On The Possibility Of Mitt Romney's Election As President Of The United States
With the greatest of respect to American readers, I take much less interest in their country's affairs than I used to. I should, for sure; for all its problems it's still the wealthiest in the world and the financial tribulations we have endured for the past four years have shown that whatever affects it badly still affects the rest of us to a very much greater degree. However R.W. Emerson, one of that nation's most famous men of letters, hit the nail of the difficulties surrounding the ideological divisions in American politics on the head in the 1840's, and after reading his essay on the subject earlier this year I don't really feel I have anything else to add.
For all of the visible policy differences between him and his likely competition, Mr. Romney might as well have been named Identikit Republican Rich Guy Number Four (and I realise that sounds like a brand of cologne; given the current state of American capitalism, I wouldn't be surprised if some thrusting College Republican entrepreneur concocts something like that to sell at the convention - it would give a whole new meaning to the term 'snake oil'). However, given that its holder might just be the next President would it be impolite to ask where on Earth the name 'Mitt' came from? Is is some kind of matronymic? It looks German in origin, but what appears to be his policy platform will inevitably lead to the headline 'The Iron Mitt In The Velvet Glove'. The guy can't help the name he was given, but it seems unstatesmanlike; a bit like having a Prime Minister named Ed.