Cringe-inducing. Creepy. Disturbing.
That's how I felt about Clint Eastwood's horrible twelve minutes on stage at the Republican National Convention before Romney spoke.
It's also how I feel about voting for Romney. So I'm glad Eastwood's performance was bad. It reflects poorly on Romney, who is supposed to be such a great manager, on top of all the details.
Well, one detail he wasn't on top of was Clint Eastwood. This has to go down as one of the most embarassing prime time appearances at a major party political convention.
Eastwood wasn't funny. He wasn't inspiring. He stuttered and stammered. His crude joke about an imaginary Obama telling Romney to fuck himself (I assume that's what he meant) was utterly inappropriate.
As was insulting Biden. Yet the Republican faithful in the audience cheered all the unfunny tastelessness. Voters of America, this is a preview of what a Romney-Ryan administration would be like.
Watch. Spend twelve minutes watching, because you're asking for four years of this if you put a check next to Romney's name come November.
The Daily Kos has a nice caustic commentary on the Eastwood debacle. I agree completely.
It was instructive of the quality of Mitt Romney's campaign. Just think of everything that had to happen to deliver us tonight's disaster:
- Republicans started buzzing about their "secret guest" on Monday, if not earlier. That means they had four days to help Clint write a speech and, you know, vet it. They didn't.
- They then spent four days building up the hype about their super duper awesome secret guest. A joke that it would be a zombie Reagan hologram soon got a life of its own, and rumors abounded that yes, it would be Reagan! But no matter what, Clint Eastwood was never going to live up to the hype. He's cool, but this is a political convention, not a Comedy Central roast. There was palpable letdown when he was announced.
- Did they read Clint Eastwood's latest hits? Pro-gay marriage, pro-choice, cut and ad celebrating the auto bailout for the Super Bowl, and someone quoted as saying he didn't believe in the modern Republican Party. So if nothing else, it provided snark fodder all day.
- Here's the big one -- the campaign obviously spent big bucks putting together a super effective and beautifully done biographical mini-documentary on Romney's early years. The guy has had a terrible job selling his personal story because he's got none. Some video director moved heaven and earth to make the guy seem almost compelling -- a great introduction to people who haven't been tuned in to the race until now. And ... they run it before the networks cut in. Sure, the folks at Fox and CSPAN saw it, but they already know whether they like Romney or not.
- No one felt compelled to lend Clint a comb?
- Bumping their pretty bio piece for Clint might have worked if the campaign knew what they were getting. He's a big star, a Hollywood legend. Convention ratings have been downright atrocious for this convention (40+ million saw Sarah Palin speak, 22 million saw Paul Ryan). Clearly, schedulers hoped that having a big time celebrity lead the coverage would keep people watching. But conventions are scripted for a reason. Or put another way, people aren't allowed to ad-lib because if they do ... well, you know.