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We've been reading for the past couple of days about an anonymous Romney adviser who assures us that Romney is more qualified to deal with England because of his deep understanding of the Anglo-Saxon heritage.

I guess that Romney foreign policy adviser hasn't been speaking with the other Romney foreign policy advisers who have been whining that President Obama has received WAY TOO MUCH admiration and support from Prime Minister Cameron.

Nile Gardiner, another foreign policy adviser to Mr Romney, previously described the Prime Minister’s behaviour in Washington as a “sad exercise in hero-worship before an extremely liberal White House”, which had shown itself willing to “knife London in the back” over the Falkland Islands.

“David Cameron’s wholehearted support for Barack Obama has significantly harmed the image of the British Conservative Party among US conservatives, who revere its greatest figures: Margaret Thatcher and Winston Churchill,” Mr Gardiner wrote after the visit.

Who wants a President actually getting along gangbusters with the other country's leader when you could have the guy whose affinity for England is just written into his DNA?

I came across a nugget later in the article that I think illustrates how deep Romney's understanding of England goes. With just a few lines, Romney paints a dazzlingly nuanced picture of England, imbued with his understanding of its culture, heritage, and sweeping impact on world history.

"England is just a small island," he wrote in his memoir 'No Apology'. "Its roads and houses are small. With few exceptions, it doesn't make things that people want to buy”.
"England is just a small island."  

I can think of only one other writer of travelogues who can take such a complex destination and sum it up in such a succinct manner.

That writer's name is Ford Prefect.  

"If you're a researcher on this book thing and you were on Earth, you must have been gathering material on it."

"Well, I was able to extend the original entry a bit, yes."

"Let me see what it says in this edition, then. I've got to see it."
... "What? Harmless! Is that all it's got to say? Harmless! One word! ... Well, for God's sake I hope you managed to recitify that a bit."

"Oh yes, well I managed to transmit a new entry off to the editor. He had to trim it a bit, but it's still an improvement."

"And what does it say now?" asked Arthur.

"Mostly harmless," admitted Ford with a slightly embarrassed cough.

--The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

Perhaps what we ended up with was Romney's expanded version, the first draft simply being: "England: Island."

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Comment Preferences

  •  wish i could double rec for ref to hitchhiker's (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MBishop1, northsylvania, meralda, Wee Mama


    still smiling - through the tears that this is the "best" that america has to offer for a republican candidate.

  •  Funny, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wee Mama, MBishop1

    but the English are fairly self deprecating and refer to Britain as a small island fairly often. Depending on who you are talking to this can be an excuse for one lane roads and infinitesimal living spaces, or their deep seated hostility towards immigrants of every race and religion.
    Authors take advantage of this. Bill Bryson, a beloved American expat who has been explaining Britain to the British for years wrote Notes from a Small Island in 1996, and Andrea Levy's 2004 book, Small Island, turns the concept inside out by showing the problems faced by Jamaican immigrants after WWII, who had come from an even smaller island.

    "There's a crack in everything; that's how the light gets in". Leonard Cohen

    by northsylvania on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 01:15:31 AM PDT

    •  That being said (7+ / 0-)

      Romney has totally stuck his silver foot in his mouth now! He had the temerity to knock Britain's preparedness for the Olympics (something we've been doing for weeks, but never mind).
      The comments below are priceless:

      Personally, I could wish the Olympic games further, but I strongly object to yanks coming over here and telling us what we do and don't want. Who the hell do they think they are?
      We should ban foreign politicians from holding fund-raising dinners in this country (Romney is charging up to $75,000 per person). One of the beneficial side effects of doing so would be that American idiot politicians like Romney wouldn't come here and bore us all to death with their vapid opinions.
      I suggest Cameron uses some robust Anglo-Saxon language to tell him where to go.
      Cameron is letting Romney come over for tea at Number 10, but he isn't doing a photo op at the front door, which is definitely a snub.

      "There's a crack in everything; that's how the light gets in". Leonard Cohen

      by northsylvania on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 03:58:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Even on one of the easiest foreign policy tours (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        that could be drawn up, he's already managed to stir up a few incidents.  The Anglo-Saxon thing, now the Olympic criticism, and talking about his classified meeting with the head of MI-6.

        If this man ever gets sent into an actually delicate diplomatic situation, he will end up starting World War III.

    •  Well, self deprecatory vs outsider deprecatory... (4+ / 0-)

      Jokes and self referential attitudes are fine if YOU are one of them... Jewish jokes fall flat when told by non-Jews... Ghetto jokes work when an African American person tells them... Not so much by a clueless White person.... we can be humorously scathing or dismissive of our own identity...

      and Brits? It is the same: they can slag themselves silly and it is more acceptable generally to them, all things being equal, than a Yank coming over and slagging Brits in their own backyard... I have seen US comics recounting something about England and the English in England that was probably fine for their middle and low information US audience back home who they probably did well with but on UK TV? a frosty uncomfortable silence and then on to other things...

