Romney Allies Creating Silly Diversions

When I hear John Sunnunu accusing President Obama of  not being “American,” I have to laugh. Sunnunu, a Romney surrogate, was born in Cuba of Greek, Lebanese and Palestinian descent, while Barack Obama was born in Hawaii to an American mother. Of course, a lot of Republicans still aren’t convinced of that. They insist Obama was born in Kenya.

While Sunnunu was questioning the president’s Americanism, Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio  was “discovering” once again that Obama’s long-form birth certificate is a fake. He wants us to believe the entire Hawaiian bureaucracy is in on a conspiracy to falsify Obama’s birth records.

The Arizona Democratic Party said Arpaio is trying to draw attention away from hundreds of sex-crime cases that his office failed to investigate effectively. And there are those  federal charges of civil rights violations the crazy sheriff is facing.

But there could be another motive for the revival of the debunked birther nonsense. It looks to me like a silly diversion designed to distract voters from Mitt Romney’s tax scandal.

That carbuncle on the face of American media, Rush Limbaugh, is beating the birther drum again – and yelling about pot smoking incidents from Obama’s teen years. Obviously, this frenzied assault is aimed at distracting voters from Romney’s refusal to show us his income tax returns for any significant number of years.

Then look who is back in the news – Michele Bachmann! She has come out with a wild-eyed theory that accuses Hillary Clinton of masterminding a takeover of Egyptian politics by the Islamic Brotherhood. Why? Because Hillary is supposedly under the spell of her Muslim aide, Huma Abedin, who happens to be married to Jewish ex-congressman Anthony Weiner. Bachmann says Huma has a mother, brother, and (deceased!) father who belong to the radical Islamist group so she is obviously a Muslim mole.

Bachmann’s silliness didn’t get much traction here at home but it got some Egyptians so riled up they threw tomatoes at Clinton’s motorcade in Alexandria and shouted “Monica” insults at her.

I see this rash of nonsensical accusations as a coordinated attempt to get the news media talking about something other than Romney’s taxes.

I leave it to you to figure out what Romney is hiding.  It could be anything.

Because Romney’s income is almost entirely based on capital gains, there could be some years – 2008 and 2009 for example – when he paid no taxes. Remember how low stocks went following the Bush-era economic collapse?

And it could be worse. Romney ran a venture capital firm with investors from far and wide. Who knows who those investors included?

Money has no morality. Investors need no code of ethics. They put up their money – wherever it came from – and demand the biggest bang for their buck.

Is it possible that those tax returns might provide clues to the identities of Romney’s investors? And is it possible some of those investors are shady characters?

Yes, Mr. Romney, sir, I realize this is sheer innuendo. I know it sounds like conspiracy rubbish, sir.

So make me a liar: release those tax returns.

And tell your gang to stop trying to change the subject by spewing out silly fantasies about the president’s birthplace and Muslim moles in the State Department.

gwgraeme

I am a Jamaican-born writer who has lived and worked in Canada and the United States. I live in Lakeland, Florida with my wife, Sandra, our three cats and two dogs. I like to play golf and enjoy our garden, even though it's a lot of work. Since retiring from newspaper reporting I've written a few books. I also write a monthly column for Jamaicans.com

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