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May 10 2012

Ugh

I am not at all surprised to learn what Mitt Romney was like as a kid: the pampered, cheerful bully.

It does suggest he’s well-qualified to represent America.

(via Camels With Hammers)

143 comments

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  1. 1
    chigau (違う)

    Nice boy.
    Nice man.
    (Cames? With Hammers)

  2. 2
    Ms. Daisy Cutter, General Manager for the Cleveland Steamers

    In before “The hammer is my penis” jokes.

  3. 3
    dano

    I am sure we have all done things in our adolescence that we would not do today. I find it funny that this seems to have appeared after Obama’s statement yesterday per date listed on the story in the TWP. I am sure we would find similar stories from just about any presidential candidate or president for that matter.

  4. 4
    R Johnston

    I am sure we would find similar stories from just about any presidential candidate or president for that matter.

    This is what’s known as a lie. Most people are not violent bullies.

  5. 5
    dougittner

    Romney didn’t just become a rich, entitled, douchebag when he started running for President, he’s always been a rich, entitled douchebag (or what Republicans call ‘qualified’).

  6. 6
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Except for one thing, dano. The Mitbot 3000 has continued in his habit of bullying LGBT people. Or does his contributing to NOM not count.

    And the shit continues to drop out of dano’s mouth.

  7. 7
    pentatomid

    dano,

    You’re sure every presidential candidate at some point in their life savagely bullied people based on their sexual orientation? Are you fucking kidding me? I am not and have never been a bully (quite the opposite), and neither have most people. Since you think stuff like this is quite normal, I’m guessing you do have stories like this in your past. You’re an asshole.
    Furthermore, Romney hasn’t exactly stopped bullying LGBT people (or poor people for that matter). I’m guessing that’s what makes him a republican.

  8. 8
    Alexandra (née Audley)

    Ugh. I couldn’t even get past the first page of the article. Fuck Rmoney.

    I’m going to spend the rest of this election season in absolute despair.

  9. 9
    schpounts

    Hi,

    I’m new here, sorry if I don’t respect “the code” of this blog… i’ll try to improve!

    Just a quick question… I don’t realy understand what’s the deal about that… We all did some crazy stuffs we’re not proud. Yes he was a little prick, the bully etc. But he may have change, although he’s a crazy dude now.

    Ho, and sorry for my English

  10. 10
    pentatomid

    Schpounts,

    The bullying described in the article is not being ‘a little prick’. You seem to be underestimating how harmfull shit like that is. And no we have not all done stuff like that.

  11. 11
    naturalcynic

    The most telling part of the story is that Mittens doesn’t remember anything about it while the others in the gang so remember.

  12. 12
    Randomfactor

    He may well have changed. His targets are bigger–the workforce of corporations, for example, instead of the individuals he could bully in school.

  13. 13
    Kevin

    His approval rating among Republicans probably went up 3 points.

    The story was probably “leaked” by his own campaign.

    Just sayin’.

  14. 14
    Alverant

    What Mittens did was assault with a deadly weapon, a felony. If he were almost anyone else, it might have been arrested and convicted. But privilige wins again for him. The statue of limitations has long since passed and the defendant has likewise passed there’s nothing that can be done except remind people what he did.

  15. 15
    Alexandra (née Audley)

    Schpounts,
    No. Just no.

    Because kids are violently bullied all the time, that gives Rmoney (and you) a free pass? I don’t fucking think so.

    You know what violent bullies do to their victims? Too often they drive their targets to suicide. This isn’t something you can handwave away by slapping the “he was a little prick”* label on Rmoney’s behavior. Not to mention that the boy in question was perceived as being gay and kids like that endure relentless bullying and violence.

    Shorter me: fuck off, bullying apologists.

    *Nice use of gendered insult, there.

  16. 16
    tbp1

    Of course we all did things in our adolescence we aren’t proud of, but most of didn’t do anything this repulsive.

  17. 17
    d cwilson

    This must be an example of the “wild and crazy” side of Mittens that Ann described.

  18. 18
    anathema

    @ schpounts:

    The problem isn’t just that Romney bullied and assaulted one of his fellow students when he was in high school, simply because that student was somewhat different (and suspected of being gay). That alone would be terrible, given how bad bullying is. But if Romney had changed as he had grown up and come to see the errors of his ways, then this wouldn’t be such a big deal. If Romney had come to understand how awful his actions were and tried to raise awareness about bullying to keep others from suffering at the hands of people like him, then we might not hold this against Romney so much. If Romney no longer treated gay people like they were second class citizens or showed any signs of remorse over this incident whatsoever, then there wouldn’t be as much outrage over this.

    But Romney doesn’t show any signs of being sorry. He doesn’t seem to regret his actions. He doesn’t seem to have learned anything. He doesn’t seem to have changed. He’s still a bully. He’s just not in high school any more.

  19. 19
    unclefrogy

    I do not mean to minimize Mittens behavior in the slightest. I have a very low opinion of him already so not much surprises me about him.
    I remember those times, I do not know if it was “anti fag” behavior or not but there was around that time a style craze involved with surfers and the surfer look. The beach boys had many hits as well as groups like Jan & Dean and the beach movies were popular. The description from the article sounded like “the surfer look” to me and not necessarily a gay look long hair ala the Beatles ect. was not uncommon with “straight” kids at that time.
    That Mittens is intolerant of perceived differences is still plain for all to see. That he has in the past used force to enforce conformity is not a surprise nor is it unlikely that he would feel in inhabited to resort to force in the future he is a “decider” after all that is the whole underling reason he is giving to be the next president. He has “executive experience”!

    he needs to go and work in a stock yard where he can feel free to exercise his executive abilities telling the cattle what to do!

    uncle frogy

  20. 20
    Ing

    I am sure we have all done things in our adolescence that we would not do today. I find it funny that this seems to have appeared after Obama’s statement yesterday per date listed on the story in the TWP. I am sure we would find similar stories from just about any presidential candidate or president for that matter.

    Go eat shit fascist.

  21. 21
    Louis

    I’m not going to judge a grown man on his actions as an adolescent if he sincerely regrets and repudiates those actions. People have the capacity to learn.

    Sadly, given Romney’s track record on LGBT issues it seems he hasn’t learned anything of substance. Other than he shouldn’t be the one to jump the gay kid and cut his hair. He provided us with the holotype of a classic notpology, continues to fund and speak in praise of discrimination of LGBT people etc.

    Sure, don’t judge the adult by the actions of the kid…unless the adult is still performing the same actions just by slightly different means. Then that isn’t a forgiveable lapse as a younger and more foolish person, that’s a pattern of behaviour.

    Louis

  22. 22
    Brony

    More and more it seems that the real key to governing is actual experience with lots of kinds of people, and lots of kinds of difficulty in life. In order to have the empathy and understanding required to create and propose effective legislation, or govern well you have to know what needs fixed on a personal level.

    Maybe social isolation of elites is part of the recipe for the periodic cycle of government collapse. Generations of protection of the young among the political classes makes for weak, ineffective politicians.

    I fucking hate tribalism like nothing else. Neurobiology is depressing…

  23. 23
    Anthony K

    This must be an example of the “wild and crazy” side of Mittens that Ann described.

    I’ll bet it lathers them both up when he fires people.

  24. 24
    Ing

    Like I said, Dano’s instinct when faced with a bully or authority figure is to lick the ass…lick it good and clean. He works so very very hard to lick all traces of shit from his favored ass. He licks long, he licks hard, but he just can’t lick the taint away.

