Editorial
Grading City Hall: How is L.A.'s city controller doing so far?

Top of the Ticket

Opinion Top of the Ticket

The wealthy 1% would be well served by Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney has a great deal of empathy for people like himself -- rich guys -- and he would serve them well as president. Of course, the wealthy have seldom not been served well by our commander-in-chief. Father and son Bush came from among the affluent, too, while Bill Clinton aspired to join their ranks and has defended Romney-style venture capitalism. Even Barack Obama bailed out Wall Street in 2009.

Yet, of late, rich folks have been getting picked on by protesters and threatened with higher taxes by Democrats. A big majority of Americans think that, given the big bills that have been racked up by congressmen and presidents over the last 12 years, the wealthy need to chip in more to dig everyone out of the hole.

So, maybe they deserve a little sympathy and understanding. It's not easy rolling in green.

Imagine living in a house so big you need to hire a staff to keep it up. Downton Abbey may look attractive, but would you truly want all those minions hovering around, day and night? And what if half of them didn't even speak English? Multiply that by a summer house in Florida and a ski lodge in Aspen, plus the yacht, and that's a lot of people intruding on your privacy.

Sure, everyone thinks having tons of money would be great, but we all know that possessions just weigh a person down. Imagine having lots and lots of very expensive possessions -- the weight would be unbearable!

And then imagine being a rich person and having to deal with Bill Gates. Here he is, one of the richest guys in the world and what does he do with his stunningly huge fortune? He pledges to spend it all curing every disease in Africa, from malaria to mumps and probably acne too. How would that make you feel if you had a crummy few million dollars and everyone was staring at you, expecting you to sell your Ferrari and chip in to save some mosquito-infested village in Bongoland?

Honestly, in a roller-coaster economy like ours, fortunes come and go with a quick turn of an automated stock trade. A fellow who has come into a lot of money through hard work, inheritance, sheer luck or good old piracy can never feel perfectly secure. It comes, it goes and, while you have it, you want to have some fun with it. Why be pressured to live up to Bill Gates? Why not emulate the man with whom Gates founded Microsoft, Paul Allen?

When Allen became a billionaire, he did the normal thing. He quit his job, bought a basketball team, bought a football team, bought a yacht the size of a battleship, built a rock 'n' roll museum, started thinking about sending rockets into space and got together with his friends to play guitars. Isn't that what most guys would do if they hit the jackpot?

Yes, the rich have it tough. They have pressures the rest of us with our simple little lives cannot appreciate. They deserve a break. And Mitt Romney would give it to them.

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
Related Content
  • On healthcare, Romney is muddled while GOP PACs brazenly lie

    On healthcare, Romney is muddled while GOP PACs brazenly lie

    The Republican stance on healthcare is a strange mix of muddle and mendacity. The muddle comes from the GOP’s presumptive nominee for president, Mitt Romney. The mendacity is the work of conservative "super PACs" that are spending millions on new attack ads built around a brazen lie.

  • David Horsey cartoons

    David Horsey cartoons

  • Genetics trumps claim that The Donald's hair is fake

    Genetics trumps claim that The Donald's hair is fake

    Given all the other critical things people are saying about Donald Trump, you might think he would (as it were) brush off the jokes about his hair.

  • No Export-Import Bank? No problem.

    No Export-Import Bank? No problem.

    July was supposed to be a particularly bad month for the U.S. economy. On June 30, the U.S. Export-Import Bank's charter officially expired. For the previous 81 years, this little-known New Deal relic handed out hundreds of billions of dollars in taxpayer-backed financing to benefit a select few...

  • Watts riots, 50 years later: What has L.A. learned, and done?

    Watts riots, 50 years later: What has L.A. learned, and done?

    We look to anniversaries of momentous events — the beginning of World War I (100 years, last July), the end of the Civil War (150 years, in April), the voting rights march from Selma to Montgomery, Ala., (50 years, in March) — to note the passage of time, to measure the progress of the generations,...

  • How to kill the summer job

    How to kill the summer job

    I had a lot of summer jobs. I was a foot messenger in New York for a couple of summers. I worked as a receptionist and mail room flunky. Before my junior year of high school, I briefly sold ice cream snacks — sort of yuppie bonbons — on the street for a company called Love Bites. The uniform was...

Comments
Loading

66°