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Old Jun 7, 2012, 09:10 AM   #1
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All Things Mitt

The Right Hates Spending- Unless They Pocket the Cash- 6/4/12 Newsweek.

Alternate Title: Will Bain be the bane of Mitt Romney?

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In 1993 Bain & Co. owed the Bank of New England $38 million. The bank went under, and Romney negotiated a deal with the FDIC that allowed Bain to walk away from $10 million of that debt—sticking the taxpayers with the bill.
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When Bain owned Steel Dynamics, Romney and his investors took $37 million in taxpayer subsidies—a sweet deal when they only invested about half that amount themselves. Tad DeHaven of the libertarian Cato Institute told the Los Angeles Times, “This is corporate welfare, an example of the government stepping into the marketplace, picking winners and losers, providing profits to business owners, and leaving taxpayers stuck with the bill.”
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Classic crony capitalism: privatize the gain, socialize the risk. When Romney drove GST Steel into bankruptcy, he and his partners made $12 million in profit and another $4.5 million in consulting fees. But Romney stuck the taxpayers with a $44 million tab for the company’s underfunded pensions.
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Old Jun 7, 2012, 09:26 AM   #2
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The interesting part of these criticisms (privatizing the gains, and socializing the losses) is that in the past several years it has primarily been the LEFT defending such policies. It was the left that supported the bank bailouts in greater numbers than the right. It was the left that supported the GM bailouts in greater numbers than the right.

The position from the right seems to be that businesses should be free to make as much money as they want and keep a higher percentage of it, but if they screw up, they should also pay the penalty.

The position form the left seems to be right in line with what Bain did, which was to have government (taxpayers) fund their poor decisions.

Bottom line, from my perspective... the bailouts, subsidies, and special deals have to stop... but both parties like them because they like to control the dials of the economy. Each side thinks they know better than the market which company, which cause deserves more money, and which ones deserve less money. They don't argue over whether the dials should exist, or whether politicians like themselves should have access to the dials... only which ones to turn and how far.
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Old Jun 7, 2012, 09:29 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by classicaliberal View Post
The interesting part of these criticisms (privatizing the gains, and socializing the losses) is that in the past several years it has primarily been the LEFT defending such policies. It was the left that supported the bank bailouts in greater numbers than the right. It was the left that supported the GM bailouts in greater numbers than the right.

The position from the right seems to be that businesses should be free to make as much money as they want and keep a higher percentage of it, but if they screw up, they should also pay the penalty.

The position form the left seems to be right in line with what Bain did, which was to have government (taxpayers) fund their poor decisions.

Bottom line, from my perspective... the bailouts, subsidies, and special deals have to stop... but both parties like them because they like to control the dials of the economy. Each side thinks they know better than the market which company, which cause deserves more money, and which ones deserve less money. They don't argue over whether the dials should exist, or whether politicians like themselves should have access to the dials... only which ones to turn and how far.
Excuse me? I didn't realize George Bush was left wing. Didn't he bail out the banks? And have we seen that money since? I personally was against the auto bailouts too, but at least we've seen a return on that investment.

You need to prove your claim that the left supported the bank bailouts more than the right. Seriously-that's a very dubious claim. This forum was pretty angry about the bailout of the banks, and we're pretty left in here.
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Old Jun 7, 2012, 09:30 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by classicaliberal View Post
The interesting part of these criticisms (privatizing the gains, and socializing the losses) is that in the past several years it has primarily been the LEFT defending such policies. It was the left that supported the bank bailouts in greater numbers than the right. It was the left that supported the GM bailouts in greater numbers than the right.

The position from the right seems to be that businesses should be free to make as much money as they want and keep a higher percentage of it, but if they screw up, they should also pay the penalty.

The position form the left seems to be right in line with what Bain did, which was to have government (taxpayers) fund their poor decisions.

Bottom line, from my perspective... the bailouts, subsidies, and special deals have to stop... but both parties like them because they like to control the dials of the economy. Each side thinks they know better than the market which company, which cause deserves more money, and which ones deserve less money. They don't argue over whether the dials should exist, or whether politicians like themselves should have access to the dials... only which ones to turn and how far.
How about Romney's claim that his business experience makes him uniquely qualified to be a job creator? Maybe all that experience destroying companies and jobs could be reversed by simply flipping a switch on the backside of his noggin?
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Old Jun 7, 2012, 09:46 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by leekohler View Post
Excuse me? I didn't realize George Bush was left wing. Didn't he bail out the banks? And have we seen that money since? I personally was against the auto bailouts too, but at least we've seen a return on that investment.

