Burch: Mr. Inappropriate

Thursday, August 2, 2012 at 10:05pm
By Michael R. Burch

A Tennessee athlete played two key roles in the 2012 Olympics. Amber Charles captains the Tennessee Temple University women’s basketball team, but she hails from London. In 2004, she presented London’s proposal to members of the International Olympic Committee. Recently, millions of people watched her carry the final torch at the opening ceremony of the London Olympics.

Tennessee is also represented by other athletes, including 2004 Olympic gold medalist Justin Gatlin, a world-class sprinter, and Candace Parker and Tamika Catchings, two world-class basketball players who won gold medals in the 2008 Olympics.

But unfortunately not all Americans are as exemplary. One less-than-world-class visitor threw a dark shadow over the opening ceremonies and left millions of otherwise ecstatic Brits feeling slighted by a prototypical “ugly American.”

Mitt Romney fumbled the ball in his first attempt at international diplomacy, when he suggested that London was not ready to host the Olympics. He called British preparations “disconcerting,” saying it’s “hard to know just how well it will turn out.” He seemed to be suggesting that England’s organizers fell short of the Olympic gold standard: himself.

America’s Mr. Inappropriate shocked Downing Street with his bad manners and lack of grace. Prime Minister David Cameron rebuked Romney with typical British irony: “We are holding an Olympic Games in one of the busiest, most active, bustling cities in the world. Of course it’s easier if you hold an Olympic Games in the middle of nowhere.”

But Romney was not content to insult only the organizers. He also seemed to impugn the character of the English people, by asking if they would “come together and celebrate the Olympic moment,” as if only Americans under his leadership are capable of attending sporting events.

Senate majority leader Harry Reid justifiably questioned why an American presidential candidate would “go over and insult everybody.”

Then, as if determined to prove that what happened in London was no fluke, Romney proceeded to alienate most of the Muslim world when, during his next stop in Israel, he suggested that Israelis enjoy a better standard of living than Palestinians because they have a superior culture and enjoy the “hand of providence.”

The remarks understandably infuriated Palestinians, who accused Romney of racism and not taking into account the fact that Israel has established a military occupation of the West Bank and a naval blockade of Gaza, which have devastated the Palestinian economy. The consensus opinion of international economists, including the IMF and World Bank, is that the Palestinian economy will remain depressed until Israel ends restrictions on imports, exports and the movement of goods.

But that was not the end of Romney’s blunders. During a speech delivered later in the day, he said, “It’s a deeply moving experience to be in Jerusalem, the capital of Israel.” The problem, of course, is that Israel has already wrested around 80 percent of the land of Palestine from the native population by force, hook and crook. If Israel claims all Jerusalem, the Palestinians will have no hope of a viable state of their own. So Israel claiming all Jerusalem with the backing of its superpower patron could inspire another intifada, more acts of terrorism like 9/11 and perhaps even World War III.

Later, Romney spoke of moving the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, something saner world leaders have wisely refused to do. At times Sheldon Adelson, the Jewish-American billionaire casino magnate who has contributed millions to Newt Gingrich’s and Romney’s presidential campaigns, sat next to Mr. Inappropriate. It seems obvious to me that Adelson is making massive contributions to American politicians in return for them agreeing to support an American embassy in Jerusalem. But that could be seen as an act of war by people who demand independence from Israeli tyranny and oppression for Palestinians.

“We condemn his statements. Those who speak about the two-state solution should know that there can be no Palestinian state without East Jerusalem,” chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat told Reuters. “What this man is doing here is just promoting extremism, violence and hatred, and this is absolutely unacceptable. His statements are just rewarding the occupation and aggression.”

Romney has criticized Barack Obama, alleging that the president had “thrown Israel under a bus” by pushing for a two-state solution. But the man most responsible for defending Israel, Defense Minister Ehud Barak, made it clear that the Obama administration has given “unprecedented backing to Israel’s security” and has “done a lot to maintain Israel’s qualitative [military] advantage” in the region.

So it seems that even Israeli Jews and Palestinians who agree about nothing else can agree about one thing: Mr. Inappropriate has no business trying to lead the free world.

Michael R. Burch is a Nashville-based editor and publisher of Holocaust poetry and other “things literary” at www.thehypertexts.com.

226 Comments on this post:

By: Ask01 on 8/6/12 at 3:54

Two excellent points, bfra.

