I took it upon myself to view to the full interviews that Mitt Romney gave last Friday to discuss his
noninvolvement with Bain Capital, and it raised a significant concern for me about the core values that make our nation great.
Romney smiled as he graciously explained that there is a difference between being "a shareholder - an owner, if you will" and being involved in the day-to-day management of an organization.
This is certainly true. But what we have is Romney claiming that he was not involved "in any way" with Bain, and yet he was still holding the titles of CEO, President, etc.
This raises some significant questions about the leadership style that Romney would bring to the White House, as well as his views on the economy and the value of work.
By no means am I saying that Mitt Romney committed a felony, although that accusation was apparently enough to ruffle Romney's feathers and get the attention of the media. I don't think anyone in the Obama campaign was accusing Romney of a felony, except to say that his signed, sworn statements aren't just some kind of off-hand remark. He made them under penalty of perjury, so they are official legal documents. What the Obama campaign was saying, clearly and concisely, is that Romney can't say one thing to one group (I wasn't involved "in any way") and then say another thing to another group (signing statements claiming his status as the CEO, President, etc., of Bain Capital).
Romney is clearly stating that being CEO doesn't mean any sort of actual responsibilities. (Remember what Sarah Palin said about the difference between being a mayor and being a community organizer?) He was a shareholder - an owner, if you will.
Whether he retroactively retired or took a leave of absence or packed his bags and said goodbye or... well, whatever he did, he didn't have any responsibilities.
And yet he was taking a six-figure salary plus the dividends and other compensation.
(We don't know how much he was actually getting paid because he won't release his tax returns, but that's another story.)
Romney is speaking the language of the ownership class. He's the son of a governor, a child of privilege who graduated debt-free. That's all good and well, but he doesn't have much experience with paying off loans. (I'd say our President needs to know how to do that, wouldn't you?) His way of thinking reflects an elitist mindset. Other people will manage his affairs and do his work but he will own the company and pocket the profits.
In my humble opinion, the Obama campaign is right. Romney isn't the solution. He's the problem.
As a former Republican who now lives in the southern part of the United States, I've been raised to believe that wealth without work is a pathway to poverty. I am troubled by the willingness of the ownership class to force others to pay their bills, clean up their messes, fight their wars, and make them look good. I don't think that's what our Founding Fathers had in mind. I think this country was founded by men and women who were sick and tired of being treated like second-class human beings by entitled lords and monarchs with outsized egos and no work ethic.
Rewarding those who shirk responsibility is not going to make the 21st century a great American century.