Although I still haven't quite figured out how Mitt Romney's "self-deportation" plan would work to solve the immigration problem, one of his veteran advisors has now offered us a another New Age plan, this one called "Retroactive retirement".
That's how Ed Gillespie described the situation in which Romney served as president and CEO of Bain Capital for three years without being the president and CEO of Bain Capital for three years.
As you might expect when novelties show up in the culture, the term exploded on the Internet with desperate attempts by cryptographers, linguists and nit-pickers to know precisely what it means. As one who benefited from two undeserved retirement parties myself, I was particularly interested in the question raised by one columnist: Did it mean that a retroactive retiree would be entitled to a retroactive retirement party that would appropriately include an old cake and muddy coffee?
But wait. Unless my dictionary betrays me, for something to be retroactive, it must have been in existence at the time when somebody decided to retro it. In other words, Mitt was indeed the president and CEO of Bain for three years when he was supposed to have left the company, right?
I asked the guy at the bank about it and he said he'd have to check with the home office in Zurich.
Frankly, it all sounds like a strategic retreat to me that only made matters worse.