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Pierce begins: "Ladies and gentlemen, we present to you today's worst paragraph in political rhetoric, courtesy of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Dickens), in an appearance at the Heritage Foundation, which must be like seeing The Beatles at The Cavern in Liverpool, back in the day. Take it away, big guy."

Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan makes the GOP case against healthcare reform. (photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty)
Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan makes the GOP case against healthcare reform. (photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty)



Paul Ryan Is Living In an Ayn Rand Fantasy Land

By Charles P. Pierce, Esquire Magazine

27 October 11

 

adies and gentlemen, we present to you today's worst paragraph in political rhetoric, courtesy of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Dickens), in an appearance at the Heritage Foundation, which must be like seeing The Beatles at The Cavern in Liverpool, back in the day. Take it away, big guy.

"We're coming close to a tipping point in America where we might have a net majority of takers versus makers in society and that could become very dangerous if it sets in as a permanent condition. Because what we will end up doing is we will convert our safety net system - which is necessary I believe to help people who can't themselves, to help people who are down on their luck get back onto their feet - into a hammock that ends up lulling people into lives of dependency and complacency which drains them of their incentive and the will to make the most of their lives."

Sentence No. 1: pure Ayn Rand. "Makers vs. takers." Moochers and leeches. You and Them. But especially Them. But not in a divisive way. Oh, no. The Congressman doesn't believe in divisive class rhetoric. He said so - "To my great disappointment, it appears that the politics of division are making a big comeback. Many Americans share my disappointment ..." - earlier in his remarks. And he is not engaging in the politics of division himself. Oh, no. He's just sad - mournful, even - that the "conceits of liberalism" are on their way to dividing the country into "makers versus takers." And you know who you are, don't you? And who They are. And what They are taking ... from You.

And also, it has apparently escaped the congressman's notice, probably because he's so saddened by the politics of division that he sees all around him, and by the fight between makers and takers, which he wishes wasn't taking place, and wouldn't be, if it weren't for those damn liberals over there, but we don't "make" a helluva lot in this country any more, and the reason that we don't make much in this country any more is because, 30 years ago, we put our brains in cold storage and started taking crackpot conservative economics seriously. The difference between a maker and a taker in the economy is whether or not the widget plant moved to China, or whether or not the company got broken up and its pension plan pillaged because some deregulated Wall Street ferret created a new way to steal other people's money. That's what we "make" now: complicated new financial instruments with which the "makers" can lift our wallets.

(Let us pause briefly here to point out that anyone who takes Ayn Rand seriously at Paul Ryan's age desperately needs to get out in the fresh air and sunshine more.)

Sentence No. 2: an entire K-Tel collection of Golden Oldies. "A Safety net, not a hammock." "Dependency." "Complacency." "The Draining of The Will." (That last one sounds like a film on penile abscesses directed by Leni Riefenstahl.) Holy god, this stuff was old when Newt Gingrich was peddling it in his previous life. Tell us, congressman, when you were skating for a couple of years on your Social Security survivor's benefits, and when your family stayed on the government dole for longer that that, "taking" from, among other people, my parents and me, how did you manage not to be "lulled" into a life of "complacency" and "dependency"? How were you not "drained" of your "incentive"? How was your "will to make the most of your life" not drained, as well. What's the magic number? Two years on the dole? Three? Five? Let us know so we can stop pestering you and find our bootstraps.

I suspect it was because, after you left the family earth-moving business, you eventually went to work on a government paycheck for Senator Bob Kasten, and then you went to work on a government paycheck for Senator Sam Brownback, and then you went briefly into the private sector - as a speechwriter for the late Jack Kemp - before going back on a government paycheck when you were elected to the House, 13 years ago. At which point, you became the pet Big Thinker and point man for a bunch of rich people, including many - Was the wine to your liking, by the way? - of the same folks that crashed the economy in 2008, thereby creating the conditions that, much to your obvious pain and chagrin, are turning so many of your fellow citizens into dependent, complacent, will-lacking slobs, because they're taking unemployment benefits. That pretty much guaranteed you wouldn't be paying for your own dinners much any more.

