Red Cross issues annoyed statement about Romney “relief” donations

Well.

It seems the Red Cross wasn’t entirely pleased to receive Mitt Romney’s busload of donated food and supplies that the Red Cross’ own Web site says they not only do not need, but such supplies actually impede the organization’s disaster relief.

From the Cincinnati Enquirer we learn that the Red Cross issued a passive-aggressive statement about Romney’s “gift” yesterday:

Agency officials told The Enquirer they are grateful for help, but don’t want people – including political candidates – sending supplies. They would rather have donations of money and blood.

We are not asking for material donations,” said Laura Steinmetz, spokeswoman for the South Jersey Region of the organization. “Financial donations allow us to quickly and efficiently meet the needs of the people in a disaster. It’s far more expensive for us to receive the donated goods, sort them, warehouse them and transport them. So our financial donations are much more cost effective.”

That’s “Red Cross”-speak for: Stop it.

We reported earlier in the week on how Mitt Romney’s Hurricane Sandy “relief” rallies were actually not-very-well-camouflaged Romney political rallies meant to take political advantage of the disaster that had just befallen NYC and the entire east coast of the United States.

Note that that woman must have gotten that Obama t-shirt at the non-partisan disaster relief rally.

Romney even had his staff buy $5,000 worth of “donations” that were then handed to attendees to then hand back to Romney for the cameras.  It never occurred to Romney to ask attendees to give money, or blood – the two things the Red Cross wants – rather than things they don’t want.  (And as a reader noted, if you have the money to buy food to donate, then you have the money to donate in and of itself.)

Of course, it did occur to Romney that his donations were counterproductive.  But “relief” wasn’t the point of these campaign rallies, was it. After all, if you really want to help someone in need, you give them what they need, not what looks best at your photo opp.

Speaking of looking good at photo opps, Paul Ryan’s “hurricane relief” events, held at Romney campaign offices, were no better.  Reminiscent of Ryan’s infamous visit to a closed soup kitchen, where he donned an apron and washed already-clean dishes for the cameras, then immediately left, only to have Romney/Ryan voters to try shut down the soup kitchen for good, Ryan actually had his staff stop their hurricane relief effort until he could arrive for a photo opp, since a PR photo was apparently more important than getting help to the disaster victims as quickly as possible.

In Romney-land, everything is an “opportunity,”even death and destruction.  After all, it was Mitt Romney himself on the infamous 47%-tape who called the 1979 Iran-hostage crisis the kind of “opportunity” that he “will work to find a way to advantage.” Who calls the Iran-hostage crisis an opportunity?  Who talks like that?

I’ll tell you who.  Financial vultures who live off of the destitution of others.

That is Mitt Romney’s background, buying and selling companies, regardless of whether he had to destroy them in order to make money.  In the soul-less world of Wall Street, greed is good, and you have to be willing to step on anyone, take advantage of any adversity, in order to win.  A recent example of this was Romney’s ongoing effort to turn the attack on our consulate in Libya into a political “opportunity.” Our ambassador and three other Americans were barely dead before Mitt Romney jumped up and tried to claim as much political advantage as he could.

I’ll ask again: What kind of person gives the Red Cross donations that the organization keeps telling them not to give? I’ll tell you who: Remember this guy?  The London trader who dreams of a market crash and another recession so he can rake in the bucks?

Here’s the short transcript of what the London trader said:

BBC: Can you pin down exactly what would keep investors happy, make them feel more confident? TRADER: That’s a tough one.  Personally, it doesn’t matter. I’m a trader.  I dont’ care about that stuff… We don’t really care how they’re gonna fix the economy, how they’re gonna fix the situation.  Our job is to make money from it.  And personally, I’ve been dreaming of this moment for three years.  I have a confession, which is, I go to bed every night, I dream of another recession, I dream of another moment like this.

BBC: Why?

TRADER: Because, people don’t seem to maybe remember, the 30s Depression, the Depression in the 30s, wasn’t just about a market crash.  There were some people who were prepared to make money from that crash.  And I think anybody can do that.  It isn’t just for some people in the elite.  Anybody can make money, it’s an opportunity.

