A recent remark by Mitt Romney’s senior adviser Eric Fehrnstrom, that upon clinching the Republican nomination Mr. Romney could change his political views “like an Etch A Sketch,” has become a national sensation. David Javerbaum seizes upon the opportunity to write this awesome piece on the quantum theory of Mitt Romney. As you’ll see, 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, which can be narrowed down as follows:
Complementarity. In much the same way that light is both a particle and a wave, Mitt Romney is both a moderate and a conservative, depending on the situation. It isnot that he is one or the other; it is not that he is one and then the other. He is both at the same time.
Probability. Mitt Romney’s political viewpoints can be expressed only in terms oflikelihood, 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.
Uncertainty. Frustrating as it may be, the rules of quantum campaigning dictate that no human being can ever simultaneously know both what Mitt Romney’s current position is and where that position will be at some future date. This is known as the “principle uncertainty principle.”
Entanglement. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a proton, neutron or Mormon: the act of observing cannot be separated from the outcome of the observation. By asking Mitt Romney how he feels about an issue, you unavoidably affect how he feels about it. 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.
Noncausality. The Romney campaign often violates, and even reverses, the law of cause and effect. For example, ordinarily the cause of getting the most votes leads to the effect of being considered the most electable candidate. But in the case of Mitt Romney, the cause of being considered the most electable candidate actually produces the effect of getting the most votes.
Duality. Many conservatives believe the existence of Mitt Romney allows for the possibility of the spontaneous creation of an “anti-Romney” that leaps into existence and annihilates Mitt Romney. (However, the science behind this is somewhat suspect, as it is financed by Rick Santorum, for whom science itself is suspect.)
As a huge physics nerd, I love this.