Stop running away from your constituents, and siccing the cops on them back home while you're in Hawaii, and ask some guy who got laid off at the Janesville GM plant last spring, if his primary worry is that his unemployment check is turning him complacent and draining him of his incentive to look for a job that probably isn't there, because unemployment in your district is running in double digits. Is that guy a maker or a taker? Speak up. Your constituents would like to know. If they can afford a ticket, that is.

 

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+106 # Kayjay 2011-10-27 19:36
Paul Ryan like Ayn Rand are pictured in the dictionary.... under hypocrite! And it really is a shame this guy learned to read.
 
 
+56 # CL38 2011-10-28 00:28
1. I read that Ayn Rand received Social Security and Medicare when she was older!

2. How the 1% apologists twist the truth! The true 'takers' are those who shamefully feel entitled to steal from the 99% and call it free enterprise!
 
 
+18 # RSJ 2011-10-30 17:59
That's true, CL38 -- Ayn Rand's wealthy 'Objectivist' friends abandoned her, and her books weren't selling, so she was broke and riddled with cancer in her last years. A caseworker from the state of NY put her on Social Security and Medicare so that she wouldn't starve and could get treatment for her cancer when she had become an aged 'parasite' on society. Ayn decided to live rather than follow her philosophy and get out of the way of the 'producers.' As Charles Pierce indicated, we all paid to keep Ayn Rand alive while her rich followers ignored her. This is who they are, including Paul Ryan -- selfish, ignorant sociopaths, and they have taken over the Republican Party.
 
 
+51 # Sandy G 2011-10-28 05:07
Its not so much that he needs more fresh air and sunshine; a thorough, cleansing enema would help, but his head keeps getting in the way.
Anyway, we all know that now, so we can tear up his plan for prosperity, and quit listening to him.
 
 
+30 # Ken Hall 2011-10-28 05:36
He may be able to read, but he doesn't understand the words.
 
 
-105 # Martintfre 2011-10-28 07:35
Excellent analysis - insult the person because you can not refute the ideas.
 
 
+49 # GeeRob 2011-10-28 09:19
What ideas? The pablum he just spit out about the hammock has been circulating for awhile now. And who are the makers? The American people would love to be the makers instead of the people being taken. If anyone deserves an insult, it's Paul Ryan.
 
 
+40 # Sallyport 2011-10-28 10:36
Sallyport
Quoting Martintfre:
Excellent analysis - insult the person because you can not refute the ideas.

Go back and read the article again (with an open mind) and you'll find the refutation that lies in the real reason "making" has been taken away from the ex-makers: the bosses found a supply of slave labor overseas.
 
 
+21 # BradFromSalem 2011-10-28 20:18
Sally,

Martin missed the part in school where he had to understand what he read. Maybe he wasn't fortunate enough to get an excellent public school education available to persons like myself. Lower middle class urban.
 
 
+7 # maveet 2011-10-28 14:20
must you martinfre?? Must You??? are you paid, or just a sado-masochist? ??
 
 
+12 # kelly 2011-10-29 12:16
Oh, maveet, it's obviously the first. If you've ever read any of Rand's books(which it seems you and I have but martinfre has had the TP's Digest version of), then you would know that no one does anything without receiving payment in return. In Atlas Shrugged, an unfinished work at best, labor without acknowledgement was the greatest sin of all. Rand was the worst of the worst when it came to hypocrites, an illegal immigrant(at least by the Republican debators' standards) from Russia who tried to take advantage of our capitalistic system and after she found herself riddled with cancer only then did she embrace the idea of health care(social security) because she lived off of it until she died.
So, of course he must because like all of the rest of them he's clueless about what he's defending but his party says it's right.
 
