Thursday, September 20, 2012

"Leaning" Romney

I am not particularly political. Political partisanship is generally a distraction from what our problems really are. Once you have become partisan you tend to ignore the merits of the other side, as well as the mistakes of your own side.

We must all become converted in our hearts to Jesus Christ. If we have Christ in our hearts, all else will follow. Joseph Smith's comment that he "teaches them correct principles and they govern themselves" was not just a casual statement. It was the confidence a prophet of God in the ability of people to know the difference between good and bad, right and wrong. Even if they err, they would get closer to the correct course by considering the principles they had been taught than by assessing the argument or immediate decision before them.

When a man is converted to truth, correct principles, and true doctrine, such a man has no difficulty stating in simple, but clear terms, the truth which inhabits his heart.

Mitt Romney has been running to be the President of the United States for 5 years now. In all of that time, I find myself unconvinced that his heart is filled with sound, true, heartfelt principles and doctrines. Why can't he set forth in plainness true economic doctrine as well as I can? His background should qualify him to speak with greater plainness about the truths of economic freedom and the principles of economic growth better than I can. He does not. At times he is almost incoherent.

There are fundamental and universal God-given principles for the preservation of the freedom of mankind. Madison, Monroe, Jefferson, Washington, Mason, and the great John Adams could all state with clarity and simplicity, with the beauty that persuades you to your very core, these God-given truths. Why is Mitt Romney unable to do so?

In his first term, President Obama experimented with turning a soft hand to the Muslim world. It was something new. Although it failed, the virulent critics immediately labeled it "an apology tour." No one had any idea how the Cairo speech might move the Muslim hearts. Instead of condemning and even rooting for its failure, we should have prayed to God that our President would move the Muslim world. We should have asked God to soften the hearts of our enemies. We should asked God to embolden our friends. Instead we withheld our sustaining prayers, and in contempt, we let the matter proceed to its now complete failure.

Thinking upon the failure of that experiment, I recall how clearly Richard Nixon articulated, and Henry Kissinger elaborated, on the effective policy of projecting national strength to our enemies. Whatever terrible flaws Richard Nixon had, he was convinced to his core, and able to persuasively articulate the truth of national power in the international arena. After our national humiliation under Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan was elected in very large part because he could speak the principles of American power persuasively, convincingly, and from his heart.

Mitt Romney is unable to do this.

As I listen to Mitt Romney speak about any topic, principle, or true doctrine, he seems hollow. He sounds more like a spokesman for the opinions of others than a man speaking from his heart. He sounds like the chairman of a committee. He sounds like he is trying to use focus group phrases. He seems to be using the results of opinion polls to formulate his public statements. In short, he seems more like an artificial life form then a principled, true-hearted, complete convert to God given truths, proven economic doctrines, and historically successful foreign policy.

This leaves me wondering:
-It is not "who" but rather "what" am I electing?
-Is this a man with a true and converted heart and soul, or is this a weather vane prepared to be tossed to and fro with every wind of shifting opinion?
-Is he, as I suspect, double-minded and unstable as water?

If opinions shift on something which is absolutely fundamental and God-given to preserve man's freedom, will that popularity shift cause him to surrender such a principle?

Why should I regard him as something more than an empty suit espousing, without the conviction I can feel in my own heart, the results of market driven research?

I am "leaning" Romney. That is because I believe all of the quantitative easing has not worked and has hurt us all very much. This I could explain with simplicity, but that's beyond this post. I believe President Obama's soft approach foreign policy has utterly failed. I believe the stock market is over-priced, and nothing more than a politically manipulated show piece for the President's sake. I believe shutting down the pipeline was an act completely contrary to our national interest, and has resulted in increased gas prices to every American. Mitt Romney criticizes each of these things. But he sounds more like a puppet than a man of principle with a converted heart. To me, if in the end I vote for Mitt Romney, it will only be as a choice of the lesser of two evils. How I wish he were not Mormon. I think he represents the religion of conviction, devotion, and true principles (the ones which reside in my heart) in such an embarrassingly weak way that if taken as an example of our people should engender contempt and disrespect. He is like the progressively less principled Joel Osteen. As Mr. Osteen's  popularity has risen, and his wealth has increased (he now lives in a $10 million dollar home) the principles he used to preach have eroded, softened, and been abandoned. He is a living example of the very problem Mitt Romney's behavior now puts on display.

May God have mercy on us all. May we all look to our Redeemer, Jesus Christ, for our salvation - both temporal and spiritual. Even so, Amen.

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