Brand Romney Takes Flight

Brand Romney/Ryan is to be launched this week at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida.

We will be presented with flattering and contrived life stories of Romney and Ryan, woven into a narrative about America and how it can be ‘turned around’ and rescued from Obama’s policy of ‘hate and division.’ The ‘Comeback Team’ above presumably refers to the team that can restore America to its ‘former greatness’.

‘Comeback’ is a throwback to the title of Romney’s 2004 memoir Turnaround: Crisis, Leadership and the Olympic Games. His leadership ‘helped save the Olympics from scandal’. Now he’s going to save America from Obama.

Ordinarily at a political convention, delegates chose the candidate. But the only legitimate candidate, who can speak without reading, Ron Paul, has been muscled out of the picture and won’t be appearing.

Romney’s Convention Power Play: Sununu Evades Ron Paul Delegates To Avoid Floor Fight – Business Insider

Also in the interests of ‘party unity,’ ex-president George W. Bush, his vice-president Dick Cheney, and ex-VP nominee Sarah Palin will not be attending. All will be air-brushed out of existence.

Todd Akin, whose bizarre views on rape caused such a kerfuffle, has been ‘asked’ not to attend.

The delightful Miss Condoleezza Rice will be there. Perhaps she’ll give a piano recital. I suggest a requiem.

Just as there can be beer without alcohol, this will be a political convention without politics. The candidate has been chosen by attrition and skulduggery. Romney isn’t a politician at all. He’s a CEO who wants to ‘lead’ America Inc. To get the job he’s got to turn himself into a brand, just like Tom Cruise and Oprah Winfrey. Not a political party, then, but a launch party.

Romney’s ‘message’ thus far is difficult to make out. It seems to be this:

Obama had his chance and he made a mess of it. Now he’s running a campaign built on ‘anger and divisiveness’.

“That’s the kind of divisiveness that I think Americans recognise and I think it’s one of the reasons why his campaign, despite spending massively more than our campaign, that his campaign hasn’t gained the traction that he would have expected.”

Obama takes things to a new low, the message continues, by trying to link Romney to controversial views on rape recently voiced by another Republican.

Mitt Romney: Obama campaign seeks to ‘divide America’

The bottom line here is that for Romney, Obama is not behaving as a president should. ‘We expect more from a president’. He’d do and say anything to stay in office.

Team Obama’s Reelect Strategy Revolves Around An Unrelenting Negative Campaign

I think the Romney campaign is on to something here. Obama has certainly invoked fear by presenting himself as the protector of America. See Brand Obama seeks emotional traction. It is a but a small step to extend that emotion to fear of Romney/Ryan’s policies.

Fear, of course, is the opposite of hope. Obama is vulnerable here to accusations that he’s reversed emotional direction. Nor does he do ‘fear’ at all well. But the scamps at the White House may well have something up their sleeves.

Romney Ad Puts Obama Campaign Tactics on Trial

The polls suggest that Bush and Romney are evenly matched. It’s all to play for. Who wins will depend on who is most successful in suppressing the vote and getting the vote out. Republicans seem particularly enterprising here.

Republicans across the United States have passed a spate of voter suppression laws aimed at those most likely to vote for Obama. They are specifically targeting African American women who, in the past, created a gender gap that decisively elected Democratic presidents. (Ruth Rosen. Voter suppression: the “Schurick Doctrine” and the unravelling of American democracy, 27 August, 2012.)

As they say, it’s the best democracy money can buy.

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