Saturday, September 29, 2012

Romney Speak: Whine and Cheese

Mitt Romney has received lots of unsolicited advice lately regarding how best to meet President Obama in the upcoming debate. The three debates, including one VP debate, are highly anticipated and as many as 86% of Americans say they plan to watch some or all of them.

Romney's alarming slide in the polls has Republican talking heads pontificating about this being Mr. Romney's last chance to salvage his failing campaign.

May I offer one humble bit of advice that I haven't seen mentioned elsewhere? I suggest Mitt practice the tone and cadence of his voice, which strikes me as either condescending or whining, depending on which talking point he is discussing.

When questioned on specifics, he takes on a tone of an ever-patient parent speaking to a petulant child. He pulls out that fake 'ha-ha-ha' and with an exasperated shake of his head, responds as if he is correcting the hired help for serving the wrong wine with dinner.

But to me, the most annoying and difficult to listen to, is the whine he takes on when speaking about President Obama. Each sentence or significant phrase ends in a notable drop in tone which gives the line a whiny quality. If he could just practice keeping the tone of the sentence even through the end, it would sound like a statement of fact instead of a spoiled child complaining, "It's not fair!"

Although I am unabashedly a liberal Democrat, I have always listened to both sides, even when I disagree vehemently with the speaker. I gritted my teeth through every speech and public appearance by McCain, Reagan, Big Bush, and most tryingly, Little Bush with his deep drawl and penchant for making up words.

But no candidate in my memory has been so difficult to listen to speak as Mitt Romney. The condescension and whiny-ness are like fingernails on a chalkboard to my ears and I can't wait to turn him off.

There you go, Mitt. More unsolicited advice and coming from an Obama supporter you have no reason to take it. But please, just in case the unlikely happens I have to listen to you speak for the next four years, practice that tone. You can't make your point if your audience can't stand the sound of your voice.

First Published on Technorati as "Romney Speak: Whine and Cheese"

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Life is Hard for Ann Romney

Ann Romney showed a bit of humanity recently when she lashed out at critics of her husband saying, “Stop it. This is hard. You want to try it? Get in the ring.” Yes, Mrs. Romney, this is hard. I'm sure it is much harder than you expected it to be.

Likely you thought you wouldn't have to work too hard in the actual campaigning stuff. Mitt Romney has avoided rallies and public appearances like the plague. Instead he has focused on fund raising and hoping carefully crafted ads will fill the void.

You probably expected your wealth and the wealth of your influential friends to smooth the path to the White House, as it always has. Money oils the gears of success in business, it should work in politics too.

You counted on millions of dollars from corporate and special interest donors, hidden from view thanks to the Supreme Court, to flood the airwaves with negative and misleading ads. It worked in the primary, right?

You were assured that new voter suppression laws, which have sprung up in many swing and southern states, would shave enough votes to secure victory in a close election.

Your campaign repeated proven lies, campaigned on them and raised money on them. Explaining this strategy, Romney campaign pollster Neil Newhouse stated, "We're not going let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers." Who knew regular Americans cared about facts?

You didn't expect people to ask so many personal questions, like wanting to see your tax returns. Don't you know that asking about someone's finances is considered impolite among the upper class?

You didn't prepare any details for your plans since you expected to prevail simply because you are not Barack Obama. Your obviously superior business experience is all the country needs to know, right?

Truly, this has been a hard summer for the Romneys. It is painful and humbling to hear people say terrible things about you. It's worse when they are using your own words.
If you would like to see a good example of how to bear up under the onslaught of negativity and lies, perhaps you should look to the Obamas. They have been attacked and vilified in ways I have not seen in my lifetime. They have held their heads high through lies, racism, obstructionism and open hatred by the opposing party.

I have seen pictures of my President portrayed as a monkey, with a bone in his nose, with watermelons growing on the White House lawn and, memorably, the President as a pimp and the First Lady as a prostitute. He has been called 'terrorist' and 'un-American'. He was forced to 'show his papers' to quell the crazies the Romney's are courting.

How the Obama family has maintained their dignity under such unrelenting attacks is nothing short of inspirational. Perhaps Mrs. Romney can learn something from them too. Remember, 'class' is defined not by financial status, but by ,"Grace under pressure," which our First Family has personified.

First Published on Technorati as "Life is Hard for Ann Romney"