Monday, January 16, 2012

People, not profits: A response

A letter-writer responds to the Scripps Howard column on Mitt Romney and Bain Capital:
History shows that the "People not profits" slogan does "bear up under examination" contrary to Joel Mathis' assertion that it just "sounds cool". For example, KB Toys, an American company founded in 1922, employed manufacturing line workers, designers, engineers, and a host of supply chain jobs for thousands of workers. With health care and profit sharing for employees, KB was clearly a company that understood that when you consider people, profits come as a by-product. KB Toys wasn't in deep trouble, but the boom in electronic toys prompted KB to seek out Bain Capital for an infusion of money to bring the company in line with manufacturing more high-tech toys. Bain soon seized control of the company, off shored jobs, raided the company's pension fund, and eventually turned it into what is now Toys R' Us where you'd be hard pressed to find toys made in America or workers that are paid much more than minimum wage or have a benefit or profit sharing package. Ben Boychuk lauds Romney and Bain Capital for jobs created at Staples and Sports Authority as "how a dynamic economy works and grows". Both companies also pay workers minimum wage, offer no benefits, and sell goods manufactured mostly offshore. This is the free market capitalism Romney, conservatives, and the GOP envision for America.

David P. Lewis
Long Beach
Ben points out the KB deal was done after Romney left Bain.

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