  25. 25
    schpounts

    I think I’ve been unclear of what I ment! Sorry for that!

    I don’t excuse what he did! it was wrong! and I agree, it’s awfull that he don’t remember anything! and it show how little he cared.

    I’m certainly not a “bullying apologists”, and I would be pleased not to be insulted! thank you.

    and, adding what we know of him, we can see a patern there.

    My question was more “do you realy have to pick on that?”

    I don’t realy like the guy and, from a european point of view, it would be better if Obama is re-elected president (dispite the fact that PZ Myers seems to think him a little to soft about certain point of view).

    I’m realy sorry if I offended anybody. it’s not my intention.

    and keep in mind that i’m “one of you” in the field of the humanist and atheist world view

  26. 26
    Ing

    My question was more “do you realy have to pick on that?”

    If someone has not ceased beating their wife is it fair to criticize them for in the past beating said wife?

  27. 27
    Brony

    To back up Audley a little, meet the huge controversy of the next decade, epigenetics and human behavior!

    You think evolutionary psychology raises hackles? Just wait until people try to sue for damages based on the marks that abusive behavior leaves on genes related to depression and more!

    How about a suicide connection!
    “The epigenetics of suicide: explaining the biological effects of early life environmental adversity”
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21082447

    Yes this is cutting edge and therefore to be treated very carefully, but if these kinds of connections can be made? I would love to see a world where you can hold people accountable for past behavior that caused real, physical, changes that increase suffering.

  28. 28
    Azuma Hazuki

    This doesn’t surprise me in the least. Cruel children tend to become cruel adults. Didn’t he spend most of his adult life at Bain, where he did basically the same thing in the financial world? He never grew out of this mindset.

  29. 29
    Rich Woods

    The WP article provides a mixed picture, and for the first time I can actually see some warmth in the man. However it doesn’t look to me like he’s moved with the times, and for that reason I don’t think he can be a good person to lead the US.

    Basically, he’s still too much of a shit.

  30. 30
    ibyea

    If Mitt Romney gets elected, I will have to tell my parents to let’s get the hell out of here. If Republicans win 2012, we are doomed.

    Heh, in the year 2012. You know, when the world is supposed to end. :)

  31. 31
    dianne

    If Romney looked back on this episode and regretted it, as at least some of his co-conspirators evidently did, then I’d say it was unfair to judge him by it. But he didn’t. He didn’t even recall the episode. Apparently, he did things like this too often to remember them all. We can judge him by that. And by his subsequent behavior as an adult, which is essentially the same.

  32. 32
    Ing

    The WP article provides a mixed picture, and for the first time I can actually see some warmth in the man.

    Where!?

  33. 33
    raven

    the pampered, cheerful bully.

    It does suggest he’s well-qualified to represent America.

    Yes of course.

    One of the neocon architects of Bush’s Catastrophe said we should throw “a crappy little country against the wall every 10 years” just to show the world we are the 400 lb. gorilla with a very small brain.

    11 years later, 7,000 Americans are dead, including two of my friends, with little to show for it. Of course, the neocons are all chickenhawks whose closest approach to wars is watching them on TV.

  34. 34
    raven

    The WP article provides a mixed picture, and for the first time I can actually see some warmth in the man.

    Oh oh. This doesn’t sound good.

    Are you sure they aren’t just the flames of hell? If we keep seeing them, I might have to re-evaluate my nonbelief in hell and Demonic possession.

    It would explain a few things though.

  35. 35
    dianne

    11 years later, 7,000 Americans are dead,

    Not to mention at least a million more Iraqis than would likely have died without the invasion and who knows how many Afghanis.

  36. 36
    dianne

    I have to say it sounds like he fit in nicely with his school. The school that tolerated a violent physical attack on a student which was witnessed by multiple students and probably teachers, but then threw the same student out for smoking a cigarette. What scumbags.

  37. 37
    raven

    “The epigenetics of suicide: explaining the biological effects of early life environmental adversity”
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21082447

    A neurobiologist has found similar things.

    Helen Neville on children brought up poor:

    “Executive function and self control is lower, language skills are lower. IQ is low, attention is poorer, and working memory is poorer.” These changes persist into adulthood.

  38. 38
    ikesolem

    Meh. The Department of Energy budget under Obama is largely indistinguishable from the DOE budget under Bush. The federal bureaucracy is as corrupt and incompetent as ever, and Congressmembers support it as long as their home districts get a cut. You can talk ‘social issues’ till your tongues get tired, but the basic factors remain unchanged: food and energy and environmental pollution are what really matters, not the fluff fed to you through the corporate media propaganda system. Go visit the cancer, heart disease and Parkinson’s wards if you doubt this.

    It’s a waste of time following the U.S. corporate media – it’s pure B.S. from one end to the other.

  39. 39
    Avo, also nigelTheBold

    ikesolem:

    You can talk ‘social issues’ till your tongues get tired, but the basic factors remain unchanged: food and energy and environmental pollution are what really matters, not the fluff fed to you through the corporate media propaganda system.

    Bullshit. Just because there are other existing issues doesn’t mean this isn’t important. Yes, environment, energy, economic recovery, and many other issues are important.

    But so is this.

  40. 40
    Crudely Wrott

    Mittens is falling all over himself to serve up a typical notpology:

    “If I did stupid things, I’m afraid I’ve got to say sorry for it,” Romney said, pointing out that his high school days were many decades behind him. “I’m quite a different guy now.”

    Here’s the linky:

    http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/05/10/11638965-romney-apologizes-for-dumb-things-during-school-years?lite

  41. 41
    pentatomid

    ikesolem,

    Congratulations, your comment has been found completely irrelevant.

  42. 42
    Kamaka

    He didn’t even recall the episode.

    Yah, so he says. I don’t buy it for a minute. One does not “forget” organising an assault, pinning a “pansy” down and personally cutting off his hair. No how, no way.

    “I did some dumb things and if anybody was hurt by that or offended … obviously, I apologize”

    I’m truly touched by his notpology.

  43. 43
    Crudely Wrott

    I posted in haste, neglecting to point out two hallmarks of a notpology:

    If I did stupid things

    The qualifier “if” is weaseling; ain’t no if about a hurtful and threatening act being a stupid thing.

    I’m afraid I’ve got to say sorry for it

    “Afraid” are you? Why? Saying you are sorry doesn’t hurt unless you think it could do yourself some harm.

    No one should take Mittens seriously any more.

  44. 44
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Nah, he remembers putting some little pansy in his place.

    He doesn’t remember any bullying.

    Meanings, words have them.

  45. 45
    dianne

    One does not “forget” organising an assault, pinning a “pansy” down and personally cutting off his hair. No how, no way.

    Maybe he does that sort of thing all the time and can’t remember this particular incident because it didn’t mean that much to him.

  46. 46
    chigau (違う)

    “food and energy and environmental pollution” are ‘social issues’.

  47. 47
    Improbable Joe, bearer of the Official SpokesGuitar

    I remember childhood pranks. The defining aspect of a prank, as opposed to bullying, is that it is a harmless and funny thing aimed at someone you actually like and respect. You’re sort of laughing with them and not just at them. It doesn’t involve a vicious group assault on an individual that you despise.

    I pulled some pranks when I was a kid… and I took part in bullying to my everlasting shame, especially since I had been bullied myself. There’s a big difference between horseplay and bullying that can’t be disappeared by claiming that everyone did it and that it is no big deal because they were kids.

    And of course Romney’s victim was thrown out of school. You have to make it seem like he was a bad kid, so that the bullying seems more acceptable. That’s how it works for those sorts of people, and it is an attitude that seems to drive the Republican Party as a whole.

