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03:21 PM on 07/03/2012
It makes you wonder why the GOP are entering such a flawed candidate as Romney? Is it that they are so confident in the best propaganda machinery money can buy?

Could it be that Romney is just out there to draw fire; perhaps another GOP candidate is ready in the wings to step in at the eleventh hour!
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Inkosi
The gods themselves rage against stupidity
04:24 PM on 07/03/2012
Perhaps the "fix" is already in.
03:20 PM on 07/03/2012
"The economic catastrophe that continues to cause us so much suffering is, at its root, a product of the gross inequality of income, wealth and political power in America's new Gilded Age, as well as the perverse incentives of casino capitalism."

Professor Reich. Why don't you move to Venezuela or Cuba where your views are more in line with the reality of the system you are trying to describe?

Wall Street did not cause the 2008 recession. The recession was caused by a failure on the part of multiple parts of our government. The Fed kept rates too low for too long and printed too much money and created a bubble in the prices of houses. Housing prices went up for so many years in a row that everyone started perceiving housing as a risk free investment - including government regulators. Those regulators then allowed Fannie and Freddie to accept loans with no down payments and "no-doc" loans which further fueled the demand for housing and the bubble.

Wall Street simply responded to the perverse incentives created by clueless politicians and regulators across multiple administrations. Bush was busy promoting an "ownership society". Barney Frank wanted to "roll the dice some more on subsidized housing". And the regulators were to stupid or too incompetent to see all of the risk that Wall Street was creating with derivatives - a level of risk that compounded the explosion when the bubble burst.
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Inkosi
The gods themselves rage against stupidity
04:26 PM on 07/03/2012
And then the banks backed up their trucks to the treasury and made a rally big heist, thanks to Dubya.
03:15 PM on 07/03/2012
Robert, great analysis. Shouldn't you be following the Yellow Brick Road with Dorothy somewhere? Are you afraid of flying monkeys? Is your favorite song..."We're off to see the Wizard" Your analysis is almost as real as the Land of Oz where you grew up. Wasn't it your former "Boss" William (definition of "IS") Clinton that said that Obama was wrong about attacking Romney's work as an entrepreneur and capitalist? Who's right, the former President or you, one of his former minions? Sorry Robert, just because someone earns lots of money and has a business doesn't make him a greedy, evil person. I would say someone who's evil would be someone who seduced an intern in the Oval Office. Wouldn't you?
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oafishcad
No Facebook so...
03:46 PM on 07/03/2012
You're right. Making a lot of money does not make you an evil person. How Romney did it however, does.
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cazsue
logic and compassion = liberal
03:57 PM on 07/03/2012
Destroying thousands of jobs for greed is MUCH WORSE than two consenting adults private business (which should have stayed private except for witch hunters who wasted millions on it for political gain).
02:58 PM on 07/03/2012
Did I catch a "proposals large and bold enough to do the job" in there? I think that shipped sailed a while back. This is all managed decline at this point. Thanks a lot Worst Generation!
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USW Blogger
02:58 PM on 07/03/2012
This is funny: "Romney is the opposite: he wants to do everything he can to make the superwealthy even wealthier and the poor even poorer, and he justifies it all with a thinly veiled social Darwinism."
Because Republicans don't believe in evolution.
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Inkosi
The gods themselves rage against stupidity
04:31 PM on 07/03/2012
They do when it is to their advantage.
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USW Blogger
09:24 PM on 07/03/2012
True. Like when they need medical treatment. The science of evolution, the science of global warming is the exact same science that leads to medical breakthroughs and effective medicines.
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MeinNH
Ooooo Silly Me
02:54 PM on 07/03/2012
Great article and lots of truths....
iflew
Pro Publiae Bonae
02:32 PM on 07/03/2012
Why not elect the candidate with good teeth, and photogenity? It should help to qualify him that he lived in the US equivalent of a manor house where he learned as a child to order around adults who worked for the family. That should help him to work with his lesser staff after he attains the highest Gov office in the land. His for practice trust funds helped him to handle money once he was presumed mature enough to handle a fund. Private schools and protection from public scrutiny prepared him to work in a protected private ofice in a public building, where he can decide to best serve the public. Is the public best served: fried, baked, stewed, boiled or bar- be- qued? Hope this brings a smile as I never mentioned which candidate.
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02:22 PM on 07/03/2012
Republicans don't want to differentiate between free market capitalism and casino capitalism. To them, it is all one and the same. If one criticizes casino capitalism, it is as if he is down on free market capitalism
and that is a sin in this country. And any system that is not capitalism, like the health care systems in most
other countries such as Canada and England is considered socialism, a real bad deal. With such narrow-mindedness, we had better control casino capitalism real well, otherwise the end result may be much worse than socialism. Too bad more than half of Congress is bought and paid for by perpetrators of casino capitalism.
03:29 PM on 07/03/2012
It's hardly a free market at this point. Someone needs to put that into sound bites the electorate can understand. We are effectively not a free democracy with free-market capitalism at this point.
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krocklin
Fox News is Watching Our Henhouse
02:11 PM on 07/03/2012
Romney is worth a lot more than he is stating.
Some very agressive reporting needs to be done on guys like him, as in Vanity Fair.
But it needs to be taken further. The Bushes dodged many bullets throughout generations, as did many of the Idle Rich.
Someone needs to nail this guy; just for starters.
He has overextended himself often; but has never been caught like most of his ilk with offshore bank accounts that have no transparency. They should be a red flag.
Unfortunately he knows he can lie with impunity because the electorate and MSM shies away from the truthtellers.
02:25 PM on 07/03/2012
Those are some serious charges - got any evidence?
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krocklin
Fox News is Watching Our Henhouse
02:44 PM on 07/03/2012
Any evidence regarding Romney or the Bushes?
Yes in regard to the Bushes.
Oneof Dubya's brother's was fined $50,000 during the savings and loan crisis. Right while his father was Vice President!
And their grandfather was fined the same amount in 1942 while sitting in the Senate for similar financial hanky-panky.
In regard to Romney, if you read my comment again you will see that I said that there SHOULD be a thorough investigation of guys like him.
But this is very hard to do in these cases, as such people are slippery and always one step ahead of the law.
The closest thing to looking into possibe criminality for tax evasion can be seen this morning on HP in a Vanity Fair investigative article .
It needs to be carried further, as I say.
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BBackSoon
Hello, I must be going.
04:47 PM on 07/03/2012
Behind every great fortune is a great crime.
02:02 PM on 07/03/2012
Robert Reich consistently short on hitting the point. Hey I am all for closing the loopholes on carried interest and preferential treatment of interest financing. Lets go check which one of Obama's campaign adds address these central themes. Whoops, none. If that is the issue, then the democrats have failed in epic fashion as these policies were NEVER brought up in the Democratically controlled legislature. Tough to blame Romney for things Dems are not trying to address.

