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October 31, 2012 4:04 PM The Plutocrat

By Ed Kilgore

If you want to read a well-reasoned, well-written, comprehensive case for voting against Mitt Romney for president, Jonathan Chait has penned a fine essay appearing today. I am particularly fond of this simple characterization of the rightward shift of the GOP that belies Romney’s tardy and empty efforts to pose as a moderate:

[T]he reality remains that a vote for Romney is a vote for his party — a party that, by almost universal acclimation, utterly failed when last entrusted with governing. Romney may be brainier, more competent, and more mentally nimble than George W. Bush. But his party has, unbelievably, grown far more extreme in the years since Bush departed. Unbelievable though it may sound to those outside the conservative movement, conservative introspection into the Bush years has yielded the conclusion that the party erred only in its excessive compassion — it permitted too much social spending and, perhaps, cut taxes too much on the poor. Barely any points of contact remain between party doctrine and the consensus views of economists and other experts. The party has almost no capacity to respond to the conditions and problems that actually exist in the world.
Economists have coalesced around aggressive monetary easing in order to pump liquidity into a shocked market; Republicans have instead embraced the gold standard and warned incessantly of imminent inflation, undaunted by their total wrongness. In the face of a consensus for short-term fiscal stimulus, they have turned back to ancient Austrian doctrines and urged immediate spending cuts. In the face of rising global temperatures and a hardening scientific consensus on the role of carbon emissions, their energy plan is to dig up and burn every last molecule of coal and oil as rapidly as possible. Confronted by skyrocketing income inequality, they insist on cutting the top tax rate and slashing — to levels of around half — programs like Medicaid, food stamps, and children’s health insurance. They refuse to allow any tax increase to soften the depth of such cuts and the catastrophic social impact they would unleash.

But Chait really adds value in an observation about Romney’s character that rings very true, even if you throw up your hands in trying to figure it out from his endlessly duplicitous record.

The vast industry devoted to exploring the unknowable question of Romney’s true beliefs has largely ignored a simple and obvious possibility: That Romney has undergone the same political and/or psychological transformation that so many members of his class have since 2009. If there is one hard fact that American journalism has established since 2009, it is that many of America’s rich have gone flat-out bonkers under President Obama. Gabriel Sherman first documented this phenomenon in his fantastic 2009 profile in this magazine, “The Wail of the 1%,” which described how the financial elite had come to see themselves as persecuted, largely faultless targets of Obama and their greedy countrymen. Alec MacGillis and Chrystia Freeland have painted a similar picture.
The ranks of the panicked, angry rich include Democrats as well as Republicans and elites from various fields, but the most vociferous strains have occurred among the financial industry and among Republicans. All this is to say, had he retired from public life after 2008, super-wealthy Republican financier Mitt Romney is exactly the kind of person you’d expect to have lost his mind, the perfect socioeconomic profile of a man raging at Obama and his mob. Indeed, it would be strange if, at the very time his entire life had come to focus on the goal of unseating Obama, and he was ensconced among Obama’s most affluent and most implacable enemies, Romney was somehow immune to the psychological maladies sweeping through his class.
Seen in this light, Romney’s belief in himself as a just and deserving leader is not merely a form of personal ambition free of ideological content. His faith in himself blends seamlessly into a faith in his fellow √úbermenschen — the Job Creators who make our country go, who surround him and whose views shaped his program. To think of Romney as torn between two poles, then, is a mistake. Both his fealty to his party and his belief in his own abilities point in the same direction: the entitlement of the superrich to govern the country.

Putting Chait’s two lines of argument together should provide some solid advice for anyone you know who has been buying the Romney assertion that he’ll somehow be able to bridge the gap between the two parties and “get things done,” mostly based on very old and not very accurate impressions of what Romney was largely forced to do as governor of Massachusetts. The current thinking among Republicans is that “compromise with Democrats” on the basis of anything other that total surrender is The Great RINO Heresy, to be rooted out with fire and sword. So the “bipartisan Mitt” fantasy really involves the belief that Romney is going to betray his own party, his own supporters, his own donors, and ultimately his own class and everyone close to him. How likely is that?

