One more Galtian superman in action

Yes, the jerk who spread false disaster rumors as Sandy hit Manhattan was a bundler for Romney.

Not all Romney bundlers are rich, hyper-entitled sociopaths. And not all rich, hyper-entitled sociopaths are Romney bundlers.

But the correlation has a p-value so small you can’t even see it.

And that is no accident, comrades.

Update The troll apologizes, and hopes that you’ll vote for the Republican Congressional candidate whose campaign he was managing until he resigned this morning.

Ummm … no?

No atheists in foxholes …

… and no anti-government conservatives in hurricanes.” – Alex Wagner

… and no anti-government conservatives in hurricanes.” – Alex Wagner

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Romney is not backing off on his earlier pledge to devolve FEMA to the states or outsource it to the private sector. But he’s also not standing by it. He’s just pretending not to hear questions.

Corrected to give the quote as stated, rather than the version I recalled, “no small-government conservatives in hurricanes.” I still like mine better; Churchill never said “blood, sweat, and tears.” But facts are facts.

Triple crown

Romney Jeep ad picks up Pants-on-Fire from Politifact to go with its Four Pinocchios from Glenn Kessler and “simply not true” from

Romney’s Jeep ad picks up a coveted Pants-on-Fire award from Politifact to go with its Four Pinocchios from Glenn Kessler and its “simply not true” from

The Triple Crown of mendacity! That will be something Mitt can look backward to with pride during his long years of retirement and disgrace.

Lesser honors came from Des Moines Register and the Indianapolis Star (“neither is true,” of the two claims in Romney’s ad) and the Nashville Tennessean (“Romney Repeats False Claim”).

Update This just in: the RBC gives the ad its four-star “So Full of It His Eyes are Brown” rating. That completes Romney’s Grand Slam of Lying.

Footnote Yes, I know I’m making a big fuss about a fairly trivial lie. But Romney’s habit of lying – worse, his utter indifference to the difference between truth and falsehood – is as central to this campaign as racism, nativism, misogyny, and economic feudalism. Lying isn’t just what Romney does; it’s who he is.

“A masterpiece of misdirection”

The Cleveland Plain Dealer on Romney’s Chrysler ad.

The Cleveland Plain Dealer protests Mitt Romney’s latest bit of flim-flam.

In some ways, it’s strange that a candidate whose whole campaign has been built on 2 + 2 = 22 budget math should finally be called out on a lie so comparatively trivial. Call it karma in action.

Question for Gov. Romney

What’s the “small-government” approach to the Frankenstorm?

Since you believe that corporations, nonprofits, and the states – in that order – are all more efficient than the federal government, do you believe that the National Weather Service should stop tracking Sandy and that FEMA should keep stay out of the relief effort?

If not, why not?

Update My apologies to Gov. Romney for asking a question he had already answered. Yes, he thinks that the federal government should not help victims of national disasters: that it’s “immoral” to do so on borrowed money.

KING: What else, Governor Romney? You’ve been a chief executive of a state. I was just in Joplin, Missouri. I’ve been in Mississippi and Louisiana and Tennessee and other communities dealing with whether it’s the tornadoes, the flooding, and worse. FEMA is about to run out of money, and there are some people who say do it on a case-by-case basis and some people who say, you know, maybe we’re learning a lesson here that the states should take on more of this role. How do you deal with something like that?

ROMNEY: Absolutely. Every time you have an occasion to take something from the federal government and send it back to the states, that’s the right direction. And if you can go even further and send it back to the private sector, that’s even better.

Instead of thinking in the federal budget, what we should cut — we should ask ourselves the opposite question. What should we keep? We should take all of what we’re doing at the federal level and say, what are the things we’re doing that we don’t have to do? And those things we’ve got to stop doing, because we’re borrowing $1.6 trillion more this year than we’re taking in. We cannot…

KING: Including disaster relief, though?