Especially the second. The GOP had a field day with President Clinton and his sexual escapades. They initiated all manner of investigations, held all sorts of hearing, and after all the expense, they in effect only discovered that if you publicly ask a married, middle aged man about possible sexual improprieties, he is going to lie.

Granted, I would have loved to see him, when asked about the contact, snort, smile lewdly, hitch up his pants, and answer, "Yep, I did. And it was good too!" All for the purpose of watching the inquisitors swallow their tongues. (Most European nations just shook their heads over the unnatural obsession displayed concerning one man's sex life. I mean, I believe it was Italy that elected an ex porn star to their legislature.)

If President Clinton was dragged through the mud over such a really trivial charge, what will happen to Willard if his tax returns are discovered to be somewhat lacking in honesty? Such antics got Capone sent away, you know.

Having said all that, considering the hatred held by many for President Obama, does anyone with more than two functioning brain cells actually believe if real, actionable evidence existed to substantiate their outlandish claims, the slobbering, rabid mobs would not have already filed lawsuit after lawsuit?

A person would have to be a true closet case, or an internet troll, to believe all three branches of government would be involved in the cover up of an ineligible person squatting in the highest office in the land.

You are correct about the firnge element continuing to repeat the same thing over and over again. I wonder if there is a connection between that and repeating the same action expecting different results. That is supposed to define insanity.

By: bfra on 8/6/12 at 3:57

Conservative Majority Fund

If there was a truth-in-labeling law for political organizations, the Conservative Majority Fund would have to call themselves Inbreds ‘R’ Us. The Conservative Majority Fund is sort of a clearinghouse for anti-Obama tinfoil-hat conspiracy theories — a One Stop Shop for knuckledraggers
These are the people behind the anti-Obama ads!

By: Ask01 on 8/6/12 at 4:57

One more observation concerning Willards tax returns.

Even if no skullduggery is evident, I suppose revealing the enormous disparity in tax percentage wise he paid to that paid by the working middle class could be as damaging as evasion.

Pure speculation on my part, I admit, but there has to be some reason for the reluctance to provide such information.

In my opinion, either subterfuge has been employed to avoid paying taxes in full or loopholes available only to the very wealthy. In either circumstance, Willard seems to feel the need to conceal something.

Of course, I suppose we should all remember Mrs' Willard's comment about having given "you people all you need." I take that to mean they will tell us what they want us to know.

How very Republican of them.

By: yogiman on 8/6/12 at 6:14

bfra (bad farts repeating again),

Name one of those conflicts that was a declared war. As I have stated, there has not been a declared war since WWII.

Yes, I know the men, and women today, in those conflicts are fighting for their lives. That's a war to them but it's a conflict by official legal determination.

By: yogiman on 8/6/12 at 6:17


To be a war, a conflict must be declared a war by congress. Yes, killing each other officially is a war by any legal definition.

By: yogiman on 8/6/12 at 6:31


As you know, time will tell. We have 92 days now and it's going to be interesting. If we haven't been put under martial law by then, and Obama wins (officially), you had better get ready for your Muslim master.

By: bfra on 8/6/12 at 6:42

yogi - Obama wins (officially), you had better get ready for your Muslim master.
Yes people this old fart is that dumb!

By: yogiman on 8/6/12 at 7:20

Let's see who's the dumbest of them all, bfra.

I'm glad you admitted you was a dumb old fart.

By: BenDover on 8/6/12 at 8:42

And now, back in the real world.


By: Mike Burch on 8/6/12 at 8:46


I agree about the veterans. They know damn well they fought in wars, and whether or not the wars were justified, they deserve every honor and all the help we can give them. But what will Romney and the GOP do to them, since they want to rip away all the safety nets? Many vets end up homeless. Mitt Romney derides poor people if they ask for affordable healthcare, calling it "free stuff" even though we pay taxes. And yet it seems he paid virtually no taxes for a decade or more, which is why he can't release his tax returns.


By: Mike Burch on 8/6/12 at 8:48


Romney's comments clearly suggest that the US, as always, will support Israel no matter what it does. It seems obvious that the neocons (emphasis on "cons") want more wars in the Middle East, and that Romney is their man ... another hubristic moron like GWB who can be manipulated into starting wars.


By: yogiman on 8/6/12 at 9:30


What do you think of the law suit Obama has brought against the service men to block their votes?

