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Mitt romney
"I sure hope people forget I wanted a stimulus plan too" (Brian Synder/Reuters)
Mitt Romney on Friday, slamming the stimulus at Otterbein University ... which received funds from the stimulus:
$787 billion of borrowing. It could have been entirely focused on getting getting the private sector to buy capital equipment, for instance. That puts people to work. Or to hire people. Instead, it primary protected people in the governmental sector, which is probably the sector that should have been shrinking.
Aside from the irony of Romney attacking the stimulus at an institution that benefited from it, his remarks reveal the contrived nature of his attack on the stimulus.

For starters, Romney basically got what he says he wanted. Over the last two years, the private sector has added 4 million jobs while the public sector has lost more than 500,000. That shrinkage of the public sector has been the biggest economic problems we've faced during that time. The problem is that state and local governments have faced a funding shortfall thanks to declining revenue, and because the stimulus—and subsequent jobs legislation—didn't do enough to help them bridge the gap, they were forced to shrink.

In February, Romney himself implicitly acknowledged that this is a problem:

"If you just cut, if all you're thinking about doing is cutting spending, as you cut spending you'll slow down the economy," he said.
But despite that fleeting concession to reality, Romney's official position is still that the proper response to recession is to cut government spending. Earlier in February, Romney had visited a Colorado metal company to make exactly that point ... but like Otterbein, the company had also received funding through the stimulus.

But it's not like every place Mitt Romney visits to slam the stimulus has received stimulus funds. Earlier this month, he gave a speech at a factory in Ohio that hadn't received stimulus support. Of course, the factory was closed—and it had closed under George W. Bush. Naturally, Romney blamed President Obama, even though the factory produced drywall, for which there won't be much demand until new housing construction starts growing again. And the reason Obama was to blame? The stimulus.

So when Mitt Romney visits an institution or business that's doing well and received support from the stimulus, then the stimulus was bad. And when Mitt Romney visits a business that closed under Bush, the the stimulus was bad. And when Mitt Romney says the stimulus should have focused on the private sector and allowed the government sector to shrink and it turns out that's what has happened, then the stimulus is still bad.

So what would Mitt Romney have done? Well, here's what he said in December, 2008 (my emphasis):

The Fed should continue to expand the money supply. And, it should confirm that it will not tolerate deflation — the pain of inflation pales in comparison.

That being said, a stimulus plan is needed without further delay, and there are some things that Republicans should insist on.

[...] The Democrats may want to wait for Obama, but the country needs action now. Republicans can — and must — play an important role in shaping a stimulus bill that makes sense for America and lays a foundation for future prosperity and growth.

So yes. What Mitt Romney wanted was a stimulus. Which he now says is the worst thing ever.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Bring (9+ / 0-)

    out the Etch-a-sketches people. You're gonna have to use them a lot between now and November.

    Obama/Biden 2012: Keep America moving forward not backwards.

    by ehstronghold on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:12:41 AM PDT

  •  I just don't see how (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JML9999, TomP, happymisanthropy

    the GOP thinks he can possibly win.  He's writing all our ads for us....

    And to me, he's just a pandering stuffed shirt: he once espoused some reasonable ideas as governor of MA, but now he's just sucking up to the crazies...


    Republicans chap my ass


    by Marc in KS on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:13:33 AM PDT

    •  He was an absentee Gov. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JML9999, happymisanthropy, Osiris

      And his record in MA is sad at best.

      Romney 2012 - He Who Criticizes Me, Divides The Country

      by kitebro on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:16:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Remember They Did That in 2010 Too and Gave Us (1+ / 0-)

      the greatest midterm defeat of either party since the 1800's. We'd better see how they could win this way. I'm not saying they will, but nonetheless they've got quite a good track record with the crazee.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:26:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The GOP establishment thinks Mittens can win... (3+ / 0-)

      because they only see Dollars and not people.  Mittens will spend $5.00 for every $1.00 Obama spends for 2012 and the GOP E believes that this, combined with vote suppression and the gullibility of the average voter, will be all it takes to swing 2 - 3% points in a few key swing states their way.

      They manage that and Mittens wins with 50+1 of the vote.

      Tax and Spend I can understand. I can even understand Borrow and Spend. But Borrow and give Billionaires tax cuts? That I have a problem with.

      by LiberalCanuck on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:28:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The world's most perfectly oiled weather vane (4+ / 0-)

    After his retirement from politics, he has a job waiting as an orbital lawn sprinkler. Or a gyroscope.

