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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Florida Primary is today

So far three primaries down, and a different winner each thttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifime.

I think Romney will take this one as Florida is full of rich people. He is leading in the polls right now.

Here is Rick Santorum badmouthing President Obama while in West Palm Beach FL.

Newt doesn't want to debate Obama if the moderators are members of the media. And Todd will be robocalling for him. You can kiss Florida goodbye Newty!

And Ron Paul is still irrelevant.

Your thoughts?

Monday, January 30, 2012

Tim Tebow spotted at hotel that was hosting a porn convention




From FOX Sports

Tim Tebow's recent trip to Sin City saw him share a hotel with one of the world's largest porn conventions, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

The Denver Broncos star, famed for his clean-cut image as much as his Mile High miracles, checked into the Hard Rock Hotel in Paradise, just outside Las Vegas, on Jan. 18 while in town for a photo shoot.

Tebow was seen strolling through the hotel's casino on the day that a four-day Adult Entertainment Expo was opening, while most of the industry's leading performers were said to be in and around the Vegas Strip for the Adult Video News (AVN) Awards.

But the quarterback checked out without his spotless image sullied by shots of him passing the adult stars in the lobby.

A source told the newspaper that Tebow spent "most of the time" tucked away in his penthouse suite.

You would have thought that Tim, his agent, or the Broncos would have made sure his hotel accomodations was not hosting something like this.

Yep the Sarah curse continues. After she declared her love for him his play went south, and now he is in the company of porn stars.

Wonder what Sarah thinks of Tim now? Probably loves him even more.

If Franklin Delano Roosevelt were alive today



Today is the 130th anniversary of Franklin Delano Roosevelt's birth. He was our 32nd president. In my opinion he was the best president of the 20th Century. Abraham Lincoln was the best president of the 19th Century.

FDR and Obama have a lot in common.

Both are Democrats.
When they both took over the presidency they inherited an economic crisis.
FDR eventually became a war president. Obama was a war president from Day One.
Both their fathers died while they were in college
Speaking of college, FDR graduated from Harvard and attended Columbia Law School
Obama graduated from Columbia and Harvard Law School
The women that raised them (Sarah Roosevelt (FDR's mother) and Mrs. Dunham, (Obama's grandmother) both died when they were 86.
Both their Vice President's first names started with the letter J-John Nance Garner, FDR's first VP, and Joe Biden
Both their Vice Presidents were 65 when elected
Both have had assassination attempts
Both had wives who said controversial things and were accused of meddling
Both were accused of being a dictator, a communist, and a socialist
FDR ushered in reform the New Deal. Obama ushered in health care reform and DADT.
Both were viewed as demagogues.
Both had to deal with big money opposition. The Liberty League founded by the Du Ponts were against FDR and even tried to have him overthrown. Obama has the wrath of the Koch brothers who founded Americans for Prosperity.
FDR was born, raised, and lived in Hyde Park NY. Obama eventually settled in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago.
Both started out as State Senators.
Both were concerned about the common man.

Right now we could use a little of FDR's guidance. I think what President Obama should have done was take a page from the New Deal playbook. Instead of bailing out banks, he should have declared a bank holiday, shut down the big banks in trouble and audit them.

As for the auto industry, what he should have done was have the Big 3 manufacture tanks, jeeps, and humvees instead of cars and trucks for two years for the military instead of the Cash for Clunkers programs. That way they were not getting free money. They did the same in World War 2.

Don't get me wrong. I like President Obama and most of what he has done, but the bailouts are something I didn't agree with at all.

In 1933 when FDR took office unemployment was at 25%, by the end of his first term it was down to about 12. Then he cut back on New Deal spending which caused another recession. Remember Dick Cheney once said deficits do not matter.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Sarah gets totally owned by Jeanine Pirro on FAUX



Damn that was entertaining! Jeanine had to bite her lip at the end to keep from busting out laughing. My favorite part was annoy a liberal, vote for Newt. What is Sarah still stuck in High School or something?

Troll comments

This is a graph Sarah Palin does not want anyone to see

AnonymousJan 25, 2012 06:45 AM

10 trillion in debt from 1776 thru 2009, and another 5 trillion from 2009 to present...your graph is disingenuous.

Lately I've been getting fewer and fewer troll comments. I guess the trolls are tired of being humiliated every week.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

This is how one of Sarah Palin's endorsees treats the President of the United States

From MSNBC.com



Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer and President Barack Obama engaged in an apparently tense exchange on an airport tarmac shortly after Air Force One touched down outside Phoenix on Wednesday.

The two leaders could be seen talking intently at the base of Air Force One's steps. Both could be seen smiling, but speaking at the same time.

Obama appeared to walk away from the Republican governor while they were still talking, according to a White House pool reporter. Brewer confirmed that by saying she didn't finish her sentence.

Asked moments later what the conversation was about, Brewer said: "He was a little disturbed about my book."

On a Phoenix radio talk show after their meeting, Brewer said Obama was "tense."

Brewer recently published a book, "Scorpions for Breakfast," something of a memoir of her years growing up and defends her signing of Arizona's controversial law cracking down on illegal immigrants, which Obama opposes.

Obama was objecting to Brewer's description of a meeting he and Brewer had at the White House, where she described Obama as lecturing her. In an interview in November Brewer described two tense meetings. The first took place before his commencement address at Arizona State University. "He did blow me off at ASU," she said in the television interview in November.

In a statement after the meeting, Brewer didn't mention the airport conversation, and would only say that she discussed economic issues with Obama in a brief meeting.

"Don't be mistaken, I'm bullish on our nation's future," Brewer said in a statement issued later. "But I'm convinced the path the president has pursued is the wrong one. I hope he takes some of the lessons of Arizona back with him to Washington."

On the tarmac Wednesday, Brewer handed Obama an envelope with a handwritten invitation to return to Arizona to meet her for lunch and to join her for a visit to the border.

"I said to him, you know, I have always respected the office of the president and that the book is what the book is," she told reporters Wednesday. She said Obama complained that she described him as not treating her cordially.

"I said that I was sorry that he felt that way. Anyway, we're glad he's here, and we'll regroup."

A White House official said Brewer handed Obama a letter and said she was inviting him to meet with her. The official said Obama told her he would be glad to meet with her again. The official said Obama told her that in her book she inaccurately described their last meeting, which the official described as a cordial discussion in the Oval Office. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to describe a private conversation between the president and the governor.

I have to admit if I ever ran into Dumbya Bush or Sarah Palin I would probably act the same way Jan Brewer did to President Obama. However like Dumbya and Sarah, Jan is a proven liar with a substance abuse problem.

Jan has been busted about her allegations that headless corpses were found along the border, and that her father died while fighting the Nazis during World War, (he died in 1955, ten years after the war ended). If she'll lie about her father's death, she'll lie about anything, just like a certain ex-Governor and her youngest son's birth.

Sarah also wrote the forward to Jan's book Scorpions for Breakfast.

Sarah you are who you roll with and you roll with Jan Brewer. Take a look at Jan, that's what you are going to look like in ten years.

I need to give a shout out to GinaM who commented on Immoral Minority that Jan's name should be Gov Burntface. I love it!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Sarah to Chris Christie: don't get your panties in a wad



That's real rich considering Sarah has had her panties (or is it thong) in a wad since the 2008 Election

This is the closest Sarah Palin will ever get to meeting President Obama



This photo was taken at the Alfalfa Dinner in 2009. It looks like Sarah is going to confront President Obama and Joe Lieberman is about to give her a body check. Which is good cuz the current POTUS is too good for her anyway.

This picture also proves Sarah is nuts. I'm sure John McCain told his good friend Joe Lieberman what a nutcase Sarah is, which is why Joe had to put himself between her and President Obama.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Mission Accomplished

Here is a real public servant with a servant's heart



I had a feeling Gabby would not run this fall, but I was hoping for the best.

Gabby thank you for your service. I hope to see you make a comeback in 2014 when your seat will up for election. And who knows, maybe 2016 when John McCain will be up for re-election, and maybe you could run for President.

And Sarah Palin take note here. This is what a real public servant does, looks out for the people they are serving, something you have never done.

Congrats Sarah. Mission accomplished for you. You put crosshairs on Gabby's district and now she has resigned. I hope you are happy.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Breaking News-Joe Paterno passes away

From ESPN.com

I can't help but feel sad about this. Even though he was morally bankrupt, he was a very good football coach. It's a shame he did not do more regarding Jerry Sandusky.

My father passed away from cancer so I do not wish cancer on anybody, not even the likes of Joe Paterno. Cancer is a horrible disease and so is chemotherapy.

Joe was the winningest football coach in college football history. He was the first coach to win all the major bowl games (Orange, Rose, Fiesta, Sugar). He won two national championships, coached five undefeated teams, and sent over 250 players to the NFL.

Another regret is this year my Iowa Hawkeyes lost to Penn State. They played before the scandal broke. I do take comfort that Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz had the best record of all coaches Joe coached against at 8-3. Kirk was even mentioned as a replacement for Joe.

