David Corn (Mother Jones): …..Mitt Romney … is still playing footsie with a popular conservative meme: Obama’s not really one of us …. (he) made a fierce pronouncement: The Obama Administration fundamentally does not believe in the American Experiment.…here was Romney saying that the president doesn’t understand the country he governs.
…Romney was engaging in what can be called otherism, a big cousin to birtherism. Otherism can be more virulent than birtherism (Obama is a secret Muslim socialist!) or more subtle (Hey, this Obama guy just doesn’t get America), but the main contention is that somehow he’s not a true American. It’s not a matter of his birth records, but of his attitude.
Newt Gingrich has helped set a benchmark for otherism … Mike Huckabee said Obama’s “worldview is dramatically different than any president, Republican or Democrat, we’ve had… He grew up more as a globalist than an American.”
…Romney slammed Obama for apologizing for “American misdeeds, both real and imagined.” (Romney didn’t explain what was wrong with apologizing for real misdeeds.) His bottom-line message: Real Americans don’t apologize. And the obvious conclusion is that if Obama does apologize, he’s not a you-know-what.
…Birtherism is (was?) fundamentally about delegitimizing Barack Obama – proving him a complete fraud … Yet the birthers, dependent on conspiracy theories, were easily done in by basic facts…..
Yet otherism continues and thrives … The strategy is to fuel suspicion, not prove a conspiracy. But the goal is the same: to encourage voters to believe Obama is not a real American …Unlike birtherism, otherism remains quite useful to the Republicans. Not even the adults of the party can resist its ugly temptations.
Full article here – really worth reading