Given that the story of Mitt Romney’s dog, Seamus, refuses to disappear, some are suggesting “Seamus,” the old Pink Floyd song, should be revived as well, and perhaps played during his opponent’s campaign rallies.
The lyrics, what little there are of them, don’t exactly fit the tale of Romney’s dog and his 12-hour rooftop ride to Canada, but the 1971 song does have a sad and bluesy feel that seems just right.
Perhaps a slight reworking of the words could make it even more relevant to the 30-year-old story that David Letterman, Rick Santorum and others refuse to stop talking about – how the Romney family dog rode in a crate on the car roof to a family vacation, with a stop to hose him down after he soiled himself.
Here are the real lyrics of the Pink Floyd song, which already features haunting, dog-like howls:
I was in the kitchen,
Seamus, that’s the dog, was outside.
Well, I was in the kitchen,
Seamus, my old hound, was outside.
Well, you know the sun was sinkin’ slowly,
But my old hound dog sat right down and cried
Here are some suggested new ones (and yes, they are for sale), just in case Pink Floyd has any interest in redoing the song:
My dog was on the car roof
I was nice and comfy inside
Seamus, he didn’t mind it
A 12-hour trip, bonafide
Now, you know, I want to run the country
I hope that you don’t mind a bumpy ride
Posted by jwoestendiek March 21st, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, campaign, crate, david letterman, dog, dogs, hose, irish setter, lyrics, mitt romney, new, new lyrics, new version, opponents, pets, pink floyd, presidency, republican, rewritten, rick santorum, romney, roof, rooftop, seamus, song, suggested, the story of seamus, trip, vacation, video
Most voters think it’s wrong to carry a dog on the roof of a car, even in a crate, but a majority also say a candidate having done so — as Mitt Romney did — would not have an effect on their vote, according to a new poll.
The poll found 68 percent say they think that it is inhumane to put the family dog on top of the car for a long trip.
Stunningly, 14 percent said they think it’s humane, and 18 percent weren’t sure, according the Huffington Post.
As asked by the polling firm, the question did not specify that it was a 12-hour trip; just a long one.
Nine hundred registered voters were interviewed for the poll, conducted by Public Policy Polling (PPP), which is described as a Democratic-leaning firm.
While most voters think putting a dog on the car roof is inhumane, 55 percent said Romney’s 30-year-old action didn’t affect which candidate they would support. More than a third — 35 percent — said it made them less likely to support Romney. Seven percent — and we can only assume they represent the dog haters among us — said it made them more likely to support him.
Among only the people who were already Romney supporters, 17 percent said the Seamus story made them less likely to vote for him, while 75 percent said it didn’t make a difference.
Romney drove his family to Canada for a vacation in 1983 with their Irish setter, Seamus, in a crate fastened to the roof of their station wagon. At one point, Seamus suffered a bout of diarrhea and Romney pulled into a gas station to hose off the dog, crate and car before continuing.
The story was first reported by the Boston Globe in 2007. Last week, Rick Santorum’s campaign finally seized on it: “If you can’t be nice to your dog, who are you going to be nice to?” a Santorum spokesman said.
In the poll, 44 percent of respondents gave President Obama a favorable rating for his treatment of dogs, compared to 20 percent for Romney.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 21st, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, campaign, candidates, car, crate, decision, diarrhea, dog, dogs, hose, humane, impact, inhumane, irish setter, mitt romney, obama, opinions, pets, poll, presidential, public policy polling, romney, roof, santorum, seamus, voters
That’s Rick Santorum atop the car roof, and Mitt Romney behind the wheel, on the cover of next week’s New Yorker.
Robert Staake, the artist behind the New Yorker’s March 12 cover, apparently saw some similarities between Seamus’ 12-hour ride in a kennel atop the Romney family car and the less than smooth sailing Santorum’s presidential campaign has encountered of late as Romney appears to be taking control.
Romney, as we’ve duly noted, strapped the kennel containing his Irish Setter atop the family car during a trip to Canada in 1993.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 6th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, campaign, canada, car, cartoon, cartoonist, cover, crate, dog, irish setter, mitt romney, new yorker, pets, politics, presidential, republicans, rick santorum, robert staake, romney, roof, rooftop, santorum, seamus, trip, vacation
A member of Dogs Against Romney has posted this video on YouTube, portraying what it must have been like for Seamus when Mitt Romney transported the Irish setter in a crate atop his car on a 12-hour drive nearly 30 years ago.
