Did someone say creepy and depressing?
Oh God, no.
No, no, no.
In the months before the 2012 election, a group of high-powered consultants and political operatives prepared a secret report for candidate Mitt Romney, explaining how he should take over and restructure the federal government should he win the presidency. […]
But now the secret is out. On May 29, the Romney Readiness Project, the Republican candidate’s transition organization known as R2P, published a 138-page report detailing how it prepared for a potential Romney victory.
The actual document is horrifying. It's horrifying in exactly the way you'd expect it to be horrifying, coming from Mitt Freaking Romney's camp. It proposes treating the entire executive branch like a big financial firm, because THAT IS WHAT MITT ROMNEY KNOWS AND LOVES, PUNY FLESH-HUMANS.
“The White House staff is similar to a holding company” read one PowerPoint slide, which would have been presented to President-elect Romney as part of an expansive briefing on the morning after Election Day. It went on to list three main divisions of the metaphorical firm: “Care & Feeding Offices,” like speechwriting, “Policy Offices,” like the National Security Council, and “Packaging & Selling Offices,” like the office of the press secretary.
I see now how narrowly the satirists, comedians and other snarkish wags of America averted catastrophe last November. There is no way anyone with any sense of humor could have survived the first hundred days of a Mitt Romney "let's treat the Oval Office like a big Wall Street firm" presidency without dying outright. The true cynics would have been killed off within a week; the optimists, within a month. It was a cunning plan to murder comedy outright.
Among the recommendations for the Romney administration:
• Corporate-style training seminars were planned for appointees and nominees before the inauguration to teach management skills.
• A plan to restructure White House operations to suit Romney’s corporate management style, with clear deliverables.
• Detailed flow charts delineating how information and decisions were disseminated through the administration to achieve “unity.”
Once you get past the inherent terror of someone trying to think of the White House as a "holding company" and whatnot, most of the supposed details of the plan seem simplistic at best, for something allegedly the product of a 500 person team—for example, a long series of slides explaining how the White House is organized, written with words like "COO" and "Selling" in an apparent attempt to explain these things to whatever executive business critters were going to be brought on board to run those things. The policy prescriptions are broad and consist almost entirely of the same one-sentence vows Romney was making in various campaign forums. (Given that more than a few tax dollars helped pay for them to come up with this stuff, charging the general public $24.95 to see the depressing end results seems a bit insulting.)
The White House as holding company, though–gonna be seeing that one in my nightmares. Now I know how the people in Russia felt when that meteor whizzed over their heads.