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Tue May 1, 2012, 06:46 AM

Paul Begala:What's Mitt Romney Hiding in His Record as Governor

Paul Begala:What's Mitt Romney Hiding in His Record as Governor
Apr 30, 2012 1:00 AM EDT
What’s Romney hiding in his record?

snip//

It’s weird. Most governors who seek the presidency can’t shut up about how great their states are. Right now, there’s an even-money chance that Bill Clinton is telling someone that Hope, Ark., produces the biggest, juiciest watermelons in the world. But not Mitt. In the most important speech of his presidential campaign thus far, he ignored the only time he has ever held public office.

snip//

Romney’s economic failure in Massachusetts is especially problematic because the central premise of his presidential campaign is the same as it was when he ran for governor: that he can apply his business skills to our economic problems. Massachusetts was the guinea pig for Romney economics. The results weren’t pretty. In addition to almost zero job growth, the state saw a modest decline in real median income, meaning that the folks who had jobs were bringing home less.

Romney did close the $3 billion budget gap he’d inherited (although he then left a projected shortfall of up to $1 billion). The methods he used are instructive. He slashed higher education, cut revenue to local governments, and raised fees on everything from college students to mortgages, from buying a boat to opening a bar.

Romney’s cuts to education and job training were especially severe
. Fees for university students shot up 63 percent as Romney hammered college funding. Robert Karam, former chair of the UMass Board of Trustees, was a Romney backer. But no more. “I think higher education really stood still” under Romney, he has said. Romney even annoyed the business community—his core constituency—by cutting job training, workforce development, and trade assistance.

more...

http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2012/04/29/paul-begala-what-s-mitt-romney-hiding-in-his-record-as-governor.html

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Arrow 19 replies Author Time Post
Reply Paul Begala:What's Mitt Romney Hiding in His Record as Governor (Original post)
babylonsister May 2012 OP
Cirque du So-What May 2012 #1
tclambert May 2012 #2
magical thyme May 2012 #3
FailureToCommunicate May 2012 #5
rox63 May 2012 #7
magical thyme May 2012 #8
rox63 May 2012 #9
magical thyme May 2012 #11
rox63 May 2012 #12
magical thyme May 2012 #13
rox63 May 2012 #16
magical thyme May 2012 #17
rox63 May 2012 #18
magical thyme May 2012 #19
liberal N proud May 2012 #4
Stargazer09 May 2012 #6
southernyankeebelle May 2012 #10
DallasNE May 2012 #14
Overseas May 2012 #15

Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Tue May 1, 2012, 07:24 AM

1. Off to the Greatest Threads with ye!

This is one of the areas in which Democratic strategists need to focus their attention: concrete examples of what America could expect under a RawMoney presidency.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Tue May 1, 2012, 07:45 AM

2. Of course he cut funds for higher education. He didn't want a bunch of Obama-indoctrinated snobs

out there. Besides, all Romney's friends can afford higher education already, though they may have to sell a few shares of stock. State funding for universities just helps poor people. If kids really, really want to go to college, they should borrow money from their parents.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Tue May 1, 2012, 08:56 AM

3. I left Mass in the nick of time

I don't love Maine and haven't prospered, but I would have been bankrupt long ago had I stayed. Courtesy, of course, of ouRMoney.

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #3)

Tue May 1, 2012, 09:33 AM

5. Come on back. Things are better: Healthcare, thanks to Romney, for one

example...

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #3)

Tue May 1, 2012, 12:55 PM

7. Yes, things are getting better here

It's still more expensive to live here than in Maine. But we've had a Dem Governor since 2006, so the Rmoney stench has mostly lifted.

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Response to rox63 (Reply #7)

Tue May 1, 2012, 01:12 PM

8. yeah, the stench lifted and blew north

with a nor'easter!

But we'll get rid of Gov 38% next election. In the meantime, my career died just ahead of Rmoney, a couple years after DEC was sold to Compaq. And in my 50s, there was no time for rebuilding. So I can't afford to go back there, even if I could sell my mini-farm here. I guess the ol' Maine saw really is true: ya cain't get theyah from heeyah!

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #8)

Tue May 1, 2012, 01:40 PM

9. I'll be 49 in a couple of weeks

and also work in the tech sector. Jobs are coming back, but the pay scales are significantly lower than they were a few years ago. I've got a steady job, but I'm making about 25% less than I did at my peak pay.

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Response to rox63 (Reply #9)

Tue May 1, 2012, 07:09 PM

11. I'll be 59 in a few months

I worked in high tech marketing communications. I would *love* to be getting 75% of my peak pay. Hell...I'd be doing fine at 50% of my peak pay.

25% of it...not so good. 25% of it after taking on 35K in student loans and ramming myself through a nightmarish healthcare program....disastrous. Huge fucking mistake made based on a string of lies. Any hope of retirement is gone. Without Obama's income-based repayment program, I was looking at losing my home last Christmas. Now I'm looking at losing it when I'm 83 if I live that long.

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #11)

Tue May 1, 2012, 07:37 PM

12. Interesting coincidences - I also went back to school for health care

Last edited Wed May 2, 2012, 12:53 PM - Edit history (1)

I was feeling burnt-out and miserable after 20 years in tech support, so I left my job in 2008, to go back to school full-time to train for a career change. I did great in school, graduated in 2010, passed all of my certification and registry exams, but couldn't get a job in the field afterwards. No one wanted to hire a pudgy, middle-aged entry-level respiratory therapist.

I also have student loans to pay back, about $20K. So I am back to my old line of work. I really like the company where I work. But they are a small software company, and the pay is quite a bit less than I used to make when I was miserable. I guess the pay cut is worth the sanity I lost working for a big corporation. I can pay my bills and put a bit aside towards retirement. But my condo is only worth about 2/3 of what I paid for it back in 2005, and the mortgage is under water.

