Huckabee (!) Defends Romney on Bain

Weigel
Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Jan. 12 2012 2:15 PM

Huckabee (!) Defends Romney on Bain

The killer quip against Mitt Romney is credited to Mike Huckabee, a 2008 opponent who really didn't go out of his way to trade compliments. “I want to be a president who reminds you of the guy you work with," Huckabee said then, "not the guy who laid you off."

And now here comes Huckabee, in a message to his e-mail list, calling for a ceasefire from the Republicans (really just Newt Gingrich) criticizing Bain Capital.

Romney has come under a lot of fire for Bain Capital's investments in some companies that were then scaled down with layoffs to become profitable. That's been demonized thoroughly by the media as corporate raiding, But it's surprising to see so many Republicans embrace that leftwing argument against capitalism. It's terrible for the workers who lose their jobs, and nobody likes to see viable companies looted and destroyed. But if downsizing can turn around a failing company, then at least it prevents all the jobs from being lost, and it sets up a stronger company that can grow and start rehiring. The term for this among people who aren't hostile to capitalism is “creative destruction.” Bad companies have to die to make way for stronger companies, in the same way that old trees fall over to make way for new trees. The other alternative, the Obama way, is to use vast amounts of taxpayer money to prop up companies that are failing in the marketplace. Sometimes, with a big enough cash transfusion, they survive, like GM. Other times, all the money in the world can't stop them from going belly-up and losing all their jobs, like Solyndra. But at least when a company that's bought out by investors goes bankrupt, the money that's lost was voluntarily invested, not taken from taxpayers at gunpoint.
Advertisement

One more Republican voice telling everyone to shut up about this.

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

  Slate Plus
Slate Picks
Nov. 25 2014 3:21 PM Listen to Our November Music Roundup Hot tracks for our fall playlist, exclusively for Slate Plus members.