Other than all that, what has Paul Ryan ever done for us?

Within seconds of Romney’s announcement that Ryan would be his running mate, the chatter started.  Democrats expressed delight, because they see Ryan’s stance on Medicare as one they can use to portray Romney and Ryan as Satan incarnate.  A couple of years ago, they showed Ryan pushing grandma’s wheelchair off the cliff.  This year, I’m sure that they’re going to show him detonating the mushroom-shaped cloud that immolates every American over 50 . . . or is it 40?  Or maybe 30?

Republicans haven’t been much better.  They celebrated wildly because Ryan is so wonderful, and then immediately began worrying:  He’s not the right color; Wisconsin brings too few electoral votes (10), as opposed to being a major swing state; bold picks seldom end well; he’s merely a competent speaker; and, of course, he is a target because of his attempts to save Medicare from itself.

What’s funny, though, is that each person who worries about some deficit in the Ryan pick comes back with an offering to show some demographic that nobody thought about, but that Ryan can bring into the Republican fold.  Right now, Republicans remind me of the famous Monty Python Life of Brian skit, with a leader expressing horror about Roman rule, and the followers reminding him that it’s not all bad.  For those of you unfamiliar with that scene (is there anybody unfamiliar with that scene), the leader of the People’s Front of Judea rhetorically, and with great disdain, asks his follows what the Romans have ever done for them, only to learn that his followers are able to recognize Roman virtues:

In no particular order, here are some of the things Paul Ryan, by appearing on the ticket, will end up doing for us, American conservatives:

1.  As the famous six-minute video shows, Ryan has already stared Obama down once, when he wiped out Obama’s pie-in-sky rhetoric by agreeing with Obama’s goals and then showing irrefutably that the ObamaCare numbers couldn’t possibly add up:

Ryan’s math literacy didn’t actually dissuade an innumerate, ideology-driven Congress from leading us to the economic abyss.  Polls show, however, that the American people, perhaps with a math ability driven by their own pocket books, have consistently agreed with Ryan to the effect that ObamaCare is a bad thing.

2.  Ryan is popular in Wisconsin.  Despite coming from a heavily Democrat district, he keeps winning.  This matters because, with the Scott Walker statehouse protests, Wisconsin put itself right in the middle of the referendum over the direction America is taking.  Despite the union spending there, Ryan’s and Walker’s party won.  Wisconsin, then, finds itself being in the peculiar position of being a bellwether state and Ryan is one of the tocsins.

3.  Ryan may not be the most fiery speaker in the world, and we’re completely in the dark about his teleprompter skills, but he is able to articulate the American vision in a way Romney can’t.  Since this election is a referendum about American values, have someone on the ticket who is comfortable speaking about those values is huge . . . ginormous . . .incredibly important.  If you ignore Charlie Rose’s bloviations, this video shows Ryan articulating just those values:

On second thought, don’t ignore Rose. The video shows admirably, not only that Ryan espouses core constitutional values, but also that he will not let MSM bullies derail him or even fluster him.

4. Although the Democrats are crowing about Ryan being toxic to seniors, the numbers show that seniors like him.  Seniors understand two things:  The first is that Ryan will not touch entitlements that have already vested; and the second is that Ryan is holding out the last best hope for the seniors’ children and grandchildren.  Seniors, having lived long, are able to take the long view.  Also, they’re probably supportive of Ryan’s values, which resonant with those values that were still prevalent in their own youths.

5.  Young people may like him.  Not only is he charmingly youthful, but they, next to African-Americans, are the demographic most horribly harmed by the Obama economy.  Hope and change has morphed into sleeping in Mom’s garage and riding a bike to work because you can’t afford a car.  Tara Servatius has a great post at American Thinker on precisely this point.  I’ll cherry pick a few idea, but I urge you to read the whole thing:

A staggering 51 percent of those who graduated from college since 2006 don’t have a full-time job, according to a recent study.  Ironically, these are the same voters who mobbed the polls for Obama in 2008, giving him a significant part of his winning margin.

Mitt Romney could have gone black, Hispanic, or female with his vice presidential pick.  Instead, he did something smarter.  He went young.


A whopping 66 percent of voters under 30 gave Obama their votes in 2008, making the disparity between young voters and other age groups larger than in any presidential election since exit polling began in 1972. But now, four years older, many of them have entered their 30s, and a full 50 percent say Obama has failed to change the way Washington works.

Until he picked Paul Ryan this weekend, Mitt Romney had no way of credibly addressing this cohort. Now, with Ryan at his side, he does. The Ryan pick was first and foremost a nod to a generation whose problems Obama not only has never truly addressed, but rarely even acknowledges.

