I know: we are not used to it; we are not used to uncomfortable truths, especially in politics. We are more comfortable with dissimulation and hypocrisy. What else do we expect from a candidate for high office? Do we expect honesty? No, of course not; or at least that’s the conclusion I have to reach on the basis of the fuss that followed the latest Romney speak.
Do you know what he said at his fund-raiser or have you simply read comment on how awful he said what he said, sans the actual words? Well, then, let’s have a look, beginning with the big shocker, the forty-seven percenter:
There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what...These are people who pay no income tax.
The business of America was once business. Not any longer, it would seem. It’s not about jobs, it’s not about enterprise, it’s not about the can-do will-do culture that built the nation, that built freedom on the frontiers of experience (if you have a business, you didn’t build that; if you have a nation, you didn’t build that). No, it’s about welfare; it’s about hand-outs; it’s about those who are trapped in a ghetto of state dependency. Come to think of it, thinking of state ghettos, it would seem that many communities across the country are turning in to a modern version of the dreadful nineteenth century Indian reservations, sinks of despondency.
Almost half of Americans receive government doles and pay no income tax, they take out but they don’t put in – now that’s the real shocker. What future is there for democracy reduced, as it is, to a form of electoral gerrymandering, to a bread and circus mentality? Just imagine what a modern Alexis de Tocqueville would have made of the land of the free.
Now there is Palestine, more evidence of Romney’s cack-handedness when it comes to foreign affairs. Is it really? Hmm;
The Palestinians have no interest whatsoever in establishing peace, and that the pathway to peace is almost unthinkable to accomplish... I look at the Palestinians not wanting to see peace anyway, for political purposes, committed to the destruction and elimination of Israel, and these thorny issues, and I say there's just no way.
It seems that the Republican challenger, unlike the Democrat incumbent, is actually familiar with Palestinian thinking here, familiar with the declared policy of Fatah and Hamas, its more extreme cousin, both of which are committed to the destruction of Israel as a Jewish state. Those who tell you that Hamas is in any way interested in peace are liars…either that or they live in the White House.
Then there is Hezbollah, the terrorist ally of Iran, a group that will use any weapon or any means at its disposal to kill indiscriminately, to kill the innocent and the guilty alike. The great fear, as Romney pointed out, is an Iranian ‘dirty bomb’ in the hands of these people, “So we really don’t have any option but to keep Iran from having a nuclear weapon.” I hope we never have occasion to recall these words as we contemplate a future tragedy of unimaginable proportions.
And now there is Obama, Mr Peace Prize No Peace President, a mouse on the stage of the world;
The president’s foreign policy, in my opinion, is formed in part by a perception he has that his magnetism, and his charm, and his persuasiveness is so compelling that he can sit down with people like Putin and Chávez and Ahmadinejad, and that they'll find that we're such wonderful people that they'll go on with us, and they'll stop doing bad things. And it's an extraordinarily naive perception
Perhaps Romney can be criticised here. Personally I think that’s an extraordinarily naïve way of putting the point. Over the past four years American foreign policy seems to have descended to a nadir, ineffectual and failing. It’s Obama’s weakness - evidenced most recently in the aftermath of the tragic death of the American ambassador in Libya - that is the greatest danger to the whole of the free world. He is Mr Nice Guy, Mr Let’s All be Decent to One Another. The thugs and the tyrants who rule much of the world, from Caracas to Moscow, simply laugh. The world is a dangerous place, a place for grownups, not for the likes of Obama.
There is nothing exceptional in Romney’s words, nothing shocking. It’s a wake up call for those not doped on opiates and the New York Times. It’s a call to look at America and the world, to look a country with higher and higher levels of dependency, with more and more who have no work. It’s a call to look at a waking nightmare, a debt that now amounts to $16 trillion. It’s a call also to look at the dangers the free world faces, greater than at any time since the end of the Cold War.
Never mind. Ignore all this; let the media sing a lullaby, putting the nation back to sleep. Romney speech is shocking. Pay no attention. It’s not happening. Slip back into your dreams. The Sandman is in the White House and all is well with the world. I just hope that when you wake up you have a country to wake up to.