Chait has said some pretty awful things about Mitt Romney, and so have I. But I don’t think either of us considers him monstrous enough to do what a lot of people who plan to vote for him hope and even confidently believe he is going to do: become a total sellout. And why would he, anyway? He is the perfect representative of the people who have come to believe what American needs is a good, strong, curative dose of plutocracy. Anyone expecting anything else from a Romney administration is really just not paying attention.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.

Comments

  • Rage on October 31, 2012 4:24 PM:

    Great stuff Ed!

  • sjw on October 31, 2012 4:25 PM:

    Yet there are sane people out there -- well, ok, sort of sane people out there -- like David Brooks, the editorial board members of the Des Moines Register (who four years ago endorsed Obama), and yes, even the admirable Joe Klein, who have this fantasy of a Moderate Mitt. At best it's a 50-50 crap shoot, but much more likely it's exactly as Mr. Chait says.

  • Don't You Know Who I Am on October 31, 2012 4:26 PM:

    How are we supposed to use this to inform low-info voters? I tried reading this to an LIV, but his eyes glazed soon after the word acclimation...

    Needs much smaller words, and maybe pictures. Yeah, definitely more pictures. Maybe all pictures, and three or four sports references.

  • RaflW on October 31, 2012 4:29 PM:

    Couple of thoughts:

    1) The GOP has embraced wrongness in the face of facts over and over and over again, not just on QE2 vs Gold standard. They are anti-empiricism at every turn. I sometimes think we're nearing a brink of a new dark ages.

    2) Romney only acted in a bipartisan manner in Mass, and only on select issues, because the Dems held a massive legislative majority. It is pure fantasy to think that when Romney talks about bipartisan that he means anything other than Boehner + Mitt + All GOP Senators + 2 or 3 Dems pulled over = BIPARTISAN!

  • beejeez on October 31, 2012 4:32 PM:

    For LIVs:

    CLINTON -- ECONOMY GOOD
    BUSH -- ECONOMY BAD
    CLINTON ENDORSE OBAMA
    BUSH ENDORSE ROMNEY

    THAT MEAN OBAMA MORE LIKELY GOOD.

  • Anonymous on October 31, 2012 4:33 PM:

    @sjw: David Brooks has lost his marbles of late, too. He's just a shambles these days trying to justify his purely emotional desire to vote for Romney.
    That I spent years listening to him on NPR and PBS seems foolish now.

  • Robert from upstate on October 31, 2012 4:42 PM:

    This has the ring of truth.

  • T2 on October 31, 2012 4:52 PM:

    the ongoing Love-Fest between Obama and Christie has me wondering what's up. As far as I can tell, the President is just doing normal president-type disaster work, but the GOP must be going crazy over Christie's praise of Obama's response. They do make an odd couple.

  • Mimikatz on October 31, 2012 4:54 PM:

    It really does seem odd and rather deranged for people to so intensely self-justify in inverse proportion to the extent it is deserved. In other words, the more they screwed up and screwed us, the more they thought they deserved to be given even more riches and power. It really does seem they feel guilt that they just won't acknowledge. So for Mitt the ends (power and adulation) justifies all the lying and deception.

  • LJL on October 31, 2012 4:55 PM:

    Romney is the ultimate uber-reactionary . . . his beliefs revolve around himself as the uber-job creator, the uber-benefactor of mankind because he is ultimately destined to become the unber-deity of the latter day. This arrogance of his was inculcated in him by his privileged upbringing, his delusional faith and his easy business acumen.

  • danimal on October 31, 2012 5:10 PM:

    T2-Christie is placing a sharpened stilleto between Mitt's shoulderblades for obvious reasons. First, he needs Obama supporters to vote for him next year, so working with the president helps market him as a bipartisan problem-solver. Second, if Romney wins, he won't be able to run as the GOP presidential nominee in 2016, in all likelihood. Third, Romney has a remarkable ability to piss off friends and enemies on the political stage.

