No More Mister Nice Blog: Josh Marshall writes about Mitt Romney's latest diatribe on the subject of those awful, shiftless, gift-craving Democrats, which is causing a pained reaction among other Republicans…. Romney doesn't just sound like an angry right-wing blogger--he sounds like most of the other people who wanted the nomination he won, or who were talked about as contenders for that nomination…. [W]ould Newt Gingrich have been better -- the guy who regularly called Barack Obama a "food stamp president" and who wanted poor kids to work as school janitors because it would give them what, in his view, they otherwise lack, a work ethic? Would Rick Santorum have been better? Even if you don't think he was referring to black people when he said, "I don't want to make blah people's lives better by giving them somebody else's money," there was also this in his Republican convention speech…. "Under President Obama, the dream of freedom and opportunity has become a nightmare of dependency with almost half of America receiving some government benefit…. The fact is that marriage is disappearing in places where government dependency is highest…. [But] this summer [President Obama] showed us once again he believes in government handouts and dependency by waiving the work requirement for welfare."
So maybe someone who didn't run would have had a more effective message. But who? Haley Barbour, who said about Medicaid, "We have people pull up at the pharmacy window in a BMW and say they can't afford their co-payment"? Mitch Daniels, who wrote… "A growing near-majority of citizens is now dependent on government for a substantial percentage of their livelihood. Increasingly, the burdens of a growing public sector are paid for by a dwindling percentage of the population. It is now reaching the point where society's ability to generate new wealth is being threatened and the non-payers have nothing to lose by demanding still more from their richer neighbors." Even Bobby Jindal… "it is important to remember and teach our children the Founding Fathers were declaring our independence, not creating a culture of dependence" and "many in Washington still fell the Land of the Free should become the Land of the Free Lunch."
Don't get me wrong… safety nets can, and often do, create "moral hazards" when they encourage irresponsible behavior…. Romney… said what the rest of them believe--what pretty much all of them believe…