Rick Santorum, yesterday, in Ohio, circumambulating from bigotry and ignorance and incoherence to bigotry and ignorance and incohence and, finally, back to bigotry and ignorance and incoherence:
[The president's agenda is] ... about some phony ideal, some phony theology. Oh, not a theology based on the Bible, a different theology, but no less a theology....
The Catholic church has a theology that says this is wrong, and he’s saying no I’ve got a different ... you may want to call it a theology, you may want to call it secular values, whatever you want to call it, it’s a different moral values....
[T]hat’s not a new low.... I should go back, it is a new low. The president has reached a new low in this country’s history of oppressing religious freedom that we have never seen before.
We are forever being "reassured" by Rick Santorum himself and Santorum's staff and Santorum's party allies and Santorum's press contingent and the media at large that Rick Santorum is a different kind of political threat to Mitt Romney (not to mention Barack Obama), in that Rick Santorum actually believes the vile crap that spews so habitually from his bigoted, shockingly ignorant and often incoherent mouth. This "authenticity," we are further assured, is what makes Santorum so appealing to so many of the few who have with great pluck remained in the disintegrating Grand Old Party.
At long last, (we are also informed), Rick Santorum is a man who genuinely represents the core values of today's movement conservatism, itself set in motion some half-century ago, by Goldwaterism.
With considerably greater freedom of rhetorical movement than Mitt Romney, I protest, on Mr. Romney's behalf. For the very last thing that movement conservatism's first man ever genuinely embraced was the topic of "moral values." It made his thinning, libertarian hair stand on end; he was viscerally repulsed by it; he had always viewed politics and policy as public, but religion and morality as properly private; he was nonetheless ensnared into the maelstrom of cultural morality by desperate advisers (with an irresistible assist from Walter Jenkins).
But movement conservatism -- today, Santorumism -- as true Goldwaterism? No way. There is simply no ideological lineage there; in fact, there is only remarkable hostility.
Mitt, I know you can't say that, because a) your party's primary base is overrepresented by hallucinatory buffoons who b) have never read objective history and c) are contemptuous of all things even remotely related to actual enlightenment, but I can.