The Watering Hole: May 18 – How did Mitt Romney get so obscenely rich?

Robert Reich explains with pictures!

You know, making money this way was illegal before Reagan. ย ILLEGAL.


This is our daily open thread — Discuss.


99 thoughts on “The Watering Hole: May 18 – How did Mitt Romney get so obscenely rich?

  1. Legitimate Ponzi scheme?
    Thanks to saint ronnie, the ruination of the nation, for this “legitimate Ponzi scheme” (if there is such a thing).

    • Now that Godboy is in the big time spotlight, expect the money to infect him like a slow spreading cancer.

    • Tim Tebow is too consumed with himself. He thinks that he is important when really, he is just another human being. What good has Tebow brought to the world? None. At least Jesus provided free health care.

    • Oh, I think I figured it out. Maybe, as part of signing with the Jets, Tebow actually was requiring them to change the team name to “My Jesus” and the new team logo was identical to what’s on the t-shirt. And that also part of the contract, Tebow owns that trademark. Yeah, that’s it. That’s the ticket.

  2. The 6 minutes that TED didn’t want to put online (but finally did):

    • If only the Republican Party was as honest as this guy. But we all know that if Boehner and Cantor actually agreed with Hanauer in public, they would lose most of their Wall Street donors. In short, since doing what’s in the best interests of the entire country would harm their careers as phony-baloney snake oil salesman, they won’t do it. They’ll continue to let the country suffer.

      • It doesn’t matter what Boner and Can’tor say in public and the job creator meme/trickle down economics has a head start of 30 years propaganda on the subject, but we need to get the truth out to this country by any means necessary to begin to turn this ship around.

    • I can see why they had to wrestle with it initially.
      It is essentially heretical.

  3. I like Robert Reich a lot – for someone with a history of being in some of the highest offices in the land, he can still deploy his intellectual firepower to make sense of complex issues.

    I worked for a firm which had a private equity takeover – I remember the CEO saying in an all-hands meeting that he didn’t care how many people left. Him and the cronies he brought in, new jack-shit about the business but instead set about slashing and burning left and right. The company is still in business and I don’t blame the vampires for everything that went wrong there (the previous CEO went to the Big House for bribing Russians and mistating earnings), but they are simply keeping it alive just to make enough blood for them and their cronies.

  4. Maybe there’s some interest, maybe not. Tomorrow is the final of the Champions League in Munich.

    There’s a lot of drama to play out – Chelsea lost the final 3 years ago tragically due to a missed penalty by their captain which would have won it. Bayern Munich by the luck of where the final is being played are actually playing in their home stadium – they are last year’s beaten finalists, beaten by Barcelona, the world’s best team of the last 5 years, but who were themselves beaten this year by a stunning Chelsea display of fortitude at the Nou Camp a few weeks ago. It was like a bullfighter who kept sticking a pokey stick into the bull who just would not fall. In the end the bull trampled the bullfighter and in the silence of the stunned Catalan crowd secured their place in the final.

    Here’s a look at Didier Drogba, the mercurial Chelsea striker, in what will probably be his last big game at this level – the only trophy he has not won. He’s still regarded as one of the best strikers of the day. The kind of game he has may decide the trophy.

    Both teams go into the game without 4 or 5 key players each due to accumulated yellow cards, so some ‘second stringers’ have the chance to make history tomorrow afternoon US time (its on the TV – SammytheTurtle and I have our seats booked and will get our snacks this evening).

    • My sister is a Chelski fan living in Southampton. I have some real time sledging/trash talk going on right now with her …. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. This chart is a reality check. Derek Thompson’s take on taxes, spending and debt:

    “This is an inconvenient truth. It is inconvenient for Mitt Romney that spending, taxes, and the deficit are all lower today than when President Obama took office. It is inconvenient for liberals (not to mention, really inconvenient for the unemployed) that we’ve been overly aggressive in paring down our deficits even with high unemployment and huge cuts to state and local government. It is inconvenient to tax reformers seeking to raise revenue, since Obama has compounded the extension of the Bush tax cuts with yet more tax credits and a payroll tax cut.”

    • Have to wait till this evening, as corporate policy blocking all things facebooky. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  6. Every time I see a picture of James O’Keefe my first thought is that this man is bitter because he has never had an intimate relationship with another human being.