    Doesn't he ever get dizzy? I mean seriously, does his campaign even keep track of what he says anymore? I imagine you'd need a Kray supercomputer.

    Things happen when you wear ELEGANZA!!!

    by Fordmandalay on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:14:49 AM PDT

  •  Six months of this upsidedownism is what... (6+ / 0-)

    ...we have to look forward to. We need split screens for practically everything, showing what Romney said then and what he says now.

    Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

    by Meteor Blades on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:15:21 AM PDT

  •  except the auto stimulus (0+ / 0-)

    which Obama totally ripped off from Romney...

    •  you mean providing federal loan guarantees (0+ / 0-)

      and a structured, pre-packaged bankruptcy?  Romney did in fact propose that -- so did everyone else.  Romney was the only one who changed his mind and wanted Detroit to fail.  I supposed he could distinguish in his mind between direct financing of GM versus guarantees for private financing, but only by ignoring everything we know he knows about economics.

      The study of law was certainly a strange discipline. -- Yukio Mishima

      by Loge on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 09:06:29 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  so where the fuck are all the jobs... (2+ / 0-)

    i am sick and tired of goper pieholes lying week after week that our glorious 1% job creators could have fixed the economy if only we'd give them more money, more tax breaks, and less regulation...

    could have been entirely focused on getting getting the private sector to buy capital equipment
    the fucking private sector hasn't done jack shit for the country or the economy imo

    i say we let em focus on higher tax rates both personal and

  •  Did anyone at Otterbein, or in a local paper, (0+ / 0-)

    point out to Romney that Otterbein benefited from stimulus spending?

    That's one more thing to add to my long list of small problems. --my son, age 10

    by concernedamerican on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:20:51 AM PDT

  •  Running for (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Prevaricator in Chief

  •  Wait for the Etch-A-Sketch moment a month from now (0+ / 0-)

    When he trys to take credit for the jobs the stimulus created and claims the President followed his advice.

    Tax and Spend I can understand. I can even understand Borrow and Spend. But Borrow and give Billionaires tax cuts? That I have a problem with.

    by LiberalCanuck on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:24:46 AM PDT

  •  Romney says one thing (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    And then says the other. We've seen this movie before. But the rest of the country needs to see it as well.

  •  Current TV News Break Before Romney's Talk Was (5+ / 0-)

    hilarious. She said that later in the afternoon Romney would give a lecture on politics "because that's what students want at 3 o'clock Friday afternoon, a lecture."

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:30:37 AM PDT

  •  What an opportunity. This is a wonderful chance (3+ / 0-)

    to, once and for all, kill the "austerity in the face of recession", gop, Mitt Romney's candidacy, and a major chunk of perennial Wall Street propaganda, in one place at one time.
    It's as if their Field Marshall decided to climb up on the sandbags at the top of the trench just as all of our snipers returned from mess.
    Beyond the "flip-flop" noise of the individual campaign, progressives have a real chance to advance the ball. Mitt has become the spokesman for the idiot gop economic policies and he starts the debate with zero credibility.

    I'd rather have a buntle afrota-me than a frottle a bunta-me.

    by David54 on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:32:04 AM PDT

  •  Otterbein grad here. (7+ / 0-)

    It really is a lovely college, and I had a blast there.  They even had the video game 'Tron' in the campus center!

    But how Mitt Romney was able to wander onto the campus and scare the undergrads like that is beyond me.

    McCain also spoke there in '08.  Time to build the dang fence, my friends.


  •  Investing in America or in Americans (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mr MadAsHell, happymisanthropy

    is not something the private sector cares about. The private sector has no loyalties except to royalties.

    The Government is the people and the people want to invest in America because if we don't then nobody will.

    Where there is no vision, there is no hope. George Washington Carver

    by Amayupta yo on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:38:31 AM PDT

  •  Republican stimulus = Tax Cut for the rich (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Keep in mind that when Romney called for stimulus, he wasn't talking about the same thing we are talking about.  You can be sure that he will wrap the Ryan/Romney tax cuts  as a stimulus/job creating plan.  The scary part is, a  lot of people might just buy it.

  •  Why doesn't Romney just build a (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Loge, pademocrat, Zack from the SFV

    stimulus elevator?

    "Hey, what's a girl gotta do around here to get a Tiffany's tiara?"--Callista Gingrich

    by The Gryffin on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:41:40 AM PDT

  •  I have strong doubts (0+ / 0-)

    that he ran Bain like that.  

    Could be useful as a tactic to show differences in how he has run a business and how he says the economy should be managed.

