, and because we believe government has an important role to play for the well being and common good of the nation, Democrats have brought to the nation programs like Social Security, Medicare, veterans benefits, and regulatory agencies like the Securities and Exchange Commission. Mitt Romney believes in an unregulated and ungoverned country, unconcerned with the fate of half of the country. He should go run for President of Galt Gulch.

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    And it is priceless that a man (5.00 / 5) (#2)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 08:53:37 AM EST
    Who made millions and millions draining the pensions of moochers and the worth of companies that caused the stocks of the moochers to plummet thinks HE is more responsible for his life than the rest of us.  How does having no decency, ethics, or morals make Mitt Romney more responsible than I am?

    Just because something is legal to do doesn't mean men of true social value and worth do it.

    Romney made a lot of money (none / 0) (#32)
    by MKS on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 03:55:43 PM EST
    draining the money out of companies....

    He never ran any of the the companies Bain acquired.

    I want to know if Bain acquired the factory in China that Romney told his donors about--the horrid conditions and barb wire.....

    Blood Diamond?

    How about Blood Acquisition?


    I think there needs to be some serious (5.00 / 5) (#4)
    by Anne on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 09:37:00 AM EST
    discussion about corporate welfare, and how much money the government hands out to corporate moochers, don't you?  Some serious calling-BS on this growing - and factually incorrect - talking point that all we really need to do is stop handing poor people, old people and sick people money and - voila! - they'd all learn to stand on their own feet and the economy would magically just be the best ever!!!

    Truth is, Romney and his ilk want this to be a country where the government serves as an adjunct and facilitator for the wealthy to grow more wealth for themselves; the only way "greater good" makes sense to them is if they think of it as "gee, it's good if my wealth is greater."  

    In reality, Democrats are just as guilty as Republicans at handing out government money to corporations and industries, but if we are going to have a discussion about moochers and handouts and those who rely on the government, that discussion needs to include everyone, not just those who have no power and no voice.

    I will not, however, hold my breath waiting for that discussion to make its way into the mainstream.

    Did GE even pay taxes last year? (none / 0) (#6)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 09:40:16 AM EST
    I know oil companies didn't.

    I do hope DK Radio is including Carter's (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by oculus on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 09:52:39 AM EST
    grandson in its coverage of this story.  Fascinating.  

    FDR. (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by lentinel on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 01:37:51 PM EST
    The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.

    Can anyone honestly imagine Barack Obama uttering those words?

    Yes, I can. (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Sep 20, 2012 at 12:46:53 AM EST
    Barack Obama (1998): "I actually believe in redistribution [of wealth], at least at a certain level to make sure that everybody's got a shot."

    But I think we're discussing what Mitt Romney said.


    You quote (none / 0) (#38)
    by lentinel on Thu Sep 20, 2012 at 03:03:59 AM EST
    what Obama said in 1998?

    How irrelevant can you get?

    This is the election of 2012.

    Do you think that Obama would have the courage to enunciate anything like that today?

    He said a lot of things, even in 2008.

    So what?

    By now, don't we know the reality of Obama?

    Just be content that Romney is universally considered to be worse.


    Actually, (none / 0) (#39)
    by lentinel on Thu Sep 20, 2012 at 04:17:48 AM EST
    the quote from FDR was printed above as part of the discussion.
    Maybe you missed it since your focus was on Romney.

    If we returned to the Randian ways (none / 0) (#1)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 08:46:17 AM EST
    This country would be plunged into a depression.  Because those who lived through the last one and were old enough to convey all that happened have passed away, the reality of the violence in the streets has been lost.  Also lost are the realities of the starving and the orphaned.  When masters of the universe get to rule the world, the consequences for others often lead to a world that even the masters can't safely live in.

    The fact remains (none / 0) (#3)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 09:34:38 AM EST

    The percentage of the population not paying income tax is at an all time high and increasing at an unsustainable rate.

    If the government did not depend on the income tax, then this would not be much of a problem.  BTW, record numbers of Americans living abroad are renouncing citizenship and thus paying no more income tax at all.


    You have (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 09:49:30 AM EST
    no one to blame but yourself for that one. The GOP has been preaching "get it for free" for three decades now.

