My impression of Mitt Romney is that he is a pleasant and well-intended individual who is clearly a good executive, personally generous and respected, and has paid a lot of taxes. My question is whether any of this translates to being an effective president.
Sam Seder calls Romney "psychopathic" for thinking of himself as a self-made man, and I guess I never really thought of it that way. In this audio clip Romney is obviously talking to close associates or donors-- like-minded individuals-- and the context is somewhat muddled. I'm trying to empathize with Romney: would I ever make such comments to any group and what would the context be?
Mitt Romney admits that he has had advantages but stops short of calling them an "inheritance." He says that the mere luck of having been born in America is equivalent to having "a silver spoon." Is it?
Alex Pareene sorts out what life would have been like if Romney had not had advantages beyond just being American:
If a theoretical non-rich Mitt Romney had gone to college (57 percent of male high school graduates enrolled in college in 1965), a prestigious private school like Stanford might’ve been out of reach. When Mitt Romney attended Stanford, tuition was $1,575 a year, which is more than $11,000 in today’s dollars, and this was just at the cusp of the age of financial aid. (If Romney were black, going to college in 1965 would’ve been significantly less likely.) And if theoretical working-class Romney had managed to bootstrap himself into a good school, it would’ve almost certainly been with the assistance of the federal government, in the form of the National Defense Education Act or the Higher Education Act of 1965 (the year Romney enrolled in Stanford).
Romney spent only a year at Stanford, and finished his degree at the less prestigious Brigham Young, at which point he was accepted into Harvard Law and then the very exclusive joint law/business degree program. When that happened, his father, by the way, was a cabinet secretary. I’m just saying.