You need to prove your claim that the left supported the bank bailouts more than the right. Seriously-that's a very dubious claim. This forum was pretty angry about the bailout of the banks, and we're pretty left in here.
I'm sorry if I gave you the impression that I thought GWB was 'left wing'. I think he's actually what I'd call a 'big-government conservative'. He did do an awful lot which corresponds generally with larger government during his time in office, which in my opinion is actually antithetical to actual conservatism (if what you're conserving are the small-government values of the founders).

You're exactly right the he supported the bailouts, and as far as my understanding goes, is one of the principal primary foundations for the ascendance of the Tea Party into power. Most on the left think of the Tea Party as a anti-left element in this country, and in all fairness it has been turned into this to a strong degree... but the two grandfathers of the Tea Party in my mind are the Ron Paul movement, and the speech given by Rick Santelli on CNBC. These are both decidedly small-government focused, and began as a anti-Republican/Democrat, anti-Bush, anti big-government movement. Basically, these are the people that EXPECTED liberals to support large bailouts and stimulus programs, but who flew off the handle when the leaders 'of their own party' threw their support behind these causes as well.

I searched quite a bit, but couldn't find a chart for you regarding the public opinion prior to the bank bailout... could some others look as well? I know what they show, as I remember that time in history very clearly and I've seen the charts before... but they seem to have completely disappeared from the web, or my Googling skills are failing me - one or the two!



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How about Romney's claim that his business experience makes him uniquely qualified to be a job creator? Maybe all that experience destroying companies and jobs could be reversed by simply flipping a switch on the backside of his noggin?
Personally, I'm less concerned with experience, and more focused on ideology. Whether or not a candidate has the right ideas, agenda, and so forth. But that's just me.

Romney's record good or bad at Bain doesn't concern me, just as Obama's complete lack of executive experience didn't bother me... what bothers me about these two individuals is their political perspective. I think they're both good guys, and mean well... with the best of intentions, but their priorities are out of whack considering our financial situation in my humble opinion.

If you force me to give commentary on Bain, even though I think it matters little, I'd say that I generally find Romney's argument stronger (that his experience in the private market gives him an edge against Obama's inexperience in the same field) is generally stronger than Obama's argument (that private equity is somehow a bad thing or a net drag on the economy.)

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Old Jun 7, 2012, 04:36 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by leekohler View Post
You need to prove your claim that the left supported the bank bailouts more than the right. Seriously-that's a very dubious claim. This forum was pretty angry about the bailout of the banks, and we're pretty left in here.
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Originally Posted by classicaliberal View Post
I searched quite a bit, but couldn't find a chart for you regarding the public opinion prior to the bank bailout... could some others look as well? I know what they show, as I remember that time in history very clearly and I've seen the charts before... but they seem to have completely disappeared from the web, or my Googling skills are failing me - one or the two!

leekohler, I found a bit of evidence of what I was discussing earler in regards to the left wing of the country being more pro-private-bailout than the right wing. They're not the best charts ever, but I think you can glean some trends from them:

http://www.gallup.com/poll/112993/Am...o-Bailout.aspx
http://www.gallup.com/poll/113047/Am...l-Bailout.aspx





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Old Jun 7, 2012, 04:52 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by classicaliberal View Post
leekohler, I found a bit of evidence of what I was discussing earler in regards to the left wing of the country being more pro-private-bailout than the right wing. They're not the best charts ever, but I think you can glean some trends from them:

http://www.gallup.com/poll/112993/Am...o-Bailout.aspx
http://www.gallup.com/poll/113047/Am...l-Bailout.aspx

Image

Image

Image
Thanks. I'm surprised by that, actually. I was against the bailouts, as was much of this forum.
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Old Jun 7, 2012, 09:14 PM   #8
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Bloomberg: Romney Critical of Govt Subsidies that Allowed Bain To Profit.

Hypocrite Warning...
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Mitt Romney likes to say that “government does not create prosperity.”

His record in the private equity industry shows otherwise.

During Romney’s years as chief executive of Bain Capital LLC, companies owned by the firm received millions of dollars in benefits from a variety of state and local government economic development programs.


----------

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Romney's record good or bad at Bain doesn't concern me, just as Obama's complete lack of executive experience didn't bother me... what bothers me about these two individuals is their political perspective.
If you look at Romney's Dem/GOP history, you can't really know what his political perspective is. You know what he said while Gov of Mass, you know he's saying while running for Pres, but what about tomorrow?
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Old Jun 16, 2012, 04:34 PM   #9
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Excuse me? I didn't realize George Bush was left wing. Didn't he bail out the banks? And have we seen that money since? I personally was against the auto bailouts too, but at least we've seen a return on that investment.

