Friday, October 05, 2012
The Debate That Never Was
That’s showbiz! The challenger found his mo-jo! The incumbent lost his!
Mitt Romney launched his political salvos with a confidence borne of a CEO lecturing a board of submissive underlings. His verbal missiles, energetically launched from a visually benign, often plaintiff countenance rained down on their target without hesitation and were consistent in the rhythm of their delivery.
President Obama, constantly studied his navel in face of his opponent’s onslaught, looking alternately bored and irritated—as if he inwardly wished not to be wasting his time by being there. Responding faster than a speeding snail, he employed the intermittent syntax of an absent minded professor searching for an intellectual shield of substance that would appeal to a game show audience---- but one that would carefully avoid any relevance to the mendacity of Romney
Cosmetics carried the day and reality was blinded by the studio lights. It is an unfortunate truth that words off the tongue from a verbally prolific and sometimes facile source are more often than not empty vessels, characterized by conveying an illusion of tangibility. In that sense, Mitt Romney and Sarah Palin have a great deal in common.
They both profusely speak words that fill the audio space of our environment and, as the poet said, “Signify nothing.” If one wants to confirm this fact, simply take what they say out of the air and put it in cold hard print. Then read it and see if it makes sense.
Romney effectively lied about and obfuscated his positions with his barrage of verbiage.
He denied his tax plan would add $5 trillion to the deficit. He obfuscated by saying there were six “studies” that refuted that figure. However, he did not mention that those “studies” included 2 Wall Street Journal editorials, an article in the same paper by one of his own economic advisors–and two right wing think tank articles. (Nor did Obama).
He rambled on with energy and verve about revenue neutrality resulting from cuts in non-essential programs. When pressed (not by Obama) to name the programs, Romney comically laid the burden on Sesame Street and Big Bird.
He lied again about the so-called $716 billion “cut” in Medicare and about covering pre-existing conditions—but then, that’s old news.
In the end Romney won the Oscar for best actor and Obama won for the best supporting role.