By Far The Best Debate Analysis I’ve Read

Posted by on Oct 17, 2012 in 2012 Campaign | No Comments

And no surprise it comes from Charles Pierce at Esquire. He as at the debate. Has lived many years in Massachusetts, and therefore knows more about Mitt than most if not all of the “talking heads” we see on television. He posted this just wonderful, accurate, and bitting post last night at 1:15 AM:

HEMPSTEAD, New York — Those of us who lived under the barely distinguishable leadership of Willard Romney in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (God save it!) know very well that the emotional membrane separating Lofty Willard from Snippy Willard is thin indeed, and that the membrane separating Snippy Willard from Dickhead Willard is well-nigh translucent. Both of those membranes were tested fully here on Tuesday night by the president, by Candy Crowley — who has clearly had enough of your bullshit, thank you very much — and by the simple fact that certain members of The Help tested the challenger’s ideas and found them wanting and, my dear young man, that simply is not done. And both of those membranes failed like rotting levees in a storm.

Before I arrived to Hofstra on Tuesday, I thought that, given the roll he’s been on, Romney would be able to keep both Snippy Willard and Dickhead Willard in check. I had no doubt that, because the nature of the event required that he mingle with actual carbon-based life forms, we undoubtedly would see English-as-a-Second-Language Willard. And we did. (“Binders full of women”?) And, because at least some of the questions were likely to be wild cards, there was a better than even chance that Zany Improv Willard would put in an appearance, as he did on the very first question of the night, when he told a young man named Jeremy that, “I want to make sure we keep our Pell Grant program going,” when, in fact, one of the under-appreciated consequences of the overall zombie-eyed granny-starving onto which he signed when he picked his running mate is the fact that his running mate’s “budget” would utterly devastate… wait for it… Pell Grants!

(I have to admit it: When the president let that fat, hanging curveball go by, I thought he was in for another long evening.)

But not even I expected Romney to let his entitled, Lord-of-the-Manor freak flag fly as proudly as he did on Tuesday night. He got in the president’s face. He got in Crowley’s face. That moment when he was hectoring the president about the president’s pension made him look like someone to whom the valet has brought the wrong Mercedes.

You’ll get your chance in a moment. I’m still speaking.

Wow. To me, this was a revelatory, epochal moment. It was a look at the real Willard Romney, the Bain cutthroat who could get rich ruining lives and not lose a moment’s sleep. But those people are merely the anonymous Help. The guy he was speaking to on Tuesday night is a man of considerable international influence. Outside of street protestors, and that Iraqi guy who threw a shoe at George W. Bush, I have never seen a more lucid example of manifest public disrespect for a sitting president than the hair-curling contempt with which Romney invested those words. (I’ve certainly never seen one from another candidate.) He’s lucky Barack Obama prizes cool over everything else. LBJ would have taken out his heart with a pair of salad tongs and Harry Truman would have bitten off his nose.

And Romney bitched endlessly — endlessly — about the rules, and why this uppity fellow on the other stool was allowed to speak before he was spoken to, and why he didn’t get to speak at length on whatever he wanted to speak on because, after all, he is the CEO of the stage. Jesus Christ, I’d hate to play golf with the man. He’s the guy who counts to make sure you don’t have too many wedges in your bag. He knows every cheap subsection of every cheap ground rule, and he’ll call you on every one of them. You couldn’t get a free drop out of him with thumbscrews, and forget about conceding any putt outside two inches. And then, on the 18th hole, with all the money on the line, he kicks his ball out of the rough and denies up and down to the rules committee that he did it. Then he goes into the clubhouse bar and nobody sits with him.

Oh and there is much, much more which is all worth your time to read.

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