Monday, January 30, 2012

It's A Rich Man's World

If Rick Santorum was running for president in my state, I wouldn't vote for him. Not that he will get the chance, but that's really part of the problem. Last week, just days before the Florida primary, the former Pennsylvania senator left the campaign trail to head home, ostensibly, to work on his taxes. It's a nice everyman touch, but it also points to one of the massive distinctions between Mister Santorum and the rest of the remaining GOP field: he's broke. More to the point: his campaign is broke. Without millions of dollars to fund a machine that will keep surviving third or fourth place finishes, Rick has to figure out if all of this effort is really worth it. His net worth is estimated somewhere just south of one million dollars, a couple of hundred times less than sometimes-front-runner Mitt "Catcher's" Romney. He lags behind Newt "Amphibian Pond Scum" Gingrich by a factor of six and even nutty old Ron Paul has a couple of million stashed away. Of course these are just their estimated private holdings. The money streaming into their Political Action Committees makes this look like a pretty paltry sum. It proves the old adage about how money makes money: Remember the scene in "It's A Wonderful Life" when after the run on the bank, George Bailey takes the remaining two dollars from the Savings and Loan and suggests that they put them in a box to see if they can make some more? There is no doubt that the dollars in Mister Potter's vaults were busy creating wealth at a geometrically advanced clip.
And so it goes. Millionaires run this country, not just from behind the scenes. You have to be part of the club just to get in the game. While I'm no fan of Rick Santorum's platform, I can't help but feel a little sorry for him as he sits at his kitchen table trying to figure out that last deduction. Maybe he can catch on as the new spokesman for Turbo Tax.

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