I hope your luck changes soon. I have a friend who is 64 and has been out of work for about a year. She is hoping that she can hold out until she's 66 before collecting Social Security, so she can collect the full amount. Fortunately, she has a small side business as a dance instructor, but it doesn't make enough to pay all the bills. She still has some unemployment benefit extensions left, and she is hoping she can get a job (even part-time) that at least equals her benefits in terms of pay rate.

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Response to rox63 (Reply #12)

Wed May 2, 2012, 07:21 AM

13. I graduated summa cum laude

and passed my med lab tech board exams. Before starting the program I called both small local hospitals to get the salary range. The hospital that answered me said the starting salary was $19/hour. Two years later, a classmate called them and they told him $20/hour. That fit with the government figures on salaries in the field. The hospital that hired me outsourced their lab to a reference lab, which didn't list phone numbers on their web site, so couldn't I couldn't get the range, but I figured it would be roughly the same.

Not great, but I own my house outright so have no mortgage, and even with student loans it worked out better than any of the local jobs...or no job at all, which was my situation. Then while in school a company opened a call center up and I got a part time job there. The salary was very low, but they ended up with a 40% turnover due in part to so many people losing their homes (and in part to my bitch of a manager), so they cranked the salaries to $15/hour. I considered dropping out of school, but with the student loans that wasn't do-able, so instead I doubled-down and pressed on.

I was lucky to be one of the few graduating students that actually got a job in the field. The university stated in print a history of 100% employment -- but of course, they didn't mention whether it was actually as a med lab tech. Government statistics still claim 14% growth in the field. A lot of students were unable to find work in the field....anywhere in the country.

The starting salary turned out to be $16/hour. It is per diem with no benefits. Hiring manager told me outright there would be no raise for at least 18 months, possibly not then. The internal website states there is a $5K signing bonus. Lie.

In the interview I was clear that night shift would be very difficult for me due to medical history, but in a real emergency I could do it. Just not on a regular basis. Then this past winter, they bullied and threatened me legally into doing it. 12 hour shifts, by myself running non-stop trying to simultaneously run QC in chemistry, hematology, coagulation, and urinalysis...while sorting lab labels in the phlebotomy room...and drawing patients in emergency, doing timed draws on the 2nd floor in med surg and ICU, and on the 3rd floor drawing OB patients. They told me not to worry, the night staff works as a team and the doctors and nurses will help me. Right. By following me around screaming at me for not drawing their patients first.

If you think you are burned out in high-tech, think again. Words cannot express how sorry I am I entered this field, or how much I hate it. On days I'm not working, I'm mostly sleeping in sheer exhaustion. Meantime, the company I was at 2 years ago just ran an ad, hiring for all shifts. I learned from a former co-worker that they fired the evil manager 9 months after I left. I sent them my resume yesterday.

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #13)

Wed May 2, 2012, 01:06 PM

16. It turns out I wasn't really burned-out on high-tech

I just hated the job I'd had for 8 years, and couldn't leave without having to take a major pay cut. Actually, having some medical background did help me get the job I have now, since I work for a company that makes software for electronic medical records. Even though the pay is lower where I am now, the stress is also much less. And that does count for something.

Being a single-income household, I couldn't afford to take a per-diem job with no benefits. I needed at least a minimum steady income every month, and health insurance. And as an entry-level RT, that wasn't going to happen. Over the course of about 8 months, I must have sent out 100 resumes, but I only ended up getting 4 interviews, and no job.

Most of my classmates got jobs in the field. But most of them were either a lot younger than me, or the older ones had a spouse that could take up the slack while they paid their dues in the field on part-time and per-diem jobs.

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Response to rox63 (Reply #16)

Wed May 2, 2012, 06:23 PM

17. I am single and without benefits

I cannot afford to stay, even if I wanted to. If I could sell my house, I could pay off the student loans, move to a better location and start over. As it is, I'm just on a slow slide down. My retirement savings are gone. Too young to retire, to old to hire.

In the long run, less stress is more important than the extra money. All the money in the world won't save you if you get seriously ill, and it won't give you back the years spent stressing to earn the money.

I just take it 1 day at a time, and pay each bill as it comes knock wood. I grow a lot of my own fruit and vegetables. When I graduated I had $300 in my bank account. After I pay my property taxes this month, I'll have $1500 in my bank account. If I get hired back to the other job, I should be able to save more, or at least stay afloat longer...

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #17)

Wed May 2, 2012, 08:51 PM

18. I hope you get the other job back

Or maybe something even better. Sending positive vibes your way.

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Response to rox63 (Reply #18)

Thu May 3, 2012, 07:26 PM

19. thank you...

I appreciate the thought and the vibes

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Tue May 1, 2012, 09:27 AM

4. He would do the same things nationally that he did as Governor

Except Health Care, he filpped on that one.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Tue May 1, 2012, 09:41 AM

6. The guy scares me

Hes so incredibly out of touch with reality, and he has a record of failure. I can't understand why he's even bothering to run. Pocketing election funds to add to his already incredible wealth? Daddy issues? Just for the fun of it?

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Tue May 1, 2012, 03:03 PM

10. He is so scared to say he was a governor of a blue state. It's like he is ashamed.

 

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Wed May 2, 2012, 07:46 AM

14. A Common Thread For Romney

Whether in private business or government is the mean-spiritedness of the man. He has to be the most compassionless man to run for the Whitehouse since Richard M. Nixon. And he has the identical problem with transparency as Nixon had. Romney is the 2nd coming of Nixon.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Wed May 2, 2012, 09:10 AM

15. K&R.

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