Robert Stein 1924-2014

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Cue In the Mock Outrage Stage

Never before in a modern presidential campaign have the clanking gears been so visible: Joe Biden comes up with a hoof-in-mouth metaphor and the Romney team winds up RoboMitt to fulminate about Obama:

"His campaign and his surrogates have made wild and reckless accusations that disgrace the office of the Presidency...And the White House sinks a little bit lower.”

Romney claims the President is “intellectually exhausted, out of ideas, and out of energy. And so his campaign has resorted to diversions and distractions, to demagoguing and defaming others.”

All this comes after Biden’s flip Iowa remark about GOP efforts to gut Dodd-Frank financial regulation: “Unchain Wall Street. They’re going to put y’all back in chains.”

VP oratorical eloquence aside, Romney’s outburst is timed to energize supporters as a Reagan predecessor wonk David Stockman bashes Paul Ryan for “preaching the same empty conservative sermon,” making Biden look tame by comparison:

“The greatest regulatory problem...is that the giant Wall Street banks remain dangerous quasi-wards of the state and are inexorably prone to speculative abuse of taxpayer-insured deposits and the Fed’s cheap money. Forget about ‘too big to fail.’ These banks are too big to exist...”

As the rhetorical cycle unwinds, little comfort comes from yesterday’s primary results.

In Florida 12-term Republican Rep. Cliff  Stearns loses to Tea Party-backed veterinarian Ted Yoho, who has never held public office.

Wrestling mogul Linda MacMahon’s cash overwhelms Republican veteran Chris Shays for the Connecticut Senatorial nomination, while her Tea Party supporters shake their heads to bewail his actual experience in legislating: “He’s a career politician. He’s been in government a long, long time.”

If they applied that kind of longevity-is-bad logic to airline pilots, we would all be in for some bumpy rides in the future.

As we probably are.

1 comment:

Jerry Doolittle said...

Longevity cuts both ways, though.
Shays, sure, but who needs Stearns? I was particularly glad to see him go. One of my sons is the head policy guy in Medicare's antifraud department. Chairman Stearns recently spent ten minutes of a Congressional hearing berating him for a spreadsheet typo to which the subcommittee had already been alerted the night before. It was a pleasure to see the Republic finally deprived of this clown's quarter century of legislative experience.