Long before their notable public sparring during the "Massacre in Baltimore" when Pres. Obama laid to waste the entire House Republican caucus at their Jan 29, 2010 retreat until now, Paul Ryan fancied himself the conservative star who will "take down" President Obama. He was one of those present at the infamous meeting that took place the night of President Obama's Inauguration where they decided to totally obstruct the incoming president. Ryan's entire conduct since then, evidenced in his voting "NO" on every single bill regardless of content, underscores his scorched earth ideological agenda.
Freudian slip or not, when Romney introduced Ryan yesterday as "the next President of the United States", it symbolized for all intents and purposes a palace coup, the completion of the hostile takeover of the Republican Party. The hard right thinks the stars are NOW aligned perfectly in their favor to spring the ultimate coup d'etat on our democracy using the perversion of the democratic process itself to dismantle our commonweal as we know it. As the Kochs' golden young gun groomed to deliver the extremely cruel Bircher ideological agenda with slick gelled hair, Ryan's paymasters think he's ideally suited for a Cheneyesque catbird's seat keeping tabs on a nervous GOP congress while also muzzling ceremonial head-of-state Romney.
At this point, Paul Ryan's inflated sense of self comes from how he thinks he can leverage the status elevation that earlier newsmaking public exchanges with President Obama granted him. So even though he is NOT Pres. Obama's direct counterpart in the race, like the GOP did with Palin, the media narrative will be forced to pitch the Prez in split screen with Ryan. The GOP is counting on those optics to bamboozle the electorate with all manner of subliminal messages. That's the plan...
...Well not so fast. President Obama's campaign and the entire Democratic Party have been chomping at the bit not only to put the Ryan budget under blinding public Klieg lights for all to see the cruel document that it is, but judge the ENTIRE Republican party too. Ryan should know this because we all saw him over and over again these last 3.75 years get a bitter taste of President Obama's smackdown of his and the radical Republican agenda.
Let's take a trip down recent memory lane...
Early on in the Obama presidency, Paul Ryan got his self-importance from the fact that Pres. Obama actually indulged him as a man of some ideas, even if they were ideas the President disagreed with. Ryan re-made himself into a fantasy figure from the elevation he got from the President, even when in FACT he had no record to support the perception that he was a fiscal "wonk," into messianic delusions.
As Chris L. Hayes showed clearly on his program on Aug 11, 2012, the very premise of Ryan's claim to be a "fiscal hawk" is a blatant LIE. Ryan's actual congressional voting record reveals him to be nothing more than run of the mill pork-barrel-gorging, debt bloating reckless, Republican. He voted for GW Bush's 2 unpaid for taxcuts, Iraq war, Medicare Part D, TARP and every Fed $$ he could shovel into his district
Ideas? Pfftt! We all remember the stunt he & Cantor led Republicans to pull in 2009 when they produced a budget that had zero info/pages in it just to upstage the President's budget release. Even as he lacked clout being in the House minority, he was invited to join those televised economic summits that President Obama held in his first year.
Rewatch him spar with Pres. Obama at the Baltimore GOP retreat. on Jan 29, 2010 over cutting Medicare. His segment begins from the 13:21 minute mark:
Baltimore retreat, Jan 29 2010
The next public debate happened during the 6hr Healthcare summit at Blair House on Feb 25, 2010 when President Obama fileted all GOP arguments. The exchange with Ryan starts from the I:35:00 mark towards the end of the video. I remember at the time FOX News hailed Ryan for ruffling the Prez. Ruffle? Well you decide:
Healthcare summit, Feb, 25 2010 starting from 1:35:00
The next public Presidential takedown of Ryan happened in in his face on April 13, 2011 at George Washington university, just before Ryan's cruel budget was passed by the incoming GOP House majority. Afterward the speech, Ryan complained bitterly of hurt feelings that Pres. Obama had characterized his budget as neither "serious" nor "courageous". The pertinent elements begin from the 16:45 min mark to 24:03 min mark
16.45 – 24:03 minOf course following that encounter, Ryan joined congressional GOP to vote down every single initiative of Pres. Obama including bringing us to the brink of debt default. He voted No on the Simpson-Bowles commission, raised tantrums at the debt ceiling negotiations, voted against the payroll tax cut extensions. Ryan has voted against EVERY SINGLE thing that Pres. Obama has proposed
...this plan achieves those goals would lead to a fundamentally different America than the one we’ve known certainly in my lifetime. In fact, I think it would be fundamentally different than what we’ve known throughout our history.