“Mitt claims the dog enjoyed the ride, so I decided to test to see how enjoyable being strapped to the roof of a car in a kennel really was,” Erik Mayer explains.
The video reenactment — for which a stuff dog was used — shows “how terrifying such a ride would be … The callousness — the cruelty — of subjecting a family pet to this FOR 12 HOURS, even after the dog soiled himself in fear, is difficult to fathom,” Dogs Against Romney says on its website and Facebook page.
Romney admits to transporting Seamus on the roof of his car during a family trip from Boston to Canada. At a stop along the way, after noticing the dog had soiled himself, he hosed down the dog and crate before continuing.
“Think about it — a loving, loyal member of the Romney family, strapped dangerously atop the car, lonely, wind-whipped, uncomfortable, sick and now wet,” Dogs Against Romney said. “We believe this is wrong — and a clear indication that Mitt Romney possesses a degree of detached coldness not easily comprehended by families who love their pets.”
However old and rehashed it is, the saga of Seamus may be a character-revealing tale, and it sure is a far cry — when it comes to reflecting the bond between man and dog — from our previous traveling dog story, the one about Ladybug.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 29th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, campaign, canada, car, crate, dogs, dogs against romney, erik mayer, irish setter, mitt romney, pets, presidential, re-creation, re-enanctment, ride, roof, rooftop, seamus, vacation, video
Given all the attention received by Mitt Romney’s former dog, Seamus — he of roof-riding fame — it’s not surprising that Rick Santorum’s dog story takes a back seat.
Then again, unlike Romney’s, Santorum’s doesn’t reflect bad judgment, just bad luck. He brought it out of his playbook again this weekend to make the point that, well, I’m not sure what point it makes, other than he doesn’t let a little dog pee deter him.
On Saturday night, Santorum told the tale — from his first campaign for Congress in 1990 — to an Ohio crowd of more than 1,000 Republicans at the Summit County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day Dinner. The Washington Post published it verbatim:
“…We went knocking doors in Upper St. Clair, which is outside of Pittsburgh, a nice little neighborhood … And I knocked on the door and this little elderly lady comes to the door. … She had a little dog that was barking. And I said, ‘Hi, I’m Rick Santorum. I’m running for Congress.’ … She looked at me and goes, ‘Oh, you look so hot.’ She goes, ‘Why don’t you come in for a glass of water?’
“So I went in and sat down. And the dog is running around, barking. And she goes in and gets her glass of water, and I sit down … She hands me the glass of water. And the dog jumps up and hops in my lap.
“Okay, fine. So, I had the dog. I had a sip or two of water. We chatted. And the next thing I know, there is a warm sensation on my lap.
“And I jump up, and on my tan pants is a huge wet spot where you don’t want a huge wet spot. So, I jumped up to look at it, and she was aghast. She reached for my pants and said, ‘Let me dry that off.’ I backed away and said, ‘No, that’ll be fine.’ She goes, ‘Let me get a hairdryer.’ Heaven forbid! And I said, ‘No, thank you very much.’ I start to move out the door and she goes, ‘Well, take your pants off. I’ll put them in the dryer.’ That was the last I heard from her, because I was out the door …
“Undeterred, I soldiered on. … So, I looked at my sheet, and I say, ‘Well, who’s the next door?’ Well, the next door is a name I recognize. Anybody remember the closer for the 1979 World Champion Pittsburgh Pirates? Kent Tekulve, correct … I said, ‘Hi, Mr. Tekulve. I’m Rick Santorum, I’m running for Congress…’
Tekulve checked out the wet blotch on the candidate’s pants, but ended up voting for him anyway.
“So, I wanted to share that with you,” Santorum concluded. “I’ve walked the path that you’ve walked. Maybe a little differently, but I’ve walked the path. And we’re walking the same path in this election.”
(Photo: Photo: Tony Dejak / AP)
Posted by jwoestendiek February 20th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: accident, animals, campaign, candidates, congress, dog, dogs, kent tekulve, mitt romney, ohio, pants, pee, pennsylvania, pets, pirates, pitcher, pittsburgh, presidential, republican, rick santorum, seamus, st. clair, story, summit county, urine
A protester emulating Mitt Romney’s dog-on-the-car-roof trick — but without a dog — was pulled over by police in Littleton, Colorado.
