Mitt Romney: true wimp or insecure weenie?

This is a good piece in Newsweek by Michael Tomasky: Mitt Romney: A Candidate With a Serious Wimp Problem:

“…But the new values surface often enough—his fondness for firing people, the way he made fun of NASCAR fans’ ponchos, his reminders to us that his friends are the people who own the teams, and now his putdown of an entire nation, which happens to be our closest ally—to suggest that they won the argument.

“[...] In some respects, he’s more weenie than wimp—socially inept; at times awkwardy ingratiating, at other times mocking those “below” him, but almost always getting the situation a little wrong, and never in a sympathetic way. The evidence resonates across too many years to deny. What kind of teenager beats up on the misfit, sissy kid, pinning him down and violently cutting his hair with a pair of school scissors—the incident from Romney’s youth that The Washington Post famously reported (and Romney famously didn’t really deny) back in May? The behavior extends, through more sedate means, into adulthood. The Salt Lake Olympics remains his greatest triumph, for which he wins deserved praise. But to many of those in the know, Romney placed a heavy asterisk next to his name by attacking the men he replaced on the Olympic Committee, smearing them in his book, even after a court threw out all the corruption charges against them.

“And what kind of presidential candidate whines about a few attacks and demands an apology when the going starts to get rough? And tries to sound tough by accusing the president who killed the world’s most-wanted villain of appeasement? That’s what they call overcompensation, and it’s a dead giveaway; it’s the “tell.” This guy is nervous—terrified—about looking weak. And ironically, being terrified of looking weak makes him look weaker still.

“[...] In a similar vein, it was breathtaking, and a meaningful window into his thinking, that he thought denouncing “Obamacare” to the NAACP constituted courage. That was the opposite of courage—an easy shot aimed at people who aren’t voting for him anyway. Going to the Southern Baptist Convention and telling them they’re all wet about Mormonism? Now that would be courage. Can anyone picture Romney doing that in a million years? The Mormon God will come down from Kolob before that happens.”

The horror of growing up with Mitt Romney “the prankster”

Mitt’s boy band (his five sons) appeared on Conan to try and convince the unwashed masses that their “severely conservative,” and infamously wealth-grabbing father is both hilarious and great fun with all his clever “pranks” — most of which the sons have had to personally deal with since birth. See? He’s just a regular guy! they say. But the hollow smiles and dead eyes betray the PTSD.

Charles Johnson of LGF summarizes: “Mitt loves that one where he says, “This butter is spoiled, here, smell it,” and then as soon as you lean over to smell it he pushes the butter into your face. Or whipped cream, that’s also a hoot. Never gets tired of it. His kids fall for it every time.”

Now THAT would never get old, would it?

Ann Laurie from Balloon Juice observes: “Pro tip, Willard: If you’ve finished puberty and people are still calling you a “prankster”, it’s time to re-examine your life, because what they’re really saying is you’re a bully who lacks the balls to own up to his desire to hurt people.”

A reminder to the military crowd who, according to some polls, favor Romney over Obama: Mitt “served his country” during the Vietnam War by obtaining four deferments — the first of which was to live in a Mormon mansion in France, performing missionary work. Similarly, his five able-bodied sons have been “serving their country” for years (how long has Romney been campaigning?), with “missions” such as appearing on late-night talk shows to explain how funny it is when their dad shoves butter or whipped cream in their faces.  In other words, military service is for the plebs.

Here’s the Conan clip:

Morning Bunker Report: Tuesday 5.15.2012

WHAT THE REPUBLICAN PARTY STANDS FOR TODAY—————————–—

Ralph Reed Concern Trolls Over Political ‘Dumpster Diving’ — During his Roundtable appearance on This Week, discussion turned to whether Mitt Romney’s pattern of bullying others and entitled attitude is relevant to the election at hand. [...] Reed actually had the nerve to ask who would want to serve “if they know people will be dumpster diving into your high school or prep school?” Wow, really? Because nothing says dumpster diving like half the Republican Party claiming Barack Obama wasn’t born in the United States, that he is really a Kenyan usurper, and the other half claiming that he’s Muslim but somehow influenced by an inflammatory Christian pastor in the church he attended for 20 years, and other assorted untrue stories they flog every damn day. Nothing says dumpster diving like pointing at his time in Indonesia as a time where he was indoctrinated by imams, or the nonsense they spewed just this week about how he dealt drugs in college. So here is Ralph Reed, calling a story corroborated by five independent witnesses and Romney himself “dumpster diving” while he and his band of religious thugs are largely responsible for the lies, rumors, and smears they laid upon Barack Obama for the last six years or so. Who would want to serve, indeed? — Hypocrites for Jebus

Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget and his kinder, gentler approach to ending Medicare as we know it is no more popular in 2012 than it was in 2011. Which is a problem for House Republicans who voted for it and are now running for reelection. Consider Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle (R-NY-25) and the convolutions she had in explaining the Medicare vote she took at a town meeting. [...] Her defenses, in order: 1) it’s not law! We all voted for it but that doesn’t mean we actually want it to be law; 2) we’re not going to take Medicare away from you, just your children and grandchildren; and 3) the Senate will never pass it anyway, so this really isn’t a real issue to be scared of, and you shouldn’t blame me for voting to end Medicare as we know it because, even though I voted for it, it’s not going to happen and isn’t that a relief. Oh, and yeah, look over there! Obamacare! Scary! Compelling stuff. Nonetheless, it’s what the Republicans have chosen, again, to run on for 2012. So it would be a really good time for Democrats to make a campaign pledge of no benefit cuts to Medicare, or Social Security. — Daily Kos

In a column for the white nationalist site VDARE.com, John Derbyshire (who was fired from National Review recently) offers unqualified praise for white supremacy: [...] Leaving aside the intended malice, I actually think “White Supremacist” is not bad semantically. White supremacy, in the sense of a society in which key decisions are made by white Europeans, is one of the better arrangements History has come up with. There have of course been some blots on the record, but I don’t see how it can be denied that net-net, white Europeans have made a better job of running fair and stable societies than has any other group. As a reminder, this man who now openly praises a racial caste system wrote for one of the nation’s top conservative publications for nearly 12 years. — Think Progress | (Note: he’s right about one thing: a society run by white Europeans IS one of the better arrangements for white Europeans – just not anyone else.) 

UNTIL 2016: Ron Paul effectively suspends presidential campaign Supporters will focus on picking off delegates already won by other candidates. Paul has yet to make clear what he plans to do with his delegates at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, and activists planning on attending have expressed differing views and sometimes confusion as to what their goals will be heading into the event. — TPM

SHHHH! Conservative commentator Rush Limbaugh was inducted into the Hall of Famous Missourians on Monday during a secretive, closed-door ceremony in the state Capitol as police stood guard to keep out any uninvited political opponents of the sometimes divisive radio show host. — The Washington Post

PRESIDENT OBAMA / DEMOCRATS————————————————————

RECALL ELECTION JUNE 5: The Democratic National Committee (DNC) has not invested heavily into the recall elections against Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker (R), according to an anonymous Wisconsin Democratic party official. [...] “We are frustrated by the lack of support from the Democratic National Committee and the Democratic Governors Association,” the official said. “Scott Walker has the full support and backing of the Republican Party and all its tentacles. We are not getting similar support.” – Raw Story | Contact the DNC

Massachusetts Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren (D) is calling for JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon to resign from his position at the New York Federal Reserve Bank to acknowledge that he was in a position of trust after his company revealed that it had recently lost $2 billion as a result of bad bets on derivatives. “I’d like to see some real accountability here,” Warren told CBS host Charlie Rose on Monday. “I’d like to see Jamie Dimon, for example, resign from his position as a Class A director of the New York Federal Reserve Bank.” — Raw Story