 
+5 # dorianb@fuse.net 2011-10-30 16:53
Martinfre:
Do you know what you are saying and how foolish you sound? Pierce's editorial is excellent! Pierce utilizes a classic icon (Ann Rand) to enlighten his readers metaphorically on Paul Ryan's arrogant, egoistic, self-serving attitude and to poke fun at his out of time/out of style anachronistic ideas which is his way of refuting both Ryan and Ann Rand's ideas. You got lost in the editorial when you thought Pierce insulted Ryan when it was Ryan who denigrated himself by telling his audience how little he cares about them and how little he intends to do for them because HE IS A MORON!
 
 
+3 # dorianb@fuse.net 2011-10-30 17:08
One more thing, Martinfre. PAUL RYAN is no MAKER. He is a heartless TAKER and has a lot of nerve to talk to his constituents as he did and I hope they TAKE him out of Wisconsin politics and the sooner the better. Who does that little nerd think he is telling people who are unemployed and impoverished to get off the hammock? Ryan and Rand both exemplify all we should strive not to be like as human beings. It's time for some highly evolved politicians to arise on the political scene who care about the people they serve and are committed not only to helping them but recognize their duty to do no harm.
 
 
+28 # grouchy 2011-10-27 22:34
I have one question here: Are these guys for real? Good grief! What a nation of idiots we have become. Someone/somethi ng please save us from them!
 
 
+23 # readerz 2011-10-27 22:44
Companies make things overseas and then take as many profits as they can here; yes, they know who "they" are. It ain't US.
 
 
+3 # sandyboy 2011-10-27 23:27
It's obviously wrong to abuse those on welfare through no fault of their own, and I'm NOT defending Ryan. I'm on disability myself. But here in the UK the truth is we DO have, apart from those who try to find jobs that aint there, an underclass of those who stay on welfare from cradle to grave who think this is their right, who never look for work, don't want to, boast about it, have huge numbers of kids with different fathers. I'm not having a neocon rant, but there ARE people like that and the difficulty is 'fessing up to the truth without letting the Ryans tar all unemployed with the same brush. Pretending such people don't exist is a failing of us liberal types. Truth.
 
 
+24 # GeeRob 2011-10-28 09:37
Sandy, no one is saying there aren't people who abuse the system of safety nets. But implying that they are the sole reason for our economic woes without giving larger attention to G.E., Bank of America, Citigroup, Exxon Mobil, to name but a few, is disingenuous. It's like comparing the person who got a speeding ticket to the person charged with a DWI and vehicular homicide.
 
 
+1 # jon 2011-10-28 18:02
Sandy, there will always be criminals, that is why we have a justice system - you know, cops, and courts, and jails.
 
 
+29 # Cliffard 2011-10-27 23:28
I think he's right, way too many takers. If he resigns that would be one less that takes way more than his fair share.
 
 
+17 # ER444 2011-10-28 00:01
Now this is a fun article. How can we make sure tha it being read in Mr. Rand's district. I think his constituency needs to hear what he really thinks of them!!
 
 
+28 # R U Kidding Me? 2011-10-28 00:10
Great article...I've read all of Ayn Rand's books honestly...neve r liked her and couldn't understand why anybody did. But then again, I also had to read John Milton's Paradise Lost and wished it had been...lost. Paul Ryan has the soul of a gutter snipe...and I apologize to gutter snipes for the comparison.
 
 
+6 # ABen 2011-10-28 12:23
Kidding; bad comparison. Comparing Rand and Milton is like comparing a child's Big Wheel and a Mercedes Benz.
 
 
+2 # dorianb@fuse.net 2011-10-30 18:24
Ann Rand's books are not read by most people for the purpose of "liking her". Her books are iconic and she is an icon for Social Darwinism and a Fascist, atheistic governmental regime where possessions and power are more important than human beings. Ann Rand had no problem using any means to attain what she wanted. Rand is classic literature and important to read for the purpose of analysing and reflecting on the human condition. Fiction you read more quickly and often enjoy identifying with or being inspired by the characters unlike Rand who treats human beings as though they are disposable objects rather than subjects treated with the respect and dignity Martin Bubar uses as context in his classic "I and Thou".

If you tried to read "Paraadise Lost" like a novel, that's where you lost Milton. I agree with you about Paul Ryan, except it's his heart not his soul that is no bigger than a "gutter snipe". A person's heart is a reflection of their soul.
 