ROMNEY: We cannot — we cannot afford to do those things without jeopardizing the future for our kids. It is simply immoral, in my view, for us to continue to rack up larger and larger debts and pass them on to our kids, knowing full well that we’ll all be dead and gone before it’s paid off. It makes no sense at all.

Do you think that any reporter will have the nerve to ask Romney, right now, whether he thinks that the victims of Sandy should be left to the mercies of the private sector, that “it makes no sense” for the federal government to offer them relief? Or ask Chris Christie whether he’d really prefer to have FEMA just butt out?

Neither do I. But a fella can dream, can’t he?

Obviously this isn’t an issue for Obama to raise now. He needs to stand back and let FEMA do its work, with maybe a single TV appearance to update the country on the situation and encourage donations of money and goods where needed.

But once the storm is past and the relief effort underway in, for example, coastal Virginia – say, about this coming Friday – he might want to mention that Mitt Romney opposed storm relief, just as he opposed the auto bailout.

Footnote Yes, it’s true. I’m in Charlottesville, where we’re expecting high winds, power outages, and flooding – UVa just cancelled classes for tomorrow, with the storm not even due to arrive until evening – and I’m much more concerned about the election than I am about the details of the relief effort. Hurricane Mitt is a Cat-6 storm that would last four or eight years. Storm relief efforts are urgent; winning the election is important.

Oh, and I know it’s rude to mention it, but one of the predicted impacts of global warming is increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events. Like this one.

Mitt’s-shameless-mendacity Dep’t

Romney ad: Obama “sold Chrysler to Italians who are going to build Jeeps in China.”

The Romney campaign has a new spot up in Ohio accusing Obama of having “sold Chrysler to Italians who are going to build Jeeps in China.” David Shepardson of the Detroit News demonstrates how a real, objective reporter treats a false statement by a candidate for office.

Machiavelli on the Romney campaign

“Whoever wishes to deceive will always find another who wishes to be deceived.”

“People are so simple, and so dominated by their present needs, that whoever wishes to deceive will always find another who wishes to be deceived.”

Continue reading “Machiavelli on the Romney campaign”

You mean, we *weren’t* greeted as liberators?

John McCain accuses Colin Powell of getting us into the Iraq War.

Colin Powell’s endorsement of Barack Obama for re-election is welcome as a sign of the thinking of one piece of the conservative establishment, and also as a fairly clear sign that Powell thinks Obama is going to win. And Powell, in addition to saying nice things about Obama, hit Romney on two sore spots: his ignorance of foreign affairs and the variability of his positions. I.e., he managed, in his preternaturally calm voice. to raise both the Commander-in-Chief test and the character issue. Still, unless Powell goes out on the stump or works the phones, I wouldn’t have expected it to matter much.

That clearly isn’t the view from the other side of the line of scrimmage. The Red Team is frankly decompensating. Sununu’s casual race-card play (and semi-retraction) is nothing new, coming from Sununu, but it’s a little bit surprising Romney couldn’t, or didn’t want to, rein him in. He knows, or should know by now, that in a Presidential campaign no Sununus is good Sununus.

And of course John McCain being vicious is about as newsworthy as the Pope saying Mass. I’m sure he’ll never forgive Powell for what he regards as a betrayal in 2008, and his hatred for Obama seems to be boundless.

Between them Sununu and McCain managed to ensure that even relatively low-information voters learned about Powell’s endorsement, which could otherise have slipped comfortably under the radar. And the President was happy to keep the story alive another day.

But the weirdest aspect of the story is the issue McCain chose to attack Powell on: the invasion of Iraq. Powell properly gave Obama credit for getting us out of Iraq. McCain – yes, the McCain who in 2008 wanted to keep our troops in Iraq forever – decided to spice up his second day of atttacks on Powell’s character by saying:

Colin Powell, interestingly enough, said that Obama got us out of Iraq. But it was Colin Powell, with his testimony before the U.N. Security Council, that got us into Iraq.

Now, how many different ways is that weird? Continue reading “You mean, we *weren’t* greeted as liberators?”