Ten Miles Square


October 24, 2012 12:19 PM Romney’s Geography Problem

By Mark Kleiman

I missed this on Monday night:

Syria is Iran’s only ally in the Arab world. It’s their route to the sea.

Apparently, it was no mere slip of the tongue: Romney has said it repeatedly before, and been called on it. It is, of course, utter gibberish: Iran has plenty of coastline and no border with Syria.

Commenter Warren Terra wins the night:

Syria is Romnesia’s route to the sea.

Really and truly: how pig-ignorant can you be and still have the Village Idiots treat you as a serious candidate for President of the United States?

Bonus One of NRO’s hacks goes for a Nobel Prize in Hackery by defending Romney on this; even the NRO commenters laugh at him.

[Cross-posted at The Reality-based Community]

Mark Kleiman is a professor of public policy at the University of California Los Angeles.


  • Neil B on October 24, 2012 1:28 PM:

    Yeah, yeah, you are right - but is American's stupidity problem bigger than Romney's geography problem?

  • Bruce N on October 24, 2012 2:44 PM:

    Hopefully, America's stupidity problem will be ameliorated by the urgent need to see the lack of truthfulness, and the shameless pandering inherent in the Republican candidates - all of them.

    What should scare American is how much the GOP represents a full-scale retreat to the past: on the economy, on women's rights, and on foreign policy.

    If you thought Bush 43 was BAD (and he was), Romney/Ryan will redefine "wrong-headed policies" back to a level not seen since Herbert Hoover.

  • digitusmedius on October 24, 2012 5:49 PM:

    It will surprise no one that although the article at NRO hasn't been yanked yet, the comments have and no new ones are being accepted.

  • Keeping Track on October 24, 2012 6:56 PM:

    If Mitt doesn't make the cut here, he can always run for Grand Poohbah of Romnesia. The position comes with a retinue of yes-men, and a small army of archers and pikemen. There's also a large flotilla of war-canoes. On the upside, Romnesia has no income, hence no income taxes. If he's still not elected, he can just buy the place.

  • boatboy_srq on October 24, 2012 7:45 PM:

    In a country where 1/3 of the population can't even find their own state on a map, is this really going to be a handicap?

    Not that I disagree that it's a disqualifier (one of so many), just that this one may not matter to voters who probably know less about the world than he does.

  • cwolf on October 25, 2012 1:10 AM:

    Bur Romney's Swiss bank account can see Ahmadinejad's Swiss bank account from across the vault floor and through the tunnel under Iraq's WMDs.

  • President Lindsay on October 25, 2012 9:13 AM:

    Oh, if only Obama had picked up on that route to the sea inanity and skewered Mitt with it immediately. A truly awesome opportunity missed. It would have been at the top of the news.

    Obama : "Syria is Iran's route to the sea? Are we living on the same planet? Syria doesn't even share a border with Iran—there's a country you may have heard of called Iraq in between them—and Iran has coastlines on both the Caspian Sea in the north and the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman in the south. They've got their own navy and multiple shipping ports. What on earth are you talking about?"

    Blissful moments I'll never see...

  • zandru on October 25, 2012 11:10 AM:

    And here's another vote for President Lindsay!

  • steverino on October 26, 2012 10:53 AM:

    After the election, perhaps Romney will be forced, with Mike Tyson, to emigrate to Bolivion.

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