Quotes of the day

posted at 9:45 pm on May 11, 2012 by Allahpundit

“I saw it with my own eyes,” Phillip Maxwell, a lawyer who was Romney’s high school pal at the elite Cranbrook School in Michigan, told ABC News. “It was a hack job … clumps of hair taken off.”…

“For Mitt to be a bully just shocks me,” [Maxwell's brother, Peter,] said. “He was the kind of a guy who would bend over backwards to do something for you and would go out of his way to help people, and for him to be characterized as a bully would be the farthest thing from the truth.”…

Democrats have been delighted by the way the story has played out, circulating news clippings to reporters and highlighting the most damning quotes aimed at Romney, such as Maxwell calling the bullying “vicious.”

***

Romney was not disciplined at the time. If such an attack happened in the public schools of 2012, it would probably lead to suspension and might also be referred for expulsion, a number of local public school leaders said following a Washington Post report of the incident involving Romney.

A call to police would probably also be in order because it would be considered an assault, said Alan Goodwin, principal of Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda.

“It would be taken very seriously,” Goodwin said. “Even using the scissors would be considered using a weapon. It would not be an acceptable prank.”

***

It might seem incredible that an episode of bullying that was remembered by so many other people in the room has been forgotten by the Republican candidate for president. In fairness, a lot has happened to Romney since his senior year at Cranbrook — he married, served on Mormon missions, ran a private-equity firm, ran the 2002 Winter Olympics, was the governor of Massachusetts, ran for Senate, and ran for president — twice.

But the science of memory retention suggests that Romney would remember parading his classmates into a room with Lauber to clip his hair, if the experience were significant enough for Romney himself.

“One would think that such an action, if it did occur, would be laden with strong emotions, making it less likely that he would not remember it,” said Steven Lynn, a psychology professor at Binghamton University whose area of expertise is human memory.

***

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.

***

A story that casts a young Romney as intolerant and without basic empathy for someone who may have been gay is unfortunate the day after Barack Obama made the most empathetic statement in support of gay rights ever made by a sitting president. Right now Romney is the bully who gangs up on another student in an unfair fight. He is Biff, and as parents we teach our kids to root for McFly.

But Romney could take back his origins. A transformative moment in a person’s life or personal history can clean one’s slate and let one emerge as a different person. And Romney may have one. A year later, at 19, Romney was a missionary in France. He was involved in a searing car crash that by his own admission deepened his faith and changed his outlook on life. A near-death experience and a coma will do that to you. It would explain why there is no analog for the behavior described in the Post story. Romney and his team might consider having him tell that story again soon.

***

In 1995, a Mormon family, the Nixons, had recently moved to the Boston area and got devastating news when two of their sons were rendered quadriplegics by a terrible car accident — a tragedy that was compounded by the financial strain. Having heard their story, Romney called the parents to see if they’d be around on Christmas Eve. Romney, even though he didn’t know the Nixons very well, showed up with Ann and his sons. They brought the injured sons a new stereo system and other gifts. According to the book, the Nixons “were floored” that Romney had not only taken an interest in them, but that he and Ann had taken time out of their busy schedule to deliver the gifts themselves and turn it into a family event to set an example. Romney also offered to pay for their sons’ college educations and participated in multiple fundraisers for them over the years. “It wasn’t a one time thing,” the father told the authors.

One time, Romney found out that a church member had broken his foot by falling off a ladder trying to remover a hornet’s nest. Romney showed up and devised a way of removing it from the inside of the house. “Everyone who has known Romney in the church community seems to have a story like this, about him and his family pitching in ways big and small,” Kranish and Helman write. “They took chicken and asparagus soup to sick parishioners. They invited unsettled Mormon transplants to their home for lasagna.” Another time, a fire broke out near where Romney lived and he “organized the gathered neighbors, and they began dashing into the house to rescue what they could: a desk, couches, books” until the fire fighters made them stop. He also helped build a playground to honor a neighbor’s child who had died of cystic fibrosis. “There he was, with a hammer in his belt, the Mitt nobody sees,” the neighbor, Joseph O’Donnell recounted. “Romney didn’t stop there,” the book reads. “About a year later, it became apparent that the park would need regular maintenance and repairs. ‘The next thing I know, my wife calls me up and says, “You’re not going to believe this, but Mitt Romney is down with a bunch of Boy Scouts and they’re working on the park.”’…

Personally, I don’t think any of this should have bearing on whether or not Romney deserves to be president. But those who want to make the fact that Romney reportedly did something inexcusable in high school into a campaign issue must also grapple with his numerous acts of charity and generosity over the course of his lifetime.

