I have drafted a letter to the editor with encouragement from This diary. If I can shape it up to be punchy and original enough, I think there is a good chance of getting published. It is a small paper in a small community--and I am one-for-one, in that they published the only previous LTE I ever wrote.
I am still fearful about submitting as I run my own business in this small, overwhelmingly Republican community. I can't afford to lose any customers. I have tried, in the letter, to focus on one area--Romney's secrecy--and present it as a legitimate concern regardless of where the reader is in the political spectrum.
I welcome input to make the letter more effective, and to scour it for phrases or perspective that would identify it as coming from a strong partisan--both because I want Republicans to take it seriously and get discouraged, and because I don't want to out myself.
And I hope, by posting this, to encourage others to write LTEs. Gotta have something to do while waiting for next weekend's canvassing shift.
Letter below the squiggly. It's currently 661 words.
A Scary Candidate
Beyond the marketing done by political campaigns, how do we know how a candidate would govern? In Mitt Romney’s case, little information is available. We have no idea of his governing philosophy. In telling different groups what he thinks they want to hear, Governor Romney has contradicted himself on every issue of concern to voters.
We cannot glean much from his past performance. No details are available. His company, Bain Capital, was famously secretive. His tenure as governor is a dead end. Email records were destroyed and his staff purchased the hard drives on their computers. The Salt Lake Olympics? Same story. And as everyone knows, Mr. Romney has denied us the insight into his personal priorities and decision-making that we could learn from his tax returns. No, Mr. Romney asks us to make do with a rather odd figure supplied by his accountant, and the admonition, “trust me!”
Mr. Romney’s secrecy makes Nixon look forthright. Still, there are some things we can discern about him. His so-called “gaffes” are revealing. They are not a matter of poor word choice in the heat of enthusiasm. No, Mr. Romney’s embarrassing moments are of a different kind. They reveal the candidate’s unfamiliarity—I’ll say it straight, his ignorance—of areas such as the concerns of the middle class, education, foreign affairs, and intelligence.
No candidate knows everything, of course. Ignorance is partially compensated by choice of advisors. Governor Romney has selected many of the same people who advised George W. Bush: the neoconservatives who brought us elective war in the Middle East, and the economic advisors whose policies brought us to the brink of depression. This tells us something.
There is one more thing we know. Mr. Romney’s ignorance on key issues, after at least five years of running for President, tells us his priorities. If the issues had any importance to him, he would have paid them some attention in those five years. That he has not means they are, to him, inconsequential. That’s scary.