Death Of Thoughtfulness - AND Magazine
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Joshua M. Patton
Joshua M. Patton is both a freelance writer and veteran of the US Army. He currently studies at the University of Pittsburgh where his writing won a creative writing... (READ ON)
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Death Of Thoughtfulness
Hypocrisy at an all-time high in politics
Mitt Romney
Mitt Romney
Mitt was born in Detroit on March 12, 1947. He apprenticed as a lath and plaster carpenter and sold aluminum paint before beginning a career that brought him to the head of American Motors and then the governorship of Michigan. | Photo: Archives
Mitt Romney | Republican 2012 | candidate
There are a number of terms that, when applied to a candidate, mean political death is imminent. I am not talking about the claims of the birther movement or those who believe that Romney's riches guarantee that he is both evil and stupid. I am talking about terms like "pervert," "corrupt," and, increasingly, "flip-flopper." During the Republican Primaries, which was such a reality show I am surprised Bravo and E! didn't host debates, Mitt Romney's opponents all criticized him for being a "flip-flopper," because he has changed his stances on a number of policies.

The most successful use of the flip-flop tactic was in the 2004 Presidential Race between Senator John Kerry and the incumbent President Bush. Kerry is a war hero, who fought in Vietnam and then took a stand against the war, calling for an end to the conflict. At the time, many saw this as a betrayal of his brothers-in-arms still in the jungles of Vietnam. This is the core problem with "flip-flop." The sin isn't that a candidate changed his position, but that he did so in a betrayal of his true beliefs, simply to win votes. The largest point of contention was Kerry's stance on Iraq. He voted to give Bush the authority for war, but then relented and said he would vote differently given a second chance. The Bush campaign painted this as the confused muddlings of a spineless war-addled bore. When the Vietnam issue arose after a group called "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth," lied about Kerry's service, it sent a message to the voters that the man wasn't principled.

As much I would like to say that Romney was unfairly targeted for changing his beliefs based on thoughtful consideration, it does seem like he is merely saying what he thinks he needs to say to be elected as a Republican after the Tea Party takeover of 2010. In fact, many independents see this as a positive to Romney's campaign. Since anti-Obama sentiment is so high, the fact that he is lying to win the love of his rabid political base, and will govern with the pragmatism that his record shows he possesses.

Also, Romney has no problem with calling out John Kerry in an article on the Talking Points Memo website. He responds to a statement Kerry made about Romney's propensity to flip-flop. Kerry, always the Democratic team-player, blasted him with some harmless political rhetoric. He said nothing about Romney that members of his own party weren't saying about him. In this moment, Romney could have related to Kerry and made an artful argument about changing one's mind on complex issues that could endear him to independent voters, toning down the divisive rhetoric of the Republican campaigns. Instead, Romney gleefully calls Kerry "really" a flip-flopper and proceeds to psychoanalyze the Senator from Massachusetts

In politics, "reason" and "hypocrisy" are not synonymous.
as having a deep-seated need to by liked by the audience he was surrounded by. It was a perfect blend of hypocrisy and irony. It was hypocrony.

The Democrats are also beholden to this attitude of stark seriousness and phony outrage, but denying the same principles when it benefits them. In the same 2004 Presidential election, President Bush used the capture of Saddam Hussein in some political ads and campaign speeches. The surrogates for Kerry were outraged! Campaigning against the war as they were, they didn't even acknowledge that the end of Saddam's reign might be something good, in the long-run. Flash-forward to now and President Obama's campaign released a video touting the death of Bin Laden and questioning whether or not Romney would have had the balls to do it. Many students of politics believe that at some point during the election, President Obama is going to have to paint Mitt Romney as a "flip-flopper," and they are probably right. And frankly, Romney has made it easy for them. I am not sure of the odds in Vegas, but I'd like to see the odds on President Obama successfully painting Romney as a flip-flopper to win the White House. Oh, the Hypocrony.

The lack of reason and thoughtfulness in the positions taken by political candidates today is part of what made Obama so appealing in the first place. Sure the "Hope and Change," cheer picked up some spirits. Generations of people since the 1980s were told that since a second-rate movie star could become president, a black president was inevitable. It felt good to vote for him. Yet, for some of us, what appealed most about the junior Senator from Illinois, was that he seemed to be a reasoned and thoughtful person. Many are still looking for that one person who is simply reasonable. Only it's twilight for reason in America. All that's left are Instagram kitten pictures, RTs and Likes, and setting the DVR from the bathroom.

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"Death Of Thoughtfulness | Hypocrisy at an all-time high in politics"
Editorial ID #12318, 798 words, first released June 18, 2012, 6:00 pm
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neleSa riMea zemGo, onrb Jlyu 22, 1929, si na cAnimrae inresg dan rssatec. moezG srift mdae erh edutb iaagerppn as innGaa ni...

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