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Gaius Julius Mittensus Caesar (a.k.a. Romneybot) has always had difficulties connecting with the common man. There’s his unfortunate “Nascar” gaffe, his claim that his wife drives more than one Cadillac, his apathy toward the poor, or perhaps best of all, his assertion that $374,000 is not a lot of cash. Oh, there’s also the whole dressage thing.

But thankfully for Mittensus, his recent “Tour de Poor” has helped his stilted, awkward, and assholish speaking style:

The Mr. Romney who emerged over this recent tour still came across as goofily old-fashioned, but he was also more polished on the stump, able to improvise and riff and better handle the surprises that naturally accompany a rambling motorcade through the heartland.

Yes, all you need to do is practice being around poor people and you’ll eventually learn how to charm them. His performance during this tour, however, is a damn sight better than his performance during the primaries, where “he delighted his traveling press corps by guessing voters’ ages and ethnicities (often incorrectly) and [proved] himself a gaffe-prone jokester.”

“You there, the fellow in brown–oh, wait, that’s your skin! Ha ha ha ha ha! Is your wife a Hottentot?”*

Alas, with his newly acquired skill of mimicking the conversations of the sweaty unwashed, he’ll surely gain ground among idiots who, despite common sense, will vote for a man that gives not a single zany fuck about them.

According to Mitt Romney’s website, this is what you can expect from a Romney presidency:

  • A bloated defense budget that relies on an outmoded idea about how modern warfare is conducted (unless we’re fighting a time-traveling British Navy, I doubt we need a bunch of new warships), coupled with the ridiculous idea that more privatization will lead to greater efficiency. I encourage you to read this if you’re at all concerned.
  • An educational system that disenfranchises the poor, and lines the pockets of people already capable of paying for private school; moreover, vouchers use taxpayer dollars to directly subsidize religious education. I’m sure American students brought up to believe that Jesus rode a dinosaur and that cell biology is the Devil’s work will be super-competitive against Chinese students who are building quantum transistors by the 8th grade.**
  • A ridiculous tax code that favors rich assholes by reducing the corporate rate (which many corporations don’t pay anyway), switching to a territorial tax system (a lovely plan which allows billionaires to hide money offshore–just like Romney!), and maintaining the insanely low tax rate for capital gains and dividends.
  • Also, an anti-state’s rights gun policy! A borderline (pun!) racist immigration policy! Anti-state’s rights marriage policies! An idiotic stance on stem cell research! And, you guessed it, an attempt to overturn Roe v. Wade!

*This exchange may not have taken place.
**You can’t prove it didn’t happen!

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According to David Brooks, Romneybot is More Like Edward and Less Like Dracula

Once again, that bloated sack of Burkean bon mots has come out swinging against those who would seek to defile the good name of private equity:

Forty years ago, corporate America was bloated, sluggish and losing ground to competitors in Japan and beyond. But then something astonishing happened. Financiers, private equity firms and bare-knuckled corporate executives initiated a series of reforms and transformations.

The process was brutal and involved streamlining and layoffs. But, at the end of it, American businesses emerged leaner, quicker and more efficient.

Apparently the last forty years of American capitalism was like a season of The Biggest Loser; muscular capitalists yelled at weak and flabby businesses and eventually turned the American economy into something you wouldn’t be ashamed to bang.

But those damned Democrats just released an ad besmirching the reputation of Bain Capital (they weren’t founded by the Batman villain, in case you’re curious) by calling into question their handling of GST, a failing metalworks:

The company was in terminal decline before Bain entered the picture, seeing its work force fall from 4,500 to less than 1,000. It faced closure when Romney and Bain, for some reason, saw hope for it in 1993. Bain acquired it, induced banks to loan it money and poured $100 million into modernization, according to Strassel. Bain held onto the company for eight years, hardly the pattern of a looter. Finally, after all the effort, the company, like many other old-line steel companies, filed for bankruptcy protection in 2001, two years after Romney had left Bain.

This is the story of a failed rescue, not vampire capitalism.

You see, Democrats? Bain is more charity than anything else; besides, Romneybot left the Bain heezy before GST crashed and burned! And he probably had no effect on policy, so as soon as he left, Bain was like, “who the fuck was that guy”? This is some solid-ass logic, Brooks.

Of course, Brooks can’t write a column without shifting from the concrete to the abstract, or without mentioning a fancy study conducted by someone in the Ivy League; therefore, we have this half-assed justification for private equity:

This process involves a great deal of churn and creative destruction. It does not, on net, lead to fewer jobs. A giant study by economists from the University of Chicago, Harvard, the University of Maryland and the Census Bureau found that when private equity firms acquire a company, jobs are lost in old operations. Jobs are created in new, promising operations. The overall effect on employment is modest.

Hey, if a guy from the University of Chicago said that the throbbing knob of venture capitalism and private equity is a good thing for America’s middle-class, unlubricated anus, then it must be! Because that school has no history of capitalist stoogery.

Perhaps the most interesting feature of this essay is the way that it elides several key points. For instance, what does the study classify as a “modest” effect on employment? Is 25% modest? Or perhaps 30%? I do not consider the absence of 30% of a company’s labor force to be modest, especially when you consider that 30% as a contributor to the local economy. Here’s another gem:

Most of the time they succeed. Research from around the world clearly confirms that companies that have been acquired by private equity firms are more productive than comparable firms.

What is the precise number for “most of the time”? Did Brooks say “most” because 51% isn’t the hotness? You know, now that I think about it, that quote is an excellent summation of Brooks’s writing for the Times:

Most of the time he succeeds. Readers from around the world clearly confirm that conservative essayists for the New York Times that are named David Brooks are more productive than comparable essayists.

Also, Team Bain for the win!

Despite Loss, Ron Paul Kenobi’s Midi-Chlorian Count Remains Strong

Romneybot eked out a minor victory against Ron Paul Kenobi on Saturday, winning by a small margin the irrelevant Maine caucus:

Although the vote had no substantive meaning in terms of delegates, losing it could have created a political headache for Mr. Romney, the former governor of nearby Massachusetts, and extended a negative storyline that had been building since last week when he lost Colorado, Minnesota and Missouri to Mr. Santorum.

Ron Paul Kenobi, ever the Jedi master, remains unflappable in the face of this small defeat:

“We’re not going away,” he told his supporters.

Despite a Romney victory, support for Ron Paul Kenobi remains strong in Maine. While New England’s republicans skew to the left of the party, Maine republicans are strongly independent; thus, Ron Paul Kenobi has found great support among the Tea Partiers there.

This is likely because old people, in their forgetfulness, tend not to remember how much of the government’s resources they soak up. They’re rather like the piece of bread floating in your French onion soup: formerly stale, crusty, and useless, they’ve found new life in the taxpayer’s broth.

I apologize if I just ruined French onion soup for you.

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