A reader dissents:
The connection you draw between Romney's revoltingly fake persona and his religion is degenerating into bigotry. Have all you analysts of the "Mormon Mask" thought about how Harry Reid, John Huntsman, and Orrin Hatch are Mormons as well? They don't seem this fake. Mitt's plastic personality is to be attributed to Mitt Romney, not his religion.
Or some fusion of both his own personality and his family's deep ties to the LDS Church. Another bolsters my case:
In the published version of his one-man play, "Confessions of a Mormon Boy," gay ex-Mormon Steven Fales starts with a section entitled "The Smile." Here's a quote:
"The Mormon smile is made by first thinking how deeply grateful and blessed you are to belong to 'the only true and living Church upon the face of the whole earth.' As one of the Chosen, this thought brings you incomparable glee that just can't be contained … Your smile can be used for many things, but its official purpose is to attract others to the Church (and other multilevel marketing campaigns–think Amway). You smile all the time because you never know how or when your smile might convert another to the source of true happiness–'mainstream' Mormonism. … If you're ever caught not smiling, you will be held responsible for all the souls that would have been saved had you been smiling as you should have been. Some of your salvation may be deducted in the next life if you're not careful. You must avoid this and any guilt with every fiber of your being. As it says in the Bible, 'Let your light so shine.' …"
So the Mormon smile and Mormon cheer is meant to attract potential converts. It's a missionary tool (or a marketing tool, though that's about the same thing).