Romney’s veep Paul Ryan is exactly the same mistake John McCain made picking Palin: to activate the base he has picked the partner most likely to alienate the middle.
Is anyone in America in favour of privatising Medicare? A few, probably. Maybe a half million rural nutters, Chicago academics and fourth-generation billionaires.
But three hundred and seven million Americans will very much want to keep it, not just because it saved their parents’ lives, but because the Meltdown showed, and showed forcefully, how much a corporation can lose when the wind changes, and they’d prefer on the whole not to die of poverty in their seventies or eighties when they might have been saved from death, free of charge, by the taxes they paid when they were younger, the money they gave to Medicare.
And there has never been in any country on earth a fifty-one percent vote in favour of privatising anything.
There has not even been a five percent vote.
It is something governments only ever sneak through, as Keneally did, and Blair did, and Iemma tried to, and Bligh did, and fall from power because of. Without the privatisations that did for them, Bligh’s party and Keneally’s party would have five times as many seats as they do now. And Blair’s party still in power. And everybody knows it.
Except Andrew Fraser of course, the esteemed young Queensland suicide bomber. What a fool he is, and always was. See my chapter Shame, Fraser, Shame in Goodbye Babylon.
So Romney has signed his death warrant, by embracing policies most Americans abhor.
It’s possible the jig is up in America, and the rich after 2008 aren’t much admired any more.
We shall see in November anyway. Obama was always lucky, and the tide is once again with him in the home stretch.
We shall see.