A couple of days ago I caught NPRs coverage of the RNC while out on some errands. As it happens I need not have bothered: a gruesome melange of nausea-inducing nonsense spilled out of my car radio, relieved only by the occasional interruption of an NPR announcer reminding latecomers of the identity of the person currently addressing the crowd. After roughly 20 minutes of forcing myself to endure, my patience wore thin and I freed my hand for a moment from the requirements of driving and gently encouraged the radio to fall silent.

Now before anyone on the right gets defensive, let me assure you that the DCCC has only to wait their turn. My objection is not to their politics; not only would I need to do more research, but it would constitute a separate topic. At the moment I object specifically to the lack of politics. The two speeches I listened to praised Mitt Romney for his work as a Pastor in the Mormon Church, and sought only to shower him with praise that is not only unearned but irrelevant.

The praise heaped onto him was unearned in that it is unwarranted. It confirms for me only that an extremely rich, privileged white man who was acting as a religious authority in a church known for its insularity and community in equal measure did his job. Now, it is important to note that doing one’s job can sometimes be praiseworthy, for example, if the person doing the job is a fireman or soldier who risks their life for the benefit of the community, or if the person is a teacher who works 0730 to 1630 plus lesson planning and grading, often paying for materials from their own pocket while making ~$50k a year. To put this into perspective, that means that elementary school teachers who more than likely have a 4-year degree, a two-year credential, and years of experience in their field are making roughly $23 an hour or less for doing one of the most essential jobs in our entire civilization.

Romney on the other hand, is being praised lavishly not merely for doing what any decent person would do, but doing it while he was essentially contracted to do so because of his position in the church. It is the job of a religious leader to provide aid and comfort, and practically the only job at that. Public servants commonly do the sorts of things he did, and do them while making a miniscule fraction of the income, while paying a higher tax rate, without millions to fall back on, while working well over 40 hours a week at difficult jobs. Now, again, I am not attacking Romney for being wealthy, I am simply stating outright that the sort of unctuous piffle being spewed for his benefit tells me nothing of which I was not already aware: he did nice things for people he knew while under an onus to do so.

This might have some relevance to people who desire to put his image up on the wall and imagine themselves a close and personal relationship with a cardboard cutout–and I concede that this would likely not be significantly different from actually having such a relationship with Romney–but to any citizen who actually cares about the direction the nation is headed, this sort of drivel is worse than useless. If he was at least spending his political capital to encourage the populous to educate themselves in some small measure, I could be assured that he was at least serious. Unfortunately, this seems not to be the case, though I readily allow that politics in the United States seem to be full of this sort of nonsense.

I certainly admit that it is useful in one respect however: that of convincing voters that he is, in fact, a member of the species homo sapiens rather than a cunningly wrought simulacrum. Perhaps it is even an advisable strategy, in light of his rather dismal performances up to this point. In all seriousness, however, this sort of appeal to emotion is unrelated to the actual concerns of governance and useless to any citizen informed enough to consider the effects of his proposed policy agenda on our nation. So if I may say to dear ol’ Willard: talk policy, and be prepared to be specific. America is listening, and we are not as ignorant as you, or at least your team at the RNC, seems to think we are.

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