Shouldn't the GIs have the right to vote? After all, they're dying, if necessary, to protect our right to vote. So why doesn't Obama want them to vote?

By: Mike Burch on 8/6/12 at 9:33

I think Harry Reid is right ... Romney paid little or no taxes for a decade or more. That's why he refuses to release his tax returns. Newt Gingrich seemed to be aware of this, as during the debates he asked Romney not to cost the GOP the election if there was something damaging in his tax returns. And of course Romney looked like a fish out of water when John King pointed out that Romney's father had set the precedent by releasing 12 years of tax returns.

I knew then there was something REALLY BAD in Romney's tax returns. His refusal to release more returns pretty much proves that in 2009 he paid little or no income tax. If that was an anomaly, he could release 12 years of return, like his father, and explain the unusual year. Since he won't do that, it seems there are problems with multiple years of his returns.

By: Captain Nemo on 8/6/12 at 9:37

In 1768, The British dispatched a 50-gun warship to New England to enforce the Crowns right of taxation over the colonist.

That ship was the HMS Romney. LOL

By: Captain Nemo on 8/6/12 at 9:44

Anyone who thinks that The Korean War was only a conflict must have been on a warm ship out at sea, never seeing any fighting.

By: Captain Nemo on 8/6/12 at 9:47

Not answering the troll will only hurt the troll. There is no reasoning with something that can’t be reason with. To do so only encourages it to act out.

By: Captain Nemo on 8/6/12 at 9:53

By: Mike Burch on 8/6/12 at 10:33
I think Harry Reid is right ... Romney paid little or no taxes for a decade or more. That's why he refuses to release his tax returns. Newt Gingrich seemed to be aware of this, as during the debates he asked Romney not to cost the GOP the election if there was something damaging in his tax returns.

Mike that was during the Bush years in White House that Romney did not pay on his taxes. Could there be something to this?

By: yogiman on 8/6/12 at 9:53

Correct me if I'm wrong, Mike. You say you think Harry Reid is right, but Harry offers no evidence. He's still right, huh?

I understand Romney presented the taxes required by law. If we are a nation of law abiding citizens, why insist on more? You, nor any other who is opposing Romney have any idea what Romney was going through in his business world during those ten years. And have you thought if Romney comes up later and shows those files and it makes them look like the damn fools they are they will accept it? Didn't think so.

Politics is politics, and a lot of low blows are thrown.

By: pswindle on 8/6/12 at 10:03

One needs to really listen to sissy Romney. He is more dangerous than stupid Bush. We will end up a Military State with a dictator. Cheney wanted to turn US into a Military State and he is still working on tnis through Mitt. Bush just was not smart enough to pull this off. Go and do some digging and you wil find info on what Cheney was planing. Scary stuff! Why do you think that the Chamber and others weaken the US by sending all the jobs overseas? Without money there is no power, and all of the money is in the hands of the 1%. Romney is the head of the 1%. America had better wake up before it is too late.

By: Captain Nemo on 8/6/12 at 10:12

Could Romney be talking about another war?

"I can absolutely make the case that now is the time for something dramatic and it is not the time to grow government. It's the time to create the incentives and the opportunities for entrepreneurs and businesses big and small to hire more people and that's going to happen," Romney said an interview aired Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union."


By: Captain Nemo on 8/6/12 at 10:15


Don’t interact with the troll. It will die if not feed and you will have a better day for not paying any attention to it.

By: budlight on 8/6/12 at 1:37

govskeptic on 8/3/12 at 4:28
Romney only stated what most of the British Press had been saying for weeks,
concerning the problems of procuring Security Personnel. London has a lot
of left leaning press and with a small push from our own a Mountain was
made of a molehill, just to discredit the man and his trip. They did a good job.
Three major American TV networks devoted 85% of their coverage of the trip
to so-called gaffes by Mr. Romney. Our resident editorialist continues with
the same. Reads like written by Axlerod's intern

Yes, Gov and the Brits had to bring in their army (or whatever they call it) to take up the slack when their security company they picked could not (or would not) train people for security.

And of course, they couldn't tell the difference in the flags for north and south Korea, or get the names right. When they finally apologized they made a joke of it and said that whoever could not see the difference, could get a free eye exam.

So sorry Burchmeister, you are wrong. A lot went wrong at the Olympics, before and during. Michele Odrama was all gushy over them, even after they flubbed the SECURITY COMPANY TEST.

