Map of life expectancy at birth from Global Education Project.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Feeling slightly more optimistic . . .

about November, in spite of the 70 quadrillion dollars Sheldon Adelson and the Koch Brothers are going to spend to drown the nation in lies. Here Pema Levy of TPM rounds up conservative politicians and yackers who are calling on WM Romney to release his tax returns. On the one hand, maybe they are actually naive enough to believe that there's nothing in there he really wants to hide, he's just standing on some weird principle. (Even though he hasn't actually bothered to say what that is.) But it seems to me more likely the rats are preparing to jump ship.

And, as I just said, I really don't care whether he was actively involved in Bain Capital from 1999 to 2002, but he appears really, really desperate to make sure nobody thinks he was. So there's the obvious question: If you were in fact involved in Bain Capital during those years, would that have been shameful? If so, how? Oddly, even though he spoke, on film, to reporters from five different TV networks on Friday, nobody thought to ask him that.

So, while I wish we were talking about stuff that really matters, Krugman the Magnificent points out today (can't link because I've blown my freebies for the month, even though I buy the dead trees NYT every day) that in a sense, we are. Most voters, and certainly not the persuadable ones, aren't going to study Romney's actual policy proposals or believe that the only way he could possibly pay for his massive tax cuts for the obscenely rich is to totally screw everybody else. They're just going to get the he said/she said on this from the intellectually lazy and corrupt corporate media. But, making it clear that Romney is a fat cat who made his money by screwing you tells the tale in a way that people can grasp.

I do have to give up and admit that politics is ultimately spectacle, and running for president is largely about putting on the best show. I wish it were otherwise, but I just live in this world.

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