  48. 48
    carlie

    That’s the part that’s so chilling, that he says he doesn’t remember it. If he really doesn’t remember it, holy shit, why not? If he does, then he’s lying stupidly about it, because an empathetic lie would be to say that it’s always haunted him but he never knew how to find the person and initiate an apology, or if the person would have even wanted him to. So either he’s so callous that he can’t even remember terrorizing someone, or he’s so callous that he doesn’t know what kind of response would play well with other human beings. Bad either way.

  49. 49
    procyon

    I have an older brother that acted much like Romney did in the ’60s. He was proud of it then, and remains proud of it to this day. His day in the sun as leader of the pack, picking on those who were unable to protect themselves with the backing of his peers. He is now a “big wheel” in the corporate world where he continues to bully people and rails against the liberals and the political correctness that forced him into anger management classes to save his career. We don’t talk much.

  50. 50
    rturpin

    What’s funny is how the wingnuts are responding to this:

    http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Journalism/2012/05/10/Obama-High-School-Drugs

    http://www.redstate.com/moe_lane/2012/05/10/barack-obamas-bullying-of-coretta-prayfcoretta/

    I don’t know whether to laugh, or given their influence, to cry.

  51. 51
    Kamaka

    Crudely Wrott @ 43

    You might have included this whopper:

    if anybody was hurt by that or offended

    Nah, public humiliation can’t possibly hurt “anybody”. And how could inciting your schoolmates to violence possibly offend “anybody”?

    “Anybody”, his victim, is dead, and so is spared this final insult.

  52. 52
    Kamaka

    Carlie @ 48

    he doesn’t know what kind of response would play well with other human beings

    I think you nailed it.

  53. 53
    AJ Milne

    His approval rating among Republicans probably went up 3 points.

    That.

    Seriously, there’s any number of knuckle-draggers out there right now saying: ‘He bullies fags? Cooool. That’s my kinda candidate, right there.’

  54. 54
    kemist, Dark Lord of the Sith

    I am sure we have all done things in our adolescence that we would not do today.

    Whatever I have done when I was a teenager, I was never a dumbfuck bully who preyed on the vulnerable.

    I was one of their victims.

    So, no, in my book he does not pass go, and doesn’t get 200$.

    I fucking hate bullies.

  55. 55
    truthspeaker

    dano says:
    10 May 2012 at 12:52 pm

    I am sure we have all done things in our adolescence that we would not do today

    Nothing like this, no.

  56. 56
    raven

    One does not “forget” organising an assault, pinning a “pansy” down and personally cutting off his hair. No how, no way.

    That happened in my school. A gang jumped a guy. Not only did they cut his hair off, they broke a few bones. A teacher was involved.

    The parents sued and the school couldn’t rush fast enough to settle out of court.

    He got married a few years later. He wasn’t even remotely gay.

  57. 57
    raven

    Great Cthulhu, that does it. I’m not voting for a rich spoiled sadistic asshole.

    Then again, I wasn’t going to vote for Romney anyway. This is the best they could do?

    That being said, another Bush class moron and the USA is done for, at least for my lifetime. The damage Bush did to the economy is projected by the Federal Reserve to be fixed by 2018. Unless someone crashes it again.

    This is an entire lost generation already.

    Just going to lay in a supply of white wine and hang out with the cats, I guess. No point in worrying about the future when there isn’t one.

  58. 58
    Azuma Hazuki

    Raven:

    I personally am moving to Canada or New Zealand as soon as I can save a few grand (which actually IS possible, just going slow as hell). Empires rise, and empires fall, and they take huge swathes of people with with them in either case. Prepare to die, but hope to live.

  59. 59
    anthonyrosa

    Crudly Wrott @43

    “Afraid” are you? Why? Saying you are sorry doesn’t hurt unless you think it could do yourself some harm.

    It really irritates me when people respond to the saying “I’m afraid x” that way. It’s an established turn of phrase.

    Might as well ask what a person means -in a hostile, confrontational tone!- when they say “to make end’s meat,” and insinuate that they’re somehow making meat, or working specifically FOR meat, or something.

    Not defending Romney. Guy’s apparently terrible. Just pointing out a pet peeve of mine. It’s a pedantic point used mainly to put down people on an irrelevant phrasing, and I’ve seen it primarily used to bully myself and others.

    And I’m not fond of bullies. Bullies like Romney, if the information here is true.

  60. 60
    Ichthyic

    That Mittens is intolerant of perceived differences is still plain for all to see.

    Mittens: Dominate Right Wing Authoritarian.

    seriously.

  61. 61
    Ichthyic

    I personally am moving to Canada or New Zealand

    Come to Hobbitton! We need all the help we can get down here fighting off the encroaching orcs.

  62. 62
    Ichthyic

    One does not “forget” organising an assault, pinning a “pansy” down and personally cutting off his hair. No how, no way.

    well, one might forget a specific instance, if one tended to do this frequently…

  63. 63
    raven

    I personally am moving to Canada or New Zealand as soon as I can save a few grand.

    Yeah, I thought of that.

    If I was younger, that would be a smart move. No point living in a dying empire.

    It’s not so easy as a boomer. We own our house, no mortgage anymore. Have you ever tried to move cats? Just changing brands of cat food is a major move for them.

    We will do what we can though. Not sure what. Probably move the liquid assets out of the US dollar into foreign currencies, most likely the Canadian dollar and Swiss Franc. Not going to trust the Euro these days. One of my friends already transferred most of her money to a Canadian account and two other people I know have emigrated.

  64. 64
    Ichthyic

    btw, FWIW, I’m siding with Froggy on the motivation for this.

    I doubt it was an attack on a gay student, so much as it was an attack on “non-comformist long-haired hippies”

    I saw this myself, even in public schools, when I was growing up in the 60s and 70s.

  65. 65
    Ichthyic

    ..of course I WAS a non-comformist, long-haired hippie.

    hell, my hair was well past my shoulders when I was 11.

    :P

  66. 66
    Ichthyic

    It’s not so easy as a boomer. We own our house, no mortgage anymore.

    Nu Zillund is a great place to retire though.

    really.

    stick to the upper half of the north island, and away from Auckland, and you’ll find some great communities with warm weather, beautiful empty beaches, and cheap houses.

    I was up near the Bay of Islands a couple years back, and saw brand new 3 bdrm houses, right on the water, for 40K (and less!).

    if you like the ocean, and fishing/kayaking/swimming/diving, etc, I can’t imagine a nicer place to hang your hat.

  67. 67
    IndyM, pikčiurna

    Mittens’ assault on the gay student was utterly horrific; however, I thought it was perfectly HIGH-LARIOUS the way he taunted that elderly blind teacher. /sarcasm

    Sometimes people make mistakes in their youth. Romney’s friends seem to feel real remorse for what they did to Lauber; they described the incident for what it was: “vicious,” “senseless.” The frightening thing is that Romney doesn’t feel any remorse whatsoever. I’m sure he remembers the incident; however, he has no concept of its cruelty and wrongness.

    I have a friend who went to Andover with Bush Jr. He said that Bush was a notorious bully who loved to target the quiet, different, and/or geeky kids–just like Romney. Bush Jr. was also a cheerleader who idealized the big jocks–just like Romney. We don’t need another dehumanizing dudebro in the White House.

  68. 68
    Kamaka

    Nu Zillund

    Aotearoa

    Land of the Long White Cloud

    Beautiful place-name. Only Haoles would think it needs improving.

    (Nothing personal to you here, Ichthyic.)

