The Etch-a-Sketch kvetching . . .

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Sweet nostalgia . . .

. . . going on among certain activists and supporters of Romney’s opponents strikes me as just a bit too high-toned to be taken seriously. That’s not to say it’s either surprising or dumb; you have to expect Mitt’s rivals to seize on any opportunity they can to steer the subject of discussion away from his big win in Illinois however they can, and Eric Fehrnstrom gave them a convenient alternative. So, of course they’re going to raise hell about it. If Rick Perry were still in the race, I’d probably be singing along with the chorus at the top of my lungs.

But, since he ain’t and I’m not, I may as well add the perspective of a guy who no longer harbors any illusions as to the inevitable outcome of the primaries — which is to say, it’s meaningless. It’s meaningless in the context of the delegate count, it’s meaningless in the context of the individual primaries that are still to be contested, it’s meaningless in every imaginable way. But, as long as people are talking about unfortunate analogies, they’re not talking about an even less fortunate inevitability.

Still, the reaction among the Hiroo Onoda factions of the primary race strikes me as just about 50% too strident — perhaps even as contrived as going to Men’s Warehouse and getting fitted for a suit, only to walk out without buying it as a way of protesting their allegiance with the 99%. After all, it’s not as if what Ferhnstrom was talking about is some wildly radical new approach to presidential politics. In fact, the analogy he drew, for all the uproar it’s caused, sounds vaguely familiar in the context of primary-vs.-general election political analysis (though, admittedly, I can’t recall where I’ve heard it before and don’t feel like searching for an example).

But, more than anything, it’s meaningless because it wasn’t Mitt Romney doing the talking in this instance. It was his longtime political aide talking shop with people who use such analogies everyday as an ineffective way of making political analysis more accessible and less stultifying to an audience made up of people who had an Etch-a-Sketch growing up, and whose lives have since become so bereft of joy that they watch political talk shows for entertainment. Most people aren’t like that; not even Republican primary voters. So, there’s little chance this whole matter is going to generate the level of outrage necessary to destroy Mitt’s hopes.

And those who do happen to glance up from their bowl of Ramen upon hearing the words “Etch-a-Sketch” will do so with a sense of nostalgia only to be confronted with the image of Newt or Santorum disdainfully brandishing the beloved relic of their childhoods and say to themselves, “Who the hell hates Etch-a-Sketch? What kind of monster is this guy?”

And besides, doesn’t all this just amount to yet another rehashing of everything everyone already knows about Mitt Romney, anyway? His entire political career seems to have been premised on the underlying concept of the Etch-a-Sketch? You run for the Senate against Ted Kennedy, say a bunch of crap that puts you to the left of him, go on to lose by a wide margin — shake vigorously, run for Governor. Repeat as needed.

Does waving around the flagship product of the Ohio Art Company really provide the compelling imagery that’s been lacking thus far in the relentless drive to deprive Mitt Romney of the nomination? I mean, people have been following the guy around with dog crates on top of their cars for Pete’s sake. If that hasn’t derailed his candidacy, it’s hard to see how waving around a near-universal symbol of the good old days is going to do the trick.

Why not taunt the audience with delicious servings of apple pie a la mode while you’re at it? It’s akin to railing against Rick Santorum’s views on contraception by holding up babies, or Newt’s obsession with Lean Six Sigma by holding up . . . something. Idunno.


UPDATE: Man. That’s one bad-ass guitar solo.

UPDATE II: Many thanks to rdbrewer at Ace of Spades for the sidebar link! Follow him on Twitter — rdbrewer4.

About Walt

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5 Responses to The Etch-a-Sketch kvetching . . .

  1. ladyczarina says:

    Personally I think that likening Romney to an ”Etch-A-Sketch” is the consumate description of him. And when he shakes himself and starts with a whole new screen in the future I’m hoping I will be able to restrain myself from saying ”I told ya so…..” to his delusioned supporters.

  2. ladyczarina says:

    Meanwhile, when the eventual certainty does indeed play itself and he starts acting out his RINO ways I hope the fact that I neither support nor vote for him will be enough to keep my blood pressure in check.

  3. The etch-a-sketch comment NOT made by Mitt has been discussed for two days…on all of the radio talk shows, all of the blogs, all of the cable news shows….etc.

    What Santorum said TODAY was NOT discussed on any radio talk show..and on no cable show on Fox except for 2 minutes on Bret Baier’s show at the end.

    I think it is another example of the conservative media acting like their counterparts on the MSM. What is amazing is that what they ARE talking about instead of what Santorum said is their war with liberal media. There’s a video talking about killing Rush, so that is huge. Of course the play on Broadway about assassinating Pres. Bush when hew as in office wasn’t such a big deal to the conservative media…but, oh well.

  4. The Mega Independent says:

    Romney has to embrace the etch-a-sketch thing and turn it back around to talking about wiping the slate clean from Obama. They want to make him the “etch-a-sketch candidate”, he needs to change the meaning of what that is.

  5. ladyczarina says:

    Actually the remark was made by Romney’s campaign manager. Now who would know what Romney has in store better than his very own campaign manager? Just wondering…..