Romney donor pulls support, backs Obama, over same-sex marriage – “I feel that I no longer wish to support your presidential campaign and ask that you please return the maximum contribution that I gave to you last year,” Bill White wrote in a letter addressed to the former Massachusetts governor and obtained by CNN. “You have chosen to be on the wrong side of history and I do not support your run for president any longer,” White added. [...] White is the chairman and CEO of the New York-based consulting firm Constellations Group. He was previously the president of the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum – the cultural and educational institution whose major presence is the floating World War II Intrepid aircraft carrier sitting on the Hudson River. White told CNN he has advocated on behalf of injured and fallen veterans for 20 years – being awarded the Meritorious Public Service Award from the Coast Guard and from the Navy. — CNN

IRONICALLY, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) says Obama is trying to ‘divide the country’ with marriage equality — Cornyn says that President Barack Obama only announced support for same sex marriage because “he can’t run on his record.” “He’s trying to raise divisive issues up to solidify his base and to divide the country,” Cornyn told CNN’s Candy Crowley on Sunday. — Raw Story

“I’ve always thought it as something that was still holding the country back. What people do in their own homes is their business and you can choose to love whoever you love. That’s their business. It’s no different than discriminating against blacks. It’s discrimination plain and simple. I think it’s the right thing to do, so whether it costs him votes or not – again, it’s not about votes. It’s about people. It’s the right thing to do as a human being.” — Jay-Z, speaking on CNN.


image: MMFA

Morning Bunker Report: Sunday 5.13.2012

WHAT THE REPUBLICAN PARTY STANDS FOR TODAY—————————–—

Mitt Romney panders to the far-right Christian fundagelicals who think his religion is a cult – Toward the beginning of the ceremony, Mark DeMoss, a well-known Evangelical and longtime Romney supporter, took to the podium to vouch for the Mormon candidate. He recounted a meeting between Romney and Dr. Falwell four years ago, after which the candidate sent the pastor a chair engraved with the words, “There’s always room for you at my table.” “I trust him to do the right thing,” DeMoss said. “To do the moral thing, to do what’s best for our country. I trust his integrity, his moral compass, his judgment, and his perfect decency. Finally, I trust his values, for I feel they mirror my own.” It was meant to be a unifying moment of culture war diplomacy on DeMoss’s part, a nod to his fellow Evangelicals that Romney was, in fact, one of them. But in the middle of his speech, an angry voice from the back of the graduates’ section interrupted: “Hey Mitt! Jesus is the only way!” [...] For the thousands of conservative Evangelicals on campus Saturday who reject the candidate’s claim to Christianity, Romney may represent a compromise: They’re voting for him because they can’t do better. —  Mitt Romney’s Pitch To The True Believers [image: arcaneimages]

  • THE BOND between Romney and Christian fundagelical fascists will be a shared hate of those who are different: “As fundamental as these principles are, they may become topics of democratic debate. So it is today with the enduring institution of marriage. Marriage is a relationship between one man and one woman. The protection of religious freedom has also become a matter of debate. It strikes me as odd that the free exercise of religious faith is sometimes treated as a problem, something America is stuck with instead of blessed with. Perhaps religious conscience upsets the designs of those who feel that the highest wisdom and authority comes from government.” - Mitt Romney, speaking at today’s commencement at Dead Dead Dead Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University.
  • Romney backs away from supporting same-sex adoption — “Well, actually I think all states but one allow gay adoption. So that’s a position which has been decided by most of the state legislatures, including the one in my state some time ago. So I simply acknowledge the fact that gay adoption is legal in all states but one.” — Raw Story
  • JESUS CHRIST Himself is too ‘counterculture’ for this place: No ‘Counterculture’ Hair Allowed At Liberty University — the rules governing hair on Liberty’s campus are very strict. From the rules for men: Hair and clothing styles related to a counterculture (as determined by the Student Affairs Deans’ Review Committee) are not acceptable. Hair should be cut in such a way that it will not come over the ears, collar or eyebrows at any time. Ponytails for men are unacceptable.