      I had a young but not that young cousin who upon meeting an older British couple touring California went into a very poor caricature cockney accent mixed with "pip pip, tally ho, I say" stereotype catch phrases... and besides the mixed and awful accent it applied even less as the couple was from Wales... needless to say the attempt at whatever it was fell flat and we all tactfully just ignored it....

      But my cousin was not running for president nor did they have any pretensions about their international experience... In contrast Mitt will not get the polite but uncomfortable silences and people changing the subject or using distractions... ooh look over there sparkly...!... or oooh look out scary brown Socialist Moo-slim!!

      Looking away from the unending Romney and campaign misstatements,  fudges, evasions, outright falsehoods, flip flops and social awkwardness and odd knowledge gaps cannot work since there is just far too much of it... sure many will not want to see it or even admit to themselves or others that it exists but but plenty of others can't help but notice a whole lot of it.... And his robot, bully, faulty sense of humor falls flat on top of it all. HA HA poor or inept! ha ha small, hardly worth robbing! haha son's face in the plate of food! ha ha! ... and does he expect the little people or those on the small island to laugh along with him?

      Pogo & Murphy's Law, every time. Also "Trust but verify" - St. Ronnie (hah...)

      by IreGyre on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 04:42:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Words from scary brown Socialist Moo-slim (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Oh Mary Oh, northsylvania
        Ramadan is an opportunity to contemplate, to pray and to give generously, and it is a holy month which I know many Muslims in the UK and around the world will be observing.

        On a personal note, it’s an opportunity to focus on what really matters in life, including the importance of family, of communities and neighbours, and of those who are less fortunate than ourselves.

        So on behalf of the Conservative Party I want  to say to all those starting the month of Ramadan today, Ramadan Mubarak

        from the site of Baroness Warsi, Co-Chairman of the UK Conservative Party.

        (p.s., the greeting is traditional, mubarack often being translated as 'joyous' or, when used as a name, 'bringer of joy')

        Fight poverty, oppression, hunger, ignorance, disease and aggression wherever they occur.

        by Lib Dem FoP on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 07:35:32 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Willard's a merchant with his thumb (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pamelabrown, Wee Mama, MBishop1

    on the scale.

    "Britain is a small island" may be characteristic, but he gives himself away with the reference to people wanting to buy.

    Wonder if he's getting the accommodations for himself and his horse for free.

    Willard's forte = "catch 'n' cage"

    by hannah on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 03:29:44 AM PDT

  •  "Just a small island" (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    durrati, Wee Mama, Bob Duck, MBishop1

    Words fail me. On second thought, no, they don't:

    This royal throne of kings, this scepter'd isle,
    This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars,
    This other Eden, demi-paradise,
    This fortress built by Nature for herself
    Against infection and the hand of war,
    This happy breed of men, this little world,
    This precious stone set in the silver sea,
    Which serves it in the office of a wall,
    Or as a moat defensive to a house,
    Against the envy of less happier lands;
    This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England..

    "Just a small island"--just a small goddamned island that gave US our language, the best, richest literature in recorded history, the basis for our law, the basis for our government, the basis for our rights.

    What kinda goddamned moron IS Willard?  He doesn't even know history?  Willard is a rat.

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

    by Diana in NoVa on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 04:48:30 AM PDT

  •  Just a small island (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wee Mama, MBishop1

    that until 60 years ago ran the largest empire the world had ever seen - one quarter of the world landmass and one fifth of its population.

    that currently makes some of the worlds favorite top end cars like Aston Martin, Bentley and Rolls Royce (even if they are owned by Mittens stylee outsourcing from abroad). Not to mention those Range Rovers that Mittens plutocrat aristo mates like to show up to his fundraising junkets in.

    That gave the world great classic films like A Matter of Life and Death, Lawrence of Arabia, Clockwork Orange etc?

    Y know what Mit.... go f*ck y self.

  •  What is this obsession Romney has with size (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wee Mama, Bob Duck, MBishop1, freesia

    of things like trees and roads?

    "The trees are just the right height."

    "The roads are small."

    It reveals neither a nuanced thinker nor an extensive vocabulary.

    That's one more thing to add to my long list of small problems. --my son, age 10

    by concernedamerican on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 05:56:53 AM PDT

  •  Bwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Oh Mary Oh, MBishop1
    “David Cameron’s wholehearted support for Barack Obama has significantly harmed the image of the British Conservative Party among US conservatives, who revere its greatest figures: Margaret Thatcher and Winston Churchill,” Mr Gardiner wrote after the visit.
    I suspect Thatcher and Churchill would revile the modern US Conservative movement. What's so funny, is that they're not conservatives in any way, shape, or form. When you believe in "anything goes" economic, energy, environmental, and firearm policies, you're not a conservative, you're a liberal of the worst stripe. You're a liberal who believes the government has no right to regulate the things it needs to regulate the most.

    I'm no philosopher, I am no poet, I'm just trying to help you out - Gomez (from the song Hamoa Beach)

    by jhecht on Thu Jul 26, 2012 at 06:04:48 AM PDT

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