BBC: If you could see the people around me, jaws have collectively dropped at what you just said.

It’s an opportunity. Where have I heard that before?


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

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  • jooney

    You are full of crap.

  • tsuki

     Oh, give it up.  Love it or leave?  Really?  You are really disgusting. 

  • Anon

    Bush II is a kind caring person, hes just not the sharpest tool in the shed.  I’m pretty sure he thought everything Cheney made him sign/do was in the best interests of all americans. 

    Mitt on the other hand only does what he thinks will be best for him and to hell with everyone else.

    Just to clarify, i was a fervent opponent of Bush II, but saying he wasnt kind/caring doesnt seem right since he at least believed what he was doing was going to help.

  • http://www.nyc.gov/ MO

    The Red Cross has delivered 153,000 meals around the region. Staten Island was not the only place badly hit–Nassau and Suffolk towns were very badly damaged as well and did not have the support of city governments as large as Staten Island does–so this was triage, just like an emergency room. The most badly off got help first.

  • http://www.nyc.gov/ MO

    Do take food to the places you name; they are working _with_ the Red Cross, not against it.

  • http://www.nyc.gov/ MO

    BRAVO–thank you!

  • http://www.nyc.gov/ MO

    The Red Cross spends about 90% of all donations on direct services. Donations earmarked for a specific disaster will be used that way. HOWEVER, directed donations are not the best way to help.

    Please think carefully about how the Red Cross–and other disaster relief organizations–actually work.

    The Red Cross and other relief organizations already existed before any of the weather and fire disasters we’ve had this year, right? So _before_ they are needed, they had offices in place to get information and coordinate their responses.

    Relief agencies need donations independent of any specific disaster.

    Agencies need vehicles to get to disasters to help the affected people. These are usually vans and trucks. These need gas, oil, tires, inspection, maintenance, and insurance–all of which costs money. The supplies distributed to people who need them–cots, cleanup kits, water, nonperishable food, clothing, blankets–already have to be purchased and in storage before a disaster hits. No one can wait days or weeks for them to be ordered and shipped to a disaster site.

    Agency offices need electricity, water, computers, Internet access, phones, phone service, printers, paper, toner, pens–and people.

    People are needed to produce reports that donors want and deserve, and to supervise the spending of money to make sure it is not wasted and supplies purchased are actually obtained. These people need to be paid living wages and have health insurance in full-time jobs. (You want that for yourself, right?)

    All of that already has to be paid for and in place _BEFORE_ any emergency, so when disasters occur, the agencies are ready. Without unrestricted donations not tied to any event, relief agencies cannot have any of these necessities–and can’t respond as effectively as necessary.

    All of this is lumped into “administration.”

    So, please be careful about dismissing money spent on “administration”–it is vital to the work of an organization.

  • Think Before You Speak

    I like how you think 4 dead in Benghazi is worse than over 5,000 young men and women dead from a 10 year war.

  • Pam

    The people needed food, he gave them food. I’m not fond of giving the Red Cross money, I don’t want to help pay the salaries of their administration. I want 100% of my donations to go to relief, not 50% or less. They need to get over themselves.

  • Concerned

    No my reason was in sarcasm, meaning that Christie wants help for his state and thats why he is being a sucker and sucking up to Obama.  And, sorry freak, my cognition cannot “congeal,” considering it is not any form of tangible matter!! Stop trying to make your statements seem as if they bear truth by adding in a bunch of words, trying to make yourself look smart. I can see through them.

    And if you “guess” Obama is doing a good job bc republicans said so..then I GUESS you should start listening to everything republicans say. Since you think Christies opinion is so rock solid, then you might as well vote for who he is voting for. But I GUESS you too need to find a better reason for believing he did he good job and back up your claim. This is odd behavior for someone who has decided to attack another saying they did not back up their claim when you have failed to do so yourself.

  • Comrade Rutherford

    The Red Cross does not have the massive infrastructure needed to process material donations.  That is not what they do.  Forcing food and clothing on them, that they can not use, diverts their resources away from what it is that they actually do.