Wait, Suddenly Right-Wing Bloggers Don’t Want Candidates Vetted? — In the wake of the Washington Post’s unflattering article yesterday about how five of Mitt Romney’s high school classmates recalled the Republican candidate leading an assault against a presumed gay schoolmate, pinning him down, and cutting his long hair while tears filled up in the boy’s eyes, conservative bloggers were indignant the Post would bother with such trivial pursuits. -“Is a decades old high school story really ‘news’?” (Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin.) -“Cutting-edge reporting from WaPo: Let’s take an in-depth look at … Romney’s cruel high-school pranks.” (Ed Morrissey) -“It’s a waste of time and energy and effort.” (Fox News’ Karl Rove.) -“BREAKING NEWS: Mitt Romney Went to High School. Seriously.” (Erick Erickson) Suddenly the far-right press thinks it’s pointless to delve deep into a candidate’s past in search of clues about his personality and clues to what shaped him into an adult. Suddenly they mock efforts by the press to paint a detailed personal portrait of would-be presidents by combing over their biographies. In short, suddenly right-wing bloggers are strongly opposed to vetting. — Media Matters

YOUR LIBERAL MEDIA: NBC’s David Gregory To Headline Conference For Major Republican Advocacy Group — The Society of Professional Journalists’ Code of Ethics states: Journalists should: — Avoid conflicts of interest, real or perceived. — Remain free of associations and activities that may compromise integrity or damage credibility. — Refuse gifts, favors, fees, free travel and special treatment, and shun secondary employment, political involvement, public office and service in community organizations if they compromise journalistic integrity. Regardless of whether Gregory is being paid for this event and of what he says in his keynote, allowing the NFIB to raise money for its political mission using his name, reputation, and celebrity appears to be at odds with journalistic ethics. — Think Progress

Arizona Ron Paul supporters boo Romney’s son off stage — Supporters of Ron Paul booed the son of presidential hopeful Mitt Romney off the stage Saturday at the Arizona Republican Party convention as he sought to solidify support for his father’s nomination. Hundreds of state GOP members were gathered at Grand Canyon University to elect delegates for the national convention in August in Tampa, which is expected to select Mitt Romney as the official Republican nominee to challenge President Barack Obama. — azcentral.com

PRESIDENT OBAMA / DEMOCRATS————————————————————

Obama Camp Ties Romney To JP Morgan Scandal — The Obama campaign is seizing on the news that financial giant JP Morgan lost billions of dollars trading derivatives with customer funds to attack Mitt Romney for wanting to repeal the 2010 law meant to curtail these kinds of risky bets. “Rolling back Wall Street reform, as Mitt Romney proposes, would be reckless,” says Obama camp spokeswoman Lis Smith in a statement to TPM. “The law promotes transparency, limits the types of risky investments that can be made with deposits insured by federal taxpayers, and prevents investment losses at one bank from threatening the whole financial system. Returning to the failed policy of letting Wall Street write their own rules would put all of us at greater risk of another financial crisis and leave us vulnerable to another taxpayer-funded bank bailout like the one shortly before President Obama took office.” — TPM

Obamacare: A Mother’s Day Gift For All Moms Throughout The U.S. — People always say good health is the greatest gift, so let’s make health a priority this Mother’s Day. Now that I am a mother myself, I am even more appreciative that I have health insurance that covers the care I need. All moms deserve the kind of quality, affordable care that I was lucky enough to receive while pregnant and postpartum, and Obamacare is working to make that dream a reality. — Think Progress

HOW JOURNALISM is done: MSNBC’s Chris Matthews Demonstrates How To Handle Tony Perkins On Television — Perkins’ presence on MSNBC isn’t surprising – the hate group leader has become a regular guest on the network over the past several months, and has typically been treated as a credible, uncontroversial political figure, especially on Hardball. On Thursday, however, things were different.For nearly 15 minutes, Matthews, with the help of Frank, grilled Perkins on his views on homosexuality, marriage equality, and same-sex parenting. Matthews challenged Perkins’ anti-gay misinformation, held him accountable for past statements, and demonstrated how out-of-the-mainstream his extreme positions really are. This is exactly the kind of interview that major news outlets should be conducting when dealing with someone like Perkins. — Media Matters