A 70 percent cut in clean energy. A 25 percent cut in education. A 30 percent cut in transportation. Cuts in college Pell Grants that will grow to more than $1,000 per year. That’s the proposal. These aren’t the kind of cuts you make when you’re trying to get rid of some waste or find extra savings in the budget. These aren’t the kinds of cuts that the Fiscal Commission proposed. These are the kinds of cuts that tell us we can’t afford the America that I believe in and I think you believe in.
I believe it paints a vision of our future that is deeply pessimistic. It’s a vision that says if our roads crumble and our bridges collapse, we can’t afford to fix them. If there are bright young Americans who have the drive and the will but not the money to go to college, we can’t afford to send them.
Go to China and you’ll see businesses opening research labs and solar facilities. South Korean children are outpacing our kids in math and science. They’re scrambling to figure out how they put more money into education. Brazil is investing billions in new infrastructure and can run half their cars not on high-priced gasoline, but on biofuels. And yet, we are presented with a vision that says the American people, the United States of America -– the greatest nation on Earth -– can’t afford any of this.
It’s a vision that says America can’t afford to keep the promise we’ve made to care for our seniors. It says that 10 years from now, if you’re a 65-year-old who’s eligible for Medicare, you should have to pay nearly $6,400 more than you would today. It says instead of guaranteed health care, you will get a voucher. And if that voucher isn’t worth enough to buy the insurance that’s available in the open marketplace, well, tough luck -– you’re on your own. Put simply, it ends Medicare as we know it.
It’s a vision that says up to 50 million Americans have to lose their health insurance in order for us to reduce the deficit. Who are these 50 million Americans? Many are somebody’s grandparents -- may be one of yours -- who wouldn’t be able to afford nursing home care without Medicaid. Many are poor children. Some are middle-class families who have children with autism or Down’s syndrome. Some of these kids with disabilities are -- the disabilities are so severe that they require 24-hour care. These are the Americans we’d be telling to fend for themselves.
And worst of all, this is a vision that says even though Americans can’t afford to invest in education at current levels, or clean energy, even though we can’t afford to maintain our commitment on Medicare and Medicaid, we can somehow afford more than $1 trillion in new tax breaks for the wealthy. Think about that.
In the last decade, the average income of the bottom 90 percent of all working Americans actually declined. Meanwhile, the top 1 percent saw their income rise by an average of more than a quarter of a million dollars each. That’s who needs to pay less taxes?
They want to give people like me a $200,000 tax cut that’s paid for by asking 33 seniors each to pay $6,000 more in health costs. That’s not right. And it’s not going to happen as long as I’m President. (Applause.)
This vision is less about reducing the deficit than it is about changing the basic social compact in America. Ronald Reagan’s own budget director said, there’s nothing “serious” or “courageous” about this plan. There’s nothing serious about a plan that claims to reduce the deficit by spending a trillion dollars on tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires. And I don't think there’s anything courageous about asking for sacrifice from those who can least afford it and don’t have any clout on Capitol Hill. That's not a vision of the America I know.
The America I know is generous and compassionate. It’s a land of opportunity and optimism. Yes, we take responsibility for ourselves, but we also take responsibility for each other; for the country we want and the future that we share. We’re a nation that built a railroad across a continent and brought light to communities shrouded in darkness. We sent a generation to college on the GI Bill and we saved millions of seniors from poverty with Social Security and Medicare. We have led the world in scientific research and technological breakthroughs that have transformed millions of lives. That’s who we are. This is the America that I know. We don’t have to choose between a future of spiraling debt and one where we forfeit our investment in our people and our country.
