As you come here and you see the GDP per capita, for instance, in Israel which is about $21,000 dollars, and compare that with the GDP per capita just across the areas managed by the Palestinian Authority, which is more like $10,000 per capita, you notice such a dramatically stark difference in economic vitality.The first thing seriously wrong with Romney's observation is that he radically soft-pedaled the devastating difference even as he was presumably drawing our attention to it: As the Associated Press pointed out, Israel’s GDP per capita was $31,000 in 2011 while the Palestinians’ per capita GDP was actually just $1,500. No doubt calling attention to the obviousness of the injustice and the extent of its toll on human lives would "send the wrong message"?
What he apparently thinks the "right message" is brings us to the second thing seriously wrong with Romney's observation, his view that the Palestinians are not suffering under the wretched and stultifying conditions of generational military occupation and authoritarian humiliation, but because their culture is "inferior" and because God is on the side of the occupiers!
[I]f you could learn anything from the economic history of the world it’s this: culture makes all the difference. Culture makes all the difference. And as I come here and I look out over this city and consider the accomplishments of the people of this nation, I recognize the power of at least culture and… I recognize the hand of providence in selecting this place.These flabbergastingly ignorant as well as profoundly undiplomatic comments, coming on the heels of a string of disastrous mis-steps in London, have made the Republican candidate for President (and, face it, America), still more enemies before even managing to trip accidentally over the front stoop and into the White House, whereupon we can only imagine the hits will keep coming and the enemies keep compounding like interest in a secret Swiss bank account. Saeb Erekat, senior aide to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas responded to Romney's outrageous remarks more or less as anyone would expect:
It is a racist statement and this man doesn't realize that the Palestinian economy cannot reach its potential because there is an Israeli occupation… It seems to me this man lacks information, knowledge, vision and understanding of this region and its people… He also lacks knowledge about the Israelis themselves. I have not heard any Israeli official speak about cultural superiority.Elect Romney and the Killer Clowns gathered around him and we return immediately to the profound danger and endless embarrassment of warmongering bigoted ignoramuses with the planet's most powerful arsenal at their disposal itching to get back to barking and bullying. You know, it actually matters that the world is nothing like the cartoon in heads of the Republican base voters mis-educated by patriarchal evangelical preachers, market fundamentalist apologists for plutocracy, and the hysterical hate speech of right wing talk radio and Fox News. Pandering to such views means pretending, and maybe even actually believing, that diplomacy doesn't work, that macroeconomics was never formulated, that public utilities are no different from private commodities, that evolution isn't sound, that climate science isn't real, that abstinence exhortation works, that guns solve every problem, that women are baby factories, that difference means either inferiority or threat, and so on. The thing is, none of that is true, none of that makes sense, none of that is remotely sane.
Romney should lose in a landslide. If he doesn't, you should worry. If you don't help bring it about, you should be ashamed of yourself.