Mitt Romney accused of supporting Chinese sweatshop labor

Report from the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights: 

When he was the CEO of Bain Capital and the president of its affiliated corporations, investments in Global-Tech factories directly contributed to abominable labor practices, records show.

more at  Mitt Romney accused of supporting Chinese sweatshop labor.

Chinese firm promoted its low-wage, low-tax liability to investors shortly before Mitt Romney made investment – Political Intelligence – A national political and campaign blog from The Boston Globe – Boston.com

Oops!

Less than two weeks before an investment firm controlled by Mitt Romney decided to invest in a China-based home appliance company, the company put out a detailed document to investors promoting itself as a low-wage, low-tax firm that would not be subject to taxes in the United States.

It used “inexpensive labor,” Global-Tech Appliances wrote in a prospectus meant to attract investors on April 8, 1998. Its location in China meant “an overall effective tax rate that may be less than that of US corporations.” It said its current operations would not be subject to “material US taxes because it should not be considered to have significant income effectively connected with a trade or business in the US.”

The company also noted its working conditions: peak production periods required six-day work weeks, and two 10-hour shifts per day in the case of the metal stamping department. The main manufacturing facility, located in Dongguan, China, included 14 buildings that served as dormitories accommodating up to 3,700 workers.

Nine days after the document was released – on April 17, 1998 — an affiliate of Bain Capital called Brookside Capital Partners Fund acquired about 6 percent of Global Tech, according to Securities and Exchange Commission documents that were first reported by Mother Jones magazine.

Romney was listed as the “sole shareholder, sole director, President and Chief Executive Officer of Brookside Inc. and thus is the controlling person of Brookside Inc.”

more at Chinese firm promoted its low-wage, low-tax liability to investors shortly before Mitt Romney made investment – Political Intelligence – A national political and campaign blog from The Boston Globe – Boston.com.

How Mitt Romney plans to spend all that money

Several new developments in the 2012 Presidential campaign of late…

Since we are starting to learn more about how Mitt plans to spend all the money he’s received from those rich, secretive donors, what little we know of them – and what they want for their money – seems like a good place to start.

Right-Wing Billionaires Behind Mitt Romney:  They’re trying to buy a presidency – and they expect a big payoff on their investment

We learned from the Washington Post that a good deal of this money is going to a team of supposed advertising gurus that includes the guy that came up with the slogan “Where’s the beef?”

Mitt Romney’s team of ‘Mad Men’ creates ads to sell a nation on a candidate

Now the ad wizards job might be a whole lot easier if they could just keep Mitt Romney quiet

Romney: ‘No ones ever asked to see my birth certificate’

Not that anyone should be too surprised with Romney’s pandering to his base. In fact, there will be 7 birther speakers at the Republican National Convention, and Kansas Secretary of State, Kris Kobach – a known birther – is the immigration adviser to the Romney campaign:

7 Birther Speaking at Republican National Convention

Former Michigan Governor, Jennifer Granholm, had one of the best reactions to Mitt’s birther comment:

Jennifer Granholm’s Response to Mitt Romney’s Birther Remark is a Doozy

But back to how Mitt’s donations. We also learned that the GOP is using data mining to search for rich, religious donors according  the AP:

Romney uses secretive data mining, exec says

This is not the only way the GOP is apparently planning on using large databases – they also come in handy for voter intimidation:

How the Right’s Building a Poll Watcher Network for November.

Now whether the effort by True the Vote is related in anyway to this despicable ad by the Conservative Majority Fund – also seeming to try to collect names – is hard to say:

Birther Group Launches National Ad Campaign Seeking to Disqualify Obama from Reelection

There is no law anywhere that says collecting 10,000 signatures in each congressional district can have a candidate removed from the ballot. A whois search of the website mentioned in that ad tracked back to a long time GOP operative, big surprise. It may still, if they haven’t already covered their tracks (which one thinks they should have done before running the ad).

One more that worth checking out before it’s gone. Someone apparently filmed Mitt talking to some rich donors at a $50k per plate fund raiser on the “good” Bain was doing by using outsourced Chinese sweatshop labor:

Mysterious Video Appears to Show Romney’s Private Remarks on Chinese Labor Conditions

or the original post:

Mitt admits to using Chinese slave labor at Bain (which was not posted by Rachel Maddow, by the way).

There is actually even more than this going on, but given the RNC’s convention is next week, there will be plenty of time for more links.

Romney’s Bain Yielded Private Gains, Socialized Losses – Bloomberg

Mitt Romney touts his business acumen and job-creation record as a key qualification for being the next U.S. president.

What’s clear from a review of the public record during his management of the private-equity firm Bain Capital from 1985 to 1999 is that Romney was fabulously successful in generating high returns for its investors. He did so, in large part, through heavy use of tax-deductible debt, usually to finance outsized dividends for the firm’s partners and investors. When some of the investments went bad, workers and creditors felt most of the pain. Romney privatized the gains and socialized the losses.

What’s less clear is how his skills are relevant to the job of overseeing the U.S. economy, strengthening competitiveness and looking out for the welfare of the general public, especially the middle class.

more at Romney’s Bain Yielded Private Gains, Socialized Losses – Bloomberg.