Dianne Feinstein Defends Obama On Gay Marriage: ‘What’s Wrong With People Being Happy?’ — When asked whether Obama had made a political calculation in endorsing gay marriage, Feinstein rejected the idea. “I don’t think it is a flip flop and there is no political calculus in this, because it is not smart from a political point of view. It doesn’t make sense,” Feinstein said. “From a personal point of view, I can tell you what happened because it happened to me,” she continued. “You get to know more and more gay couples and you see the happiness. You see the economic security that marriage brings. And even more fundamentally, you can see children who otherwise would not have an adopted home being able to have that home. And so same-sex couples raise children, they do a fine job. And I think when you see this — and it has happened in California — more and more people say, ‘What is wrong with people being happy?'” — HuffPo [image: randomactsofchaos]

BREAK UP BIG BANKS: A message from Bernie Sanders — J.P. Morgan Chase revealed that its in-house trading operation lost $2 billion in the past six weeks. “The debacle at J.P. Morgan Chase reaffirms my view that the largest six banks in this country, including J.P. Morgan Chase, which have assets equivalent to two-thirds of our GDP, must be broken up. This is important in order to bring more competition into the financial marketplace and to prevent another ‘too-big-to-fail’ bailout,” Sen. Bernie Sanders said. “At a time when 23 million Americans are either unemployed or underemployed, huge financial institutions should not be involved in ‘making wagers or high-stake bets.’ They should be investing in the productive economy creating jobs and improving our standard of living.” — Crooks & Liars

Betty White says she ‘very, very much favors’ Obama — As she prepares to visit the Smithsonian Institution and National Zoo next week, White told The Associated Press she “very, very much favors” President Barack Obama in the election. The 90-year-old actress said Friday she is very bi-partisan and has stayed away from politics all of her life. She usually never says who she is for or against because she doesn’t want to turn off any of her adoring fans. White says in this year’s election, she likes what Obama has done and “how he represents us.” – HuffPo

It’s Mormon Cultist Day at fundagelical Liberty University!

Two items of interest from the The Maddow Blog

  1. When President Obama endorsed marriage equality this week, he announced a position that his church, the United Church of Christ, has supported for quite a while.
  2. Falwell U. offers a course that identifies Mormons as belonging to a “cult” that must be defeated.


via: christopherstreet

I keep reading about how Romney can’t close the deal with the fundagelicals no matter what he does. Christ, what does he have to do?  Beat up a gay kid?

TRUE STORY: 

Among Mitt Romney’s timid responses this week after President Obama’s endorsement of marriage equality was an admission that he was “fine” with same-sex couples adopting children, saying, “that’s something that people have a right to do.” But by Friday afternoon, he was already backing away from that position, suggesting that he merely “acknowledges” that many states offer same-sex adoption — Mitt Romney’s Support Of Same-Sex Adoption Lasts One Day


via: christopherstreet

Mitt Romney Will Not Be Distracted by ‘Counterculture’ Hair During His Liberty University Speech — That’s because, according to the school handbook, “hair and clothing styles related to a counterculture (as determined by the Student Affairs Deans’ Review Committee) are not acceptable” at Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University, where Romney is giving a commencement address this Saturday. “Hair should be cut in such a way that it will not come over the ears, collar or eyebrows at any time,” the handbook continues.


via: liberalsarecool

Mitt Romney’s defenders speak out (all two of them): According to Ann Romney, Mitt is still the “crazy” guy from high school who loves “playing jokes” on people. And according to his high school friend Gregg Dearth, Romney probably was merely acting “jokingly” when he bullied John Lauber. Dearth, who didn’t witness the attack, imagined it was probably a barrel of laughs, the kind of thing that might “traumatize” or “scare” somebody, but “no harm, no foul.” So there you have it, folks. Mitt Romney was a crazy jokester who liked to traumatize and scare people unfortunate enough to be his lesser, but there’s nothing wrong with that. And he’s still the same guy today that he was back then. No harm, no foul.


via: guiseppegetto

Jonathan Chait: Perhaps that is the deeper fixation: It is not enough for Romney to have perfect hair. Others must have terrible hair.

