Mitt happens

At the circus, the elephant [sic] is always followed by a dedicated crew equipped with large shovels and stiff brooms. Sometimes the guy with the follower spot slips up and a shovel guy comes into view doing his job. Why did this memory pop into my head?

Romney is in serious trouble on grounds of honesty and decency.  What he needs is to give a speech to the nation, looking right into the camera, and talk about his wife’s modest cloth riding habit. It’s important that he do this with his faithful dog right next to him…wait a minute…OK, hold the dog.  Speaking of Seamus, though, I wonder why that story got stuck on the dog. Shouldn’t it really be about the stinginess and inconsiderate nature of a ‘devoted family man’ with all the money in the world – who won’t rent a second car so his big family can drive twelve hours in reasonable comfort; getting the dog off the roof is almost a side issue.

Lawrence O’Donnell unloaded admirably on the audience of Mitt’s Boca Raton evening tonight. His sermon was on the word stupid, also hateful. It seems that not a single person in that room – beneficiaries of zillions of dollars’ worth of education and privilege, and hundreds of hours of sitting in churches being preached at, all masters in their domains who give orders and decide stuff – not one stood up to take issue with ol’ Mitt about anything, or walked out in disgust. What a shabby, cowardly, lot. Unless, of course, the missing two minutes of tape was when they rose as one and rejected Mitt’s discourse…and then sat down again and wallowed in it.

[I can’t believe I thought of the title of this post. If anyone remembers seeing it, I’ll post a HT]


Author: Michael O'Hare

Professor of Public Policy at the Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley, Michael O'Hare was raised in New York City and trained at Harvard as an architect and structural engineer. Diverted from an honest career designing buildings by the offer of a job in which he could think about anything he wanted to and spend his time with very smart and curious young people, he fell among economists and such like, and continues to benefit from their generosity with on-the-job social science training. He has followed the process and principles of design into "nonphysical environments" such as production processes in organizations, regulation, and information management and published a variety of research in environmental policy, government policy towards the arts, and management, with special interests in energy, facility siting, information and perceptions in public choice and work environments, and policy design. His current research is focused on transportation biofuels and their effects on global land use, food security, and international trade; regulatory policy in the face of scientific uncertainty; and, after a three-decade hiatus, on NIMBY conflicts afflicting high speed rail right-of-way and nuclear waste disposal sites. He is also a regular writer on pedagogy, especially teaching in professional education, and co-edited the "Curriculum and Case Notes" section of the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management. Between faculty appointments at the MIT Department of Urban Studies and Planning and the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, he was director of policy analysis at the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs. He has had visiting appointments at Università Bocconi in Milan and the National University of Singapore and teaches regularly in the Goldman School's executive (mid-career) programs. At GSPP, O'Hare has taught a studio course in Program and Policy Design, Arts and Cultural Policy, Public Management, the pedagogy course for graduate student instructors, Quantitative Methods, Environmental Policy, and the introduction to public policy for its undergraduate minor, which he supervises. Generally, he considers himself the school's resident expert in any subject in which there is no such thing as real expertise (a recent project concerned the governance and design of California county fairs), but is secure in the distinction of being the only faculty member with a metal lathe in his basement and a 4×5 Ebony view camera. At the moment, he would rather be making something with his hands than writing this blurb.

17 thoughts on “Mitt happens”

  1. The phrase gets 100,000 Google hits, and someone is selling it on T-shirts to Romney supporters, who apparently think it’s a good pro-Romney phrase. No accounting for taste.

    In fact, a date-delimited search finds 21 results before 2002, including official Salt Lake City Olympic pins with “Mitt Happens”.

  2. OK, no HT for cloud-pervasive memes. I can’t believe the T-shirts. Yes, I can… the phrase “Wait a minute, no-one could be that stupid…” has been ringing in my ears all summer, again and again.

  3. Mitt-faced


    A state of being during which one reveals genuinely-held beliefs; but ones so stupid that one experiences regret, remorse, and embarrassment once the morning after arrives.

    Related words: two-faced, shit-faced

  4. The entries for Andy’s slogan contest keep coming, after the formal expiry date.
    “Disgrace under pressure”!
    I thought of
    “Romney-Ryan: Winter Olympic champions in the men’s pairs dancing on thin ice”
    but that’s now out of date. The melting ice they don’t believe in has broken and they have fallen through. (Cue Prokofiev.)

  5. Now now…
    My understanding is that Mitt has skated it back…
    And now says he will be President of 110% of the people…

    Which beggars the question: Why are there apparently no Romney impersonators?
    That mayonnaise voice combined with his pompous humility?
    It’s a can’t miss…

    1. Wouldn’t that be like trying to impersonate an impersonator? If an android tries to impersonate another android, isn’t that just reprogramming and therefore nothing special?

      (Upon reflection, I miss Phil Hartman … maybe the sole person who could do a dead-on Bill Clinton and I’d love to have seen his take on the rMoney2012.)

  6. I’m wondering about something you wrote: “…won’t rent a second car…”

    Are you thinking the Romney fambly had only one car?

    1. Back then, it’s not implausible that they only had one car. After all, Ann didn’t need to leave the house without her husband’s permission.

  7. About the title: I first saw it back in May on Margaret and Helen dot com. Look in the May 2012 archive.

    I tried to post a link but for some reason it’s not posting.

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