But the biggest regret is how Joe handled Jerry Sandusky. Why he felt the need to protect him I do not know. Jerry retired in 1999, three years before Mike McQueary caught him in the shower with an underage boy. Joe had the clout to make one phone call to law enforcement to have that monster thrown in jail. But he did not and that is unforgivable.

My hope now for Joe is that God forgave him for not turning Jerry Sandusky in to the State College police. Hell is not fun.

Troll comments

How can the Palins keep affording to buy properties without any PAC money?

Dorothy KilgallenJan 18, 2012 06:07 AM

There's a Forbes article called "What Sarah Palin Really Earns: Less Than You Think" and though it's a little outdated (published 7/7/10), the info is well sourced:

"But an investigation by Forbes of Palin’s income since she left office last July ... plus a review of her finances from a source with access to her business records, suggests Palin made a far smaller advance and that her earnings over the past 12 months were at best $10 million.

"Palin’s biggest source of income since leaving office is her 'Going Rogue' advance and royalties. Neither Palin herself nor her publisher, HarperCollins, would comment on what they are. But a publishing industry source who knows the terms of the deal said Palin’s advance was 'nowhere near $7 million.' A source inside Palin’s camp says the number is closer to $2.5 million.

"How plausible is this smaller figure? Last October Palin made her final required financial disclosure during her term as governor. In the first 6 months of 2009, while Palin was still in office, she listed $1.25 million in income from the forthcoming book. It’s standard practice in the publishing business to give an author half of their advance upfront; the rest when a manuscript is delivered.

"Palin’s publisher, HarperCollins, reports 'Going Rogue,' a bestseller, sold 2.2 million copies. After subtracting the estimated advance, Palin’s take would be $6 million. That’s a windfall, but hardly the birth of a financial juggernaut ...

"A second source of income for Palin is the Fox News Channel, where she began appearing in January as a commentator. Her first year income from the network is reportedly $1 million (which the Palin insider does not dispute). Palin will also earn income from an Alaska-themed series on the Discovery Channel. For that, she’ll reportedly get $250,000 apiece for each of 8 episodes.

"Palin’s speaking fees are reported to be $100,000 per appearance. But Palin has done fewer than a dozen speeches in which she has made even close to this number, says the Palin insider ... Palin’s take from speeches since leaving office, then, probably hovers at $500,000."

http://tinyurl.com/7l9brbu
As for her Arizona house, this is from HuffPo, 5/23/11:

"An anonymous Delaware-registered limited liability company paid nearly $1.7 million cash for the 7,900-square foot property earlier this month."
http://tinyurl.com/3r27hj4

If you're going to blog about Palin (or anything else, for that matter):

1. Get your facts straight. It took me about two minutes to find out that the AZ house's purchase price was $1.7 million and not "like 5-7 million."

2. Give credit where it's due. The info, pic and documents re: Bristol's house came from PoliticalGates' recent scoop, yes ? SAY SO ...otherwise it looks like you dug those facts up.

Dorothy KilgallenJan 19, 2012 07:25 AM

Levidumpedthepalins,

Read the whole post dump, dump, dump ...

The h/t to Politicalgates was added after I posted my comment.

You've obviously mistaken a dump for your brain.

Don't sleep on your side, Levi. You'll wake up with skidmarks on your pillow

Dorothy I added that h/t before you commented so shut the fuck up

Saturday, January 21, 2012

South Carolina primary is being held today-Update

Now we are down to four.

Mitt Romney
Newt Gingrich
Ron Paul
Rick Santorum

Jon Huntsman dropped out on Monday, Rick Perry on Thursday. I think Mitt will win this one. Newt's ex wife did a lot of damage, so did the Palins endorse of him. You all know, everything they touch turns to shit.

Also Santorum was declared the winner of the Iowa caucus after a recount.

Update-Gingrich wins, Romney 2nd.

Whoo Hoo! Even though Gingrich pisses me off the most I want him to get the GOP nomination so Obama will have the pleasure of creaming him

Friday, January 20, 2012

If John McCain had been elected president (satire)

This is what would have happened

1/20/09-John and Sarah are sworn in as president and vice president, respectively

1/21/09-Sarah starts plotting John's death.

3/12/09-Sarah invites John to the Naval Observatory for a moose steak dinner. While there he mysteriously has a heart attack and dies, thus breaking the record for the shortest presidency set by William Henry Harrison back in 1841. Sarah is immediately sworn in as president by Justice John Roberts.

3/13/09-Sarah's first official act is to appoint Todd as her Chief of Staff, making history as being the first Presidential Spouse to hold a position in a presidential administration. People cry nepotism. She also appoints Wayne Anthony Ross as Attorney General, Chuck Norris as Secretary of Defense, Chuck Heath Sr. as Secretary of Education, (more nepotism), Kristen Cole as Secretary of the Treasury, David Koch as Secretary of the Interior, Scott Walker as Secretary of Labor, William Koch as Secretary of Energy, and Meg Stapleton and RAM as Co-Press Secretaries. She bypasses on naming Nancy Pelosi as Vice President as dictated by the Constiution, choosing to leave that vacant.

3/14/09-Sarah blackmails Harry Reid to call on the Senate to look into Barack Obama's associations with Jeremiah Wright, William Ayers, Tony Rezko, and Rod Blagoevich. When the Senate comes up empty, she then has WAR start an investigation. WAR is unable to come up with anything so Sarah comes up with a fake birth certificate and has him deported.

4/19/09 Sarah uses her authority as Commander in Chief to pull Track out of Iraq.

5/17/09 Sarah gives the commencement speech at Notre Dame. She announces she will sign an executive order banning all abortions in any circumstances.

5/31/09 Willow is expelled from Sidwell Friends School. Sarah and Todd send her to Alaska to live with Chuck and Sally.

6/1/09 Sarah announces she is reinstating the draft. Minimum draft age is 15 maximum 60. First person drafted is Mike Wooten. 2nd person David Kernell. 3rd Levi Johnston but he flunks the physical.

7/14/09 After David Letterman makes his joke about Bristol/Willow. Sarah has the FCC remove him from the air.

11/09 Sarah has moose served at her first state dinner with India. She also has Big and Rich, Hank Williams Jr and Ted Nugent provide the musical entertainment. And those party crashers? She has them arrested after the fact.

2/10 After Family Guy makes fun of Sarah and Trig, Sarah has the FCC remove Family Guy from the airwaves.

4/10 Congress passes the health care reform, Sarah vetoes it

6/27/10-Willow comes to visit and brings ten of her closest friends with her. They ransack the Lincoln bedroom, strewing Vodka bottles, used condoms, and cigarettes all over. They also do damage in the Red Room, the State Dining Room, and the White House pool. Several White House domestic staff quit in protest.

7/10-Bristol and Levi announce their re-engagement and that they plan to marry at the White House. Sarah has Levi drafted into the Army and is sent to Iraq.

12/10 Congress repeals DADT, Sarah vetoes it.

1/8/11-Jared Loughner goes on his killing spree in Tucson and also wounds Rep. Gabby Giffords. Sarah gives him a presidential pardon.

1/18/11-Sarah cancels the state dinner with China cuz she's uncomfortable around Asians.

3/11-Jeremy Morlock is arrested for killing civilian Afghanis. Sarah gives him a presidential pardon. She also sends ground troops to Libya and orders airstrikes.

5/1/11-Osama Bin Laden is killed. Sarah takes all the credit.

4/1/11 Sarah goes to Iraq to visit the troops. While boarding Air Force One for the return trip she "forgets" Trig.

5/17/11-Sarah announces that Track and Britta got married at the White House

9/7/11 Piper's "tutor" quits saying she cannot take anymore of her diva attitude. Sarah enrolls her at Sidwell Friends but Piper ends up being expelled.

10/12/11-Sarah cancels the state dinner with South Korea for the same reason as why she canceled the state dinner with China.

10/20/11-Gaddafi is killed and Sarah takes all the credit.

1/20/12-Impeachment proceedings against Sarah finally begin.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Nikki Haley one of Sarah's endorsees isn't doing so well

From the National Review:

Haley certainly has seen her approval ratings slump since being sworn in, although just how much is a point of dispute. According to a December Winthrop University poll, the governor’s approval rating is 35 percent, with only a little more than half of Republicans giving her a thumbs-up. Since every statewide official in South Carolina is a Republican, the GOP controls the legislature, and Republicans have a seven-to-one advantage in the congressional delegation, the Winthrop survey rang alarm bells everywhere.

The governor punched back. Appearing on NBC’s Meet the Press, she dismissed this “local poll” because it also showed that President Obama would today win South Carolina, which would be a bizarre result since he lost the state by 9 percentage points in 2008.

But the poll in question didn’t test President Obama’s general-election prospects in South Carolina, only his statewide approval rating. This came in at 45 percent — higher than Haley’s. The governor’s office was forced to admit she had misspoken.

I don't follow South Carolina politics so I don't know how accurate her ratings are but this isn't good.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Is Willow engaged?

Not sure if this is her Twitter page but check it out:

From Twitter:

How can the Palins keep affording to buy properties without PAC money

And any other financial resources are dwindling and Levi is allegedly not paying child support for Tripp?