 
+24 # cadan 2011-10-28 00:17
Well, in fact there are takers and would-be makers in our society, but not who Ryan thinks they are.

The takers are the ones taking trillions of dollars out of our economy to fight pointless wars.

And the would-be makers are of course those who want to be productive, but because we've wrecked our economy and closed 50,000 factories, cannot be.

Ending the wars will solve the "taker" problem, and there are lots of ways we can try getting the economy going again (such as modest tariffs on imported manufactured goods).

But everybody in the ruling class seems very reluctant to do anything like this.

:(
 
 
+23 # cherylpetro 2011-10-28 02:20
I don't get what the big "brilliance" is supposed to be about Paul Ryan. He just wants the rich to have more, and poor to fall of the face of the Earth. The world is full of plenty of mean, greedy SOBs, he is just one more. The pity is that anyone gives him any power over anyone else. He is not an innocuous Eddie Munster, he is a dangerous megalomaniac, who thinks it is fine to step on others to get money and power! That is not human, is is evil in human form! I'd rather be dead than be like him!
 
 
+43 # overanddone 2011-10-28 03:53
I completely agree with Mr. Ryan. The takers have been who they are always, content to let others toil so that they may reap the benefits. Offer crumbs to workers, so that they might put loaf after loaf in the larder for them and for their next generation of takers.
The Takers are the ONE PERCENT. When they have rung the last bit of work, innovation, loyalty, hope, and enterprise out of the 99% they are willing to raise the drawbridge, thumb their nose and count there bounty, using it to exploit the next opportunity, the next countries resources, the next generations hope.
 
 
+10 # Mike Farrace 2011-10-28 09:40
Nicely put.
 
 
+8 # Terrapin 2011-10-28 17:54
Might the proper nomenclature for the 1% be PARASITES ... sociopathic, ecomomic, Spiritual PARASITES. Sucking the very marrow out of the lifeblood of America ... and the planet.
 
 
+6 # jon 2011-10-28 18:05
In short: "FEUDALISM"
 
 
+18 # moby doug 2011-10-28 04:26
Ryan, like so many of the Teahoaxers he claims to speak for, seems to have been on the gov't dole his whole life. What IS it about the state of Wisconsin (Joe McCarthy, Gov. Walker....) that spawns this scum?
 
 
+13 # Rara Avis 2011-10-28 04:27
But does he even realize Ayn Rand hated his own Catholic Church. I'd like to hear his confession to his Priest when he explains that he believes in an avowed Atheist and critic of the church he claims to also be a part of. Good family man and devout Christian you know. Hmmmmm.......nope.

The greatest takers are the people who are at the top of our society's wealth and power pyramid. The rest of us seek aid from some other entity than ourselves because the plutocracy of Wall Street has taken it all in the last thirty years.
 
 
+8 # alan17b0 2011-10-28 04:52
Send money to Robert Zerban, the guy who
is running against Ryan. For address,
point your browser at
http://www.robzerban.com/

Alan McConnell, in Silver Spring MD
 
 
+4 # Lute 2011-10-28 05:39
These idiots never tire of their own irony: On the gov't dole yet ranting against it. Puu-leez! Why doesn't someone release him our bondage? The moron is just weeping for a job in the private sector.
 
 
+11 # Andrew Hansen 2011-10-28 06:02
If Paul Ryan weren't so mendacious, I'd pity him. He doesn't even know what it means to be his own definition of "maker". As MM eloquently put it, making money off of money is lazy. Put that togeher with the greed of Wall St and you have a "taker" of the finest kind.
 
 
+14 # mwd870 2011-10-28 06:30
I can't believe Paul Ryan is a representative from Wisconsin. This point has been made, but it doesn't hurt to keep saying Paul Ryan is employed by the government, receives his paycheck and health care from the government. Paul Ryan is not representing the interests of the people of Wisconsin. He needs to go.
 