    You have bought the far-right lies about Red Cross.  They are it, after the Nat Guard.

    Support the Red Cross by NOT forcing things on them that they can not deal with.  If you want to donate material goods do yourself a favor and know what you are talking about first by locating an organization that can deal with the crap you want to dump on them.

    I support the Red Cross because I understand what it is that they actually do, I don’t believe the far-right lies about them.

  • Comrade Rutherford

    Give all your money to religious institutions so their leaders can buy another solid-gold limousine!  That’ll help disaster relief!

  • Comrade Rutherford

    “the Salvation Army; you know, that agency that actually HELPS people in need.”

    The Salvation Army that force you to declare you are a far-right ‘christian’ before they’ll help you.  Yeah, right.

    They don’t call themselves ‘Salvation Army’ for no reason.  They don’t deserve my money to spend on proselytizing.

  • Comrade Rutherford

    Better than Mormon Bishop Mitt Rmoney who couldn’t even bother stopping his campaigning and enjoys increasing the suffering of others.

  • Comrade Rutherford

    Yeah, the Red Cross really appreciates having to drop everything they are doing in disaster relief to accept materials they can’t use from a pandering presidential candidate who was cravenly trying to fake a campaign event into an obviously fake ‘disaster relief’ effort!

    Vote Rmoney, because disaster relief is far less important than making a Republican look good to his voters.

  • Comrade Rutherford

    Who wants a “business man” whose sole experience is moving middle class jobs to China and stealing your pension so you’ll never be able to retire?

    Terry wants a Mormon Bishop as President so we can all enjoy the fruits of a Mormon theocracy.

    Let’s all go back the Bush policies that intentionally brought about the crash of 2008!  That was so much fun, let’s vote Rmoney and do it again!

  • Comrade Rutherford

    Oh, so you agree that Americans should not be allowed to retire.

    That the obscenely rich should be allowed to steal your pension and impoverish you after working hard your whole life for a decent retirement.  

    You agree that America should be a third-world nation because insanely rich shouldn’t have to pay their fair share of the cost of keeping america a First-world nation.

    You agree that 380 Million Americans should not get paid for their work, that we should be just like Communist China: $1/hour for mandatory 12 hour days, seven days a week, just so your boss can have a third solid-gold yacht that he never has even seen.

    You hate America so much that you meet calls for patriotism from the rich with demands that we move to North Korea.

    Why do you hate America so much that you would vote for a Mormon Bishop to institute a Mormon Theocracy in what had been the Land of the Free until the rich stopped paying their taxes?

  • Merky

    unless your actually a red cross worker in the trenches do not judge them now where is said that they wont use what they have gotten the did HOWEVER let us know what is the best way too help those in need fast and efficiently.  I am sure anyone who needs those items sent the red crosss will be happy to give them to, but they have a job to do and a very demanding and large job and the one thing mitt could have done was actually LISTEN to what the red cross knew would be best for those in need and he should have done that not was was best for HIM.   So back off 

  • Vstk00

    To even suggest that North Korea is a communist nation makes you look stupid.

    Try to understand the difference between communism and dictatorism.

    Communism, in its true form, has never existed.

  • http://www.facebook.com/christelelaineplatt Christel Platt

     YES! I say F red cross, dont take the food to them, take it to food banks, or to soup kitchens to hand out, they are SO ungrateful

  • http://www.facebook.com/christelelaineplatt Christel Platt

     I was just thinking this, the red cross doesnt want them, but ask the families sitting there with nothing at all to eat if they want them and I bet they say yes! I have a problem giving money personally bc I feel it never makes it to the victims, example: the thousands of organizations that have shut down over money laundering. I feel the exact same way you feel.