Bristol bought her home along Lake Lucille on July 29, 2011, while she was in LA filimg her unreality show:



Here is the tax assessment for it:


Bristol claims it's a fixer upper but it looks like it doesn't need it:


Since she bought this house in July 2011 it's obvious she had no plans to stay in Hollywood. Once again she lies.

Also she defaulted on the property taxes on the house she bought in Arizona. Not surprised considering she is spending all her money on houses.

How did she get all this money to buy these two properties not including the condo in Anchorage. She made $267,000 for lying about abstinence, got at least $300,000 for DWTS, several hundred thousand dollars for her photo shoots, which Levi should get a cut of since Tripp was in them, and the book deal. Can you say SarahPac?

Sarah and Todd bought some property as well. They bought the property near to Bristol's which is separated by two empty lots on Aug 25, 2011 under the name Iron Investments. That address is 325 W LAKE VIEW AVE WASILLA. Who did they buy that house for? Track and his family?

How can the Palins afford to keep buying properties. Sarah bought the Arizona pad for like 5-7 million, and the new home that was featured on SPA.

Sarah got paid 2 million for SPA, then there is her salary from FAUX News. She also got 12 million for Going Rogue. She charges $100,000 for speaking engagements but those are drying up. Then you take out the taxes. Alaska has no state income tax but she is going to get hit on the federal. So you figure about 25% total for taxes that still isn't enough to buy all those big properties. Where did the money come from? Her PAC.

Big thank you to Politicalgates for their sleuthing.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Sarah makes a Newsweek article that has nothing to do with her all about her


From Huffington Post

Sarah Palin took to Twitter early Tuesday to give Newsweek a piece of her mind.

The former Alaska governor and vice presidential candidate seemed to be particularly annoyed by the magazine's decision to run a cover story about President Barack Obama under the headline: "Why Are Obama's Critics So Dumb?" But Palin's ire wasn't directed at the story's assertions; instead she took aim at Andrew Sullivan, the author of the article.

Sullivan is the former editor of The New Republic, a weekly columnist for the Sunday Times of London and the author of several books, including "Virtually Normal," "Love Undetectable" and "The Conservative Soul." In recent years, he has covered Palin's public and political life, including the unfounded rumors that claimed Palin may not have given birth to her son Trig. The speculation ended in 2008 when Sullivan posted links to photographs showing a pregnant Palin.

Game On Sarah!

You are so dumb. Now everyone is going to be asking about Babygate. You can refer them to my blog.

Happy Birthday First Lady Michelle Obama!

I hope she has a lovely day.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Sarah Palin says Republicans should vet one another

From Mudflats

Sarah Palin, perhaps politics’ most high-profile vetting escapee seems to have a strong opinion on the matter of vetting when it comes to people who are not Sarah Palin. Despite documentation that proves Palin was never vetted (as John McCain and others claim), she is waving the red flag, encouraging Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich and others to continue their public “vetting” of Mitt Romney and the cast of Republican presidential hopefuls.

Palin says that criticism of Romney’s record as the head of Bain Capital is fair and that he should provide the public with proof of his claims that he helped to create 100,000 jobs during his time with the firm.

That's real rich considering Sarah was the least vetted candidate in history. And she is a tax cheat as well.


Two primaries are down

So far the Iowa and New Hampshire primaries are on the books. Mitt Romney has won both of them and is on track to capture the GOP Nomination for President.

Here is the breakdown for delegates:

Mitt Romney-14
Ron Paul-10
Rick Santorum-8
Jon Hunstman-2
Newt Gingrich-2
Rick Perry-2

How many delegates has Sarah won?

0!

Breakdown for Iowa votes:

Mitt Romney-30,015
Rick Santorum-30,008
Ron Paul-26,219
Newt Gingrich-26,251
Rick Perry-12,604
Michele Bachmann-6,073

How many write in votes has Sarah Palin gotten?

0!

Breakdown for New Hampshire:

Mitt Romney-97,600
Ron Paul-56,872
Jon Huntsman-41,783
Rick Santorum-23,362
Newt Gingrich-23,291

And how many write in votes has Sarah Palin gotten?

0!

Suck on it Palinbots!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Tim Tebow's season is over

From ESPN

Ever since Sarah declared her love for Tim, he has gone 1-4 as a starter.

Hopefully Tim can wash the curse of during the offseason. I really do like the guy. He acts more Christian than Sarah ever will, visiting sick kids in the hospital and setting up a charitable foundation.

Kind of disappointing yesterday. The Saints lost to the 49er's. I hate the 49'ers.

Troll comments

We remember the victims of the Tucson shooting

Anonymous Jan 8, 2012 10:00 PM

You people need to get a life... the terminology used in political battles has been around for many decades and is nothing new. Hilary Clinton and other Democrats and Republicans used similar maps to target her political opposition in various campaigns. Time to move on and find something new to bitch about...

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The dark side of Mitt Romney


From Vanity Fair

Mitt Romney has long been a front-runner for the G.O.P. nomination—even if no one really knows who he is. Digging into the candidate’s record as a Mormon leader, his business deals at Bain Capital, and that infamous car trip with the family dog strapped to the roof, Michael Kranish and Scott Helman pierce the Mitt bubble in an adaptation from their new book, The Real Romney, to find that the contradictions, question marks, and ambivalence go deeper than his politics.

itt Romney’s privileged pedigree was common knowledge to his classmates at Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School, where he was simultaneously enrolled in 1971 through a joint-degree program. By that time, his father, George Romney, had run a major corporation (American Motors), been elected three times as Michigan’s governor, sought the presidency, and been appointed to President Nixon’s Cabinet. Despite strongly resembling the elder Romney—the full head of strikingly dark hair, square jaw, dazzling smile—Mitt did little to draw attention to his parentage. The only hint was George’s faded gold initials on a beat-up old briefcase that Mitt carried around.

In truth, Mitt cherished his father’s example and endeavored to follow it. George became more than just a mentor to his youngest son. He was a pathfinder, showing the way of their Mormon faith through the thickets of politics and business, home life, and character. Through his achievements and mistakes, George had bestowed many lessons, and Mitt soaked them up. “His whole life,” said John Wright, a close family friend, “was following a pattern which had been laid out by his dad.” So with his wife, Ann, as a partner and his father as an inspiration, Mitt set out to build a family, a career, and a place in the church that he loved.

The Romneys’ Mormon faith, as Mitt and Ann began their life together, formed a deep foundation. It lay under nearly everything—their acts of charity, their marriage, their parenting, their social lives, even their weekly schedules. Their family-centric lifestyle was a choice; Mitt and Ann plainly cherished time at home with their children more than anything. But it was also a duty. Belonging to the Mormon Church meant accepting a code of conduct that placed supreme value on strong families—strong heterosexual families, in which men and women often filled defined and traditional roles. The Romneys have long cited a well-known Mormon credo popularized by the late church leader David O. McKay: “No other success can compensate for failure in the home.” They had arrived in the Boston area with one son, Taggart, and soon had a second, Matthew. Over the next decade, the Romneys would have three more boys: Joshua was born in 1975, Benjamin in 1978, and then Craig in 1981.

To Mitt, the special one in the house was Ann, with her wide smile, piercing eyes, and steadying domestic presence. And woe was the boy who forgot it. Tagg said there was one rule that was simply not breakable: “We were not allowed to say anything negative about my mother, talk back to her, do anything that would not be respectful of her.” On Mother’s Day, their home would be fragrant with lilacs, Ann’s favorite flowers. Tagg didn’t get it back then, but he came to understand. From the beginning, Mitt had put Ann on a pedestal and kept her there. “When they were dating,” Tagg said, “he felt like she was way better than him and he was really lucky to have this catch. He really genuinely still feels that way.” What makes his parents’ relationship work, he said, is their distinct characters: Mitt is driven first by reason, while Ann operates more on emotion. “She helps him see there’s stuff beyond the logic; he helps her see that there’s more than just instinct and feeling,” Tagg said. Mitt and Ann’s relationship would grow and change as their family entered the public eye. But she has remained his chief counselor and confidante, the one person who can lead Mitt to a final decision. Though she did not necessarily offer detailed input on every business deal, friends said, she weighed in on just about everything else. “Mitt’s not going to do something that they don’t feel good about together,” said Mitt’s sister Jane. Tagg said they called their mom “the great Mitt stabilizer.” Ann would later be mocked for her claim that she and Mitt had never had an argument during their marriage, which sounded preposterous to the ears of many married mortals. Tagg said it’s not that his parents never disagree. “I know there are things that she says that he doesn’t agree with sometimes, and I see him kind of bite his tongue. But I know that they go and discuss it in private. He doesn’t ever contradict my mother in public.” Friends of the Romneys’ back up that account, saying they cannot recall Mitt ever raising his voice toward Ann. Nowhere was Ann’s special status more evident than on long family car trips. Mitt imposed strict rules: they would stop only for gas, and that was the only chance to get food or use the restroom. With one exception, Tagg explained. “As soon as my mom says, ‘I think I need to go to the bathroom,’ he pulls over instantly and doesn’t complain. ‘Anything for you, Ann.’” On one infamous road trip, though, it wasn’t Ann who forced Mitt off the highway. The destination of this journey, in the summer of 1983, was his parents’ cottage, on the Canadian shores of Lake Huron. The white Chevy station wagon with the wood paneling was overstuffed with suitcases, supplies, and sons when Mitt climbed behind the wheel to begin the 12-hour family trek from Boston to Ontario. As with most ventures in his life, he had left little to chance, mapping out the route and planning each stop. Before beginning the drive, Mitt put Seamus, the family’s hulking Irish setter, in a dog carrier and attached it to the station wagon’s roof rack. He had improvised a windshield for the carrier to make the ride more comfortable for the dog.