***

“The real question here is, is Mitt Romney a bully? And the answer is no,” she said. “Mitt Romney is absolutely, as his other friend from high school said — he doesn’t have a vicious bone in his body.”

In defending Romney as “deeply compassionate” and “unfailingly kind,” she pointed to moments during the GOP primary when Romney was “being attacked from every side.”

“His response was always professional, calm, civil,” she pointed out. “In fact, he even intervened on behalf [of] — to try to help — Gov. Perry when he was stumbling [in attempting to remember a talking point during a debate]. His impulses are very kind impulses and there should be no debate about whether or not Gov. Romney is a bully.”

***

It’s standard fare for revelations about a candidate’s past to be leveraged against him. But it’s unfair to draw sweeping conclusions about Romney’s character based on allegations of high school cruelty. For one thing, it’s hypocritical. The vast majority of high schoolers, as anyone who attended high school can tell you, are pretty unbearable. They can be mean, stupid, cliquish, insecure. They blame everything on their parents, probe for signs of weakness, bad-mouth one another. There is no such thing as a human being who did not make bad decisions in high school, whether it involved binge drinking or bullying a weaker kid. That’s not to minimize the pain Romney allegedly caused; as Horowitz shows, the incident haunted both the victim and some of the perpetrators for a very long time. But it’s not necessarily a measure of who Romney has become.

It was silly four years ago to argue that Barack Obama was unsuited for the presidency because he smoked pot and snorted cocaine once upon a time. It is silly to reach the same conclusion about Romney now. Recreational drug use and adolescent bullying are different — the former crime, most of the time, is victimless. But in 1965, homophobia was even more common than it is now. That doesn’t excuse it, yet even today, in what is supposed to be an era of social progress, anti-gay epithets are still flung haphazardly by kids grasping for touchstone insults, including kids who aren’t anti-gay…

It would be relevant if Romney exhibited this kind of bad judgment, prejudice or cruelty in his adult life. There’s no evidence of that. If Obama is allowed to “evolve,” Romney is entitled to the same privilege.

***


***

Via the Daily Rushbo.


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Well, I’ve officially turned into a pumpkin. So, I’m going to roll myself off to bed.

Goodnight, all. Have a blessed Saturday!

4Grace on May 12, 2012 at 4:49 AM

…night 4Grace…night and thanks Dire…night loving!…

KOOLAID2 on May 12, 2012 at 4:57 AM

4Grace on May 12, 2012 at 4:46 AM

So far Romney has been able to stay on message

lovingmyUSA on May 12, 2012 at 4:57 AM

Shite…it’s 4 o’clock! Night…

lovingmyUSA on May 12, 2012 at 4:59 AM

Me too, never seen that one…it’s with Paula Cole…

lovingmyUSA on May 12, 2012 at 4:44 AM

Bingo!!..Beautiful voice!!..:)

Dire Straits on May 12, 2012 at 5:07 AM

KOOLAID2 on May 12, 2012 at 4:57 AM

Later ..Enjoyed it!!..:)

Dire Straits on May 12, 2012 at 5:08 AM

My absolute, hands down favorite of his. Awesome.

I’ve never seen that video. I’m going to watch it again…and again.

4Grace on May 12, 2012 at 4:33 AM

+100..:)

Dire Straits on May 12, 2012 at 5:10 AM

4Grace on May 12, 2012 at 4:49 AM

Enjoyed it as always!!..:)

Dire Straits on May 12, 2012 at 5:10 AM

lovingmyUSA on May 12, 2012 at 4:47 AM

Very nice tune!!..Enjoyed it!!..:)

Dire Straits on May 12, 2012 at 5:12 AM

Well, one more for the morning, and the MSM

lovingmyUSA on May 12, 2012 at 5:16 AM

Night Dire, my friend…

lovingmyUSA on May 12, 2012 at 5:17 AM

lovingmyUSA on May 12, 2012 at 5:17 AM

Night to you friend..Enjoyed it!!..:)

Dire Straits on May 12, 2012 at 5:21 AM

This portion of AP analysis is by far one of the most misinformed statements I have ever read..