    I am not religious, and did NOT say I enjoyed sects.

    by trumpeter on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:42:27 AM PDT

    •  what? (0+ / 0-)

      he bankrupted a bunch of companies and sold them off for scrap.  That's exactly how he thinks things should be run: let it hit bottom so he can buy low.  Just like Hoover thought the economy needed to hit bottom before the rich would buy everything up and set things right.

      Or maybe I'm misunderstanding you.

      •  Maybe you are. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Maybe I wasn't clear enough.

        He claims to have some sort of superior knowledge of how to run the country because he ran a business.  But the model he uses would be an utter failure if used to run a nation.  Or worse.

        His methods and practices when he ran Bain should be contrasted with how the country actually works, and with what he says he'll do as President.  Say ... "As head of Bain Capital, he put thousands out of work, and all of the profits went to a tiny number of already wealthy individuals - is that how we want the country to be managed?"

        I am not religious, and did NOT say I enjoyed sects.

        by trumpeter on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 10:41:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Electoral map.....Cautiously optimistic..... (2+ / 0-)

    To me...the 2012 electoral map could look a lot like the 2008 map, except Missouri, Arizona, and even Georgia may be in play.....

    Bush is not helping Romney, whereas Clinton is helping Obama......Obama's citizenship is not an issue, whereas Romney's Mormonism is.....

    It's going to be hard for the Koch and Rove money to overcome all that....and even conservatives don't know what Romney will do....NOW THAT IS UNCERTAINTY..!!!

    •  Arizona, Georgia, and Texas (0+ / 0-)

      are a cycle away.  Missouri and Indiana will be harder this go-around.  And keep an eye on Iowa and New Hampshire.  (Not just for the primaries, kids!)  The good news is Scott, Kasich, and Corbett will do wonders for pushing Florida, Ohio, and PA into the dem camp.  CO, NM, and NV will be stronger Obama states.

      Romney's a terrible candidate, but if the economy remains stagnant, he starts looking better to some people.  As, most distressingly, will republican senate candidates.  Any optimism should be cautious, not just on the electoral map terms but really the effects of Citizens United are a classic known unknown.

      The study of law was certainly a strange discipline. -- Yukio Mishima

      by Loge on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 09:11:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Willard.....does the word INcredible register (0+ / 0-)

    anywhere between your ears?

  •  The title is so wrong LOL Even tho Ann might agree (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happymisanthropy, pademocrat

    "Rick Perry talks a lot and he's not very bright. And that's a combination I like in Republicans." --- James Carville

    by LaurenMonica on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 08:47:49 AM PDT

  •  Mitt doesn't do economics as GWB didn't do nuance (4+ / 0-)

    If the money were used exclusively to buy capital equipment, to what end?  There are already facilities with equipment sitting idle where the companies were bought out and gutted by investment capitalists, who realized the book value of the company was less than the total of its assets.  So they bought distressed companies and gutted them.

    Now Mitt wants people to jump in again and create more companies to work years building up, only to have cash flush speculators buy you out for pennies on the dollar and firing all your employees?  been there, done that.

    Mitt would be better off asking why his bankster friends why they sat on funds instead of lending them during this time?  Why any profits were spent in executive salaries, buying back their own stock, or simply retained instead of being invested is the question Mitt should ask but never will

    •  He knows the answer, (0+ / 0-)

      lack of demand, it's just not in his self-interest to ask it.  Mitt Romney, personally, doesn't have any problems with insufficient demand, so water off a duck's ass.

      The study of law was certainly a strange discipline. -- Yukio Mishima

      by Loge on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 09:12:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  True Believer or just another grifter? (0+ / 0-)

    Either way - This small-minded, well coiffed automaton has about as much business aspiring to be the "leader of the free world" as Donald freaking Trump

    Dissatisfaction with democratic government is substantially due to economic globalization. We either rein in the corporations or Nation States will continue to diminish in stature, power and their ability to protect and serve their citizenry.

    by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 09:01:35 AM PDT

  •  two other points, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    he seems unaware of what states and local governments spent their money on, and to the extent it wasn't spent on "capital equipment" it was his crew that demanded it be loaded up with tax cuts.

    But rather than calling him a hypocrite, though he has elements of that, his conception of a stimulus is still trickle-down.

    The study of law was certainly a strange discipline. -- Yukio Mishima

    by Loge on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 09:03:17 AM PDT

  •  I wish I didnt' have to see his face that big (0+ / 0-)

    all over the front page all the time....just saying...