Then Mitt put his sons on notice: there would be pre-determined stops for gas, and that was it. Tagg was commandeering the way-back of the wagon, keeping his eyes fixed out the rear window, when he glimpsed the first sign of trouble. “Dad!” he yelled. “Gross!” A brown liquid was dripping down the rear window, payback from an Irish setter who’d been riding on the roof in the wind for hours. As the rest of the boys joined in the howls of disgust, Mitt coolly pulled off the highway and into a service station. There he borrowed a hose, washed down Seamus and the car, then hopped back onto the road with the dog still on the roof. It was a preview of a trait he would grow famous for in business: emotion-free crisis management. But the story would trail him years later on the national political stage, where the name Seamus would become shorthand for Romney’s coldly clinical approach to problem solving.
The Book of Mitt

If Romney is exceedingly comfortable around family and close friends, he’s much less so around those he doesn’t know well, drawing a boundary that’s difficult to traverse. It’s a strict social order—us and them—that has put co-workers, political aides, casual acquaintances, and others in his professional circles, even people who have worked with or known him for years, outside the bubble. As a result, he has numerous admirers but, by several accounts, not a long list of close pals. “He’s very engaging and charming in a small group of friends he’s comfortable with,” said one former aide. “When he’s with people he doesn’t know, he gets more formal. And if it’s a political thing where he doesn’t know anybody, he has a mask.” For those outside the inner circle, Romney comes across as all business. Colleagues at work or political staffers are there to do a job, not to bond. “Mitt is always the star,” said one Massachusetts Republican. “And everybody else is a bit player.” He has little patience for idle chatter or small talk, little interest in mingling at cocktail parties, at social functions, or even in the crowded hallway. He is not fed by, and does not crave, casual social interaction, often displaying little desire to know who people are and what makes them tick. “He wasn’t overly interested in people’s personal details or their kids or spouses or team building or their career path,” said another former aide. “It was all very friendly but not very deep.” Or, as one fellow Republican put it, “He has that invisible wall between ‘me’ and ‘you.’” Referring to the time later when Romney was governor of Massachusetts, a Democratic lawmaker recalls, “You remember Richard Nixon and the imperial presidency? Well, this was the imperial governor.” There were the ropes that often curtailed access to Romney and his chambers. The elevator settings restricted access to his office. The tape on the floor told people exactly where to stand during events. This was the controlled environment that Romney created. His orbit was his own. “We always would talk about how, among the legislators, he had no idea what our names were—none,” the lawmaker said, “because he was so far removed from the day-to-day operations of state government.”

This sense of detachment is a function partly of his faith, which has its own tight social community that most outsiders don’t see. Indeed, the stories of Romney’s humanity and warmth come mostly from people who know him as a fellow Mormon. His abstention from drinking also makes parties and other alcohol-fueled functions distinctly less appealing. He is the antithesis of the gregarious pol with a highball in one hand and a cigar in his mouth. Romney’s discomfort around strangers would later become more than just a curiosity; it would be an impediment on the campaign trail. Lacking an easy rapport with voters, he would come across as aloof, even off-putting. “A lot of it is he is patrician. He just is. He has lived a charmed life,” said one former aide. “It is a big challenge that he has, connecting to folks who haven’t swum in the same rarefied waters that he has.” His growing wealth, the deeper he got into his career, only widened the disconnect. Even as he began shouldering more responsibility at work, Romney would assume several leadership positions in the Mormon Church. But he could handle it. “Mitt,” said Kem Gardner, a fellow church official from this period, “just had the capacity to keep all the balls up in the air.” Or, as Tagg put it, “Compared to my dad, everyone’s lazy.” Helen Claire Sievers, who served in a church leadership position under Romney, got a glimpse of his work habits during weekend bus trips to the Mormon temple near Washington, D.C. Church groups would leave late on a Friday, drive all night, and arrive early on Saturday morning. Then they’d spend all day Saturday in temple sessions before turning around and driving home, to be back by Sunday morning. It was a grueling itinerary, Sievers said, so everyone used the time on the bus to sleep or read quietly. Everyone but Romney. “Mitt was always working. His light was on,” she said.

Mormon congregations, typically groups of 400 to 500 people, are known as wards, and their boundaries are determined by geography. Wards, along with smaller congregations known as branches, are organized into stakes. Thus a stake, akin to a Catholic diocese, is a collection of wards and branches in a city or region. Unlike Protestants or Catholics, Mormons do not choose the congregations to which they belong. It depends entirely on where they live. In another departure from many other faiths, Mormons do not have paid full-time clergy. Members in good standing take turns serving in leadership roles. They are expected to perform their ecclesiastical duties on top of career and family responsibilities. Those called to serve as stake presidents and bishops, or leaders of local wards, are fully empowered as agents of the church, and they carry great authority over their domains. Mitt Romney first took on a major church role around 1977, when he was called to be a counselor to Gordon Williams, then the president of the Boston stake. Romney was essentially an adviser and deputy to Williams, helping oversee area congregations. His appointment was somewhat unusual in that counselors at that level have typically been bishops of their local wards first. But Romney, who was only about 30 years old, was deemed to possess leadership qualities beyond his years. Romney’s responsibilities only grew from there; he would go on to serve as bishop and then as stake president, overseeing about a dozen congregations with close to 4,000 members altogether. Those positions in the church amounted to his biggest leadership test yet, exposing him to personal and institutional crises, human tragedies, immigrant cultures, social forces, and organizational challenges that he had never before encountered.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is far more than a form of Sunday worship. It is a code of ethics that frowns on homosexuality, out-of-wedlock births, and abortion and forbids pre-marital sex. It offers a robust, effective social safety net, capable of incredible feats of charity, support, and service, particularly when its own members are in trouble. And it works hard to create community, a built-in network of friends who often share values and a worldview. For many Mormons, the all-encompassing nature of their faith, as an extension of their spiritual lives, is what makes belonging to the church so wonderful, so warm, even as its insularity can set members apart from society.

But a dichotomy exists within the Mormon Church, which holds that one is either in or out; there is little or no tolerance for those, like so-called cafeteria Catholics, who pick and choose what doctrines to follow. And in Mormonism, if one is in, a lot is expected, including tithing 10 percent of one’s income, participating regularly in church activities, meeting high moral expectations, and accepting Mormon doctrine—including many concepts, such as the belief that Jesus will rule from Missouri in his Second Coming, that run counter to those of other Christian faiths. That rigidity can be difficult to abide for those who love the faith but chafe at its strictures or question its teachings and cultural habits. For one, Mormonism is male-dominated—women can serve only in certain leadership roles and never as bishops or stake presidents. The church also makes a number of firm value judgments, typically prohibiting single or divorced men from leading wards and stakes, for example, and not looking kindly upon single parenthood.

The portrait of Romney that emerges from those he led and served with in the church is of a leader who was pulled between Mormonism’s conservative core views and practices and the demands from some quarters within the Boston stake for a more elastic, more open-minded application of church doctrine. Romney was forced to strike a balance between those local expectations and the dictates out of Salt Lake City. Some believe that he artfully reconciled the two, praising him as an innovative and generous leader who was willing to make accommodations, such as giving women expanded responsibility, and who was always there for church members in times of need. To others, he was the product of a hidebound, patriarchal Mormon culture, inflexible and insensitive in delicate situations and dismissive of those who didn’t share his perspective.

In the spring of 1993, Helen Claire Sievers performed a bit of shuttle diplomacy to resolve a thorny problem confronting church leaders in Boston: resentment among progressive Mormon women at their subservient status within the church. Sievers was active in an organization of liberal women called Exponent II, which published a periodical. The group had been chewing over the challenges of being a woman in the male-led faith. So Sievers went to Romney, who was stake president, with a proposal. “I said, ‘Why don’t you have a meeting and have an open forum and let women talk to you?’” she recalled. The idea was that, although there were many church rules that stake presidents and bishops could not change, they did have some leeway to do things their own way.

Romney wasn’t sure about holding such a meeting, but he ultimately agreed to it. Sievers went back to the Exponent II group and said they should be realistic and not demand things Romney could never deliver, such as allowing women to hold the priesthood. On the day of the meeting, about 250 women filled the pews of the Belmont Chapel. After an opening song, prayer, and some housekeeping items, the floor was open. Women began proposing changes that would include them more in the life of the church. In the end, the group came up with some 70 suggestions—from letting women speak after men in church to putting changing tables in men’s bathrooms—as Romney and one of his counselors listened and took careful notes.

