[Romney's] economic pitch is in many ways contradictory and incoherent, but that’s intentional. Romney isn’t trying to sell Americans on some detailed, comprehensive plan to rebuild the economy. His goal is to offer broad, pleasant-sounding policy prescriptions while playing up dire statistics and anecdotes about the economy and the deficit.
Kornacki's introductory characterization is correct--Romney's pitch is contradictory and incoherent; and Kornacki's subsequent characterization is correct--Romney's goal is to offer pleasant-sounding prescriptions. But therein lies Mitt Romney's internal contradiction: incoherent policy prescriptions cannot by definition be pleasant.
Not to the rational mind, anyway. Incoherence yields chaotic results, or at least it does yield chaotic results in execution and it should yield chaotic results in its campaign debut. Yet we have been deluged for years by torrential assurances from both expert political analysts and amateur political sociologists (one is, for instance, terrorized by the thought of another David Brooks column plucked from another mad social scientist's lab) that American voters don't vote according to the mind; they vote from the heart.
I am not here to refute those findings. Their transcendent validity comes in three little words: George W. Bush. I am here to argue, however, that future elections are not necessarily captive to irrational behaviors of the past; that is, if, perhaps, political observers were to stop insisting that voters vote mostly with their hearts and rarely with their minds, well, maybe voters would pause--in fact might even find it incumbent upon themselves--to think more rationally for a change.
As things are, these persistent assurances that voters' irrational behavior is indeed normal behavior only encourages the irrationality's persistence.