Archive for Bain Capital

In a Campaign Based on Lies…..

Posted in Playthell on politics with tags , , , , on August 13, 2012 by playthell
Public enemy Number One

 …….Telling the Truth can be a Dangerous Thing!

The rage and confusion on the Republican / Tea Party Right, that has that shrill nauseating shrew Ann Coulter screaming like a banshee at Sean Hannity, warning that the sky is falling, and Michel Malkin squealing like a hog on crack, was sparked by Romney’s Press Secretary Andrea Salk; who accidently told the truth.

Confronted with the release of a democratic ad featuring former steel worker Joe Soptic, who tells how Romney’s firm Bain Capital closed his steel plant, wrecked his community; caused him to lose his health insurance, and this led to his wife’s untimely death from cancer because she could not get the health she needed.

It is a devastating ad because it features a real blue collar white worker whose family was devastated by the amoral decisions of Mitt’s private equity firm, and Soptic concludes that Mitt doesn’t give a whit what happens to people like him…people just like the white workers Mitt is trying to win through lies and deceptions.

In a panic to explain away the narrative in the ad, Andrea Salk said if the Sopics lived in Massachusetts they could have gotten the medical services they need through Romneycare; the health care system Romney established in that state that Barack Obama’s healthcare program is modeled on. It was the simple truth, but it set off a fire storm in Republican ranks and the pugnacious right-wing punditry is calling for her head to roll!

But that may be the first time that anybody in the Romney camp has actually told the truth; so it has disturbed the natural order and the coalition of forces on the right Mitt has cobbled together is falling apart.  That’s why he just chose Paul Ryan – an extreme rightwing ideologue – as his vice presidential running mate, a matter about which I will have more in my next commentary.

No presidential campaign in the half century that I have been paying attention has been so blatantly constructed on lies. I am not talking about pussyfooting around the facts; I am talking about a wholesale assault on the truth.  Mitt’s first Ad edited a speech by President Obama that completely changed its meaning.

Then they took a factual statement the President made about the role of public investment in the success of private business and completely distorted his argument.  And now they are lying about the President’s position on welfare and calling the Affordable Healthcare program “A war on religious freedom.”

And then there are Mitt’s lying boosters, like the rightwing radio host Brian Fischer, who is ranting and raving to his idiotic listeners that Wade Michael Cage, the neo-Nazi mass murderer who slaughtered the Sikhs in their temple, was a liberal because he hated Herman Cain.  He went on to talk about how the Tea Party whites love Herman.

The fact is that the Tea Party is full of white racist, and they have demonstrated it repeatedly.  There are known racists of long standing who have been invited to speak at their rallies.  If they love Cain it is because he is a self-deprecating coon!   But the fact that he is willing to tap dance on the graves of his ancestors and repudiate their charge for us to struggle and uplift the least among us was not enough for Cage. All he saw was a biggity nigger who had sexually mauled white women.  Hence to argue that this far right racist Nazi is a “liberal” is a blatant lie that insults the intelligence of the American electorate.

It is abundantly clear that Romney believes the American electorate is apathetic and stupid.  There is no other way to explain the fact that the man lies about things that are so easily disproven.  Time will tell if he is right.  The problem for Mitt is that if you build a campaign on lies you must keep on lying; or your story falls apart.

The more you lie the harder it is to keep from contradicting yourself…that’s what happened in the present instance.  And it explains why all the Republican wags and bigwigs are running around like chickens with their heads cut off….Oh what a tangled web we weave…when at first we start to deceive.

 A Lying Rascal!

He will say anything and hope people are too stupid to notice


Playthell G. Bemjamin

Harlem, New York

August 13, 2012

The Stealth Candidate

Posted in Playthell on politics with tags , , , , on June 14, 2012 by playthell
 A pitchman who aspires to be President

 Notes on the Invisible Man

       In Mitt Romney we have a candidate for the Presidency of the United States, the most powerful office in the world, who refuses to come clean about issues that are critical to our understanding of what he believes, his personal history and his intentions for the nation; the kinds of things that will tell us who the guy really is.  We are not to ask about Mitt’s religious beliefs – especially on questions of race and gender equality – or his wife’s history in the work place, although he tells us she counsels him on women’s aspirations.

We are also not supposed to demand that Mitt tell us just what government programs he would eliminate, although he has promised to cut a trillion dollars or more from the federal budget.  And he has said on the public record that questions about the vast inequity in the distribution of wealth in America should be confined to “quiet conversations in private.” In Mitt’s view, such questions are not fit topics for public discussion.

