Thursday, July 19, 2012

Presidential Personality Profiles - Mitt Romney

"Remember when we were little kids and Edmond got that whistle for his birthday and you got a pony? Well, you were so mad that Edmond was happier with his whistle than you were with your pony." - Mercedes, Count of Monte Cristo

There is a certain frustration of seeing other people who are enjoying themselves with so little and asking, "Why can't I be that happy? Why can't I be easily amused? Don't I deserve that type of enjoyment as well?" Jealousy not of a thing, but of a feeling.

Mitt Romney is that child on the playground who is generally befuddled by the game of tag. Why should we endlessly run around in circles trying to touch one another? What's the point of it? With the answer being, of course, "It's fun." Not to Mitt Romney. There is no strategy in this game. There is no puzzle to solve. It's not so much fun as it is what it is. No more.

The cool kids never knew what to make of Mitt. He was not one of them, but not really one to pick on either. He was just this awkward guy who was just there; doing his thing. He doesn't drink, he doesn't smoke, and he doesn't break any of the normal rules. He isn't the guy who is the life of party, but more of the guy who gets invited because there really isn't a reason to dis-include the guy. Mitt "He's okay, I guess" Romney. Saying that he has trouble relating to others would be an understatement.

I find this quality to be endearing. Just watch the guy, he is awkward as all hell. That's who he is. He stands up giving a speech because he knows he is supposed to do. His well-paid advisers have told him so. They know how to play the game and he is doing his best to follow suit. But his mind appears to be somewhere else. Toiling over some other problem in that back of his mind. Wondering "What's next?" He, like Obama, is an introvert. 

His attempts to relate to others have turned out terribly wrong. I believe he is desperately trying. "Gaffe-prone" is the wrong word. It's a term that is part of the dialect of politics. The idea that you are always supposed to say the right thing to everybody; to offend nobody; to play it safe. Given who he is and what he supposed to do to get elected, I don't think he is doing a half-bad job.

I like all of this about Mitt Romney. Because if I ever ran for political office, I would be the exact same way.   I would be perceived as cold and distant when I don't mean to be. I would struggle relating to others because I can't pull out a warm-hearted story at whim. I would be more amused by creating the policy platform or running the fundraising projections than actually campaigning.

For some god-forsaken reason if people actually elected me, I would be a fantastic executive because I would be wanting to solve people's problems with an almost obsessive nature because, just like Dr. House, for the puzzle of it all. Accusations will fly that I  "do not care about people" - only their problems from a business-minded perspective. For that, there will be a certain amount of truth to it, but it will miss the point entirely. It's not about caring or not caring. It's the acting like you do or you do not care. I will never be a great actor.

Nor will Mitt Romney. He doesn't not embody the guy who brought Massachusetts universal health care. Or the guy who successfully turned around the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.  Or a happy and successful family man who raised several kids. He will always embody the awkward kid on the playground that nobody really knows what to make of.

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