Romney was essentially willing to grant any request he couldn’t see a reason to reject. “Pretty much, he said yes to everything that I would have said yes to, and I’m kind of a liberal Mormon,” Sievers said. “I was pretty impressed.” (Ann Romney was not considered to be sympathetic to the agitation of liberal women within the stake. She was invited to social events sponsored by Exponent II but did not attend. She was, in the words of one member, understood to be “not that kind of woman.”)

Romney’s leadership was not so rosy for everyone, though. As both bishop and stake president, he at times clashed with women he felt strayed too far from church beliefs and practice. To them, he lacked the empathy and courage that they had known in other leaders, putting the church first even at times of great personal vulnerability. Peggie Hayes had joined the church as a teenager along with her mother and siblings. They’d had a difficult life. Mormonism offered the serenity and stability her mother craved. “It was,” Hayes said, “the answer to everything.” Her family, though poorer than many of the well-off members, felt accepted within the faith. Everyone was so nice. The church provided emotional and, at times, financial support. As a teenager, Hayes babysat for Mitt and Ann Romney and other couples in the ward. Then Hayes’s mother abruptly moved the family to Salt Lake City for Hayes’s senior year of high school. Restless and unhappy, Hayes moved to Los Angeles once she turned 18. She got married, had a daughter, and then got divorced shortly after. But she remained part of the church.

By 1983, Hayes was 23 and back in the Boston area, raising a 3-year-old daughter on her own and working as a nurse’s aide. Then she got pregnant again. Single motherhood was no picnic, but Hayes said she had wanted a second child and wasn’t upset at the news. “I kind of felt like I could do it,” she said. “And I wanted to.” By that point Mitt Romney, the man whose kids Hayes used to watch, was, as bishop of her ward, her church leader. But it didn’t feel so formal at first. She earned some money while she was pregnant organizing the Romneys’ basement. The Romneys also arranged for her to do odd jobs for other church members, who knew she needed the cash. “Mitt was really good to us. He did a lot for us,” Hayes said. Then Romney called Hayes one winter day and said he wanted to come over and talk. He arrived at her apartment in Somerville, a dense, largely working-class city just north of Boston. They chitchatted for a few minutes. Then Romney said something about the church’s adoption agency. Hayes initially thought she must have misunderstood. But Romney’s intent became apparent: he was urging her to give up her soon-to-be-born son for adoption, saying that was what the church wanted. Indeed, the church encourages adoption in cases where “a successful marriage is unlikely.”

Hayes was deeply insulted. She told him she would never surrender her child. Sure, her life wasn’t exactly the picture of Rockwellian harmony, but she felt she was on a path to stability. In that moment, she also felt intimidated. Here was Romney, who held great power as her church leader and was the head of a wealthy, prominent Belmont family, sitting in her gritty apartment making grave demands. “And then he says, ‘Well, this is what the church wants you to do, and if you don’t, then you could be excommunicated for failing to follow the leadership of the church,’ ” Hayes recalled. It was a serious threat. At that point Hayes still valued her place within the Mormon Church. “This is not playing around,” she said. “This is not like ‘You don’t get to take Communion.’ This is like ‘You will not be saved. You will never see the face of God.’ ” Romney would later deny that he had threatened Hayes with excommunication, but Hayes said his message was crystal clear: “Give up your son or give up your God.”

Not long after, Hayes gave birth to a son. She named him Dane. At nine months old, Dane needed serious, and risky, surgery. The bones in his head were fused together, restricting the growth of his brain, and would need to be separated. Hayes was scared. She sought emotional and spiritual support from the church once again. Looking past their uncomfortable conversation before Dane’s birth, she called Romney and asked him to come to the hospital to confer a blessing on her baby. Hayes was expecting him. Instead, two people she didn’t know showed up. She was crushed. “I needed him,” she said. “It was very significant that he didn’t come.” Sitting there in the hospital, Hayes decided she was finished with the Mormon Church. The decision was easy, yet she made it with a heavy heart. To this day, she remains grateful to Romney and others in the church for all they did for her family. But she shudders at what they were asking her to do in return, especially when she pulls out pictures of Dane, now a 27-year-old electrician in Salt Lake City. “There’s my baby,” she said.

In the fall of 1990, Exponent II published in its journal an unsigned essay by a married woman who, having already borne five children, had found herself some years earlier facing an unplanned sixth pregnancy. She couldn’t bear the thought of another child and was contemplating abortion. But the Mormon Church makes few exceptions to permit women to end a pregnancy. Church leaders have said that abortion can be justified in cases of rape or incest, when the health of the mother is seriously threatened, or when the fetus will surely not survive beyond birth. And even those circumstances “do not automatically justify an abortion,” according to church policy.

Then the woman’s doctors discovered she had a serious blood clot in her pelvis. She thought initially that would be her way out—of course she would have to get an abortion. But the doctors, she said, ultimately told her that, with some risk to her life, she might be able to deliver a full-term baby, whose chance of survival they put at 50 percent. One day in the hospital, her bishop—later identified as Romney, though she did not name him in the piece—paid her a visit. He told her about his nephew who had Down syndrome and what a blessing it had turned out to be for their family. “As your bishop,” she said he told her, “my concern is with the child.” The woman wrote, “Here I—a baptized, endowed, dedicated worker, and tithe-payer in the church—lay helpless, hurt, and frightened, trying to maintain my psychological equilibrium, and his concern was for the eight-week possibility in my uterus—not for me!”

Romney would later contend that he couldn’t recall the incident, saying, “I don’t have any memory of what she is referring to, although I certainly can’t say it could not have been me.” Romney acknowledged having counseled Mormon women not to have abortions except in exceptional cases, in accordance with church rules. The woman told Romney, she wrote, that her stake president, a doctor, had already told her, “Of course, you should have this abortion and then recover from the blood clot and take care of the healthy children you already have.” Romney, she said, fired back, “I don’t believe you. He wouldn’t say that. I’m going to call him.” And then he left. The woman said that she went on to have the abortion and never regretted it. “What I do feel bad about,” she wrote, “is that at a time when I would have appreciated nurturing and support from spiritual leaders and friends, I got judgment, criticism, prejudicial advice, and rejection.”

One woman who had been active in the Exponent II organization was Judy Dushku, a longtime scholar of global politics at Suffolk University in Boston. At one point while Romney was stake president, Dushku wanted to visit the temple outside Washington to take out endowments, a sacred rite that commits Mormons to a lifetime of faithfulness to the church. She had never entered a temple before and was thrilled at the chance to affirm her dedication to a faith she’d grown up with and grown to love. Earlier in her life, temples had been off limits to Mormons who, like Dushku, were married to non-Mormons. Now that rule had changed, and she was eager to go. But first she needed permission from her bishop and stake president.

After what she described as a “lovely interview” with her bishop and after speaking with one of Romney’s counselors, she went to see Romney. She wasn’t sure what to expect. Despite Romney’s willingness to allow some changes in 1993, he and Dushku had clashed over the church’s treatment of women. “He says something like ‘I suspect, if you’ve gotten through both of the interviews, there’s nothing I can do to keep you from going to the temple,’ ” Dushku recalled. “I said, ‘Well, why would you want to keep me from going to the temple?’ ” Romney’s answer, Dushku said, was biting. “He said, ‘Well, Judy, I just don’t understand why you stay in the church.’ ” She asked him whether he wanted her to really answer that question. “And he said, ‘No, actually. I don’t understand it, but I also don’t care. I don’t care why you do. But I can tell you one thing: you’re not my kind of Mormon.’ ” With that, Dushku said, he dismissively signed her recommendation to visit the temple and let her go. Dushku was deeply hurt. Though she and Romney had had their differences, he was still her spiritual leader. She had hoped he would be excited at her yearning to visit the temple. “I’m coming to you as a member of the church, essentially expecting you to say, ‘I’m happy for you,’ ” Dushku said. Instead, “I just felt kicked in the stomach.”
The Bain of Mitt’s Campaign

By the time Mitt Romney walked into the Faneuil Hall offices of his mentor and boss, Bill Bain, in the spring of 1983, the 36-year-old was already a business-consulting star, coveted by clients for his analytical cool. He was, as people had said of him since childhood, mature beyond his years and organized to a fault. Everything he took on was thought through in advance, down to the smallest detail; he was rarely taken by surprise. This day, however, would be an exception. Bill Bain, the founder of Bain & Company, one of the nation’s premier consulting outfits, had a stunning proposition: he was prepared to entrust an entirely new venture to the striking young man seated before him.

From the moment they’d first met, Bill Bain had seen something special, something he knew, in Mitt Romney. Indeed, he had seen someone he knew when he interviewed Romney for a job in 1977: Mitt’s father. “I remember [George] as president of American Motors when he was fighting the gas guzzlers and making funny ads So when I saw Mitt, I instantly saw George Romney. He doesn’t look exactly like his dad did, but he very strongly resembles his father.” Beyond appearances, Mitt had an air of great promise about him. He seemed brilliant but not cocky. All of the partners were impressed, and some were jealous. More than one partner told Bain, “This guy is going to be president of the United States someday.”