  • Chinadoll1854

    Your perspective expound on the truth for who Mitt Romney really is…he geniunely do not care about middle class nor the poor. When he spoke about the 47% of the people who would vote for President Obama, he was including the citizens who were suffering from the Sandy’s crisis. Mitt only cares about 53% of the wealthy people he is working for, and recorder tape of his meeting speaks for itself. Fortunately, I read body language and I can tell you I read his demeanor in how he was collecting can goods; there was no sincerity or embrace that he was happy to assist. His facial impression was like, “Oh God, I can’t wait to get of here.” This guy is not use to being around common people, he’s use to being around his elite friends bullying and demanding to get what he wants. If you have not seen the tape, watch it. A man of his wealth should have been happy to write a check; it’s a tax write off for him. He really did not have anything to lose. Mitt Romney would be a huge mistake for this country. Technically, Mitt show no respect for the Hurricane Sandy’s victims…disregarding the Red Cross request. 

  • Asmilelies

    I’m from New Orleans and no one who is actually from New Orleans would say that it was all Nagin’s fault.

  • James Tingley

    Except this businessman’s business is to export local economies and create 1% wealth by cashing in on loss (paid for with help from your tax dollar, bud). 

  • spamtrap93

    “His reasons” means you have no explanation why someone who was the keynote speaker for Mitt Romney would say the president was doing an outstanding job when in your own little world of secretive, unconfirmed knowledge, he wasn’t. Somehow you know more about the disaster than a governor directly impacted, because to think otherwise would impact your weak, unsubstantial narrative. Your cognitive dissonance has congealed into wilful ignorance. Come back when you have something that makes sense.

    I guess I think Obama’s doing a good job because Christie, Ed Gillespie, and a bunch of other republicans have said so, and if anyone would have reason not to, it would be them. You’ve brought nothing to the table.

  • Hyudra

    The Red Cross has repeatedly issued statements that it’s counterproductive to send in material goods/food/clothing because they then have to delegate staff and space to sorting, transporting and storing said materials when there’s almost always better ways to acquire equal/superior goods near the emergency site.

    And that’s staff/space/resources they can’t use elsewhere at a critical juncture.

    For food alone, you have to:
    *  Check the conditions the food was transported in, sign paperwork.
    *  Check the condition of said food.  Was that container of peanut butter half used?  Unscrew it and check seal, check outside of container.  Was it crushed in transport?  Did it get wet?  Do this for every item donated.
    *  Check the nature of the food.  Is it expired?  Is it a potential contaminant or allergen?  Do this for every item donated.
    *  Sort the food by type, organize food into containers.
    *  Transport sorted food to an area where it can be kept dry, clean and at the right temperature.
    *  Transport food from that place to an area it is needed.

    That’s just food.

    The same applies to clothing (is it soiled/used?  Are there body lice?  Did it get wet & is it thus a risk of mold?) and mundane supplies.

    That’s an effort that takes trained individuals hours.  Leaving it to untrained people opens them up to lawsuits and disasters (someone getting food poisoning or an infestation of lice that swarmed through a bulk package of blankets moving across an entire emergency shelter).  It’s safer, faster and more efficient to have trained individuals buy the food in bulk amounts rather than sorting through a disorganized mess of goods of unknown origin.

    Rather than ask why they’re refusing to use the items to help individuals in need, realize that they’ve got less able hands to help & supply said individuals because of people like Romney who aren’t following instructions.

  • Magnus Holter

     you need to think this through… re-read the article, re-read your comment and think hard about what was said. I am sure you are more clever than this.

  • http://www.facebook.com/757kiwigirl Leonie O’Shea Strutton

    while I am not pro Willard I find it not only sad but disgusting that the red cross doesn’t want these donations  when there are areas of the shore that they are flat out refusing to help because there is a “greater NEED” else where! How about sending those items you don’t want to the small fishing seaside towns you turned your back on! I will never donate to The Red Cross again!  

  • Guest

    So,, Comredade, aka Tovarishch, patriotism = socialism and communism?:))))

    Go to North Korea, dear. (Even Cuba is too good for you, there at least you can learn how to dance rumba and how to tell difference between your head and your bottom , while life in North Korea is made of your kind of stuff.  You’ll always have your kind of patriotism to go along with a bowl of rise and a Complete Collection of Kim Il Sung’s Works which undoubtedly shall uplift your spirits:)

  • Ljb1123

    Samaritan’s Purse…..ha!  Franklin Graham makes 1million a year.

