I want to keep this brief, partly because I don’t have a real interest in politics and we already have a poly sci major on board, and partly because I don’t think it’s a big deal. But I guess the latter is belied by my posting. I need to preface this by saying that I am by no means sympathetic to the conservative agenda or its candidates, but I am sympathetic to logic and tempered thinking, as emotionality is the quickest route to bad policy (see: 9/11 and the Patriot Act).
Anyway, the nonissue of the Romney/Perry $10k bet from last night’s debate exploded in the media immediately, with #what10kbuys becoming a trending topic on Twitter among the whining liberal class. Apparently, Mit has “lost” his common appeal because he can afford to make a random bet for $10,000, while the more valiant of our 99% class are spending that money on broken down cars and hospital bills. But when you look at the public tax records of our elected officials (and as you overlook the invasion of privacy in obtaining and obsessing over those records), THEY’RE ALL MILLIONAIRES. The Clintons, Obamas, Edwards, Romney, etc. Every last one of them. Since our form of democracy is more like a covert oligarchy/plutocracy/quibble with semantics as you wish, we (on both sides of the proverbial aisle) like to pretend we want, or could ever get, an outsider, some mythical “Maverick from Main Street” to shake up the system. And then we want to ridicule, rightfully so, the Sarah Palins and Michelle Bachmanns and (maybe less rightfully so) the Ron Pauls who do have more of a claim to “outsider” thinking, notwithstanding their seeming incompetence.
In my own opinion, I of the 0.0000000028% that resides at (address withheld), it would be MORE deceptive/insulting for a candidate to make a $1 bet, a la the movie Trading Places, and to continue to pretend that they are among the “common folk”, as has been the conservative M.O. for years (not surprisingly coinciding with the stark increase in wealth disparity). Of course, politics is all about impressions, not substance, and this has produced a hashtaggable trend for whiny liberals to rally around. But it will be just as quickly subverted when the winner of the wager donates that $10k to charity, which is the obvious course of action for a savvy campaign manager. And then, will the liberal rabble complain about the fact that the rich have the ability to make such donations, or will they suckle at the welfarish teat that is private giving?