"I am the Very Model of a Muddleheaded Candidate"

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This website launched before the 2012 Presidential Election and has not been updated since. It was a

"Warning From a Deep Blue State"

Since Mitt Romney was Massachusetts' "gift" to the nation, centrists and liberals in these parts can take a very skeptical view of our ex-Governor's campaign. And why is that? Romney's single term could best be described as a mitt-igated disaster - a sprinkling of minor achievements, crowned by a universal coverage health bill that he has been running away from ever since. Romney always treated the highest government job in Massachusetts as a résumé check-off item on his way to bigger and better things. He didn't even have the decency to finish out his term before making us the butt of his jokes, as he snuggled up to a Republican base of the religious right, Tea Party faithful and the like. (see Notes) He is widely expected to lose the state, come November, by a landslide. You know there's something wrong with the kind of job he did as Governor when the best feeling you had was the day he left office.

Most of all, his convictions run as deep as last night's polling numbers. No one knows that better than the citizens of this fair Commonwealth: the man will say absolutely whatever he deems necessary to get elected. So dear voters, if in this election Governor Romney expediently backs away from any new-found conservative positions, please don't say you weren't forewarned by all your friends in the Deep Blue State of Massachusetts.

Here's what we mean:
 


If any slides zip by too quickly, just replay the video! Or here's a printable PDF, with lyrics and pictures.
(If the embedded YouTube player does not work properly, just click here to see the video.)

The Annotated "I am the Very Model of a
Muddleheaded Candidate"

To the tune of: "I am the Very Model of a Modern Major-General"

Music by Sir Arthur Sullivan
Original lyrics by Sir W.S. Gilbert

Starring: Mitt Romney

Romney with question marks

I am the very model of a muddleheaded candidate,
I'll tell you what you want to hear but later change my mind on it,
 

Muddlehead: a muddled, confused or foolish person -
Collins English Dictionary

Bay Windows interviews Mitt Romney

More liberal than Kennedy in matters homosexual,
 

"When Ted Kennedy speaks on gay rights, he's seen as an extremist. When Mitt Romney speaks on gay rights, he's seen as a centrist and a moderate...When Ted says it, it's extreme; when I say it, it's mainstream.

I think the gay community needs more support from the Republican party and I would be a voice in the Republican party to foster anti-discrimination efforts."

"Romney: I'll be better than Ted for gay rights", Bay Windows, 8/25/1994, www.baywindows.com/Romney-Ill-be-better-than-Ted-for-gay-rights

Don't quote me now, because I'll say, that's just out-of-contextual.


"Speaking before an adoring audience of Utah Republicans last night, Governor Mitt Romney (said)...'America cannot continue to lead the family of nations around the world if we suffer the collapse of the family here at home'...the Supreme Judicial Court's legalization of same- sex marriage in Massachusetts (was) 'a blow to the family.'"

 "Romney Links Gay Marriage, US Prestige; Says Nation Cannot Lead and Allow Legalization", Michael Levenson, Boston Globe, 2/26/2005, Page B.1
 

I slaved full-time to bail out the Olympic Games in fair Utah,
While claiming Bay State residence so I could run for Guv'nah,

 

  • Massachusetts state law requires that governors be an "inhabitant of this commonwealth" for seven consecutive years prior to taking office.

  • Small problem: Romney had spent the previous three years in Utah running the 2002 Winter Olympic Games.

  • Slippery solution: File tax returns listing Utah as his primary residence, but maintain an "official residence" in Belmont, Massachusetts.

  • Nice side benefit: listing Utah as his primary residence saves a cool $54,000 taxes on his home there.

www.malegislature.gov/laws/constitution

"Romney Returns; Decision On Way", Sarah Schweitzer, Boston Globe, 3/18/2002, page B.4

"Romney Got Credit As Utah Resident 'Primary' Listing Is Called An Error", Frank Phillips, Boston Globe, 6/5/2002, Page A.1 

(And yes, the compliant State Ballot Law Commission did allow his candidacy, but here's the rub: days before a Democratic challenge was filed, Acting Gov. Jane M. Swift filled two vacancies on the five-member panel with Republicans. Of course, "the timing of their announcement was purely a coincidence.")

"Republican's Candidacy Is Challenged By Democrats", Fox Butterfield, New York Times, 6/8/2002, www.nytimes.com/2002/06/08/us/republican-s-candidacy-is-challenged-by-democrats.html?pagewanted=print&src=pm)
 

Health Care Signing w/ Ted Kennedy

In my key "Health Insurance Law" the mandate was a  cornerstone, 
 

"With regards to the individual mandate, the individual responsibility program that I proposed, I was very pleased that the compromise between the two houses includes the personal responsibility mandate."

The individual mandate, (Romney) said, "is essential for bringing the health care costs down for everyone and getting everyone the health insurance they need."

