When you sit there and watch Mitt Romney’s contortions, you’re instantly reminded of how many different ways he’s had to stretch to obtain and maintain the support he has. The strain on the machine is immediately evident; you can hear it grind and squeal and creak under the stress. The only question is, does it spin out of control and tear itself apart now or later? Eventually, the Republican party as we know it is doomed. There are just not enough of these parts to keep putting it back together.
So it’s instructive to think about all the awful things that Mitt Romney’s candidacy is made out of.
- Herald readers. Back in the day, these are the people who put him on Beacon Hill. People who’ve become convinced that 90¢ on every government dollar is intrinsically wasted, gone to the type of people that Fox 25 runs exposés on, that corruption is the rule, not the exception, that it’s all somehow Larry Lucchino’s fault.
- Small government nutbags. Like the crazy lady who wanted to arbitrarily cut the Massachusetts income tax in half two years ago. They’re not happy with Mittens, but they’ll be voting for him too. These people at least have an ethos, an internally consistent worldview, even if they seek it out in irresponsible ways, such as hitching their wagon to a guy who might be less qualified as a help to their cause than the Democrat. At any rate, Mitt Romney would be a rubber stamp to the worst of these elements in Congress, the people that will strip-mine our country’s most successful, most bedrock services and declare them better done by the private sector. Or at least more profitably done.
- Greedy people. The “I got mine, everybody else can go screw” crowd. People who cling to every last cent, spiting every school, every bridge, every park. People who can’t make the connection between things that are immediately good for them, and the good (and i mean financial good, not touchy-feely good) that comes to every last one of us from helping everybody.
- End-of-the-world loons. Let’s not forget that Bush himself was said to believe in the idea that war in the Middle East, specifically in Israel wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact it was a good thing, something that meant the Second Coming was at hand. Romney’s saber-rattling in the direction of Iran (tempered or not, last night) wins these peoples’ vote.
- Normal religious people. Even though i couldn’t disagree more with them, honest, decent people believe enough in their religion that they will vote for people who they think will drive that into everyone else’s lives. Me, i think this is revolting, but these people are well-intentioned, and will vote for Mittens overwhelmingly (even if they think his is the wrong Jesus).
- Crazy religious people. Here, i’m talking about the cavemen-and-dinosaurs crowd, the ones who write textbooks in Texas and speak in tongues and heal people with their sportcoats. These people will vote for Mitt Romney.
- Racists. Everyone from proud Klansmen to my dumbass grandfather who forwards emails with .gifs of Obama as a monkey. You could say that this isn’t Romney’s fault, and certainly he has plausible deniability, just as every Republican has for the last fifteen years. But that deniability is achieved through the oft-mentioned racist ‘code words‘. Words like ‘welfare’, which i think we’ve heard a bit, which make nice suburbanite white folks think of inner-city Americans who make them nervous and say, “well, I’m not for that” without admitting to themselves why. These aren’t even mostly bad people, but the key here is that Republicans and Romney are appealing to our worst angels, sides of us that we’d embarrassed to face up to.
- Warmongers. The military-industrial complex that Eisenhower warned us about. They did well when we invaded Iraq and Afghanistan and want us to keep that up. To buy ships we don’t need and planes that don’t work. These people will vote for Mitt Romney.
- Rich People. The assholes who create nothing but money for themselves and try to tell us all it is a virtue unto itself even as they crashed our entire damn country. People who can pay legions of accountants and lawyers and lobbyists (they’re job creators, duh!), because the taxes these people help them escape more than pay for themselves. Mitt Romney will help these people keep what they have and give as little as possible back to the country that enables them to be so successful. Mitt Romney isn’t just their enabler, he is one of them, through and through.
Fortunately, we’re breeding out some of these people. We won’t have the money for a mega-military forever. Racists will die off. Younger people are less and less religious. The window for a Republican coalition of assholes and idiots is closing, and i desperately hope it closes now.
If you’re on the fence, ask yourself if you want to be counted with these people.