Monday, November 05, 2012

Inside Mitt Romney's Head Someday someone will try to explain Mitt Romney. What has made him the person that he is? Someone so eager to win the Presidency that he will say almost anything — even if it contradicts whatever else he has been saying? Someone so contemptuous of public opinon that he doesn’t mind that many respected people consider him a liar? Someone who identifies so strongly with the 1% and disdains the 99%--and the 47%? What follows is pure speculation. *** Like George W. Bush, he is competing with his own father. The senior Bush didn’t topple the leader of Iraq, Sadaam Hussein; George W. wanted to succeed where his own father didn’t. Mitt’s father, George, also coveted the Presidency. But after visiting Vietnam and claiming that he had been “brainwashed” by the military there, his prospects for election sank. (The older Romney blamed his failure on Rockefeller’s entering the race.) Mitt is determined to succeed where his father didn’t. He may feel the sting of defeat from his own father’s frustration. So, to win this election, there isn’t much he isn’t willing to do. *** His Mormon religion may have exerted an influence. As a religion, it is a bit more absurd than other religions. Joseph Smith’s finding special tablets and being able to translate them... Mormons being able to have multiple wives, like Brigham Young... a Mormon leader named Moroni (it was lucky the religion didn’t wind up called Moronism). Was it Mark Twain who said that most of the pretty girls in Utah marry Young? Possibly Mitt concluded, as an early age, that all this was garbage—and concluded that most people will believe anything. And since Mormonisn made little sense, the idea of an afterlife, where you might be punished for your sins, was nonsensical. So, all that mattered was success, and power, is this our life…. All this is speculation. But Mitt Romney does need explaining. His father, George, was a man of unquestionable integrity. And I think we need to explain why the apple fell so far from the tree.