Friday, August 17, 2012

Paul Ryan and the 2012 Election

Paul Ryan is the Republican I respect the most but when the history of this campaign is written, it will not surprise me in the least to learn that he lobbied very hard to become vice-president or at minimum made it known that he was very open to the possibility.  He is a very bright and principled legislator who really, really wants to do the right thing for this country.  This selection is interesting on several levels; the impact it will have on the substance of this campaign for which Mitt Romney should be congratulated, the political implications and the Machiavellian benefits to Paul Ryan.

I’ve never been a fan of Mitt Romney but this selection gives me some hope that he’s not the closet leftist I've long suspected him to be.  Having Paul Ryan on the ticket will FORCE the Democratics (and Romney for that matter) to face our present and future fiscal crisis.  But the Democratics will pivot the conversation to their political benefit by taking advantage of our debilitating culture of entitlement.   They will not promise a new entitlement but rather will instill fear of losing a benefit the electorate is already “paying for” and therefore entitled to; Social Security and Medicare.

As Obama’s negative attacks picked up steam in the last few weeks Romney’s numbers started slipping, so a new campaign strategy was quickly becoming necessary.  The choice of Paul Ryan as his V.P., the one man who can explain the fiscal mess we’re in (and a possible solution), initiates a very principled strategy and a debate we should all look forward to.  And speaking of debates, I can’t wait to see Joe Biden versus Paul Ryan.  It should be very entertaining.  But understand this, while it should be much more interesting and educational than the pure gutter fight that was developing, education and campaigns typically don’t mix.  The American people, generally, prefer to wallow in ignorance.

This brings us to the main reason, which I alluded to earlier, why this approach will lead to failure for the Republicans.  The American culture has become a culture of entitlement.  And not just for Democratics; Republicans and independents are all heavily invested in the aforementioned entitlement of Social Security and Medicare.  The youngest “baby-boomer” turns 48 this year.  So, about 17 million of them will be directly affected by the changes Ryan’s plan will bring to these programs, not to mention all 48 million of generation X just behind.  Gen X and the Baby Boomers make up 85% of the workforce.  Paul Ryan, a Gen Xer is atypical of this generation whose “MO” seems center on “what’s in it for me”.

I haven’t read Ryan’s plan yet.  But it’s my guess the Democratic interpretation of it will be an easier sell than the Republican version.

The Machiavellian considerations for Paul Ryan are interesting.  He is 42 years old.  In 4 years he’ll be 46.  The Republicans only give you one shot at the Presidency so if Romney doesn’t win he’s kaput.  This campaign is win-win for Ryan.  If Obama wins re-election the country will devolve further and the electorate will surely be ready for change.  Ryan will have had 4 years to make the case and I suspect more and more people will be open to listening.  If Paul Ryan wasn’t lobbying to be selected as V.P. he should have been.

1 comment:

Ed said...

"If Obama gets back in the country will Devolve further" TJ??

OK, here is a challenge. Name a place where we are worse off than we where in January 2009 (when Obama got in) and I will show you that its not as bad as you think it is.
Please use facts and numbers if you can... It helps.