The Bain Way, as it became known, was intensely analytical and data-driven, a quality it shared with some other firms’ methods. But Bill Bain had come up with the idea of working for just one client per industry and devoting Bain & Company entirely to that company, with a strict vow of confidentiality. From the start Romney was perfectly adapted to the Bain Way and became a devoted disciple. Patient analysis and attention to nuance were what drove him. For six years, he delved into numerous unfamiliar companies, learned what made them work, scoped out the competition, and then presented his findings. An increasing number of clients preferred Romney over more senior partners. He was plainly a star, and Bain treated him as a kind of prince regent at the firm, a favored son. Just the man for the big move he now had in mind.

And so Bain made his pitch: Up to that point, Bain & Company could watch its clients prosper only from a distance, taking handsome fees but not directly sharing in profits. Bain’s epiphany was that he would create a new enterprise that would invest in companies and share in their growth, rather than just advise them.

Starting almost immediately, Bain proposed, Romney would become the head of a new company to be called Bain Capital. With seed money from Bill Bain and other partners at the consulting firm, Bain Capital would raise tens of millions of dollars, invest in start-ups and troubled businesses, apply Bain’s brand of management advice, and then resell the revitalized companies or sell their shares to the public at a profit. It sounded exciting, daring, new. It would be Romney’s first chance to run his own firm and, potentially, to make a killing. It was an offer few young men in a hurry could refuse.

Yet Romney stunned his boss by doing just that. He explained to Bain that he didn’t want to risk his position, earnings, and reputation on an experiment. He found the offer appealing but didn’t want to make the decision in a “light or flippant manner.” So Bain sweetened the pot. He guaranteed that if the experiment failed Romney would get his old job and salary back, plus any raises he would have earned during his absence. Still, Romney worried about the impact on his reputation if he proved unable to do the job. Again the pot was sweetened. Bain promised that, if necessary, he would craft a cover story saying that Romney’s return to Bain & Company was needed due to his value as a consultant. “So,” Bain explained, “there was no professional or financial risk.” This time Romney said yes.

Thus began Romney’s 15-year odyssey at Bain Capital. Boasting about those years when running for senator, governor, or president, Romney would usually talk about how he had helped create jobs at new or underperforming companies, and would claim that he had learned how jobs and businesses come and go. He’d typically mention a few well-known companies in which he and his partners had invested, such as Staples. But the full story of his years at Bain Capital is far more complicated and has rarely been closely scrutinized. Romney was involved in about a hundred deals, many of which have received little notice because the companies involved were privately held and not household names. The most thorough analysis of Romney’s performance comes from a private solicitation for investment in Bain Capital’s funds written by the Wall Street firm Deutsche Bank. The company examined 68 major deals that had taken place on Romney’s watch. Of those, Bain had lost money or broken even on 33. Overall, though, the numbers were stunning: Bain was nearly doubling its investors’ money annually, giving it one of the best track records in the business.

Romney was, by nature, deeply risk-averse in a business based on risk. He worried about losing the money of his partners and his outside investors—not to mention his own savings. “He was troubled when we didn’t invest fast enough; he was troubled when we made an investment,” said Bain partner Coleman Andrews. Sorting through possible investments, Romney met weekly with his young partners, pushing them for deeper analysis and more data and giving himself the final vote on whether to go forward. They operated more like a group of bankers carefully guarding their cash than an aggressive firm eager to embrace giant deals. Some partners suspected that Romney always had one eye on his political future. “I always wondered about Mitt, whether he was concerned about the blemishes from a business perspective or from a personal and political perspective,” one partner said years later. The partner concluded that it was the latter. Whereas most entrepreneurs accepted failure as an inherent part of the game, the partner said, Romney worried that a single flop would bring disgrace. Every calculation had to be made with care.

Despite some initial struggles, 1986 would prove to be a pivotal year for Romney. It started with a most unlikely deal. A former supermarket executive, Thomas Stemberg, was trying to sell venture capitalists on what seemed like a modest idea: a cheaper way to sell paper clips, pens, and other office supplies. The enterprise that would become the superstore Staples at first met with skepticism. Small and midsize businesses at the time bought most of their supplies from local stationers, often at significant markups. Few people saw the profit-margin potential in selling such homely goods at discount and in massive volume. But Stemberg was convinced and hired an investment banker to help raise money. Romney eventually heard Stemberg’s pitch, and he and his partners dug into Stemberg’s projections. They called lawyers, accountants, and scores of business owners in the Boston area to query them on how much they spent on supplies and whether they’d be willing to shop at a large new store. The partners initially concluded that Stemberg was overestimating the market. “Look,” Stemberg told Romney, “your mistake is that the guys you called think they know what they spend, but they don’t.” Romney and Bain Capital went back to the businesses and tallied up invoices. Stemberg’s assessment that this was a hidden giant of a market seemed right after all.

Romney hadn’t stumbled on Staples on his own. A partner at another Boston firm, Bessemer Venture Partners, had invited him to the first meeting with Stemberg. But after that, he took the lead; he finally had his hands on what looked like a promising start-up. Bain Capital invested $650,000 to help Staples open its first store, in Brighton, Massachusetts, in May 1986. In all, it invested about $2.5 million in the company. Three years later, in 1989, Staples sold shares to the public, when it was just barely turning a profit, and Bain reaped more than $13 million. It was a big success at the time. Yet it was very modest compared with later Bain deals that reached into the hundreds of millions of dollars.

For years Romney would cite the Staples investment as proof that he had helped create thousands of jobs. And it is true that his foresight in investing in Staples helped a major enterprise lift off. But neither Romney nor Bain directly ran the business, though Romney was active on its board. At the initial public offering, Staples was a firm of 24 stores and 1,100 full- and part-time jobs. Its boom years were still to come. Romney resigned his seat on the board of directors in 2001 in preparation for his run for governor. A decade later, the company had more than 2,200 stores and 89,000 employees.

Assessing claims about job creation is hard. Staples grew hugely, but the gains were offset, at least partially, by losses elsewhere: smaller, mom-and-pop stationery stores and suppliers were being squeezed, and some went out of business entirely. Ultimately, Romney would approvingly call Staples “a classic ‘category killer,’ like Toys R Us.” Staples steamrolled the competition, undercutting prices and selling in large quantities. When asked about his job-creation claim during the 1994 Senate campaign—that he had helped create 10,000 jobs at various companies (a claim he expanded during his 2012 presidential campaign to having “helped to create tens of thousands” of jobs)—Romney responded with a careful hedge. He emphasized that he always used the word “helped” and didn’t take full credit for the jobs. “That’s why I’m always very careful to use the words ‘help create,’ ” he acknowledged. “Bain Capital, or Mitt Romney, ‘helped create’ over 10,000 jobs. I don’t take credit for the jobs at Staples. I helped create the jobs at Staples.”

Howard Anderson, a professor at M.I.T.’s Sloan School of Management and a former entrepreneur who has invested with Bain, put it more plainly: “What you really cannot do is claim every job was because of your good judgment,” he said. “You’re not really running those organizations. You’re financing it; you’re offering your judgment and your advice. I think you can only really claim credit for the jobs of the company that you ran.”

The same year Romney invested in Staples—digging into a true start-up—he also inked the biggest transaction, by far, that Bain Capital had put together until then. And with this $200 million deal, he waded full-on into the high-stakes financial arena of the time: leveraged buyouts, or LBOs. Whereas a venture-capital deal bet on a new business, pursuing an LBO meant borrowing huge sums of money to buy an established company, typically saddling the target with big debts. The goal was to mine value that others had missed, to quickly improve profitability by cutting costs and often jobs, and then to sell.

Initially, Romney thought that putting money into young firms “would be just as good as acquiring an existing company and trying to make it better.” But he found that “there’s a lot greater risk in a start-up than there is in acquiring an existing company.” He was much more comfortable in an environment where the issue wasn’t whether an idea would pan out but whether the numbers worked. He knew himself, knew that his powers ran less to the creative than to the analytical; he was not at heart an entrepreneur. Perhaps that was what led him to push the Pause button at the outset with Bill Bain. But he now felt ready to take on much bigger financial risks, mostly by making leveraged bets on existing companies, whose market was known and whose business plans he could parse and master.

Billions of dollars were being made in the field of leveraged buyouts in the roaring 80s, and Romney was fully in the game, continuing to ratchet up his favored strategy. On the campaign trail in 2011, Romney said his work had “led me to become very deeply involved in helping other businesses, from start-ups to large companies that were going through tough times. Sometimes I was successful and we were able to help create jobs, other times I wasn’t. I learned how America competes with other companies in other countries, what works in the real world and what doesn’t.” It was a vague summary of what was a very controversial type of business. In his 2004 autobiography, Turnaround, Romney put it more bluntly: “I never actually ran one of our investments; that was left to management.” He explained that his strategy was to “invest in these underperforming companies, using the equivalent of a mortgage to leverage up our investment. Then we would go to work to help management make their business more successful.”