Mitt’s activities as a corporate raider, which he posits as his main qualification for President, are also off limits. So are his secret accounts in foreign banks which serve as havens for tax avoidance; as well as his tax returns over the period of years set by his father, George Romney, a former Governor of Michigan who also ran for President.   Furthermore  Mitt refuses to disclose the identity of the financial bundlers raising grand theft dough to fund his candidacy.

All most Americans really know about Mitt Romney is that he was born to the purple, got two Harvard degrees, and is worth a quarter of a billion dollars which he accumulated from his raider days kicking workers to the curb with nothing – no benefits or pensions – nothing!  And we know that he and his wife look like an aging Ken and Barbie!  That’s about it.

Mitt is rumored to be a Bishop in the Church of the Latter Day Saints i.e. the Mormons, but nobody seems to know for sure, or what it means if he is.  Yet this would make Mitt the highest ranking religious official ever to occupy the Oval Office should he win the election.  Where I grew up choosing a candidate who has not been fully examined is called “buying a pig in a poke,” and even children had better sense than to do that.

The most pressing question raised by Mitt’s refusal to come clean on all of these questions is: What is he hiding?  Is he afraid that if voters knew that until 1978 he was a leader in a church that taught black people were cursed because we were evil in a former existence?  Or that this racist belief is central to Mormon theology and has never been denounced.   Is he afraid we might find out that he believes in magic underwear that can protect him from harm? Or is he squeamish about the vulgar, male chauvinist, medieval attitude the Mormon Church teaches regarding women.

Perhaps this explains Mitt’s pusillanimous response to Rush Limbaugh’s shameful attack on George town  law student Sandra Fluke, when he called her a whore on a national broadcast and said we should be allowed to watch her having sex, just because she supported insurance coverage for contraceptives.  And maybe it also explains why Mitt thinks he can say the most ridiculous things about President Obama, and get away with it.

Maybe Mitt is scared that we might discover that he has been gaming the tax code by hiding money offshore; or that he has never had to worry about health insurance or missing a meal in his life.  Maybe he’s afraid that if voters knew this, his pledge to repeal the Affordable Health Care Act – although his health care proposal consists of exactly 331 words – and shred the safety net that provides subsistence aid to those in desperate straits, while slashing the taxes of the plutocrats, would go over like a concrete balloon with working and middle class voters – who comprise the majority of the electorate.

It could be that he is terrified of having his former company’s record of closing factories and shipping American jobs overseas seriously examined; or that he has pledged to make massive cuts in federal assistance to vital public services in the nation’s cities.  Maybe Mitt’s scared to death that if they knew his solution to all our economic problems is to reinstate the Bush economic program, except as Bill Clinton observed “this time on steroids,” the American electorate might not prove to be as stupid as he thinks.  That’s the main reason why Mitt is a stealth candidate who remains a mystery man even as he ask us to elect him our next President….But I’ma try my level best to put all the suckas business in the streets!


Playthell G. Benjamin

Harlem, New York

June 14, 2012

Is Jay Z a Better Businessman Than Mitt?

Posted in Cultural Matters, Playthell on politics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on May 23, 2012 by playthell

It’s all about the Benjamins!

 If Business Success is the Standard Why not Jay Z for Pres?

There is far too much hand wringing over the off the cuff statements made by Newark Mayor Corey Booker on TV last Sunday.  In a clumsy attempt to present an even-handed argument calling for an end to personal attacks and commencing an honest debate designed to find real solutions to the nation’s pressing problems, Booker ended up giving the Carl Rove crowd material for a political ad against President Obama.

Seizing on one statement by the Mayor in which he described ads interrogating Mitt Romney’s claims that he was “a jobs creator” during his career at Bain Capital as nauseating; Mitt’s Superpack had an ad of the Mayor popping off on the air faster than the cisco Kid could draw his guns.

But I say calm down fellow democrats.  If that’s the game the grand Obstructionist Party want to play I say bring it on!  There is no end to devastating criticism of Mitt’s business career by top Republicans. They are the ones who invented the term “vulture Capitalism” to describe The Mittsters business practices; and it’s all on video tape in living color!  Mitt Romney was a corporate raider, “private equity,” is the fancy term for it.  And the things he did were standard procedure.

Their goal is to increase the wealth of their investors. If that means leveraging a financially healthy company with big loans, then selling off the assets of that company and throwing workers who have given their lives to the company out on the streets with nothing – no pensions, no health care, NOTHING!