The most recent occasion when Pres. Obama directly took on Ryan's plan, he flat out called it "Social Darwinism" much to the shocked bleating of the corporate media. OMG did he call it that? How dare he? The key passages begin from the 14:00 min mark to the 30:45 min mark
Pres. Obama's scathing rip of Ryan Budget on April 3, 2012
14:00 min mark to 30:45 min markAlso from 34:00 min mark Pres. Obama promised to let every American know about this budget & told the journos that they will be forced to cover this debate in the coming year, & here we are.
Instead of moderating their views even slightly, the Republicans running Congress right now have doubled down, and proposed a budget so far to the right it makes the Contract with America look like the New Deal. (Laughter.) In fact, that renowned liberal, Newt Gingrich, first called the original version of the budget "radical" and said it would contribute to "right-wing social engineering." This is coming from Newt Gingrich.
And yet, this isn’t a budget supported by some small rump group in the Republican Party. This is now the party’s governing platform. This is what they’re running on. One of my potential opponents, Governor Romney, has said that he hoped a similar version of this plan from last year would be introduced as a bill on day one of his presidency. He said that he’s “very supportive” of this new budget, and he even called it "marvelous" -- which is a word you don’t often hear when it comes to describing a budget. (Laughter.) It’s a word you don’t often hear generally. (Laughter.)
So here’s what this "marvelous" budget does…..
This is not conjecture. I am not exaggerating. These are facts. And these are just the cuts that would happen the year after next.
If this budget became law, by the middle of the century, funding for the kinds of things I just mentioned would have to be cut by about 95 percent. Let me repeat that. Those categories I just mentioned we would have to cut by 95 percent. As a practical matter, the federal budget would basically amount to whatever is left in entitlements, defense spending, and interest on the national debt -- period. Money for these investments that have traditionally been supported on a bipartisan basis would be practically eliminated.
And the same is true for other priorities like transportation, and homeland security, and veterans programs for the men and women who have risked their lives for this country. This is not an exaggeration. Check it out yourself.
This congressional Republican budget is something different altogether. It is a Trojan Horse. Disguised as deficit reduction plans, it is really an attempt to impose a radical vision on our country. It is thinly veiled social Darwinism. It is antithetical to our entire history as a land of opportunity and upward mobility for everybody who’s willing to work for it; a place where prosperity doesn’t trickle down from the top, but grows outward from the heart of the middle class. And by gutting the very things we need to grow an economy that’s built to last -- education and training, research and development, our infrastructure -- it is a prescription for decline.
So, the TeaGOP and their corporate paymasters know they want to pull a fast one on the American people in order to radically change this country, before America itself gets to the point where it would be demographically and structurally hard to be tricked easily anymore. Theirs is an act of DESPERATION. It is now or never for them. President Obama has their number. They know he has their number.
The bet now is will the American people see through the phony pair of slick hair trying to hoodwink them, see past all the residual prejudices, magical thinking that the interests of an impoverished Middle Class also align with those of the parasitic 1%ers?
President Obama and Democrats may be all sorts of exasperating things to various segments of this populace but NIHILISTS, they are not. Voters should remember that it was DEMOCRATS who enacted EVERY SINGLE aspect of MODERN American life that enhances the WELFARE of the American PEOPLE.
Remember these few examples, showing how PEOPLE-CENTERED Democrats have been:
-- Social Security so seniors don't wallow in poverty & their families don't drain their savings to care for granny
-- Medicare so seniors don't DIE from illness in their golden years
-- Workplace protections to Americans don't DIE on the job
-- Food & Drug regulations so Americans don't DIE at the hands of charlatans
-- Banking regulations so Americans are not SCAMMED (although these now hang by the thinnest of threads)
-- Child Labor laws to protect welfare of our children
-- Obamacare, well, because Obama cares...
So we have a vigorous fight on our hands, and I hope we Democrats will rise up to fight to protect our accomplishments of the 20th & 21st centuries. It IS an EXISTENTIAL War and we will have no one to blame but ourselves should the unthinkable happen.
Our scrappy party leaders are chugging hard, but we have our part to play. Register voters, Talk to voters, friends, family, Donate donate donate. Leave it all on the road.