    And if the GOP is so concerned about this then why aren't they advocating get rid of the Bush Tax Cuts then? Because the really don't care about this kind of stuff because it's THEIR OWN voters


    The OTHER facts remain (5.00 / 3) (#12)
    by Yman on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 09:57:41 AM EST
    The winger theory pushed by Romney and Faux News - that the 47% are Democrats looking for a handout instead of taking personal responsibility and getting a job - is a lie.

    Several, in fact.

    The reasons the percentage of the population is at an "all time high" is because the economy was driven off a cliff in 2008 and incomes have dropped significantly.  Not to mention the fact that it is largely low-income seniors and the working poor that pay no income tax, yet often pay a higher overall tax rate than Romney when you look at all taxes paid.  Furthermore, it was Republican policies (and Presidents, like Reagan and GW Bush) who helped build that 47%.  Finally, Romney was lying when he said that this 47% who pay no income tax would "vote for Obama no matter what".  In fact, the states with the highest percentage of "non-payers" are solid red states.


    Why do you think this is? (none / 0) (#5)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 09:38:02 AM EST
    Income Disparity for $200 Alex... (none / 0) (#11)
    by kdog on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 09:52:53 AM EST
    What does Romney expect when we went from his old man making 15 times the secretary to today's Greedapalooza?

    If the 1% will accept being only 15 times richer than Joe & Jane Worker again, more people can afford to pay taxes...like Slick Willy said, Arithmetic.


    I speak from being one of those people who did (none / 0) (#13)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 10:08:19 AM EST
    Not pay taxes at a point in my life.  Single mom, with a baby...the first two years were touch and go as they often are when new babies arrive.  I paid no taxes, and qualified for earned income credit.  I met other single moms at daycare who did not understand earned income credit and heard about it from me because I was so excited to be able to buy a washer and dryer.  Not that Amir would know what it is like to have a baby or have a baby with no washer or dryer.

    That year I learned how to and amended two other tax returns for working poor moms.  Who doesn't pay taxes in this country?  The working poor.  Republicans have fought to destroy organized labor, all job benefits, and socially other means had to be created or $hit is going to hit the fan in the streets.  Republicans built this, this nation where 47% are so poor they can't afford to pay federal income taxes.  The working poor are barely hanging in there so CEOs can make enormous bonuses.


    And many of the working poor ... (none / 0) (#22)
    by Erehwon on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 12:34:53 PM EST
    "cling" to the belief that the Republican Party represents them and vote for the very folks that are destroying their own future! Not that the Democrats live up to much of the lofty talk at their convention either. What a shame!!!

    we do not know (none / 0) (#36)
    by Amiss on Thu Sep 20, 2012 at 12:29:53 AM EST
    if Mitt Romney has paid income taxes the majority of his adult life.  

    Ah yes, money matters more than people (none / 0) (#14)
    by Dadler on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 10:11:19 AM EST
    I can't be nice, you are a fool of the highest order, who has no fundamental understanding of where money comes from and what gives it value. How do you think it possible for the Fed to instantly create trillions to "save" the economy and the big players?  How?  But you want normal people to consider money an unattainable God who needs human sacrifices to prosper.  Your imagination is atrophied beyond any excuse a supposedly Free American can muster.

    Your position is clear: Money is more important than human beings. Own it.


    Money is more important than human beings. (none / 0) (#15)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 10:20:42 AM EST

    Projection.  Money has no value at all other than its usefulness to human beings.  As such it can never be more important than human beings.  

    Then why do you make a projection (none / 0) (#16)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 10:45:17 AM EST
    More important than people if you know this?

    Romney believes... (none / 0) (#7)
    by kdog on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 09:41:25 AM EST
    in some regulation and government...everything that gives his ilk an edge, all the protection racket services in our rigged market...he wants to keep or strengthen those regulations.  Drug war to warehouse the people whose potential jobs got outsourced...he loves that big government.  Military Industrial Complex and getting a slice of that action...can't get enough of it.

    In a nutshell, he wants to reform a government currently favoring the 1% into one that serves the 1% exclusively...aka make us a third world country.

    A 10 year old could see right through this hypocritical bullsh&t, the fact that Mitt isn't polling at 20% is an indictment of Obama and the Dems.

    Richard Nixon had 25% support when he resigned (none / 0) (#17)
    by Angel on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 11:30:37 AM EST
    so nothing surprises me regarding Mitt's polling numbers.  Can't blame it all on Obama and the Dems.

