Saturday, 9 July 2011

Romney's "The Audacity of Indifference"

Long time GOP presidential nomination front-runner, former Gov. of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney has attacked incumbent President Barack Obama's economic track record. Capitalizing on somewhat of a gaffe by Senior Advisor to the President, David Plouffe, yesterday in a breakfast with Bloomberg reporters the new 30 second ad is voiceover-less and features a five individuals passing comment.

I couldn't help but notice a distinct lack of brothers in the ad or it maybe it's just because we don't vote for people like Romney. (He's a Repu... Mormon.)  

However, in an interesting story by the Washington Post which perhaps sheds light and context on the comment perhaps the gaffe was not so much of a gaffe after all. Here is the transcript courtesy of Bloomberg:
QUESTION: Axelrod likes to say that every campaign has inherited [inaudible]. You know, an environment in which unemployment is [inaudible] percent when the president runs for re-election, what’s — what’s the Obama narrative about that?
PLOUFFE: Well, listen, I don’t -- you know, we’re a long way from 2012. We’re a long way from knowing what’s going on in the world and exactly what the economy is and who are opponent is.
I would make a general statement, though, because there is a lot of attention focused on the unemployment rate. The average American does not view the economy through the prism of GDP or unemployment rates or even monthly jobs numbers.
In fact, those terms very rarely pass their lips. So it’s a very one-dimensional view. They view the economy through their own personal prism. You see, people’s — people’s attitude towards their own personal financial situation has actually improved over time. You know, they’re still concerned about the long-term economic future of the country, but it’s things like “My sister was unemployed for six months and was living in my basement and now she has a job.”
There’s a — a “help wanted” sign. You know, the local diner was a little busier this week. Home Depot was a little busier. These are the ways people talk about the economy. They don’t talk about it in the terms of Washington.
And so their decision next year will be based upon two things, okay, how do I feel about things right now, and then, ultimately, campaigns are always much more about the future, and who do I think has got the best idea, the best vision for where to take the country?
I would submit to you that a healthy percentage of Americans, far more than a majority, believe the president has a very sound vision for where the country needs to go.
So, you know, people won’t vote based on the unemployment rate. They’re gonna vote based on, “How do I feel about my own situation? Do I believe the president makes decisions based on me and my family?”
So really what we can see here is a contextual answer to a question about campaign narrative which has been extrapolated to produce the impression that the White House believes that the unemployment rates does not matter at all to Americans. Well, in my opinion, it's all fair game and as they say: "It's all fair in love and war... and politics." (Because in my view politics can be viewed through the prism of War hence the military terminology by many politicians... hello Palin!)