David Horsey's latest column does a pretty good job at pointing out just how flawed a candidate for president Mitt Romney is. The man simply has no clue. About anything.
The column was written before the latest non-sense from Mitt (in which he declares that passenger jets should have roll-down windows so that when the plane is smoke-filled the passengers can breathe), but it gets at the reason why Mitt continues to speak "inelegantly." Horsey speaks briefly about the "shoot first, aim later" Romney response to the Libyan violence and then moves on to his comments to donors captured on video and widely circulated this past two weeks.
As soon as the video came to light, critics -- including many conservatives -- pointed out that the 47% is composed mostly of disabled veterans, retired people, the working poor, a few thousand millionaires with good tax lawyers and millions of former members of the middle class who have lost their jobs. Some further noted that the policy that gives them a break from paying taxes was an idea championed by many Republicans, such as President Reagan. Only about 15% of the 47% are underemployed poor families who receive food stamps and other government assistance.Yes.
These facts did not seem to faze Romney. He acknowledges that his words were "inelegant," but he and his campaign continue to stand by his premise that there is a vast swath of Americans who are increasingly dependent on government. Indeed, there are more people receiving food stamps and unemployment checks, but that has a great deal to do with the economic calamity Romney's friends on Wall Street brought down on the country in 2008 and is no proof half the people of this country want to become permanent wards of the state.
Such facts do not matter to Romney. He shares the illusion of the rich -- people such as those in the room where he spoke of the 47% -- who find it comforting to believe money is a reward for virtue and those who do not have money are, therefore, lacking in virtue, brains and drive. Helping out those who struggle with financial challenges, therefore, simply rewards sloth and is bad policy -- especially if it means millionaires and billionaires have to pay higher taxes.
Mitt Romney's biggest liability in his run for president has been the public perception that he is an out-of-touch rich guy. The reason that perception has been so hard to overcome is that it is the truth. Mitt’s father and mother -- both wealthy, but liberal, Republicans -- tried to teach their kid the value of personal frugality and empathy for people of modest means. The lesson, apparently, did not stick with their country club brat of a son.
And what compounds the problem is that Mitt has never bothered to learn and to retain any facts about the real world, whether it involves finance, tax policies, the effect of outsourcing, cold fusion, or airplane design. He's never had to. He's always gotten what he wanted because, of course, he's entitled, something his wife keeps reminding us of.
The GOP stalwarts must be pulling their hair out at astounding rates. Here's a guy who just keeps shooting himself and other down-ticket candidates in the foot. I suspect a lot of them would agree with Lee Judge's cartoon of 9/20/12.
Fortunately, Mitt and his people don't seem to care.
Labels: Election 2012