“Our 911 center received a call from a motorist who saw the car in the photo drive past, and she said the door to the animal carrier was open and a large white dog was in it,” Littleton city spokeswoman Kelli Narde said in an interview, reported on the Huffington Post.
Turns out the rooftop crate contained only a stuffed animal.
The unidentified motorist was re-enacting what the Republican presidential candidate did on a family vacation in 1983, when his crated dog, Seamus, rode on the roof of his car for 12 hours.
Resurgence of that tale led to the formation of a “Dogs Against Romney” protest movement/website.
When police received the call, a dispatcher radioed nearby officers, who spotted the car and pulled it over, finding only a stuffed animal in the cage. Police said the motorist was not cited for having a kennel on his car roof, but did get a ticket for failing to provide proof of insurance.
“We respect anyone’s right to support or oppose anyone’s candidate but when you pull a stunt like that and lead passersby to think there’s a live animal in there, it’s probably taking it too far,” Narde said.
Police didn’t identify the man by name, but Dogs Against Romney confirmed he was a “pack member” known on the Internet as “Oredigger.”
In a blog post Tuesday, Dogs Against Romney said the fact that motorist was pulled over “clearly illustrates how blatantly awful, incredibly dangerous, outrageously insensitive — and even illegal — Mitt Romney’s decision to transport his own dog on the roof of his car was.”
Posted by jwoestendiek February 9th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, car, carrier, colorado, crate, dog, dogs, littleton, mitt romney, pets, police, protester, pulled over, romney, roof, rooftop, seamus, stopped
Since it was a 25-year-old story when we first wrote about it, and since it’s nearing 30 now, we haven’t weighed in too much during this latest rebirth of the saga of Seamus, the dog Mitt Romney put on the roof of his car for a trip to Canada.
But now comes a report that, after arriving in Canada, Seamus ran away. (And who could blame him?)
The Observer.com report, on the blog Politicker, seems to imply that Seamus ran away for good, but it’s a little vague, and the new developments, if they can be called that, are based on pretty flimsy reporting:
“Mitt Romney may not have told the whole truth about the scandalous tale of his Irish Setter, Seamus, being strapped to the roof of his car during a 12-hour family road trip to Canada. According to a trusted Politicker tipster, two of Mr. Romney’s sons had an off-record conversation with reporters where they revealed the dog ran away when they reached their destination on that infamous journey in 1983.”
Romney’s wife, Ann, has previously been reported as saying Seamus survived the trip and went on to live to a “ripe old age” — one would presume with the same family.
Other reports indicate Seamus moved in with Romney’s sister — but don’t say why — and that he lived happily on a farm until his death.
Politicker reported that Romney’s campaign has not responded to multiple requests for comment on the most recent twist in the old story.
Seamus’ story first came to light in a 2007 Boston Globe profile of Romney. The family was on its annual drive to Ontario, to visit Romney’s father’s cottage in the gated Beach O’ Pines community on Lake Huron. The story included details about Romney’s son noting a brown fluid dripping down the rear window, apparently from the dog, who was in a crate on the roof, with a barrier in front to shield him from the wind. It recounts a gas station stop where Seamus and car were hosed down before moving on.
The original story didn’t get into what became of Seamus, and the reporter, Neil Swidey, doesn’t answer the question in a recent article about the story’s continued resurgence.
So we’ll join in asking the question that other bloggers — including Dogs Against Romney — are raising: Whatever happened to Seamus?
Posted by jwoestendiek February 2nd, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, campaign, candidate, car, crate, crate gate, dogs, irish setter, mitt romney, observer, off the record, pets, politicker, politics, presidential, ran away, republican, roof, rooftop, runaway, seamus, station wagon, vacation, whatever happened to seamus
In a new campaign ad, Newt Gingrich has seized upon opponent Mitt Romney’s 25-year-old doggie debacle — the boneheaded transporting of his Irish setter Seamus on the roof of his car.
The web ad released yesterday by the Gingrich campaign revives the story of a Romney family road trip during which Romney put a crate holding his dog on the roof of his station wagon for a 12-hour drive from Boston to Ontario, according to ABC News.
It’s the same story — and a true one — that came up during Romney’s 2008 White House bid. Four years later, it infuriates animal lovers no less. At a campaign event in South Carolina last week, a protester with a “Dogs Against Romney” sign greeted Romney supporters while standing next to a car with a stuffed animal dog strapped to the roof.
