Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Bootstraps

If there's anything in the recent tumult over Mitt Romney's "unguarded comments to zillionaires" flap that raised my shaggy eyebrows, it was his assertion that he didn't inherit anything, that he made his fortune on his own.  There seems to be a stubborn blind spot in some wealthy folks when it comes to admitting that, yeah, they may have had a leg up on the average joe.  In Romney's case, he was born to a fellow who was the head of a major American automobile company and eventually became the Governor of Michigan.  Romney himself attended private school and Harvard on his Dad's dime.  Yes, later, Romney the Mitt gave his family inheritance to charity, but that was after he had used the stepping stones (excellent education, political and financial contacts, seed capital in the form of a trust) provided by Dad to start a business and get rich.

Nothing wrong with any of that, of course.  Some folks are lucky and still fail.  I am sure Romney worked very hard at Bain.  But this personal myth-making is a little absurd.  Hey, I grew up in a middle class household, went to public school and attended a State college (go, go, Portland State University!) while working at McDonalds, tending bar, driving a truck and other odd jobs. Yes, I've worked hard, but I never forget how fortunate I was to have had a stable home-life, supportive parents and enough money to buy 53 cent quarts of beer and other basic necessities.  That Romney doesn't want to accept that he had plenty of help becoming a multi-millionaire strikes me as a tragic character flaw and an almost frightening empathy negative zone...  

1 Comments:

Blogger John Goins said...

We all knew that Romney was gonna be the candidate before the endless Republican debates even started. And we knew that he would lose because he's not likable enough and Obama is very likable. A very smart friend of mine said about six months ago said, regarding Romney, 'I think the public is on to him'. How right he was.

2:10 PM  

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