  • Ljb1123

    I’m guessing that rep=republican.

  • http://www.nyc.gov/ MO

    Bravo!

  • http://www.nyc.gov/ MO
  • http://www.facebook.com/bondibox Jason Neely

    Are you saying Romney’s donations actually made it to the Red Cross?  I suspect they will show up in a Cleveland food pantry in about a month.

  • No

    I read a book something about marine machine gunners about 5 different stories from 5 diff people who served. i forgot what exactly was said but something pretty backwards about the red cross.

  • Maggiejlarkin

    I don’t know, I think he very well could be a real representative. Just look at their record.

  • Concerned

    But what do you care if I justify it, you already have justified your own opinion. I am always open to the truth, so please tell me how you believe he has done a wonderful job dealing with the aftermath of Sandy?

  • Concerned

    Governor Christie, im sure, has his reasons for saying what he said.  However, there are a large number of people still not getting the help they need.  Sandy did not only affect the people in New Jersey. There are numerous people in great need in Staten Island practically begging for help…but all this will be ignored by the media. There were still a lot of problems to address when he scooted off to NV to campaign. 

  • spamtrap93

    Well? What’s your reasoning? The REPUBLICAN governor of New Jersey says the President was doing an outstanding job, but you know better? 

    Seriously. Justify what you say instead of giving me some lame platitude.

  • Concerned

    Don’t worry, the feeling is mutual. Our country is divided more than ever, despite a man who said he was going to bring us together. 

  • Anon

     It’s been a long-standing policy of the relief agencies (Salvation Army, ARC, etc) that they would rather have the cash than the goods, too.  I recall that information from them going back every storm since Hurricane Andrew.  Surely at some point in the last 20 years or so, someone in Romney’s organization had heard that as well.  As an Independent voter, this leaves me wondering what kind of low-information leadership there is in that campaign and if they bungle this badly over one relatively simple thing to find out, then how badly will they bungle running the country?

  • spamtrap93

    Do you know how to use Google, dumbass? None of their people make over a million a year, including the CEO. How do you justify being this ignorant and lazy?

  • Anon
  • spamtrap93

    You’re not a representative. You don’t know how to use punctuation and you have the language skills of a 7 year old.

  • spamtrap93

    Mitt bought food for people to hand back to him because it was a PHOTO OP. Nothing else. He doesn’t care if those people get help. The only thing he knows how to do is help himself.

  • spamtrap93

    Yeah, he wasn’t on the phone with the governor of New Jersey. He made all that up. How are you this stupid yet able to type?

  • woody woodrich

    Yes, it would give the Romney robots an opportunity to “harvest” those firms.

  • spamtrap93

    Name one executive who works for the red cross that makes over a million dollars a year. 

    Name one.

  • spamtrap93

    For the record, the CEO of the Red Cross is Gail J. McGovern. She makes $500k a year.  Anyone who is saying she makes a million dollar salary is an idiot too stupid to figure out how to use Google, and should delete their account in shame.

  • disqus_OsdPhFea96

     It costs the Red Cross to truck canned food, pay people to load and unload and for warehousing, you would think the great master Romney would have thought about those little details, the only business knowledge Romney possess is to harvest companies, lead those companies into bankruptcy, raid the employees pension funds, fire the workers and ship the jobs to china, that’s his great business experience the Vulture Capitalist.

  • disqus_OsdPhFea96

    You are a F**L, the President went to New Jersey, put everything in place and left, maybe you were looking for him to lift boxes and load into trucks like you expect black men to do you piece of Tu*d…

  • The T

    When are you birthers going to give it up?

  • Peteybridge40

    please post that comment somewhere, where the country can see it

  • Peteybridge40

    don’t you wish New Jersey was a swing state… then Romney would have helped them

  • Jlw

    You know, it seems to me that when we all get on here and post about “Rethuglicans” and “Rmoney” and “Obummer” and the like, we all lose.

