SIGN IN to access Harper’s Magazine
1. Sign in to Customer Care using your account number or postal address.
2. Select Email/Password Information.
3. Enter your new information and click on Save My Changes.
Subscribers can find additional help here. Not a subscriber? Subscribe today!
Mitt Romney reportedly teared up during his withdrawal speech yesterday but so far the pundits aren’t analyzing his moist eyes. Did he really get choked up? Was it merely a ploy to build sympathy for his likely presidential run in 2012? Alas, that sort of penetrating insight is reserved only for tears shed by Hillary Clinton.
Nor have there been strenuous objections about Romney’s lamentable remarks, revolting even by his own low standards, in which he essentially accused Clinton and Barack Obama of being in league with Osama bin Laden. “If I fight on in my campaign, all the way to the convention, I would forestall the launch of a national campaign and make it more likely that Senator Clinton or Obama would win,” Mitt said. “And in this time of war, I simply cannot let my campaign be a part of aiding a surrender to terror.”
Yes, as Jon Stewart noted last night, if Mitt were to keep on campaigning–the terrorists would win.
Romney didn’t drop out for the perceived good of the country; he bailed because his campaign has been a fiasco. Despite the construction of an impressive political machine and the expenditure of vast sums of money, including tens of millions of dollars of his own fortune, Mitt couldn’t win a single important state.
And why was that? Well, as another Daily Show segment last night put it, Romney is a douche. Beyond that, he was surely hurt by the Mormon issue (especially in the South) and by the fact that he’s an inveterate flip-flopper with no core values, and hence most voters just didn’t trust him.
Come 2012, there’s a good chance that Romney will be back for another shot at the presidency. Given his inherent political liabilities, a second bid is likely to end in crushing defeat as well.
More from Ken Silverstein:
Perspective — October 23, 2013, 8:00 am
How pro-oil Louisiana politicians have shaped American environmental policy
Postcard — October 16, 2013, 8:00 am
A trip to one of the properties at issue in Louisiana’s oil-pollution lawsuits
I recently spent a semester teaching writing at an elite liberal-arts college. At strategic points around the campus, in shades of yellow and green, banners displayed the following pair of texts. The first was attributed to the college’s founder, which dates it to the 1920s. The second was extracted from the latest version of the institution’s mission statement:
The paramount obligation of a college is to develop in its students the ability to think clearly and independently, and the ability to live confidently, courageously, and hopefully.
Let us take a moment to compare these texts. The first thing to observe about the older one is that it is a sentence. It expresses an idea by placing concepts in relation to one another within the kind of structure that we call a syntax. It is, moreover, highly wrought: a parallel structure underscored by repetition, five adverbs balanced two against three.
Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:
An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.
A naked man believed to be under the influence of LSD rammed his pickup truck into two police cars.
Subscribe to the Weekly Review newsletter. Don’t worry, we won’t sell your email address!
“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”