A few days ago, I posted the following on my facebook page:
"I never saw a candidate so coddled by the media before in my life. Here is a man who dodged the draft, outsourced U.S. jobs, evades U.S. taxes, won't release his tax returns, banks offshore, invests in communist countries, destroyed hard drives, took his state from 36th-47th, hates half the country, and on TOP OF THAT; has no specifics or details on anything and his tax plan has been debunked every which way."
I thought of that statement as I was reading this from The National Memo: 10 Forgotten Scandals Surrounding Mitt Romney
. Most of them we know about, as we are not prone to forget so easily here at 4F. One however gave me a head tilt moment. It was titled Mitt Romney 'Potentially Violating Ethics Laws'. What gave me a jaw drop was the next part:
Throughout Romneyís tenure as governor of Massachusetts, the state did frequent business with a marketing company called Imagitas. The company, which was run by former Bain employees Tom Beecher and Tobin Ryan ó brother to Romneyís running mate, Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan ó had been started based on loans from Bain while Romney was still running the company. When it was sold in 2005, Bain ó from which Romney still makes a massive amount of money through dividends, interest, and capital gains ó tripled its original stake.
From the linked article:
For three years from 1995, Tobin Ryan, who is now 47, was a senior manager at Bain & Company, the consulting firm where Mr Romney made his name. Mr Romney was at the time leading Bain Capital, the firmís investment arm, inside the same Boston headquarters.
In March 1998, Mr Ryan left Bain to become a vice-president at Imagitas. The company had been co-founded by Tom Beecher, another former Bain consultant. Their company secured the $5 million (£3.2 million) from Bain Capital in June 2000. Mr Ryan declined to say if he was involved in the deal. Mr Beecher declined to be interviewed.
A Bain Capital source said the investment was made by the company's Bain Capital Fund VI. While Mr Romney had by then taken what he called a leave of absence to run the 2002 Winter Olympics, SEC filings state that he remained sole stockholder, chairman, CEO and president of this fundís two controlling entities. His campaign now claims that he retired "retroactively" in 1999.
But wait, there IS more.
In December 2001, Imagitas secured a contract with Wisconsin, whose then-governor, Scott McCallum, was a political ally of Paul Ryan, who is a US congressman for the state. Roger Cross, the administrator of Mr McCallumís department of motor vehicles at the time, said: ďI know Tobin through politics, not businessĒ. Tobin Ryan declined to say whether he had been involved in the Wisconsin deal.
Imagitas announced a similar partnership with Massachusetts in July 2002, shortly before Mr Romney was elected as the stateís Republican governor, and just after Tobin Ryan says that he departed the company. Its work for the state continued for several years under Mr Romneyís governorship. His officials boasted that it saved taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars a year.
Tobin Ryan has since 2009 been a private equity executive at the California-based Seidler Equity Partners. While he lists several past appointments on his biography at Seidlerís website, he does not mention Imagitas.
Paul Ryan was picked as Romney's VP candidate on August 14. Let's talk about Tobin Ryan for a moment. From Fortune/Money/CNN
Seidler is located just outside of Los Angeles, but Tobin Ryan works out of his home state of Wisconsin. He joined the firm in October 2010, following a three-year stint with local private equity firm King Equity.
Before that, he served as chief operating officer for Tomah Products, a maker of industrial ammonia that is now owned by Air Products & Chemicals Inc. (APD). It was during Ryan's time at Tomah that he first got to know the folks at Seidler, when the firm helped sponsor a management buyout from another outside shareholder. Tomah's CEO at the time, Steve King, is a major player in Wisconsin's Republican Party, last year serving as one of three transition team members for newly-elected RNC chair Reince Priebus.
So we've now got a former private equity executive running for president alongside the brother of a current private equity executive. Perhaps one of these days we'll learn if either one of them supports the industry's favorite tax break, in which partner profits ("carried interest") is treated as capital gains, rather than as ordinary income.
Paul Ryan's 2010 budget proposal called for an elimination of all capital gains taxes (he dropped that language for his more recent version), but also makes vague reference to closing various tax loopholes. In other words, either he wants a lower tax on carried interest or he wants it treated as ordinary income. He does not appear to have ever specifically discussed carried interest.
Is anyone still wondering why Mitt Romney picked Paul Ryan? John Nichols of the Nation
wrote this back in August:
The ticket Republicans will nominate in Tampa next week is uniquely connected to the ďvulture capitalistĒ constituency, and uniquely committed to protecting the interests of todayís robber-baron class.
Paul Ryan grew up in a wealthy family with a Republican bent and all the right political and corporate connections.
He could easily have made his way into the private sectoródoing business with family and friends, as have generations of wealthy Ryans.
Paul Ryan is a useful tool for our modern day Robber Barons. Of course he wants to stay in office, he's gives them all the right connections.
For all of the extreme social issues this GOP has taken, and for all of it's offenses, this perhaps is the most incestuous of all. Oh, and those other Romney scandals? Here is the list, you can read about them all here
: Posthumous Baptisms
Profiting From 9/11
Potential Voter Fraud
Profiting From Disposal Of Aborted Fetuses
Trying To Block A Lifesaving Abortion
Still Hiding Those Tax Returns (And That Over-stuffed IRA?)
Potentially Violating Ethics Laws (With Paul Ryanís Brother)
His Sonís Connections With A Ponzi Scheme
The White Horse Prophecy