Dear Ann Romney:
This newspaper devoted a lot of space last month to a series about your husband and his run for president. I'd hate to see all that grunt work come to naught. So please get him to stop talking about Vietnam, OK? The Romney men have a genetic predisposition toward self-destruction on that topic. First, Papa George blows up his campaign in 1968 by claiming to have been "brainwashed" by the US military. Now here comes Mitt, in this paper, talking about his own, completely imaginary, experience in Southeast Asia.
"I was supportive of my country. I longed in many respects to actually be in Vietnam and be representing our country there and in some ways it was frustrating not to feel like I was there as part of the troops that were fighting in Vietnam."
Picture young Mitt, wandering the fragrant vineyards of la belle France, pitching Mormonism to winemakers, but, in reality, desperate to be slogging through a rice paddy. Lost and tormented in the Bien Hoa of his mind, he can't eat and, every night, when he lays himself down to sleep beneath the gentle Gallic breezes, he dreams of a mildewed sleeping bag in the Central Highlands. In the morning, when someone opens a cottage door to receive his pitch, he stands in mute agony, because he'd rather be going headfirst down into a fortified tunnel. I will bet all the money in my wallet against all the money in Mitt's wallet that he can't find a single person with whom he contemporaneously shared this appalling dark night of the soul. Stop him, Ann. Seriously. Before people start asking you where your family buys its mushrooms.