Find something better to do than bash Romney, will you. Your bashing is getting to be "old hat" as they say in England.

By: Rasputin72 on 8/6/12 at 2:02

Mitt Romney is a good choice for the future of America. Unfortunately the future of America has already been cast. A decade or so of the have nots living off the haves and then the haves will be so outnumbered that they cannot support the have nots. Since a large segment of the have nots have the same IQ as a Gerbel you can expect riots and insurrection as they find the cupboard is bare.

By: Captain Nemo on 8/6/12 at 2:40

The average man has to show three years of income tax to buy a house, yet the right wing fringe is willing to let Romney lead the country with know qusetions asked.

By: Beernazi on 8/6/12 at 3:13

During his losing Senate run against Ted Kennedy Romney demanded that Ted Kennedy provide his tax returns on the basis of the public's right to know:

"It's time the biggest-taxing senator in Washington shows the people of Massachusetts how much he pays in taxes," Romney said in April of 1994, according to a report in the Boston Globe.


By: Beernazi on 8/6/12 at 3:13

*As for taking Mr. Romney's word that there's nothing to be concerned about, to just trust him to tell the truth the linked Boston Globe article has a nifty little example of how Mr. Romney misrepresented his residency filing and then went back and amended his filing when the situation became uncomfortable

By: Captain Nemo on 8/6/12 at 3:47

Hello Blanket. The right will let that ride so long its not a Democrte.

By: Captain Nemo on 8/6/12 at 3:47

Hello Blanket. The right will let that ride so long its not a Democrte.

By: Beernazi on 8/6/12 at 3:53

Yep. I guess we're just "picking" on Romney. LOL

By: yogiman on 8/6/12 at 4:27

Yep, except you're trying to use a sledge hammer and chisel.

By: parnell3rd on 8/6/12 at 10:08

headlines from London, Romney right, London losing money on the Olympics. They are falling way short of the 1 million visitors a day as they planned. Still plenty of empty seats at every venue, except tennis.

By: parnell3rd on 8/6/12 at 10:12

Dear Mr. Burch, the unemployment rate will takes years to recover from all of the damag from Obama's policies. And I'm here to say NONE of the bail out's should have happened!

By: yogiman on 8/6/12 at 11:43


The Democrat party members whom are taking Barack Obama as their honored President are making a bad mistake. Obama is not a true Democrat. He is a staunch communist. Why? Because that is the way he was raised from childhood through adulthood.

One of the communist party's regimes is to fool the people and Obama is fooling them eloquently.

By: Ask01 on 8/7/12 at 4:32

I am amazed Willard and his party continue to lay blame for the recession at the feet of President Obama.

The recession was under way before the last election, so the blame needs to be rightly placed on the previous administration.

Willard has a proven track record for outsourcing jobs, leaving Americans unemployed. The Republican Party has demonstrated complete contempt for the middle and lower class, blocking continuation of tax cuts unless the same cuts are extended to those who have no need of them.

The prime supporters of Willard and the Republican Party, the wealthy and big businesses and corporations are the ones who have caused the unemployment issues, slashing jobs to increase money available for upper management salaries and bonuses, all the while complaining about the out of work "moochers" they created asking for more aid.

(Let us be clear. The issue is aid for those seeking work and not being able to find employment, not tho chronic unemployed who wouldn't work for any reason.)

I represent what those behind the recession should fear most. A working middle class American who has experienced first hand the lack of jobs while corporate America sends jobs overseas, posts record profits, and awards obscene bonuses to those who orchestrated the scenario.

I've also experienced the jeers and insults of those who scream "Get a job," and "Lazy bum," even though I was seeking employment in an economy which offered nothing.

I represent the angry middle class who, finding themselves unemployed, were abandonded by their former fellow workers, and ignored by the Republican party and their corporate masters.

Willard and the Republican party face a huge obstacle with this voting bloc, and his antics overseas only help to further distance him from middle America, or what is left of that group.

Sorry for the rambling rant, but I just wanted express my opinion, if a class conflict is looming, it will be the direct result of actions undertaken by corporate America, the wealthy who never have enough, and the Republican party.

The clock is ticking and elections, with an angry middle and lower class, loom on the horizon. This could be the end of a major political party.

Tick tock, tick tock.

