Tuesday, September 18, 2012

An Island of No Escape and an excerpt of "Thurston Howell Romney" by David Brooks

David Brooks, a conservative journalist, in The New York Times today, wrote a brilliant piece on yet another gigantic faux pas of the worst Republican candidate in US history, Mitt Romney.  Now it is about this latest wizard of the gaffe's indicting 47% of the American people (nearly one-half of the total humanity that calls itself American,) as those people who simply want cradle to grave government safety net entitlements with no working input for them.  I could have pasted the link but I though better simply to quote from part of it below.  He nails Romney to the wall for what I think is the single most destructive and sinking-of-his-own-campaign disastrous comment made by any presidential candidate EVER !
This comment suggests a few things. First, it suggests that he really doesn’t know much about the country he inhabits. Who are these freeloaders? Is it the Iraq war veteran who goes to the V.A.? Is it the student getting a loan to go to college? Is it the retiree on Social Security or Medicare?
It suggests that Romney doesn’t know much about the culture of America. Yes, the entitlement state has expanded, but America remains one of the hardest-working nations on earth. Americans work longer hours than just about anyone else. Americans believe in work more than almost any other people. Ninety-two percent say that hard work is the key to success, according to a 2009 Pew Research Survey.
It says that Romney doesn’t know much about the political culture. Americans haven’t become childlike worshipers of big government. On the contrary, trust in government has declined. The number of people who think government spending promotes social mobility has fallen.
The people who receive the disproportionate share of government spending are not big-government lovers. They are Republicans. They are senior citizens. They are white men with high school degrees. As Bill Galston of the Brookings Institution has noted, the people who have benefited from the entitlements explosion are middle-class workers, more so than the dependent poor.
Romney’s comments also reveal that he has lost any sense of the social compact. In 1987, during Ronald Reagan’s second term, 62 percent of Republicans believed that the government has a responsibility to help those who can’t help themselves. Now, according to the Pew Research Center, only 40 percent of Republicans believe that.
The Republican Party, and apparently Mitt Romney, too, has shifted over toward a much more hyperindividualistic and atomistic social view — from the Reaganesque language of common citizenship to the libertarian language of makers and takers. There’s no way the country will trust the Republican Party to reform the welfare state if that party doesn’t have a basic commitment to provide a safety net for those who suffer for no fault of their own.
The final thing the comment suggests is that Romney knows nothing about ambition and motivation. The formula he sketches is this: People who are forced to make it on their own have drive. People who receive benefits have dependency.
But, of course, no middle-class parent acts as if this is true. Middle-class parents don’t deprive their children of benefits so they can learn to struggle on their own. They shower benefits on their children to give them more opportunities — so they can play sports, go on foreign trips and develop more skills.
People are motivated when they feel competent. They are motivated when they have more opportunities. Ambition is fired by possibility, not by deprivation, as a tour through the world’s poorest regions makes clear.
Sure, there are some government programs that cultivate patterns of dependency in some people. ... But, as a description of America today, Romney’s comment is a country-club fantasy. It’s what self-satisfied millionaires say to each other. It reinforces every negative view people have about Romney.
Personally, I think he’s a kind, decent man who says stupid things because he is pretending to be something he is not — some sort of cartoonish government-hater. But it scarcely matters. He’s running a depressingly inept presidential campaign. Mr. Romney, your entitlement reform ideas are essential, but when will the incompetence stop?
It cannot stop because Romneybot is controlled hook, line and sinker by the Citizen's United money billionaire machine that put him there.  Romney does not control Romney; Thurston Howell does and he has put him on an island from which there is no escape.  

Honey Boo Boo -- An American Tragedy

Interesting article by Joanna Weiss today, September 18, 2012 in The Boston Globe "Honey Boo Boo and the Real America" placed here and below on this our uniquely and, to me, tragically American phenomenon. I first tuned in when a relative who values academics as I do asked me to watch something so utterly disgusting I would wax incredulous for the rest of my life. So, I did. For about 5 seconds of horror I am now psychologically maimed for life.

Yes, we are a divided nation but for the Globe's Joanna Weiss to tout this poor southern redneck family as simply examples of Maslow's self-actualized beings who sell their female child for a tiara is disgusting. How about showing a reality show in a Harvard classroom discussing the history of philosophical thought and how it relates to our very serious human condition.

How wonderful it would be if this nation were composed mainly of those who place value on academics, learning and science instead of laughing at those who make the US the laughing stock of the world. Shame on people who watch this junk for making NY and Hollywood think this trash is money and shame on Honey Boo Boo's family for creating a child whose odds increase every day that she will probably lose the game of life in the end!