 
-32 # MidwestTom 2011-10-28 06:51
Obviously the author Charles Pierce does not live in Illinois, or if he does, he has no contact with hourly workers and employers. It is very hard to find legal American citizens who will work for $12/hour doing manual labor. Thy all claim that they can make the equivalent from the state. If on assistance in Illinois you can rent an apartment for which you pay $10/month. You get food stamps, free medical plus medical transportation via taxi; plus cash payments for your other expenses. That is why a total of 21 corporations have annopunced that they are leaving the state, and 12 have already left taking with them over 2000 jobs.
 
 
+4 # jon 2011-10-28 18:07
Tom, once in a while you come up with something insightful, but, this is BS!
 
 
+8 # BradFromSalem 2011-10-28 20:27
Tom,

That is 15K/year.

Try paying rent, food and transportation anywhere for only $480/week. Remember, those Corporations are getting tax breaks to send the jobs overseas. They are holding onto record profits because they don't have to pay workers a living wage.

Raise the minimum wage to a living wage, tax companies that outsource work, and double that tax when they outsource it overseas. Then stand back because the economy will take off.
 
 
+7 # fredboy 2011-10-28 07:00
Ryan's adoration of the atheist Rand does not surprise me. She is also the queen of the Evangelical movement. Notice I did not include the word 'Christian' as neither show any resemblance to that faith.
 
 
-42 # Martintfre 2011-10-28 07:34
Milton Friedman accurately observed that the problem with the welfare state is it is not productive enough to support the welfare state.
 
 
+12 # GeeRob 2011-10-28 12:54
Here's your welfare state:
Apple, Broadcom, Cisco, Google, Microsoft, Pfizer, Oracle and others.
These are multinationals which cut 2.9 million jobs in the U.S. and added 2.4 million jobs overseas between 2000-2009.
 
 
+8 # Ken Hall 2011-10-29 01:54
We can all see how brilliant Milton Friedman was, it's his "free market" ideology and trickle down economics that have put the US where it is now.
 
 
+11 # allie 2011-10-28 07:41
Another sheepherder the loyal conservatives follow to the promised land of whateverism. Ever notice how much Ryan and Cantor look alike......sepa rated at birth, same mold.
 
 
+11 # Capn Canard 2011-10-28 07:50
Good god almighty! Ayn Rand is like herpes, she just won't go away! I remember non nonsensical arguments about Objectivism vs. Collectivism in college(20 years ago) and I rejected it as quickly as I heard it. I would say that Rep. Paul Ryan is just as short sighted as Ayn Rand, perhaps more so. Ayn Rand? Objectivism? ... really?
 
 
+21 # feloneouscat 2011-10-28 08:11
"Makers and Takers" - that is a laugh riot.

Making money off of other people's hard work and talent is NOT being a maker, it is being a taker. Privatizing gains and socializing losses is again, being a taker.

If one were to take Ryan's arguments seriously, the people in the safety net are the wealthy and ultra-wealthy. They are the only ones whose wage is going up. They are highly dependent on a Congress that does their bidding.

Perhaps the ultra wealthy need some incentive to start creating jobs (after all, that was the whole point of cutting taxes, that it would release money to create more jobs). Apparently, in Ryan's myopic view, those out of work are out of work because, well, they just want to be taken care of. Classic, if 100% wrong.

Reagan, once described a welfare mother who lived a luxurious life in a ritzy hotel. When push came to shove, he admitted to making it all up, but argued that even if the person didn't exist, there were some elements of truth. Huh? Ryan is engaging in the same kind of lie.

The GOP is intent on dismantling the safety net (it has never been a "hammock"). If he thinks that welfare is all that great, perhaps he ought to do so. As a Congressman he certainly doesn't seem to be doing his job.
 
 
+6 # Dale 2011-10-28 08:20
NEANDERTHAL ZOMBIES IN AMERIKA INC.

Human evolution took a wrong turn.
The Neanderthals are back!
They call themselves Republicans,
But they are Zombies,
Risen from the grave of history
Now chasing Homo Sapiens
With their big sticks
Clubbing every social advance of human kind,
Torturing and killing non-white peoples in distant lands
Jailing and deporting those considered aliens in their heartland.