  69. 69
    SC (Salty Current), OM

    A few days later, Friedemann entered Stevens Hall off the school’s collegiate quad to find Romney marching out of his own room ahead of a prep school posse shouting about their plan to cut Lauber’s hair. Friedemann followed them to a nearby room where they came upon Lauber, tackled him and pinned him to the ground. As Lauber, his eyes filling with tears, screamed for help, Romney repeatedly clipped his hair with a pair of scissors.

    …After the incident, Lauber seemed to disappear. He returned days later with his shortened hair back to its natural brown. He finished the year, but ultimately left the school before graduation — thrown out for smoking a cigarette.

    Gotta love those honor codes.

  70. 70
    anuran

    He perfectly represents his constituents

  71. 71
    jdrs0819

    I’m turning 24 this year, so high school wasn’t that far back — nor was middle school — but in just that short time frame I’ve looked back on some things I did with, “What the hell is wrong with children sometimes?”

    I never physically assaulted anyone like Mitt did. I also rarely ever participated in the jeering and such. However, in middle school and early parts of high school (up until I was like 13 I guess), my friends and I in our Boy Scout troop did make fun of the mentally challenged kid in our troop. Quite often, actually. I remember making amends with the kid in freshmen year of high school, and I wrote and mailed him a card when he got his Eagle.

    That was pretty much the extent of my engagement. But I still feel sickened by myself for not doing anything when it happened in high school, even though I stopped participating myself. There was this kid nicknamed “Cheeseburger” because he would suddenly turn violent if you said the word “cheeseburger” at him in order to instigate him. I’m not sure what his condition was — he was a big guy who looked kind of like an ape and mumbled “bub bub bub” to himself throughout the hallways — but he was taunted by over 50% of my graduating class (and I graduated in 2006).

    I think a lot of people in my class felt the way I do, but because of mob mentality you’re afraid of saying, “Dude, wtf is your problem?” Not to mention…kids are damn cruel sometimes.

    In itself, this incident from nearly fifty years ago shouldn’t define who Mitt Romney is or say much about what kind of president he would be. What is troubling is Romney’s response to the revelations. Even though the incident is vividly remembered and recounted by five students, Romney says he has no recollection of it. Saying he doesn’t remember either means it was truly not memorable despite the impact it had on another human, or that he thinks it’s OK to say he doesn’t remember and that most people won’t think it had much impact on the victim. That’s the problem.

  72. 72
    Kamaka

    IndyM, pikčiurna @ 67

    Bush was a notorious bully who loved to target the quiet, different, and/or geeky kids–just like Romney

    Perhaps all these “I should be in charge” types have an inner bully hiding beneath the glad-handing and baby kissing.

  73. 73
    Ichthyic

    (Nothing personal to you here, Ichthyic.)

    no worries.

    I’m just now starting to plug into the Maori side of things here.

  74. 74
    'Tis Himself

    Kamaka #42

    He didn’t even recall the episode.

    Yah, so he says. I don’t buy it for a minute. One does not “forget” organising an assault, pinning a “pansy” down and personally cutting off his hair. No how, no way.

    I was bullied in high school. Several years ago, when I was visiting my parents, I ran into one of the guys who bullied me. He didn’t remember being a bully. He was convinced he and I were bestest buddies in high school

  75. 75
    duane

    Ooo, a poll at the Post asking if you think his behavior will influence his electability…!

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-user-polls/post/is-mitt-romneys-high-school-bio-relevant-to-his-2012-campaign/2012/05/10/gIQAzedgFU_blog.html

  76. 76
    IndyM, pikčiurna

    @Kamaka

    There are leaders who inspire people to follow them because of their ideas and character, and then there are leaders who are bullies–they rally the mob to their side at the expense of well-chosen scapegoats. And the GOP seems to comprise mostly the latter group. Glad-handing and baby-kissing are easy to do and all for show, but these “I should be in charge” types seem to be completely bereft of compassion. Sigh.

  77. 77
    petejohn

    Some pretty typical right-wing apologia in the comments too. A lot of “Well, but, Obama did…” and “WP is trying to hatchet Romney!” None of them actually deal with the substance of the article, which seems to make it clear that Romney not only shoved a young man he suspected was gay to the ground and lopped off his hair, but that he doesn’t seem to give half a shit about the incident. The lame “I don’t remember, but I’m sorry,” is really pathetic, especially considering his little buddies all seemed to recall a great deal of detail. Romney is possibly the smallest piece of waste of space of Santorum-Gingrich-Romney troika of shit, but he’s still a smelly, rotten, useless, right-wing waste of space.

  78. 78
    athorist

    @59 it’s “make ends meet”, although meet is a corruption of ‘mete’, as in equal. I think it refers to tally sticks, where if the notches matched it meant you’d paid. But I can’t find anything about it. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tally_stick#Split_tally

    http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/meet#Etymology_2 From Middle English mete, imete, from Old English ġemǣte (“suitable, having the same measurements”)

  79. 79
    Ichthyic

    He was convinced he and I were bestest buddies in high school

    interesting.

    I believe he was likely being honest about it too.

    it’s amazing how our own perceptions can color our memories.

  80. 80
    Ichthyic

    … I’d go on to add, that it is not uncommon for people who grew up being lauded for who they were (whether cheerleader or sports star, say), to think of themselves as blameless for any actions, and conclude that anything they did, good or bad, must have been essentially good, otherwise they would have been chastised for it.

    so, coming back ’round to Obama’s latest commentary on rights…

    authoritarians are like children. If you don’t directly chastise them for bad behavior, they automatically conclude they are acting appropriately.

    what Obama did is essentially grant a pass to the bad behavior of the authoritarian fuckwits in the entire country.

    this is why it is inclement at this point that people who are in leadership positions in the States actually identify and directly chastize bad behavior, REGARDLESS of what people say their motivations ARE for the bad behavior. Sorry, but imagined religious dogma is insufficient grounds for bad behavior.

    Stop mollycoddling the fuckwits, please.

  81. 81
    Kamaka

    <Derail

    I'm a bit out of date on the latest, Ichthyic, but for better understanding, you will want to read Alan Duff’s novels and Keri Hulmes “The Bone People”.

    To help understand “Greater Polynesia”, read Kalākaua’s Legends and Myths of Hawai’i.

    </derail

  82. 82
    SC (Salty Current), OM

    …Laubergate?

  83. 83
    IndyM, pikčiurna

    @ Tis #74

    This reminds me of something I’ve recently experienced.

    I wasn’t bullied much in school, but I was one of the top nerds in a high school class of 800, and I was famous for being a nerd. (I was teased a lot–”walking dictionary,” “poindexter,” etc.–but it never bothered me because I was a pretty happy kid and had a lot of friends.) There was an extremely vicious bully in our school system who terrorized many children. I never had to deal with her since I was safely isolated in honors classes; however, she did once try to make my life miserable in kindergarten. (It didn’t work–like I said, I was a happy, confident kid, and so her attempts at bullying me kind of fell flat.)

    Anyway, I never got to know her, and I can’t remember ever having a single convo with her past kindergarten (I’m 48 now). I only remember one incident in high school where she shouted, “Nice fucking clothes, loser!” when she was passing me in the hallway because I was dressed in a preppie way (skirt, kneesocks, Weejuns).

