A painstaking investigation into Romney's finances over the years -- the art and the dodges he used to make himself very, very rich -- reveals a man who may be acceptable to other crafty dodgers but not so much to the rest of us, the more we know about him.
Nicholas Shaxson's article at Vanity Fair reveals a Mitt Romney who had been part of an investment world so comprehensive in its reach that it suggests how (for example) massive profits from Mexican cartels can be laundered in the US. The interest on -- the profits from -- that laundering is surely funding political campaigns here and now.
Here's just one look through a window into the world Shaxson found when he investigated the Romney millions.
One cannot properly understand Wall Street’s size and power without appreciating the central role of offshore tax havens. There is absolutely no evidence that Bain has done anything illegal, but private equity is one channel for this secrecy-shrouded foreign money to enter the United States, and a filing for Mitt Romney’s first $37 million Bain Capital Fund, of 1984, provides a rare window into this. One foreign investor, of $2 million, was the newspaper tycoon, tax evader, and fraudster Robert Maxwell, who fell from his yacht, and drowned, off of the Canary Islands in 1991 in strange circumstances, after looting his company’s pension fund. The Bain filing also names Eduardo Poma, a member of one of the “14 families” oligarchy that has controlled most of El Salvador’s wealth for decades; oddly, Poma is listed as sharing a Miami address with two anonymous companies that invested $1.5 million between them. The filings also show a Geneva-based trustee overseeing a trust that invested $2.5 million, a Bahamas corporation that put in $3 million, and three corporations in the tax haven of Panama, historically a favored destination for Latin-American dirty money—“one of the filthiest money-laundering sinks in the world,” as a U.S. Customs official once put it.
Bain Capital has said it did everything required by the U.S. government to check that the investors were not associated with unsavory interests. U.S. law doesn’t require Bain to enforce the tax laws of its investors’ home countries, but the presence of Swiss trustees, Bahamas trusts, and Panama corporations would raise red flags with any tax authority.
Many Americans might react with a shrug to the idea of shady foreign money such as Robert Maxwell’s being invested here. But, says Rebecca Wilkins, of the Washington, D.C.–based nonprofit Citizens for Tax Justice, “It is shocking that a presidential candidate should think that is O.K.” ...Vanity Fair
O.K.? It's how we get the Congress we have, the candidates. That money even helps to "socialize" and politicize our Supreme Court justices, at least those who share particular political affiliations. It can fund a charter school here, a war there. It buys the balloons for conventions and the votes for its chosen candidates.
Hell! It can buy a whole president! Just not the president we'd respect.