Mitt Today, Ryan Tomorrow

From George Packer, “Just Forget It,” The New Yorker:

“If the Republican argument for firing Obama were to be broken down, it would consist of equal parts truth, omission, chutzpah, and lies.  Unemployment remains high and the recovery has been sluggish at best, and that may well get the President defeated.  But, the moment that Obama was sworn in, the Republicans united to thwart his every effort to stimulate demand and create jobs, in order to lay responsibility for the recession at his door.  The Party’s silence about its own obstruction can be heard in every pause of the campaign.  The Republican answer to Obama’s policies — deregulation, tax cuts, limited government — has been the conservative position for decades.

“As for falsehoods, they are a staple of campaign politics on both sides.  But the flow of distortions and lies came so thick and fast from the podium at the Tampa Bay Times Forum that it seemed as if the Republicans required them to justify the full measure of their contempt for the President.

“At one point, Ryan movingly told the Convention that, after his father’s early death, his mother ‘got on a bus every weekday for years, and rode forty miles to Madison.  She earned a new degree and learned new skills to start her small business.’  An ideologue like Ryan doesn’t let himself trip over the thought that a bus, a road, and a public university helped his mother build it.

“But the [Ryan] speech was written without benefit of shame or fact-checking.

Ryan will be the Party’s next leader because his style is perfectly suited to its demands:  purist, inflexible, combative, and untroubled by any complicating fact.”  Emphasis added.

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