    Christie has really stepped all over GOP messaging. At just the time when they need to make the sale that Obama is anti-American, socialist-communist-kenyan-nazi, Christie is revealing that Obama is calling at midnight offering assistance to help rebuild. Cognitive dissonance is a feature for the GOP, but that combination has to be frustrating some of the hate-mongers something fierce.

  • SecularAnimist on October 31, 2012 5:31 PM:

    Chait wrote: "The party has almost no capacity to respond to the conditions and problems that actually exist in the world."

    Chait has it entirely wrong.

    On the contrary, the Republican Party has demonstrated that it has a powerful capacity to respond to the conditions and problems that exist in the world -- to respond in ways that concentrate as much of the world's wealth and power in the hands of a tiny ultra-rich, ultra-powerful minority, the better for them to survive in comfort while those conditions and problems lead inexorably to catastrophe for everyone else.

    The one percent will survive. The rest of us will be ground up into Soylent Green.

    What Chait doesn't understand is that to people like Mitt Romney, that's a feature -- not a bug.

  • c u n d gulag on October 31, 2012 5:50 PM:

    About Mitt governing as some sort of bipartisan President, I've been saying that for over a year.

    The psychological profile fits perfectly!
    I wish I'd thought of THAT!!!

  • CDW on October 31, 2012 7:08 PM:

    What amazes me is that corporate/business money gravitates to the conservative right even though their policies would devastate the U.S. economy. Is it a question of I want mine and I want it now - to hell with the rest of you? Or are corporate leaders simply blind to reality?

    BTW, Please tell the WM powers that be that I would be happy to donate to WM if they would installed disqus, or even if they just went back to the old commenting system w/o captcha.

  • mudwall jackson on October 31, 2012 7:17 PM:

    even if there is somewhere a moderate mitt, do you think he has the moral courage to take on the right wing of his party?

    the primaries proved otherwise. i challange anyone to point to a single position he took that could be considered to the left of tea faction orthodoxy.

  • JR on October 31, 2012 8:00 PM:

    Ed, it's not so much fear of Romney himself, it's Romney + GOP House + McConnell-led GOP Senate caucus.

  • Rick B on October 31, 2012 8:07 PM:

    @T2 4:52 PM

    Christi is running for President in 2016 if Romney loses. He'll have to be seen as a successful governor, and dealing with Sandy requires that he rapidly deploy resources which belong to Obama. In four years what will matter is that he not be seen to fail on the George W. Bush scale when dealing with Sandy.

    Christi's compliments towards Obama are going to a man who is finished in Politics after this election. Who will even bother to bring it up in 2016? Newt Gingrich? Newt's had a lot worse to say about Mitt, and you can see where it got him.

    @danimal 5:10 PM

    Quite right. And as for cognitive dissonance among the Republicans, how much cognitive dissonance do you think they suffer when a politician puts his own desire for power ahead of his loyalty to the country or to his party? They EXPECT that!And they vote for the idiots anyway, while blaming the Democrats for being rational and honest.

    @CDW 7:08 PM

    Many of these plutocrats feel that they saw the financial collapse of 2008 coming and just waited too long to sell out. Many of them got caught, but now they are sure they will not be caught a second time. Most of them will fail, but that's not the way they'll vote now. Instead they will blame the ignorant lower classes for their failure. They are too "smart" to lose their bet. Just ask them.

  • yellowdog on November 01, 2012 12:56 AM:

    You have to go back to Calvin Coolidge to find anyone with a conception of the presidency as narrow and blinkered as Mitt Romney's. He is running to be businessman-in-chief--and he has no idea that the presidency might require a bit more than the skills of a CEO. To Romney, there is nothing more. There is a lot of good in having business savvy and experience, but businessmen like George W. Bush and Herbert Hoover have often been lost in the presidency because they could not complement their business skills with other skills the job demands. Romney vastly overrates the usefulness of his Bain experience to the problems the country faces.

  • BWC on November 01, 2012 4:38 AM:

    As opposed to Obama's statist abomination? did it ever occur to you that maybe Romney is fighting for traditional American values like free enterprise and thrift and is appalled by what Obama has done to this great country?

