>> Tuesday, October 09, 2012
...the Obama camp is charging that the Romney on display in Denver—a candidate who appears to have won over quiet a few voters—is not the real Romney but instead an inauthentic version of the man we'd seen throughout the GOP primary and into this summer. The Romney campaign's story of the candidate's family freeing him (letting "Mitt be Mitt") obviously pushes back on the president's claims, and instead portrays this "new" Romney as the real Romney.- Josh Voorhees, "Who Is Getting Credit For Romney's New Campaign Image? Tagg!" Slate, October 9th, 2012
Whatever. I just have to say: this supposed "reinvention" of Romney and the Obama campaign's effort to pigeonhole Romney into the box he made for himself with his 47% comments is a little boring because it doesn't matter which Romney is the "real" Mitt Romney.
I.e. this isn't a situation where Evil Romney, complete with goatee, is wrestling with Good Romney on the edge of a precipice, both of them shouting "Shoot him! Shoot him!" while Ann Romney awkwardly holds a gun like she's obviously never held one before, swinging the muzzle from one to the other and back and forth trying to figure out which one she's supposed to shoot. Though I'd pay good hard coin to see that. This is a situation in which Goatee Evil Universe Romney and Angelic Barefaced Romney are, matter of fact, the same exact guy; more-or less, supposedly. Maybe the "authentic" Mitt Romney is the guy who showed up to the Presidential Debate and he just lies to his donors and during the primaries, or maybe the "true" Mitt Romney doesn't care about nearly half the public and he was lying his balls off during his debate with Obama, or maybe there's Yet Another Romney and the first two are lying rat bastards--but you see the problem, right? Which Romney is the "real" Romney is a sideshow, a diversion: regardless of who he's lying to, or when, his pants are still on fire (outside pants, magic underpants, does it really matter?), his nose (as they say) is longer than a telephone wire (in this case, we should assume the telephone wire in question is transatlantic).
Reminds me of that old joke or anecdote sometimes, apocryphally, attributed to Winston Churchill and turned into a shitty feature-length Adrian Lyne movie starring Demi Moore: a gentleman asks a woman if she'll sleep with him for a million bucks, and she says "Sure." So then he asks if she'll do it for twenty, and she gets angry and asks, "What do you think I am?" And he says, "I thought we'd established that, I just wanted to see if you'd haggle." By now, I think we've established Mitt Romney's a lying sack of shit, but--unlike the gentleman in the preceding dubious tale--I'm not too interested in what kind of lying sack of shit Romney is, or whether we can get a discount on him.
I kind of wish the Obama campaign would skip the whole futile exercise of trying to label any of Romney's plethora of political personae "the real Romney" and just go to the real point, which is that electing Mitt Romney would be a lot like playing Russian Roulette: you have no idea what's under the hammer when it falls, and you can only hope to hear a hollow metallic click instead of nothing ever again. I assume--or maybe I mean "hope"--that if they don't take that tack, it's because they know what they're doing and have conducted plenty of focus groups and polls.
And as to what we do if Romney manages to get himself elected? Gods only know. At this point, I don't know I'd be all that shocked if the lying SOS turned out to be some kind of wacky unreconstructed communist. Would it really be more inconsistent with any of his many prior positions than any of his other desultory stances? If a foolish consistency, as Emerson said, is the hobgoblin of little minds, we can only speculate that Mitt Romney is very, very wise, even if he reinvents himself more times than David Bowie.