Romney has continued to defend his actions: “This is a completely air-tight kennel, mounted on the top of our car,” he said in a Fox News interview, part of which is used in Gingrich’s ad. “He was in a kennel at home a great deal of time as well. It was where he was comfortable.”
The Gingrich video, which includes six clips of other “Romney gaffes,” then shows white words flashing across a black screen: “Imagine what Obama would do with a candidate like that.”
Here’s the short version (a longer one is here):
In 2009, Dawn Rizos, the operator of The Lodge, a gentlemen’s club that does business under the name DCG, Inc., was informed she’d been selected to receive an “Entrepeneur of the Year” award from Gingrich’s organization, American Solutions.
Gingrich invited Rizos to a private dinner in Washington to receive the award, provided she made the requested $5,000 donation, which she did.
The week before the event, though, American Solutions realized they had accidentally bestowed the award on a strip club, and rescinded the invitation. The organization refunded the $5,000 to Rizos, who donated it to an animal rescue organization — specifically to create a shelter for pit bulls, which was dubbed “Newt’s Nook.”
The next year, Rizos got another letter, under Gingrich’s signature, containing a membership card to American Solutions and requesting a donation. This time around, in light of the previous snub, Rizos didn’t take him up on the offer.
But she did send him a Lodge VIP card, entitling him to preferred seating, free auto detailing, steak and lobster dinners and access to the the club’s “intimate members-only lounge.”
Posted by jwoestendiek January 13th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: ads, american solutions, animals, campaign, car, carrier, crate, dallas, dogs, gentlemen's club, irish setter, kennel, mitt romney, newt gingrich, pets, politics, presidency, roof, seamus, strip club, the lodge, trip
Most of us dog owners already know that our dog is as at least as smart, when it comes to both verbal and non-verbal cues, as a six-month old human infant.
Now, another study has confirmed that — this one from Hungary.
It’s one of those stories that keeps resurfacing and pretending to be breaking news – like Mitt Romney transporting his dog by putting him (in a crate) on the roof of his car.
Because humans don’t remember as well as dogs, and because we’re conditioned to thinking something labeled “news” is going to be new, we accept it as that. But that’s probably another study.
In this one, the Hungarian researchers, according to findings published in the Cell Press journal Current Biology, concluded that dogs pick up on the words we say and on our intent to communicate with them — and that their receptivity to human communication is similar to that of very young children.
“Increasing evidence supports the notion that humans and dogs share some social skills, with dogs’ social-cognitive functioning resembling that of a 6-month to 2-year-old child in many respects,” said József Topál, Ph.D., of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
“The utilization of ostensive cues is one of these features: dogs, as well as human infants, are sensitive to cues that signal communicative intent,” he said. Those include verbal addressing and eye contact, he explained.
Folks, except for some of those big words, did we not already know that? Just as surely as we know it’s stupid to put your Irish setter, or any other dog, atop your car and take him on a trip?
Topál’s team presented dogs with video recordings of a person turning toward one of two identical plastic pots while an “eye tracker” captured information on the dogs’ reactions. It was the first study to use eye-tracking techniques to study dogs’ social skills
One of the videos showed a person who first looked straight at the dog, addressing it in a high-pitched voice with “Hi dog!” A second showed the person uttering a low-pitched “Hi dog” while avoiding eye contact.
Researchers discovered dogs were more likely to follow along and look at the pot when the person first expressed an intention to communicate: “Our findings reveal that dogs are receptive to human communication in a manner that was previously attributed only to human infants,” Topál said.
Topal is convinced that the receptivity is something that has evolved in the species in the time since its domestication: “Dogs have evolved to sharing their lives with humans. And they gained new skills that support their social interaction with humans.”
We’d agree with that theory, but we still think some of these studies are stating the obvious — and that it’s time to move forward and research whether dogs are not just smarter than babies, but maybe smarter than the average presidential candidate.
Let’s track their eyes and see what happens.
(Top photo: Punjapit)
Posted by jwoestendiek January 10th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, behavior, candidates, car, car roof, communication, cues, current biology, dog, dogs, evolution, eye tracking, eyes, hungary, intelligence, mitt romney, news, non-verbal, pets, politics, presidential, receptivity, research, roof, science, seamus, study, top, tracking, verbal