  • Gnirol on November 01, 2012 4:57 AM:

    I offer this advice to Mr. Romney and all those who are thinking of voting or already have voted for him.

    ďSeven social sins: politics without principles, wealth without work, pleasure without conscience, knowledge without character, commerce without morality, science without humanity, and worship without sacrifice."

    How I wish I had been sage enough to think of those myself. Oddly enough, these would seem to jibe with ramrod American and Christian values. Oh, quoted from the words of Mahatma Gandhi.

  • mrgavel on November 01, 2012 6:05 AM:

    What drives me crazy about Obama's performance in the first debate is that he had a chance to point out to about 62 million viewers that Romney only cares about his class, not the whole country. If he had started his remarks with an attack on the 47% comment and then had referenced it the rest of the night the reaction of viewers would have been a lot different. He could have continually pointed out that Romney believes that government should only work for, and be responsive to, a very small percentage of Americans.

  • James M on November 01, 2012 7:49 AM:

    @CDW on October 31, 2012 7:08 PM:

    What amazes me is that corporate/business money gravitates to the conservative right even though their policies would devastate the U.S. economy."

    Great point CDW! I went to business school and spent lots of time in and out of big companies so I might be able to provide some insights:

    1. The MBA mentality: I am guessing that most of today's corporate titans are B school grads. Most of my classmates at business school had a total lack of concern for workers. They saw them as units of production. Nothing more. The workers well-being played no part in their thinking.

    2. Shareholder Capitalism: Corporate leaders are not into the 'stakeholder concept'. The only group they recognize as being legitimate constituents are their shareholders. The shareholders want:
    1)Continuously rising profits
    2)Continuously rising stock prices

    3. Lack of understanding of Macroeconomics: MBAs are forced to take at least 1 class in both Microeconomics and Macroeconomics in business school, but all I can conclude is that a lot of CEOs really don't understand it. They seem to be convinced that low inflation, reduced taxes and government spending cuts will always be good.

    4. Closed circle: Maybe the reason a lot of CEO don't understand the impact of their decisions on the larger society is that they live in closed social and intellectual circles. CEOs are royalty who only hang out with each other in various clubs, business associations, committees, etc. They also tend to read conservative business magazines like Forbes, or reports from think tanks like the Heritage Foundation or AEI, all of which say that government influence is bad, bad, bad!

  • Anonymous on November 01, 2012 8:21 AM:

    I seem to have become caught in an ideological echo chamber. About the best thing I can say for the article and comments is that they are, for the most part, not strident or offensive.

    I, for one, don't really care whether Mitt Romney is a plutocrat or not. Being a plutocrat is as much about transmitting a certain air of superiority as having money and I sense much less of a supercilious tone from Romney than I have from President Obama. We have had presidents before who came from families with money like both Roosevelts and JFK. I don't think it is of great concern to most Americans. Right now what I see and feel all around me -- and what I am also feeling myself -- is anxiety over our moribund economy, shrinking family incomes, and an exploding federal debt. Also, the disdainful tone of the president for American business has been unmistakeable. As small business owners, we have been clobbered under President Obama, fearful of the consequences of the health care law and what new regulations might be coming down the road. Those, I believe, are the real concerns of the American people, not Romeny's socio-economic status.

    I imagine my comments will probably fall on deaf ears in this stream but I am going to post them anyway.

  • Zdeno on November 01, 2012 8:47 AM:

    yellowdog on November 01, 2012 12:56 AM:


    You have to go back to Calvin Coolidge to find anyone with a conception of the presidency as narrow and blinkered as Mitt Romney's. He is running to be businessman-in-chief--and he has no idea that the presidency might require a bit more than the skills of a CEO
    =====================================================
    Maybe the CEO type will work better than the community organizer type. Just saying.