"In 2006 Video, Romney Calls Health Care Mandate 'Essential'", Michael D. Shear, New York Times, June 28, 2012, thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/28/in-2006-video-romney-calls-health-care-mandate-essential

Same mandate in Obamacare now causes me to bitch and moan.

(Chorus)
Same mandate in Obamacare now causes him to bitch and moan. (3x) 
 

Oh, puhleeze...

I retired retroactively, is that so hard to understand?
My last Bain pay as CEO topped just a measly hundred grand! 


"Mr. W. Mitt Romney is the sole shareholder, sole director, Chief Executive Officer and President of Bain Investors VI and thus is the controlling person of Bain Investors VI."

SEC Filing, 2/11/2001

www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1054290/000092701601001009/0000927016-01-001009-0001.txt

"...Romney was unquestionably the decider at Bain. 'I insisted on having almost dictatorial powers,' he bragged years after the Ampad deal."

"Greed and Debt: The True Story of Mitt Romney and Bain Capital", Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone, 8/29/2012, www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/greed-and-debt-the-true-story-of-mitt-romney-and-bain-capital-20120829

"He took a leave of absence (from Bain) and, in fact...he ended up not going back at all and retired retroactively to February of 1999 as a result." Romney advisor Ed Gillespie.

July 15th, 2012, politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2012/07/15/gillespie-romney-retroactively-retired-from-bain-capital/
 

I'll tell you what you want to hear but later change my mind on it,
I am the very model of a muddleheaded candidate. 
 

Blah, Blah

(Chorus)
He'll tell you what you want to hear but later change his mind on it,
He is the very model of a muddleheaded candidate. 
 

Blah, Blah

I sneered at Grover's tax reform and said I wouldn't sign "The Pledge,"


"...Republican gubernatorial candidate Mitt Romney is refusing to rule out tax increases and said yesterday he will not sign a 'no new taxes' pledge."

Romney said that while he opposes all tax increases in principle..."I'm not intending to, at this stage, sign a document which would prevent me from being able to look specifically at the revenue needs of the Commonwealth."

"Romney Won't Sign a Pledge of No New Tax", Rick Klein and Stephanie Ebbert, Boston Globe, 3/28/2002, Page A.1 

"Eric Fehrnstrom, a Romney campaign spokesman, mocked written pledges as 'government by gimmickry.'" (same citation) 
 

But higher office called to me and so I thought it best to hedge,


"Almost five years after he refused to sign a 'no new taxes' pledge during his campaign for governor, Mitt Romney announced...that he had done just that, as his campaign for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination began in
earnest."

"Romney Finds 'No New Taxes' Promise Suits Him After All", Scott Helman, Boston Globe, 1/5/2007, B.1
 

Hey, is it me, or hot in here? Because my flop sweat's glistening...
 

"I think the global warming debate is now pretty much over and people recognize the need associated with providing sources which do not generate the heat that is currently provided by fossil fuels..."

Cape Cod Times, 3/14/2003

"Massachusetts is the first and only state to set CO2 emissions limits on power plants."

Romney Press Release, 12/7/2005

Perhaps to global warming scientists I should be listening.


"...
with regards to global warming that that's something, which, you're right, the scientists haven't entirely resolved..."

CNBC's "Kudlow & Company", 2/7/2007

"Unfortunately, some in the Republican Party are embracing the radical environmental ideas of the liberal left...Republicans should never abandon pro-growth conservative principles in an effort to embrace the ideas of Al Gore."

Romney For President, Press Release, 2/23/2007
 

Supported gun controls at first, who cares about the NRA? 


Romney supported the assault rifle ban and the Brady gun control law. "That's not going to make me the hero of the NRA" he said.

Boston Herald, 9/23/1994
 

Turns out, I do, sign me right up, I'll shoot some varmints straightaway, 
 

Romney tells a Derry, N.H., audience, "I'm after the NRA's endorsement. I'm not sure they'll give it to me. I hope they will. I also joined because if I'm going to ask for their endorsement, they're going to ask for mine."

Associated Press, 4/5/2007

In April 2007, Romney said, "I'm not a big-game hunter. I've always been a rodent and rabbit hunter. Small varmints, if you will. I began when I was 15 or so and I have hunted those kinds of varmints since then."

"Has Romney been hunting since 2008 'small varmints' gaffe?", Christine Delargy, 1/17/2012, www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-57359904-503544/has-romney-been-hunting-since-2008-small-varmints-gaffe/

As President my border fences will reach up and touch the sky,
But wait Hispanic voters, mis amigos, I am still your guy!

(Chorus)
But wait Hispanic voters, mis amigos, he is still your guy! (3x)


"Romney said illegal immigrants should have a chance to obtain citizenship."  

Lowell Sun, 3/30/2006

"...secure the border, employment verification and no special pathway to citizenship."

