In the wake of President Donald Trump finally conceding the 2020 Presidential election to President-elect Joe Biden, I wanted to take some time in the weeks and months to come to shine the light on an ugly aspect of liberal culture that has long since been ravaging D.C. and the press ever since Donald Trump first kicked off his bid for the presidency in 2015.
It’s the constant and consistent rehabilitation of figures from the right that would otherwise be reviled by liberals, progressives, and Democratic voters all around, but instead are assigned virtue that is measured, as Glenn Greenwald once put it, by “how adversarial one is perceived to be to Trump”. I always think this rehabilitation can’t stoop any lower, that it can’t possibly become any more potent or dominant, yet it materializes once again this week to be as such, as though it were Sandman, maximizing his body size and mass to terrorize helpless constituents below.
Okay, not a comics crowd I see.
Utah Senator Mitt Romney has once again evidently been ascribed by the left heaping amounts of praise and fawning over for his swift criticism and condemning of Trump fanning the flames of the riots that took place at the Capitol on January 6th. Romney said that what was most disappointing to him was that “too many political figures have stoked these divisions”, no doubt likely referring to Trump, Senators Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz, among others.
CNN claimed that Romney was showcasing what “real leadership” looked like, that he undertook the “soul-searching that follows a rejection” after 2012, and that he “understands that speaking truth to power is what leadership is all about”.
That’s right kids, look past the sitting President, and you’ll find the real leaders, like the “vulture capitalist” who founded the private equity firm Bain Capital and presided in takeover deals that drove smaller firms into bankruptcy and led to the layoffs of tens of thousands workers, but will still humble himself as a charitable ‘man of the people’ who donates his earnings and insists $360,000 in speaking fees is “not very much” money.
I guess $70 for a trim that could just as easily be replicated with a $14 bottle of “Just For Men Touch of Gray”, plus tip, must really add up for this guy.
But the left’s showering of praise for Romney didn’t just start this week. Last year, after Romney voted to affirm one of the articles of impeachment against President Trump, it was declared that Romney was putting his country over his party, and facts over his own self-interest, and that he had absolutely risen to the occasion rather than tow the party line. Never mind the fact that statements like this are only issued based on how opposing a figure is in question to Donald Trump (this is why Tulsi Gabbard’s vote of “present” during impeachment, in spite of her also choosing to vote her conscience, was seen as somehow sympathetic to Trump), Senator Romney is no stranger to the tendency of issuing his own deliberately misleading statements when it suits him, in other words, putting self-interest over facts. Hey, obfuscators gonna obfuscate.
Remember back during the 2012 campaign when Romney told CNN’s Soledad O’Brien that he was “not concerned about the very poor — we have a safety net there. If it needs repair, I’ll fix it. I’m not concerned about the very rich — they’re doing just fine.”
Now of course, following the financial crisis of 2008, that “safety net” Romney was referring to refers to government-funded welfare programs that were suffering as well. 13 states by that summer had slashed Medicaid budgets even as the federal government was making efforts to try and expand coverage for 17 million Americans. Republicans in Congress at the time were trying to amplify restrictions on food stamp eligibility.
Romney was characterized as and lambasted for during the 2012 campaign season, among other reasons, being an out-of-touch affluent politician simply unphased and unconcerned with the economic hardships ravaging the country in the wake of the financial crisis. It’s easy to forget that this was the case when today, op-ed writers are tossing around bombastic declarations like “history will judge Mitt Romney among the righteous” and that Romney “is owed an apology for 2012”.
To that I bite my tongue on any snappy remarks, and instead let Romney’s own statement of enjoying “being able to fire people who provide bad services to me” speak for itself. His infamous comment regarding Americans who don’t pay federal income taxes should still shatter any illusion as well that he is an ally to the disenfranchised or marginalized.
“[They] 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 healthcare, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what … These are people who pay no income tax … [M]y job is is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”
The comment above highlights precisely what the Democratic strategists sought to paint Romney as. Political ads usually often exaggerate and distort to portray a more simplistic image of the target, in order to captivate attention spans within thirty to sixty seconds. But in this case, remember that Romney’s comment above was not only seized upon by the 25/8 news cycle and by his opponents, it was also on video.
The notion of a politician willing to challenge his own team and going against the grain is always something tempting to lavish acclaim and admiration onto. But in the eyes of the left, as the country increasingly looks to embrace more progressive policies that improve upon their material well-being, Senator Romney is not a figure to be welcomed with open arms, that can help advance such an agenda.
Remember what he stands for – being against single-payer healthcare, more defense spending, quashing unions, more nuclear weapons, being against the Green New Deal, and thumbing his nose at the thought of $2,000 cash relief stimulus checks.
In the coming weeks and months, I will continue to make the case that the left was never really in short supply of allies to push back against genuinely damning scandals and impeachable offenses committed by Trump (violation of the emoluments clause, war crimes, bombing Syria on false grounds, the attempted extradition of Julian Assange, attempts to initiate a genuine coup in Venezuela).
Instead what establishment Democrats and pundits looked for were individuals with “integrity” on the other side of the aisle who were first in lockstep with their highly corporatized and warmongering agenda, and then, and only then, were willing to publicly denounce Donald Trump.
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