Man Up, Poors! Paul Ryan Is Nobody’s Fool
Mr Big Stuff (aka Rep. Ryan), Congress’ self-apointed Poors Troll, sent his personal drone out over a few American urban centers and determined “ya got trouble, right here in River City.”
This is how Ryan sees it:
We have got this tailspin of culture, in our inner cities in particular, of men not working and just generations of men not even thinking about working or learning to value the culture of work, so there is a real culture problem here that has to be dealt with.
In case that sounds like political argle-bargle to you, Laura Clawson, a linguist with expertise in political argle-bargle over at Markos’ Place offered up this helpful translation:
The problem is “in our inner cities” (where the black people live) where men (black men) are “not even thinking about working.” It’s a “real culture problem” (black culture).
Thank you, Laura. That’s what I thought. Now that we’re all post-racist it hardly seems necessary to speak in tongues about racism, anymore, but Mr Ryan is, after all, a conservative. So, maybe he’s not ready to shed his political correctness for that bold leap into 21st century overt racism, yet.
Of course, the well-read and wonktastic, Rep Ryan (R-Planet Derp) supported his argle-bargle with citations from Charles Murray. Evidently, Ryan’s scholarly quest has advanced from Ayn “Queen of Mean” Rand’s dystopic, but not overtly “colorful” maunderings, to Murray, a white nationalist specializing in pseudo-scientific studies that “prove” that social inequality is caused by genetic inferiority.
A huge number of well-meaning whites fear that they are closet racists, and this book tells them they are not. It’s going to make them feel better about things they already think but do not know how to say.
—regarding his book, Losing Ground, quoted in “Daring Research or Social Science Pornography?: Charles Murray,” The New York Times Magazine, 1994
Well, I have good news and bad news, Mr Ryan—if you are taken in by this sophomoric pseudo-sociological crap you are a lot dumber than you come across (and that’s saying something) but you’re no closet racist. You’re an out and about, down and dirty hardcore bigot. And no amount of P90X, deer-stalking and catfish noodling is ever going to make you a man, let alone a principled man.
Now that Ryan has decided to take off the gloves and “call a spade a spade” as it were, I think it’s high time that this self-absorbed, smug, little creep is turned out of his congressional “hammock” and made to look for a real job—without his mama’s help.
Despite the inspirational and squeaky clean Ryanbio that you find on the Google these days, just a short hop on the Wayback machine tells us that far from the American Dreaming go-getter that Ryan has concocted he was actually a slackerati poster child who had to be whipped into shape because his mom was afraid he was going to become a ski-bum.
It was Mom’s idea to trade on the family fame and fortune in Janesville, WI to get her feckless boy onto the federal payroll:
Douglas’ role in her son’s political career goes back to his first run for Congress when he was just in his 20s. She used to drive him around his Wisconsin district during that first campaign, and she helped schedule his appointments and public appearances. She knows the game. And she’s good at it.
Sound like a self-starter to you? Here’s Ryan’s own inspirational version of Young Paul:
“I don’t know about you, but when I was growing up, when I was flipping burgers at McDonald’s, when I was standing in front of that big Hobart machine washing dishes, or waiting tables, I never thought of myself as stuck in some station in life,” Ryan recently told a crowd at a high school in suburban Denver. “I thought to myself, I’m the American dream on the path or journey so that I can find happiness however I define it myself.”
. . . And yet Ryan, 42, was born into one of the most prominent families in Janesville, Wis., the son of a successful attorney and the grandson of the top federal prosecutor for the western region of the state. Ryan grew up in a big Colonial house on a wooded lot, and his extended clan includes investment managers, corporate executives and owners of major construction companies.
Even a Ryan spokesman admitted:
. . . I don’t know that I’d say it’s [Ryan’s bio] a message of humble beginnings. Rather a message of hard work and upward mobility.
Personally, I’d question the “hard work” bit, myself . . .
Ryan’s rise to political power and financial stability was boosted by family connections and wealth. The larger Ryan family has repeatedly helped the candidate along in his career, giving him a job when he needed one and piling up tens of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions.