CNN's "The Situation Room", 5/22/2007

"Romney says he favors 'self-deportation'", David Boroff and Roque Planas, NY Daily News, January 24, 2012, articles.nydailynews.com/2012-01-24/news/30657385_1_mitt-romney-illegal-immigrants-deportation

By the way, Mitt Romney's great-grandparents "were polygamous Mormons who fled the United States with their children owing to the federal government's prosecution of polygamy." So it would seem that the Romney family has some experience with self-deportation. What goes around, comes around!

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_W._Romney , accessed 9/1/2012.

As for Romney's proposed 2,000 mile high tech fence, so far it's an abject failure. See the grim details here: www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/06/romney/
 

The Ryan budget cuts five trillion bucks but does it fair and square, 
 

$5.3 trillion, give or take a few billion...

"What Paul Ryanís budget actually cuts ó and by how much", Brad Plumer, 03/20/2012, www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/what-paul-ryans-budget-actually-cuts--and-by-how-much/2012/03/20/gIQAL43vPS_blog.html

Good thing that plutocrats like me don't have to slum on Medicare.


The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office projects that in 2022, annual out-of-pocket costs for a typical 65-year old would be nearly $7,000 greater in the Ryan proposal than under traditional Medicare. Chump change for a plutocrat...Romney bets more than that in your average candidate's debate!

www.kff.org/medicare/upload/8179.pdf
 

Insert Dog Whistle (Part A) into Mouth (Slot B)

I'll tell you what you want to hear but later change my mind on it,
I am the very model of a muddleheaded candidate.

(Chorus)
He'll tell you what you want to hear but later change his mind on it,
He is the very model of a muddleheaded candidate.
 

"Dog-whistle politics is political messaging employing coded language that appears to mean one thing to the general population but has an additional, different or more specific resonance for a targeted subgroup...It is an analogy to dog whistles, which are built in such a way that their high-frequency whistle is heard by dogs, but is inaudible to humans."

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dog-whistle_politics, accessed 9/13/2012

Examples: "Mitt Romney: 'No one's ever asked to see my birth certificate'", Felicia Sonmez, 8/24/2012 www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/election-2012/wp/2012/08/24/mitt-romney-no-ones-asked-for-my-birth-certificate/

"President Obama 'takes his political inspiration from Europe and from the socialist democrats in Europe.'" www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/09/22/fox-news-google-gop-2012-presidential-debate/#ixzz24SgaEmL8

Pro-choice, pro-life, pro-choice, pro-life, depending on the time and place,

Break out the Etch-a-Sketch whenever needed and reset the race,


"I believe that abortion should be safe and legal in this country...I believe that since Roe v. Wade has been the law for 20 years we should sustain and support it."  

"On jobs and wages" (Debate Excerpts, The Kennedy-Romney Debates), Boston Globe, 10/26/1994, p.23.

"When I am asked if I am pro-choice or pro-life, I say I refuse to accept either label."

"This Is The Place, But Politics May Lead Romneys Elsewhere", Glen Warchol, Salt Lake Tribune, 2/14/99

"I will preserve and protect a woman's right to choose, and am devoted and dedicated to honoring my word in that regard. I will not change any provisions of Massachusetts' pro-choice laws."

Romney-O'Brien Gubernatorial Debate, Suffolk University, Boston, MA, 10/29/2002

"'It hit me very hard that we had so cheapened the value of human life in a Roe v. Wade environment that it was important to stand for the dignity of human life,' Romney says."

"What Romney Believes", Karen Tumulty, Time, 5/21/2007
 

I dissed the Gipper big-time back when first I sought election, 
 

"I was an independent during the time of Reagan-Bush. I'm not trying to return to Reagan- Bush..."

Massachusetts Kennedy-Romney Senatorial Debate, 10/25/1994
www.c-spanvideo.org/program/61101-1

Now a severe conservative, I reject my rejection.


"Ronald Reagan is one of my heroes."

Mitt Romney, quoted in "Romney Links Gay Marriage, US Prestige; Says Nation Cannot Lead and Allow Legalization", Michael Levenson, Boston Globe, 2/26/2005, Page B.1
 

The Deep Blue State of Massachusetts is no longer where I'm found,
Deported self to California; park both Caddies underground,  


"Gov. Mitt Romney Fought for Conservative Values in a Deep Blue State", Romney Press Release, 2/10/2012, votesmart.org/public-statement/667490/gov-mitt-romney-fought-for-conservative-values-in-a-deep-blue-state

"Romney says he favors 'self-deportation'", David Boroff and Roque Planas; NY Daily News, 1/24/2012, articles.nydailynews.com/2012-01-24/news/30657385_1_mitt-romney-illegal-immigrants-deportation

"Romney's Cadillac Comment Highlights His Wealth", Michael Barbaro, The New York Times, 2/24/2012, thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/02/24/romney-cadillac-comment-highlights-his-wealth/

"Romney's car elevator cost $55,000"; Maggie Haberman, Politico.com; www.politico.com/blogs/burns-haberman/2012/05/romneys-car-elevator-cost-124588.html
 

I ran for President 'cuz Barack governs socialistically,


In classic Romney fashion, he hasn't actually called Obama a socialist...yet. Instead, he is using thinly veiled or almost laughable references, "...I don't use the word socialist - or I haven't so far."

