Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Romney the Bad Manager, Part 2

Mitt Romney has known for a long time that he was going to run for president. He might have had it in mind way back when he ran against Ted Kennedy for the Senate. He certainly knew back in 2006 when he started his 2008 run for the nomination. And the moment John McCain lost in 2008, Romney knew he was next in line to be the GOP presidential nominee come 2012.

So why didn't he clean up his act? Why didn't he get rid of the accounts in the Caymans and Bermuda and Switzerland? Etc. etc. etc.

And why didn't he get ready for the questions he knew would be coming his way about his tax returns and his years at Bain? Ted Kennedy's campaign attacked him on this same stuff.

How dumb do you have to be? He's been caught flat-footed on all this very predictable brouhaha.

The man is a bad manager. Maybe you can get by in business by being half-assed (I can think of notable examples in businesses) but you can't do it in politics. You have to THINK! And plan. And anticipate. And prepare. It's a skill and a craft and hard work. A lot of business people think it's a hobby they can take up when they get bored with business. They think it's easy. In fact, they despise politicians as not-quite-bright.

Oh, honey, that's a big mistake. Sure, there are some really dumb politicians. (Remember Anthony Weiner?) But to run a good presidential campaign you have to be very good at the craft. In fact, how a candidate runs a campaign is a good indicator of how well he might run the country. Of course some guys have become president who screwed up royally once elected. Remember George W? But they hadn't run their campaigns. They just showed up.

What impressed me initially about Obama after I heard his Iowa speech in January '08 (and was blown away) was the quality of his 2008 campaign. I recognize he didn't run the whole thing. But he found the people who could. And that's what counts.

It was a beautiful, breathtaking job. By golly, he beat the famed "Clinton machine" in the primaries! He beat ol' Bill himself and the very appealing Hilary and all "the smart money". Then he beat war hero John McCain and the lipstick pig from Alaska.

And what's Romney done? One term as governor of Massachusetts. He couldn't even polish off the feeble guys who ran in this year's primaries. Not until they had done him a lot of damage and raised the same Bain Capital/tax return stuff that Obama is beating him over the head with now.

Romney is one sloooow learner. Very slow. We can't afford a president who is a slow learner. No indeedy.

So go back to Bain, Romney. Unreactivate your "retroactive retirement". Or go over to London and straighten out the traffic jam around the 2012 Olympics. Stay with the small stuff, mister. You don't belong in the big leagues.

And don't bother to write if you get work.


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