Steve Benen / Maddow Blog: But for the larger mainstream, the commencement address suggests Romney’s post-primary shift away from his party’s more extreme elements still isn’t happening. What’s more, despite all the talk about his focus on the economy, the Republican’s anti-gay agenda is reinforced, not just with his push for a constitutional amendment, but with his decision to visit a school that considers itself a “hard liner institution against the homosexual menace.”


via: corporationsarepeople

Video: the one where Tamron Hall tells Tim Carney where he can stick his ‘meta meta’

Now this is good.

Washington Examiner reporter Tim Carney appeared on MSNBC this afternoon with host Tamron Hall, but was apparently uninterested in discussing what he agreed to come on to discuss, leading to a heated confrontation between the two. Hall asked Carney about the Romney campaign’s response to allegations that he bullied a perceived gay classmate in high school, but Carney refused to accept the premise, calling her question a “typical media trick.” Carney said Hall was trying to justify the initial allegations, which he claimed were bogus, by discussing the “meta story” of the response. Hall slapped Carney down for apparently going back on his agreement to discuss the topic and using the platform to criticize her. Watch it:


From Raw Story,

Hall cut him off, saying, “You knew what we were going to ask you. You didn’t have to accept the invitation to come on.” She went on to tell him to wait because “you’re kind of in my house here.”

Carney fired back, “What you’re bringing up here is a meta story. ‘What is the Romney response to this other non-story?’ I’m trying to go meta meta on you and say, here’s some media treatment.”

“You’re actually irritating me right now, I’m going to be honest with you,” Hall quipped, pointing out that she was asking Carney about Romeny’s response to not only the Colorado questions, but also a Washington Post story that reported he bullied a fellow student in prep school and his response to Obama’s endorsement of same sex marriage. “You’re not going to come on and insult me. You’re not going to come on and insult the network. You knew what you were going to talk about. Done.”

Carney immediately took to Twitter, protesting, “So that’s the first time a TV host cut off my mic. Best part: when she put me back on camera at the end to yell at me while I had a dead mic.” He added the hashtag “#metameta” to a tweet that linked to the Examiner’scoverage of the incident.

META META! What a dork.

Romney’s conditional non-apology apology on bullying incident he said he didn’t remember

Andrew Sullivan points out that one of the witnesses / participants in the hair-cutting incident described himself and his friends as “a pack of dogs:”

“It’s a haunting memory.  I think it was for everybody that spoke up about it…  because when you see somebody who is simply different taken down that way and is terrified and you see that look in their eye you never forget it.  And that was what we all walked away with,” said Phillip Maxwell, who is now an attorney and still considers Romney an old friend.

“I saw it with my own eyes,” said Maxwell, of the anecdote first reported by the Washington Post.  Maxwell said Romney held the scissors helping to cut the hair of a student, John Lauber, who was presumed to be gay and who had long hair. “It was a hack job… clumps of hair taken off.” Maxwell said he held the boy’s arm and leg, describing he and his friends as a “pack of dogs.”

Sullivan says:

Today, Romney actually laughed off the assault. Laughed. We have two options: this man is so callous that, unlike all those others involved in this assault, he has forgotten it. Or he is a liar.

Now Romney seems to recall the kid and says he “certainly doesn’t believe” that he and his buddies tackled that kid and cut his hair because he thought he was one of those homosexual fellows.

Seems like the Romney campaign realizes that average people don’t consider this kind of physical bullying as some kind of “prank” or youthful “hiijinks.” In fact average people consider this level of physical bullying as vile, disturbing, and cruel. Especially coming from Mitt the governor’s son, born into wealth and privilege.

Yet Romney gave one of those “if-then” conditional non-apologies:

Romney: “Back in high school I did some dumb things and if anybody was hurt by that or offended by that I apologize.”

He further said: “I certainly don’t believe that I thought the fellow was homosexual. That was the furthest thing from our minds back in the 1960s.”

Earlier Romney, through spokespeople, had said he didn’t remember the incidents.

He didn’t remember the incident but he remembers the guy? Josh Marshall adds even more background:

And more is coming out. The Romney campaign has apparently already spoken to a number of ex-classmates asking them to step forward and speak on Mitt’s behalf. And ABC has spoken to a number of them. Here’s one graph from a piece just published by ABC.

