We should be grateful that the mask has slipped. Mitt Romney has bluntly staed that he is “not interested in the very poor”. He qualifies this by saying that the “very poor” have a safety net and he will ensure that the saftey net remains and will repair it as necessary.
Yet this is a perfect illustration of how meaningless the concept of “compassionate conservatism” actually is. There is no such thing. Millionaire Romney is interested in the “middle” because he allows for the fact that they can be aspirational. Romney does not believe that the very poor are entitled to any aspiration….other than being fed at a soup kitchen.
That seems not very extraordinary when speaking of the relationship between the “Western World” donating aid to Africa but it is an extraordinary statement when a Presidential candidate speaks of his own fellow citizens. The fact is that in United States being very poor is actually an unAmerican activity.
Being “in the middle”..actually being hard pressed is a patriotic act….as the conervatives would have us believe. The test of American patriotism is to at least try and overcome being hard-pressed. The “middle” interests Romney not just because of conservative philosophy but they are a key demographic. I suggest thats the “interest”.
Yet the “middle” are perhaps closer to the “very poor” than a millionaire conservative. And perhaps Romney underestimates their essential decency….clearly a person does not have to be rich to be a conservative……but a person does have to be a greedy bastard. Wealth is not the marker of a fiscal conservatism….Greed is the true marker.
The key thing is that Mitt Romney may not be interested in the very poor. Perhaps in Election Year, the very poor should take an interest in Mitt Romney and his aspirations for the White House.