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MSNBC’s Moment of Honesty

You might want to sit down for this. 

At 11:14 a.m. EST, Friday, May 25, something remarkable happened on the very left leaning MSNBC. If you missed it, you missed a rare and momentous moment in MSNBC television. MSNBC host Thomas Roberts raised a question about the fairness of Obama’s attacks on Romney as job-creator vs. job-destroyer while he was a private equity investor at Bain Capital – based on Obama’s poor record playing venture capitalist with our money.

There is myth that Obama saved jobs at General Motors. It ignores the destruction he wrought on hundreds of family-owned, small businesses across America, many in towns that depended on them, the auto dealerships summarily closed as a cost-cutting measure.  

That’s exactly the sort of thing a private equity investor must often do: prune back a company (thus erasing some jobs) in order to rescue and reform it. If Bain Capital had come to GM’s rescue in place of the U.S. taxpayer and initiated precisely the same blood-letting, Obama would be vilifying Bain. He’d parade the aggrieved car dealers and their families about on the campaign trail and feature them in ads.

The myth of Obama as GM savior also ignores GM’s subsequent overseas investment and the epic sum it still owes taxpayers (an amount disguised as stock crashed far below the price we paid for it rather than calling it unpaid debt). It ignores the fact that the creation of a “new” enterprise with fresh, clean equity to gift to unions was theft from shareholders and creditors. The GM rescue was really more a stunning example of federal organized crime than anything laudable. It did preserve some jobs, but in a manner consistent with Mussolini making the trains run on time.

Obama isn’t talking much about his job-creation by stimulus spending, or as he prefers putting it, investing, either. You won’t see an Obama ad featuring his quote: “I guess there weren’t that many shovel ready jobs after all.”  

Finally, there are his venture capitalist forays in the green industry (the term itself something of an oxymoron) and they were the point of the MSNBC host’s skeptical query. Solyndra is the most famous money-suck. But there are other failures in which Obamamoney (ie. our money) has gone in the front door and out the back door, often apparently into the hands of his campaign contributors and bundlers, leaving bankrupt entities behind.  

Thus the MSNBC host raised a fine question, for which I imagine he was severely reprimanded.  

Vice-President Biden has asserted that Gov. Romney’s vast and predominately successful experience in private enterprise, in rescuing and turning around troubled companies, in providing fuel for winners like Staples and Dunkin’ Doughnuts, makes him no more qualified to manage the U.S. government and our economy than some ordinary plumber. Even if that were so, it leaves Romney or the plumber infinitely more qualified to make investments on our behalf than is President Obama. And kudos goes to Roberts, who, at 11:14 a.m. EST, Friday, May 25 dared hint at this truth. 

It isn’t often that it’s possible to praise MSNBC. But at that minute on that day, it was fair and balanced.