    We just lose.  Let’s not.

  • Devinjmorgan

    did you all miss the part that he spent his own money on the can food and such and than gave it out just to get the stuff back for a photo what the hell is wrong I’m a rep in Idaho and I’m sad to say I can not vote for Mitt Romney he lies to much I can not trusted him not sure if I should even vote

  • Concerned

    what have you done? And what do you do to assist people in every day life. Please tell

  • Concerned

    I have done a lot for a lot of people for a lot of reasons… you do not know me.

  • Guest

    Yes.  Because you refuse to face facts.  Delusion isn’t pretty, nor is it benign, especially when inflicted on people who need help and against the organizations that are capable of helping them.  Before you hurl more invective, tell me what you’ve done for disaster relief?  Oh, I thought so.  You’re OK, Jack.  Not your problem. 

  • Guest

    No.  You’re the idiot.  The President isn’t a miracle worker.  If you think he has the power to remedy the depredations of the storm of the century, you’re a real fool.  The President did everything it was in his power to do.  As fate would have it, he also is in the position of having to face an immiment election.  And, oh, we’re so sanctimonious about Nevada.  never mind the Republican flesh-merchants like Sheldon Adelson who launder money to Romney through the cesspool he runs in that place and Macao.  I won’t waste more space on the likes of you, except to say that the President certainly didn’t “act like nothing happened.”  If you believe that, you’re delusional.  In any event, you’ll get your answer on Tuesday.  Be prepared to live in a world you don’t like.  Oh, and what have you done to assist disaster relief in New Jersey?

  • Concerned

    We are beneath contempt and democrats are not?

  • Herpderp

     Stanley Obama? You’re an imbecile.

  • Guest

    Oh, sure.  Let’s all beat up on the Red Cross.  You people are beneath contempt.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YJXFZ3DABEX3QZAXNXMF3VOUBE Howard

    I agree with Staten Island mayor or whatever they call him when he said DO NO GIVE TO THE RED CROSS.
    If they have people making upwards of 1mil./year, something is wrong. Give to local facilities or Samaritans Purse as the money will undoubtedly make it to the people not into the pockets of the red cross

  • Concerned

    the true swine will be exposed… and all their lies… I am sure of it.

  • Concerned

    Very true. The alleged charity “Red Cross” needs to be exposed for the money hungry vile excuse of an organization they are.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YJXFZ3DABEX3QZAXNXMF3VOUBE Howard

    you sir are an idiot. No, instead show up to New Jersey, tell everyone that we will do all we can to help, then leave and people are still starving 5 days later. not to mention, (leave 4 to die in Benghazi while watching them die and blame it on a video nobody saw, then fly to Vegas with some bimbos and act like nothing happened). Thank you Mr. Leader from behind stopping emergency vehicles from getting to residents in N.J. because of security detail. Stanley Obama, what a tool!

  • Concerned

    Im from New Orleans and the only person who let New Orleans down was our idiot mayor!

  • Papa Bear

    Damn well said!

  • silas1898

    I could see the donald jumping in with all six feet.

    Yes, nobody has the original “Passport application”.  It was mailed in with the old Passport and the check.

    I didn’t even make a copy.  Useless

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Terry-J-Trainor/100000036542212 Terry J Trainor

    Yeah, who the HECK wants a businessman when they can have a community organizer who pushes for class warfare?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Terry-J-Trainor/100000036542212 Terry J Trainor

    Where are the college records?
    You know, the ones that show Barry attended as a FOREIGN STUDENT?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Terry-J-Trainor/100000036542212 Terry J Trainor

    If you want to give food and clothing, give it to the Salvation Army; you know, that agency that actually HELPS people in need.  The Red Cross is only interested in hard cash and blood that they sell for hard cash; hey, those executiveswith their multi-million dollar salaries need MONEY, not cans of food!!

    The Red Cross is nothing but money-grubbing scum; avoid them, people.

  • Guest

    Like George Bush at McCain’s birthday party while New Orleans washed away?

