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"Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby fisticuffs » Wed Sep 12, 2012 8:36 am

The difference is because of decisions made by greedy bastards like Mittens Americans don't have much of a choice of products to buy that are made under reasonable conditions. The consumer is to blame as well. not letting them off the hook. We seem to have decided price is the only deciding factor. Quality, service and the rest of it are long gone now. We'd rather buy a Chinese product tax free on the internet than an American product from the store down the street. In some cases that's because we simply can't afford the American made product sold on Main Street because for 30 years executives have been taking a bigger and bigger cut of our labor.

Doesn't let vulture capitalists like Romney off the hook for the damage they've done to our economy and the lives of the workers they've damaged or destroyed.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby snoqueen » Wed Sep 12, 2012 8:44 am

If you were to start from scratch, independent of this conversation, would "Great Capacity for Human Empathy" make it onto your top ten list of Presidential qualifications? (Maybe so, I dunno, it's your list.)

But for me, it doesn't matter much whether a President has some idea of what it's like to stand in line at a food kitchen, for instance. How will this prove useful in executing the duties of the Presidency?


I totally disagree here. Empathy is most certainly on my list.

When we elect a public official, we are electing someone to represent us. That "us" can be "me," or it can be any larger group the voter has in mind. Some voters have in mind not only persons in their own social class/situation, but are taking a wider view. Some idealistic voters (and this is perfectly legal) see themselves as casting a vote for the disenfranchised. You may think this is silly, but people do it.

If we are electing a representative, we might have a list of desired skills for that representative. She should be a good organizer, experienced with the bureaucracy, good at holding a minority viewpoint, good at sucking money from donors, or whatever else the voter thinks will help further the goals he has in mind.

One of those qualities might very reasonably be empathy. If the electorate doesn't have to write the representative every time a certain issue arises, the assumption is probably "my representative already empathizes with my concerns so I don't have to keep sending reminders." The voter might think, for instance, his representative knows what it's like to be burdened with student loans and a poor job, so if student loan relief legislation is being written the representative already prioritizes the issue and has a good grasp of what kind of relief would help the most.

Empathy is shorthand for a lot of other skills. When it's missing, it's glaringly obvious. Does anyone seriously believe Paul Ryan has impoverished grandparents who are trying to choose between cutting their pills in half or buying groceries? Of course not. On the contrary, he is seen as lacking empathy with regard to that population.

I'd be interested what qualifications are on your short list.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby Francis Di Domizio » Wed Sep 12, 2012 8:46 am

Not to try and derail what looks like a really good discussion, but has there been any actual confirmation that that this was actually Romney speaking, where was the speech given, and what was the overall context of the speech, and if Bain actually bought the factory (and if yes, did they leave it's operations as is).

Seeing as this hasn't been picked up by any news service after being out for several weeks (and hasn't been tossed around by the Obama campaign or the Democratic party) it seems there's a good chance this little clip is being taken out of context, and twisted around to present a false picture of events in the past.

Note: I did find one person on Obamadiary.com's forums who stated the factory mentioned in the video was owned by Global-Tech (http://www.motherjones.com/politics/201 ... lobal-tech) but I can't find any confirmation of said link on Mother Jones.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby rabble » Wed Sep 12, 2012 8:50 am

Francis Di Domizio wrote:Not to try and derail what looks like a really good discussion, but has there been any actual confirmation that that this was actually Romney speaking, where was the speech given, and what was the overall context of the speech, and if Bain actually bought the factory (and if yes, did they leave it's operations as is).

The only consensus among the people who are acknowledging the existence of the clip is that it is indeed Romney. The other questions haven't been answered.

As one article points out, seems like somebody ought to put them to Romney. He could clear all this up pretty quick, I should think.

For some reason he's been pretty quiet about it.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby Francis Di Domizio » Wed Sep 12, 2012 8:55 am

rabble wrote:
Francis Di Domizio wrote:Not to try and derail what looks like a really good discussion, but has there been any actual confirmation that that this was actually Romney speaking, where was the speech given, and what was the overall context of the speech, and if Bain actually bought the factory (and if yes, did they leave it's operations as is).