“Recreational drug use and adolescent bullying are different — the former crime, most of the time, is victimless”

I am heading home to Laredo, Texas today to visit my mother who has been sick, about a month ago when I was there, 14 dead bodies were found in 10 plastic bags and left at the door steps of the Nuevo Laredo City Hall. Last week when I was there, 9 bodies were found hanging from a bridge with 14 decapitated bodies found in a van right by the bridge in Nuevo Laredo. Meanwhile, a city who shared a culture with it’s sister US city has been destroyed…800 businesses have closed down, leaving families suffering in REAL poverty that is beyond the belief of a US citizen. Many of the atrocities are never reported because the drug cartels kill Mexican journalists and their families who report the violence.

Victimless crime? I would say not.

mark cantu on May 12, 2012 at 5:51 AM

sun isn’t up yet. wonder what policy issue sketchy is going to flip flop on today.

renalin on May 12, 2012 at 6:16 AM

OK, time to sneak back in while everyone’s asleep and grab a snack.

This portion of AP analysis is by far one of the most misinformed statements I have ever read..

mark cantu on May 12, 2012 at 5:51 AM

Yum. The irony of that statement was absolutely delicious.

sun isn’t up yet. wonder what policy issue sketchy is going to flip flop on today.

renalin on May 12, 2012 at 6:16 AM

May as well do gay marriage. Apparently those flip flops are in style these days.

Or maybe he’ll just eat a dog.

Damn, now you made me lose my appetite.

RINO in Name Only on May 12, 2012 at 6:47 AM

just wait. Obama is gonna get a haircut in the debates. Just yous guys wait!
////

ted c on May 12, 2012 at 6:53 AM

Victimless crime? I would say not.

mark cantu on May 12, 2012 at 5:51 AM

absolutely. I live in a rural area and meth is making a mess of things around here. I see all sorts of victims.

Terrye on May 12, 2012 at 7:04 AM

Mornin’!

annoyinglittletwerp on May 12, 2012 at 7:10 AM

May as well do gay marriage. Apparently those flip flops are in style these days.

RINO in Name Only on May 12, 2012 at 6:47 AM

wouldn’t be surprised. after the grenell flap, mitt will want to make nice. gotta win over those independents doncha know.

renalin on May 12, 2012 at 7:23 AM

The fact that Holder’s inJustice Department is attempting to cause him grief is enough for us to rally around somebody trying to protect his jurisdiction from the influx of illegals.

AZfederalist on May 12, 2012 at 12:47 AM

Speaking of:

…142 House Democrats backed an amendment from Utah Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz Wednesday, which prevents the Department of Justice from using taxpayer funds to lie to Congress. Though 41 Democrats voted against it, the bipartisan support could be a sign that frustration over the administration stonewalling on Fast and Furious transcends party lines. Source

FINAL VOTE RESULTS FOR ROLL CALL 226

Flora Duh on May 12, 2012 at 8:00 AM

FINAL VOTE RESULTS FOR ROLL CALL 226

Flora Duh on May 12, 2012 at 8:00 AM

Since it appears HA has had more important political news to report in the past few days, check out these videos of my main man, Trey Gowdy, arguing on the House Floor for support of the Chaffetz Amendment.

Fast & Furious: Congressman slams DOJ, proposes cutting salaries over refusal to comply with subpoenas

Round 2: Rep. Gowdy rails again on the House floor against DOJ over Fast and Furious

Flora Duh on May 12, 2012 at 8:16 AM

This story is getting way too much mileage from the msm. Give ‘um credit tho, they are really trying to prove their impossible point. Wonder if they know or care just how much people are laughing at them over this ‘event’. Have they asked to root around Mitt’s emails yet?

Kissmygrits on May 12, 2012 at 9:29 AM

Flora Duh on May 12, 2012 at 8:16 AM

Thanks for that. No matter what people say, there are still some good people in congress. I don’t agree that they all need to go, and certainly not this guy. I wonder what democrat said this was all wrapped up and the people responsible have been punished.

