The "Death Team": Killing their own campaign, with a smile
We say "Congratulations!" to the journalists from Mother Jones, especially David Corn, who have delivered the final death blow to Mitt Romney's campaign. As you certainly all have seen by now, Mother Jones obtained the full clip from a private fundraiser after some snippets had already appeared on the internet. The remarks about the Chinese factory workers for example already received some attention, also at Politicalgates almost one month ago, but the full tape was still missing.
Well, thanks to the efforts of Jimmy Carter's grandson James Carter IV (read the details here), the full mystery tape finally saw the light of day - and what is better in the days of the internet than a really good hard-hitting tape in which a presidential hopeful flushes his campaign down the toilet!
The background story about the involvement of James Carter IV is actually very fascinating - as reported by MSNBC:
James Carter IV told NBC News in an interview that, starting late last month, he tracked down the source who took the secret Romney video via Twitter -- and then in a series of messages encouraged him to release the full tape to Mother Jones magazine.
After emailing his grandfather the magazine's story about the tape -- under the subject, "Huge campaign news," and calling it "my biggest story yet" -- the former president wrote back at 7:16 am Tuesday: "James: This is extraordinary. Congratulations! Papa."
"I'm proud of my role in being able to track him down," James Carter, 35, said about the source who took the video. "I'm a partisan Democrat. My motivation is to help Democrats get elected. If there is anything I can find in any race, I try to do that."
But Carter also confirmed there is a personal side to the backstory of the campaign video: he was especially motivated, he said, because of Romney's frequent attacks on the presidency of his grandfather, including the GOP candidate's comparisons to the "weak" foreign policy of Carter and Barack Obama.
"It gets under my skin -- mostly the weakness on the foreign policy stuff," Carter said. "I just think it's ridiculous. I don’t like criticism of my family."
So thanks to the anonymous person who secretly taped this speech and who can be regarded as a true American hero, the US electorate now knows what Mitt Romney really thinks - for example that Mitt Romney has utter disgust for almost half the country. What I love about all this is the fact that no "Rove-spin" and no additional millions from shady activist billionaires will be able to fix this mess. Mitt Romney is not the person he purports to be in "public" - he is just a bad, uncomfortable actor when he gives his public speeches. Mother Jones thankfully revealed the "real" Romney - and the picture ain't pretty.
Today, Mother Jones finally published the full, uncut clip of Romney's speech. Here it is, in two parts.
The Obama-campaign wasted no time and immediately produced a hard-hitting campaign-spot featuring Romney's remarks:
So congratulations again to Mother Jones, they have thoroughly deserved this epic scoop, as they have been hard on Romney's tail right from the beginning. But reports about missing tax returns and questionable investments simply cannot deliver the same blow as an embarrassing "raw tape" - and as a politician, you better watch what you say these days. The internet will watch you. Mitt Romney now learned this lesson the hard way, and he can soon continue to enjoy his tax-free millions, as he surely will never become the president of the USA.
In addition, take a look at Lawrence O'Donnells excellent take on Mitt Romney's extreme views (and watch mitt Romney's pathetic response):
A short while ago, Kathleen discovered a blog called "Hope and Change" which is run by a person called Joe Markowitz. Kathleen loves his writing and his sharp thoughts, and I would like to conclude with an excerpt from Joe Markowitz's recent post about the Romney-tape, which he titled "The 47 Percent":
Romney’s division of the country into the dependents and the independents is wrong for an even more fundamental reason. You simply can’t divide the country that way. Like it or not, we are all dependent on the government. In many ways, the well-off might even be more dependent on government services than the less well-off. People who buy luxury cars still need to drive them on the public roads. Moreover, without a strong transportation network of roads and bridges and ports, built and maintained by government, companies would not be able to move their goods to market, or their workers to their jobs. Without public education, companies would not be able to obtain an educated work force, essential to their success. Who else is dependent on government? Let's talk about defense and other government contractors; and also subsidies to agricultural businesses and oil companies. And as long as Mr. Romney has brought up the Americans who pay no income taxes, we should not forget the favorable tax treatment for capital gains that allows multi-millionaires like Mitt Romney himself to pay a lower rate than many members of the 47%, who might not pay much in income tax, but do pay a hefty amount of payroll taxes, thus mostly paying for the entitlements that Romney decries.
Then there is the judicial system, where I have spent my whole career. Law enforcement benefits everyone. But who uses that public court system, and benefits from it, the most? In my experience, those with the most property to protect have the most need for courts that exist largely to protect property interests. We all rely on the enforceability of contracts, but that enforcement is more valuable as the stakes in contracts become larger. Take intellectual property as another example. Who benefits most from our country’s strong protection of patent, trademark and copyright? It’s not assembly line workers or low-paid service workers. It’s not even inventors and artists, who do benefit a lot, but not as much as pharmaceutical companies and computer and other advanced technology companies and agribusiness and media companies who obtain vast profits from these legal protections, furnished to them as a public benefit by the government.
Romney’s pitch to his wealthy donors would be more honest if he admitted that he is not really against government at all. Rather, he wants to maintain and strengthen those aspects of government that benefit the wealthy and those that benefit business. He wants to reduce the scope of programs that benefit the poor and middle class. But if Romney admitted his true program, he might find out that it’s not just the 47% to whom his program will lack appeal. It’s more like the 99%.