In the latest episode, President Obama portrays the rational adult character who calmly "addresses" Hurricane Isaac, pretending to negotiate with yet another irrational force of nature. According to the White House, he is taking the usual balanced approach. Choosing between a Category Five monster and a wimpy tropical storm, the president will split the difference, and proclaim victory when Isaac makes landfall as a Category Two. So eat your peas, Gulf Coasters. He has a three-day campaign swing ahead of him. As the New York Times tells us today, it's hard out there for a philosopher king.
Meanwhile, the irrationalists of the GOP are in full lunatic mode as they cavort in Tampa. Dueling coverage of the hurricane and the convention will exhibit the schizophrenia of the Republicans in all their split personality glory. TV screens will be literally split between the latest updates from the big-government evil National Weather Service and the big-spending deficit hawk anti-government hoarding phonies. New Jersey Gov. Chris "Incredible Hulk" Christie will be overshadowed by the ghost of Katrina. He will be upstaged by George W. Bush in absentia, as an audience of 16,000 corporate media stenographers (three per delegate) looks on.
And then there's the ultimate split personality: Mitt Romney. At this stage of play, there is simply no putting him back together again. Binyamin Applebaum surmises that he is being pulled in two different directions. But it's more like a hundred. He is a living bundle of contradictions collapsing under the weight of his own flimsiness.
But forget all that. RNC Chairman Reince Priebus reminds us that it's all bullshit anyway. As long as they're "nimble" about it and take that vaunted balanced approach, what with Isaac and all, fooling some of the people all of the time and all of the people some of the time is the best one can hope for.
"We have the ability to make alternative plans if we have to, but right now we feel that our message of the American dream and fixing this economy and putting ourselves on the right track for the future of this country — I think it’s a positive message and it’s a message that will always be good. When we’re optimistic about the future and how we’re going to fix this great country and put people back to work, it’s a message that works all the time."Incidentally, the Google search for NimbleMitt brings you to an ad for an arthritis glove. It deadens pain with a combination of heat and snake oil.