By: Captain Nemo on 8/7/12 at 4:37


By: Ask01 on 8/7/12 at 4:58

Only if we are extremely fortunate, Captain.

By: yogiman on 8/7/12 at 6:41


It's easy to blame either party or anyone on a default, but may I ask: Who was President when our jobs started going overseas to the cheaper labor? A Democratic president Bill Clinton when he signed the US into the NAFTA program.

May I further ask; what would you do if you owned a business or was in charge of a corporation and could get cheaper labor elsewhere than your current location?

By: Beernazi on 8/7/12 at 7:00

Uh, NAFTA is the NORTH AMERICAN Free Trade Agreement and has nothing to do with China. We need legislation that would help even out the trade deficit with China.

By: Rasputin72 on 8/7/12 at 7:44

ASK01.......I can certainly see why you do not have a job. I am assumng by your command of the English language that you are looking for a "position" of sorts. Unfortunately for you it is people like me and other like minded people that have the jobs in the private sector. I think a good interviewer or human resources person could see that you would be a distraction to their company.

You could be however a good candidate for a federal job.

By: Beernazi on 8/7/12 at 7:47

Rasputin, why do you not have a command of using commas? And "like-minded" is hyphenated.

By: yogiman on 8/7/12 at 8:06

Thanks, Beernazi, for correcting my error in NAFTA. I got up too early (and I'm not going to finish the comment "I ain't woke up yet").

But foryour comment to Rasputing72 about his misuse of the comma in spelling, may I remind you the writing skills in the English language today isn't taught as it was before the federal government set up the Department of Education and took over requiring all children be taught the same lessons all over the nation.

That's when communism started its major takeover of the US.

when the teacher's union was formed, too many "teachers" had no interest in teaching the children, only drawing a pay check.

It's ironic so many people today can't even speak the language, let alone write it.

By: Beernazi on 8/7/12 at 8:12

yogi, you do not speak the language correctly, let alone write it correctly. The correct use of commas has not changed so your excuses have no weight.

By: yogiman on 8/7/12 at 8:42

I'm sure I'm not the expert you are today, Beernazi. I just hope you never have to go through what I have in my life to loose so much of your brain. I wonder what you'll think then, if you can.

Not to change the subject, but if you're for the USA instead of just being an Obama fan, I recommend you check out www.riseupforamerica.com/

By: bfra on 8/7/12 at 9:04

By: yogiman on 8/7/12 at 9:42

I'm sure I'm not the expert you are
OMG maybe he is catching on!

By: Loner on 8/7/12 at 9:14

Nice missive, Mike Burch....but it's been up for five days.....time for a new comment board.

As for Bishop Romney....he is an LDS Bishop...I'm calling him "Darth Evader"....he evaded the draft during wartime, he evaded taxes all his life, he is evading relevant questions today....and like the Star Wars character, Willard owes allegiance to an evil emperor and like Darth Vader, Willard also relies on some supernatural "force"...in this case, it's the Israeli PM and Judeo-Christianity.

The Republicans are telling America, "May the farce be with you."

By: yogiman on 8/7/12 at 9:52

There you go, Loner, making accusations you can't know anything about. I question your accusation on Romney's taxes. Did you file them for him? And only Romney knows why he didn't "volunteer" for the military.

As a vet, don't you remember the religious group that wouldn't serve?

Everyone is different, Loner. There ain't no two alike, even twins.

In a way, I feel sorry for you Obama lovers but you are grown enough to see what he's doing so I can't feel very sorry for you in what's going to be the outcome if Obama gets his regime pushed through.

I do feel sorry for your children and grandchildren because they normally follow their parents and grandparents paths.

When the party's nominations take effect, I believe all hell will break loose. You will learn more in September and October than you have in Obama 3+ years in office.

By: yogiman on 8/7/12 at 9:57

I caught on right after I entered this site, bfra.... and it wasn't hard to determined how "stupid/ignorant" (take your pick) you are when you accept someone as President of your nation when you don't even know his name, let alone where he was born.

By: bfra on 8/7/12 at 10:00

yogi - Rather than use your toddler retorts, back atya!

By: Captain Nemo on 8/7/12 at 10:35

What is it you people and feeding the Troll. Can't you just leave it be and die on it,s in.

By: bfra on 8/7/12 at 10:38

Nemo - Old troll don't die & they never fade away!