    She friended me on Facebook a year or two ago, and started to act like my best buddy. Thinking back on the past, I felt kind of sorry for her, and so I thought I would just see where it would go. Turns out that she had become a raving wingnut (what a surprise, eh?). All her posts (and there were many on a daily basis) were full of racism, hatred, intolerance, and lies (of the Glenn Beck variety [she worshipped him]). (And when the posts weren’t wingnut in nature, they would be insipid Christian messages.) I would gently call her out on her racism, etc., but she would just delete my comments–but she still wanted to be “friends.” I guess I was stupidly optimistic–I thought maybe I could make her see beyond the lies and prejudice.

    One of the most ironic things of all was that she used to rail and wail about her daughter being bullied in high school. And I wondered: does she not remember the hundreds of children she terrorized and beat up?

    I wonder about the incredible disconnect that these bullies exhibit–Romney, your high school classmate, this woman. I just don’t get how their minds work. Anyway, she recently defriended me on the sly, much to my relief.

    P.S. I once posted our kindergarten class picture on FB, and some other bullies came out of the woodwork to talk about classmates and reminisce. With the exception of the aforementioned woman, the bullies sincerely expressed regret for the way they had behaved. The aforementioned bully, however, joined this discussion and picked a fight with several classmates and threatened them…

    /oy, so long–sorry!

  84. 84
    Ichthyic

    but for better understanding,

    actually, I’m learning direct from the source, as it were.

    part of my consulting work is now involved with a Maori tribe up in the Bay of Plenty.

  85. 85
    IndyM, pikčiurna

    @ Kamaka #81

    OT, but I just had to tell you: I LOVED The Bone People! I think I read it at least three times!

  86. 86
    Victor

    First of all, I want to say that cutting off the student’s hair is not a prank – it’s vicious bullying.

    That being said, what I found more telling was his little stunt to get the sight-impaired teacher to walk into a door.

    I’m around Mitt’s age, and remember kids doing all sorts of crap to other kids knowing that they wouldn’t get punished. But to do something to a teacher – only someone with massive ego born of privilege would have attempted that.

    But maybe that’s SOP for those who go to expensive private schools.

  87. 87
    Kamaka

    IndyM, pikčiurna

    You won’t LOVE One Night Out Stealing, but what a novel!

    Alan Duff is woefully under-appreciated.

  88. 88
    IndyM, pikčiurna

    @ Kamaka

    I will check it out! I tend to like a lot of stuff that a lot of people don’t, so I’m not worried. Always interested in reading good stuff. :) Thanks for the rec!

  89. 89
    Jadehawk

    ohh ffs, no, most of us never pulled shit like that, because most people haven’t been bullies, you stupid apologists. Hell, I was a bully in school, and I never did anything like what Romney pulled.

    You can talk ‘social issues’ till your tongues get tired, but the basic factors remain unchanged: food and energy and environmental pollution are what really matters, not the fluff fed to you through the corporate media propaganda system.

    those aren’t separate things, and you actually can’t solve one without solving the other. also, look up “environmental justice” sometime.

    Come to Hobbitton! We need all the help we can get down here fighting off the encroaching orcs.

    NZ doesn’t want me :-(

    …Laubergate?

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

  90. 90
    Kamaka

    Speaking of bullying…

    Once Were Warriors

  91. 91
    seditiosus

    Jadehawk:

    Sure NZ wants you!

    Just start a cult, fleece a whole bunch of money from your converts (that’s why they’re called a “flock” after all), and use the money to buy your way through Immigration.

  92. 92
    RFW

    I’m of two minds about this incident.

    First, it is true that pre-adults do really stupid things. And sometimes these amount to what we’d call assault today. (Technically, it was assault then, but kids will be kids was probably the reaction.)

    But otoh I believe very strongly that a great deal of our personalities is inherent, present at birth. Good friends’ daughter, who just turned 32 the other day and is a pleasant woman, was one of those babies who would twist and turn if anybody but Mama held her: I know: I held her when she was only a few weeks old. And though she’s no longer shy, there’s a certain je ne sais quoi to her personality that is directly traceable to that reaction. (In later childhood, she was a very shy little girl. Her parents bled themselves white to send her to a very good girls’ school, and that may have made all the difference.)

    And in myself I often recognize behavior that is just like my mother or father. Some of it’s very objectionable and by dint of will I’ve largely overcome such tendencies, but the urge is still there.

    All of which is to day that the child is the father of the man, if you know what I mean.

    In Romney’s case the deleterious effects of Mormonism are also felt. If we could peer into his psyche, we’d likely see that many of those qualities we value have been cauterized, turning him into an incurious, plastic zombie of sorts.

    But let’s give the guy a break and only look at his more recent behavior and we’ll all agree that he’s an unprincipled opportunist who will say and do anything to get ahead. Note that that is a positive interpretation.

  93. 93
    Cipher

    Personality doesn’t need to be present at birth to remain consistent for a long time, especially if one doesn’t face pressure to change.

  94. 94
    Childermass

    Most children engage in bullying of some sort or are a victim of it. Almost all are at least complicit.

    That is my experience anyways.

    To say the least, I have some real doubts on some people saying they never did it. Maybe it like the commenter above who ran into a bully as an adult who failed to recognize that he was one as a child.

  95. 95
    evilDoug

    While I suspect he is lying about not remembering the event, I can see a couple of possibilities to account for it actually being true.
    One is that he has done so many despicable things that any particular event simply disappears into the cesspool. The other, not entirely unrelated, is that each new dirty deed takes the focus in his mind. Given the crap he did in his days of destroying companies, where many lives were grossly disrupted all at once, perhaps something so trivial as a criminal assault on one person has been supplanted with other more pleasing memories.

  96. 96
    Cipher

    Most children engage in bullying of some sort or are a victim of it. Almost all are at least complicit.

    That is my experience anyways.

    To say the least, I have some real doubts on some people saying they never did it.

    Do you have any grounds for implying that other people are being dishonest about their own experience, other than your own experience?

  97. 97
    DLC

    I’ve no doubt Mitt remembers his days at Cranbrook fondly.
    He no doubt looks back on them as being the best times of his life. I wouldn’t say it was gay-bashing only because we do not know if the victim actually was gay. Or does it matter ? I mean, if the perpetrator(s) acted in a mistaken belief that the victim was gay, isn’t that legally the same thing ? Hm. a question for those more schooled in the law than myself.

    I always thought the movie The Ruling Class ( 1972, Peter O’Toole) (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0069198/ ) was quite the commentary on the silver spoon set.

  98. 98
    Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    @59.

    Wrong. It’s “an established turn of phrase” with a meaning, which is that the speaker regrets having to say what s/he is about to say.

    In this case, Romney is clearly saying that he regrets, not what he did in high school, but having to say he’s sorry about it.

    It’s conceivable that this isn’t in fact what he meant to convey, but it’s the clear implication of the words he chose.

  99. 99
    Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

    @94.

    I think the general sentiment is not that people never engaged in any bullying at all (although I count myself among those who never did very much, and none of that after junior high), but rather that they never did anything remotely like the physical assault that Romney committed as an adult (age 18).

  100. 100
    seditiosus

    I do believe that most of us have done bad things at some point and that people can change, but I don’t see any evidence that the Mittbot has changed. He doesn’t seem to have any remorse at all. For people to change, they have to want to change and they have to acknowledge that they need to change. A weaselly not-pology and claiming he doesn’t remember the incident tells me the Mittbot doesn’t want to change, or aknowledge that he should.

  101. 101
    Ms. Daisy Cutter, General Manager for the Cleveland Steamers

    Raising cruel children is a distinguishing mark of the ruling class, because it reinforces their entitlement to be at the top of the hierarchy and to dispose of “lesser” beings as the whim strikes them. Of course, cruelty is also correlated with religious fundamentalism, because it reinforces hierarchies. With Romney you get a two-fer.