The only consensus among the people who are acknowledging the existence of the clip is that it is indeed Romney. The other questions haven't been answered.

As one article points out, seems like somebody ought to put them to Romney. He could clear all this up pretty quick, I should think.

For some reason he's been pretty quiet about it.


Has anyone actually put it to him to comment on? I've seen no credible news article about the clip (other than Kos, which is more blog than news). The originator of the clip could of course clear up some of that information as well. At the very least they could show the whole speech and tell where it was given. The fact that they didn't makes me question the validity of their claim.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby rabble » Wed Sep 12, 2012 9:37 am

Of course it should be questioned. Just not discounted out of hand.

I don't think it would be the first time that a video has been largely ignored until proven true.

We'll just have to keep an eye on it.

And of course, debate whether the people who buy the products made in such factories are just as bad as the people who own them and therefore cannot say anything about it.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby jman111 » Wed Sep 12, 2012 9:41 am

ArturoBandini wrote:But for me, it doesn't matter much whether a President has some idea of what it's like to stand in line at a food kitchen, for instance. How will this prove useful in executing the duties of the Presidency?

This is disturbing. Truly disturbing.
For brevity, I will only add that sno's response was spot-on.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby ArturoBandini » Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:00 am

jman111 wrote:
ArturoBandini wrote:But for me, it doesn't matter much whether a President has some idea of what it's like to stand in line at a food kitchen, for instance. How will this prove useful in executing the duties of the Presidency?

This is disturbing. Truly disturbing.
For brevity, I will only add that sno's response was spot-on.
Which past presidents, do you think, had this qualification (I called it "Great Capacity for Human Empathy")? All, most, a few or none?

My list would look something like this:
1a. Ability to understand and respect Constitutional limits on executive power.
1b. Ability to understand and respect Constitutional limits on federal government power in general.
2. Ability to stand up to a war-hawk Congress (which presupposes a dovish President).
3. Willingness to unrepentantly veto legislation that doesn't deal with explicitly Constitutional powers.
4. Ability to conduct peaceful diplomacy with foreign officials, allies and enemies alike.
5. Ability to defer executive decision-making to state governors, or going further, city and local leaders.
6. Ability to perceive risk of unintended consequences of government actions, and willingness to abstain from action when that risk is too large. Willingness to admit fault for unintended consequences when they occur.
7. During campaign, hesitancy to make promises.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby ArturoBandini » Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:06 am

rabble wrote:I don't think it would be the first time that a video has been largely ignored until proven true.

We'll just have to keep an eye on it.

Everything is going just fine for this video. Romney won't go out of his way to deny this video, because that would draw even more attention to it. The media doesn't want to get burned by sensationalizing something that might turn out to be bogus or digitally-altered (doesn't seem to be the case).
rabble wrote:And of course, debate whether the people who buy the products made in such factories are just as bad as the people who own them and therefore cannot say anything about it.
This is a strawman and you know it. There is an intermediate position, which is that people who buy factories and those who buy factory-produced goods are both complicit, but to greatly differing degrees. The terms "just as bad" and "equivalence" came entirely from those on your side of the argument. I never said anything like "therefore [they] cannot say anything about it", so I'm not sure where you're getting that from.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby rabble » Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:11 am

ArturoBandini wrote:This is a strawman and you know it. There is an intermediate position, which is that people who buy factories and those who buy factory-produced goods are both complicit, but to greatly differing degrees. The terms "just as bad" and "equivalence" came entirely from those on your side of the argument. I never said anything like "therefore [they] cannot say anything about it", so I'm not sure where you're getting that from.

Sorry. I thought you liked hyperbole when you said "Romney doesn't know what it's like to stand in a soup kitchen." after someone pointed out Obama didn't grow up filthy rich.