  • Kathryn on November 01, 2012 10:26 AM:

    @Anonymous....In what specific ways have you been clobbered? How do you propose dealing with millions of medically uninsured Anericans shoul the ACA be repealed, emergency rooms? New regulations that MAY be coming down the road, specifically? Factually speaking, Obama Administration has issued less regulation than Bush Administration. Would you do away with environmental regulations on clean air, clean water, food safety? Disdainful tone for American business, actually have heard Obama praise free enterprise system many, many times and my ears have not detected disdainful tone. Pres. Obama did tell some business leaders that he was all that stood between them and citizens with pitchforks, did that hurt their feelinfgs irreparably? How fragile the egos of our "job creators" must be. BTW, what happened to the jobs the tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 were suppose to rain down on us? Since demand for goods and services grows the economy, not tax cuts to the already filthy rich, why would GOP plan work? Why do you ignore 20 plus months of job growth despite GOP refusal to do anything but pass bills in the House of Representatives defunding Planned Parenthood, restrict abortion rights (legitimate rape?) while speechifying on Pres. Obama's background, falsely ginning up Kenyan roots, birth certificate nonsense and assorted lies of socialism, communism, and fascism? Why has the stock market risen to over 12,000 since lows in th 7,000s? Are you a fan of lying to get elected, see Romney latest campaign whoppers in Michigan, voter suppression, see John Husted, Ohio, Rick Scott, Florida, GOP hired voting registration cheats in Florida, Virginia, True the Vote Orwellian tactics, etc, ? Do you believe in cutting Medicaid so severely that millions are tossed into the streets? Are the "Nuns in the Bus" a bunch of liars? How about all those middle class families whose parents won't be able to stay in nursing homes having already exhausted their life savings, okay with that? Voucherizing Medicare for older Americans while not offering coverage for pre existing conditions sounds like a plan? What could go wrong and be more enjoyable than trying to bargain with insurance companies in your sixties with a voucher that leave you thousands short for decent coverage? Have you noticed the results in Europe with their austerity approach? Ready to go back go the gold standard, get rid of Dept. of Education, etc. and create Dept. of Pregnancy Monitoring? Looking forward to the Netanyahu foreign policy of war with Iran, no apologies, real or imagined? We will have to distract the villagers from their poverty with something, war works well when you don't have Obama's birth certificate and college transcripts to distract from misery. Well time's getting away from me, must sharpen my pitchfork.

  • JamesS on November 01, 2012 10:45 AM:

    Whenever I read a liberal article, such as this one, I'm struck immediately by the two different world views of liberals (as currently defined) and conservatives.

    I'm struck as to how liberals consider the Federal government to be a piggy bank to fund whatever they deem as "just", regardless of constitutional constraints. Your motivation seems to be "social justice" or "general welfare". OK. I can accept that, but the problem is that it is a constantly moving target.

    Back in the 60s, it was Civil Rights. OK. That has a constitutional basis in the 14th Amendment. Then came Medicare, which doesn't. Then came abortion, which only tortured reasoning finds a constitutional basis for. Now we're up to gay "marraige" and income redistribution.

    NONE of this except Civil Rights has a constitutional basis. And I guess that what separates us in the end. Until you guys come around to the rule of law again, and not give in to your passions, I guess we'll be at war. The only difference, though, between now and then is that we're aware of liberal's intent and will fight for our principles. So bring it, guys. Game on.

  • TAEK on November 01, 2012 11:19 AM:

    Since Obama's own personal wealth is now estimated somewhere between $ 3 and 10 million I totally agree with this article. Once you have the kind of money that Obama has he is certainly part of the plutocrats in this country. And in Congress of the 12 richest members 8 are Democrats and 4 are Republicans. And all of those have over $20 million at least. In fact at least 50 of them have at least $ 6 million ( Obama's territory ). So yes they are all plutocrats and Romney is just one of many, many including Obama. He the man, he the winner, he Barack, he the plutocrat.

  • Casey on November 01, 2012 11:40 AM:

    Wow, I really don't know what to say. You guys come accross as irresponsible journalists to me with these theories that have absolutely no substiantiation. Romney has been moderate his entire career so why would he no longer be one? Yes, he came accross as a hard right winged person to get the nomination from his party because they shifted far to the right (about as far as the democrats shifted left, mind you)but has come right back to where he normally is. I wish you would stop writing this stuff though because your ignorance will cause people to vote for Obama when they should not becasue he lies and leaves people to die like he did in Libya and gouges small businesses so much that it kills the economy. Take it from a former Obama supporter, make the right choice and vote for Romney so our country isn't doomed.