6. Paul Ryan has an A rating from the NRA.  Cynics will say that NRA ratings always matter to conservatives and constitutionalists, but this election is special.  This may well be the first time in which NRA members and gun rights supporters understand that the loss of the 2nd Amendment right to bear arms is no longer a hypothetical worry, something that must be guarded in the abstract, but a genuine concern.  Another four years in office will give Obama the chance to affect the Supreme Court (and that reed is sufficiently fragile already), to pack lower federal courts, and to issue more and more executive and administrative orders curtailing the American right to bear arms.  Mitt Romney has waffled on this point, although he’s better than Obama; Ryan, as I said, is an “A.”

7.  There’s nothing about Ryan that will scare away the Jews.  That is, if Jews were already leaning away from Obama, Ryan won’t change that.  Israel hasn’t been an issue for him, but every indication is that, as is true for most Republicans, he’s a friend to Israel.

8.  Yes, Paul Ryan is a Tea Party candidate — and that’s a good thingAs Rick Richman points out, 2010 wasn’t the result of a few crazy people in George Washington costumes.  The wave election that resulted in conservative candidates winning races in every corner of America, from small towns to the federal government, meant that many more people than just Tea Partiers looked at the Ryan world view and found it good.  There’s no reason to believe that, in the face of Obama’s continued attacks on traditional American values, politics, national security, etc., people will have become disaffected from that Ryan-esque world view.

Those are just a few of the nice things I remember reading about Paul Ryan.  I’m sure you can think of more.

I’ll just ask worried Republicans one thing:  Other than being a budget wizard who’s not afraid of Barack Obama; being popular in a bellwether state; having the ability to articulate conservative values; appealing to seniors; holding out true, not hyped, hope for young voters; getting an A rating from the NRA; not scaring Jews; and representing a rising tide of American conservativism, what has Paul Ryan ever done for us?

Be Sociable, Share!
  • JKB

    Book, I sent you a link to this but this is a great video of the youth pining for the “Obama that they used to know” youtube…watch?v=yJnAp3YxCCw&feature=related 

    The girl has a great opening line that is hard to catch but it is a good question: “Sometimes I think a Peace Prize winner shouldn’t have a Kill List.”  They go on to lament all the promises like closing GITMO, etc. that Obama abandoned.  

    BTW, we should really start a meme questioning the Norwegians over their Peace Prize award to a man who would build a kill list and send drones to attack from the sky

  • Gringo

    BTW, we should really start a meme questioning the Norwegians over their Peace Prize award to a man who would build a kill list and send drones to attack from the sky
    Yes, that would embarrass the Norwegians. We should be glad that Obama, by using killer drones, showed the true value of the Peace Prize.

  • Duchess of Austin

    Oh please.  The Norwegians gave Obama a Peace Prize for nothing more than *not* being George Bush.  Maybe the secondary reason was so that they can say they have a “sort of” black man on their list of winners (Hey Sven, we honored the first BLACK President!!!! Whooohoo!).  Other than that?  Giving Obama a Peace Prize made them look more out of touch and stupid than giving one to Yassir Arafat.  Give me a freaking break.  I would wager Alfred Nobel is spinning in his grave.  A Nobel prize isn’t worth the powder to blow it up anymore.  Frankly, I don’t give a rat’s patoot what the Europeans think, anyway.  Their most conservative party is far to the left of our most hard core lefties.  Sheesh.  Who cares?
    Maybe the Romney Team just decided that this election is so important, they couldn’t play it safe.  Remember, we had to suffer through Jimmy Carter to get Ronald Reagan, and maybe Romney wants to actually fill Reagan’s shoes in a way that might have made him proud.  I, for one, congratulate him!  I’m seeing what I wanted to see and what I prescribed in an earlier thread.  An aggressive, no holds barred, IN-YOUR-DAMN-FACE-OBAMA campaign and I’m excited about an election for the first time in many years!  Yay team!  Way to fire up the base!  The slavering, slobbering press won’t be able to savage Paul Ryan the way they did it to Sarah Palin this time around.  Not that they won’t try, mind you, but I’m pretty sure Messrs. Ryan and Romney will, by their combined intelligence and integrity, show up the mainstream press as the water carrying stooges that they are, and they will do it with humor and panache.  Again…yay team!
    Obama is a colossal failure as President and it won’t take much to make that as plain as the noses on most of our faces….even the squishy middle.  I suspect that Obama is going to have to go so negative nuclear that he will turn them off anyway, because “I got Bin Laden” only goes so far.  People are going to want to hear *specifics” this time, not a bunch of amorphous “hopey changey” crap.  Enter Paul Ryan…the policy wonk with a gift for putting his ideas into plain English.
    Pass the popcorn…with butter on it!