Anyway, you just keep on saying "but YOU buy Chinese goods, right?" every time it comes up. We'll all know what you mean.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby ArturoBandini » Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:16 am

snoqueen wrote:I totally disagree here. Empathy is most certainly on my list.
It is now, now that we're talking specifically about it. I asked if it would have been on your list had you started with a blank slate, outside of this discussion. You can answer that however you like.
snoqueen wrote:One of those qualities might very reasonably be empathy. If the electorate doesn't have to write the representative every time a certain issue arises, the assumption is probably "my representative already empathizes with my concerns so I don't have to keep sending reminders." The voter might think, for instance, his representative knows what it's like to be burdened with student loans and a poor job, so if student loan relief legislation is being written the representative already prioritizes the issue and has a good grasp of what kind of relief would help the most.
At least for your example case (student loans), I disagree. It all depends on what you think the government, especially the federal government since we're talking about the President, should be doing. In the case of student loans, the President and the rest of the USG should be doing nothing, which includes stopping whatever they are already doing. There should be zero federal involvement in student loans. Same goes for mortgages and other sorts of debt that the USG has become entangled with. In this case, the point is moot about whether the President should empathize with a student loan holder, because the President's response should be nothing beyond, "Thanks for registering your concern with the Federal Government. The power to address your concern is not within the powers explicitly granted to my office under the Constitution. Good luck."
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby ArturoBandini » Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:22 am

rabble wrote:Sorry. I thought you liked hyperbole when you said "Romney doesn't know what it's like to stand in a soup kitchen." after someone pointed out Obama didn't grow up filthy rich.
I did not purposefully choose the term "soup kitchen" in relation to anything said about Obama.
rabble wrote:Anyway, you just keep on saying "but YOU buy Chinese goods, right?" every time it comes up. We'll all know what you mean.
I don't think there is anything inherently wrong with buying Chinese goods, and I don't think there is anything inherently wrong with hiring Chinese labor. In both cases, the details matter, of course. I don't want anyone to just shut up about anything, I want them to consider the whole picture and not act like this is a black and white, good versus evil issue.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby rabble » Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:32 am

ArturoBandini wrote:]I did not purposefully choose the term "soup kitchen" in relation to anything said about Obama.

Hem, haw.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby wack wack » Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:34 am

ArturoBandini wrote:
jman111 wrote:
ArturoBandini wrote:But for me, it doesn't matter much whether a President has some idea of what it's like to stand in line at a food kitchen, for instance. How will this prove useful in executing the duties of the Presidency?

This is disturbing. Truly disturbing.
For brevity, I will only add that sno's response was spot-on.
Which past presidents, do you think, had this qualification (I called it "Great Capacity for Human Empathy")? All, most, a few or none?

My list would look something like this:
1a. Ability to understand and respect Constitutional limits on executive power.
1b. Ability to understand and respect Constitutional limits on federal government power in general.
2. Ability to stand up to a war-hawk Congress (which presupposes a dovish President).
3. Willingness to unrepentantly veto legislation that doesn't deal with explicitly Constitutional powers.
4. Ability to conduct peaceful diplomacy with foreign officials, allies and enemies alike.
5. Ability to defer executive decision-making to state governors, or going further, city and local leaders.
6. Ability to perceive risk of unintended consequences of government actions, and willingness to abstain from action when that risk is too large. Willingness to admit fault for unintended consequences when they occur.
7. During campaign, hesitancy to make promises.


57% of this is not only disturbing, it makes my skin crawl.
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Re: "Romney boasts about Bain's slave labor profits"

Postby DCB » Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:40 am

ArturoBandini wrote:
jman111 wrote:
ArturoBandini wrote:But for me, it doesn't matter much whether a President has some idea of what it's like to stand in line at a food kitchen, for instance. How will this prove useful in executing the duties of the Presidency?

This is disturbing. Truly disturbing.
For brevity, I will only add that sno's response was spot-on.
Which past presidents, do you think, had this qualification (I called it "Great Capacity for Human Empathy")? All, most, a few or none?

Few or none. Which is a problem.
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