What a coincidence that during the same week that Mitt Romney came under fire for his “I don’t care about the poor” comment and looking like an out-of-touch 1%-er, Fox News Sunday chose a billionaire, private equity executive and philanthropist as its “Power Player of the Week” yesterday and host Chris Wallace made a point of likening him to Mitt Romney.
The “power player” was a man named David Rubenstein, co-founder of the Carlyle Group, a venture capitalism firm. Can you think of anyone else involved in venture capitalism?
Wallace made a point of letting us know right away that Rubenstein was no fat cat but got his money because he worked hard for it. “Rubenstein grew up in Baltimore, the son of a postal clerk who never made more than $8,000 a year,” Wallace said, before explaining that Rubenstein got a scholarship to Duke, went to work for the Jimmy Carter administration and then co-founded Carlyle, now one of the country’s biggest private equity firms. Rubenstein was seen saying his was “an advantaged upbringing. I needed to apply myself and that was a great advantage.”
That “rich people are rich because they work hard” meme was repeated later, as Rubenstein said he travels 260 days a year but that he enjoys it. Wallace also mentioned that Rubenstein has an inscription at his big vacation home saying, “On the whole, I’d rather be working.” That’s probably the same inscription that will be on his tombstone, Rubenstein told us.
Then, in case you missed the message, Wallace threw in this gratuitous comment at the end: “Not surprisingly, Rubenstein doesn’t think much of the attacks on Mitt Romney and private equity. Carlyle has investments in more than 200 companies that employ more than 600,000 people.”
Of course, Romney is no Rubenstein. Whereas Rubenstein was shown giving his money to the arts, to museums and the Washington Monument, Romney’s contributions have largely been to the Mormon church as well as a number of conservative causes. Also, while Rubenstein grew up working class, Romney grew up privileged and wealthy. But Wallace didn't go into any of that.
When a ( R ) shows his teeth it’s because he’s worked hard to git ‘em shiny ’n’ bright. Wooooooeeeee, I kin hardly see hiz policies fer dat blindin’ light …