Friday, September 14, 2012

UK: Romney's Obama attack smirk

The Guardian

Mitt Romney's ill-judged attack on Obama over Libya backfires

The Republican nominee's smirk after remarks on Libya was trivial – yet spoke volumes about his fitness for the presidency

The image of a smirking Mitt Romney as he walked away from his press conference regarding the terrorist attacks in Libya is his John Kerry-windsurfing moment. Much as with the Kerry image, critics are making too much of a fleeting moment: Romney partisans are correct to point out that Romney's expression is only that – not a deep-seated reflection of an inner belief.


But sometimes, the wink isn't just a wink. It's a tic, an unthinking habit that won't go away. The Romney reaction to the news out of Libya suggests something even more dangerous: a habit of unthinking. As Fred Exley put it, in his classic A Fan's Notes, bemoaning the latent cynicism that allows good people to excuse themselves for doing bad things:
"A wink eventually becomes a twitch, the twitch a sign of some inner disturbance.

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