The Zombie Machos party with tea spiced with Texas bourbon,
Cooled with Alaska ice and served by a stylish Haus Frau.
Through their control of yellow journalism
They force those with residues of tolerance and humanity
To swallow the piss and bile of once defeated anachronisms.

The Zombies, bankrolled by their friends in corporate board rooms
Prepare to remove the Nation´s heart
And replace it with a Made-in-China machine.
They coerce and blackmail the reasonable yet complaint politicians
To appoint the plutocrats and murderous Generals to controlling government bureaucracies
And to follow their dictates to roll back social progress.
The bankers succeed in reversing the American Dream,
Full version at www.zcommunications.org/zspace/Dale Johnson
 
 
+4 # Pufferly 2011-10-28 08:23
I need help finding the man or woman who voted for this Ryan guy. This voter needs to be sentenced to 30 days in the electric chair without bathroom privileges.
 
 
+8 # humanmancalvin 2011-10-28 08:31
This is the face of divide & conquer that big biz has painted on Ryans smug mug. Amazing as it is, there will be millions of poor/middle Americans under the flag of the GOP that will continue to support this shameless huckster. The one solution: vote straight Democrat(ic).
 
 
+11 # mwd870 2011-10-28 09:00
Quoting humanmancalvin:
The one solution: vote straight Democrat(ic).


Good point - I remember when Republicans started using "democrat" as an adjective/ adverb. It sounded contrived, yet the media followed along. It is the Democratic Party.

I too wonder how millions of poor/middle Americans continue to support the GOP. It doesn't make sense. I think I will adopt the "NEVER VOTE REPUBLICAN" mantra even though most Democrats in office seem to be turning into Republicans before our eyes.
 
 
+2 # walbridge 2011-10-29 17:58
As a life long Democrat I have decided that the current party has become the old Republican Party of the 1960's or 1950's. Under Obama and Clinton it has a center-left/cen ter-right agenda. It still believes in the need for Government but is easily pushed around by the very far right Republicans. The GOP being controlled by the Tea Party CAVEmen (Citizens Against Virtually Everything)!
 
 
+8 # Kootenay Coyote 2011-10-28 09:42
Rand’s infantile philosophy collapses continually: it is a feebly disguised apology for greed & violence, & nothing more. Paul proves himself an intellectual weakling & unfit for government by espousing this stuff.
 
 
+20 # walt 2011-10-28 09:50
Matt Taibbi said it well back in April in "Rolling Stone:"

"Paul Ryan, the Republican Party’s latest entrant in the seemingly endless series of young, prickish, over-coiffed, anal-retentive deficit Robespierres they’ve sent to the political center stage in the last decade or so, has come out with his new budget plan. All of these smug little jerks look alike to me – from Ralph Reed to Eric Cantor to Jeb Hensarling to Rand Paul and now to Ryan, they all look like overgrown kids who got nipple-twisted in the halls in high school, worked as Applebee’s shift managers in college, and are now taking revenge on the world as grownups by defunding hospice care and student loans and Sesame Street. They all look like they sleep with their ties on, and keep their feet in dress socks when doing their bi-monthly duty with their wives."

How well this describes Ryan and the others!
 
 
+7 # ABen 2011-10-28 12:08
Ayn Rand's "Atlas Shrugged" is reported to be required reading for those who work for Ryan. He seems to think this juvenile piece of literary claptrap is good social analysis. Really? Rand was a rabidly anti-communist neo-facist who believed in the "morality of the free market." Her works reek of Social Darwinism and authoritarian social control by those who are strong enough(or lucky enough) to take what they want. This is the sort of simple-minded BS that engendered the "social cleansing" in 1930's Germany. I am sure that Ryan sees himself as a good patriotic American, and I don't question his sense of patriotism, only his intellect and powers of perception.
 
