Mitt Romney is a bully. And he’s just right for the GOP.
May 14, 2012
Mitt Romney says he likes being able to fire people. Mitt Romney takes a drive with a terrified family pet strapped to the roof of his car. Mitt Romney assaulted a gay student while in prep school. Mitt Romney tricked a blind teacher, apparently one he “liked,” letting the man walk into a glass door. He is a bully. Mitt Romney is also the presumed presidential nominee for a political party of unapologetic bullies. Ergo, he is a near-perfect leader for the Tea Party GOP.
American politics in the age of Obama is beset by deep divides in partisanship, ideology and political values. These debates are about more than policy. They have devolved into disagreements about the very nature of empirical reality, facts and science. We’re having fights over whether global warming is real; whether tax cuts for the rich trickle down to the rest of us; whether Barack Obama is a United States citizen.
According to the right-wing media echo chamber, Democrats and progressives are not just wrong on almost every major political and social issue. No, they are treasonous, deserving of death, and want to destroy the country.
Interestingly, research has found that the diametrically opposed worldviews of conservatives and liberals can be a function of differences in biology, brain structure and political personality types. For example, researchers have discovered that the fear centers of conservatives’ brains are over-developed. This in turn makes them highly susceptible to anxieties about social change and threat, and creates a hostility toward people conservatives perceive to be the Other.
Moreover, conservatives tend to be deferential to authority and hierarchy, fearful of change, closed off to new experiences, possessed of a binary world view, attracted to simple moral appeals (right and wrong, good guys vs. bad guys) and highly intolerant of ambiguity. These traits are a formula for authoritarian thinking, which according to the book, has a broad impact on public opinion regarding such topics as immigration, privacy, women’s reproductive rights, national security, gay marriage, and matters of race and racial inequality.