Thursday, September 20, 2012

Is Telling the Truth a Gaffe?

The word "gaffe" means a misstatement, usually a spoken
mistake, an verbal miscue. In politics, the word is
understood to mean an inadvertent and unscripted
truth which when uttered sends certain key consti-
tuencies into a raging froth which abates only when
its members vote en masse to punish the politician
and/or his party in an election. Republican presidential
nominee Mitt Romney uttered one of these in a
recent post-convention speech, and has tongues
wagging all around the country as a result.

Romney's comments? "There are 47% of the people
who will vote for the president, no matter what ...
All right, there are 47% who are with him, who are
dependent upon government, who believe that they
are victims, who believe the government has a
responsibility to care for them, who believe that they
are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to
you-name-it ... that the government should give it
to them. And they will vote for this president no
matter what ... These are people who pay no income

Let us examine the content of Mitt Romney's words
and see what we can learn as to the truth of his
message, shall we? Now, democracy in these
United States has deteriorated into a perfectly
legal means for us to steal from each other,
that is, for some of us to vote to confiscate the
hard-earned rewards of those who do the required
hard work to earn and receive them. And it is not
so simple to identify all those in the former group
who so prey upon those in the latter; this goes
beyond those who just want an big enough
subsistence to keep them housed, clothed, fed,
medicated, and perhaps entertained (going to
bars or to racetracks, for example), this includes
those who want their college education underwritten,
their businesses subsidized, or financial support for
whatever some people want to build, purchase,
rent, fund, expand, maintain, create, experience,
or who knows what. It ranges from idle slobs
on street corners to business CEOs, from
artists to teachers, from single mothers to
Planned Parenthood clinics, from community
organizers to practitioners of identity politics
seeking redress for some perceived grievances,
often in the form of good old fashioned cash.
What candidate Romney was getting at was
a simple truth that most, if not in fact all
Americans have long been aware of; that
there are some among us who think, for
whatever reason, that they are entitled to
a portion of what we strive and sweat to
obtain for ourselves and our families. And
these people say it with votes, voting for
those politicians who promise to deliver
the goods by taking them from those who
produce them to distribute them to those
who would consume them and come back
demanding more.

The 47% figure has been disputed by some
conservatives, including your favorite Peasant.
We feel that the percentage is too high, that
if it were accurate then our country would not
only be in still more serious economic trouble
than it now is but that the state of things would
be irrevocably in disrepair. But there is, to be
sure, a not-that-small minority of Americans
who do think and behave this way, and there
are politicians in both major political parteis
who happily cater to their whims, sensing
easy votes. Romney is sending a clear signal
(let's hope) that he won't be one of them if
elected President.

Romney also presumed another simple truth:
People vote their economic interest. Always
have, always will. Politicians have to concen-
trate their time, energy, and resources on
where they can get the most for their expen-
ditures of these assets. This is not, it must be
pointed out, a dismissal of half the country;
it is merely an acknowledgement that elections
are not won by the partisans or extremes in
either camp but by the people in the middle.
this is also not an admission that it is fruitless
to campaign on an unvarnished conservative
platform, but is a nod to the idea that while
a conservative office seeker can offer his
conservative ideas to the electorate, he
has to find a way to appeal to the electorate
in a way that will attract the most of that body
to his conservative ideas. Some give and take
must take place. Liberals do this too, by the
way; it's just that when they get elected they
then brush aside their campaign rhetoric and
promises and govern as they really are with
little if any regard for the wishes of those who
voted for them. Remember Obama's saying
that there was no reason to raise the taxes
of the middle class (for just one example!)?

Romney went on to say that his job as a
candidate for the White House is to appeal
to the independent 5% or so who are not
in either party's camp but could turn the
election in Romney's favor. Of course, it
follows that Romney will thus ignore those
who just want an existence as fully subsidized
as possible, and therefore will never support
him. In this way, politics is about giving and
getting, often giving to get. But this very set
of facts so upset so many in the nation's
electorate that no one will openly admit this,
and few will actually act in accordance with
same. Political parties are, therefore, not
about ideas but interests, pitting those of one
party against those of the other(s). This
begets the endless assaults on our earnings,
our property, our liberties, our very freedom.

And this is why we cannot rely upon any
political party to truly protect our interests.
Instead, we must work to keep our earnings,
our property, and our liberties from the
grasping clutches of the political parties
and their politicians. Is it any wonder that
so many people who are active in the Tea
Party are not Republicans or Democrats?
Your faithful Peasant left the GOP six years
ago just for these reasons. We can work
for the election of our candidates from the
Republican Party, but once they are in office
we cannot walk away thinking that we have
done our part, and our elected candidates
will automatically do what we elected them
to do without fail. We have to keep an eagle
eye on them, and for the reasons given here.

Mitt Romney spoke the truth, albeit a bit
clumsily. He should not be castigated for
being open and honest about what every-
body knows but will never oepnly acknow-


No comments:

Post a Comment