You need to prove your claim that the left supported the bank bailouts more than the right. Seriously-that's a very dubious claim. This forum was pretty angry about the bailout of the banks, and we're pretty left in here.
A true leftie would've said to buy out GM and make it state owned.

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Personally, I'm less concerned with experience, and more focused on ideology. Whether or not a candidate has the right ideas, agenda, and so forth. But that's just me.

Romney's record good or bad at Bain doesn't concern me, just as Obama's complete lack of executive experience didn't bother me... what bothers me about these two individuals is their political perspective. I think they're both good guys, and mean well... with the best of intentions, but their priorities are out of whack considering our financial situation in my humble opinion.

If you force me to give commentary on Bain, even though I think it matters little, I'd say that I generally find Romney's argument stronger (that his experience in the private market gives him an edge against Obama's inexperience in the same field) is generally stronger than Obama's argument (that private equity is somehow a bad thing or a net drag on the economy.)
You couldn't pay me enough to convince me that the majority of US politicians in Washington are well meaning.
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Old Jun 16, 2012, 04:49 PM   #10
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You couldn't pay me enough to convince me that the majority of U.S. politicians in Washington are well meaning.
Well, take care Son.

For they seem to be paid* well enough to lose that particular "flaw".

*Pay includes, but is in no way limited to, salary.
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Old Jun 17, 2012, 12:11 AM   #11
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The interesting part of these criticisms (privatizing the gains, and socializing the losses) is that in the past several years it has primarily been the LEFT defending such policies. It was the left that supported the bank bailouts in greater numbers than the right. It was the left that supported the GM bailouts in greater numbers than the right....
I think you're conflating several things to make your argument. First, if you review one of Gallup's polls on Bear Sterns, you'll see that Democratic support was soft, but Republican generally supported it. Later, Democrats became more supportive of wide-spread legislation, the $700 billion in TARP and other "Wall Street legislation."

This indicates to me that Democrats believed the argument made at the time by economists that refusing to protect the banks would be detrimental to average people. Moreover, the support for GM makes sense along those same lines. Democrats didn't want to "privatize profits and social losses," they wanted to protect the economy and average workers.
Republicans didn't want governmental influence and either thought the consequences were overstated or believed that some other actor would step in.

However, Bain did exactly what required the bailout on Wall Street. It operated with a safety net provided by FDIC and other agencies, but one of its heads now argues that such a safety net is ideologically dangerous, while at the same time using Bain as a reason why he understands the economy better than the other guy.

Bain Capital is the guy at the poker table who has run the table and now wants to change the rules.
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Old Jun 17, 2012, 04:55 AM   #12
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Thanks. I'm surprised by that, actually. I was against the bailouts, as was much of this forum.
Bailouts are typical for left wing politics, it's pretty much social security benefits for companies. This is because it saves the jobs of those employed in the companies, and we all know that the further left you come, the more people are willing to spend money in order to secure jobs, income and whatnot for the individual, no matter the cost for the society.

Letting a company take the fall for its bad decisions and letting the individuals fall with it, in order to secure a society where companies learn not to do stupid **** or they'll go under, is typical right wing politics.

But remember, having good friends can make right wing politicians take left wing decisions, and the whole left/right scale is as stupid as can be since not a single soul will be entirely in one camp or the other - which is why representative democracy with a lot of referendums is the future. Block politics is retarded.
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Old Jun 17, 2012, 05:50 AM   #13
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representative democracy with a lot of referendums is the future. Block politics is retarded.
The trouble with referenda is that they reduce complex questions to a simple yes or no. Rarely are things that simple.
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Old Jun 17, 2012, 06:54 AM   #14
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The trouble with referenda is that they reduce complex questions to a simple yes or no. Rarely are things that simple.
First of all, I wasn't proposing a system where everything would be decided by referendums. Second of all, all questions, no matter how complex, can be broken down into a number of yes/no questions. Finally, why is it better to have politicians decide whether it should be yes or no rather than letting the people decide?

Have elections and proportional representation for the every day things that are included in running a country, and let the people decide when it's time for big decisions. Bailouts for instance.

But hey, if you think the US has a better system and society than say Switzerland, be my guest. I just don't agree...

Or let me ask you this: is there a party with which you agree to 100 %?
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Old Jun 17, 2012, 07:54 AM   #15
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First of all, I wasn't proposing a system where everything would be decided by referendums.
Well, what, then? The bailouts? Not enough objective information available to make an informed decision. Voting with your gut is all very well, but the ramifications can be disastrous.
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Finally, why is it better to have politicians decide whether it should be yes or no rather than letting the people decide?
Politicians are employed to inform themselves of the issues and find a balance. That many of them fail to make a proper assessment because they are in hock to their commercial paymasters is a different issue.