Romney’s phrase, “leverage up,” provides the key to understanding this most profitable stage of his business career. While putting relatively little money on the table, Bain could strike a deal using largely debt. That generally meant that the company being acquired had to borrow huge sums. But there was no guarantee that target companies would be able to repay their debts. At Bain, the goal was to buy businesses that were stagnating as subsidiaries of large corporations and grow them or shake them up to burnish their performance. Because many of the companies were troubled, or at least were going to be heavily indebted after Bain bought them, their bonds would be considered lower-grade, or “junk.” That meant they would have to pay higher interest on the bonds, like a strapped credit-card holder facing a higher rate than a person who pays off purchases more quickly. High-yielding junk bonds were appealing to investors willing to take on risk in exchange for big payouts. But they also represented a big bet: if the companies didn’t generate large profits or could not sell their stock to the public, some would be crippled by the debt layered on them by the buyout firms.

The arcane domain of corporate buyouts and junk-bond financing had entered the public consciousness at the time, and not always in a positive way. Ivan Boesky, a Wall Street arbitrageur who often bought the stock of takeover targets, was charged with insider trading and featured on the cover of Time magazine as “Ivan the Terrible.” Shortly after Romney began working on leveraged deals, a movie called Wall Street opened. It featured the fictional corporate raider Gordon Gekko, who justified his behavior by declaring, “I am not a destroyer of companies. I am a liberator of them! … Greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right. Greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit.”

Romney, of course, never said that greed is good, and there was nothing of Gekko in his mores or style. But he bought into the broader ethic of the LBO kings, who believed that through the aggressive use of leverage and skilled management they could quickly remake underperforming enterprises. Romney described himself as driven by a core economic credo, that capitalism is a form of “creative destruction.” This theory, espoused in the 1940s by the economist Joseph Schumpeter and later touted by former Federal Reserve Board chairman Alan Greenspan, holds that business must exist in a state of ceaseless revolution. A thriving economy changes from within, Schumpeter wrote in his landmark book, Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy, “incessantly destroying the old one, incessantly creating a new one.” But as even the theory’s proponents acknowledged, such destruction could bankrupt companies, upending lives and communities, and raise questions about society’s role in softening some of the harsher consequences.

Romney, for his part, contrasted the capitalistic benefits of creative destruction with what happened in controlled economies, in which jobs might be protected but productivity and competitiveness falters. Far better, Romney wrote in his book No Apology, “for governments to stand aside and allow the creative destruction inherent in a free economy.” He acknowledged that it is “unquestionably stressful—on workers, managers, owners, bankers, suppliers, customers, and the communities that surround the affected businesses.” But it was necessary to rebuild a moribund company and economy. It was a point of view he would stick with in years ahead. Indeed, he wrote a 2008 op-ed piece for The New York Times opposing a federal bailout for automakers that the newspaper headlined, let detroit go bankrupt. His advice went unheeded, and his prediction that “you can kiss the American automotive industry goodbye” if it got a bailout has not come true.

Thanks to a highly leveraged but successful takeover and turnaround of a wheel-rim maker, Accuride, Bain Capital became a hot property. So much money poured into Romney’s second investment fund that the firm had to turn away investors. Romney set out to raise $80 million and received offers totaling $150 million. The partners settled on $105 million, half of it from wealthy customers of a New York bank. During a break at a photo shoot for a brochure to attract investors, the Bain partners playfully posed for a photo that showed them flush with cash. They clutched $10 and $20 bills, stuffed them into their pockets, and even clenched them in their grinning teeth. Romney tucked a bill between his striped tie and his buttoned suit jacket. Everything was different now.
Valley of the LBO Kings

It was time for another road show, but the days of soliciting prospects for scarce cash in obscure locales were mostly over. This time Romney and his partners headed to Beverly Hills, California. Arriving at the intersection of Rodeo Drive and Wilshire Boulevard, they headed to the office of Michael Milken, the canny and controversial junk-bond king, at his company, Drexel Burnham Lambert. Romney knew Milken was able to find buyers for the high-yield, high-risk bonds that were crucial to the success of many leveraged-buyout deals. At the time of Romney’s visit, it was widely known that Drexel and Milken were under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission. But Drexel was still the big player in the junk-bond business, and Romney needed the financing.

Romney had come to Drexel to obtain financing for the $300 million purchase of two Texas department-store chains, Bealls and Palais Royal, to form Specialty Retailers, Inc. On September 7, 1988, two months after Bain hired Drexel to issue junk bonds to finance the deal, the S.E.C. filed a complaint against Drexel and Milken for insider trading. Romney had to decide whether to close a deal with a company ensnared in a growing clash with regulators. The old Romney might well have backed off; the newly assertive, emboldened Mitt decided to press ahead.

Romney’s deal with Drexel turned out well for both him and Bain Capital, which put $10 million into the retailer and financed most of the rest of the $300 million deal with junk bonds. The newly constituted company, later known as Stage Stores, refocused in 1989 on its small-town, small-department-store roots. Seven years later, in October 1996, the company successfully sold shares to the public at $16 a share. By the following year, the stock had climbed to a high of nearly $53, and Bain Capital and a number of its officers and directors sold a large part of their holdings. Bain made a $175 million gain by 1997. It was one of the most profitable leveraged buyouts of the era.

Romney sold at just the right time. Shares plunged in value the next year amid declining sales at the stores. The department-store company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2000, struggling with $600 million in debt, and a reorganized company emerged the following year. So ended the story of a deal that Romney would not be likely to cite on the campaign trail: the highly leveraged purchase, financed with junk bonds from a firm that became infamous for its financial practices, of a department-store company that had subsequently gone into bankruptcy. But on the Bain balance sheet, and on Romney’s, it was a huge win.

Not every deal worked out so well for Romney and his investors. Bain invested $4 million in a company called Handbag Holdings, which sold pocketbooks and other accessories. When a major customer stopped buying, the company failed and 200 jobs were lost. Bain invested $2.1 million in a bathroom-fixtures company called PPM and lost nearly all of it. An investment in a company called Mothercare Stores also didn’t pan out; the firm had eliminated a hundred jobs by the time Bain dumped it. Fellow Bain partner Robert White said Bain lost its $1 million and blamed “a difficult retail environment.”

In some cases, Bain Capital’s alternative strategy of buying into companies also ended in trouble. In 1993, Bain bought GST Steel, a maker of steel-wire rods, and later more than doubled its $24 million investment. The company borrowed heavily to modernize plants in Kansas City and North Carolina—and to pay out dividends to Bain. But foreign competition increased and steel prices fell. GST Steel filed for bankruptcy and shut down its money-losing Kansas City plant, throwing some 750 employees out of work. Union workers there blamed Bain, then and now, for ruining the company, upending their lives, and devastating the community.

Then, in 1994, Bain invested $27 million as part of a deal with other firms to acquire Dade International, a medical-diagnostics-equipment firm, from its parent company, Baxter International. Bain ultimately made nearly 10 times its money, getting back $230 million. But Dade wound up laying off more than 1,600 people and filed for bankruptcy protection in 2002, amid crushing debt and rising interest rates. The company, with Bain in charge, had borrowed heavily to do acquisitions, accumulating $1.6 billion in debt by 2000. The company cut benefits for some workers at the acquired firms and laid off others. When it merged with Behring Diagnostics, a German company, Dade shut down three U.S. plants. At the same time, Dade paid out $421 million to Bain Capital’s investors and investing partners.

The amount of money now being earned at Bain Capital was skyrocketing, and much of it came from a handful of giant deals. During Romney’s 15 years there, the firm invested about $260 million in its 10 top deals and reaped a nearly $3 billion return. That was about three-quarters of its overall profit on roughly 100 transactions during Romney’s tenure. In one of his most specific explanations of how he made his fortune, in his autobiography, Turnaround, Romney wrote that most of the companies he invested in were ones that “no one has heard of—TRW’s credit services, the Yellow Pages of Italy.” Those weren’t just any two deals. They were two of the most lucrative of Romney’s career, and luck played a big part in both. A mere seven weeks after buying TRW, Romney and his partners flipped the company. Bain’s $100 million investment returned at least $300 million. The second deal cited by Romney took longer but involved even more good timing and luck. It began with a renowned Italian investor named Phil Cuneo, who had the idea of buying the Italian version of the Yellow Pages. It seemed a solid investment in a firm with a staid and stable business model. But mere months after closing the deal, Cuneo and his Bain associates realized that they had acquired a company that might benefit from the surging interest in dot-com businesses; the Yellow Pages company owned a Web-based directory that had the potential to be the Italian version of America Online or Yahoo. In just under three years, in September 2000, the partners sold the investment, earning a windfall that far exceeded anyone’s initial expectations. Bain’s $51.3 million investment in the Italian Yellow Pages returned at least $1.17 billion, according to a Romney associate familiar with the deal. There is no public documentation of how the profits were distributed, but at that time at least 20 percent of the return would have gone to Bain Capital. Of that, Romney’s typical payout was then 5 to 10 percent. That means this one obscure deal would have given him a profit of $11 million to $22 million. If Romney made a side investment in the deal, as was standard among Bain partners, he would have made even larger gains. One Romney associate said Romney’s total profit could have been as much as $40 million. (A Romney spokesman did not respond to questions about the deal.)

