These are my links for January 12th through January 13th:
- New Romney Ad Defends Candidate’s Record at Bain – Mitt Romney’s campaign plans to release its latest television ad in South Carolina on Friday, geared to combat the growing attacks — from both Republicans and Democrats — on Mr. Romney’s career at Bain Capital as a corporate buyout specialist.
In the 30-second spot, a female narrator says, “This is a business Mitt Romney helped start,” as “Staples,” the office supply store giant, flashes on the screen in red letters. “And this one. And this steel mill,” the narrator continues, as “Sports Authority” and “Steel Dynamics” appear, again in red letters.
Though Mr. Romney’s advisers said they always expected that President Obama and the Democrats would criticize his private sector record of buying and selling companies in the general election if Mr. Romney were to win the nomination, they were taken by surprise to find the attacks coming so early in the primary — and from members of his own party — and have been huddling in recent days, trying to find an effective way to respond to the assault. This television ad, titled “Bright Future,” represents one of their most potent lines of defense.
- Correction: Romney’s Former Firm Bain Didn’t Advise Obama – A previous story incorrectly reported that Mitt Romney’s former firm, Bain & Co., was part of a team of consulting companies that advised President Barack Obama on a decision to shutter car dealerships during the auto bailout.
Bain & Co. said it has no connection to the “Bain Consulting” firm referenced in government documents.
- Rick Perry defends ‘vulture capitalist’ attack on Romney – Speaking to about 30 people at a restaurant north of Columbia, Rick Perry left out his “vulture capitalist” attack on Mitt Romney’s work with Bain Capital. But in an interview with Fox News that came afterward and played on the restaurant’s big-screen TVs, he repeatedly defended his criticism.
Perry insisted that he was not taking on all venture capitalists, but was specifically assailing Bain Capital, the firm that the former Massachusetts governor co-founded.
“We’re trying to lure more venture capitalists into my home state every day,” the Texas governor said, “but the idea that you get private equity companies to come in and, you know, take companies apart so they can make quick profits and then people lose their jobs, I don’t think that’s what America’s looking for. I hope that’s not what the Republican Party’s about.”
When the network’s Martha MacCallum asked Perry whether he believed this argument was working in the state that holds the next GOP presidential primary, he said: “If you go to Gaffney, S.C., or Georgetown, S.C., a couple of cities where Bain Capital did come in and destruct those companies and people lost their jobs, I will tell you it’s still a real sensitive issue in those places.”
- What Really Happened In Gaffney? – The Left is carrying out a coordinated attack on Mitt Romney’s business career. One sees exactly the same allegations, often phrased identically, whether you look at the Daily Kos, the Associated Press, Slate or Think Progress, or listen to Newt Gingrich or Rick Perry. The centerpiece of the Left’s attack has been Bain’s involvement with two companies that merged to become Holson Burnes Group, Inc. Holson made photo albums, and Burnes made picture frames. In the late 1980s, Holson was in deep trouble because of competition from cheap imports. Bain helped to save the company, then encouraged its merger with Burnes:
Partly because of the import problem, the Holson family sold out to Bain Capital in 1986; however, the Holson Company, which was still managed by family members, continued to have problems under the Bain umbrella. To return the organization’s competitive edge, Bain called in a series of consulting teams, including one from Price Waterhouse. Among the members of the Price Waterhouse team was Hoffmeister. Bain asked Hoffmeister to join Holson as head of the company in 1988 to effect a turnaround.
- Yes, Romney Could Lose – I just watched the Bain documentary featured below and being broadcast throughout South Carolina by Newt Gingrich’s SuperPac in full. It’s loaded with out-of-context quotes and heavily biased; it focuses on the specific human suffering of the necessary “creative destruction” of capitalism not its general benefits to the economy. It does so through the voices and stories of ordinary Americans. And, as an emotional bludgeon, it’s devastating.
But what makes it so dangerous to Romney, it seems to me, is that the Bain Brahmin didn’t just fire thousands of working class people in restructuring and in closing companies. He made a fucking unimaginable fortune doing it. That’s the issue. Other Republicans can speak about the need for free markets in a sluggish economy. But with Romney, we have a singular example of someone who made a quarter of a billion dollars by firing the white middle and working class in droves in ways that do not seem designed to promote growth or efficiency, but merely to enrich Bain.
- Report: 1% of Americans paid 22% of health care costs in 2009 – Just 1% of Americans accounted for 22% of health care costs in 2009, according to a federal report released Wednesday.
That’s about $90,000 per person, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. U.S. residents spent $1.26 trillion that year on health care.
Five percent accounted for 50% of health care costs, about $36,000 each, the report said.
The report’s findings can be used to predict which consumers are most likely to drive up health care costs and determine the best ways to save money, said Steven Cohen, the report’s lead author.
While the report showed how a tiny segment of the population can drive health care spending, the findings included good news. In 1996, the top 1% of the population accounted for 28% of health care spending.
“The actual concentration has dropped,” Cohen said. “That’s a big change.”
About one in five health care consumers remained in the top 1% of spenders for at least two consecutive years, the report showed. They tended to be white, non-Hispanic women in poor health; the elderly; and users of publicly funded health care.
- President 2012: Mitt Romney Responds to Bain Capital Attacks = Weak Sauce | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – President 2012: Mitt Romney Responds to Bain Capital Attacks = Weak Sauce
- @Flap Twitter Updates for 2012-01-13 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – @Flap Twitter Updates for 2012-01-13
- How the Australian Open Is Acing Digital Media – RT @AustralianOpen: Whoop! RT @mashable: How the Australian Open Is Acing Digital Media -
- National GOP Leader Post-New Hampshire Is Good Bet to Win – In recent Republican presidential nomination campaigns, the results of the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary have often made Republicans nationwide re-evaluate their preferences for the nominee, with the most change occurring in 1980 and 2008. Since 1976 — the first year in the modern nominating era in which there was a competitive Republican contest — the leader after New Hampshire has ultimately won the nomination.
- Gregory Flap Cole – Google+ – A Twinkie defense for bankruptcy probably won’t work… – A Twinkie defense for bankruptcy probably won’t work unfortunately…Hostess Bankruptcy | Gary Varv
- Poll Watch: Conservatives Continue to Be the Largest Ideological Block of Americans | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Poll Watch: Conservatives Continue to Be the Largest Ideological Block of Americans
- The Morning Flap: January 12, 2012 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – The Morning Flap: January 12, 2012
- President 2012: Politico Teams Up With Facebook in New Method of Election Prediction | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – President 2012: Politico Teams Up With Facebook in New Method of Election Prediction