“It’s Good To Be A Prince”: Once A Privileged Abuser Of Power, Always A Privileged Abuser Of Power.
Romney would be able to dismiss the bullying story as ancient history if it didn’t confirm what we already suspected about him—that he’s a serial abuser of power.
It is a good general principle that we ought not hold teenage wrongdoing against middle-aged people. Mitt Romney has run a business, run the Olympics, run a state, run for the Senate, and run for president. Surely we can and should judge him on his performance of those public duties.
But what if childhood conduct helps shed a light on adult behavior? Romney’s teenage bullying hurts him because it is consonant with his adult record. Voters may well conclude: once a bully, always a bully; once a privileged abuser of power, always a privileged abuser of power.
If the Washington Post reports of his teenage behavior are true—and even Romney does not dispute them, except to disingenuously say he doesn’t remember—what adult traits do those actions presage?
First, abuse of power. Romney was tall, handsome, and rich. But he was not athletic, at a time and a place when athleticism among young men was the coin of the realm. So he became a cheerleader. Like fellow cheerleaders George W. Bush and Rick Perry, he adopted a macho swagger, perhaps overcompensating for his lack of ability on the field. Maybe that’s why he didn’t confront his nonconformist classmate alone but rather took the coward’s path: assembling a posse in an episode one classmate described as like “Lord of the Flies.”
A less-commented upon part of the Post‘s story on Romney’s teenage years is nearly as cruel as the bullying of his classmate. Cranbrook, Romney’s elite private academy, had a teacher who was so visually impaired the kids called him “The Bat.” Romney and a pal walked The Bat up to a door. Romney beckoned The Bat to walk through first, making a sweeping motion toward the door as if it were open, but it wasn’t. The Bat walked into the closed door as Mitt collapsed in fits of sadistic laughter.
One can draw a straight line from the young man who pinned down a terrified teenager and walked a blind man into a closed door, to the adult who put the family dog in a kennel and strapped it to the roof of the car, to the businessman who laid off hundreds of people, cancelled their health benefits, and paid himself millions while their company went bankrupt. And the line continues: the governor who slashed education and raised fees on the middle class, and the possible president who would use his power to cut taxes on his fellow millionaires while pushing for the gradual demise of traditional Medicare.
Then there is the aura of someone who acts as if the rules don’t apply to him. The Post reported that the abused boy was ultimately expelled from Cranbrook—for smoking a cigarette. Really. The victim got expelled for smoking a cigarette, but Mitt faced no sanctions for maliciously victimizing a vulnerable student and a teacher. It’s good to be a prince. Maybe that’s why Romney felt entitled to take a $10 million bailout for Bain, but opposed President Obama’s bailout of the auto industry. He thinks there’s one set of rules for the privileged, and another for the rest of us.
This is why Romney’s ancient misconduct at Cranbrook haunts him today: it helps illuminate the man who seeks to become the most powerful person in the world.
By: Paul Begala, The Daily Beast, May 11, 2012
No comments yet.
Share This Blog
- “Gov. Pence Feels The Effects Of Epistemic Closure”: Hailing The Beliefs Of Those Living Inside ‘The Bubble’ March 30, 2015
- “How Rand Paul Is Losing His Distinctiveness”: He’s About As Libertarian As An Ambitious Republican Can Be March 30, 2015
- “Working For The Same Boss”: The Coal Industry Is Imploding. Why Is it Still So Powerful in Washington? March 30, 2015
- "Gov. Pence Feels The Effects Of Epistemic Closure": Hailing The Beliefs Of Those Living Inside 'The Bubble'
- "Indiana Takes On America": Discrimination Against Gays, Religious Freedom And Rewriting The Constitution
- "This Did Not Go According To Plan": McMorris Rogers Gets An Earful On ACA
- "How Rand Paul Is Losing His Distinctiveness": He’s About As Libertarian As An Ambitious Republican Can Be
- "Obamacare Opponents Still Await The Apocalypse": Opponents Are As Wrong About Obamacare As Reagan Was About Medicare
- "For The Moment He Feels The Need To Look Like A Moderate": Is Jeb Bush Actually A Moderate, Or Does The Media Just Think He Is?
Affordable Care Act African Americans Bain Capital Bush Tax Cuts Citizens United Congress Conservatives Contraception Corporations Debt Ceiling Democracy Democrats Economic inequality Economy Eric Cantor Florida Foreign Policy Fox News George W. Bush GOP Government Shutdown Gun Control Health Exchanges Health Insurance House Republicans Immigration Immigration Reform Iraq War Jobs John Boehner John McCain Koch Brothers Lindsey Graham Marco Rubio media Medicaid Medicare Middle Class Minorities Mitch McConnell Mitt Romney National Security Newt Gingrich NRA ObamaCare Paul Ryan Politics Poor and Low Income Poverty Racism Rand Paul Reproductive Rights Republicans Rick Perry Rick Santorum Right Wing Ronald Reagan Rush Limbaugh SCOTUS Senate Social Security Spending Cuts Tax cuts Taxes Tax Revenue Tea-party Teaparty Ted Cruz Texas Unemployment uninsured Voter Suppression Wall Street War on Women Wealthy
- RT @jbogeajis: .@raemd95 @WindsorDw @HuffPostPol GOP passes around 1 script, these guys can't sell it. If u can't think for urself, u can't…----------- 8 hours ago
- “We're not going to change the law". A typical conservative, who thinks he knows it all, & keeps proving he doesn't @GovPenceIN @GovPenceIN----------- 9 hours ago
- RT @emilymbadger: Portland, Seattle, San Francisco have all banned city-funded travel to Indiana over its religious freedom law: http://t.c…----------- 9 hours ago
- #MikePence 's lies about religious freedom aren't just white lies. As far as the truth about discrimination is concerned, he's colorblind----------- 9 hours ago
- "@BreakingNews: American Pharmacists Assoc adopts policy discouraging members from providing death penalty drugs @AP wapo.st/19CcrKT"----------- 9 hours ago
- 188,807 hits