Last week after Romney won all the primaries of the day, he gave a little “rah rah” speech in where he asked the same basic question Ronald Regan asked more than a decade ago,
“Are you better off now than you were 4 years ago?”
I was paraphrasing but Romney’s question actually went like this:
“What do we have to show for 3 and 1/2 years of President Obama? Is it easier to make ends meet? Is it easier to sell your home or buy a new one? Have you saved what you need for retirement?”
The speech went on, but let’s stop there and focus on one aspect of the above quote.
To keep this blog a reasonable length, let’s slice out one of the above questions and try to keep this blog’s focus on it.
So, “Is it easier to sell your home or buy a new one?”
In 2009, during Obama’s presidency, the Romney’s sold their 6,400-square-foot colonial in Belmont, Mass. where they raised their five sons for $3.5 million and they also sold their 9,500-square-foot Deer Valley, Utah ski lodge for close to $5.25 million.
I have no idea what they paid for each property but considering that they sold both of these properties on Obama’s watch, so to speak, it is obvious that some people are able to sell their properties.
So, how about the other half of that sentence.
Also during the Obama presidency, Romney purchased a home in La Hoya, California because, as he said, “I wanted to be where I could hear the waves,”
As Church lady used to say, “Isn’t that SPE-CIAL.” She would usually follow that up with, “Could it be SATAN?”
So, considering that the Romney’s purchased one home and sold two other homes, is he the person who should be asking questions about how hard it is to buy or sell a home?” I think not!
To be sure, there are millions of homes out there for sale – a good part of which are foreclosures and because of that sheer number, homes are not selling as quickly, if they are selling at all. But does Obama deserve to be dinged for how long it takes to sell a house?
On the other side of the coin, with depressed home prices, it is a buyer’s market and for those people who qualify, many have purchased homes that they might not have been able to afford in the past.
To show how out of touch the Romney’s are by asking that question, the Romney’s are not selling their La Jolla home – they are actually destroying that home and planning to build another home in its’ place that will be approximately 4 times the size of the home being hauled away in dump trucks.
Well, I do not want to be accused of fudging the numbers, so here are the numbers of the existing square footage and the anticipated square footage. Their existing house in La Jolla is roughly 3,009 square feet and the home they want to build on the same property is approximately 11,062 –not quite four times the size – but it is at least 3 and 1/2 times larger.
Let’s put that in perspective – there have been hundreds of thousands of Americans who have, out of necessity, walked away from their homes because they are upside down with their mortgages – i.e. the value of their home is now less than what they owe on their home and as a result they are walking away in numbers.
So, the question is not, “Is it easier to buy or sell a home?”, the question becomes, “If you did not lose your job, would you still be in your home?”
Again, put aside the homes and ask, “Why aren’t their more jobs for Americans?”
Those to the extreme right are heads of corporations who have moved jobs overseas. They have also chosen to trim their number of employees to cut costs and increase profits. On top of that, they have acquired other companies and then turned around and let thousands of workers go because of redundancy – i.e. you do not need two payroll departments, two HR departments and two Benefits departments.
The net effect of moving jobs overseas, mergers and acquisitions, and cost cutting efforts are three fold:
- More Americans are out of work.
- People are walking away from their homes because they have simply run out of money – their savings is gone, they have drawn out their 401k plans and now the well is dry.
- Corporate profits are up. Yes, up!
How can that be? Profits are up because corporations are not spending money on infrastructure projects – nor are they choosing to spend money on expanding product lines or building a new warehouse or new manufacturing facilities.
Why would companies do that? They are doing that because they know if a Republican gets elected a new administration would reduce taxes on corporations and billionaires / millionaires – the group that does not need those reductions in the first place.
Again, these large corporations, some of which pay zero in taxes (like General Electric), are sitting on trillions of dollars and waiting on the sideline and basically holding our economy hostage. As soon as they get their hostage demands met (cut corporate tax rates) they will hire people to work on the projects they have shelved and they will start hiring – both of which will falsely show that a new Republican administration was the reason for the uptick in hiring
What the real reason will be is greed.
That would be like Pizza Hut putting a sign in their window that says, “Our sales of pizza are down, so to help us make more money, we are raising prices 50 percent and refills of Pepsi, instead of being free will be 50 cents and the tip will be going from 15 percent to 25 percent.
In actuality, Pizza Hut has dropped prices to win back customers – they are running specials where any pizza is $10.00, which compared to their advertised prices, is a steal.
Large corporations are gambling. They know that millions of Americans are out of work and as a result are buying fewer big ticket items, but these corporations see how that all could change if a Republican gets in and caters to big business.
Republicans claims that the U. S. corporate tax rate is higher than all other countries in the world. To that, I say, when some of our oil companies and other companies like General Electric have an effective tax rate of 0%, it does not matter what the statutory tax rate is.
U. S. corporations are playing a game of chicken with the world economy – if they sit on trillions of dollars too long and Americans remain unemployed, tax revenues for cities and states and the federal government will continue to decrease which will result in layoffs to teachers, fire departments, police department, and libraries. That will further reduce tax revenues and could move us from a recession to another depression.
As long as Romney has his 15% tax rate and he can buy and sell homes and even demolish one home to build another on top of it, Romney and his “two Cadillac” wife can remain out of touch with the average American.
I have the greatest respect for women who have the option to stay at home and raise kids, but the possibility of that happening is much less than it was 30 years ago.
Millions of American wives would love to be stay-at-home wives and mothers but because of the economy they cannot – that HAVE TO work to make ends meet.
I would venture to guess that Ann Romney does not know what a gallon of gas is running – nor does she probably know what a pound of beef costs.
Life would be so boring for anyone wanting to live like Ann Romney when the biggest decision she has to make in a given day is, “Gee, which Cadillac do I want to drive today?”
Just like George W. Bush’s mom said on Good Morning America about the number of soldiers coming home in body bags, “Why should we hear about body bags and deaths,” Barbara Bush said on ABC’s “Good Morning America” on March 18, 2003. ”Oh, I mean, it’s not relevant. So why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that? It’s not relevant, so why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that?”
You can substitute “gas prices” or “foreclosures” or “student loans” or even “jobs” and see if Ann Romney might say the same thing.
They have five sons who do not have to worry about gas prices or losing their homes to foreclosure or paying back student loans or getting jobs. How can Mitt feel confident in turning to his wife to get input on the economy and the issues average families have to deal with every day?
The Romney’s are out of touch with the wants and needs of Americans – many Americans want a “lift up” and not a “hand out.”
Many people think that those at the bottom of the ladder are all “welfare abusers” and to that I say that I am more worried about the “corporate abuse” at the top.
Do the Romney’s have to worry about electric rates or how much they have to pay to get their grass cut or hedges trimmed? I think not.
I do not begrudge them – I only say these things to say that they are out of touch with the needs of average Americans.