I've held off making Mitt Romney the Asshat of the Day, because if I really dedicated myself to it, I could have been making two or three posts a day for the past month and never had time to talk about anything else.
Now, however, he has done something so monumentally stupid I can't ignore it.
Let’s start by getting the facts straight. The Romney campaign has reduced itself to arguing with this statement from the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, issued yesterdray:
The Embassy of the United States in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims – as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions. Today, the 11th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, Americans are honoring our patriots and those who serve our nation as the fitting response to the enemies of democracy. Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy. We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others.
At the time this statement was released, the U.S. embassy was under siege from protesters and was trying to pacify crowds and prevent violence from occurring. Even if one disagrees with this sentiment, the rationale behind releasing it is not difficult to understand.
Still, that didn’t stop the Romney camp from going into full attack mode, unbelievably accusing the Obama Administration of "sympathiz(ing) with those who waged the attacks."
The marvelous Jim Wright from Stonekettle Station weighs in here.
I’ve read though the President’s public statement regarding the attack last night on American embassies in Egypt and Libya. I’ve read through them twice. I watched the videos. Hell, I even watched Fox News, because I figured if anybody would have tape of Obama palling around with terrorists, it would be them.
Nowhere, no Goddamned where, did I see President Obama express anything even vaguely resembling sympathy with those who waged the attacks – unless Mittens was implying that the family of US Ambassador to Libya, the late J. Christopher Stevens, and the families and friends of the other three slain State Department employees were in fact Muslim extremists who assaulted the embassies in Egypt and Libya. See, because those were the only people President Obama expressed sympathy for.
Looking at this event in the cold light of a rainy Alaskan afternoon, this is what I immediately [saw]:
Barack Obama condemned the attacks, he spoke against violence and expressed sadness for the dead and sympathy for their families and friends, he told us what he was doing to protect our people in similar situations around the globe, and he promised us justice. About what you would expect from your President in such a situation.
Mitt Romney attacked his own government and his fellow Americans.
The President was coldly angry, but determined in his public response to prevent further bloodshed, further violence.
Mitt was outraged.
The President’s concern was for the dead, for their families, for people.
Romney’s concern was that somebody touched our stuff.
Obama responded like a president.
Romney acted like a businessman.
Finally, from Andrew Sullivan.
Of course, sitting in my blogging chair on the Cape, I can demand as radical a defense of blasphemy and hate speech as Romney can. But I was not inside an embassy in a foreign country as mob violence was building outside and as the US government was being conflated entirely with a bigoted anti-Muslim fanatic. And practically speaking, the embassy was trying to calm a situation, not inflame it. And diplomacy in the real world, where American lives are at stake, can necessitate such frustrating but necessary nuances. But such nuances are lost on Romney, as is, it seems, the basic notion of agency and responsibility:
These people are simply unfit for the responsibility of running the United States. The knee-jerk judgments, based on ideology not reality; the inability to back down when you have said something obviously wrong; and the attempt to argue that the president of the US actually sympathized with those who murdered his own ambassador in Benghazi: these are disqualifying instincts for someone hoping to be the president of the US. Disqualifying.
I honestly don't know what is in the Romneybot's head. It certainly isn't any recognizable human thought. I wonder if he's subconsciously starting to realize that he's really, really not cut out for the job of being President, but his ego and sense of entitlement ("You people owe me that position, dammit!") won't let him back down.
Multiple cascade failures of the positronic brain. Shutdown imminent.