Can someone explain why Mitt Romney’s comments that are being condemned across the board and on both sides of the Atlantic as a horrible ‘blunder’are considered so outlandish and unacceptable? Let’s take a look at them:
“There are a few things that were disconcerting, the stories about the private security firm not having enough people, supposed strike of the immigration and customs officials, that obviously is not something which is encouraging.”
So, each of the points in turn:
- The private security firm (G4S) didn’t have enough people so he’s right about that. The sheer scale of their incompetence and irresponsibility makes it nothing short of a national scandal and the questions it asked about the ideology of outsourcing have been brought into sharp relief (which is why the government and much of the Labour opposition want us to quickly forget it, get our flags out and give them a good wave). It got to the point when the army had to be called in. That normally indicates a crisis, I think you’ll agree. Romney, clearly not familiar with the to and fro and British politics (or apparently his own total dependence on corporate cash…….) has inadvertently hit the nail on the head.
- The strike (for which the government is solely to blame), had it gone ahead, would have caused massive disruption (nothing to lose any sleep over in my opinion) and was only called off at the last minute so again, he’s right…….
Romney may have been extremely impolitic with his comments but it doesn’t make them wrong. It was a ‘blunder’ only in so far as he spouted off and revealed the truth without thinking through the effect it would have on his election campaign. In some respects such indiscretion is quite commendable and endearing.
Naturally the political establishment here want to gloss over all the problems of the Olympics and the Democrats will unsurprisingly use anything to beat Romney over the head with. But none of that should stop the rest of us acknowledging that Romney is basically spot-on. By accident.
It says something about our warped political culture that Romney lies and dissembles on a daily basis, but gets slaughtered when for pretty much the first time he speaks the truth.