 
0 # sandyboy 2011-10-28 12:48
Dear GeeRob, I did say I DON'T defend Ryan!!! And am aware that the underclass are not as big a problem as the fatcats and the corrupt system we live under. But you yourself said nobody pretends there aint those who abuse welfare - trouble is that's EXACTLY what some folks seem to be doing. Ryan's a schmuck, agreed. But in my country at least we have an underclass, ever growing, and though they may not hurt us anything like as much as, say, banks and inflated defence budgets, they do exist.
 
 
+2 # GeeRob 2011-10-28 17:18
I read what you wrote and I understand where you are coming from. There will always be welfare cheats, I'm afraid. I just wanted to point out the bigger picture. The biggest welfare cheats are the huge conglomerates who pay no taxes and quite often get taxpayer money to boot.
I wish you peace and health, sandyboy.
 
 
+4 # stonecutter 2011-10-29 07:48
It's time we stopped responding in these comment streams to pernicious trolls like "martinfre" as if a coherent argument against his cretinous "positions" were warranted. I fully understand civility, but this individual deserves none of it, anymore than an Ayn Rand-brainwashe d, Koch Brothers-funded ultra-libertari an drone like Paul Ryan deserves to be representing ordinary Americans in Congress. Every time this creep martinfre comments on RSN, a dozen people rush to refute his asinine remarks, as if they merited anything but crickets. When he takes his head out of Paul Ryan's butt, let me know.
 
 
0 # kelly 2011-10-29 12:39
Thank you Stoney for your intuitive comments. Although I agree with the sentiment, I have to take the Constitutional position of free speech(sigh). Even for martyrfre.
 
 
+4 # Diane 2011-10-29 12:42
I read "Atlas Shrugged" when I was in my early 20's - sometime around 1964. I remember being disgusted by the book and, subsequently, never did read anything else she wrote.

I was barely old enough to know the difference between a Democrat and a Republican, but I was smart enough to know how utterly out of line with reality Rand's ideas were.

I shun Paul Ryan and those like-minded just as I have shunned Ayn Rand.
 
 
+3 # carioca 2011-10-30 07:06
The irony of Atlas Shrugged is that it is about a system that is breaking down due to a huge welfare state.

That a system would break down because of a huge corporate state is not part of the book but that is what is currently happening.
 
 
+3 # SeriousCitizen 2011-10-30 11:16
What industrial enterprise did Paul Ryan create? I think he is not a Steve Jobs. As a politician on the public dole, getting excessive pay and benefits for incompetent work, Paul Ryan is one of the takers, not one of the makers. Parasites, it seems, think they are contributing to prosperity.
 
 
+3 # Archie1954 2011-10-30 14:44
I've never thought of Americans as being that different as individuals from Canadians,Briti sh, French,Australi ans etc, yet all these countries have very strong safety nets that are a cut above anything the US has in place or is even considering. In Canada at least the current unemployment figure is around 7%. Most people want to work and do even with a strong safety net, so unless this Ryan fellow has information about the character of the majority of the American public that the rest of us don't, I think he is whistling dixie.
 
 
+3 # MylesJ 2011-10-31 12:08
Anytime you are confronted by the self made man argument here are two questions to ask.

Self-made man, I have only two questions to ask you but I would like to go into great details on these questions.

First, how did you conceive, gestate, and deliver yourself before you had a corporeal prescence?

Second, what was the first thing you did today when you awoke naked on the forest floor?
 
 
+2 # DMuffin 2011-10-31 20:58
Not only did the hypocrite Rand accept SS and Medicare but she was a bitter drug addled Benzidrine addict! I'm sure formulating her "ideas" with a clear head. It's no wonder Ryan and his little freak friends are drawn to her...THE PARTY OF HYPOCRISY!!! Let's get rid of these freaks, phonies and greedy liars before it's REALLY too late. They made their pact....not with the people... with that weasel lobbyist sleazy Grover Norquist and the whole FREAK SHOW!What does it say about Democracy today when you know how all the Repubs are going to vote....before they do it! They want to take everything from us even our vote. And while we're at it we REALLY need to get ride of Clarence Thomas.What a disgrace.
 

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