"Romney: I Donít Say Obama Is A 'Socialist'", Eric Kleefeld, September 16, 2011, 2012.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/09/romney-i-dont-say-obama-is-a-socialist-video.php
 

My platform is, "Cut Taxes On All People Who Are Just Like Me!"

(Chorus)
His platform is, "Cut Taxes On All People Who Are Just Like He!" (3x) 
 

  • Ryan's proposed "Roadmap for America's Future" eliminates taxes on capital gains, dividends and interest.
     

  • Since about 95 percent of Romney's $21.6 million income came from those sources in 2010, he would pay no taxes on the vast majority of his earnings.

"Paul Ryan's Tax Plan Would Slash Mitt Romney's Tax Rate to 1 Percent", Steven T. Dennis, 8/11/2012, www.rollcall.com/news/Ryan-Tax-Plan-Would-Slash-Romney-Tax-Rate-to-1-Percent-216837-1.html

I've come so close, were I to fail, 'twould be quite an ignominy,
I'll flip and flop straight to the top sure as my name's Mitt
Rom-n-ey,  
 

For a great chronicle of Romney flip-flops (that sadly stops at 2008) see "14 Bald-Faced Mitt Romney Flip-Flops That Were Dug Up By John McCain",  Michael Brendan Dougherty, 1/18/2012. www.businessinsider.com/14-bald-faced-mitt-romney-flip-flops-that-were-dug-up-by-john-mccain-2012-1

AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION SECTION!! 

Channel your inner Gilbert & Sullivan and tell us in the comments how YOU would
describe Mitt Romney!

"I am the very model of a ....        

...bunkum-spouting hypocrite."
...smarmy gaffe-prone idiot."

I'll tell you what you want to hear but later change my mind on it,
I am the very model of a muddleheaded candidate.

(Chorus)
He'll tell you what you want to hear but later change his mind on it,
He is the very model of a muddleheaded candidate!
 

The "Audience Participation Section" of the video may be a bit caustic, what with its suggested alternate versions:

"...bunkum-spouting hypocrite."
"...smarmy gaffe-prone idiot."

But Romney showed in the Republican primaries, he certainly knows how to fling the mud. As Finley Peter Dunne wrote: "...politics ain't bean-bag." And as Romney misquoted him, "Anything wrong, I'm opposed to. But, you know, this ain't, this ain't the bean bag."

 "Mitt Romney Incapable of Correctly Reciting Famous Political Aphorism", Dan Amira, 1/30/2012. nymag.com/daily/intel/2012/01/romney-cant-quote-bean-bag-aphorism-correctly.html

"I believe in an America where millions of Americans believe in an America that's the America millions of Americans believe in.
Thatís the America I love." - Mitt Romney

"The Man Who Gave Us Newt", Mark Steyn, National Review Online,  1/ 22/2012, www.nationalreview.com/corner/288873/man-who-gave-us-newt-mark-steyn


Notes: Please don't take my word on this! Here are the opinions of Massachusetts businesspeople and a former state director of economic development under two Republican governors:

"His economic record was uninspired. They never developed an economic strategy nor implemented a coherent set of initiatives that would improve the state's business climate." Michael C. Widmer, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, a business-funded research group.

"He was going to be the number one salesperson. I don't think that turned out successfully." Brian Gilmore, spokesman for Associated Industries of Massachusetts, the state's largest business advocacy group.

"I was very shocked to hear our governor on the road basically saying Massachusetts is a terrible place to do business." David Begelfer, chief executive of the Massachusetts chapter of the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties, a commercial real estate trade group.

Romney seemed more concerned with his presidential ambitions than the nitty gritty of local economic development. "People had very high hopes for him as governor. He's extremely bright, talented, and involved in business. In the end, he showed no loyalty to the state he was elected to run." David A. Tibbetts, former state director of economic development under two Republican governors.

Source: "As governor, Romney faced similar economic situation as Obama -- with similar results", Megan Woolhouse and Michael Rezendes, Boston Globe, 9/5/2012, www.boston.com/businessupdates/2012/09/05/governor-romney-faced-similar-economic-situation-obama-with-similar-results/S2cHk3JRGn0hHRnbEFuh2M/story.html


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Text Copyright 2012, Joel Bresler. All Rights Reserved.

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