It was those kinds of deals that enabled Bain Capital to report the highest returns in the business in the 1990s. Romney’s own net worth would grow to at least $250 million, and maybe much more, a trove that would enable him to foot a large part of the bill for his 2008 presidential campaign. Asked about a report that his wealth at one point reached as high as $1 billion, Romney said, “I’m not going to get into my net worth. No estimates whatsoever.”

For 15 years, Romney had been in the business of creative destruction and wealth creation. But what about his claims of job creation? Though Bain Capital surely helped expand some companies that had created jobs, the layoffs and closures at other firms would lead Romney’s political opponents to say that he had amassed a fortune in part by putting people out of work. The lucrative deals that made Romney wealthy could exact a cost. Maximizing financial return to investors could mean slashing jobs, closing plants, and moving production overseas. It could also mean clashing with union workers, serving on the board of a company that ran afoul of federal laws, and loading up already struggling companies with debt.

There is a difference between companies run by buyout firms and those rooted in their communities, according to Ross Gittell, a professor at the University of New Hampshire’s Whittemore School of Business and Economics. When it comes to buyout firms, he said, “the objective is: Make money for investors. It’s not to maximize jobs.” Romney, in fact, had a fiduciary duty to investors to make as much money as possible. Sometimes everything worked out perfectly; a change in strategy might lead to cost savings and higher profits, and Bain cashed in. Sometimes jobs were lost, and Bain cashed in or lost part or all of its investment. In the end, Romney’s winners outweighed his losers on the Bain balance sheet. Marc Wolpow, a former Bain partner who worked with Romney on many deals, said the discussion at buyout companies typically does not focus on whether jobs will be created. “It’s the opposite—what jobs we can cut,” Wolpow said. “Because you had to document how you were going to create value. Eliminating redundancy, or the elimination of people, is a very valid way. Businesses will die if you don’t do that. I think the way Mitt should explain it is, if we didn’t buy these businesses and impose efficiencies on them, the market would have done it with disastrous consequences.”

The first time I saw a picture of Mitt Romney,he reminded me of a sleazy car salesman. Guess I was right

Friday, January 13, 2012

Sarah uses another teen mom to make a political point




Recently Sarah opened her trap about Sarah McKinley who used a gun to kill an intruder. This is what she had to say in an e-mail to the National Review:

“I love that young woman. I’m all in favor of girls with guns who know their purpose. She fulfilled a purpose of the Second Amendment. I’d advise my own daughters to do the same. This mom protected an innocent life. Kudos to the 911 dispatcher, too.”

Now I totally agree with what McKinley did. She had to protect her infant son and herself. What is tragic is that McKinley is an 18 year old widow with a three month old son. Her late husband was a 58 year old man that she started a relationship with back when she was 15. She had to sell two of his guns to pay for his funeral.

Her late husband is a pedophile who should have died in prison. The legal age for consent in Oklahoma is 16 but in my eyes he is still a pedophile. Why is it in that conservative bible thumping states like Oklahoma the age of consent is so young?

Sarah McKinley should not have been in the situation she was in. A poor widowed 18 year old with a baby. God help her. I wonder if Sarah even knew that. Or cared. Oh who am I kidding?

Sarah rips into Michelle for defending her husband the POTUS

You can watch the video here

Appearing on Fox News’ Hannity, Sarah Palin reacted in disgust to a clip from Gayle King‘s interview with First Lady Michelle Obama, where she said Americans were “confused” about how much had been accomplished by the President. “Oh, Lord. Oh, Lord — what are we just a bunch of numbskulls out here in the heartland of America?” Palin exclaimed incredulously. “Just a bunch of numbskulls who can’t read the unemployment numbers and see that 5 trillion dollars in new debt later under her husband, President Obama? 5 trillion dollars more! And we have fewer jobs today than we had before we took over, but, no, we’re numbskulls out here and we don’t know what the numbers actually represent!”

“We’re not that bright!” added Hannity, who later asked if the former Alaska Governor was worried Republicans wouldn’t be able to come together to defeat President Obama.

“You know why people are so concerned, two to one, about a second term for President Obama?” Palin questioned. “We understand with now — 15, 16 trillion dollars in debt, there’s not enough money in the world to pay back what it is that we have borrowed for today’s wants and needs and yet we’re going to try to hand this bill to our kids and grandkids. That makes us less safe and secure as a nation and when you see the turmoil going around this world and now, more than ever, America needs that strong military, we shouldn’t be looking first at cutting military funding. We should be looking at the entitlement programs that need reform and looking at frivolous expenditures our bureaucracies are still engaged in.”

I think Sarah is jealous that Michelle is much prettier than her, and doesn't have to wear dead animals on her head to hide any bald spots.

Yes Sean you and Sarah are not bright.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Remember all the evidence the Anchorage PD took from Shailey Tripp?

Surprise surprise it got destroyed!

From Malia Litman's blog

We have known since Feb of 2011 that the Anchorage Police Department issued a “press release” at the request of Sarah Palin’s attorney, indicating that none of the “evidence seized” implicated Todd Palin in an alleged sexual relationship with Shailey Tripp, a prostitute. Dave Parker of the APD stated it was just “guilt by innuendo.” He said:

“It was just guilt by innuendo, nothing else,”

”There’s not one scintilla of evidence that Todd Palin had anything to do with this.”. It now seems that there isn’t one scintilla of evidence, other than Shailey Tripp’s lie detector statements, because the APD DESTROYED the evidence. Shailey Tripp has confirmed that in the last hearing before the Judge regarding the property seized that the cell phone and lap top were destroyed by Dave Parker on Sept. 14,2011. Dave Parker has admitted to me that he reads this blog, and doesn’t appreciate some of the things I have reported, but he never complained that anything I reported was inaccurate.
In the original National Enquirer articfle, they claimed 36-year-old Shailey Tripp was arrested for maintaining a house of prostitution in March and that cops had confiscated physical evidence that could tie ex-Gov. Sarah Palin’s husband to the alleged affair.

Thus the APD was put on notice that the “evidence seized” was critical to confirm the story of Shailey Tripp, but that evidence has been destroyed by the very policemen who gave the statement to the National Enquirer that attempted to vindicate Todd.

This is corruption at its most repugnant level! This is obstruction of justice! It’s an example of an elected official using the police to distort the truth. Shailey Tripp is entitled to the same protection under the law as any other citizen. Shailey’s rights have been violated. So have ours. The people of this country are entitled to know about the woman that could have been our Vice President, and the man who was Alaska’s First Dude. Todd Palin has never denied the allegations of Shailey Tripp. He must have been waiting to be sure the evidence was destroyed by the police.

It was clear that the “evidence seized” included a cell phone and lap top computer that were allegedly not “reviewed”. On two different occasions I notified Officer McKinnon that the “evidence seized” was very important and that the police should take special precautions to ensure that the “evidence” that included a cell phone and lap top did not mysteriously disappear.

The latest news from last week, is that the City prosecutor’s office admited to the presiding judge that Officer Parker destroyed everything, except the credit card machine. That means that the cell phone and lap top of Shailey Tripp, that she has been trying to obtain since June were destroyed. They were destroyed on Spet 14, 2011 !!! The fact that it was only the cell phone and lap top that were destroyed, and not the credit card machine would suggest that it was a cover-up rather than a routine police procedure! It appears Sarah Palin would like the government to “get out of the way” unless she needs their help.

I wonder how much the Palins had to pay to get that stuff destroyed.

Shailey I'm sorry this happened.

Sarah is only good at one thing




And that is FAILING!

She failed at being a good Christian
She failed at being a wife
She failed at being a mother
She failed at being a grandmother
She failed at being a fiscal conservative
She failed at getting the Bridge to Nowhere built
She failed at being elected Vice President
She failed at being the chair of the Gas Commission
She failed at being Governor
She failed at being Mayor
She failed at being a good FAUX News Analyst
She failed at being faithful
She failed at keeping her daughter abstinent
She failed at keeping her son out of trouble
She failed at sending her kids to school
She failed at getting her kids to graduate
She failed at trying to win Miss Alaska
She failed at graduating from college on time
She failed at trying to get her brother in law fired
She failed at being an NBA groupie
She failed at debating Joe Biden
She failed at trying to show compassion for Gabby Giffords
She failed History
She failed Geography
She failed English
She failed to pay her property taxes
She failed to finish her bus tour
She failed at her reality show
She failed at getting a reality show for Todd
She failed to tell the truth
She failed to graduate from college on time
She failed at practicing better hygiene
She failed to prep for her interviews with Katie Couric and Charlie Gibson
She failed at stand up comedy
She failed to get Joe Miller elected
She failed to get Christine O'Donnell elected
She failed to get Sharron Angle elected