In the year after his father’s death, Ryan’s maternal grandmother set up the Ryan-Hutter Investment Partnership, which remains an important part of Ryan’s finances with assets of up to half a million dollars, according to the congressman’s 2011 financial disclosure statement. Ryan continues as the general partner running the entity for the family.
Court records indicate Ryan’s father left a probate estate of $428,000, though the number of assets existing outside the will or the probate remains unknown. Ryan was to receive $50,000 when he turned 30. The will leaves the bulk of the estate to Ryan’s mother, who now lives in an oceanfront condo in Florida.
In addition to the Ryan-Hutter Investment Partnership, Ryan also benefits from another family entity, Ryan Limited Partnership, which was established in March 1995 by an aunt. Ryan’s share of that is worth up to $500,000. Ryan makes no investment decisions in either partnership, the campaign spokesman said.
By the time Ryan had entered Congress in 1999 at the age of 28 and filed his first disclosure statement, he reported assets between $167,000 and $1.3 million, owned a home and had three rental units.
The next year, Ryan married Janna Little, a tax attorney and K Street lobbyist, and his income skyrocketed. (Ryan reported gross income of $323,416 in 2011.)
Of the Ryans’ maximum estimated assets of $7.6 million, Janna’s holdings account for about $6.5 million. She is the daughter of Dan and Prudence Little, two lawyers in Madill, Okla., who over the years have overseen a vast network of land and oil and gas mineral rights in the Red River area straddling southern Oklahoma and northern Texas.
Ryan and his family now live in a Georgian Revival home in Janesville that was once owned by the president of the Parker Pen Co. and former chairman of the state Republican Party. The congressman’s aunt, uncle, cousin and brother all live within blocks of his home in the historic Courthouse Hill district.
The Paul Ryan “success” story is one of entitlement, family connections, financial security, marrying money and sucking on the government teat for his entire working life. Actually, if anyone in this society is a parasite, it’s a guy like Paul Ryan because he’s unlikely to use his office to do anything truly constructive, for the American people.
Over the years that Ryan has been in Congress, he has managed to paint himself into a corner as a political and sociological visionary of superhuman conviction - in other words, Ryan is doctrinaire, making it virtually impossible for him ever to admit that he’s wrong or change his course. It’s a typical frat-boy double-bind and, in a 40-something year old congressman, a definite sign of arrested development and not very attractive.
Ryan is now busily trying to justify inequality and, consequently, his agenda to visit even greater misery on the growing numbers of Americans who are deemed to not deserve a place at the conservatives’ table.
I don’t doubt that Ryan may feel some mild unease over the plight of the poor when he parachutes in for a look around. But his conclusions, once he’s had a look, are silly, simplistic and/or obstinately blind.
One either goes into public service to make things better, or not . . . and, a public servant who refuses to see problems objectively is very likely to exacerbate, not solve, those problems.
Paul Ryans “Conservative Vision” is a two-dimensional Hieronymus Bosch cartoon, based on a self-guided tour of fringe “philosophy” that should offend conservatives every bit as much as the rest of us.
Evidently, Paul Ryan had time to sleep on it and realize that he was simply “inarticulate” when he said that our society is in a “tailspin of culture” and “generations of men not even thinking about working or learning to value the culture of work,” He explains that he sees this as a “Society As a Whole tailspin” rather than a blah thing. The “race” thought never entered his head and it was only a coincidence that he supported his comments by citing a white supremacist on the issue.
Someone should tell the man that he doesn’t have to go risking life and limb dropping into grubby urban centers to research poverty, though. There are plenty of poors to observe in the suburbs these days and oodles of masochistic poors in southern Red States only too happy to vote against their own interests, and support his Path to Prosperity budget in the hope that the South Shall Rise Again!.
Ryan still believes in his “poverty trap,” however, and that good-paying, free-market jobs, generated by more and better corporate welfare, are the answer.
Sure! he would think that because all Republicans can ever think about is Job Creation! Job Creation! Job Creation. Sometimes I wish they could just drop the obsession with creating so many jobs for one minute and concentrate on my gynecological welfare.