Thursday, June 28, 2007

Romney's Dog

There are some rumblings around the Internet concerning an article about Republican candidate Mitt Romney in the Boston Globe. In a 1983 trip to Lake Huron, because the car was crowded he decided to put the family dog in a crate on the roof rack. While underway, the kids announced when the dog had an attack of diarrhea. Romney just stopped at a gas station, hosed off the dog and car, brushed his hands together, and got back underway. Problem solved.

Various blogs and editorials have latched onto this as a hot button political issue and an indictment of Romney's management style and Mormon faith. I doubt I share many views with Romney, but come on.

It gives me the willies that he put the dog on the roof, and then put him right back after the assplosion. And, though the physical risks and exposure probably aren't that different from putting a dog in a pickup bed, it's particularly troubling because of all the thought he put into placing the crate on the roof and setting up a little windscreen-- he had plenty of opportunities to consider what ifs. I keep having flashbacks to when I was a puzzled kid looking out the rear window at our luggage scattered all over the highway after the roof rack had fallen off our car.

But in 1983 how many doggy safety belts were available? How many dogs ran loose around busy suburban neighborhoods? It was a different time and a more complacent attitude about pets. And even today, Romney's vision of the pet as a glorified piece of furniture is pretty pervasive-- most of us pet bloggers happen to be at the other end of that bell curve. Rather than beat up Romney as a candidate, I'd rather people consider this in the context of their own lesser lapses and move a little towards my end of the curve.


Charlie said...

Naw... let's consider this an example of of what Romney has in store for the nation...
- Charlie

Pappy's Fella said...

That's the way that most bloggers seem to be taking it. Comments on different blogs make reference to stories of Bush blowing up frogs as a kid, and aligning it to a broader conservative agenda. The most interesting comment I've seen is this breakdown of the total capacity of a Chevy Caprice station wagon and Romney's other options. Must be an engineer.

Rhea said...

Romney is Mr. Efficiency? Well, he's just a cruel, selfish man. That poor pup.

Finnegan said...

I still find it cruel and idiotic. I cannot imagine my parents ever doing that. They would probably have put me on top of the car over my mom's dear Harris. Also, I think the comment on Daily Kos put it best and was quite amusing.

Off the topic, my husband and I lived in Salt Lake City during the Olympics and the BIG NEWS was that he said f--- when the traffic was all f----- up (sorry, had to). God, I miss Utah..

Finnegan's Mom

Gus said...

Didn't change my opinion of the man one whit. My dad is the only man of age qualified to be president, and he wouldn't take the job.

(muzzer wouldn't let him, probably.)

Pappy's Fella said...

Rhea & Finnegan,
Can't say I have any support for Romney, and this doesn't encourage me to think he is a good man. But I also don't think this level of neglect or lack of empathy is unique. I wish the story were being put to better use than political theater, and encouraged people to think rather than polarize.

I can't remember details, but it seems to me Rousseau described the benevolent despot, who had to be drafted to the position of authority to spread the benefits of enlightenment. Gus's Dad for president.

Pappy's Fella said...

I came across an interesting blog posting regarding presidential hopefuls' pet menageries. Depending on which way you swing, Dem Dennis Kucinich has three dogs, but Republican John McCain may exceed that total bio mass with two dogs, one cat, thirteen fish, one ferret, three parakeets, and two turtles. Romney currently has a late dog (not sure whether this one rode on the roof).

Stella and Annie said...

We agree there's too much polarizing and not enough thinking these days. But, just to throw our paws into the mix, we wish we could vote for Dubya and Barney a THIRD time ;)