Friday, August 24, 2012

Memo to Mitt Romney: If you have to spend millions to portray yourself as warm, friendly and open isn’t that the problem

Clueless in Tampa

On the likeability issue Mitt Romney fails, for the simple reason that this is not a very likeable person.  All of us want to be wealthy and successful but Mr. Romney gives the impression that this is the only driving force in his life, and that accumulating great wealth regardless of its source or the negative impact on others is his sole defining trait.

To counter this his professional handlers in Tampa are planning to present the warm and fuzzy Mitt, and to spend unlimited resources in doing so.

Working from makeshift offices at a hockey arena here, a team of Romney advisers, producers and designers has been staging and scripting a program for the Republican National Convention that they say they hope will accomplish something a year of campaigning has failed to do: paint a full and revealing portrait of who Mitt Romney is.

And to do this they plan a truly mystifying approach.

Instead of glossing over Mr. Romney’s career as a private equity executive, they will highlight it in convention videos and speeches as the kind of experience that has prepared him to be the economic steward the country needs.

That’s right they plan to emphasize Mitt’s experience as an investor.  Not as a builder of businesses, not as a generator of jobs but as a greed driven executive in private equity, where his skills were using other people’s money to make a great fortune for himself.  Really, that’s the image they think has been missing from the campaign.  Here’s how they plan to convey it.

The most ambitious element of stagecraft, however, will be the podium — which features 13 different video screens — the largest about 29 feet by 12 feet, the smallest about 8 feet by 8 feet and movable. All the screens will be framed in dark wood.

“Even the frames are designed to give it a sense that you’re not looking at a stage, you’re looking into someone’s living room,” said Russ Schriefer, one of Mr. Romney’s senior advisers who is running the convention planning for the campaign.

Yeah, the living room of a mega millionaire who thinks he should be President because he managed the Olympics and served on term as Governor and turned his back on his one sole accomplishment while in the job.

The professional handlers will spare no expense.

The campaign aides are determined to overcome perceptions that Mr. Romney is stiff, aloof and distant. So they have built one of the most intricate set pieces ever designed for a convention — a $2.5 million Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired theatrical stage. From its dark-wood finish to the brightly glowing high-resolution screens in the rafters that look like skylights, every aspect of the stage has been designed to convey warmth, approachability and openness.

And the impression most voters will get – Here is a guy with a great interior decorator and the money to afford it.

Sorry Mitt, all of the above says why you are regarded as stiff, aloof and distant.  And it is because you are stiff, aloof and distant, no amount of paid staff and false image will convince anyone otherwise.  That doesn’t mean they won’t vote for you or even elect you, but nobody is ever going to like you.

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