  • zandru on November 01, 2012 11:44 AM:

    James M, let me suggest you add

    5. Echo chamber - CEOs and upper execs are surrounded by folks who have found the best way to get ahead is to tell the boss what he wants to hear, as opposed to what he NEEDS to hear. Big bosses don't interact with their employees who actually do the work, nor get down onto the factory floor (which they wouldn't understand, anyway, being MBAs...)

  • Anonymous on November 01, 2012 12:15 PM:

    And the goal is to keep the current kleptocratic dictatorship in the White HOuse??? They are much more heavily into rewarding the already wealthy.

  • James M on November 01, 2012 12:24 PM:

    @zandru: You are exactly right my friend. Telling a CEO something he doesn't want to hear can by a very quick ticket out of the organization!

    @Casey on November 01, 2012 11:40 AM:
    "...Romney has been moderate his entire career so why would he no longer be one? Yes, he came across as a hard right winged person to get the nomination from his party because they shifted far to the right (about as far as the democrats shifted left, mind you)but has come right back to where he normally is."


    This is so intellectually dishonest it is hard to know where to start. First, his "whole career' was only 1 term as a governor. He has been running for president for longer than that! Next, he shifted hard right because it was politically expedient and then he came back? How does a 'moderate' shift to being a 'hard right' conservative and then come back? Would you trust someone who did that?

    Moreover, give me one-that's all I ask, one position that Mr. Romney has consistently defended throughout his 'career' (I wouldn't be mean enough to ask for 2!). The whole point of elections is to have candidates state positions and policies, defend them, and allow the voters to make a choice. Mitt Romney refuses to defend any of his positions that becomes politically unpopular. Is that the kind of person you want to be president?

  • exegesis on November 01, 2012 12:28 PM:

    The democrats worked very hard to tarnish W for a very beneficial reason for their party. So that any time they need to tarnish anyone else in the republican party they just tie them to W and it's a done deal.

    I liked GWB at the beginning, not so much at the end. He was a country club repub i.e. big spender. But he proved himself to be an honorable man.

    Mr. and Ms. democrat, you will not get the truth about any republican from Kilgore or Chait. Keep looking to fine the truth.

  • msusapatriot on November 01, 2012 12:40 PM:

    Casey - I am unable to comprehend how anyone in this country is able to conscientiously vote for Romney. With all the outright lies and misleading statements that Romney has given the American people, it's beyond me. How do you do it?

  • Rabbler on November 01, 2012 12:49 PM:

    @secular animist Given that the human population is going to decrease, one way or another, by something like 75% in the next century or so, maybe it is reasonable to assume that the 1%ers are already fighting that war of survival while the rest of us try to hold together the pieces of a doomed paradigm.

  • Keevan D. Morgan on November 01, 2012 1:43 PM:

    well, now. NO PLUTOCRATS ALLOWED!

    why, you might get an al gore if we allowed that. you know, a guy who leaves office worth $2 million and is now worth $100 million, earned from commissions for getting $2.something billion in loans etc. from uncle sam for favored "green" companies.

    no, no, no. NO PLUTOCRATS!

    keevan d. morgan, esq., chicago

  • E B on November 01, 2012 2:12 PM:

    The media is playing us for fools. They reference polls weighted unrealistically towards Democrats - above even 2008 levels. They ignore the independents flocking to Romney. They created a fictitious Romney that doesn't match up with personal accounts of him in the slightest. I searched out dozens of such accounts that all agree Romney is kind, caring, helpful, hardworking, humble, honest, thrifty, and funny. I know of no such personal account of Obama - and I've looked. Yet the media continues to boost Obama and gloss over his record and many failures and criticise Romney for his successes.