One former classmate and old friend of Romney’s – who refused to be identified by name – said there are “a lot of guys” who went to Cranbrook who have “really negative memories” of Romney’s behavior in the dorms, behavior this classmate describes as “evil” and “like Lord of the Flies.”

The classmate believes Romney is lying when he claims to not remember [the hair-cutting incident].

“It makes these fellows [who have owned up to it] very remorseful. For [Romney] not to remember it? It doesn’t ring true. How could the fellow with the scissors forget it?” the former classmate said.

LORD OF THE FLIES. As JM Ashby points out,

Many of us did things in our childhood we regret, however not all of us went on to bankrupt companies for profit, strong-arm our political opponents, or sideline our national security adviser because Bryan Fischer doesn’t approve of his homosexuality… 

Bullies grow up and just find different ways to inflict pain on others for their own amusement or gain.

via: mittromneysamerica

Mitt Romney’s high school years: a privileged, rich punk who enjoyed bullying others

“I participated in a lot of hijinks and pranks during high school and some might have gone too far and for that, I apologize.” — MITT ROMNEY apologizes for behavior in high school after the Washington Post published a story on his high school years.

The most surprising thing about this story on youthful Mitt Romney isn’t that it reveals he was another privileged, rich punk at an exclusive prep school who enjoyed (and had a real talent for) bullying others, but that Romney’s classmates admitted it:

Mitt Romney returned from a three-week spring break in 1965 to resume his studies as a high school senior at the prestigious Cranbrook School. Back on the handsome campus, studded with Tudor brick buildings and manicured fields, he spotted something he thought did not belong at a school where the boys wore ties and carried briefcases. John Lauber, a soft-spoken new student one year behind Romney, was perpetually teased for his nonconformity and presumed homosexuality. Now he was walking around the all-boys school with bleached-blond hair that draped over one eye, and Romney wasn’t having it.

“He can’t look like that. That’s wrong. Just look at him!” an incensed Romney told Matthew Friedemann, his close friend in the Stevens Hall dorm, according to Friedemann’s recollection. Mitt, the teenaged son of Michigan Gov. George Romney, kept complaining about Lauber’s look, Friedemann recalled.

A few days later, Friedemann entered Stevens Hall off the school’s collegiate quad to find Romney marching out of his own room ahead of a prep school posse shouting about their plan to cut Lauber’s hair. Friedemann followed them to a nearby room where they came upon Lauber, tackled him and pinned him to the ground. As Lauber, his eyes filling with tears, screamed for help, Romney repeatedly clipped his hair with a pair of scissors.

The incident was recalled similarly by five students, who gave their accounts independently of one another. Four of them — Friedemann, now a dentist; Phillip Maxwell, a lawyer; Thomas Buford, a retired prosecutor; and David Seed, a retired principal — spoke on the record. Another former student who witnessed the incident asked not to be named. The men have differing political affiliations, although they mostly lean Democratic. Buford volunteered for Barack Obama’s campaign in 2008. Seed, a registered independent, has served as a Republican county chairman in Michigan. All of them said that politics in no way colored their recollections.

“It happened very quickly, and to this day it troubles me,” said Buford, the school’s wrestling champion, who said he joined Romney in restraining Lauber. Buford subsequently apologized to Lauber, who was “terrified,” he said. “What a senseless, stupid, idiotic thing to do.”

“It was a hack job,” recalled Maxwell, a childhood friend of Romney who was in the dorm room when the incident occurred. “It was vicious.”

“He was just easy pickins,” said Friedemann, then the student prefect, or student authority leader of Stevens Hall, expressing remorse about his failure to stop it.

The incident transpired in a flash, and Friedemann said Romney then led his cheering schoolmates back to his bay-windowed room in Stevens Hall.

Continue reading…

Imagine if that was your kid. Romney considers this incident a “hiijink” or “prank.” Lifestyles of the rich and famous. Isn’t this kind of behavior what most of us already understand to be the standard mentality for many of the wealthiest one percent? It’s horrifying that this guy wants to be our president.