  • Wolf Howling

    I think No. 8 is by far the biggest point there, BWR.  The whole Tea Party movement and the wave election of 2010 showed that America is, for the first time since FDR ascended, ready to listen to an adult conversation on the hard choices.  My biggest concern with Romney was that he would be a moderate who would not make the hard choices and systemic changes we need to return the country to even a semblance of the free nation envisioned by our Founding Fathers.  The Ryan selection sends a huge message to a highly energized base that reality may, thankfully, be otherwise.  

    How the left think that the Ryan choice plays into their wheelhouse says a tremendous amount about them.  It is no secret that they plan to demagogue Ryan and Romney on the “Ryan budget.”  They don’t seem to realize that the world, and our corner of it in particular, has changed.  It is as if 2010 never happened.  You’ve made the point on your blog, several times, that there is nothing “progressive” about the left, that they are irrevocably wedded to 1930’s statism and cannot adapt.  I think Democrat glee at the Ryan pick certainly frames your point in spades.  And just as countless species have died off because they failed to adapt to changing conditions, the hard left Democrats may find themselves on the edge of an extinction event in 2012.  

    How much of the Democrat glee at the Ryan pick is pure posturing for the cameras – I would say very little.  It becomes ever clearer that the left operates in a bubble, where there are no competing ideas, only right ones (theirs, of course) and wrong ones, not worthy of anything other than derision and demonization.  

    Romney may head the ticket, but Ryan now defines it.   Thus, given all of the above, the 2012 election is shaping up to be the biggest “choice” election for our nation since 1860, and every bit as meaningful to the future of our nation.  


  • http://bigfoodetc.blogspot.com Marica

    My two cents… . The choice makes sense, given where we are. It’s going to take a lot longer than four (eight?) years to fix what’s wrong. As everyone here knows full well, what’s wrong goes well beyond math. Case in point. Towns and cities here in Mississippi are considering making it illegal to show your undies in public, i.e., “Pull up your pants, son!” How is this the proper function of any level of government? You cannot legislate morality. Duh. To that end, I compared Ryan & Ron Paul’s voting record. (Take it easy, folks!) Results are here: http://www.opencongress.org/people/compare?person1=400351&person2=400311&representatives=true

    Ryan votes with party 93%; Paul, 73%. (For what it’s worth, Ryan abstains 0% while Paul does 35%. Surprised me.) They have voted the same 77%. And of course, a lot of those differences are classic Paul votes. Even still, it’s instructive to note the differences.  

    I bring this up because I worry that if R&R win– and God knows I pray they do– we drop our guard, utter a collective “Whew” and get back to our pre-2008 mindsets.  

    “Thus, given all of the above, the 2012 election is shaping up to be the biggest “choice” election for our nation since 1860, and every bit as meaningful to the future of our nation.”   

    You can say that again!

  • Jose

    Paul Ryan, Avid Deer Hunter
    and regular guy, at least by the standards of where I’m from.
    ” I was planting clover this past weekend at my mom’s place in a rural part of Wisconsin. Yes, deer like to eat clover.”

  • Libby

    The Democrats don’t realize that hitting Ryan on his budget or on Medicare is wandering into the briar patch. Suddenly they find themselves discussing policy, and having to defend Obama’s years without a budget & stealing from Medicare to fund Obamacare, instead of Bain, Romney’s tax returns, the ‘war on women’, immigration, etc.
    Thank you for putting Ryan’s take-down of Obamacare at the Healthcare Summit as #1. There’s Ryan, assertively, but with no hostility, absolutely demolishing everything that Obama had been saying for months in all of his roadshow speeches and press conferences. With facts, simply stated, in under 6 minutes. This really got under Obama’s skin (you can see it in his glare), and it led to Obama’s petty put down of Ryan (after inviting him to sit in the front row) when he spoke at the Republican retreat. Along with picking a VP candidate from WI – the site of the Left’s biggest and ugliest defeat in decades – picking someone that so unnerves Obama shows that Romney knows how to push Obama’s buttons. Nice!

  • Oldflyer

    Borrowing from a comment I made on another forum of thoughtful folks:
    “I believe that by picking Ryan, Romney is demonstrating faith that the American electorate can recognize truth, will respect truth, and will accept hard reality.
    I fear that he is too optimistic.”
    Despite my niggling fears (no, that is not a racist statement),  I am delighted with the choice.  If the electorate is ever going to rise to the challenge, this is the year to do so.

  • Mike Devx

    If the Democrats could demagogue Ryan in 2010, they can do it again.  One can hope for diminishing returns, though.  And perhaps, having had two more years of on and off discussion of ObamaCare, the rising debt, and having heard a few more things about the *real* Ryan plan, maybe the independents are a little smarter two years later.  I don’t give a DAMN what the 35% hard core liberals think.  They don’t matter one bit.  They’ll vote Obama no matter what.  Let em bitch and moan and play their games.  It’s that 30% in the middle who are mostly conservative in outlook, but easily swayed by propaganda, where the battle is.