    • Un effen believable!
      LL how do you manage to survive in such an atmosphere of idiocy?
      Those that are supposedly “in charge” acting so damn juvenile – from the Gov. to this SoS.

      • I live on an endless supply of hope. And I have The Zoo to keep me sane. ๐Ÿ˜‰
        The politics have certainly gone downhill in the 10 years that I have lived here. It used to be pretty reasonable and independent thinking state, but we have all of these nutjobs here lately, it can truly be disheartening sometimes.

          • If Arizona keeps going the way it is going, I may have to resort to that. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Shorter teabagger platform:

      “A white man for every White House!”

      – bet if I made that bumper sticker I’d have rent trucks to Arizona.

  7. QOTD:

    “Romney has exactly one strategy for winning: being the out party during an economic crisis,” – Jon Chait.

    Sums it up.

    • I think that Mr Reich has foreshadowed a Romney presidency:

      1. Take over the reins, staff with incompetent cronies
      2. Cut the benefits, outsource the jobs
      3. Slash the investment
      4. Run up the debt
      5. Pay off yourself and your cronies
      6. Get out before the roof comes crashing down
      7. Leave you and me with the bill

  8. Speaking of vile racists: The Eagle Forum has responded predictably to the news that there are more non European births than European births in the U.S. Just to state the obvious: not all non Europeans are immigrants, American values are not GOP values, and most immigrants who come to this country come here, at least in part, because they LOVE American values.

    • BTW. The Founders affirmed that “all men are created equal”. Those guys were pretty good at saying what they meant and meaning what they said. If they had meant “all men born in the New World to European parents are superior to all others”? That’s what they would have said.

    • Sounds better in the original German, with a marching band and some black and white newsreel to go along with it.

    • I’m an immigrant, I’m European and by this yardstick I have three Euro-Americans who are *not* likely to have ‘American values’. Dunno about the five year old though – he’s got a penchant for blurting out orders, not taking responsibility for himself, and not caring about anyone else’s problems.

        • S’possible, he also does not seem to value school and learning either and reacts badly to any kind of regulation (like bedtime for example). If he didn’t hang about with noted TV pinko-minimum wage-possibly LGBT- ‘Mr S Squarepants’ and eschew ‘hand egg’ for ‘foot ball’, I’d say we have a Redstater on our hands…. currently we’re managing it with liberal use of the ‘timeout’ and ‘no TV or computer time’….

          • Doesn’t everyone start out as a conservative and then, as you mature and grow, you naturally become progressive? A person ends up an adult conservative if your environment stifles that growth.

            • Exactly. You have to be taught to share. Sometimes the lesson doesn’t take, and then you have a greedy adult who doesn’t believe in teamwork.

      • He is 5 years old. When Taylor was 4 she’d tell me I was driving in the wrong/slow lane one the expressway and never listened to me. One time I threatened to drive the car up a pole. But as a teenager she’s delightful. Except she seems to be deaf when I tell her to pick up her stuff.

  9. Advice to would-be Romney running mates: Run for the hills – Yahoo! News

    But what if all these Romney refusniks are actually telling the truth? What if they made a rational calculation and concluded that the upside–sharing the history books with Spiro Agnew, seats at the best international funerals–is not worth the cost if Romney loses in the fall? We could hardly blame them. The modern history of what happens to losing vice presidential nominees is enough to make any politician recoil in horror.

    Interesting take. If no one really wants to be Romney’s VP, then maybe the insider take on this is it’s a lost cause. So where you end up is with someone who’s prospects are so dim, that being on a losing ticket is a step up?

  10. Another local record high temp. 92 degrees and still climbing. The lilacs are in bloom and I’ll be out hunting morel mushrooms tomorrow. That’s about 2 weeks early.

    • Did I see they were using dogs instead of pigs to dig up truffles in France these days because the pigs eat too many of them before they can get to them? I think it was dogs.

