Welcome to the first business day of 2016. The financial markets are cranking up, poised to tank (unless they don’t).
You may have also heard this is a presidential election year.
Months of debates and other media-driven nonsense have produced spirited races, plus a large contingent of voters sick of all Democratic dogs and GOP gerbils. It’s too early to predict winners, but there is one loser already … Karl Rove.
Mr. Rove’s American Crossroads political action committee raised $117 million to support Mitt Romney for president four years ago. He squeezed the last of it out late in the game by guaranteeing his billionaire suckers – er, donors – that Mr. Romney was on the cusp of a “mandate.”
Fox News continues to give Mr. Rove a forum as a “contributor,” despite his bias toward the failed candidacy of Jeb Bush. To the money men, he’s dead. Donations are down 99% this time around.
“I gave Rove $500,000. What did I get for it? Nothing,” Home Depot co-founder Ken Langone bitched to Gabriel Sherman of New York magazine.
Another Rove sucker speaking out is John Jordan, a winemaker from California: “It bothers a lot of people that politics has become a cottage industry. Everyone is taking a piece of this and a slice of that. Crossroads treated me like a child with these investor conference calls where they wouldn’t tell you what was really going on. They offered platitudes and a newsletter.”
Few noticed, but the rules of the game changed in 2015. It took the candidacy of a loud, brassy former donor type to change them. Now his fellow billionaires are investing carefully, if at all.
Meanwhile, I am attacking Mr. Rove with the ultimate TV weapon – my remote.