Rmoney the Crook
"Le secret des grandes fortunes sans cause apparente est un crimeoublié, parce qu' il a été proprement fait."
(Very loose translation/paraphrase...)
"Behind every great fortune is a great crime."
-- Honoré de Balzac
Willard M. Rmoney is the very embodiment of this quote.
What did he do at Bain Capital? Well, Bain's business model was to buy distressed companies on the cheap, "leverage" them to the hilt (meaning borrow an asston of money in the name of the corporation) and go bankrupt. Hey, it was a win-win (for Bain)! Bain made money if the company turned around and it made even more money if the company went bankrupt.
"How did they make money on bankrupting companies they owned?" you may ask.
Well, much of the borrowed money went to pay management and consulting fees to Bain, in an amount that was greater than the purchase value of the equity. After the bankruptcy, creditors and investors picked over the company's carcass and squeezed out whatever value was left in the company's assets. Bain, being a major investor, got paid on that end of the deal too.
Best part? Rmoney was playing with other people's money. The man never took a risk and piled up an obscene fortune.
Now, if you or I borrowed a bunch of money, paid ourselves with it, and went bankrupt knowing full well that we were in economic distress when we borrowed the money, we could (and likely would) be prosecuted for fraud. But not Rmoney. Oh no -- there is a special set of laws for people like him, a set of laws that says if you're "investing" you can make and borrow money but if you lose it, well, it's not really your fault, and golly, here's a little something for your trouble.
But Rmoney's crookedness doesn't stop there -- not even close. He says he retired from Bain in 1999 to run the Olympics, but his signature is found on SEC filings right up until 2002. If he was signing important documents on behalf of the company but not working for the company at the time, that would constitute a crime. It would definitely be a felony if the FEC filing he signed in 2011 contained false statements, such as his claim to have not been involved with Bain while he was involved with the Olympics.
Poor Willard is damned if he does and damned if he doesn't on this one: Either he committed a felony by signing SEC documents while not working for Bain, or he committed a felony by falsely claiming to have not been involved with Bain during the period when he was signing very important paperwork on Bain's behalf.
But it doesn't stop there. Rmoney was legally bound to recuse himself from Bain while running the Olympics because of potential conflicts of interest. Sealy mattress company, a Bain-owned entity, earned a couple million bucks by supplying mattresses to the Olympics. Other Rmoney owned and connected companies also profited. More on that here. It's OK, though, right? I mean, Rmoney wasn't with Bain at the time so there's no ethical or legal quandary with paying Bain out of the Olympic kitty. Er... except, based on the SEC filings he signed, it does appear he was with Bain at the time. In fact, he drew a small (as in, only six figures) salary from Bain during that time so...
How does this guy get away with this crap? Justice truly is blind when it comes to Willard M. Rmoney and the enormous fraud that led to his filthy (and very lightly taxed) lucre.
Speaking of taxes, I wonder why he is so very reluctant to release his returns? My guess is that he took advantage of FBAR amnesty to avoid slammer time for money he tried to hide in his Swiss bank accounts. Either that or he didn't pay taxes at all by claiming a bunch of bogus losses and deductions. Anyway, it's like the Republicans are always saying when they want to let the government plant listening devices in our most intimate orafices: "If you have nothing to hide, you shouldn't worry about the government invading your privacy. 911! Terrists! War! Troop! Duh!"
So where are those returns, Willard? What are you hiding? And while you're at it, we'd like to have a look at your birth certificate.