Those who argue that this is just the normal working of capitalism are introducing a dangerous conservation that could well come back to bite them in the ass.  Because opening the eyes of many people who have never questioned the ethics and methods of capitalism could prove hazardous to the Plutocrat’s health.

One does not have to be an economist to understand that Mitt is not a “Captain of Industry;” someone who creates new industries that employ masses of workers – like Henry Ford, John D. Rockefeller, Henry M. Flagler, Andrew Carnegie, et al.  Nor was Mitt a creator of new hi-tech industries that have changed the world for the better, while amassing his personal fortune – men like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, et al.  And compared to any of these men, the money Mitt has made in business is a pittance!

A Business Wunderkind? 

The Mittster During his Bain Capital Days

To the average American 250 million dollars sounds like a vast fortune.  Most of us cannot even fathom what it means to have that much money, and when we think about it most believe it would make all their dreams come true – especially people like this writer who have everything they want but money!  But Mitt is just what that rotund braggart and concumate bullshit artist Donald Trump said he is: “a small business guy from Boston.”

That’s why a lot of the really big money guys left where they were and came to the Apple – multibillionaires like Mort Zuckerman – a native Bostonian – and Mike Bloomberg.  There are hedge fund managers here in the Apple that makes a billion dollars a year!  Mitt ain’t even that impressive a businessman when compared to some rappers.

Puffy’s net worth is estimated to be double that of Mitt’s. Will Smith, Master P. and Hip hop impresario Russell Simmons are all estimated to have fortunes that equal or exceed that of The Mittster’s.  Brooklyn boxer Mike Tyson blew 250 Million dollars before he was 35.  Jay Z, who had neither a rich father, white skin, nor two degrees from Harvard law and Business Schools, presides over a billion dollar business empire that he emerged fom the Marcy projects in Brooklyn and created out of nothing!

“Jigga,” as he is affectionately known in the hood, is also one of the creators of the multi-billion hip hop industry which is influencing pop culture worldwide. Yet Mitt has chosen to ignore his tenure as Governor – which was nothing to brag about since Massachusetts ranked 47 of fithy states under his leadership – and make his carrer at Bain Capital the yardstick by which hr is to be measured for the presidency.

But if business acumen, and showing great judgment in choosing a wife – Mitt married a dependent Mormon houswife, while Jay Z’s wife is not only beautiful and gracious; she is almost as rich as him from her own efforts – then why not Jay Z for President?  Especially since the only Harvard MBA to serve as US President wrecked the economy and we are still trying to recover from it.   I’m just trying to keep it real yhall!

Jay Z and Wife Byonce


 Presidential Material?

Playthell G. Benjamin

Harlem, New York

May 23, 2014

On Republican Economic Amnesia

Posted in Playthell on politics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on January 13, 2012 by playthell

                        A Stockbroker Watching the Market Crash

 Reflections on Republican Denial

President Obama’s outstanding performance in the area of foreign policy and National Security forced the Republicans to rely on economic issues as their propaganda weapon of choice.  But now that the unemployment rate is only half a point from the 8% he promised during the last election, and we have seen three years of economic growth, they are retreating into fantasy, denial, and willfully induced amnesia.

Just this morning Republican frontrunner, Mitt Romney, accused the President’s policies of putting 25 million workers on the unemployment line; even as the non-Partisan Congressional Budget Office credits the president with saving over two million jobs with his economic stimulus plan.

Mitt’s tactics mirror those adopted by the rest of the Republican field; which is to blame Barack for not being able to magically cure the devastation of George Bush’s economic policies while arguing that the economy is coming back in spite of the President’s policies.  The truth is Barack’s performance has been magnificent when the situation he inherited from Bush, and Republican obstructionism in the Congress, is taken into account.

When Barack took office the world financial system was on the brink of collaspe.  George Bush had dramatically admitted the abject failure of his policies when he was forced to ask Congress to rescue the banks and other financial institutions that were “too big to fail.”  By some estimates trillions of American assets were lost in the financial meltdown, and if the shadowy Credit Default Markets – which is estimated to top sixty trillion dollars – had been allowed to collaspe the crisis would have been too big for the government to manage and the world would have plunged into a greater depression than the 1930s.

