The Worst Political Decision of the Year

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Romney’s choice of Paul Ryan to be his running mate does little more than changing one aspect of the election dynamic for the Presidency. But it an important change.

Have you been to an even any time over the last several months at which a Federal level Democratic candidate gave a speech? Unless you were not paying attention or sleeping through part of it, there is a good chance that you heard the candidate, or perhaps someone speaking on behalf of a candidate, mention Paul Ryan. Of all the Republicans who are not famous for being perennial losers (such as Newt Gingrich) or batshit crazy (like Michele Bachmannn) or having a wide stance or for some other reason, Paul Ryan is the one who is at this moment in political history the best known all around the country. This, of course, is because of the famous Ryan Budget.

In case you don’t know, here’s what the Ryan Budget is. Imagine inviting several members of the Tea Party to make a wish list, then converting that wish list into a budget. That would be the Ryan Budget. The Ryan Budget saves money. Just under 70% of that money is saved by gutting social welfare programs like Medicare. It also lowers taxes. Over a third of those tax benefits go to the top 1% of taxpayers. The Ryan Budget is an unabashed plan to drive more of the middle class into poverty than ever since the middle class existed, punish everyone who is poor, and consolidate even more wealth into the top 1%. The Ryan Budget removes Obamacare. People who currently get Medicare would mostly get thrown off, though the program might be expanded to fill the big hole left by removing Obamacare. Medicaid would be converted to a state block grant, so states like Louisiana and which are run by morons would not have Medicaid. Corporations would get a huge tax break. The plan would ruin the middle class, harm the poor, enrich the rich, but it would not balance the budget. It is a plan designed to ruin the country, which is clearly the objective of the Tea Party who seem to be in “let’s try the survivalist thing” mode.

Here’s the thing. Anyone who was already a Democrat but not necessarily committed to Obama was pretty worked up about the Ryan Budget. They were energized by the Ryan Budget. They hated the Ryan Budget. The Ryan Budget gave them a reason to wake up every morning and drop lit, phone bank, drive around with certain bumper stickers on their cars. The Ryan Budget was their target, and now, that target has been shifted. Anyone who was prepared to spend energy to defeat Romney and anyone who was prepared to spend energy to defeat the Ryan Budget and the Tea Baggers now has one place to spend all that energy.

This would be like in World War Two they move Tokyo and Berlin to the same place and all the Allies have but one target to focus all their forces on. It would be like the Minnesota Vikings are having a really good year and all of the sudden the Saints and the Packers merge into one team (the Paints? Sankers? Whatever) so the Vikings have only one must-win game instead of two to prepare for. It would be like flies and cockroaches become the same thing and all your various bug killers could consolidate to become One Mondo Bug Killer. It would be like you are taking your best shot all year at the range and all the skeets come up at once in perfect alignment. Bam.

(I should point out that the “target” metaphor is an old tradition in politics…races and issues are targeted all the time and have been for decades. I am not suggesting that anyone should shoot anyone. If I was a gun-happy Tea Bagger, “target” may well be a dog whistle, but here it is not. Context is important. Do. Not. Shoot. Anyone.)

Ryan does not add anything to the Romney Ticket other than a person who seems to actually believe much of what Romney has been pretending to believe over the last few months. Kinda makes you wonder why they didn’t run Ryan to begin with. Maybe he’s got some problem with his tax returns, I dunno. It is true that Romney introduced Ryan by saying “Join me in welcoming the next president of the United States, Paul Ryan.” Maybe they have some sort of plan.

There is of course a reason that Ryan is on this ticket. Two reasons. David and Charles. The Koch Brother already owned Ryan. They are buying Romney’s presidency. This is kinda like having their lieutenant insinuate himself as a member of the board of a company they have taken over mafia style, but instead of the mafia taking over a pinball arcade or something, it is big oil taking over you and me.

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8 thoughts on “The Worst Political Decision of the Year

  1. So not only do we have a single target, that target will probably have less people supporting it.

    Your warning might be a good thing for those with fuzzy and wishful thinking problems, but “target” is hardly limited to being “something at which one discharges a firearm”, especially now. (The original sense was for archery, but prior to that it had the meaning of “shield”. Wouldn’t it be weird to reach your fundraising shield or complete something by your shield date?)

  2. By now it is obvious to anyone with a more-than-two-digit IQ that Romney has less chance of winning this election than he has of telling the truth for any particular 24-hour period. The strangeness of his selection can only be a tacit admission that he will lose, and then will have to reposition himself for another grab at the brass ring in 2016.

    By then his bonafides for the extremely wealthy and seriously hated will be firmly established and he will be able to lie like a m*****-*****r to the simpletons he is sure will vote for him. Of course having those wealthy creds will guarantee him a monstrously large war chest of contributions from the 1%’s, many of whom are just as simple-minded as Romney’s other rank-and-file faithful.

    Gotta give it to him…He’s discovered a way to make a big paycheck without having a job or even being elected to an office.

  3. Ryan may not be as crazy as Bachmann, but his voting record is very similar to hers, as others have pointed out. And speaking of similarities, I noted the Romney announcement had a familiar odor.

  4. Read one political commentator saying the appointment of Ryan is evidence that Romney is just the puppet with the Tea Party and the Kochs pulling the strings. They’re not taking any chances that Romney will have another etch-a-sketch moment once elected–Ryan is there to keep him in-line.

  5. What I hope happens is that this puts the lie to the idea that who wins “doesn’t matter”.

    That a vote for the Green Party candidate is ok because Obama/Biden is exactly the same as Romney/Ryan.

    There are fundamental differences in social programs, in taxes, in what kind of Supreme Court Justices will be nominated, in thresholds for military intervention, in reproductive rights.

  6. Anyone with the least familiarity with online discussions of energy policy or climate change science will have seen lots of people unhappy with Obama suggesting they’d find third party candidates to vote for or abstain from voting.

    This looks like the perfect political move to get them to set aside any reservations or reluctance and a) vote, b) vote to defeat RR by voting for Obama, c) actively seek support of others to defeat RR.

    A real clanger – seeing as all they get on their side of the ledger is more enthusiastic support from people who’d support them anyway. (Though I’m not so sure about older/baby boomer voters staying with them in the face of the Medicare proposals.)

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