They Are All Randians Now

The chattering classes all along the political spectrum have been saying that the GOP is in an identity crisis, that they know they want to run from Bush 43, but haven’t yet figured out exactly what they’re running to.

The chattering classes are wrong — the GOP has definitively chosen a new identity:  they may give lip service to Ronald Reagan, but they’re really kissing the behind of another dead person — Ayn Rand.  They are all Randians now.

Nixon famously said we are all Keynesians now, and that was true.  The Dems had a leftist take on Keynes, and the GOP had a rightist take on him, but everybody believed that when the economy was bad, as during a garden-variety recession let alone a Great Recession, the government should spend to make up for the lack of private sector demand.  The difference was that when things were good and humming along, the Dems wanted more government spending than the GOP did.  It was a difference of degree, not of fundamental ideology.

Ayn Rand is a different ideology.  This is not the GOP of Nixon, Ford, Reagan, either Bush, or McCain.

Republicans, Independents, and the teeny, tiny sliver of Dems who are voting for Mitt need to think long and hard about this — are they really Randians?  Is this what they believe?  It’s not just that this isn’t your father’s GOP, this isn’t even the GOP of 2008.  Reagan famously said that he didn’t leave the Democratic party, it left him.  Well, now the Republican party has left him as well.   Everyone who is voting for Mitt should stop and reflect if the party has left them as well.

Mitt himself isn’t really a Randian, he’s an empty vessel, but he picked Paul Ryan because Mitt recognizes that Rand has filled the vacuum Bush left, and Ryan is her deaf, dumb, blind disciple — Paul “Tommy” Ryan.

The “Other” threatening our country isn’t a fictional Kenyan Muslim Socialist, it’s a Russian atheist who wrote fiction.

The Other Guy Always Loses

From “Why don’t we love Mitt Romney?,” Roger Simon, Politico:

“They live among us, but they are not really part of us.  They pretend to be like us only in order to gain our votes.

“They are the Others, those who insinuate themselves into American life, but who are not ‘real’ Americans at all.

“For years, his opponents have tried to portray Barack Obama as an Other.

“But the Democrats have reacted cleverly.  Hold on, they say, the real Other in the race is Mitt Romney.  He is the guy, they say, who does not act like a real American.

“The Romney campaign appears to have been caught somewhat flat-footed by all this, and Romney’s supporters are not helping.

“‘Can you make me love Mitt Romney?’ [House Speaker John] Boehner said recently.  ‘The American people probably aren’t going to fall in love with Mitt Romney.’

“But why not?  Is it his foreign bank accounts?  Creating jobs overseas?  Imprisoning his dog on the roof of the family car?  Attacking a gay student in high school with a pair of scissors?  Or those four car elevators he wants for his California beach house?

“Boehner did not say.  But it is not Romney’s wealth that keeps him from being loved.  Americans loved John Kennedy, after all.

“It is something else.  It is some quality Romney has or some quality Romney lacks that, as Boehner says, makes him unlovable, makes him seem not like a president, but like an Other.”