    Not all... (none / 0) (#18)
    by kdog on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 11:35:38 AM EST
    but better messaging, and more importantly stop bending over for Wall St. only 10% less than Republicans, would certainly help.  

    Voter stupidity and distracrtion via wedge issue is a big part of the reason Romney hasn't dropped out in shame yet.  And the fact there is a sizeable portion of America who would vote for any old moron with an R (or D for that matter) after their name.


    From Reagan (none / 0) (#8)
    by cal1942 on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 09:45:25 AM EST
    through Clinton and Bush we had what amounts to a Fed Chairman with an adolescent belief system.

    Greenspan said he "found a flaw"

    Awww, isn't that special.

    more moorchers (none / 0) (#19)
    by ding7777 on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 11:39:02 AM EST
    Here's an interesting site. It is searchable but you can find Government Contract Awardees (moochers?)  

    I (none / 0) (#20)
    by lentinel on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 12:05:38 PM EST
    watched as much as I could of the Romney fundraiser.

    While he was talking to the assembled few, there is heard the constant clinking of silverware on plates. The guy nearest to Romney is stuffing his face throughout the discourse. They all are.

    Then, when someone asks a question to the candidate, Mitt takes the opportunity to stuff his own face.

    It really is disgusting.

    It's like a bunch of slobs.

    Occasionally, you see a waitperson walking by.
    Also, occasionally, the proceedings are punctuated by what sounds like the popping of a cork.


    For $50,000 (none / 0) (#23)
    by CoralGables on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 12:35:26 PM EST
    you would expect plenty of popping corks. This isn't the $40 breakfast at the Loews Regency.

    The (none / 0) (#28)
    by lentinel on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 01:34:32 PM EST
    popping is just part of a general ambience of a bunch of people eating when, one would think, they would be trying to pay close attention to someone they are giving a lot of money to - someone they think could be the president and affect their lives and pocketbooks.

    They may as well have saved $49,960 and had breakfast with Al.

    It is borderline hilarious to me to see Romney using the occasion of someone asking him a question, to stuff his face and start chewing.


    I've seen pictures of Romney stuffing his face (none / 0) (#31)
    by shoephone on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 03:19:15 PM EST
    on other occasions. He has really disgusting table manners. Like a fratboy.

    Wine service too can (none / 0) (#33)
    by MKS on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 04:02:12 PM EST
    be seen.

    It wasn't so much the manners, as the wealth combined with arrogance....

    If the DNC had made such an outrageous ad, everyone would say it was false, a cartoonish caricature....

    Plutocrats from the 1920s, or perhaps the 1890s.

    Reminiscent of the world of Gatsby.


    I've been reading lately that the income gap (none / 0) (#35)
    by shoephone on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 06:23:58 PM EST
    in the U.S. hasn't been this wide since the 1890's. So, you're pretty much on the mark.

    Yeah, Obama blames Wall Street (none / 0) (#21)
    by me only on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 12:16:15 PM EST
    and to show his disdain for them he uses his power as President to appoint Timothy Geithner as Treasury Secretary.


    Turning inelegant into elegant: (none / 0) (#24)
    by KeysDan on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 12:38:47 PM EST
    Stephen Colbert Polishes the...silver.

    Stupid smart people (none / 0) (#25)
    by unitron on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 12:50:32 PM EST
    "Those of us who have looked to the self-interest of lending institutions to protect shareholders' equity, myself included, are in a state of shocked disbelief,"

    Did these idiots really believe that human nature had changed all that much since '29?

    GOP infighting continues (none / 0) (#26)
    by CoralGables on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 12:56:05 PM EST
    as it's everyman (and woman) for themselves. Three GOP Senate candidates have now come out against the Romney 47% video: Dean Heller in Nevada, Scott Brown in Massachusetts, and Linda McMahon in Connecticut.

    How does Fox Punditry keeps the rats from fleeing the sinking ship.

    By trotting out an... (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by kdog on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 01:14:16 PM EST
    Obama wealth redistribution comment circa 1998.  I believe the term is "grasping at straws".

    A bad sign to watch for, (5.00 / 2) (#30)
    by KeysDan on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 01:46:03 PM EST
    when  the Mormons baptize the Romney campaign.

    Three Republican Senate candidates (none / 0) (#34)
    by MKS on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 04:03:21 PM EST
    in trouble.

    Good to see Heller think he is on the bubble.