American Prospect's Paul Waldman joins the progressively palsied chorus of 'Big Lie'-watchers:
I cannot recall a single presidential campaign ad in the history of American politics that lied more blatantly than [Romney's welfare ad].... [T]hey decided that they don't even have to pretend to be telling the truth anymore.
For sure, this Romney obscenity isn't his first. For at least a year he's been prattling with virtual impunity about President Obama's shameful apologies to the world and about Obama's unprecedented debt and his zero job creation and his "massive defense cuts"--and if I itemized every lie the campaign would be over before I was finished. So I'll stop. Besides, a recreation of Romney's propagandistic crimes is a needless exercise; anyone reading this site already knows them, and even Romney's base accepts that he's a degenerate liar, which of course engenders what little love they do have for him.
It also nearly goes without saying that Romney's rolling deployment of the Big Lie is scarcely anything new in politics. If one is made of sturdy enough stuff, one may choose to recall the GOP's 2010 congressional assault, which wallowed in the counterfeit hysteria of "death panels"; or the 2008 Palinesque Obama-as-terrorist maneuver; or, regressing a bit farther, W., Dick & Co.'s "mushroom clouds"; or one could roam still farther back, from the National Sozialistische Partei's innovative work in ruthless propaganda to the profitably brutal Crusades. All were founded on hideous, and quite big, lies.
What is new in this presidential cycle, however, is the growing number of heretofore unflappable observers who seem shaken by the Romney campaign's brazen contempt for even half- or quarter-truths, let alone whole truths. Waldman's piece reminded me, for example, of an E.J. Dionne appearance earlier this week on MSNBC, in which the mild-mannered scholar of gentle remarks and reserved judgment readily conceded that Romney has indeed lowered political rhetoric to not merely squalid, but "new" depths.
I mentioned Romney's "virtual impunity." That, I have no doubt, will end on the evening of November 6th. My confidence extends only to the wreckage of Romney's presidential aspirations, however. Through the boundless assist of this ghastly Supreme Court, our potential congressional mob of 2013 is looking more wicked every day.
And in the event of that downballot Triumph of Wickedness--gleaming aside its top-of-the-ticket destruction--what will the GOP's hardcore base and strategists and wannabes and moneymen conclude? You got it. That Romney failed to lie enough; that his Big Lies, as Big Lies go, were somewhat admirable, however total victory in the total war of presidential politics clearly requires even Bigger Lies--and if they don't work, yet bigger ones.
Hence another four years of competent, productive, two-party governance will be squandered in sacrifice to the GOP's death spiral--a suicide by its own wretched filth and monstrous lies.