The Life of Ryan
The good news is, Republican Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney woke up his base by picking Congressman Paul Ryan as a running mate. The bad news is, he may have also managed to wake up President Barack Obama's base as well.
ABOVE PHOTO: Paul Ryan.
By Denise Clay
Even Stevie Wonder could see just how rough Republican Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney has had it from the primary season up to this point.
From getting beaten up by his fellow Republican Presidential candidates in a series of debates that have made it so President Barack Obama didn't have to bring in any interns for opposition research duty this summer to the mistrust that Tea Party Republicans have of him to his nearly creating an international incident prior to the London Olympics, Romney had had a tough time of it so far.
So because his base wasn't shaking enough hands on his behalf because they're all holding their noses (I've had more than one Republican say to me, 'Is it too late to find anyone else?!') Romney had to find someone who would make his base more receptive to him.
Enter Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan.
Romney made Rep. Ryan his running mate on Saturday...or was it Friday night...there was a bit of premature app-ulation from Romney's VP notification app...
And the Tea Party rejoiced.
Now for those of you who are like "Who's Paul Ryan?" here's a few facts. He's the scion of the founder of a construction company in Wisconsin that made it's money the old fashioned way...building roads and collecting federal money in the process.
He went to college at Miami University of Ohio, with the help of the survivor's benefits that you used to be able to get and use for college from Social Security...something you can't do anymore.
And he's a believer in the philosophy of Ayn Rand, who referred to those in need of help as "parasites" to those who, I guess, have more than enough to live on...something that made the fact that the author of "The Fountainhead" wound up collecting Social Security until her death kind of ironic. Who was the parasite then?
But here's some more important stuff that you need to know about the man who would be our Vice President...
Rep. Paul Ryan created a budget that most Republicans support, but wouldn't be caught dead with. Why? Because when you advocate a budget that would turn Medicaid into a private insurance voucher program, would raise the retirement age and prevent people from collecting the Social Security that they've been paying into their entire working lives, you're asking for a butt-kicking from the AARP.
But while the elderly would catch hell in the Ryan Budget, the kids aren't doing so well either. Need help going to college? If this piece of legislative artistry became law, you're gonna have to take out a loan...from a bank...at their interest...In other words, back to the bad old days when a bank could cut off your student loan just because it felt like it.
And don't even talk about Pell Grants, or other forms of financial aid. They're gone too.
In fact, 62 percent of the cuts in the so-called Ryan Budget are to programs aimed at helping the poor, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Meanwhile, the money saved from all that cutting, which really isn't much because it doesn't touch the elephant in the room known as the defense budget, would go right into the pockets of folks who really don't need anymore money in the form of tax cuts.
(The reason why those folks don't need anymore money is because their taxes have been cut so far back that in some cases they're not paying any...)
I mean, hey. It gets those "parasites" out of your bloodstream, right? Ayn Rand would be proud...as she sat in her house drinking the coffee she paid for with her Social Security check...
Now don't get me wrong. I understand the corner that Mitt Romney was painted into. No amount of money was going to make Republicans work for him enthusiastically. He had no choice but to pick a running mate so far to the right that left turns were impossible. I mean, the Tea Party still remembers when he was a moderate...or when he had a position at all...
But he should have talked to the last guy to run for President as a Republican before he made this move because while it's managed to motivate the hard-right Republican base, it's also managed to wake up a base that wasn't really feeling President Barack Obama...
Kinda like Sarah Palin what did when Sen. John McCain decided to make her his running mate.
While I'm pretty sure that Rep. Ryan will never try and tell us that he can see Russia from his house, especially since it's in Wisconsin, he provides Vice President Joe Biden with a pretty large target to hit. The prospect of the Ryan Budget alone is probably enough for him to hit him with.
And it's also being used as a fundraising tool. If I get one more news release from NOW, the Democratic Party, the Obama Campaign, or any of the other entities that I keep telling "I'm a reporter, stop asking me for money!" because of this guy, I'm gonna scream!
When you look at the polls, and by the polls I mean those polls that haven't been invented by my right-wing friends on Facebook, you see that adding a member of Congress, particularly this member of Congress, didn't do much to help Mitt Romney.
But it does explain one thing for me.
I now know why people are trying so hard to make sure that these Voter ID laws stay in place...
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This year, millions of Americans will be hitting the roads and facing cold temperatures, along with the snowy and icy conditions winter weather brings. These factors are not only a nuisance, but at times, very dangerous, even for the most confident and experienced drivers.
If your arm goes numb and your speech is slurred, you know you need to seek immediate medical attention. When you nick yourself shaving, you know you can deal with it yourself. But for the vast number of maladies in between...
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