Sunday, July 29, 2012

Who's Yer Daddy, Mitt?

Bonasera: .... Then I said to my wife, "For justice, we must go to Don Corleone."

Don Corleone: Why did you go to the police? Why didn't you come to me first?

Bonasera: What do you want of me? Tell me anything. But do what I beg you to do.
I suppose politicians have always gone hat in hand to the person who pulls the strings--the archbishop's man of business, the clerk with all the file cards. the ward boss.  Franklin D. Roosevelt, riding high at the end of his third term, got himself some grief when he settled the vice-presidential nomination by telling the troops to "clear it with Sidney."*

But have we ever seen anything more embarrassingly supine than the spectacle of Mitt Romney beginning the foreign policy phase of his presidential campaign by going to the capital of a foreign country and meeting with his big donors behind closed doors?  And this at the beck of a prime minister who won't even show him the courtesy of remembering who he is?

I suppose we have to grant the candidate this much, though: I suspect it isn't really his idea. I don't think even this candidate would be so clueless to think he can gain points among the homies by beginning with a kowtow to a foreign leader. And probably not Netenyahu's either--he who I suspect cares far more about showing that he can make an American presidential candidate jump when he snaps his fingers than he is in the more paltry question of who actually wins the race. That leaves the remaining suspect: the money man, Mr. Casino himself, Sheldon Adelson, the 35th richest man in the world, to whom Romney's few hundred millions are a rounding number. In perspective, Adelson probably doesn't understand politics nearly as well as he thinks he does, but if you have that kind of money, nobody will ever clue you in.

Don Corleone: That I cannot do.
Bonasera: I will give you anything you ask!
Undocumented bonus: I asked my friend Ignoto to clarify this stuff about showing up on the eve of Tisha B'av, the solemn anniversary of the destruction of the first and the second temple? Was it another flatfooted gaffe, like telling the Brits they don't know how to run an Olympics, or can he spin it as a gesture of solidarity with a beleaguered people. Ignoto responds:

Well, technically, it's worse to show up on the Shabbath.

It is not a biblical holiday, but a rabbinic one, which means the rules are much less strict.

Interestingly, the fact that the T'ish fall on the Shabbath this year means that the fasting is on the following (this is a product of rabbinic (Tisha B'av) vs Biblical (Shabbas).

This means that those attending banquets would be violating Tisha B'av -- although some people no longer observe since Jerusalem was captured.

He can't spin it as a show of respect, but Netanyahu said it was ok.
That last is perhaps the killer argument, not so? Netenyahu says it's okay, end of story...

Oh wait folks, there's more (link).
*In fairness, Roosevelt survived.   Dewey tried to beat him over the head with the remark but without success.  Fun footnote: apparently some unreconstructed old laborites now run a weblog  named "Clear it with Sidney."


Ken Houghton said...

Adelson, last seen pushing a "Catholic" for the Presidency, sent Willard to the places where he was supposed to solidify his credentials; the places the Krauthammers of the world have been saying were "betrayed" by the Administration.

So far, he's managed to make David Cameron appear witty and Bibi appear autocratic. The first is a major accomplishment, though not one that suggests a Presidential resume; the second is boring, in a way that even Krauthammer will have trouble explaining.

If I were Obama's Campaign Director, I would be celebrating right now.

Jimbo said...

This continues the Romneyshambles since he said on the record to his "friend" Bibi that he would do whatever Bibi told him to do. Sorry POYUS is not a low level Cabinet level of the Israeli Govt,

Mittens is a disgrace and were Obama a white guy, he would be a walk at this point.