Welcome to the Romniverse!

At last, Mitt Romney explained at the most fundamental level possible:

A bit of context. Before Mitt Romney, those seeking the presidency operated under the laws of so-called classical politics, laws still followed by traditional campaigners like Newt Gingrich. Under these Newtonian principles, a candidate’s position on an issue tends to stay at rest until an outside force — the Tea Party, say, or a six-figure credit line at Tiffany — compels him to alter his stance, at a speed commensurate with the size of the force (usually large) and in inverse proportion to the depth of his beliefs (invariably negligible)….

But the Romney candidacy represents literally a quantum leap forward. It is governed by rules that are bizarre and appear to go against everyday experience and common sense. To be honest, even people like Mr. Fehrnstrom who are experts in Mitt Romney’s reality, or “Romneality,” seem bewildered by its implications; and any person who tells you he or she truly “understands” Mitt Romney is either lying or a corporation.

Exactly so.  There’s even a very helpful Feynman diagram, demonstrating that when a Mitt and an anti-Mitt collide, they annhiliate, leaving behind an electron…and a single $20 bill.

Go read the whole thing to grasp — at last! — the full complexity of the quantum Romney.

(Just as a lagniappe, here’s my favorite of the quantum principles invoked to explain the mysteries of Mitt:

Probability. Mitt Romney’s political viewpoints can be expressed only in terms of likelihood, not certainty. While some views are obviously far less likely than others, no view can be thought of as absolutely impossible. Thus, for instance, there is at any given moment a nonzero chance that Mitt Romney supports child slavery.

Oh.  And a very happy first of April to all of you, too.  And/or:  let there be more (open) thread.

Image: Giacinto Gimignani, An Angel and a Devil Fighting for the Soul of a Child, 17 c.

[Cross posted at The Inverse Square Blog]

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36 replies
  1. 1
    Zagloba says:

    I chuckled mightily.

    /Then facepalmed at “principals”. But kept chuckling.

  2. 2
    Tom Levenson says:

    @Zagloba: Yeah. Well. You never had to attend Schrodinger’s High School, I’ll bet. You mess up there and you are both within and not the Principal’s office for punishment. Or not.

    Fixt, also too.

  3. 3
    Steeplejack says:

    @Tom Levenson:

    Since you’re tidying up . . .

    “And/or: let there be more (open) thread.”

  4. 4
    Michael says:

    The Feynman diagram had me laughing pretty hard

  5. 5
    Tom Levenson says:

    @Steeplejack: And may I say that I suck even more than usual as a proofreader of my own copy after midnight and +3 on the brandy?


    You guessed that?

    Carry on, then.

  6. 6
    Steeplejack says:

    @Tom Levenson:

    I’m not getting on your case. As a former journalist, I know it probably kills you to have typos slip through in a front-page post. And I still have the OCD copyediting thing going on.

  7. 7
    jl says:

    At least no mention of the parallel Romneyverse hypothesis. Where, upon any discrete political observation event, Romney splits into two Romneys holding different opinions which exist in parallel and mutually inaccessible political universes.

    Except, theoretically, the two could meet in the same world when two or more parallel Romneyverses are brought into juxtaposition via inter political dimensional Youtube clip transport.

    Which theoretically would result in a release of unimaginably hugebogglemendous amounts of hack spin energy ripping the universe apart, except everyone is bored and disgusted.

  8. 8
    stibbert says:

    what really boggles my brain, the GOP has spent the best part of a year to work on the thing, yet ‘Mitt Romney’ is gonna be their consensus choice. he’ll be their best answer to run against Barack Obama.

    it’s like they’re not even trying to compete, they’re just throwing dollars into the media-machine.

  9. 9
    JCJ says:

    @Tom Levenson:
    Shouldn’t we wait until @Schrodinger’s cat comments on this? It seems any quantum thread hear at Balloon Juice should involve him/her.

  10. 10
    Marcellus Shale, Public Dick says:

    More precisely, Mitt Romney will feel every possible way about an issue until the moment he is asked about it, at which point the many feelings decohere into the single answer most likely to please the asker.

    this is the best part of a truly great offering. imo.

  11. 11
    Narcissus says:

    Mitt Romney: free floating full-torso vaporous apparition.

  12. 12
    Marcellus Shale, Public Dick says:


    it makes sense when they KNOW that people who simply blanch/bleach at the thought of obama will show up. they are counting on romney being able to stretch the play all the way to the sideline, and make one cut and go as soon as obama loses gap integrity.

    they are counting on the democrats not being able to pursue down the line witth out over pursuing, or trying to shoot the gap.

    yes, yes this was a gratuitous football analogy.

