Another Skeleton in the Bain Closet

Establishment Republicans have categorized attacks on Romney's Bain history as an attack on free-markets and capitalism itself. The obvious retort is that this is not the kind of capitalism we approve of as a society, however according to Fortune editor William Cohan, Romney's Bain didn't exactly put the "free" in "free market" either.

Under the devastating headline, “When Romney ran Bain Capital, his word was not his bond,” Fortune editor William D. Cohan writes that “there is another version of the Bain way that I experienced personally during my 17 years as a deal-adviser on Wall Street: Seemingly alone among private-equity firms, Romney’s Bain Capital was a master at bait-and-switching Wall Street bankers to get its hands on the companies that provided the raw material for its financial alchemy.” [...]

“Bain would seek to be the highest bidder at the end of the formal process in order to be the firm selected to negotiate alone with the seller, putting itself in the exclusive, competition-free zone.” he explains. “Then, when all other competitors had been essentially vanquished and the purchase contract was under negotiation, Bain would suddenly begin finding all sorts of warts, bruises and faults with the company being sold. Soon enough, that near-final Bain bid — the one that got the firm into its exclusive negotiating position — would begin to fall, often significantly.”

In other words -- Bain would flex its bidding muscles to out-bid the competition until there was no competition remaining, and after the competition had all fled the scene, Bain would begin undercutting their own high bids to acquire the target for a much lower price. This process effectively robs the original owners of the opportunity to receive a maximum bid for their property.

Eliminating the competition through nefarious means doesn't seem very free-market-y to me.

Or as Paul Krugman said "Would you buy a used company — or a used ideology — from this guy?" Personally I wouldn't even buy a used car from him.