Monday, April 16, 2012

Just Plain Folks

It was Friday the 13th when Rush Limbaugh argued

In fact, let me expand.  I have a theory.  I could be a little off on this.  But I think Mitt Romney and Ann Romney may be the stereotypes of everything Obama and people like him resent in this country, just the way they live, just who they are, I think they are highly resented....

Can you imagine somebody more likely to arouse resentment in Obama than somebody like Mitt Romney, who is as white bread as anybody you could find in this culture?  And I don't mean racially.  I'm talking about plain, ordinary, just dull, boring, all those things that white bread is.  He's the quintessentially successfully guy, Romney, straight-laced...

Limbaugh went on to say Romney is "a guy who makes money while he sleeps, with his investments."      And what does the Romneys do with the money Mitt makes while while asleep?    The Palm Beach Daily News reports  

Yes, that was First Lady hopeful Ann Romney on Worth Avenue Saturday, looking very Palm Beach-y in her hot pink tunic and jeans with her shoulder-length blond hair. The only thing missing was the Helga Wagner necklace.

Mitt’s missus spent four hours with Alfred Fiandaca, her old pal from Boston who closed the store for her so she could shop in peace without any worries about paparazzi grabbing a shot of her in the fitting room. Trying on a little something to wear to tonight’s big dinner at Darlene and Jerry Jordan’s house, perhaps? When they’re paying 50k a couple, a lady wants to look good.

The private shopping went well for the wife of the presumptive candidate — c’mon, like that’s not a given by now — but for the customers who had “Stop by Alfred’s” at the top of their Saturday to-do list, well, not so much. They had to wait. Some did, patiently and quietly. Others did, not so patiently and not so quietly.

Finally, Ann strolled out, shopping bags in hand, smiled at the small crowd gathered on the sidewalk, climbed into the big black car waiting at the curb, and drove off.

Oops (as Rick Perry would say)!    There I go failing to heed Barack Obama's admonition to lay off the spouses of political candidates.     But the rich are, as F. Scott Fitzgerald once famously wrote, different from the rest of us, though in this case, not the rich- the super-duper rich.      

Chris Cillizza notes that Mitt Romney closed his Swiss bank account in 2010.     His Swiss bank account- a typical possession of a "plain, ordinary" guy.       So,too, do ordinary guys derive their entire income, as Mitt did in 2010 and 2011, from capital gains, interest payments and stock dividends including foreign investments, Cillizza notes, "in places such as Luxembourg and the Cayman Islands, both of which are well known tax havens."

A few Democrats, including James Clyburn, have implied that Romney may have had a Swiss bank account because he had something to hide.   That may be the best possible scenario, however.    One financial writer explains" Swiss bank accounts aren't just for criminals trying to hide their monetary tracks. They're also popular among people in countries with unstable banks, monetary policies or governments, because they provide added privacy and security for assets."

It's comforting to know that the 2012 GOP presidential nominee may not be a criminal "trying to hide" his "monetary track(s)."      Instead, Romney may have parked money overseas because he had more faith in the Swiss monetary system than that of the U.S.A.    That would be fairly stunning for a presidential candidate- perhaps even more so because the future Repub standard-bearer opened the account during the presidency of George W. Bush and closed it during the presidency of Barack Obama.

Rush, then, may have a point when he says Romney "doesn't appear to be outwardly angry at anybody, and he's certainly not angry at his country."     Mitt isn't angry at the country but he appears not to have had much faith in it- while Bush was president, anyway.     It is speculative, but reasonable to suggest, that Romney gained some faith in our nation sometime after Barack Obama became president, perhaps shortly after the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act started paying dividends for the economy.

Let it be said of Mitt Romney:    no one truly knows what he believes about anything, but he isn't stupid.

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