  • Guest

    What’s sick is people who persist in doing things because it makes them feel good, rather than whether it does good for anyone else.  Particularly people who persist in doing things that make them feel good while they may be causing actual harm to other people.  Food drives have a place.  It’s for the local food bank to help the poor and needy.  You don’t see these people doing that.  They don’t have a place in major disaster relief efforts.  Oh, well.  It’s pointless to try to teach pigs like you to sing.  It doesn’t work, and it only makes the pig more unhappy than the wretched swine already is.  

  • Concerned

    Of course you all would rather have a leader who is with scantily-clad Eva Longoria in Vegas during a disaster than one who is collecting supplies. Get real. You all are sick!

  • Concerned

    of course they would rather donation of money so they can pocket a huge portion for themselves. Red cross needs to be exposed!

  • Guest

    WHERE ARE THE TAX RETURNS?

  • Guest

    Becca. of course, is right.  But there’s more.  For all of his vaunted “business experience”, Romney’s never run or produced anything.  He made his money as a financial predator, manipulating balance sheets and trading on other people’s money to buy and sell.  Which makes the current generation of economic royalists pale not only in virtue but in competence to their robber baron predecessors.  The latter, for all of their cupidity, actually created and ran enterprises that produced things people wanted and needed:  transportation, oil, steel, coal, etc.  These guys produce nothing.  They merely manipulate money.  Their only “clients” are their investors, who are little more than suited casino players.  Their entire competence and talent is in being parasitic.  

  • Mk

    Faypage, you are stupid. There isn’t any more that can be said. You read the article. It’s not a political opinion of the Red Cross. It’s how they operate.

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    The Red Cross expressing a political opinion, in saying what kind of donations they prefer, is political? Yeesh, that’s a stretch.

    No. This was nothing more than an attempt on their part to take one of the most recent deliberately publicized efforts — which was a food and item collection rally held by a political candidate who absolutely was trying to express a political opinion (to wit, that private relief from regular folks is somehow better than gov’t or organization-coordinated relief) — and make it clear to anybody considering similar activities in the future that the Red Cross wants money and blood donations, nothing else. Certainly not trucks full of random stuff grabbed off Walmart store shelves. Mitt Romney and his campaign created the visual; the Red Cross is trying to keep anybody else from making the same mistake.

    The fact these preferences have been stated on the Red Cross website and in their literature for years now proves the point this has nothing to do with politics on their part. But still, well meaning people fill trucks with diapers, bottled water, used clothes that must be sorted, some usable foodstuffs but also canned goods that aren’t really useful when sent to places where there is no electricity or natural gas. Then the Red Cross has to spend time and money sorting through those goods to ensure the food isn’t expired, devote warehouse space for all the excess stuff, and arrange for trucks to drive it from Town A (which, let’s say, didn’t need three trailer trucks full of baby diapers because it’s mainly a retirement community) to Village B (which due to another group’s well-meaning but uncoordinated effort, received only two Ryder trucks full of soiled clothes, expired food, and broken home appliances).

    Real disaster relief requires coordination. Random people sending random things (some useful, some not) to random places — “feel good” relief — is an active hindrance to the effort.

    It’s not the least bit political for them to try to get out the message, “Don’t go to the store and buy that stuff. We know what we need, and where it’s needed. Just send us the money you would have spent otherwise so we can buy it, and also have the transportation available to get everything to where it is needed most, in the most efficient way possible.”

    This isn’t Christmas or someone’s birthday where part of the fun is trying to guess what that friend or loved one wants or needs. It’s a natural disaster, and they’re flat out stating they need money and blood donations, period. It’s not politics to do this.

    Relabeling a swing-state campaign event as a relief rally, and faking up visuals of people giving you food and other items your own campaign bought? That’s crass politics.

  • mirror

     I’m sure if I took a car load of goods to my local Red Cross office that they would politely tell me they couldn’t accept it and suggest I give it to the local food bank.  But Romney’s status forces them to accept such goods from him in order to not seem political.  In addition, since he publicized collecting goods for the Red Cross, they now have to expend time and resources countering that.