    Helping a food pantry on the Cheyenne River Reservation,Okiciyap." ><"

    by betson08 on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 09:05:38 AM PDT

  •  I don't think he knows what he's talking (0+ / 0-)

    about. It never occurs to him that actual people are benefited or harmed by actual decisions. It's all numbers on a spreadsheet to him. So, be rehired for half your previous pay. How can anyone possibly be against improving the bottom line?

    "A cynical, mercenary, demagogic press will produce in time a people as base as itself." - Joseph Pulitzer

    by CFAmick on Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 09:06:36 AM PDT

  •  Which is also Obama's Stimulus Problem (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Zack from the SFV
    "the public sector has lost more than 500,000. That shrinkage of the public sector has been the biggest economic problems we've faced during that time.",
    If Obama loses in 2012, it will be because of 8.3% unemployment, 15% real unemployment and the jobs depression Americans face four years after voting for government to fix the problems of Reaganomics run amok.

    And what did Obama do about this jobs, jobs, jobs problems?  One that could have been solved by direct government action, giving states money to keep 500,000 jobs.  Obama passed a weak GOP tax cut stimulus and has since then been standing on the table talking about the "debt crisis",  about the phony deficit/debt problem and how cutting Federal spending would fix it.

    Obama, like Romney, has allowed himself to be dragged to the right by likes of Santorum, Bachmann and the Koch brothers SuperPacs and TeaParty front group.  Ignoring the country's real problems in favor of fake debates over fake problems.

    If Obama were taking the 500,000 jobs (teachers, police, water plants, road workers) and making a big campaign push to rehire them by taking $25B from Pentagon and addressing the very real national security problem of jobs and local government vital services we would have some hope.  But Obama has a Romney problem and Obama is focused on fake solutions to Reagan deficit and debt and collecting cash from the same unregulated Wall St crooks who put 500,000 workers on the street.

  •  Don't worry, Romney will take credit for the (0+ / 0-)

    stimulus package next week.   "It is exactly what he said to do."

    Just like the killing of Bin Laden -- it is exactly what he said to do just before he said it would be too expensive and not worth it, just before he said anybody would have done the same thing.

    But don't worry, the economy always fixes itself according to Romney.

  •  Help me understand. Isn't what a venture (0+ / 0-)

    capitalist doing borrowing money to get something they couldn't afford otherwise?  Sort of like a stimulus package from the companies they are raiding.  The sell off the assets, raid the retirement fund so they can buy more companies?  Don't they then pay themselves a tremendous bonus for having shrunk the bloated company workforce?  Seems similar to a government stimulus payment, but at least the institutions that got stimulus money made an effort to come around to productivity again where the venture capitalist ensures that the company will fail and never raise again.

    •  You're clueless. (0+ / 0-)

      Venture capitalists LEND money, you twit.  

      They lend it to business startups, or for a major expansion of a smaller business.   Umm, ventures.  They capitalize ventures.

      This is funding which is too risky for banks.  The venture capitalist assumes the much higher risk in return ownership in the company, where the return is VERY high to offset the risk.  

      As I read the rest of your incoherent babbling, I am reminded that Birthers are not the only gullible fools.

  •  Dishonest Reporting (0+ / 0-)

    In your phony quote from Romney, you DELETED the part on what Republicans should insist on.  Cute.

    For the thinking impaired "stimulus" need not mean the Keynesian stimulus we got, which has been a tragic failure.  There is a good reason nobody has been crazy enough to do Keynesian stimulus in 80 years.  

    The success of Kennedy's tax cuts, "across the board, top to bottom, personal and corporate" (in his words), with 40% to the rich, and his rejection of Keynesian stimulus, totally discredited Keynesian stimulus a half century ago -- ending 16 years of economic misery after WWII.

    There are two things that are always certain about Keynesian stimulus.  It will fail.  And the losers will always claim it wasn't large enough.

  •  It's just the same old (0+ / 0-)

    What blows my mind is how the conservatives ignore or omit the reality that all governments -- big and small -- buy things from the private sector, which is just one example of how government spending (or the lack thereof) has a direct impact on jobs.

    The DOT inspects roads and bridges and determines that, for example, 1,000 bridges are in severe need or repair or replacement ... well ... those 1,000 fucking bridges aren't going to build themselves! PEOPLE have to do the work, and generally that work gets contracted out to the private sector.

    Ok ... gotta simmer down now.

  •  Mitt is leading Obama nationally/he has no problem (0+ / 0-)

    for all of the quote flip-flopping, hispanic, women problems.....Mitt seems to be doing just fine as he is either leading or in a statistical tie with Obama for the presidency......Mitt strategy seems to working his way right to the oval office.....everything else is just chatter....

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