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Romney Wins First Debate!

Jack O'Mahoff
Posted on Dec 13 2018 at 11:26 AM
Latest Articles | Jack O'Mahoff

Channeling his hero Ronald Reagan, Mitt Romney humiliated Obama last night in the first presidential debate broadcast live from Denver. He killed the outgoing President with the billions he spent on failed solar and wind energy projects, and he killed Obama with the charge that he cut billions from social security. In a stunning Sophistic display that froze Obama under the hot lights, Romney managed to sound like he was a big defender of social security; and Obama was trying to destroy it! I didn't think Romney knew what he was doing. I was mistaken. He is as dangerous as they come.

The truth – which doesn't matter, of course, except to occasionally maintain some semblance of sanity as we try to keep track of our own lies and obfuscations – is Obama’s social security cuts never happened as Romney said they did, and Romney himself plans to privatize social security entirely (as George Bush tried to do before him), by turning it all over to Wall Street (for the fees, stupid)  in what promises to be the biggest swindle since Enron, Worldcom, Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, Bank America and a dozen other big players gamed the deregulated business and financial systems and bilked investors and then American taxpayers – in the bailout – out of billions. So it was an especially stunning reversal for Romney to paint himself as a defender of the socialist medicine plan no legitimate republican can stand, and then get a free pass from Obama on it. 

Obama looked like he never knew what hit him. What a turnaround! If Romney was on the ropes after announcing at a friendly fundraiser in Florida last month that he has written off 47 percent of the country as lowlife parasites he has no intention of trying to court for votes, he turned it all around last night. When you closed your eyes, he sounded just like Ronald Reagan. I kept expecting to hear Reagan’s famous “Government is not the solution. Government is the problem.”  Romney never needed to deliver that gem once he put Obama on the ropes.

As in his Republican debates, Romney attacks his opponent with a banker's pointed smile, driving the knife in again and again with distortions and outright lies, and then in the same breath and with an even more confident smile, he finishes by telling his opponent and the country that even though things are fucked up beyond the pale, he, Romney, can still save the day. “You’re the problem,” Romney is really saying, to everybody,  “and I’m the solution.”

I think Obama got the point last night, as did anyone who happened to be watching. Obama hasn’t fixed the mess he inherited fast enough. Romney can’t fix this mess, either, of course, and will likely make it worse, if recent Republican history means anything. Reagan raised taxes eleven (11) times and left the economy in such a shambles it forced Bush I to also raise taxes (costing him a second term because he had announced in his campaign that he would never raise taxes); and then Bush II took a record surplus, gave huge tax cuts for those of us at the top while starting a couple wars and then leaving office with the biggest debt we’ve ever seen while the economy imploded. So we know that what modern Republicans really do economically is raid the treasury and exploit the country’s resources for the benefit of corporate friends (as they should, of course) – all of which makes it so astonishing that Romney came off as believable last night. He looked into the camera like he was really excited about the possibilities of serving the trickle down Kool-Aide again. (And oh, you folks will just love it! Wow.)

The real message Obama and the rest of the country got, quite clearly, which I think is what left Obama with the deer in headlights look, as he figured it all out right there on stage just as the rest of the country did, was this: If you’re going to get fucked, wouldn’t it be more pleasant to have it done by a smiling, smooth-talking white guy with nice hair rather than an arrogant, robotic black guy?  Mitt’s got the nice hair, great teeth and a confident smile. What’s not to like?