Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Jon Stewart on Romney, Bain and taxes

Stewart returned from a 2-week hiatus and went after Romney's jugular with his usual style and humor (part 1, part 2). He catches up on the news about Romney's supposed retirement from Bain after '99 when the company was outsourcing, while still collecting at least $100k per year salary for apparently doing nothing. Mocking him Stewart says: "And that's the kind of common sense business experience I hope to bring to the White House."

As to Romney's off-shore investments and tax havens, and his excuse that they were in a blind trust without any control on his part, Stewart provided a 10/18/94 video of Romney saying: "The blind trust is an age-old ruse, if you will. You can always tell a blind trust what it can and cannot do. You give a blind trust rules." Stewart astutely observes: "So Romney is running on his business and financial acumen, but is not responsible for the management of either his business or finances."

Then he highlights Romney's hypocrisy on getting the benefit of government while at the same time denouncing such benefits to others. Romney has no problem whatsoever taking advantage of the tax code, such as the 15% capital gains rate, or off-shore tax havens. Or $77,000 in business expenses for dressage horse competition. Yes, a tax break "to send your fucking horse to the prom." What Romney doesn't understand is that no one cares that he's rich. "It's his inability to understand the institutional advantage that he gains from the government's tax code largess, that's a little offensive to people, especially given Romney's view on anyone else who looks to the government for things like, I don't know, food and medicine."

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