    My favorite impression of Ryan that you didn’t list, Book:  He doesn’t ever get flustered.  More importantly, he NEVER gets angry.  Anger comes across horribly on the TV camera and the TV set.  Ryan simply never makes that mistake.  Yet he still manages to always come across and sincere and with a certain passion for his convictions.

    He’s very effective.  Unlike Obama, you never get sick of Ryan on TV.

    Finally, Obama is the Friday night date from hell: A week and two dates later, the girl is wondering, whatever did I *see* in this loser?  After a week of him I want him to shut UP and just go away.  He’s making me nauseated!  Ryan, on the other hand, after a week and three dates, the girl is impressed, thinks he’s the one, wants to take him home not only to Mom, but to the entire every-ten-year whole family reunion, and is already pretty sure he’s the one for the rest of her life.  He’s the good guy, whose word is gold, whose handshake deal can be trusted, who will never, ever throw anyone under the bus, and won’t be caught dead playing one round of golf, let alone two hundred rounds of golf, while people are suffering.

  • bizcor

    I believe the 2010 election was the precursor to 2012. Obama and his minions believe it too. They have “real” poll numbers, not the ones we are privy too. They know they are way behind which is why they are being so dirty in this campaign. It is their only option at this point however, they will do anything to turn it around. Out and out lying is immoral. My fear is they will stoop to illegal means to win. In the past they have used voter fraud to win. This time around that may not be enough and they will have to use something more extreme. Obama is a mere pawn in the effort, the left wants this country on its knees so they can achieve their “New World Order”. Keep your powder dry you may literally need it. I hope not but it is what has kept this country free this long. The founders knew this when they wrote the 2nd amendment. The circumstances surrounding this election are very much like those of 1776 and 1860.

    I was listening to Rush the other day and he stated that for the first time in his life he is hardly excited by the upcoming football season. (If you listen to him at all you know he is an ardent football fan.) As an ardent baseball fan I understand this because for the last two seasons I haven’t been able get excited about baseball. While watching a game I think how irrelevant my team’s winning or losing is. The United States of America is at the precipice. We have to win this election to begin the turn around. Then we have to win the next 20 elections to get back on track. We can’t stop because the left won’t.

  • Pingback: Watcher of Weasels » Watcher’s Council Nominations..Ryan’s Hope Edition()

  • Pingback: GayPatriot » Watcher of Weasels — Ides of August nominations()

  • Pingback: The Colossus of Rhodey()

  • Pingback: Watcher’s Council Nominations … Ryan’s Hope Edition | therightplanet.com()

  • Pingback: This Week’s Watcher’s Council Nominations | therightplanet.com()

  • Pingback: Watcher’s Council Nominations… Ryan’s Hope Edition | askmarion()

  • Pingback: Watcher’s Council Nominations..Ryan’s Hope Edition | Virginia Right!()

  • Pingback: Trevor Loudon's New Zeal Blog()

  • Pingback: Watcher’s Council Nominations – Ryan’s Hope Edition | Independent Sentinel()

  • Sara Noble

    Having men with ideas is refreshing. Great article.

  • Pingback: Bookworm Room » This week’s Watcher of Weasels submissions()

  • Pingback: Watcher of Weasels Nominations – Ryan’s Hope Edition | Maggie's Notebook()

  • Pingback: Rising IQs |()

  • Pingback: Watcher of Weasels » The Council Has Spoken!! This Weeks’ Watchers Council Results()

  • Pingback: The Council Has Spoken!! This Weeks’ Watchers Council Results | therightplanet.com()

  • Pingback: The Council Has Spoken!! This Weeks’ Watchers Council Results | Virginia Right!()

  • Pingback: The Colossus of Rhodey()

  • Pingback: Trevor Loudon's New Zeal Blog()

  • Pingback: GayPatriot » Watcher of Weasels Winners — August 17 ’12 Edition()

  • Pingback: The Council Has Spoken! This Week’s Watchers Council Results | Independent Sentinel()

  • Pingback: Rhymes With Right()

  • lethargic

    Re: #4 … in my experience, most seniors actually WERE taught math in school, and so have no trouble at all following Paul Ryan’s logic and common sense.  In contrast, they can see that Bammbamm and his minions are just huffing smoke and twirling mirrors.  I also think that most seniors care more about their children and grandchildren than they do about themselves … certainly as a middle-aged person, I would take the bullet for my children … who are these seniors in the ads who are so adamant about take-take-taking regardless of the harm to their little grandkids … I don’t know these people …

  • Pingback: Bookworm Room » Watcher’s Council winners for August 17, 2012()

  • Pingback: The Razor » Blog Archive » The Council Has Spoken: Aug 24, 2012()