    Nobody in the thread has brought up his poor dog Seamus so far. I think we’ve all heard the stories about W. torturing animals. Mike Huckabee’s son has done likewise. College fraternities, which produce “the future leaders of society,” are notorious for encouraging and protecting rapists. Also see Procyon’s comment at #49.

    I agree with Victor at #86. What Romney did to Lauber was despicable; that goes without saying. What he did to the teacher was not only despicable but the act of a cruel ruling-class child.

    Dano and Schpounts are telling us in no uncertain terms that they are not safe people to be around, especially if you’re not considered a full human being in society’s eyes. Of course, Dano has told us that before in various ways.

    Ikesolem, shove your straight male privilege right up your fucking ass. Do you ever come in here to engage with people, instead of talking at them?

    Raven:

    He got married a few years later. He wasn’t even remotely gay.

    What the fuck difference does that make? You do realize that lots of children are bullied for their gender presentation, regardless of their orientation, right?

    ‘Tis:

    Several years ago, when I was visiting my parents, I ran into one of the guys who bullied me. He didn’t remember being a bully. He was convinced he and I were bestest buddies in high school.

    That’s a common thing.

    RFW:

    But let’s give the guy a break…

    Might I remind everybody that RFW is the person who felt it appropriate to use sexual orientation and race as a joke in an earlier thread? If I could remember any specific terms, I’d bring up a link.

    Childermass, how does “are a victim of it” equate to “are at least complicit”? Victim-blame much? Do you really think that kids who don’t back against bullies are “complicit” in their own bullying?

    Also, do you really think that all kids are as cruel as Romney apparently was? Sure, nearly all kids say or do mean things to one another from time to time. Not all of it rises to the level of “bullying.”

  102. 102
    Cipher

    I wouldn’t say it was gay-bashing only because we do not know if the victim actually was gay.

    Actually, this was in the article:

    He came out as gay to his family and close friends and led a vagabond life, taking dressage lessons in England and touring with the Royal Lipizzaner Stallion riders.

    Other people have pointed out that, in fact, Mittens might not have realized that the kid was gay or been doing it because of direct homophobia, since there were other cultural factors at play in that time period. So you kinda have it precisely backward in your post.

  103. 103
    Cipher

    If I could remember any specific terms, I’d bring up a link.

    Here you go.

  104. 104
    thunk: turmite city

    Augh. Sometimes, I was a cruel jerk back in grade school. Today, I’m really not (thanks to you all), but I did flirt with bullying then.

    I try to put it behind me; but I’m far removed from them. I’ll probably apologize next chance I get. It’s my streak of being horribly self-centered.

    But I still never tried anything nearly as horrible as Romney et al did… but I do have long hair and my parents sometimes tease me about going to my bed at night and cutting it off. Might want to remind them about this.

  105. 105
    DLC

    Cipher, OM @102 : I had missed that bit. I’ll have to put it down to multitasking, and so withdraw my speculation.

  106. 106
    neuralobserver

    I am, for the record (because one needs to get the record straight here, not that it matters) a social, political and economic progressive, staunchly anti-conservative, and find virtually nothing of value in the conservative mindset and approach.

    I VEHEMENTLY DESPISE bullying of ANY STRIPE/ANY TYPE, and have intervened to stop it a number of times.

    But…*sarcastically snickering*…
    Bullying–physical… mental… verbal?

    On the subject of bullying, it’s interesting reading these posts of self-righteous bullshit from all the ‘regulars’, as well as others, about anti-bullying—all the while so many at this site make it a near constant exercise to verbally abuse almost anyone and everyone who presents differing or opposing views, regardless of how valid the argument or how fully informed the presenter. This, to me, is VERY telling.
    Oh,… and deflecting the criticism by hiding behind,’ that’s the tone of this blog’–just like the excuses others give for bullying– doesn’t cut it. Most of this blog, as well as other less sophisticated blogs, rings in at the level of middle school kiddie conflict rather than adult discussion; embarrassing to say the least.

    (Apparently, verbal abuse doesn’t count here as ‘bullying’, as it would for instance in,..oh I dunno,… a marriage,.. or a classroom,… or a work environment. I guess it’s only PHYSICAL bullying or abuse that rises to the degree worthy of criticism on this blog site. (And given the apparent hypocrisy of many in this blog, in a real life situation, I wouldn’t hesitate to question the commitment to anti-bullying by many who post here.)

    Hypocrisy–one thing that can always be counted on in so many, no matter how self-righteous; this blog is a prime example.

    (I expect the invective and bullshit will now fly–in keeping with many of the personalities here. After all, self-examination, self-control and staying the hand of the bully–in any capacity, for any reason– is for others,..certainly not for the odd, smug Pharygulite!)

  107. 107
    thunk: turmite city

    Neural Observer:

    “Verbal Abuse”?

    Your concern is noted.

    Now stop with the tone trolling, and take a porcupine.

  108. 108
    anathema

    @ neuralobserver

    Assaulting someone =/= making insulting or vitriolic comments on a blog

  109. 109
    barbyau

    It’s utterly fucking depressing how many people ask “what’s so wrong with tormenting gay kids.” I mean, are they really that fucking stupid? Or are they that fucking evil?

    These are the people who just say “things are tough all over” without realizing that people like themselves can stop making it tougher for no reason.

  110. 110
    barbyau

    And the sniveling “oh, I’m not saying…I’m just asking” approach of these idiots is grating.

  111. 111
    Cipher

    Neuralobserver, your tone trolling doesn’t deserve a response, but you might want to think about the fact that you’re conflating two different definitions of “abuse.”

  112. 112
    Rick

    FUCK ME!! Romney is an asshole and lying sacko-shit.

    The local news just aired and in it they reported his wife said he was always a “prankster”.

    Oh Mitt your silly goof, you shaved the head of the fag, and tormented another human being. I hope he doesn’t kill himself over it. Oh ha ha…. you kidder you.

    Then to top it off he claims he doesn’t remember? Bull shit.

  113. 113
    Ichthyic

    It’s utterly fucking depressing how many people ask “what’s so wrong with tormenting gay kids.” I mean, are they really that fucking stupid? Or are they that fucking evil?

    neither.

    they are never told by their peers that it is wrong; in fact xenophobic attitudes are encouraged in authoritarian groups.

    got nothing to do with stupid, though I’m sure that helps to avoid any real information leaking through to break the indoctrination.

  114. 114
    DLC

    neuralobserver @106 :

    Perhaps you miss the distinction, but I’ll point it out for you in hopes you manage, somehow. This site, like any other internet site, is totally voluntary. You can leave at any time and no one will stop you. That’s the difference. The bullied child has to go to school. None of the trolls or other targets has to be here. Your (and their) presence is voluntary. If you don’t find the atmosphere here convivial, leave.

  115. 115
    Rick

    The Post’s Jason Horowitz spoke to five of Romney’s prep school classmates about the Lauber incident. All of them gave similar accounts, completely independently of each other. And, like Seed, all of them feel terrible about it, even decades later.

    And I repeat, Romney claims to NOT remember it. LIAR!

    So to hear Mitt Romney tell it, while his memory is completely blank with regard to that specific gay-bashing incident, he does know with absolute certainty that the attack — which, again, according to him, may or may not have even happened — was in no way motivated by John Lauber’s real or perceived sexual orientation.

    LIAR!!!!