However in an authoritative report from Bloomberg News of March 11, 2010, about 13 months after Barack took office, we learn the following facts:

“One year after U.S stocks hit their post-financial-crisis low on March 9, 2009, the benchmark Standard & Poor’s 500 Index has risen more than 68 percent, and it’s up more than 41 percent since Obama took office. Credit spreads have narrowed. Commodity prices have surged. Housing prices have stabilized.  We’ve had a phenomenal run in asset classes across the board.  If he was a Republican, we would hear a never-ending drumbeat of news stories about markets voting in favor of the president.” 

The Report goes on to note “The economy has also strengthened beyond expectations at the time Obama took office. The gross domestic product grew at a 5.9 percent annual pace in the fourth quarter, compared with a median forecast of 2.0 percent in a Bloomberg survey of economists a week before Obama’s Jan. 20, 2009, inauguration. The median forecast for GDP growth this year is 3.0 percent, according to Bloomberg’s February survey of economists, versus 2.1 percent for 2010 in the survey taken 13 months earlier.”

 The private business sector went on to enjoy record profits – three trillion – but decided to sit on the money rather than invest in the country whose taxpayers rescued them from disaster!  Professional economists have pronounced the recession over; which is to say the private sector has recovered.

Unemployment remains high because the corporate sector has decided to ship millions of jobs overseas, where they can maximize profits employing cheap labor with no benefits…These are precisely the policies favored by Mitt Romney at Bain Capital that Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry are now dogging him about.  They argue that Mitt’s financial wheeling and dealing is “Vulture” capitalism rather than “Venture” capitalism. And Mitt has yet to renounce these predatory practices, even as he aspires to become our president.


               Mitt Romney is a Shameless Charlatan!

A Contemporary Gordon Gieko?

 On Mr. One Percent and Vulture Capitalism

It is amusing to watch Mitt Romney complaining about being misquoted, his remarks taken out of context, when just a couple of weeks ago he approved a commercial that told a blatant lie about President Obama…a far worse offense.   Mitt’s ad presented an edited video-tape in which President Obama was quoting an advisor to John McCain to make it look like the remark was a statement of the President’s position.

It was a blatant lie, everybody knew it was a lie, and yet Mitt tried to justify it as just hard ball politics. In the present controversy Mitt actually said he “liked firing people.”  And when his defenders rush to point out that he was talking about insurance companies, I would hasten to remind them that Mitt has publicly proclaimed “corporations are people!”  You can’t have it both ways.

But since Mitt is a charlatan lying, or otherwise misrepresenting the truth, is his modus operandi.  Anyone who thinks my judgment of the Mittster is too harsh should Google charlatan: “A person practicing quackery or some similar confidence trick in order to obtain money, fame, or other advantages via some form of pretense or deception.”  Sounds like a perfect description of The Mittster to me.  Not only has Mitt put false statements in the President mouth, he is even trying take credit for the success of Barack’s brilliant strategy that saved the US auto-industry. The guy is such a compulsive liar he seems to forget that there are video tapes of his statements.

The fact is that Mitt Romney vehemently opposed President Obama’s plan to rescue the auto industry.  In a November 18, 2008 Op-Ed piece in the New York Times, titled “Let Detroit Go Bankrupt” he wrote; “If General Motors, Ford and Chrysler get the bailout that their chief executives asked for yesterday, you can kiss the American automotive industry goodbye.  It won’t go overnight, bit its demise will be virtually guaranteed.”  Well, the American auto-industry is not only back, but in grand style.  It is once again leading the world.  This is a genuine American success story.

In his desperation to bask in Obama’s glory, Mitt even went so far as to announce on CBS Wednesday morning: “In the general election I’ll be pointing out that the president took the reins at General Motors and Chrysler – closed factories, closed dealerships laid off thousands and thousands of workers – he did it to try to save the business..”  The real issue here is that General Motors – a company that turned out B-29 Bombers, a flying fortress with 2 million moving parts, every 28 minutes in the middle of the last century – was collapsing, along with Chrysler, and when they appealed to the government for a loan Mitt said let them go bankrupt!  Barack Obama saved them!

President Obama’s speech with business leaders at the White House as I write, outlines a very different vision of American prosperity and unveiled a plan to do it; in fact they are doing it.  This real life Gordon Geiko, who calls himself Mitt, has no answer for Obama’s innovative approach to the economy; that’s why he is desperately trying to take credit for the President’s rescue of the auto-industry. It is unassailable evidence that the slippery rascal is a shameless charlatan!

 Detroit is Back!

 At the Detroit Auto Show January 2012!


Playthell Benjamin

Harlem, New York

Janurary 12, 2012