QotD: Brainwashed or Light Rinse

 

In honor of Mitt Romney, who really knows how to tick off Republicans, I have a quote from his Dad and the stunning response.

In 1967, as he prepared to challenge President Lyndon Johnson, Romney took a completely different position that U.S. involvement in Vietnam had been a mistake from the beginning. In a TV interview with a Detroit station, he was confronted with the previous statement and basically accused of a flip-flop. (Plus ca change.)

Romney replied: “When I came back from Viet Nam, I’d just had the greatest brainwashing that anybody can get.” He added that after the trip, he made a deeper study of the history of the conflict and concluded that it had been a “tragic” blunder to get U.S. troops into an Asian land war and that in fact it hadn’t been necessary to send U.S. soldiers to prevent a Chinese takeover of Southeast Asia.

The retort, generally attributed to Eugene McCarthy (it’s disputed whether McCarthy said this), helped end his campaign:

Romney says he was brainwashed,” said McCarthy. “I think a light rinse would have been sufficient.

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There are 11 comments.

  1. SkipSul Moderator

    Governor Jim Rhodes of Ohio more memorably said, “Watching George Romney run for the presidency was like watching a duck try to make love to a football.”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Romney_1968_presidential_campaign

    • #1
    • January 9, 2019, at 11:12 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  2. Vectorman Thatcher

    George Romney was born in 1907 to American parents living in the Mormon colonies in Mexico; events during the Mexican Revolution forced his family to flee back to the United States when he was a child.

    Like with John McCain, when George Romney ran for President in 1968 there were comments about him being a “natural born citizen.” Maybe his father’s failure of becoming president has driven Mitt Romney to not only run and lose, but also now potentially challenging Trump in the 2020 primaries.


    Start the New Year right by submitting a Quote of the Day post, the easiest way to start a fun conversation. We have many open dates on the January Schedule. We’ve even include tips for finding great quotes, so choose your favorite quote and sign up today!

    • #2
    • January 9, 2019, at 11:47 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  3. Misthiocracy secretly Member

    I like the paragraph at the end of that article:

    “George Romney’s son Mitt is trying to navigate similar waters. He has changed his position on a number of issues, although he seems to want to deny that he has done and won’t explain clearly why he has done so. I wrote a couple of days ago that he should directly address those switches and explain why he made them. But given his father’s experience with doing so, I guess I can muster a soupcon of sympathy for his reluctance to do so.”

    Whenever one torpedoes a politician for being open and honest about their thinking, one discourages other politicians from ever doing so, hence the maxim: “A gaffe is when a politician accidentally tells the truth.”

    • #3
    • January 9, 2019, at 12:11 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  4. Vectorman Thatcher

    Misthiocracy secretly (View Comment):
    Whenever one torpedoes a politician for being open and honest about their thinking, one discourages other politicians from ever doing so

    There have been many politicians who changed positions, but did so only once after realizing that change was needed. Prime examples are former segregationists like George Wallace and Strom Thurman, the latter also changing from Democrat to Republican. Reagan said he didn’t leave the Democrat Party, the Party left him. Wafflers like Hillary are at the opposite extreme.

    • #4
    • January 9, 2019, at 12:30 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  5. GFHandle Member

    Vectorman (View Comment):

    Misthiocracy secretly (View Comment):
    Whenever one torpedoes a politician for being open and honest about their thinking, one discourages other politicians from ever doing so

    There have been many politicians who changed positions, but did so only once after realizing that change was needed. Prime examples are former segregationists like George Wallace and Strom Thurman, the latter also changing from Democrat to Republican. Reagan said he didn’t leave the Democrat Party, the Party left him. Wafflers like Hillary are at the opposite extreme.

    And then there is Winston Churchill: “Anyone can rat. It takes a genius to re-rat.”

    • #5
    • January 9, 2019, at 12:40 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  6. Western Chauvinist Member

    Did you read Dennis Prager’s piece on Mitt Romney? Devastating!!

    • #6
    • January 9, 2019, at 12:54 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  7. SkipSul Moderator

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Did you read Dennis Prager’s piece on Mitt Romney? Devastating!!

    Prager has sadly become almost unreadable for me these last 3 years. He has a smugness about his arguments that always makes me want to take the opposite tack.

    • #7
    • January 9, 2019, at 1:11 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  8. Western Chauvinist Member

    SkipSul (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Did you read Dennis Prager’s piece on Mitt Romney? Devastating!!

    Prager has sadly become almost unreadable for me these last 3 years. He has a smugness about his arguments that always makes me want to take the opposite tack.

    I know what you mean. He’s let his success go to his head. But I notice it more in his speaking than his writing. I think his critique of Mitt is spot on.

    • #8
    • January 9, 2019, at 1:42 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  9. Vectorman Thatcher

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):
    I think his critique of Mitt is spot on.

    Yes, that article is good.

    • #9
    • January 9, 2019, at 2:27 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  10. Misthiocracy secretly Member

    SkipSul (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Did you read Dennis Prager’s piece on Mitt Romney? Devastating!!

    Prager has sadly become almost unreadable for me these last 3 years. He has a smugness about his arguments that always makes me want to take the opposite tack.

    < Possibly Off Topic Mode = on >

    I think one of the reasons for Jordan Peterson’s likeability is that his talks often have a, “but hey, I might be wrong,” quality about them.

    I think one of the reasons for Jordan Peterson’s unlikeability is that his talks don’t always have that quality about them.

    < Possibly Off Topic Mode = off >

    ;-)

    • #10
    • January 9, 2019, at 2:27 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  11. SkipSul Moderator

    Misthiocracy secretly (View Comment):

    SkipSul (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Did you read Dennis Prager’s piece on Mitt Romney? Devastating!!

    Prager has sadly become almost unreadable for me these last 3 years. He has a smugness about his arguments that always makes me want to take the opposite tack.

    < Possibly Off Topic Mode = on >

    I think one of the reasons for Jordan Peterson’s likeability is that his talks often have a, “but hey, I might be wrong,” quality about them.

    I think one of the reasons for Jordan Peterson’s unlikeability is that his talks don’t always have that quality about them.

    < Possibly Off Topic Mode = off >

    ;-)

    One of the things that horribly bugs me with Prager is is self-assuredness in his always trying to tell you what you’re thinking. He’s no mind reader. He also thinks he knows Christianity better than any Christian, which is likewise galling.

    • #11
    • January 10, 2019, at 6:16 AM PDT
    • 3 likes