    I don’t know what’s going on upstream, but anything like this, or bullying, intimidating, harrassing, demeaning, etc., etc., is NOT okay. Point of fact; not everyone does “it”. Any person who justifies it as “being kids”, or “they all do it” should probably shut their trap until they have a more informed position. I suffered with this shit as a kid and this crap doesn’t fly in any form. Hence, my emotional reaction to the story and some comments.

  116. 116
    Amphiox

    Well, looks like this is my answer to those on the other thread who challenged me to explain how Obama differs from Romney on LGBT issues.

    Obama is the one who makes mealy-mouthed platitudes and does not act to prevent bigoted violence to be committed against gays.

    Romney on the other hand IS the bigot who actually commits the violence against gays, while snarling bigoted taunts.

    The distinction is considerably more depressing than I initially thought it would be, back when the challenge was made, though.

  117. 117
    Kamaka

    neuralobserver @ 106

    Pathetic.

    Yup, that’s you.

    it’s interesting reading these posts of self-righteous bullshit from all the ‘regulars’, as well as others, about anti-bullying—all the while so many at this site make it a near constant exercise to verbally abuse almost anyone and everyone who presents differing or opposing views

    Evidence!! Give us some citations, asshole.

  118. 118
    Amphiox

    verbally abuse almost anyone

    RIIGGHHT. Because a few harsh words, in a form where the target is COMPLETELY FREE TO RESPOND IN KIND (or leave at will), is EXACTLY EQUIVALENT to gathering a mob, chasing someone down, physically restraining him against the ground, and violating his bodily integrity with a sharp metal object.

    Here’s your porcupine.

    Now go away.

  119. 119
    Ing

    IMO Authoritarians are dangerous not just because they’ll do horrible things to you…but they expect you to LIKE them for it.

  120. 120
    Ing

    A bully has to have power to coerce or torment a subject. Disagreement is not bullying.

    Do you think Dan Savage “bullied” the people he offended?

  121. 121
    robro

    thunk: One difference is that you at least remember. And you regret.

    I remember things that I did, even way back 50+ years ago when I was a teenager, that I’m still very ashamed of. How could I forget being such a stupid jerk? I wish I could, but I can’t.

    It says a lot that Romney can’t remember. Five of the group involved have clear and corroborating memories of the incident, even regretting their involvement. They are approximately the same age as Romney. They remember.

    But Romney can’t remember. Oh, he’s “apologized” alright…for something…or other…or, whatever, you know. “Boys will be boys.” Nudge nudge punch punch know what I mean know what I mean.

    Either his lying about his conveniently bad memory or his memory really is that bad. My bet is on the former, but in either case, a prick like that isn’t fit to be president.

  122. 122
    raven

    Neuralmoron is an idiot.

    This isn’t even “verbal abuse” it is a documented fact.

    The trolls who show up here do so voluntarily. They can leave any time. If they are being forced to read Pharyngula at gunpoint, we will gladly call the local police and have them rescued.

    Bullied kids OTOH, don’t have choices and aren’t volunteering to be abused or assaulted. You don’t choose to be gay or different and no matter how hard you try to hide it, the other kids will notice something of the “other”. You don’t choose to get beat up, tortured for years on end, have your hair cut, or your skull fractured.

    There is a huge difference between the two situations and this is a flaming case of false equivalence.

    BTW, if you, neuralmoron, are being forced to read Pharyngula because someone is pointing a gun at your head, we will gladly call the local police and have you rescued. Just post your name, address and the nearest local police office and we will call 911 and have you rescued quickly.

  123. 123
    Kamaka

    Do you think Dan Savage “bullied” the people he offended?

    Did Dan Savage do anything to *offend* the people he supposedly offended?

  124. 124
    Ing

    @Kamaka

    He sinned by using the bible to attack the bible.

  125. 125
    Lyn M: G.R.O.S.T. (ADM) -- Membership pending

    @ DLC #97

    I mean, if the perpetrator(s) acted in a mistaken belief that the victim was gay, isn’t that legally the same thing ?

    That’s an interesting question. I reviewed the Criminal Code of Canada, because I am called to the bar in Ontario. It appears that the offence of incitement to hate is closer as the offence committed, but fails as Romney may not have done the incitement in a public place.

    The crime of “publicly inciting hatred” has four main elements. To contravene the Code, a person must:

    communicate statements,
    in a public place,
    incite hatred against an identifiable group,
    in such a way that there will likely be a breach of the peace

    There is a provision that allows judges to add to a sentence for a non-hate crime if the motivation for the regular crime, such as assault, turns out to be due to hate that is defined as criminal.

    I have looked a bit, but don’t see any cases on point. I looked for a case in which there is a mistaken belief that the victim is a member of a group which the accused criminally hates. I suspect that the motivation could be used to add to the sentence regardless, because the idea is to suppress criminal hatred as wrong, and as leading to harming people including those who have nothing to do with the criminally hated group, a further wrong.

    Can’t get preview to work. Hope the comment doesn’t look all scrambled.

  126. 126
    DLC

    Lyn M @ 125 : it was later pointed out to me that the young man was indeed gay. Of course there were no hate crime statutes in 1965. Those would come much later. I guess it’s legally a grey area, with little in the way of case history to go by. Personally, I tend to go with the idea that it’s like the attempted murder story — a man is lying on the floor and you pull a gun and shoot him. Although he was already dead when you fired, are you still guilty of attempted murder or do you only get cited for unlawful discharge of a firearm and molesting a corpse ?

  127. 127
    Lyn M: G.R.O.S.T. (ADM) -- Membership pending

    @ DLC #126

    Yes, there is case law on that. It comes up more often than you would think, before law school anyhow.

    As I recall it, the charge would be attempted murder.

  128. 128
    chigau (違う)

    Well.
    Shooting a corpse could be attempted murder.
    That is a topic I can enjoy! Really, no irony.

    Who is neuralobserver a sockpuppet for?
    For whom is neuralobserver a sockpuppet?

  129. 129
    autumn

    Well, I’m just glad that the LDS church, as well as other churches across the USA, have all stepped up to denounce this sort of inexcusable behavior.

    What’s that?

    [crickets]

    Oh, right.

    Fuck Mitt Romney, fuck the LDS, and a big FUCK YOU REPUBLICANS.

  130. 130
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    If an alpha asshole cannot physically abuse a queer, what the fuck use are we?

    *spits venom*

  131. 131
    birgerjohansson

    “Augh. Sometimes, I was a cruel jerk back in grade school. Today, I’m really not (thanks to you all), but I did flirt with bullying then”

    Mee too. But I did never do a Romney.

    BTW yesterday evening I watched a documentary about gang rape among school kids. The victim is seldom beleived, often the victim is not coming forward to report it because there is no indication anyone would believe her/him.

    This is the kind of thing that gets me to fantasize about channeling Dexter Morgan.
    Romney? Not a full Dexter, maybe remove his testosterone-producing glands.

  132. 132
    godskesen

    @ Birger comment # 131
    What was the name of that documentary? I might like to see myself. Also, I’m not sure, but I think your comment is the kind of thing that would merit a trigger warning… though it’s not really for me to say.

  133. 133
    Jadzia626

    @16 tbp1

    Of course we all did things in our adolescence we aren’t proud of, but most of didn’t do anything this repulsive.

    No, we did not all do that. I never bullied anyone.

    One of the kids I grew up with got bullied a lot and ended up as a socially dysfunctional and incredibly insecure man. He survived though. It was a horrible thing to watch.

    Granted, many of the kids who bully change. One of my old classmates did, and as an adult apologized to my other friend who he bullied a lot. But most of his bullying was pre-emptive as he was the only kid in class with a mixed race background. Most of the bullies never really changed though. They’re still assholes last time I saw any of them.