Bain offshoring victims ask Romney for help – Salon.com

Bain is STILL outsourcing  jobs…

While Mitt Romney struggles to explain his retroactive retirement from Bain Capital, the company he created keeps offshoring U.S. jobs.  Among them: the jobs of 170 workers in Freeport, Ill., now training the workers who will replace them when Sensata moves their jobs to China. SEC filings reveal that the U.S. share of Sensata’s workforce has been dropping ever since Bain acquired it in 2006.  And the Sensata workers aren’t Bain’s only recent casualties.

Some Sensata employees blame Romney for their impending layoffs. “He designed the business model for that company,” says production associate Tom Gaulrapp. “Venture capitalism, where they’re out for every last dollar, no matter what … that’s the attitude they still have.” (The Romney Campaign and Bain Capital did not answer inquiries from Salon.)

more at Bain offshoring victims ask Romney for help – Salon.com.

EXCLUSIVE: Romney Invested Millions in Chinese Firm That Profited on US Outsourcing | Mother Jones

In 1998 – when there is NO QUESTION as to whether Romney was in charge of Bain!

Last month, Mitt Romney’s campaign got into a dustup with the Washington Post after the newspaper reported that Bain Capital, the private equity firm the GOP presidential candidate founded, invested in several US companies that outsourced jobs to China and India. The campaign indignantly demanded a retraction, claiming that these businesses did not send jobs overseas while Romney was running Bain, and the Post stood by its investigation. Yet there is another aspect to the Romney-as-outsourcer controversy. According to government documents reviewed by Mother Jones, Romney, when he was in charge of Bain, invested heavily in a Chinese manufacturing company that depended on US outsourcing for its profits—and that explicitly stated that such outsourcing was crucial to its success.

more at EXCLUSIVE: Romney Invested Millions in Chinese Firm That Profited on US Outsourcing | Mother Jones.

Romney’s Independence Day Advice: Buy Foreign

A message from Leo W. Gerard, the international president of the United Steelworkers:

America commemorates its Independence Day this week with food, festivity and fireworks. To supply these events, Mitt Romney recommends: Buy foreign.

Americans naturally think the patriotic choice would be to buy American. But for Romney, capitalism trumps patriotism. Romney goes where the money is. He made big bucks as CEO of Bain Capital by investing in a series of companies that specialized in shipping American jobs offshore. For him, it’s fine to kill an American job as long as he can make a buck on it.

Americans must decide. Do they pledge allegiance to money-grubbing? Or do they pledge allegiance to the United States of America? If it’s the United States, then on this Independence Day, demonstrate patriotic pride by deliberately buying American. Search for that “Made in USA” label. Pick the product that will create American jobs, the one that is an investment in an American company and the American economy.

more at Romney’s Independence Day Advice: Buy Foreign.

Three Controversial Bain Decisions That Happened Before Romney Left | ThinkProgress

And still MORE problems for Mitt…

Romney…may have been involved in decisions that the campaign would rather voters forget. These include:

– Medical-waste firm disposing aborted fetuses. Bain Capital invested $75 million in the medical-waste disposal firm Stericycle, a target for anti-abortion groups for disposing aborted fetuses. The company had a record of safety violations, including a fine for “knowingly exposing workers to life-threatening diseases.” SEC filings name Romney as an individual who holds “voting and dispositive power” with respect to the stock owned by Bain.

– Firms offshoring jobs to low-wage countries. Bain Capital was the largest shareholder in Modus Media, which specialized in helping companies outsource their manufacturing. Bain became the majority shareholder in Stream International in 1999, which set up call centers overseas. The campaign’s defense was that Romney had left Bain in February of that year, but he clearly still retained ties to the firm.

– Loading a company with massive debt and causing it to cut 367 jobs. After purchasing Dade in the early 1990s, Bain “pushed Dade to borrow hundreds of millions of dollars” in April 1999. Dade bought half of Bain’s shares in the company, which led to layoffs that year and bankruptcy in 2002. It’s unclear to what extent Romney waas involved in the deal, but he was still advising Bain at the time.

Romney himself had claimed that he left the company in February of 2009. “Mr. Romney retired from Bain Capital on February 11, 1999 to head the Salt Lake Organizing Committee. Since February 11, 1999, Mr. Romney has not had any active role with any Bain Capital entity and has not been involved in the operations of any Bain Capital entity in any way,” he wrote in an Office of Government Ethics report.

via Three Controversial Bain Decisions That Happened Before Romney Left | ThinkProgress.

Mitt Romney’s record: Outsourcing | Romney Economics

Mitt Romney’s record: Outsourcing | Romney Economics.

ROMNEY:“The idea that we have to see more and more products move from our shores to China is unacceptable.” —Mitt Romney [Detroit News, 9/5/11]

REALITY:The Washington Post reports that as CEO, Mitt Romney advised companies that were “pioneers” in outsourcing jobs overseas. As governor, Romney drew from the same playbook and outsourced state jobs. And today, Romney has proposed eliminating all taxes on companies’ foreign profits—which would actually encourage companies to send jobs overseas.