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But hey, if you think the US has a better system and society than say Switzerland, be my guest. I just don't agree...
Hey, I don't, but Switzerland is rather a different country.

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Or let me ask you this: is there a party with which you agree to 100 %?
A UK party? No. A US party? Certainly not. But I don't expect to.
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Old Jun 17, 2012, 08:05 AM   #16
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Well, what, then? The bailouts? Not enough objective information available to make an informed decision. Voting with your gut is all very well, but the ramifications can be disastrous.
Can you mention a few referendums that have had disastrous ramifications?

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Politicians are employed to inform themselves of the issues and find a balance. That many of them fail to make a proper assessment because they are in hock to their commercial paymasters is a different issue.
Politicians are elected based on their point of view on certain questions, then they have the power to decide everything during the time they're in office. But what if a new question pops up during their term? Maybe their take on that question isn't something that their voters agree on, and would have changed the outcome of the election.

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Hey, I don't, but Switzerland is rather a different country.
Why don't you think the Swiss system would work in say the UK?

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A UK party? No. A US party? Certainly not. But I don't expect to.
Sorry, I assumed you were american for some reason. So you don't agree with any party. Do you vote blank? If not, would less compromise be better than more compromise?
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Old Jun 17, 2012, 08:23 AM   #17
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Can you mention a few referendums that have had disastrous ramifications?
Athens during the Peloponnesian War was the instance that sprang to mind (!) but there are probably many more recent examples. The debacle of California's budget seems to be a possible candidate, though I don't know much about that. Now, for war-making and constitutional change, I think a mandatory referendum would be an excellent idea, but little else seems to qualify.

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Politicians are elected based on their point of view on certain questions, then they have the power to decide everything during the time they're in office. But what if a new question pops up during their term? Maybe their take on that question isn't something that their voters agree on, and would have changed the outcome of the election.
Hopefully you vote for a candidate with what you regard as good judgment.

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Why don't you think the Swiss system would work in say the UK?
It might well. We already make nice cheese and some passable chocolate.


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Sorry, I assumed you were american for some reason. So you don't agree with any party. Do you vote blank? If not, would less compromise be better than more compromise?
Clearly less compromise is better than more.
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Old Jun 18, 2012, 09:09 AM   #18
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Athens during the Peloponnesian War was the instance that sprang to mind (!) but there are probably many more recent examples. The debacle of California's budget seems to be a possible candidate, though I don't know much about that. Now, for war-making and constitutional change, I think a mandatory referendum would be an excellent idea, but little else seems to qualify.
New Zealand nearly regressed to FPP for our voting system in a recent referendum. The ACT and National coalition nearly have a voting majority under MMP which quite frankly scares the !@#$ out of me. Hate to think what numbers they would have under FPP.
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Old Jun 20, 2012, 08:51 AM   #19
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Romeny Refuses to Answer Question on Immigration Repeal.

When specifically asked by Bob Schrieffer multiple times if he would repeal the Dream Act, all Mr. Romney would say was that after being elected, he'd come up with a better solution. I find this very interesting because during the GOP primaries, Mr. he was very adamant about his position of repealing the Dream Act. Shouldn't politicians be willing to take a position?
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Old Jun 20, 2012, 08:56 AM   #20
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Shouldn't politicians be willing to take a position?
Only the incumbent has that luxury.

All the others are on the outside, looking in.
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Old Jun 20, 2012, 09:01 AM   #21
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Only the incumbent has that luxury.

All the others are on the outside, looking in.
Ah, but Romney did take a position during the primaries when he sensed it was to his advantage. Now that he senses it is not to his advantage, when appealing to the others than his reluctant base, he becomes very vague. Unfortunately for him, this is not what voters want to hear.
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Old Jul 6, 2012, 04:03 PM   #22
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The Caymans: where patriotic Leaders hide their stash. This is the guy I want for President:

Outside The Beltway: Mitt Romney's Offshore Bank Accounts.

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Although it is not apparent on his financial disclosure form, Mitt Romney has millions of dollars of his personal wealth in investment funds set up in the Cayman Islands, a notorious Caribbean tax haven.
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Official documents reviewed by ABC News show that Bain Capital, the private equity partnership Romney once ran, has set up some 138 secretive offshore funds in the Caymans.
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Old Jul 6, 2012, 04:09 PM   #23
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Mitt Romney's lawyers
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Old Jul 6, 2012, 04:12 PM   #24
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Mitt Romney's lawyers
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But we all want to be like him, right? Rolling in dough living the American Dream!
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Old Jul 6, 2012, 04:13 PM   #25
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But we all want to be like him, right? Rolling in dough living the American Dream!
NO, we all are jealous and want to take all of his hard earned money so we can continue with our freeloading lifestyles.
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