    Read both sides for balanced coverage. How can you make an informed opinion if you consider only one point of view? You can't. Thanks for listening.
    www.conservativemormonmom.blogspot.com

  • Anonymous on November 01, 2012 2:43 PM:

    @Kathryn.....There appear to be two ďAnonymousĒ above. I am the earlier one that you responded to. First of all, I think you need to slow down and take a deep breath before you have a coronary. I donít really know how, nor do I care, to respond to such a rambling rant. Having read your defensive, long-winded harangue, it would just be a total waste of time to try a rational, reasonable response. You donít know me nor do you really care to know about me or our business and our struggle the past four years and having to fire employees that we cared about. Your mind is set in ideological cement and the only thing that appears to matter to you is defending President Obama and the liberal agenda. Just keep shouting with your hands in your ears. Iím not listening.

  • Anonymous on November 01, 2012 3:34 PM:

    Romney is resinating with voters because 1)he is a successful businessman 2)he appears to the average person to be bipartisan & 3) Obama has politically cast himself as a left of center president. All of this adds up to a Romney win. My prediction is that Romney will carry OH, WI, IA as well as FL, VA, NC. PA will be a little harder to win, but it is totally in play as Obama is not polling higher than 48% in PA.

    Bill Clinton, after he saw the handwritting on the wall in 1994, shifted his course to align with house republicans. This, I understand, was partly due to his failed healthcare push. Obama success in his healthcare reform was actually a net negative, but to confront his problem of being a liberal transformative politician, Obama probably should have over shifted towards the right in light of 2010 losses. His failure to shift himself solidified in my mind that he is a less than average politician.

    Remember, politics is all about give and take while you ensure that your net gains are more than your net losses. Political winners tend to frustrate their opponents because they bob and weave: they counter their wins with creative loses (ie. defense). Their opponents know that what they are doing to them, but to the masses they appear to be bipartisan.

  • Bob on November 01, 2012 3:47 PM:

    He is the perfect representative of the people who have come to believe what American needs is a good, strong, curative dose of plutocracy. Anyone expecting anything else from a second Obama administration is really just not paying attention.

  • JeffersonWeeps on November 01, 2012 6:04 PM:

    I'll take a capable plutocrat with a proven record in business and politics over a talks-big Marxist community organizer who has spent his entire career living off other people's money and the past four years squandering our economic strength, our national sovereignty, and our personal freedoms.

  • C Murdock on November 01, 2012 7:19 PM:

    Romney started to morph into a conservative towards the end of his term as governor, and it was obvious to everyone that he was doing that because he wanted to run for president. It's possible, of course, that after years of spouting conservative dogma, he has come to believe in it. But I'm more inclined to believe that his flip-flopping is due to his blind ambition. He really doesn't have any beliefs beyond his precious Mormonism. Like the capitalist that he is, he adopts whatever beliefs are necessary in order to attain power just as he adopted whatever business policies were necessary in order to make money at Bain. The man is an ambitious cipher.

  • Todd on November 01, 2012 9:03 PM:

    Plutocracy? Sorry. No matter how rich the president is, it's not a plutocracy. This is a silly word for a journalist to use who understands how our nation is governed. To liberals, Romney is scarier than Halloween. Heaven forbid we would actually use restraint in spending, balance the budget . . . and if women have to buy their own birth control pills, so what . . . I have to pay for my medications too! We should be very concerned if Obama continues his spending spree.

  • Trav on November 01, 2012 9:04 PM:

    Hey righties, you guy isn't going to win because most people who understand what he is selling have no reason to buy. And if you tell someone you are a "severe conservative" to get their vote and then tell the next guy you're a moderate to get his vote you are a liar. The voter has to decide who he is lying to. But all of this comes down to my basis for hating conservatism in the country today; When you have to lie to get into office, when a good percentage of your supporters are avowed racists, when all of the policies foreign, and financial have blown up in your face, How in hell do you continue to support the movement? Even if I thought I was right about something, if I look about me and see that a guy in a KKK hood agrees with me, then I know I better reassess the situation. Spin all the BS you want Righties, but if your beliefs allow you to continence the company of evil men in the pursuit of your goals, then you have lost your way.

  • You're Not Listening on November 02, 2012 11:44 PM:

    There is something wrong with Romney . . . really wrong. And he lies alot and dosn't blink an eye while doing it.