Further, if they are not willing to change the law, how do we blame anyone for trying to be successful following the rules. Reich fails to mention that every single company Bain bought required that all parties of interest mutually agree this was in their best interest, no guns were put to anyone's head. Reich likens this to Casino Capitalism. Do you blame the dealer when you sit at the blackjack table and lose. You walked in, you sat down, you made the bet. Should they give you your money back? Why we consistently blame businesses for trying to be successful, I will never know. Successful businesses are the only ones who ever create jobs...
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02:56 PM on 07/03/2012
"Success" in inversely related to greed and can be defined by developmental maturity in the entirety of the human condition, instead of a narrow specialization by which excess is zealously chased. That changes everything and explains why greed-driven people are incapable of understanding social function or running anything which demands unselfishness. Perhaps the framework for evaluating the merit of what Romeny stands for is the problem.
01:59 PM on 07/03/2012
Trust the government.
We are drifting into the mindset that "Govt knows best"........and that is a dangerous place.
US is the only "protestant" nation on Planet Earth........we protest and object to the concept that there is a benevolent, paternalistic government above us.......we believe in self-governing......remember??
.....
So folks....please stop insulting me by preaching about how the government knows whats best for me and how I cant be trusted with dangerous concepts, on and on.............
You guys are just a few short steps away from approving a benevolent dictator.
All Fascist Regimes start out as Liberal Democracies.
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LloydDrako
02:47 PM on 07/03/2012
Historically, fascist regimes have taken over when too-clever-for-their-own-good conservatives arrange to put violent "populist" into power as a means of curbing the left.
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BBackSoon
Hello, I must be going.
04:48 PM on 07/03/2012
Do you believe that Corporations can be trusted any more than Governments?
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xsited1
Moderated for my own good
01:59 PM on 07/03/2012
I love Robert Reich. Just take the opposite of what he says and you'll usually be on the right track.
01:58 PM on 07/03/2012
I like Robert Reich, I really do. But his screed against Bain and Romney is seriously defective. Yes, Bain and other vulture capital firms take huge tax breaks, which they often lobbied for and created. Yes, they take advantage of every other government subsidy and tax break they can find. Yes, they make money both coming and going. And yes, they support politicians who put money into their pockets. But so would everybody else in this country, barring only those who refuse, on principle, to deduct their mortgage interest payments.

And yes, Romney opens the question about Bain by claiming that his experience there qualifies him to reduce joblessness. But the likes of Bain are not to blame for job losses. If they invest in firms that subsequently go bankrupt, the same fate would likely have happened sooner without their investment. If they outsource jobs, other rational, profit-seeking owners would probably have done the same. And taken as a whole, to the extent that they invest in US firms they probably increase employment over what might otherwise have been. Are their investments the same as casino bets? They, and their investors, obviously don't think so, any more than any venture capitalist does. So on this ground, I think Reich's point, and his overheated rhetoric, are misplaced.

As for Romney, he spent his career as a financial manipulator, a deal engineer. That leaves him with no qualifications whatsoever for political life, or the stewardship of the nation's well being.
01:53 PM on 07/03/2012
Wow.....Mr. Reich pastes Romney with all the misdeads of prominent wall-street democrat supporters like Dimon Jim, corrizine, and Blankfein.
The Wall Street crowd typically supports the status quo incumbant administration......ie Obama.
Romney's Bain Capital Group actually invested in real companies, regardless of their outcomes.....at least its not "Casino Capitalism" as Mr. Reich erroneously charges.
.......
Historical Reference........FDR was far more filthy-richer, guilded ager than Romney could ever dream of.......
Maybe Professor Reich needs to raise his expectations of just what Romney is capable of doing.
...
Better yet, Mr. Reich, dont quit your day job.. Stick to teaching economics at Harvard.
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BBackSoon
Hello, I must be going.
04:49 PM on 07/03/2012
Mitt, is that you?
01:09 PM on 07/03/2012
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