Hard to see how Romney-Ryan can win from here. Ryan proposed, this year, the end of all moneys to FEMA, the agency currently swabbing out and rebuilding Eastern America. Romney proposed, last year, its privatisation.
Romney thinks Big Government should be wound up and the taxes that fund storm repairs given back to the entrepreneurs. He thinks those who make bad choices, like buying a beachside house in the East or catching leukemia, should pay for it; bankrupt their families to pay for it, in millions if need be. Obama looks more merciful than this, and more in control of the winds and waves when crying ‘Peace, be still.’
And of history’s priorities too. On Sunday night the Geronimo film, about the SEALs that shot Bin Laden once in the face and five times in the chest, will be seen by fifty million people keen to vote on Tuesday, and on Monday downloaded by twenty million more; voters who may then judge Obama a man of iron will, and Romney a vacillating pussy. By then Romney-Ryan will no doubt have been asked by stormwashed Ohioans why, if elected, they will cut off the money for the clean-up, or reduce it.
And they may have nothing convincing to say, in this, the state they need to win. And so it will go.
As I always tend to say in weeks like this, ‘Bad policies lose votes.’ And though the Murdochists try each day to remove all hint of policy from political discussion — Craig Thomson’s imaginary strumpet is back again this morning — it all comes back to policy eventually. Had Gore got 285 more votes in Florida in 2000 there would have been no Hurricane Sandy. Had Beazley got 1000 more votes in 1998 there would have been no Iraq War.
Policy is important; and the more we avert our eyes from it the more we suffer down the track.
And this the Eastern Seaboard is discovering as we speak, and watch television, and shake our heads.