If you've read this site for any length of time over the past several months, or listened to the podcast for that matter, you know that an ongoing frustration for me has been trying to put into words just what the hell makes Mitt Romney so weird. Other than referencing the Uncanny Valley, which Romney falls squarely into, there's just no way to truly sum up his various oddities, tics, awkward linguistic bloopers and so on, all of which seem to stem from his complete lack of empathy and inability to function like a normal human being.
Alex Pareene over at Salon once summed it up pretty well, and for that he deserves kudos:
"He seems incapable of natural conversation and frequently uncomfortable in his own skin. He’s simultaneously dorkily earnest and ingratiatingly insincere. He suggests a brilliantly designed politician android with an operating system still clearly in beta. He once tied a dog to the roof of his car and drove for hundreds of miles without stopping and some years later thought that was an endearing story. All video of him attempting to interact with normal humans is cringe-inducing, as a cursory YouTube search quickly demonstrates. (Martin Luther King Day, Jacksonville, Fla., 2008: Mitt poses for a picture with some cheerful young parade attendees. As he squeezes in to the otherwise all-black group, he says, apropros of nothing, 'Who let the dogs out? Woof, woof!') He seems to have been told that 'small talk' is mostly made up of cheerfully delivered non sequiturs... If Nixon was epically, operatically weird — the sort of president the nation that produced Charles Manson should expect, let’s say — Romney is uninterestingly weird. First reel of 'Blue Velvet' weird, without a hint of that subterranean layer of rot and perversion underlying the whole thing. Upon returning to his childhood home in Michigan for a 2012 campaign event, Romney noted that the trees were 'the right height.'"
Well, again to the site's credit, Salon has now put together what it calls the Mitt Romney Master Gaffe List -- and scanning through it may not help you to understand why Romney's such a weirdo, but it definitely proves that he is one.
Salon: Mitt's Master Gaffe List/8.27.12