    • I still can’t believe that you can buy an R/C airplane that’s already put together.
      Tells you what kind of a fossil I am.
      Electric motors had no power whatsoever when I was in it.
      My models were capable of finding the tallest tree in the neighborhood
      So, my solution to everything became more cubic inches and more nitromethane.
      Actually that still is my solution to everything only on a larger scale.
      Good luck on the morels

      • The new technology for RC planes plus the Chinese entry into the market have completely revolutionized the hobby. I still like aerobatics and planes that will climb vertically out of sight but gliders have always been close to my heart. I got a 35 minute flight after about a 30 second motor run day before yesterday. Still, the best part, so far, is the new cheap radios. I bought a 9 channel with every control mixing function one can imagine for $76.00 delivered! Extra receivers are $9.00 a pop and the transmitter has 8 memory slots for custom trim and mixing for each plane. The assortment of planes available for under $200.00 and my decision to buy planes instead of beer should result in a pretty fair sized fleet.

        This one is stock, out of the box, and costs $150.00. All that’s needed is a radio and battery.

  11. Charities are SO competitive!

    Goodwill won’t come get large items, so I asked them if they knew of anyone who would — no, of course not!

    The ReStore will get my stuff that doesn’t sell. ๐Ÿ˜€

  12. The department I work with is responsible for creating, proofing, producing and distributing a large amount of printed material (on-street schedules, printed schedules, maps, etc and more etc) for an annual service change in September. This year it gets even crazier than usual because the Agency is forced to make even more service cutbacks, restructuring routes and completely eliminating the fare zone system that has been in use for decades.

    Ordinarily the work is done by a manager and five specialists. The manager is leaving in a matter of weeks, and we only have three specialists, one of whom is worth negative work points. Oh, and he’s leaving in August. Maybe by July we’ll have the manager replaced and can start training him/her which should only take about a year. Possibly two new specialists will be hired in June and will be sharp enough and hard-working enough to contribute.

    Cool, huh?

    So guess who needs to step in and take over the manager’s workload in addition to his own? And guess who doesn’t get an extra dime for it?

    Thanks to the Academy of Sciences, however, I’m going to Woods Hole on Sunday and not returning until Wednesday evening. After that I’m taking two days off to lead into a three-day weekend. Only then will I stick my head in the oven.

    • If you pull that off, gummitch, they’ll know they don’t have to hire anyone else. Cuz you’ve got it handled. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ

    • How long before you can retire, gummitch?

      Enjoy Woods Hole and all its wonders.

      • Even if I could afford to retire soon, I believe it would stick it out until 2015. That September we open the new light rail line to Milwaukie (along with a very cool new transit/ped/bike only bridge). I’ll be one of the very few people working here that has been around for all six rail start-ups.

        Packing the binoculars and my bird book for sure, Ebb. I’ll have a day and a half on my own after the work is done.

        • I love the public transportation system in Portland, gummitch.

          You’re the only one I know who works there, so you get all the credit. ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Just caught up on the Schlafly nuttery (on TP) concerning “immigrants” and in the process couldn’t help but notice that there is some truth in her thesis about immigrant descendents being basically worthless. I mean, based on her photograph, I have to say she clearly has no Iroquois, no Athabascan, no Lakota (etc.) blood in her so she’s clearly descended of immigrants. No wonder she’s such a worthless turd.

  14. Gavin Newsom’s new show debuts tonight on Current at 11pm eastern, 8pm pacific. All my online links for Current are gerflunken tonight, but if I’m awake, I’ll try to watch it since I have it on cable. It’s on a couple times tomorrow too. I think the late time is because they expect him to mainly appeal to the West Coast where they know him better. Maybe they will have some clips up on the Current site or Youtube.

  15. I saw one tweet by Wayne tonight, three by Leftside Annie, and one by Motivated in Ohio.

  16. Well, MSNBC’s work-release says they have to go back to jail for the weekend, so I’m moving over to Current to watch Jennifer, then check out Gavin Newsom if I don’t get too sleepy.

    • I basically use Facebook as a means for logging into websites for comments. I follow, like, six things like,, The Daily Show, stuff like that. I removed all Friend connections so they’ll no longer be able to figure out who I spend my time talking to through their website.

      And I hate using any commenting system that uses Facebook. Hell, I’d rather haev Disqus than Facebook, that’s how bad it’s gotten.

      Okay, I need to start writing tomorrow’s Watering Hole. See you tomorrow.

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