  13. 13
    RossInDetroit says:

    All politicians are the same because there is actually only one politician. Political space is made up of infinite non-Euclidean dimensions that fold over. Our 4D view of reality makes it appear that politicians are everywhere and are identical, when actually we’re seeing the same one over and over.

    1980s hair metal bands: same deal.

  14. 14
    Yutsano says:


    It seems any quantum thread hear at Balloon Juice should involve him/her.

    Her FWIW. And her other half is having family issues that are eating up her time as of late. I hope all is well with her.

  15. 15
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @JCJ: Or not.

  16. 16
    Redshift says:

    I think the upshot of this that when the wavefunction collapses, his candidacy will too. I have discovered a truly marvelous proof of this, which this comment box is too small to contain.

  17. 17
    piratedan says:

    so if I read this correctly, by observation alone, I get to experience both blue and red doppler shift effect at the same time while observing the Romney phenomena?

  18. 18
    Martin says:

    A $20 bill? That’s not the Mitt I know. His generic denomination is $10,000. He’d be leaving behind a Sam Chase.

  19. 19
    MariedeGournay says:

    @RossInDetroit:Best thing I’ve read all day.

  20. 20
    JCJ says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Well done, sir!

  21. 21
    JCJ says:


    Thanks. I certainly hope all is well with her also.

  22. 22
    kdaug says:

    OT (but completely true!), Schrodinger had a dog, too.

    That dog hated the damned cat.


  23. 23
    Monkey Business says:

    I look forward to political physics becoming a thing. I think we’ll call this Romneydynamics.

  24. 24
    Comrade Nimrod Humperdink says:

    Great find Tom, this was genius. I don’t really have anything to add, but that’s great snark.

  25. 25
    bjacques says:

    I wanted to do a joke about reading Romni magazine in the 1970s, but all I have is the creepiest sci-fi short stories being the ones by Orson Scott Card.

  26. 26
    chopper says:

    santorum, OTOH, can be described as a bozonic condensate.

  27. 27
    dmsilev says:

    Excellent piece. However, it seems biased towards a theoretical description of Quantum Romneydynamics (QRD), and is light on the essential question of how to experimentally probe this fascinating system.

    As a first pass, I would suggest taking Romney and having a standard observer (let us say a primary voter from Ohio) ask him the same question about (for example) right-to-work repeatedly at uniform intervals. This will give us a baseline. Then, place the Romney inside a large magnetic field and repeat the protocol. There are a couple of possibilities, which will tell us a lot about the internal mechanisms of the Romney. For instance, if we observe Zeeman splitting in the response (two answers simultaneously, with the gap between the answers proportional to the size of the field), that strongly points to a spin component in the answer. A steady precession of the response (single response, varying with time) would allow us to identify the underlying eigenviewpoints that so far have eluded description.

    I have access to a magnet, a cryostat, and suitable detection equipment. I’m in.

  28. 28
    RossInDetroit says:

    According to the Standard Model, an AntiRomney has the same mass and charge absolute value as a Romney, but behaves as though it’s traveling backward in the 4th dimension, time. There’s no reason that 3 dimensions of spacetime should have full directional freedom yet time only moves in one direction. Hence, there must be AntiRomneys.

  29. 29
    Cheryl from Maryland says:

    One law of TV memes says that any Anti-character has more hair (evil Kirk, evil Spock, evil Cartman). Does that mean the only Romney we have seen is the AntiRomney?

  30. 30
    schrodinger's cat says:

    @JCJ: Did you call me? I am here and not here.

    *kitteh is a girl cat.

  31. 31
    schrodinger's cat says:

    Physics cannot truly understand Romney since he is made of dark matter, which sustains itself on the blood of the poor.

  32. 32
    RossInDetroit says:

    @schrodinger’s cat:

    If only. If he was dark matter he’d be invisible and only interact with gravity.
    Wait. That’s Jon Huntsman!

  33. 33
    Ken says:

    Thus, for instance, there is at any given moment a nonzero chance that Mitt Romney supports child slavery.

    I suppose this must be seen as a slight improvement on those Republican presidential candidates who definitely support child slavery, or at least have acted to prevent the extension of child-labor regulations to US territories and offshore possessions.

  34. 34
    Jerzy Russian says:

    Goddamn, this post and the comments are the funniest things I have seen in about 3.5 years. It has been a while since I have graduate level quantum mechanics, but as far as I can tell, the theory of the Romniverse seems sound. It appears to be more developed than string theory even.

  35. 35
    BigSouthern says:


    Yes! HAHAHA.

  36. 36
    Thymezone says:

    The Mitt Romney which can be known is not the true Mitt Romney.

    Lao Tsu Tsu Tsudio

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