     Most political operations planning a relief event/fund raiser would contact the intended recipient to coordinate efforts.  At minimum, you wouldn’t want to be doing an event that was in conflict with other events at the same time.  But the Romney campaign clearly didn’t give a damn about that, since relief effort was never their goal at any level.

    If he was an upstanding guy, he would apologize and do a PR piece suggesting other ways of helping, but he isn’t an upstanding guy, which is why no one is saying he should.

    How they hell did the GOP find someone to make Bush II look like an extremely kind caring person?

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    Well, when the top priority is PR visuals, it’s pretty easy to conclude it was never about an actual relief effort, but the appearance of one.

  • http://twitter.com/undefeatedwomen Christine Solanzo

    From a business point of view, it is always best to understand the need of the client first. Since Romney has based his campaign and his ability to lead our country back to prosperity on his business sense, I am left to wonder why he would promote a donation drive without verifying the need of the American Red Cross. While I believe any benevolence is, in the long run, better than doing nothing, when you have the luxury of planning, is it not best to to understand the greatest need to deliver a positive impact? It appears very clear that Mr.Romney neglected rule #1 of good business and instead used this event as an opportunity to gain some press by enlisting supporters to give in a way that ended up creating a burden for the ARC. This leaves me with a lack of confidence in Mr. Romney’s ability to use his business savvy to lead our country when he has delivered such a blatant mistake while still running for office.

  • Guest

    You should check what you “would think” once in awhile against facts — but people like you are never bothered by being wrong.  You just have feelings.  The Red Cross has well over a century of experience providing disaster relief.  I would think — bozo — that that means they know what they’re talking about when they tell you what helps and what just gets in the way of help.  Sorry.  Romney isn’t interested in helping anyone.  He’s only interested in calling attention to himself and extracting ouzie feelings from people like you.  And it’s hardly political, if you really are in the business of trying to help people and some grandstanding demogogue like Mitt gets in your face and impedes your work, to tell him to butt out and stop making things more difficult than they are already. 

  • paul Winthrop

    Anyone want to bet that Romney tries to write off the food he gave out on his Tax returns? He seems to be able to skirt the law in everything else.

  • Faypage

    I would think the Red Cross would appreciate Romney trying to help even if his way is not exactly what they want. Makes a person wonder should you give money to the Red Cross are they in the political arena also trying to knock Romney and making anything he does is for only gain for him. I got on this web site to donate not get a political opinion from the Red Cross

  • arparp

    That guys name was Alessio Rastani and he was completely full of it:  ”They approached me,” he told The Telegraph. “I’m an attention seeker. That is the main reason I speak. That is the reason I agreed to go on the BBC. Trading is a like a hobby. It is not a business. I am a talker. I talk a lot. I love the whole idea of public speaking.” 

  • Quilla

    What are the odds Willard’s BFF, The Donald, will take that 5-million offer for the President’s “passport application” (seriously, does anybody still have the darn “application”?) and give it to the Red Cross?  Start holding your breath…NOW!

  • cole3244

    this is another example of romney and his supporters putting their own welfare above the countries good, the supporters are as much to blame as he and the gop elitists are if not more so, the gop and their followers love themselves but hate our great nation.

  • ComradeRutherford

    I saw Rmoney’s ‘business leadership’ in person.  Vulture capitalists discovered motion picture processing labs in the late 1980s. They dangled obscene amounts of money in front of the owners to sell the company, the second they bought it they ‘raided’ the pension fund (read: stole) then fired all the 60 year-olds who worked there and closed the company forever.  Those poor guys were left with nothing, they had no retirement anymore after earning that retirement money for 30 or 40 years!

    Rmoney gleefully killed the spirits of hundreds of thousands of Americans, stole their life’s work, hid all their money in his Cayman Island accounts, and refuses to pay taxes to his nation on all that stolen money.

    Mitt Rmoney is the opposite of a Patriot.

    How could anyone ever vote for someone that has promised to destroy their lives?

  • nicho

    Anyone who thinks Romney is running to make the country a better place is an idiot. Romney has never made anything better in his life — except by accident.

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