Gloves Are Off: Mitt Said 'Bless His Heart' to Barack
Well, we all know that Mitt Romney is a gentleman. Now we also know that Mitt has a keen grasp of the Southern-style, genteel insult, which tends to leave its victim so utterly confused that he simply cannot defend himself.
Oh yes, darlin'. Mitt went there.
Speaking at LeClaire Manufacturing in Bettendorf, Iowa yesterday, Governor Romney delivered the ultimate Southernese insult to his opponent. (Video link here.)
"It is free men and women that drive our economy. Freedom is what makes America work. And President Obama, bless his heart, has tried to substitute government for free people-and it has not worked, and it will never work[.]" (Emphasis mine.)
For anyone outside the South, who may need an accurate translation, allow me to enlighten you.
The phrase "bless your heart" is known throughout the South as the worst, most insulting, most buried-under-sweet-sounding-rhetorical-sugar phrase possible. What we mean, when we say it, is that the object of our pronouncement could not be more the imbecile if he were working hard at the task.
This person is so completely hopeless that only God can come to his rescue with protective blessings. Otherwise, the poor fool is doomed to be a victim of his never-ending shots at his own two feet.
But because the insult is delivered in an offhand or sweet-sounding tone, it creates a state of disabling confusion in its victim.
In this particular instance, Mitt Romney delivered one of the most brilliant rhetorical juxtapositions I've ever witnessed: his own love of individual liberty versus Obama's love of big government. Romney proclaimed his own unwavering fealty for American freedom, inserted the "bless his heart" insult, and then, without missing a beat, came down with the hammer that nails Barack Obama to a T: "he has tried to substitute government for free people -- and it has not worked, and it will never work." (Emphasis mine.)
In one crystal-clear moment, Mitt Romney has successfully and brilliantly captured the theme of this election: American liberty versus freedom-stifling big government. And Romney aimed his verbal thrust at the hearts of both pragmatists and idealistic patriots in one fell swoop. Pragmatists want what works best; Obama's big-government vision hasn't worked and never will. Freedom is the patriot soul's equivalent of oxygen; real Americans require freedom to stay alive.
Governor Romney has been on the receiving end of Barack Obama's Chicago thug-style mocking provocation for months now. Yet rather than become defensive and peevish, Governor Romney has proved above Alinskyite ridicule. Ridicule is the bully's shallow weapon; it is manipulative and without substance. The real man, who is sure of himself and his beliefs, neither needs ridicule nor bends under its childish, emotional spell.
Mitt Romney is going to make a truly fine president, just as he has made a strong, faithful husband and father, spiritual leader, and governor. At this rate, he may even redeem the Boomers' reputation before we all pass from the world scene.
Barack Obama, bless his heart, really doesn't know what just hit him in Iowa this week.