    Luckily I never got bullied myself despite being good at math.

  134. 134
    Childermass

    Childermass, how does “are a victim of it” equate to “are at least complicit”?

    That is a huge misreading of what I said. Most children either outright did it or where victims. In addition, almost all children are complicit.

    Victim-blame much?

    I most definitely do __________NOT_________ think that victims are to blame.

    Do you really think that kids who don’t back against bullies are “complicit” in their own bullying?

    If you repeatedly watched your friends do it and and did nothing, you are complicit. I can outright say that pretty much everyone in elementary and middle school did tolerate such behavior. It gets somewhat better in high school but it is still widespread.

    Also, do you really think that all kids are as cruel as Romney apparently was? Sure, nearly all kids say or do mean things to one another from time to time. Not all of it rises to the level of “bullying.”

    No I don’t think that most engage in outright physical attacks. But I guaranteed that most (and quite possibly all) of his fellow students knew he was doing and did nothing. I also dare say he suffered no consequences. After his attacks, he was still popular and his victims where still unpopular. If that does not make his peers complicit, then I don’t know what the word means.

    Also might I make it clear that I am not giving any outs for those who bullied with words and not their fists. If you “picked on” your fellow children as a child, you were bullying. And I dare say, it hurts. It has severe consequences that often don’t go away.

    I can recognize that many don’t do it as adults. But most of those people who got better don’t like to recall that they did do it as children.

    Frankly, the real reason to vote against Romney is what he promises to do when elected. Everything else is a distraction.

  135. 135
    jimmauch

    I don’t know if claiming that you have no memory of the incident is a good defense. How can someone recall a trivial thing like assaulting a student when there are more important things to recall such as that rock’n school dance.

  136. 136
    jimmauch

    Here’s another laughable arguement. Little Mitt is less culpable because there were a bunch of kids that did not tattle on the cool dude. I hope this kid is better at handling power now.

  137. 137
    Jadzia626

    I don’t know if claiming that you have no memory of the incident is a good defense.

    Of course he remembers. He’s lying.

  138. 138
    myeck waters

    Of course he remembers. He’s lying.

    Oh, well that’s all right then.

  139. 139
    Jadzia626

    Oh, well that’s all right then.

    Well, he is Republican isn’t he?

  140. 140
    Lynna, OM

    Here’s a Moment of Mormon Madness provided by ex-mormon, Steve Benson. This historical material provides a mormon background for Mitt Romney’s actions as a young man. Please note that Apostle Boyd K. Packer, now on his last legs, was a powerful voice in the LDS Church when Mitt was growing up.

    In a homophobic screed launched by Mormon Church apostle and then-acting president of the Quorum of the Twelve Boyd K. Packer, entitled “To Young Men Only,” Packer justified physical violence against gays.

    Packer’s hate-filled speech–delivered to young Mormon boys at the General Priesthood Session of Mormon Conference in October 1976–condoned committing acts of physical assault on gays as the situation warranted.

    Packer’s gay-bashing sermon was subsequently published in official Mormon Church pamphlet form and distributed throughout the Church to LDS young males.

    In his vicious attack on gays, the paranoid Packer issued the following foaming-at-the mouth alert:

    [intro above written by Steve Benson, quotes below from Boyd K. Packer's speech]

    Now a warning! I am hesitant to even mention it, for it is not pleasant. It must be labeled as major transgression. But I will speak plainly. There are some circumstances in which young men may be tempted to handle one another, to have contact with one another physically in unusual ways. Latter-day Saint young men are not to do this.

    Sometimes this begins in a moment of idle foolishness, when boys are just playing around. But it is not foolishness. It is remarkably dangerous. Such practices, however tempting, are perversion. When a young man is finding his way into manhood, such experiences can misdirect his normal desires and pervert him not only physically but emotionally and spiritually as well.

    It was intended that we use this power only with our partner in marriage. I repeat, very plainly, physical mischief with another man is forbidden. It is forbidden by the Lord.
    “There are some men who entice young men to join them in these immoral acts. If you are ever approached to participate in anything like that, it is time to vigorously resist.

    While I was in a mission on one occasion, a missionary said he had something to confess. I was very worried because he just could not get himself to tell me what he had done.
    After patient encouragement he finally blurted out, “I hit my companion.”

    “Oh, is that all,” I said in great relief.

    “But I floored him,” he said.

    After learning a little more, my response was “Well, thanks. Somebody had to do it, and it wouldn’t be well for a General Authority to solve the problem that way.”

    I am not recommending that course to you, but I am not omitting it. You must protect yourself.

    There is a falsehood that some are born with an attraction to their own kind, with nothing they can do about it. They are just ‘that way’ and can only yield to those desires. That is a malicious and destructive lie. While it is a convincing idea to some, it is of the Devil. No one is locked into that kind of life. From our premortal life we were directed into a physical body. There is no mismatching of bodies and spirits. Boys are to become men –masculine, manly men –ultimately to become husbands and fathers. No one is predestined to a perverted use of these powers.

    (Boyd K. Packer, “To Young Men Only,” Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, semi-annual General Conference Priesthood Session, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2 October 1976, at: http://www.lds-mormon.com/only.shtml; see also, “The LDS Church (Mormons) & homosexuality. Church statements: 1976 to 1999,” Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance, at: http://www.religioustolerance.org/hom_lds2.htm)

    I found Romney’s protestation that nobody even talked about homosexuality during his teen years unconvincing. I believe the subject was mostly taboo, especially in mixed company, in his community. But it’s highly likely that whisper campaigns, innuendo, and a culture of being generally anti-gay were also rampant. His own beloved apostles were talking it about in statements made to all-male audiences. Packer’s speech was published and distributed.

  141. 141
    Menyambal

    Of course he doesn’t remember it—the incident wasn’t a big deal to him, and was possibly one of many.

  142. 142
    What a Maroon, oblivious

    RIIGGHHT. Because a few harsh words, in a form where the target is COMPLETELY FREE TO RESPOND IN KIND (or leave at will), is EXACTLY EQUIVALENT to gathering a mob, chasing someone down, physically restraining him against the ground, and violating his bodily integrity with a sharp metal object.

    Here’s your porcupine.

    Ooh, look, hypocrisy in action! Come and see hypocrisy in action! Amphiox is violating someone’s body with a sharp object!

    OK, let me amend that–virtually violating their body.

    Um, with a virtual sharp object.

    I mean, violating their body by proxy….

    No, that’s not quite right….

    I’ve got it:

    Amphiox is inviting someone to virtually violate their body with a virtual sharp object!

    Come see the violence hypocrisy inherent in the system!!!!

  143. 143
    pedantik

    Having grown up in a very conservative, intolerant religious culture, I’m ashamed to remember the attitudes I once had about minorities, including gays. While we’ve all done things in our youth that we’ve grown up to regret, Romney minimizes these incidents as ‘pranks’ or ‘hijinks’. He once again shows how his privileged upbringing has left him woefully unable to see the viewpoint of those who are in some way less fortunate. It makes me want to go on a high-speed joyride in one of my Ferraris.

    And I don’t believe for a nanosecond that he has forgotten the haircutting assault. His victim is now dead, so the not-pology is too little, too fucking late. If I had done something like this to somebody, I would certainly remember it, even 50 years later. If this ‘prank’ is the sort of behavior he routinely engaged in, then that could explain why this one incident didn’t stick in his cerebrum, but that would be an even worse indication of what an asshole he is.

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