WHEN I HEAR MITT ROMNEY, in a campaign stop in Michigan, lament the demise of the Oldsmobile - the OLDSMOBILE, for God's sake! - in the context of criticizing President Obama'a bailout of the auto industry, I can ony recall something that the New Yorker's late film critic Pauline Kael once said of the sniffy tone of her magazine."They were so superior to the subject that they never dealt with it," the esteemed Ms. Kael wrote.
Romney, who is tossing around muddled ideas like so many Edsels, often leaves me to wonder whether he is so above the crowd that he lives in a world of abstractions. In this instance, he was either unaware or intentionally deceptive in telling us about the Oldsmobile that GM phased out in 2004. If you do the simple math you will quickly discover that it predates Obama's election by four years, inconveniently for Republicans that a fellow named George Bush was president at the time.
Don't go away. Mitt also claimed credit for today's auto industry's success with an obscure explanation that I won't try to repeat. He once did say, however, that the Obama folks should have let the industry go bankrupt.