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January 20, 2014

Mitt Romney: Let It Burn

No he doesn't say that. I lied for the headline. I learned that from The Media (TM).

But what he does say is that America seems to have reached a tipping point from which it will not recover -- which is the same premise that underlies the "Let It Burn" impulse.

Via Hot Air, Byron York reports a key moment in the new Romney documentary film, relaying Romney's thoughts upon realizing he wouldn't be the next President of the United States.

As defeat settled in, Romney discussed what to say in a concession speech — which, for all his natural pessimism, Romney had not considered ahead of time. And it was in that moment that some of Romney's passion about the race finally came out, far from the view of voters and television cameras. Stevens suggested that the losing candidate should play an almost "pastoral" role, "soothing" the American people after a long and divisive campaign.

"I don't think it is a time for soothing and everything's fine," said Romney. "I think this is a time for [saying], 'This is really serious, guys. This is really serious.'"

"To get up and soothe is not my inclination," an obviously anguished Romney continued. "I cannot believe that [Obama] is an aberration in the country. I believe we're following the same path of every other great nation, which is we're following greater government, tax rich people, promise more stuff to everybody, borrow until you go over a cliff. And I think we have a very high risk of reaching the tipping point sometime in the next five years. And the idea of saying 'it's just fine, don't worry about it' -- no, it's really not."

Given what has come before it in the film — Romney's defeatism in the debates — the scene leaves the impression that perhaps in his heart of hearts Romney never really believed he could win.

I think this is what we all felt, and all feel: That Obama is not an aberration. The man and the moment met at the precisely perfect time. Prior to 2008, a socialist could not have won the White House. In 2008, and thereafter, a socialist could win the White House -- if he was the exact perfect socialist.

Which, in 2008, Obama was.

But Obama's excellence as a candidate (at least in 2008) and perfect timing -- the Perfect Semi-Stealth Socialist Candidate at the perfect Socialist Moment for such a thing -- cannot obscure the fact that something has changed in America. We all feel it; we all know it. Even the very reasonable and moderate-tempered Mitt Romney, who wouldn't start yelling "Socialist!" at the drop of the hat (to the chagrin of some of us), can feel it.

I think we have not been quite the same since 2008, and probably never will be the same again. We didn't leave America; America has left us.

2012 was our opportunity to right the American ship. After all, Obama's socialist agenda had produced nothing except exactly that which we had predicted -- a miserable economy in which a record number were on food stamps our out of work, and an unpopular statist takeover of health care.

And yet, even with the proof of Socialism's failings in our pockets... We still lost.

And it wasn't even really that close.

2012, I think, represented in our minds the Last Best Chance we had to prove America was still America... and we failed in that, or, perhaps, America failed to prove that about itself.

And so what now? Who knows. As Romney suggests, this may be the long slow sinking of the ship, the looting phase of an Empire which has rotted from within, a period in which not enough people are creating wealth, because banditry is now so lucrative (and state-sponsored).

The links above (Allah's and York's) contain interesting stuff about whether Romney ever really believed he could win the Presidency. For example, he seemed resigned to the idea of losing his debates with Obama, or hoping for, at best, ties.

But I think it's Romney's observation about America the Once-Great Nation, the Once Shining City on a Hill, which are most important.

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posted by Ace at 03:40 PM

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