Night Owl on May 12, 2012 at 9:30 AM

For those Democrats discussing memory loss please recall Hillary’s testimony before Congress on the Rose Lawfirm documents found in her office.
Wasn’t it 72 “I don’t recall” statements?

barnone on May 12, 2012 at 9:52 AM

This is the most stupid election I have seen in my lifetime. Dogs on top of cars, eating dog meat, high school pranks from 50 years ago, the sex life of college students, etc. Does anyone care that Americans are losing their freedoms every day while the media is talking about this garbage? Gingrich would know how to stay on message and get the media coverage for it. He’s a lot of things, but boring isn’t one of them. Maybe he can wake up Romney’s campaign.

lea on May 12, 2012 at 10:12 AM

…142 House Democrats backed an amendment from Utah Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz Wednesday, which prevents the Department of Justice from using taxpayer funds to lie to Congress. Though 41 Democrats voted against it, the bipartisan support could be a sign that frustration over the administration stonewalling on Fast and Furious transcends party lines. Source

FINAL VOTE RESULTS FOR ROLL CALL 226

Flora Duh on May 12, 2012 at 8:00 AM

First line from the article: Congressional Democrats are abandoning their party line en masse to support efforts to hold the administration accountable for Operation Fast and Furious.

hahahhahahaha the ‘Rats are abandoning ship en masse – last week on Fox News, I first heard it mentioned that some Dems were finally starting to gang up on Holder over F&F, too. To this degree though? Wow.

Is it because they see the writing on the wall pointing to 0bamessiah’s/Holder’s guilt? Is it too cynical to wonder if they’d be doing so if they were confident in 0bamessiah’s reelection chances and/or His ability to help Dems win their elections? :)

It is gonna be fun to watch so much of the MSM avoid covering this as they did when they got scooped by the National Enquirer over the John Edwards’ “love” child story!

Bizarro No. 1 on May 12, 2012 at 10:19 AM

Thanks for that. No matter what people say, there are still some good people in congress. I don’t agree that they all need to go, and certainly not this guy. I wonder what democrat said this was all wrapped up and the people responsible have been punished.

Night Owl on May 12, 2012 at 9:30 AM

I agree with you, but I’d go even further – I think most of the Republicans are fine, I see the weak leadership (especially McConnell imo) as the real problem.

Bizarro No. 1 on May 12, 2012 at 10:26 AM

Night Owl on May 12, 2012 at 9:30 AM

True but getting rid of a few sends a nice message. I wouldn’t mind Orin Hatch staying if we would admit that his constituents have valid concerns and not whine about public push back.

Cindy Munford on May 12, 2012 at 10:39 AM

Flora Duh on May 12, 2012 at 8:00 AM
Flora Duh on May 12, 2012 at 8:16 AM

You cannot be thanked enough for the research and commentary that you provide. Thanks again.

de rigueur on May 12, 2012 at 10:46 AM

You cannot be thanked enough for the research and commentary that you provide. Thanks again.

de rigueur on May 12, 2012 at 10:46 AM

You’re welcome and thank you.

Though it drives me crazy, I’ll have to admit I sometimes find myself getting caught up following the left’s newest shiny distraction.

But thinking about the millions of families in the country who are hurting because of this economy, and the families of Brian Terry & Jamie Zapata who are desperately seeking answers to just who is responsible for their murders, helps get me back on track.

Flora Duh on May 12, 2012 at 11:00 AM

“In 1995, a Mormon family, the Nixons … “

Yet another example of Mormons helping only other Mormons.
Gosh oh golly, what a swell guy! /sarc
~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on May 12, 2012 at 12:38 PM

If this were being offered in court to prove that my client was a bully 50 years ago when he was 17 in high school, the first question you have to ask is what’s the foundation? How many witnesses were there and how good was their testimony? The primary witness is dead.Were any contemporary records made. How detailed are the descriptions? Have they remained consistent. This is why we have statutes of limitations.

Of course, this isn’t court. All they need to do is tarnish, and since the only mud the left can find to sling is pretty thin, that’s the best they can hope for. This is closest thing to prostitution I’ve seen in the field of “journalism.”

flataffect on May 12, 2012 at 1:11 PM

Yet another example of Mormons helping only other Mormons.
Gosh oh golly, what a swell guy! /sarc
~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on May 12, 2012 at 12:38 PM

Are you just another tool making crap up for fun, or are you actually this ignorant?

RINO in Name Only on May 12, 2012 at 6:46 PM

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