by JOHN CASHON
In a time where facts have become fiction and fiction has become fact, the last Presidential debate did not disappoint. Governor Romney once again has changed on another position. With dizzying effect, this constant switching of positions, during the debates, shows a total disregard to the recent history of his own statements.
Concerning the auto bailout change in Governor Romney's statements saying that he would have supported government help to cover the loans to the companies, this appears to be in conflict with what he had been saying, especially in the Governor's Op-ed in the New York Times called Let Detroit go bankrupt.
One of the most interesting statements is the beginning of the article:
"IF General Motors, Ford and Chrysler get the bailout that their chief executives asked for yesterday, you can kiss the American automotive industry goodbye. It won’t go overnight, but its demise will be virtually guaranteed."
History has shown this was incorrect since the American automotive industry is thriving today. Governor Romney also states in the article:
"But don’t ask Washington to give shareholders and bondholders a free pass — they bet on management and they lost.
The American auto industry is vital to our national interest as an employer and as a hub for manufacturing. A managed bankruptcy may be the only path to the fundamental restructuring the industry needs. It would permit the companies to shed excess labor, pension and real estate costs. The federal government should provide guarantees for post-bankruptcy financing and assure car buyers that their warranties are not at risk.
In a managed bankruptcy, the federal government would propel newly competitive and viable automakers, rather than seal their fate with a bailout check."
While it mentions that the government should provide guarantees for post-bankruptcy financing and assure car buyers that their warranties are not at risk, the question remains how the government could have provided guarantees for post-bankruptcy financing if there wasn't anyone able to loan money to them in the first place. Everyone, in the private sector marketplace, was holding onto their money because of the uncertainty caused by the 'Great Recession', and credit was not available, so the only way possible was for the government to provide the loans, to be paid back, to the auto companies.
As Governor Romney stated in the beginning of his article that a bailout should not be given to the American automotive industry, his assertions today that he would have supported giving government loans does not make sense. Would these loans be considered a bailout as well?
Also, permitting the companies to shed excess labor would have lost a large number of jobs, and the shedding of pensions would have hurt millions of workers by taking their retirement funds. All of these were saved by the President's actions.
In the earlier debates, Governor Romney has been steadily moving to the middle on his positions regarding abortion, contraception, women's equality, medicare vouchers, Obamacare, along with taxes and the budget.
What do Governor Romney's supporters think when they hear him state completely different policy positions in the debates to the ones they have been hearing on the campaign trail, and by all the Republicans backing his candidacy?
His supporters have been talking among friends, family and around the water cooler at work about the positions of the Governor and the Republicans, and now, they will have to change to a different position altogether, again.
Do they recognize these changes? These are such conspicuous and blatant changes that many Democrats have been asking how none of his supporters have noticed, or if they are intentionally remaining quiet about them. The changes began with the first debate, and it was considered in the media to be political strategy to shift back to the middle for Governor Romney and his campaign, but this many changes makes it look as a desperate switch to appeal to more voters. It is very easy to question how this move was not politically motivated.
The question remains if the electorate will have a hard time backing a candidate that has switched positions so quickly and right before the election, because their credibility could be questioned for showing a complete lack of integrity by not sticking by their beliefs.
Can it be that this campaign tactic is working and will become the new norm? Can a candidate be trusted if no one is sure of what they believe in the first place? In all future campaigns, each base will have to just ignore everything being said by their candidates, and just vote the party line, because everything being said will not be worth listening to because it is obviously untrue.
It doesn't have to be this way though. Sometimes, credibility and integrity do matter.